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, November 25, 2014

Killer Snot Monster From Outer Space




Episode 5.9: Listening to Fear. Original Airdate 11.28.00

"Buffy and her friends investigate when a meteorite transports a deadly creature to Earth."



Sophia's still here! Hi Sophia!

Daniel's Thoughts:

  • Sure, Buffy gets all the skinny vamp boys.  The scoobies get female wrestlers.
  • Come on, how thin is the skin and muscle on these vamps that Willow’s weak little stab in their backs dusts them? SHENANIGANS!
  • Riley is off trying to ‘feel.’  Snap out of it, Riley!
  • Tiny Jewish Santa!
  • Joyce’s crazytalk is a bit unnerving.  But also, some of the best work Sutherland's done on this show.
  • I love Tara’s goofiness.  And this whole scene with her and Willow looking at the stars is cute.
  • Really? No one sees the snotmonster from outerspace crawling in the ceiling?  Maybe in the corner of their eyes?  Really? Shenanigans!
  • “I’m not great at research” – Riley.  Yeah…you’re only a TA and a grad student.
  • Graham smiled! He had an expression! Stats:  Graham smile: 1
  • Hey! Joyce said the name of the episode twice!  Meaning two different things!  Go, Joyce.
  • They’re so loud.  Why isn’t anyone shushing them up in the University library?
  • Hey payphones!  I guess Willow has no need for a cell yet.
  • Sophia, Zelda and I are entertained by the wordless Latin music coming in over the radio.
  • I love that some of Joyce’s ramblings have to do with a country club because that was her old life.  At least that’s what it seemed like Buffy’s parents’ lives were like in the preceding movie…which may or may not be canon.
  • Oh, go away, Spike!
  • Ok, that Queller monster is kind of terrifying.
  • I’m glad Joyce finds out about Dawn in this way.  Because it’s not just about her finding out…it makes sense because of other factors and rules of the season.
  • I love that all the Scoobies are there to see Joyce off.  But also, does she have any friends?



Sophia's Thoughts:

  • Aww, family time with the Summers women. Too bad it’s in a hospital.
  • Where do these did these vamps workout? Is there a gym in Sunnydale? Is there a Sunnydale wrestling team?
  • Ugh! Riley is still misguidedly letting vamps feed on him. I would be worried or feel sorry for him if I didn’t find it so pathetic and this plot point a little forced.
  • Buffy wanted to be normal. Sometimes normal isn’t so pretty—sometimes it means spending days in a hospital and delaying school.
  • What is this monster?! I don’t understand. Is it a beetle? Is it a roach? It doesn’t look like it is from space. Why does it kill with snot of all things? Why can’t it tell the difference between people who are supernaturally crazy and those that are crazy for natural reasons?
  • Buffy’s mom is becoming more dependent on her. Look at how she tells Buffy to be her voice with the doc. I think this is the official shift of Buffy being the head of the family. She is not only offering emotional support and watching over Dawn; she is also giving medication and taking vitals.
  • I didn’t know Xander wanted to have kids. Look how quickly he jumps out of the way when he hears there is a chance the meteor might make him sterile.
  • Why hasn’t anyone else noticed the meteor and reported it? Good thing Willow and Tara happen to be looking at the sky the exact moment it fell to Earth.
  • You’re looking in “history”, Willow? What were you looking at before when you were referencing the 12th century? Also, is there a website that contains all historic info? Even the obscure stuff? Can you give me the URL?
  • When I get sad, I like to listen to loud tonally inappropriate music too, Buffy.
  • Go, Dawn! You’re not a complete spaz. I’m glad that being around a slayer has rubbed off on you.
  • Buffy, I would advise making a note to self: “Find out why Spike was rummaging through my basement and stealing pictures of me.”
  • “A body might ask what exactly it is you think you’re doing.” A viewer might ask too. What was the point of all this? I’m calling shenanigans on the Queller demon. Why does it come from space when it doesn’t look or do other worldly things? (Maybe as an excuse to bring the military guys back so that Riley can exit the show?) And the Scoobies identified it by “looking in history” and a YA book entitled Meteors and You, really?! If Ben summoned the Queller demon to clean up Glory’s mess, why doesn’t it kill just the supernatural victim crazies?  Also, did Ben think that a string of dead bodies all over town would distract from the crazies all over town? Lastly, I’m a little wary of a demon that I could defeat with Mucinex.
  • The More You Know Message: Sometimes you need to listen to the fears of crazy people because sometimes their fears are snot monsters from outer space. Also, crazy people know when things aren’t real. Well, actually that’s not true. Correction: crazy people can tell when supernatural energy has been transmogrified into human flesh. And sometimes that’s useful.




