This episode is a bit better than part one although it unfortunately retains many of that episode's poorer qualities including a slow pace, poor music, and mediocre fight sequences. This time around, though, Spike gets to interact with a lot of the main characters which creates a handful of good moments. Spike is the main thing that elevates this episode up a notch from the previous one.
Alright, we pick up right where the last one left us, with the discovery that Kendra is another Vampire Slayer and not the third Tarakan assassin. The conversation between Buffy and Kendra here is very entertaining and a good launching point for the episode. The scene moves into the library where Giles attempts to sort out what the heck is going on. It is during this scene that we find out how different Buffy and Kendra are, not only in personality but also in fighting methods and lifestyle. Kendra is the responsible "do it by the book" sort while Buffy is obviously the opposite. These differences are the beginning of all kinds of interesting discussing regarding the role of the Slayer, which method is better, and the possibility of Kendra replacing Buffy as 'the' Slayer.
The replacement issue in particular interests me a lot. By the end of this episode we find out that replacemnt won't work, so when Faith shows up in "Faith, Hope, and Trick" (3x03), nobody thinks about Faith replacing Buffy but instead think about Faith assissting her (aside from Joyce who didn't know all the Kendra issues). I also love Buffy's, "I could say, 'Kendra, you slay, I'm going to Disneyland.'" At this point in her life, that's really all Buffy wants. She would love to give up her Slayer powers and duty and just take off to Disneyland for a few months. If she knew what was going to happen soon in "Innocence" (2x14) she might better appreciate how decent things are in Sunnydale right now.
Unfortunately, I don't really like Kendra as a person very much. I like what her what her character does to contrast the uniqueness that Buffy possesses, but I find Kendra cold. Also, her accent is very grating and the acting behind her is mediocre. I do like how she mixes things up, though, and introduces an anomaly into the whole Slayer mythology.
A big development in this episode is the beginning of the Cordelia and Xander relationship. While I think their first kiss was ridiculously over-corned (and intentially too), the idea of the two of them together is oddly fascinating. Here's two people who have sparred from the very beginning of the series and now they have a 'thing' between then. They still mostly hate each other though. This is currently a completely physical attraction as these two have nothing in common. Only through time will they learn to actually care for each other. A few scenes in "Becoming Pt. 2" (2x22) come to mind as evidence of that.
The third Tarakan assassin, Patrice, was a breath of fresh air compared to the other two. Guns are very rarely used on this show, but I've got to admit they make things interesting. Buffy's fight with her in the school was satisfying. I also love Oz's, "I, uh, I'm shot! (takes his hand away briefly and chuckles) Y'know. (laughs) Wow! It's odd! And painful." The final fight scene with the assassins and Spike is handled okay, but it could have been much better in the hands of a better director (maybe he was just off his game that week). There are two things in particular, though, that really anger me. The first is that Patrice stops attacking Kendra so she can say her dumb line about that being her only shirt. The second, which surprised me, is the poor "I'm good!" line from Buffy. It's very rare this show completely gives into cliched dialog.
The episode ends on a high note, though, with Kendra explaining to Buffy that being the Slayer is who she is and not a job. I also found the very final shot, where a newly restored Drusilla picks Spike up out of the rubble of the church and slowly carries him out, very haunting. So when looking back at this two-parter as a whole I can't help but be disappointed. It wasn't bad, but it should be been a whole lot more. This second part is a bit better than the first, but it still has similar problems. Once again, though, there's a lot of great stuff mixed in as well.
Xander and Cordy get together, inevitable really. But Willow and Oz also take their first real steps towards a relationship. The shootout at the careers fair with Jonathon held hostage for the first time. Dru torturing Angel and Angel goading Spike into almost killing him. Great fight, great final twist, the sight of an arisen Dru carrying Spike is awesome.
