"Supernatural" Skin (TV Episode 2005) Poster

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Evolution is Mutation
Claudio Carvalho1 December 2006
While on the road, Sam gets an e-mail from his old school friend Becky telling that her brother and also Sam's friend Zach is arrested, accused of murder of his girlfriend. Zach claims that he was in another place at the same time, but the surveillance camera had taped his image in the crime scene. Sam convinces Dean to drive to St. Louis, Missouri, to investigate the typical doppelganger case. Once there, they disclose that a mutant is killing and hurting people in the neighborhood. When the shape shifter takes the form of Dean, things get complicated for the Winchester brothers.

"Supernatural" is a kind of teenager simpler version of "X-Files", with two brothers investigating supernatural events the same way Mulder and Scully did. The episodes are getting better and better along the series, and I am liking a lot this entertaining series. My vote is nine.

Title (Brazil): "Pele" ("Skin")
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zombiehigh1827 October 2011
Warning: Spoilers
Sam gets an Email from a college friend telling him that her brother is accused of murdering his girlfriend. Sam asks Dean to look into that case but reluctant Dean doesn't think it is their problem yet Sam insists. They later discover it's a shape shifter that can take the form of any person as well as their memories. Dean is framed for attempted murder but they could kill the shifter while he is taking Dean's form so he is presumed dead.

A very important episode since it has its effect on later ones, like Dean's problems with the law which haunts him for some time. We also notice Dean necklace which here seems important to him.

There are some very good things about this episode:

1- Dean arguing with Sam about having friends and having to lie to them. The Anti-social Dean who has never had friends before or even a long-term relationship does not like being so attached to people because he knows that he might lose them and he learned the hard way (as we will know later) that it hurts.

2- I like that they always argue about the jobs they take "Is it our kind of thing or is it not".

3- Sam finding out that the shape shifter took the shape of his brother which shows that they actually know each other pretty well (but it disappoints me that Dean failed to do the same in season 5 in the body swap episode).

4- The scene with the shape shifter where he talks about Dean abandonment issues and his fear of people leaving him and his loneliness.(But in my opinion he was lying about Dean's resentment of Sam because if Dean values any body in the world that would be his little Sammy)

5- Does every creature in the world know that Sam's neck is his weakness? Dose he walk around with a sign stating "Hey my neck is my Achilles heal"?!

6- I really wish that Sam listened to the shape shifter and he appreciated Dean a little more.

7- Dean even in the hardest situations handles things with sarcasm and humour.

8- Sam confused about his life, he wishes that someday he can go back to college and have the normal he always wanted but at the same time he confesses to Dean that deep down he never really fit in it and that he knows that he is a freak.

9- Dean telling Sam that they are both freaks and that he knows that and that their lives is not easy but promises Sam that he is sticking around.

The twists in this episode were good with a breathtaking beginning. The acting and the stunts are getting better.

The scene where the shape shifter was shedding skin was really disgusting. But overall is was good.
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An Important Episode for the Rest of the Series
katierose29517 March 2008
Warning: Spoilers
This is an important episode for the rest of the series. It establishes why the FBI chases after the brothers through seasons two and three, and it directly ties in with the season two episode "Nightshifter." This is also an episode that lets the viewers get under Dean's skin a bit. (I know. Bad pun. Sorry, couldn't resist.) But, "Skin" is a metaphor for stripping away Dean's "outer skin," his wise-ass, tough guy act and explore the Dean underneath that becomes more apparent as the series goes along. It's an episode that lets Sam and the audience see Dean more clearly. If you're watching on DVD, you shouldn't skip this one.

"Skin" revolves around a shape-shifter. Sam gets a message from his old college friend, Rebecca. Her brother, Zack, has been arrested for murder, even though she swears that Zack was with her at the time the victim died. Dean is reluctant to investigate, claiming that there's nothing supernatural about this case, but secretly fearing that Sam might be drawn back into his old life and leave him alone. Sam insists on helping Rebecca, though, so they start to investigate.

It soon becomes clear that a shape-shifter is in the neighborhood, kidnapping people, then assuming their identities to kill their loved ones. Soon Dean is captured by the shape-shifter and has his identity stolen. Sam instantly knows that there's something "off" about this Dean, but he gets kidnapped, too. The shape-shifter, still looking like Dean goes off and attacks Rebecca. Sam and Dean escape in time to call the police and save her, but then Dean is wanted by the cops for the attack. Meanwhile, the shape-shifter switches over to Rebecca's identity and attacks Sam. Dean saves Rebecca, then shoots the shape-shifter while it is attacking Sam. Unfortunately, the shape-shifter still has Dean's face, so the police think that it's really Dean. They declare him dead and release Zack, pinning the murders on poor Dean.

