Buffy 4×18: Where the Wild Things Are

[Review by Mike Marinaro]

[Writer: Tracey Forbes | Director: David Solomon | Aired: 04/25/2000]

Wow this is a bad episode — the worst since “I Robot, You Jane” [1×08] ! I’m looking at my notes…and there’s almost nothing there. This is going to be a very short review. The savior of this episode from getting no points at all is Spike, Anya, and Giles. Anya is having unfounded relationship issues with Xander, Spike is simply bored, and Giles turns out to have a singing hobby. The failure of this episode is, well, the fact that the entire plot involves Buffy and Riley having lots and lots of steamy sex. If you love seeing Buffy and Riley having nonstop sex then you may want to look away from this review!

Early on there’s a scene between Xander and Anya that is very entertaining. Anya thinks that because her and Xander didn’t have sex the previous evening their relationship is ending. After Xander starts defending himself, Anya asks him if there’s something wrong with his body. Then Xander, wanting to prove his functionality, says “You want sex? Let’s have sex. Right here. Hot, sweaty, big sex.” It turns out that as he was saying this a bunch of customers were amusingly standing right outside his ice cream truck.

The highlight of the episode is definitely the resulting interaction between Anya and Spike. These two definitely have a lot in common and enjoy sharing time together. They chat up how much they miss their carnage. Anya says, “Seen a thousand relationships. First there’s the love, and sex, and then there’s nothing left but the vengeance. That’s how it works.” When Xander sees Anya with Spike, he begins to get a bit worried. This is just an amusing little conflict between them that doesn’t last through the episode.

I need to point out how much I love how abused fraternity parties get in BtVS. Xander even points out, “A ghost? What’s the deal? Is every frat on this campus haunted? And if so, why do people keep coming to these parties, cause it’s not the snacks.” My question is, why do the Scoobies keep going to these parties? They all look horrendously bored every time (as I would be) and nothing good ever comes from going. Anyway, the plot is just overall extremely boring. There’s some repressed ghosts of some sorts being fueled by Buffy and Riley’s sexual energy. But haven’t Buffy and Riley had sex in Riley’s room before, more than once in fact? Why are these ghosts manifesting now? Am I missing something? Even if the plot made sense it’s still a terrible idea. And that’s about it. Sorry this ends so abruptly, but I really don’t have anything else to talk about. Terrible episode. 😦

 


Minor Pros/Cons (+/-)

+ Buffy getting all sexually excited after tag team fighting with Riley again.
+ The extended scene where all Riley finds is a dripping bathtub.
+ Spike trying to scare people into giving him money.
+ An orgasm spot on the wall. Ridiculous, but kind of funny.
+ Willow and Tara’s talk about horses, which is very suggestive of something else…
+ Spike getting excited when the party gets ruined.
+ Giles singing and playing the guitar and the Scoobies’ stunned reaction. Also, I love how all the girls admire how sexy his voice is.
+ Buffy and Riley completely satisfied they got forced into having nonstop sex.
+ Plant vines and tentacles? Ugh…
+ The old lady is somehow insane, boring, hokey, and creepy all at the same time.


Foreshadowing

* Anya telling Spike, “Seen a thousand relationships. First there’s the love, and sex, and then there’s nothing left but the vengeance. That’s how it works,” fortelling her own relationship with Xander through “Entropy” [6×18].


[Score]

30/100

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84 thoughts on “Buffy 4×18: Where the Wild Things Are”

  1. [Note: Grounded posted this comment on March 22, 2006.]

    Tracey Forbes’s Buffy carrer = Beer Bad, Something Blue, WTWTA. Sorry, but 33% is a failing grade. 😉

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  2. [Note: 20questionsgenius posted this comment on March 22, 2006.]

    Yikes! I hadnt realized that Tracey Forbes wrote “Beer Bad” and “Where The Wild Things Are”. I knew she wrote “Something Blue” which is my very favorite episode of all, but damn, those other two are pretty much universally disliked. Maybe she had help on “Something Blue” from some of the other writers, cuz “Beer Bad” and “WTWTA” are shining examples of what not to show someone when trying to get them interested in Buffy (although, the argument that bad episodes of Buffy are better than a lot of other stuff out there is true cuz “Beer Bad” was like the second or third episode i ever saw and i still wanted to watch more), but “Something Blue” is fantastic. Anyway i also wanted to say that the rate at which youre putting these reviews out is great MikeJer! I love checking the site and seeing new reviews. You do a really good job talking about the important stuff in each episode and explaining what it all means in your opinion, but most important of all, its apparent in each review that you love the series a lot and that makes it all the more fun to read these, so keep up the good work!

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  3. [Note: MikeJer posted this comment on March 22, 2006.]

    Thanks 20! One thing to note is that I, unfortunately, wont be able to keep up this pace for too much longer. Not because I don’t want to, but because my final quarter of university begins next Wednesday and it’s going to be really busy. So I’m trying to finish S4 before I go back, hence the mania of reviews. I’ll try to keep up a good pace after next quarter begins, but it wont be as fast as it currently is. I’m actually watching “New Moon Rising” right now for review. 🙂

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  4. [Note: fryrish posted this comment on May 22, 2006.]

    Watched this the other day. I don’t think it’s quite as bad as your rating suggests. While the main plot isn’t very interesting there’s enough in it to keep it from scraping the bottom of the barrell completely.

    However, my main order of business is this. In the quotes you have Spike saying the Danger Mouse bit. I wasn’t sure I heard it right so I put the subtitles on and he actually says “I wonder if Asian House is open.”

