9.17 Mother's Little Helper

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Title Mother's Little Helper
Episode # Season 9, Episode 17
First aired March 25, 2014
Directed by Misha Collins
Written by Adam Glass
On IMDB Mother's Little Helper
Outline While Dean hunts Abaddon, Sam checks out a case of apparent demonic possession and learns about a similar case in 1958 investigated by Men of LettersHenry Winchester and Josie Sands.
Monster Demons
Timeline March 12, 1958
A few days after 9.16 Blade Runners
Location(s) Milton, Illinois
Lebanon, Kansas
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In Milton, Illinois, a housewife returns home and becomes inexplicably angry with her husband. She picks up a candlestick and bashes him until he is dead.

Dean, who is suffering from insomnia, is in the library researching when Sam comes in and says that he found a case. However, Dean is obsessed with finding Abaddon and doesn't want to go on a hunt. Sam is worried about Dean's obsession, but he leaves without Dean who then opens a bottle of liquor.

At the police station in Milton, Sam begins his investigation by discovering that the angry housewife has killed herself. He then calls Dean to check in, and he continues to worry about Dean's attitude. After the Boys hang up, Dean flashes back to holding the First Blade and his hand begins to shake.

A young man is hitchhiking when he is picked up by a van. As the van drives away, the young man begins to scream and a bright white light shines out the back.

Sam is eating at diner, when the young man, Billy, comes in and gets angry with the waitress. When Sam intervenes, Billy stabs the waitress forcing Sam to physically restrain him. Later at the police station, Sam finds that a number of people are locked up and acting strange. Sam tests Billy with holy water and then questions him about what he is. Sam calls Dean, who is now in a bar (“The Milton”), to talk about the case, and Sam compares the perps to his time being soulless. Sam again asks for Dean's help, but Dean again declines. After hanging up, Crowley appears behind Dean.

While at the police station, Sam meets Julia Wilkinson who is trying to warn the police about demons. She tells Sam a story about how, in 1958, the Men of Letters came to Milton to investigate a strange occurrence.

In 1958, Henry Winchester and Josie Sands arrive at a convent where Julia is a nun, and they meet with Mother Superior and Sister Agnes who direct Julia to guide Henry and Josie around the convent. While investigating, Henry and Josie discuss their on the job training and Henry's concerns about joining the Men of Letters. He is worried about Millie and John. Henry and Josie discover that the Knights of Hell are involved. Later that night, Julia, who continues to tell her story in the present to Sam, was curious about noises and went to check them out. She is taken hostage by Mother Superior along with several other people. Henry and Josie arrive and start to perform an exorcism but it does not work on Abaddon, who knocks out Henry. Abaddon concludes that Josie and Henry are Men of Letters, and she decides to possess Henry. However, Josie asks Abaddon to possess her instead. Julia watches as Abaddon's smoke flows into Josie. Abaddon vows to destroy the Men of Letters and asks Sister Agnes to continue with their project. Henry awakens and he isn't aware that Abaddon has possessed Josie.

Meanwhile, at the bar, Dean is playing pool and talking with Crowley who thinks Dean is stalling on finding Abaddon. Crowley accuses Dean of being scared of the First Blade, and he irritates Dean by comparing Dean to Cain. Dean claims to be nothing like Cain, but Crowley continues to force the issue. Crowley excuses himself to go to the restroom, and Dean again remembers holding the First Blade. He then notices a young man, who appears to be a hunter, follow Crowley to the men's room. Dean follows him and stops him.

Then, Dean berates Crowley for his blood addiction. Crowley, in turn, says Dean is a junkie too –- he is addicted to the First Blade. Dean counters that he just wants to kill Abaddon, no matter what the consequences. Dean leaves, and the young “hunter” appears. Crowley has set up the confrontation to confirm that Dean would save him and that “he is ready.”

During this time, Sam investigates at the convent. Just as he discovers a number of jars with glowing lights in them, a demon arrives, and Sam kills him with the knife. Another demon, Sister Agnes, knocks Sam down, and then tells him that the glowing lights are souls. She laments that it has become more difficult to steal souls, but it is necessary to make an army for Abaddon. She tells Sam that there are other demons doing the same thing. Sam starts chanting the exorcism but Sister Agnes begins choking him so he can no longer speak. Sam pulls out his phone that has a recording of the exorcism and he then tosses the phone across the room. Sister Agnes lets go of Sam and dives for the phone in order to stop the exorcism. Sam kills her with the knife. He then opens the jars and watches as the souls go free to return to their bodies.

The next day, Sam asks Julie why she didn't warn Henry about Abaddon, and Julia admits this was her greatest shame. She flashes back to 1958 where we see Abaddon, as Josie, threaten Julia. Sam assures her that she has helped save lives by telling her story.

In 1958, Henry and Josie are leaving the convent, and Henry's enthusiasm has been renewed because he understands that what they do saves lives. Meanwhile, Abaddon feels like a whole new person.

Sam returns to the Bunker to find Dean researching in the library. Sam also has renewed enthusiasm for the quest to hunt down Abaddon because Abaddon is mining souls to create an army. The boys sit at separate tables, but they now have a shared mission.




