Posted by: thebuffyrewatch | June 10, 2013

Cordia’s Review: S6, E10 – Wrecked

Wrecked
Season 6, Episode 10
Original airing: 11/27/2001

My Rating: 52

The Good: Buffy and Spike continue to make the show worth watching. Most of this episode was a disappointment, but the evolution in Buffy and Spike’s relationship is fascinating. The initial scene really shows how Buffy feels about things. She’s not happy with her decision to sleep with Spike, but she’s easily swayed physically. In her hunt for reconnection to the mortal world, the best she’s found so far is sex.

Spike is practically back to his pre-chip self in terms of his confidence and swagger. He has a new outlook on the whole situation and definitely reflects that in his body language and tone of voice to Buffy. He acknowledges his love for her, but also knows that the power has completely shifted.

Otherwise, I was really frustrated with this episode. I love the concept of Willow’s continuing descent into magic and the effect it has on her and her decision making skills. But the execution of that story can be described as poor at best.

The Bad: The majority of this episode just happens way too fast. But the worst of it is the complete lack of subtlety. Coupled together, these two things make the episode seem silly when it’s supposed to be a very serious situation.

The writers didn’t attempt to disguise the connection between Willow’s magic use and drug abuse. She went from completely competent to completely addicted to rock bottom to recovery in less than 40 minutes. It’s just too much to take in and take seriously. And the effects are much closer to being drugged or drunk than anything we’ve ever seen on the show relating to magic. It feels like they introduced this summation of the story purely to parallel Buffy’s relationship with Spike.

Amy is used to highlight the story and purely as a prop to Willow. She introduces Willow to Rack and tells Buffy about Rack, thus bringing the story full circle. The silliest part, though, is when she’s stealing generic magic spells supplies which someone could buy at any old grocery store. It’s too silly.

Finally, I really hated watching Dawn in this episode. She’s the most understanding teenager ever, apparently. She doesn’t really get worked up about anything or try to do anything. She’s purely a plot device at this point and that’s a huge disservice to a character that’s supposed to be a main part of the show.

Speaking of main characters used purely for plot purposes, for the second episode in a row Xander and Anya sit in the Magic Box and complain about Willow’s magic addiction without actually doing anything about it. Why are they here again?

Favorite Moment: In a very rushed episode, I appreciated the slow moment they took to show just how lost and lonely Willow is at this point. When she comes out of the shower and uses magic to inflate some of Tara’s clothes to cuddle with, I can’t help but feel for her. I love the complete lack of dialogue and the time the moment takes to show the clothes inflating.

The Bottom Line: This episode over all was a rushed mess. Several of our main characters are used purely for convenient plot purposes and to further Buffy’s story. It’s a huge departure from the show’s ability to truly balance its cast and made me have little to no feeling about the struggles of Willow’s magic addiction.

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