Breakdown is the 11th episode of Season 13. It aired on January 25, 2018.
|There was something about being there... It felt pure.|
This episode summary is an official CW press release. It may contain errors.
DO NOT CHANGE!
Donna (guest star Briana Buckmaster) calls Sam and Dean for help after her niece, Wendy (guest star Sarah Dugdale), goes missing. The three hunters discover Wendy was kidnapped by a man who sells human parts to monsters in a grotesque online auction and race to save her before it is too late.
A masked man—the Cutter—stands over an operating table in a room filled with bloody parts from various beings. His prisoner begs him to stop but he doesn't.
In Oshkosh, Nebraska at Manny's tuck stop, a girl Wendy gets out to refuel and discovers that her card doesn't work. She goes in to see the cashier, and the customers turn to stare at her. Wendy tells the cashier that his card thing isn't working, and the cashier takes her card and ID to try it. The cashier, Marlon, looks at it and flirts with her, and then runs her card. As Wendy takes it, Marlon briefly holds her hand.
Wendy goes back to her car and fills it up. She turns and a bearded man comes up and offers to wash her windows. Wendy refuses and quickly drives off. Down the road, her tire goes flat and Wendy gets out to check it. A trucker drives by, ignoring Wendy's attempts to flag it down. She discovers that someone put a spike in the tire, and a man in goggles grabs her from behind and throws her to the ground. He grabs Wendy's leg and drags her off.
At the bunker, Sam is trying to sleep without success. Dean knocks on his door to ask how many pancakes he wants, but Sam just ignores him. When his phone rings, he finally answers it. Sam goes to the kitchen and puts Donna on speaker, and she says that her niece Wendy has gone missing. She ask the Winchesters to help and they immediately agree.
When the brothers get to Oshkosh, they meet Donna at the local impound lot. She explains that the state troopers found Wendy's car and signs of a struggle, and that Wendy was taking a gap year. Dean assures Donna that whatever happened isn't her fault, and she says that Doug is inside talking with the locals. Inside, Dean finds Doug talking to the locals. As he examines the spike in the tire, Agent Clegg comes over and complains about Dean's presence. Doug comes over and says that Dean is with the FBI, and Clegg asks why Dean is walking through his crime scene. Dean says that the victim is family and he's not there on official business, and claims that Donna is his cousin. Once Clegg leaves, Doug asks if Dean was at the Hanscum family reunion a few weeks ago. Dean plays along and then goes to check the map with Clegg.
Clegg tells Dean and the others that the troopers got an anonymous tip about the car, and Wendy isn't the only one who hasn't been abducted. The agent calls the serial killer Butterfly, and admits that all of the victims have disappeared and they've never found a body. Clegg tells them he's been chasing Butterfly for 12 years and can use all of the help he can get, and Dean speaks for all of them, saying that they're in.
At their motel, Dean uses a CB radio to track down Wendy by talking with truckers. Sam says that it won't work and it's not their kind of case, and points out that the FBI thinks that they're dead. Dean tells him that they don't need to go back to the bunker just so Sam can mope because they've lost Jack and Mary is gone. He says that the only way out is through, and promises that they'll find Jack and Mary once they help Donna. A woman with the handle "Felix the Cat" responds on the CB and asks to talk live at a diner. Dean agrees and tells Sam that he'll check it out while Sam hangs back in case something else breaks. Sam says that he's there for Donna, and Dean agrees.
Wendy is tied up in the operating room. The Cutter comes in wearing his mask and apron, rips off Wendy's hood, and screams at her when she screams. She asks why he's doing it to her, but the Cutter just takes out a video camera. Wendy begs whoever is watching for help.
Sam and Donna meet with Clegg at the police station, and Clegg gives Sam his file on Butterfly. They've checked Wendy's credit card record and traced her to Manny's, and Clegg has one suspect. The suspect, Pastor "Diamond" Don Hankey, was there, Hankey is a road preacher who has been arrested for drunken and disorderlies, and found Wendy's bloody t-shirt on him when they picked him up. In the interrogation room, Hankey calmly reads a Bible.
Felix meets Dean and says that she was at Manny's the night that Wendy came in. She was the trucker that passed Wendy by, and admits that she shouldn't have left her there but she was running behind schedule. Felix says that Manny's gives her the creeps.
Sam and Clegg question Hankey, and he claims that he's never seen Wendy or another victim, Luis Fernando. Hankey demands to see a lawyer, and Clegg tells him that he doesn't care about Hankey thinks. When Hankey calls the two victims an illegal and a whore, Clegg grabs him. Sam pulls him away and Donna comes in and asks to talk to Hankey.