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  5. [Note: MikeJer posted this comment on May 22, 2006.]

    I get all my quotes from the Buffyverse Dialogue Database website in my links section. But that’s interesting for you sure. I’ve heard that sometimes the subtitles say stuff that’s not in the script anymore, because of a last minute change. That’s likely what happened in this case, although I’ll be sure to check the transcript to be sure.

    And for the record: I genuinely believe the ep is as bad as I rated it. My notepad was nearly empty after watching it, and that hadn’t happened since S1. When BtVS fails to entertain me much and fails to make me think about anything, it fails as an episode.

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  6. [Note: Fallen posted this comment on May 23, 2006.]

    WTWTA really is a bad episode. I think it has a bit of snappy dialogue but it just fails at the plot level and adds nothing to the arc and your review pretty much says it all.

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  7. [Note: Latoya posted this comment on May 1, 2007.]

    Buffy and Riley’s sexual history before this ep.

    The I in Team: Their first time together. At his dorm while being watched on the monitor by Proffesor Walsh.

    They aren’t together for awhile due to more pressing matters going on.

    This Year’s Girl: At his dorm? While you are not positive they did it, it is pretty likely.

    She waits a while before she sleeps with him again because of the whole Riley-having-sex-with-Faith-in-Buffy’s-body thingy. She felt hurt that he didn’t know it wasn’t her and insecure that he wouldn’t be satisfied by her now that he had been with the much more sexually experience Faith.

    Superstar: Again, at his dorm? She moans Jonathon’s name, I guess that spell wasn’t completely worn off yet. 🙂

    That makes only three times by the time Where the Wild Ones Are. So by that episode, Buffy is having her first thoughts of I Can Have Sex Anytime I Want And Nothing Bad Will Happen. And of course, she over does it. But look at her track record.

    She slept with Angel in Surprise and then never gets to be with him again due to him turning into Angelus, torturing her, and trying to destroy the world. She sleeps with Parker in Harsh Light of Day and then never sleeps with him again due to finding out he was a womanizing Poophead that was lying to her to get in her pants. She sleeps with Riley and his boss/mentor tries to kill her.

    Now this happens. Is it no wonder that in Triangle she tried on the nun’s wimple (sorry, don’t know how to spell it)?

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  8. [Note: Nix posted this comment on July 9, 2007.]

    What I find interesting is that *every one* of Tracy Forbes’s three episodes involves Buffy being influenced by something that causes her to act completely out of character for a large portion of the ep. This is otherwise fairly rare: _When She Was Bad_ possibly, _Halloween_, in a sense _The Wish_, in a sense _Who Are You_, _Normal Again_, and that’s *it*. And most of the non-Forbes episodes actually require *more* writing effort, _Who Are You_ in particular. (I’m ignoring _Bewitched, Bothered & Bewildered_’s enratting here because that was a hack to avoid SMG scheduling conflicts and thus essentially forced on the writers.)

    It’s only Forbes’s attempts that, to be blunt, feel like a writer trying to avoid writing a character that she’s having trouble with: and that’s a bit of a problem when the character is as central as Buffy. And it’s notable that she does it *every* time.

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  9. [Note: buffyholic posted this comment on November 7, 2007.]

    Ok, this plot is awful. Really bad but I like watching it. For me, Anya and Spike are a delight to watch.

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  10. [Note: Plain Simple posted this comment on February 14, 2008.]

    I also can’t believe this is the first time in decades someone has sex in this frat house. Or is it Buffy’s super powers that steams up the ghosts.

    Ah well, let’s not over analyse and just enjoy the good bits (mainly Anya-Spike and Giles singing, like you point out).

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  11. [Note: wilpy1 posted this comment on March 8, 2008.]

    HATE this episode. Tracy Forbes was like a bad fan-fiction writer. ‘Something Blue’ was neat, but even that plot was like a fan-fiction come to life. WTWTA is just an awful, awful episode. I vow never to watch it again. Cringe!

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  12. [Note: Paula posted this comment on June 18, 2008.]

    I’ve really got to disagree with you on this episode’s scoring, MikeJer. The main plot is pretty silly, but not exceptionally so (IMO, the Buffy “monster-fighting” plots are rarely anything too special; it’s the character-driven stuff that shines). And all the rest about this episode was quite entertaining, so I’d have given at least a C. But I guess there’s no arguing about matters of taste. 🙂

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  13. [Note: Tonyy posted this comment on July 25, 2008.]

    Yeah I watched this yesterday again and it really wasn’t that bad. A 33 is a bit low I think. Way to low actually. The plot, yes really stupid. But there were many times I laughed out loud with my friend while watching this. Anya is just hilarious.

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  14. [Note: jillyenator posted this comment on August 5, 2008.]

    Just watched this again and if I ignore the plot, the interactions with the Scoobies and foreshadowing with Anya/Spike turning to each other for comfort makes it *almost* worthwhile. I’d give it a D, myself.

    The plot is as bad as the season 1 eps, but I have gotten REALLY good at ignoring plot in Buffy eps by now. 🙂 I can now look past cavemen, preying mantis sex, penis-head wig ladies, hokey Chumash Indians and all manner of sorry plotlines at this point…and just watch for the sparkling moments of continuity, foreshadowing, humor, character-driven dialogue and brilliant facial acting by much of the cast (esp Spike).

    It’s amazing how much better the series is on the second viewing in this way.

