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S02.E16: Roadkill

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Sam and Dean set to rest two ghosts who have been haunting the same stretch of highway for 15 years.

 

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I really want to like this episode more than I do, but I just can't ever seem to get there. There's just so many plotting problems and then it also feels out of tone and seems to take itself too seriously. I do rather enjoy seeing Six (Tricia Helfer) though, so it's not all bad.

 

So lets get the plotting issues out of the way first...

  • I never understand why they need to do the hunt on that particular night. It seems to me, they could have looked for Greely's bones and salted and burned them any day or night out of the year, but they chose the one night that his ghost would be problematic to them and possibly put others in danger. I'd think smart hunters would have done the hunt a week or two earlier, then stuck around to see if it worked or not. Whatever.
  • What was their exact plan with Molly? They were using her as bait to bring Greely to them? How does that help them find his bones and/or get rid of him. Again whatever.
  • What exactly was Molly attached to that allowed her to not only haunt that highway, but then to climb into their car and drive to her husband's house presumably some distance away? This is one of those things that I usually can ignore with this show, but since I was pointing out other plot nonsense, I figured why not point this out as well. And, while I'm on things I usually just ignore with the show: What's with Greely--a ghost himself--breaking a window to grab another ghost? How is it that Greely could make Molly bleed?--she's a ghost for Chuck's sake! And Sam dug and entire grave, salted and burned the bones in the space of like five minutes. Sorry, I just don't think that's even humanly possible. Okay, I just need to move on now.
  • I didn't understand the need for the flashbacks and I could have rolled with the ones showing us stuff we hadn't seen, even though I thought they were unnecessary, but what's with replaying stuff we'd already seen? Since I had figured Molly was a ghost from the first moment Sam barely rolls down his window to talk with her, I guess I didn't think I needed the extra explanations. I makes me feel like they think I'm stupid when shows do this sort of thing.

 

So the things that worked for me...The idea of a ghost that doesn't know it's a ghost isn't a bad one--albeit possibly an overdone ghost story, but not bad necessarily. Dean was very in-character, which is how I prefer him. I do like a good musical choice and House Of The Rising Sun isn't a bad one. Baby looks good. And as I said before, it's always nice to see Six.

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What exactly was Molly attached to that allowed her to not only haunt that highway, but then to climb into their car and drive to her husband's house presumably some distance away?

 

I think it was that she was looking for her husband. All she remembers is waking up from the crash and him being gone, then she goes looking for him & Greeley goes after her, then repeat. I guess this just happens in a loop for her? She went with them because they were taking her to him.

 

I didn't figure out she was a ghost as quickly as you did but I did figure it out before they revealed it. I do agree about some of the other stuff. However, I still do really like this one. I love ghost stories, and I thought that Tricia did a great job. I really liked her, and I felt for her throughout the episode. 

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I understood her hang up was her husband, but according to established show rules, ghosts need to be in proximity to some sort of genetic material...that's what ties them to a certain place. I guess I was saying that either her husband moved to a nearby town, or for some reason her spirit gets to go traipsing everywhere at random. And I know they were trying to take her to the husband and Greely wouldn't let her go, but they kept saying they only had that one night to finish this hunt. I didn't realize they had to torch their bones when the ghost was active. I mean, visually it certainly is more interesting, but logically doesn't really add up for me.

 

I do like a good ghost story, that's why I really want to like this one more than I do, I just can't get over all these issues. Totally agree about Tricia Helfer though, she was great. I especially liked her in the opening sequence before they crashed.

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What exactly was Molly attached to that allowed her to not only haunt that highway, but then to climb into their car and drive to her husband's house presumably some distance away?

 

 

I'm reaching here, but what if, the husband kept the car and it had some genetic material left from her?

Edited by trxr4kids

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I'm guessing they couldn't scrape all of Molly off of the tree.

I find the episode enjoyable but nothing special.

I think they chose that night not for Greeley but for the other ghost. They said they knew there were two. They wanted to put both of them to rest.

