Season 1 Episode 15

The Benders

Aired Thursday 9:00 PM Feb 14, 2006 on The CW
out of 10
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Episode Summary

Dean searches for Sam when he is kidnapped by a backwoods family who likes to hunt humans and use their body parts as trophies.

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  • What Came first in crazy rednecks movies?

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  • I absolutely hated this episode

    The episode itself was well done but I cannot stand it when the bad guy is a person. It upsets me to no end.
  • A not so Supernatural episode.

    Crazy ass hillbillies, might be the only thing that is scarier than a ghost. Every so often shows like to throw you a curveball, but I never would have imagined that Supernatural would have used hunting addictive hillbillies as the central theme of an episode. It relies less on the suspense of ghost hunting to fuel the episode and more on the acting of its characters, and it worked out reasonably well. The cop in this episode is one of the better side characters that we've encountered so far; although desperate to find closure for her missing brother, does a great job of keeping her cop composure...somewhat. The thing is this episode doesn't really do a great job of separating itself from other similar movies; although these hillbillies have been doing this for generations, somehow it is the main characters that wiggle their way from their cages and end the killing streak. Nonetheless, still a solid episode.moreless
  • Close Encounters of the Redneck Kind

    This episode is so unlike any other episode from season one.The villians of this story are humans that have no connection to the world of the supernatural. Not even psychic powers like the Miller's son in the previous episode. These people are just plain evil. They kill for fun. For them it is the thrill of the hunt. The premise for the episode is people being hunted for fun which is something that has been a major part of fictional works from the short story The Most Dangerous Game to The Condemned starring Stone Cold Steve Austin.

    The trademark pop culture references and humor are back in this episode. At the beginning of the episode there is an exchange between Dean and a young witness about the greatness of Godzilla vs Mothra and the crappiness of the Godzilla remake. Later, a fellow captive tells Sam that he thinks "Its Ned Beatty time, man" and that their cators are "psycho, hillbilly rednecks looking for love in all the wrong places." Both of which are references to Deliverance. While this episode does not contribute to the main story of the series, it does show the lengths that Dean will go to to protect his brother and shows some more of their relationship with each other. It is another middle of the road episode that is neither amongst the worst nor best episodes of the season.moreless
  • Caged and Confused

    There's more than an air of familiarity to this episode and that's mainly down to the fact it cribs its ideas from many, many hillbilly horror films. It's a good thing that I enjoyed the likes of Texas Chainsaw, Wrong Turn and Hills Have Eyes, cos this was a really enjoyable stand-alone episode. Yes, I'd prefer more arc driven storylines, but with the boys in deep dung so early into the episode and Dean meeting a damsel that's far from in distress, it's a refreshing change of pace. The fight scenes on this show are great – they're stylised but not overly choreographed and for every punch you're guaranteed a bruise or a cut. The hour just feels out of place, like it should have been at the beginning of the season.moreless
Jessica Steen

Jessica Steen

Deputy Kathleen Hudka

Guest Star

Jon Cuthbert

Jon Cuthbert

Alvin Jenkins

Guest Star

Ken Kirzinger

Ken Kirzinger

Jared Bender

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (14)

    • At the bottom of Dean's information on the police records, there is a "Relevant Link" to 'Sam Winchester - brother of the subject.' However, Sam was in the database as "Samuel Winchester" which is what the link should say.

    • At 11:30 when Sam asks Alvin Jenkins where they are, the tip of the boom-mic is visible in the shot. At the top center, just to the right of the Alvin's head.

    • Trivia: In spite of the height mistake, the database lists Dean as being born January 24, 1979, died on March 6, 2006, and has brown hair and green eyes.

    • When Dean is handcuffed to the police car, we see him picking the lock of the cuff around his wrist, in the next shot when the Bender Boys come around the car, the handcuffs are gone. This would mean Dean had time to pick his own cuff, and the one attached to the door handle

    • When the Benders are talking to Dean, who is tied up to the chair, Lee is standing behind Pa, and he places his hands on his shoulders. In the next shot they are off. In the next, we see him placing them on Pa's shoulders again. The last shot, they are on them like they had been there the whole time. They keep moving.

    • When Sam is talking to Jenkins in the cage, a boom mike is visible at the top of the shot in the center of the frame.

    • Whenever Dean is undoing his handcuffs, you can tell that his boots are all muddy. Then when he walks into the barn in the next scene, you can tell that his boots aren't close to as muddy as they were.

    • Both Sam and Dean's name appeared on the computer search, however a person's name appears on a search only if they were arrested before.

    • Trivia: This is the first episode where Dean and Sam don't drive off in their car. Instead they walk.

    • When Sam is in the parking lot, he walks past three cars and puts his dad's journal on it to pull out his flashlight. When he goes to look under the car, he is now looking under the second car he passed but he never moved from the position he was standing.

    • When Dean is tied up in the Bender house, he gets punched in the nose and starts bleeding. The blood disappears and reappears throughout the scene.

    • When the police database shows statistics for Sam and Dean it shows both as being 6'4". It is clear that Sam is taller than Dean.

    • Trivia: The statement of Dean's "death" was a reference to the episode "Skin" in which a shapeshifter died and was buried while in Dean's form.

