Season 3 Episode 14

Long Distance Call

Aired Wednesday 9:00 PM May 01, 2008 on The CW
out of 10
User Rating
769 votes

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Episode Summary


The town of Milan, Ohio, is plagued by a series of calls where the victims are contacted by dead loved ones, and urged to commit suicide. When Dean and Sam investigate, Dean gets a call of his own and the two brothers are soon at odds.

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  • Great Episode

    Man this episode was good. I liked the demon he was pretty cool. I thought the episode really knew how to keep your interest and not bore you to death like fear itself and other bad poser horror shows. So Dean tried to talk to his dad huh? i thought it was pretty interesting when he kept getting the phone calls. I liked how the guy was told that his daughter was killed by Dean, and the fight scene was pretty good too. Did this episode have some kind of message or something? about community and strength i mean it might have. I don't knowmoreless
  • Still not back on its feet after the strike

    After the previous episode, an attempt to ease back into production after the writers' strike, the story gets back on track with this installment. This is all about the shift in Dean's attitude about his own survival. Unlike the beginning of the season, Dean is feeling every inch of his mortality as his deadline approaches. The frustration is mounting with every new failure, and he's ready to accept any chance of a come-from-behind victory.

    So when the demonic creature in this episode uses a cell phone connection and John Winchester's voice as a ruse, Dean falls for it hook, line, and sinker. "John" gives him the opportunity to take down the demon with control over his fate, and nothing Sam says will ever get in the way of that. After all, it very seldom has.

    Sam, on the other hand, is all about discovering the truth and surviving the threat. He simply doesn't believe that their father is calling, and it puts the brothers at odds. It also eventually puts Sam in exactly the same position as the previous episode: tied up and forced to watch a civilian die. Either the writers completely missed the repetition, or the downtime had a more profound effect than anyone imagined.

    The "phone calls from the dead" were very creepy and well-done, especially with the little boy, but the rest of the episode felt a little "off". Perhaps it was the tension between the Brothers Winchester; the brothers haven't really been a solid team in the forefront of an episode since "Jus in Bello", and there was tension there as well. The conversation at the end of the episode did much to repair the damage, but the writers would be better served to let the brothers work together.

    That said, I'm beginning to get very concerned about the resolution of this season arc. A lot of time was lost by the strike, and it seems impossible (with the relative lack of progression in the past couple episodes) that the writers will come up with a satisfying season finale. I maintain my long-standing prediction that Sam will save Dean by agreeing to take his place as leader of the demonic horde (at least, those still supporting him), but I also believe it will now feel rushed. The reality of a fourth season helps mitigate the disappointment, but with the actors' strike now looming, I can't help but wonder how much further the series arc (and the series itself) will be damaged.moreless
  • A good pre-finale episode, enriched by two great character actors but slightly diminished by a not-so-scary monster.

    Crocotta are first mentioned by Pliny, who compared them to a dog-hyena hybrid, foe both to men and dogs. Pliny also said that the offspring of a Crocotta and a Lion (Leucrota) is perfectly able to imitate the sound of the human voice. In this episode, written by Jeremy Carver, the Crocotta is a humanoid monster that uses the voices of the dead to lure its victims into traps and hence devour their souls. As a monster of the week, the Crocotta is pretty weak and there are some little inconsistencies (if the Crocotta uses the modern phone technology, how was it able to reach the toy-phone? Otherwise, if it has such powers, why bother using modern technology?) in its depiction. Nevertheless, as a storytelling device to tell Dean's desperation and fear and Sam heart-wrenching attempt to save his brother's soul, the Crocotta is perfect. And when it imitates the voice of John, the episode becomes suddenly dramatically intense and deeply emotional. And this is, in the end, the most important thing.moreless
  • Interesting premise that ends up being just okay.

    The idea of John Winchester returning, even if it was just a voice cameo, was compelling and I was fully excited to see an episode that really brought the chills, the twists and the laughs. Well, I suppose we got a little of each, but in the end, it ended up being a somewhat filler episode.

    I did enjoy the plot that the monster set up for Sam and Dean.. It's clever the way he set everything up so that Dean would truly believe it was his father talking on the other line. I was secretly hoping that John would be making another appearance from Hell, but apparently, a voice cameo is all we're going to get.

    The episode itself was good, but just not the high quality that this show is known for. It was just one of those episodes that exists as an interesting look into another new monster, although they did keep me on pins and needles as to whether Dean would truly find a way to save himself or not.moreless
  • Crocotta.

    Finally a serious episode after Ghostfacers. They finally bring up Dean going to hell. Which is jut perfect for me. It is all really escalating to the season finale. Dean looks like he is becoming desperate. Trying to kill a man to save his soul. And now Ruby definitely can't help him. Is this the end of Supernatural. Is Sam going to carry on the legacy. We'll never know. I like how they fit in the Crocotta plot. AN unexpected plot for me. It all pieced togetehr in the end which is what I love in Supernatural episodes. This episode was amazing! 2 episodes to go.moreless
Cherilyn Wilson

Cherilyn Wilson

Lanie Greenfield

Guest Star

Tom O'Brien

Tom O'Brien

Clark Adams

Guest Star

Anjul Nigam

Anjul Nigam

Stewie Meyers

Guest Star

Jeffrey Dean Morgan

Jeffrey Dean Morgan

John Winchester

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (4)

    • When Sam is trying to get out of the cables binding him there is blood on his wrist. When he is fighting the crocotta there is no sign of blood.

