Buffy 7×12: Potential

[Review by Mike Marinaro]

[Writer: Rebecca Rand Kirshner | Director: James A. Contner | Aired: 01/21/2003]

“Potential” is a decidedly mixed bag. Although I liked more than I didn’t like, the episode just didn’t come together for me. Surprisingly, though, the Potentials themselves aren’t what pulled this episode down. It actually makes sense to focus on the Potentials for an episode. Its downfall is really the split focus between Buffy training the Potentials and Dawn’s hope, fall, and renewal of her self worth. Oh yeah, and Amanda’s thrown in there somewhere. While each aspect individually does a decent job, I don’t feel they connected with each other very well; I felt like I was watching several entirely separate episodes at times.

The episode picks up right where “Showtime” [7×11] left off in regard to its theme of changing the game on the enemy and taking the fight to them. Buffy takes full command of the Potentials here, where before she was unsure of what to do with them. Buffy’s comments to them about the nature of the Slayer, based on her own experiences, is very cool to see. She says, “Death is what a slayer breathes, what a slayer dreams about when she sleeps. Death is what a slayer lives.” This, of course, harkens back to a major theme of Season 5. Remember “death is your gift?”

This is a Buffy that has seven-plus years of experience and knowledge behind her and is imparting that information onto the next generation. It’s all good knowledge, but I’m not sure Buffy’s approach is the best it could be. It seems she’s going with the overly authoritative style of leadership for the time being. I have to admit that I think a more casual conversational style would have probably connected with the Potentials more quickly and ensured a more dedicated group. As it stands now, Buffy’s training these people in a very workmanlike manner, which is not going to inspire their good graces. Of course, it could be argued that this is a good thing. In my opinion, though, I don’t think this situation warranted it. Points for effort though!

Apparently the First is in remission because of the Ubervamp’s dusting. I have to say that this reeks of a serious lack of writing creativity. Blatantly telling the audience that the First is out of the game for a little while may buy the writers some time to not have to top themselves in the doom department for a while, but all the tension that has been built up has now just left the room because of it and it makes me a little more than sad to see it. All the momentum accrued since “Conversations with Dead People” [7×07] has now fully disappated, when it should really just be continuing to ramp up. This may have even been a good time to throw Caleb into the season. Regardless, this is a big plotting mistake that I think largely perpetuates this mid-season slump.

As I mentioned in the introduction, each piece of “Potential” pretty much works on an individual level. In particular, I really enjoyed the training excercises Buffy put the current group of Potentials through. The opening scene, using Spike as the predator, was fun to watch, as was Buffy having trouble keeping herself away from getting a little too cozy with Spike in front of the trainees. Later in the episode, there’s a well edited sequence where Buffy’s pummeling a newly risen vampire and giving some good strategic fighting techniques while Dawn and Amanda are using their environment and ingenuity to fend off a vampire of their own.

Maybe it’s because I enjoyed the actress on Freaks and Geeks so much, but I like Amanda. Although not amazingly well developed here or anything, we get enough of a background to want her to survive. More importantly, though, I was happy with how her situation with the guy who picks on her somewhat parallels what Buffy went through with Spike last season. Amanda asks Buffy “Is it weird? We’re mean to each other, and we like each other.” Buffy’s entertaining response is “Well, it depends. Sometimes that’s how people relate. Being mean to each other. Even mortal enemies. Then with the- And that leads to no good, absolutely no good. And much confusion. And then it’s over. Absolutely, seriously, definitely over. And that’s confusing too. The over part. Which it is. Over! So, maybe.” This gives us a little bit more insight into what’s going on in Buffy’s head in regard to Spike. In a nutshell, there’s “much confusion.”

Probably my favorite aspect of the episode is how the situation with the Potentials affects Dawn and her sense of self worth. This is a wonderful little character aspect that is thrown into the plot. Our first hint that Dawn will even be remotely important in the episode is when Buffy tells some Potentials that “you’re all special. Most people in this world have no idea why they’re here or what they want to do. You do. You have a mission, a reason for being here. You’re not here by chance. You’re here because you are the chosen ones.” Immediately following this speech, the scene quickly cuts to Dawn looking sad, indicating that she feels she is one of those people Buffy is referring to that isn’t remotely special or needed; Dawn is not “chosen.”

Having us believe Dawn’s the new Potential really works, both from a plot and a character perspective. First of all, it kind of makes sense that she might be a Potential, what with her sister being the current Slayer and all. But, even more importantly, it makes sense on a purely character level. For a short time Dawn thinks she has what she’s always wanted — to be special and to have a reason to more actively be involved in Buffy’s life. There’s this divide going on between the Potentials, or “the important people,” and everyone else. One thing I love about the episode is that it turns this notion on its head. Yes, the Potentials are important, but so is everyone else. Each contributing person is important in their own way, which is what the end of the episode so beautifully summarizes.

Everything comes together when Dawn hands her weapon — her power — over to Amanda. Xander, doing what he does best, properly props Dawn up because of this selflessness. I know Buffy’s busy, but she could at least devote a little bit of time to having a heart-to-heart with Dawn and make an attempt to appreciate what it’s like for her. Thank God Xander’s around to fill in this role for her! His speech to Dawn at the end of the episode is simply sublime, and very reminiscent of an inspirational speech he gave to Buffy back in “The Freshman” [4×01].

Xander tells Dawn, in the stand-out moment of the episode, “Yeah. They’re special, no doubt. The amazing thing is, not one of them will ever know, not even Buffy. … How much harder it is for the rest of us. … Seven years, Dawn. Working with the slayer. Seeing my friends get more and more powerful. A witch. A demon. Hell, I could fit Oz in my shaving kit, but come a full moon, he had a wolfy mojo not to be messed with. Powerful. All of them. And I’m the guy who fixes the windows. … I saw what you did last night. … You thought you were all special. Miss Sunnydale 2003. And the minute you found out you weren’t, you handed the crown to Amanda without a moment’s pause. You gave her your power. … They’ll never know how tough it is, Dawnie, to be the one who isn’t chosen. To live so near to the spotlight and never step in it. But I know. I see more than anybody realizes because nobody’s watching me. I saw you last night. I see you working here today. You’re not special. You’re extraordinary.”

This wonderful dialogue not only sweetly gives Dawn a bone, but it also summarizes Xander’s life as one of the Slayer’s best friends for seven years. Dawn, in response, gives Xander some due kudos as well. She tells him, “Maybe that’s your power. … Seeing. Knowing.” I think Dawn nailed it. What a very ‘final season’ insight into our flawed yet beloved Xander. When Dawn makes that comment, the many times Xander has been there for his friends come flying through my head, from that speech to Buffy in “The Freshman” [4×01] to his insightful outlook on her relationship with Riley in “Into the Woods” [5×10] to his world-saving speech to Willow in “Grave” [6×22].

