Episode Reviews (41)
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that's not Buffy we know...
okay, Buffy returns to Sunnydale after three months in . -- and there are some changes in her: not only the hairstyle, but the behavior, the attitude to her friends and slaying. Buffy's kinda Bitca :) she tries to deal with her issues... about the Master, about death, but it doesn't work so well. plus, she doesn't let her friends to help her and just pushes them away, hurts them. so finally she almost loses them and gets them killed -- not quite the Slayer's behavior, huh?
but here's the thing: we often tries to deal with our pain like Buffy -- we turn away from our friends, don't let them be in our lives, we become the persons we're never supposed to become... and it doesn't work either.
FAVE SCENE: Cordelia and "Three Musketeers" :)
FAVE QUOTE: Cordelia (to Buffy): Whatever is causing the Joan Collins' attitude, deal with it. Embrace the pain, spank your inner moppet, whatever, but get over it. Because pretty soon, you're not even going to have the loser friends you've got now.moreless
When She Was Bad
"When She Was Bad" is an accomplished and rousing opener that gets Season 2 out of the gate on fire, and has really grown on me over time. Its flaws are minor and inconsequential, leaving us with an underrated episode that is densely packed with emotional intimacy, significant character development, an incredible amount of deceptively subtle details, extensive thematic relevance, and a boatload of ominous foreshadowing for the rest of the season. "When She Was Bad" displays a storytelling maturity that just wasn't there in Season 1, which is a really good sign for what's ahead. Welcome to Season 2!moreless
When She Was Bad
This is a great season opener! When I saw this episode for the first time I wasn't nearly as enthused about it for some reason. I remember being really bored of the Anointed One and the couple things that bugged me really stuck out. The music in the training session really grated on me along with Buffy being a little too bitchy to her friends. Aside from these complaints, though, there's really nothing else in this episode that I don't like, which makes my original impression of this episode drastically unfounded.
At the very beginning I noticed a really sweet "previously on Buffy..." sequence that recaps most of the big events in S1. This is fantastic and I wish they'd included one of these at the beginning of every season (or maybe they just left them out on the DVD sets). I've been introducing a lot of people to 'Buffy' lately and I usually start them off with "School Hard" (2x03); that seems to be working perfectly. I think I'm going to play this recap first, though. It gives a lot of backstory really quickly, which is good, because explaining all the stuff that happened can be confusing and annoying to a 'Buffy' virign. Anyway...
Pretty much everyone is a little different at the beginning of this episode. Everyone's personalities are where we last left them, but many of the relationships have flourished during the summer. First off is an emotionally distant Buffy, who we discover was away in Los Angeles with her dad (a.k.a. Mr. MIA Jerk who runs to Spain with chicks and abandons his daughter in future seasons). More on our not-so-lovely Buffy later. Next we've got Willow and Xander who's relationship has gotten a bit more intimate since we left them. Willow obviously still has the hots for Xander, but this is the first time we see romantic interest in Willow from Xander. They have a cute scene involving ice cream on Willow's nose which gets interrupted by a lousy vampire. Also on the slate of change is Giles and Jenny. They have really progressed their relationship and have turned into two flirting adults who are obviously about to go out on a date (and they do in the next episode). Cordelia, on the other hand, is pretty much the same where we last saw her, thankfully still being more friendly to the group yet not losing the snide remarks.
Now we get back to Buffy, who's in all-out angst mode. We find out very early on that the root of her problem is how traumatized she is from being killed (drowned) by the Master in "Prophecy Girl" (1x12). She hasn't told anyone about how scared and shaken up she is all summer long. I'm glad that event was not forgotten. I'm particularly impressed by Sarah Michelle Gellar here when she visually shows, by subtly shaking when walking up the Master's grave after it's dug out as an example, just how frightened she is of the thought of him coming back. All of this emotion being bottled up for that long is going to make you into a meaner individual, which is exactly what happens to Buffy here.
