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  • Machine Empathy: Dean seems to have this in regards to his Impala. This concept becomes very important as the show goes on.
  • Made of Iron: Justified for demons, angels, et al. Sam and Dean, however, have sustained more head injuries between them than Muhammad Ali.
  • Major Injury Underreaction: Lucifer, after being shot in the head by the Colt, the series until-then kill-everything weapon, crumples to the ground...before taking a deep breath and staring back up at Dean.

 Lucifer: Ooooowwwwwww!

  • Male Gaze/Female Gaze: An odd one, this. There's a hot girl every episode and lots of attention gets paid to her cleavage, of course, but there's been slow, lingering shots panning up the boys' long legs and arses, half of their promo shots for Season 2 consisted of hooker poses and you just can't deny that they're not wearing a bit of lip gloss and eyeliner in Season 1 episodes. When there's a sex scene, the camera generally spends more time looking at Sam or Dean than his partner.
  • A Man Is Not a Virgin: Dean, although it's portrayed as not always a good thing. Hilariously, he concludes in Season 4's "Monster Movie" that, thanks to full body regeneration after being pulled out of Hell, he is a virgin again. (By the end of that episode he's not.)
  • Manly Tears: You have to admit, they cry a hell of a lot for two, supposedly manly, blue-collar soldiers/warriors.
  • Man of Wealth and Taste:
  • Meaningful Name:
    • Anna Milton, a fallen angel.
    • Arguably, the Winchester name itself, given the Winchester Mystery House.
    • In one episode, a girl called Lily is revealed to have the power to kill someone by touching them. The lily flower is often a symbol of death.
  • Mental World: Sam is stuck in one in the season 6 finale of Supernatural after Castiel destroys the mental barrier that is keeping his traumatic memories from potentially turning him into a vegetable.
    • Dean and Sam also enter Bobby's nightmare world in another episode.
  • Martyr Without a Cause: All three Winchesters.
  • McLeaned: Many of the characters who were killed off because their actors got regular roles on other shows.
  • Milky White Eyes: Upper level demons.
  • Mind Screw:
    • "What Is And What Should Never Be" and "Mystery Spot"
    • "Dark Side of the Moon." At least until it was explained that Sam and Dean are actually in Heaven, reliving their fondest memories.
  • Minion Shipping: The two demons from "Sin City", Casey and the priest.
  • Missing Mom: She's killed by deomns when Sam turns six months old, in the pilot.
  • Mistaken for Gay:
    • Being Heterosexual Life Partners who always travel and work together, the brothers are sometimes mistaken for a gay couple. Luckily for them, all they have to do is quickly mention they're brothers and not be bothered with any further questions (or delve into a Not That There's Anything Wrong with That discussion).
    • In "The French Mistake", this continues with Sam and Dean transported into the bodies of their actors Jared and Jensen. This despite the fact that both actors are married--wait a minute.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • In "Mystery Spot", Dean keeps dying, we laugh hysterically because they're showing the funny ones, and then Dean dies for real, which breaks Sam completely, and we feel guilty for ever laughing at all.
    • Notable in "Swan Song."

 Dean: Assbutt?

Castiel: He'll be back, and upset, but you got your five minutes.

Lucifer: Castiel...did you just Molotov my brother with holy fire?

