IMPORTANT NOTE: The writers/props department at Supernatural decided to continue their tradition of dating things for the estimated release time of the episode, ignoring the fact that, because Dean lived with Lisa for a whole year between the end of S5 and the beginning of S6, S6 should therefore start in 2011, not 2010. As always, my order of priority for gathering time-lining information remains 1)Writing, 2)Art/props department, 3)Other official sources, 4)Conjecture.
According to 1st AD Kevin Parks:
They decided to do "soap opera time", because they didn't want to have to push the year forward for the rest of the show's run. So, just like in soap operas when people's kids are toddlers and then suddenly teenagers, so too can Sam and Dean spend a year apart while no time has actually passed in reality. (source)
So, what happens when the writers make a continuity mistake? – The months/dates will remain consistent with the show, with all events taking place during “The Year That Wasn’t” indicated with an asterisk: *
If you want the timeline to be LOGICAL/Chronological, just add one year to all dates except for those with an asterisk (ex: Exile on Main St. takes place in Spring/Summer 2011, not 2010). In some cases, the TRUE date actually makes more sense than the continuity-mistake date (such as in The Man Who Knew Too Much, in which we see an eclipse that could only possibly occur in 2012, not 2011.)
Sometime in the 2010/2011* year – Sam has sex with a Hunter named Annie (Of Grave Importance)
Winter 2010* – Sam and Samuel hunt an Arachne in Bristol, Rhode Island. (Unforgiven)
Fall 2010* - Castiel refuses to follow Raphael’s orders and restart the apocalypse, leading to a civil war in heaven. Castiel makes an unholy alliance in order to be powerful enough to oppose Raphael. (The Man Who Would Be King)
-Season based on the fact that Dean is raking leaves when Castiel almost goes to him for help.
Spring 2011* - Sam and Samuel shoot a werewolf on the half-moon. (All Dogs Go To Heaven)
Unknown (possibly Spring/Summer) 2010 – Dean is in Exile On Main St. when things start getting strange in Cicero, Indiana, and he discovers that his brother has been alive for a while and everyone knew but him. We spend approx. 3 days with Dean, only one 24 hour period is spent with Sam, in which the two of them travel to Bobby’s place in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and back again.
-It’s been one year since Sam fell into the pit. It is unspecified exactly how long Sam has been back, but it has been “close to” a year as well.
Unknown 2010 – Sam calls Dean for help on a case, when he has to deal with an unfamiliar situation involving Shapshifters and babies. Meanwhile, Lisa and Ben unpack in the new house, while the Two and a Half Men are off Hunting. We see approximately 3 days. Sam starts the episode in Lansing, Michigan, and Dean in Battle Creek, Michigan (see notes). During the episode, they also travel to the Campbell Compound, which is in an unknown location.
-No dates are given, but we can guess that there has actually been quite a bit of time passed between this episode and Exile on Main St. It’s takes time to move house after all, and in this episode Dean and Lisa have already packed up their old house, and rented a new house, and are moving in. The quickest one could do that (in my opinion) is probably a month. Not only that, but based on information in Appointment in Samarra we know that they moved from Cicero, Indiana, to Battle Creek, Michigan. It would probably take even longer to move between states to a brand new city.
Unknown (possibly a day and a half since Two and a Half Men) 2010 – Dean joins Sam in Easter, PA, where they discover a plague, and The Third Man to Team Free Will shows up with news from heaven. We spend at least 2 days, more likely 3, in this episode.
-We don’t know where Dean was calling from when Sam told him to come to Pennsylvania instead – only that he obviously wasn’t in Pennsylvania, because of this, we also don’t know how long it took Dean to get to Pennsylvania.
-Sam says “Easter, PA” but there’s no such town (according to Google Maps), so we’ll have to assume it’s fictitious.
-Dean says it’s been a day in a half since Sam was at the Campbell compound – either this means it’s been a day and a half since the events of Two and a Half Men, or it means it’s been a day and a half since Dean called Sam and told him that he was going to join him, and presumably Sam told him to meet him at the Campbell compound.
Unknown (possibly Fall), 2010– We spend a Weekend at Bobby’s and a working week as well, when Bobby tries to get his soul back from Crowley with a little help from his friends. The episode takes place over at least 6 days. Sam and Dean are hunting a Lamia in Kenosha, Wisconsin, until the evening of the 4th day, when Bobby asks them to go to Scotland.
