Season 2 Episode 13

Houses of the Holy

Aired Thursday 9:00 PM Feb 01, 2007 on The CW
out of 10
User Rating
968 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

An angel causes people to cheerfully go out to murder, and when the Winchesters investigate one of them falls under its sway.

Who was the Episode MVP ?

  • Sam starts to show his weakness

    I like this one because it is that start of Sam having doubts about God, angels and the devil inside him. Glimpses of the the stresses that will be put on the brothers in the near future!
  • Sam and Dean investigate a series of murders, which were supposedly ordered by an angel. They disagree upon the reality of angels and anything “good” existing in the supernatural world.

    As a believer, I always get a little nervous when Hollywood addresses a religious issue, but I very much enjoyed this episode. To repeatedly show how powerful evil is, we get to see glimpses of the good side. Sam’s hopefulness is contrasted strongly to the darkness that Dean carries from so much he has endured in his life. I thought the end of the episode did a good job of showing how Dean may have a grain of faith even if there was no real angel. Sam is left despondent which may lead to his possession in the next episode. The true hero of the episode is Father Reynolds who grants final peace to very much confused, but not evil, Father Gregory. Even in the face of supernatural events, Reynolds’ faith remains strong. He knows his stuff, “Men cannot be angels”, “what you are doing is not God’s will” shows that he is a faithful man. He knows God’s word and follows it. The Father Reynolds’ character is so strong, I would like to see him work more with Sam and Dean in future episodes.moreless
  • Definitely a filler episode, but not without it's interesting moments.

    I suppose it was to be expected that there'd be a lull in the incredible streak of episodes Supernatural had, but even for a filler episode, it's well made and exciting. I wasn't a huge fan of the "monster," or "spirit," and found myself less than interested in the outcome. After all of the hoopla between Sam and Dean about whether or not the culprit was an angel or not, it turns out its just another vengeful spirit. I'm a big fan of any supernatural being that Sam and Dean have to get rid of, but this felt a little too vague.

    The one thing I was interested in was Sam and Dean's reversal in terms of faith. In the beginning, Sam was a believer and prayed every day that he would be saved when the time came. Dean, meanwhile, despite believing in demons and werewolves and vampires, finds it hard to believe in angels since he's never seen one. Throughout the episode, they both finds that challenge their beliefs, and by the end, they've both met in the middle. It was quite the emotional episode.

    I don't know if it's just because of the lack of Ellen and Jo, but this episode felt as if there was very few people in it. It seems as if the last five or six episodes, there has been a lot of characters we've either known or have seen before. The last few have felt like season 1 episodes (new and improved season 1 episodes, that is).

    Now that it's the halfway point, I'm expecting some yellow eyed man!moreless
  • The perfect episode to couple with "Faith" (1x11)

    Sera Gamble is one of my favorite writers of the show, I've made no mystery of that. This episode, "Houses of the Holy" (2x13), is just a perfect example of why I love her episodes so much.

    Back in Season One, Sera and Raelle Tucker co-wrote "Faith", an episode about the things you do for love, about faith and delusion, about the often ironic tragedy of life. "Faith" is one of Supernatural best episodes, and whilst "Houses of the Holy" isn't at par with it, it shows nonetheless a depth that the vast majority of nowadays shows utterly lack.

