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As I was looking for a way to pass the quarantine doldrums, I saw Entertainment Weekly’s list of what it considered to be the 75 most ‘essential’ episodes of Supernatural, leading up to Season 15. Since any excuse for a rewatch is a good excuse, I figured I’d not only invite my Supernatural "Team Free Will North Carolina" (TFWNC) Facebook group to join me, but I’d also recap my thoughts on which episodes Entertainment Weekly (EW) chose, which ones they skipped, and what was left out.  Music plays such a big role in Supernatural, so I also noted which iconic songs were included and which were missed in the skipped episodes. Reporting on all that turned into quite the project, and The WFB was kind enough to let me share it here! (My snarky opinions are my own and don’t reflect those of The WFB.)

So come on the journey with me! Start with season 1, then follow the links until you catch up with us in season 13! 

Season 13 (Show runners: Andrew Dabb and Robert Singer )


Snarky Opinion—Two big pet peeves of mine are canon inconsistency when canon is inconvenient, and ‘forced errors’—characters who make obviously dumb choices so the writers can maneuver them to the desired outcome without bothering to make sense.


Essential Episodes

"Lost and Found"

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Dean is grieving Cas’s death, Sam meets Jack. Naked Jack goes out for fast food and gets arrested.


Jack earns his ‘Nougat’ nickname.


Angels try to take Jack. Sam argues that Jack isn’t evil. Jack mourns Kelly. Sam, Dean and Jack give Cas a pyre.

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Dean is sure Mary is dead, but really Lucifer and Mary are in the AU.

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"The Big Empty"

The boys investigate a murder, but Dean is not in a good headspace. Sam knows how to handle him. Jack has been watching Clone Wars but tells Sam, “I kinda hate Anakin.” Sam tells him “that’s probably for the best.” Jack overhears Dean—thinks Sam is using him. Sam tells Jack that he cares about him even if he can’t save Mary.

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Sam has really good hair. Jack calls out to Cas, wakes him in the Empty.

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People are being killed by their ‘dead’ relatives—turns out they had the same therapist. Sam and Dean go to therapy, but role play turns real.


The therapist is a shifter who changes into the person’s dead relative to let them say goodbye. Jake asks the therapist to let him meet ‘Kelly’.

13.4 377 SFO Jack Kelly

Cas wakes the Entity up and annoys the crap out of it.

Cas vs Cas

The therapist’s ex-boyfriend, also a shifter, has been killing her clients. Jack saves Sam’s life. Dean and Jack come to an understanding back at the Bunker. Dean tells Sam he needs him to keep the faith for both of them. Cas wakes up in a field.

13.4 497 SFO Cas Sun

"Advanced Thanatology"

Two kids go ghost hunting at an old mental hospital, and one steals a plague doctor mask. Something chases them and one boy is killed by a masked doctor with a drill. The other boy stops talking. Sam talks Dean into working the case, lets him have his favorite alias, and gives him a beer with breakfast to try to cheer him up over the loss of Mary and Cas. Sam even suggests going to a strip club. Dean goes out alone for ‘bullets, bacon and booze’ and Sam finds him passed out on the floor in the morning.  The surviving boy draws a picture of a man with the plague mask. Dean bonds with him. They find out about the trip to the mental hospital and discover that the crazy doctor experimented on patients. Dean chooses to kill himself and wants Sam to wake him up after he asks Billy for help.


They find out that the doctor possessed the boy, brought him to the hospital and killed him.

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Billie freezes time and tells Dean she’s the new Death and shows him the books on how he dies. She tells him that he and Sam have work to do. Dean wakes up, and doesn’t tell Sam the whole truth about what he saw. Dean says he just needs a win.

13.5 1799 Reunion Cas

Cas calls from a payphone.


An amazing crossover that managed to be respectful to the legacy of both shows and do justice to both series, retaining the appropriate flavor of each. Sam and Dean get sucked into a cartoon episode of ScoobyDoo (the original series’ first episode).

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Dean says that no matter where they were as kids, Scooby was on TV. 

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He is so excited to meet the gang and offer to help solve a mystery with them.

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Baby is also pulled into the cartoon, and Cas shows up later.

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 The case is different from the episode Dean remembers because the deaths are real and gruesome.

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It turns out a boy’s ghost is being forced to haunt people in order to help a greedy real estate developer.

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He gets them out of the cartoon after Sam and Dean have reassured the Scooby Gang,

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and they turn the tables on the bad developer, burning the boy’s pocket knife to set the ghost free and reporting the developer to the IRS. Great script, great special effects, and awesome animation.


One of the best episodes ever.

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