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


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

One Perfect High School Moment

Episode 3.20: The Prom. Original Airdate 5.11.99

"After Angel breaks off their relationship, Buffy single-handedly battles three fearsome hell hounds so that her classmates can enjoy their senior prom."

Zelda's Thoughts:

  • Mostly I'm waiting for Jonathan's speech at the end. But I guess I'll watch the rest of the episode.
  • HAHA BUFFY HAS BEDHAIR. This is a rarity on television, y'all. Of course, the half of her hair that was actually against the pillow isn't smuffed at all, so um ... fuck that.
  • Awww Buffy is getting all nesty in Angel's pad. Poor thing doesn't know what's coming.
  • "I guess it's later than we thought." THERE'S A DOUBLE MEANING IN THAT.
  • "Men are evil. Will you go with me?" // "One of us is very confused, and I honestly don't know which." Yeah, I ship this. They have great banter chemistry.
  • Then again, he also has good chemistry with his sock puppet of love:
Who's this Anya? Is she prettier than me?
(Thanks Darthy for this gif!)


I uh...leaped from shadow to shadow.

  • I'd say dammit Joyce stop pooping on Buffy's love life, but it was clear from the teaser scene that Angel's already harboring Mayor-planted doubts of his own about his future with Buffy.
  • "The caffeine, it makes me jittery." um really? 

  • DB's work here is almost great, it's okay, but this is such a well-written scene and I love it. It's right and it's still heartbreaking.
  • "And I myself will be wearing pink taffeta as chenille would not go with my complexion. Can we please talk about the Ascension?" I love you Giles.
  • Buffy states her thesis here: we deserve a little fun before the Mayor tries to kill us all. And she will fight like a hellhound to achieve that for her friends and classmates.
  • D'awww dream wedding. What first looks like fan-wanking turns into HAHAHAHA FANS FUCK YOUR DREAMS.
  • But listen to the sweet music of their lurv.
  • Wow though I don't like Buffy's dress. Hate the skirt, hate the sleeves. Great neckline.
  • Alert! Bad hand acting from DB.
  • Oh Angel. A sewer is a terrible place to break up with your Buffy.
  • SMG is acting the hell out of this scene. DB is ... considering acting at some point in his future? I dunno. He's just reading his lines with no emotion.
  • "I want my life to be with you." // "I don't." And there's no way to argue with that and it's awful.
  • "How am I supposed to stay away from you?" 
  • I find myself in a weird position. I feel for Buffy, and SMG is really amazing in these scenes, but I don't actually ... I'm not anywhere close to crying. Not like in Becoming Part 2, not like in New Moon, and nowhere remotely close to The Body or Forever or The Gift.
  • "I think horrible is still coming. Right now it's worse. Right now I'm just trying to keep from dying." It is really sad and SMG is amazing and stuff.
  • "But don't you already have all the dresses?" Love it.
  • Love that Cordelia's shallowness about wardrobe is actually the key to the motivation of the hellhounds.
  • Hi Tucker! You may recognized Tucker's voice from such classics as Jonathan's singing in Superstar, or Aladdin's singing in Aladdin.
  • Buffy's new mission! Prom for everyone! (Except Buffy)
  • "I'm going to give you all a nice, fun, normal evening if I have to kill every single person on the face of the earth to do it." // "Yay?" Great act break.
  • "I'm over the whole Buffy Gets One Perfect High School Moment Thing" waaaaaaaaaaah
  • People shouldn't look so terrifying when they say "Have. A nice. Time."
  • I just want to point out what a good man Giles is. After all he feels about Angel and all the shit Angel/Angelus did to him, when Buffy tells him Angel's leaving her, he looks genuinely sad and says "Buffy, I'm sorry."
  • This is actually a far more realistic portrayal of prom that most film and tv does it.
  • I like that this was a way for Cordy and Xander to be on good terms again. Their romance is long over, but they can be friends now.
  • "I have my reasons." Flashback: "You wanna go to the prom with me?"// "No." BEST. UNDERMINING. FLASHBACK. EVER.
  • "That's right, follow Buffy, good dogs."
  • Yay Buffy brought her dress. And it's such a pretty dress, except for the weird train. Though I can't understand what's keeping it up. Tape?
  • But see, Jonathan's speech? I'll cry every time. 
  • Also glad to see he wasn't suspended from school for that whole weapon thing.
  • "Is Buffy Summers here tonight?" BRB ALREADY WEEPING
  • "lowest mortality rate of any graduating class in Sunnydale history." ... it's insane that they track that. slash wonderful
  • Buffy Summers: Class Protector. And Jonathan's sweet smile at her. And I'm just weeping.
  • "And you have the emotional maturity of a blueberry scone." I have to start using that in real life
  • wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiild horses couldn't drag me awaaaaaaaaaaaaay
  • Buffy's work got recognized by her classmates - she will be remembered - calling back to Homecoming - "I could pick up a yearbook someday and say, 'I was there. I went to high school, I had friends, and ... for one moment, I got to live in the world.' And there'd be proof. Proof that I was chosen for something other than this." and even though they're not getting back together, Angel came to Buffy's prom to dance with her. This is just ... thank you, show. Thank you for the feels. And thanks for earning them first.
Daniel's Thoughts:

