Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Season 1 Episode 12

Prophecy Girl

Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Jun 02, 1997 on The WB



  • Trivia

    • Nitpick: When Buffy is talking to Willow at Willow's house Buffy asked Willow to promise her that she would stay in that night. However, after Buffy punches Giles, Willow and Xander are at the library and are upset to learn that Buffy has gone to face the Master. Is it possible that Jenny or Giles called them or did Willow simply go back on her promise to Buffy?

    • The death of the Master is the first and only vampire death (in both Buffy and Angel) where bones were left afterwards. All other vampires have dissolved completely into dust, including their clothes (except for a plot point ring).

    • While the earthquake is happening, Xander and Willow run under the stairs at The Bronze. While they get under, you can see Alyson put her hand on the stairs. While her hand is on them, you can see people running down and you can actually see someone step on Alyson's fingers and hear her give a little scream.

    • Goof: When Buffy tells Giles and Angel that she is retiring from her Slayer duties, she yanks her cross necklace from her neck and throws it to the floor. Judging by both the angle and the force she used to pull it, the chain would undoubtedly break. But when Buffy comes back to the library, she sees the necklace sitting on the table and fastens it around her neck with no problem.

    • Ms. Calendar tells Giles that a monk from Cortona, Italy has been emailing her about recent demonic occurrences. Cortona is the same village in which the monks bound the Demon Moloch into a book. ("I Robot, You Jane" - 1x08) It is possible that the monk communicating with Ms. Calendar, belongs to the same brotherhood that fought Moloch many years ago.

    • Apparently Cordelia and Mitch's relationship dissolved right after the Marcie debacle ("Out of Sight, Out of Mind" - 1x11), because she is making out with Kevin at the beginning of this episode and seems to have really fallen for him.

    • Nitpick: There has been a significant earthquake the night before. There is structural damage to the library and possibly to other parts of the school. It seems likely that the authorities would keep the school (and other public buildings) closed until they have been determined to be safe to enter.

    • Goof: During Buffy's rooftop fight with the Master, her shoes change in between shots from white heels, to black boots when she's kicking him, back to white heels.

    • Nitpick: Apparently the automobiles in Sunnydale have Slayer healing powers too. Despite the fact that Cordelia smashed her car through Sunnydale High, there is not a single scratch or scuff on her car afterwards.

    • Goof: After the Master bites Buffy she falls into the water and lands with her arms under her and her hair tied into a ponytail. When Xander and Angel arrive her hair is loose and her arms are out to the sides. The water is too shallow for it to have removed the tie by itself and she couldn't have removed it herself because she was dead.

    • Nitpick: In the beginning of the episode, Buffy falls on her butt, and then gets up and proceeds to pull a really sharp stake from her shirt behind her back. With the fall and the pointiness of that stake, you'd think if would have broken or stabbed her.

    • Nitpick: In Giles' office, his calendar clearly reads June. Yet, everyone is getting ready for the May Spring dance.

  • Quotes

    • Buffy: You have fruit punch mouth.
      Master: What? (She punches him)

    • Buffy: Giles, care? I'm putting my life on the line battling the undead. Look, I broke a nail, okay? I'm wearing a press-on. The least you could do is exhibit some casual interest. You could go "hmm".

    • Buffy: Xander, you're one of my best friends. You and Willow...
      Xander: Well, Willow's not looking to date you. Or if she is, she's playing it pretty close to the chest.

    • Giles: Listen. Some prophecies are a bit dodgy. They're mutable. Buffy herself has thwarted them time and time again, but this is the Codex. There is nothing in it that does not come to pass.
      Angel: Then you're reading it wrong.
      Giles: I wish to God I were! But it's very plain! Tomorrow night Buffy will face the Master, and she will die.

    • Giles: You know how to get in touch with this Brother Luca chap?
      Ms. Calendar: As far as I can tell, no one can. He's disappeared. Did send out one last global though. A short one.
      Giles: What did it say?
      Ms. Calendar: Isaiah 11:6, which I dutifully looked up.
      Giles: "The wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, the calf, the lion and the fatling together, and a little child to lead them."
      Ms. Calendar: That's kind of warm and fuzzy for a message of doom.
      Giles: That depends where he's leading them to. Aurelius wrote of
      the Anointed One, "The Slayer will not know him, and he will lead her into Hell."
      Ms. Calendar: So Luca thinks the Anointed is a kid?
      Giles: If the vampire that Buffy killed was, in fact, not the Anointed,
      then it may well be.
      Ms. Calendar: Well, then we need to warn her.
      Giles: I don't intend involving her at all.
      Ms. Calendar: What do you mean?
      Giles: Buffy's not going to face the Master. I am.
      Buffy: No, you're not.

