Superstar

Episode Reviews (28)

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  • 6.5

    Superstar

    By arkanitoo, Aug 14, 2014

    This is an occasionally fun, but nearly completely inconsequential episode that simply doesn't have a lot else going for it. Why isn't this an arc episode anyway? This just tells me that the writers probably knew they didn't have much of anything to do with Adam and the Initiative at this point. Jonathan somehow manages to alter all of reality so that he's the big hero that everyone loves. Buffy and Riley mend their wounds over the Faith issue and Jonathan learns a couple lessons. That's about all that happens. It's also got the whole James Bond-type music going for it. The demon that was summoned as a side-effect to Jonathan's spell is incredibly hokey, annoying, and certainly not the sum of everyone's worst nightmares. I'm not a big fan of this episode, but I admit there's some worthwhile stuff mixed in here.



    I really enjoyed the altered opening credits along with how, right from the beginning of the episode, everything is already changed. Being thrown into something while it's happening is a technique I'm quite fond of, the best example of which I've seen used is in the movie Dark City. Early on it is obvious that this Buffy has not gone through nearly as much as the Buffy in the real reality. Here she dresses in a way that makes her look frivolous and we can see she doesn't have a lot of confidence because, as Giles puts it, "she's never stood alone against something like this This is what Buffy would be like at this age had she not killed the Master, defeated Angelus, fought Faith, and dealt with all the daily fighting she's had to endure mostly by herself. In this reality, Jonathan did all that. This means that Buffy never trained, got little fighting practice, and didn't have to go through all that pain, which made her able to take more both physically and emotionally.



    Buffy's conversations with Riley reveal a lot more. When she's with him, she's very much like the Buffy in the real reality. Certain characteristics, such as caring for and loving (and I mean this not in the romantic way) others, are a part of who Buffy is, regardless of memory. Her instincts are still extremely sharp as well. While borderline frivolous, we can still see that there's some depth to Buffy. Riley tells her, "If they'd just put a little trust in me I know I could get the job She replies, "I've felt that way my entire This Buffy is untrained, underdeveloped, and just itching to blossom but is always superceded by Jonathan who is able to do everything better. That makes it all the much warmer when Riley sticks up for and supports Buffy when no one else will after she questions the perfectness of Jonathan.



    That brings us to Jonathan who is, as Buffy puts it, "trying to make everything work out with some big gesture all at He did that in "Earshot" (3x18) when he was going to commit suicide, and he's definitely done it again here. At the end Buffy tells him that "things are complicated. They take time and Through this fantasy Jonathan gets everything he wants. His album addresses his lack of popularity, the slaying addresses his lack of power and self confidence, the Swedish girls address his lack of a love life, and the Scoobies address his lack of companionship. While obviously envious of Buffy, he still very much likes her and who she is. That's why when he gives her good advice on her relationship with Riley, it's completely genuine. What's also genuine is when he decides to help Buffy fight the demon, even though it means he will lose his fantasy. He does something very similar in "Seeing Red" (6x19) when he tells her how to drain Warren of his power, even though it means he'll likely end up in prison for what he's been a part of. This is something that is a part of who Jonathan is, and a good something at that. He should be, at the very least, proud of that.



    One last thing to point out is the second scene between Buffy and Spike (when only Jonathan is with her). Spike says, as he caresses her hair, "Someday sweet slayer. I would love to take you on. See you face the evil alone for Spike seems a bit infatuated with her already, and Buffy doesn't do anything to deter him from continuing. Anyway, this episode has some humor, a decent amount of cheese, and a little bit of character insight. Overall, though, it's simply mediocre.

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  • 6.0

    This is an occasionally fun, but nearly completely inconsequential episode that simply doesn't have a lot else going for it.

    By tarafan2, Jun 21, 2013

    Why isn't this an arc episode anyway? This just tells me that the writers probably knew they didn't have much of anything to do with Adam and the Initiative at this point. Jonathan somehow manages to alter all of reality so that he's the big hero that everyone loves. Buffy and Riley mend their wounds over the Faith issue and Jonathan learns a couple lessons. That's about all that happens. It's also got the whole James Bond-type music going for it. The demon that was summoned as a side-effect to Jonathan's spell is incredibly hokey, annoying, and certainly not the sum of everyone's worst nightmares. I'm not a big fan of this episode, but I admit there's some worthwhile stuff mixed in here.



