Wednesday, December 26, 2012

2012 Whedonverse Holiday Ornament Swap Recap!

Thanks to everyone who participated in this year's 5th Annual Whedonverse Holiday Ornament Swap! I'm so glad we've been doing this all this time. Over the years we've collected some gorgeous handmade creations and personally, gracing my tree with this fandom fun is such a joyful experience.

This year was another huge success with some truly remarkable ornaments. If you didn't participate, check out some photos below.

Swappers: if you haven't yet posted your pictures to the Flickr group page, please do when you get the chance. And see you next year!

This was my ornament, it has a sound effect (Thanks Kaaren for uploading the vid!):


And here are the images from our ever-growing Flickr Group:

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Happy Holidays from Buffyfest!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays fellow Whedonites! Hope the rest of the year is full of joy and fun and you all have the best of luck in 2013!

I'm pretty sure we've shared this before, but it's so amazing, let's post it again:

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

It's a Xmas Miracle! Buffy & Angel Together Again.

The King & Queen of the Whedonverse - Sarah Michelle Gellar and David Boreanaz natch - were reunited this past weekend at the "Santa's Secret Workshop" Event at the Andaz Hotel in West Hollywood.
The event benefited L.A. Family Housing, whose mission is to help families transition out of homelessness and poverty through a continuum of housing enriched with supportive services. Smidge went solo but Boreano brought his wife Jaime Bergman and their two children Bella and Jaden. Looks like it was a crafty time!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Reminder: Last day to sign up for the Whedonverse Holiday Ornament Swap!

If you'd like to join this year's 5th anniversary of our beloved Whedonverse themed ornament swap, follow the instructions below before midnight tonight! We'll be sorting the groups immediately and you'll receive your list of recipients over the weekend.

If you're not sure what this is about, read full details here. To sign up for the swap, send an email with the subject "MERRY WHEDON" and the following information to before midnight tonight PDT:

- name
- address
- whether your are willing to ship internationally

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Spoliers - Live Twitter #EspensonChat Recap

Well, last night's live twitter chat with Jane Espenson was hard core! And we're happy to report that the hashtag became a trending topic later in the night. Fandom in full effect.

During the chat, we were lucky enough to have special guests Drew Z. Greenburg of Whedonverse fame and Husband's co-creator Brad Bell (aka Cheeks) on board as well! For anyone who missed it, please see a full recap below of all questions that were answered:

**Please be warned. There are a slew of spoilers on here for all types of things including, but not limited to: Husbands, Warehouse 13, Buffy, Buffy Season 9 and a LOT of Once Upon a Time discussion. If you want to remain spoiler-free for any of those titles, we'd strongly suggest diverting your eyes for this one.**

Hello tweeps! Please give a warm welcome to Whedonverse greats &  and  of 'Husbands' fame 

CHAT! Ask me,  &/or , but use the hashtag  We'll respond directly to you, so search the tag to see all.

To refresh --  wrote Buffy, Warehouse 13, and writes Buffy comics with me including today's new "Billy issue".

Hello, all. I am ready for my . Which I assume is where we talk about French cats who resemble . cc

Are we  ing? I was on a writing sprint. Talk to me lovelies. How does the evening find you?

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Wednesday: Live Twitter Chat with Jane Espenson! #EspensonChat

**UPDATE please note new time and hashtag**

Got questions for Jane Espenson? Well you're in luck! We're happy to annouce that tomorrow night, Wed, Nov. 14th at 7 PDT/10 PM EST, Buffyfest will be hosting a live Twitter Chat with Jane courtesy of Dark Horse Comics! Whether you're wondering about her hit web-sitcom Husbands, the Billy the Vampire Slayer arc currently taking place in the Buffy Season 9 comics or something from deep in her past.

Jane has been writing for the Whedonverse stories since 1998 with some of the best episodes of the show under her belt ("Pangs", "Superstar", and "A New Man"...just to name a fabulous few) and has written a slew of comics for Dark Horse. She has also written and produced for over a dozen hit TV shows including Buffy, Angel, Firefly, Dollhouse, Tru Calling, Battlestar Galactica, Caprica, Torchwood, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Game of Thrones, Once Upon a Time and many more. But you knew that!

So gather your questions and join us tomorrow at 9:30! Make sure to use the hashtag #EspensonChat to join the fun.

'Browncoats Unite' was a Ratings Darling - More Firefly in the Future?

Not only did it bring us all to tears, but it looks like Firefly: Browncoats Unite was a huge winner for the Science Channel! They scored their highest ratings ever among coveted ages 25-54. Shiny! Now go ahead and be good boys and girls, Sci Channel, and get some new episodes made. We've been very, very patient and it's about time now isn't it?

Until then, don't worry if you missed the event...Sci Channel is showing Browncoats Unite again almost every day this week. So check your local schedule.

See below for the full official press release:



--1.2 Million Unique Viewers P2+ Tuned-In to the FIREFLY 10th Anniversary Special--
-- The Night Was the Network’s Most-Watched Sunday Ever among P25-54--

(Silver Spring, Md.)—FIREFLY: BROWNCOATS UNITE–Science Channel’s long-awaited 10th anniversary celebration of the cult hit series FIREFLY–earned stellar ratings on Sunday night at 10PM/ET, and was the network’s most-watched Sunday night  ever among P25-54. FIREFLY: BROWNCOATS UNITE garnered 1.2 million unique viewers across the evening and was the network’s second-highest-rated telecast of 2012 among P25-54 and M25-54. The special delivered a 0.7HH rating and a 0.5 rating among P25-54. 

The excitement for FIREFLY: BROWNCOATS UNITE also was seen on Twitter with the network’s "Flock to Unlock" campaign, where fans had a chance to unlock deleted scenes and cutting room floor footage from the special. On Sunday, Firefly ranked tenth in Twitter TV Ratings in Cable (according to SocialGuide) with more than 25,000 tweets generating 26 million impressions. 

The FIREFLY grassroots movement began this past July, when Science Channel’s reunion panel became the most-buzzed about television event at San Diego Comic-Con.  This was followed up by Nathan Fillion’s surprise appearance at New York Comic-Con this past October, which accompanied a sneak preview of footage from the special.

On air, Science Channel’s FIREFLY extravaganza began Sunday morning with an all-day marathon of the series. That evening, at 8PM ET/PT, the final two episodes were enhanced and presented as FIREFLY: SPECIAL EDITION where executive story editor Jose Molina gave fans unique insight into the inner workings of the series by revealing FIREFLY facts and behind-the-scenes info. FIREFLY: BROWNCOATS UNITE premiered at 10PM ET/PT.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Today's the day! Call it a "Fireflyfest" if You Will...

Rise and shine! It's November 11th. And in about 5 minutes, starting at 7 a.m. EST, the Science Channel will begin airing a marathon of all 14 glorious "Firefly" episodes to mark the 10th anniversary of the show. Following the 'thon they will air the hourlong special "Firefly 10th Anniversary: Browncoats Unite" at 10 p.m. EST tonight!

