After Daniel Elkins, a vampire hunter (guest star Terence Kelly) and John’s (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) mentor, is murdered, Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean (Jensen Ackles) are surprised when John himself shows up to solve the case. John discovers the vampires have taken an antique gun, which has the power to kill all supernatural beings. The Winchester family sets out to retrieve the gun from the vampires so they can use it to kill the demon that took Sam and Dean’s mother.
The episode was written by Cathryn Humphris & John Shiban and directed by Tony Wharmby.
Old man Elkins pores over a Big Book O’ Spookiness just like Papa Winchester’s in a bar. A bunch of hot young leather-clad people enter, and Elkins flees back to his house. The girl from the group meets him there, and he stabs her in the chest. She doesn’t seem to mind. Elkins barricades himself in his study and pulls an old gun out of a safe. Before he can use it, two more biker-types burst through the skylights. The girl takes the gun, and her henchmen – well, it looks like they’re making a meal of Elkins.
The guys find a message scratched in Elkin’s floor. It’s a post office box number. They break into the box and find a letter addressed to J.W. – for John Winchester? Before they can open it, Papa Winchester himself appears. John reads the letter and asks the guys if they saw a gun. When they say no, he tells them they’ve got to pick up the trail. Sam is incredulous – now you want us to come with you? The gun is important, John replies. It’s a legendary weapon that can kill absolutely anything – including the demon who killed their mother.
Elkins was taken down by what he hunted best – vampires. The guys are shocked – they thought vamps were a myth! John thought they were extinct, killed off by Elkins and the rest. The bad news: Most vampire lore is crap – sunlight hurts them, but they don’t burn up, and they aren’t afraid of crosses or garlic. And forget a stake through the heart – the only way to kill a vamp is to behead it.
John monitors the police bands and gets wind of the vamps newest victims, a couple who reported a body on the road, but who had disappeared by the time the cops got there. The vamps took the couple back to their barn. Sam is skeptical – how does John know all of this? – but John just wants them to snap to his orders. Dean denies it bothers him, but Sam fumes and finally snaps. He confronts John, who is unwilling to share. Sam mutters that this is why he left, and the fight is on. You left us when we needed you! John yells. You told me to never come back, and you’re just pissed that you can’t control me anymore! Sam replies. Dean finally breaks them up, but it’s not looking pretty.
The Winchesters track the vamps down and decide to sneak into the barn while they’re sleeping. John goes after the gun, while Dean tries to free the food supply and Sam tries to save the woman. Mistake – she’s already been turned, and she wakes up the rest of the vamps. They get away, but the vamps now have their scent, and they’ll hunt them for the rest of their lives.
While Dean is off on an errand at the morgue, John tells Sam that he started a college fund for the boys when they were born. He wanted a different life for them. But when Mary died, he got so focused on hunting that he stopped being a father and started being a drill sergeant. When Sam left, all he could think about that Sam wouldn’t be safe. He and Sam make up. Dean returns with a bottle of fluid, then takes the role of bait. When the vamps come to get him, John and Sam shoot them with arrows soaked in dead men’s blood, which poisons and weakens vampires. John takes the girl hostage and cuts off the other vamp’s head.
John plans to use the vampire girl as a hostage in exchange for the gun. He orders the guys to leave the area as soon as they’ve cleaned out the vamp’s lair. Sam is pissed – you still won’t let us come with you to hunt mom’s killer! John claims he just wants to protect the guys, but Dean calls him on it – he’s sent them after big scary monsters, so the protection story sounds dubious. John admits that he just can’t stand the thought of losing his sons to the demon. Dean argues that they’re stronger fighting together, but John is unmoved. He orders them out of the area.
John lures the vamps away from their lair with the girl, then offers to exchange her for the gun. The head vamp agrees, but the girl recovers from the blood sickness before John can pick up the gun. She flings him over the car. It looks bad form John, but Sam and Dean ignored his orders and rush to the rescue. The head vamp gets his hands on Sam. Don’t we have as much right to live as you do? he asks Dean. John disagrees — he shoots the head vamp with the gun. The vamp dies spectacularly. The other vamps run away.