- I've always flown from the Americas to Europe in the evening, if Sam and Dean did the same then the earliest they could have left the country is the evening of the fifth day, arriving in the UK on the sixth day. However, apparently there are also flights to Europe during the day, so it is also possible they left the morning of the 5th day. I’m assuming they knew exactly where they were going and were able to get there and dig up Fergus MacLeod’s grave (probably) on the sixth day, with their conversation with Bobby at the end of the episode taking place the evening of the sixth day for them (and the afternoon of the sixth day for Bobby). However, it could be that they needed an extra day to get from the airport to the graveyard, in which case the episode would be 7 days.
-Other information gained: Crowley (Fergus MacLeod), was born in 1661. 1723-Gavin MacLeod dies. 1981-Wreck of Gavin MacLeod’s ship found and his signet ring recovered.
-When Sam and Dean are driving at night in Scotland, it is very dark. This would actually mean that it cannot be summer, as it does not get that dark at night in Scotland in the summer time. That’s extremely nitpicky, but, hey, when you have nothing else to base something on...
~October 17th, 2010 – Dean gets turned into a vampire when he and Sam investigate a rash of missing person’s cases in Limestone, Illinois. We spend 3 days with the Winchesters. (Live Free or Twi Hard).
-The girls’ missing person notices are dated between October 8 and 15, 2010 (see disclaimer).
October 2010 - You Can’t Handle the Truth when Dean and Sam travel to Calumet, Illinois, to investigate a series of suspicious suicides. They spend 3 days in the episode.
-The first victim’s cat calendar is open to October 2010 (see disclaimer).
-It’s 4:12pm when Dean gets off the phone with Bobby the second time and attempts to call Lisa, but hangs up.
-When Sam is reading a webpage on ancient rituals, the sidebar list the days as “Yesterday, Wednesday, Tuesday...etc.” making the day Sam is reading a Friday. This occurs on the second day, but does not mesh well with the timing of the next episode.
-The boys are somewhere called Springfield when Sam finds the news article about the case. The closest Springfield to Calumet, Illinois, is Springfield, Illinois, which is approx. a 3-hour drive away.
~October, 2010, Unknown-Unknown Friday – Family Matters when Dean discovers that Sam came back from Hell without his soul. They head over to see their grandfather and end up hunting the Alpha Vampire. This episode picks up the same night that the previous episode ended, and the boys are still in Calumet, IL. They spend 3 or possibly 4 days in the episode, arriving at the Campbells’ compound either at dawn or dusk of the second day (I’m going with Dusk). The location the Campbells’ compound, the Alpha Vampire’s house, and the place where they kept the Alpha Vampire are unknown.
-When Crowley shows up, he says “what is it today, Friday?” Again, this is Supernatural’s continuing practice of mentioning the day the show airs in the episode, but it has to be taken as canon.
-When Christian confronts Dean in the hallway outside Grandpa’s office, he mentions the Hunt “tomorrow” – it is nighttime then, so either Dean and Sam waited a whole day to try to sneak into Grandpa’s office, or they only waited a little bit and arrived the night before the Campbell’s were set to leave on the hunt. If that sounds confusing, it’s just me trying to explain why the day count is hard to pin down.
Unknown (Not close to a full moon, possibly last week of October) 2010 – Not All Dogs Go To Heaven, when Sam and Dean have to take out a sleeper-cell of Skinwalkers in Buffalo, NY. We spend at least 6 days with them.
-Sam also mentions that 6 months ago he and Samuel Campbell killed a werewolf on the half-moon.
-In 2010, there is a full moon on October 23rd and November 21st.
Unknown, 2010 – You can Clap If You Believe all you want, but it’s not going to bring back Tinkerbell this time. Sam and Dean find themselves fighting fairies in Elwood, Indiana. Although the fairies have been around for 2 months, it only takes Sam and Dean 4 days to find them and vanquish them.
-Dean returns from being abducted at 4:07am on the second day, which is possibly a Friday (the Supernatural crew seem to have any online archive the Winchesters search permanently set to appear as though they are searching it on a Friday.)
Unknown – Sam and Dean finally have enough of being Crowley’s errand boys, and track him down to somewhere near Evergreen, Missouri. We spend somewhere around 12 to 18 hours with the boys as they drive around the country (for the sake of the timeline, the Campbell base-camp, the abandoned house where the boys are staying, and Crowley’s prison, all have to be pretty close to each other). (Caged Heat)
-We find out that the boys have been working for Crowley for “months”, which to me indicates that considerable time has passed between this episode and All Dogs Go To Heaven.
