Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Season 6 Episode 1

Bargaining (1)

Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Oct 02, 2001 on The WB
out of 10
User Rating
512 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

It's a dark and gloomy world without the Slayer. Buffy is dead, and the Scooby Gang must do the best they can without her. But concern about the way she died leads Willow to believe that she may have been pulled into a hell dimension. Unable to bear the thought of their friend enduring eternal torment, Willow, Xander, Anya, and Tara decide to perform a resurrection spell that will bring Buffy back from the dead.moreless

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  • "It'll be dark soon," Xander utters as he and the remaining Scoobies watch Giles fly back to England.

    "Bargaining Pt. 1" is an excellent season opener, easily the best of Buffy and possibly the best of the entire Buffyverse altogether. It's got so much character development, darkness, powerful images, and gigantically impacting events that its importance and value cannot be overlooked. The only thing holding it back from a P are the small bits involving the excessively lame demon biker gang. Ironically, how little they're used here is also what raises this episode above it's conclusion. However, great stuff! This is what I want from a season opener that picks up from the kind of devastating events of the previous season's finale. Where "Anne" failed, "Bargaining Pt. 1" succeeds.moreless
  • She who believeth in me...


    The Good;

    SMG is just wonderful as the Buffybot, credit it to her that she can remember all the dialogue at the end of the teaser. Another nice Anya/Tara scene and Dawn and Buffy reunited is always a joy. Love the way that the Buffybot is such a hit at Dawn's parent/teacher day. Possibly the coolest Spike moment ever when he kicks the Hellion off the bike.

    The Bad;

    The Hellions are deeply stupid. There's only 15 of them and they appear to be killable by conventional methods (some are even human) so why don't the SDPD just shoot them? The fat vamp seems to burn awfully fast, Dru and Darla on Angel take far longer.

    Best line;

    Xander; "House o' chicks relax, I am a man, I have a tool!"

    Women good/men bad;

    Razor is nastily misogynist so Tara let's him have her axe. Good for her!


    Will kills Bambi! Even though she's a machine you feel so sorry for the Buffybot. The sight of Buffy's corpse is upsetting but not as much as her crawling out of her grave.

    Kinky dinky;

    The Hellions threaten to rape the Scoobies.

    Captain Subtext;

    Love the Willow/Tara house. In the comics Willow talks of the pair being tempted of just taking Dawn and the three moving out of Sunnydale, forming their own little family. Spike can't be with Buffy so he takes the closest thing he can get, babysitting Dawn. Xander appears to like the Backstreet Boys? Hmmmmm? Dawn and the Buffybot, a***wwwwww! Xander and Giles hug at the airport. Xander says he needs more male friends.

    Apocalypses; 6

    Scoobies in bondage:

    Buffy: 8

    Giles: 4

    Cordy: 5

    Will: 3

    Jenny: 1

    Angel: 4

    Oz: 1

    Faith: 3

    Joyce: 1

    Wes: 1

    Xander; 1

    Dawn; 3

    Scoobies knocked out: Willow

    Buffy: 16

    Giles: 10

    Cordy: 6

    Xander: 8

    Will: 6

    Jenny: 2

    Angel: 6

    Oz: 3

    Faith: 1

    Joyce: 3

    Wes: 1


    Kills: 1 vamp for Spike and one for the Buffybot. One fawn and one demon for Will. A demon each for Xander and Anya. Tara's first kill plus 3 demons for Buffy

    Buffy: 96 vamps, 35 demons, 6 monsters, 3 humans, 1 werewolf, 1 spirit warrior & a robot

    Giles: 5 vamps, 2 demon, 1 human, 1 god.

    Cordy: 3 vamps, a demon

    Will: 6 vamps + 1 demon +1 fawn.

    Angel: 3 vamps, 1 demon, 1 human

    Oz: 3 vamps, 1 zombie

    Faith: 16 vamps, 5 demons, 3 humans

    Xander: 5 vamps, 2 zombies, 1 a demon,

    Anya: 1 vamp and 1 a demon

    Riley; 18 vamps + 7 demons

    Spike; 3 vamps and 2 demon

    Buffybot; 2 vamps

    Tara; 1 demon

    Scoobies go evil:

    Giles: 1

    Cordy: 1

    Will: 2

    Jenny: 1

    Angel: 1

    Oz: 1

    Joyce: 1

    Xander: 3

    Alternate scoobies:

    Buffy: 6

    Giles: 3

    Cordy: 1

    Will: 2

    Jenny: 2

    Angel: 3

    Oz: 2

    Joyce: 2

    Xander: 3

    Recurring characters killed: 10

    Jesse, Flutie, Jenny, Kendra, Larry, Snyder, Professor Walsh, Forrest, McNamara, Joyce

    Sunnydale deaths;


    Total number of scoobies: goodbye Giles and goodbye Buffybot so 6

    Xander, Willow, Buffy, Anya, Tara, Spike

    Xander demon magnet: 5(6?)