    Being an atheist myself, I'm nevertheless fascinated with religious subjects and angels are indeed a rich material from an aesthetic perspective. Angels were written in this episode with cleverness and subtlety, and thus they became less a storytelling gimmick and more a creative device to deepen Dean and Sam's own systems of belief, their characters and to enrich their background. Sam prays every night for his redemption, because Dean's revelation about what John told him before dying shattered him. Dean, on the other hand, keeping in mind the tragic history of their family, can't believe in higher powers, in other-worldly goodness or in God's will. The top-notch script maintains constantly high the tension between these two poles, and it is clever enough to resolve the doubt only in the end, and not before shuffling the cards once more, that's saying before Sam realizes his delusional desires and Dean aknowledges the possibility of a Greater Good. What is really interesting is that Sam's agnosticism and Dean's skepticism are more than this. Sam always had faith; always he thought that what Dean and him were doing was some sort of mission bestowed upon them. It was evident in his urge to vindicate Jessica's death, in his will to believe in a grand scheme, an overarching truth capable of explain everything in the world. Dean, on the other hand, had always seen what they do as a job, a hard-to-do but necessary job, an heavy legacy, but a legacy nonetheless. Dean believes in free will, and he's a true Humanist, considering nothing human extraneous to him and considering his fight against the evil in terms of "saving people". Sam, on the other hand, is more of a Fatalist, and this help explain what happened to him in between Season Three and Four (see "Lazarus Rising", 4x01): it's interesting, in fact, that Dean CHOSE to make a deal with the Crossroad Demon and that the same choice was forbidden for Sam. This philosophic richness is what really set "Supernatural" apart from any other show!moreless
  • I really like this episode.

    In this episode Sam thinks they are dealing wiht an angel whereas Dean doesn't. They end up having a few arguments about faith and the angel.

    Turns out they there isn't an angel but the spirit of a recently departed reverend who died outside the church. He is getting rid of all the evil people from within his congregation that have confessed to him thing he knows are wrong.

    Sam is dissapointed that there is no angel and Dean questions his lack of faith.

    It is good how they figure it out though, that its a spirit and not a angel. I really like this episode.moreless
David Monahan

David Monahan

Father Thomas Gregory

Guest Star

Heather Doerksen

Heather Doerksen

Gloria Sytnik

Guest Star

Dan Mellor

Dan Mellor

Frank the Pedophile

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (4)

    • When Zach's room is shaking and his TV falls over you can clearly see that the power cord is neatly tied up and unplugged.

    • According to Dean's cellular phone listing, he's playing Kashmir by Led Zeppelin, but he's actually playing Down On Love by Jamie Dunlap.

    • When Zach's room is shaking, his lamp falls and breaks, but the light from the light bulb stays on.

    • When Sam is talking to the patient in the mental institute at the beginning of the show, he pulls a metal chair up to talk to her. No top-security mental hospital or low-level clinic would ever place any kind of movable furniture in a patient's room because the patient could harm him/herself or others.

  • QUOTES (18)

    • Dean: Let me guess, you were personally chosen to smite some sinner. You just got to wait for some divine bat signal, is that it?

    • Sam: She's living in a locked ward, and she's totally at peace.
      Dean: Oh yeah, you're right. Sounds completely sane.

    • Sam: And this angel…
      Gloria: Spoke God's word.
      Sam: And the word was… to kill someone?

    • Sam: So, no disturbances lately?
      Gloria: You mean am I stark raving cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs?

    • Sam: It appeared before me and I just... this feeling washed over me. Like peace. Like grace.
      Dean: Okay, ecstasy boy. Maybe we'll get you some glow sticks and a nice Dr. Seuss hat.

    • Father Reynolds: What are you doing? What is this?
      Sam: Father, please, I can explain. Um... actually, maybe I can't. Um, this is, uh, a séance.
      Father Reynolds: A séance? Young man, you are in a house of God.
      Sam: It's based on early Christian rites if that helps any.

    • Sam: I don't know, Dean, I just, uh, I wanted to believe so badly. It's so damned hard to do this, what we do. All alone, you know. And…there's so much evil out in the world, Dean, I feel like I could drown in it. And when I think about my destiny, when I think about how I could end up…
      Dean: Yeah, well, don't worry about that, all right? I'm watching out for you.
      Sam: Yeah, I know you are. But you're just one person, Dean. And I needed to think that there was something else watching too, you know? Some higher power, some greater good. And that maybe I…
      Dean: Maybe what?
      Sam: Maybe I could be saved.

    • Sam: You know, Gloria said the guy was guilty to the deepest foundation.
      Dean: You think she literally meant the foundation?

    • (Sam enters the motel room, while Dean is sitting on the bed listening to the police radio)
      Dean: Did you bring quarters?
      Sam: Dude, I'm not enabling your sick habit. You're like one of those lab rats that pushes the pleasure button instead of the food button until it dies.
      Dean: What're you talking about, I eat.

