Season 1, Episode 8|
WB Description After a construction worker is killed by insects burrowing into his brain, Dean and Sam investigate the town's history and find that the new housing development is being built on sacred Indian land. The Indians put a curse on the land after their reservation had been ravished and destroyed. Dean and Sam must find a way to survive and kill the deadly swarm of bees, locusts, spiders and beetles.
|March 20, 2006||Dustin Burwash dies at construction site|
|March 23, 2006||Dean and Sam find case and drive to Oklahoma|
|March 24, 2006||Dean and Sam interview Travis Wheeler about Dustin Burwash and look at sinkhole; boys crash BBQ and meet Larry Pike and Lynda Bloome; Sam meets Matt Pike; boys squat in an empty house; Lynda Bloome dies|
|March 25, 2006||Dean and Sam speak to Larry about Lynda's death; boys follow Matt into the woods and they find the ancient burial mound; boys take the bones to an anthropology professor|
|March 26, 2006||Dean and Sam drive to Sapulpa to speak to Joe White Tree and find out about the curse; boys call Matt to try to get the Pikes out of harm's way; Dean and Sam arrive moments before the bugs attack; boys and Pikes survive all night bug attack|
|March 27, 2006||Dean and Sam say goodbye to the Pikes|
Friday March 20th, 2006 - At a construction site to build homes in Oasis Plains, Oklahoma, Dustin Burwash and Travis Wheeler from Oklahoma Gas and Power are talking about the houses as they are working. Dustin notices something in the ground, and while investigating, falls into a sinkhole and breaks his ankle. Travis runs back to their truck to grab some rope, while the increasingly panicked Dustin notices the beetles that are swarming over him. After they crawl into every orifice, and Dustin's screaming for help, Travis reaches the sinkhole only to discover a bloodied and dead Dustin laying at the bottom.
Monday March 23rd - Sam is reading a paper about the mysterious death, as Dean comes to Sam with money in his hand from hustling at pool. Sam complains about the dishonesty, but Dean claims he would rather take a "fun and easy" way rather than a "honest" way. Sam then brings up the article he read how Dustin died due to Mad-Cow Disease. Dean confesses that he heard it on "Oprah", which Sam is shocked to find out. Dean wonders why would it be their problem. Sam explains to Dean about Mad-Cow disease and how the symptoms do not show up immediately. Dean and Sam then drive to Oklahoma.
Tuesday March 24th - Their first stop is Oklahoma Oil and Gas Company, asking Travis Wheeler what happened to "Uncle Dusty". Travis explains what had happened. Sam questions him about the symptoms of the Mad-Cow Disease, but Travis claims Dustin did not have any of them. The boys then ask where Dustin died.
They arrive at the construction site, and head for the sinkhole. After checking it from above, Dean realizes there is only room for one to go down and check it out from the inside. Sam advises caution. Dean calls him "chicken" and tosses a coin to decide who goes down, so Sam insists on going down himself, tying the rope around his middle and telling Dean not to drop him.
Driving around the housing development afterwards, they talk about the case. Sam did not find any other evidence in the sinkhole, except a few dead beetles. Some beetles eat dead meat, but that did not explain what had happened. Needing more information, Dean notices an "Open House: BBQ" sign, so he figured that would be a good place to start.
At the real estate barbeque, Dean and Sam are met at the door by Larry Pike, who is the developer. The boys assure him they are looking for a house, which he mistakenly thinks is for them. "Let me just say - we accept homeowners of any race, religion, color, or... sexual orientation." Dean informs him they are brothers, as Sam is quick to say the house is actually for their dad. Larry invites them in, giving them a short spiel, when he introduces his wife Joanie before excusing himself. Before more than introductions can be made, Lynda, the head of sales, approaches them. Joanie tells them Lynda is the second family to move in, the Pikes being the first, and that Lynda is a very noisy neighbor, before leaving. Lynda laughs over Joanie's 'joke', and tells them, "Well, let me just say that we accept homeowners of any race, religion, color, or... sexual orientation." This time Dean sarcastically chuckles and leaves to talk with Larry, smacking Sam on the butt as he tells him, "Okay, honey?"