    I really enjoyed the altered opening credits along with how, right from the beginning of the episode, everything is already changed. Being thrown into something while it's happening is a technique I'm quite fond of, the best example of which I've seen used is in the movie Dark City. Early on it is obvious that this Buffy has not gone through nearly as much as the Buffy in the real reality. Here she dresses in a way that makes her look frivolous and we can see she doesn't have a lot of confidence because, as Giles puts it, "she's never stood alone against something like this This is what Buffy would be like at this age had she not killed the Master, defeated Angelus, fought Faith, and dealt with all the daily fighting she's had to endure mostly by herself. In this reality, Jonathan did all that. This means that Buffy never trained, got little fighting practice, and didn't have to go through all that pain, which made her able to take more both physically and emotionally.



    Buffy's conversations with Riley reveal a lot more. When she's with him, she's very much like the Buffy in the real reality. Certain characteristics, such as caring for and loving others, are a part of who Buffy is, regardless of memory. Her instincts are still extremely sharp as well. While borderline frivolous, we can still see that there's some depth to Buffy. Riley tells her, "If they'd just put a little trust in me I know I could get the job She replies, "I've felt that way my entire This Buffy is untrained, underdeveloped, and just itching to blossom but is always superceded by Jonathan who is able to do everything better. That makes it all the much warmer when Riley sticks up for and supports Buffy when no one else will after she questions the perfectness of Jonathan.



    That brings us to Jonathan who is, as Buffy puts it, "trying to make everything work out with some big gesture all at He did that in "Earshot" when he was going to commit suicide, and he's definitely done it again here. At the end Buffy tells him that "things are complicated. They take time and Through this fantasy Jonathan gets everything he wants. His album addresses his lack of popularity, the slaying addresses his lack of power and self confidence, the Swedish girls address his lack of a love life, and the Scoobies address his lack of companionship. While obviously envious of Buffy, he still very much likes her and who she is. That's why when he gives her good advice on her relationship with Riley, it's completely genuine. What's also genuine is when he decides to help Buffy fight the demon, even though it means he will lose his fantasy. He does something very similar in "Seeing Red" when he tells her how to drain Warren of his power, even though it means he'll likely end up in prison for what he's been a part of. This is something that is a part of who Jonathan is, and a good something at that. He should be, at the very least, proud of that.



    One last thing to point out is the second scene between Buffy and Spike. Spike says, as he caresses her hair, "Someday sweet slayer. I would love to take you on. See you face the evil alone for Spike seems a bit infatuated with her already, and Buffy doesn't do anything to deter him from continuing. Anyway, this episode has some humor, a decent amount of cheese, and a little bit of character insight. Overall, though, it's simply mediocre.moreless

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  • 1.0

    Worst episode so far

    By BevinChu, Sep 25, 2012

    Worst episode so far.



    I don't condemn Whedon for experimenting. Experimentation is good.



    But there is no denying that some experiments fail. This is one of them.



    The standard formula for leading men and leading ladies has a logical basis.

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  • 8.0

    The halfway point

    By joxerlives, Jan 20, 2012

    The Good;

    How brilliant is Danny Strong? So glad we had him back in the 6&7 seasons. His final talk with Buffy is a winner



    The Bad;

    Monster looks a bit lame, aside from that, great ep



    Best line;

    Graham;(upon seeing the Initiative's 'tactical consultant' Jonothan) "About time we brought out the big guns"



    Women good/men bad;

    Actually in this case 'man' brilliant but it's hardly real



    Jeez!;

    Poor Tara, you so feel for her



    Kinky dinky;

    Anya moans Jonathan's name during sex and describes him as 'lickable' (as indeed does Buffy although she claims she was only joking). She also seems to find his trumpet playing a turn-on. Jonathan has a threesome with beautiful twins which appears to be an illicit yet universal male fantasy to judge by all the Buffy/Dawn/Joyce or Charmed sisters sexfic on the net? 'Buffy the Streetwalking Hooker' , 'Thanks for taking care of my body Faith' and 'Don't Go' probably the most tasteful in a highly dubious genre if you're over 18.



