Perri's Review | Julie's Review | SunSpeak

Perri's Review

We're back -- if not with a bang, then with quite a few whimpers from the audience. It would have been much better given and extra hour to actually have a plot, but I don't hear anyone *really* complaining.

The Sunnydale graveyard, and the fresh grave of one Andrew Hoelich. As the baby vamp claws his way through the dirt, he looks up to find himself face to face with... Willow the Vampire Slayer. She invites him to 'come and get it' -- which he does. Reinforcement arrives in the form of Xander and Oz, but the three of them together still don't manage to kill the vampire. A quick review of tactics leaves all of them trailing out of the cemetary, looking forward to (and dreading) the first day of school, and wishing they knew where Buffy was.

Buffy is dreaming about sdtanding on a beach with her arms around Angel, telling her he loves her and will always be there -- even if she kills him. She wakes from the dream/nightmare to find that real life isn't much better. She's living in a tiny apartment and waiting tables at a diner (read: dive) in the city under the name 'Anne', trying desperately to pretend to be no one. She winds up waiting on a very familiar face -- Chantarelle , the blonde twit she rescued from vampires in Lie to Me. Chantarelle is going by Lily now, and she and her boyfriend Ricky are joined at the hip (and the tattoos on her arms).

Meanwhile, it's the first day of school and Sunnydale Library is swarming with students when Willow reports to Giles on their lack of success; he warns them to be careful. Cordelia comes in and complains about her summer of hell, and flips over the prospect of seeing Xander again, certain he's already forgotten her. Oz shows up a minute later with his books -- since he flunked twelfth grade and is back in school. Willow and Oz discuss this turn of events wandering through the halls, as Xander has an insecure wig over seeing Cordelia again, Larry tries to inject some team spirit into his football teammates, and Xander and Cordelia have an incredibly awkward reunion. And Buffy sits alone in her dark apartment, then, while walking to work, passes an old homeless woman announcing she's "No one" -- something she can realte to.

On a tip (his ninth for the summer), Giles races out of town to try to find Buffy, who has already been found again by Lily, who recognizes her from the rescue months earlier. Lily, a runaway, and Ricky have been living on the streets for months; Lily tries to get Buffy to go with her to a party, since she's broke, but Buffy refuses, although she offers Lily money. As Buffy tries to leave the awkward situation, she sees a homeless man, who announces that "I'm no one" and walks into the street. Buffy is just in time to tackle him out of the way of a car -- which hits her.

The Slayer rises more or less unhurt and escapes the concerned crowd; on her way away, she runs into Ken, who runs a runaway shelter and offers her help. Buffy refuses and leaves. Back at the Bronze, Xander and Willow are sitting around being depressed, Willow worried about Buffy and Xander dwelling on Cordelia. When Oz joins them, the conversation switches back to their slaying tactics and when Cordelia arrives, Xander gets an idea -- bait.

Joyce is still alone in the house, and still starting at every knock, expcting Buffy. But the one that comes is Giles, reporting a failure on his last tip. Joyce, worried and exhausted, thanks him for his help; Giles tries to reassure her, but the conversation ends with Joyce blaming Giles for Buffy's disappearance, and for the Slaying.

A worried Lily comes to the diner to ask for Buffy's help finding Ricky, who has disappeared. Buffy tries desperately to stay out of it, but Lily is helpless, and she gives in. A visit to a blood donation center Lily and Ricky have frequented turns up no sign of Ricky, and the two girls split up to check out shelters, flops and Ricky's hangouts. Finally, in one shlter, Buffy finds the body of a older man who has committed suicide -- and has Ricky's tattoo on his arm.

Lily refuses to believe what Buffy tells her about Ricky's death, trying to find a way to blame Buffy before she runs out -- and into Ken, who tells her Ricky is alive and at Ken's runaway shelter. Frightened and needing to believe, Lily goes with Ken. Buffy, guilty and tired, but determined, breaks into the blood center and finds their records on Ricky, records that show he was recommended for something. The nurse who catches her confesses that she recommended healthy kids to someone -- someone who turns out to be Ken, who is preparing Lily for some kind of 'ceremony'.

