Buffy the Vampire Slayer : Ep by ep; Empty Places

Ep by ep; Empty Places

The Good; Spike and Andrew's road trip, the girls shaking their stuff at the Bronze.

The Bad; So harrowing watching Buffy cast out after all she's been through. Again why doesn't Caleb take Buffy prisoner or something when he knocks her out? Anya says Buffy is 'luckier' than everyone else to be the Slayer but it hardly seems to be much of a prize? The Hellmouth influenced cops also seem a very handy contrivance.

Best line; Rhona (on Buffy leaving) "Ding dong, the witch is dead!" Dawn; (rounding on her) "SHUT YOUR MOUTH!" (about time someone slapped Rhona down!)

Women good/men bad; More misogyny from Caleb

Jeez!; Hardest thing to watch is Dawn telling Buffy to leave (as she states, Revello Drive is her home too). Equally the scenes between Willow and Xander in hospital are so sad. Faith get's some nasty beatings although Angelus claims she's actually still looking for someone to beat the evil out of her.

Kinky dinky; Anya refers to her and Xander's break-up sex to the Potentials, Faith reminds everyone she had him first. Speaking of which Faith starts putting the moves on Wood, who if not a boyfriend Buffy was attracted to and had at least one date with. Caleb speaks of the 'sweet pleasure of taming Buffy' which is odd phrasing for a guy who claims to abhor women especially in the sexual sense. Faith flirts with the cops who've come to arrest her, she must have a thing for the uniform (and maybe the handcuffs, nightsticks and fast cars?) as we've seen her do this before in Bad Girls ("I like him, he's butch"). Interestingly she later refers to Buffy as a cop even after receiving a thorough nightsticking and punch on the jaw.

Captain Subtext; Giles hints that Buffy's partiality for her vampire boyfriends costs lives, alluding to Jenny Calender. Spike and Andrew bond on their road-trip over bar food. Spike threatens to bite Andrew which he has done before. With Willow away Kennedy chooses to dance with Dawn at the Bronze as indeed does Faith (closest thing to Buffy for her once more?). Dawn seems to have lost her antipathy towards Faith and they seem tight from now on.

Guantanamo Bay; Buffy and co have a long talk about how they're not a democracy, that it takes one strong individual leader to be effective.

Scoobies to the ER; Faith nastily bashed up but Slayer healing takes care of it all.

Scoobies knocked out: poor Buff

Total number of scoobies: 35 or so. Anya back but no Vi again. We never ever actually get to see all the recurring potentials (those with names and dialogue) together until the final ep.

What the fanficcers thought; Read an interesting fic once where we discover that Caleb's mother was a Slayer who was sired and he was forced to kill her as a young boy as she tortured him. It was very well written, actually made you feel sorry for this screwed up monster.

Questions and observations; It's Dawn who makes the breakthrough regarding the mission, her junior Watcher role really coming along, Giles even teaching her like his pupil. Andrew wears the same football helmet as Dawn wore when she rode on Spike's motorcycle (is it Hanks? I can't imagine Joyce, Buffy or Dawn playing American football? Maybe the lingerie ball?). Faith stops Amanda drinking alcohol at the Bronze, already adopting the leadership role. Last appearance of Clem on the show although he's back in the comics as Harmony's 'friend'. If you can't pierce the UberVamps sternum with your stake why not stab then upwards under the ribcage so you don't have to? Holy Water does affect them (Showtime)but not as much it does ordinary vamps. SMG hoarse again, both as Buffy AND The First. The SDPD have changed their uniforms but not their cars. Actually I would rate Jaws 3D as the second best in the series although a LONG way behind the fabulous original. Buffy doesn't want to talk about Xander not because she doesn't care but because she finds it too painful. Note Buffy doesn't actually object to Faith taking the girls to the Bronze, she just doesn't want them drunk and fighting.

We once again see Xander's love of jello as evidence by Earshot. Noticeably it's Amanda who backs up Dawn in the argument before they go off to the Bronze. Buffy correctly suspects that Spike is the only one who will back her up in the argument although you have to wonder what Andrew would have thought? Was Faith's hair shiny enough for him?
Even after all these years and so many rewatches I can't count it's still shocking to see Buffy cast out like this, the rug well and truly pulled out from under us in the last few eps.

Marks out of 10; 8/10