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  15. [Note: HarFang posted this comment on September 6, 2008.]

    LOL jillyenator! I think you’re right! I’ll try to develop the same knack for looking elsewhere at the right moment!
    Anyway, another good thing that this stupid plot allows is to see the Scoobies fend for themselves and actually manage to get the job done. The last time they had to do without Buffy was in Anne / Dead Man’s Party, and they’re definitely getting better -although not as good yet as they’ll be in Bargaining.

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  16. [Note: Lacie posted this comment on September 21, 2008.]

    Yikes! I hadnt realized that Tracey Forbes wrote “Beer Bad” and “Where The Wild Things Are”. I knew she wrote “Something Blue” which is my very favorite episode of all, but damn, those other two are pretty much universally disliked. Maybe she had help on “Something Blue” from some of the other writers, cuz “Beer Bad” and “WTWTA” are shining examples of what not to show someone when trying to get them interested in Buffy (although, the argument that bad episodes of Buffy are better than a lot of other stuff out there is true cuz “Beer Bad” was like the second or third episode i ever saw and i still wanted to watch more), but “Something Blue” is fantastic. Anyway i also wanted to say that the rate at which youre putting these reviews out is great MikeJer! I love checking the site and seeing new reviews. You do a really good job talking about the important stuff in each episode and explaining what it all means in your opinion, but most important of all, its apparent in each review that you love the series a lot and that makes it all the more fun to read these, so keep up the good work!

    Hehe I just thought I’d mention Tracey is actually a man =)

    Anyway I actually thought the last episode (superstar) was the most boring. Sure, this is terrible, but I just HATE Jonathan. And it’s just not interesting.

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  17. [Note: bigmoneygrip posted this comment on November 4, 2008.]

    For me, the only parts I liked were Spike and Anya, and Xander outing Spike a.k.a. Hostile17 at the party.

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  18. [Note: Jurgan posted this comment on December 30, 2008.]

    “The old lady is somehow insane, boring, hokey, and creepy all at the same time.”

    Aww, no love for Kathryn Joosten? She’s great- it was the saddest thing when she died on West Wing. I think she did a much better job here than you give her credit for. Other than that, I pretty much agree with this review.

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  19. [Note: Sam posted this comment on March 13, 2009.]

    Yeah, this episode is pretty horrendous, and come to think of it, I hated all of the eps that Tracey Forbes wrote. The only scenes I liked were Spike and Anya bonding over bad relationships, and the priceless reaction shot of Willow mooning over Giles singing at the cafe. “No wonder I used to find him sexy”, indeed. 🙂

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  20. [Note: Emily posted this comment on May 13, 2009.]

    Mike, I have to agree with everything that you say here. I just wanted to add that there’s no resolving of the Anya/Xander issue. Once again (like in “Anne” 3×01), they fight together and make up. That’s so stupid.

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  21. [Note: Thrupcat posted this comment on July 6, 2009.]

    “I just wanted to add that there’s no resolving of the Anya/Xander issue. Once again (like in “Anne” 3×01), they fight together and make up. That’s so stupid.”

    Emily, isn’t that what people very often do?

    As to not liking this episode, as most buffyversers do, I want to mention one thing that I have found odd. People usually claim that WTWTA is “against sex”, whereas I have always considered it to be against the REPRESSION of sex.

    MikeJer, ever since I found this site I wanted to tell you how great it is. It’s simply awsome. Thank you!

    Like

  22. [Note: Nix posted this comment on July 16, 2009.]

    This ep has an unusually high number of co-producers: Espenson, Solomon, Fury. A case of ‘too many cooks’, perhaps, or a case of ‘oh shit this script is awful, let’s rope in everyone we can in a desperate attempt to salvage something’?

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  23. [Note: Nix posted this comment on July 16, 2009.]

    And another ‘sheep’ logo, on the wall behind Giles when he’s singing.

    What *is* it with these sheep? Some prop-crew injoke?

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  24. [Note: Shannon posted this comment on July 17, 2009.]

    “oh shit this script is awful, let’s rope in everyone we can in a desperate attempt to salvage something?”

    Ha! Or, let’s rope in everyone we can so no one person has to take the blame for this p.o.s.

    Where are other sheep? I’ve never noticed them.

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  25. [Note: Shannon posted this comment on July 17, 2009.]

    To everyone who says that Mike was too harsh on this episode, you’re wrong. Buffy is an amazing show, but the writers/creators/whoever completely failed with this episode. That’s all there is to it. This episode is heinously bad. When I finished watching it for the first time (barely – I pretty much only made it through sheer force of will), the only thought my brain was capable of formulating was, “WTH was that??”

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  26. [Note: Nix posted this comment on July 18, 2009.]

    Other sheep: there’s one on Willow’s bedroom wall (seen in _Passion_ as the dead fish are discovered). There’s a ‘sheep’ identical to that one in _Restless_ as Xander is crawling backwards out of the ice-cream van back into the basement. The latter two sheep are obviously linked, but this one seems, well, more like a prop in-joke than anything Willow-related.

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  27. [Note: Selene posted this comment on July 22, 2009.]

    Giles singing—SIGH!

    That and the Spike/Anya interaction are about the only things worthwhile about this episode.

    However, a possible bit of foreshadowing: When Xander gets his face cut by the vine, isn’t the cut over the eye he eventually loses?

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  28. [Note: Hannah posted this comment on September 6, 2009.]

