Another Friday night and I ain’t got nobody – and I have about half an hour before Buffy comes on. The seventh series just started last night, but I turned over to watch the last episode of series six again, it is rather good! Mind the episodes leading up to it were pretty awesome too. Funny that, as first time round I wasn’t impressed by a lot of series six (apart from the obvious, of course), but on seeing it again there’s so many nuances and so much focus on personalities and relationships that I wonder, did I miss that or have the years given me a different perspective? A few thoughts on things I noticed this time round…..
Xander’s dad at the wedding, we all know that type, not nice and a lot of other ugly words; Xander would probably harbour secret worries that he’ll become the same. Let’s face it, he had become quite annoying and a tad disaffected through series six, so when Xander was shown a bitter future who didn’t think that was his truth? Okay, there was a teensy tiny suspicion but we were all relieved that it was a lie, sadly the lie had already done enough damage; Anya’s and Xander’s trust and belief in each other was torn to shreds by doubts and fears. I actually felt quite moved by their loss and fallibilities.
But back to Xander’s dad, where did I know that face from? Ah, I would have previously known it from Grace Under Fire (a great sitcom from the 90s), more recently it’s been the face of Bernadette’s taciturn father in The Big Bang Theory.
What a great story arc for Willow in series six, there were plenty of little hints of her descent into magic addiction, like the petulance and blind desire to shape life to suit herself. And when she gets really dark, wow, who ever would have thought sweet little Willow from season one would ever flay a guy alive?! Her romance, break up and getting back together with Tara was all so brilliantly written and acted; there was no big flag waving or heavy underlining of, oo, lesbians here, it was played so naturally and sweetly, I was rooting for them all the way. Tara’s death was quite shocking and signalled the start of the spiralling mayhem to the series finale.
How good was Anthony Head’s return? “I’d like to test that theory!” Boom, Giles was back, and the episode ended. There may have been a little air-punching the first time I saw that, and then we had to wait a whole week to see what would happen next! The anticipation! But the brilliance when it was Xander, the everyman, the ordinary chap, who saves the world and Willow by being himself and refusing to give up on her. Oh, my heartses!
One thing that didn’t ring true this series, this time and on my first viewing was the bathroom scene with Buffy and Spike. I get why it was put it in, but for all we know about these two, no, it just felt contrived and poorly written. I guess it wasn’t the easiest of scenes to write but still, it felt like the characters were being fed lines rather than being themselves.
Another wee note is Clem, like the Shar Pei of demonkind (very wrinkly skin). A sweet likeable demon who takes over Dawn-sitting duties when Spike takes off. For most of Buffy demons were all varying degrees of bad guys, then suddenly we notice Spike seems to have a chum and the local bar were demons hang is the place to go get info. This is, of course, after Angel goes to L.A. and Joss Whedon starts writing demons as just other citizens living there and getting on with their lives; which reminds me, next week E4 is showing Angel from the start. Joys!
Toodle pip, my sweets!