In conclusion, I have to reiterate what I said in the introduction: “Potential” is a mixed bag. The episode doesn’t mesh its various components together very well and it seriously silents the tension that had been built up. There’s also several other plotting mistakes that just have no reason to be there. On the positive side, though, there’s some wonderful character work for Dawn along with a reasonably entertaining plot involving Potentials in training. When all is said and done, though, “Potential” has its moments but just doesn’t quite gel.


Minor Pros/Cons (+/-)

+ Vi being freaked out that Spike has her.
+ Buffy being a little overly concerned about Spike while on top of him. I can’t fault the Potentials for being a little interested in what that’s all about.
+ Buffy’s honesty to the Potentials about the likelihood of their deaths.
+ Clem! Pure gold on what Buffy asks him to do. I love Kennedy’s comment: “You think she dated him too?”
+ Buffy and Spike going on about how nice his crypt was. Haha.
+ Anya’s off-handed comment about the Buffy/Dawn blood connecting never really making any sense.
+ The Potentials enjoying a moment of victory over taking on a vampire.

– Spike hits Rona and his chip doesn’t fire off. :/
– Buffy claims that her death could make one of the Potentials the next slayer. Although it’s possible Buffy’s not sure how this works, it seems much more likely that this was just a slip-up. Faith’s death would cause a new slayer to be called, as the line was passed to her when Kendra was killed in Season 2. It’s possible that Buffy’s death in “The Gift” [5×22] caused another slayer to be called somewhere in the world, unknown to everyone we know. More likely, though, is just that Faith holds the line now. This should have been represented more clearly this season — the writers should have thought this through.
– Dawn leaving the house with all that’s going on out there? Come on now… Dawn should know better than that by now. I can understand wanting some quiet time on the porch outside or something, but don’t go running off down the street.
– Willow and Xander were able to notify Buffy and get to the school far too quickly to help Dawn and Amanda.




73 thoughts on “Buffy 7×12: Potential”

  1. [Note: Adam posted this comment on April 19, 2009.]

    Great review! However, this episode is when season 7 starts getting to a bad place for me. While it isn’t entirely a horrible episode, this marks the point where the series lost it’s spark. It started around Sleeper/Never Leave Me. I would rate this one a 70. I think you were being a little too nice, hmm?


  2. [Note: Sam posted this comment on April 19, 2009.]

    Hooray. Another review! I’m so happy. I also didn’t realize that the actress who plays Amanda was on “Freaks and Geeks”, so nice pop culture connection there.

    One thing: Yes, Buffy tells the potentials that her own death will activate one of them as the new Slayer, and you’re right–that’s incorrect, because really Faith’s death would cause a new Slayer. However, I’m not sure that’s a slip-up in the writing (surely Rebecca Rand Kirshner had watched the show enough to catch it). I always thought that telling the potentials that “I already died, so now the Slayer line goes through another girl” would complicate what is an already volatile situation. I mean, Buffy is trying to impart to these girls the finality of death, and that eventually it catches up with all of them. Wouldn’t telling them that she died and was revived (twice) take the sting out of it? Wouldn’t they then start to grasp at the hope that maybe if whoever the next Slayer is dies, that she could just be resurrected by a powerful witch, or something? I don’t know, it could just be me, but I think Buffy withheld the technicality of her dying and transferring the lineage to Faith for a reason.


  3. [Note: Benboy606 posted this comment on April 19, 2009.]

    Love your reviews. I agree, but….

    I probably would’ve given it a lower score, because, like you said, it felt like many different episodes, but the thing is, I thought they were bad episodes. The Dawn story, in particular, drove me insane. I thought it was incredibly boring, and honestly, useless. It made me like Dawn more, but I feel like the attention thrown at Dawn in this episode should have been thrown at Xander, or Willow, only good attention. It wasn’t my favorite thing to watch.

    Also, the potentials just really bore me. I love Amanda, though.


  4. [Note: Jason posted this comment on April 19, 2009.]

    Buffy shouldn’t have just “known” how to be a leader. The writers have always been quite respectful of the notion that Buffy doesn’t always just magically do things correctly. Recently given even more direct power over even more people’s fate (girls thrown into her already full lap), everyone around her is expecting her to teach, guide, and protect them. Buffy rises to the challenge without a moment’s pause, but she gets it all wrong. This is incredibly humanizing in my eyes. If she was the perfect teacher to these girls I would feel cheated. We knows that Buffy feels superior to everyone, and I think she expects these noobs to respect and obey her, maybe even hang off her every word. Many people given this much power over people, especially those training other to kill, dehumanize them (think of the army) because the will of the leader trumps the thoughts and feelings of those beneath them. Buffy does this to everyone this season, as she is fighting a war. This is why they ALL rebel against her and eventually kick her out of the group. The potentials also feel entitled (and they literally are)–kinda like the kids running around today. Ultimately, I think Buffy is forceful with the girls because she knows she right, however, she fails because she never connects with them. In fact, she expects them to connect to her, which as the past as proven, is mostly a futile endeavor because Buffy rarely connects with anyone. She is the slayer and is always alone. I don’t see any of this as a bad thing, I think they nailed it. Plus, they didn’t throw it in our faces or talk about it (the way everyone complains they do on Dollhouse).


  5. [Note: MikeJer posted this comment on April 19, 2009.]

    Jason, good points! I pretty much agree. Note that my disucssion of this in the review wasn’t intended as a dig on the episode, but rather just an observation about Buffy that I happen to have in hindsight. 🙂


  6. [Note: jarppu posted this comment on April 19, 2009.]

    I also want to join in on the “This episode should get lower rating” -choir. But unfortunately it’s been a really long time since I’ve seen a lot of these season 7 episodes so I can’t really comment on why. I guess this episode just sucks in a very typical season 7 way; there really isn’t any new problems in this episode that haven’t been a complaint in previous episodes already.


  7. [Note: buffyholic posted this comment on April 20, 2009.]

