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Survival of the Fittest is the 23rd episode and the season finale of Season 7. It aired on May 18th, 2012.


Dean Purgatory Blade.png.png There was something about being there... It felt pure.

This episode summary is an official CW press release. It may contain errors.

Dean and Sam prepare for battle with Dick Roman (guest star James Patrick Stuart). Dick's in the final phase of his plan and the Winchesters must team up with Castiel (guest star Misha Collins), Bobby (guest star Jim Beaver), Meg (guest star Rachel Miner) and Kevin (guest star Osric Chau), the prophet, to stop him. However, Dick is one of the smartest enemies they've ever faced so it's a mind game to see who can keep the upper hand.


Following the customary montage of the season, the episode opens with Crowley having just been summoned to Sucrocorp and imprisoned beneath a digital devil's trap. After a bit of semi-friendly/ threatening banter, Dick offers Crowley a deal - the Demons get the entirety of Canada following the Leviathan takeover of America in exchange for Crowley deluding Sam and Dean with a vial of ordinary demon blood instead of his own, to complete their weapon. Crowley accepts and pulls out a huge parchment with the terms, which he and Dick proceed to review and edit as needed.

Meanwhile, the Winchesters travel to a church crypt in search of the bone of a righteous mortal. After considering several nuns, they finally agree upon Sister Mary Constant, a nun who devoted her whole life (83 years) to the order. Following a bad 'bone a nun' joke by Dean, the boys get to work extracting the bone.

Elsewhere, Bobby, still inhabiting the body of the maid from the motel, picks up supplies for his planned assault on Sucrocorp. His vengefulness is only incensed by the constant news images and video feeds of Dick on the street.

After signing the contract with Crowley, Dick retrieves the real Dick Roman's hand (which they had cut off and saved on ice). He then gets several other Leviathans to morph into Dick's form in order to protect himself once Crowley (inevitably) betrays him.

Back at the Winchester hideout, the boys finalize their plan and try to summon Crowley for his blood, to no avail. While debating whether or not Crowley screwed them over, Meg comes knocking.  Castiel found her hiding place and teleported her to the Winchester hideout. Meg seems very irritated, and the boys are skeptical.

Dean walks out to Cass sitting in the car listening to "Vincent " and taking in every word. Dean tries very hard to stow his exasperation as he attempts to inquire about Cass's motivation. In between expressing admiration for flowers and pondering the great mysteries of why humans test cosmetics on monkeys, Cass lets slip that he's been to Kevin's house, only to find it ransacked with the bodies of the Angels who were meant to guard him. He's been around Creation looking for members of his former garrison only to find that they're all gone. Leviathan, he points out, are the only creatures that can kill Angels; that's why God locked them away in Purgatory in the first place.

Before they can react, Meg spies the remnants of the failed demon summoning spell used on Crowley, and is angry. Just as she inquires what it's for, Crowley shows up with a vial of his blood. Although, very displeased that the Winchesters are harboring both the betrayer Cass and Meg who wants him smote, Crowley decides to let Meg remain with the boys, as Cass has grown fond of her. Crowley realizes that Cass is functioning with precarious mental capabilities, including the inability or unwillingness to deal with any conflict. Cass is attuned to Meg, whom the boys don't fully trust. The boys want to keep Cass close, but know he will bail if they serve up Meg. Crowley has to play all of them if he wants to see his own plan come to fruition.

He then tactfully, indirectly warns them about Dick's knowledge of their plan and his countermeasures before giving them the vial of blood and vanishing.

Meg just stares on in fear.

Meanwhile, in Sucrocorp, Kevin's futile attempt to open the door of his 'room' is foiled by a Leviathan in doctor's garb bringing in a dazed-looking girl named Polly (who is 'stoned out of her mind' on the Leviathan's food modifiying drug).

Meanwhile, Sam and Dean put together weapon by pouring the three kinds of blood over the bone, and they discuss if Crowley is double crossing them. Castiel appears with two sandwiches, he reassures the brothers that the ingredients are edible and the he got the ingredients from a farm in Normandy. Sam asks Castiel why Crowley said they needed to bring him along, but Castiel cuts him off by saying that Crowley's wrong and he'd be waiting right here.

Back at Sucrocorp, Susan brings a box to Dick's office, and tells him that the delegates are on there way. Dick opens the box, it contains the real Dick Roman's arm with a watch around the wrist.

The same Leviathan later brings Polly a dress to wear, complete with hairpins and accessories. The delegates arrive and are greeted by Dick and Susan in front of Sucrocorp. The Leviathan returns to the room Kevin is locked in with a burger a bottle of water and fries, and takes Polly with him. Kevin picks the door with a hairpin he stole from Polly's outfit. Kevin sneaks around the halls and overhears the meeting between Dick and the delegates, he heads for the nearest exit but is caught by Susan.

Sam and Dean tap into cameras in Sucrocorp, and find three "Dick Romans" in various areas of the building. Dick brings in Polly, he introduces Additive 3.0, a dairy creamer additive: his method for breeding out undesired characteristics, i.e. Low Body Mass, Vertically Challenged, Hemophilia, IQ>150. Using Additive 3.0, he injects Polly using a syringe and she immediately froths from the mouth, collapses and dies.

