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Supernatural Fodder

Supernatural: Dead Man's Blood


Great episode, but just a set up for the last two of the season. Good use of the personal friction between the brothers and dad.


I thought this was a strong episode. We're back to a conventional foe: vampires. But that doesn't slow the story down. Much like a lot of recent works, most notably Anne Rice's vampire novels, this episode takes the vampire legend, throws some kinks in it, and freshens it up a bit.

For example, these vampires aren't afraid of the sun. It hurts, but isn't deadly. Crosses and holy water have no effect. And stake through the heart? Forget it. However, the blood of a dead man (and presumably, woman) is poisonous, though not fatal.


This isn't the first hint that we're given of a alternate world where men and women hunt evil, paranormal creatures, but it is the most direct statement of it. Daniel Elkins, one of John Winchester's friends, and a former "hunting" teacher, is killed. There is apparently a whole separate world, where people suddenly are exposed to supernatural evil, and decide to become its enemy.

It's a nice touch that's been used in some popular books (more in the "Trivia" section), and it really works here. I also have a feeling it's going to show up a lot in the 2006 season.

Another great thing about this episode is introduces some real personal issues that complicate the story. Not only is there the unresolved conflict between the 3 men, but there is now the risk that they may be separated again. True, it's not as compelling a cost as death, but it's a bad consequence that they will try to avoid.

The episode also sports a fantastic ending. The Winchesters win a partial victory. They get their prize, a Colt pistol with a spell that allows its bullets to kill anything, even a powerful archdemon. But the victory is incomplete. Several of their adversaries escape, and are capable of crossing their paths again.

I like it.


Written by Cathryn Humphris, a newbie writer with a credit for episode 7 of the 2006-7 season, and John Shiban, who is credited for writing one of my favorite episodes, "Skin".

Directed by Tony Wharmby, a veteran of Bones, The X-Files, The O.C., and the 2005 remake of The Night Stalker, among others.

This episode is reminiscent of some great books, Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake series. That series takes place in an alternate universe where vampires, werewolves, ghosts, zombies, etc. are real and living alongside normal humans. As expected, this creates some unusual cultural situations. There is also an underground world of "hunters", trained and licensed killers who track down and kill rogue paranormals if needed. It's an excellent series, though recently it's become more focuses on the improbably weird love triangles (yes, plural) of Ms. Blake.

A couple of other works that explore the idea of an alternate, hidden world where the occult runs free are the movies Underworld, and the Russian Night Watch.

Posted by Miller on September 26, 2006 1:16 PM
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