    • Near the end of the episode, it is revealed that the crocotta uses the phone lines to communicate with people, yet he still managed to call a toy phone earlier in the episode. During the episode's first scene, the crocotta was also able to call Ben Waters even after Ben had ripped his phone from the phone jack.

    • Trivia: BustyAsianBeauties was a website previously mentioned in "Tall Tales."

    • When Lanie is on the computer talking to her "mother," the closed captioning flashes lyrics to Scandal'us' Make Me Crazy even though no music is playing.

  • QUOTES (16)

    • Dean: Pack your panties, Sammy. We're hitting the road.

    • Dean: Wow, man, a couple of civvies are freaked out by some ghosts. Newflash, Sam--people are supposed to be freaked out by ghosts!

    • Lanie: (to Sam) Since when does a phone guy drive a rental or wear a cheap suit?

    • Sam: We should summon Ruby.
      Dean: I'm not gonna have this fight with you.
      Sam: She says she knows how to save you.
      Dean: Well, she can't.
      Sam: Oh, really? You know that for sure?
      Dean: I do.
      Sam: How?
      Dean: Because she told me, okay?
      Sam: What?
      Dean: She told me...flat out... she could not save me. Nobody can.
      Sam: And you just somehow neglected to mention this to me?
      Dean: Well, you know, I really don't care what that bitch thinks and neither should you.
      Sam: So what? Now you're keeping secrets from me, Dean?
      Dean: You really want to talk about who's keeping secrets from who?

    • Sam: So you two were talking a case?
      Dean: No we were uh, we were actually talking about our feelings. And then our favorite boy bands. Yeah, we were talking a case.

    • Dean: Mrs. Waters, withholding information from the police is a capital offense. (Sam clears throat) In some parts of the world, I'm sure.

    • Dean: I just talked to an 84-year old grandmother who's having phone sex with her husband who died in Korea.
      Sam: Eww.
      Dean: Completely rocked my understanding of the word "necrophilia."

    • Sam: I mean, Dad? You really think it was Dad?
      Dean: I don't know. Maybe.
      Sam: Well, what did he sound like?
      Dean: Like Oprah. It was Dad, he sounded like Dad, what do you think?

    • Sam: (about demon) And it's following you because...?
      Dean: I guess I'm big game, you know? My ass is too sweet to let out of sight.

    • Sam: Dean, it's not Dad.
      Dean: Then what is it?
      Sam: A crocotta.
      Dean: Is that a sandwich?

    • Stewie: Yeah! That's what happens when you mess with the phone company, dillweed!

    • Sam: There's nothing wrong with having hope, you know.
      Dean: Hope doesn't get you jack squat.

    • Dean: And the only one person who can get me out of this thing is me.
      Sam: And me.
      Dean: "And me"? What, deep revelation, having a deep moment here. That's what you come back with? "And me"?
      Sam: Do you want a poem?
      Dean: Moment's gone.

    • Dean: Wow, you know, you'd think that Stanford education and a high school hook-up rate of 0.0 would produce better results than that.
      Sam: Hilarious.

    • Sam: So, what the hell is going on here, Dean?
      Dean: Beats me. Better find out soon. This thing's turning into Spook Central.

    • Dean: Is that uh,
      Stewie: No... maybe.
      Dean: Word to the wise. Platinum membership--worth every penny.

  • NOTES (2)

    • International Airdates:
      Denmark: May 11, 2008 on TV3
      Latin America: May 21, 2008 on Warner Channel
      UK: June 15, 2008 on ITV2
      Australia: June 15, 2008 on TEN
      Norway: September 7, 2008 on TVNorge
      Spain: November 24, 2008 on AXN
      Sweden: December 7, 2008 on Kanal 5
      Portugal: February 5, 2009 on RTP 2
      Germany: March 16, 2009 on Premiere Film
      Finland: July 23, 2009 on Sub
      Czech Republic: April 23, 2010 on Prima COOL
      Slovakia: October 6, 2010 on Markiza

    • Jeffrey Dean Morgan is heard but not seen.


    • Dean: Like Oprah.
      This refers to the talk show host Oprah Winfrey, who on her show is famous for calling people on her show Oprah to tell them they've have won something or are on international television.

    • Dean's Voicemail: This is Herman Munster. Leave a message.
      This line refers to the character Herman Munster, who was the lovable oafish father of the monster-ish family in the popular CBS series, The Munsters (1964-1966), as played by Fred Gwynne.

    • Dean: Just watch out for Chris Hansen.
      Referencing the Dateline NBC reporter who runs stings operations on sexual predators who locate their victims via the Internet.

    • Misters Campbell and Raimi
      Dean and Sam go by the names Campbell and Raimi in this episode. Bruce Campbell and Sam Raimi are two friends who created the Evil Dead movies (Campbell starring and Raimi writing and directing).