Sam and Dean cycle through the cameras again, then Sam spots the maid from the hotel and realises she's possessed by Bobby, Sam tries to stop Bobby, but Bobby fights back, almost choking Sam to death, Bobby realises what he's doing and leaves the maid's body. After the scuffle, Sam and Dean head back to Rufus' Cabin after dropping off Louise the maid at an hospital.

Castiel and Meg are waiting for the boys back at the cabin, Meg asks why they didn't go through with the plan, Dean tells her to "shut up". Sam tells Meg and Cass that Dick made more 'Dick copies' and figure out that the Leviathans must have kept a part of the real Dick Roman so they could all touch and copy his appearance. Castiel gets shaky and nervous, and Dean notices. He asks if he knows anything that could help them and why Crowley insisted that he should come along. Castiel refuses and says he may destroy everything just like he did before. Dean angrily confronts him, that he should clean up the mess that he started, Cass responds by saying "you know, we should play Twister," displaying a game of Twister that he'd brought along. Then, Cass teleports away.

Meg berates Dean for making Cass leave, Meg then explains that Cass was the vessel of all the Leviathans and therefore should know what each of them look like, meaning he could look past the meatsuits and identify the real fake Dick Roman.

Later that evening Sam and Dean go over what information they have on Dick when Bobby appears. Bobby tells the brothers he's going vengeful, wanting to just grab "some poor bastard" and kill his way in. Bobby decides he needs to end it by having them torch his flask; the only thing 'grounding' him as a ghost. The boys (and Castiel who is watching from the staircase) do as he asks and sadly watch as he passes/leaves.

Castiel starts setting up his board games UNO and Mastermind when Dean walks in, Dean and Castiel are teleported to where the Impala is stored, they talk about forgiveness, Castiel agreeing to join them, the plan, how Dick Roman knows they're coming.

The Impala is driving down the road, it drives right through the security and into the SUCROCORP sign. Meg gets out of the Impala with Borax and a machete. Sam, splits up from Dean and Cass while infiltrating the building. Meg decapitates the Leviathan security. Dean and Cass encounter one of the Dick Romans but Cass says it's not him.

Meg is thrown across the ground by two demons, one of them says "The King of Hell will see you now". Sam searches and finds Kevin, Sam unties him, Kevin tells Sam that they need to blow up the laboratory containing all the dairy creamer.

Dick and another Leviathan are in the labs packing the creamers, Dean and Cass decapitate the other Leviathan and confront Dick. Dick thanks Castiel for letting his kind out of Purgatory and throws Cass across the room, Dean lunges and stabs Dick with the weapon. Dick is not affected. He pulls it out, breaks it in half, and taunts him, then Cass pulls Dick's head back and Dean pulls out the real weapon and stabs it sideways through Dick's neck. Sam and Kevin burst in just as Dick is stabbed. An aura pulses from Dick Roman who grins maniacally then explodes into black goo.

Sam and Kevin look around the room to see that Dean, Cass and Dick have vanished. Crowley and two other demons appear next to Kevin. Crowley says that Leviathans have become just another monster without their leader. He also says that he's taking the Prophet with him. Crowley and his men disappear, along with Kevin, and Sam is left all alone.

Dean and Castiel in Purgatory.

Dean is woken up by Cass in a dark forest, Cass who is now sane tells him they're in Purgatory, where the souls of monsters prey upon each other for eternity. Dean asks how they're supposed to get out of here, but Castiel replies that they're far more likely to be ripped to shreds first. Dean notices two shadowy creatures with red eyes in the trees. He turns around to see that Cass isn't there. Dean is left all by himself, and the monsters are approaching...


Main Cast[]

Recurring Cast[]

Special Guest Stars[]

Guest Stars[]


Featured Supernatural Beings[]


  • After being mentioned multiple times in Season 6, Purgatory is shown for the first time.
  • Castiel still experiences insanity from the previous episodes but at the end, he is himself again.
  • Crowley brings up Dick's remark from Slash Fiction.


  • Antagonists: Dick Roman and Crowley.
  • This episode was reported to feature the return of John Winchester, however, this turned out to be an April Fools joke.
  • This episode marks the return of The Impala.
  • Misha Collins is billed as a "Special Guest Star" for the 5th and final time this season.
  • During "The Road So Far" segment: Rufus Turner, Lucifer, Garth Fitzgerald IV, Chet, The Reaper, Death, Frank Devereaux, Jody Mills, Susan and Dr. Gaines are absent.
  • The rendition of Carry On My Wayward Son that plays during the "Road So Far" segment is longer than it has been in previous season finales.
  • Before the official announcement, rumors circulated that this episode would be called "Get Dick". However it was later proved to be false.
  • This episode has the distinction of being the first 23rd episode of a season, all before it being only 22 episodes long (apart from Season 3). It is also the 149th episode overall.
  • This is also the first season finale to feature Meg since Devil's Trap. It is also the last season finale she appears in.
  • This is the fourth season finale to feature Castiel.
  • This is the seventh season finale to feature Bobby Singer.
  • This is the second season finale to feature Crowley.
  • The promos for this episode showed a scene in which Sam, Dean, and Castiel are gathered outside SUCROCORP just before they infiltrate the building. This scene was cut from the actual broadcast, however.
  • Originally, Kevin was supposed to be killed in this episode, but fan support kept him alive until "Holy Terror" in Season 9.


