15.14 Last Holiday

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SPN-1514.jpg
Title Last Holiday
Episode # Season 15, Episode 14
First aired October 8, 2020
Directed by Eduardo Sanchez
Written by Jeremy Adams
On IMDB Last Holiday
Outline Sam and Dean free a wood nymph that had been trapped in the Men of Letters Bunker since 1958, and she makes life in the Bunker much easier for them. But the boys must soon contend with Mrs. Butters's overprotective nature when she becomes determined to protect them at any cost.
Monster Vampires
Mrs. Butters
Timeline
Location(s) Lebanon, Kansas
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Synopsis

Sam hears a clanking noise as he researches in the library when Dean comes in. He tells Sam he was making burgers when the pilot light went out, noting that the Bunker has been having various issues. Dean asks about Jack, and Sam says he is still in his room processing everything now that he has his soul back. He also mentions to Dean that Castiel is looking for Amara because Jack has to kill her too, in order keep balance in the universe if they kill Chuck. When the air system stops working, Dean decides they need to fix the Bunker themselves, so he and Sam go down to the control room. While Sam looks through a manual, Dean just hits the reset button. It seems to restore things so Dean goes to finish cooking. As he takes his burger to his room, he finds a strange lady folding his underwear, and calls out for Sam.

In the library, the woman laments over the state of the Bunker. She reveals that she is a wood nymph that worked for the Men of Letters in the 1950s. Due to her name being unpronounceable in the human tongue, they called her Mrs. Butters. Unaware of the year, Mrs. Butters is dismayed when Sam and Dean tell her the Men of Letters were killed by Abaddon and it is 2020. She tells Sam and Dean that in 1958 she was asked to guard the Bunker as the Men of Letters went to the initiation ceremony, and when no one returned, she put herself and the Bunker on standby. Mrs. Butters explains that the Bunker was also powered by her magic, and this means the Bunker has been at half power since Sam and Dean have been there. She snaps her fingers, fully powering it up. It turns out that the map table is actually a monster radar, and it's indicating a nest of vampires nearby. Sam worries they can’t trust her, but Dean says this will be her test. If they find vampires where she says they are located, then she was telling the truth. If not, they will deal with her. They let Jack know what’s going on and leave.

On the way to the vampire nest, they discuss Jack’s trauma, wondering if he can kill Chuck. Sam is unsure, but Dean believes Jack can go through with it given he's been through worse trauma. They arrive at the nest and quickly kill the vampires inside. When they get back to the Bunker, Mrs. Butters has decorated for Christmas. Dean is giddy. Sam is uncertain.

The next morning Mrs. Butters tells Sam to enjoy the world they’re saving as she serves him breakfast. When Jack walks in, Mrs. Butters is instantly on guard, aware he's powerful and dangerous. Dean walks in showing off his sleeping robe and flashing Sam in the process. Mrs. Butters makes Jack a smoothie but gives Dean tomato juice instead. The alarm blares signifying a monster, and Sam and Dean run off to get ready. As they leave Mrs. Butters hands them sack lunches. With Sam and Dean gone, Mrs. Butters puts Jack to work helping her with the dishes. During their talk, Jack regretfully admits he killed Mary. Mrs. Butters responds by assuring him that there are second chances in life.

Over the coming days Sam and Dean go on many hunts identified by the monster radar. Without having to locate, research, and identify cases, their hunting becomes much more efficient. Before each hunt, Mrs. Butters packs them food, and on their return she helps them celebrate the many holidays they have missed over the years -- Thanksgiving, Halloween, and the Fourth of July. One day Jack walks into the library to find Mrs. Butters quickly hiding something. He asks for another smoothie, and when she leaves, he looks and finds a movie reel. In the film, we see Cuthbert Sinclair explain that she was retrieved from a Thule laboratory, and killed upwards of 200 Nazis before being restrained. He goes on to explain that he has convinced Mrs. Butters to work for the Men of Letters and has her demonstrate her loyalty by removing the head of a Thule operative that was no longer needed.

Shocked at what he has seen, Jack goes to find Sam, but Sam is being prepared by Mrs. Butters to go off on a date with Eileen, who is in town. Jack goes to talk to Dean, but Mrs. Butters interrupts to say she has fixed the broken TV in the Dean Cave, causing Dean to rush off to check it out. Jack confronts Mrs. Butters, but she informs him that there was something in the smoothies she has been feeding him which has weakened him and left him unable to use his powers, and she easily restrains him in angel cuffs. She tells him that she knows Sam and Dean are afraid of him, and declares she won't let him hurt them, before locking him in the dungeon.