    Calling Captain Subtext;

    Exactly why does Giles have a copy of the Jonathan swimsuit calender to hand? Was it a gift? Tara and Willow seem infatuated with Jonathan, one wonders if he suggested it they might come 'running back to boys-town', at least for the night? Xander also seems alarmingly devoted to Jonathan. Spike strokes Buffy's cheek, their attraction evident. Note the evidence of Jonathon's heroism, no wonder he comes good in season 6&7.



    Guantanamo Bay;

    Buffy and Jonothan beat Spike up for info. The police seem quite content to just let Jonothan handle things without their help.



    Scoobies to the ER;

    Poor Tara gets pretty banged up



    Where's Dawn?

    Does she share in the Jonathan idolisation?



    Scoobies in bondage:

    Buffy: 8

    Giles: 4

    Cordy: 5

    Will: 3

    Jenny: 1

    Angel: 4

    Oz: 1

    Faith: 3

    Joyce: 1

    Wes: 1



    Scoobies knocked out: no but Jonathan knocked unconscious by the beast.

    Buffy: 15

    Giles: 10

    Cordy: 6

    Xander: 8

    Will: 5

    Jenny: 2

    Angel: 6

    Oz: 3

    Faith: 1

    Joyce: 2

    Wes: 1



    Kills:

    Buffy: 3 vamps for Buffy so 79 vamps, 26 demons, 6 monsters, 3 humans, 1 werewolf, 1 spirit warrior & a robot

    Giles: 5 vamps, 1 demon

    Cordy: 3 vamps, a demon

    Will: 4 vamps

    Angel: 3 vamps, 1 demon, 1 human

    Oz: 3 vamps, 1 zombie

    Faith: 16 vamps, 5 demons, 3 humans

    Xander: 5 vamps, 2 zombies, a demon, a demon

    Anya: a demon

    Jonathan; 2 vamps and 1 demon

    Riley; 11 vamps + 6 demons



    Scoobies go evil:

    Giles: 1

    Cordy: 1

    Will: 2

    Jenny: 1

    Angel: 1

    Oz: 1

    Joyce: 1

    Xander: 2



    Alternate scoobies:

    Buffy: 6

    Giles: 3

    Cordy: 1

    Will: 2

    Jenny: 2

    Angel: 3

    Oz: 2

    Joyce: 2

    Xander: 3



    Recurring characters killed: no but for a moment you really think Tara might go the same way as Jenny Calender

    Jesse, Flutie, Jenny, Kendra, Larry, Snyder, Professor Walsh



    Total number of scoobies: 7

    Giles, Xander, Willow, Buffy, Anya, Spike, Riley



    Xander demon magnet: 5

    Preying Mantis Lady, Inca Mummy Girl, Drusilla, VampWillow, Anya (arguably Buffy & Faith with their demon essences?)



    Scoobies shot:

    Giles: 2

    Angel: 3

    Oz: 4



    Notches on Scooby bedpost:

    Giles: 2; Joyce & Olivia, possibly Jenny

    Cordy: 1?

    Buffy: 3; Angel, Parker, Riley

    Angel: 1;Buffy

    Joyce: 1;Giles, possibly Ted

    Oz: 3; Groupie, Willow & Verucca

    Faith:2 ;Xander, Riley

    Xander: 2; Faith, Anya

    Willow: 2;Oz and Tara



    Questions and observations;

    The first mention of the world without shrimp as far as I know? Of course it's actually Jonathon who works out Adam's weakness although surely if you cut his head off it would slow him down a great deal? Note Buffy know's how to make Jonathon's coffee. Less Adam in this ep and it's all the better for it. An ep much beloved of fanfic writers as whatever has gone on before Jonathon can always put it right. We also see Buffy show her strength, able to see beyond the illusion and show her latent power. Riley begins to see beyond the Initiative and is introduced to magic. How great is magic Jane's commentary? Now of course this marks the halfway point of Buffy, 72 down, 72 to go.

    Marks out of 10; 8/10 I think, bordering on the marvellous

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  • 8.5

    Jonathon The Vampire Slayer

    By goodridd, Sep 17, 2011

    This episode is entertaining from start to finish. I believe this episode is incredibly underrated. I think people don't like it because it's a filler episode. But I can't help but find it adorable. Espenson proves again that she is a great writer.