    • According to the computer readout, Sam was born May 2, 1983, in Lawrence, Kansas. He is 6'4", 180-190 lbs., brown hair, brown eyes. Dean was born January 24, 1979 and "died" March 7, 2006.

  • QUOTES (16)

    • Dean: Have you seen them?
      Sam: Yeah. dude, they're just people.
      Dean: And they jumped you? You must be getting a little rusty there, kiddo.

    • Deputy Kathleen: And it just got back to me. Says here your badge was stolen. And there is a picture of you.
      (shows him a picture of a large black man)
      Dean: I lost some weight and I got that Michael Jackson skin disease...

    • Dean: Oh, you gotta be kiddin' me. That's what this is about? You yahoos hunt people?
      Pa Bender: You ever killed before?
      Dean: That depends on what you mean.
      Pa Bender: I've hunted all my life. Just like my father, his before him. I've hunted deer, and bear. Even got a cougar once. Ho boy. But the best hunt is human. Oh, there's nothin' like it. Holdin' their life in your hands. Seein' the fear in their eyes just before they go dark. Makes you feel powerful alive.
      Dean: You're a sick puppy.

    • Kathleen: (about Sam) Does your cousin have a drinking problem?
      Dean: Two beers and he's doin' karaoke.

    • Dean: Don't ever do that again.
      Sam: Do what?
      Dean: Go missing like that.
      Sam: You were worried about me!
      Dean: I'm just saying, you vanish like that again and I'm not looking for you.
      Sam: Sure you won't.
      Dean: I'm not!

    • Dean: (talking about Sam) When we were young, I pretty much pulled him from a fire. And ever since then I've felt responsible for him, like it's my job to keep him safe.

    • Deputy Kathleen: So you know his brother Dean Winchester died in St. Louis and was suspected of murder?
      Dean: Yeah, Dean, kinda the black sheep of the family. Handsome, though.

    • Sam: So you got sidelined by a 13-year old girl?
      Dean: Shut up.
      Sam: I'm just saying, getting a little rusty there, kiddo?
      Dean: Shut up!

    • Deputy Kathleen: Your, uh… your cousin's looking for you.
      Sam: Thank god. Where is he?
      Deputy Kathleen: I, uh… I cuffed him to my car.

    • (trying to get out of handcuffs)
      Dean: I gotta start carrying paperclips.

    • Pa Bender: So what, you with that pretty cop? Are you a cop?
      Dean: If I tell you, will you promise not to make me into an ashtray?

    • Pa Bender: Tell me, any other cops gonna come lookin' for you?
      Dean: Oh, eat me! No, no, no...wait, wait. You actually might.

    • Sam: I was looking for you.
      Jenkins: Oh yeah?
      Sam: Yeah.
      Jenkins: Well, no offense, but this is a piss-poor rescue.

    • Pa Bender: We never been that sloppy.
      Dean: Yeah, well... don't sell yourself short – you're plenty sloppy.

    • Pa Bender: Only reason I don't let my boys take you right here and now is there's something I need to know.
      Dean: How about "It's not nice to marry your sister"?

    • (looking at pictures of the family's victims)
      Dean: I'll say it again. Demons I get, people are crazy.

  • NOTES (4)

    • Music: Rocky Mountain Way (Joe Walsh), Sweet and Low Down (George Gershwin)

    • This is the first episode in the series where the villains are humans and they act on their own without the help of the supernatural.

    • This episode is the first which doesn't feature a teaser at the beginning of the episode. Instead, it shows the "22 years ago" recap and then goes straight into the titles. All other episodes have a short teaser of the current story before the titles.

    • International Airdates:
      Denmark: April 16, 2006 on TV3
      France: January 15, 2007 on TF6
      Portugal: January 15, 2007 on AXN
      Belgium: July 11, 2007 on VT4
      Germany: February 18, 2008 on ProSieben
      The Netherlands: October 12, 2008 on NET5


    • The Benders
      Though their methods and motives for killing are different, the Benders in this episode share their name with another killer family. The "Bloody Benders" were a family of serial killers from Kansas, killing an estimated 21 people between 1872 and 1873.

    • Jenkins: They're just a bunch of psycho hillbilly rednecks... lookin' for love in all the wrong places.
      Referring to the song "Looking for Love" from the album of the same name by country singer Johnny Lee.

    • Kid: Godzilla vs. Mothra.
      Dean: That's my favorite Godzilla! So much better than the original, right? (about Sam) He likes the remake.
      Movies in the Godzilla franchise referenced here include Godzilla (1954), Godzilla vs. Mothra (1962), and a remake, possibly the 1984 Godzilla remake, the 1998 American Godzilla, or the 1992 remake of Godzilla vs. Mothra.

    • Dean: If I tell you, will you promise not to make me into an ashtray?
      Real-life serial killer, Ed Gein, was infamous for using human body parts as pieces of furniture or decorations; among these were human skulls that had been turned into ashtrays.

    • Jenkins: Ned Beatty time, man.
      Alluding to the 1972 movie Deliverance starring Ned Beatty along with Jon Voight, Burt Reynolds, and Ronny Cox. They play four city men who go canoeing down a river in Georgia and run afoul of vicious mountain men.