From the Press Release: 
"Science Channel reunites Joss Whedon, Nathan Fillion and the entire renegade crew of the Serenity for the first time ever to provide the complete oral history on the franchise that continues to explode in popularity — despite meeting its end a decade ago. The 60-minute special includes secrets from the set, exclusive cast interviews, and footage from this year's colossal Comic-Con panel that dominated the pop culture conversation."

So get up and get ready! in 5...4...3...2...

Thursday, November 8, 2012

The 5th Annual Whedonverse Ornament Swap!

Happy Holidays, crafty people! We're so happy to announce the 5th anniversary of our Whedonverse Holiday Ornament Swap. We love this event and every year we are reminded of the fantastic creativity of this fandom. See for yourself the several hundred photos of festive craftiness from years past:

Aren't they amazeballs? If you're just hearing about this for the first time, the event entails creating ornaments with a Whedonverse theme and sending them to 4-6 different recipients. In return you will receive 4-6 completely different handmade ornaments from around the world. As you can see from the photos, you really can make them out of anything: Wood, knit, sew, paint, draw, sculpt, paper craft, recycle old ornaments (earth friendly!) And you'll have a much more Whedoney Holiday time.

If you'd like to join us, sign-ups begin right now and will end next Friday, November 16th at 11:59 PM U.S. EST. And pretty please make super sure you're willing to go through with this entire process before signing up! Deadbeats ruin the holiday fun. Here are the guidelines in 6 easy steps:

1. Sign up by sending an email with the subject "MERRY WHEDON" and the following information to by Friday, November 16th.
- name
- address
- whether your are willing to ship internationally*

2. On November 17th you'll receive an email from us containing the addresses and email addresses of 4-6 swap participants for you to send your ornaments to. Since you'll have each other's personal info, please contact each other with any questions, disputes or praise.

3. Design and create the multiple Whedon themed ornaments! You'll have 3 weeks to make them.

4. Package your ornaments well (especially if you create something fragile) and send one ornament to each person on the list of swap participants in your group by Saturday, December 8th.

5. Sit back and relax as you wait to receive 4-6 lovely Whedonverse ornaments in the mail!

6. Then don't forget to share photos of the ornaments you make and receive by uploading to the swap flickr group here: You will need a flickr account to upload photos, which is easy to set up.

*A note on international shipping: Please only select international shipping if you are willing to ship at least 2-3 of your ornaments overseas. Take the cost of shipping into account when you design your ornament. Lighter and more compact ornaments are cheaper to ship, but chances are you cannot send any food or plant life.

Any questions? Email

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Exclusive Interview: Scott Allie Talks 'Willow' at NYCC 2012

Willow: Wonderland, the 5-part mini series by Dark Horse Comics comes out today. There is a bit of time travel involved here, as we discussed all things Willow with Scott Allie a few weeks ago at New York Comic Con. That seems like a lifetime ago now! Prior to Hurricane Sandy, Daylight Savings and the Election...but we called one thing right, it's definitely freezing in New York right now.

It was still seasonable then, so take a walk back in time with us and check out part 2 of our interview with Chief Allie below, with bonus suprise guest appearance by Angel & Faith artist Rebekah Isaacs around the 10:00 mark!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Happy Election Day!

Who are you voting for today? I think we know who Joss Whedon is voting for at this point. In his words:

"Mitt Romney is a very different kind of candidate. One with the vision and determination to cut through the business as usual politics and finally put this country back on the path to the zombie apocalypse."

"Romney's ready to make the deep rollbacks in healthcare, education, social services and reproductive rights that will guarantee poverty, unemployment, overpolulation disease and rioting. All crucial elements in creating a nightmare zombie wasteland." - Joss Whedon

Monday, November 5, 2012

Buffyfest Chills Out with Jane Espenson

New York Comic Con is now but a memory but we still have a few treasures from NYC's wackiest weekend of the year. For instance, we had the enormous pleasure of sitting comfortably amidst all the chaos in a cozy VIP room with writer extraordinaire Jane Espenson. We talk everything from her career, her critically acclaimed web series (and upcoming comic book) Husbands, ABC's Once Upon a Time and of course all things Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Thanks so much, Jane!

Sandy the Beachtown Slayer

Well it's been crazy, to say the least. Last week here we planned on posting our interview with Jane Espenson and kicking off the Holiday season by starting our annual Whedonverse Ornament Swap but that plan went to hell when as you know by now, we got our asses kicked by Hurricane Sandy. Hopefully we'll get to that other stuff this week.

I can't complain too much, my family and friends are safe and I feel I was given a big break. For those that follow us on Twitter you prolly saw my bitching and moaning about not having power for 4 days and I definitely was starting to crack. Blow-drying my hair in the morning with the car's heating vent while charging my phone at the same time, using multiple coolers (unsuccessfully) as a refrigerator and listening to 1010Wins AM on an old walkman every night to get news by candlelight with 3 blankets on. But these things seem almost silly compared to the total devastation others went through. I feel guilty even sitting here with a computer now. It's really bad out there and just getting colder by the day, all of a sudden. Today we brought some clothes, blankets and food to the people displaced in Hoboken and you should've seen the long line of people freezing outside that just lost everything. Sucks. If you're in the area and want to get over there, that donation center is at Hoboken High School on 8th and Clinton, Hoboken NJ. We also added a link on our right sidebar, if you have the means to donate.

From the awesome Shore to Staten Island, to the small harbortowns just ruined by water, to the Breezy Point fire of 100+ homes and two massive oil spills in the region, not to mention the hundreds of huge trees down everywhere and of course all the people who have died....any single one of these news stories would be the biggest of the week, but there are so many at the same time that it's hard to keep track. I don't know how it is for the rest of the country, but the hurricane news is on 24 hrs a day here on some channels. And there are still *so* many people without power. I have someone staying with me now because they STILL don't have electricity or heat and they live right across the street! Man I am sure counting every one of my lucky stars tonight.

This bitch Sandy.  Don't remember her?
She got sired by VampWillow and bit Riley for kicks.
Can't really blame her for the destruction of the North East,
but I feel like taking it out on since it's Buffy,
this girl is gettin' it. Sorry actress Megan Grey.

Monday, October 15, 2012

NYCC 2012 'Firefly' Panel

The other highlight of NYCC Saturday besides the Buffy panel was the Firefly Sci Channel event. Speakers were Sean Maher, Jewel Staite, and very surprise guest Nathan Filion, who first side-tracked the rest of the cast by calling on the phone but then showed up in person! Tricky, tricky. The panel featured some clips from the upcoming Browncoats Unite special on Sci Channel, but they are not included in the video. You'll have to wait for Nov. 11 at 10 p.m for that! In the mean time, see the official video of panel in full below.

Scootch to 31 minutes for the Firefly portion.


