PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS A SPOILER-RICH ZONE

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

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

A Chosen One and Her Friends

Episode 4.20: The Yoko Factor. Original Airdate 5.9.00


"After joining forces with Adam, Spike drives a wedge between Buffy and her friends. Meanwhile, Angel's return to Sunnydale leads to a violent confrontation with Riley."


Zelda's Thoughts:

  • Yay I can't wait for drunk Giles!
  • But ask me how much I care about the military briefing. Ask me.
  • Daniel just audibly groaned in disgust when Xander showed up in the credits.
  • I don't know who Tony Robbins is. Oh
  • I like this callback, Spike's recognition that Buffy having friends/family is part of what makes her strong, harder to kill. It was his first lesson after meeting her in Sunnydale, when Joyce clocked him with the axe in School Hard.
  • Daniel and I were sitting here wondering why Buffy looked so depressed when she entered her dorm. We finally remembered that she just got back from her crossover appearance on Angel, where she went to hunt down Faith. This is what happens when you don't have previouslies, DVDs!
  • "But to be fair, it's not him you hate, it's the curse." In one sentence we see just how little Riley understands of anything. For one, without the curse, Angel would never have a soul, and would have been staked long long ago. The curse is the only thing that makes him tolerable in Xander's eyes. [See, I think this is a writing problem.  I think what Riley meant to say was the curse of being a vampire, not the gypsy curse.  Meaning it's the vamp he hates, not the person. - D]
  • Xanderrrrrrrrrrrr you had to have figured out Buffy didn't tell Riley the whole truth about Angel. Bad Xander, bad.
  • I just screamed "YAY" really loudly because Giles is singing. I'm not sorry.
  • Mmmmmmmm.
  • And then his little yelp when he sees Spike.


  • Spike's insight is also strong - his playing of Yoko for the group wouldn't work if they weren't already fragmented. Step one: remind Giles of his directionless and lack of influence over Buffy this season.
  • GILES FEELS
  • Also he pours a drink while talking to Spike. It's my headcanon that he keeps drinking until the big fight.
  • It's a sure sign of how far Willow's come that she idly suggests taking Drama - callback to her stagefright in Nightmares.
  • The awkward in this scene is hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigh. Riley Riley Riley, jealous boyfriend is not a good look on you.
  • Step two: emphasize the uselessness of Xander.
  • I like the acknowledgement of how much class they cut in high school
  • Spike's accent is kind of all over the place this ep.
  • Sigh Forrest. Go away, Forrest.
  • Oh the show listened to me! Forrest is dead now. Sadly, he's still gonna come back, because no one's death is ever their final appearance on this show.
  • Yep, Giles is still drinking.
  • Step three: Cotton to Willow's relationship with Tara and play on that insecurity too.
  • "Easy as really difficult pie."
  • He's actually quite good at this, the manipulation. Because he keeps acting like it's not the important part of the conversation, which makes them want to drag more details out of him.
  • So I have to ask ... why did Angel think this was a good way to come back to town? Like "Hi guys, how many humans can I beat up today?" It's just kind of stupid and feels contrived so we can get to a fight between Angel and Riley.
  • Also we're not actually supposed to suspect that Angel's gone bad, so ... what's the point of him being extra dicky? I call shenanigans on this whole set up. Like, a lot.
  • And they could have played it differently. They could have made it clear that Angel wanted to pick a fight with Buffy's new beau. They could have done that, and I would have rolled my eyes, but I would have bought it. I don't buy his behavior here. I don't. And I don't feel it's that consistent with what's going on over on his show. But then again, that crossover consistency is at its worst at the end of S7 ...
  • "You're hurt." // "You too." Subtext, I see you.
  • "Running a car into a tree is an accident. Running your fist into somebody's face is a plan." PREACH, Buffy.
  • Petty Angel is funny. Petty Angel is probably the only time I ever enjoy Angel.