While I think the writers took her angst too far, most of it was believable and spot-on. The way this is dealt with is with a satisfying scene at the end where Buffy smashes the bones of the Master into pieces with a sledgehammer, then breaks down and weeps in Angel's arms. Her tears here serve as a means to wash away her ordeal with The Master for good. The moral of the story is that keeping your emotions bottled up for long periods of time is not healthy and will only lead to hurtful comments to your friends and loved ones. Instead, one should confide with those same friends as they will always be there to help you through times of need, as is displayed at the end when Willow and Xander save Buffy a seat in class.
The main plot was on the mediocre side but it got the job done. Due to the wonderful character interaction and drama, this is the perfect foundation and launching point for this season's maelstrom of emotion. I have come to really appreciate this episode.moreless
When she was bad;
Buffy's 'Miss me' to the camera (which I inexcusably missed first time around). Xander and Willow's almost kiss (awwwwww! even the most foremost Tara/Willow or Willow/Oz fan must feel their heart breaking). Snyder and Giles' brilliant talk and walk and the first hints of Giles'/Jenny's attraction. Buffy's great training session with Giles, the incredibly creepy dream sequence where the Master-as-Giles tries to kill Buffy whilst Willow and Xander watch on unconcerned (she should have known it was a dream when Xander swapped his chocolate for an apple). The whole scene smacks of Freudian rape overtones, Buffy's father figure forcing himself upon her and penetrating her body with his fangs. Willow not being able to say the word B-I-T-C-H and Xander not being able to spell it (LOVE Giles' expression in this scene). The great Hank/Joyce scene (I figure this is the summer by the beach Dawn later refers to in Blood Ties), Cordy's sympathy with Buffy and characteristic bluntness about the truth about Sunnydale. The Buffy/Angel bedroom scene and the smoking-hot Buffy dancing with Xander at the Bronze. The trap and rescue of the Scoobies, Buffy's cathartic smashing the Master's bones, especially Buffy killing 2 vamps at once. All told, fan-bloody-tastic and a whole new start for Buffy.
The only thing I can find wrong with it is when the Scoobies figure out that Jenny is the vamps next target and rather than try to warn her just assume for no possible reason that they've already got her. Lazy writing! Also Willow wears her HORRIBLE yellow tights again
Snyder; there are some things I can just smell, like a sixth sense
Giles; actually that would be one of the five
What the fanficcers thought; Merciless Mistress at fanfiction.net
Questions and observations;
So, you CAN bring a vampire back from the dead as we'll see later with Darla in Angel. One wonders why they don't try it more often but then with a few notable exceptions they don't really seem to care about one another so much. Joyce and Hank seem to have a pretty civilised divorce.
The whole look and feel of this ep is different, as though the first season was just a trial run and now it's time for the real thing to begin. Firstly, we have all the Scooby's except Buff and Angel knocked out and all but Buffy, Angel and Xander tied up. Secondly rewatching this ep you're very much struck by the sight of Buffy torturing the vamp for information to save her friends, ramming a silver cross down it's throat, the vampire equivalent of a red-hot poker. HMMMMMM?
Kinda puts 'waterboarding' and Abu Grahib in persepctive, huh? Psychologists (and yes, that's the degree I'm doing in case you're wondering) have occaisionally commentated on the way people object to torture in real life but are ok with it in fiction (Dirty Harry springs to mind). What they suggest is that we find it easier to accept when we can put a human face to those who are going to be saved, in TV and movies the correlation between the info gained and benefits are always very direct and evident
10/10, now we're talking
When She Was Bad
When She Was Bad, She Was So Good!!! Buffy is Back!!! Buffy returns to Sunnydale after spending the summer in LA with her father. She comes back with a grade A Attitude, and plays her friends dirty. Everyone is trying to look out for her. It was interesting to see the apparent toll that the end of last season had on Buffy, and LA as well, as she has a major attitude. Her friends Willow and Zander have grown up in their own right. This episode had plenty of moments that make it the begining of a Classic Second Season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I thought it was funny in the begining when Willow and Zander were about to kiss, and a vampire just pops up behind them, and we start to see the begining of Cordelia being in the wrong places at the wrong time, and getting tied up into this other life.moreless
When she had issues.
