"The Pack", and in fact this episode is written by the same two writers. But despite the initial similarities to "The Pack", it has more in common with "Teacher's Pet" and "I Robot, You Jane": One of Buffy's friends becomes romantically involved with someone who turns out to be a freaky monster-type thing. But unlike the best monster-of-the-week Buffy episodes, there are no real twists, and the episode proceeds in a pretty predictable way. The episode benefits from some pathos for "Ampata," the mummy, and a somewhat interesting resonance between her position as the "Chosen One" and Buffy's as the Slayer. They even both died as a result. But the episode doesn't really mine this for all it's worth, and it ends up pretty inconsequential.
"You're not a preying mantis, are you?"
- Is there something weird about the lighting in the library in this episode? It seems brighter than usual.
- One of the ways in which this episode seems like a relic of the first season is the bitchier version of Cordelia used here. It kind of makes me wonder whether this episode was originally pitched for the first season, and got recycled for this season.
- A spoilerish note on sexuality: [HIGHLIGHT FOR SPOILERS] Ampata nearly kisses Willow, but stops short. Willow would have been the only female Ampata attacked in this episode. And Willow spent much of "School Hard" locked in a closet. I'm tempted to read these as hints about Willow's sexuality, but Joss claims that, although he wanted either Xander or Willow to experiment with their sexuality at some point, it was not until writing season four that he decided it would be Willow.