That night at Manny's, Dean meets with Doug. Doug gives him the reports on what has happened at Manny's, and nothing screams hunting ground for a kidnapper. The deputy asks Dean if Donna is going to be okay. He admits that he loves Donna but he's never seen her untalkative before. Doug figures that Donna is hiding something from him, but then dismisses it as nothing. Dean tells him that he's a good guy and advises him to trust Donna.
Hankey demands his lawyer, and Donna quotes the Bible to him about lawyers. She tells him that it's a small town on a Friday and if Hankey is lucky, they might get him a public defender by Monday. Donna makes it clear that the other prisoners will attack Hankey, and says that if Hankey answers a few questions then they can get him out. Sam and Clegg are watching through the one-way mirror, and they agree that she's good.
Dean and Doug ask the bearded man if he's seen Wendy, and the man takes some money to say that Wendy was there and Marlon liked her. After Wendy left, Marlon closed up, drove after Wendy, and didn't come back until Dawn.
Hankey says that he's been on the rod for years and travels across the roads. Donna brings up Hankey's sexual crimes, and Hankey says that he's a sinner and his wife knows it. She asks him if his wife knows about the t-shirt and explains that they found it in Hankey's van. Hankey insists that he had nothing to do with it, and insists that he's done wrong but never hurt anyone. He breaks into terrors and begs Donna to believe him. Outside, Donna tells Clegg and Sam that they believe him. Sam figures that if Hankey was Butterfly then he wouldn't have kept the t-shirt and the real Butterfly planted it.
Dean and Doug go into Manny's and ask Marlon where Wendy is. Marlon says that he doesn't know, and Dean slams his head on the counter and repeats his question. The cashier says that Dean won't believe it, while Doug turns on the "closed" sign. Marlon shows them a streaming video of Luis Fernando in the operating room, and bids coming in for his left arm. Someone wins and the Cutter cuts off Luis' left arm on-camera to prove that he did it.
When Donna and Sam arrive, Dean has Marlon show them a recording of the video. Sam figures that Butterfly is selling food to monsters, and Marlon explains that he sends a message and gets paid. A new auction is starting and Donna is the victim. Disgusted, Donna walks out and Doug goes after her. Sam tries to hack the video but warns that he can't do it in 58 minutes when the bidding starts. He tells Dean that the only people who can do it is the FBI.
Donna explains to Doug about monsters, and how the Winchesters are Hunters and so is she. Dean comes out and tells them that Clegg has located the source of the video feed. The group drives to the building where the feed is originating and go in, Sam taking the back while the others go in the front with Marlon. Doug hangs back to watch Marlon, and Donna tells him that they'll figure it out when they get back to Stillwater.
As Sam goes in the back, Clegg arrives and says that he needs to see the hunt for Butterfly through.
Doug handcuffs Marlon to a door and Marlon says that Wendy is out of Doug's league.
Butterfly sharpens a knife and Wendy begs him to let her go.
Dean and Donna move through the building and find a radio playing Butterfly's music but no sign of the killer.
Marlon tells Doug that he's a vampire, bares his teeth, and breaks free of his handcuffs. He punches Doug and throws him to the floor, and feeds some of his blood to Doug. Sam and Clegg hear him, and Clegg knocks Sam unconscious.
Donna and Dean find Doug, and he transforms into a vampire as he warns that he's not okay. He says that he's hungry and starts to attack Donna, and Dean shoots him up with some dead man's blood to knock him out. Dean describes the cure, and Marlon comes in and points out that Dean needs the blood of the vampire who turned Doug. Marlon tells them that Clegg is Butterfly and has Sam, and Dean draws a machete. Donna shoots Marlon in the leg and tells Dean to get Marlon's blood and mix the cure. Meanwhile, she aims the gun at Marlon's head and tells him to tell them where Clegg and Sam are or he'll die slow.
In the operating room, Clegg has strapped Sam to the operating table and has the Cutter placing the camera. Clegg knows who the Winchesters are and admits that he tried to set up Hankey but it didn't work. He's selling food for monsters and explains that there are hundreds of thousands of monsters out there and most of them could be he next door neighbors. Clegg sells them people so that they don't hunt and kill thousands more, and Sam tells him to go to hell. The agent says that it's showtime and the Cutter starts the feed as Clegg dons a mask. He then announces that they're auctioning off Sam.
Dean and Donna drive to the location Marlon gave them, and Donna gives Doug the cure.
Clegg sells Sam's liver for $5,000, and begins the auction for Sam's heart.
Dean and Donna approach the building, leaving Doug unconscious in the car. They split up and Donna finds Wendy. The Cutter attacks her and Donna grabs a knife, stabbing him in the chest.