  • Kevin tells Sam about the Leviathan Creamer - which he supposedly learned about when spying on Dick's meeting. However, he had already been caught by Susan before Dick showed off the creamer.
  • Royce's body disappears from the lab after Dick is killed, though it is possible that his body was also transported to Purgatory. 


Cultural References[]

  • Dean: Shut up, Meg. [Reference to Family Guy. A remark Peter Griffin says to his daughter Meg.]
  • Meg: Nice. There goes the Empire's only hope. [A reference to Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back. For when Luke leaves Yoda's training prematurely.]
  • The episode title is taken from Herbert Spencer's theory of Social Darwinism. The phrase is often misattributed to Charles Darwin
  • Dick Roman refers to Sam and Dean as "Frick and Frack" - the nicknames of two famous Swiss ice skaters who performed comedy.

Featured Music[]

  • Carry On Wayward Son by Kansas (The Road So Far)
  • Vincent by Don McLean plays (while Castiel sits in the car)
  • Born to be Wild by Steppenwolf (plays during the Impala's return)


  • Crowley: It's not easy to kill me, but doable, especially for you lot. You kill Angels. You can certainly wipe a demon off the board. And yet, here we are, negotiating like proper psychopaths.
  • Dick Roman: Full immunity for you and your constituency. I'm talking free-range grazing for all demonkind. I'm willing to cordon off, say, Canada. You and your crew can work your little deals, have your way with the locals.
  • Crowley: All of Canada?
  • Dick Roman: Have it.
  • Crowley: Fair. And down here?
  • Dick Roman: America's ours. Your sales team stays out – period. That's not up for negotiation. We need America. They're so fat.

[As Sam and Dean are about to break open a tomb to get the bone of a nun.]

[Sam gives him an exasperated look.]

  • Dean: ...Sorry.

  • Castiel: You know, Leviathan can kill angels. There's a reason why Father locked them in Purgatory. They're the Piranha that would eat the whole aquarium.

[After Castiel presents Sam and Dean with sandwiches]

  • Castiel: So. None of this should cause you any ill effect. I went to a little farm in Normandy for the wheat, and the lettuce, and tomato. And, I thoroughly examined, and comforted the pig before I slaughtered it for the ham. Here, you need your strength.
  • Castiel: Please accept this sandwich as a gesture of solidarity.

[After Dick makes copies of himself]

  • Sam Winchester: Dick made more Dicks!

  • Dean: We can't leave it. You let these friggin' things in. So you don't get to make a sandwich. You don't get a damned cat. Nobody cares that you're broken, Cass. Clean up your mess!

[Castiel walks up to Dean]

  • Castiel: You know... we should play Twister.

[Castiel vanishes; Sam and Dean exchange looks]

  • Meg: (dryly) Nice. You scared off the Empire's only hope.
  • Dean: Shut up, Meg.

  • Dean: So, what's it feel like?
  • Bobby Singer: What? Going vengeful? It's an itch you can't scratch out. Look... I'm done. Go get Dick. But don't do it 'cause you think it'll scratch the itch. Do it 'cause it's the job. And when it's your time... go.

  • Bobby Singer: (last words) Here's to seeing you guys on the other side. Just... not too soon alright?

  • Castiel: So, can I ask the plan?
  • Dean: Well according to Crowley, Dick knows we're coming. So we're gonna announce ourselves- big.

(cut to the Impala crashing through SucroCorp's front gate and giant glass sign)

(Dean fails to kill Dick with the Bone Of Righteous Mortal Washed In the Three Bloods of Fallen)

  • Dick Roman: Did you really think you could trump me?
  • Dean: Honestly? No. (pulls the real bone out of his jacket and stabs Dick through the neck while Castiel holds his head in place) Figured we'd have to catch you off guard!

(Dick pulsates energy waves and laughing, eventually explodes into black goo)

[After Dick is killed]

  • Crowley: You got what you wanted – Dick's dead, saved the world. So I want one little prophet. Sorry, moose. Wish I could help. You certainly got a lot on your plate right now. It looks like you are well and truly... on your own.

[Last scene: Dean wakes up in a dark forest with Castiel]

  • Dean Winchester: Where are we?
  • Castiel: You don't know?
  • Dean: Last I remember, we ganked Dick.
  • Castiel: And where would he go in death?
  • Dean: (realizes) Wait, are you telling me...?
  • Castiel: Every soul here is a monster. This is where they come to prey upon each other for all eternity.
  • Dean: We're in Purgatory? How do we get out?
  • Castiel: I'm afraid we're much more likely to be ripped to shreds.

International Titles[]

  • German: Das Überleben der Stärkeren (Survival of the Fittest)
  • Hungarian: A leszámolás (The Reckoning)


Behind the Scenes[]

Promotional Images[]

External Links[]