4.08 Wishful Thinking

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Title Wishful Thinking
Episode # Season 4, Episode 8
First aired November 6, 2008
Directed by Robert Singer
Written by Ben Edlund
Lou Bollo
On IMDB http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1222615/
Outline Sam and Dean come to a town where wishes come true and no one is careful about what they ask for.
Monster Wishing Well
Timeline Early November, 2008
Location(s) Concrete, Washington
[[{{{prevep}}}|« Previous Episode]] | [[{{{nextep}}}|Next Episode »]]


This isn't how Psycho ended: when an invisible being encounters Candace Armstrong in the showers of the Cascade Women's Fitness Center, it apologizes nervously.

Elsewhere, over shots, Dean rebuffs Sam's questions about remembering Hell, and denies flat-out that he can. He is, however, eager to investigate the shower-spirit case. At #1 Lucky Chin's, a restaurant in Concrete, Wa., Candace tells Sam about her ghostly encounter (for his book, tentatively titled Supernatural). Rather than harming her, the spirit knew her name and helped her when she fell, begging her not to tell its mom. Dean finds no EMF at the site, but he and Sam do come across a man claiming to have been attacked by Bigfoot -- a well-known hoax. They can't explain the huge tracks they find in the woods, though, which lead to a raided liquor store. A little girl on a bike, Audrey Elmer, drops off a box full of alcohol and porn, along with a "Sorry" note. While passing by Winchesters, Busty Asian Beauties magazine falls to Dean's feet from the girl's box. Sam and Dean follow her home, and are surprised when she tells them that her teddy bear is responsible for the damage. The girl's teddy is big, real and can talk -- and it's in the midst of an existential crisis, holed up in the TV room crying at news reports. Audrey tells Sam and Dean that she wished for him at the Wishing Well at Lucky Chin's.

They visit the restaurant, and Dean tests the well by wishing for a sandwich. Dean's wish comes true. Posing as health inspectors, they clear the restaurant and drain the fountain. Dean asks Sam if he's tempted to make a wish, to reset his life so he could be normal again. Sam says he wouldn't, but if he did, he'd ask for Lilith's head on a plate, bloody. They notice an ancient coin at the bottom of the fountain, which refuses to budge. Dean goes on research duty, while Sam repairs to the women's health center, to scold the pervy teen who wished for invisibility.

Back at the hotel, Sam finds Dean being sick in the bathroom. The wishes, it turns out, turn bad, because the coin is cursed. It depicts Tiamat[1], the Babylonian dragon deity of primordial chaos, and it has been known to wipe entire towns off the map with the trouble it causes. The only way to stop it is to find the first wisher, the one person capable of removing the coin and turning off the well.

Dean wakes from a fitful nap, dreaming of Hell. Sam confronts him, about the nightmares and his increased drinking. Dean deflects the questions, and deduces the first wisher: Wes Mondale, a nerdy guy announcing his surprise engagement to the beautiful Hope Lynn Casey. At his house, Wes confesses that his grandfather found the coin while a soldier in North Africa in World War II, but he told Wes never to use it. Now that it's working, Wes is recalcitrant about undoing his wish, but Sam and Dean convince him, with some helpful threats. Near the well, they see Todd, a small kid with super-strength, terrorizing a group of bullies. Dean tries to talk to him, but gets beaten up for his troubles. At the restaurant, a lightning bolt strikes Sam, thanks to Hope wishing that no one take away her love for Wes. Wes removes the coin from the fountain, reversing all the wishes in town. Hope doesn't even remember his name now. A dejected Wes leaves Sam with the coin.

Later, Sam meets Dean at a pier, confirming that the coin's been melted down. Before they leave, Dean confesses something: he's been lying to Sam, and he does remember everything that happened to him in the Pit. When Sam tries to get him to talk about it, so he doesn't have to deal with it on his own, Dean refuses, telling Sam that there's no way to make him understand.





Dean: I got to tell you, I'm pretty disappointed.

Sam: You wanted to save naked women.

Dean: Darn right I wanted to save some naked women.
Wesley: Aren't you the guys from the Health Department?

Sam: Yeah. And florists on the side.

Dean: Plus FBI. And on Thursdays, we're teddy bear doctors.
Dean: The things that I saw. There aren't words. There is no forgetting. There's no making it better. Because it is right here… forever. You wouldn't understand. And I could never make you understand. So I am sorry.

Trivia & References

The Title of the Episode Wishful Thinking might be a reference to a British rockband formed in 1965.
See also The Meaning of Episode Titles
Dean: Or it's a Bigfoot. You know, and he's some kind of alcoholo-porno addict. Kind of like a deep-woods Duchovny.
A reference to the extracurricular activities of actor and X-Files star David Duchovny.
Dean: He's a girl-drink drunk. A reference to a well-known sketch in the Canadian comedy show The Kids In The Hall about a man who gets drunk on stereotypically female drinks.
The annoyingly cheerful waiter at the beginning of the episode is a reference to Brian from the movie Office Space, a waiter who has a very similar personality and also wears many "pieces of flair."
Dean: What's this, like a Harry and the Hendersons deal?
Harry and the Hendersons is a 1987 movie about a family who hits Bigfoot with their car, and how he ("Harry") comes to live with them.
Dean: Run, Forrest, run!
A reference to the character Forrest Gump in the movie of the same name, who at one point runs across America.
Dean: You see, with great power comes great responsi...
Dean is quoting a line from Spiderman: With great power comes great responsibility.
In the comic Amazing Fantasy #15, the phrase appears in a caption in the comic's last panel, not as spoken dialogue. In the 2002 movie it is spoken by Peter Parker's Uncle Ben just before he dies. Ted Raimi, who played Wes in this episode, appeared in the movie Spiderman, which was directed by his brother Sam Raimi.
Todd: Kneel before Todd!
This is a play on a line from Superman II spoken by Terence Stamp's character General Zod: "Come to me son of Jor-El! Kneel before Zod!"
Dean: Health department. You, my friend, have a rat infestation.
This is at least the third time rats are mentioned in the Supernatural series. The first being in 1.17 Hell House where Dean states that he hates rats and the second time in 3.13 Ghostfacers where Harry mentions that he also hates rats.


The porn magazine Sam sees left behind in the store is called Backside. It is the same magazine Dean gave him as a present in 3.08 A Very Supernatural Christmas. Audrey also drops a copy of Busty Asian Beauties.
The name of the lottery winner seen in the last newspaper headline, George Neuman, is a reference to series set decorator George Neuman.
When we see him at his house, Wes is watching Captain Blood, a famous 1935 swashbuckler starring Errol Flynn and Olivia de Havilland.
When Dean starts to feel queasy a hotel can be seen in the background. It's the "Chieftain," which is known from the series Men in Trees.
Anita Brown, who plays Hope Lynn Casey, also played a woman (Lindsay) tortured by the shapeshifter who assumes her husband's form in 1.06 Skin. She also had previously appeared as "Gill Girl" in an episode of Dark Angel alongside Jensen.
Comment from young actor Cainan Webe who played one of the bullies about filming the episode
Dean says he will shut down the restaurant under Emergency Hazard Code 56C.
Sam threatens the restaurant owner with a 44-16.
Interesting observation: The movie The Avengers features a scene with giant teddy bears.

Sides, Scripts & Transcripts