Larry takes Dean through the house, giving him the full tour, and at the end of it Dean notices the jar of bugs Larry's son collects. Meanwhile Sam is getting an earful from Lynda outside, not really paying attention, when he notices a tarantula making its way towards her hand. After excusing himself, he carefully picks up the spider and returns it to the teen who had been eagerly watching. Sam and Matt introduce themselves; Matt being Larry's son. Sam starts to connect with Matt over how he relates to his "old man". Larry and Dean arrive, and Larry pulls Matt off to the side to "talk" with him. Sam notices this and points out to Dean that they remind him of Dad. Dean does not remember. Sam remembers because he used to always get yelled at by Dad, but Dean was the "good son." Dean defends their father by saying that Sam was sometimes out-of-line, while Sam sarcastically says it was the wrong choice to play soccer over learning to bowhunt. Dropping the subject, they exchange information. Dean found out about a year ago a surveyor died by a severe bee sting reaction. They make the connection - each death included bugs.
That night they discuss why bugs would do this. Hauntings sometimes include bug manifestations, but there was no evidence of ghosts. They toss around an idea that someone is controlling insects, possibly Matt Pike. Dean wants to squat in an empty house, because it is too late to talk to anyone else and he wants to try the steam shower. Sam is reluctant at first, but gives in, driving into an empty garage.
Lynda Bloome walks into her bedroom, turning on the television to watch the nightly news. A spider crawls out of her hair, spooking her, so she heads for her shower. In the shower multiple spiders come out of her showerhead. She tries to escape, crashing through her glass shower door, but she is killed, as she is the next victim of the bugs.
Wednesday March 25th - Sam hears a new body was discovered over the police scanner, three blocks from where they are squatting. He heads for the shower, banging on the door to get Dean to move. Dean tells Sam the shower is awesome.
Police and coroner are already at the house. Dean and Sam find Larry standing out front and pull over to question him. Larry tells the boys that Lynda passed away last night, although they did not know what it was. Dean and Sam realize they need to see if there was a bug problem in the house. As the police leave, they jump up on the back fence and climb up the side of the house, finally climbing through the window of her bedroom. Poking around, Dean finds dead spiders in a towel that Lynda had dropped, and they decide Matt is next to question.
Pulling up at the bus stop, Dean and Sam are surprised to see Matt heading into the woods, the opposite way from his house. They follow him, confronting him when he is studying a preying mantis. Matt gets nervous and asks if they were serial killers in which Sam and Dean assure him with a "no". They question him about his bugs and how Linda died due to spiders. Matt gets defensive because he knows that he did not do the killings. Matt does confess that he knows something weird is happening with the insects and goes to show them an area he had found. On the walk Sam asks why Matt does not talk with his father Larry. Matt discloses that Larry does not listen to him, because, "he's too disappointed in his freak son". Sam assures him it gets better, because Matt is sixteen now, in two years he will get out of the house and go away to college. Dean thinks that it is bad advice because a kid should not leave his family. Once at a clearing in the woods, Matt shows Sam and Dean that many insects - bees, earthworms, to beetles - have all been congregating in the same general area. Sam points out a large mound. Heading over to investigate, they discover thousands of worms. Dean goes digging through the mess, and finds a skull.
After digging up bones, the boys take them to a nearby University of Oklahoma Department of Anthropology, wondering if it is a haunting. While on their way, Dean challenges Sam's advise to Matt. Sam perceives that it is about not respecting Dad, that Dad is disappointed in him because he did not want their life, that he was a freak in their family. Sam is not sure Dad is going to want to see him, since he was tossed out of the house when he scored a full ride to Stanford. Dean reveals, to Sam's shock, that John was proud of Sam and not disappointed as Sam thought. That John used to secretly check up on Sam while he was at Stanford. John was scared that he could not protect Sam.
They meet a professor in a classroom, claiming they take his Anthro 101 class, and he tells them what he found about the bones. The professor states that the skeletons were about 170 years old, heavily suggesting Native American. Sam questions him, asking if there were any tribes within the vicinity. The professor says not according to historical records, but they might have been relocated. There were no local legends or oral histories, but they might find something in nearby Sapulpa, about 60 miles away, with an Euchee tribe.