    • Ms. Calendar: I'm sorry to bring this up, but we also have an apocalypse to worry about?
      Xander: Do you mind?
      Willow: (to Giles) How come she's in the club?

    • The Master: (to Buffy) You tried. It was noble of you. You heard the prophecy that I was about to break free and you came to stop me. But prophecies are tricky creatures. They don't tell you everything. (whispers) You're the one that sets me free. If you hadn't come, I couldn't go. Think about that.

    • Ms. Calendar: Well, what do we do now?
      Giles: I don't know about the rest of you, but I'd like to get out of this place. I don't like the library very much anymore.
      Xander: Hey! I hear there's a dance at the Bronze tonight. Could be fun.
      Cordelia: Yeah!
      Willow: Buffy?
      Buffy: Sure! We saved the world. I say we party! (looks down at her ruined dress) I mean, I got all pretty.

    • Giles: Buffy, I'm not going to send you out there to die. Now, you were right. I've waded about in these old books for so long, I've forgotten what the real world is like. It's time I found out.
      Buffy: You're still not going up against The Master.
      Giles: I've made up my mind.
      Buffy: So have I.
      Giles: I made up mine first!

    • Xander: How could you let her go?
      Giles: As the soon-to-be purple area on my jaw will attest, I did not let her go.

    • The Master: Yes! Yes! Shake earth! This is a sign! We're in the final days! My time has come! Glory! Glory!
      (Earthquake stops)
      The Master: (To the Anointed One) What do you think? Five point one?

    • Xander: How can I say this clearly? I don't like you. At the end of the day, I pretty much think you're a vampire. But Buffy's got this big old yen for you. She thinks you're a real person. And right now I need you to prove her right.
      Angel: You're in love with her.
      Xander: Aren't you?

    • Xander: You were looking at my neck!
      Angel: What?!
      Xander: You were checking out my neck! I saw that.
      Angel: No I wasn't!
      Xander: Just keep your distance, pal.
      Angel: (annoyed) I wasn't looking at your neck.
      Xander: I told you to eat before we left!

    • Cordelia: Willow, I really like your outfit.
      Willow: No you don't.
      Cordelia: No, I really don't, but I need a favor.

    • Buffy: I can't put it off any longer. I have to meet my terrible fate.
      Giles: What?
      Buffy: Biology.

    • Buffy: It doesn't matter as long as you're okay.
      Willow: I'm not okay. I knew those guys. I go to that room every day. And when I walked in there, it... it wasn't our world anymore. They made it theirs. And they had fun.

    • Buffy: (after hearing the prophecy that she will die) So that's it, huh? I remember the drill. One Slayer dies, next one's called. Wonder who she is. Will you train her? Or will they send someone else?
      Giles: Buffy, I...
      Buffy: They say how he's gonna kill me? (quietly) Do you think it'll hurt?

    • Buffy: I've got a way around it. I quit.
      Angel: It's not that simple.
      Buffy: I'm making it that simple. I quit. I resign, I-I'm fired, you can find someone else to stop The Master from taking over.
      Giles: I'm not sure that anyone else can. All the... the signs indicate...
      Buffy: The signs? Read me the signs! Tell me my fortune! You're so useful sitting here with all your books! You're really a lot of help!
      Giles: No, I don't suppose I am.
      Angel: I know this is hard.
      Buffy: What do you know about this? You're never gonna die!
      Angel: You think I want anything to happen to you? Do you think I could stand it? We just gotta figure out a way...
      Buffy: I already did. I quit, remember? Pay attention!
      Giles: Buffy, if The Master rises...
      Buffy: I don't care! I don't care... Giles, I'm sixteen years old. I don't wanna die.

    • Willow: Even I was bored. And I'm a science nerd.
      Buffy: Don't say that.
      Willow: I'm not ashamed. It's the computer age. Nerds are in. They're still in, right?

    • The Master: Ah, the feeble banter portion of the fight.

    • Xander: That's okay. I don't wanna go. I'm just gonna go home, lie down and listen to country music. The music of pain.

    • Angel: By the way, I really like your dress.
      Buffy: Yeah, yeah. Big hit with everyone.

    • The Master: You're dead!
      Buffy: I may be dead, but I'm still pretty. Which is more than I can say for you.

