Episode Reviews (28)
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Bewitched, Bothered And Bewildered
Here's an episode where we finally get a look at Xander and Cordelia's odd relationship. This is an extremely lightweight romp that makes its mark as easily the funniest episode of the season and is also one of the series' overall funnier episodes. There's lots of confusion and fun after Amy's backfired spell kicks in and it never lets up all the way until the, actually somewhat surprising, ending involving Cordelia actually ditching Harmony and her now old group of sheepish friends.
The craziness begins with Cordelia's 'group' abandoning her simply because she's dating Xander. Cordelia's genuinely upset about this. Like she said back in "Out of Mind, Out of Sight" (1x11), "Well, it beats being alone all by yourself," in response to why she likes being popular. She doesn't fully realize that now she's got the Scoobies to keep her from feeling alone. By the end of the episode that realization comes and she, naturally scared about it, leaves her old friends behind. It becomes quite the whacky adventure before she gets there though.
First, Cordelia breaks up with Xander on Valentine's Day of all days, right after he gave her a beautiful heart pendent on a necklace. This genuinely hurts Xander and he doesn't try to hide it. We can tell Cordelia also feels quite bad about it as well because the next day she is wearing (although hiding) the same necklace. That leads to the blackmail of Amy and the spell to make Cordelia love him, so he can in turn break up with her instead. Like almost all spells in this series, it backfires and causes chaos to ensue. Every single female except Cordelia ends up falling in love with Xander, including Buffy.
Buffy coming onto him is his absolute fantasy and he can barely resist kissing her when offered the opportunity to. He gets pulled away by Amy who is also hitting on him in the same way Buffy was. This is when he realizes, in a subtle and heartbreaking way, that Buffy isn't really coming onto him; the spell is talking, not Buffy. This really saddens Xander, especially after the little bit of hope she gave him after hugging him in the previous episode. All of this Xander lovin' going around leads to the fantastically funny scene where he's walking down the main hallway of the school while all the girls are checking him out and making moon eyes.
By this point absolute chaos is unleashed. Amy turns Buffy into a rat, Cordelia is getting beat up, Ms. Calendar is even coming onto Xander, and Willow tries to axe murder him for not returning her 'love.' In response to all this Xander grabs Cordelia and runs off to Buffy's place for sanctuary. While here Buffy's mom hits on Xander and he, absolutely hilariously, slams his head down on the table and yells "whatever!" Amazingly, the chaos doesn't stop here. They flee up to Buffy's room where Angelus, wanting to finally do in Buffy, grabs Xander instead but Drusilla is under the spell and stops him from hurting Xander! Wow, good times.
Giles and Amy finally break the spell and everything returns to normal except at the end Cordelia finally shuts Harmony up and says, "You're a sheep. All you ever do is what everyone else does just so you can say you did it first. And here I am, scrambling for your approval, when I'm way cooler than you are 'cause I'm not a sheep. I do what I wanna do, and I wear what I wanna wear. And you know what? I'll date whoever the hell I wanna date. No matter how lame he is." And with that speech Cordelia has grown another step forward. This is great stuff.
There's also a couple other nice touches that don't involve Xander and Cordelia. Giles shows that he hasn't lost his affections for Jenny and that his devotion to Buffy still comes first. Jenny completely understands, and this is undoubtedly the moment she decides to begin research on how to curse Angel again. The rotten fruits of her labor come up in "Passion" (2x17), the next episode.
The good guys aren't the only ones celebrating Valentine's Day. Spike gives Drusilla a stunning necklace for the occasion, but Angelus comes in and gives her a fresh heart from a shopkeeper to outdo Spike's gift. Angelus is continuing to steal Dru's affection away from Spike and this naturally infuriates him. Spike will get some satisfaction in seeing Angelus being beat up by Giles in "Passion" (2x17) and then will actively help stop Angelus in "Becoming Pt. 2" (2x22). This is simply a fantastic episode with tremendous fun to be had.moreless
The ep that made me a fan
Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered
Just when you thought it couldn't get any better! Pretty much everything, even the music is superb, especially when Xander does his slow walk through the school. It really does set the bar for other eps.
Are you insane? This may well be my favourite Buffy ep EVER!
Dru; Don't fret kitten, mummy's here. How do you feel about eternal life?
Xander (terrified); We couldn't just start with coffee?
Angelus (bemused) Boy I really did drive you insane!