    Only episode I’ve ever liked by Tracey Forbes was Something Blue, HATE Beer Bad and this one, but then BB and WTWTA are two commonly disliked eps. Something Blue is a laugh, which I watch if I’m in a bad mood.

    I like the Spike/Anya bits and Xander and Anya in the icecream truck, but once we get past anything with Anya in, it’s like ‘…’ . Look, Buffy and Riley have steamy sex. Nevermind that the plot makes NO sense!

    Mind you, Giles sings! If I’m re-watching I always flick to the Anya bits and Giles’ song.

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  29. [Note: Ian posted this comment on September 13, 2009.]

    Danger Mouse?

    Just watched this and Spike says, “I wonder if Asian House is open?”

    The Danger Mouse thing must be a transcription error in the dialog database.

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  30. [Note: Nathan.Taurus posted this comment on November 1, 2009.]

    I think this episode is good. It is way ahead of ‘IRYJ’. Yes the Buffy/Riley sex plot does go on a bit too long but it still doesn’t take up alot of screen time. Most of the episode is standard for season 4. With the great interaction between Spike and Anya at The Bronze, Willow telling the spirits to “get over it.” Spike talking himself out of helping, and of course, Giles singing at the Espresso Pump. And when Anya tells Xander that Spike and her didn’t have sex….yet. I would rate this episode at least a 70.

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  31. [Note: KatieJ posted this comment on May 4, 2010.]

    Agreed, I usually skip over this one on the DVD. Yawn. I do like seeing that one guy from Beer Bad on the orgasm wall. I really enjoyed those guys, and would’ve liked to see them as regular background victims in this episode.

    Quick cute thing: When Anya and Xander are in the ice cream truck in the beginning discussing their sex life. Take a look at the magazine cover on his dash.

    hee hee.

    Transcription mistake or no…. I heart Danger Mouse.

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  32. [Note: Beth posted this comment on May 11, 2010.]

    I recently rewatched Season 4 for the first time in a long while. I remember thinking that the plot of this episode had been ridiculous and that many people hate this it, but when I rewatched it I couldn’t help being pleasantly surprised by the number of good bits, including Spike/Anya, Giles, even some of the tension when you think the characters are in trouble. And I laughed out loud more than once (Xander’s “Hostile 17” and “She who smelt it dealt it” come to mind). All in all, I’m glad I gave this one another chance. It’s kind of a microcosm of Season 4 in a way – gets pretty derided by many fans, but when I took a step back I found that I enjoyed it a lot more than I remembered.

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  33. [Note: Emily posted this comment on May 21, 2010.]

    Aww, I kinda like this episode. It’s a guilty pleasure for me. Although it certainly borders on the TOO ridiculous – I mean, c’mon, an orgasm spot on the wall? Tracey Forbes, please stop.

    Fair rating though.

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  34. [Note: G1000 posted this comment on May 23, 2010.]

    This episode really isn’t all that bad. Giles playing guitar and Anya and Spike’s interaction easily elevated this to a better grade than an F. It bugs me a bit that this one got an F, while truly terrible episodes like “Inca Mummy Girl”, “The Pack”, and “Nightmares” got better grades. Those three are all way worse than this one. In fact, so’s “Beer Bad”. And “Superstar” for that matter.

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  35. [Note: Steph posted this comment on August 3, 2010.]

    I totally agree with this episode having a low score. My interest was completely lost minus Giles hiding the fact that he goes to sing which was amusing. I heart Willow and Tara, so I was definitely not expecting Tara’s sudden repulsion at Willow touching her thigh. It totally took me the second time of watching that episode until I understood it was a statement of Religion (Christianity) vs. Homosexuality. Although, I wouldn’t quite say the rules the old lady was following was proper Christianity. Who forces children under water? Crazy old loon. Anyway, this episode would not have been nearly as entertaining without the presence of Spike or Anya. I’d hate to see the score without them.

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  36. [Note: Jason posted this comment on August 27, 2010.]

    Nix (comment 12):

    Nice job finding the common thread in all three of Tracey Forbes’s episodes. Unfortunately, it’s a hack trick that one would not expect to usually work. 33% sounds about right.

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  37. [Note: nathan.taurus posted this comment on September 6, 2010.]

    Rewatching this episode again I realised this is where the viewer sees that Anya will never be fully human. She was a demon causing mass carnage for 1120 years and in this episode she was still newly human again. She does gain a small percent of humanity in ‘End of Days’, but she would need centuries before she fully assimilated into being a nice productive human and forgot the memories of her demon days.

    The alleged gripe she has with Xander over nothing proves this and to a huger extent the ‘Entropy’ episode. Even if Anya had another 70 years as a human she could never break away from her 1120 years as a demon.

    Giles singing, Spike talking himself out of helping, evil christian woman are the good parts.

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  38. [Note: John Roberts posted this comment on September 9, 2010.]

    “while truly terrible episodes like “Inca Mummy Girl”, “The Pack”, and “Nightmares” got better grades.”

    Nightmares was terrible? It scared the bleep out of me. Plus, the kid actor was about 12 years old yet I didn’t want to wring his neck.

    The Pack was alright too. Praying Mantis Teacher was terrible.

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  39. [Note: Shiny posted this comment on October 7, 2010.]

