When anyone in the town of Springfield ask for the truth, they end up getting barraged with more brutal honesty than they know what to do with. The truth is more than any of them can take, leading to a rise in suicides and something new for Sam and Dean to investigate. It doesn't take them long to figure out that the victims were being force-fed the truth, all they have to do now is figure out why and stop it.
Ever since he realized that Sam allowed him to be vamped, Dean's struggled to even be in the same room as his brother. Bobby is sympathetic, but they've run Sam through all the tests and he's passed them. Bobby doesn't know what else he could be, but Dean refuses to accept that the Sam he's stuck with is all that's left of his brother.
After another truth related death- this time a dentist murdering his patient- Dean lucks out and finds what may be a connection between the last two victims: they were both customers of 'Harry's House of Horns'. Now that he has a lead, Dean goes to check it out; the owner recognizes both the victims, but has nothing useful to offer- other than the fact that an ancient horn had recently been stolen.
Dean looks into the horn, which turns out to be nothing more than Gabriel's horn of truth! The horn finally gets Castiel's attention, since he's apparently been too busy t answer Dean's other calls. It only takes him seconds to look around town, and he discovers that the horn is not actually Gabriel's. He also tells Dean that Sam is not Lucifer- one more thing Dean doesn't want to hear.
Still unable to stand being around Sam, Dean heads to a nearby bar while Sam checks out the bodies at the morgue. While drinking his feelings, he morosely wishes aloud that he could just get the truth. Oh Dean-really? As soon as he says it, the truth is all Dean gets- from the bartender, from the desperate woman in need of attention- Dean gets an earful of honesty, whether he wants it or not. As soon as Dean realizes what's happening, he decides to test out if the spell works over the phone as well. One quick call to Bobby- and more information on his grooming habits and sex life than Dean ever wanted to hear- and he knows for sure it's possible. After his traumatizing talk with Bobby, Dean calls Sam, knowing that now he can get the truth out of him. His call goes to voicemail, and Dean tells Sam to call him as soon as he can.
Meanwhile, Sam's discovered that all but the newest victim's body is missing- the morgue attendant has no idea where they've gone. He also finds out that there is another victim- someone who dies a whole week before anyone else. Whatever is going on, chances are she's at the heart of it.
Sam pays a visit to the victim's roommate, where he finds out that the girl was obsessed with finding out the truth ever since she started thinking her boyfriend was cheating on her. After searching her room, Sam finds a box holding all the makings of a spell- including the skull of the dead girl's 'missing' cat.
Dean is going to meet up with Sam when Lisa calls; against his better judgment, Dean answers and gets a whole lot of truth thrown at him. Because of the spell, Dean really shouldn't be talking to anyone, but Lisa needs to. "You shoved my kid, Dean- how 'bout we do this now?" For whatever stupid reason, Dean doesn't tell her that he was a vampire the last time he saw her, so Lisa has no real explanation for why he acted like he did. She thought she could handle all of Dean's problems, "but as soon as Sam walked through that door, I knew it was over. You two have the most unhealthy, tangled-up thing I've ever seen. And as long as he's in your life, you're never going to be happy." She…is not wrong, and Dean knows it too. Lisa tells him that she and Ben can't be with Dean through whatever he's dealing with before hanging up. Lisa may not know what made her say some of the things she did, but Dean knows that it's the absolute truth.
Dean looks completely broken after his talk with Lisa, and when he goes inside to meet Sam, he confronts his brother about standing by as Dean was vamped. Sam tells him that he didn't just stand there, he froze out of shock. He acts properly upset and tells Dean that "he can't lie here", Dean seems to believe him, but as soon as Sam turns around, the act is over and he just looks…empty.
Now that they have the spell ingredients, the boys are able to figure out what's going on- turns out, the first victim becomes so obsessed with discovering the truth about her boyfriend that she invoked Veritas, the goddess of truth, who then gives you far more than you wanted until you kill yourself and she can claim her tribute, which in this case is the bodies of her victims.
Veritas used to love coming down and speaking the truth to the masses, and if she's back, it makes sense that she would stile doing the same thing. "What's the twenty-first century version of 'speaking truth to the masses'?" That's right- news reporter, in this case, Ashley Frank, an investigative reporter whose show 'Frank Talk' does just as the name implies.
Sam goes through hours of footage to make sure she's their monster, and when they finally confirm it, they head off to put an end to her work. Armed with knives and dog blood ("do I even want to know where you got that?" Dean asks Sam, "Probably not."), they enter Veritas's house. Everything seems normal- gorgeous, in fact- until they follow Ashley's cat into the back room, where of course the bodies are stashed.
Veritas finds them, of course, and Sam and Dean fly into a wall and are out cold with a swish of her hand. Once they come to, Veritas decides to flavor up her new meals with a little forceful truth. She asks Dean how he really feels about Sam. "Better now; as of yesterday, I wanted to kill him in his sleep. I thought he was a monster, now I think…he's just acting like me." Dean told himself that he "wanted out, that I wanted a family. But what I'm good at is slicing throats. I 'aint a father- I'm a killer. And there's no changing that, I know that now."
Having gotten his painful truth out in the open, Veritas moves on to Sam, who is asked how he feels about being with his brother again. "Look, what we do is hard, but we watch out for each other, and that's what's important." Veritas can tell that he's lying though- he's been lying all along. "You're not human" she tells him, much to Dean's surprise. He may have thought his brother was possessed, but he never thought he might not be human.
Sam's managed to cut through the cords that he's tied up with and attacks Veritas after tossing Dean his knife. Dean frees himself and stabs her (and kudos on the special effects in that scene, show). She's finally dead, and Dean turns the knife on Sam. "You are not my brother. What are you?!" Sam works to convince Dean that he is indeed himself, "She was right, there's something wrong with me- really wrong. I've known it for a while. I've lied to you, yeah, and I let you get turned by that vamp. Because I knew there was a cure Dean, and we needed in that nest, and I knew you could handle it!" Dean can't believe his brother- he could have killed Ben because of what was allowed to happen to him. Sam knows that, but "I just don't feel it. Ever since I came back, I am a better hunter than I've ever been! Nothing scared me anymore, because I can't feel it! I don't know what's wrong with me…I think I need help." Dean seems even more broken now than he did earlier, and he puts the knife down. Sam seems relieved- maybe now they can finally fix what's wrong with him. And as much help as Sam needs, Dean needs…to beat his brother face in. And he does. Over and over. Pretty soon, Sam's not moving, and we're left with Dean, kneeling over his unconscious, fully-pummeled brother.
Wow-just…wow I never thought we would actually get to find out anything that was wrong with Sam in the episode, but they've really followed through and given us a hint as to what's going on. It's pretty obvious that Sam doesn't have a soul, which is going to make for a few very interesting upcoming episodes, I'm guessing. I do wonder though- In season five, Famine accused Dean of not having a should as well, but he was very different from the way Sam's been acting now; I would love to find out if there's a reason for that.
I'm also quite in love with the fact that Lisa broke up with Dean. Not because I enjoy seeing the end of their relationship (which I've really enjoyed), but because it's about time that we have an amazing female character who actually seems to have survived the Winchester dead-girlfriend curse.
The plot of the episode was solid enough, but it felt like the means to an end that it was. The point of the episode was to get into Sam's problem, and it did that quite well, thankfully.