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


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Ritual Sacrifice with Pie

Episode 4.8: Pangs. Original Airdate 11.23.99

"On Thanksgiving, Buffy encounters the spirit of a Native American warrior whose people were wiped out by settlers."

Zelda's Thoughts:

  • "Why don't you just go back where you came from? Things were great before you came!" Uh ... huh? She's been here four years? Did he mean campus? Because that only sprang into existence over the summer? I really don't understand this line except as a heavy-handed nod toward one of the themes of the episode.
  • Xander's arms do look pretty good in that tank top.
  • So ... I know our next episode is Something Blue, where we deal directly with Willow's heartbreak again, and we dealt with it last week in The Initiative but it seems to be on hold this week while we take a break for Thanksgiving. I'd say if they weren't doing the holiday ep, Something Blue would have naturally come after The Initiative instead of this. The one nod we get toward it is when she yells at Angel for leaving for Buffy's "own good."
  • Ugh. Angel. I'm so done with you, Angel. blah blah blah stalking from the bushes blah blah blah
  • aww hey Willow still has her Dingoes poster up. That's interesting.
  • It's cute how they explain away all the parents' absence for Thanksgiving - Joyce is off visiting Aunt Contrivance, Willow's mom is against it on principle, and Xander's family sucks.
  • "We could not invite Anya." That was kind of unnecessarily mean, Willow. I mean, I get you're still holding a grudge from Doppelgangland, but like ... she's dating your best friend. Then again, Xander was always a shit about Angel, so maybe that's just the semi-gross culture of their friendship.
  • Awww Xander has funny syphilis.
  • Emma Caulfield has such amazing delivery. See!! Even though she's awkward and lacking in tact (being the new Cordelia and all - hey, Xander has a type!), she loves Xander and when he's sick, her instinct is to take care of him, not to run away.
  • I like that for a hot second, when the Chumash spirit shows up, the scientist lady looks kind of turned on, before he kills her.
  • You know what's cute? If you ask anyone in the audience, the Chumash spirit is the A plot. But were you to ask Buffy, she'd say making Thanksgiving dinner was the A plot and the Chumash stuff was background.
  • So has Buffy always been able to sense Angel like this? Is it a result of her vampy sense? Or some deeper connection from that time he drank her blood?
  • Seriously, it makes no sense for Angel to be in this episode. Like no sense. He does NOTHING useful, he just lurks and talks to everyone except her. Was the entire point just to have him come over to set up the (admittedly amazing) Angel episode I Will Remember You? Yeah, that's the reasoning I'm going with. It could have been any episode, they woulda just had him lurk somewhere. He adds so little anything to this episode.
  • Snerk. Bereft, blanket-clad Spike watches through a window at a vamp family enjoying a meal together.
  • I do like Willow's reaction to Angel. "You're evil!"
  • Aw Harmony standing up to Spike for his shitty boyfriend behavior.
  • Also HA to his reaction to her wielding a stake. "You had that in our bed? Do you know dangerous that is?"
  • "Still trying not to refer to you lot as bloody colonials."
  • What the hell's a ricer? This, Apparently
  • Ew, peas are gross.
  • "I like mushy peas." Yeah apparently mushy peas are a British thing and I DO NOT GET IT. THIS IS WHY WE SECEDED YO.
  • "I think perhaps we won't help the angry spirit with his rape and pillage and murder."
  • "That's not terribly stealthy of him." // "He's lost his edge." And here we have proof that once Angel got his own show, everyone had free reign to mock him forever and I approve of this.
  • "Xander? You look like death." // "Are you okay?" // "You didn't bring rolls?" I stand by my Dinner As A-Plot theory.
  • On the plus side, Willow's fluffy sweater this week is more Big Bird colored than pink.
  • "Sarcasm accomplishes nothing, Giles." // "Sort of an end in itself." Giles, once again proving he is my spirit animal.
  • "He's a vengeance demon! You don't talk to vengeance demons; you kill them." Oh damn, don't say that in front of Anya.
  • Poor Buffy. Everyone is fighting. She just wants foods and family.
  • "Buffy, Xander is in real danger. Are you sure the solution is pie?" Oh Giles, the solution is always pie. Or cake. Yeah, strike that, the solution is totally cake. And ice cream.
  • Spike, the slowest-burning vampire since ... other Spike.
  • I can't decide who looks grosser right now, Spike or Xander.
  • "So you're saying you haven't murdered anybody lately? Let's be best pals!" Apparently that's the writers' plan. I mean, I'm not complaining much, because I love Spike and I love his arc, but this is a bit contrivey, guys.
  • Tied up Spike is pretty damn funny, though. I'm going to enjoy him as Giles's tenant.
  • "I came, I conquered, I felt really bad about it."
  • So Joss talked somewhere about how they couldn't figure out what to do with Spike once they made him a regular, and the original plan was to make him the new Cordelia, the one who said "you guys are being really stupid and I'm not afraid to tell you." And that's super clear in this episode with Spike's telling them how dumb they are about fighting (or not fighting) the Chumash spirit. What they didn't realize, of course, is that Anya was the new Cordelia and was way better at it. Spike's funny and awesome, but he ain't Cordelia.
  • "Do you know what else has blood in it? Blood."
  • Seriously, Spike all tied up and impaled with arrows during the fight is never not funny.
  • But also TINIEST HEART EVER. Couple this with his lack of burning, and the only vampire less destructible is Angel.
  • "We're under siege now, actually, thank you."
  • Thanks, show, for not showing the actual arrow removal from Buffy's arm. Considering I got tricked into watching some torture porn last night, I'm super grateful.
  • With all the head bashing Giles is receiving, I'm impressed he's still conscious.
  • Wow Buffy is fighting a giant stuffed animal. I mean totally realistic bear.
  • "An entire siege, you'd think one of you would bleed a little." Just a reminder that Spike is still evil, even if funny and all tied up.
  • NO XANDER DON'T oops too late now Buffy knows Angel came back.

