Supernatural: Love Hurts
December 29, 2021 10:23 AM - Season 11, Episode 13 - Subscribe

Sam and Dean investigate a set of murders on Valentine's Day and discover they are dealing with the ripple effects of a curse.


Dean: Morning. [stumbles into the kitchen, opens the fridge, pulls out some leftover Chinese take out and takes a bite]
Sam: Is that a hickey?
Dean: [spits out his food] And? It was Valentine's Day. I can’t help it if I’m a hopeless romantic.
Sam: You got half of that right.
Dean: Just doing my civic duty. Helping all the single ladies. You know the best thing about February 14th... you don’t have to be Mr. Right. Just Mr. Right Now.
Sam: That’s classy
Dean: Yeah and what’d you do, Judgy? Curl up in your snuggie, watch 50 Shades on cable?

Dean: All right, so what do we know? Um, if you kiss someone, and then they die?
Sam: I guess. Wait a second. You didn't kiss Staci.
Melissa Harper: No, of course not.
Dean: No, but Dan did.
Sam: So the curse is transmittable?
Dean: Like a magic STD. Okay, that works. Kind of makes you nostalgic for good, old-fashioned herpes.

Dean: Well, the silver lining about being cursed, I finally get some face time with Daisy Duke... my deepest, darkest desire.
Sam: Seriously?
Dean: Ever since I was 7.
Sam: So... Bach, not Simpson?
Dean: Eh. Guess I wouldn't say no to either.

Dean: [returning from an evening out at the local bar to the motel room where Sam has been doing research] Hey. Any luck?
Sam: No. You?
Dean: Nah. Hey, what’s a… uh… dad bod?


Dean claims his deepest desire has been Daisy Duke since he was 7 years old. Daisy is a character from the comedy/action series The Dukes of Hazzard. The show aired from 1979 to 1985 (when Dean was 0-6 years old). When Sam says, "So, Bach... not Simpson," he's referring to Catherine Bach, who portrayed Daisy in the original series, and to Jessica Simpson, who portrayed Daisy in a 2005 film based on the show.

When Dean says he wouldn't say no to either Catherine Bach or Jessica Simpson, this is a meta reference to the fact that Jensen Ackles and Jessica Simpson dated for a short time in the late 90s.

In this episode, Dean beats Sam at Rock Paper Scissors for the first time in the series. While he technically won in episode 6.17 "My Heart Will Go On," they were in an alternate reality, making this the only occurrence in this universe.

When Dean says "Drop a house on her," when suggesting ways to slow down a witch, he is referring to the classic scene from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz where the wicked witch of the East was killed by Dorothy's house falling on her.

At the beginning of the episode as Staci is flipping through the TV channels three Adult Swim shows are shown in this order: Your Pretty Face is Going to Hell, Neon Joe: Werewolf Hunter, and Rick and Morty.

In this scene you can hear Rick from Rick and Morty utter a well-known quote from the show, "I hate to break it to you, but what people call 'love' is just a chemical reaction that compels animals to breed. It hits hard, Morty, then it slowly fades leaving you stranded in a failing marriage. I did it. Your parents are going to do it. Break the cycle Morty, rise above, focus on science. " (The whole quote is not said but most of it is.) This is an obvious nod to the love theme of the episode.

This episode bears similarities to the 1981 horror film My Bloody Valentine in which the victims' hearts are ripped out on Valentine's Day. Jensen Ackles starred in the 2009 remake.

Author Joe Hill's book Heart-Shaped Box can be seen on the coffee table in the living room in the opening scene.

The plot of this episode is relatively similar to the plot of the horror movie It Follows.

When the Winchesters realize they're dealing with a Qareen, Dean compares it to a genie. Sam then mentions Barbara Eden, who starred in I Dream of Jeannie as Jeannie the genie.
posted by orange swan (9 comments total)
Why on earth would that beautiful 19-year-old want that married, middle aged guy? I don't think I've ever seen an equivalent scenario in real life.

Dean's desire for Amara is messing him up. He may cast a wide net when it comes to his attraction to women -- any beautiful, reasonably intelligent and personable human woman will do -- but he doesn't (knowingly) sleep with monsters, and just as he doesn't like it when he has to kill humans, such as the Benders, he doesn't like it that he wants Amara.