  • "It's Not Too Late" by The Bughouse 5
(playing in the diner Sam is eating at)
  • "Love, Dance and Sing" by Electric Banana (De Wolfe Music Library)
(playing in the bar when Dean and Sam are talking about the case)
  • "Plastic Princess" by David Alan Tomlinson & Gary Alan Jones (Extreme Music)
(plays while Dean is shooting pool)
  • "You're No Good" by Linda Ronstadt
(playing while Crowley talks with Dean at the bar)
  • "Grey Skies" by Electric Banana (De Wolfe Music Library)
(plays while Dean talks Jake out of going after Crowley)


Sam: What's up with you?

Dean: Nothing.
Sam: Yeah? See, because ever since you killed Magnus, you've been acting... sort of... obsessed.

Dean: Well, maybe because I want an end to all this. Maybe because if we find Abaddon, then Crowley ponies up the First Blade, and we kill her and him both. So, what you call being "obsessed," I call doing my job.
Crowley: You're lying to Sam like he's your wife. Which kinda makes me your mistress.
Julia: I'm an ex-nun sweetie. Complicated is my middle name.
Dean: Demons don't take leaks, next time you want to shoot up why don't you find a better excuse.
Abaddon: You hunters are always sticking your noses in where they don't belong.

Josie: Hunters? Please.
Abaddon: Then what are you? Quickly, dear, before this one pays for your stubbornness!
Josie: We are preceptors... Beholders, chroniclers of all that which man does not understand.
Abaddon: A woman amongst the Men of Letters?
Josie: Yes.

Abaddon: Well, ain't that a blast.
Abaddon: I'm trading up from this bag of bones to Mr. Dreamy here. Then I can study your kind real close.
Sam: You know, um, can I ask you something?
Julia: If it's for a date, sorry. I never see anyone under 65. Too much drama.
Julia: I had betrayed our flock, God, myself. It was and still is my greatest shame.

Sam: Well, what you shared with me saved lives, and I couldn't have done that with out you. Take care

Julia: You too Sam.
Henry: This -- our work... it's a noble calling, isn't it? I mean, yes, there's risk, but, gosh. I feel the fool for doubting it for even a second.
Sam: You were right.

Dean: About what?
Sam: Finding Abaddon ASAP. She's mining souls.
Dean: Why?

Sam: To create an army.

Trivia & References

"Mother's Little Helper" is a track from the Rolling Stone's 1966 album Aftermath. In the '60s the sedative Valium was known as "mother's little helper" due to its popularity amongst women.
Sam travels to Milton, Illinois to investigate the case. Dean is seen at a bar called The Milton drinking and playing pool. Fans suggested that this may indicate that Dean followed Sam to Milton, or that it is simply a visual metaphor for their connection, despite their separation. The name Milton may be a reference to poet John Milton who wrote the epic poem Paradise Lost. The poem tells the story of Satan and the angelic wars, as well as Adam and Eve and their relationship and fall expulsion from Heaven. It could also be a reference to the drug Meprobamate, marketed as "Miltown," and the drug referenced in the song "Mother's Little Helper."
Sam's FBI alias Leiter is likely a reference to the James Bond character Felix Leiter.
Sister Julia Wilkinson is named after the Supernatural Wiki admin, Jules Wilkinson.
Crowley: Actually, long as I'm here, last time we chitchatted we agreed you were going to line up Carrot Top.
Carrot Top is a famous prop comic, most noticeable for his tuft of red hair.
Crowley: I know that Cain gave you his Mark for a reason, and I know that rather than embracing it, rather than looking at it as the gift that it is, you’re sulking like you lost you Knuffle Bunny. Why are you fighting what you really are?
Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale is a children's book about a toddler named Trixie who loses her stuffed animal named Knuffle Bunny.
Crowley: I’m going to go water the lily. Care to cross streams?
"Cross streams" may be a reference to the Ghostbusters films, in which crossing the streams of the proton packs could have catastrophic results.
Crowley: Well, I was going to, but then after very little soul-searching, I decided to embrace my addiction. What about you? Takes a junkie to know a junkie. You just want to touch that precious again, don't you?
In the Lord of the Rings series, the character Gollum -- who has an obsession with the One Ring refers to it as his "precious."
Crowley: Of course he saved me. We're besties... and now he's ready.
Besties is a slang term for best friend.


Before the episode Misha answered questions on the official Supernatural Facebook page. Over 25,000 questions were posted! Here are his answers to some of them.
The episode marked Misha's directorial debut. He joins Jensen Ackles, Jerry Wanek, Kevin Parks, Serge Ladouceur and Johnny MacCarthy as a member of the cast and crew of the show who has also directed.
Marilyn Norry, who played Mother Superior / Abaddon, previously played a nurse in 3.15 Time Is on My Side.
It is revealed that Henry's wife and John's mother was named Millie.
It is a seven hour drive from Lebanon, Kansas to Milton, Illinois.
Henry and Abaddon are seen leaving in a black 1956 Imperial Limousine.
In 8.22 Clip Show, Abaddon says that she learned about Josie Sands from Father Max Thompson, and decided to use her to infiltrate the Men of Letters. In this episode her initial encounter with Josie appears to be unplanned. Though Abaddon is aware of the Men of Letters, inferring that the episode takes place after her encounter with Father Max Thompson. This is supported by the fact that Henry and Josie indicate they are close to initiation.

Sides, Scripts & Transcripts