Sunday, October 14, 2012

'Buffy' Panel at NYCC 2012

Yesterday was a very fun day at New York Comic Con. Dark Horse's morning Buffy panel was one of the best ones we've been to in a really long time. Titled "Once More With Feeling: 15 Years of Buffy the Vampire Slayer" the speakers were: Jane Espenson, Scott Allie, Rebekah Isaacs, Sierra Hahn, Jeremy Atkins & surprise guest Nicholas Brendon! Everyone was great, we learned a few new tidbits from the upcoming Dark Horse comics and Nick Brendon couldn't be more charismatic. Watch the full video below.

Description: In March of 1997, the first episode of Joss Whedon's landmark television series was aired, inspiring fandom the likes of which remains unmatched to this day. 15 years later, this cast of characters lives on Dark Horse's family of Buffy-related titles. Join longtime editor of all things Whedon-related, Scott Allie, as well as some surprise guests for a look back, as well as news around Buffy Season 9, Angel, Spike, Willow and more!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Buffyfest Interviews Scott Allie at NYCC 2012

Scott Allie took the time to meet with us at the pretty Buffyverse wall of the Dark Horse booth, after being newly appointed Chief earlier this week. We talk about a little bit of everything, Willow, Spike, Angel & Faith, and of course, Buffy...there are some juicy bits in there. Check it out below and look out for part 2 of this interview in a couple of weeks where we exclusively discuss the fantastic first issue of Willow and the lovely Rebekah Isaacs interview bombed us!

Angel & Faith's Christophe Gage will be co-writing the second half of the Willow mini-series.
After Spike's 5-issue arc he will appear in Angel & Faith.
The character of Nadira will be getting increasingly more difficult and she will be featured on a future cover.
The season's big bads are named, although there will be others.
The core characters will be back together soon and Xander will be crucial to the conclusion.

Interviewers: Tara & Dan
Camera and Audio: Nanci

Thursday, October 11, 2012

New York Comic Con 2012: Day 1

Today was preview night of NYCC so it was nice and slow but the perfect day to get some work done! Actually, all we pretty much did was pick up our press passes, stopped by the Buffy car (below), play some Wii U, interviewed Super Scott Allie and left. But look out for that interview, it will be up very shortly!

Oh and Dark Horse announced today that they'd be releasing a Buffyverse value sampler. From the press release:


BUFFYVERSE SAMPLER TO FEATURE FULL FIRST ISSUES OF BUFFY SEASON 9, ANGEL & FAITH, SPIKE, AND WILLOW! OCTOBER 11, NEW YORK, NY—Dark Horse offers fans and retailers alike the perfect jumping-on point for all of the titles in Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 9! In 2007, Dark Horse made comics history with a revolutionary new concept: Joss Whedon’s best-loved television series continued in comics with Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 8. With Joss Whedon himself at the helm, the series launched with much critical acclaim, and sold out of multiple printings. 
Following the success of Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 8, Dark Horse launched four separate series for the anticipated Buffy Season 9. Buffy Season 9 and Angel & Faith are direct follow-ups to Season 8, while Spike and Willow are spinoffs from those two ongoing series. 

Collected here are all four #1 issues, with all-new cover art by C. L. Bradley! 

Coming in at 96 pages, this issue carries the low cover price of only $4.99! 

Look for this at your local comic shop on January 23, 2013! 

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Dr. Horrible Makes it's TV Premiere Tonight!

In just over an hour, my very favorite Whedon masterpiece of them all, Dr. Horrible, will be shown on TV for the first time on network television! Fans rejoice and if for some ungodly reason you've never had the pleasure, now's your chance! Tune in to The CW network at 9 pm to see an edited version of this internet classic.

You should also tweet with the hashtag #drhorrible and the best comments will be reproduced on Doc Horrible's official site along with a live commentary.

Scott Allie Promoted to Editor In Chief of Dark Horse Comics!

Scott looks a bit evil here, but we don't
think he plans on bringing Dark Horse
to the brink of evil empire terror...
Congratulations are in order for the Whedonverse's main Comic dude, Scott Allie, who has just been promoted to Editor in Chief! Look out for our interview with him later this week!

From the official press release:
“I’m delighted and relieved to hear that my great collaborator Scott Allie has been made editor in chief, because, to be perfectly honest, I thought he already was,” said Buffy the Vampire Slayer creator Joss Whedon. 

Ha! Read the full release after the jump:

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Eliza Explains Why Girls Can Game Then Proceeds to Curse Like a Sailor

So Eliza Dushku was on The Jace Hall Show talking about why he shouldn't question a girl's game cred, then proceeds to go on a Natalie Portman-sque rapping tirade. Is this awful or entertaining? I'll leave you, dear reader, to decide.  

Eliza's part is after "The Godfather of Gaming" INTELLIVISION's Keith Robinson's part...around the 6:27 & 7:57 mark.


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Finale of The Season Seven Showdown

With mere hours to go until this season's Supernatural Premiere, we give you the final battle of the Season Seven Showdown.

Supernatural Episode #23 - "Survival of the Fittest"
The Lightning Round Recap:
"Carry On, Wayward Son" kicks it off as per usual, and we pick right up with Crowley in the belly of the beast - negotiating a deal with Dick friggin' Roman at Sucrocorp. The deal's this: if Crowley replaces the blood the boys need for the super-weapon (The Macguffin), he can have all of Canada after the apocalypse. Luckily, Crowley promptly screws Dick over (with no explanation as to the how he fudged the contract) and gives the boys his actual blood. The boys obtain the final ingredient, the blood of long dead nun Sister Mary Constant, and the super-weapon is ready to rock.

Meanwhile, Castiel's still in lalaland, but he gets back involved to let the boys know all the Angels have been murdered. Crowley is infuriated that the boys have had Cas stashed from him the whole time and even more annoyed that he's too cracked to give him some satisfying revenge.

Over at Sucrocorp, Kevin Tran discovers that a poison creamer has been created to weed out the skinny humans...and this is where this plot line has been taken too far. Creamer now? Come on, it's the Season Finale let's step it up a bit, sheesh. Meanwhile, Dick has used the frozen arm of the original Dick friggin' Roman to create many avatars of the CEO, thus confusing Sam & Dean as to who's the real one. Bobby shows up, having body-jacked that poor, unsuspecting maid at the motel and Sam is forced to stop him. This helps Bobby see how dark he's gotten and he makes the decision to finally move on. So the boys burn the flask, setting Bobby's soul free while Castiel watches from the sidelines.

Now Crowley, had cryptically mentioned that Cas would be needed n the final battle. See he can spot the actual fake Dick Roman, since all the Leviathan were inside of him at one point. So Dean talks Cas into helping and they FINALLY pick up the car just so Meg can smash it through Sucrocorp's welcome sign. Ugh, what shit is this? Meg distracts the guards but ends up getting caught by Crowley's men. Inside, Dean and Cas go on a mission to find the real Dick while Sam and Kevin blow up the....creamer...lab. Dean stabs Dick in the neck with the convenient weapon, killing him dead but with some sticky side effects: Crowley snatches up Kevin Tean, Dean and Castiel end up in Purgatory where they immediately get separated and Sam's left all alone.


