For all the destain the memory of season 7 brings to mind it seems somewhere in blocking most of it out I forgot about this little run of pretty great episodes that we had with the previous episode “Same Time Same Place” and which here continues with “Help” as Buffy attempts to settle into her new role of the school councillor at Sunnydale High a role that seemingly doesn’t need any qualifications to do seeing how she’s pretty much walked into the role. Through her first batch of students Buffy comes into contact with a young girl called Cassie who predicts that she is to die on friday causing Buffy and the Scoobies to leap into action to prevent this.
Opening with the humorous infiltration of a funeral home by Buffy, Xander and Dawn who really has settled into her role in the scoobies, largely playing the comedic sidekick that somehow doesn’t push Xander out of the group instead it strangely only makes him seem like the veteran monster hunter while at the same time with the various issues facing the group thinning the group back to the core members really has helped strengthen the unit. Dawn though adds a new angle especially with her being tasked with getting to know Cassie rather than relying on Buffy to try and hang out with the students and there is a real charming Dawns bumbling nature which plays her as more of a klutz than an idiot.
Now back in the fold Willow is surprisingly likeable and almost like her old school self which shows that the single life really works out well for the audience as here she mainly handles the research and quips side of things.
The story itself might play alittle like an after school special with Buffy assuming for a large portion that Cassie plans to kill herself before realising its not that kind of show and moves onto more darker and essentially supernatural means for its final quarter while managing to work in a decent final twist which still managed to catch me off guard. The biggest misstep though is in having Cassie be a one shot character as I’m almost certain that she would have made a great addition to the group maybe developing her psychic abilities throughout the season and consindering how many seasons we have with magic being the one tool to fix anything why not a psychic? Perhaps they felt it would make her too similar to Cordelia’s vision girl role on “Angel” and instead chose to go with a twist ending instead leaving Cassie as one of those what could have been questions which linger over the season.