    Seconding JohnR; I really enjoyed Nightmares and The Pack, and didn’t hate Inca Mummy Girl as much as the fanbase seems to (I may be biased, having an interest in Mesoamerican history). But WTWTA, like Teacher’s Pet, makes me cringe. It also, more crucially, makes me bored. I don’t skip it on re-watches, just fast-forward to the good parts, but… well…

    I watched Buffy from the start. We only had one TV, so my mother had to be introduced and hooked on it so that I could watch it every week. Sure, some risqué jokes and scenes would go by, but we could smile behind our hands and pretend the other one had no idea why it was funny/what was happening. I was thirteen or fourteen when WTWTA aired.

    So. Freaking. Painful.

    For the first (and last) time, my mum actually asked if she could switch. I was hoping that the crappy plot would end after each ad break, so I persisted. And spent a lot of time peeking out from behind a cushion. The orgasm spot on the wall made me want to die and be dead. Mum still regards it as the most embarrassing hour of TV she’s ever watched. She’s a very open-minded lady (supported me wholly when I came out – not that she was particularly surprised, apparently my love for Willow and Tara had given her a clue) who was at the time trying to un-do the brainwashing my convent school education was giving me – i.e. what the crazy lady in the episode says – but sitting with your young daughter and watching a genteel kind of orgy is going to be excruciating no matter how open-minded you are.

    Thanks, Mr Forbes, for giving us an hour of horror. I’d been a lone weirdo of the fan world for loving Beer Bad, and then you gave us this! The mental scars may never go away.

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  40. [Note: Merry posted this comment on November 30, 2010.]

    This episode is just kind of painful to watch. Cringeworthy. Besides the conversation with Spike and Anyay, Giles singing, and the recurring theme of frat parties being riddled with supernatural evils, this episode just…sucks. I can’t even find a way to say that eloquently because it’s not worth it.

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  41. [Note: Marcus posted this comment on March 23, 2011.]

    i have steered away from this episode for a long time, but have recently started re-watching the series from the beginning. therefore, obligation to watch this episode. i agree that the main plot was awful (and if i remember correctly, this was similar to BBB because SMG was filming something else), but i give it up to the writer for some quality comedic moments. tracey does comedy well (esp. something blue), but supernatural exposition – not so much.

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  42. [Note: Afterthebattle posted this comment on March 27, 2011.]

    I love it when Xander tells Anya “… we have to work our way through some stuff. It doesn’t mean that we rebound with the evil undead”. Hellooo Entropy. Also, Where the Wild Things Are and Entropy are both the 18th episode in season 4 and 6 respectively. Wonder if that’s a coincidence.

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  43. [Note: ~cal~ posted this comment on May 5, 2011.]

    Can I still comment after five years? Maybe It’s just me but I liked this episode a lot I thought it was really funny and having read some reviews near the top and bottom I realize I just sort of barely saw what you all see. I don’t mean I wasn’t paying attention, I definitely was, but Normally I Over-analyze everything and when I’m watching this show (and Angel of course) that all just goes away and I just enjoy it. Maybe y’all should do the same, just enjoy it don’t think to much it’s a funny show.

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  44. [Note: MikeJer posted this comment on May 6, 2011.]

    @cal: You can comment after twenty years if you want! As for enjoying the show just for enjoying it, well, that’s just not the function of this review site. More importantly, Buffy as a show has proven that it is able to do great comedy yet still have substantive character development and thematic cohesion on top of it. Some notable examples include S2’s “Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered,” S3’s “Doppelgangland,” S4’s “Something Blue,” S7’s “Storyteller” and, heck, even S5’s “Triangle” has way more depth than “Where the Wild Things Are.”

    I expect a whole lot more out of Buffy than a sitcom. Its comedy elements are quite wonderful, but they’re only one piece of many that make the show what it is. It can do comedy without sacrificing its other elements, and this episode totally fails in that regard. The points it does get are thanks to the funny bits. With that said, I personally find S7’s “Him” overall a whole lot funnier than this if we’re talking straight gut-bursting laughter.

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  45. [Note: ~cal~ posted this comment on June 24, 2011.]

    I agree, “Him” is an incredibly funny episode. But as for your not wanting a sitcom I just wanted to know if you prefer it as a supernatural soap opera (which it is)? But I do get your point, this episode does have little depth compared to others.

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  46. [Note: amberpoochie posted this comment on January 5, 2012.]

    The reference to Dangermouse could in fact be correct. Dangermouse is a cartoon that was on in the 80s in the UK. Tragically I am old enough to remember it!! Its a very neat cultural reference for Spike’s character. I think Whedon lived in London for a while and would have seen the cartoon.

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  47. [Note: JustJenna posted this comment on March 26, 2012.]

    Personally I don’t understand all the hate for this episode. I thought the plot was interesting and fount it fun to watch. And no I am not a Buffy/Riley shipper. I also don’t get the hate for Something Blue, which I find to be one of the funniest episodes in the show’s history. Beer Bad was terrible, but Tracy Forbes is hardly the worst writer ever… I’d say that honor goes to some of the writers in early season one.

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  48. [Note: George posted this comment on July 12, 2012.]

    Was the plot silly? Absolutely. But the other aspects of the episode, namely Xander and Anya’s ‘issues, Giles’ singing and anything involving Spike would earn this episode at least a 6/10 (or 60/100).

    Like

  49. [Note: Less newt posted this comment on August 14, 2012.]

    1. MikeJer, your May 6, 2011 comment is brilliant, as is this site in general. Thank you for making it (literally, apparently, as it looks like you coded from scratch).

