Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Season 6 Episode 8

Tabula Rasa

Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Nov 13, 2001 on The WB



  • Trivia

    • Right after they open the door to the vampires they're crouched down on the floor talking about what just happened and if those were real vampires and Willow says: "It's Halloween, maybe those were just costumes."

      Two things are wrong with this line: 1. This episode was two episodes AFTER the Halloween episode where Dawn snuck out with her friend and almost got bitten by the guy she liked who turned out to be a vampire. And 2. The gang had just woken up from Willow's spell not remembering their own names or anything else so how would Willow suddenly remember the day or even the month? Perhaps, this was an oversight because they wanted to have a plausible explanation for the characters after they encountered vampires for the first times since losing their collective memories. Also, the existence of vampires would not be easy to accept if the gang has forgotten their previous lives and just thought of themselves as regular people instead of monster fighters.


      EDIT: Another ridiculous 'Goof' listing

      The gang had no memory at all of who they were, where they were or what day it was - Halloween is known for people dressing up in costumes which is why that line was in there - not a goof at all

    • When Spike passes out while sitting on the counter he slumps to his right and his legs are hanging down. Later, as everyone is waking up Spike is now lying on the counter on his back fully stretched out with his hands behind his head. It is possible that he moved while unconscious but nobody else moved much, if at all(Except Buffy as noted in another post).

    • The establishing shot of the Magic Box uses film from the same establishing shot in "Bargaining, part 1". Though the actual footage is different, the same two people standing together talking with a large brown shopping bag at their feet can be seen and a woman in a tan coat is walking from left to right.

    • At the moment the gang falls unconscious, Buffy has just walked up all the steps toward the door of the shop and is standing on the landing in front of the table. When she falls to the floor, she is parallel to the steps in front of her facing the gang. Yet when she wakes up she is sitting on the steps, her back to the gang and resting her head on her arms on the landing above her.

    • In the sewers, when the Scoobies were running away from the vampire, Tara finds a tunnel where they run into and hide. In goes Tara first, last is Xander.

      In the shot from their backs, we can see Willow is in front of Xander, Dawn has already climbed in, but in another shot, the one from inside the tunnel, we see that after Willow climbs in, follows Dawn, and behind her is Xander.

    • In the scene near the end when "Joan" and Randy" are fighting the vampires on someone's lawn, Buffy kicks a letterbox, and breaks it in two. She picks up the end with the letterbox on it, and when she stakes a vamp, the letterbox is nowhere to be seen and is not on the ground either.

    • When Buffy and Spike are fighting the vampires, Buffy uses a letter-box pole to stab one of the vampires. From the vampire's point of view we can see that Buffy held out the blunt part of the pole, however when the camera switches to side view we can see that Buffy used pointed bit to stab the vampire.

    • Before the gang all pass out, the lights in the magic shop are on. Next when we see them on the floor, after passing out, the lights are off. Who turned them off, if everyone was unconscious?

  • Quotes

    • Willow: I just wanted us not to fight anymore. I love you.
      Tara: If you don't want to fight, you don't fight. You don't use magick to make a fight disappear.

    • Buffy: (about Spike) If I would just stop saving his life, it would simple things up so much.

    • Anya: This is the book for us.
      Giles: Oh, good. Does it focus on mind control, or-or memory loss?
      Anya: Not exactly, I just, um ... my intuition tells me this is the book. And I figure being a magic shop owner and a natural at the supernatural, I should trust my intuition.
      Giles: Yes, fine, but as you recall, I too am a magic shop owner.
      Anya: True, but my intuition says that you're not so much the magic guy and more of a paperwork type.

    • "Joan": I kill your kind.
      "Randy": And I bite yours. So how come I don't want to bite you? And why am I fighting other vampires? I must be a noble vampire. A good guy. On a mission of redemption. I help the helpless. I'm a vampire with a soul!
      "Joan": A vampire with a soul? Oh my God. How lame is that?

    • Giles: Clearly that is not a helpful book darling. Come down and we will go about fixing this in a sensible fashion.
      Anya: Sensible? You think its sensible for me to go down into that pit of cotton top hell and let them hippity hop all over my vulnerable flesh?

    • "Joan": Monsters are real. Did we know this?

    • Willow: I didn't mean to...
      Tara: Didn't mean to what? Violate my mind like that?

    • "Randy": Randy Giles? Why not just call me Horny Giles or Desperate-For-A-Shag Giles?

    • "Joan": I think I know why Joan's the boss. I'm like a superhero or something.

    • Spike: Take it easy, you'll get your kittens.
      Shark Demon: Oh, I trust you, Mister Spike.
      Buffy: Oh God, what is it with you guys? Why kittens? Why can't you just use money like everybody else?
      Shark demon: (to Spike) She's funny. I like funny in a girl.

    • "Randy": Oh, listen to Mary Poppins! He's got his crust all stiff and upper with that nancy-boy accent. You Englishmen are always so… Bloody hell. Sodding, blimey, shagging, knickers, bollocks. Oh, God. I'm English.
      Giles: Welcome to the nancy tribe.

    • Anya: I don't see any booze, I don't feel any head bumps, I don't see Allen Funt.