If you can find some, let me know because I can't
Xander; I am the bug man, coo-coo coo chu
Questions and observations;
Although not a Scooby yet Oz is shot, the second in a long line to be so plus Angel chained up. Buffy and Kendra torture Willy the Snitch, the Scoobs really having no problem with it. Cordy's wet dress is pretty daring not to mention Willy offering Buffy and Kendra a nude photoshoot (one day she won't be so dainty) but not half as extreme as the kinkfest which is Dru and Angel (she calls him a 'bad dog' and even more disturbingly 'daddy') . Note that Dru seems to genuinely miss her family (whilst Angelus glibly killed his) implying once again that Dru and Spike are exceptional vamps with remnants of humanity (possibly due to Dru's link to the PTB?). Despite his reputation Spike meanwhile seems to have no taste for torture commenting that he'd rather just see Angel die than the pre-show. Isn't it a bit risky for Dru to have Holy Water lying around? The Dru/Spike/Angel(us) jealousy triangle rears it's ugly if fascinating head. In terms of jealousy we also have Kendra and Buffy competing for Giles' attention like two little girls with their father, it's interesting to contrast that later with Buffy and Dawn (or Faith?) vying for Joyce's affections.
For a long time I thought the police woman assassin was Pat Tallman from Babylon 5 (who's also a stuntwoman) but it's not.
If Kendra was taken from her family to be trained at an early age, why wasn't Buffy? Although you can imagine Joyce and Hank's reaction if Merrick turned up at their door and said "Hey, I need to take your little daughter away to train her to fight the powers of evil" (they'd probably call the police and/or shoot him). Kendra's Watcher is called Sam Zebuto, confirming for the first time that not all Watchers are automatically British despite the Council's full name. Don't the council think Giles' and co need to know of Kendra's existance?
Willow nails her first vamp whilst Cordy helps Xander kill the bug man.
So did Kendra and Buffy dream up this plan between them all along or did Kendra follow Buffy to the church and then call all the Scoobies? Or was the argument at Willy's place all a show and the rest of the Scoobies tailed her and Willy knowing he'd lead them to Spike?
So why is the contract called off? That is lame and it's the only reason the ep gets 8/10 rather than top marks. Reminds me off Star Trek;Voyager where they'd find a way to return to Earth one week only to conveniently forget about it the next
What's My Line? (2) was a superb follow up to part one of this story. In this episode we saw the rise and fall of enemies who rise again, and made a new ally, and there was almost a loss for Buffy. I think that the writers did a great job on this story. There was a lot interesting characters including the assassins who were sent to kill Buffy. Zander and Cordelia Kiss, and Kiss again! Cordelia knows how to get out of Dodge when evil is afoot. I think I just made a pun. Cordelia drives a Dodge, haha. This episode was revealing future stories, and gave us more depth to the characters at a great pace.
Buffy learns that Kendra is the new vampire slayer and her replacement. Until the matter is solved, Buffy and Kendra must work together. Meanwhile, Angel is under Spike and Drusilla's custody, and Xander and Cordelia are trapped in Buffy's basement after a parasitic man enters the home.
I liked this episode. David Boreanaz (Angel) is so sexy when he's shirtless. Yay, Xander and Cordelia kissed! I loved when he was squirting her with the hose. I loved when the cop brought the guns to school and tried to shoot Buffy, and ended up shooting Oz. Hehe, Xander and bug people. Very entertaining episode.
This episode concludes the story arc of Spike trying to restore Drusilla to her power. This episode shows everyone really coming together to defeat the enemy and that is really fun to watch. There is also more Oz which is always appreciated on my part. Kendra and Buffy are really good together in this episode and they establish a nice rhythm as they fight vampires together. Angel's near death experience adds a lot of drama as well as they come together to save him. The aftermath of the show down at career day is good as well and all the fighting scenes are really good.
What's My Line, Part 2-Buffy is attacked by the mysterious girl and during the fight learns that her name is Kendra and that she is a Vampire Slayer. Apparently, Buffy's temporary death at the hands of the Master was enough to activate the next Slayer, and she has come to Sunnydale. They call a truce, and Giles convinces them to work together to save Angel from Spike and Drusilla.