Unknown – Dean has an Appointment in Samarra when he tries to contact Death for help. Dean begins the episode at 230 Keefer St, in an unnamed city, he then drives back to Bobby’s. He begins his 24 hours as Death at sunrise the next day, but fails the wager before the sun rises again.
-Bobby tells Sam that he “woke up and you were gone”, given that Bobby keeps more of a regular schedule than the Winchesters, we can assume that he wasn’t napping, but rather sleeping during the night like a normal person. This would make the low-lighting when Dean starts his 24 hours as death sunrise instead of sunset – though, if you wanted to argue that Bobby was indeed napping, then this episode could have possibly taken place in one day instead of two.
Unknown (~10 days after Appointment in Samarra) late 2010 or Early 2011 – Sam is Like a Virgin, when he wakes up at Bobby’s with no memories from the past year and a half. While Dean tries to protect Sam’s innocence, they drive to Portland, OR, to slay some dragons. Dean takes a side trip to San Francisco, CA, in order to quite dramatically pull a sword from a stone. The episode takes place over roughly 10 days.
-They spend about one or two days at Bobby’s at the beginning of the episode. The drive to Portland is a 25 hour trip, so probably takes them two days. They spend a day and a half in Portland before Dean has to take a side trip to San Francisco (about an 11 hour drive, so probably takes him at least a day and a half to do). Then they have to drive back to Bobby’s. So, over all, the episode takes place over roughly 10 days.
-Bobby says that Sam went “straight up Menendez on me not ten days ago” – which means it’s been about 10 days since the previous episode.
-Dean tells Sam that he had been in hell for a year and a half, which places this episode in late 2011 or very early 2012, assuming that Sam went to hell in the spring of 2010*(see disclaimer) and that Dean is not speaking in exact terms (there is no way this episode takes place in October).
Winter, 2011 (Possibly February – see Mannequin 3: The Reckoning notes) – Sam finds that a lot of what he did the previous year will remain Unforgiven, after Sam and Dean travel to Bristol, Rhode Island, to investigate a series of disappearances, only to discover that Sam had been there once before. They spend about 4 days in this episode.
-Season based solely on the amount of snow on the ground. Year is really a guess based on how many episodes have passed since it was October, 2010/2011.
- Missing person’s report on one of the females lists the last time she was seen as 11/09/12. The women apparently disappeared in the last week. It was October, 2010/2011, about 6 episodes ago, yet in Caged Heat (3 episodes ago), they say they’ve been working for Crowley for “months” – indicating that a lot of time had passed between All Dogs Go To Heaven and Caged Heat. I doubt “months” means a whole year though...which means that either “months” is incorrect and the date here is December 09, 2011 (which completely goes against US date-writing customs)...or we just have to disregard this date entirely for being completely unbelievable. I’m going with the latter option. Furthermore, the date on the missing person’s report from “a year ago” has a last seen date of “November 2, 2009” which is NOT a year ago and would have been mid season 5. Therefore, I think I’m justified in throwing out all date from the art/props department that appear in this episode.
Winter, 2011 (Possibly February- see notes) (Immediately following Unforgiven) – Sam and Dean investigate a series of deaths that occur near mannequins and dummies, when they travel to Paterson and then Passaic, NJ. Dean gets a call from Ben 3 days into the case that has him driving to Battle Creek, MI, while Sam continues with the case on his own. Finally, at the end of the episode, the boys take the Impala back to Bobby’s in Sioux Falls, SD, for repairs for a total of 7 days spent in the episode. (Mannequin 3: The Reckoning)
-It’s 10 hours driving between Passaic, NJ, and Battle Creek, MI. Dean does it as a 24 hour turn-around trip. It’s 22 hours driving from Passaic, NJ, to Sioux Falls, SD, we do not know if the Impala was operational for the trip or whether it had to be towed.
-Dean once again asks Sam to be his Valentine and presents him with an model of a human heart – he did the same thing during My Bloody Valentine in S5, an episode that took place close to Valentine’s day. It could be that this episode is also occurring close to Valentine’s Day, hence Dean’s reuse of the joke.
Unknown, 2011 – Sam and Dean are researching at Bobby’s when Balthazar shows up and flings them into a parallel universe where they exist as Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles. They spend 3 days in the parallel universe, but they return on the same night that they left. (The French Mistake).
Unknown, 2011 (most likely following shortly after the previous episode, see notes) – There were allies and enemies, And Then There Were None, as Bobby, Sam, and Dean, spend 3 days together when they travel to Sandusky, Ohio, on the trail of Eve and a new type of monster.