    2. I’ll watch Sarah Michelle Gellar have just as much sex on screen as she’s willing to have.

    3. Yes, this episode is really quite crappy. But see (2).

    4. No comments on Giles’ earring?! His lobe has been pierced, but I don’t think we’ve seen the ring until now. Rock out, you bad Ripper!

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  50. [Note: MikeJer posted this comment on August 14, 2012.]

    Less newt,

    Re 1: Thanks, again! And, yes, I coded the site from scratch. The site you see now is actually v2.0 (and v1.0 was nearly entirely black and white). I’m in the middle of working on a big upgrade to v3.0. I can’t wait to show it off to everyone. 😀

    Re 2: I have no problems admiring the physical qualities of Sarah, don’t get me wrong, but this episode still pushes the limits. The larger problem is probably that Riley is there too. I like the guy more than most, but not like this! (lol)

    Re 4: I think I get around to making note of his earring at some point! 😉

    Like

  51. [Note: Less newt posted this comment on August 14, 2012.]

    MikeJer, I didn’t see v1.0, but v2.0 is really classy, so I can’t wait for v3.0!

    Re: Re 2: lol indeed!

    Like

  52. [Note: Criosdan posted this comment on September 26, 2012.]

    Well, I guess I’m almost alone with my opinion but I don’t find this episode as bad as you do. I even find the plot pretty interesting. Child abuse of religious reasons, hmm? Sadly, that’s no fiction, it happens pretty often. But not like in Buffy the consequenses aren’t always seen promptly. You have disturbed adults who may give the same abuse to their children.As for the sex. Hey, I’m adult, I have no problems with sex scenes. (But sometimes I really think that here in Europe we have an easier realation to sex that the US)

    Like

  53. [Note: Summer posted this comment on December 26, 2012.]

    I find this episode to be pretty hilarious. I mean the Giles scene alone is like… 50 points. And he really is sexy. I don’t blame Willow for having a crush on him. It was great to see the development of Xander/Anya… and how they fought together. Usually they are the ones always having sex. Now they are the ones battling the forces of evil while Buffy and Riley are the fornicators. They switched places but I don’t think Xander and Anya liked it too much. I mean, a tree root went through Anya’s hand! But she didn’t seem too bothered by it. I’m still cringing. This episode was pretty creepy along with… weird. There’s a message there. It’s about lust and also isolation. I love how Spike is still holding out on being helpful. If I were in a house like that Asian House would definitely be the better option.

    Like

  54. [Note: Arachnea posted this comment on March 1, 2013.]

    Because there’s not much to tell about this episode – besides Giles and some noteworthy lines, I’d like to make a comment about Anya/Xander fighting.

    At this point of the show, we don’t know a lot about Anya and she’s mostly used for comedy. Her relation with Xander and the scoobies seems so unnatural. She’s despicable with the group and doesn’t seem to like them. She’s killed and maimed hundreds but no one seem to care since season 4. Xander wanted Angelus or Angel dead because he was a killer, but it’s ok for Anya. So they forgive Anya but they couldn’t give Faith the benefit of the doubt when she could still be helped.

    Don’t get me wrong, I love Anya’s character ! But as seen in the hilarious scene with Spike, if she could, she’d revert to a demon to exert vengeance: she’s Riley’s opposite. His nature is essentially good and he can’t be a “bad boy”, Anya is bad and is trying to fit to keep Xander. All I’m saying is this is obviously a bit of writing-laziness and should have been adressed earlier in the season. Or even instead of this episode. It had the premises to go for an inspection of Anya’s character and her relation with Xander (and the rest of the group).

    Like

  55. [Note: Nida posted this comment on July 20, 2013.]

    Apart from the Buff/Riley scenes, I also really liked the rest of the episode. It was creepy and I do not agree with it being as bas as I Robot You Jane either. It still is a lot better than Superstar and all the boring Adam stuff.

    Like

  56. [Note: Monica posted this comment on October 13, 2013.]

    I don’t care for the recurring drinking/frat parties-related themes that are present in this episode, Reptile Boy, Beer Bad, and Fear, Itself (which I actually like as an episode). I don’t equate either with being bad, and I don’t relate with what the writers are trying to get across since I don’t necessarily agree. When I was in college frat parties were awesome, and my college drinking experiences were just fine. It’s almost unrealistic that they don’t drink and I wish the show would have taken this season from a more realistic perspective and give the characters more of a college experience where the normal parts were fun rather than seemingly be seen as negative.

    This episode is particularly awful.

    Like

  57. [Note: T.G. posted this comment on January 10, 2014.]

    Ugh. Why do Riley and Buffy have to have sex the entire freakin episode 😦 whenever I watch this episode I can’t help but think “No one wants to see that!” So yea I agree that this episode is awful.

    Like

  58. [Note: Spuffy4eva posted this comment on January 18, 2014.]

    I think that this one was scheduled around SMG doing the Scooby Doo film as well-hmm Scooby Doo…Scooby gang…

    Like

  59. [Note: Shimmer posted this comment on January 25, 2014.]

    You’ve given it the lowest score, but there’s no way this is the worst episode of the entire series. It fits in fine with the rest of season 4, and never sinks to the level of some of the early cringe-inducing episodes.

    Like

  60. [Note: MrB posted this comment on January 25, 2014.]

    A) Yes, it is that bad
    B) By this time time in the series, there is no excuse for such a bad episode. That is this episode’ biggest and most insurmountable problem.

    Like

  61. [Note: T.G. posted this comment on February 27, 2014.]

