Posted by: thebuffyrewatch | January 27, 2014

Podcast #141: The Killer in Me

Here’s the podcast for Season 7, Episode 13 – The Killer in Me

Is that really Willow?

Is that really Willow?

Download: The Killer in Me

RSS Feed: The Buffy Rewatch

The next podcast will appear on Monday 3rd February 2014  for episode fourteen of Season Seven: “First Date.” As Xander and Buffy both go on first dates.

Comment on this post to get your views on the podcast.

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  1. A couple followups to the podcast

    – Regarding Kennedy’s age, I’m with Cordia in relying on the show to tell me how old she is. Except Michelle Trachtenberg, of the actors look like they’re in their early twenties, so I accept it as a television convention that they are as old as they say they are.

    – The only way the First’s non-corporealness makes any sense at all is if it’s basically an illusion that doesn’t include touch, so the First can appear to be opening and closing a car door or wrapping up in a blanket (and then putting the blanket back where it came from), but that if you touch anything it’s holding, you’ll see that’s not there either. But as usual, the show hasn’t made any of this clear, so it’s not obvious they thought it through.

    (Leaning against things or sitting on things isn’t a problem, though. The First doesn’t fall through the floor, so presumably it can hold position against a wall or sitting on a table as easily as it can standing on the floor).

    – My take on Warren jumping straight to full-on gun waving misogyny is that that wasn’t literally Warren taking over Willow, it was Willow’s memories of Warren.

    – Did anyone consider that the phone call from Dobson might have been the First? (Assuming that it can fake a ringing phone – maybe first it took the form of a dead phone, then Dobson.) Maybe Andrew was right, and the whole thing was a plan to get him alone and capture him.

  2. PS – in response to Marike’s question about Amy’s mother, the script for Doomed had a shot that showed she’s was still aware in the rubble. Presumably, Xander’s crew cleaned her up.

    The script has the following paragraph, starting with Xander’s quip about “Mayor meat.”

    Mayor meat. Extra crispy.

    Willow nods. Makes a face. Steps on another piece of debris.


    It’s a CHEERLEADING TROPHY, black with smoke-damage. In fact – it’s AMY’S MOTHER. Still entombed, her eyes dart desperately as Willow’s foot comes CRASHING DOWN ON HER. After Willow moves off, Amy’s mom GLARES AT HER despite her impotence.

  3. I didn’t except to but on the whole I kind of enjoyed First Date. It’s not a great episode and maybe not even a good one but the lighter tone is always better and I more easily accept logical gaps on story’s that are not apart of the season arc. Which is not to say I don’t have things to complain about because come on, it’s me.

    I hesitant to bring up Spike again but this episode really makes clear the problem I have with Buffy and Spike in season 7. They feel like Angel and Buffy and that means that the season acts like they’re relationship last year wasn’t completely unhealthy but flawed. I think Buffy had feelings for Spike because of who she is and it be hard for her to not after sleeping with someone multiple times but I don’t think it ever crossed into “love”. Buffy literally says she was in love with Spike in this episode and that wasn’t their relationship at all to me last season.

    I also don’t like how Buffy says she has an attraction to darkness. I can’t deny that the show has made it a definite aspect of her character but I have never agreed with it. I always felt she was more attracted to the good in Angel then the evil and the reason Riley and her didn’t work out was because he was boring for her and to watch. Riley being human is not what failed that relationship Riley being Riley failed that relationship. I feel like the Buffy that comes back from the dead is a completed different person because y’know how death changes you, we’ve all been there. If Buffy hadn’t died she would have never slept with Spike or I feel ever been attracted to him. My main problem with Buffy and Spike this season is I don’t understand where the depth of her feelings for him come. It’s not as if they developed, she couldn’t even look at him early in the season and suddenly she’s trying not to jump his dead bones every scene.

  4. The run up to the date was cute on the scoobies side – like the idea that Buffy would always have to consider a date as hopefully a romantic event but be aware it could turn into a fight against evil. The misdirection re: Principal Wood was quite annoying. As he returned his blood stained knife to his hidden cabinet I couldn’t help wonder how he had arranged to have that there – did he ask for it in the building plans or did he come in especially on the weekends to make it himself – carefully gluing the velvet lining into place….anyway silly.

