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Supernatural is a TV show that began in 2005 on the network known as The WB. The show's life was in the balance when the network merged with another and became The CW. After two successful seasons on the air and a huge fan base developed, the creator Eric Kripke launched the comic. The comic series is a prequel to the show and is titled Supernatural: Origins.
John Winchester was a US Marine (Company Echo 21). That makes him good with most of man's weapons however he had to learn how to cast spells and expel demons after Mary was killed by a yellow-eyed demon on November 2, 1983 after she put their two sons Dean Winchester and Sam Winchester to bed for the night. John had since dedicated his life to hunting down the killer and he didn't much care what it was.
He enlisted the help of Missouri Mosley, a psychic, who sent him to find Fletcher Gable. Fletcher is a squirmy man who has vast knowledge of the paranormal; he gives John the Winchester Journal and instructs him to record everything on his quest. He sends John off where he ends up meeting a man called Hunter after an encounter with a Hellhound. That encounter unfortunately saw John facing another family death, that of Mary's relative Jacob who had tracked John and the two boys down.
John's first kill is in Issue #3 when Hunter takes him looking for a shapeshifter. Unfortunately, Dean witnesses the slaying while the creature was in the form of a man named Ichi. Issue #3 also brings the introduction of the Winchesters to the Harvelles at the Roadhouse.
In the show, John is in possession of the Colt revolver which is the only known device able to kill the yellow-eyed demon. The Colt hasn't been mentioned to date in the comic but John comes across magical items from the very beginning of his quest. In this universe, one can be capable of casting magic without having to be a magical being.