  • Well, also dancing Angel. The rest of it I can do without.
  • D'aw Riley. "Not movin' a muscle." I like you there. Not most of the rest of the time.
  • Buffy is my faaaaaaaaavorite. Calling Angel out on all his petty bullshit.
  • Oh wow is DB bad at laughing. Like that's some bad.
  • "We don't live in each other's worlds anymore." Hey, at least you're still on the same network. Wait til S6.
  • Buffyyyyyyyy so matuuuuuuuuuure I love yoooooooou.
  • Sorry, I'm just kind of annoyed with everyone else right now so I'm enjoying how she's the best Buffy to ever Buffy. Deal with it.
  • "Since we've got all our ducks in a row, and not talking to each other."
  • "Xander? Oh he's the deadest man in Deadonia."
  • "He's not bad." // "Seriously? That's ... a good day?" I love when they make fun of Angel. It is my life's blood.
  • I actually really like the trick of this moment. It looks like Riley gets up to leave, because he's upset that Forrest is dead, but it's actually Adam summoning him, which we won't realize until the end of the episode.
  • Giles, still drinking.
  • "You never train with me anymore, he's going to kick your arse. Sorry, was that a bit honest? Terribly sorry." DRUNK GILES
  • "I am no Alfred, sir. No, you forget, Alfred had a job." Seriously, DRUNK GILES
  • I really love this scene. Like it's upsetting to see them all fighting, but so well done, this fight! I love it. I love it.
  • "You two are the two who are the two."
  • "Fort Dix." GIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIILES.


  • Giles fell off the chair. GILES.
  • So this is like the only scene of just Tara and Anya ever. That's kind of sad. [There's one later where they talk about the internet.  But I agree that there should be more. -D]
  • And then Giles throws his sweater on Xander's head. Seriously, you guys. Seriously.
  • "It's not today. Buffy, things have been wrong for a while, don't you see that?"
  • Oh but now it hurts because Buffy's getting mean. Dammit show.
  • Oh look, Riley and Adam together. Boring plus boring equals boring stew!




Daniel's Thoughts:



  • Hey, A Spike episode. There’s the remote...go on
  • Wow, I don’t remember this scene at all – with the people at the initiative on skype, or a skype like thing.
  • Spike is trying to make Adam more interesting. It’s not working.
  • Zelda ewww’d that Angel is in the credits. I was happy.
  • Spike’s comparison of Adam and Tony Robbins:

Accurate

  • “To be fair, it isn’t the guy that you hate – it’s the curse” – the difference between Riley & Xander.
  • Awkward…I guess Buffy didn’t tell Riley everything, specifically how Angel became evil.
  • Giles singing! Anthony Head has a nice voice. Also, he has kind of an American accent when he sings.
  • OK, this first part. Giles. That was convincing….the seeds have been laid.
  • Miss Kitty Fantastico!
  • How about drama class? Foreshadowing for Restless.
  • Ugh, that ugly sweater that Buffy sometimes wears.

Burn it, Buffy.


  • Riley still looks cute with those stupid clown pants.
  • No hug/kiss hello. That says something.
  • The chip works on intent, Spike. You can’t hurt anyone.
  • Part two: Xander. This one is a bit more forced with the military thing. It’s sad that Xander thinks that Buffy and Willow would “have a laugh” talking about him joining the army. But he is definitely self-conscious.
  • I’d like Forrest/Buffy bantering more if Forrest wasn’t such an asshat. He’s always just so angry; he blames her for everything despite everything he’s learned about the Walsh situation.
  • Well…I guess that’ll be the last argument they have… Bye Forrest.
  • Hey! Forrest died in a forest!
  • Giles is still drinking!
  • Part 3, Willow: Come on Willow, stop believing it, But again, ok, I buy it a bit because Willow’s all self-conscious about her new life. With Tara. With the witchininess. But it’s just the way it’s done. It was just way too easy.
  • And OMG, the wicca/lesbian metaphors are just…
  • Hey Angel! Meet Riley.
  • Ugh. Men. Stop measuring. I’m sure you’re both…adequate.
  • You guys…stop fighting….!
  • Interesting that Angel needed to be invited into the dorm room. (Spike needed it back in the beginning of the season.) Buffy lives there…and I guess she had to sign something but she doesn’t own it. I’m assuming the same goes for rented houses/apartments..
  • Buffy: "You’ve got to be kidding me." Seriously.
  • Riley’s like 12. “I’m not leaving this room.”
  • SHENANIGANS! Why is no one walking the dorm hallways. Is it because it’s late? Cause that never stops anyone. Also, if it is late, why isn’t anyone leaning out of their doorways telling the fighting exes to shut the hell up because they’ve got an exam in the morning?
  • “If you’re gonna break my heart, do it fast”. Awww. “Because I’m so in love with you, I can’t think straight.” Double awww
  • I hate when the Scoobies fight. Things are said, people get hurt. But this is better written than previous fight scenes and more believable.
  • I love how Anya & Tara just sneak off to the bathroom.
  • Xander: ”I knew you hated her.” This was a secret?
  • I hate that Giles and Xander find out about Tara this way. Xander should have known by now. I know it’s another example of how the group has grown apart this season, but it seems so… I dunno.



