2.18 Hollywood Babylon

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2-18 Hollywood Babylon.jpg
Title Hollywood Babylon
Episode # Season 2, Episode 18
First aired April 19, 2007
Directed by Phil Sgriccia
Written by Ben Edlund
On IMDB Hollywood Babylon
Outline Sam and Dean investigate the haunting on the set of a horror movie.
Monster Vengeful Spirits
Location(s) Los Angeles, California
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On the set of the movie Hell Hazers II: The Reckoning, directed by McG, a stagehand is killed and the star of the movie, Tara Benchley, reports seeing an apparition near the body.

Dean has convinced Sam to come to Los Angeles for a break after the death of Madison, but Sam wants to throw himself into work. Dean, a movie buff, becomes enthusiastic when he discovers the movie is a horror movie starring one of his favorite actresses, Tara. It doesn’t take the boys long on the set to discover that the stagehand’s death was faked by the studio executives to promote interest in the movie. But then a studio executive, Brad Redding, dies in the middle of the set after encountering a ghost. Dean goes undercover, joining the crew as a P.A., a job he embraces. The boys discover that a young actress killed herself in the 1920s after being wooed and then dumped and fired by a studio executive. They find her buried at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, where they salt and burn her bones.

After another producer, Jay Wiley, is killed, Sam notices that the Latin in the movie script is a real summoning ritual. They confront the writer, Martin Flagg, who admits that any authentic rituals in the script are all that remained from the original script by writer Walter Dixon. Dixon lures Flagg onto the set to kill him, but Sam and Dean arrive in time to save him. Walter admits that he was conjuring real ghosts and forcing them to kill those he saw as responsible for ruining his script. Before they can stop him, Walter destroys the talisman he was using. This frees the spirits who, enraged at being used, turn on Walter and kill him.

The production of the movie continues, with Martin incorporating his experiences with the ghosts into the script. Sam finds Dean emerging disheveled and with a post-coital glow from Tara’s trailer. Sam and Dean walk off into the sunset together – until it is wheeled away and revealed as just another Hollywood prop.




  • "I've Got the World on a String" by Frank Sinatra
(plays when Dean and Sam go to Gerard St. James' apartment)
  • "Green Peppers" by Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass
(plays at the end, when they ride into the sunset)


Brad: Uh, excuse me, Green Shirt Guy? Yeah, you. Come here. Can you get me a smoothie from craft?

Dean: You want a what from who?
Brad: You are a P.A.? This is what you do?
Sam: Yeah, yeah... he uh... One smoothie coming right up.
Dean: What's a P.A.?

Sam: I think they're kind of like slaves.
Dean: No EMF anywhere.

Sam: Great. So, what do you think?

Dean: Well, I think being a P.A. sucks. But... the food these people get, are you kidding me? I mean look at these things. They're like miniature Philly cheesesteak sandwiches. They're delicious.
Dean: Absolutely. Hey, I wanted to ask you... what was it like working with Richard Moll? Metalstorm. He was Hurok, King of the Cyclops people.
Gerard: Gentlemen's gentleman.
Brad: Well, for one thing, the rules aren't really landing for me. Like, the kids do this Latin chant, and that makes the ghosts show up?

McG: Yeah.

Brad: See, but if the ghosts are in Hell, how do they hear the chanting? I mean, what do they have, super-hearing? It's a logic bump. The rules don't track.
Tara: I just can't wrap my head around the dialog, you know? Salt? Doesn't that sound silly? I mean, why would a ghost be afraid of salt?

McG: Okay, um... Marty?
Marty: Yo.
McG: What do you think?
Marty: Not married to salt, what do you want? We still sticking with condiments?
McG: It just sounds different, not better. What else would a ghost be scared of?
Walter: Oh, you've gotta be kidding me.
Marty: What would a ghost be scared of? Maybe, uh, maybe shotguns.
McG: Okay, that makes even less sense than salt.