Meanwhile, the Slayerettes are trying their new plan to catch and stake Andy Hoelich, although their bait -- Cordelia -- is less than pleased. As usual, she and Xander start fighting instead of watching. Lily is lead into a room with a shallow pool of something dark and oily, as Buffy attempts to bull her way into the shelter. Subtlety has no effect, so she starts breaking down doors and people. She locates Lily just as the girl's hand touches the pool -- and something pulls her down and through. uffy tackles Ken and both of them follow Lily into the pool--

--and fall ten feet to a concrete basement. The girls lay on the floor, dazed, but Ken gets up... and rips off his damaged mask, revealing a demon's face. The girl's try to run and stumble into a huge room, some kind of ironworking filled with kids working as slave labor. Distracted and horrified, Buffy doesn't manage to fight off Ken when he knocks her cold, announcing that she and Lily are never leaving his world.

Xander and Cordelia's fight -- where communication is actually managing to be achived -- is brought to abrupt halt as the vampire attacks Willow. Oz races to her rescue and the vampire attacks Xander. Cordy tackles both of them and the vampire is staked between them, leaving Cordy in Xander's arms. Cue cheesy music as the two forget their fight and kiss.

Buffy wakes in a cell, with a Lily who is deep and shock -- and beds with skeletons. Lily says they're in Hell, and Ken agrees. He tells them Ricky was also brought their, and worke to death over years, since time moves more quickly in this place. Ken and his minions have been using kids for slave labor for years, then kicking them back into teh real world after they are too old and used up to work. Buffy and Lily are put into the work force, under an overseer whose first job is to make them believe that they are no one. But when he tries to make Buffy admit it, she informs him "I'm Buffy, the vampireslayer? And you are?" When the overseer tries to punish her, she proceeds to kick his butt. The melee spread to the rest of the room as Buffy tries to lead her fellow would-be slaves to freedom. Leaving Lily in charge of the others, Buffy creates a distraction, to Ken's fury. Fighting six-to-one odds, the Slayer still wins -- until Ken appreas with a captured Lily, holding a knife to her throat. Unfortunately, he also takes the time to give a little victory speech -- interrupted when when Lily does something for the first itme in her life -- and shoves him off the concrete ledge.

Buffy takes her chance and she and Lily run for the exit. ken catches them as they make it through the gate and Buffy brings the gate crashing down on his legs, then coolly bashes his head in. She and Lily emerge from the pool just as it seals itself over, all traces of the doorway disappearing.

The two girls settle things the next day -- Lily will take over 'Anne's' apartment and job, and name, and try to make decisions, and a life, for herself. And when Joyce starts at the next knock on the back door, she opens it to find Buffy standing before her. Wordlessly, mother and daughter embrace.

Buffy has been waitressing in a cafe in a city for summer, and is also having some recurring dreams/nightmares about Angel. Big shock.

Buffy's middle name is Anne.

Apparently Joyce and Giles did have that showdown regarding Buffy, slaying, et al we were all expecting -- they just had it off-screen. So she's fully up-to-date in everything, although still not dealing terribly well.

In Buffy's absence, the Slayerettes have been trying to fill in, with predictably mixed results.

Oz flunked twelfth grade due to massive incompletes and a lack of summer school. He's back in school.

There are other planes of reality where time runs much faster than on our own -- a few days can equal a hundred years. Methinks this has bad implications for Angel....

Awww.. Xander and Cordy, together again. The communication problems continue, but at least they've still got the cheesy music. And Xander shows no signs of pulling an idiot over Willow, which is a definite good.

Willow and Oz are still too cute for words, of course -- although Oz has some ground to regain over the flunking thing. Good thing he's about as cute as he hopes he is.

Giles and Joyce... < shudder > Oh, please let me be wrong about where I think Joss is going with this. Although it is starting to look logical.... She's going to have to get over blaming Giles for all of this first, though.

