For a show named "Supernatural," episodes aren't always a sure-fire fright fest. Sure, characters fight a slew of supernatural characters ranging from werewolves to vampires to angels to demons and, literally, anything you can imagine on heaven, hell, earth, or any other mythology. But in reality, no matter who or what the boys are fighting, the story of Sam and Dean Winchester is ultimately one of family.
Since family is the general theme of the 14 season show, you are sure to get a range of emotions in episodes. Some make you cry, some make you laugh, some make you do both. Fans of the show attribute its longevity to its characters, not its supernatural entities. But when you get down to it, a lot of people turn on "Supernatural" for the first time with the goal of being scared. And the show, especially the early seasons, doesn't disappoint viewers with this goal either. From jump scares to scary special effects, to the scariest monster of all - humanity - here are 10 of the scariest "Supernatural" episodes that you can watch this year to put you in the Halloween spirit!
1. "Provenance" Season 1, Episode 9
In this early episode, Sam and Dean hunt a spirit that is connected to an *extremely* creepy painting of a family. After hearing about a string of unsolved murders, Sam and Dean go to investigate. At an art auction, they find a 20th-century painting of family whose father is believed to have murdered his wife and children before killing himself. But what makes the creepy painting supernatural? The subjects and murder weapon move! The boys have to track down the painting and kill the responsible ghost before it gets them.
2. "Scarecrow" Season 1, Episode 11
Season one wasn't lacking in the jump-scare department, and for people that like episodes with both horror and drama between the Winchester brothers, this is the episode for you. After going their separate ways after a fight, Dean tries to hunt down a Norse god hunting sacrifices in an apple orchard before he becomes a sacrifice himself. The scarecrow is super creepy and Dean makes light of its appearance with his hallmark sass: "Dude, you fugly." If you're into a fall-themed scare, this is the episode to watch.
3. "Playthings" Season 2, Episode 11
One of the scariest, creepiest, most disturbing things on this planet is old antique dolls. They literally stare into your soul and some have downright disturbing facial expressions. On top of that, add some "Supernatural" trademark creepy kids and an old, haunted hotel and you're in for a good old-fashioned horror movie style scare. When Sam and Dean investigate mysterious deaths at the hotel, they're sure it's haunted. But who is the ghost? The only people there are maintenance, the owner, her daughter and her friend, and the grandmother. Will the whole family make it out alive or will they be stuck playing for eternity?
4. "No Exit" Season 2, Episode 6
If you're into classic horror-thrillers, this episode will be right up your alley. The boys and tag-along Jo hunt the spirit of serial killer H.H. Holmes in a haunted apartment building built upon the site of his hanging. The stakes are raised for the hunters when Holmes' spirit abducts another young woman and then Jo. Complete with ecto-plasm and jumpy scares, this episode is definitely one to watch with the lights on.
5. "The Benders" Season 1, Episode 15
Sometimes the scariest things aren't supernatural at all. When Sam gets abducted during a hunt, Dean has to figure out what took him before its too late. Once he teams up with a local cop who also lost a family member, Dean realizes that what they're hunting is much scarier than the things that go bump in the night. Dean puts it best, "Demons I get, people are crazy." Will Dean be able to save Sam before they both become meals for some cannibalistic human hunters?
6. "Asylum" Season 1, Episode 10
In another tribute to classic horror tropes, Sam and Dean hunt a group of spirits at an abandoned Illinois asylum after an investigating cop inexplicably murders his wife. As they investigate, the hunters find out that the asylum has been shut down for years since illegal experiments by missing Dr. Ellicott. Once they go to investigate, they stumble upon your classic teenagers stuck in a horror movie - because naturally, the best place to go on a date is a haunted insane asylum. Between these classic horror-movie tropes and by far the creepiest setting of any episode, this is a great one to watch if you love horror movies.
7. "Everybody Loves a Clown" Season 2, Episode 2
This title is a lie. Second, maybe to dolls, clowns are just creepy. On so many levels. recurring joke on the show - especially in the early seasons- is that Sam's only supernatural fear is clowns. So in my opinion, if one of the Winchester brothers is scared of something it's probably a smart thing to be scared of. Over the years, "Supernatural" has done plenty of episodes with clowns ranging from funny to scary. This is definitely the scariest. If you're a big fan of "It" this is the episode for you.
8. "Bloody Mary" Season 1, Episode 5
In my opinion, this is the scariest supernatural episode of "Supernatural" in its nearly 300 episode run. After a little girl says "Bloody Mary" in a mirror on a dare, her father is gruesomely murdered in front of the same mirror. Of course, this draws Sam and Dean to investigate. After some investigating, the hunters find the story of a young woman named Mary who was mysteriously murdered in front of a mirror with her eyes removed - and the killer was never found. And as in any good horror show, a dumb teenager says her name in front of a mirror again, so Sam and Dean have to save her and hunt the spirit before it gets them. Between a creepy ghost, dumb teenagers, bloody murders, and a good brother moment, this episode is one of the best.
9. "Family Remains" Season 4, Episode 11
If "Bloody Mary" is the scariest "Supernatural" episode, this is the scariest episode. Period. down. I'm a huge fan of the show and have seen this episode more than once, and I still don't watch it in the dark. Sam and Dean investigate a murder in another creepy old farmhouse. Typical. But to complicate matters, a grieving family just bought the home looking for a fresh start but instead stumble upon a house of horrors. Instead of finding a vengeful spirit, Sam and Dean discover a much more tragic story, complete with a twist at the end. I don't want to spoil anything for you here, so I won't explain much more, but I would definitely recommend this episode to anyone wanting a really good scare.
10. "It's the Great Pumpkin Sam Winchester" Season 4, Episode 7
Since "Supernatural" is always a semi-scary show, it rarely references holidays especially Halloween. This episode is a notable exception. While definitely not the scariest episode on the list, this Halloween centric episode will definitely put you in the holiday spirit. Sam and Dean try to prevent one of the 66 seals to apocalypse from breaking by stopping a witch from summoning the demon Samhain on Halloween night. Complete with jack-o-lanterns, witches, demons, death, zombies, blood, gore, and ghosts - this episode really has everything you could need for Halloween.
Bonus: "Monster Movie" Season 4, Episode 5
So maybe your not the scary Halloween type. That's okay because this episode is for you. As I said earlier, "Supernatural" isn't always out to scare the crap out of you, sometimes it's a show that can give you a great laugh. "Monster Movie" does just that. Paying tribute to the great monster movies of old, the whole episode is shot in black-and-white and opens with traditional movie credits. The boys travel to Pennsylvania on what they think is a typical vampire hunt (and to celebrate Octoberfest), but once the Wolf-Man and Mummy attack, they are truly stumped. Once Dean is sucked into the movie too, Sam has to save him before Dracula wins.
To find these episodes and the rest of the show, Supernatural airs on TNT during the day premiers new episodes on the CW on Thursdays, and the complete series is on Netflix in the United States.