    Jonathon has cast a spell that makes him a Superstar, but with terrible consequences. Along with his new found fame, comes a demon that is out to kill. So many hilarious moments in this episode. Willow and Tara's shrine to Jonathon, Riley's poster, The dialogue between Jonathon and Spike early on, Jonathon speaking to the commandos, and Karen with a K.



    It's not all humor though. Jonathon actually helps Buffy resolve her issues with Riley. So I guess Jonathon's spell wasn't a total loss.moreless

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  • 1.0

    Season 4, Episode 17.

    By Wanted23, Sep 14, 2011

    Buffy, Xander, Anya, and Willow hunt vampires and kill one, but they follow another to a nest. They realize they cannot fight the vampires alone, so they seek help from Jonathan, who has gained fame. Finally, Buffy realizes that something mysterious is behind Jonathan's popularity.



    WOW! I hated this episode! I couldn't even pay attention. I kinda like how they changed the credits for Jonathan to fit the episode, but the episode itself was dull. Just when season 4 was getting good, they give us this crap! I HATE the character of Jonathan! I missed out on most of the episode because I lost interest. It was very random. Probably the worst episode of Buffy ever.moreless

    3 11

  • 1.0

    Worst episode ever

    By MazenNabawy, Sep 14, 2011



    really this was the worst episode of buffy the vampire slayer and btw i am a big fan so its not easy for me to say that this episode was not only the worst in buffy but in all the series that i have ever watched during my life



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  • 5.9

    Supernerd

    By lenzinoH20, Dec 22, 2010

    Superstar-Buffy, Willow, Xander and Anya are out hunting vampires and kill one of a pair. They track the other to a nest and decide to call in the big guns and visit... Jonathan.



    One of the few experimental episodes that went wrong, "Superstar" starts out with many viewers going what the hell when Buffy and the gang having trouble defeating a group of vampires and going to Jonathan of all people for help. It seems that Jonathan did a spell which has made him into god-like figure where everyone loves him and he is literally good at everything including demon fighting. While it's nice to see Danny Strong agian who is a very talented actor and of course, who wouldn't have fun playing a character whose worshiped for an episode but "Superstar" literally works half the time. Some gags are funny, most just fall flat. Also, some cast members just seem a bit OTT in their performances, maybe even a bit uninterested in the storyline.



    At least the episode does move the other storylines of the season along like Buffy and Riley dealing with the fact he slept with Faith while she was in Faith's body. Also, we find out that Adam has an unlimited power source that will keep him alive forever and destorying it is the key to killing him. But besides some funny lines here and there, "Superstar" is an average Buffy hour with nothing really special about it.moreless

    1 6

  • 6.5

    An average episode. It has some cheap laughs but overall, a very weak episode when compared to the previous two.

    By TwistedConverse, Dec 22, 2010

    Superstar is one of the very few episodes of Buffy (and I mean very, very few) that I don't much like. It's an episode of Buffy of course, so it is better than most things TV (the worst Buffy episode is way better than the best episodes of One Tree Hill or other annoying teen dramas for example) but for a Buffy episode, it's bottom of the barrel.



    It felt like the writers were out of ideas and really worn out after the extravaganza that was This Year's Girl/Who Are You? and stuck with their first idea that wasn't awful. The storyline of this episode is particularly weak (and has a few gaping plot holes) and Jane Espenson, a normally brilliant writer (probably the best after Joss himself!) is at her worst here.



    I felt like the writers tried to add cheap novelties here to keep this episode from being an utter waste. The opening credits were a really neat idea and gave the world a bit more credibility. Seeing what the world is like when Buffy isn't all powerful is interesting (but was done similarily and so much better in The Wish) but besides that, everything is bad/average.



    Jonathon isn't a particularly strong character. He isn't bad but really isn't interesting. He's good when he's a background character (Earshot anyone?) but as the main focus, he doesn't work so well. Danny Strong puts in a good effort, as do the main cast but it is a rather shaky foundation to lay an episode on.



    Anya was really the best thing about this episode. She was hilarious as always and injects a bit of life into a stale plot. She gets all the good lines and is the one thing that keeps this episode above 6/10 (usually the lowest I'd give a Buffy or Angel episode, though there are so exceptions).



    Superstar is an average episode- poor storyline, average writing and just has "meh" written all over it. It is still an episode of Buffy though, so it earns a reasonable mark from me!moreless

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