    Robin Wood’s real identity is a great idea, I loved how excited Buffy is to have some kind of connection to another slayer – maybe she’s pleased that another slayer has had children as that doesn’t rule it out for her.

    The joke of Xander having a date with an evil demon was fine but the whole intervention with the text message just didn’t work for me. How did he send it?

    Did like the looks exchanged between Buffy and Spike in the basement after the fight. I agree with Derek though that they are rewriting the past to suggest that Buffy was in love with him in the last season. Wasn’t it just a sexual obsession?

    Neat internal reference, in the first scene in the graveyard there is a large gravestone marked “Snyder”

  5. Finally. The end of the “Willow is just like Warren” device. The writers liked the parallel so much they brought it back for one final outing, making the dualism absolutely literal. Why be subtle when you can shove it down the audience’s throat?

    Of course it doesn’t work. It plays as contrived and false and to cap the contrivance off, they make the whole thing a plot of Amy the Rat, who is resentful that Willow could try to destroy the world and still be loved by “everyone”.

    First of all, how does Amy even know that Willow tried to destroy the world? Was it on the news? But even assuming she heard about it magically somehow, who is this “everyone” who still loves her? Surely Willow does not have groupies. I mean besides Kennedy.

    The only ones who know what Willow did and still love her are Buffy, Giles and Xander. I don’t see how or why Amy could resent the fact that her closest friends still love Willow even in the circumstances. It is another false note in an episode filled with them.

  6. Comments on First Date:

    First thing that I noticed and had a comment on in this episode was actually P. Wood’s knife and sword collection. All beautiful pieces and placed just as beautifully in the case, except for one….did anyone else think that meat cleaver was just SOOO out of place?! I mean really, you have weapon upon weapon in there, that are probably very expensive and very old weapons at that, and then a kitchen utensil?? (Shakes head)…ok then!

    Xander’s date; I am sorry, but that never gets old! Beautiful woman (with killer eye effects at one point!) seems to take an interest in Xander and then turns out to be a demon! Xander’s remark about it saying “This can’t just keep happening” is actually wicked funny and I like that they actually reference basically his entire line of girlfriends with that one comment. I also liked Anya’s response to finding out about his date. They have been subtly showing affection towards eachother for some time now (noticeably in Sleeper when they are taking turns interrogating Andrew and she slaps him and immediately apologizes silently) And, does anyone else want to try the “Red Eye”? Sounds yummy!

    Buffy’s date; First, I am sorry Cordia, but I don’t see the attraction for P. Wood. I just don’t get it. But, my personal feelings on him aside, I thought the misdirection they have been giving us about P. Wood finally coming to a head was pretty good. I remember thinking the same thing Buffy says when it appears that he set her up in the alley with the attack of vampires. The fact that he reveals to her that he is actually a Slayer’s son was a very interesting concept to me and shows that the Slayers are either very promiscuous at young ages, or can live a lot longer than I had originally perceived (I always assumed Buffy was an exception and most didn’t live past 17-19)

    Another major point about this episode I would like to comment on is P. Woods’ mother (by the way, you guys have not mentioned this yet to my knowledge, but I found out on the extras on the DVD’s that they named him “Robin” because they were not sure if they would use a male or female for that role so they used a non-gender biased name. Thought that was a kinda cool trivia fact. Anyways…) She shows up obviously as the First and just blurts out that Spike is the vampire that killed her; ok. This just makes me believe that once again, the First has no real plan, it has just decided “Ok, now I want Spike dead again” or “Now I want Spike to kill P. Wood when he tries to avenge his mother”. I think it’s kinda cool that this also tells us where P. Wood is from (as I think he is a little young and a little NOT Asian to have had a mother in the Boxer Rebellion) and that he crossed the entire country from New York to settle on the Hellmouth at Sunnydale for what is building up to be a potentially very epic fight.

