Buffyversed is a week by week, episode by episode, re-exploration of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Look for it every Friday on Goomba Stomp.
Well, as we covered last week, the first part of “What’s My Line, Part One” certainly had its issues. A lot of interesting seeds had been sown for development, but they all seemed to be fighting with one another to decide who got the sunshine and H20. Luckily, this week, only the strong have survived, making the second part of “What’s My Line” a significant pay-off from its middling, disjointed first act.
Picking up from the cliffhanger ending of “Part One”, we’re back in the thick of things as Buffy faces down with Kendra, only to be left reeling from the revelation that Kendra also claims to be a vampire slayer. So, what’s the what, could it possibly be true?
Well, as it turns out, yes. You see, Buffy did technically die in the season one finale, “Prophecy Girl”. Now, this is still a bit confusing perhaps, without a bit more insight into Slayer lore. So, each of the watchers on the Watcher’s Council have been assigned to a potential slayer somewhere in the world, and the moment one slayer dies, the next becomes activated, and gains the powers and duties associated with being the chosen one. However, since Buffy was revived by Xander, there are now two, count ’em, two, slayers!
Anyway, with all of that metaphysical jargon out of the way, we can focus on the meat of the episode. Picking up from the other cliffhangers, Xander and Cordy find themselves hiding in the basement of… well, someone’s house, as Maggot Man attacks from the other side. Fearing for their lives though, drives them into the most desperate emotional space of all as a barrage of insults leads to… kissing?
Hahah, yes, it’s the ultimate love/hate connection in Xander and Cordy. You take a horny teenager, add another horny teenager, and then introduce copious amounts of energy and aggression. In some versions of the experiment, the two subjects will end up killing one another, but luckily for us, in this case we get a swell of angelic music, along with the most unlikely coupling in maybe the entire series.
But let’s just back up for a second and examine Maggot Man himself for a moment. How useful of a power does this guy really have? Yes, he can wriggle under doors and get stepped on. Sure, he can attach himself to a roof and drop on top of unsuspecting teenagers. Okay, but where does this tie into his membership in a top secret, international order of assassins? What is the actual, practical use of his ability? Lemme tell ya, if this was the X-Men, this guy would not be getting on the Black Bird, ever.
In any case, let’s move on to the third cliffhanger, ya know, that Angel was going to be scorched to ash by the rising sun. Well, it’s out of the scalding cage and into the sewer for poor Angel, I’m afraid. Though he is rescued by the weaselly bartender, Willy, he is subsequently given over to Spike and Dru for nefarious purposes. Turns out they’re planning a gnarly, black metal ceremony in an abandoned church. Spike has an inverted cross dagger that he uses to pierce Angel and Dru through the hand, and with that, we’ve even got some symbolism from “the crucifixion” as vamps are wont to call it.
Wait though, hang on a second, wasn’t there one more cliffhanger? Oh yeah, Willow and Oz were being considered for some high-rate computer jobs or something. Yeah, turns out even the writers didn’t care about that one, since it’s more or less irrelevant this week. Fortunately, it did do some good, as Willow has been set along the path to her first non-Xander love, Oz. There’s a selfless gunshot wound, there’s trendy musician talk, and there’s even some witty banter about animal crackers. If these two aren’t just the cutest, then I’m not a writer/editor on a successful website (I’ll let you decide if that means it’s true or not).
Alas, sniveling fuck that he is, Willy sells out Buffy and Kendra when they head off to Angel’s rescue, and a fight ensues. Buffy and Kendra face off against Spike and his assassins, and kick some pretty solid ass in the process. And while Spike attempts to make another last minute escape with Dru, Buffy manages to stop him in his tracks with a well-placed thurible toss and… well, it was more well-placed than even she suspected, as it leaves him trapped under a smashed pipe organ while the church burns around him.
Ah well, Spike and Dru are almost certainly dead, we can move on to bigger and brighter things… like Xander and Cordy kissing again. Aw shucks, it’s Pride and Prejudice for the ’90s, as so many rom-coms were. Only time will tell where we’ll find these two crazy kids in a few weeks time. Perhaps they’ll be bewitched, bewildered, and even bothered to a certain extent. Having no future knowledge of the series, I have no way of predicting.
Well, it seems as Homer Simpson would say that everything is all wrapped up in a neat little package! Except that… Dru has been restored, and as she rises from the wreckage to carry Spike out of the church, we know that things are about to get a bit more serious in Sunnydale.
“Cristina Says,” is based on observations my fiancèe makes. This is my 4th time through the series, but Cristina is a first-time watcher with modern TV sensibilities.
“What about half-vampires?” (Cristina wonders if Kendra is here to kill all the vampires.)
“Aww, he looks scared.” (In regard to Angel, maybe Kendra is here to do just that.)
“Oh, put a shirt on.” (Boy, Angel’s shirt sure does seem to get ripped/removed pretty often around these parts.)
“Someone’s getting jello of the Jamaican!” (Buffy seems to be a little bothered by how quickly Giles takes to a book smart slayer.)
“Are they gonna kiss?” (Cristina followed the Pride and Prejudice clues to Xander and Cordy getting together.)
“Uh-oh, she likes him!” (Does Kendra like Xander? All signs point to a general sense of nervousness, but is it sexy nervousness?)
“Hahah, see, I like Xander.” (This makes me feel a lot better about the Xander comparison I received a few weeks back.)
Whedonisms are a sort of term for (Buffy creator) Joss Whedon’s style of dialogue, and something we’re using as a catch-all for particularly fun or witty lines.
“Just a little!” (Buffy tries to downplay her short-lived demise.)
“Buffy would never do that… Oh, except, sometimes you do that.” (Willow realizes that Buffy actually would make out with a vampire.)
“I was thinking dinner and a movie. I don’t want to rush into anything. I’ve been hurt, ya know.” (Spike explains his strategy to deal with Angel.)
“Now all we need is a full moon and you will be restored. My black goddess; my ripe, wicked plum.” (Spike is dropping some pretty black metal shit right here.)
“What is it with you and bug people Xander?” (Buffy wonders how Xander could have possibly encountered a preying mantis woman and a maggot man in the same calendar year.)
“Angel’s our friend… except I don’t like him.” (Xander appreciates Angel’s value, even if he has conflicting opinions on the matter.)
“Well aren’t you the ‘throw yourself to the lions’ kind of chap?” (Spike admires Angel’s suicidal, higher cause, ambition.)
(Featured image credit: Basement Rejects)
No cliffhangers this week gang, as we’re headed back to monster-of-the-week territory with “Ted” in seven days. Who’s Ted, you ask? Tune in next week to find out!