    Mike, great review but I gotta disagree with the score. I think this warrants at least an 82. First off, I have no problem with “my death can make you the next slayer” comment because I see it as Buffy giving them a bit of tough love, she is trying to get them into action fast and another reason is also Buffy´s superiority. She is always talking about how she is the one with the power, that they have to do what they say and even with Faith there, she still feels the only one with enough power to lead them.
    I think Dawn was put into good use here, she finally accepted her place in this world. In S6, she had nothing to do because she was no longer the key and since everyone was messed up and never paid any attention to her, she was feeling lost and here in S7 she was hoping that being a Potential would connect her again with Buffy. At the end, she found out that Amanda was the chosen, so she gave her her power and like Xander said, that was extraordinary! And I believe that Dawn from this point on, is more confident in herself.
    So, I think her part worked out great, as well as the Potentials training. There was comedy with Andrew and a good pace.
    I really think you were a bit harsh.


  8. [Note: MikeJer posted this comment on April 20, 2009.]

    jarppu, I respectfully disagree. “Potential” in no way “sucks.” Its got its flaws, but plenty of episodes in the show have flaws. As I pointed out in the review, there was more here that I liked than disliked. I’m still not sure why S7 gets picked on with that extra bit of enthusiasm.

    Paula, I’m sorry your comment got cut off. I’ve seen this happen a few times now to people (along with double posts). Hopefully I’ll have time to look at the code and investigate why this is happening soon.

    buffyholic, I can’t win, can I? Some people think I was too easy on the episode, you think I was too harsh. Ah, the wacky nature of reviewing. 😉 Anyway, I personally feel the episode is scored just right. I liked the episode overall, but it had some notable drawbacks. B- feels like the right place for it.

    Thanks for the comments everyone!


  9. [Note: Tara and Willow posted this comment on April 20, 2009.]

    Great review Mike! As you said Potentional continues the middle plot slip!It certainly was an average episode!


  10. [Note: NoNoNora posted this comment on April 20, 2009.]

    Hi, I’m a long-time lurker, first time commenter. In response to Benboy606’s comment that the attention given to Dawn should have been given to Xander or Willow- IMO, Dawn needs this attention more than them. At the end of S6 Buffy promised to show her the world, to train her and at the beginning of the season we see this happening. But once the potentials are in the picture, this is stopped and Dawn is just expected to be the normal girl again to “get to school”. The fact that the potentials are all similar to her in age further exaserbates (I’m sure I spelt that wrong!) the problem. Dawn used to be the key, she used to be the biggest responsibility in Buffy’s life, but that seemed to stop in S7. (Was it because Dawn was now the same age as Buffy was when the series began?)… And Dawn, in a typically teenage-girly fashion, notices this.
    I agree with the score, and the pros/cons… Dawn running away seems so much like s6 Dawn, not the more grown-up (and not whiny!) character in s7. Like most S7 episodes, IMO, it started with an interesting premice but seemed very rushed.


  11. [Note: Paula posted this comment on April 20, 2009.]

    Okay, here goes with more or less what I tried to post earlier (my bad for not having the sense to copy the text somewhere before posting, I suppose):

    Spike hits Rona and his chip doesn’t fire off. :/

    Well, there is an explanation of sorts to this, although the writers certainly were vague on this point. Remember this exchange from “Never Leave Me”?

    BUFFY: When did your chip stop working?
    SPIKE: I wasn’t aware that it had, you know. Not ’til now.

    I seem to remember the chip firing when Spike hits Xander in “Sleeper”, and I tend to think that the First Evil simply overrode the chip by having Spike do all the bad stuff without knowing it, but what with “The Killer in Me” being the very next episode from “Potential”, I think there’s a distinct possibility that the chip was at this point working erratically, if at all.

    Then on to my personal grievances with this episode:

    * While I do love everything Spuffy, that little graveyard scene just feels a bit over the top to me. They could have made Buffy’s concern over Spike’s wellbeing a little more subtle.

    * Somebody please tell me I’m not the only one sorely missing some sort of an explanation regarding Amanda’s smooth move to the Summers house. It’s not like her family are all dead or something, and they’re right here in town, too!

    Regarding Buffy and leadership, Jason makes a good point: Buffy just doesn’t get it right. While she’s a highly experienced Slayer, obtaining and exercising leadership is something she hasn’t got much experience of. In the past she has due to her position been forced to lead the Scoobies and make the big decisions to the point of exhaustion, but this bunch of younger girls (each a potential future Slayer) are a completely different thing from a few old friends who have been with her for years. It’s easy to just rely on the authority given by your position, but it’s not going to work for long with these girls – from them, Buffy needs to earn her leadership.

    I think though that what Buffy tells Spike much later in the season is a more relevant explanation than a superiority complex: “These are girls that I got killed. I cut myself off from them… all of them. I knew I was gonna lose some of them and I didn’t… […] I’ve always cut myself off. I’ve always… Being the slayer made me different. But it’s my fault I stayed that way. People are always trying to connect to me, and I just slip away.” Also, remember how well Buffy previously being friendly with fellow Slayers ended? Kendra got killed, Faith went about as bad as a Slayer can go and did her best to hurt Buffy in any way she possibly could. No wonder Buffy had issues making friends with these girls.

    I’d also like to add that Buffy’s relationship with Spike can only undermine her position from just about every direction. It’s understandable that she’s none too willing to discuss her history with Spike or explain why she now deals with him the way she does, but even the old Scoobies are uneasy about Spike’s presence, and the Potentials are bound to question Buffy’s judgment – a vampire slayer who’s had two vampire boyfriends and even now focuses quite strongly on this formerly very bad-ass vampire? The soon-to-occur removal of Spike’s chip surely doesn’t improve anyone’s confidence in her either.

    Add a few bad situations and the more sociable Faith into the mix, and you get what takes place in “Empty Places”. I’m just sayin’.


  12. [Note: Benboy606 posted this comment on April 20, 2009.]

    To NoNoNora:

    Well, I think a Dawn episode would have been fine, but with all these episodes in s7 devoted to plot (and IMO, a rather boring plot), and very little character episodes, a Willow episode (a good one; sorry, but A Killer In Me just doesn’t do it for me) or a good Xander episode (First Date reminds me a bit too much of the s1 monster of the week, Xander’s demon bait episodes!). Also, instead of a Dawn might be a potential episode, I think they should have at least somewhat followed up to her, ya know, being the key. But that’s more of a Season 6 complaint, I guess. Like I said, I really liked parts of it, and Amanda is awesome, but most of it really fall flat for me, and there were many things I believe could have been cut for other character tidbits.

    I agree with what you say about Buffy almost forgetting about Dawn. I don’t like that either. Buffy’s life becomes the potentials and Spike, which is understandable, but when you say we need a Dawn episode and then mention that BUFFY needs to do these things with Dawn, it just reinforces the fact that Buffy barely communicated with Dawn in the episode, at all! I thought “Lessons” was a great first step to the promise we got in “Grave”, but there was no followup. At all.