Buffy Episode #22 - "Chosen"
The Lightning Round Recap:
Here we go! After Buffy kills Caleb once and for all, Angel passes the amulet to Buffy and they have a nice little post-kiss chat. A chat about Spike, a chat about the future, a chat about cookie dough. Oh yes, cookie dough…see Buffy is now a metaphor for the very thing that was in the ice cream her and Angel shared oh so many years ago. Basically, when Buffy is fully a baked warm delicious cookie, Angel will be waiting. Spike sees and hears the whole thing but Buffy tells him she didn't use tongue, so it's all good. Buffy gives Spike the amulet then spends the night with him, even though she has "Angel-breath." Speaking of 'ships, Kennedy/Willow are still making use of the latter's tongue piercing, Anya/Xander have rekindled and Faith/Wood have a moment where he puts her in her place for putting up emotional walls, so they make a deal about their post-apocalypse relationship.

 Buffy then comes up with the big plan to finally defeat The First, which freaks Willow out because it involves some major mojo and she doesn't want to go all "Black Eyes of Shut Up Willow." The entire group heads over to Sunnydale High and it's pretty epic, actually. There's a fab moment between the original core-four Scoobs, calling back to "Welcome to the Hellmouth"…Giles says "The earth is definitely doomed." Willow's spell uses the Scythe to call all the Potential Slayers to their duty and triggers their powers. Instead of "Evil Eyes of Shut Up Willow", we get to see her go "white-hair of Goddess Willow." A huge fight ensues down in the Hellmouth betwixt the now-Slayers and a gajillion Ubervamps. Oh man, I had a feeling Buffy would make it but I remember being so scared Faith was going to die here.

Unfortunately we do lose some Slayers and one of the major casualties is Anya, but not before she showed some rare bravery, brought forth by the thought of floppy, hoppy bunnies. During the battle, the amulet now around Spike's neck is charging up. It brings forth the power of the sun and kills all the Ubers in one fell swoop. Right before Sunnydale go boom, Buffy says to Spike "I Love You", which he doesn't really believe, but appreciates. Spike makes the ultimate sacrifice and the surviving gang make a run for it in a School Bus, with Buffy jumping rooftops to try and catch up to. Once the town is imploded, they look back and wonder what to do next. Buffy just smiles.

Finale Final Ruling: 
Look, this season finale of Supernatural felt more like a mid-season Finale than anything else. Killing the Leviathan and Dick Friggin' Roman was a little too easy, and too many of the season's loose ends weren't tied up. Bobby's goodbye was a little too unceremonious and with Dean in Purgatory over the summer, well I just feel like we've been here before. "Chosen" is the obvious winner here, but this episode is not without it's problems. First off, it's not even the best season finale, never mind a way to end the series, and it definitely should've been a 2-hour event. I remember being very upset that it wasn't at the time. But the real problems are with the details. Buffy called all the slayers to power and I'm still not sure I agree with the morality behind this decision. But most importantly, everything they did was in vain. Willow's Spell, The Scythe, Spike's kamikaze, the battle tactics, none of that was even needed. Straight up, the person who defeated The First Evil was Wolfram & Hart. They saved the world, sending that amulet.

So the Scoobs don't get credit for that. This wasn't the school banding together to beat The Mayor or Buffy driving a sword through a loved one. And it definitely wasn't Buffy sacrificing herself on top of a tower to avert the apocalypse. To this day it's that moment that feels like the true, epic ending this series deserved. This ending just falls a tad short...but, it did have some fantastic full-circle moments. I'll give it that.


Post-Season thoughts:
I remember really hating Buffy Season Seven and we have beat it with a bat over the years. But really, it wasn't as vile 10 years later. It has major flaws, but at this point I *might* even scootch it ahead of Season 6. For Supernatural's part, I can't really crown it a glorious winner here. Sure it beat the numbers, but that's only because it was marginally better than Buffy, not because it kicked Buffy's ass. I probably could make the argument for it being the worst of all Supernatural seasons. Lucky for us, it gets another chance where Buffy didn't on TV. So with that, I'm going to make some popcorn and get ready to see how Season Eight kicks off tonight. Thanks for reading :)

The Season Seven Showdown - The Penultimate

Everyone please welcome our guest blogger!

Maestro here. Buffyfest has been hard at work wrapping up the Season Seven Showdown with this marathon lightning round in honor of tonight’s season premiere of Supernatural. Episode by episode the Winchesters have maintained a lead, but the Slayer is known to finish strong. Who will take the final episodes? We'll work it through within a minute.

Before Tara comes back here to compare the grand finales, we have a small mathematical issue to address. The creative team behind Supernatural saw fit to write an extra episode into their seventh season, stretching it across 23 parts instead of the usual 22. This leaves us with a conundrum: we are left without a fair matchup in the end and it is obviously wrong to not let the finales stand up against one another. With great deliberation your bloggers have made the only executive decision we think that is appropriate under the circumstances.

It’s time for Ben Edlund vs. Ben Edlund.

Supernatural Episode #21 - "Reading is Fundamental"
The Lightning Round Recap:
An overachieving Asian lad plays cello according to a ridiculously regimented schedule while Frank and Joe Hardy squat in an abandoned loft and chisel masonry off of the handprops. The concept for this new character is actually a bit racist.

So, the brothers hammer away at that chunk of stone that they lucked into during the whole Felicia Day incident assuming there is a creamy center inside, and expose an ancient tablet hand inscribed with ten commandments and eleven secret herbs and spices, and for some reason freeing it results in crazy stuff hundreds of miles away: the young man we barely know gets hit by lightning and Cas wakes up. 

The kid sleeps through a day of school and then steals his mother’s car to run away while displaying the an unusually orange shade glowing eyes of mystical mind control while Meg summons our protagonists back to the mental institution. They discover that our favorite trenchcoated seraphim is in fact up and about, but definitely not all there. He’s like 25% Cas, 50% Gravelly-voiced Rain Man, and 12% Teleporting Conflict Avoider. I’m not sure what the rest is, for now we’ll just say tar.

Misha better be having fun with this (probably is.)

Anyway, Crazy Angel’s reluctance to stay in one place for unpleasant conversations will be leading to a few incidents of strange script pacing for the remainder of the season. This first time it inserts a gap that allows him to give Dean a really awkward apology while Sam and Meg tackle the boy we met earlier, Advanced Placement Kevin, who had successfully slipped in and stolen Sam’s Holy Backpack with the rock of doom, which he can read for some reason.

We’re short on time so to quickly explain that reason the writers instantly beam in a hit squad of angels to tell us: the kids a prophet. Tough plot twist for you, Asian boy. You just inherited Chuck’s job. (Unless Chuck was secretly God. They never actually made that clear.)

Anyway, my watch says we’re only a couple of episodes from the end of the year, which according to the Supernatural writing formula means it’s time for the boys to find the Macguffin that will conveniently take out the big bad. Turns out the magic rock that conveniently dropped into their laps is not that Macguffin: it’s the instruction manual that tells you how to make the Macguffin. No, that’s not ex machina at all.