Well, Buffy obviously spent too much time hanging around Angel -- she's spent the summer honing her brooding skills. But apparently it did some good; by the time Lily showed up to give her a kick int he butt, she was ready to be kicked. Once again, she's realized that she can't run away from slaying,because it'll jsut catch up. But she seemed much more accepting of the realization than she usually is -- after fighting it more out of habit than anything, she slipped right into gear. Her confrontation with the nurse was Buffy at the height of Slayerdom, more confident than we've ever seen her. She's ready to take on being herself again, which is definitely a good. But she's still not dealing with the Angel thing....

Giles, on the other hand, spent the entire summer in a state of Limbo. His entire energy has been focused on finding Buffy, to the extent of leaving the work of vampire patrolling and slaying to the three Slayerettes, which is utterly out of character for him. But he's operating off of his usual guilt trip -- not helped by Joyce's far-too-accurate (in his eyes) assessment of his relationship with Buffy, and the guilt he thinks he bears in her run away. He and Buffy are going to have some serious issues to work out now.

Meanwhile, Joyce has been occupying her own little slice of Limbo. After three months, she's still losing it every time the phone rings or someone knocks on the door, and she's still got her hopes up. Laying the blame on Giles as she did was harsh, yeah, but it actually makes a certain amount of sense once, you get past the, "But... but... it's Giles!" kneejerk reaction. In her eyes, Giles is the adult and is therefore the responsible one, the one who should have been protecting her little girl instead of sending her out to fight vampires ont he strength of prophecy and hokey religions. Giles is the adult and Buffy is the kid, and she hasn't been around the two of them enough to realize how equal the relationship is. I'm dying to see how she's going to handle Buffy's determination to be the Slayer -- and how fiercely protective Buffy can be of her Watcher.

Xander and Willow are busy contrasting each other through the ep. True to form, Willow is desperately holding onto hope, while Xander is being his pragmatic self and has more or less given up. He still wants Buffy back, but he's not living with it every second like Willow is. He's buried it enough that he is getting on with his life. I'd be upset about that except a) he's still busting his butt filling in for Buffy with Slaying and b) it's just how Xander copes -- if there's anything he can do, there's no stopping him. But if there's nothing he can do, then he deals by not dealing. Willow, of course, has no concept of giving up, especially not on a friend. It'll be interesting to see how they react to getting Buffy back.

Oz is his usual sweet, funny self. He's into the Slayerette thing in a big way, carrying his own stakes and cross and helping with the patrols. He's still doing pretty well handling Willow -- knowing she'll be upset about the flunking, he gives her the absolutely honest (and, yes, adorable), "I was hoping you'd think it was cute" routine. This being the best way to get a smile out of her, although surely the boy knows she wasn't going to go with "cute" on that. < g > Love Oz, so happy to have him around. And god knows he comes through -- as Dianne said, when the vampire attacked Willow, Oz crossed twice as much distance as Xander in half the time to save her.

It';s very amusing to see Cordelia being completely insecure (to the point of asking Willow how her hair looked) and over Xander, no less. The only time we've ever seen her legendary self-confidence this shaken was during 'Reptile Boy', trying to impress her college boy. But she was also genuinely pleased to see Willow, and she did go along with the bait plan -- her complaints about the plan were mostly so she could have an excuse to fight with Xander, not because she was reluctant to help. But, interestingly, even though she's so confortable when reuinited with the Slayerettes, when she came into the Bronze, she was still with the Cordettes. So her social status is still clinging to the higher levels.

Lily is an interesting character -- normall, my reaction to people with less than three brain cells to rub together is utter 'get them off the screen' disgust (don't get me started on Lise Edgars on Babylon 5), but Lily's brainlessness was almsot sweet, in a clueless sort of way. Losing Ricky, however harsh, was probably the best thing that could have happened to her. With no on to depend on, no one to tell her what to do or how to do it, she's going to actually have to start using those brain cells. I'd like to think she'll make it, since she's showing signs of growing a spine, but I'd like to see her show up later, just to find out.

Best Moments:
"Come and get it, big boy," followed by Oz throwing the stake -- and missing. ROTFL through the whole scene. The Scooby gang is trying so hard and they're just so not equipped.

Willow and Oz's walk through Sunnydale High on the first day back. Lots of familiar faces (hi, Larry!), some entertaining background business ("not as many mysterious deaths" LOL!), and a nice orientation for Those of You Just Joining Us. In addition to just being a beautifully executed and really impressive single-shot.

