Episode Title: Something Blue
Original Air Date: November 30, 1999
“This is the crack team that foils my every plan? I am deeply shamed.” – Spike
Despite Oz being gone for a couple of episode now, for some reason the writers felt that this was the perfect time to have Willow mope over his departure. Things however are only made worse when her emotional state causes her to unwittingly start to lose control of her powers.
This is one of those episode which could have turned out so wrong in the hands of other writers but instead of giving us the expected episode of teen angst and general moping about here turns into something pretty special let alone surprisingly amusing as the most casual statement made by Willow starts coming true. As such Xander becomes a demon magnet, Giles goes blind and more shockingly Spike proposes to Buffy!!
For those rewatching the series there is a surprising amount of foreshadowing throughout this episode starting with a banner for the college lesbian alliance and later added to by Xander telling Willow that she will meet someone soon, both foreshadowing the introduction of Tara who makes her appearance in the next episode. On the other end of the scale Buffy and Spike suddenly deciding to get married foreshadowing their eventual relationship seems to be more the result of certain fans getting excited by this unlikely hook up and pressuring the writers to make it happen, an aspect of the series which never made sense to myself, yet seeing how much fan gushing there is over this relationship I might be in the minority.
The real strength of the episode is that it’s genuinely funny, especially whenever the focus is with the loved up Spike and Buffy and the blind Giles who is forced to endure them as his blindness confines him to the couch. Even before falling victim to Willows magic there is some great back and forth dialogue between the three of them as Spike still chained up at Giles continues to struggle with remembering the location of the Initiative lab which he escaped from while Buffy and Giles believe that he’s just holding out on them. Unquestionably the comic timing between the three is perfect but its when you focus purely on the back and forth conversation between Buffy and Spike that the episode really shines, especially as they argue over such minor wedding plans such as the names to register under or the cons of an outdoor wedding.
Buffy – “Honey, we need to talk about the invitations. Now, do you want to be ‘William the Bloody’ or just ‘Spike’? Cause… either way, it’s going to look majorly weird.”
Spike – “Whereas the name ‘Buffy’ gives it that touch of classic elegance.”
Buffy – “What’s wrong with Buffy?”
Outside of the magic chaos we get in this episode more development with Riley and Buffy’s relationship, while at the same time she worries about how nice he is to her. Seeing how this was one of the main complaints his detractors have about him I wonder how much of these thoughts were highlighted by this episode of it this was just one of the more unfortunate foreshadowing incident.
One of the more fun twists here is the appearance of Anya’s former boss D’Hoffryn who mistakes her accidental magic usage for acts of revenge and attempts to recuit her for his league of vengeance demons. Especially amusing about this scene though is when Willow turns down his offer in what seems to be building up to him striking her down only instead to happily accept her refusal and turning her back to Sunnydale.
A fun episode thanks to its writing which I mentioned already far raised this above what it could have been with a lesser writer.
Next Episode: Hush