Zelda's Thoughts:

  • Dawn and Buffy flanking Joyce in the hospital bed and bantering is the cutest thing.
  • "You're the one who insisted on teaching her to talk."
  • Parking lot! Do a shot.
  • Willow's sheepskin jacket is pink but not fluffy. It gets no stat.
  • Joyce has no friends? Oh right, her one boyfriend was a robot and her one friend turned into a zombie.
  • Willow's care package for everyone is so sweet.
  • "Homework? Ugh. I don't believe in Tiny Jewish Santa anymore." Yeah, last time Willow brought Buffy homework in the hospital, it was all completed. She's slipping.
  • Joyce yelling inappropriate things makes me sad.
  • Hey guess what, Ben's as bad at line delivery as Glory.
  • He's a better actor with a beard though. (hyperlink)
  • Tara making up her own constellations because the real ones don't make sense is adorable, but isn't Short Man Looking Uncomfortable as much of a stretch as some of the "real" ones?
  • Ugh. Fuck the Queller, man. I hate this demon. I hate this plot. And I hate hearing Joyce ramble crazily, it hurts, okay?
  • Gross ew gah ew ew ew ew ew ew Riley pulling goop out of dead guy's mouth.
  • "What do we do now?" // "We can't call Buffy. I wanna call Buffy."
  • I would like to point out from everyone's posture that today must be the one cold day in Sunnydale.
  • "You look just like your father when he cries." It hurrrrrrts.
  • Oh noes the Queller has spotted them blah blah blah stupid alien demon thing.
  • Sunnydale has a lake. In addition to its beach.
  • The one time Buffy lets herself break down is when there are no witnesses. Just the most repetitive Spanish music ever.

  • Go Dawn! You fight off that Queller!
  • And creepy stalker Spike is hiding in Buffy's basement. That felt pretty unnecessary shoehorning in just because he's a regular and had nothing to do this week.
  • Gasp! The Scabby Demons know Ben!
  • Also hey Ben summoned the Queller! That means he's responsible for six deaths (possibly more). In case there were doubts about whether he's a good guy. So much for his Hippocratic Oath.
  • "Dawn, she's not mine, is she?" It's so sad. I'm glad Buffy was honest with Joyce about this though. "She does belong to us, though. And she's important, to the world, precious. ... Then we have to take care of her."
  • It's Buffy's promise to her mother, when Joyce thought she might not survive the surgery - to protect Dawn, to keep her safe. It's one of the many reasons Buffy does what she does in The Gift.
  • Shut up, you're the one who's crying.

  • Sorry I didn't have much else to say about this episode. I find it largely unpleasant - it's alternating really upsetting and just really annoying.



Favorite Lines:

Daniel: "You got her a book on spells.  The girl who can break things by looking at them now has a book to teach her to....break things by looking at them?" - Buffy
Sophia & Zelda:"I still don't get why we came here to get info about a killer snot monster." // "Because it's a killer snot monster from outer space ... I did not say that." - Xander/Giles


Arc/Continuity Stuff:

  • Recurring: Joyce, Dr. Kriegel, Brain-sucked Night Watchman, Ben, Tara, Graham, Scabby Minion
  • Riley's little suckfest with Sandy has led him down the dark path of vampire blood brothels.
  • Annual reminder that Willow is Jewish.
  • Riley calls The Initiative on his flippy phone.
  • Reveal that Ben knows Glory and has been cleaning up her messes his "whole damn life."
  • Joyce knows that Dawn isn't her real daughter.

Stats:

Anya's Hair - shoulder-length, honey blonde, curly
Dead Humans - 6
Dead Undeads - 3
Giles Unconscious - 1
Giles Cleans His Glasses - 1
Buffy Breaks a Door - 0
Evil Reveal - 1 (Ben is IN SOME WAY cahoots with Glory. Also he summoned the Queller)
Unevil Reveal - 0
Shenanigans Called - 3
Apocalypse Called - 0

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

One-Stop Spot to Shop

Episode 5.8: Shadow.Original Airdate 11.21.00 

"Glory transforms a snake into a terrifying monster in her quest to find the Key; Joyce is hospitalized after being diagnosed with an illness."  