Crossfire!
David Boreanaz's name in the credits
Z: UGH
D: Aww
 

Favorite Lines:
Zelda: Everything said by Drunk Giles, but mostly when he goes to sit in a chair and just falls down.
Daniel: (to Angel & Riley) "Okay, that's enough.  I see one more display of testosterone poisoning and I will personally putt you both in the hospital." ~Buffy.   And she can totally do it, too.



Arc/Continuity Stuff:

  • First appearance: Miss Kitty Fantastico
  • Recurring: Col. MacNamara, Adam, Sunnydale High, Tara, Anya, Forrest
  • Buffy just got back from LA, where her encounter with Faith and Angel did not go well.
  • Angel follows her back like the petty guy he is.
  • Riley tells Buffy (without Faith in Buffy's body at the time) that he loves her for the first time.
  • Xander and Giles now know that Willow and Tara are a couple.
 
Stats:
Anya's Hair - short, curly, honey-colored
Xander's Job - references to past jobs at Starbucks and a phone sex line
Dead Humans - 1
Dead Undeads - 0
Dead Flashbacks - 0
Giles Unconscious - 0
Giles Cleans His Glasses - 0
Buffy Breaks a Door - 0
Evil Reveal - 0
Unevil Reveal -  0
Shenanigans Called - 2
Apocalypse Called - 0


4 comments:

  1. Miss Kitty Fantastico! Quick, someone keep her away from Dawn!

    Xander finding out that way kind of bugged me too because he and Willow were supposed to be best buddies. I suppose the drift probably started when Willow made the decision to make up with Oz after their whole affair. They never really seemed as close after that incident. Willow gravitated more to being best friends with Buffy, almost to make sure Oz knew she was not going to make that mistake again.

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    Replies
    1. That's a really good point. They were very deliberating keeping their distance then, and it probably developed into a habit. And then when she started exploring new stuff that didn't involve him - both the new relationship, and getting more into magic, it became easier to drift. I've had that happen, finding new interests that don't involve old friends, and finding myself somehow not wanting to tell them about my new thing.

      Delete
  2. Excellent point, I never thought of that, but you're right. Thinking about it, Willow and Xander were at their closest in the first 2 seasons, and they do start to drift apart in season 3 and never get back to the way they were. So I guess, given that, it does make a bit more sense that Willow hadn't yet told him about Tara. I do think that if Spike hadn't interfered to provoke an argument, she would have told him eventually but it's just a question of how long you think she would have waited.

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  3. I can't figure out why they thought Angel making an appearance in this episode was a good idea. Though I thoroughly enjoy Petty Angel (and I think it's being consistent with him on his show because he is actually showing a personality, unlike him on Buffy before he left), there was zero point to his appearance. Buffy and Riley were going to have that conversation anyway.

    And why didn't they ask Angel - the immortal - to stay and help kill FrankenAdam? This really bugs me.

    ReplyDelete