    • The sixth season episode "Live Free or Twi-Hard" starts with a dead-on Twilight parody but switches to angsty after the first act.
    • Ghostfacers has a lot as well. Between the incompetence of the Ghostfacers crew, the depressing ghost's story, Corbitt's death and Ed's tearjerker farewell and the Ghostfacers bumps before every commercial break, the episode is all over the mood map.
  • Moral Dissonance:
    • The Winchesters seem to care less and less about killing the demons' human hosts as the show goes on, though this may be a result of the sheer number of demons they encounter. And Dean's Moral Myopia means he'd rather kill them all than risk Sam using his powers to save the hosts, especially once he finds out demon blood fuels them.
  • Moral Myopia: Dean's attitude towards the possibility of Sam turning into a monster or otherwise being abnormal; he's perfectly willing to kill strangers who might go darkside, but simply refuses to do so with his brother even when presented with clear indications of this happening, because he couldn't bear to live without him.
  • More Than Mind Control: This is basically what Ruby did to Sam with the help of demon blood.
    • Lucifer used this to successfully gain permission to possess Nick
  • Monster Lord: Azazel, Crowley and Lilith are powerful, high-ranking demons. Bobby refers to Death as the "Big Daddy Reaper". The Alphas and Mother of All also count.
  • Monster Progenitor: Season 6 introduces the concept of Alphas, the progenitors of various monster types such as shifters, vampires and skinwalkers, and then the Mother of All Monsters.
  • Monster of the Week
  • Most Important Person: Sam and Dean are this to each other. Though some fans will always insist differently.
  • Mother of a Thousand Young: The Mother of All, the Big Bad of the second half of season 6.
  • The Multiverse: As of season 6 we have Earth, Heaven, Hell, Purgatory, an alternate future, the Trickster's alternate realities, and of course, Fairy World. The Masquerade for normal humans has gone beyond just covering up for things that go bump in the night (oh, and the apocalypse). And, of course, heaven itself is a mess of alternate realities strung together.
  • Mundane Solution: Decapitation is only a minor setback to a Leviathan, but they can be burned by Borax, which can be found in common household cleaners. They regenerate even from that, of course.
  • Must Make Amends: Season five is this for Sam after accidentally starting the Apocalypse and freeing Lucifer and in response to his behavior in season four. The second half of season six starts like this for him after he finds out what he did while soulless.
  • My Horse Is a Motorbike: The Horsemen don't ride horses. They ride in style, baby. Except Pestilence, naturally.
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast:

  Nick's "wife": I'm an angel. My name is Lucifer.

  • Nay Theist: Sam and Dean, after a certain point in season 5. You would be too if the angels were, on the whole, dicks and it looked like God didn't care about stopping the Apocalypse.
  • Near-Death Clairvoyance: "In My Time of Dying"
  • Neurodiversity Is Supernatural: Sam's body living without a soul is treated like sociopathy.
  • Never Sleep Again: The M.O. of a Monster of the Week
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: at the end of season four, Sam spends most of the season getting the power to kill Lilith so he can stop her from breaking the final seal and freeing Lucifer. In actuality, Lilith was the final seal, and by killing her he causes the release of Lucifer and kick-starts the Apocalypse. Oops.
    • At the end of Season six, Castiel absorbs the monster souls of Purgatory to get the power to defeat Archangel Raphael, who wanted to restart the Apocalypse. But in doing so, he unleashes the Leviathans, creatures that God locked away to stop them from eating everything else.
    • To an extent, Dean as well, not only for breaking the first seal between seasons three and four, but also for revealing to Azazel beforehand that his plans were going to work.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: Lucifer thinks raising Time Abyss Death and keeping him on a leash will help him. Mistake.
    • Zachariah sends Dean into a bleak future to convince him he must say yes to Michael. The trip also convinces Dean he has to stick with his brother, which lets Sam talk Dean out of the Michael thing and lets Dean give Sam the strength to take control of his body from Lucifer long enough to throw him back into the Cage.
  • Nigh Invulnerability: A number of types of this trope appear in the show:
    • God: Pagan gods can be killed by mere mortals, but the trope does apply to the Big G, since it seems like Death is the only entity that could kill him.
    • Divine protection mixed with Resurrection: In season 5 Sam and Dean are functionally incapable of staying dead. If they do die then the Angels (and in Sam's case, also Satan) will just resurrect them because they can't be used as Angelic vessels if they're dead.
    • External Repair: Dr. Benton is a scientist who somehow gained immortality, but his body kept on decaying. In order to continue functioning he regularly harvests new organs.
    • Extreme Luck: Whoever acquires the rabbit's foot, at least as long as they have it in their possession.
    • Regeneration: The Leviathans recover from almost anything. The only known means of immobilizing them so far is to chop off the head, and then keeping it absolutely out of reach of the body so it can’t just reattach itself.
  • No Dead Body Poops: Averted in the Groundhog Day Loop episode.
    • Subverted in "Free to Be You and Me" when Dean prevents the angel Castiel from insta-transporting him somewhere: "The last time you did that I didn't poop for a week!"
  • Noble Demon: Possibly played straight with Casey in Sin City.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: The "douchebag" magician, Jeb Dexter, is pretty much a dead ringer for Criss Angel. In fact, the episode's title is "Criss Angel is a Douche Bag."
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Castiel delivered one of these to Dean Winchester, when Castiel caught him attempting to surrender, which the angel considered a betrayal.
    • In 4x16, when Alastair unexpectedly freed himself from the devils-trap. And having been tortured by Dean for a few hours, he was quite pissed to put it mildly.
    • In the season 5 finale, Dean puts himself on the receiving end of such a beatdown when he refuses to leave his brother while Lucifer is possessing Sam.
    • In 6x13, a soulless-Sam gives one to a cop who's grown suspicious of his cover.
  • Nostalgia Heaven: Except that, because you become distracted by the projections of your friends/family, instead of actually getting to meet up with your loved ones, the characters who find out are decidedly unhappy.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • From "Yellow Fever": ""