    • Giles: I'm afraid we don't know a bloody thing... except I seem to be British, don't I? Oh, and a man. With glasses. Well, that narrows it down considerably.

    • Dawn: How are you?
      Willow: A little confused. I mean, I'm... all sweaty... and trapped, no memory, hiding in a pipe from a vampire... and I think I'm kinda gay.

    • Xander: So I have decided to simplify the whole thing. Me like Buffy. Buffy's alive. So me glad.

    • "Randy": I'm a hero, really. I mean, to be cast such an ugly lot in life, and then to rise above it. To seek out better, nobler things. It's inspirational, isn't it? And the two of us -- natural enemies thrown together, to stand against the forces of darkness. Utter trust. No thought of me biting you, no thought of you staking me.
      "Joan": Depends on how long you keep on yapping.

    • "Randy": I'm sure he has some kind of midlife crisis transport. Something red, shiny... shaped like a penis.

    • Anya: What? I'm just saying what everyone else is thinking, right sweetie?
      Xander: You are attractive and have many good qualities.

    • Spike: We kissed, Buffy.
      Buffy: So?
      Spike: We... we kissed, you and me all Gone with the Wind, with the rising music and the rising... music and what was that, Buffy?

    • Spike: Can we talk?
      Buffy: Vocal chord wise? Yes. With each other? No.

    • Anya: They're blood suckers, they kill by sucking blood, take it easy Joan.

    • "Joan": Hey, stay away from Randy!

  • Notes

    • In this episode, a statue of the two-faced Roman god Janus can be seen briefly. Ethan Rayne used a statue like this one to turn everybody into their costumes in the series 2 episode "Halloween". Presumably this is a different statue, as Giles had to destroy that one to reverse the spell.

    • This episode is tenth in Joss Whedon's list of his top ten favorite episodes (which is more of a top twelve list) according to his personal letter included in the Australian Chosen Collection Box-set. The episodes on this top ten list are not ranked, but are put in order of which episode aired first.

    • When Spike thought his name was Randy, he said "Randy Giles!? Why not just call me Horny Giles or Desperate-for-a-shag Giles!?" It's not common and rather embarrassing for the British to have Randy as a name, because "randy" is a British slang word which means "aroused," or "feeling great sexual desire." In other words, "horny" or "desperate for a shag."

    • Joan, the name Buffy gives herself, was the real name of Chanterelle/Lily to whom Buffy gave her middle name, Anne, in the season 3 premiere, also entitled Anne.

    • In that same segment of the "Restless" dream where Spike is shown wearing a tweed suit, there is some discussion of "a shark, but on land. A land shark."

    • Randy comes to the conclusion that he is a righteous vampire as he doesn't want to bite Buffy and attacks other vampires. He thinks of himself as a vampire with a soul. Buffy says 'a vampire with a soul? How lame is that?' This is a funny stab at Angel. Spike also says "I help the helpless," which is the slogan for Angel Investigations.

    • Michelle Branch performs her song 'Goodbye To You' in The Bronze.

    • When the memory-lacking gang decides to head to the hospital, Randyspike suggests they take Giles' car, adding "I'm sure he has some sort of mid-life crisis transport. Something red, shiny... shaped like a penis." Giles does indeed have a mid-life-mobile which was introduced in season 5's 'Real Me', and it is both red and shiny. Not so much penis-shaped, though.

    • The suit Spike wears for most of the episode is quite reminiscent of the one he wore in Xander's dream in the season 4 finale 'Restless'. During the same dream, Giles said he thought of Spike as a son, and during the memory lapse Spike comes to the conclusion that Giles and him are father and son.

    • At one point during the memory lapse, Willow tells Dawn "I think I'm kinda gay."
      Willow said the same thing about the Vampire Willow in episode 'Doppelgangland'.

  • Allusions

    • "a shark, but on land. A land shark."

      The term "land shark", dates back to sailor's chanties, referring to merchants who cheated sailors. In more recent usage, however, it refers to a classic Saturday Night Live skit spoofing Jaws shortly after it was released.

    • Giles sword-fighting the skeleton is a possible reference to Ray Harryhausen's skeleton fight scene in Jason and the Argonauts, where he animated 7 skeletons fighting a live-action Jason with stop-motion photography.

    • Xander: Sorry, I just got back the memory of seeing King Ralph.
      King Ralph is a 1991 comedy starring John Goodman as a brash, loutish American man who is identified as the next in line for the British throne when the Royal Family are all killed.

    • Title: Tabula Rasa
      Latin for "blank slate" (Literally blank tablet).

    • Anya: I-I don't see any booze. I don't feel any head bumps. I don't see Allen Funt.
      Allen Funt was the creator/host/director/producer of the show Candid Camera which premiered in 1948. On Candid Camera unsuspecting people are placed in confusing, impossible, embarrassing, ridiculous, and hilarious positions, while their reactions are recorded on a hidden camera.

    • Spike: We... we kissed, you and me. All Gone With The Wind, with the rising music, and the rising... music, and what was that, Buffy?
      A reference to the 1939 Victor Fleming film Gone with the Wind staring Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh.