Buffy the Vampire Slayer
This Year's Girl (1)

Episode Report Card
This Year's Girl (1)

Faith lies comatose in her depressing hospital room. We see a flash of cloudy sky and the camera pans down to a wooded area. In her bed, Faith's eyes move rapidly under her closed eyelids. It's nice to see that even though her room looks drab and neglected that someone has taken the time to apply eyeshadow for her. "You think it's gonna rain?" asks Faith, and we see her reclining on a picnic blanket with Mayor Wilkins. He replies that it won't and she doubtfully says, "It always seems like it starts raining right about now." Faith is wearing light make-up, a blue blouse and a pink skirt and the Mayor tells her that she's "too young and too pretty" to worry so much. He spots a little snake on the blanket and lifts it, cooing that it doesn't "belong here with us." He puts the snake back down and cheerfully asks if Faith wants cheesecake. She smiles as he turns towards the picnic basket but suddenly screams, "No!" as she sees Buffy, clad in black pants and top with an olive overcoat approaching. Buffy cuts the Mayor's throat with Faith's knife and then stabs him in the gut. Buffy menacingly says that she told Faith she had things to do and starts advancing towards her. Faith crawls across the grass slowly with Buffy behind her. In her hospital bed, Faith's eyes continue to move as she dreams. It's interesting to note that Faith dresses the Buffy in her dreams much better than Buffy dresses herself in real life, whereas Faith dresses herself wicked awful. It must have something to do with her subconscious lack of self-esteem or something.

Buffy, Willow and Xander patrol the woods with flashlights. They decide to spread out and as Buffy walks she unknowingly passes some demon legs, spread-eagled and tied to two different trees. She does a double-take and turns back to see the whole demon's corpse, suspended between two trees and completely flayed open. The body is still steaming and when Buffy shines her flashlight on it, we can see right through the open ribcage.

At Xander's, Buffy says she's never seen anything like the demon's corpse. Willow says it was Adam but asks why he did it, and Buffy suggests that he's studying the biology of demons and humans. She goes on to say that the Initiative can't stop Adam but the Scooby gang will. Xander is sad that the plan to catch Adam won't entail "hiding in a cabin with stockpiled chocolate goods." Willow asks what they have to do first and Buffy replies that she needs to rescue Riley. She lays out a plan wherein Willow somehow disables the Initiative's security computer and Xander gives her any military gear that he still has. She's not going to sneak in, but will instead blast her way in to find the infirmary. Behind her Riley asks, "Am I really worth all that?" and smiles. Buffy is overjoyed (and for the first time her expression of it is believable) and leaps up to hug him, bumping his wound in the process. She asks how he got out of the Initiative and he replies, "I walked." Willow is surprised that they let him go and Riley says he threatened a "major ass-kicking" if they didn't let him leave. Xander jumps up, saying it's great that Riley's there and then asks, "Did they put a chip on your brain?" Riley doesn't seem to know what Xander is talking about and Buffy tells him they are happy to have him back. Riley apologizes for his previous behavior, which gains some points with me and Willow says, "You two crazy kids take down an unstoppable, killer, cyber, demon-hybrid thingy and we'll call it even." Buffy says they can handle anything now that Riley is with her. I have a confession to make. I don't want y'all to think I'm going soft on you, but Riley did not annoy me for most of this episode.

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer




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