Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Season 4 Episode 22

Restless

5
Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM May 23, 2000 on The WB
SUBMIT REVIEW

Episode Fan Reviews (38)

9.1
out of 10
Average
655 votes
  • Bittersweet Dreams

    10
    Restless-Unable to sleep after their victory, Buffy, Xander, Giles, and Willow decide to stay up late watching movies. And immediately fall asleep. One by one, their dreams take a dark and twisted turn as a sinister force stalks each of them through the dream world and their own psyches. Now while "Primeval" may conclude the overall arc of the the year, it's not the season finale. Joss Whedon wanted to try something different instead of the big season enders like the "Becoming" and "Graduation Day" episodes. "Restless" is a bizarre choice for a season finale yet it's one of the most rivating hours of television you'll ever see. Like the groundbrekaing "Hush" earlier this season, "Restless" sees Joss crafting a episode that broke barriers for tv featuring both breath-taking visuals and insightful dialogue that truly capture the essence of dreams. The series has always been amazing with depickting dreams in the past, but here, it's flawless!

    One of the reasons "Restless" works so well is that the dream sequences give us tremedous insight on the character's psychy. First we have Willow's dream, where see Willow stillself-confidence issues when her drama class suddenly opens production of "Death of a Salesman." It's hilarious watching Buffy, Riley and Harmony acting so over-the-top in their play roles which have nothing to do with "Death of a Salesman." Gotta love Riley being "Cowboy guy", lol. Yet at the same time, we learn that Willow is terrified with people seeing her as a nerd and I love how that's down with people asking her why she's "in costume". Next is Xander, who we despite learning is attracted to Buffy's mom and has sexual fantasies about hooking up with Willow and Tara, Xander is sees himself failure and seems to always end up back in his parents' basement. I love the "Apocalpyse, Now" version of his dream and having Principal Schnider return was great.

    Then there's Giles' dream, which shows that he sees himself as Buffy's father yet he is conflicted as to which life he should chose or means more to him. I love the hilarious scenes of Spike posing for pictures as an attraction at the cemetary carnival and Giles singing his expedition to Xander and Willow at the Bronze. Lastly, we have Buffy's dream where she searchs for friends, only to discover the essence of the slayer's power when she reveals that the primative creature trying to kill them all is the first slayer. The concept of the first slayer is ingenious and it's about time we learned bit more about slayer line. The idea of the first slayer would want to kill Buffy's friends because it's an insult to the power of the slayer makes sense and it a wonderful development that will be one of the main storylines of the 5th season.

    From beyond hilarious comedy (Anya's priceless gesturing) to disturbing horror (the first slayer ripping out Xander's heart) to complex metaphors (Joyce living in a wall) to though-provoking dialogue (the forshadowing of Dawn) to visually stunning (the wide landscapes) to utter randomness (the infamous Cheese Man in each dream), "Restless" is unlike any episode of television u'll ever see. Whether see it as intelligent philosophical affair or just bunch of brainy bull,you can't deny how unqiue it is. "Restless" is a psychological masterpiece that should be studied by writers, philosophers, etc. for being so imaginative and innovative.
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