Dean comes hungry to the kitchen and as Mrs. Butters hands him a sandwich, she informs him they have to kill Jack. Dean realizes that the good times are through. He tries to reason with her, but she decides he's been corrupted by Jack and locks him up as well. Sam returns late from his date and Mrs. Butters tells him that they have to kill Dean and Jack. Sam plays along, saying he'll go get his gun. In his room, he calls Dean and berates him for not calling him. They decide that if they put the Bunker back on standby, this should also put her back into stasis.

As he is on his way to hit the button, Mrs. Butters catches Sam, ties him up, and tortures him to get him to see that Jack is a monster. Sam defends Jack, even while his fingernails are being ripped off, telling her he is just a kid with a tragic life. Meanwhile, in the dungeon, Jack wants to use his powers, but Dean thinks that will signal Chuck. Jack asks if Dean thinks he's a monster. Dean tells him he's trying to get past it, but he's still angry at Jack. He vows, regardless, that he won't let Mrs. Butters hurt him. They wonder where Sam is and Dean decides to try to break the cuffs with the archangel blade. It doesn't break the cuffs, but throws Jack with force. Dean helps Jack up and decides to use the power of the blast to knock down the door. Free, he and Jack press the reset button, then go to the library, where they find Sam alone and untie him. Mrs. Butters, however, comes charging back and magically throws them, telling them she won't let her boys die again. She'll protect them. Sam argues they care about Jack. When she retorts that he's a monster, like the ones that meant she couldn't go home. Sam responds she was manipulated. Dean breaks through to her by declaring Jack can save the world. Mrs. Butters finally relents and tearfully tells them how she misses her boys so much.

Mrs. Butters heals Sam's hand and decides to return to her forest. This means the Bunker goes back down to standby, with no monster radar or interdimensional geo-scope (the telescope). Dean says he did look through the geo-scope but didn't see anything. Mrs. Butters says that is a bad sign. Jack gifts her a picture of the Men of Letters she worked with and she departs.

Later, with coaxing, Jack expresses his doubt to Sam that he can kill Chuck. Sam says he's the only one who can. Dean comes in with a birthday cake for Jack, made with more love than skill, saying they should take time to celebrate. Dean lights a candle, Sam tells Jack to make a wish. Jack blows out the candle.

Characters

Definitions

Music

  • "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" by The Toreador Brass
(playing as Sam and Dean return to the Bunker to find it decorated for Christmas)
  • "Cleanin' Up the Town" by The BusBoys
(plays over the montage of Sam and Dean going on hunts and celebrating various holidays)

Quotes

Mrs. Butters: When the lads left for the ceremony, I was told to stay behind, guard the Bunker. But they never returned. So, to keep the Bunker safe, I placed it and myself in standby mode.
Mrs. Butters: I never dreamed... it would take this long to be reactivated.

Sam: Yeah, we don't totally know everything about this place yet.

Dean: It's kinda been one apocalypse after the other.
Mrs. Butters: I know how busy your work can be. If you're anything like the others, then it has been an age since you had a home-cooked meal or celebrated the holidays or -- oh -- ahem -- washed your clothes.
Sam: Yeah, we're not really holiday people.
Dean: He'll be fine. I mean, I've been through worse. Look at me. I'm the picture of health.

Sam: Ignoring your trauma doesn't make you healthy.

Dean: Sure it does.
Dean: Whoo! Well, that's gotta be a record. I mean no investigation, no dead ends. Just -- ding! Bloodsuckers. That monster radar rules.
Sam: Why didn't you call me?

Dean: Well. I mean, I, you know, figured you were... "practicing your sign language."
Sam: And that's more important than coming to save you? Dean?

Dean: It's been a while for you, man, you know?
Dean: Dang it. Dang -- Damn it. Damn it! "Language," my ass.
Mrs. Butters: It -- Oh. Dean. Eat your vegetables. And, Sam... cut your hair. And, Jack... go save the world. Well. Goodbye, boys.