So Team "No Apocalypse" is on the run being chased down by a number of angels and demons and Leviathan FBI who all want AP Kevin before he can translate the ancient cookbook. Long story short: fighting ensues, demons and angels die, the Leviathans do get their hands on the prophet but not before the heroes get a marble composition book that contains the cheat sheet for the end of the season.

Also: great work on protecting God’s chosen one, entire forces of good. How has evil not won seasons ago?


Angel Season 4 Episode #20 - "Sacrifice"
The Lightning Round Recap:
This is coming out of left field for some of you with very little buildup, but while Buffy and Company have been in this middle of their Mal and the Uruk-Hai crap the Angel Crew have been fighting Zoe and her Cult of Happiness. Basically this was the year that the bastard step-child Firefly came back to wreak vengeance on its favored siblings.

So to catch you up: all of Los Angeles has been mind controlled by Zoe, who is basically a god whose parents are Comatose Cordelia and Creepy Connor, with all the alliteration and uncomfortable incest vibes that brings.

In the last minute of the previous episode our whole team of heroes is freed from the brainwashing by the magic of plot contrivance, except Connor decides to stay with the zombies anyway and betrays everyone to the cult. So this week opens with Angel having to beat the extreme amounts of pretty out his extremely pretty son’s face and then everyone escapes in the Angelmobile.

The brainwashing appears to have spread over northern California (except specifically Sunnydale, where apparently there is no longer any television or radio and also people are busy with their own apocalypse) and soon the whole world will be affected once the good guys are dead. Zoe projects herself into random individuals to try to kill the heroes, so we take to the sewers for safety.

Here we find the last temporarily un-kool-aided citizens who have been hiding out even since the extended eclipse from earlier in the season. Because without them we wouldn’t know about the strange monster that our characters really shouldn’t be wasting their time with right now but luckily will somehow tie back into the main plot although there is no way for them to know that. Wes gets to have a brief conversation with the creature, an alien from another dimension that thankfully came to our world to deliver exposition to the heroes, while everyone wanders the smelly tunnels looking for someone or another. Fred gets a line in about how even if their lives are pain and suffering she’d still prefer that to being a shell, so there’s a nice piece of cruel foreshadowing for next year (thanks for that.)

Gunn beats up a little kid while the alien tells Wes that to beat Zoe, Angel has to travel to his home dimension and find out the god’s True Name. Then Angel kills him.

Anyway, the main character has to jump through the portal alone (because the air is poison) and everyone else gets captured while Zoe creepily laughs feeling every wound and injury her minions receive. And scene!

Final Ruling: Obviously under the circumstances this would not be a fair matchup to include in the final tally, so we’re going to call this one an exhibition match. Just for fun.

This is definitely an interesting one, since both these episodes were written by a guy mostly known for doing the wacky humor episodes. But apparently at the end of a season he puts down his Tick skills and focuses and darkness and gravitas. These are both pretty decent episodes that have powerful moments, and they further the overall plot arc but still squeeze in time for big character growth as well. They both have the same major flaw: the heroes are so far behind that they need a ridiculously lucky twist if they want to win in time, so the universe has to just hand it to them in an unbelievably improbable way. You can blame that on previous episodes being too inefficient, but in Supernatural’s case I feel like this happens every year. But we’ll forgive both shows because these chapters are enjoyable enough that you don’t really get hung up on how improbable it is during the first viewing.

So, high marks all around, almost a tie but the scales tip very slightly in favor an Angel for better plot momentum.

Unofficial Tally:


Supernatural Episode #22 - "There Will Be Blood"
The Lightning Round Recap:
Hey, remember that Alpha Vampire from last season? No? Don’t feel bad, not sure anyone else did either.

So, Evil Dick has conquered the high-fructose corn syrup industry, because he wants all Americans lazy and fat and blah blah blah meta-message. He also thinks he can bribe AP Kevin with a letter of recommendation to Princeton, so that racism from last week is still present. When that doesn’t work he threatens to kill his mom, which is really a motivation that transcends all ethnicities.

Sam and Dean are debating whether or not to be smart for once or just rush in, while Bobby points out that they’ve missed the window for smart and now just have to be fast. So they call Crowley in, figuring that they need his blood to make their superweapon. Crowley agrees, but won’t give it to them until they get the other ingredient from the heavenly recipe first: the blood of the original vampire that got captured last year by Grampa X-Files.

They drive to a town indicated by Crowley but can’t eat any food because everything with sugary goodness is poisoned with happy juju like the Turducken sandwiches. We reach Casa de Vampyre where the bloodsuckers are all dead with burns on their mouths. But hey, there’s a nice traumatized thrall locked in a secret room who appears to have not mentally aged in the last decade since she was kidnapped in a really, really, upsetting writing choice. 

So, we’ve figured out the blood of the corn-syrup zombies is what killed the vampires so the boys steal some from a random person to use as a weapon. They then lock the vampire’s slave in their motel room with Bobby’s flask, completely not realizing that she’s been obviously evil this whole time and instantly calls “Daddy” to warn him. Bobby gets pissed and steals a maid’s body so he can go murder Dick.

The captured Winchesters try to negotiate with the vampires for their precious pernicious plasma, but Lethal Latino Leviathan arrives to sour the deal. Smooth Alpha Vamp chooses at first not to believe that Dick would betray the other monsters, but Triple L’s arrogance lets it slip that the black-bloods want to be the only predators on the block: their drug will not only subjugate humanity it will kill everything that eats humans except for the Leviathans. So Lethal Latino gets beheaded, the Vamp let’s us know he’ll be back next year, and Sam and Dean leave with the blood. Everything is now going their way.

Except that Bobby is missing, walking around in a maid suit.

Oh, and Dick has captured Crowley. Cheers!


Buffy Episode #21 - "End of Days"
The Lightning Round Recap:
So, at this point in Buffy there were very, very few people who had actually read Fray so the significance of the weapon in front of our heroine is not well explained, but Mal will try to convey it to us with his very expressive face.

Before any fighting can happen, the First taunts Buffy with the fact the newbies are all about to die so she has to run out the door and save all their asses. They appear to have survived the bomb but are surrounded by Uruk-hai, so obviously Buffy (who previously had to spend weeks fighting just a single one of them) is now able to dispatch three of then in 30 seconds, because “Shut up, audience, we don’t have time for this now.”

The wounded are all teleported back to the house somehow, and Buffy talks about how Faith shouldn’t be blamed for falling into a trap because she could have done the same thing (except you just did the same thing, like yesterday, but good job faking the moral high ground) and everyone can ooh and ahh about Buffy’s new magical Axe of +5 Vampire Slaying. They mistakenly refer to it as a scythe, which it totally is not, and I refuse to ever refer to it as such even if they call it that forever after. It’s either an axe or a glaive or a “fuck you medieval polearm experts”, take your pick.

Anya and Andrew have nothing good to contribute to this episode so they go off to scavenge medical supplies from a hospital. Buff assigned One-Eye the task of kidnapping her sister to take her out of harm’s way (one quick tase later and she’s on the way back). Willow and Giles waste our time not finding out about the axe in order to remind the audience how great and special the witch is.