-The boys are still at Bobby’s (where they finished the previous episode). Bobby informs them that “all week” there has been increased monster activity along the I-80. This either means that the boys have been hanging out at Bobby’s for a while, or the monster activity started before the events of The French Mistake. Bobby’s window has been repaired – so my guess is that the boys have been at Bobby’s for a while, possibly repairing the damage to his house.
Possibly after April 29th, 2011 (possibly a week after previous episode, see notes) – We find ourselves in an alternate universe where no one has ever heard “My Heart Will Go On”, because the Titanic never sank. We spend at least 3 days in the alternative timeline, but it is unclear how much time has passed really once everything has been restored. During the three days, the boys drive from Bobby’s house to Chester, Pennsylvania (a 22 hour trip).
-Bobby “hasn’t slept in days”, and later, when he’s sleeping, Dean says that it’s probably “the best he’s felt all week”. To me, this indicates that it’s probably been a week since Rufus died.
-The newspaper clipping Sam shows Dean is from a weekly newspaper that is dated with “week ending Friday the 29th, 2011” – This is most likely in reference to April 29th, 2011 (as the other option is July and the weather doesn’t suit).
Unknown Sunday-Monday (Possibly May 30, 2011) (sometime after My Heart Will Go On) 2011 or March 3rd – 5th, 2011– Sam and Dean travel back to Frontierland in order to hunt a Phoenix. They spend 24 hours in 1861 and we spend 48 hours in 2011. The only traveling done is between Bobby’s and the Campbell compound (which remains in an unknown location).
-A subtitle informs us that present day is 150 years after March 5th, 1861, which if you take it exactly, means that this episode could actually take place before My Heart Will Go On instead of after it (as it aired). I prefer to take the aired episode order as chronological though, and assume that the “150 years” is approximate and it could in fact be a month or two more than 150 years.
-Sam tells Samuel Colt that he is a “from the year 2011” (see disclaimer).
-Sam’s watch says that it’s Sunday at 1:16pm when Castiel transports them back in time. Castiel transports them back at noon. This fits in with the hour listed on Sam’s watch, since Wyoming and South Dakota are in neighbouring time zones. It doesn’t fit in with the minutes on Sam’s watch, but maybe Sam’s watch is set 16 minutes ahead, or Castiel just transported them to arrive on the hour to make things easier.
-When Sam starts the countdown on his fancy watch, the time display briefly changes to say “5 30” which may be the date...except that May 30, 2011, is a Monday, not a Sunday. (And a Wednesday in 2012)
Unknown, 2011 – Sam and Dean meet Mommy Dearest, when with the help of Castiel, they instantly travel from Bobby’s place in Sioux Falls, SD, to Grant’s Pass, Oregon. This episode appears to take place during only one day (excluding the opening teaser, of course).
-Ed Bright is said to be 25 years old by Dr. Silver in his report to the CDC. We see on his driver’s license that he was born on Dec. 16, 1985 – placing this episode sometime in 2011 (before December).
Unknown, 2011 – Castiel and Crowley, each of them The Man Who Would Be King of their respective realms. We explore what they’ve both been up to for the past two years. Because “time is fluid” it is hard to tell how many days take place in the present – but I estimate that Winchester parts of the episode take place over at least 2 days.
Unknown, 2011 (Immediately follows The Man Who Would Be King) – Dean and Sam have to rescue Lisa and Ben from demons when Crowley tries to divert their attention. Meanwhile, Bobby takes up the task of trying to stop Castiel. The episode takes place over at least one 24 hour period. (Let It Bleed)
-This episode starts the morning after the final scene of The Man Who Would Be King.
Unknown, 2011 (Possibly June 15, 2011 or June 4, 2012*) – We spend 16 hours with Dean and Bobby, while Sam plays The Man Who Knew Too Much inside his own head, after Castiel destroys the Great Wall of Sam, in a final attempt to get Dean to stop trying to stop him from opening the door to Purgatory. Dean and Bobby travel from Sioux Falls, SD to the fictional town of Bootback, Kansas, with Sam following on their heels once he’s able to fight his way back to consciousness. (~7 hour drive)
-Bobby says they have 16 hours to find Castiel when he’s trying to get Dean to pull himself together.
-The ritual takes place during a lunar eclipse. (Dean tells Cas that they have to diffuse him before the eclipse ends). In 2011, there is a lunar eclipse on June 15 that is visible in Africa and East Asia. In 2012, there is a partial lunar eclipse on June 4 that is visible in Asia and the Americas (For those of you sticking with logical time, June 4 would be the one I’d use.)
