PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS A SPOILER-RICH ZONE. If your diet requires you to dine on television spoiler-free ... good luck with that.


Thursday, October 25, 2012

Snakes. Why did it have to be snakes?

Episode 2.19: I Only Have Eyes For You. Original Airdate 4.21.98

"Sunnydale High School is haunted by the ghosts of of a former student and teacher who reenact their tragic romance through the bodies of the school's current inhabitants."

Daniel's Thoughts:

  • Aww, Xander and Cordelia dancing is sweet
  • "I'm Ben.  We had Algebra II together last year". I'm a senior in college?  Nice casting...
  • Also, not to be confused with hottie doctor Ben! [Yes, "Doctor" Ben, who can't pronounce the word muscle. - Z]
  • Oooh, It's a spooky possession story!
  • Snyder: "I'm no stranger to conspiracy.  I saw JFK".  Hee
  • Buffy! Don't just put the moving-by-itself book back!  It's a clue!
  • Oh, poor, sad Giles :(
  • Hey! It's Chris Gorham!
  • "Did you see what he wrote?" -Stupid extra in regards to the GIANT WRITING ON THE BLACKBOARD.  
  • Scary arm through the locker!  I LOVE GHOST STORIES!
  • The direction in this episode is really well done.  There are four sets of couples and each have a very similar intonation with their deliveries.  I wonder if everyone had to watch "James" and "Ms. Newman's" performances to mimic them well.  And the choreography is key and well done, too.
  • Again, poor, sweet Giles.  He wants to believe so badly.
  • Aren't prison rape jokes funny and not at all cliche?  ....
  • Eww, snakes!
  • This is the first time Snyder admits he knows about the hellmouth.  
  • When do they have time for homework?  
  • Really spooky effects - especially for the 90s - Cordy's face, Willow getting pulled into a hole - very good.
  • I love the role reversal - Buffy being possessed by him and Angel being possessed by her.  It works so perfectly.  As Buffy says, he possessed her because he identifies with her.
  • And it's a great acting exercise for David and Sarah.

Zelda's Thoughts:

  • My dad taught me the proper grammatical use of the word "only," This song gets it wrong.
  • "Like a steel trap." I use that a lot.
  • Ben seems nice. Go with Ben, Buffy! He's human and stuff.
  • 666 Park Ave just ripped off the premise of this. Stupid 666.
  • Oooh they use the word bitch on TV. A lot. Daring!
  • This episode is so well-crafted. The mystery unfolds slowly without telegraphing how it will go.
  • "You stink of lies." He thinks he's in a noir movie, doesn't he.
  • So is Willow missing all her classes while she teaches Jenny's classes? Also, where's the actual adult substitute? Should I stop?
  • Poor sad Giles.
  • Also I like that Willow is learning more of her witchy ways from going through Jenny's stuff. Carrying the banner of both tech-hacking and magic!
My hair will never be this short again.

  • Hey, everyone who's a fan of Covert Affairs, Harper's Island, or Ugly Betty! Lookit the tiny Chris Gorham!
  • The five-second reaction shot of Buffy and Xander not quite knowing how to react to the arm in his locker: beautiful, beautiful.
  • "...some kind of locker monster." // "Loch Ness Monster?"
  • "Despite the Xander-speak." It's called Joss-speak, Giles. You silly.
  • I gotta say, all around very good acting from these one-offs re-enacting James and Grace's breakup.
  • No wonder Giles thinks it's Jenny. He hears, separate from the re-enactment of the murder, a female voice saying, "I need you." James's pain is spazzing in all directions.
  • Mansion! Fancy new set!
  • "It'll be perfect when we want the sunlight to kill us."
  • Spike quietly tolerating all of Angelus's assery. BECAUSE REVENGE WILL BE HIS.
  • "I've read the book, seen the movie, and I'm still fuzzy about what's going on."
  • I like that the scoobies, seeing Giles is irrational, don't persist in arguing with him, but go off to investigate on their own.
  • "Dog spit is cleaner than human's."
  • "The quality of mercy is not Buffy."
  • They each respond to different parts of James's story - Buffy doesn't want to forgive him for killing his love (her baggage), Willow wants some allowance to be made because he was clearly a smart, good student (like her), and Xander recognizes the patterns of bad judgment in sabotaging a relationship.
  • I've had it with these monkey fighting snakes in this Monday-Friday school!
  • "I saw that movie! Even the priest died!" Way to spoil it, Cordy. I only just saw the movie this year.
  • This episode is so awesome. Even outside of the amazing scene with Buffy and Angelus, this episode is so awesome.
  • All the slamming doors. So cool.
  • "Our man Angel here likes to talk, but he's not much for action. All hat and no cattle." Spike, calling it like it is.
  • Poor Giles. Still looking for Jenny. DAMN YOU, JOSS.
  • I like that when Buffy is watching James and Grace dance, there's a bit longing/jealousy in her. Even as she knows they both died, she still sees the love and misses her own.
  • "Giles, Jenny could never be this mean." :(
  • Spell didn't work. Giant swarm of wasps. RUN RUN RUN.
  • "It is just something he is gonna have to live with." // "He can't live with it, Buff. He's dead."
  • So would the ghost peter away after Sadie Hawkins? Could they have just let this one lie until next year?
  • I like when Angelus slips out of Angelus into Grace. Joss said it was DB's performance in this episode that made him realize he could carry his own series. He's okay, the vulnerability is pretty good, but SMG is so much better. So are the flashbackers.
  • Love the cutting between Grace/James and Buffy/Angel.
  • Oh man, SMG is so freaking good.
  • And it's such a brilliant brilliant twist - not just that Buffy's identifying with James makes her play his role instead of Grace's, but that that allows Angelus/Grace's spirit to survive the shooting to stop Buffy/James from killing her/himself.
  • And like a (really creepy) fairy tale, the spell is broken with a kiss.
  • Buffy's tiny voice after the kiss: "Angel." ::wibble::
  • Aaaaand gratuitous shirtless DB.


