Supernatural – Advanced Thanatolgy
By: Stacy Miller
Grand Junction Colorado. Two teen boys have their video camera ready as they enter the abandoned Dr. A. Meadows Mental Health Center. “We’re going to get so many hits,” one of the teens says. Like Season One episode “Asylum,” it looks like these boys are looking for ghosts in all the wrong places. They are Shawn (Seth Isaac Johnson) and Evan (Josh Hudniuk). Evan tells Shawn the story of the freaky doctor who was arrested for cutting his patients’ skulls open. Shawn, who is operating the video camera, wants to leave. Evan teases that Shawn is scared as they continue looking around and filming. Evan takes a souvenir from the place and puts it in Shawn’s bag. Trespassing and stealing? I’m thinking this is NOT going to turn out well. The boys heard a noise and are soon attacked by a drill wielding spirit. Poor Evan meets a grisly fate while Shawn will probably be traumatized for life. Shawn hightails it out of there, running as though his life depends on it because it probably does.
At the Men of Letters bunker, Dean (Jensen Ackles) is making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Sam (Jared Padalecki) enters the room and noticing Dean’s sandwich, says “P B & J for breakfast strong work. You want a beer with that?” Sam offers his brother, which surprises Dean enough to ask what’s going on with Sam. Usually Sam is the one eating salads and on occasion, jogging. Now, not only is his little brother not bitching about Dean’s choice of the most important meal of the day, but he’s encouraging drinking before noon? Sam changes the subject by telling Dean about a possible case involving a kid that was killed in Grand Junction and his surviving friend only saying one word: monster. Sam also suggests they leave Jack (Alexander Calvert) there as Jack has been keeping himself busy with Sam’s old Final Fantasy games. So it’s off to Colorado for the Winchester boys.
Posing as Detectives Page and Plant, Sam and Dean go to the Raider house and asks Shawn’s mom Penny (Alisen Down) to speak with her son. Penny tells the detectives that her son hasn’t spoken since the incident. While Sam stays behind with Penny, Dean goes upstairs to talk with Shawn. But like his mother said, Shawn isn’t speaking. So Dean does all the talking. He says that he knows how it is to see monsters and how once you’ve seen them, sometimes they never go away. “You see them when you close your eyes, you see them in your dreams.” But Dean assures that they (he and Sam) are the ones that stop monsters. “They’re scared of us,” Dean says. Penny mentions to Sam that Evan is missing. She adds that Evan and Shawn and their friend Mike were inseparable, so the detectives may want to question Mike.
Sam and Dean leave the Raider house. Pulling up to their hotel The Royal Towers, Sam suggests that they talk with Mike in the morning and check out a strip club called The Clam Diver which he read got great reviews. Okay, that’s enough…Dean KNOWS something has to be wrong with Sam now. Let consider Sam’s behavior all day: He gave Dean a beer for breakfast, let Dean be Agent Page (which Sam always likes to be), didn’t complain about Dean’s blaring music and ordered chili fries when they stopped for lunch. And now Sam wants to go to a strip club? Sam hates strips clubs…the last time they went to one, he spend the time trying to convince the stripper to go to nursing school! Sam admits that he’s trying to be nice because Dean told him that he (Dean) didn’t believe in anything and Sam wants to help Dean believe in things again. Dean reminds Sam that he (Dean) has been down this road before and has always been able to climb out with the help of the three ‘Bs’ which are bullets, booze and bacon.
Shawn has a nightmare and Penny comforts him then leaves the room. But it’s more than a dream. A ghost wearing a mask and holding a drill appears. Shawn screams.
The next morning, Sam’s alarm wakes him at 8:01. He looks over to the other bed but Dean is not in it. In fact, it looks unslept in. Where Dean? Sleeping and snoring on the floor with a women’s bra over his face. I guess a fun time was had by Dean Winchester after all! Sam takes the car keys and leaves the hotel.
He goes to see Evan and Shawn’s friend Mike (Micah Solis). Sam questions Mike and learns that Evan dared Mike and Shawn to go to the old Meadows place, but Mike got scared and refused to come. When he learns that Evan is missing, Mike just thinks that his friend is off hiding somewhere. Sam returns to the hotel where he finds Dean loading up on the complimentary breakfast. Sam tells Dean about his conversation with Mike and shows his brother information on Dr. Avery Meadows, who worked in Grand Junction in the 60s and treated his patients by lobotomizing them. Those that lived, Dr. Meadows kept in his house to experiment on. When the authorities found out what he was doing, Dr. Meadows was tried and executed. Dr. Meadows wore a mask while he worked on his patients for fear of getting germs and when he died, it couldn’t be removed. Sam wonders whether Dr. Creepy is back because he made a demon deal while Dean reasons that maybe Meadows wasn’t even human. Sam and Dean return to the Raider house. Penny tells them that Shawn is gone.