    Can’t wait for the next review 🙂


  13. [Note: Jason posted this comment on April 20, 2009.]

    Yeah, after I wrote my reply I reread your review because I realized you weren’t digging on that aspect of the ep, but I still felt compelled to give my insight 😀


  14. [Note: spuffy posted this comment on April 21, 2009.]

    sorry first time commenting.i actually loved this episode especially that final speech from Xander.He really is one of a kind.The whole Amanda and Dawn thing really just shows how much shes grown form being but a annoying brat to someone who actually understands the situation of being a sister to the slayer.

    i think that buffy’s whole love hate thing going on with spike last season really finally evolves into genuine friendship.the concern buffy shows him when she was straddling him i think still proves that she is attracted to him, just that now,she knows the situation better. oh and……

    (Jai Ho)You are the reason that I breathe,(Jai Ho)
    You are the reason that I still believe,(Jai Ho)
    You are my destiny,
    Jai Ho! Uh-uh-uh-oh!
    (Jai Ho)No there is nothing that can stop us(Jai Ho)
    Nothing can ever come between us,(Jai Ho)
    So come and dance with me,
    Jai Ho! (oohh) hehe slumdog 🙂


  15. [Note: Leelu posted this comment on April 22, 2009.]

    During Xander’s speech to Dawn, it’s always so painful to watch her face that second he says “You aren’t special.” Her face just kind of crashes down. And then he says “You’re extraordinary.” and it’s so sweet! 8)


  16. [Note: HarFang posted this comment on April 24, 2009.]

    Great to have all those new reviews pouring in!
    I don’t know for you all, but in season 7 I often prefer to re-watch particular scenes rather than the whole episodes.
    Here I really appreciate the Slayer-101 lessons, which remind me of the first seasons, when the Scoobies were all learning those basics by themselves (and it was Cordy and Xander getting awkwardly tangled up on the cemetery ground). How nostalgic. And I’m also happy to see that Buffy does have some fond memories of the previous year. Seeing her so comfortable with Spike also makes me sigh a little…

    But without any doubt the highlight of the episode is Xander’s speech to Dawn. I tear up every time I hear it. Xander’s status as the team’s odd man out (or more exactly, as its “normal” man out) has popped up now and again (in the Zeppo, at the beginning of season 4, maybe a little in Grave…) but never in such a moving way. It’s terrible to realise that he’s been putting on a brave face all those years to hide how hurt he was… especially if you consider that even Riley could not bear that more than a few months. I feel that in a way Xander has come to replace Joyce as the heart of the Summers’ house.

    ( Mike, I think that you should have added Dawn’s comment about Xander’s power in the “Foreshadowing” section of your review, considering what’s about to happen to him.)


  17. [Note: bookworm posted this comment on May 7, 2009.]

    being authoritarian is a sign of being insecure. As some kind of instructor, I got this problem until I figured a way out.

    Buffy only gets comfortable around her “students” and “colleagues” once she herself believes there is a way out, that there is a way of averting the apocalypse. And that’s really well executed throughout the season, the more insecure Buffy gets the more dictatorian she becomes.


  18. [Note: Suzanne posted this comment on June 8, 2009.]

    After seeing this episode, I finally realise where all these “Dawn the Watcher” fanfics come from. In school with Amanda, she was acting as one. At the most crucial points, with the vampire in pursuit, she used her knowledge (her main power at that point) to enable ‘her’ Slayer-in-training to save them both. Amanda could only watch as Dawn was being attacked by that vampire. Dawn used her knowledge of her surroundings to save Amanda from the Bringers, get a stake, and then her knowledge of the Slayer’s fight to empower Amanda. In no way does this make Amanda’s fight any less admirable, but Dawn was being phenomenal here. Also, I think she shared her power (knowledge) rather than that she handed it to Amanda. I’m a little surprised that I didn’t yet find a reference to Dawn as Watcher-in-training in canon. If it was there, I certainly missed it. Of course, Dawn deserves a chance to go to uni. She might not want to be a Watcher, but was it even adressed?


  19. [Note: Blue Fan posted this comment on July 13, 2009.]

    Outstanding reviews, as usual. I really like them. However, I disagree with onle ONE negative aspect (cons).
    You imply that with Buffy’s death in S5, it should have been made clear for the audience if another potential was becoming a slayer or not; or if Faith was going to be the official one. BUT THIS ISSUE WAS MADE CLEAR, IN FACT, BY BUFFY.
    Nevertheless, you are foregetting something. There is some episode in S6, where Buffy tells someone (I think Giles) that she understands why nobody replaced her after she died: because she was supposed to come back. As some kind of destiny, I think Buffy’s time to die hadn’t come in S5.
    Of course, this would never explain why was Kendra activated after Buffy’ death in S1 (following the same logic).


  20. [Note: Lucy posted this comment on October 28, 2009.]

    Blue fan: No, I think Mike had it right. The slayer line was passed from Buffy to Kendra and then to Faith. That’s why no slayer appeared after Buffy died in ‘the Gift’ and it’s also why Faith WAS called after Kendra’s death.

    I quite liked this episode because I love Amanda, and I loved that we were teased that Dawn might be a potential. I was SO RELIEVED when she wasn’t. Don’t get me wrong, I actually quite liked season 7 Dawn (hated season 6 Dawn) but it would have been too cheesy to have her be a potential. Too convenient.


  21. [Note: Leelu: posted this comment on October 28, 2009.]

    @Lucy: Having Dawn be a potential could be conceived as too convenient, but you also can’t forget about the fact that she is basically made of Buffy. She’s like a Buffy-clone, in a sense. And since Buffy was a potential, then it stands to reason that Dawn could very well be one.


  22. [Note: Lucy posted this comment on October 29, 2009.]

    Leelu, you’re right. I know it would have made total sense to have Dawn as a potential, I just didn’t want it to happen. I was scared they’d carry on the series as ‘Dawn the vampire slayer’ and it would lose the awesomness of Buffy


  23. [Note: G1000 posted this comment on June 1, 2010.]

    I liked this one a bit better than you did. I am questioning the decision of the writers to focus on Dawn and the Potentials rather than the “fab five” of Buffy, Willow, Xander, Anya, and Spike that I’ve spent the seven seasons falling in love with. Still, the action scenes were well-done. Buffy the teacher was pretty cool as well. And I loved seeing Clem again.


  24. [Note: Aisha posted this comment on June 7, 2010.]