And as of this post, all the Supernatural posts really are in Fanfare -- I've said that before, when I got to episode 9.20, but at that time I wasn't aware there were three missing. There aren't anymore missing from this episode to the show finale. And I've done the posts for 60% of the total number of Supernatural episodes.
posted by orange swan at 10:26 AM on December 29, 2021 [3 favorites]

So, this is the infamous Dad Bod episode, huh? The one where the writers decided that Dean was simply too old and decrepit to find love, or even to viably pursue one-night stands. I didn't remember that he apparently starts the episode having just enjoyed an offscreen frolic with some woman, so he goes from hickies to hopelessly over the hill in the span of one episode! I expressed my annoyance about all this in various threads, but it's still one of the show's weirdest turns for me. Dean was a total horndog for 11 seasons, it was one of the character's defining aspects, and then it all just stopped and the closest we got to an explanation was that some waitress shot him down. Maybe he never stopped pining for Amara?

I hate to break it to you, but what people call 'love' is just a chemical reaction that compels animals to breed.

I've only seen a couple of episodes of Rick and Morty, enough to get the gist that it's dark as hell but worth watching, and I'm planning to catch up with the whole thing someday. I hadn't heard that quote before, but yikes does it sound like exactly the kind of thing that the show's worst fans would glom onto. I don't think the show's creators really think like that, Rick is presented as a guy who's made a lot of mistakes and is kind of a monster in some ways. But I can see how the incels might take that speech as a manifesto.

These threads have been lots of fun and I was glad to see them come back on the main page, even if it was only for a few days. I feel like I've said goodbye to this show too many times. There was the penultimate episode of the series, which I thought was the final episode and sure felt like a finale... but wasn't. Then there was the actual finale, which was super duper mega final, they burned the whole show down so we know we'll never see the Winchesters in action again. The vintage episode threads here kept going, so that was a bit of Supernatural methadone for me, but then they suddenly went away... only to recently come back again for a few days. Are there really no other gaps? I remember when the show was on, being all excited to discuss it but sometimes waiting for days before a thread showed up. I could swear we missed a few, in the last few seasons.

Assuming this show is completely covered on Fanfare, it does feel like the end of something for me. It's a farewell to Supernatural as an active presence in my life, and maybe the end of my regular participation on Fanfare too. I feel like the whole site is winding down, something I never thought would happen. I'm sure I'd have plenty to say about Picard season two, Doctor Who, The Mandalorian and others, but those are months away and I'm honestly not sure how many people will still be here then. I can't imagine another site online that'd take the place of this one.

Thank you, Orange Swan and everybody who participated in these threads. Carry on, my wayward sons!
posted by Ursula Hitler at 3:55 PM on December 29, 2021 [2 favorites]

Dean claims his deepest desire has been Daisy Duke since he was 7 years old. Daisy is a character from the comedy/action series The Dukes of Hazzard. The show aired from 1979 to 1985 (when Dean was 0-6 years old).

It also aired extensively in syndication well beyond those years in late afternoon time slots kids could tune into after school, in the days when there were not all that many channels to choose between, so it definitely fits.
posted by Pryde at 7:24 PM on December 29, 2021

So, this is the infamous Dad Bod episode, huh? The one where the writers decided that Dean was simply too old and decrepit to find love, or even to viably pursue one-night stands.

My suspicion is that Dean, who was 38 at the time of this episode, had been trying to hit on a woman much younger than himself and got shot down with a "dad" insult. Obviously Dean is still exceptionally attractive and can surely find takers in his own age cohort, but he has reached the age where it is no longer advisable for him to pursue women in their twenties, and he probably hadn't quite faced that reality yet. Also, women his own age are also less likely to be hanging out in the bars he goes to, or for that matter to be single at all, so he is experiencing a general slow down. I'm inclined to think he's still getting action, just less often than before, and that it's realistic of the writers to indicate that.
posted by orange swan at 3:33 PM on January 20, 2022

Dean was a total horndog for 11 seasons, it was one of the character's defining aspects, and then it all just stopped and the closest we got to an explanation was that some waitress shot him down.