An excellent second half of this 2 parter, "...Line" Part 2 sees Buffy trying to get along with her new slayer pal as the gang must stop Spike and Dru when they kidnap Angel. The best parts of the episode is the interaction between Buffy and Kendra. Buffy's jealous attitude is uncalled for but her jokes toward Kendra are undeniably funny like calling her "Pink Ranger" and "She-Giles". Bianca Lawson continues to play the character quite well despite her laugably bad accent (seriously, is she Jamiacian or South African or Eygptian...what?) It's also interesting seeing the 2 slayers' different life styles. I mean compared to Kendra, Buffy has it pretty damn good! It's pretty sad how Kendra had to sacrifice everything from family, friends, to an education for her destiny while Buffy gets a chance to go to school and have somewhat of a social life. The scenes with Drusilla torturing Angel are disturbing as Drusilla taunts him about what how he killed her family and pours holy water on his chest at the same time. Also, I loved how Angel gets into Spike's head about Drusilla's affections toward him. The dynamic between Spike-Drusilla-Angel is always great as there is past we don't much about yet between them and I gald in future episodes we find that out. Then there's Cordelia and Xander's hilarious scene as being trapped in Buffy's basement leads to them passionately kissing cheesy soap opera music in all. I always found they're relationship hilarious as they're the couple you love to see fight. Also, when Xander sprays Cordelia with the water hose is too priceless!
The whole plot with Spike getting Drusilla's strength back from Angel plays out well. I loved how Buffy and Kendra team up against Spike and Patrice the Assassin. We get to see Willow and Giles stake vampires for the first time as well as Xander and Cordelia stomping on the Worm guy. There is also some impressive stunt work with bodies flying around and the way Buffy knocked out Spike with Drusilla in his arms was an inventive finish. The episode ends with little touching scene of Buffy and Kendra saying goodbye but also reassuring each other no they are not alone in the fight anymore. Then shockinglt Spike and Drusilla survived and now Drusilla is at full strength while Spike is weak. All and All, an episode with lots to love with many great characters, acting, fights and surprises.
With this second part, the pieces are coming together for the second season and in some cases, beyond that to even the final episode. It offers plenty of good character moments, comparing Buffy to the newly tapped chosen one Kendra. These pieces connect to the overall theme of the season.
Kendra represents what the Watcher Council wants a slayer to be; respectful of the rules, on top of her studies and socially isolated. The first two qualities make her a big hit with bookworm Giles, and even arouse some jealousy in Buffy. However, what Buffy lacks in studying “The Slayer Handbook”, she makes up for with experience. She’s already prevented one major catastrophic event (many more will follow) whereas Kendra doesn’t know how to handle a cross bow properly.
Of course, these two slayers with different techniques would clash, especially with regards to the social element. It’s puzzling to Kendra that Buffy would have as many people in the loop regarding her secret, much less call them her friends. Kendra doesn’t even have a last name she has distanced herself so far from other people. This detachment leads her to be awkward when around others (nothing ever came out of the Xander thing), but effective when in a fight.
It isn’t until Kendra steps in and helps Buffy combat the cop assassin that they reach some kind of agreeable coexistence. Ultimately Kendra learns a little about Buffy’s techniques such as channeling her anger towards her fight and being able to think on her feet. Also, Kendra gives Buffy the sense of normalcy she has needed. She isn’t alone in her calling.
It’s unfortunate that they would brush Kendra aside after her introduction, since these two personalities clashing would’ve been exciting to see developed further. Buffy had been looking for a chance to have a normal life, and Kendra provides the perfect exit. It might’ve been interesting to see Buffy try to take a vacation from slaying and let Kendra do the work, but they had other ideas for where this season would go.
Angel’s guilt over siring Drusilla is a major part of the psychological torture aspect of Dru and Spike’s pre-game. He must watch his handiwork, thinking that he will be responsible for her return and more bloodshed. Not to mention tying him up and watching them presumably have kinky sex in front of him seems like a perfect way to traumatize someone before killing them (since murder just isn’t enough for monsters).
While Spike’s allegiance and love to Dru is unquestionable, the feeling isn’t mutual. As Noxon noted in her commentary, Drusilla is attracted to where the action is and it’s with Angel. Angel’s her new toy and she is enjoying him a little too much for Spike, whose jealousy almost causes him to stake Angel and thwart his own plans. This character development is rather good considering how it will play through the rest of the season.
Although the police officer revealed as the third assassin was unexpected, having a cop start shooting in a crowded school wouldn’t be allowed in the post-Columbine/Virginia Tech landscape (as of this writing, only two months have passed since the Virginia Tech tragedy). Despite the fact that “Buffy” is in a fantasy world, there is a fine line for where they can go for student deaths. Generally they preserve the fantasy line by only having them be killed by vampires or the monster of the week rather than one of their own.
