Thursday, April 5, 2012

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Witch

I might be grasping at straws here, but I think this episode might be about witches.  Possibly.

Buffy's decided that in her question to became a normal high school girl, she's going to try out for the cheerleading squad.  Only problem: there's a witchypoo wandering around who wants to maim and kill all the cheerleaders who are peppier and better at cartwheels than her.  So far she's started a girl on fire, blinded Cordelia, taken away a random cheerleader's mouth, and cursed Buffy to make her tipsy and then kill her.  Ouch.

But why would some random girl want to be a cheerleader so bad that she's willing to turn to the dark arts?  Well, she wouldn't.  But her psychotic witch of a mother with image issues and a desire to relive her glory days probably would.

Yes, Mommy Dearest has used black magic to switch places with her daughter.  It's like an extra creepy version of Freaky Friday.  Luckily, Giles uses his vast manwitch powers to reverse the voodoo.

What I Liked About It:  Elizabeth Anne Allen is pretty strong in the dual roles of Amy Madison and her evil mother.  I would like to see more of her, please.  I like that Buffy, Willow, Xander, and Giles are continuing to develop as a team.  It's exciting to see them take on the witch with magic, axes, and fire extinguishers.  And it's nice for Giles to get a chance to do more than cluck and drink tea...the idea of having him at least mildly versed in magic is an interesting one with a lot of potential.

What I Didn't Like:  Well, the whole concept is a little silly.  After all this time, the mom suddenly decides she just can't take it any more and that her greatest desire is to cheerlead at Sunnydale?  Like, you had a genie and that was your first wish?  You couldn't think of anything better to do with black magic than become a cheerleader?  But then again, this is a show about vampires, so maybe I shouldn't be complaining about believability.

Random Musings:

"I didn't know you wanted to be a cheerleader.  You lost a lot of weight."  Uhh...Willow?  That's kind of a weird thing to say to someone.

"It wouldn't physically kill you to give me a hand."  Look, Joyce, if you can't open it with a crowbar what do you expect your 16-year-old daughter to do?

These people live in Southern California.  So why does their cheerleading uniform involve a thick, long-sleeved sweater?

I like that they acknowledge when Joyce screws up and says something hurtful to Buffy while she's trying to help.  So many shows are just interested in depicting good parents or bad parents.  There's a lot of depth to Joyce, though, as they show her struggling to emotionally support a daughter she doesn't really understand.  The fact that she doesn't always succeed makes her all the more lovable and realistic.

It's kind of ridiculous that this woman is that good at witchcraft, but the only thing she can focus on is reclaiming her lost youth, cheering, and leading others to cheer.

It might seem a little silly, but I'm kind of in love with Peppy!Buffy.

I love Xander and Willow showing up for the fight like decades after everyone else.  "I've got her, cut her head off!!"

Verdict: 6 Stakes Out of 4

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