Women good/men bad-0
Kinky-dinky; yep, Willow enthusiastically telling Xander that 'Force is ok' showing the naughty girl behind the softer side of Sears (love her impish smile as she says this). Buffy striptease too.
Questions and observations;
Lovely to see Amy and Jenny back and Harmony playing a fairly major role. Buffy's slit leopardskin mini-skirt is just SCANDALOUS, is this the outfit Joyce refused to buy her in Bad Eggs? Xander meanwhile seems to be dressed as though he's auditioning for Life on Mars, you could go handgliding with that collar. I always knew Cordy and Buffy and Jenny were lovely but here I think for the first time you realise the incredible sexiness of Alysson Hannigan, all the more remarkable for her wearing a man's shirt at the time. Joyce has been introduced to Cordy and greets her by name when she turns up at the door. Exactly how long are Cordy and Xander running around, it's light when they leave the school but dark when they reach Buffy's house?
If I was to single one performance out from them all it would actually be Robia LaMorte for playing Jenny, the way she tries to talk to Giles whilst being gradually overcome by her irresistable attaction to Xander. Amy's bitchy comment that Jenny is old enough to be Queen of the World is a bit much as she's only 28 at the time of shooting.
Note Spike's charming present for Dru contrasted to Angelus' hideous gift, his humanity once more shines through. The jealousy between the three shows through, AngeIus tormenting Spike in all sorts of subtle little ways. I once read a very short but hugely funny slashfic at fanfiction .net calld 'Bewitched, bothered and befuddled' where Amy's spell goes wrong in a slightly different way, resulting in all the boys lusting after Xander rather than the girls, even Angelus. Anyone else read that one?
10/10, just terrific in every way
Bewitched, Bothered And Bewildered
Bewitched, Bothered And Bewildered was a Perfectly Classic Episode of Buffy The Vampire Slayer. This episode had a lot of character growth for most of the characters. This episode is the start of viewers seeing Amy using Magic. Cordelia and Zander once again find themselves hiding together in Buffy's Basement, only this time from a raving hoarde of women. Oz also comes into play, accusing Zander of hurting Willow. This episode definitely asserts that one should be careful what they wish for and don't mess with Love spells. I really enjoyed watching this episode. The ending was nice, as Cordelia stood up to her so called friends. I thought it was funny that Druscilla fell under the spell as well.moreless
Love me, love me! Say that you love me!
When Cordelia dumps Xander on Valentine's Day he blackmails the witch Amy into casting a love spell. His goal is to punish Cordelia by breaking up with her. But the whole thing backfires when everyone except Cordelia falls in love with Xander. After a few strange situations Xander realises his mistake but going back to normal might not be that easy. To complicate things even more Buffy is turned into a rat by the lovesick Amy and the soulless Angel wants to show his affection for Buffy by killing one of her friends.
In the end all spells are reversed, Cordelia for once sees that being popular isn't the only thing in life and all of Buffy's friends live another day.
This episode has been one of my favorites right from the very first time I saw it. This is mostly due to the fact that I'm a huge fan of the character of Xander. But there are other things that are great about this episode as well. It is funny and we get to see we normally don't: A very sexy Buffy, a jealous Cordy and Jenny, Joyce and Willow hitting on Xander.
In my opinion this episode is important because it shows Xander making a mistake and taking responsibility by telling Giles that he messed up. And while the basic tone of the episode is relaxed and funny the love spell and its consequences are dead serious: Angel attacking Xander is real. And the anger of the rejected women makes them very dangerous.
I also think that it's important that Cordy and Xander are getting back together in the end. We never got a lot of insight into their relationship (except their fighting) anyway which is sad in my opinion. The way they treated each other always made me wonder if what they had was more than a fling. As far as I know we also never learnt whether they ever had sex.
But still: In this episode we get a glance at their feelings for each other. We never had a doubt about how Xander feels for Buffy and Willow. But here the audiences sees Xander risking something for Cordelia as well. And that's maybe the most important thing about the episode since it puts their relationship into perspective.moreless
Season 2, Episode 16.
It's Valentine's Day in Sunnydale! Cordelia breaks up with Xander after her (former) friends make fun of her and shun her out for dating him. So, Xander blackmails Amy, a witch from season one, into making Cordelia fall in love with him so he can break her heart.
I liked that Cordelia still wore the necklace. She definitely still liked him, but didn't want to go out with him because of the way people treated her. I liked how she was transformed back to normal though. The spell worked on Buffy! Haha. And Amy. And every other girl. Haha, I liked Buffy in the raincoat in the library. Awesome episode!moreless
Xander's use of magic comes back to haunt him.
