Mark Watches ‘Buffy The Vampire Slayer’: S02E15 – Phases

In the fifteenth episode of the second season of Buffy The Vampire Slayer, a werewolf terrorizes Sunnydale, and then WHAT THE HELL. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Buffy.

In 1998, this aired. There was an entire episode of a show devoted to the sexualization of women, the violence they experience on a daily basis, the microaggressions that build up against them, and how misogyny even affects (and is perpetrated by) gay men. That’s not to say this is the Most Important Episode On Sexism Ever, as there’s a lot of sloppy metaphors made here, but HOLY SHIT THIS WAS ON TELEVISION. I’m just not used to it! I’m used to having to read really hard into the text or script to even find this stuff, and then this episode is all about it.

Oh, right, and Oz is a werewolf. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHAT IS THIS SHOW DOING TO ME!

There’s a lot of really obvious talk of sexism and misogyny in “Phases,” but I think the one thing I picked up on the most was the gender reversal of Willow, Buffy, and Cordelia. I’m become accustomed to watching men discuss how flippant, confusing, and fickle women are over the years, but this episode specifically inverts that. Instead, there’s a whole lot of time spent discussing how much Xander and Oz make no sense at all. Now, I don’t think women discussing men is the most progressive thing I’ve ever seen, but all throughout “Phases,” the focus is shifted from the male perspective of these issues to show us how women are affected by them. And of course, the characters of Larry and Cain represent two distinct types of sexism women face.

I’m still not sure what sort of metaphor the werewolf stands for, though. Is the show trying to say that sexism is a “phase” in teenage boys? That it’s in their nature to act the way they do towards women? Or is it just a fringe plot that really doesn’t have much to do with this? Or is it just one of the worst creature costumes I’ve ever seen? Okay, sorry, but it truly is awful. There’s nothing frightening about it at all. I SWEAR I TRIED. But it looks like a school mascot, not some frightening were-beast.

Anyway, it’s a small thing out of a lot of good things in “Phases.” The episode never really focuses entirely on one person, starting off with Willow, then moving to Cordelia, and then finally to Oz when he discovers who he really is. It’s interesting to see Cordelia complain about Xander’s inappropriate behavior, not just because SERIOUSLY DUDE PLEASE GET OVER IT, but because it’s one of the first times we see how much she actually does like him. Gosh, I am so glad that their relationship is out in the open, whatever sort of relationship that is. I don’t know how much more I could have tolerated sneaking around. But it also gives us perhaps the best scene in the whole episode: Willow and Cordelia sitting on a couch in The Bronze, comfortably discussing their problems. They aren’t being witty, they aren’t being mean, and they’ve found a way to bond with one another. Could more of this happen? thank you THANK YOU.

I wasn’t super into this episode, though, until the big reveal of Oz’s. I swear to you, my first thought was, “COULD SOMEONE ON THIS SHOW DATE AN ACTUAL HUMAN FOR ONCE?” Then my next thought was, “COULD YOU PLEASE NOT KILL HIM OFF, JOSS WHEDON?” Then the thought after that was, “Oh, I shouldn’t have thought that. Damn it.” Then it was, “Wait a second, did he just ask his aunt if her son is a werewolf and she confirmed it? That seems…bizarre.” Then I thought, “Well, wait, no one seemed to “notice” or remember the werewolf breaking into The Bronze earlier. The residents of Sunnydale sure aren’t very observant.” Then, “Did Oz as a werewolf actually plunge from the ceiling in that scene? Where did he come from?” Then: “Hold the front door, Oz woke up from his transformation totally naked, so how did he get home? Where exactly did he find an oversized button down shirt?” Then: “Wow, hold old is Oz’s cousin? Could you imagine having a nine-year-old werewolf sun? I would rather have an adult werewolf than a child.” Then: “I just had too many thoughts at once.”

It became my chief worry of the episode to see if the show would now dispose of Oz after the big reveal. That made Willow’s big confrontation scene so much more worse to me. Was she finally getting the courage to tell Oz what she wants, only to have her heart broken just moments later when Cain kills him? Seriously, there is already so much heartbreak on the show as it is, and now we’re going to add Willow’s to that? UGH LOOK, JUST GIVE ME ONE THING AT A TIME, BUFFY. Seriously!