    I am tempted to say that episodes like this fall kind of flat (not terrible) because of the lack of coverage given to these themes building up to them. I appreciated this episode because it must be incredibly difficult to be the sister of Slayer. Add to that that fact that you have to watch other teenagers running around YOUR house learning Slayer skills only to become what her sister is. Not to mention in the event that this would happen, her sister would have to die (so they keep saying – I’m still not sure that it’s not Faith who has to die). Dawn feels left out and neglected. And I’m glad that her story is being told because she is clearly affected by larger events. I don’t think Dawn becoming a Potential would have helped Season 7 any. The idea of it was interesting.

    Hurray for Xander! Dawn would make an excellent Watcher. I always kind of wished they had explored Dawn’s interest in magic, but after the Dark Willow business that may have seemed unwise.


  25. [Note: Joe posted this comment on August 12, 2010.]

    It doesn’t really get touched on a lot, but I think the fact that Amanda is a better fighter (at least at the outset–let’s not forget that she [SPOILER] gets whacked in “Chosen” [END SPOILER])–is a nod to what has always made Buffy such a great slayer. She hasn’t followed (at least for the first four or so years of her time as slayer) much “traditional” training, working with instinct and her own personal style. I’m reminded of the moment in “Checkpoint” when Travers asks Giles what he’s been teaching Buffy and Giles says he’ been teaching her to win (as opposed to the unnecesary Japanese fighting commands or whatever). It brings an interesting complication to Buffy’s style of teaching the potentials–how much SHOULD she be teaching them formally? Can they really tap into their potential power? How inherently strong is the slayer nature within them?

    Alas, though, these interesting questions about the nature of being the slayer don’t really come up. Would have been a nice addition to what was explored so richly in season five.


  26. [Note: Selene posted this comment on September 12, 2010.]

    I think Amanda seemed like a better fighter because, if you’ll remember, she already had a tendency to fight. She mentioned in Help that she beat down that guy who was picking on her. So she already had some experience fighting. Not vampires, grant you, but any experience comes in handy.

    Xander’s speech at the end was just perfect. Yay, Xander!


  27. [Note: yippers6 posted this comment on September 12, 2010.]

    how could you forget

    Rona: That’s hot Molly: So we’re supposed to like make out with him or something


  28. [Note: ellecat posted this comment on November 12, 2010.]

    I am one who found Xander’s speech sappy and over the top. Dawn, extraordinary? Ok, maybe because she was a Key and not human at first. Whatever. I was glad the writers did not choose to make Dawn a Potential, since she was already a Key. Seems like too much for one character.


  29. [Note: John posted this comment on January 13, 2011.]

    Th overall plot was kinda weak for this episode, but the humor redeemed it for me; Andrew’s in particular. The Dragonball Z reference and Andrew’s unfortunate comment about shedding skins in front of Willow was particularly great.


  30. [Note: CoyoteBuffyFan posted this comment on January 17, 2011.]

    I like Amanda. I like that she is kind of goofy looking and awkward. And I like that, unlike the rest of the slayers, she doesn’t just whine 24/7 snd cracks quips in the face of danger and actually LISTENS to Dawn since she realizes that Dawn knows more than her sbout fighting vampires.

    Nice to know the students think their counselor is a high functioning schizophrenic. LOL. Buffy must not have a lot of respect at the school.

    It was cool to see Dawn taking care of herself (and Amanda) and the maturity that she shows when she finds out that Amanda is actually the Potential is great to see. However, she is still a total idiot for sneaking out in the middle of the night by herself when she thinks she is a Potential and knows that the Bringers are after them.

    I like that Buffy is taking charge and training the Potentials but the way she teaches the lessons are awful IMO and the lack of respect that the Potentials, in general, show for her is annoying. Although I guess that Buffy showed some irreverance to Giles in the beginning as well so I guess I shouldn’t be so hard on them.

    I love Xander’s talk with Dawn at the end. Even though we know it isn’t true that Xander is this “all seeing guy”, it is a truly sensitive and sweet moment that touches me and makes me tear up every time.


  31. [Note: Conor posted this comment on March 25, 2011.]

    This is a mostly average episode with a few nice touches, such as the meet-up with Clem and Spike prattling on about the style of his old crypt. Agreed that the Xander/Dawn exchange in the final scene represents the apex of the episode. It’s a beautiful scene mainly because it addresses the issue of Xander and Dawn’s supposed impotence within the group in an accepting and revelatory manner. We come to realise watching this scene just how important Xander has actually been, how he’s always been there to advise his friends, the one supporting them even when they’re prone to ignoring him. Possibly Xander’s one truly great scene in the entire season (which, in general, is decidedly not Xander-centric).


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

    Did you notice how Buffy handed Spike the flashlight during one of the scenes with the potentials? I’m sure it’s done deliberately to show how far her and Spike already have come by this point in the season 🙂


  33. [Note: RunawayMarbles posted this comment on May 26, 2011.]

    I actually like this episode. Dawn needed some kind of storyline in here, and a chance to come to terms with who she is. Without this ep, I would have found her fighting in Chosen a lot less realistic.

    The scenes with the potentials always make me laugh. “Go drown all the yak urine and pigs blood spritzers you like.” Sometimes I just go back and rewatch those… 😀


  34. [Note: RunawayMarbles posted this comment on May 26, 2011.]

    (Also, I was wondering if Amanda was still living at home, just hanging out at Buffy’s a lot more.)


  35. [Note: Andrea posted this comment on July 11, 2011.]

    This how I chose to explain the supposed “glitch” in the Slayer Line that the First Evil is so adamant about wiping out.

    When Buffy died in S1, Kendra was activated and, after her death, Faith. As such, now the Slayer Line will proceed only with Faith’s death.

    However, after Buffy’s resurrection in S6, and taking for granted that somehow she came back slightly different (i.e. Spike being able to hurt her), I think that Buffy was somehow pulled back into the Line, meaning that, if she was ever to die again, a new Slayer would be activated. The glitch, as I understand it, is that, potentially, this procedure – death and mystical resurrection – allows for infinite Slayers and that’s why the First Evil has now decided to disrupt the balance and wipe out the Line.

    I don’t know if this make any kind of sense, but I find that it’s the more likely solution to explain what is going on in S7.


  36. [Note: nathan.taurus posted this comment on December 23, 2011.]

    -I quite liked Buffy training the Potentials. However, there is no way in Hellmouth that any of the girls are 15.

    -It would have been worse for Dawn and maybe better plotwise if the Bringers had of killed Amanda in front of her in the classroom. Buffy saves Dawn and Dawn becomes stronger because of watching Amanda die.

