Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Tabula Rasa

Episode Report Card
Ace: B | 12 USERS: A+
The Blankest Slate

At this point, Xander and Anya quickly leave the room. "Do you think I'm stupid?" Tara continues. "I know you used that spell on me." Man, I like this girl. Where's she been the past few years? Willow is shocked at having been caught, and tries to apologize. Tara isn't having it, though; she reams Willow for "violating" her mind and reminds her of the brainsuck she suffered at Glory's hands last season. Stuttering, Willow fumbles around for a good reason; lacking one, she lamely explains she was trying to prevent a fight between them. And once again, Tara rocks completely by saying that Willow doesn't get to make those sort of decisions: "We're in a relationship. We're supposed to decide together!" They continue discussing the fact that Willow uses magic indiscriminately and for selfish reasons; although Willow is apologetic, she doesn't really seem to understand Tara's point. On the verge of tears, Tara eventually says, "I don't think this is going to work." Ouch. It takes a lot of pain and thought for someone as besotted as Tara to get to those words. Desperately, Willow says she needs Tara more than magic, and will go a month without spells. Unsmiling, Tara tells Willow to go just a week without magic; Willow grins and says that will be a piece of cake. "Go a week and then we'll see," finishes Tara. She needs some space, which causes Willow's face to crumple, because she knows that means, "Whatever. Mentally my bags are already packed." "Are you saying you're gonna leave me?" asks Willow and....

...we cut to Giles and Buffy in the training room at the magic shop. "I have to," says Giles, who has obviously told Buffy that he's going back to Britain. Buffy is not very understanding; she begs Giles to stay and insists, "I can't do this without you." Oops, that just gives Giles an opening to explain his reason for leaving. Buffy will always turn to him when she feels inadequate to meet a challenge, and he'll "step in because [he] can't bear to see [her] suffer." I would slam Giles for this reasoning here, but actually I think I should just be grateful they didn't kill him off because I love him so and I honestly can't think of any good reason this loving, stalwart man would leave Buffy, so I'm guessing the writers did the best they could with a difficult situation. Giles earnestly explains, "I've taught you all I can about being the Slayer and your mother taught you what you needed to know about life." Despite the revelation of Buffy having been in Heaven, he still feels he needs to leave her to learn to trust her own competence. Buffy is very, very angry and hurt and ends the conversation by storming out of the shop.

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer




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