New Moon Rising is a fantastic episode that rounds off the romance of Willow and Oz and officially starts the romance of Willow and Tara. It is emotional and shocking all the way through.
Oz coming back was good. I feel his story arc was naearly over in Wild at Heart and this episode was needed to really finish his storyline and his romance with Willow. It is nice to see Willow and Oz together for the last time, as even though I'm a Willow/Tara fan, I've always liked Willow/Oz as well. I thought they were just a nice, interesting relationship and nnot overly dramatic like some (Buffy/Angel) or boring like others (Buffy/Riley).
I was very satisfied with how they ended the romance. It was all very believable; I understood that Willow still has a place in her heart for Oz but is not in love with him anymore and I felt her choosing Tara was a natural choice.
I felt this episode had some really great scenes; the last scene between Willow and Oz was brilliantly written; sad and emotional. I love Willow saying she's sure they'll meet again; whether it's in Sunnydale or in Istanbul. It gave fans of Willow/Oz hope that they might reunite but didn't feel like an attempt to satisfy them in case of angry reactions from fans (e.g. Angel coming back in End of Days/Chosen and Buffy's annoying and irrelevant cookie dough speech).
The Initiative scenes were good and furthered the main arc slightly. Spike being Adam's ally is a reminder that he's still evil and the scenes between them were OK- nothing special as I don't really care for the arc at all. Nevertheless, it didn't make the episode feel completely out of place.
Riley finally did something that wasn't annoying OR boring- punching that annoying Colonel McNamara. That guy is so irritating and up himself. I look forward to watching his death in Primeval again. Willow coming out to Buffy was a really good scene. Buffy's initial weirdness about it but her acceptance and support of it immediately after sends out the right message to people in the same predicament. It really reminds us of the close bond between them.
The last scene was so- for lack of a better word- cute! It was a little cheesy with Tara blowing out the candle but really made a nice start for their official relationship.
New Moon Rising is an excellent episode and one that has sad endings and happy beginnings. It isn't one of my favourites but is still a really great episode and one not to be missed.