Thursday, July 29, 2010

Buffy 2x18 - "Killed by Death"

After an extremely dark episode, which advanced the ongoing story arc a lot, we get something a little more standalone and less dark. It's a strange occasion when an episode about a monster that murders sick children can be described as "less dark." Anyhow, more after the break.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Buffy 2x17 - "Passion"

Just when you think the tension can't get any higher, Buffy surprises you with a frightening and dramatic look at the depths of Angel's obsession... or as he calls it, "passion." More after the jump.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Buffy 2x16 - "Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered"

"Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered" is an episode composed mostly of frivolous fun and a horribly cumbersone title. However, as is common on Buffy, the fun leads to some interesting character moments, as we get some nice developments in Xander's relationship with Cordelia. More after the jump!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Buffy 2x15 - "Phases"

EDIT: [ by a bizarre coincidence, this review was posted on the full moon. How weird is that? You might think I planned it that way, but I'm nowhere near smart enough (or organized enough) for that. ]

While Buffy's love life has taken a turn for the absolute worst, the Cordelia/Xander/Willow/Oz love trapezoid has now been fully activated, and this episode features the show's first earnest attempt to work through it. As if that weren't enough, it features an exciting standalone plot and some interesting subtext regarding issues of masculinity. It's just a pity the werewolf looks so lame. More after the jump.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Buffy 2x14 - "Innocence"

My complaint about "Surprise," that none of its numerous constituent parts seem to go anywhere, is rectified more or less completely in "Innocence." Not only do all of the threads of the previous episode bear fruit, but they all collide and intersect in deceptively complex ways, without getting in the way of the episode's considerable emotional weight. More after the jump.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Buffy 2x13 - "Surprise"

I apologize for that little hiatus. Things got away from me. In some ways, reviewing Buffy three times a week is harder than reviewing it five times a week, because there's less momentum to sustain. That shouldn't be a problem in the coming week, as I post new reviews daily (or as close to daily as I can get) until I catch up to the schedule. So, on with it.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Buffy 2x12 - "Bad Eggs"

Bad Eggs? More like... Bad Episode! HEY-OH!

I kid. But this wasn't really the strongest episode we've seen recently, and I'll explain why after the jump.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Buffy 2x11 - "Ted"

After a fairly long run of episodes centering on the serialized aspect of the show, Buffy takes a breather from Spike and Drusilla for a mostly self-contained episode focusing on Buffy's home life. A standalone Buffy is not necessarily a bad Buffy, though, as this episode proves by uncovering some interesting themes and making great use of its first celebrity guest star, sitcom actor John Ritter.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Buffy 2x10 - "What's My Line, Part 2"

"What's My Line, Part 2" picks up right where "Part 1" left off, with Buffy and Kendra at a stand still, Angel in danger of death by sunlight, and Cordy and Xander in Buffy's house with the second member of the Order of Taraka: a man made entirely out of bugs. But while we're left with some really tense cliffhangers, the major cliffhanger is a sort of existential or ontological cliffhanger regarding Buffy's status as the Slayer: "One girl in all the world" etc. Of course, this leads Buffy to consider not being the Slayer anymore, but by the end of the episode this concern is dropped (without, I think, having been explored to its full potential), but I think regardless of this, the "What's My Line" two-parter is on the whole some pretty fantastic Buffy. More after the jump.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Buffy 2x09 - "What's My Line, Part 1"

This episode and the following are a two-parter, but while they, unlike "Welcome to the Hellmouth" and "The Harvest," share a title, also unlike those episodes they weren't aired together. They were also produced as separate entities, with different directors and separate writing credits. So although the episode doesn't really tell a complete story with a beginning, middle, and end, I'm going to consider it on its own entity. Review after the jump.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Buffy 2x08 - "The Dark Age"

Sadly, I'm not going to be able to say as much about "The Dark Age" as it probably deserves. I'm vacationing in beautiful Cape Cod, and my internet access (and writing time) are limited at the moment. What little I do have time to write, you will find after the jump.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Buffy 2x07 - "Lie to Me"

"Lie to Me" is yet another fantastic hour of Buffy, and yet for completely different reasons from "School Hard" and "Halloween." It just goes to show how well this show is maturing as it tackles a variety of different kinds of stories. But I think "Lie to Me" might just top both of those episodes. Find out why after the jump.