Mal and Sarah Michelle First have a creepy sexual moment in order to roid him up into UberCaleb for the end of the episode, and then Faith has a creepy sexual moment with the new Mr. Pointy as a setup for her wasting our time in order to remind the audience how great and special the Slayer is.

It strikes me that if the creators spent a little less time talking themselves up here, we might have enough time here to build to a resolution that isn’t a total ass-pull.

So, Spike and Buffy reiterate everything we’ve seen from them a million times so far this season without getting any further than we ever have, and Buffy goes off to destiny. Destiny is a white-haired woman in a grave who apparently is that last of an all-female order of sisters that have been deeply entwined with the slayer line from the very beginning, so it makes total sense that we have never heard of them before the LAST FUCKING MINUTE IN THE SERIES. Anyway they made a weapon that could superboost Buffy’s power in case the world was ending and left it in a place that she would find it at like the tenth time in her life that she really needed it. If she had died in one of those many other times they world was going to end, this old woman would have felt very stupid.

Before she can tell us anything that’s actually useful Mal snaps her neck, an act which reaches across the universe and into another television network to anger the rightful king of neck snappings, who then leaps across the void to the UPN for his revenge.

Just as Buffy is losing her fight despite her new glaive juju, in walks the Ex to help with the killing blow. “Hey honey, I just came back from this alternate dimension with a villain destroying Macguffin and thought you might like it if I picked you up one too.”

What happens next is either the best thing ever or the worst thing ever depending on your ship: Bangel kissage.

Final Ruling: 
I don’t have much to complain about this Supernatural exactly: while there is a strange convenience to all this and weird pacing I can’t say that is anything particular bad about the episode. It really more of a sense like: this? This is what we’re doing? It’s alright, but are you sure there wasn’t a better option, some superior way of going about this? But okay, I guess. The vampire is cool at least.

As for Buffy: it was like old times. Especially with Angel being here and everything. But it was also crammed full of too many moments for the real characters because of all the wasted time in previous episodes focusing on unimportant new people. No matter which character you love or which ship you support there was something in this for you to appreciate, but no matter which character you hate or which ship you are against there was something to piss you off. I could try to make an argument for this ep as it was at least much better than the two that came before it, but it must forever be penalized for the revelation that Dawn killed Tara’s cat.

Advantage Winchester.

Season tally so far:

Well, there you have it; nothing left to do now but wrap it up. If anyone has any complaints or anything to add, well, that’s what the comments section is for. Otherwise: back to you, Tara.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The Season Seven Showdown - The Reckoning Part III

We're winding down now to the final countdown! If you're just joining us, we've taken longer than we should have to determine whether Supernatural Season Seven was as truly awful as Buffy Season Seven was. Since last October we've been pitting each episode against each other in a battle to the death.

Now the Season 8 premiere Supernatural starts tomorrow night, so we've got to get through the final handful of episodes in the next 24 hours. Luckily, we'll have a guest blogger tomorrow to help out with that and then the finales!

So excited! Here we go:

Supernatural Episode #19 - "Of Grave Importance"
The Lightning Round Recap:
Annie Hawkins, an old hunter friend who just happened to sleep with the whole crew, calls Sam & Dean to pass them some of Bobby's old books and stuff. They high tail it to Bodega Bay, California, only to find she's missing. This leads them an old Bordello, where ghosts are getting ganked and unfortunately, Annie's now gone and got herself all dead as well. The boys run around town trying to figure shit out, all while Ghost Bobby makes bitchy remarks  because he's ten steps ahead of them, but can't contact them unless he calms his spirit ass down. Finally, while Dean is naked in the shower, Bobby exclaims "I can kill werewolves, fix a Pinto and bake cornbread. I will be damned if I can’t get Zen", and succeeds in writing a helpful note on the steamy bathroom mirror.

So now the boys know Bobby's a ghost and they're led back to the house where it turns out it's former owner, Whitman Van Ness, was a killer in life and in death. He's keeping the bodies of former hookers and current teenagers in a hidden room and sucking their ghostly life force, or something, as needed. Annie & Bobby plan on burning the bodies and putting the souls to rest (including hers at her request), while Sam & Dean visit the Van Ness grave so they can burn the murderer's bones just in time before he destroys Bobby. This works out nicely. When the boys return to the house, Bobby is now visible to them, but they are furious about his choice to hang back on this spectral plane and proceed to yell at him for a while. A hurt and angry Bobby disappears, but eavesdrops on the boys worried conversation anyway from the backseat of their car that isn't Baby.  Dean wonders aloud "What are the odds this ends well?"


Buffy Episode #19 - "Empty Places"
The Lightning Round Recap:
Sunnydale's a crazy zone and Buffy's acting like a bitca! She's totally insensitive to the fact that XANDER LOST HIS EYE and ditches him and Willow at the hospital to cry on each other's shoulders, but it seems like this behavior is coming from a guilty place. She takes a time-out to reflect on this over at Sunnydale high, where Caleb shows up and beats her senseless. My my, Fillion is terrifying in this role. Back at the Summers home, other members of the gang try to gather info about Caleb, the Ubervamps, The First and the rest of the impending doom.

Even though the bulk of Sunnydale's townfolk have fled, The Bronze is still packed and a band is playing...Nerf Herder, to be exact! So Faith takes the Potentials there to have a little pre-apocalypse fun while Giles sends Spike and Andrew to gather intel. All of these decisions PISS OFF Buffy pretty royally. Unfortunately, the fuzz show up at The Bronze, seemingly to arrest Faith but in actuality they just want to brush up on their Police brutality skills. After the brawl Buffy shows up and bitches Faith out big time for bringing the girls, but when Faith makes a good point about Buffy putting the girls in danger herself Buffy punches her in the face! Luckily, we're treated to famous the Spike/Andrew "Onion Blossom" scene to diffuse that tension. Then Spike and Andrew reach their destination and find an engraving on a creepy wall that says "It is not for thee, it is for her alone to wield."

Xander arrives home and Buffy takes this moment to tell the group about her plan to go back to the scene of the crime: the vineyard where Xander lost his eye and a few Potentials lost their lives. Everyone (except for Andrew and Spike who haven't arrived home yet) tell Buffy to stick it. And even though I sort of get their fear and lack of trust of Buffy at this point, it's majorly fucked that they kick her out of her own house that they've all been living in. Especially Willow and Dawn. But in the end Buffy does walk out and leaves Faith in charge.

Final Ruling: 
Supernatural has a solid, classic ghost episode on their hands here that just also happens to be Bobby's grand return. On the other end, besides the "Onion Blossom" scene, I've seen this Buffy episode bashed by pretty much every faction in the fandom. "Empty Places" is infuriating and oh SO Season Seven. Supernatural takes it!