Buffy face-to-face with the first "nobody". Left right at this, this would have been a excellent PSA on runaways/homeless all on its own, from the look on Buffy's face as she relates to that. Nice shot slightly dimmed by the ensuing events.

Buffy finding Ricky's body. Again, the trek through the shelter was a very effective, and creepy, shot, and actually finding Ricky, drain cleaner and all, was far too creepsome -- easily the scariest thing about the episode.

Xander and Cordy staking the vamp. Amusing for its, um, uniqueness, it's also a damn impressive special effects shot! Too cool! And, of course, immediately followed by the Cheesy Music (TM) and kiss. Lovely!

Joyce and Giles. Very quiet, very calm scene, which makes Joyce's "I blame you" even more of a sucker punch. Poor Giles...

Buffy in the blood center. She was so calm and adult facing down the nurse, it jsut rocked!

"I'm Buffy, the vampire Slayer. And you are?" Awesome delivery and a wonderful moment, leading into an outstanding fight scene!

The last scene -- neatly done, no dialogue and everything depending on Kristine and Sarah, who more than deliver. Very nice.

Questions and Comments:
So, who were those demon guys? Where did they take the kids? What happened to the ones Buffy didn't get out? Why did the oil pit close up behind her? How long had the demons been doing this (quite a while, judging from the number of "Nobody"s Buffy ran into)? How many times has Joss seen 'Men in Black' (not to mention "Skin of Evil" on 'ST:TNG' -- you know, the one where the black oil pit eats Tasha Yar?)? What happened to the other half of the episode?

There was a reasonably nice teacher at Sunndale High -- how did he manage to survive the episode?

Now that Buffy is home, what's she going to do? School is apparently out -- and whatever happened to that murder warrant?

We could have done without the socially-conscious runaway montage in favor of 30 more seconds of plot; it was a nice segue back to the Bronze, but Lily made a much better -- and more subtle -- statement on the runaway front.

Rating: 3.5 stars out of five. Not as show-stopping as 'When She Was Bad', but a solid opening for the season. Joss supplies the Buffy Withdrawl Syndrome victims with some great character moments and a satisfying continuation to last year's arc -- but you do end the ep going "Plot? What plot?".

Julie's Review

Sorry if this annoys anyone or repeats much. Also, don't expect it to be exactly scene by scene. I tend to wander and group some things together as my brain sees them, not as they are necessarily shown.
I loved seeing the Slayerettes in action, especially with Willow trying so had to do it like Buffy would. And I like that they _are_ having a hard time with the slayage. This really emphasizes the difference that being the Slayer makes from the rest of us mere mortals. Very humorously and slickly done by Joss and Co. I also loved Oz trying to throw the stake and not even coming close. Trashed another film cliche right there. ::THWAK::

Seeing a very soul weary Buffy working at a job that she really doesn't care about is riviting. We're used to seeing her showing so much energy and animation about everything that's she _is_ almost like another person. Then we see a slight flash of the Buffy we all know when the old fart hits on her. In many ways her listlessness is very reminescent of how she was in Ted when she thought she had killed another human being. And, in a way, she had in B2. Angel with his restored soul was closer to being a human being than many people who still _are_ mortal. The stress and self punishment for this is still strong. Her dreams are her one escape, and even then the reality of her being the Slayer is still evident. Her fantasies are still interwoven with the precognant dreams of her calling.

I must admit that I didn't recognize 'Lily', who continues to be a codependant wimp who continually brought the phrase 'too stupid to live' to my mind several times during the episode. Here she is, hanging on to a guy with no more common sense than she has, as they put almost their last pennies into getting a joint tattoo (on both of them--not of a doobie. phht!) rather than a decent meal. They have what may or may not be enough money for a piece of peachless pie. Not a brain trust either way.

Buffy's reaction to the possibility of being recognized by someone has her upset, but not as much as when she realizes that they were in her dream the past night. She is especially upset as it portends what she's been trying to deny--no matter how she feels or what happens, she's still the Slayer. She reacts by doing the same as she has since B2; she takes off to be alone and try to forget and ignore it.