The third assassin provides a catalyst for Oz and Willow’s beginning relationship. They decide to go the rhetorical route by having Oz literally take a bullet for Willow. Luckily he’s only grazed, but Willow’s appreciative all the same. Unlike other guys in her life, Oz has shown her a genuine interest in a possible romantic relationship. His complements aren’t something she isn’t used to either. On the other end, Cordelia and Xander, once stuck in the basement at the mercy of the bug man, deal with their antagonism with straight lust. This kind of “to the chagrin of the character” attraction is typical of these situations in romantic comedies. The swell of music during both kisses is a bit corny, but that could be a deliberate reference to those types of movies and TV shows.
An odd element is Willie “the Snitch”. Such a character, at least the way he’s portrayed, is more suited for old cop shows (Huggy Bear on “Starsky and Hutch” comes to mind). However, considering hell spawn are generally more dangerous than street criminals, he would be prime fodder for the various demons that set up in Sunnydale. It doesn’t seem like he’d be alive for long considering his loose lips.
One of the better decisions the show made was scraping the original idea of killing Spike in this episode or around this point in time. That reprieve was one that would define the series. The series would’ve been completely different had they followed their original plan. While it is usually good for arc-orientated shows to have a plan of where they are going, flexibility in this case is even better. If something works as well as Spike has, it would be fitting to have more of him.
Thankfully, they delve more into his character than just keep him around to satisfy fans. As the episode ends, the twisted vampire lovers have switched roles, with Drusilla proving to be quite strong, hoisting the ailing Spike out of the ashes of the church. This would only be the beginning for this fascinating character.
This is one of the most pivotal episodes of the series, as the original plan would’ve altered much of what’ll come later. The season is starting to take shape with Drusilla’s recovery, effectively ending the introduction phase of the season (perhaps a bit late than preferred). These episodes work well upon multiple viewing to see how much they set up for future episodes.
I loved Kendra! She made this episode completely brilliant. I loved Kendra bonding with Giles about some books and how jealous Buffy was about it. Kendra was even better when realizing that Buffy went to school there and mocking her. Xander talking with Kendra was funny too.
Buffy and Kendra were great when talking about their earlier fight. I loved how Buffy was trying to teach Kendra about emotions. It was great to see them together both slayers but with completely different styles.
Cordelia and Xander were great as well. I loved how they went from "I hate you" and "No I hate you" to making out in Buffy's basement. The sexual tension between them when they were hiding from the bug guy was incredible. I loved how they ran out of the house and Xander had to squirt Cordelia off with the hose because she was covered in worms. I loved the pair when they were doing research in the library too. They were insulting each other too much and it was very humorous. I loved how in the end they were both trying to deny what had happened in Buffy's basement and then they just started kissing again.
Willow and Oz were great here too. I loved how the cop lady turned out to be a member of the Order of Taraka and ended up shooting Oz in the arm. Oz's reaction to being shot was great he was just like "Wow I'm shot." I loved Willow and Oz when they were bonding over animal crackers and Oz going on about the monkey and his monkey pants. Oz and Willow were very cute together.
I loved Spike and Drusilla. It was obvious that there was some trouble the paradise with them. She really is more into Angel than Spike and when Dru was torturing Angel it was obvious. I liked that Drusilla revealed a lot of Angel's past when they were together too.
I loved the fight at the end. I loved what Buffy did to Spike that was awesome.
This episode explains why there is a second slayer, Kendra. When Buffy died for about two minutes in the season one finale, a second slayer was immediately activatted, even though she was revived. The battle scene toward the end of the episode is great. Two slayers kicking vampire butt simaltaneously. There are so many cool moves going on that it's kind of hard to keep trach. This is also the episode where Spike is injured. He spends most of the rest of this season in a wheelchair. This episode is definitely exciting and could be considered a series classic.
We get to meet Kendra, another slayer, in this ep. She was "called" when Buffy died for the short time in Season one. Seems she has been keeping a close watch on Buffy and Angel. She even tried to kill Angel, but Spike and Willy saved him. Of course Spike only wants him to use to restore Drusillas health. Kendra is *nothing* like Buffy, she is all slay, all day. She takes it very seriously, whereas Buffy has her own way of dealing with things. This was an outstanding episode from start to finish. I wasnt a huge Cordy/Xander fan, but we get to see then kiss in this one. Buffy thinks Spike and Dru are out of thie picture, but she will soon find out how wrong she is.