Unknown, 2011 (Possibly June 15, 2011 [or June 4, 2012*] - Unknown) OR (Possibly Unknown - Sep. 30, 2011) – We Meet The New Boss, when Cas absorbs more souls than he can handle from Purgatory. We spend an unknown amount of time with the Winchesters and Bobby – most of it is in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where Dean lovingly restores the Impala. They also travel 9 hours away from Sioux Falls in order to meet with Death, and then they travel back to the fictional town of Bootback, Kansas, in order to try to save Castiel.
-Although time passes quickly in this episode, we know that it is probably only a question of weeks, rather than months, because Sam’s hand remains bandaged the entire episode. There’s a date in Hello, Cruel World which might date the end of this episode, but it doesn’t match up with the lunar eclipse, so I’ve included both possibilities and you can decide for yourself which one works best.
-There is another eclipse, but it is an artificial unscheduled eclipse created by Death, so therefore I can’t really use it in the timeline.
~July, 2011 OR Sep. 30 – Oct. 3, 2011 – We pick up directly where we left off. Sam, Dean, and Bobby spend 4 days trying to figure out what Leviathans are up to and what is wrong with Sam’s brain. After travelling back to Sioux Falls, from Kansas, they remain there for the rest of the episode. (Hello, Cruel World)
-The Time of Death listed for Mrs. Hackett in the morgue is Oct. 3 at 9:33am.
-See The Girl Next Door notes for explanation of possible July date.
~July, 2011 – ~August, 2011 OR Oct 3, 2011 – Oct. 27, 2011 – We meet The Girl Next Door, when Sam spots a familiar story in a newspaper. But first, we see the boys escape Sioux Falls General, and then travel to Rufus’s cabin near Whitefish, Montana, where they spend 3 weeks convalescing. We only see the last three days of the boys stay in Whitefish. At the end of the episode, they move on to Spokane, Washington.
-Caption says 3 weeks later.
-When the Leviathan at the credit card bureau is dealing with his customer, he is looking at the last 3 months of activity on his computer screen, which starts in May, 2011. – This date actually works out better logically for the episode, as the healing on Sam’s hand is more realistic and the season matches the outside world.
Unknown, 2011 (Possibly ~Early September OR ~Early November) – (shortly after the previous episode) – Sam gets to practice Defending Your Life in court, when Dean is put on trial by Osiris. We spend 4 days with the boys in Deerborn, MI.
-Dean’s cellphone, when he drops it, says that is Mon. Dec. 29, which, doesn’t make any sense because Dec. 29th isn’t on a Monday, and also it’s definitely not that close to Christmas/New Year in Michigan. Also, both Dean and Sam’s phone numbers are Vancouver area codes – so, I’m chalking it all up to the props department not really caring all that much.
-It’s 9:32pm when Dean gets abducted on the evening of their 2nd day.
Unknown, 2011 (Possibly around ~Early-Mid September OR ~Early-Mid November) – (shortly after the previous episode) – Dean and Sam head to Prosperity, Indiana, for 3 or 4 days, and find themselves in a witch war. (Shut Up, Dr. Phil)
-Once again, Dean is searching the internet on a Friday as the episode opens.
Unknown, 2011 (Possibly ~Mid September OR ~ Mid November) - (Two days after the previous episode)– The Leviathans decide to write their own Slash Fiction starring Sam and Dean when they go on a killing spree, prompting the real Sam and Dean to track them down and put an end to it. The real Winchesters travel from Whitefish, Montana, to an unknown location, and then head towards St. Louis, Missouri, before changing course and driving to Ankeny, Iowa. We spend 5 days with them.
-It takes ~30 hours to drive from Indiana to Montana, assuming the Winchesters drove straight to Bobby at the end of the previous episode, they still seemed surprised when they came down to find that Bobby hadn’t made any headway on the leviathan, which would indicate that Bobby had been working on him for at least a day, rather than just a few hours.
-Wherever Frank Devereaux lives, it is a solid day’s drive from Montana and Iowa.
Unknown, 2011 (Possibly ~End of September OR ~End of November) - (A week and a half after previous episode) – Dean travels to Lily Dale, NY, only to find Sam already trying to find whatever is killing The Mentalists in town. We spend 5 days with Dean and 4 days with Sam (assuming one day of travel for Dean to get to Lily Dale).
-Dean says it’s been a week and a half since he last saw Sam.
