May 28, 2022

Buffy 3.7, Revelations: Hands Off

Posted in TV tagged , , at 1:14 pm by Jenn

Intervention, Scooby-style

Summary: Dingoes Ate My Baby are playing at the Bronze, so the Scoobies (minus Buffy) are in the crowd. Oz joins them after the set, and Xander and Willow try to keep their distance from each other so Oz and Cordelia don’t get suspicious. It just leads them to act awkward and make Oz and Cordelia more suspicious. Keep up the great work, guys!

Willow asks if anyone thinks Buffy’s been acting weird. She’s been skipping group hangouts and seems distracted. Cordelia guesses that Buffy’s dating someone and didn’t want to say anything because her last two relationships ended so badly. Xander doesn’t think Buffy would hide something like that from them. Buffy arrives and tells the Scoobies that she’s going out with someone that night. But it’s Faith, and they’re going to the cemetery to slay, so it’s not exactly a date.

Giles joins the Slayers, putting his Watcher skills to good use by observing them as they kill a couple of vampires. They think they did a great job, but a woman who has just arrived disagrees. They telegraphed their moves, they were sloppy, and they took too long to finish off the vampires, considering it’s a school night. The woman is Gwendolyn Post, Faith’s new Watcher, and she’s clearly not going to be as friendly as Giles is.

The group heads to the library, where Faith insists that she doesn’t need a new Watcher. Gwendolyn says it’s not up to her. She asks for the rest of Giles’ occult books, unimpressed with what he thought was a good collection. Gwendolyn is very serious about fulfilling her duties to the Watchers’ Council to observe Faith and report back on her performance. Actually, she’s supposed to report back on all Slayer/Watcher-related goings-on there, including Giles’ performance. Buffy teases him about being on “academic probation.”

Gwendolyn continues that the Council thinks Giles has become “too American.” He and Buffy are both surprised to hear that. Gwendolyn says a demon named Lagos is on his way to Sunnydale. He’s looking for the Glove of Myhnegon (which I’m going to call the GOM, because there’s no way I’m typing that all out again). There isn’t a lot of available information on the GOM, but needless to say, they can’t let Lagos get a hold of it. Good thing there are two Slayers here to kill him. The GOM is supposedly buried in a cemetery, but there are 12 in Sunnydale, so that’s going to take some time.

Gwendolyn takes Faith off with her, leaving Buffy and Giles behind to discuss the new Watcher. Buffy asks if they can kill her. Giles thinks the Council might object to that. He suggests a training session for now, but instead, we see Buffy later, doing tai chi with Angel. He puts his arms around her to guide her movements and they come close to kissing, but she pulls back. She’s worried that someone will find out what they’re up to. She doesn’t want them to go back to their old relationship, but she’s having trouble quitting that habit. She mentions Lagos, and though Angel clearly finds the name familiar, he just tells her to be careful.

Giles can’t find any information on Lagos in his books, so he tells Xander to help with the search. “Hey, you’re not the Watcher of me,” Xander protests. Willow also isn’t happy to have to stay so late, but she can’t complain about getting to spend time with Xander. They end up kissing in the stacks, coming very close to getting caught by Giles. He’s found the location of the GOM, which means Xander and Willow can leave.

Buffy and Faith are downtown, debating whether all guys are horrible. Faith wants more details on Buffy’s history, finding it fascinating that she “boinked the undead.” Buffy says it was complicated and she’s still sorting through her issues, so she doesn’t want to talk about it. Faith tells her she can head home, since they’ve had no luck in six cemeteries and nothing else is going on.

Faith goes to another cemetery alone and catches Lagos raiding a tomb. They fight, but he leaves when he realizes what he’s looking for isn’t there. Xander goes to the correct cemetery, wanting to help since he feels guilty about kissing Willow. He spots someone taking the GOM, but he doesn’t need to worry that Lagos has gotten his hands on it. It’s Angel. Xander follows him to the mansion, ready to stake the guy who was evil the last time he was around, and catches him making out with Buffy.

They kiss for a really long time, to the point where I’m not sure how Buffy’s able to keep breathing. Maybe Angel doesn’t think about that stuff since he doesn’t have to worry about it himself. Finally Buffy realizes that they’re doing the exact thing she didn’t want them to do. He shows her the GOM, which is less a glove and more a giant metal arm. He warns her not to touch it, since it can’t be removed once it’s put on. “So…no touching. Kind of like us,” she says. She asks him to hold on to it for now.

Giles and Gwendolyn are at his place, doing research. He finds information on the GOM in a book, but only as it’s been mentioned in legends. She chastises him for not being more diligent in his work, both in research and in keeping an eye on Buffy. Giles assures her that he has complete control of his Slayer. Cue Xander bursting in to announce that they have a big problem involving Buffy. Giles pulls him aside for a conversation, during which he pretends everything’s okay so Gwendolyn doesn’t catch on that it’s not.