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

    Scoobies shot: no although Razor has a gun he never uses it.

    Giles: 2

    Angel: 3

    Oz: 4

    Riley; 1

    Notches on Scooby bedpost:

    Giles: 2; Joyce & Olivia, possibly Jenny and 3xDraccy babes?

    Cordy: 1?

    Buffy: 3 confirmed; Angel, Parker,Riley, 1 possible, Dracula(?)

    Angel: 1;Buffy

    Joyce: 1;Giles, 2 possible, Ted and Dracula(?)

    Oz: 3; Groupie, Willow & Verucca

    Faith:2 ;Xander, Riley

    Xander: 2; Faith, Anya

    Willow: 2;Oz and Tara

    Riley; 3; Buffy, Sandy and unnamed vampwhore

    Spike; good or bad? (new column to handle one of the most pressing questions of the series)

    Spike is fighting alongside the scoobs and taking care of Dawn but also pouring scorn on the schooling system and thinking the chaos and destruction looks fun.

    Questions and observations;

    Very long 'previously on Buffy', the series now very much rooted in it's own mythology. Love Tara the vamp hunter, note she feels the need to get a leather coat for her warrior princess phase. Note Giles and Spike actually share a joke together. The numbered shirts appear which I actually didn't notice first time around. Buffy looks to have put a little weight on whilst dead and it suits her. The Buffybot remarks 'I don't eat', deliberate joke? Dawn is back in touch with her dad. The Buffybot appears to be breaking her programming and almost becoming a real girl. Check out the scene where the Scoobies are saying goodbye to Giles at the airport, it looks like Spike is sitting behind Giles (JM's stand in?).

    One good thing is that they kept Dawn. She wasn't that popular with the fans and it would have been very easy to write her out, she would have simply gone to live with her dad and she and Buffy could have had an offscreen reunion as Buffy and Angel do. But they kept her and the show is all the better for it. Dawn not only gives Buffy the will to live but she seems to just instinctively be able to sense that she's back and find her amidst the chaos. Once again it's implied that that there's a deeper connection between the 2 sisters.

    Surely if Willow can fix a decpitated Buffybot she can fix a limbless one? So what happens to the bot? I remember reading an excellent fanfic on fanfiction.net called The Sentry where they repair it and leave it hooked up to an electricity supply in a remote cave, programmed to come to the rescue if anything ever happens to the Scoobs (very 'Demon with a glass hand' if you ever watched The Outer Limits). To judge by Buffy's appearance when she comes out of the grave she dyes her hair. You notice that the 'power shot' at the end of the opening titles isn't actually Buffy at all, it's actually the Buffybot.

    I almost stopped watching Buffy at this point, I was so disappointed in these opening eps but I'm glad I kept with it.

    Marks out of 10; 6/10

  • Dead Slayer Walking, Part 1

    Bargaining, Part 1-It's a dark and gloomy world without the Slayer. Buffy is dead, and the Scooby Gang must do the best they can without her. But concern about the way she died leads Willow to believe that she may have been pulled into a hell dimension. Unable to bear the thought of their friend enduring eternal torment, Willow, Xander, Anya, and Tara decide to perform a resurrection spell that will bring Buffy back from the dead.

    In 2001, Buffy was nearly cancelled but thanks the UPN gladly willing to take over as the series' home network, Buffy was brought back to life...again! Starting of with quite the bang and not showing any sign of loss in quality due to switching networks, "Bargaining, Part 1" is stellar first parter to this slightly epic season premiere which sees the Scooby Gang trying to live life without Buffy. The episode starts off with a brilliant openning teaser with the whole gang chasing after vampires. I love Willow using her mind reading magic to guide the others through the cemetary, especially when she scares Xander and Anya. The Buffybot fake-out was well done as for just a second you're wondering "Wait a minute, isn't Buffy suppose to be dead!?" Then there's Spike saving Giles with cool move by setting a vampire fire unknowingly. Spike's line to Giles after that was just priceless:

    Spike: "What's the matter? Life flash before your eyes? Cup of tea, cup of tea, almost got shagged, cup of tea."

    The whole cast is wonderful in the episode dealing with their lives with Buffy's death. Willow and Tara are palying Dawn's parental figures with Buffy gone, Xander and Anya dealing with the secrecy of their engagement, Dawn trying keeping living life like Buffy said, etc. The most interesting is Giles, as he decides to go back to England now that Buffy is gone. The farwell scene between Giles and the gang was pretty sad, considering what the characters have been through since he's been in America and how close he got to them. Sarah Michelle Gellar doesn't even appear that much in the episode, but her scenes as the Buffybot bring some of the light-hearted, humorous moments the episode needs considering how dark it becomes. It was obvious that Bufy would be brought back to life, but the scenes involving the spell to bring Buffy back are some truly disturbing scenes. One scene that caught me off guard was Willow stabbing a deer to death and putting the blood on her face. It's the darkest that Buffy has ever gone and becomes one of the trends of this season.

    The Road Pirates, while cool looking demons, don't feel like more than any other monster of the week, but they do help move the story along. The scenes of them causing choas in Sunnydale well directed and the way it interuppts the gang when they are doing the spell is played out well. Even before that, the whole spell sequence is very intense and brings some stunning effects..well, minus the fake looking snake. You really do feel bad for the gang, especially Willow who gets all cut and bruised from doing the spell. You really do believe it's hope less until we see inside Buffy's coffin and her corpses turns right back into Buffy! An excellent ending to this superb part 1 and Par 2, is even better..like always!moreless
  • Buff the Vampire Slayer has been resurrected...onto UPN and we kick things off with a two hour episode.

    Great way to start the season, although, the initial "Season Premiere" is actually 3 episodes long, this first half of what was a two hour premiere, starts off very well. Much of the characters lives are explored as they have been masquerading the Buffy-bot around as the Slayer, in hopes of keeping the illusion that Buffy is still alive(no new Slayer has been called because Faith is still alive). Willow has pretty much mastered the telepathy she used in the S5 finale, Xander is still the same. Dawn is no longer the Key, but Spike still watches over as a way of a redemption for him not getting to Dawn in time before. Giles is also leaving for England and leaving Anya the Magic Shop.

    The emotions from each of the characters are well done, but this episode tends to get a bit on the darker side, more like an Angel episode, than a Buffy one. Although, it has the famous one liners and jokes Buffy is known for, it feels a bit out of place this time around. The Demon Biker gang was an ok way to throw Buffy right into the middle of things again, but it seemed more like an excuse to break up the team and have a reason for Buffy to have to dig herself out of her own grave. The Demon Biker Gang also lends itself to one of the biggest plot holes; Where are the damn cops!!!! An entire town is being looted and terrorized and not one cop is shown to even try and stop them. It's a no wonder there needs to be a Slayer.moreless
  • Season 6, Episode 1.

    Buffy is dead, and the Scoobies are trying to go on without her. Willow has repaired the BuffyBot, and they try to pass her off as the Slayer to vampires. Willow and Tara are living with Dawn, and Giles is moving to London. When Willow thinks about how Buffy's death was not from natural causes but from mystical ones, she begins to think Buffy is suffering from eternal torment, and the gang develops a plan to resurrect her.

    This was an OK episode. I think the storyline was good and everything, but they used too much of the characters' personal lives in this episode before they actually resurrected Buffy. Not bad, though. I liked how Season 5 ended, but I liked Buffy alive even more. Plus, BuffyBot is kinda starting to annoy me. Cool episode, though.moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (8)

    • Nitpick: The BuffyBot's programming to find Willow if damaged is inconsistent. When damaged by the vampire it doesn't go straight to Willow but instead goes home first. When damaged by Razor it goes directly to Willow at Buffy's grave. It is doubtful that the gang told the BuffyBot where they would be if for no other reason than they couldn't risk the 'Bot saying anything about it in front of Dawn or Spike, so how did the BuffyBot know where to find them?

    • Goof: After Willow asks Spike to shine the torch, you can see Spike's arm in the mirror besides the door before he opens it. Later, in another scene, the mirror is covered up.

    • This is one of the only episodes of the series in which the character of Buffy Summers does not fight (although the BuffyBot does); it is also the only episode in which Buffy Summers does not speak.

    • Goof: When BuffyBot gets hit by the bottle in the alley it looks like she got hit on the right side of her face, but the cut shows up on her left side.

    • Goof: When Xander tells Anya and Tara to run you see them start to run, but in the next shot you can see them start to run again.

    • Goof: When Tara does the spell to get Anya off the demon biker's bike, she is standing still. But when you see Anya fall off the bike you see Tara's hand moving (like she's doing the spell) and she's running.

    • Goof: The table that BuffyBot runs into when she sees Willow has moved from where it was before. When Spike and Dawn are about to play cards you can see the table near the chair. But when BuffyBot runs into it you can see that it's moved into the middle of the room.

    • Nitpick: The BuffyBot is the only one with a stake during the initial vamphunt.Spike has a lighter and Giles has an axe, but they seem curiously weaponless.

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Giles: You might have let me in on your plan while he throttled me.
      Spike: Oh, poor Watcher. Did your life pass before your eyes? Cuppa tea, cuppa tea, almost got shagged, cuppa tea.

    • Xander: (reading Giles's letter) I've gone. Not one for long goodbyes. I thought it best to slip out quietly. Love to you all. Giles.