    One more point, what is up with Giles? I mean is he on his period or something?? They have made light of grave situations in the past and he has never yelled at them for it, in fact he has encouraged it many times. It actually shocked me quite a bit when I saw him lose it at all of them. I could understand his disbelief in the beginning that Buffy had Spike’s chip removed. That is understandable because he felt that was controlling Spike and keeping him from hurting others, but to lose it like that at the end of the episode, Wow, so not Giles!

  7. I also wanted to comment a little bit on past seasons, as I am just catching up with you guys. I have only made it through about half of the 3rd season, so if I repeat things that have already been said, I apologize.

    Season 1:
    This, to me, was an overall “Ok” season. It is certainly NOT my first choice if I am going to sit down and watch Buffy. I remember sitting down to watch my first episode of Buffy and thinking “What the hell? Where are the vampires in a show called “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”??” The first episode I ever saw (and my least favorite of Season 1) was The Witch. I suppose if I had seen The Harvest first and had heard Giles’ speech about the different evils they would face, it wouldn’t have bothered me as much and I probably would have continued to watch on a regular basis. In real time, I actually didn’t start watching the show regularly until Spike arrived in Sunnydale in Season 2. My favorite episode in Season 1 was The Pack. I am a sucker for the “bad boy” routine and I absolutely LOVED Xander as a threat/bad boy.

    Season 2:
    Overall, LOVED this season! This was the one that got me hooked (as stated previously)!Though I only picked a tie on my favorite episodes, I could honestly say there is really only one episode that I can not watch to this day! First, my tie for favorites: When She Was Bad and Passion. When She Was Bad is (as I stated last week) almost like a mirror for me. I had a point in my life (won’t get into details) where I was pushing everyone away and I didn’t want to deal with my emotions and that made me a pretty unlikable person for a while, but once I finally broke down and cried, I was “ok” again, just like Buffy. I don’t think I really need to go into any kind of reasoning for Passion, I know you guys felt the same way about it! Worst episode due to ONE aspect of it, I’ll Always Have Eyes for You. I CAN NOT watch that episode especially when alone. I love the story, I love the idea….that song creeps that crap out of me! Has since the first time I heard it. I actually get chills every time I hear it!

    Season 3:
    Again, overall, LOVED it! The only major complaint I guess I would have would be the mini-me Giles, Wesley Windham Price. Ugh, he was so annoying! Makes me wonder if Giles was actually like that before he got some experience and common sense under his belt! For this season (as in season 2, hard to pick the favorite and least favorite but here goes) my favorite was The Prom. As much as I love the entire season as a whole, if I just want to watch an episode of Buffy to pass the time and I grab season 3, I watch The Prom. I can’t help but tear every time I hear Jonathon’s speech read at the end when she gets “Class Protector”. It proves that although she has never been thanked, she has. The worst episode of this season, Gingerbread. I think the only good that came out of this episode was Amy is gone (haven’t liked her since she started to follow the same path as her mother, knowing where it may lead her!)

    Season 4:
    With the exception of the Oz-Willow-Tara story and Faith finally excepting responsibility for her actions in season 3, Oh My God, Joss, what were you thinking! Seriously! Was he just too wrapped up in Angel to even read the scripts and/or ideas for season 4? That being said, I do actually have 2 Favorite episodes in this season that I couldn’t decide between. The first is Hush. It was amazing what they could do with maybe 10 minutes of dialogue in the entire episode! The fact that Hush actually one an award as well was amazing! My other favorite was Wild At Heart. I don’t know what it is about episodes that make me cry, but this one, I cried almost as hard as I do when Angel dies (season 2) and when Buffy dies (season 3). (There is one more part in the serious that makes me cry like crazy, but spoiler free, right?!) The worst episode; so many, but chosing one, Living Conditions. Glad they got rid of Cathy, but OMG, awful, awful, awful!!!

    I don’t want to get into season 5 here because I actually want to share a major debate that my father and I have about it. There are two very well thought out arguments and I want an outsiders opinion. Will post that next week.