October 7 – October 13, 2011 OR December 5 – December 11, 2011 (At least 6 days after previous episode) – It’s Season 7, Time for a Wedding, when Sam unexpectedly gets married in Vegas. Dean follows Sam and his new sister in law, Becky, out to Pike Creek, Delaware, in order to figure out what’s going on with his brother. We spend one evening in Vegas. It’s a 2 day drive between Vegas and Delaware, and the brothers spend 4 days in Delaware, which means that we spend a week in this episode in total.
-Dean says it’s only been 4 days between Sam meeting Becky again and marrying her. I’m assuming this means that Dean dropped Sam off for his hike four days before the episode started. (If we assume they headed to Vegas directly after the last episode that means that they also drove the 2 days it takes to get from NY to Nevada.)
-Becky’s tweets are marked as posted on “12/10/11”. Twitter usually spells out the month, and America usually dates things M/D/Y, so this is either October 12, or December 10. Personally, I prefer the October date, as it suits the storyline better and also the weather.
-Sam calls Dean at 10:23pm for the wedding.
~End of January, 2012 (see Adventures in Babysitting notes) – Bobby, Sam, and Dean learn How to Win Friends and Influence Monsters when they spend 3 days in and around Hammonton and Wharton State Forest, The Pine Barrens, NJ.
-Our boys are already in Hammonton when Sam finds the nearby job in the paper, so no time was added for driving.
-The “recent press conference” in the program about Dick Roman that the boys watch took place in 2011.
~End of January, 2012 (immediately following previous episode) – Bobby is at Death’s Door as Sam, Dean, and Bobby, spend an unknown, but short, amount of time in the hospital in Hammonton, New Jersey.
~February 27, 2012 - March 2, 2012 – The boys deal with their grief over four weeks in Whitefish, Montana, before a phone call prompts Sam to pick up a hunt, while Dean goes to check on Frank. Sam travels to an unknown location and meets Krissy and then travels to Dodge City, Kansas, to try to find Krissy’s father. Dean travels to Frank’s unknown location, and then travels with Frank to a field near Summit, Wisconsin. When Sam gets into trouble, Dean travels to see get information from Krissy, and then has some Adventures in Babysitting when Krissy insist on accompanying Dean to Dodge City to look for Sam and her father. In total we spend at least 5 weeks with the Winchester, though the events of the episode take place over the last 5 or 6 days.
-Dean says that Dick Roman is at a TED conference on the 2nd day of the episode. In 2012, the only TED Conference in the US was in Long Beach between February 27 and March 2. If you wanted to use the 2013 date, then the episode (and the TED Conference) takes place ~February 25 - March 2, 2013.
-We don’t know where Frank or Krissy live, so we do not know how much time passes between when Sam and Dean leave Whitefish and arrive at their respective destinations. It does appear as though Krissy lives only a few hours away from Dodge City, as Dean and her only take one evening/night to get to Dodge City, stake out the truck stop, and rescue Sam and her father.
-Dean sleeps for 36 hours (according to Frank) between the 2nd and 3rd day of the episode.
-Sam is tied up for 2 days.
Unknown, 2012 (Possibly Early-Mid March – see Out with the Old notes) – Sam and Dean get a call from Sheriff Jodie Mills about a series of suspicious murders, that seem to be happening Time After Time in Canton, Ohio. We spend 2 days with the boys as they travel from Whitefish, Montana, to Canton Ohio and investigate. Then Dean gets accidentally zapped back to 1944. It is unclear how many days pass while Dean is gone, but my estimate is that it is about 2 days – bringing the episode total to 4.
-Dean spends 2 days in 1944 (November 4-5) before getting zapped back to the present at 11:34pm
-When Lila Taylor sets her grandfather clock, she sets it to 10:50pm
-I’m not sure if the night that Sam and Sheriff Mills drink is the same night that Sam finds the note from Dean – I think it makes more sense for it to be the night after, as the Sheriff was sober enough to go out and get coffee and take-out, which means that Sam and the Sheriff have at least 2 days together without Dean.
Unknown, 2012 (Possibly Mid March – see Out with the Old notes) – The boys drive to Seattle, WA, where Dean inadvertently gets tangled up with The Slice Girls. They spend at least 4 days in this episode.
-Emma is born within 36 hours of their first night in town. It takes at least another two days for her to mature to the age of sixteen.
Unknown, 2012 (Possibly Mid March – see Out with the Old notes) – Sam and Dean visit Plucky Pennywhistle’s Magical Menagerie when they find a series of bizarre deaths in Wichita, Kansas. We spend just a little over 60 hours in this episode over the span of 3 days.