    “WTWTA” doesn’t fit anywhere into the series as a whole. Its an episode dedicated to riley and buffy having nonstop sex. I don’t even think there is any depth added to it at all….. Just gross, sweaty, love scenes. I HATE the sex scenes (just throwing that out there)

    Like

  62. [Note: Kyle posted this comment on February 28, 2014.]

    I disagree with your second point. I do not believe even the season 1 episodes have an excuse for such poor quality, looking at it from critical standpoint. Yeah sure, the writers were trying to find their footing. However, just because a baby learning to walk stumbles around a bit (actually quite a lot) doesn’t mean that the baby doesn’t stumble, so to speak. While I know we have higher expectations for the later seasons, I think that that expectation can cloud a reviewer’s judgement of an episode/season, resulting in an unfair review. Look at the episodes “Welcome to the Hellmouth”, “Angel”, and “Prophecy Girl”. Many people would give these episodes a perfect score simply because they are the best of season 1 (I emphasize “season 1”), completely ignoring their flaws. However, one of the reasons I like the reviews on this site is because they look past any expectations and analyze each episode from a logical standpoint.

    Like

  63. [Note: ericas623 posted this comment on March 1, 2014.]

    I agree with those of you above who called the sex scenes in this episode “gross.” The funny thing is that we see far more graphic and truly disturbing sex scenes on TV now, and, yet, I still cringe at the essentially forty minute sex scene that is this episode.

    Like

  64. [Note: LoveroftheBuffer posted this comment on March 23, 2014.]

    I completely agree with this review.It’s awful! Worse than ‘I Robot…You Jane’ The sex scene just wasn’t handled well at all and comparing it to Buffy’s other sex scenes its tacky. Yet Anya,Spike,Giles along with Tara telling Willow to leave her make this episode ‘eh’. My LEAST favourite episode. Its lucky to be an F

    Like

  65. [Note: LittleMissKay posted this comment on June 7, 2014.]

    I think this episode does a little more foreshadowing because of the slightly more explored dynamic between Spike and Anya. Retrospectively watching them converse it makes the heated affair in the Magic Box of episode 18 season 6 seem much more…premeditated? I find a bit more depth in their affair from this pseudo-foreshadowing.

    Like

  66. [Note: Boscalyn posted this comment on June 20, 2014.]

    To this episode’s credit, I’m almost certain “Touched” devotes more screentime to the characters fucking than this episode does. I’m gonna test that out this weekend.

    Actually, maybe this episode isn’t as bad as everyone says? I think it’s the first time we see Tara really integrated with the Scoobies, and there’s all that delicious Spike/Anya stuff. Yeah, I’m definitely rewatching this over the weekend.

    Like

  67. [Note: Boscalyn posted this comment on June 28, 2014.]

    The episode dedicates one minute and thirty-eight seconds to Buffy and Riley fucking. That’s absolutely nothing compared to Touched. For christ’s sake, Riley spends more time investigating a leaky bathtub this episode.

    Of course, the entire episode is very sexually charged, from Anya’s interest in Xander’s penis to Tara’s talk about the joys of “riding” to Willow’s crush on Giles’s voice… It feels like a throwback to one of season two’s clumsy sex-themed episodes, like “Some Assembly Required” or something.

    That’s probably the big flaw of the episode thematically. What “WTWTA” seems to be saying is that Buffy and Riley’s relationship is based entirely on sexual longing, and that there’s no basis for the relationship other than that. Hence the opening scene, where the one time they attempt to collaborate in a non-sexy manner (Riley holds the demon back so Buff can shoot), they’re rudely interrupted by a demon. But… that’s not even remotely close to what their arc is about.

    Another note is that the episode contains a ton of foreshadowing for the Spanya relationship in season 6; Xander’s quip about rebounding with the evil undead comes to mind, but most of the exposition in the first act of the episode centers around how odd it is that a vampire and a demon are teaming up.

    I don’t think this episode is anywhere near as bad as “Teacher’s Pet,” and there’s a bunch of really funny moments. Anya and Xander in the ice cream truck, Spike volunteering to help out before realizing he hates them all, Xander’s “she who smelt it dealt it” line. Plus the music is actually really good! It made the boring scenes tolerable. And that shot with the slow zoom out to reveal the bed floating in a dark void was just great.

    I’d honestly give this episode a 57, maybe a 60 if I was feeling generous. It’s proof that even the worst episode of this show is better than a lot of network television.

    Like

  68. [Note: Lydia posted this comment on July 2, 2014.]

    I was dreading this episode. I really was, mostly because there’s so, so much hate for it, some people even consider it the worst episode of the series. I don’t think it’s the worst episode in the series, but I will agree that there isn’t a lot to love. First of all, this was the episode that made me cringe at every Buffy and Riley scene that came after. I was fine with their relationship before this, but now every time I watch a Buffy and Riley scene I want to peel my eyes off. There have been scenes of Bangel and Spuffy sex, hell, there’s even scenes of Parker and Buffy sex, but they’re all okay to watch. I don’t know if it’s necessarily the sex that disturbs me or the way they shot and portrayed it. I mean, today’s TV shows have a lot more to offer in the sex department than this, but whatever it was the Riley and Buffy sex scenes were cringeworthy, boring and simply futile. I feel like they devoted waaay too much screen time to the characters making odd sexual sounds as well and it grossed me out. Now I just want the Riley and Buffy relationship to be over already. I can’t believe the dude who wrote ‘Something Blue’ (a truly great episode, your argument is invalid.) wrote this one.