The bidding goes up to $500,000, and Clegg tells Sam that since Dean is out there, he'll shoot Sam dead because he's in a hurry. A gunshot rings out... as Dean arrives and shoots Clegg dead.
The trio takes Doug to the motel and he wakes up. They confirm that he's not a vampire, and Donna removes Doug's handcuffs and says that Wendy is safe. Dean tells Doug that it would be nice to have him on their side, but Doug says that maybe they can live the Hunter life but he can't. He tells them that he just wants to go home, and when Donna takes his hand Doug pulls away and says that he's not cut out for it. Donna apologizes for lying to him but says that she can't give it up. He tells her that she's a hero, but it's not him. Doug apologizes and says that he loves her, and goes. Sam tells Donna to let Doug go, and warns her that anyone who gets close gets hurt or worse so he'll be safe. Donna breaks into tears, and the brothers leave.
On the road, Dean tells Sam that he was tough on Donna. Sam points out that knowing them has never worked out for anyone, and they get people killed. He insists that he's just saying the truth about their lives, and it will end bloody and bad for them.
- Steven Yaffee as Marlon
- Sarah Dugdale as Wendy Hanscum
- Emilio Merritt as Luis Fernando
- Christopher William Martin as Terrance Clegg
- Troy Skog as Don Hankey
- Camille Atebe as Female Diner Customer
- Jason Vaisvila as Window Washer
Featured Supernatural Beings
- Dreamwalker (Kaia Nieves, mentioned only)
- Nephilim (Jack Kline, mentioned only)
- Primordial Entity (God, mentioned only)
- Rugaru (cameo only)
- Seraph (Castiel, mentioned only)
- Vampires (Marlon, Doug Stover)
- Werewolf (cameo only)
- Arachne (cameo only)
- The Men of Letters bunker was previously featured in The Bad Place.
- Doug Stover previously appeared in the Season 11 episode Plush.
- A Rugaru was previously featured in the Season 12 episode Family Feud.
- Sire blood previously appeared in the Season 12 episode Ladies Drink Free.
- A vampire cure was previously made in the Season 9 episode Alex Annie Alexis Ann.
- Dead man's blood was previously used in the Season 9 episode Alex Annie Alexis Ann.
- Sam and Dean refer to the events of the Season 7 episode Slash Fiction when they mention the FBI thinking they are dead and being wanted by the FBI.
- The episode was watched by 1.93 million viewers and got a 0.6 rating. This is the season's most watched episode since Patience and the show's most watched eleventh episode since There's No Place Like Home in Season 10.
- The title of the episode is a reference to the 1997 American adventure/mystery/thriller film starring Kurt Russell, making this the second episode of the season to have a title referencing a movie starring Kurt Russell with Tombstone being the first one.
- The episode was originally titled The Midnight Train and was supposed to feature vampires on a train, but this was later changed due to filming constraints. However, the episode did briefly include the vampire Marlon and Doug Stover when he was turned for a short time.
- This is the second time Donna Hanscum appears this season, making Season 13 her first season where she appears in multiple episodes.
- Sarah Dugdale, the actress that portrays Wendy Hanscum, also portrayed Chloe in the Season 7 episode Party On, Garth.
- Doug Stover is the fourth character that was turned into a vampire and cured with Dean Winchester, Seth's Victim and Alex Jones being the first three.
- Dean tells the vampire Marlon "bring it, Twilight. This is a reference to the Twilight series. He also said something similar to a vampire he killed in the Season 5 episode Free To Be You and Me.
- Dean refers to when the time when he was cured from vampirism in the Season 6 episode Live Free or Twihard.
- Doug mentioned the events of Wayward Sisters which he stated to have been a couple of weeks before.
- According to Sam's bio on Clegg's website, Sam is 34 years old, 6'5" (195.58 cm), weighs 210 pounds (95.25 kg) and is from Lawrence, Kansas.
- One of the locations given on Clegg's map of the Butterfly's victims is Gunnison, Colorado. This is where Season 11's The Chitters took place and where the Winchesters fought the Bisaan. According to the map, the abduction or abductions occurred on September 2, 2009.
- The plot of this episode is very similar to the plot of the 2008 supernatural horror movie The Midnight Meat Train where New York City authorities sacrifice people to a race of humanoid reptilian monsters that live below the city to prevent them from surfacing and consuming its inhabitants.
- Numerous unnamed people (mentioned only)
- Luis Fernando
- Marlon (off-screen)
- The Harvester
- Terrence Clegg
- Hungarian: Összeomlás (Breakdown)