Thursday March 26th - The boys drive to Sapulpa, stopping once to ask for directions to someone who might know the ancient legends. A Native American is playing a game of solitaire as Sam and Dean go inside the diner to talk to him. This is Joe White Tree, a member of the Euchee Tribe. He could tell Dean is a liar and Sam is not, so he answers Sam's questions. Sam tells him about the Native American bones they found, so he tells them a story that has been passed down for generations. The tribe that lived in Oasis Plains was slaughtered by the cavalry over six days starting the night that the sun and the moon shared the sky as equals. As the chief of the tribe lay dying on the 6th night, he cursed the land for Nature to rise up and protect the valley, for white man to suffer and die the same amount of time. The boys thank him and leave, realizing that the curse started when the gas company man died on Friday the 20th (the equinox), and that tonight was the 26th - the last night of the curse. They need to evacuate the Pikes!
Matt is outside looking at bugs when he comes across multiple bugs coming out from the ground. He shakes them off his hand, and quickly heads for the house.
Sam calls Matt as they are driving back, for Matt to try to get his dad to listen and leave. Matt is panicked over the bugs he found earlier, and Sam confirms the bugs are coming. Dean, grabbing the phone, tells Matt to fake a pain to get them out of the house.
Matt was unable to get his family out of the house because he told the truth and his father did not believe him. The Winchesters arrive at the Pike's home, and Larry argues with them, telling them they are crazy, before the sky is blackened with swarms of insects. They race inside to safety. Once inside, Dean and Sam take charge, getting ready for the siege, sealing off all openings to the house. Dean then goes to find something to fend off the bugs and grabs some flammable bug spray. The insects have blanketed the house so thoroughly they cannot call for help with cell phones, and the phone line and power line were chewed through. They wait anxiously downstairs, until the bugs break the fireplace flue and swarm in, before they race upstairs. Larry pulls down the attic steps, and they all race up to the attic to escape. Before too long the termites start eating through the wood in the roof, allowing more bugs to swarm in. Dean's homemade flamethrower fizzles out, and the five of them huddle together to try to keep the bees off. Amazingly, the insects leave at dawn, and they are all still alive.
Thursday March 27th - Dean and Sam show up as the family is packing to leave. Larry promises that the development will not go ahead, that the production for the other houses end due to the bones that were found. Larry is not too sad because he realizes what he did not lose, his family. Sam heads over to say goodbye to Matt, as Matt throws away his bug collection for they weird him out now.
Sam joins Dean at the Impala, watching the Pikes for a minute. Sam wants to find Dad to apologize. Dean assures him they will find him, then Sam will apologize, then Sam and Dad will be at each other's throats once more. They share a moment, before hitting the road.
|Shirts the Boys Have Worn|
|Interesting Things That Have Happened|
|Items That Have Shown Up|
|Quotes People Have Said|
|Total Count of Species|
|Who Died and How|
|Dean: Mad cow? Wasn't that on Oprah?|
Sam: You watch Oprah?
Reference to the "Mad Cow" issue: Oprah Winfrey's influence reaches far beyond pop-culture into unrelated industries where many believe she has the power to cause enormous market swings and radical price changes with a single comment. During a show about mad cow disease with Howard Lyman (aired April 16, 1996), Winfrey exclaimed, "It has just stopped me cold from eating another burger!" Texas cattlemen sued her and Lyman in early 1998 for "false defamation of perishable food" and "business disparagement," claiming the Winfrey's remarks subsequently sent cattle prices tumbling, costing beef producers some USD$12 million. On February 26, after a trial spanning over two months in an Amarillo, Texas, court in the thick of cattle country, a jury found Winfrey and Lyman were not liable for damages. After the trial, Winfrey received a postcard from Rosanne Barr reading, "Congratulations, you beat the meat!"
|Dean: Maybe they're being controlled somehow. You know, by something or someone.|
Sam: You mean, like Willard?
Dean: Yeah, bugs instead of rats.
Sam: He did try to scare the realtor with a tarantula.
Dean: You think he's our Willard?
Willard was a 1971 horror movie about a social misfit named Willard, who has a strange affinity/link with rats. He controls the rats to attack and kill people who have been cruel to him.
|Sam: There are cases of psychic connections between people and animals - elementals, telepaths.|
Dean: Yeah, that whole Timmy-Lassie thing.
