In a show called Supernatural, there’s bound to be a resurrection or two. Throughout its 15-season run, the series has said goodbye to many beloved characters, but they haven’t all stayed dead. Some have returned as alternate versions from another reality while others came back as a supernatural entity. A few returned characters stuck around for a whole story arc while others only reappeared for an episode.
Regardless of the circumstances, fans love to see old favorites return to the screen and learn how they affect the Winchesters’ current lives. Here are 10 of the best character comebacks on Supernatural.
10 Charlie Bradbury
Played by Felicia Day, the nerdy and obsessive Charlie entered the Winchesters’ life during the Leviathan era. She started as a tech nerd but after learning about monsters she turned into a hunter. In season 10, after a few shenanigans of her own, she returned to help Sam remove the Mark of Cain off Dean. But in the process, she was killed by Eldon Frankenstein.
When Dean finds her alternate version in Apocalypse World he jumps at the chance to rescue her from her captors, the angels. It’s his second chance to save his best friend.
9 Kevin Tran
The advanced placement student lost his chance at college when he was tapped to become a prophet. When he gets in Gadreel’s way, he is killed by the traitorous angel in Sam’s body. Later, Dean and Sam encounter his spirit in the bunker where God claims to send Kevin to his rest. Except after finding the Apocalypse World Kevin, the Winchesters learn their Kevin was sent to Hell. They rescue his soul and their Kevin decides to wander the Earth as a ghost.
8 Mary and John Winchester
Mary’s death is what started the whole series, so to see her resurrected by the Darkness in season 11 came as a huge shock to fans. John’s death in season two left the brothers grieving and reckless. Season 14 pulls the 2003 version of John into their present-day, reuniting the Winchester family for a brief, shining moment. But his presence in the present causes ripples and the only way to fix it is to send him back to 2003. Mary remains with her boys to continue hunting, eventually sacrificing herself to save them from Lucifer.
7 Bobby Singer
Bobby’s death in season seven sent the Winchesters and fans alike into a depressive spiral. When Sam enters Hell to rescue an innocent soul as part of the tablet trials, he saves Bobby from an eternity of torture. Bobby wants to return to Earth, but they convince him to go to Heaven so that the trial can work. Later, Sam and Dean perform a seance to contact Bobby’s spirit in Heaven and ask him to be their inside man to learn how to take the Mark of Cain off Dean.
6 Adam Milligan/Michael
Sam and Dean learned about the third Winchester brother in season four when they were lured by the ghoul posing as him. Adam was resurrected in season five by the angels looking for a vessel for Michael. But when Sam takes on Lucifer to jump in the cage, Michael goes after him and gets sucked in, too.
In the last season premiere, it’s revealed that after God unlocked all the gates to Hell, Michael is still sitting in the cage. So Michael/Adam hasn’t made an official return, but it’s only a matter of time.
It was assumed that after “Swan Song” Lucie was rotting away in his cage in Hell for all eternity. But when Amara’s antics damaged his cage it allowed him to reach out to Sam and he tried to return to Earth that way. Sam refused but Castiel said yes to his help, which allowed Lucifer to return in the body of the Winchesters’ best friend.
Many vessels and battles later, Lucifer gained the thrones in Heaven and Hell and reached out to his Nephilim son Jack. But his rule didn’t last long as Dean killed him for good.
4 Ellen and Jo Harvelle
Ellen and Jo had a rocky relationship with the Winchesters but in the fight against the devil, they decided to join the cause. In an epic showdown in an abandoned town, Jo was mauled by a Hell hound and it’s clear she won’t make it.
Ellen decided to stay behind with Jo to set off the bomb that allowed everyone else to get out. Later in season six when the angel Balthazar unsinks the Titanic, it sets off a butterfly effect that brings Ellen and Jo back for an alternate reality.
3 Benny Lafitte
Ty Olsson originally appeared as a side character named Eli in season two as part of a nest of vampires that Dean and Gordan hunt. But in Purgatory he is a vampire named Benny that Dean befriends and promises to bring back to Earth.
True to his word, when Dean escapes Purgatory he brings Benny’s soul along for the ride and performs a ritual to return him to his earthly body. The bond that was forged in Purgatory remains and Dean continues to help Benny against Sam’s wishes.
2 Sam Winchester
Though the Winchester brothers have died a million times over and always come back, “Swan Song” had fans at the edge of their seats. It was meant to be the end, so when the audience saw Sam standing outside Lisa’s house, where Dean went after the showdown, fans wondered if it was really him.
His uncharacteristic behavior in season six confirmed this was not the Sam everyone knew and loved. It wasn’t until his soul returned that it felt like Sam was truly resurrected.
1 Jack Kline
The Nephilim Jack, son of Kelly Kline and Lucifer, stole the Winchesters’ and the audience’s hearts with his boyish charm. At the end of season 14, when Chuck got fed up with them and their fight against his story, he smites Jack, who wakes up in the Empty with Billie saying they need to talk.
The season 15 premiere brought Alexander Calvert back as Jack’s corpse possessed by the demon Belphagor. Seeing the sweet and literally angelic Jack used by a demon of Hell is too much for his found family.