There are some good parts to this episode. I like Dean whining that because they have to get up at 5am to investigate a crime scene. It just seems like something someone would really grumble about. And I like conflicted feelings Sam continues to have about his life as a Hunter v. his life at Stanford. A part of him still hopes that he can go back to college some day, even as it becomes clearer to him that he never really fit in there or anywhere else, except next to Dean in the Impala. I also love Dean's plan to hunt down the shape-shifter and the beat the "holy crap" out of that "handsom devil." It just makes me laugh. Finally, the scene where the shape-shifter had Sam tied up in the sewers is really cool. The shape-shifter goes on about Dean's conflicted feels towards their lives. Since Sam went to school, Dean COULDN'T. He stayed, because that's what the thought a "good son" would do. But Dean made sure Sam could leave home with a clear conscience. He gave Sam and John what they needed so they could live their lives and neither of them thought about Dean's needs. I like the scene with Sam and the shape-shifter because I think Sam finally sees the sacrifices Dean quietly makes.

Aside from the obvious "peeling away" of people's exteriors in "Skin", there are other references to the idea that everyone is hiding their "real" selves beneath a mask. Photographs are mentioned several times in "Skin." Especially how they are can capture a person's soul. They can spot the shape-shifter in the video because his eyes gleam in the light. The shape-shifter might be able to look like the person and assume their identity, but he still can't BE them. When the shape-shifter turns into Dean, Sam instantly senses something wrong. For Sam, he had a picture perfect life at Stanford. All his friends just loved him... But they really never knew him at all. The photograph of Rebecca, Zack, and Sam on the refrigerator is fake somehow, because the Sam smiling in it doesn't really exist. For Dean, the police drawing of the shape-shifter inside of his skin, just isn't "a good picture." He's hiding so much about himself that even the shape-shifter is surprised. Dean's insecurities and abandonment issues are nearly as bad as its own and, at the end, he actually scold Sam for not "appriciating" Dean more. But at the same time, when Dean ignores Sam's orders and heads into the sewers alone to find the shape-shifter, he apologizes to his absent brother by saying "Sorry, Sam, but you know me." Of all the loved ones the shape-shifter attacks in the episode, it's clear that Sam & Dean are coming to know each other the best. Their bond is getting deeper all the time.

On the downside, does the guy the shape-shifter framed for beating his wife have to go to prison? That seems unfair. Also, I think that the shape-shifter was lying when it told Sam that Dean was jealous of Sam's life. While, I think Dean is scared that Sam will leave him alone, there's no real resentment there. If anything, I think Dean is SAD that Sam's life has gotten so screwed-up and can't be normal. Dean would sacrifice anything for Sam.

My favorite part of the episode: Dean's anger over the shape shifter taking his possessions. Assuming his identity is bad. Making him a fugitive from the FBI is worse. But, stealing the Impala and wearing his necklace is just taking things too far. Interestingly, the Impala and the necklace are the two possessions that seem to represent Dean. He always has them and clearly treasures them. Plus, they were gifts from John and Sam, respectively. It's just a nice touch that Dean's so eager to get them back from the shape-shifter. Ripping the necklace right off his double's neck was like Dean reclaiming his identity.
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Under your skin
on-the-road-so-far5 July 2014
Warning: Spoilers
Skin is a terrifying, bloody and exciting episode. From the first scene, which is really all kinds of awesome, it gripped me with it's gritty atmosphere and the suspense just kept building up steadily throughout the whole episode.

The monster of the week is a shapeshifter and it's the best baddie up until now. Even though it's clearly a monster, it's background is really fascinating and even kinda relatable. Apparently a shapeshifter is born human, or human-like at least, and they will only learn how to change their shape later on in life, as this one did because it felt hideous and hated for being different. There will be more episodes about shapeshifters in later seasons and they always make a good and compelling storyline.

The scenes with the shapeshifter shedding it's skin were quite disgusting and not for the squeamish. They were really well done however, and the fight scene between shifter!Dean and Sam at the end is awesome! The scene in the sewers, when shifter!Dean talks to Sam is excellent. I think the things the shapeshifter says to Sam are mostly half-truths. It's still in the process of "downloading" Dean's memories and feelings, and it's most likely influenced by it's own past experiences of being shunned and hated. For example, I don't think that Dean is jealous of Sam in the sense of begrudging him a normal life. Dean even says so himself in the last scene, that he wishes for Sam that things could be different. But Dean is also the realist of the two brothers. He knows, even back here in season 1, deep down inside his heart, that such a life will only ever be an unreachable dream for them.