I suppose that it really did surprise me that Oz was a werewolf because there were no hints of this development before. I mean, yes, he was bit recently by his cousin, but I can’t even think of a single detail that might have tipped me off. On top of that, there was a very clear misdirect on the part of the writing that purposely was meant to distract the audience to believe that Larry was the werewolf. I think there’s something to be said about how well Larry’s story fits in the episode, even if I also think it’s not done as well as it could be. You can parallel his experience with what Oz later feels. Both fear rejection once their identity is known, and both are reasonably calmed down once they are not rejected by people they trust or respect.

If it seems at all unbelievable that someone like Larry could be both gay and viciously misogynistic, allow me to confirm that people like Larry are very much real. I’ve known them! In fact, it’s one of the things that’s rather disheartening about the mainstream gay community: a lot of men think because they’re gay, it’s totally cool to be raging sexist douches. Whether it ranges from thinking it’s acceptable to mock or hate women because they’re not attracted to them, or, on the opposite end of the spectrum, to hate women to “prove” their masculinity to others, this is very much a thing that happens all the time. While I think Larry’s transformation is disingenuous (people don’t engage and criticize their own misogyny over the course of a day), I actually didn’t find Larry’s character to be an offensive thing as a gay man. I was a little weirded out by Xander’s reaction to the whole thing. Hey straight guys, you know that we’re not all automatically attracted to you, right? In context, I do get that Xander just accidentally outed himself to Larry, so it’s not like he didn’t have something to freak out about. But just communicate that you were discussing something else and brush it off. The whole gay panic face isn’t a fun thing to see. (I’m directing that at the writers, for what it’s worth. I am actually starting to like Xander a lot more.)

Ultimately, I am ecstatic that Oz survived this episode; once Cain started pursuing him, I thought that this story would end with Willow seeing the guy she liked shot down in front of her. I sort of wish that Cain’s characterization was a bit more layered; all he really serves in the story is to be super sexist and gross, and then he just sort of goes away? Well, Buffy does bend his shotgun, which is pretty cool, but there’s no way he’s going to learn not to be a misogynistic asshole. He just won’t ever come back to Sunnydale.

Still, the important thing here is that Oz is alive, and Willow is still willing to give him a chance. I’m hesitant to throw any real emotional weight behind this ship, because now there’s a thing that can tear them apart. I certainly want more of Oz in the rest of the season, and I’m definitely interested to see how the show deals with his werewolf side again. WOULDN’T IT BE COOL IF HE WAS SOME SORT OF WEAPON FOR THE SCOOBIES??? oh my god WAIT CAN THIS HAPPEN? Someone stick me in a time machine so I can go suggest this idea to the writers. Wait, if I have a time machine, I really hope that I use it for anything but suggesting a slightly mediocre idea to a staff of writers on Buffy.

That’s another point for another day, though. I’ve gone on enough tangents in one post to last a lifetime.

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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366 Responses to Mark Watches ‘Buffy The Vampire Slayer’: S02E15 – Phases

  1. echinodermata says:

    Hey Mark, remember when you didn’t know Angel was a vampire?

    Hey Mark, remember when you didn’t know Giles had a dark past?

    Hey Mark, remember when you knew Buffy was the one slayer in all the world, except then she wasn’t?

    Hey Mark, remember when you didn’t know Jenny was from the Romani tribe that cursed Angel?

    Hey Mark, remember when you didn’t know Oz was a werewolf?

    Hey Mark, you realize there’s over 10 seasons of Buffy and Angel you haven’t seen still? (Erzrzore jura lbh qvqa’g erzrzore Qnja? – edit: so this was rot13d in my prewritten comment. Wow something went wrong when I edited it; sorry y’all. )

    So, jumble of episode thoughts.
    Oh, Buffy and Willow, it hurts me a lot when you slut-shame. I love you two, so please don’t do that! And Cordelia, please don’t slut-shame yourself! I love you too, so please don’t do that!

    Plus, oh great, now Xander’s acting proprietary over Willow’s love life now too.

    And just generally, too much gender-essentialist bullshit going on in this episode from various characters. It’s just an overwhelming amount to me in this episode. But even while I’m not particularly fond of Cordelia’s and Willow’s talk at the Bronze, I do love them commiserating together – I want them to be friends, please! Perhaps especially when they’re meant to be hating each other.

    The werewolf costume is not at all impressive. But the werewolf/Oz morph was pretty decent, considering the production values.

    Oh look, Willow and Buffy pretty well learn Xander was lying about not remembering the events of “The Pack” and…that’s it. Just a mention and no further discussion of it from anyone. Great.