Meanwhile, back at Slayerette Central--_people_! Lots of people! I haven't been that startled in a few years by what should be a normal scene. (There's a little town I used to go to--my great grandfather is buried there--and visit the cemetery and would never see a single soul anywhere. Until my last visit. Suddenly there were people coming out of the woodwork. I was so startled, I just drove through town without stopping.) I guess those 'Read' posters must be working. There we see a very rushed Giles, still trying every way he knows to find the missing Buffy. He's not as worried as I had expected, but as we see later, it's due to his having faith that Buffy can handle what anyone could deal out physically. I loved watching Xander & Cordy both dealing with not having seen each other all summer. Seeing Cordy being unsure about a boy is delightful. She's becoming more and more human every time we see her. And Xander is, well, Xander. Still a little geeky, and still thinking with his hormones.

And then back with Buffy who is listlessly walking the streets. Many old people here and there, hiding and muttering about 'being nobody.' Buffy just sees it as a part of them being old and possibly crazy. Just the usual strange but not-so-strange homeless people one sees in any major city. And Lily coming after her and finally getting her attention by calling Buffy by her real name. I'm glad they had Buffy not remembering her right off the mark. Most normal people wouldn't remember a chance thing like that months later. Her refusal to help in a concious manner is contrasted nicely with her running out into the street to save the old man in the path of the car. No matter what, her true self always helps others. I think she again runs from that knowledge as much as from the possibility of being ID'd as a runaway at the hospital. Then the man from the local shelter trying to get her to come there. I kept thinking about the head vampire guy from the movie "the Lost Boys". He had that same 'I'm just a nice non-threatening person...not' that he had. Made me nervous. I'm wondering if they were trying to make him kinda Ted-like. ::shrug::

Back on the Sunnydale front, I wasn't surprised to see how Buffy's mom was handling her being gone. No smiles, doing what looks like sork that should be done at the gallery at home as she's afraid of missing a possible call from her errant daughter. I liked to see that she and Giles have obviously talking to each other during this crisis. (First name basis?!) I was happy to see that she's not letting Giles off the hook of encouraging Buffy to keep things from her. I'd be mad, too. I wonder if we'll see more of the grown-up front in later eps and how the relationship will develop.

The Slayerettes are keeping busy. Willow is shown to be taking Buffy's absence a bit harder than anyone except Joyce. Nothing's as much fun anymore, and she keeps wondering where Buffy is, what's she doing. It's probably not as bad as it could have been, probably thanks to Oz. It's nice to see him becoming more and more important to her, even to the point of her seeing it's okay to be honest and annoyed with him, like she was when she found out that he has to do his senior year over again. Xander is still obsessing on girls, hir current attention still on Cordelia, and still thinking about all the reasons why she could/would dump him only to realize that Willow was talking about Buffy. I also liked the interaction between Willow, Xander and Oz as they tried to figure out how they could do a better job at slaying, and Xander, still obsessing, spies Cordy and decides to pull her back in the Slayerette circle (and closer to him) by suggesting they get her to be 'bait.'

Back with Buffy, who has been learning that you can't completely hide from yourself, is reluctantly helping Lily to find her missing Ricky. Their first stop is the local Blood Bank donation center, where Lily and Ricky sometimes went to donate for money and cookies. The nurse they speak with looks a _lot_ like the school nurse we saw in GF last season. And we're left with the idea that this one's no better. (What _does_ Joss have against nurses, anyway? Or is it just against health care in general?) Buffy and Lily split up to check other places for the missing Ricky (after getting Lily to understand the splitting up portion :). We find Buffy looking through some very seedy, dark areas that made me more nervous than when they had her wandering through the sewer tunnels in first season. She eventually finds a body of an old man who appears to have drank Draino. And to her surprise, he has Ricky's new tattoo.