    -I hated Willow being a bitch towards Dawn while the latter is upstairs. Too cold.


  37. [Note: Ryan ONeil posted this comment on May 20, 2012.]

    I really liked finding out after the fact that this episode was supposed to be a metaphor for pregnancy scares (finding out that you have so much more responsibility that you will never be free of, but then finding out “not really” and you feel worthless after consigning yourself to the new life), especially since Dawn had accidentally mentioned the tension of taking pregnancy tests in another episode (does anybody remember which it was? Still waiting for the DVDs, haven’t watched in a while but I have never forgotten that line)


  38. [Note: Will posted this comment on August 6, 2012.]

    @Nathan (two posts above):

    I didn’t think Willow was being too cold. For someone who is constantly wanting to be treated as an adult, she didn’t really show it with her ‘run to my room’ reaction.

    Also, great to see a Freaks And Geeks alumni. That show was just brilliant.


  39. [Note: Domitan posted this comment on August 31, 2012.]

    Amanda: Now this is a Potential with enough background character development to interest me. Thank goodness! Nice twist on the Dawn-Potential fakeout. Very good development of Dawn’s character as she seems to be moving on from her struggles to live in the shadow of the Slayer(s). Buffy observing the prattling Potentials in the training basement while wielding her axe. Was she momentarily tempted to winnow them? Ah, perhaps that’s just me. A big ‘hurrah’ when she threw the axe at the targetboard and then dispensed with the Potentials’ nonsense. Time to get onto the grim Slayin’ business.Like many here, I’ve wondered about why we never saw a new Slayer after Buffy’s Gift at the end of Season 5. Interesting explanations here. Why didn’t the Watcher’s Council attempt to flatline the present Slayer(s)’ hearts (like in the Flatliners movie) and then quickly revive them without any lasting damage? That would have created a formidable army of Slayers.


  40. [Note: Rob W posted this comment on December 28, 2012.]

    Willow: “Remember that thing about ‘they share the same blood’ or…whatever…”Sounds like Willow’s got seventh season fatigue.


  41. [Note: Dave posted this comment on February 16, 2013.]

    I am glad someone else pointed out that Buffy dying would probelbey not activate the next slayer with faith being already active


  42. [Note: Gemma posted this comment on February 17, 2013.]

    Buffy’s death would not activate a new slayer, Faiths death would. Buffy dying in season 1 and her being revived by Xander ended her mythical ability to call anew slayer. That then falling to Kendra, who activated Faith after Becoming part 1. Christopher Golden’s book the lost slayer covers this, With the activation of August after Faith’s death while Buffy is still alive.

    Also bear in mind the Gift. Buffy sacrificed herself to save the world and a new slayer was not called.

    For a new slayer to be called; Faith’s death would need to come about.

    I wonder if there is something in Buffy’s character that allows her to still believe her death would call a new slayer….


  43. [Note: Arachnea posted this comment on March 25, 2013.]

    In the bar, Buffy treats the potentials like they are slayers with powers. She can scare demons, they can’t. She would never send Xander or Dawn in a bar to beat information out of demons. It made for funny scenes though, and Clem !

    The training in the graveyard was great until she locks the Potentials in a crypt. We thought that leaving Buffy powerless against a vampire was cruel (in Helpless), yet she does the same to those girls. Granted, she was outside with Spike, but the vampire could have killed one of them in a second.

    Buffy does it all wrong from now on and becomes totally disconnected and superior. But, the role of training potentials should be the Watcher’s. There’s one watcher left and it’s Giles; he should be there with Buffy and Spike, he should be the one to lecture, to instruct and to give information. Very few teenagers would respect a 20 years old teacher/commander, even if she is the slayer and especially if this particular slayer doesn’t show any respect for them. So, it’s very realistic for Buffy to do things wrong, but a lot of the blame – as much as it pains me to say – is to be put on Giles. He literaly came back with a package of Potentials and put them plus the apocalypse on Buffy’s shoulders. It’s no wonder she can’t give Dawn the attention she requires.

    Now, I loved Xander’s speech because it resumes everything about being completely normal but very much in danger and in the shadows. And it felt wonderful to see, for once, that Dawn gets some acknowledgement for her courage and strength after everything she endured. I still believe Xander is the heart and not the sight: we saw the same thing with Riley. He didn’t see, Riley tipped him off. Here, he knows what Buffy doesn’t [Dawn could have been a potential]. In both cases, he was able to relate to their suffering and his heart being good, he can give this warmth and understanding.


  44. [Note: Ryan ONeil posted this comment on March 26, 2013.]

    “The training in the graveyard was great until she locks the Potentials in a crypt. We thought that leaving Buffy powerless against a vampire was cruel (in Helpless), yet she does the same to those girls. Granted, she was outside with Spike, but the vampire could have killed one of them in a second.”

    I would love to say that that was a deliberate method of showing how much Buffy is doing things wrong, by letting herself be convinced that she is supposed to be disconnected from her “soldiers,” and how it’s turning her into the people that tried to kill her in “Helpless”

    … but that wasn’t brought up at all (for this incident at least), so I can’t. Maybe the “strength in numbers, legitimate backup is right there” is what makes the difference? Or is supposed to at least?


  45. [Note: Waverley posted this comment on July 17, 2013.]

    I think in Mike’s review of S6’s ‘All the Way’ he referred to it as something like ‘definitley not Dawn’s The Zeppo’, which I would certainly agree with. In rewatching watching ‘Potential’ last night, however, I had the feeling that maybe this was finally Dawn’s Zeppo moment, or at least it very nearly was. Actually, in some ways it’s both her Zeppo and her The Replacement rolled into one.

    Just as Xander comes to the realisation that he doesn’t need ‘a thing’ or validation from others at the end of The Zeppo, so does Dawn come to the same conclusion by the end of Potential. And just as Xander finds direction in his life as a consequence of seeing his potential in The Replacement, so does Dawn find her role in Potential – we will soon hear her refer to herself ‘watcher junior’ in a later episode. This is of course why it was not only incredibly moving but also absolutely appropriate and structurally satisfying for Xander to be the one to give Dawn the speech at the end of the episode.

    I only say ‘nearly’ because, as Mike points out, Potential suffers from structural problems (and the slightly annoying continuity ball-dropping re: Buffy dying supposedly creating a new slayer) which let the episode down. I would have liked to see the writers push the other characters further into the background, a la The Zeppo, to really hit home Dawn’s development here. I have the feeling they were wary of this risk, perhaps due to the fandom’s reaction to Dawn, or perhaps due to the previous misteps in Dawn-centred episodes. That’s understandable but I really think they should have had the courage of their convictions and gone all out Dawn with this one.