Buffy and the newly discovered vampire slayer Kendra work together to save Angel from the evil clutches of Spike and Drusilla. They work well together depsite being complete opposites. Kendra is exactly what Giles wanted Buffy to be like, fortunately he doesn't state this.
Another odd pairing that actually could work quite well is that of Xander and Cordy. It looks wrong to see them together but it has a tonne of witty comical potential with a lot of jumping in broom closets.
Thios episode was expertly written and it just proves that the writers of Buffy aren't afraid to push the boudaries of the conventional sci-fi series.
There's only one slayer and once one slayer dies, the next one comes. Remember!? So, here goes Kendra, the "new" vampire slayer, and she could hardly be more different from Buffy.
I think this episode or actually both parts of it, was sooo great!
We learn that there's more to being a slayer than killing demons and we see how impressed Giles is with Kendra's knowledge. But in the end, having family, friends and believing in love and friendship is worth more than fighting evil on your own. That's a lesson Kendra has to learn and Buffy realizes how lucky she truly is.
It was great that despite their rough start, the two slayer united their force to save Angel. Well written, great eppy!
Buffy tells Kendra that she is the real Slayer and tells her they should go talk to Giles. Turns out that Kendra is the real deal. When the Master killed Buffy, she was dead long enough to trigger a new Slayer, enter Kendra. Buffy wonders of she can retire and Kendra be the Slayer. Angel is saved by Willie who hands him over to Spike and Dru who start to torture him. Turns out that if they kill him and do a ritual it will restore Dru to health because Angel is her sire. Xander and Cordelia are still locked in the closet and start making out – this scares both of them and they manage to escape. Assign number three is a cop who comes after Willow and Buffy, Oz takes a bullet meant for Willow and Kendra saves Buffy. They all go back to the library where Giles tells them about Angel. This really upsets Buffy and she vows revenge. They find out from Willie where he is Buffy goes for him and Kendra goes for Giles bringing the gang as back-up. They save the day and think all is well but later we see a healthy Dru helping a hurt Spike. Kendra goes home but not with out some advice for Buffy.
Funny quote: Oz: I mock you with my monkey pants. *my friends and I used to randomly quote this and people would just stare at us.
Some shows featuring characters cursed by a destiny usually go on for years with that character desperately craving a normal life, going on and on about it for what seems like ages. Thankfully, What's My Line? Part Two sees Buffy realizing she can't escape her slayer duties, and faces up to the fact that it's not a job, it's who she is. And the show can only get better from here.
Kendra is a lot like the complete opposite of Buffy. Giles always wanted his slayer to be a lot like her, somebody who has devoted their entire life to her duties, and ignoring any type of social contact outside of her destiny. This episode proves that this isn't the way to treat a slayer, since Kendra's inability to make her own decisions during bad situations (unlike Buffy) could have led to Angel's death and Spike and Drusilla becoming even more powerful than they already were, if Buffy died for good or was not activated years before.
The funniest scenes in part two come from Buffy's immediate dislike for Kendra. Her numerous catty comments to the new slayer, calling her everything from "Pink Ranger" to "she-Giles", are hilarious, and Sarah Michelle Gellar clearly loves playing Buffy all jealous. I also loved the teaming up of Xander and Cordelia, who share a kiss in this episode. I was initially worried by this shock relationship but it eventually grew on me, realizing it had a ton of comedy potential.
The most memorable scene was the huge battle at the end. It was the first big fight on the show, with Buffy and Kendra doing some kick-ass moves whilst battling crazy-knife-lady and Spike. Plus, both Willow and Giles get to stake vampires for the first time, Xander and Cordy get stampy and Angel's life hangs in the balance. It's a really tense scenario and one of the best action scenes seen on the show.
Just like the first part, What's My Line? is brought to a satisfying close, with characters placed in peril numerous times, an awesome team-up between Buffy and Kendra (who clearly hate each other at first) and some truly excellent dialogue. Plus, there are monkey pants, and they're always great.
