Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Season 2 Episode 21

Becoming, Part 1 (1)

8
Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM May 12, 1998 on The WB
SUBMIT REVIEW

Episode Fan Reviews (24)

9.5
out of 10
Average
759 votes
  • Slayer Got Slayed

    9.3
    Apocalypses have always been center stage of every Buffy season finale. What would a season ender be without the world at risk from some kind of apocalyptic chaos? In Becoming Part One, we are introduced to Acathla, or, as Spike calls him, "a big rock", a powerful demon cast in stone whose mouth opens a gateway to hell. The apocalyptic themes of this episode are raised a lot higher than any other finale, with a ton of memorable "end of the world" lines, including Angelus' awesome "we're about to make history... end".

    This episode also featured the first use of flashbacks, with us being shown Angel's siring and Buffy being told of her destiny. All the flashbacks are excellently done, with Angel's siring being both dramatic and overtly sexual, whilst Buffy's first slaying is hilarious, in particular the 90210-style big yellow jacket she wears whilst on patrol.

    One character I was pretty much indifferent to in Part One was Xander, since he turns into a complete jerk wherever Angel is concerned. He attacks Buffy for getting everybody to completely forget about Jenny's death in order to support getting Angel back, and I have to disagree with his actions. Yes, Angelus killed Jenny, but that isn't Angel. Whilst everybody else (even Giles) can see that both sides of Angel are two different people, Xander completely disregards that fact, possibly because of his attraction to Buffy, which seemingly never goes away.

    Probably the most memorable scene in this episode is the massive assault on the Scoobies in the final act. Whilst the scene is emotionally painful and exciting, in retrospect, I couldn't help but feel let down, mainly due to Kendra's death. Kendra is a slayer, but her death doesn't feel in any way special or memorable, especially since all Drusilla did was hypnotize her for a couple of seconds and slash her throat with her fingernail. Maybe such a lame death was written in to show how weak and inexperienced Kendra was compared to Buffy, but, since Buffy's head-strong, almost selfish, attitude led to the attack on the library, I guess it shows that both Slayers sometimes fail to save the day in times of crisis.

    Whilst undeniably powerful and featuring some of season two's best writing, there are too many little problems which stop the episode from being a complete masterpiece. Part Two on the other hand...

    Director: Joss Whedon
    Writer: Joss Whedon
    Rating: A-
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