  Dean: …the truck stop waitress with the bizarre rash…

    • From "And Then There Were None", and possibly "When the Levee Breaks", there's the situation in Omaha between Bobby and Rufus.
    • Sam, Interrupted

 Sam: Martin is a great hunter.

Dean: Was... until Albuquerque.

  • Not So Different:
    • Michael and Lucifer lecture Dean and Sam about this, who are their respective vessels. Michael tell Dean that he is dutifully obedient to his father (God), that he cast Lucifer down because he defied him, and that he practically raised his younger brother, taking care of him "in a way most people could never understand". Lucifer tells Sam that he loved and idolized his older brother and begged him to stand alongside him in refusing to bow down to humanity, but that Michael instead called him a "freak" and a "monster", casting him down because he was different and had a mind of his own.
    • Eve gives this speech about herself and their mother in "Mommy Dearest".
  • The Nth Doctor: Demons who come back later on take on new bodies (Ruby and Meg.)
  • Odd Couple: Sam and Dean.
  • Offscreen Teleportation:
    • Primary mode of travel for angels. Though it's only offscreen for the audience; there've been a number of instances of Sam or Dean watching as an angel vanishes.
    • Crowley can do this, and quite possibly is better at it than Cas. When Cas does it, you hear wings. When Crowley does it, you hear nothing. Considering that Crowley is a demon, this is quite possibly intentional Paranoia Fuel on his part. It's also a sign of upgraded-Cas' power that he can do it silently now.
    • It also seems that any demon that is summoned will also teleport, and it will also do it offscreen.
    • In Season 6, Eve, like the angels, is capable of doing this while Dean is looking directly at her. She just appears behind him, and still somehow manages to surprise him.
  • Oh Crap:
    • We get a pretty epic one at the end of season 4, because it doesn't get much worse than finding out that you've just accidentally unleashed Lucifer when you were trying to prevent exactly that.
    • Oh Crap reactions all around, at the end of Season 6:

 'Castiel: I'm your new God, a better one. So you will bow down, and profess your love, unto me your Lord, or I shall destroy you.