I barely noticed that line and did not realize this episode was infamous for anything, but I remember somebody on the old Fanfare threads pointing out late in the show that Dean barely got written as being interested in sex or romance anymore, and realizing that was true but I hadn't really noticed it happening at the time. It was something in the back of my mind while I was doing this rewatch, and I actually haven't come away so much with the sense that it's been a core part of his character all along. The biggest shift I honestly noticed was after Lisa (which was also season 6, so a transitional point for a lot of stuff in this show, and also a time when I don't know long-term planning was a thing they were doing particularly well.) The main time I can think of him really seeking out a ton of casual sex after that is when he's a demon, and having post-karaoke five-ways with Crowley on the regular.

It's not that Dean showed no interest in casual hookups outside that, but my sense is that it's been rarer. I can think of a few reasons the show might've gone that way, some of which make more sense in the context of Dean's character and storylines than others, but yeah, I don't know that it's ever really remarked on and you kind of just have to guess on how intentional it was or where it came from or what it's supposed to mean. (Also full honesty I'm giggling a little at how much of this paragraph I could've written about my friends and how we act in our late thirties compared to our mid-twenties.) It's a kind of interesting choice but even if it never came up again after this, at this point I don't know that it would really feel that sudden to me.
posted by jameaterblues at 8:34 PM on January 25, 2022

Well, it's probably only "infamous" to me. I was the one in the old threads who was crabbing about the weird turn in Dean's love life. I would have been fine with it if they'd had one scene where Dean talked about why he made the choice to stop dating. What bugged me was that the closest we ever got was the "dad bod" scene, which is kind of ageist and crappy. It also didn't really make sense, because Jensen Ackles is still a famously handsome fellow (and this was several years ago, now!) and Dean didn't seem like the type to let one mean comment shut him down. Sam was always the one who chose to be celibate while Dean was the party boy hedonist. Dean even used to tease Sam about being a prude, but somehow they both kind of ended up on the same page without the show ever really acknowledging it.

I suspect the writers heard the feedback from some of the fandom that Dean's old school flirting and skirt chasing didn't play well in MeToo era, and instead of evolving the character to fit the times better they decided to just kind of ignore the whole thing. Dean did become notably less homophobic and less misogynistic (he said "bitch" a lot in the early days) but we never got to see him evolve romantically.

Rob Benedict and Richard Speight Jr. are statring up a Supernatural rewatch podcast, with the rest of the cast making appearances. I doubt I'll catch up with it but I thought I'd mention it here for any of the fans who didn't know.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 2:27 PM on January 26, 2022

I haven't listened to the podcast myself, but I have read that Jared was talking on it about how when he first read for the role of Sam the executives were like, "Oh, well, he's great but we were hoping for somebody more cerebral," and then said his agent called them up and said "Well, you know Jared's really smart and he was planning to 'go pre-med' and what not, and he's a National Merit Scholar."

Item: Jared Padalecki was never a National Merit Scholar.

I've also read that when he was in Vegas in 2019, he was paying people (or more specifically, young female people) to take selfies with him.

I love Sam Winchester, but Jared Padalecki is a douchenozzle.
posted by orange swan at 8:24 AM on February 2, 2022

Why would Padalecki pay people to take selfies with him? He and Ackles have plenty of young female fans. Like, do a Google image search for damn near anything and pics of the Supernatural guys will probably come up before long. I've heard some weird, bad stories about the guy, but that one doesn't really make sense to me.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 9:55 PM on February 2, 2022

While it's true that Padalecki and Ackles have lots of young female fans, they aren't household names. Word is Padalecki is notorious in Austin for "DON'T YOU KNOW WHO I AM?!" behaviour, when in fact most North Americans have never seen Supernatural nor heard of him or Ackles -- the show always struggled for ratings. I read one post a few months ago that described how the commenter had seen Ackles in a small airport in Colorado (he has a cabin there, and his aunt lives there), and that one young woman approached him for an autograph, which she received, along with a hug. But of all the people there, only that young woman and the commenter seemed to have recognized Ackles. When he was approached for the autograph, everyone else just looked at him in a bemused way, wondering who he was.

So, yes, I can see Padalecki not getting the recognition he thinks he deserves when walking down the street in Vegas, and paying women for selfies that he can then post with the implication that they're fans to bolster his ego and his image. But I will say I'm not married to this story being true. I couldn't verify it and it may only be a rumour.
posted by orange swan at 11:28 AM on February 3, 2022

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