Director: David Semel
Writer: Marti Noxon
Buffy: Then why the hell did you attack me?
Kendra: I tought you were a vampire.
Buffy: Oh, a swing and a miss for the rookie. (walks around Kendra to Willow)
Kendra: I had good reason to tink you were. Did I not see you kissing a vampire?
Willow: (stands up in her defense) Buffy would never do that! (realizes) Oh. (to Buffy) Except for that sometimes you do that. (to Kendra) But only with Angel. (to Buffy) Right? (sits again)
This arc also give us the now classic Xander-Cordelia only on a hellmouth relationship. Which both are dying to keep from ever happening again (the kissage) but that doesn't last long.
The first part was exciting but it didn’t go that much into the characters self, this one did that. Specially Kendra and Drusilla stole my heart.
It had some awesome moments, character development and hilarious twists.
It continues where part 1 left us, with Kendra and Buffy arguing, Kendra says that she’s a slayer but Buffy says that she’s already the slayer. Kendra takes Buffy’s scenario not to fight and they go to Giles who is confused as well, he says that it can only happen when the original slayer dies, then he realised that Buffy did in fact die. Then Willow is filled in and Kendra thought Buffy was a vampire because she kissed Angel, then she says she almost killed him.
When they go to the cage where she left him she finds it without ashes, means he didn’t die. Wily had already dragged him out and sold him to Spike.
Willy is also the only bad thing about this episode, he bothered me quite a lot and goes down as one of the worst characters of BTVS.
Meanwhile Cordy and the worm guy are talking about cosmetics, then Xander sees him and they see a worm on his face, They run and the guy burst into worms, they do to the attic and hide. While they wait they start to bicker and then kiss. They have to get out of there and before they go out of the house the worm guy jumps onto Cordy, Xander then washes the worms off her and they leave in Queen C’s car.
My favourite parts of the episode were once again, the Dru/Spike ones. They have a very twisted sexual energy going on, then Spike brings in Angel and Dru has the chance to torture him for what he did to her family, what bugs me. They used to be a gang together and why is she mad at Angel anyway? Since when do vampires have a conscious?
Anyway, Buffy and Kendra have also a twisted sexual vibe, except they don’t seem to like each other until they start to understand that they are not alone anymore. Not the only freak, but still. Kendra thinks that Angel should die because he’s a vampire.
The third relationship is between Willow and Oz, they blossom and make such a cute couple. The third Taraka member is in school, a cop and she tries to kill Buffy but instead shoots Oz. Then Kendra comes to protect dear old Buffy and Patrice (the cop) escapes.
Buffy goes back to pummel Willy who finally takes her to Spike, Kendra goes to the watcher. It was all a trap and Spike knew about Buffy but he gets mad because know she’s at the hidden church, Spike already crucified Angel onto Dru and it’s draining his energy to her.
When Spike is about to kill Buffy, Kendra and the scooby’s walk in and the two slayers kick Spike’s ass, meanwhile Cordy and Xander kill the worm and then Kendra fights Patrice and kills her as well (in a lame way if I might say)
Buffy saves Angel and Spike takes Dru with him, Buffy then throws something on Spike and he goes under a piano thingie and she thinks she killed him. The church then burst into flames and Buffy saves Angel and Kendra helps her.
This episode was very neat, Kendra’s goodbye was great and Oz’ talk about cookies was sweet. Also, the end has a twist. Dru and Spike aren’t dead at all, Spike is just hurt but Dru is at full strength now.
The story continues in this second half, with Kendra and Buffy starting to get along. But still Kendra is quite the stiff tight bookwormish, slayer that Giles would want Buffy to be like.
Spike and Drusilla just excel in being vicious and Spike gets quite jealous of Angel.
Wow, the kiss between Xander and Cordelia in the series classic. Also poor Jonathan gets some screen time; he is a great hero to come.
Drusilla’s torture of Angel is a great venture. She is only repaying him for his gruesome torture to her family which he performed on her before he sired her.
Buffy is shocked to discover that the mystery woman she has been fighting is infact a slayer, but viewers will be more shocked at the result of Xander and Cordelia's escapades after finding themselves locked in Buff's basement. Another great episode from
This episode starts at the same frantic pace that the last one finished on. In this episode we see a "new" slayer that was called after Buffy died for a few moments at the end of the first season.