I always forget how much I like this episode until I watch it. Xander is such a great character and I love all the humor that he brings to show which is showcased in this episode that features him trying to win Cordelia back after she succumbs to peer pressure. I love the ways in which all the women come on to him. Jenny is hilarious as she tries to seduce him as well as Joyce. Buffy's seduction scene is really funny as well and you really have to admire the willpower of Xander in that case. The scene with Willow in his bed is good as well and it is kind of sad to see her still hung up on him, but I'm glad that Oz came in and punched Xander, because he really deserves it for how he treated Willow (outside of this episode). I really like the end though with Cordelia realizing that what her friends think shouldn't rule her life.moreless
this episode doesn't said aything much. it was just hillarious. thats the reason i like this episode.
if this episode was compared to other epissode, i dont think it would have made my top ten. maybe top 20. i just like this episode cause it was funny. xander was hillarious. the girls that were chasing was juat funny. i love xander's face when he finally thought buffy was showing an interest in him. then he found out that the spell went wrong. it was just sooo funny. the scene with willow was great. xander looked so freaked out. it was hillarious. altogether, this episode doesn't said much. just funny, but still great. (you must be thinking what is with this person and the word 'hillarious'. i don't know really. i just like the word. hope you will forgive me for using it so often)moreless
Love Sick City
Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered-Xander tries to use Valentine's Day to further his relationship with Cordelia, but she succumbs to peer pressure and breaks up with him. With the help of Amy (who is experimenting with her mother's magickal tricks), he puts a love spell on her which goes horribly wrong, turning him into every woman's desire... everyone's except the one who matters most.
Now Buffy is known for mixing horror, comedy and drama is such a remarkable package , but this is one of the first time that a whole episode was devoted to comedy, and it worked brilliantly. This is supernatural hijnks at it's finest. Xander is at the center of the episode and Nicholas Brendon is hilarious throughout as Xander as all the women of Sunnydale literally runnning after him.
The whole cast is great here, especially Charisma Carpentar. Cordelia breaking up with Xander is a sad scene as well as Cordelia obviously has strong feelings but when her popularity is in question she has to make the obvious choice to survive the other populars girl abuse. Also, Amy returns as witch no less, and is black mailed by Xander do a love spell for him. It just beyond hilarious watching every woman fight for Xander's affections. From Buffy dressing in a trench coat being naked underneath, from Ms, Calendar suddenly falling head over heels for Xander in seconds and Joyce lusting after Xander just a second after letting him into her house. Not to mention, when Drusilla protected Xander from Angelus and offered him "eternal" life was just too funny! But there is also an emotional side to the spell's effects and Willow is the worst of the bunch. I mean she loved Xander before any spell and it makes sense she would be the most hurt out of any of them.
Ohter great scenes are Oz punching Xander for hurting Willow, Oz searching for the Buffy rat, and Cordelia standing up to her friends in the end to still date Xander. Just goes to show that this relationship while hilarious, is serious as Xander and Cordelia become closer as a couple. Also, the special effects are stunning in this episode with spells being casted all over the place. All and All, one of the funniest episode of the series which is a nice breakaway from a pretty emotional season.moreless
A fun piece of comic relief before the darkest part of the season.
Spells gone awry is a common plot device in fantasy going back to Shakespeare, often allegorical for an easy solution to a difficult problem, which in turn makes the problem worse. Love with all its complexity is a very appropriate problem. This chaos can be played both seriously and comically. Considering its position in the season arc, right before even darker revelations and events than we've seen so far, it's fitting for it to be done comically.
With the reference in the previous episode to the cheerleader trophy from "Witch", it's fitting to bring back Amy for another story, especially as magic grows in importance on the series. Despite having her witch mother switch bodies with her and hold her hostage in her home, the draw of magic to accomplish her own desires is too tempting, evidenced with the "invisible homework". This is setting herself up for a big fall in the future.
Of the main couplings on the show, Cordelia and Xander's is the most flawed. They came together out of fear of the bug man and since then have stayed together merely out of teenage lust. Once it happened, they kept it secret from the rest of the group until it was revealed at the least opportune moment possible. Despite them having some feelings, there isn't a solid foundation for their future.
Perhaps the episode would've been strengthened had the focus been on Cordelia, not Xander, since her actions set up the episode. Cordelia broke up with Xander to meet the approval of her clique, who besides Harmony are nameless generic high school girls. Once the spell has gone awry and every female in sight is obsessed with him and attempt in zombie esque fashion to seize the Summers' basement does she turn around. Even with her self assertion at the end of the episode, her decision to stay with Xander is influenced by how her friends reacted under the influence. Only she would find such a gesture romantic.