Supernatural Episode #20 - "The Girl with the Dungeons and Dragons Tattoo"
The Lightning Round Recap:
Bobby's back and has a boatload of info regarding Dick friggin' Roman's entire plan that he became privy to moments before his untimely demise. Seems Dick has already broke ground on the facility in Wisconsin that will basically be center for disease control/human slaughterhouse, helping to provide a limitless food source for Leviathan, forever. That's the gist. Then Sam receives an email auto-sent from probably dead Frank Devereaux explaining that someone is likely hacking into his hard drive full of the boys private info. That someone is our very own Felicia Day, who is instructed by Dick friggin' Roman himself to break the encryption in 3 days or else. She's a geek girl so there are LoTR, ComicCon and Potter references being sprayed around. Frank had a GPS locator on the hard drive, so the boys set off to the worldwide headquarters of Richard Roman Enterprises in Illinois, sans Bobby.

Felicia Day learns the truth of the Leviathan pretty quickly and tries to make a run for it, but San & Dean cut her off at the pass. Thy all team up, Felicia sneaks into RRE, hacks all the files in the world and they learn that Dick has unearthed what he's been looking for all season at his many archeological dig sites: a tablet. The boys hijack the tablet at the airport and replace it with a borax bomb. Meanwhile, Bobby, who hitched a ride via-flask in Felicia's bag, saves her ass from Dick friggin' Roman but also goes dark, vengeful spirit in the process, which worries the boys. In the end, Felicia changes her name, gets on a bus and says "Peace out, Bitches."


Buffy Episode #20 - "Touched"
The Lightning Round Recap:
This episode starts right where "Empty Places" finished. Potentials are bickering and Kennedy and Anya are at an all time high of irritating, I want to mash both their faces. But hey! Double dose of Felicia Day! Since Faith has been crowned leader, she makes a plan to capture a Bringer and make it talk. They learn that the Bringers are housing an armory underground somewhere. Meanwhile, an ousted Buffy walks down Revello Drive, breaks open a door with her Slayer Strength, forces a man out of his house and raids his fridge! So rude.

Spike and Andrew return from their trip and after they learn of what happened with Buffy, Spike chews them all out and punches Faith in the face! They fight, he leaves and sniffs his way to Buffy's location at the stolen house. He tells Buffy that she was right all along, that Caleb is protecting for a mystical weapon at the vineyard. She doesn't want any of it though, she's just depressed. Spike tries to help and explains all the reasons he loves her so much. They spend the night, just sleeping in the bed. Back at the Summers home, The First appears to Faith as Mayor Wilkins and tries to rattle her. Principal Wood interrupts and tries his own hand at the helpful pep talk…and unlike the Spuffy in this ep, they have actual sex. Speaking of, Kennedy/Willow and Anya/Xander seal that deal as well. The next morning, Faith leads a team to the arsenal the Bringer spoke of while Buffy goes on her own mission to confront Caleb and The First alone at the vineyard. Buffy finds the Melaka Fray's scythe, Faith finds a bomb.

Final Ruling: 
Once again I'm going to give this one to Supernatural. I mean both of these eps have tons of info and twisty, turny convoluted plots designed to set up the big finales coming up, so it's tough. But Supernatch succeeds in doing this it in a cooler, funner and more interesting way. Buffy has some good moments, The Mayor's appearance being a big one and a more compassionate point in the history of Spike and Buffy's relationship. I just hate the way the writer's have set up Faith and Giles to fall for a trap that Caleb set up for Buffy when they weren't wrong to question her. And really? Buffy really leaves her own home and sleeps in someone else's house? I guess the effects of "Empty Places" are still just wearing on me in this episode.

Season tally so far:

Got a problem with this score so far? Let me quote Dean's alliterative and to-the-point outgoing message, "Leave your name, number and nightmare at the tone." Or rather sound off in the comments.

The Season Seven Showdown - The Reckoning Part II

OK, Supernatural starts Wednesday and we're right in the middle of in the Lightning Round in this Season Seven Showdown - comparing the sordid seventh seasons of Buffy and Supernatch, of course. Let's get right to it!

Supernatural Episode #16 - "Out With the Old"
The Lightning Round Recap:
Sammy's not sleeping, Frank Deveraux is cranky and ballerinas are dancing their feet off. So our boys set off to Portland, Oregon in a car that is NOT baby. There, they find out that the ballet slippers have the hoodoo whammy on them and the wacky music of cursed objects begins! (Hilarious side-note, Dean is enthralled by the slippers as he has a hidden desire to dance.) So we end up at "Out With The Old", an antique store that is closing and selling off all the inventory, some of which is now causing gory deaths all over town. See a hunter woman owned the store and kept the questionable ballet slippers, tea kettle, gramophone and porn safe in locked curse-boxes for many years, but right after being forced to sell the shoppe to an annoying realtor named Joyce, the owner is killed and left no further instruction to her son about the deadly objects in question.

It turns out that bitchy realtor Joyce is actually an employee of Dick friggin' Roman and has been aggressively buying several properties in Portland. The Leviathan become privy to Sam and Dean's presence and set up a trap...but in a backstabbing twist, Joyce's assistant George turns on the bitch and he aids the boys in killing her. During all this, we learn that the Portland real estate is actually a front for a Leviathan research facility to cure human cancer for some unknown reason. We also learn that the only real way to kill a Leviathan is for them to be eaten.  In the end, the boys find Frank's trailer ransacked and Frank nowhere to be found. Aww. First Bobby and now Frank. He was growing in me :(


Buffy Episode #16 - "Story Teller"
The Lightning Round Recap:
This episode starts off in a Geeky Masterpiece Theatre-esque opening with Andrew as host presenting his documentary "Buffy, Slayer of the Vampyres." See while he's been held "guestage" in the Summers home, he got bored and annoyingly recorded the current apocalyptic events…even though the opening of the Hellmouth this time was pretty much all his fault. There are many lovable and hilarious fantasy scenes, though…best one probably being the breakfast introduction scene, what with the wind machine and slo-mo and all. But that scene is interrupted by another one of Buffy's long, boring motivating speeches (Andrew's words but come on, oh-so true by this point.) There is also a fantastic scene of Spike doing his best impersonation of Spike. It's great.

During all this, the Hellmouth is really acting up. Since Andrew himself is linked to the Seal of Danthalzar in the high school's basement, he must face the music before it opens and tears apart Sunnydale. Willow uses a magic crystal to make Andrew remember all he knows even without a "refreshing Zima." Then Buffy hauls Andrew to Sunnydale High where she threatens to use the mystical knife he killed Jonathan with to gut him, but he painfully breaks down in tears at the revelation that he consciously killed Jonathan all on his own. His tears close the seal in place of his blood. Well played. Oh and Xander and Anya hook up and learn their relationship is really over.

Final Ruling: 
Well, on Supernatch, the "Dick" jokes are getting old and the last cursed objects ep "Bad Day at Black Rock" was really much better. On the other side, the only way "Storyteller" fails is that it's similar to "The Zeppo" in that the apocalypse is almost silly in it's high-drama, but that ep was an awesome parody and this was for real. I sort of blame that on the fact that it's Season Seven. Still it's rock-solid character-development and a shining light in an otherwise dreary season. Buffy takes this one!