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You know, I rewatched this last night and I am not concerned with the logic points.  I liked this one the first time around when I didn't know that Molly was a ghost and enjoyed it even more when I knew how sad she really was.  I think this would be a good ep to bring someone into SPN fandom although I have to say I didn't like the dissolving into light at the end.  Seemed too religious for me.

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For a monster of the week episode I thought it was pretty good.  It touched on some of the differing opinions the brothers have such as how dean feels about things that are supernatural as well as how they each would feel if they lost the other.  I think there are other story arc plot points that this motw touched on but i'll have to watch it again.

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This was a great old fashioned ghost story.  Even though I had practically figured the whole thing out from the moment Sam and Dean started talking about Molly like they knew exactly who she was, it was fun to watch it all unfold.  And very moving at the end.

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I know this isn't the most popular episode among fans, but I always enjoy it.  I particularly like how it follows Tall Tales, where Dean's version of events totally mocks Sam's doe-eyed acknowledging of everyone's pain; and then he's exactly that guy all through this episode.

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As another said, they had to do that night because they already knew Molly had been cremated, so couldn't salt and burn her bones.  they had to find a way to put her to rest another way (and it was necessary to find her  because it was her running into the road that caused accidents and others to die).  They needed to 'keep her alive' with Greeley because she would vanish shortly after sunrise, so that's why they had to quickly find Greeley's bones.  They also needed her to experience the event so she would understand what she was.

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Not one of my favorites, but a good solid ghost story. Like Twilight Zone, classic campfire ghost story. And I've always felt like an idiot for not seeing the twist ending. And I love that they have to help Molly because she's causing deadly accidents as well as protecting her from being tortured every year and helping her move on. I love Sam's kinder, gentler approach to dealing with a spirit, Dean slowly coming around, and Molly's fear of the unknown. 

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I figured it out and found myself surprisingly emotional when they said her husband was alive, knowing what would come next. It was sad. This poor spirit running around looking for her husband. 

The bad guy was generic monster boring and there were some sort of odd notes. Something about the interplay of the ghosts was off and I think it is largely that the entire thing doesn't entirely hold together under scrutiny. Also, the suicide piece was a little weirdly shoehorned in (nope to any place with that many spiders, by the way).

Overall, I will forgive some of the warts because the story was well done from an emotional standpoint and fairly satisfying.

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@The Companion, so if you want to continue the discussion from Folsom Prison Blues, about why do they do stuff that is more dangerous, I don't know why they had to wait for the one night that the road is haunted to look for the bones.  Much safer during the other 364 nights a year that the ghost is sleeping or whatever he's doing.  Then, Sam (or maybe it was Dean, I'm not sure) said that they only had until sun up. Why?  If they burn the bones while the ghost isn't active does it not work?  

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10 minutes ago, Katy M said:

@The Companion, so if you want to continue the discussion from Folsom Prison Blues, about why do they do stuff that is more dangerous, I don't know why they had to wait for the one night that the road is haunted to look for the bones.  Much safer during the other 364 nights a year that the ghost is sleeping or whatever he's doing.  Then, Sam (or maybe it was Dean, I'm not sure) said that they only had until sun up. Why?  If they burn the bones while the ghost isn't active does it not work?  

Yes, sometimes ths strategy seems a bit deficient. I guess I could buy that they would only find Molly if she was being chased by Greely (she runs onto the road being chased by a bloody man per the legend), but that is really a fanwank that could have been canon with a small tweak to the script. As a larger observation, the Winchesters boys tend to be a bit reckless sometimes for plot and entertainment purposes.

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On 11/13/2019 at 2:48 PM, gonzosgirrl said:

For what it's worth, I thought there was another plot hole in this episode, and it bugged me so much I wrote a fan fic about it. 🙂 Not gonna say more here and spoil it, but if you're so inclined...

This is great! You clearly love your source material. I am always so impressed by the creativity and dedication it takes to create stories like this 

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