  • Only the Chosen May Wield: Dean has to pull a sword from a stone in "Like a Virgin". When it doesn't work, he just blows it up.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Inverted; Sam seems to become more and more Southern as the series goes on. While his actor is a Texan, Sam's earlier accent is closer to Jared's.
    • While Jensen Ackles is also a Texan, his accent is nothing like Dean's. Dean's accent has also gotten more Southern, though a lot more overtly.
  • Other Me Annoys Me: In "The End", both Mes are annoyed (or, you know, scared by) their Other; in "The French Mistake", Other Me manages to be annoying without actually being present
  • Our Angels Are Different: As Dean puts it, they're more "dicks with wings" than Roma Downey. Like demons, they posses (albeit willing) people in order to move about on Earth, and they can relinquish their grace and be reborn as humans.
  • Our Demons Are Different: The souls of the damned who've had their humanity tortured out of them in Hell, they appear as black smoke unless they are possessing someone.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: ancient beings from purgatory who resemble "Giant Bats", have heat-hands, can shapeshift into human form and serve a being they only refer to as "Mother" and can only be killed by a weapon forged in their blood. They also have hordes of gold and collect virgins for their rituals.
  • Our Souls Are Different: You can sell 'em to demons (or angels!), string 'em up in Hell, and torture them! And when you need to move 'em around, a briefcase is all you'll need (admittedly, this was a Cosmic Power's means of soul transportation, not a mortal's). Humans can apparently survive without them, and simply lack emotions, empathy, and the need to sleep when lacking one. Monsters have them too, while ghosts and demons are respectively trapped and corrupted souls. Angels don't have them. Nor do Leviathans, being far older than the creation of souls.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: They are. This is lampshaded in Monster Movie, where they encounter an apparently typical Bram Stoker Dracula and are completely baffled. The really funny part is that the witnesses immediately identify it as a vampire, whereas this would probably not be the case with an actual vampire.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: In addition to werewolves (who infect humans with their bites, eat hearts and look like humans with fangs and claws), there are also shifters (Shapeshifting Doppelgangers), rougarou (humans who transform into hideous, cannibalistic monsters), okami (who look like humans with wolf teeth, have superhuman athletic ability and are nigh invulnerable to anything other than a bamboo dagger blessed by a Shinto priest or a woodchipper) and skinwalkers (who can turn into wolves and are vulnerable to silver).
  • Overly Long Scream: In the second-season episode Hollywood Babylon the brothers investigate a possible haunting on a movie set. This trope is one of the signs of how terrible the horror movie being filmed is.
  • Parental Abandonment: John, honey, don't you think it would have been a better plan to tell your son what's going on and order him not to come instead of just taking off, leaving him to think he did something wrong or that something bad happened to you?
    • God vanished, leaving the soldierly angels without a father or direct orders.
  • Parents as People: Whether you think he's a useless bastard of a so-called father or a good guy just trying to raise two pretty difficult kids (if "Tall Tales" and "Hell House" were anything to go by) on his own under horrible circumstances, you have to admit that John is just as multi-layered and complex as Sam and Dean.
  • Parental Issues: Forget "Supernatural: Scary Just Got Sexy", the show's real tagline should be "Supernatural: Where Even The Angels Have Daddy Issues." (But only because God's just another dead beat dad with a bunch of excuses.)
  • The Password Is Always Swordfish: Subverted, played straight, and both times lampshaded in "The Girl with the Dungeons and Dragons Tattoo".
    • While trying to hack into Frank's encrypted hard drive, Charlie thinks she found the password in the remarkably simple "War Games" when this yields results. Then Frank's hard drive opens a program revealing that it's a false lead and taunts her.
    • Played straight while she's hacking into Dick Roman personal computer, which is locked by the password "W1nn1ng".
  • Perma Stubble: Dean and Castiel.
  • Phony Psychic: Sam and Dean run into an entire town of these in "The Mentalists". Lampshaded to no end, but particularly when Dean mentions that Pamela was one of the few genuine psychics they have encountered. There are actually some real ones as well, including the villain, who has summoned the ghost of a dead psychic to kill the impostors, while her equally psychic and ghostly sister tries to warn people about her.
  • Physical God: The Trickster and a handful of Pagan gods. Already majorly superpowered to begin with, Castiel becomes this in the season six finale, and expresses his newfound status appropriately.
  • A Plague on Both Your Houses: In "Death Takes A Holiday", the boys talk Pamela into helping them into the spirit realm, despite her objections that it is a stupidly dangerous endeavor. Sure enough, she gets hurt protecting their comatose bodies. As she dies, Pamela tells the Winchester boys to curse Bobby for introducing her to them.
  • Plot Coupon: The 66 Seals.
  • Post Modernism:
    • In "The Monster at the End of This Book," the Winchesters discover they are the lead characters in a series of horror novels with a small but fervent fandom. Online research turns up fan criticism, Samgirls, Deangirls...and slash fiction. When the boys track down the author (who at first believes they are his fictional characters brought to life), he apologizes for all the emotional torment and bad writing they've been subjected to.
    • When they meet a fangirl who writes Sam/Dean slash fics...well, you can imagine. The boys are understandably squicked.

