5.17 99 Problems

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Title 99 Problems
Episode # Season 5, Episode 17
First aired April 8, 2010
Directed by Charles Beeson
Written by Julie Siege
On IMDB 99 Problems
Outline Outnumbered by demons, Sam and Dean are saved at the last minute by a hunter and his very religious townspeople -- all of them aware of the Apocalypse and trained to kill demons.
Monster Whore of Babylon
Location(s) Blue Earth, Minnesota
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The episode opens with Sam and Dean driving away from unknown enemies, both heavily injured and desperately trying to escape. They find the road blocked by a burning truck and are set upon by a group of demons. At the last minute, they are saved by some hunters who use a hose to douse the demons in holy water and utter Enochian words that exorcise the demons instantly. The Winchesters convince the hunters, members of the Sacrament Lutheran Militia, to take them back to their refuge (a church) where they discover that people have gathered together in preparation of the Apocalypse, many of them marrying while they still have the chance. The town is seemingly led by Pastor Gideon but they soon discover that the hunters are guided by what they believe to be the will of Heaven via Leah Gideon, who receives prophetic visions from the angels.

Leah has a vision of several demons inside a house on the outskirts of town. Pastor Gideon, Dean, Sam, Rob, Jane, Dylan, and Paul go to the house and kill/exorcise about 15 demons. Afterwards, Dylan (son of Rob and Jane) asks to ride with the Winchesters but is dragged under the Impala and is killed by a demon. The mother subsequently blames the boys during the funeral and Leah receives another vision, claiming that in order for them to reach paradise they must follow the Angels' commandments without reservation (such as no premarital sex, no gambling, no drinking etc...). Dean asks Leah about Paradise, and she informs Dean that after there is a major battle, the planet will be handed over to the Chosen, where there will be no monsters, disease, or death but only peace. She also tells him that he is one of the Chosen to inherit Paradise, where he will be with the people that he loves. Sam visits Paul, the local barman who seems unconvinced by the Angels' plans and the two get drunk together. Sam staggers back to the hotel and informs Dean of the extremist lengths the people are going to to fulfil the Angels' wishes.

Dean is uninterested, however, and wishes to leave the townsfolk to it. Sam does not accept this and urges Dean to help him stop them. Dean goes out to clear his head and a very drunk Castiel arrives after Sam left him a message on his voice-mail earlier. Meanwhile, Leah receives word from the Angels: they are furious, for some people are not abiding by their rules and must be dealt with in order for the others to go to paradise. Dean walks by the bar and find several townsfolk hassling Paul, resulting in Jane shooting him dead "for the greater good". Pastor Gideon does not believe this to be just, but Leah assures him that it is necessary for them to reach salvation. Upon returning to the motel, Dean learns from Castiel and Sam that Leah is in fact dead, and that the creature taking her form is the Whore of Babylon; a creature that manifests during the Apocalypse with the sole purpose of damning humans to Hell.

Castiel explains that she can only be killed with a cypress branch wielded by a true servant of Heaven. The boys logically assume that Pastor Gideon is the only one who fits the bill and succeed in convincing him to kill his daughter's impostor, who is at that moment about to burn the "sinners" alive, including innocent children. Sam, Dean, Castiel, and the Pastor try to kill the Whore, but she utters an incantation that cripples Castiel temporarily and uses a mild form of telekinesis to keep Sam and Dean at bay. Pastor Gideon tries to impale her with the branch, but is thrown aside whilst she tries to kill Dean, but he grabs the branch and stabs her through the heart, killing her instantly.

The boys, Castiel and Pastor Gideon escape the church, leaving Sam wondering how Dean was able to kill the Whore if he didn't have any faith in Heaven. He fears that Dean is considering saying "yes" to Michael, but Dean claims otherwise. At the motel, however, Dean drives off to visit Lisa Braeden. He tells her that, in an ideal world, he would want nothing more than to live in peace with her and her son Ben, but knows that this is impossible. He warns her that in the next few days, things are going to get really bad, but not to worry, because the people he is going to see next will not get anything from him unless they promise to make arrangements for their safety. Dean does not explain his intentions, but heavily implies his intention of accepting Michael's proposal.