This is a reference to the TV show Lassie (1954-1974). The show revolved around a collie named Lassie and her boy owner, Timmy, a farm boy who was frequently helped out of scrapes by his super-intelligent dog.
|Dean: Yeah, you were kind of like the blonde chick in The Munsters.|
The Munsters was a TV show back in the 1960s. The entire family was strange and odd, except for the one blonde niece named Marilyn Munster that would be considered "normal" by society. However, she was the odd one in that family, being entirely made up of monsters - a type of Frankenstein's monster, vampires, and ghouls. The family is vaguely ashamed of their relationship to such an "ugly" person, and even Marilyn is aware of her "plain-ness." She bemoans that she keeps scaring off potential boyfriends, having no idea that the youths are in fact frightened away by her family.
|Many of the final scenes in Bugs appear to have been inspired by the Alfred Hitchcock 1963 classic The Birds, such as the shots of the bugs swarming against the night sky, the bugs penetrating through the closed windows and doors, and the ripped back roof through which the Winchesters see the sky the following morning.|
|The scene where Dean fights the bugs off with an improvised flamethrower made from a combination of a can of some sort of pressurized accelerant and a lighter, is reminiscent of scenes in the 1990 film Arachnophobia wherein Jeff Daniels' character faces off against the "Queen spider" in his basement with a nail gun and an improvised flamethrower.|
Writing the Episode
|Dean is coming out of a pool hall, after hustling money playing pool.|
Sam: You know, we could get day jobs once in a while.
Dean is counting the bills.
Dean: Hunting's our day job. And the pay is crap.
Sam: Yeah, but hustling pool? Credit card scams? It's not the most honest thing in the world, Dean.
Dean: Well, let's see honest.
He holds out one hand.
Dean: Fun and easy.
He holds out the other hand. Dean gestures that "fun and easy" outweighs "honest".
Dean: It's no contest. Besides, we're good at it. It's what we were raised to do.
|Dean: Growin' up in a place like this would freak me out.|
Dean: Well, manicured lawns, "How was your day, honey?" I'd blow my brains out.
Sam: There's nothing wrong with "normal".
Dean: I'd take our family over normal any day.
|Larry: Let me just say - we accept homeowners of any race, religion, color, or... sexual orientation.|
Dean: We're brothers.
|Lynda: Well, let me just say that we accept homeowners of any race, religion, color, or... sexual orientation.|
Dean smiles sarcastically and chuckles.
Dean: Right. Um... I'm gonna go talk to Larry. (to Sam) Okay, honey?
He walks away, smacking Sam on his ass.
|Larry walks away with Matt. Dean joins Sam, glancing back towards Larry and Matt.|
Sam: Remind you of somebody?
Dean looks over at Larry, who is yelling at Matt. Dean looks back at Sam, confused.
Dean: Dad never treated us like that.
Sam: Well, Dad never treated you like that. You were perfect. He was all over my case. (pause) You don't remember?
Dean: Well, maybe he had to raise his voice, but sometimes, you were out of line.
Sam: Right. Right, like when I said I'd rather play soccer than learn bowhunting.
Dean: Bowhunting's an important skill.
Sam rolls his eyes.
|Sam: Dean, you know what most dads are when their kids score a full ride? Proud. Most dads don't toss their kids out of the house.|
Dean: I remember that fight. In fact, I seem to recall a few choice phrases comin' out of your mouth.
Sam: You know, truth is, when we finally do find Dad... I don't know if he's even gonna wanna see me.
Dean: Sam, Dad was never disappointed in you. Never. He was scared.
Sam: What are you talkin' about?
Dean: He was afraid of what could've happened to you if he wasn't around. But even when you two weren't talkin'... he used to swing by Stanford whenever he could. Keep an eye on you. Make sure you were safe.
Sam: Why didn't you tell me any of that?
Dean: Well, it's a two-way street, dude. You could've picked up the phone.
|Sam: If we don't do something, Larry's family will be dead by sunrise. So how do we break the curse?|
Dean: You don't break a curse. You get out of its way.
|Sam: I wanna find Dad.|
Dean: Yeah, me too.
Sam: Yeah, but I just... I want to apologize to him.
Dean: For what?
Sam: All the things I said to him. He was just doin' the best he could.
Dean: Well, don't worry, we'll find him. And then you'll apologize. And then within five minutes, you guys will be at each other's throats.
Dean looks back at Sam. Sam laughs, a real laugh, before sharing a look with Dean.
Sam: Yeah, probably.
They sit in silence for a few seconds.
Sam: Let's hit the road.