Supernatural Episode #17 - "The Born Again Identity"
The Lightning Round Recap:
Sammy's "Lucifer Insomnia" finally causes a car accident which lands him both in a mental ward and in a B-plot of helping a fellow patient kill a ghost. But more importantly, the A-Plot: The Sam situation causes Dean to freak out himself. He has no luck getting help from fellow Hunters about how to cure Sam, but he does get a little assist from the other side. Bobby's diary is mystically thrown to the floor and a card falls out of it. This leads Dean to the house of a faith healer named Emanuel. Unfortunately demons are also after Emanuel but fortunately Emanuel is really the beloved, much-lamented and sorely missed Castiel. Where ya been buddy!? He wouldn't know because he has amnesia. Whomp, whommmppp.

Cas introduces his wife to Dean (and Dean definitely looks a little crushed, not gonna lie) and explains he can use his healing ability to help Sam, so they go on a little road trip. Since Crowley has cancelled the "hands-off memo" the demons are back on the Winchester's asses, so Dean recruits Meg to lend a protective hand. I miss the original Meg. When they reach the mental hospital Castiel's memories come rushing back in a fabulous little montage while he smites every demon in the parking lot. Cas nearly bails out of guilt, but Dean procures his iconic trench coat from the trunk and helps push him in the right direction.

Inside the hospital, Cas find Sam just in time before a demonic electroshock therapy session fries his brain, but sadly he can't heal Sam. So, he sacrifices himself by transferring Sam's madness to his own mind and permanently checks in at the hospital with Meg by his side.


Buffy Episode #17 - "Lies My Parents Told Me"
The Lightning Round Recap:
This episode starts most woefully, with a re-cast Nikki Wood fighting Spike in 1977 NYC. The scene parallels a present day fight Robin Wood is having alongside both Buffy and Spike. He's just waiting for his moment to kill Spike, you see. The next morning at school, a concerned Giles returns from his trip with a magical stone that might be able to deactivate Spike's musical trigger. The stone turns into a worm and enters Spike's brain via his eyeball, which causes him to revisit his past. There we find that Spike and Lily Van Der Woodsen's share a mother! And it makes the family dynamic on Gossip Girl even more confusing than it already is.

In the past we learn that the trigger song is "Early One Morning" - a song Spike's mother would sing to him. And Drusilla! Oh it's the last time we ever get to see Dru in all her fabulousness. We also get to witness Spike's worst childhood traumas: his siring of his mum, her evil, incestuous advances and her strong need to finally be rid of him. In the end, he has to kill her and it's quite sad.

Meanwhile, in the present, Buffy's acting quite rash and protecting Spike...going so far as unchaining him even though he is still triggered and in all reality, should've been killed years before he got his soul. Giles learns the truth about who Wood is they team up behind Buffy's back in a plot to kill Spike. But it fails and Spike and Buffy both balk that Wood is a dead man if he ever tries it again. Really, everyone's being all fucked up. The most frustrating part, however, is the end. When Buffy says the mission is what matters, but her actions shows the opposite as she closes the door in the Giles' face. I'm still not sure she was right to this day and we never even get to see them make up after this.

Final Ruling: 
"Lies My Parents Told Me" is fandom-polarizing. If you're in love with Spike you may love this good-quality episode. I think Spike is a deeply layered, fantastic character and clearly very different from every other vampire in the series, but that can't cure this ep. In a way, it's quite simply THE low point in the series. Not in a frivolous "Beer Bad" way, in a "changing characters forever" way. After this, it's shocking that Spike continues to wears her Nikki's coat as a sort of trophy to this day. I really wish they would've played it different. Now "The Born Again Identity" is an A+ Supernatural episode, but I wish Cas wouldn't be immediately off the grid again. It furthers the plot but then just stalls it. Even so, I really missed Cas and thought his sacrifice was refreshing in the face of Spike's actions. it's going to Supernatural.


Supernatural Episode #18 - "Party On, Garth"

The Lightning Round Recap:
"Party on, Garth" When a drunken teen is murdered in the woods in Kansas, apparently by a ghost named Jenny Greentree, everyone's favorite uber-skinny hunter Garth Fitzgerald IV arrives to burn the bones quite nicely, but when the teen's brother is also murdered the next day, he calls Dean for the assist. Dean and Garth investigate the case, and find out the father of the dead co-owns a brewery douchily named: Thighslapper Ale, which has some behind-the-scenes corporate shenanigans going on. Seems one of the partners had been forced out of the company for not wanting to sell out, resulting in his suicide. But enforce he offed himself, he sent a box of Sake and intentionally released a Japanese Alcohol Spirit called a Shojo you can only see when you're drunk to kill all the other partners' children. I mean really? Japanese Alcohol Spirit? Whatever.

Meanwhile, Garth is on to Bobby's ghost. Dean and Sam are in denial, but when the blessed samurai sword needed to kill the Shojo during the big fight just magically glides into Dean's hand, he becomes suspicious once again. In the end, we are shown Ghost Bobby's presence through the flask, confirming what we've been suspecting for a while...that they killed Bobby and kept him off the show for half a season, just to bring him back. Just like they did with Cas. Ugh.


Buffy Episode #18 - "Dirty Girls"
So in the middle of "Lies My Parents Told Me" Willow got a phone call from Fred in LA. "Orpheus" happened, which we've discussed endlessly here at Buffyfest as being both a stellar Angel episode and one filled with plot-holes and fail. One thing is for sure, however: Faith kicked ass during her arc in Angel and now she's here in Sunnydale, ready for the big fight. Anyway, she and Willow come upon a Potential Slayer in the road that was just knifed by a Nathan Fillion shaped Priest named Caleb. Here we go.

As soon as Buffy sees Faith she punches her right in the face. And maybe she deserves that after the events of "Five by Five/Sanctuary" but I do wish this show would've reflected Faith's atonement a bit better. People don't really change much in this world, but the loose cannon known as Faith the Vampire Slayer actually did…but you'd never really know it if you only watched Buffy. It's a shame. Then there's the part where Andrew tells the story of Faith killing a Vulcan. More shame. Anyway, after learning of Caleb's arrival in town and his message "I have something of yours", Buffy stands up to Giles and makes it clear that she's going for Caleb without much of a plan. What results is a shitshow. Two Potentials die, Buffy, Spike and Faith are easily taken and ohhhh the worst part is Xander. Xander and his eye.

Final Ruling: 
Like the boys, Garth has really grown on me and he actually saved this Supernatural episode for me. Now "Dirty Girls" is in my memory bank as being a poor episode. But seeing it again and going up against "Japanese Booze Monsters" it's the clear winner...a real plot advancement and a dose of Fillion, which is what's needed so late in a season. Buffy wins.

Season tally so far:

Got a problem with this score so far? Let me quote Dean's alliterative and to-the-point outgoing message, "Leave your name, number and nightmare at the tone." Or rather sound off in the comments.