She meets back up with Lily and tells her the bad news. Lily, having her only support again ripped out from under her, flounders. As with most people, she wants someone to blame, and chooses Buffy since she's the most convenient. With this, Buffy tells her off, and while rightly so, is too much for Lily's fragile selfworth. Lily leaves, and is just perfect for our Mr. Safe House Guy to get to go with him. We are now let know that he is a bad person (duh) when he lies to Lily saying that Ricky is alive & well at the home. Lily, grasping at the thought that her only emotional support is still alive, goes with him. Here is a girl who is a blue print for the saying that 'those who don't learn from the past are doomed to repeat it.' When we first saw her, she refused to believe anything Buffy told her, because it didn't fit in her little self-delusional mind, and became a temporary appetizer for Spike & Co. And now here she is, again refusing to believe what Buffy has told her, and about to find out how bad her life really _could_ be. Frankly I was all for her going. This was one of those 'too stupid to live' moments I kept having.

We go back to the Slayerettes, in the cemetery discussing strategy on how to get the vamp. I loved Xander telling Cordy to go away and 'go act baity.' I also loved seeing Oz in action when the vamp jumps Willow while Xander & Cordy were arguing. I wonder if Oz has hightened speed/strength due to the werewolf thing? I'm wondering as he got there faster and from farther away than the others. He did a nice full body tackle, too. < g > It was fun seeing how Cordy 'helped' Xander to dust the vamp. That's two he's gotten by someone knocking the vamp onto his stake. Should we keep score of this? < bg > Good use of schmaltzy lust music while Xander and Cordy kiss. Makes me giggle every time.

Back with Buffy, we see her becoming more and more her old self, and she's not happy about it. No subtle breaking and entering anymore. Bust the whole door knob and lock out. Definitely not the happy camper. I liked her non-reaction to being discovered by the nurse.

Nurse: What are you doing?
Buffy: Breaking in and going through your files. Candidate for what?

Buffy is visibly getting more and more angry for being taken from the non-feeling cocoon she had wrapped herself in and thrown back into the slaying business. "I just wanted to be left alone." She is aware that the cocoon is gone and that she won't be able to get it back. Now we are told what we already knew-the nurse is in league with whatever got Ricky. The nurse tells Buffy who's behind the disappearances, and we next see Buffy at Missing Central--the 'safe' house. She's almost back in form with the confusing babble trying to talk her way in, and just barging in when she realizes the babble isn't working. She fights her way to where Ken has Lily, kneeling down for the 'cleansing' infront of a disgusting black pool. Okay, I'm gonna rant about Lily's stupidity again, fair warning. Doesn't this girl EVER get a clue? She ignores the one person who has never lied to her and helped her anyway, trusts a total stranger who seems to know too much about her missing boyfriend, is put in a dirty, burlap bag tunic for a 'cleansing' and puts her hand in a pool of water that she can't see the bottom of and that could be full of God knows what germs or toxins and is SURPRISED when she gets grabbed by something? Someone, please, shoot her now. Save the gene pool. < /rant > Okay, I feel better. Buffy struggles with Ken and they all fall through---to a floor? (I started having visions of an episode of the cartoon Cow and Chicken. It was called the Laughing Pool. It was this little puddle that kept sucking people through when they touched it. Chicken discovered eventually where it came out--in the ceiling of a comedy club. Needless to say, I snickered a bit during this scene.)

We now get to see the real Ken--kinda lizardy, but definitely not human. Buffy and Lily are now his captives...and slaves. Ken has this factory/smelting thing going on and aparently wants a low overhead, so he's into unpaid slave labor. He has them tossed into a cell with a few corpses to demoralize them to make their 'training' easier. He only succeeds in getting Buffy annoyed. Especially when he calls her pathetic and tells her she got what she wished disappear. Buffy and Lily are taken for their 'instructions' by the guards. Is it me or was the guard doing all the talking the same one who played Luke (Vessel Boy) in WttH/H? We see where all the old street people got the "I'm no one" mantra from as they teach it to Lily and the others, but when they get to Buffy, we find she's really back and has realized that there's not getting away from it. "I'm Buffy. The Vampire Slayer. And you are?" I must admit, I cheered. I'm happy to see the Buffy we've seen for the past few years back. She tells Lily to get the others out when she distracts the guards. Lily wobbles until Buffy tells her she can do it because she (Buffy) says so. We're now treated to lots of nicely coreorographed (sp?) fighting (gotta get that violence rating:). Then Ken spies Lily and decides to use her as bait. He makes his threats, lets Lily go and forgets about her as she's not worth the effort. The problem is she has a new role model-Buffy. She pushes Ken over the railing in the first self-preservation motivated move we've seen her take (yea). Buffy fights her way up, pulls up a gate for the escapees to get through and ends up dropping it on Ken's legs. Then she just bashes his head in. Buffy? Mad? Naw...;)

Later in Buffy's apartment we find her and Lily talking. Buffy has decided to go home and gives her apartment and job to Lily, who now wants to be 'Anne', probably as she sees it as helping her to be a bit like Buffy and partially like having a talisman.

Okay, I was wrong int the "who will Buffy go to first" sweepstakes. It was nice to see her go home and see her mom welcome her with pen arms. ::sniff::

I just have a few wonderings. How much trouble is Buffy in with the police? She may not have killed Kendra, but there's assaulting a police officer and resisting arrest. Not charges to sneeze at. And how are they gonna get her back in school? Is that why Snyder's gonna go? ::ponder::


"Okay, I admit I cried through a half-box of tissues... but where was the plot??? Hell? A hundred years in a day? Aging? Homeless people? Runaways? Far too many ideas, far too little time." -- Elaine

"I liked seeing Chantarelle/Lily again --- and liked the contrast of her to the Slayerettes, still going strong even when the Slayer isn't there... Loved that Giles hasn't given up on Buffy. Not totally sure about those glasses; I think whoever thought up those missed the point (you're *supposed* to look different in them! I dunno, I need time to adjust)..." -- Chris

"Mommy knows all and she is pissed! Go Joyce! I don't think I would be that excepting of Hey your daughter is a vampire slayer with some psychological issues and I'm her Mentor. " -- Sasha

"Like that she isn't supporting his slacker lifestyle. but at the same time it was a good plot device to keep them together. Also is it just me or have they taken over the Best Couple in Sunnyhell spot most recently held by Spike and Dru?" -- Sasha on Willow and Oz

"Oz: Oh my joss I couldn't be happier to have him around just to utter the perfect line or do the perfect thing at the perfect time. The stake throwing failed thing was priceless. As was his comment about failing "rhythmically." And count on Joss to make me immediately accept the plot contrivance of Oz staying back a year. He just made it work so smoothly (I thought it would be cute! < g >)" -- Mary Beth

"The homeless story seemed to drift at times--kinda lame (the bad guys' make up just looked plastic, not scary) but it served the arc of Buffy's development in the episode very well. " -- Mary Beth

"Gotta love Joss for giving us a sweet romantic beautiful moment.... with a good sucker punch to the stomach for a kicker. " -- Mary Beth

"I'm very much afraid that the scene between Giles and Joyce means that they are going to get together. < pout > "
"actually the wiggage potential is high enough that I'm beginning to think that Joss would attempt it, just to mess with our heads ... but ... they have no chemistry!!! None. (Oh joss please don't!)" -- Lizbet and Sasha

"I don't care what anyone says, I don't care what arguements people put forward, it is completely irrational, but I dislike Joyce. I did from the moment when she found out that her daughter was being stalked by her "ex-boyfriend" and instead of going after *him*, decided to rip into her daughter instead. My mother would have taken after him with an ax. *Then* she would have ripped into me. " -- Lizbet

"So, what was with all the people in the library?!? Don't those people know that's _not_ a public place? How's the Scooby-gang going to work on monster-killage if there are, like, students wandering into the library? Sheesh." -- Maureen

"But the plot& plausability here makes Go Fish look profound. ;) Random Hell-beasts using street kids in LA-or-somewhere as slave labor to no apparent (or clarified) end in an alternate dimension... which, once one guy (the head honcho apparently) is killed, waits five minutes and then seals itself all on its own? Is it _gone_? What about the other kids down there? Lost forever? Will it reopen once Buffy's gone? Whatinthehell *was* going on down there anyway??? (Hey, like I said-- much fun and great character, but the plot-- such as it was-- was all over the damned place! ;)" -- Dianne