Shifter!Dean also accuses Sam of leaving him behind when Sam went to college, and he reveals his fear that everybody's going to leave him eventually. Sam did it. John did it, too. I think this one's actually very true to what Dean is feeling on the inside. If we think back to the pilot, Sam mentioned to Dean that he could have just called if something was up, but Dean argued back that Sam probably wouldn't have picked up and Sam didn't correct him on that. It makes us wonder how much contact they truly had over those years Sam spent at college, and I do think that Dean felt rather hurt that Sam cut him from his life like that. As for John, Dean always tried to be the perfect son and did everything his dad asked him to, but John just left him behind, completely alone and without any explanation. It's the first time we really touch on Dean's abandonment issues, and boy, do they run deep.

With all the drama, there are also a few awesome brotherly moments. The scene in the beginning, when Dean checks if Sam's really listening to what he's telling him, by saying that "Sam wears women's underwear" is really funny and cute. I love that, after Dean initially refuses to check out the case, Sam seemingly convinces Dean to actually drive to St. Louis with one single look - he must have used that one quite a few times when they were younger, as we can see that Dean apparently knows what he's trying to do, but isn't able to say no to that look. And it's a really great moment when Sam notices right away that Dean isn't really Dean, after the shapeshifter takes his form.

I also just love Dean's reaction when he realises that the shapeshifter took his beloved car. Nobody steals baby without facing the consequences! The ending, with Dean being blamed for the murders, will play a big part in a few upcoming episodes, so you shouldn't miss this episode! It's my personal favourite so far.

Favourite quote: Well, I'm a freak, too. I'm right there with you, all the way. ~ Dean Winchester
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Brothers against Evil: Shape Shifter
Coventry2 April 2007
Warning: Spoilers
The Winchester Brothers' ongoing search for their missing father suddenly gets interrupted when one of Sam's former college buddies gets arrested for a murder he couldn't possibly have committed. Even though the surveillance cameras irrefutably reveal Sam's friend Zach as the murderer of his own girlfriend, his alibi is waterproof and his yummy sister Rebecca as well as Sam insist on proving his innocence. A second and oddly sinister murder causes Sam and Dean to suspect they're dealing with a shape shifter who hides in the sewers and takes over the identities of others in order to oppress his own monstrous appearance and nature. This is another very competent installment in the the "Supernatural" series, effectively depicting the huge differences in personalities of the two brothers. Whilst Sam clearly still has difficulties giving up the social life and friends he had in college, Dean more than ever acts like the emotionless and lonely supernatural crime-fighter. During this episode, in which they find out more about each other's deepest sentiments, they definitely become more of team. The screenplay sadly doesn't investigate the mystery of the shape shifter thoroughly, but there are some effectively creepy mutation-sequences as well as a terrific use of the sewers as the monster's dark and ominous hideout liar. Dean's courage, calm and strength gets ultimately tested during a remarkable confrontation with ... himself.
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Just like the X files
mm-3911 July 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Just like the X files where they had some guy who ate peoples livers. Does anyone remember that episode? There is a tribute to the 1986 movie Manhunter at the beginning. I like the Dean character being upset about the hap shifter driving his car. The old getting caught about in a lie is done again. The great looking girl eventual believes who they are. The brothers figure out what to do after the shape shifter take Deans form. Not a bad show. The boys move on to the next town. 8 out of 10. One of the better shows. I would like to see one of the brothers finally gets the girl, but I guess the show could not be continued with such a plot twist. Maybe, in season 3 when the show needs some new characters. Maybe, have a evil girlfriend for a episode. I will keep watching for more. Best show on TV.
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shape of evil
Danual11 February 2018
I left this episode wondering what the shapeshifter looks like O Well.
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The boys meet a shape shifter
SVU14_111 April 2006
Okay so this episode starts out with a man convicted of murder and he's friends with Dean and Sam. The boys investigate and they run into a Skinwalker (a shape shifting man) who senselessly assaults and kills people for no reason. It morphs into Dean and starts wreaking havoc! I thought this episode was rather strange (this and Phantom Traveler). The Shape Shifter doesn't have a true story or background, I mean: where on earth did this thing come from? The being says it was born with the ability but that's it? Hmm...this is what makes it confusing because most of the other episodes of the show (except this one and Phantom Traveler) explain where the things come from and why they are what they are.

6 out of 10
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