Giles: Yes. Well. I appreciate your thoughts on the matter. In fact, I encourage you to always challenge me when you feel it's appropriate. You must never be cowed by authority. Except, of course, in this instance when I am clearly right and you are clearly wrong.
Daniel: Omigosh, it's Zelda!
Zelda: (small voice) Except that I am right!

Favorite Lines:

Daniel: "To forgive is an act of compassion, Buffy. It's not done because people deserve it. It's done because they need it."  - Giles. I remember feeling really touched by that sentiment the first time I heard it and continue to be so upon numerous rewatches.  
Zelda:  Um ... see the crossfire for mine.

90s Factoid:

"You just went OJ on your girlfriend!"

Just in case you forgot who he was

Arc/Continuity Stuff:

  • Buffy's flashback is during her US History class.
  • Snyder is conspiring with the police on covering up Sunnydale High goings-on. This is the first time he admits he knows it's a Hellmouth. This is also the first time The Mayor is dropped as a threatening high source. Lookit that foreshadowing!


Dead Humans - 1
Dead Undeads - 0
Dead Flashbacks - 1
Giles Unconscious - 0
Giles Cleans His Glasses - 0
Buffy Breaks a Door - 1
Evil Reveal - 0
Unevil Reveal - 0
Shenanigans Called - 0
Apocalypse Called - 0

We're also retroactively adding a Flashback Death stat for Buffy's cousin Celia.


  1. Yes! Flashback Death Stat FTW! You're welcome, guys. :P

    Also, despite my Angel/Buffy love hatred, I love this episode. I love ghost stories and the whole thing was just too brilliantly done for me to hate it on principle. My cold heart was even crushed for poor Buffy when she came out of the possession and thought she had Angel back. That's how good this episode is.

    Also, "Giles, Jenny could never be this mean." gets me every time. Poor Giles, he wanted so bad for it to be Jenny, to get to see her again. :'(

  2. Good entry!

    Regarding grammar point, the song could mean "The only reason I have eyes is for looking at you", though it seems unlikely.

    1. pssssssssssssssssssssssssshaw to that. The full verse lead-up is:
      "Are there stars out tonight? I don't know if it's cloudy or bright - 'cause I only have eyes for you."

      The meaning behind the song is that he sees only her - should be "I have eyes for only you" or "I have eyes only for you." Everything else is wrong. WRONG, I TELLS YA.

      But, like, everyone makes this error, so it's gonna piss off only my daddy and me.


  3. Wow I really never thought about that. But it makes sense, about the song title I mean.

    I adore this episode, whilst I'm not sure I could emphatically call it my favourite, because a voice in my head always says 'what about Passion?' but it would either be first or second if a rabid fan pointed a gun to my head and said pick your favourite ever Buffy episode. I don't know, maybe I do prefer it to Passion just because of the amazing parallel between James and Grace and Buffy and Angel (the latter being my favourite TV couple ever).

    Oh and Cordy spoiled the Exorcist for me too. Just cause it came out in the 70's doesn't mean us young uns will see it before we watch Buffy :P. But I didn't mind cause I wasn't impressed by the Exorcist anyway.

    1. I'm not sure it would make my top ten, though I do love it (those bully specialty episodes muscle a lof of the other good ones out of the way), but it would definitely make my top 20.

  4. Chris Gorham: Harrison John - Popular. Just saying