Daniel's Thoughts:

  • Buffy’s being watched! It’s Angel!
  • Ok, this whole episode is a lame excuse for Angel to come back.  She’s been in worse danger than this.  But I’m still glad he’s back :)
  • Anya! Emma!
  • Xander looks pretty good in that t-shirt.  This is why Anya still finds him sexy.
  • What’s with the cowboy hat, Buffy?
Cowboys & Indians theme?

  • “To commemorate a past event, you kill and eat an animal.  It’s ritual sacrifice.  With pie.”
  • “Imaginary Xander is quite the machine.”
  • Oh, Angel.  I've missed your skulking.
  • She senses him!
  • Already, Willow is hateful towards Anya.  I don’t like this part of her personality.  She’s big on grudges.  I mean, sure Anya tried to kill her.  But that’s in the past.
  • Back away from the green mist, lady.  Whoops, too late.
  • I would have liked to have seen that scene – where Buffy uses her slayer powers to shop.
  • “Why aren’t we doing this at your house?” Because they got rid of that set for a while…
  • Giles was hiding Angel!
  • Cordelia shout out!
  • And Angel is jealous! Hee. I like jealous Angel.
  • "Iowa….that’s one of the ones in the middle right?"  Heh, that’s what I always say.
  • Harmony!  It’s…a sweater…but it’s a midriff and…has a turtleneck..and also no sleeves?  Also the pink and the blue. 
I don't understand this...

  • I love how obsessed over this Thanksgiving dinner Buffy is.
  • Funny syphilis!
  • Anya’s being incredibly helpful!  I think they’re not quite sure what to do with her yet.
  • “You can have casinos now!”  Oh, Buffy…
  • SHENANIGANS! “So this is Angel.  He’s large and glowery, isn’t he?”  She’s met him before.  In Dopplegangland.
  • Giles has an amazing apartment.  That’s what I’m getting from this whole fight.
  • It’s kinda sad that Angel’s in this entire episode but has no scenes with Buffy.
  • Such an amazing shot of everyone at the end looking at Buffy after Xander accidentally reveals Angel was there. Also, if anyone was going to fuck that up, it would be Xander, wouldn't it?

Zelda: Ooh, dead human comin' up!
Daniel: You got way too excited.

Favorite Lines:

Zelda: "A bear! You made a bear!" // "I didn't mean to!" // "Undo it! Undo it!" - Spike/Buffy
Daniel: "To commemorate a past event, you kill and eat an animal. It's a ritual sacrifice. With pie." -Anya

Arc/Continuity Stuff:

  • Recurring: Angel, Anya, Harmony.
  • In The Bachelor Party, Doyle had a vision of Buffy in trouble, so Angel came a-calling because of contrivance.
  • Willow refers to the buried church the Master hung out in.
  • Xander calls Anya his girlfriend BECAUSE THEY'RE IN LOVE.
  • Willow asks if Cordelia's really working for Angel (a fact we assume she learned from Oz after In the Dark

Anya's Hair - long, brown, straight
Xander's Job - construction worker (and a shout out to previous of free hot dogs on sticks)
Dead Humans - 3
Dead Undeads - 1
Giles Unconscious - 0
Giles Cleans His Glasses - 0
Buffy Breaks a Door - 0
Evil Reveal - 1 (schmuck bait from the teaser is a vamp)
Unevil Reveal - 0
Shenanigans Called - 1
Apocalypse Called - 0


  1. I'm so torn about the episode. I love it on its own, but what a waste of an Angel appearance! He was back so rarely that it breaks my heart to see him so criminally misused.

  2. "Considering I got tricked into watching some torture porn last night"

    Err...excuse me?


    1. Strangely (depressingly), you're not even the first friend of mine to be hurt that *they* weren't the one who tricked me into watching torture porn!