Trivia & References

Dean: Oh, yeah -- "uh, hey, Mario Brothers? Yeah, could you come the most secretive, secure supernatural hideout in the world? Great. Thanks. Go, Luigi!"
The Mario Brothers - Mario and Luigi - are two Italian-American bothers who are plumbers and the stars of the video game franchise named after them.
One of the sigils that Mrs. Butters absorbs herself into when she puts the Bunker in standby mode is that of a Twanas symbol, which is best known as the stick man charm from The Blair Witch Project, which was co-directed by "Last Holiday" director, Eduardo Sanchez.
Sam: Even if she is what she says she is, some kind of --

Dean: Magic Roomba?

A Roomba is an automated, self-propelling vacuum cleaner.
The vampires are watching an episode of the Gothic soap opera Dark Shadows before Sam and Dean burst through the door.
Mrs. Butters: What are you?

Dean: He's a millennial. Don't let that throw you.

A millennial is someone born between 1981 and 1996. Given he was born in 2017, strictly speaking Jack belongs to Generation Alpha.
The montage set to "Cleanin' Up the Town" by The BusBoys, and Dean's earlier proclamation of "Any bloodsuckers in here?" after entering a vampire nest, are a reference to this scene from Ghost Busters.
Dean: Oh, wow. Somebody's shopping at Abercrombie & Bitch.
Abercrombie & Fitch is a clothing designer often associated with the "preppy" look.
Dean: Yeah, we had a good thing going, and, of course -- of course -- you had to go full Nurse Ratched.
Nurse Ratched is the main antagonist in Ken Kesey's 1962 novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest which was later made into a play and then a 1975 Academy-Award-winning movie. She is a nurse in a psychiatric institution who enjoys tormenting and humiliating the patients. In 2020, Sarah Paulson starred as Nurse Ratched in a series by Ryan Murphy called "Ratched".
Dean: Now, I was angry with you... for a while. And maybe I still am a little bit, okay? But I'm not gonna let some Evil Mary Poppins take you out. Do you understand?
Mary Poppins is the protagonist of P.L. Travers' book series of the same name about a magical British nanny.
Dean: Alright, now, remember -- pain is just weakness leaving the body, mm? On three. Here we go.
"Pain is just weakness leaving the body" is a mantra used by the United States Marine Corps.

Minutiae

During the broadcast of the episode, Misha organized a livestream to promote voting with Supernatural cast members past and present, and politicians including Cory Booker and M.J. Hegar. They were also going to discuss the episode as they watched it but the livestream just became a big group chat. The highlight was that Jensen and Danneel were watching from the backseat of the Impala in their garage.
Dean: Dude, we fought the Devil, okay? I've killed Hitler. I think we can handle a few old pipes.
Dean is referencing when he shot the newly-resurrected Adolf Hitler in the head in 12.05 The One You've Been Waiting For.
We learn in this episode that Dean owns a pair of Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! boxers.
Dean: Now... burger time. Meat man! Comin' to town!
Dean previously referred to himself as a "meat man" in 15.04 Atomic Monsters. It is still uncertain if he knows what the term actually means.
In this episode, it's revealed that the Bunker had only been partially operating until Mrs. Butters restores it to full power after being taken off of Standby Mode. When they moved into the Bunker in 8.13 Everybody Hates Hitler, Sam initially questioned how the Bunker even has water or electricity. Charlie Bradbury also mentioned that the Bunker's computer was powered by "something magical" in 9.04 Slumber Party.
Mrs. Butters mentions she got her name from "Mr. Ganem". Larry Ganem was one of the last surviving Men of Letters that Sam and Dean met, who was killed in 2013 by Abaddon. She also makes mention of "Markham" and "Ackers," two of the Men of Letters who were killed at the initiation of Henry Winchester and Josie Sands in 1958. Markham was also the man responsible for banishing Cuthbert Sinclair in 10.19 The Werther Project.
Mrs. Butters can take on a green incorporeal smoke form, much like the Wicked Witch of the West did in 9.04 Slumber Party.
This episode marks the first time since 8.23 Sacrifice when the Bunker's map table reveals the presence of monsters, though the map table revealed the impact site of every angel that descended from Heaven during the Fall. The Men of Letters Bunker radar system designates vampires with the color red, though the color red was also used to display the presence of angels.
Dean: Oh. Dude, you gotta see this thing. It's like I'm wrapped in hugs.
Dean had previously noted his enjoyment of wearing a sleeping robe (and nightcap) in 13.16 Scoobynatural, where he also told Sam it felt like he was "wrapped in hugs."
"Last Holiday" marks the third time Sam has seen Dean's penis in an episode, after 3.01 The Magnificent Seven and 5.11 Sam, Interrupted.
Mrs. Butters: Samuel, the radar says it's a lamia. I put blessed knives in the trunk.
In 6.04 Weekend at Bobby's, the Winchesters also faced a lamia which they at first tried to kill with a knife which they tried to have blessed by a priest. However, they had to improvise after the priest was killed before they could get the blessing by incinerating the lamia after weakening it with salt mixed with rosemary. However, Rufus and Bobby also mentioned that Lamia never leave Greece, making the appearance of one in the US an anomaly.
The holidays that Mrs. Butters has Sam, Dean, and Jack celebrate are Christmas, Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, and Halloween. There is also apparently a Boxing Day breakfast which is mentioned, but which we do not get to see, though Sam and Dean are especially impressed by the omelets she made. We previously saw the boys celebrate Christmas in 3.08 A Very Supernatural Christmas, and they hunted Michael and his monsters in 14.09 The Spear and 14.10 Nihilism during Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. The Fourth of July and Thanksgiving were also celebrated by each of the brothers in a relived memory in 5.16 Dark Side of the Moon. Dean celebrated the Fourth of July from 1996 with a 13-year old version of Sam, and they end up burning down the field where they set off their fireworks. Thanksgiving of 1994 is celebrated by Sam along with a family from McKinley, Wisconsin, which he considers his first real Thanksgiving. Halloween is celebrated in 1.01 Pilot when Sam reluctantly joins Jess and their friends for Halloween, and the episode 4.07 It's the Great Pumpkin, Sam Winchester takes place at Halloween. In 14.04 Mint Condition, Sam revealed that the reason he hated celebrating the holiday is because he threw up on a girl he had a crush on at a Halloween party when he was a kid.
This episode is the second time that Sam has had an onscreen birthday celebration since his birthday picnic with Amelia Richardson and Riot in 8.03 Heartache. Sam's birthday is celebrated, as is Jack's, though the latter appears to be a spontaneous action on Dean's part.
It is revealed that Billie has confirmed that Jack must kill both God and the Darkness. In 11.23 Alpha and Omega it was discovered that only killing one would disrupt the Cosmic Balance and bring about the end of existence and in 15.12 Galaxy Brain the Winchesters had expressed concern about this fact.
Dean gets to use the grenade launcher for the first time since 12.22 Who We Are, though he did attempt to equip himself with it in 15.10 The Heroes' Journey.
It is revealed that Mjölnir has been in Sam and Dean's possession since 8.02 What's Up, Tiger Mommy?
Cuthbert: Cuthbert Sinclair, Men of Letters, File 5150. As you know, Henshaw was successful in retrieving a wood nymph from the Thule's laboratories.
Henshaw is a reference to Clifford Henshaw, who Sam said was a Bunker-based Man of Letters in 1943 and the mentor of Delphine Seydoux in 11.14 The Vessel.
Jacks says "Son of a Bitch" which is Dean's favorite curse.
Mrs. Butters repairs the TV that Dean had gotten for his Dean Cave and then later had to destroy in 13.16 Scoobynatural.
Sam goes on a date with Eileen Leahy and returns quite late. Dean makes lewd suggestions about them before and after Sam returns, but Sam doesn't explain what happened on the date.
This is the second holiday-themed episode in which Sam has his fingernails ripped off, the first time being in 3.08 A Very Supernatural Christmas.
We finally learn that the telescope in the Bunker is actually an "interdimensional geo-scope." When Dean says he did not see anything when he looked into it earlier, Mrs. Butters tells them that that is "not good." As we saw in 15.12 Galaxy Brain, Chuck has been destroying the other universes, which explains why Dean did not see anything through the geo-scope.

In 12.18 The Memory Remains, Ketch looked through the geo-scope and remarked that he couldn't see a "damn thing." Though, as we learned in this episode, the Bunker was only running on half-power, which would explain why he did not see anything when he looked through it. The geo-scope is only shown to be powered up when the Bunker is at full power.

Sides, Scripts & Transcripts

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