"I also loved the Oz moment earlier-- Willow screams and Xander and Cordy turn immediately and run to help... and are out-paced by Oz who is *bookin'* like his very life depends on being there yesterday! *Very* sweet touch! :)))" -- Dianne

"If they were gonna introduce a demon realm, couldn't they at least make it look... demony? As far as I could tell the demons were making the kids build Toyotas. " -- Abby

"Um...color me confused but what was the point of the underground neo-techno-chitty-chitty-bang-bang imprisonment of the children? Were they mining? I saw a couple of kids beating anvils but there was nothing ON the anvils. < insert dramatic gasp > Dear God, do you think they were creating demonic blacksmithing equipment so as to take over the lucrative world of show riding? Or maybe it was just a plot hole." -- Deb

"So, how many people said the line with Joyce "I blame you"? Hands? Me too. I wonder how Joyce got to this point. I mean, she has obviously wrapped her mind around the situation - she doesn't like it, she has issues with it but she isn't trying to have Giles, the Scooby Gang and her daughter committed so I assume she has at least come to grips with the oddness of the situation. I wonder what it took. Would Giles be able to convince her alone? I suspect Willow probably had a hand is bringing it all home to Joyce - 'cause who wouldn't believe Willow? " -- Deb

"But I loved how the story served Buffy's character re-devopment, if you will. To go from the lonely lost girl who barely reacted when the guy slapped her butt to the kick ass Slayer we know and love .... that was fabulous. And the fight scenes really were extraordinary." -- Mary Beth

"Other things I loved: The *awesome* SINGLE SHOT from Giles & Willow in the library to Xander & Cordy in the teachers' lounge. Very ER.... very hard... *very* well done." -- Mary Beth

"Thing I just noticed: Oz in the cemetery when he says "Is everybody packing?" His stake is quite cleverly carved from a baseball bat. Trust him to think through his stake making process. Also, he lifts his shirt to show his cross like a gun. He's having way too much fun with this. " -- Mary Beth

"I am *so* proud of Giles for not only *learning* to use the scan-a-book computer dealie, but learning to use it comfortably enough that he can do it absent-mindedly and casually (and without much complaining). Now, granted, he's been preoccupied enough that little inconveniences like the invasion of the computer world are not the priority on his list of annoyances, and that *much* of what he's done has been done absent-mindedly...but I was still very proud. And impressed." -- Amy

"I was fascinated (although not at all surprised) when she asked if she could be was interesting. I don't think she's really learned an *abiding* lesson on taking care of herself--I think she's got the first little, tiny, beginning piece of that lesson--an actual foundation to begin from. But it was curious to me because I couldn't decided if the, "Can I be Anne" was because she wanted to identify with the "Anne" identity into which (when it was Buffy's) she had placed so much faith--even her life--and she wanted the identity as almost a kind of ward against evil--to get protection from the aura of the identity, or if it was because she thought she could actually *become* someone like the person Buffy/Anne was. Somehow, I think it's more of the former." -- Amy

"I'm glad they kept the Angel/Buffy scenes to a minimum. Yes, I want him back, but she had a lot of other issues to deal with in this episode. And it's strange, but I...well...I *really* miss Spike. I don't know what it was about this episode, but it made me *really* miss Spike. (Hmm...maybe it was seeing "Lily" from "Lie to Me"...)" -- Leslie

"This just happens to be a plane where a bunch of really ugly guys have a lot of totally pointless industrial-type work to do, and they'd infinitely rather kidnap slave labor from another dimension to do it for them. Makes perfect sense to me. " -- Valerie

"It's impossible, to me, to compare WSWB and Anne. WSWB was about being very much alive and having to deal with that fact. Anne was about being very "dead" in a sense and overcoming that fact. It wasn't going to be a Buffy like anything we knew because she was in uncharted territory... I think the main bad guy story was weak, but other than that it's the sheer... *difference* of this ep that has me off balance... it was Buffy-centric (it *is* her show) and she was away... her life was blown to hell last season... so what we got as the beginning of the follow-up was harsher, darker, weirder. If it had been anything familiar, that would have been just as wrong, IMO." -- Mary Beth

Back to Episodes.