Also, a fact creator Joss Whedon acknowledges in some commentaries, Nicholas Brendon is much better looking than his nerd persona would suggest. So it's easier to believe he could get a girl as good looking as Cordelia or that women would fawn over him (not that Nicholas Brendon likely cared), but not as easy for him to be completely humiliated when he gets dumped, as if his peers think he'll never get close again. However, that humiliation is a good motivator for him to resort to witchcraft for an easy answer.
Quickly, Xander realizes the spell was a major mistake, as every female in sight becomes entranced by him. It also creates some uncomfortable moments when he faces his feelings with the two unavailable women in his life. These encounters, as hard to resist as they were (between Willow's ear biting and Buffy's sexy raincoat, I would've been catatonic), really show that Xander is a stand up guy, refusing their advances due to their intoxication with the "mystical roofie". He even saves Cordelia from being torn apart by his admirers. While he caused a lot of trouble (so much that the only people who could help stop it were straight guys, one of whom was a briefly angry Oz), Xander attempted to avoid further harm for his friends.
More could've been made of Willow's pain following the spell, since she's the one who really loved Xander without magic, as Buffy reminds him in the end, and whose obsession was the most intense. Casting the spell showed an unusual amount of selfishness and almost resulted in serious consequences, particularly if Buffyrat went for the cheese before Amy could revoke the spell. Perhaps the light hearted nature of the episode prompted them to gloss over it: they'd have plenty of dark times ahead.
Considering the tone of the episode, it makes sense to set up the reconciliation between Giles and Jenny, whose relationship has been inactive since "Innocence". This awkwardness is far worse than the episodes following Jenny's possession in "The Dark Age". Unfortunately, they wouldn't have much time for that as Jenny falls victim to the spell. Giles' telling Amy she's not feeling love could be his way of expressing the angst over his own relationship.
While he never gets to craft any grand "poet[ic]" display to taunt Buffy, much to the delight of puppies everywhere, the hints of the menace Angelus poses to Buffy's friends is still clear. One important piece that hasn't been referenced since Angelus' return is the fact that Angel's invitation into Buffy's home extends even to his monstrous alter-ego, evidenced when he reaches into Buffy's room and pulls out Xander. Although he passed on slaughtering the bewitched women afterward, he still has total access to her home, a reality that isn't addressed until the next episode.
Spike continues to sit impotently while Angelus moves in on Dru. For a vampire gift, a fresh human heart would be more endearing than a necklace. Every time Spike tries to do something in his less mobile state, Angelus is ready to upstage him with something more dramatic, something Dru, who is unable to be docile for too long, would be drawn to. Not to mention Angelus putting the necklace on her eats Spike up and Angelus couldn't enjoy it more.
Side note on Spike: it's interesting that he doesn't automatically find a rhyming word for "lungs", considering who he was before he turned.
Regardless of its flaws, this episode is still a fun piece of comic relief to throw us off guard before the dark twists in the final episodes of the season. It helps establish connections with magic and spells, something that would become very important to the series. The cast clearly has fun going over the top, which makes it even more enjoyable.moreless
Xander becomes a chick magnet
Xander being a chick magnet was so incredibly amusing. I cannot believe that Xander would turn to the dark arts of magic just for Cordelia. The fact that the spell totally didn't work was completely brilliant. I loved that Cordy didn't fall in love with Xander but every other woman in Sunnydale did.
The scene in the Bronze where Cordy broke up with Xander was so painful to watch. I felt so sorry for Xander. I loved Willow bragging about how her boyfriend was in the band playing at the Bronze too. Everything going on with Angel and Buffy was just scary though. Angelus is scariest around Valentines Day. Buffy coming onto Xander in the library was so incredibly funny. I loved how Amy came into the library then and how she and Buffy were fighting over Xander. It was crazy though that Amy went and turned Buffy into a rat. I loved how Oz came in and punched Xander because he hurt Willow, that was just kinda cute.
Buffy and Xander talking after the spell was so adorable. I loved how Buffy was about what had happened. Begging Xander to undress her and then a sudden need for cheese how great is that?!
I loved Cordy and Xander being trapped together in Buffy's basement at the end and talking things out it was almost cute. I loved Cordelia telling her friends off and then going off with Xander.
Very amusing episode.moreless