  • Buffy’s getting all couple-y  and Angel’s not.  Do they ever talk?  They know what happened last time they got too involved.  There’s no way they can have a sexual relationship. There’s no future in their relationship.  They both know it and they’re both not talking about it.  Besides the no-sex thing, 
  • Anya!  I almost forgot!  And I got really fan-girly:

Yes, this was me at that moment

  • Anya and Xander haven’t really interacted until this moment.  I wonder if they tested their chemistry first.
  • "Men are evil, will you go with me?" (to the prom).  I love it.  She’s so amazing.
  • And Willow’s contempt of Anya starts early... [Well, she did lie right to her face about a spell. - Z]
  • Buffy and Angel 4eva. YES.  SHE’S A TEENAGER.  AND YOU’RE 500.
  • Aww, we don’t really get to see Joyce in other places. 
  • And she brings up so eloquently what I was trying to say earlier.  Yay, she’s being a good mom.  Love this scene.
  • Prom Dress or Demon?  Fun game.
  • Hey! People in the library!  Nope….just Cordelia & Wesley. I got excited for a second.
  • The monster of the week subplot is incredibly sub par and kind of lame.  And the demon dog make-up looks fake.  Doesn't matter though because the writing in the rest of the episode is so good.  And the monster part, I think, is just meant to be a background story while the real story is about Angel & Buffy, and about leaving high school.
  • Buffy looks really beautiful in her wedding dress.  (It seems there would be crossfire here, as Zelda criticized the dress up there. except SMG looks pretty in everything.)
  • It’s interesting in his dream that it’s Buffy that goes up in flames when they hit the sunlight.  I think that speaks to Angel's character that he's more worried about her than himself.
  • Buffy and Angel fight.  Vamp comes.  Buffy, “Not now.” *stake*  Love it. No long sequence; just a stake.   Because, the relationship is more important than the Hellmouth right now.
  • I like that they bring back what the mayor said about their relationship.  Good continuity. It’s important that this didn't just come out of the blue.
  • This break-up is so sad because they WUV EACH OTHER SO MUCH BUT THEY CAN’T BE TOGETHER AND IT’S ALL SO SAD.
  • And then she goes to her best friend because that’s what you do.
  • And Willow does her best friend duties by making Angel the bad guy.  HAHA.  And she just said, “And that’s a best friend’s job.” Are these my thoughts or my memories?
  • How…did they get the security footage?
  • Buffy: “I’m going to give you a nice normal fun evening if I have to kill everyone on the face of the Earth to do it.” HA!
  • McPlasmas would make a lot of money in Sunnydale.  But they’d need to be open just at night.  And the workers would have to wear crosses for protection.  I've thought way too much about this.
  • This episode is seriously missing a getting-ready-for-the-prom music montage.
  • ANYA IS TERRIBLE AT SMALL-TALK.  She’s talking about her past and the fate she's befallen on men AND IT’S amazing and awesome. 
  • I’m glad they didn't bring Tucker back as they had planned.  He’s not as interesting as Andrew. (Though I hate Andrew.)  Love you Tom Lenk!
  • Did Xander really think he was going to win class clown?  No one. Likes him. [No one likes Buffy either but she got a toy surprise. - Z] [People like Buffy or at least respect her. Mini-Crossfire! -D]
  • Jonathan had to lower the mike because he’s a little person!
  • Omg.  This Jonathan speech about Buffy.  I love it so much.  I think it just boils up the first three seasons so perfectly.
  • Heh.  There’s a kid dancing with his girlfriend and he’s so much shorter than her so his head is resting on her boobs. 