    Okay, I’m done bashing. Despite how terrible the plot is, the old lady and ghost children were actually kinda creepy. Anya is awesome here. While she is on the verge of becoming too aggressive on her blunt honesty, there’s something endearing on Emma Caulfield’s delivery that just makes me love her. I always laugh at her “I’m having fun already, woo-hoo”. She’s yet another unique and strong female character on a show that is always offering great female characters. Also Spike and Anya together are a great comedic duo and all their scenes were simply a hoot. I like Spike! I demand more Spike! He’s simply hilarious here, I love it when he talks himself out of helping the Scoobies. And Giles oh, my, god. I’d almost forgotten this bit was in WTWTA, I love it when he’s singing and the four of them walk in on it and look totally flabbergasted. Willow’s expression is priceless. I don’t blame her for having a crush on him, his voice is soothing and strangely erotic… If that’s actually Anthony Head’s voice? I dunno.

    The idea itself isn’t the worst idea I’ve ever seen on television about the repressed sexuality and stuff, but the way they portrayed it threw me off. There are interesting touches to the story, such as possessed Tara screaming to Willow “that’s disgusting” regarding their homosexual coupling and I know that plenty of people were grossed out by the Orgasm Wall, but I found it amusingly hilarious. Maybe one of those ideas that are so bad they seem good. The re-use of the Beer Bad dude talking on about how much he liked the way the ‘French language’ rolled off his tongue made me laugh. God, I fear for the dude who thought up this episode.

    I’d also like to mention something very interesting and ironic that I noticed, and wonder if the writers did that on purpose. In the scene where Xander and Anya are in the ice cream truck, there is a poster or something that reads out ‘Giant Insects’. Is that a nod to ‘Teacher’s Pet’ and Xander’s brief ‘thing’ for the praying mantis lately? Anyway, surprisingly, when I re-watched this episode and simply skipped past all the sex scenes, it wasn’t half as bad as I thought it would be. I would give it a D. Spike, Anya and Giles officially do it for me in this episode.

    Like

  69. [Note: Odi et Amo posted this comment on July 2, 2014.]

    The only facet of this episode that saves it from being the worst of all is Anthony Head’s unreal cover.

    Like

  70. [Note: FlyingPenguin posted this comment on July 6, 2014.]

    This is by no means the worst episode of the series, in my opinion–but it is pretty bad. Easily one of the two worst of the season, anyway (along with “Living Conditions”). About the only think I really like here is the Giles singing scene–which almost (but not quite) makes the rest of the episode worth slogging through. I’ve always very fondly remembered that scene, and I rather wish that it were in a different episode…

    Like

  71. [Note: Nix posted this comment on August 5, 2014.]

    Lacie, if Tracey Forbes is a man, something very strange, possibly involving sex changes, is going on in the DVD season 4 introduction. She looks female enough there 🙂

    Like

  72. [Note: Freudian Vampire posted this comment on August 5, 2014.]

    IMDb and Wikipedia both confirm Tracey Forbes is a woman. I have no idea where Lacie got her information from.

    Like

  73. [Note: Courtney posted this comment on April 28, 2015.]

    This unfortunately, was one of the first episodes I ever watched with my mom in the room. Because of this episode, my mom almost banned me from watching the show. She supervised me for a few weeks afterwards to ensure I wasn’t watching soft core porn.

    Like

  74. [Note: Pandorita posted this comment on March 15, 2016.]

    Yes, I totally agree with the ranking given here, this truly is a bad episode. Lamest excuse for a plot ever, no character development, little to no funny/witty dialogue, (Spike and Anya being the exception) and if it wasn’t for those two and Giles singing the whole thing would have been unwatchable. And don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining about Buffy and Riley having all the steamy sex because I didn’t mind that, done properly it could have been bold, interesting, enticing or even funny (for instance, exploring more on Buffy’s insecurities regarding sex and her recent discovery that she could actually enjoy it without her partner turning bad afterwards, or about how’s sex with a normal human is compared to sex with a vampire, or the awakening of that “slayer super sex drive” which was already hinted with Faith, but not really seen with Buffy…). They were lots of ways to go if they wanted to do a episode entirely revolving around sex; but haunted frat house? Buffy and her boyfriend being a battery for repressed ghosts? REALLY? That’s the best they could come up with? It was so, so lame and even worse: so, so boring. I mean, this writer managed to make a sex-oriented episode BORING! You can’t get any suckier at writing than that.

    Like

  75. [Note: Krssven posted this comment on March 24, 2016.]

    Ok, I have to take issue with this comment you made. You don’t expect a sitcom of Buffy? Fair enough. However your (and others, by the comments on this page) insistence on continually separating the plot of Buffy episodes and deriding them as poor/hokey/lame/silly makes me question your expectations.

    When I found Buffy on BBC tv in the late 90s I was drawn to multiple elements of it – the vampire mythology (that had been nearly slain itself by the Anne bleeping Rice), the comedic elements, the character interaction and the fact that I believed these could be real people. I also liked the exotic (to me) California setting. Anyone that states that they ignore the plot, or actively TRY to, I’d say switch this show off. It’s not for you. Sitting and watching this show and saying you don’t pay attention to its plots is like saying you could play table tennis with no arms. It doesn’t make an iota of sense. The characters are audience surrogates in their world/setting – we are experiencing their lives, including plot, in a world where vampires and demons are real. If that is hokey or silly to anyone, again, you shouldn’t really watch this show.

    Like

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