Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Into The Woods

Episode Report Card
Sep: B | 2 USERS: A
Into The Woods

In the training room, Buffy continues her tiny mouse punches. I wish she'd just quit already! Too much SMG, not enough Buffy. Riley enters and tells Buffy they need to talk. She doesn't want to, but he tells her, "Too bad," which just sets the whole tone for the debacle to follow. Buffy insists there's nothing to say and that nothing he can say will "make things better." She turns her back on him, and he paces across the room to grab her arms and turn her towards him. Um, hands off, scary out-of-control threatening boyfriend! Uh, except for the part where Buffy could kick his ass six ways to Sunday. But that still doesn't give him a right to get all Grabby McManhandling. He says he needs her to "hear him out," and she agrees but coldly tells him to remove his hand. Riley seems shocked at the depth of her anger and sighs, trying to marshal his thoughts. He tells her that the whole thing started as a "stupid immature game," wherein he was trying to "even the score" after Buffy "let" Dracula bite her. Oh boy! Where to start with the inaccuracies of this statement? I don't even know whether to blame them on Riley or the writers, and if I challenge every dumb thing Riley says this recap won't be finished until 2001. So, okay, he was drinking in Willy's bar long before he let Sandy bite him, it really didn't look like a "game" when he did, and plus, Buffy didn't let Dracula bite her. Which actually is exactly what Buffy replies.

Riley continues to explain, saying he wanted to understand what she saw in Angel and Dracula; he wanted to understand her. Well, Dracula had her in his thrall, and blood-sucking was never a component of Angel and Buffy's relationship, you big stupid spud. How about that for an answer? Riley admits that the whole situation is his fault and there's a moment where reconciliation could occur, but then he begins to explain that these "girls," which Buffy modifies to "vampires. Killers," made him "feel something" he didn't know he was missing. Buffy is disgusted and turns away, but he insists she listen. "Fine, fine. Tell me about your whores! Tell me what on Earth they were giving you that I can't," she snaps.

There's a long explanation that boils down to Riley basically feeling that the vampires needed him, and he craved that. Buffy realizes that she doesn't make Riley feel that way and defensively insists that he isn't a "passion" to the vampires, he's a "snack." Riley tries to insist that he can know what the vampires feel for him, because that's what he feels about Buffy. Um, I think he's projecting. A lot. The conversation continues, with Buffy claiming he can't tell her how she feels and him saying she never let him in, never relied on him. Now, finally, we're getting to the actual problems between them. Too bad Riley clouded the issue with all his whoring around. Buffy insists that she can't rely on him because she's the Slayer, and says she gave him her "heart, [her] body and soul." Riley doesn't feel that's true and frankly neither do I, but it really seems Buffy believes it. She then tells him, "This is me. This is the package. And if it's so deficient that you need to get your kicks elsewhere, then we really have a problem." Riley looks like things are finally sinking in to him and seems to make a decision. He tells Buffy that the INot!tiative wants him to join them and that if he does, he has to leave tonight. Buffy asks if he's going and Riley replies, "I don't know. If we can't work this out..." People on the boards have tried to claim this isn't an ultimatum, but it sure as hell sounds like one to me. He's leaving if they can't work things out and it's up to Buffy to do that. Buffy gets angry all over again, shouting about him giving her an ultimatum, and he tries, ineffectually, to insist that he wasn't. Then, hoping for something, anything, from her, he tries to get her to hit him. She refuses and coldly walks away. As she goes, he calls after her, "I'm leaving, Buffy. Unless you give me a reason to stay, I'm leaving tonight." Leave already! Buffy looks devastated but walks out anyway.

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer




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