Please welcome Sophia!  She is our friend, fellow Wolfram & Hart employee and guest blogger for the next four episodes!


Sophia's Thoughts:

  • Buff, this is a fight you can’t win because it is not your fight; it’s your mom’s fight.
  • Is it just me or has Dawn become more precious to Buffy, now that she is a slayer mission?
  • You see kids…that’s why we got rid of phone books. Besides being completely useless in the cellphone age, they attract the wrong type of people—evil gods who are willing to pay for goods and services.
  • Spike, stalker much?…Perv much?…Eww!
  • Spike is forever a poet. He loves poetic diction, alliteration, and metaphor. “the lover-wiccas…a bit of prod ‘n probe. Bite-sized one went too.”
  • Did the doc just say nearly one out of three do just fine? What is nearly one? 0.8? These are terrible odds.
  • Out of the mouths of babes: “She doesn’t get all worked up like that over you.”
  • Poor little lost lamb Riley. Does he think letting vamps feed on him will make him darker?
  • Oh, look Giles’ new car is not just pretty; it drives really fast too! Also, why aren’t there more high speed car chases in Sunnydale? Would it be like Pleasantville where the end of the street is just the beginning again? Inquiring minds want to know.
  • This episode is just one of many this season that will test Buffy’s strength in new ways and help her come to understand herself better. Being a teenage girl and a slayer are not mutually exclusive. Both identities inform who Buffy is. Although, they require different resources—Buffy, you can’t use magic to heal your mom, but your support as she goes through this is helpful—the unique mixture of the two is what is going to help Buffy get through this season.
  • Shadow/ Darkness/Evil: So far, we’ve learned that shadows aren’t always evil; sometimes they are just part of nature. Darkness means different things to different people—I’m looking at you Riley, Spike, and Buffy. And evil (read: vampires) are not always evil…they can be downright “harmless?”.

Zelda's Thoughts:


  • Nooooooooooo Joyce noooooooo.
  • Dammit show.
  • I feel for Dawn here. Asking random nonsense questions because it's too awful to be alone with your own thoughts, waiting in a hospital.
  • Tara looks so gorgeous.
  • "Am I right, Giles?" // "I'm almost certain you're not, but to be fair, I wasn't listening."
  • Oh god. The Glory minions are here.
  • blah she is saying her lines wrong again.
  • See, Giles, this is what happens when you put an ad in the phone book. Psychotic exiled Gods come to your store and buy things! Any cook could tell you that!





  • Oh right. Spike's doing that creepy clothes-sniffing thing. Stop being creepy, Spike.
  • Buffy has a fluffy pink sweater? I bet you it's Willow's!
  • Aaaaand he stole her underwear. Stop being creepy!
  • While Spike's not wrong that Riley's not Buffy's long-term love, his delusion about his own appropriateness for Buffy at this juncture is ... impressive.
  • Joyce and Buffy, both trying to be strong, trying not to cry, not to show each other their fear. Dammit, show.
  • Tara is definitely much more confident speaking up in Scooby gatherings since Family. I dig it.
  • Ugh. Giles is totally cleaning his glasses out of frame. But we don't have a confirmed visual so it doesn't count.
  • Brain tumor. Totally not cool, having real world stuff intrude on our metaphor magic!
  • And Buffy's bewildered quiet panic at the doctor's questions, regarding insurance and other things - she didn't expect to have to grow up so suddenly. She can save the world, but she doesn't know how to do this.
  • "Anya, your heys are startling the customers."
  • I like that Anya can see from the receipt what spell is being planned.
  • Sunnydale has a carousel? Sure, okay.
  • More bad Dawn line readings.
  • Riley's selective hearing: he hears that Buffy doesn't get worked up over him, but not that he's been good for her. Also I don't want to see him getting all butthurt about Buffy's behavior when she's dealing with a problem she doesn't know how to solve, the possibility of her mother's mortality.
  • Emma Caulfield's comic timing this episode is perfect.
  • There's so much build up to the snake demon Glory's gonna create, and then it's just the worst CGI ever.
  • At least this snake demon isn't as penis-y as some of our others.

