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Supernatural: Scarecrow

Holly: "Everyone in this town is so nice."
Vince: "Yeah. What's the catch?"

This was the first episode of Supernatural that totally creeped me out.

That scarecrow scared the crap out of me. It was freakishly hideous when it was immobile and tied to its cross (and trembling ever so slightly, which intensified the ook factor) and then we couldn't quite see it when it was on the move, which was almost worse. Dean climbing up the ladder and getting so close to it ("Nice tatt") had me on the edge of my seat. They know how to do scary right on this show.

We had the good townspeople carrying out their annual ritual sacrifice, a callback to Shirley Jackson's classic short story, The Lottery. There were some twisted Wizard of Oz references, too, from the living scarecrow to the evil trees. Auntie's speech to Emma about responsibility and sacrifice and the greater good was chilling. Good acting there, because I just wanted to slap her. Fortunately, Auntie and Uncle got theirs. Well deserved, you turkeys.

In the brotherly conflict department, Dean was determined to be the good son and follow orders, while Sam wanted his own revenge on what killed Jessica. Not surprising that John's phone call was enough to split the brothers up, at least temporarily. I think that was another reason why this episode was so effectively scary: they were each on their own, making them more vulnerable. Divide and conquer.

Our lead actors got a break from doing nearly every scene in every episode together, and they both spent a good part of the episode with a woman. Dean won that one on points, because Emma was a sweetheart who had guts. Meg, on the other hand, felt like an obvious plant even before we found out she was an obvious plant. I didn't expect her to be quite that evil, though. "Yes father," huh? That can't be good.

It was cool of Dean to give Sam validation, encouragement, permission to leave. It was also cool that Sam stole a car and raced to Dean's rescue. They're good apart, but they're better together.

Bits and pieces:

— John Winchester told Sam that he was after the demon that killed their mother, and he knew what happened to Jessica. And to stop looking for him and do their jobs.

— Meg said that she had cut loose the first guy in the van who had picked her up. She must have meant that literally.

— Another bit of The X-Files, with William B. Davis as the pagan expert slash professor who turned out to be evil.

— An extra creepy touch was that the god thing was either wearing, or it became, its latest male victim. (I wasn't quite sure which it was, but either way, very scary.)

— This week, the Impala took them to Burkitsville, Indiana. Even I can make the obvious Blair Witch connection and I never saw all of that movie.


Sam: "So Dad is sending us to Indiana to go hunting for something before another couple vanishes?"
Dean: "Yahtzee."

Dean: "Hi, my name is John Bonham."
Scotty: "Isn't that the drummer for Led Zeppelin?"

Dean: (to the scarecrow) "Dude, you're fugly."

Emma: "I don't understand. They're going to kill us?"
Dean: "Sacrifice us. Which is, I don't know, classier, I guess?"

Dean: "I hope your apple pie is freaking worth it!"

Sam: "You and me. We're all that's left. So if were going to see this through, we're going to do it together."
Dean: "Hold me, Sam. That was beautiful."

Definitely three stars, and I might go higher.

Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.


  1. I love Meg, really! She is bad but she is a kickass villain.
    And you know, Sam is a bit harsh on Dean. He says that Dean only wants him to follow orders, but Dean also gave him permission to live his own life.

  2. I was fine in this episode until the scene where Dean is examining the Scarecrow and you see the arm of that poor sod who was murdered in the pre-credits sequence attached to the vile thing. Not only was it a bit gross and partially decayed, but it also called to mind the Patchwork People from Doctor Who: The Doctor's Wife. The idea of that type of character has always disturbed me...and I don't know why. I think the fact that we never find out why the Scarecrow used the body parts to repair itself only makes it worse.

  3. Billie after finding your alias reviews by chance i was very happy to find you had an entire site dedicated to reviews.

    Every time i look for a new show this is the first place i look, although supernatural has started off slow with a couple of poor episodes this marks a clear improvement

    The episode "bugs" which had the brothers fighting clouds of cgi, although poor at least had some actual character development which gave an insight into their relationship with their missing father, it seems a bit strange the ancient curse of retribution was defeated by terrified people hiding in an attic armed with a pitiful homemade flamethrower

    So thanks again for introducing me to another potentially great show

  4. The late Kim Manners pays homage to himself here - the shot with the four townspeople discussing the necessary sacrifice whilst holding umbrellas in the rain is almost exactly the same as a shot in the Kim Manners' directed Die Hand Die Verletzt episode of X Files. Die Hand Die Verletzt is also about sacrifice (to the devil, not the Pagan-esque scarcrow) and in it the four townspeople (all teachers at the local highschool) stand together in the rain with black umbrella discussing sacrifice. It's a great shot, and very cool of Kim Manners to pay homage to himself, and one of the best X Files episodes ever.

    - Arie

    1. Finding this comment almost 10 yrs later..just after watching that X Files ep Die Hand Die.. for the first time. You are the only person who has made reference to the X Files ep that has the similar scene to Supernatural Scarecrow. Though, I didn't know that Kim Manners directed both eps. Makes it more special after watching X Files and realising the scene was reminiscent to Scarecrow and recognising same actress in both shows. Also same director..wow!

  5. Every episode that involves pegan gods is a good one

    I love when they put myths into the show like norse mythos or native American mythos or hell even Japanese mythos


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