  • And wiiiiiiild horsessssssss couldn’t drag me awaaay.  I love this freaking song.  And it’s so perfect for when Angel walks into the prom.
  • And such a nice way to end the episode.  They’re not reunited – because that would be a big backwards step.  They dance with no other expectations.  They just want to hold each other. 


Angel: "I'll go."
Buffy: "Where?"
Daniel: "LA."
Zelda: "Wednesday nights."
Favorite Lines:

Daniel & Zelda: "We have one more award to give out. Is Buffy Summers here tonight? Did she, um ... This is actually a new category. First time ever. I guess there were a lot of write-in ballots, and, um, the prom committee asked me to read this. 'We're not good friends. Most of us never found the time to get to know you, but that doesn't mean we haven't noticed you. We don't talk about it much, but it's no secret that Sunnydale High isn't really like other high schools. A lot of weird stuff happens here ... But whenever there was a problem or something creepy happened, you seemed to show up and stop it. Most of the people here have been saved by you, or helped by you at one time or another. We're proud to say that the Class of '99 has the lowest mortality rate of any graduating class in Sunnydale history. And we know at least part of that is because of you. So the senior class offers its thanks, and gives you this. It's from all of us, and it has written here, 'Buffy Summers, Class Protector.'"

90s Factoid:
Yes, they're all 90s songs but we feel the song playing at the beginning of the prom, Praise You by Fatboy Slim really gives that 90s feel. And it's got this amazing video:

Arc/Continuity Stuff:

  • Recurrings: Anya, Joyce, General Redhead, Wesley, Jonathan
  • Cordelia's brokeness and her job at the dress shop is finally revealed.
  • Tucker Wells is here, with an as-yet-undisclosed younger brother.
  • Zombies and Hyena People get recalled at the Prom.


Oz's Hair - blonde
Anya's Hair - honeyblonde with swept bangs
Dead Humans - 1
Dead Undeads - 4
Giles Unconscious - 0
Giles Cleans His Glasses - 0
Buffy Breaks a Door - 0
Evil Reveal - 0
Unevil Reveal - 0 
Shenanigans Called - 1
Apocalypse Called - 0


  1. I love this episode. Despite my hatred of the Angel/Buffy relationship I still felt bad for Buffy when he dumped her because I hate seeing her sad. I even was happy that she got to have one last dance with him, it was a nice send off.

    The class protector feels! I need a moment. :'(

    1. Yey! I hate Angel/Buffy together too!
      I'm not alone :D
      When ever they were onscreen this season, it was time I got myself some food :P

    2. Oh my God! Someone else hates them as much as I do? Awesome! I usually tuned out and did my homework when they were on screen together and being lovey.

  2. "ANYA IS TERRIBLE AT SMALL-TALK. She’s talking about her past and the fate she's befallen on men AND IT’S amazing and awesome. "

    I would so enjoy having small-talk with Anya :)
    Just think about the interesting things she must have seen.

  3. Am I the only one who can't listen to that "Wild Horses" song without picturing Marky Mark fingerblasting Reese Witherspoon on a roller coaster?

  4. How can you feel anything other than love for Andrew?!?

    1. To paraphrase Spike, had they given us Just-Enough-Kill, Andrew would have been perfect. But they Overkilled him.

      I did enjoy his stint on Angel, except for the ridiculous implication that he wasn't gay.

    2. Zelda pretty much said what I wanted to but way more eloquently. I didn't really start disliking Andrew until season 7.

  5. This was a very good episode! and the only good Jonathan moment (at least for me, I can't stand him) The best part was when they were naming all the creepy creatures and stuff that has been going around and some one says SNYDER!

  6. Fun fact: the woman who designed SMG's dress in the dream sequence in this episode also designed her actual wedding dress :)

  7. Just found your blog and am LOVING it! Wanted to mention how the umbrella-awarding scene was VERY reminiscent of Carrie - I almost want to say an intentional shot-by-shot recreation but I haven't seen the movie recently enough to be sure. (oh yeah I could google that... nah.) Even now when I watch the episode for the eleventy-billionth time I clench up thinking 'oh NO....'

  8. I've been shipping Buffy and Angel since day 1 so this broke my heart!! Not as sad as Becoming Part 2, but still sad :(