-The boys are somewhere else in the beginning of the episode, but it must be close to Kansas, because Sam manages to get a Kansas newspaper. He refers to Kansas as though they are not already in it, however.
-We get a countdown clock in this episode, so we know it is exactly 60 hours between when Sam finds them the job and when Sam is attacked by clowns. The episode breaks down as follows:
- Day 1, late morning: Sam reads about the suspicious death (60.60.60). Rest of Day 1: They travel to Wichita, examine body and interview widow and daughter.
- Day 2, late morning: Dean investigates unicorn death (36.36.10), discovers connection to Plucky’s. Rest of Day 2: Sam investigates Plucky’s, gets Chinese takeout for dinner. Janitor killed.
- Day 3, Evening (before sunset): Sam and Dean try to come up with theories (04.34.11). Rest of Day 3: Sam interviews employees while Dean tries to win a slinky. Cliff tells them about sub-basement. Sunset. Dean investigates sub-basement. Sam attacked by clowns. Solve case. Drive away.
Unknown, 2012 (Possibly Mid-End March – see Out with the Old notes) – Sam and Dean re-visit Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, when an old demon appears to resurface. We spend only 2 days with them, with the end happening probably very early in the morning on a 3rd day. (Repo Man).
Unknown, 2012 (Possibly Mid-End of March) – Sam and Dean spend 24 hours in Portland, Oregon, when an someone starts selling cursed objects in a bid to be Out With The Old. The episode takes place over 2 days, but the first 24 hours are spent in (or near) Portland. After that, the brothers drive to wherever Frank currently has his trailer parked.
-Based on the Sam storyline that occurs between Repo Man and the Born-Again Identity, this episode has to begin almost immediately after Repo Man.
-It has just snowed in Portland – it could be a freak March snowstorm (they happen in Vancouver in March, at least). That would put this episode at the end of March at latest, and make the month very jam-packed, as the past 4 episodes would have had to happen in quick succession.
Unknown, 2012 (Possibly End of March/beginning of April) – Cas experiences The Born-Again Identity when Dean goes searching for someone to help Sam only to find the amnesiac angel. This episode takes place over at least 6 days. Dean drives from Indiana (where Sam is in hospital) to Rufus’s cabin near Whitefish, Montana (a 1+ day trip), to Colorado (where Cas is), and then back to Indiana.
-At the beginning of the episode it has been 2 days since they left Portland (Lucifer states that Sam has been awake for 4 or 5 days straight, at the end of Out With The Old, he had only been awake for 3)
-A directional sign prop in the hospital names it as Northern Indiana State Hospital.
-By the third day of Sam’s hospital stay, he is seeing maggots in his food and hardly eating. He has been awake for ~7 days. By the end of the episode, Sam has been awake for ~10 days, his fingernails and hair are beginning to fall out.
-We don’t know the timing of Cas’ return. Cas tells us that he was found “a few months ago,” and the Hunter who gives Dean the information on Emmanuel informs us that he visited him “a couple months back” at which point he was obviously already found, married, and healing people.
Unknown, 2012 (Possibly Mid-April) - (~two weeks after The Born-Again Identity) – Dean gets a call from Garth asking for some help on a case in Junction City, Kansas. We spend approximately 24 hours with the Winchesters. The teaser death, however, happened 4 days previous to their arrival, and we get to see a montage of Garth working over an unknown period of days after the first death before he calls the Winchesters. (Party On, Garth)
-Dean is on the phone to Meg when we first see the Winchesters. Sam’s face healed and he looks well rested. According to Bobby in Of Grave Importance, it has been approx. 2 weeks since the previous episode. Bobby states that knocking the book off the table in The Born-Again Identity caused him to “black out” for 2 weeks, yet he was present in this episode.
Late April, 2012 (ending before April 29) – Bobby helps the boys on a hunt Of Grave Importance when a fellow Hunter goes missing in Bodega Bay, CA. The episode takes place over 3 days.
-The boys go to meet Annie at the restaurant at 1pm on the second day. The boys are already checking out the Van Ness house just after 4pm (they find Annie’s cell at 4:23PM). On the third day the boys go to the Bodega Bay Heritage Society and then deal with the house that evening.
-We get information about the timing between episodes from Bobby. He tells us that he “blacked out” for two weeks after he caused the book to fall off the table, which means that since he was around in Party On, Garth then that episode took place approx. 2 weeks after The Born-Again Identity.