Next, Sam and Dean go to the Meadows house where they are attacked by the ghost of Dr. Meadows. They are able to get rid of the ghost with rock salt but soon learn there are other spirits in the house, probably those of the patients Meadows killed. But Sam and Dean can’t see these ghost as usual. They reason maybe the spirits are trapped in the veil, so they need to burn the bodies. Dean decides that he needs to kill himself and pull out a syringe. He tells Sam that one syringe will stop the heart and the other will start it up again. “Look we can’t talk to them on this side of the veil so I’m going to go to the other side and work my way through all these Caspers until we find out where this freak hid the bodies,” Dean tells Sam. But Sam thinks killing himself is a huge risk for his brother to take. It’s not like he hasn’t done it before, reminds Dean. Sam puts salt around his brother’s body while Dean makes his way through the veil. He sees one ghost dude and a woman named Jessica (Kayla Stanton), who tells him that she’s there to take him to his next life. Dean tells her that he’s a little busy right now. Jessica goes to a room where there are book shelves labeled ‘W’ with a stack of books on them. “Dean Winchester is in the veil,” Jessica says. Dean runs into ghost dude again but the spirit still isn’t talking. “I know you, you’re the FBI guy from my house,” a voice says. It is Shawn, who is dead and asks whether Dean is dead too. “What happened to you?” Dean asks Shawn. We see that Dr. Meadows killed and possessed Shawn. Shawn tells Dean how he (Shawn) misses his mom but can’t leave the house. Dean promises that he’ll help Shawn go to a better place, but Shawn needs to tell him where the doctor hid his (Shawn) body. Armed with the information, ghost Dean returns to Sam so his brother can revive him. But it’s not working. All Dean can do is helpless watch his brother hovering over his (Dean) dead body trying to bring Dean back to live. “Hey Dean,” a familiar voice says. “Billie,” is Dean’s response in seeing the Reaper, who is now wearing a new outfit and carrying a scythe. “We need to talk,” Billie (Lisa Berry) tells Dean. Sam is still frantically trying to revive Dean. “And that’s enough of that,” Billie says, freezing the scene. Dean can’t believe Billie is standing before him because he saw Castiel (Misha Collins) kill her. “And how’s that working out for him?” Billie asks. She thinks it’s funny to hear a Winchester talking about the finality of death. Billie explains that when you kill one incarnation of Death, another takes its place. “So when Castiel stabbed me in the back, I got a promotion,” Billie says. She thinks it’s almost poetic. So this is why they need to talk. “Welcome to my reading room,” Billie says, bringing Dean to the room with the ‘W’ bookshelves. Dean asks whether Billie is keeping him dead and if so, to stop so he can find some ghosts and return to his brother. Billie says that returning to the land of the living is up to Dean. “Word on the interdimensional streets is that you’ve been jumping between worlds. I want to know how,” Billie asks Dean. They make a deal: If Billie frees all the ghosts in the Meadows house, he’ll tell her what she needs to know. “Done,” Billie agrees, releasing the ghosts. Dean tells Billie about Lucifer’s son Jack and how being born opened the rift into the other world. Billie comments how Dean bargained with her but didn’t ask to be brought back to life shows how much he’s changed. She directs him to all the books, which tell the many ways Dean Winchester has died. “But which one’s right? That depends on you, on the choices you make,” Billie tells Dean, adding that none of the books say he dies today. “Since I got this new job I stand witness to a much larger picture,” Billie says, explaining he and Sam have much work to do. Dean asks Billie about Mary (whether she’s alive) but the new Death returns him back to life without answering.
The next morning, Dean tells Sam that he saw Death and looked her in the face. “It was Billie. I guess she got a new gig. She was the one who took care of the ghosts.” Dean tells Sam that he always believed they were doing the right thing (hunting) but since their mother and Castiel, he doesn’t know anymore. “I just need a win.” Penny cries as the police remove Shawn’s body from Dr. Meadows’ house.
As the episode ends, Dean gets a call on his cellphone and stops at a phone booth where he is shocked to see Castiel (Misha Collins).