John is pissed that the guys ignored a direct order, but Dean reminds him that they saved his ass. John finally acknowledges that they’re stronger as a family. They’ll fight the big bad together.
Jeffrey Dean Morgan
as John Winchester
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as Daniel Elkins
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Official Episode Stills:
Episode Screen Caps:
“Strange Face of Love” by Tito and Tarantula
“House is Rocking” by Stevie Ray Vaughan
Sam: You were the one who said “Don’t come back,” Dad. You’re the one who closed that door, not me! You were just pissed off you couldn’t control me anymore!
Sam: Hey, there’s salt over here. Right inside the door.
Dean: You mean like “protection against demons” salt? Or, uh, “oops I spilled the popcorn” salt?
Dean: So they’re really not afraid of the sun.
John: Direct sunlight hurts like a nasty sunburn. The only way to kill ’em is by beheading…and yeah they sleep during the day, but it doesn’t mean they won’t wake up.
Kate: Car trouble? Let me give you a lift. Take you back to my place.
Dean: Ah, I’ll pass. I usually draw the line at necrophilia.
Kate: Ooh! (picks Dean up with one hand)
Dean: I don’t normally get this friendly until the second date…
Kate: You know, we could have some fun. I always like to make new friends.
Dean: Sorry, don’t really stay with a chick that long, definitely not eternity.
Dean: Vampires. Gets funnier every time I hear it!
Girl: So you’re just going to kill me?
Kate: Oh no, we’re going to take you so high you’re never going to come down.
John: Scares the hell out of me. You two are all I’ve got. Well, I guess we are stronger as a family. So, we go after this damn thing…together.
Sam and Dean: Yes, sir.
John: So boys.
Sam: Yes, sir.
John: You ignored a direct order back there.
Sam: Yes, sir.
Dean: Yeah, but we saved your ass.
John: You’re right.
Dean: I am?
Sam: You can’t treat us like this.
John: Like what?
Sam: Like children.
John: You are my children. I’m trying to keep you safe.
Dean: Dad, all due respect, but that’s a bunch of crap.
John: Excuse me?
Sam: Hey, Dad, whatever happened to that college fund?
John: Spent it on ammo.
John: Get back in the car.
John: I said, get back in the car.
Sam: Yeah. And I said no.
John: Dean, why don’t you touch up your car, before you get rust. I wouldn’t have given you the damn thing if I thought you were going to ruin it.
Sam: Hey, there’s salt over here, right inside the door.
Dean: You mean like “protection against demons” salt or “oops, I spilled the popcorn” salt?
If dead men’s blood incapacitates vampires, why did the team not take blood-soaked arrows as well as machetes when first entering the nest?
When Dean and Sam run out of the vampire nest you can see Sam holding the machete in his right hand, but when they get to the cars he doesn’t have it. He doesn’t have it when they are inside the nest either.
When we first see John outside the Impala, the window is completely closed, the when John gets in the car, the window is open about halfway, and when John leaves and talks to Dean through the window, the window is open almost all the way.
When telling the legend of the Colt, John says it was made the same night in 1835 when all the men died at the Alamo. The Battle of the Alamo, however, occurred in 1836.
Daniel’s last name was given as Elkins. However, he was listed as D. Elkin in the journal.
The band Tito and Tarantula whose song “Strange Face of Love” is featured in the show performs as the vampire band in the strip club in Robert Rodriguez’s vampire/action film From Dusk Til Dawn.
Gun Inscription: Non timebo mala.
Translates from Latin as “I will fear no evil”; referencing the Bible and Psalm 23.
Dean: Sounds more like That’s Incredible than Twilight Zone.
Referring to two TV shows – That’s Incredible was a reality show that looked at amazing people. Twilight Zone in its three different incarnations told stories of the supernatural.
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