  • "Too Hot to Stop" by Marc Ferrari and Steve Plunkett
(plays when Sam and Dean are in the town bar)


Dean: A whole town full of hunters. I don’t know whether to run screaming or buy a condo.
Dean: And let me guess. Before you see something, you get a really bad migraine, you see flashing lights?

Leah: How’d you know?

Dean: ‘Cause you’re not the first prophet we’ve met. But you are the cutest... I mean that with total respect, of course.
Voicemail: You have reached the voicemail box of:
Castiel: I don’t understand why, why do you want me to say my name?
Sam: No drinking, no gambling, no premarital sex. Dean, they basically just outlawed ninety percent of your personality.
Castiel: I got your message. It was long, your message. And I find the sound of your voice grating.

Sam: What’s wrong with you? Are you…drunk?
Castiel: No!... Yes.
Sam: What the hell happened to you?
Castiel: I found a liquor store.
Sam: And?

Castiel: And I drank it. Why’d you call me?
Castiel: It’s starting.

Dean: What’s starting? Where the hell have you been?
Castiel: On a bender.
Dean: Did he—did you say 'on a bender?'

Sam: Yeah. He’s still pretty smashed.
Sam: Well, for starters... Leah is not a real prophet.

Dean: Well, what is she, exactly?
Castiel: The whore.
Dean: Wow, Cas, tell us what you really think.
Castiel: She rises when Lucifer walks the earth. 'And she shall come, bearing false prophecy.' This creature has the power to take a human’s form, read minds. Book of Revelation calls her 'the Whore of Babylon.'

Dean: Well, that’s catchy.
Dean: And the Enochian exorcism?
Castiel: Fake. It actually means, “you, um, breed with the mouth of a goat.” It’s funnier in Enochian.
Dean: Whatever happens, you’re gonna be okay.

Lisa: What do you mean? What are you talking about?
Dean: The people that I’m gonna see next, they’re not gonna get anything from me without agreeing to a few conditions.
Lisa: Just... just come inside. Please. And whatever you’re thinking of doing, don’t do it.
Dean: I have to.
Lisa: Just stay an hour. At least say bye to Ben.

Dean: It’s better if I don’t. Bye, Lisa.

Trivia & References

The title of the episode refers to the Jay-Z song 99 Problems. It is also the 99th episode of Supernatural.
Dean: Yeah, well, whatever. When in Rome.
"When in Rome, do as the Romans do" is a saying attributed to Ambrose. It means when visiting another country, you should behave like the people in that country.
Sam: At what point does this become too far for you? Stoning? Poisoned Kool-Aid? The angels are toying with these people!
Poisoned Kool-Aid is a reference to the Jonestown massacre, where members of the People's Temple were given Kool-Aid laced with cyanide.
Dean: Since the angels got the only lifeboats on the Titanic. I mean, who exactly is supposed to come along and save these people? It was supposed to be us, but we can’t do it.
The RMS Titanic was the most famous ocean liner of its day and sank on its maiden voyage after hitting an iceberg in the North Atlantic in 1912. 1,517 of the 2,223 passengers and crew on board died, in large part because there were not enough lifeboats to save everyone on the ship.


At Comic Con 2007, Jensen suggested “You know, we ought to just mount one of those old-style sprinkler systems on top of the Impala and have it spit out holy water.”
Pastor Jim, the hunter friend of the Winchesters, was also based in Blue Earth, Minnesota; and it was here that he was killed by Meg in 1.21 Salvation.
Dean and Sam stay in the Uncle Erv's Green Valley Motel.
Sam: I got one thing, one thing, keeping me going. You think you’re the only one white-knuckling it here, Dean? I can’t count on anyone else. I can’t do this alone.
This line echoes when Dean said the same thing to Sam in 1.01 Pilot.

Sides, Scripts & Transcripts


Episode Meta