The new slayer, Kendra works alongside Buffy to try and rescue Angel from Spike and Drusilla, while Xander and Cordelia have time to explore their feelings with each other, after getting locked in a basement - as do Willow and Oz.
This is another episode jam packed with twists and turns, and full of great writting and cleverly exacuted plots. There is a real feeling of love and caring in this episode which helps give the show added depth. And as ever, there are great moments of comedy and utter suspence, all mixed with great action.
Another fantastic episode from season two - truelly fantastic.
What a lot happens in this episode! After watching the first half of the two-parter, I that assumed this episode would resolve the cliff-hangers and explain the Slayer #2, but that’s only the bare bones of it. We get the notion of what a slayer is, love and romance in all of its twisted forms, the beginnings of the Angel/Dru/Spike triangle, naked torture, rôle reversals, religious metaphors, quite a lot of revenge and an utterly stupendous false ending.
So, the cliff-hangers. Buffy discovers that she is only one of the Chosen Two as Kendra reveals that she has been sent to Sunnydale by her Watcher, Mr Tsebuto, to stop a dark power rising. This begs the question as to why Mr T didn’t contact Mr G, or even the Watchers’ Council. I bet Giles had to file a report about the whole Buffy rising from the dead thing – I’m sure the Council would want to know about the Master. And wouldn’t Kendra’s Watcher have told her about the previous Slayer and how she died - in fact who was the Slayer(s) between Nikki Wood and Buffy Summers? It is a question that only Dark Horse can answer, I imagine.
Anyway, this is pedantry. I’m not sure the Watchers Council even “existed” at this point. We’ve only just found out about the Slayer Handbook! Although I’m as disappointed as Willow that there aren’t t-shirts. Kendra turns out to be a model slayer, full of obedience (even Giles looks perturbed when she calls him Sir), duty, book-learning and lack of interest in boys. Buffy is immediately put out that Kendra is more the perfect slayer than herself. Kendra has no friends, family, school or boyfriend to distract her, she is pure fighting machine. However, her black-and-white philosophy does not allow for grey shades or even consequences:- her locking of Angel in the cage in Willie’s Bar - which leads to the events of this episode - is going to come back to haunt her in a very big way.
Buffy stops feeling sorry for herself for almost 10 minutes as she realises that Kendra, whilst not having to juggle many different lives, has *no* other life and is thus worse off than herself. Even though she has to keep her supernatural life a secret from Joyce, at least her parents didn’t deposit her with Giles from an early age. Buffy may be impulsive, unruly and disobedient, but she has begun to analyse what a Slayer is, something Joss and his team will continue for the next 5 seasons. Already there are the beginnings of the idea that a Slayer being controlled by men is not quite right and that Watcher guidance leading to independence is the key to a successful Slayer. The concept of another Slayer rising is convenient for the fellows of the Watchers’ Council because it means that the Slayers are expendable, not quite human. Buffy is not as keen on being the Slayer as Kendra is, but she is a lot better at it – another question is raised in my mind as to what would have happened to Kendra had she not been called. She was identified as a Potential from an early age, but presumably so were many others. If another had been chosen, would she have been discarded like a puppy outgrown its cuteness? Anyway, apart from her accent making Spike or Dru’s cod cockney look good, it also takes her appearance to make Buffy value her place in the world. Someone else threatening her position makes her appreciate that position. Still, Buffy has a lot to learn. Her impulsiveness makes her run off into a trap – as it does in Becoming I – and Kendra is shown to be right when she goes to find Giles and the gang. Kendra might disapprove of Buffy having a Scooby Gang, but they’re useful when needed. And as Buffy points out, imagination and resourcefulness are as important as strength and fighting ability. When they are battling with Spike and Patrice the evil Policewoman, Kendra and Buffy swap enemies in an amazing stunt as Buffy rolls across Kendra’s back, showing both inventiveness and the importance of using emotion - Buffy battles Spike better than Kendra because she hates him, he has almost killed her boyfriend. There are echoes of "Never Kill A Boy On A First Date" (and that is the episode where Giles says that there is no Slayer Handbook) as Buffy goes into anger overdrive at the thought of anyone harming Angel “You can attack me, you can send assassins after me, that’s fine – but nobody messes with my boyfriend”. In the end, Buffy and Kendra make an excellent team – playing Bad Cop and Bad Cop with Willie, Kendra saving Buffy (and poor Jonathan) from Patrice at school and finally using her anger (and teenage girl obsession with clothes?) to kick the policewoman’s bum after she rips her top: “Dat’s me favourite shirt! Dat’s me only shirt!” She and Buffy bond (without hugging) and she leaves Buffy with some words of wisdom: “You talk about slaying, as if it’s a job. It’s not. It’s who you are”, something Buffy is just starting to learn and which answers her question about careers, especially as law enforcement is looking like a dodgy option.
