A being that cannot be described as human, the phantom attacker harasses its victims, taking away their sense of security. The victims describe these encounters as traumatic, because what assaulted them was strange, unusual, and obviously not human. Those who have been attacked live with a horrifying fear that cannot be explained. Famous phantom attackers include the Mothman, shadow people, the Springheeled Jack, and the chupacabra.
Looking into the disappearance of Alvin Jenkins, Dean begins to question if it is one of their type of "gigs." Sam goes on to tell him that John had marked the area as a possible hunting ground for a phantom attacker, due to the county they are in having the highest missing persons per capita in the state. Still somewhat skeptical, Dean questions this idea by pointing out phantom attackers take people from their beds, while Jenkins was taken from a parking lot. Sam goes on to correct Dean by telling him there are different types of attackers.