The next day, Buffy goes to the library with the news that she has the GOM. Giles and the Scoobies are there, looking like they’re about to hold an intervention for her. Giles announces that they know Angel is back and that Buffy’s been hiding him. Buffy says it’s not what everyone thinks. Xander replies that what they think is that she’s harboring a killer.

Willow reminds everyone to use “I” statements and talk about their feelings. Cordelia says she feels worried – about herself. The last time Angel was around, he mostly left Buffy alone while he went after her friends. Buffy insists that he’s better now. She objects to this meeting of “Demons Anonymous” and starts to leave. Giles says that she must have known what she was doing was wrong, or she wouldn’t have hidden from everyone. Buffy says she didn’t know what was going on, and she wanted to wait.

Xander points out that Angel could have gone evil again after…well, as Faith would say, boinking her. Buffy says they’re not together anymore, but Oz notes that they were kissing. She accuses Xander of spying on her. Cordelia doesn’t think that’s worse than Buffy getting back together with her demon ex. Buffy acknowledges that she messed up and it can’t happen again, but she wouldn’t have done all this if she thought Angel would hurt anyone. If she did… “You would stop him, like you did last time with Ms. Calendar,” Xander finishes for her.

Willow tries to bring things back around to “I” statements, saying that she feels that where Angel’s concerned, Buffy doesn’t see things clearly. That’s why the Scoobies are going to help her. Buffy says again that Angel’s okay now. He’s the one who found the GOM and is keeping an eye on it. Xander thinks that’s a horrible idea; people will get killed and the Scoobies will have to deal with the aftermath.

Buffy accuses Xander of wanting a reason to hurt Angel. Xander replies that he already has a reason – Angel has killed people. Buffy thinks Xander’s trying to seem noble when he’s just jealous. Cordelia tells Buffy to get over herself, but Buffy warns that this isn’t a good time to start in on her. Willow complains to Giles that no one’s using “I” statements.

Giles finally calls an end to the discussion. Buffy has heard their concerns and they’ve heard her explanation. They need to focus on destroying the GOM. Well, after school. As everyone splits up, Buffy thanks Giles for rescuing her from the interrogation. He hushes her and tells her that she must know how dangerous her actions were. Angel tortured Giles, and he deserved to know that Angel was alive. It’s disrespectful to Giles and his job that Buffy kept such a big secret.

Gwendolyn goes to Faith’s motel room, which she calls Spartan. (Not that Faith knows what that means.) The Spartans were fierce warriors who didn’t have much in the way of possessions because they felt they didn’t need them. That’s Faith. Gwendolyn is going to be hard on her, but only because it’s to Faith’s benefit. She worries that Giles has been a bad influence on Faith. She’s also annoyed that the Scoobies had some secret meeting and didn’t tell her about it. Faith is a little hurt to be excluded, too. She welcomes a training session with her new Watcher.

Buffy cautiously approaches Willow, who says she’s okay with Buffy keeping secrets because everyone has them and they’re not necessarily bad and people keep them for a reason. Buffy tells her she’s going to try to kill Lagos tonight to make things up to Giles. She plans to ambush Lagos when he goes looking for the GOM in another cemetery, since he doesn’t know that Angel has it.

Faith goes to the Bronze, where Xander’s playing pool by himself and trying to work through his anger. She tells him she knows the Scoobies had a secret meeting, but she thinks it was about the GOM. He lets her know that Angel’s alive and has the GOM. Faith is upset to learn that Buffy knew Angel was back and didn’t say anything. She, like Xander, doesn’t want Angel to use the GOM on any innocent people. She’s up for some slaying, and Xander wants to tag along.

Giles asks Gwendolyn to the library and tells her he knows where the GOM is. He says a friend of Buffy’s has it. He’s figured out how to destroy it with some kind of ritual fire, and he has all the necessary ingredients. But what he doesn’t have is consciousness, because Gwendolyn knocks him out.

Buffy couldn’t get a hold of Faith to go on a Lagos stakeout, so she’s brought Willow along. She wonders how long Giles will be angry at her. Willow thinks it’ll last a while, since Giles is “the emotional Marathon Man.” Buffy’s at least relieved to have her big secret exposed. Willow can understand – not that she’s keeping any big secrets herself! She can just hypothetically imagine how it would feel to let go of a burden like that.

She asks if it felt sexier to keep the reunion with Angel quiet. Buffy says no, it was actually more pressure. She guesses that something’s going on with Willow, and Willow decides to unburden herself. But before she can admit to her secret with Xander, Lagos arrives. After a brief fight, Buffy uses Lagos’ own axe to cut off his head. Then she goes right back to her conversation with Willow. Willow chickens out and says she opened her SAT test booklet five minutes early.