    • The Master: You were destined to die! It was written!
      Buffy: What can I say? I flunked the written.

    • Ms. Calendar: Okay, so this Master guy tried to open the Hellmouth. But he got stuck in it, and now all the signs are reading that he's going to get out, which opens the Hellmouth, which brings the demons, which ends the world.
      Giles: Yes. That about sums it up, yes.
      Ms. Calendar: The part that gets me, though, is where Buffy is the Vampire Slayer. She's so little.

    • Cordelia: (Cordelia bites a vampire's hand) Let's see how you like it!

    • Xander: On a scale of 1 to 10? It sucked.

    • Buffy: When he wakes up, tell him... I don't know. Think of something cool, tell him I said it.

  • Notes

    • According to the Watcher's Guide, Joss Whedon has stated that this is the episode where Willow "officially" grows up, after seeing the students slaughtered in the AV room.

    • Ironically enough for a show titled Buffy the Vampire Slayer, half of the first season episodes do not even have a vampire appear: "Witch", "The Pack" (1x06), "I Robot, You Jane" (1x08), "The Puppet Show" (1x09), "Nightmares" (1x10) (only the Master and the Anointed One) and "Out of Mind, Out of Sight" (1x11) (not counting Angel). Many fans must have noticed this because many of the non vampire-centered season 2 and 3 episodes show Buffy at least at one point on patrol.

    • There are some striking similarities in this episode to the film version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Both Buffys must face a vampire king on prom night. Both girls wore a white dress with a leather jacket thrown over it. Interestingly, small screen Buffy is wearing Angel's leather jacket, and big screen Buffy is wearing love interest Pike's leather jacket.

    • Featured Music:
      "I Fall To Pieces" by Patsy Cline (As Xander is moping on his bed)
      "Inconsolable" by Jonatha Brooke & The Story (As Buffy looks through her photo album)

    • This episode is number ten in Joss Whedon's list of his top ten favorite episodes according to The Last Sundown featurette in the season seven DVD box set.

    • This is the first aired Buffy episode to be directed by Joss Whedon.

    • This episode marks the first and only time when Nerf Herder's opening credits theme is played during the show.

    • According to Alyson Hannigan, there were two versions of the murder-discovery scene. One was a tame version which appeared on the screen. The other had blood all over the walls and door which the crew thought they might be able to get away with in Europe. However, they didn't.

    • When this episode was filmed it wasn't known if the series was going to be renewed for a second season. It gives the final scene with the characters walking out of the library an added poignancy as this could have been the last time we saw our heroes. Luckily, for everyone, a second was eventually given the go-ahead.

    • This was the first episode to be rated TV-14.

  • Allusions

    • Isaiah 11:6

      In this episode, one of Ms. Calendar's on-line colleagues uses Isaiah 11:6 to describe this particular "End of Days" scenario, which Giles is kind enough to quote for us. Ironically, Isaiah 11 is a prophesy of the coming of the Messiah; one who will come to save the world, rather than destroy it.

    • The Master: Where are your jibes now?

      This may be a reference to the play Hamlet by William Shakespeare. In the play, when Hamlet finds the skull of the old court jester, Yorick, he speaks to it saying, "Where be your jibes now, your gambols, your songs, your flashes of merriment that were wont to set the table on a roar?" (Act V, Scene i) This may imply that The Master is speaking to Buffy as to one who is already dead (which, in a sense, she is).

    • Xander: Calm may work for Locutus of the Borg here, but I'm freaked out and I intend to stay that way.
      In the TV show Star Trek: The Next Generation, the Borg are a race of emotionless cyborgs who travel around the galaxy assimilating other races. A well known episode concerns Captain Picard being assimilated and becoming a Borg known as "Locutus."

    • Buffy: What can I say? I flunked the written.

      Buffy plays off the Master's line "You were destined to die, it was written." While the Master was referring to written prophecy, Buffy teases him by evoking the idea of a written test which she has failed.

    • Buffy: Angel, better put on your game face.

      Buffy refers to Angel's vampiric appearance as his game face. Normally the phrase put on your game face is used metaphorically as preparing for a contest.

    • Xander: The polls are in, and it's time for my concession speech.

      Xander evokes the image of a politician on election night. When the exit polls indicate that a candidate has lost the election, the candidate will often give a concession speech to admit defeat and congratulate the winner.

    • Buffy: Look, I broke a nail, okay?
      I'm wearing a press-on. Fake fingernails, such as the infamous Lee Press-On Nails, are used to give the look of long fingernails.