-Sam also tells us that sometime in the (first) 2010/2011 year, he slept with Annie while soulless. Dean also slept with Annie, most likely while Sam was at Stanford.
-NOTE: There IS a date on Annie’s cell when Dean calls it, but I believe it reflects the filming date, rather than the storyline date, so I’ve disregarded it for the purposes of the timeline (for those wondering, it said Feb. 27.)
April 30 – May 2, 2012 – see notes – (Nearly immediately following Of Grave Importance) – The boys meet The Girl With the Dungeons and Dragons Tattoo, when they track Frank’s hard-drive down to Richard Roman Enterprises in Deerfield, IL. They spend 3 days pulling off an IT caper with her help.
-The boys start the episode in Rufus’s cabin near Whitefish, Montana, but are in the Chicago area by the second day. They spend approximately 24 hours with Charlie.
-RRE HQ is located at 707 Osterman Ave, Deerfield IL (in real life it is a US post office).
-At the beginning of the episode, Bobby says that the boys have been distracted “killing ghosts the past few days.” I assume he is referring to the events in Of Grave Importance.
-Bobby asks what month it is and Dean confirms that it’s April. That being said, it makes a lot of sense that the next episode would immediately follow this one, as the boys are a)still in Chicago, and b)very curious as to what’s inside the clay they stole. The next episode takes place in May, so therefore in order to satisfy both the dialogue in this episode, the dates of the next episode, and have believable logical story flow, I’d place this episode as taking place between April 30 – May 2...and the boys oddly took a day off before cracking open the clay...perhaps to strip off a layer of clay? It would make sense, as the clay was red at the end of this episode and hardened grey clay at the beginning of the next. Or maybe they took a day off because May 2nd is Sam’s birthday!
May 4 – May 7, 2012 – Reading Is Fundamental, when Sam and Dean discover that they have God’s Word on a tablet, yet can’t decipher it without the help of a reluctant prophet. We spend 4 days traveling from South Chicago, IL, to northern Indiana and then to Rufus’ cabin near Whitefish, Montana.
-Kevn’s girlfriend calls him at 8:33pm on Friday May 4, according to his phone.
-The boys crack open “the God rock” at 8pm Central Time (9pm Eastern Time for Kevin in Neighbor, Michigan) on Friday May 4.
-For some reason, although both Chicago and Michigan are in 4 hours driving range from wherever Cas is in Indiana, it takes until nightfall for both Kevin and the Winchesters to reach his location on Saturday, May 5. Kevin left his house just after 10:22am, and the Winchesters left shortly after that from Chicago. I assume Kevin would have been driving towards the Winchesters the whole time, so perhaps they just took a very very odd route...or there was a really bad traffic jam.
-It does, however, accurately take them a full day to drive from Indiana to Montana, on May 6. Kevin stays up the whole night translating the Word, and the angels return him to his house on Monday May 7.
~May 7 – May 10, 2012 – Dean and Sam embark on a mission to build a weapon to take down the leviathan. Meanwhile, the leviathan begin to poison the food supply. One thing is for certain – There Will Be Blood. The episode picks almost immediately after the previous episode, and we spend 3 days with the boys, who have to travel from Rufus’ cabin near Whitefish, Montana, to Hoople, North Dakota, and then back to Missoula, Montana. The actual day count is 4 days though, because we spend the final morning/day with Crowley.
-Between the previous episode and this one, the leviathan had to get Kevin from Michigan to Seattle, but given their previous use of private jets, I’m guessing that it only took them a few hours. Meanwhile, Sam and Dean showered and changed clothes (they were due - they had worn the same clothes for 3 days.)
~May 10, 2012 – May 15, 2012 – It’s the Survival of the Fittest when Dean and Sam assemble the weapon and go after the head of the Leviathan in the hopes of bringing them all down. This episode takes place over 6 days, with Sam and Dean traveling from Rufus’s cabin in Montana (near Whitefish) to Sucrocorp HQ (in Seattle, WA) multiple times.
-This episode picks up where it left off as far as Crowley’s storyline is concerned. Though, sometime on May 10, Cas showed up naked covered in bees when Dean presumably prayed for him. The boys summon Crowley on May 11, they stake out Sucrocorp on May 12, they put Bobby to rest on May 13, Dean picks up the Impala on May 14, and they attack Dick on the May 15. We know there’s a day between picking up the Impala and the actual attack, because when Dean picks up the Impala, he tells Cas, “I’m probably going to die tomorrow.”
TIMELINE MASTER POST