    • Giles: Yes, I was a perfect Watcher. I did what any good Watcher would do. Got my Slayer killed in the line of duty.
      BuffyBot: That wasn't your fault.
      Giles: Of course not. That's how all Slayer-Watcher relationships end, isn't it?

    • Xander: Great Great Googalymoogaly, Willow. Quit doing that.
      Willow: I said I'd get a lay of the land.
      Xander: But not the lay of my brain.
      Anya: It's intrusive. You could knock first or something.

    • Willow: (about BuffyBot) I got her off those knock knock jokes.
      BuffyBot: Oh, who's there?
      Xander: If you want her to be exactly...
      Spike: She'll never be exactly.
      Xander: I know.
      Tara: The only really real Buffy is really Buffy.
      Giles: And she's gone.
      BuffyBot: If you want her to be exactly she'll never be exactly I know the only really real Buffy is really Buffy and she's gone who?

    • Anya: (about BuffyBot) She's not the descendant of a long line of warriors- she's the descendant of a toaster oven.

    • Xander: Okay, when I'm marveling at the immaturity, be scared.

  • NOTES (15)

    • The original name Marti Noxon gave to the leader of the demon biker gang was Pike. Having never seen the original Buffy movie, she changed it so as not to confuse the demon with the character portrayed by Luke Perry.

    • With this episode, Marti Noxon's name now shares the Executive Producer credit screen that closes out every episode with Joss Whedon.

    • In the DVD commentary it is said that George Lucas visited the set during Season 5. Marti Noxon explained that his daughter was a big fan of the show. So, he called Sarah Michelle Gellar on her cell and asked if he could come. Marti said he was really nice with everyone, and even invited them to go to Australia and spend some days in the recording of Star Wars II, but they couldn't go because of a scheduling conflict. She also said that Joss and Aly ended up meeting him another day.

    • The final image of Buffy in the opening credits is actually not of Buffy, but of the BuffyBot, taken from "The Gift".

    • The scenes at Sunnydale Airport were filmed at the beautiful Long Beach Airport, between Los Angeles and Orange County (considered Los Angeles County).

    • This is only one of two season premieres that series creator and executive producer Joss Whedon did not direct or co-direct. The other was the first episode of the series.

    • In the first two scenes of the biker demons riding their motorcycles, the clip playing in the background is from the song "Permanence" by the group Static-X.

    • On the UK video release, when the gang finds Giles's letter, instead of Xander reading the whole letter, we hear a Giles voiceover instead.

    • The only showing of the episode (as of date) has cut three scenes from this episode for seemingly no reason.
      -Tara's comment about the vamp taking prescription medication and all related comments;
      -Everything at Dawn's school before they are in the classroom listening to the teacher;
      -Xander being unable to give Giles a gift because the bum in front of the store would not buy it for them because they aren't 21 yet.

    • The Season 6 Box Set has an Egyptian theme. This is probably due to the fact that the Resurrection, the main thing that put Buffy back in this season was performed using Osiris, an Egyptian god.

    • The scene where Willow kills the deer was considered too horrific and as a result of this, part of it was cut.

    • When Tara gives Giles the little rubber finger monster as a parting gift, she wiggles it on her finger while saying, "Grrr argh," just like the monster in the Mutant Enemy logo at the end of each episode.

    • Alyson Hannigan is now listed by character name in the opening credits, taking the place of "Anthony Stewart Head as Giles".

    • Anthony Stewart Head is now listed as a guest star - the first time since the series premiere.

    • The show now airs on UPN.


    • BuffyBot: (after dusting a vampire) That will put marzipan in your pie plate, Bingo!
      Spike: (to Willow, who re-programed the robot) What's with the Dadaism, Red?
      Dada or Dadaism was a cultural movement that began in Switzerland during World War I and peaked from 1916 to 1920. It is considered an "anti-art" movement; i.e., if art were to have at least an implicit or latent message, Dada strove to have no meaning - interpretation of Dada is dependent entirely on the viewer.

    • Visual: The vamp in the demon bar is wearing a Hanson T-shirt, from their Freshman album "Middle of Nowhere". Hanson is a pop boy band (most popular in the late 1990s). They are most noted for their song "MMMBop." The vamp's shirt is in stark contrast to the rock music and atmosphere of the club. Hanson has since gone on to create two more albums and a Holiday album.

    • Xander: Great Googalymoogaly Will, would you stop doing that!
      This is reference to the children's cartoon Maggie and the Ferocious Beast in which the beast's term of exclamation is Great Googalymoogaly.

    • Tara: You found the last known urn of Osiris on eBay?
      eBay is an online auction website.

    • Tara: You found the last known urn of Osiris on eBay?
      Willow uses an "urn of Osiris" as part of the ritual for resurrecting Buffy. Osiris was the Egyptian god of the Afterlife: in myth, he was brought back to life by Isis, his wife (and sister) following his murder by Set. So far, so appropriate.