    • Dean: Man, you have got to try this because there really is magic in the magic fingers.
      Sam: Dude. You're enjoying that way too much. It's kinda making me uncomfortable.
      Dean: What am I supposed to do? You got me on lockdown here. I'm bored out of my skull.
      Sam: Hey, you were the bank robber on the 11 o'clock news, not me.

    • Father Reynolds: So, you're interested in joining the parish?
      Dean: Yeah, well you know, we just don't feel right unless we hit church every Sunday.
      Father Reynolds: So where'd you say you lived before?
      Sam: Uh...
      Dean: Freedmont, Texas.
      Sam: Yep.
      Father Reynolds: Really? That's a nice town. St. Theresa's parish. You must know the priest there.
      Dean: Sure, yeah... no, it's Father... O'Malley.
      Father Reynolds: I know a Father Shaughnessy.
      Dean: Shaughnessy. Exactly... what did I say?

    • Sam: Why would you do that?
      Gloria: Because it was God's will.
      Sam: Did God talk to you?
      Gloria: I get the sense God's a little busy for house calls.

    • Sam: Dude, all right, I'll admit, we've gone pretty ghetto with spellwork before, but this takes the cake! I mean, a Spongebob placemat instead of an altar cloth?!
      Dean: We'll just put it Spongebob-side down.

    • Dean: If Father Gregory's spirit is around, the seance will bring him right to us. If it's him, then we'll put him to rest.
      Sam: What if it's an angel and won't show? Nothing will happen.
      Dean: Exactly. It's one of the perks of the job, Sam, we don't have to operate on faith. We can know for sure. Don't you want to know for sure?

    • Dean: What's next, you're going to start praying every day?
      Sam: I do.
      Dean: What?
      Sam: I do pray every day, I have for a long time.
      Dean: The things you learn about a guy.

    • Dean: I'll tell you who else had faith like that. Mom. She used to tell me when she tucked me in that angels were watching over us. In fact, that was the last thing she ever said to me.
      Sam: You never told me that.
      Dean: What's to tell? She was wrong. There was nothing protecting her. There's no higher power, there's no God. There's just chaos, violence, random unpredictable evil, that comes outta nowhere, rips you to shreds.

    • Dean: Well, I think I learned a valuable lesson. Always take down your Christmas decorations after New Year's, or you might get filleted by a hooker from God. Ha.
      Sam: I'm laughing on the inside.

    • Dean: Hey, you know what, there's a ton of lore on unicorns, too. I hear they ride on silver moonbeams, and they shoot rainbows out of their ass.
      Sam: Wait, there's no such thing as unicorns?
      Dean: That's cute.

  • NOTES (4)


    • Title
      Houses Of The Holy is the title of a Led Zeppelin album and is also the title of a song off of the album Physical Graffiti.

    • Sam: Sounds great, I hope Whoopi's available.
      Referencing the 1990 film, Ghost. In the movie, Whoopi Goldberg plays a psychic medium who communicates with ghosts.

    • Dean: Yup, Roma Downey made him do it.
      This is a reference to the TV show, Touched by an Angel, in which Roma Downey plays an angel named Monica who helps people.

    • Dean: We'll just put it Spongebob-side down.
      Referencing the popular Nickelodeon animated TV show, SpongeBob SquarePants, and the main character, a yellow sponge that wears pants, works as a fry cook, and lives in a pineapple under the sea.

    • Dean: Since when are you all Mr. 700 Club?
      The 700 Club is the longest-running Christian program beginning in 1966 and hosted by Pat Robertson. It is a mixture of news, commentaries and interviews about Christian life.

    • Dean: You just got to wait for some divine bat signal, is that it?
      Referencing the spotlight given by Batman to the police of Gotham City to summon him when necessary. It first appeared in Detective Comics #60 (February 1942), and typically Commissioner Gordon uses it when he needs to talk to the Caped Crusader. It projects a bat-shaped silhouette onto the clouds.