The crushing and burning of Spike and Dru is a fabulous ending and the epilogue draws a distinction between the tenderness of Buffy rescuing Angel and the other relationships in the episode. As equally touching is Willow’s encounter with slacker Oz who is exceptionally clever but whose only ambition is to play E b dim 9. The fact that he took a bullet in his guitar playing arm to save Willow when Patrice goes mental is terribly heroic and his selflessness immediately initiates him into the gang. Their cuteness together is contrasted with Cordelia and Xander’s love/hate relationship which goes something like:
“I hate you!”
“I hate you!”
C&X take their bickering relationship to the next level. Ever since Willow and Cor got stuck in the cupboard in School Hard, they’ve not had a problem with each other – it’s Cordy and Xander who’ve been trading insults in a non-platonic manner. It was bound to end up like this (I do have a little sympathy with Xander – Norman Pfister did not look ‘normal’ as Cordy insists – his name, voice and appearance are very Hitchcockian). Although Xander is eager to point the hose at Cordelia’s, erm, skirt (and hey, real not CGI bugs on poor old Cordelia), when they are back with the gang, neither of them shows much enthusiasm for the other. Xander is trying to crack onto Kendra and is still bickering with Cordelia in the research session. Still, they get to bond during their revenge on Norman Bugman as they glue him to the floor. The scene in which Cordy tries to avoid Xander in the hall and he looks left and right to make sure no-one has seen them as they go into a classroom shows perfectly why Xander and Willow could never date. He is always going to be attracted to the not-so-nice girl and he likes a bit of hard work, not puppy love. As we see the beginnings of the love triangle involving Spike, Dru and Angel, both Xander and Willow are moving away from their isosceles with Buffy.
The fourth love interest in the episode is of course the strange and twisted Spike/Dru relationship. He is wholly committed to her (“my black goddess, my ripe wicked plum”) and her cure whilst she gets her kicks torturing a wholly gratuitous half-naked Angel.…[pause in reverie]….showing a nice knack for revenge as she reminds him of how he murdered her family. Not that I imagine she's so bothered about that – but she knows that he is. She and Spike kiss and caress whilst Angel is tied up, which of course is what Darla and Angel did whilst the human Dru whimpered for her life in the corner. He is suffering for his sins. Angel also knows how to get his own back on the twosome by mocking Spike by saying Dru prefers him sexually, foreshadowing the threesome to come. This has a double purpose as he is trying to provoke Spike into killing him, which will save Buffy and Sunnydale from the wrath of Dru. His crucifix position whilst being tortured and his further torment in the (of all places) church is more Jesusy than an arc-load of Methodists. Of course this again foreshadows his death at the end of S2 - which just happens to save the world.
After the epilogues is the entirely brilliant and inspired post-epilogue. Spike and Dru were supposed to die in this episode but Joss reprieved them - thank God! Where would the rest of this series and indeed Seasons 4 and 5 have been without Spike? It also makes a fantastic ending – and a completely pyrrhic victory for Buffy. She may have saved Angel, but the “dark power” has still risen, Dru is restored and stronger than ever and she and Spike have the element of surprise from now on. From here on in, the roles are reversed, everything is as possibly changed as it could be. Or is it? We have a new Drusilla, hinted to be the ultimate Big Bad – or is she?
I think this was areally great episode I love how in the Whats My line?1 How Kendra and Buffy got into that big fight! Its also cool to watch how they Kendra was called to be the slayer! They also showed acouple fights seens in this episode which were really cool!
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