Walter: These people are idiots.
Sam: How's it going in here?

Dean: It is going really good, man. Tara's really stepped up her performance. I think it's probably from all the sense memory stuff she's drawing on.
Sam: Sense memory?
Dean: Yeah.
Sam: Dean, you, you know when I ask how it's going in here, I'm talking about the case, right? We don't really work here. You know, I thought you hated being a P.A.

Dean: I don't know. It's not so bad. I kind of feel like part of the team, you know? It's good – oh, taquito? They're wonderful.
Dean: We're digging tonight, aren't we?
Walter: You know, the history, the lore in my draft was completely accurate. We could've gotten it right for the first time ever in this whorehouse of a town. But, you tore it to shreds. You replaced it with cleavage and fart jokes. It was real.

Marty: Who gives a rat's ass about "real"? We're talking about ghosts here, Walter. There's no such thing.

Walter: That's where you're wrong, Martin.
[Walter smashes the talisman]

Walter: There! Okay, now no one can have it.
Sam: I wouldn't have done that if I were you.
Walter: Oh, yeah?
Sam: Yeah.
Walter: And why not?

Sam: Because you just freed them. We can't stop them now. Walter, you brought them back, forced them to murder. They're not gonna be very happy with you.
Tara: You're one hell of a P.A.
Dean: Thank you.

Trivia & References

The episode title is taken from a book by Kenneth Anger about Hollywood scandals from the 1920s to the 1950s.
The concept sketches for the CG monster the director shows Tara are reminiscent of the Marvel Comic character Ghost Rider who also has a flaming skull, but instead sports a fiery whip instead of a chainsaw.
McG was the producer of Supernatural, The Pussycat Dolls Present: The Search for the Next Doll, and The OC, and the director of Charlie's Angels and Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle. The real McG can be seen standing behind Sam and Dean in the scene where the crew is listening to faux McG.
There is a call heard for "Ivan in FX," a reference to VFX Supervisor Ivan Hayden. Assistant Production Coordinator Lesley DeHaan appears as the P.A. on set.
Dean: Hey, you know this is where they filmed "Creepshow"?
Creepshow is a horror anthology film written by Stephen King and directed by George A. Romero.
Tour Guide: Now, to the right, here is Stars Hollow. It's the setting for the television series, Gilmore Girls. And if we're lucky, we might even catch one of the show's stars.
This is a fourth wall break as Jared Padalecki had a recurring role on Gilmore Girls as Dean Forester.
Tour Guide: And then up to the right here we have New York Avenue, and that's where they shot Lois and Clark.
Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman was a previous credit of SPN producer & director Robert Singer.
Dean: Sammy, check it out, it's Matt Damon!

Sam: Yeah, I'm pretty sure that's not Matt Damon.
Dean: No, it is.
Sam: Well, Matt Damon just picked up a broom and started sweeping.
Dean: Yeah, well, he's probably researching a role or something.

This is a reference to Matt Damon's role as the genius janitor in Good Will Hunting.
Sam: No, come on, we've gotta work. Dude, you wanted to come to LA.

Dean: Yeah, for a vacation. I mean swimming pools and movie stars, not to work.
Sam: This seem like swimming pool weather to you, Dean? I mean, it's practically Canadian.

"Swimming pools and movie stars" is a line from the theme song of the TV show The Beverly Hillbillies. A reference to the fact that while the scene occurs in California, the filming of the episode really took place in Canada.
Sam: Yeah, uh, rumors spreading like wildfire online. They're saying the set's haunted.

Dean: Like Poltergeist?
Sam: Could be a poltergeist.
Dean: No, no, no. Like, the movie Poltergeist. You know nothing of your cultural heritage, do you?

Poltergeist It was rumored that the set of was cursed, and that they used real human bones as, uh, as props.
Tara's last name, Benchley, may be a reference to author Peter Benchley, who wrote Jaws.
Brad: No, look, don't get me wrong. Everyone at the studio loves the dailies, myself included. We were just wondering if it could be... you know, a little brighter?

Jay: Brighter?
Brad: Yeah, Jay. More color. McG, you know what I'm saying, you're the master of that stuff.
McG: Brad, this is a horror movie.
Brad: Yeah, and who says horror has to be dark, you know? It's just, it's sort of... depressing, don't you think?

At Comic Con Kripke said that all of Brad's complaints and advice about the movie were taken from similar things he'd been told by network executives about Supernatural.
Before they start the shot with the actors in the cabin, the sound clapperboard says Roll 6, Scene 6, Take 6. The number 666 is a reference to the devil and considered to be a "bad" number. Has been used in countless horror novels and movies, including Supernatural itself. See 1.13 Route 666.
Martin Flagg and Walter Dixon are both references to the character ultimately known as Maerlyn in the Dark Tower (or Gunslinger) series written by Stephen King. Walter is a master of magic and conjuration.
Dean: Yeah. My big break. You know, I know it's... really uncool to say this, but I–I'm a big fan. I loved you in Boogeyman.

Tara: Oh, God, what a terrible script. But thank you.

Kripke, who has said that the show and he himself are able to laugh about themselves, throws in a little side blow at a past project of his, Boogeyman was written by Eric Kripke and he admitted at the 2006 Paley Festival that the movie wasn't very good because it missed substance and soul, unlike Supernatural, which has it all, thanks to Bob Singer.
Dean: You were Desert Soldier Number Four in Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn?

Gerard: I was.
Dean: I knew I recognized you. I am a huge fan. Heh heh. I mean, your turn as a tractor crash victim in Critters 3.

Metal Storm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn is a 1983 science fiction/space age western film. Critters 3 is a 1991 horror film. Neither of which starred the actor (R. Nelson Brown) who plays Gerard.
Gerard: These days, it's all about new media, building buzz. They say I'm the new "lonelygirl."
This is in reference to the YouTube video blogger lonelygirl15, actually portrayed by an actress hoping to score a movie deal through the exposure.
Gerard: Hey, I just play the part. I don't write the script. Speaking of, I'm playing Willy in a, in a dinner theater production of Salesman at Costa Mesa, all next month. You get a free pepper steak with the coupon.
The dinner theater and pepper steak coupon mentioned when Dean and Sam were talking to Gerard St. James is a likely shout out to The Simpsons episode, "Mayored to the Mob", in which Mark Hamill stars in a local theater production of Guys and Dolls and the dinner special is the pepper steak. Willy is reference to Willy Loman the lead character in the Arthur Miller play Death of a Salesman.
Dean: Hey, I wanted to ask you... what was it like working with Richard Moll? Metalstorm. He was Hurok, King of the Cyclops people.
Richard Moll is an American actor who played Hurok in the 1983 movie Metal Storm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn.
Dean: Tara has really stepped up her performance. I think it's probably from all the sense memory stuff she's drawing on.
Sense memory is a technique used in method acting where the actor draws on the sensory aspects of personal experiences to evoke a genuine response in their characters.
Dean: It's like Three Men and a Baby all over again... Selleck, Danson and Guttenberg. And... I don't know who played the baby.

Sam: What's your point?

Referencing the now debunked theory that Three Men and a Baby contained spirit photography in a scene that purports to show a boy in the background that no one remembers being on set. Ironically, the theory was pushed in order to increase video rentals of the film. Similar to how the network hired Gerard to fake his death on the set of Hell Hazers II: The Reckoning to generate buzz for the movie.
While working as a P.A. Dean uses the name "Ozzy," a reference to singer Ozzy Osbourne.
Dean: No, I don't have a 20 on Tara, I think she's 10-100.
Dean is using Citizen's Band radio codes. '20' means location, '10-100' means on break/using the restroom.
Dean: This map is totally worth the five bucks! Hey, we've gotta go check out Johnny Ramone's grave when we're done here.

