Vanir are the Norse Fertility Gods of Wisdom and Future appearing in the Season 1 episode Scarecrow in Burkitsville, Indiana.
The Vanir is the embodiment of a Norse Pagan God who, in return for a sacrifice, granted the presenters with wealth, security and protection from all that is bad. In ancient times, the villagers would build an effigy in their fields for the god to possess. It would often resemble a scarecrow, and it was used by the god to collect its sacrifices. Its sacrifice pattern required a male and a female, and followed an annual cycle. Each Vanir was linked to a sacred tree. The tree was the source of its power; if the tree was destroyed, then the god would die. One such Vanir was transported to America by colonists to present-day Indiana, forming the town of Burkitsville. The residents of Burkitsville falsely told traveling tourist couples that the backlight of their car needed repairing and would be ready by sundown. During this time they fed the tourists a "last meal" to fatten them up for the Vanir, similarly to turkeys at Thanksgiving. The Vanir possessed a scarecrow at which time it patrolled the vineyard for its two sacrifices.
The Vanir then devoured his victims in ritualistic fashion beginning usually with the male. Hunters Sam and Dean Winchester were contacted by their father, John Winchester, who informed the brothers of the Vanir's victims and sent them on his trail. Sam departed firstly to reunite with his father in California leaving his brother Dean to hunt the Vanir. Dean arrived in Burkitsville in time to find a potential couple to be sacrificed that night to the Vanir, but they were saved by Dean as he escorted the couple back to their broken vehicle warding off the Vanir with rock salt. The community citizens of Burkitsville were aware of the Vanir and were responsible for both sending them to Orchard Lane and causing their car to break down at the location. Dean was eventually offered as the next sacrifice along with a town member, Emily Jorgeson, both tied to two apple trees on the Orchard Lane Vineyard. The Vanir rose that night and instead murdered Emily's Uncle and Aunt Harley and Stacey Jorgeson, who were closer to the podium, by inserting his hook into Harley's chest and wrapping his right arm around Stacy's throat and dragging them off. The two were devoured and the Vanir left the body of the Scarecrow. The next day, with the help of Sam and Dean, Emily incinerated the First Tree, the calling mark of the Vanir. The Vanir was destroyed as a result and was unable to inhabit the scarecrow again.
Powers and AbilitiesEdit
- Tribute Blessings - When given human sacrifices, one male and one female, they can ensure the prosperity and protection of its environs. Crops will grow faster and larger, and diseases will 'skip' the protected area. However, if the tributes aren't met each year, the blessings will begin to fade shortly after, and eventually fade off completely.
- Weather manipulation - Has a limited control over the weather, if given sacrifices they will provide perfect weather for crops. And if annoyed, they will cause rain as warning.
- Possession - They are able to possess the scarecrow at will, leaving or entering, depending on his will.
- Immortality- As a pagan deity, the Vanir doesn't age, and will remain in the scarecrow for eternity, unless the First Tree is destroyed.
- Invulnerability - As a pagan deity, the Vanir was invulnerable, it could not be harmed by most weapons, even shotgun blasts barely slowed it down.
- Super strength - One was able to casually drag a grown man behind it, with one hand.
Weapon of ChoiceEdit
The Vanir uses the one handed sickle of the scarecrow it was possessing to claim its sacrifices.
In Norse mythology, the Vanir are a tribe of gods associated with the land, the sea, fertility, and sexuality, who eventually reconciled with the dominant Aesir following the events of the Aesir-Vanir War. Known members of this sub-pantheon include Njord, the Norse god of the sea, and his twin children; Freyr, the Norse god of fertility, and Freyja, the Norse goddess of love and the most prominent of the goddesses of Scandinavia. The Kurgan Hypothesis, formulated by archaeologist Marija Gimbutas, posits that the Vanir represent the gods native to Old Europe prior to the invasion of the Indo-Europeans, or "Kurgans," who brought the Aesir to Germania and Scandinavia, citing the similarity of various Aesir to other Indo-European gods (Zeus and Thor, Hermes and Odin, Hera or Hestia and Frigg, Apollo and Baldr, etc.).