Spirit or angel?
When death stops evil people,
What clues to Sam’s fate?
Houses of the Holy was a high concept story, something Supernatural does better than any other current show that I can name. Is there a God, and does He influence what happens to people on Earth? How can you know? How do you live, in the absence of proof? How do you explain faith – having it, losing it, discovering it anew?
In Houses, losers inspired by the vision of an angelic figure in brilliant white light, accompanied by a feeling of rapture, stabbed perfect strangers in the heart and then immediately confessed to police. The boys discovered that the victims had been hiding evil deeds, including murder and pedophilia. Sam believed that the figure who inspired the killings was an angel, especially after it appeared to him with a mission, while Dean hewed to the more typical explanation (for the Winchesters!) of a vengeful spirit. In the end, the figure of light turned out to be the spirit of a murdered priest, shattering Sam’s desperate attempt to believe that a higher power existed and would watch over him, possibly saving him from what he fears is his demonic destiny. At the same time, however, non-believer Dean saw the would-be rapist/killer whom the priest had labeled as Sam’s target impaled through the heart in a freak accident so unlikely as to seem influenced by an outside power, prompting him to wonder if there was indeed some greater plan. Both of the brothers came away shaken from their earlier beliefs, but with no indication of how their questions may eventually be resolved.