Sam: You wanna dig him up, too?
Dean: Bite your tongue, heathen!

Johnny Ramone was the guitarist for the pioneering punk rock band The Ramones. He died in 2004 and was cremated, but a bronze statue of him was erected at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery in 2005. His former bandmate Dee Dee Ramone is buried there.
In the trailer for Hell Hazers II: The Reckoning, Tara is seen reciting a ritual from a book in Latin. Some of the phrases written in Latin in the book roughly translate to: 'I have a catapult. Give me all your money, or I will fling an enormous rock at your head' and 'May barbarians invade your personal space'.
Marty: Dude, right on, that's my thing. I mean, you know, color me guilty, but that is me. I'm a total detail buff.

Sam: No, I can tell. I mean, the way you worked in all those, all those Enochian summoning rituals and all the authentic language.
Marty: What, you mean that Latin crap? No, man, that's Walter. Walter Dixon, the original writer. You like that garbage?

Enochian is an angelic language, which would later be used in Supernatural when angels were introduced in Season four. It was in reality invented by occultist John Dee.
Don Stark's character Jay is on the phone with someone called Bob. He says: "You're a genius, you're kicking ass and taking names". Don Stark is best known for playing Bob Pinciotti on That '70s Show.
Dean: Come out to the coast, we'll get together, have a few laughs...
This is a line by Bruce Willis' character John McClane in Die Hard.


R. Nelson Brown who plays Frank/Gerard St. James previously appeared in the 2005 film Devour as a tattooist alongside Jensen Ackles.
Graeme Duffy, who played Dave, also played Jofiel in 11.18 Hell's Angel.
Andrew Francis, who played Rick, also played Lee in 7.18 Party On, Garth.
Leah Graham, who played Assistant Director, previously played Pauly in 1.11 Scarecrow.
Gerry Rousseau, who played Billy Beard, also played Bill Gibson in 4.11 Family Remains.
The episode takes place at Warner Brothers Studios in Burbank, Los Angeles. The cemetery is Hollywood Forever on Santa Monica Boulevard. However the episode was actually filmed in Vancouver, BC.
The set of Hell Hazers II: The Reckoning may look familiar. The water tower is from 2.08 Crossroad Blues and the cabin is from 2.16 Roadkill. The deer's head on the wall has appeared in the boys' motel room in 1.14 Nightmare, John's room in 1.21 Salvation, and Steve Wandell's home in 2.14 Born Under a Bad Sign.
Despite what Dean says, the actress Elizabeth Whitmere, who plays Tara Benchley, was not in the films FeardotCom, Ghost Ship, or Boogeyman.
In the faux trailer for Hell Hazers II: The Reckoning, writer Martin Flagg is also credited as the writer of Cornfield Massacre and Monster Truck, which are illustrated with images from Supernatural episodes 1.11 Scarecrow and 1.13 Route 666. There's also a shot of the hook from 1.07 Hookman, of Claire's desiccated hands from 2.07 The Usual Suspects, Gordon and his bloody knife from 2.03 Bloodlust and the inside of Angela's coffin from 2.04 Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things.
Hell Hazers II: The Reckoning is filming at Warner Bros. Studios. Season 1 and 2 of Supernatural aired on The WB. In the faux trailer, the production company is listed as 'Wonderland Films'. Wonderland Sound and Vision was the production company for Supernatural from 2005-2013 formed by McG.
The door to the Hell Hazers II: The Reckoning set has a large number 4 on it. This door reappears in 5.08 Changing Channels and 6.15 The French Mistake.
In Martin’s office there is also a poster for Carnivore Carnival which has an image from 2.02 Everybody Loves a Clown.
The original screenplay by Walter Dixon appears to be titled Lord of the Dead, and features a sketch of a grave and tombstone on its cover.

Sides, Scripts & Transcripts


Episode Meta