    Last thing I would like to point out before I get to season 5 though, did you guys ever notice that they referenced season 5 not only in Restless in Season 4 (basically telling you everything about season 5 in particularly Buffy’s dream), but in Graduation Day Part 2 in Season 3 as well??

    *Faith and Buffy’s conversation in “the coma dream”
    ~Buffy: There is something I’m supposed to be doing.
    ~Faith: Oh, yeah. Miles to go. Little Miss Muffet counting down from 7-3-0

    This is actually a conversation about Dawn, though most wrote it off as some indecipherable comment about the fight with the mayor (including myself initially). Little Miss Muffet was Dawn and the counting down from 7-3-0 was a reference to when she would be there (exactly 730 days passed until they introduced Dawn for the first time in Dracula)

    Keep up the great work guys. Still catching up as I said. Hopefully be well into season 4’s podcast by Monday! Stay Shiny

    • I also wanted to add that the speech that Xander gives Buffy in the Freshman (about What would Buffy do?), I cite that in my head whenever I am faced with a grave situation and I don’t know what to do. I am not ashamed to say that she has been (and probably forever will be) my hero 🙂

  8. I’m always happy when Giles makes flashcards, the more horrifying the better, I’ll even take the cheap jokes about the asian potential who doesn’t understand a word they’re saying and vice versa for it.

    One thing that has been bugging me more and more everytime I see the scene with Giles in Robson’s apartement is the fact that Robson doesn’t even bother at all to warn Giles that maybe he should duck because there’s someone behind him, but instead he absolutely has to say that it has started, which I’m pretty sure Giles could have figured out himself if he survived the axe in his head.

    Regarding Kennedy’s age, I’m pretty sure she said a few episodes ago that she might already be too old to become the next slayer which would indicate that she’s older than the other potentials at 15. But yeah, Kennedy’s age is the least of my problems with her character.

  9. First Date is, as far as I am concerned, the “real” start of season 7. We are done with setting the scene and introducing the bit players. Now the actual drama begins.

    This episode is a big step up from (most of) the earlier ones. Instead of misdirection that does nothing, we finally get some with a dramatic payoff. Robin Wood’s reveal of why he had been acting so mysterious and what he is doing in Sunnydale makes perfect sense.

    And it is well acted. Last week you talked about how good the casting on Buffy was and D.B. Woodside is another big success. He is likeable, physically impressive and has good comic timing. His palpable resentment at Spike provides the first inkling of dramatic conflict to the season.

    Speaking of misdirection, there is actually a good example of it in this episode: Xander’s careless dismissal of Willow’s offer to research his date to make sure she isn’t evil. He says he prefers to go in blind, but he is so cheerful and hopeful about it, we feel that this must be a feel-good ‘B’ plot that cannot possibly end in bloodshed….

  10. My favorite moment in this episode is a very small one. Anya’s not sure whether the stain on Buffy’s shirt is blood or pizza. In Conversations with Dead People, Dawn got a pizza stain on one of Buffy’s shirt, and shrugged it off saying, “she’ll think it’s blood.”

  11. – That’s a great catch, Marn.

    My thoughts on First Date

    – Overall, this was an OK episode. I like Robin and Buffy’s chemistry, and Robin seems like he has the potential to be a more interesting version of Riley – a non superpowered romantic alternative to Spike. Also, Xander’s complaining when he found out his date was evil was very funny.

    – One quibble. Why does Giles pointless lie to the potentials about how he protected himself from the bringer? Wouldn’t “stay aware of your surroundings” be a helpful lesson, and how is a lie about insticts any better of a story that “I heard a noise behind me and then went on a badass rampage”?

    – Another quibble. I don’t think the editing came together on the reveal of Spike’s vampire nature to Robin. In the car, Robin kept checking Spike out in the mirror, so I assume he knew Spike was a vampire then, but I guess the director wasn’t confident we would get it, so he had Robin exposit “AHA! I now realize Spike is a vampire!” or something like that during the fight.

    – Now we know how Xander has climbed the ranks so quickly at his job. He attends lots of emonstrations at Home Depot!

    • “demonstrations”, I mean. . .

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