    So, a flawed ep indeed. But I like the character of Dawn and never thought she deserved all the crit thrown her way, so I’m glad she got her moment here.


  46. [Note: Other Scott posted this comment on January 15, 2014.]

    The scene between Xander and Dawn at the end is fantastic. Ditto with Andrew bringing up the metaphor of what the whole series was originally based on. The rest of the episode was sort of dumb though.

    1. I can understand Buffy saying to the Potentials that her death would mean the continuation of the slayer line (not wanting to include Faith in the mix), but why does Anya emphasize to Dawn that in order for her to become the slayer Buffy would have to die. Both Dawn and Anya know about Faith.

    2. I really wasn’t buying the whole “Dawn can’t slay the vampire because she doesn’t have the right instincts that those other potentials have.” Why wouldn’t the instincts come with the rest of the slayer powers? How did Buffy know that they had those instincts? Also, we saw Willow and Xander get quite proficient at slaying vampires on occasion.

    3. Buffy’s speech in “Bring on the Night” was great, but we definitely reached the point of diminishing returns with the big speeches by this episode. I got nothing out of them. And it doesn’t appear we’ve reached the point where the show’s trying to point out poor leadership.

    4. Locking the four potentials in a room with a vampire? Nothing can go wrong there.

    5. It was a bit hokey that Amanda was waiting outside the door of Buffy’s house right as the magical light was moving to it’s target.

    It’s too bad, because this episode did really good things with Dawn. It seems like the Buffy writers are incapable of building episodes around Dawn as well as giving Dawn stuff to do. This episode was a bit like “All the Way” in that respect.


  47. [Note: Buffster posted this comment on March 24, 2014.]

    Yet another great review, Mike! Although, I must say I do disagree slightly at some points, I don’t know why, but I would’ve given this episode slightly more credit, with a little higher score. Firstly, it’s because this is one episode where I don’t with the Potentials utterly as annoying as I usually do, another reason (maybe it’s just because I’m being a biased, Spuffy fan) but are all the sort of cute-ish Spike-Buffy moments and how we get to understand her feelings towards him and their situation a little better, another reason would be is because I really do love Xander, he used to be my favourite character in BTVS up until Season 3-4 ish, and this episode, in the little speech at the end, reminded me why. Also, this is so very in-character of Dawn, to, you know, feel the way she does. I can really relate to Dawn for a lot of reasons, which is why I’m in the minority of fans who enjoyed her character from the episode she was introduced. I understand why she would want to feel ‘special’ what with her sister being this Kickass, world-saving Slayer: The original Chosen One (to Dawn, anyway), she always felt inferior to Buffy, and now with all these Potentials popping up, it just adds salt to the wound. So

    I feel this was a wonderful, little episode that gave us some insight on Dawn and Xander’s characters as well as Buffy’s feelings towards the whole Spike situation, also, there was well-defined comedy that didn’t bore me, I enjoyed seeing Clem again, he’s hilarious and is it weird that I find him cute in that pet doggie sort of way? Also, Andrew was quite funny, so was Anya, blunt and peppy as usual. I do see why you feel like the silly explanation of The First being off the radar for a little bit seemed like sloppy writing, I actually agree to this. But, even though the writers weren’t at their best this season, i like the fact that we have an episode or two that’s less gloomy-and-doomy compared to the rest, so that we can focus, even momentarily, on something other than The First. So, overall, for me, anyway, I would at least give this episode a B or a B+, even. Solely because it somewhat managed to entertain me, make me laugh at certain points, and mislead me at the same time. isn’t that the whole Buffy package that we so rarely see in season 7? So yeah, I really did like this episode. Especially the ending speech with Xander, although I disagree, that up until Season 7, he wasn’t the most observant of the lot, but now, I can see why he is.

    Other than that, i found it strangely out of character for Buffy to lock the Potentials up in a room with the vampire, alot could’ve gone wrong there!

    Anddd, although I liked her speech, the whole death-thing, i agree she should have taken it in a more casual approach, but at the same time, I get what the show is hinting it, the writers want us to feel that The First is a really huge threat to make the finale more spectacular (although it wasn’t) but to do that, they had to make it look like it really was a big deal. Normally, Buffy probably would have been casual, but she’s done with the sunshine and rainbows, as you said, this is a woman who is well-experienced, she has 7 years of being the Slayer behind her, she is portraying the harsh truth of the gig to these girls: It’s kill or be killed. It’s do or die. If you can’t take on one single, lame-ass, vamp then you sure as hell aren’t fit to be a slayer. Buffy is past the point of spoon-feeding, The First is a huge deal, atleast according to the writers anyway,so it makes sense for her to go all-work, no-play and super commando on them,to end my embarrassingly long rant, I just feel like this episode deserved more praise than criticism, it has it’s bad points, no denying that, but I just feel like it has more good than bad.


  48. [Note: SpuffyRocks posted this comment on March 26, 2014.]

    I actually agree to you, your right about almost everything. I actually happen to like this episode very much too. The only thing I am not agreeing to you with is that you like Dawn, I like Dawn season 7 but I didn’t like her in the earlier seasons for lots of reasons. However, she was good in this ep. I hate the Potentials also.

    (I’m sorry for my english it’s my second language, I’m from France ;))


  49. [Note: JoJer posted this comment on June 16, 2014.]

    As a Spuffy fan my favorite parts of the episode were the Spike/Buffy scenes.
    Her being very concerned for him in the grave yard, Spike patting her hand and saying he’s ok, Buffy saying Spike’s crypt was cozy. It’s nice to see them getting along instead of abusive to each other like in season 6.


  50. [Note: fiona posted this comment on August 8, 2014.]

    Did anyone else notice the hilarious reference to Kennedy’s sexuality when Rona said (while holding a stake) “I just love the feel of wood in my hand” and Kennedy responded with something like “I wouldn’t know that’s like!” Hahah 😉


  51. [Note: FlyingPenguin posted this comment on November 26, 2014.]

    I have to say that I disagree with the criticism that the various aspects of this episode don’t mesh into a coherent whole; on the contrary, I feel like this one works really quite nicely, and is one of the few episodes in which the potentials are actually handled/used well. Buffy’s interactions with the potentials set the stage for Dawn’s feelings about (apparently) being one herself; then there was the brilliant sequence where Dawn and Amanda’s fight with the vampire at the school is intercut with Buffy’s training-fight with the vampire in the crypt; and in the end, Amanda and the other potentials have each had essentially the same experience and are able to bond while processing it. And through it all, Dawn goes through a nifty emotional arc. Seems pretty coherent to me!