 Dean: They do realize we're brothers, right?

    • There's an episode where they end up at a Supernatural convention.
    • The episode where Sam and Dean end up in an alternate dimension where their life is a TV show called "Supernatural". They have to act. It isn't pretty.
  • The Power of Love: Discussed in "Point of No Return."

 Sam: There's another way.

Adam: Great. What is it?

Dean: (sarcastically) Well, we're working on the Power of Love.

Adam: How's that going?

Dean: Not good.

    • And in the end? The Power of Love is pretty much what does the trick. Which makes the above conversation foreshadowing.
  • Power of Trust: In season five, Sam's (basically misplaced) trust in him is all that keeps Dean from going through with it after saying yes to Michael.
  • Power Trio: Sam, Dean, and Castiel (circa Season 5). They even have the in-canon team name "Team Free Will", when including Bobby.
  • The Problem with Fighting Death: Discussed. To stop Lucifer, Dean tries to kill Death, unaware that he could've gotten what he wanted without killing him, as they both had a common interest in stopping the "bratty child". Dean assumes that Death would be angry at this, but it turns out the problem with a human fighting Death is that the human just doesn't matter.

 Death: You have an inflated sense of your importance. To a thing like me, a thing like you, well...Think how you'd feel if a bacterium sat at your table and started to get snarky. This is one little planet in one tiny solar system in a galaxy that's barely out of its diapers. I'm old, Dean. Very old. So I invite you to contemplate how insignificant I find you.

He later gambles with him and buys him a hotdog, but continues to impress upon him the depths of his insignificance at every opportunity. It's here that Death also clarifies that he himself cannot, in fact, die.
  • Promotion to Parent:
    • Bobby for the boys, although considering Dean's daddy issues, fans would have preferred him to remain a friend-type. Explicitly stated in "It's a Terrible Life" and most of Season 4.
    • Deconstructed with Dean for Sam: it left him with a whole ton of issues--not the least of which is his lack of a spine when it comes to family--and an unhealthy need to keep Sam alive and safe.
    • Michael also claims that he was this to his younger brother Lucifer.
  • Properly Paranoid: Frank. Even dying messily doesn't stop him from being effective.
  • Proscenium Reveal: "Hollywood Babylon" opens with two terrified 20-somethings, Wendy and Brody, in the woods. Brody runs away; Wendy calls for her friends, hears a noise, turns toward the camera and screams — unconvincingly, at a tennis ball stuck on top of a movie camera. "Cut!" calls the director. "Wendy" is actually Tara Benchley, the lead actress of Hell Hazers 2.
  • Psychic Dreams for Everyone: Averted averted averted. Sam's psychic powers begin as harmless visions that help them save people in peril, but still cause all main characters to completely freak out because they must be evil. Turns out, they are.
  • Psychic Nosebleed: Sam, when he uses his psychic exorcism powers against particularly difficult demons.
  • Psychic Powers: Sam and the Special Children. Pamela Barnes and Missouri Mosely are more garden variety clairvoyants.
  • Pstandard Psychic Pstance: See above.
  • Puppy Dog Eyes: Mostly Sam and Castiel, although Dean can also manage to look like a stomped-on puppy at times.
  • Pyrrhic Victory: The end of season five: Sam and Dean manage to defeat Lucifer, but at the cost of Sam having to jump into Lucifer's cage. Particularly heartbreaking because all Dean was trying to do was save his brother for most of the series.
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