As they go off to give Giles the good news about Lagos, Xander and Faith raid the library for weapons. They hear Giles coming around in his office, and Faith assumes that Angel attacked him. Xander disagrees, since this isn’t Angel’s style and there are no bite marks. While he calls an ambulance, Faith decides to go find Angel on her own. Xander can’t stop her and make sure Giles is okay, so he lets her go while he stays with Giles.

Angel also has all ingredients to destroy the GOM, and he’s started the ritual in the mansion. Buffy and Willow arrive at the library as paramedics are taking Giles away. He’s conscious enough to tell Buffy to destroy the GOM. Xander tells Buffy that Angel attacked Giles, and Faith is on her way to kill him. Xander clearly has no regrets about the situation. Buffy tells Willow to figure out how to destroy the glove, then takes off to save Angel. Willow’s angry with Xander and orders him to help her.

Gwendolyn goes to the mansion and tells Angel that Giles sent her to help destroy the GOM. She lies that Lagos is on his way, so they need to hurry. When Angel goes to get the GOM, Gwendolyn knocks him out. But she thinks he’s human, so she doesn’t expect him to jump right back up in vamp face. She tries to stake him but he has great reflexes and is a lot stronger than she is. Faith arrives just in time to see Angel trying to take out her new Watcher. She tosses him around and is about to stake him when Buffy arrives.

Xander and Willow gather all of Giles’ ingredients to see if they have what they need to destroy the glove. Xander finds a picture of what the glove does, and they decide they need to get going without a test run. Meanwhile, Buffy and Faith face off. Gwendolyn tells Faith that Buffy is blinded by love, so Faith needs to take out Angel. The Slayers fight each other, and since they’re evenly matched, it goes on for a while.

Xander and Willow arrive and Gwendolyn tells them to get the GOM out of the trunk where Angel’s stashed it. Xander tries to stop the Slayer fight but he just gets himself tossed aside. Gwendolyn grabs the GOM and uses it to knock out Willow. She slips it on her hand and chants something. A thunderstorm starts up overhead and Buffy and Faith stop fighting. Gwendolyn offers Faith what she calls “a word of advice: You’re an idiot.”

The glove apparently draws lightning to it to power it up, and the wearer can then shoot that lightning at people. Gwendolyn tries to zap the Slayers, who are able to jump away. When she turns on Willow, Angel tackles her out of the way. Buffy sends Faith to draw Gwendolyn’s (literal) fire, then grabs a piece of broken glass. She whips it at Gwendolyn and cuts off her arm. Lightning rains down on Gwendolyn and zaps her into dust.

At school the next day, Xander and Willow wrap up the storyline by telling Oz and Cordelia that they destroyed the GOM. Willow wonders what Buffy and Angel will do now. She’s pretty okay with Angel now, since he saved her life. Xander’s sort of okay with him, as long as he and Buffy keep things PG.

Buffy joins the Scoobies and tries to convince them (and herself) that she and Angel aren’t back together. Xander tells her they’re okay – it was hard for him to see Buffy and Angel kissing after his killing spree, but Xander trusts her. “I don’t, just for the record,” Cordelia speaks up. Giles arrives and reveals that Gwendolyn was kicked out of the Council years ago for misusing dark power. “They swear there was a memo,” he says. Buffy leaves, and the Scoobies wonder again how things will turn out for her and Angel.

Buffy goes to Faith’s to see how she’s doing after learning her Watcher was a liar and almost killing Buffy’s crush. She’s five by five, as usual. Buffy thinks Faith is ashamed of herself for believing that Gwendolyn was a good person. Faith just says she should have learned by now that she can’t trust people. Buffy promises that Faith can trust her. Yes, she kept secrets, but she didn’t have a choice. She and Faith are on the same side. “I’m on my side, and that’s enough,” Faith says. “Not always,” Buffy replies. Faith tells her to leave, and though she starts to say something else to Buffy, she changes her mind. Whatever it is, she’ll keep it to herself.

Thoughts: Bite me, show, for making me type “Myhnegon” even one time.

I know I’m not alone in never being able to hear the words “no touching” without thinking of Arrested Development.

I guess the Council didn’t care enough about Faith to arrange housing for her in Sunnydale. Or maybe she used that money on clothes or weapons or something.

I was curious about how many times Giles gets knocked out over the course of the series, so I looked it up. Surprisingly, it’s only ten.

1 Comment »

  1. Deja said,

    When the pandemic first started, my coworkers and I would shout “No Touching!” to one another from across the room. It was even funnier when someone asked for a tampon.

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