We start in Buffalo, New York, with a businessman’s car being attacked (along with the businessman) by a very angry dog. Lot of options: both werewolves and hellhounds come to mind.
At a roadside diner, Dean chats on the phone with Bobby in an effort to work out what to do about Crowley (the “King of Hell” who’s taken Lucifer’s place and busted Sam out of Hell), but Crowley shows up in the middle of the phone call. He’s got a job for Sam and Dean. Sam puts up a nominal protest, but he doesn’t have a soul, so how much can he really object to anything anyway. As Crowley puts it, “You’d sell your brother for a dollar right now if you really needed a soda.”
Dean, however, still has a soul and refuses to work for Crowley … until he points out that he can cause Sam pain whenever he wants, since he currently is in possession of Sam’s soul.
The first assignment is to go after the werewolf, which has been attacking on nights that weren’t a full moon. (This has, apparently, been happening lately, according to Sam.) If they bring back an Alpha, Crowley promises to return Sam’s soul.
They investigate the case, finding that the businessman killed was a slumlord. It turned out there was a common factor. They go to investigate Cal, a man whose estranged brother was one victim and whose landlord was the other. There’s a dog at the house, name of Lucky, and he doesn’t seem to like Cal. My guess is that Cal may end up being the next victim.
And, I’m right this time. Lucky attacks Cal the next morning … and then transforms into a naked human.
With Cal out of the way, his girlfriend, Mandy, is the best suspect. Sam wants to hand her over, but Dean doesn’t want to give anyone over to Crowley until they’re dead certain. It turns out that Mandy was taking care of her sick kid when Cal died, so something’s not adding up.
While Sam is surveilling the house he notices a naked man walking around which is, to say the least, odd. The man pulls on some clothes and heads down the street, with Sam in pursuit. He meets with some other guy in a park, then seems to catch a whiff of Sam. A chase commences, with the guy shifting into a dog halfway through. The dog gets hit by a car. The guy driving the car drives off, presumably taking him to the vet, before Sam is able to catch up.
They’re able to track him down at the pound. He’s not a werewolf, but a skinwalker – kind of a distant cousin of a werewolf. He tells them that he’s part of a sleeper cell of skinwalkers, about 30 of them, who are all getting in position to turn their families into skinwalkers when they get the command. “30 becomes 150.”
The problem is that this particular skinwalker has grown to love his family. Dean convinces him that the only way to protect them is to help Sam and him stop the skinwalker pack leader. Dean sets up a sting, where he’ll be able to pick off the pack leader with a sniper rifle before he can smell them and send his command to turn all of the families.
Sam has some problems with this whole scenario. First, he doesn’t get why they don’t try to catch the pack leader and use him to get the Alpha. Sure, Dean’s right that a bunch of people might be turned into monsters, which sucks, but … they need to get an Alpha to get his soul back.
Second, Sam thinks the skinchanger will betray them, thinking it’s his best chance to survive. Dean’s sure he won’t. “‘Cause he loves that family? I’d double-cross us,” Sam says.
“Thanks, Dexter. That’s reassuring,” Dean replies.
Then the plan goes south because Dean can’t get a clear shot at the pack leader. They have Mandy and her kid as hostages, to force Lucky to prove his loyalty. “Take the shot!” Sam says. “I’m trying. She’s in the way,” Dean replies. “Take it anyway,” Sam says. Dean doesn’t, leaving them to rely on Plan B.
Plan B consists of Sam walking into the warehouse where the skinwalkers are meeting and popping the pack leader a silver bullet in the eye, while Dean covers him with the sniper rifle from a corner of the room. Much chaos ensues, but the skinwalkers pretty much all get taken out. After the carnage is over, Sam sees Lucky lying there, bleeding, and moves in like he’s about to take him out. That’s kind of weird. But when he gets there, Lucky is gone, only a splotch of blood on the floor.
The suspense doesn’t last long. After the commercial break, he’s at Mandy’s door in human form to apologize. She’ll have none of it, telling him to get away from them forever. He wonders off, shapeshifting back into his dog form. (A German shepherd, by the way.)
The episode concludes with an elaborate confession from Sam. He’s not the old Sam, he says. He’s done horrible things, killed innocent people in the line of duty, and it doesn’t bother him. He remembers the old Sam and is probably a better hunter than he’s ever been. “But I’ve been thinking,” he said. “I was that other Sam for a long time. And it was kind of harder, but there are also things about it I remember. Let’s just say, I think I should probably go back to being him.”
It’s a start, at least. “We do what we gotta do,” Dean says. “Let’s get my brother back.”
- Episode 6.7 – “Family Matters”
- Episode 6.6 – “You Can’t Handle the Truth”
- Episode 6.5 – “Live Free or Twi-hard”
- Episode 6.4 – “Weekend at Bobby’s”
- Episode 6.3 – “The Third Man”
- Episode 6.2 – “Two and a Half Men”
- Episode 6.1 – “Exile on Main Street”
- Supernatural Seasons 4 & 5
- Supernatural Seasons 2 & 3
- Supernatural Season 1
- Smart Pop Books – Supernatural: Reload