    I agree both with the observation that Buffy’s leadership style leaves something to be desired and with the idea that that’s as it should be–that she should struggle with this new role. But I still have a criticism here. What interested me about the scenario of Buffy training a bunch of potential slayers was the role reversal aspect—Buffy suddenly finding herself playing Giles, essentially, to the “next generation” of girls like herself. These days Buffy and Giles understand each other very well, of course, but back in the first couple seasons, they butted heads more—with Giles representing the burden of Buffy’s “calling,” and Buffy sometimes resenting the pressure from him (and seeing him as stuffy, detached, duty-obssessed, etc.). Here, I wanted to see Buffy more explicitly conscious of and wrestling with all of that as she tries to step into his shoes—perhaps trying not to come off to the potentials the way Giles used to come off to her, but catching herself doing it anyway, and thereby gaining insight…or, alternatively, perhaps being so determined not to be overbearing like Giles occasionally was that she errs in the other direction… There are several ways it could have been taken, but the bottom line is that I wanted to see Buffy (and the show) explicitly acknowledge and wrestle with the parallels between Buffy now and Giles then. That didn’t really happen, and it seems like a major missed opportunity to me.

    Apart from that issue, though (which is pertinent to other episodes besides just this one, of course), I like this episode and think it worked nicely. I would definitely score it higher than C+!


  52. [Note: Great Review posted this comment on February 2, 2015.]

    Xander is a character at times I really like and other times I can’t stand. I never saw him as the one that sees or the heart, merely the mouth. He says things that should be obvious but sometimes aren’t to people too embedded in a situation. It’s not like other characters don’t notice a lot of what he sees, they just don’t speak up cause they aren’t as forceful with their opinions.


  53. [Note: Vincent posted this comment on April 26, 2015.]

    The show is kind of tired.
    This episod has cool moments, great lines, and some good ideas, but all this lacks freshness. While I like the idea of Buffy giving advices (both to the Potentielas and the students of Sunnydale high) after 7 years fighting demons and… life, I think the whole thing is too didactical.

    “The slayer is this, the slayer does that, blah bla blah”. It’s like “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” (the show) talking about “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”, so it’s a bit boring.

    Like I already said it a few comments ago, in this season, Joss Whedon and the team seem to take their show too seriously, I mean, more than they used to. I liked when the show mocked itself and was self-aware of its cheesy side.

    I wouldn’t say seventh season has totally lost this touch – in this episod, there is a scene in the demon bar, for example – but most of it is too serious, too heavy.

    And I have this bad feeling ; like if the writers felt forced to make those episodes. Like if they didn’t have actual FUN doing all this.

    Oh, and I won’t mention the stupid characters we’re dealing with – but hey, we don’t give a single f*** about Kennedy, Rona and all the crew. They’re empty shells to me. Gosh.

    Anyway, I’m not as bored as I was at the beginning of the season, because now I understand the main plot and I find it less complicated or confusing. But I think there wasn’t a lot left to say.


  54. [Note: MichaelJB posted this comment on January 2, 2016.]

    Buffy and Spike locking the girls in with the vampire was disturbingly reminiscent of the council’s intended test for Buffy in “Helpless.” It’s really the same thing, except that Buffy was drugged to her “potential” state and these girls come by it naturally. Why is it okay for Buffy and Spike to do this to them, but not for the council?


  55. [Note: LouisLittForEmperor posted this comment on January 2, 2016.]

    I suppose they would have helped them out if things went south, whereas the Council wouldn’t have given a crap.


  56. [Note: Samm posted this comment on January 2, 2016.]

    Well obviously the girls weren’t drugged or anything and that vampire was a strong out of control lunatic.

    Here there was more than one person, they have all been training, a more controlled environment and Buffy was fighting that vamp for 30 seconds so if it was a very strong one she could probably figure it out.

    Plus they were just outside, if things went south she would have intervened.


  57. [Note: LouisLittForEmperor posted this comment on January 5, 2016.]

    I wonder if the writers actually knew that Faith’s death would be the one to produce the new Slayer and not Buffy’s (this was obviously proved by a Slayer not being activated after The Gift). Either that or Buffy was deliberately lying to the Potentials or wasn’t sure herself.


  58. [Note: Samm posted this comment on January 5, 2016.]

    Honestly it seems like a bit of both, they knew another Slayer couldn’t arise as none came after Buffy’s death. But every conversation indicated in season 7 pointed to the contrary.


  59. [Note: Robert posted this comment on January 10, 2016.]

    There was a deleted line in “Chosen” where Buffy was giving the speech to the potentials about how none of them had the power that she and Faith had, and Buffy continued by saying something to the effect of “I think both Faith and I would have to die for a new slayer to be called.” This would indicate that the activation trigger is now split between the two of them, so only if both of them died would a new slayer become activated.

    Of course, the obvious flaw in this logic is that Kendra died in Season 2 and Faith was called without Buffy also having to die, which would indicate as other have speculated that Kendra was the one who held the activation trigger. So why would the activation trigger be suddenly split now between Buffy and Faith? It’s definitely something that the writers could have clarified, and it’s a shame that they didn’t do a better job explaining why a new slayer wasn’t called after The Gift (other than the writers didn’t want a third slayer).


  60. [Note: Samm posted this comment on January 10, 2016.]

    They probably needed to explain it, but i think the fact no slayer was called after Buffy’s second death indicates only Faith’s death will cause a new slayer to be called. And with what happened in season 2 they don’t need to both die for it too happen either.


  61. [Note: LouisLittForEmperor posted this comment on January 10, 2016.]

    I guess it’s possible that Buffy’s second resurrection could have messed the Slayer line even further but it’s not really something that’s hinted at. And frankly it’s not like they didn’t have time to explain it properly since it really would have only needed a line.

    Then again this purports the problem that Mike mentioned of us never seeing Buffy react to the Eye’s news about her resurrection causing everything in Season 7 (didn’t even occur to me it wasn’t mentioned until after i finished the show). It’s like they needed an explanation but then didn’t think they needed to do anything with that knowledge afterwards.


  62. [Note: Samm posted this comment on January 10, 2016.]

    It probably wouldn’t have been good for morale if they mentioned the news why it was possible. It would destroy Buffy and Willow, but something The First could have mentioned if it was as good as a taunter as it thinks it is. That would have been interesting.


  63. [Note: Doyden posted this comment on June 17, 2016.]

    I always thought that when Buffy is talking about vampires being animals and all the same inside it was very insensitive ,spike is stood right there and looks away


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