And so our loveable hero adopts a Joan Collins-tude, and Sarah Michelle Gellar has a ball playing the ultimate Bitca. Anyone who has seen cruel intentions knows she revels in showing a dark side every now and then. (I remember this was around the time the media latched onto this fact, deeming her a diva, pfft).
Written and Directed by Joss Whedon, season 2 kicks off in style: the one-liners are razor sharp and come every other second, and the episode just looks spectacular. Whedon should do a show solely based on dreams, he executes them SO well. The moment where Giles mutters â€˜Iâ€™ve Killed you once, shouldnâ€™t be hard to do it againâ€™ still shocks me, even to this day. And the way Willow and Xander act as though nothing is wrong, itâ€™s a brilliant moment.
Itâ€™s very telling of Buffy. Well, of Buffy as a Bitca. In the dream, Xander is infatuated with her, while Willow is all googly eyed for Xander. Buffy knows this. And even so, she leads Xander into a rather sensual, one-way dance, while Willow looks on, as well as a very jealous Angel. And then Buffy leaves Xander to look a fool after sheâ€™s bored teasing him. Gellar excels.
â€˜What about the rest of the note?...The Part that says P.S, itâ€™s a trap!â€™
A good, emotional fight scene tops off one of the better season premiers from Joss, and from the show.
Poor Charisma seems to have had a cold during this episodeâ€™s shoot. She still manages to add a venomous sting to her line delivery, mind. And her distress over her stained clothing? Hilarious!
â€˜I hate that girlâ€™
Really? Cos I love her!moreless
LA takes it's toll on Buffy
ok so Buffy returns from LA after a new hair do and some liposouction. And looks like Willow and Xander have been having a fun summer with out Buffy. As soon as she comes back Xander starts lusting after her again. So the vampires dig up the bones of the master and try to use them. Buffy is totally taken by her LA trip and is mean and nasty. And takes it out on the vampires after they set a trap using her friends.
Not bad return series episode and is good for creating some characteristics of Buffy and helps people begin to like her for who she is and what makes her a good character.moreless
Season 2, Episode 1.
This was a pretty good episode. It wasn't bad at all. Cordelia is still the same, which is good. Buffy's back! However, she has a major attitude change since her death. That scene with Buffy getting choked by the Master was a very weird and obvious dream. And YAY, Angel's here! I honestly don't think Buffy cares if she dies anymore, since she already did. Angel is hot though! Woohoo! Not a bad episode. I missed a little because I was on the phone. The parts I did see were good though. I was kinda mixed when Xander threatened Buffy. I loved when she smashed The Master's bones and Angel was there when she was crying. Great episode.moreless
Good episode with uncharacteristically bad dialog
This was a very good season premiere, but it could have been better. To date, the series has done a great job with it's witty banter. However, while there were some good lines in this episode, there were also a few that were down right awful (i.e. the Cibo Matto clog dancing line). They again did a great job with the music in this episode. The songs they used did a great job of setting the mood for the scene. All in all, I like the episode and thought it was above average. However, I can't help but wince during some of the one-liners.moreless
Buffy's not quite as she was.
Buffy's bad girl attitude plays out really well in this episode. I particularly like the scene at the bronze when she does her 'sexy dance' with Xander, but she gets a little Faith-esque as the episode progresses. I love her revelation at the end when she finally takes the Mater out for good and she grinds his bones so that she can no longer be afraid of him killing her. This episode does contain the only Willow/Xander romantic moment that I like, the ice cream on the nose is really cute, but the moment he sees Buffy he turns away from her which shows how she should never ever want to be with him. An good start to the second season.moreless