Not...as penis-y

  • This episode is so weak. Like yes, first time we hear Glory's name, first time we find out why Joyce hasn't been well, moving along Riley's inferiority complex, and Anya and Giles are delightful, but otherwise this episode is so meh. And that CGI ...
  • Sad montage of sads. Buffy, limping and waiting in the hospital, Riley drinking at Willy's, Dawn doing homework and knowing something's wrong, Joyce finding out.
  • Snake demon! Glory told you to go to the holy places! Why are you at the carousel?
  • Giles-mobile to the rescue!
  • Glory claims to be on a schedule. She is? Since when? She kind of takes her time.
  • CGI Buffy! Look at her flowy CGI hair!
  • Buffy punches the snake until it is dead. And then keeps punching it.
  • Witness Riley's butthurt because Buffy didn't want to break down in the middle of a hospital corridor with her family three feet away, expecting her to be strong for them.
  • If I deflect enough anger at Riley I can ignore how sad Joyce's story makes me.




Daniel's thoughts:



  • Joyce going through the cat scan is just...oh man
  • Why is it called a cat scan? Shush, Dawn. But also, aww.
  • Here Dawn, have a cola brand cola. 


I love Cola Brand Cola!

  • Glory saw Giles’ ad! At least he knows it’s working?
  • So Spike is giving the finger in the credits so it’s basically in every single episode. But it’s the English way. So…it’s not obscene?
  • Ew, Spike, Ew. Stop. Just stop sniffing Buffy’s clothes.
  • Don’t worry, Spike – no matter how long you’re out in the sun – it won’t do a thing to you.
  • So oblivious. I love it. "[Glory] could be anywhere!" She…could have just bought dangerous magical items from you...
  • This is so well directed the way Buffy is getting the news…the doctor starts talking but she doesn’t really hear much beyond ‘brain tumor’.
  • 1 out of 3 is not great odds, doctor no-bedside-manner.
  • Eww. It’s Ken doll. Zelda just told me that Ken Doll is on How to Get Away with Murder which just blew my mind because his acting has improved there.  Zelda thinks it's the beard.
  • “Are you stupid or something?” Heh. Oh, Anya. Thank god for Anya. She just knows things.

Always listen to Anya.

  • I love when Dawn describes a memory and you know it’s a fake inserted memory and there's such detail in it.  That's some powerful magic right there.
  • Oh, Dawn. She thinks she’s helping. “She doesn’t get that worked up over you.” I wish Riley had more confidence in himself.
  • Anya is so ON this episode.
  • “Just once I’d like to come across bunny-worshipers”//“Thank you very much for those nightmares.”
  • Sunnydale Zoo! We haven’t been there since Xander became a Hyena.
  • Wow. The snake Glory grabs is so fake. It falls like rubber.
  • Aww, Xander is worried about Riley.
  • A snake monster. Maybe we can chase it around with Ebola. Or a box that just says Ebola. [Or attack it with hummus – Oz]
  • Riley, stop it. Just go find Buffy.
  • How is Riley going to cover up that bite mark? How about the scarf Buffy used to cover up Dracula's bite?

Looks natural.


  • Awful awful CGI snake monster. It’s on the one street of Sunnydale!
  • CGI snake monster is bad but puppet/guy in costume snake monster isn’t terrible.
  • Oh. Riley in a turtleneck. In Sunnydale. But also, covering up his neck wound….
  • Listen to what she needs, Riley.  Just listen...she's telling you what she needs.



Favorite Lines:
Sophia & Daniel: "I for one didn’t want to start my day with a slaughter…which has shown how much I’ve grown!" - Anya
Zelda: "Are you stupid or something?" // "Allow me to answer that question with a firing." - Anya/Giles

Arc/Continuity Stuff:

  • First appearance: Glory's scabby minions, Dr. Kriegel.
  • Recurring: Joyce, Tara, Glory, Ben, Sunnydale Zoo, Sandy the Vampire
  • We finally learn Glory's name.
  • The cause of Joyce's headaches is revealed - a brain tumor.
  • Shoutout to Anya's bunny fear ("Just once, I would like to run into a cult of bunny worshippers.")
  • Shoutout to the Mayor being a snake thing
  • The Magic Shop's address is listed as 5124 Maple Court


Stats:
Anya's Hair - shoulder-length, honey blonde, extra curly
Dead Humans - 0
Dead Undeads - 2
Giles Unconscious - 0
Giles Cleans His Glasses - 0
Buffy Breaks a Door - 0
Buffy Breaks a Glass Display With Her Body - 1
Evil Reveal - 0
Unevil Reveal - 0
Shenanigans Called - 0
Apocalypse Called - 0