    I…have conflicting thoughts about the Larry story. Don’t entirely know how I feel about it, but discomfort and disappointment are chief feelings in that mix of thoughts. I know it was generally progressive to even have gay characters on a show in the 90s, but still, I dislike that it’s just used as a joke and Xander is all freaked out and ugh, hate that ‘no homo’ bullshit with all my being.

    And Mark, from the beginning of the episode: “My cousin Jordy just got his grownup teeth in. Does not like to be tickled.”

  2. arctic_hare says:

    Yay, Oz episode! πŸ˜€

    Witch callback! Nice!

    Ew, Larry, you are being so skeevy (and overcompensating) here. I continue to adore Oz, though.

    UUUUUUUGH WILLOW NO DON'T DO THAT. AND BUFFY, DON'T ENCOURAGE HER WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU TWO?! AAAAAAAAAAARGH! It's upsetting enough when men slut-shame women, but for me it's somehow even more infuriating when women do it to each other, perhaps because WE SHOULD NOT BE PERPETUATING THAT PATRIARCHAL BULLSHIT ON EACH OTHER, WE SHOULD KNOW BETTER, DAMMIT. I hate hate hate this scene because of this shit. Just stop. Look, Willow, you have legitimate reasons to not like Cordelia, like the fact that she's bullied you for years. Criticize her based on that! But her love life is NOT and NEVER WILL BE a legit target for your distaste, because it's none of your business and there's nothing wrong with her dating around. At all. If she'd slammed her for some other reason, fine, I'd have no problem with this scene. But as it is, with her lashing out at Cordelia's sexuality, it inspires rage in me. No, Buffy, it is not "well-deserved". Not in the slightest. Willow's comment was gross and so is your approval of it.

    Also gross and weird is Xander yammering on about Willow when he's supposed to be on a date with Cordelia here. And then insulting her with his comments about what kind of people bands attract. WTF. More shaming of her for her past dating choices, AND a creepy fixation on his friend and her new boyfriend. It is not your business, Xander. Why so focused on this? I think maybe I was onto something in Surprise when I asked if he was threatened because Willow was now into a guy that wasn't him. Like I said, it's weird and gross and I don't like it. Then Cordelia drops that he's constantly talking about Buffy too, to her. Just… stop, Xander.

    Giles' enthusiasm is so endearing and hilarious. <3

    Oh ffs, Xander, shut up. This is so irritating to watch. I thought he didn't think about Willow in that way, why is he suddenly so creepily fixated on her relationship with Oz? Is his ego really just not able to handle the fact that her affections are no longer focused on him? This is seriously disturbing.

    It doesn't sit well with me to see Buffy pretending to be weak and Willow cheering her on. She's got a reputation already for getting in fights and has already bested Larry physically once, it doesn't make sense to fake weakness now. Plus it just puts me in mind of the societal pressure for girls and women to feign being weaker than men, or worse at something, to preserve their fragile male egos and thus I get irritated just watching this nonsense. It doesn't help that Willow says to Buffy that she's supposed to be a "meek little girly-girl like the rest of us." That line is so horrible in so many ways: it erases strong, sports-playing girls, and connects meekness and physical weakness with being "girly", implying that girls who are neither aren't really girls, or that one can't be physically strong AND be a girly-girl without being the Slayer like Buffy is.

    All right, I already don't like this guy.

    AW SHIT IT'S ANGEL RUN AWAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY this is not going to end well for this poor girl. πŸ™ πŸ™ πŸ™

    Hee, Cordy and Willow are bonding. Though, I've been wondering this since the beginning of the episode: why the hell doesn't Willow say something, or initiate the first kiss herself? There's no law that says the guy has to do it! Bleeeeeeeeh.

    Oh god, will this guy just shut the fuck up?

    ILU Oz and your perfect reactions to weirdness. "Huh."

    Oh, so, we're going to maintain the lie that you don't remember anything about the hyena possession, Xander? Wow, you are really on a roll this episode, continuing to not win points with me. Seriously, not cool of him at all.

    Yes, Xander's gay panic here is so hilarious I forgot to laugh.

    • arctic_hare says:

      And then I just hang my head in utter despair when Buffy suggests Willow make the first move with Oz and Willow asks if that'll make her a "slut". Nooooooooooooo. Stoooooooooooooooooooop.

      <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

      Yeah. I remember liking this episode a lot back in the day, and now I'm getting so annoyed at it. πŸ™ I still like all the stuff with Oz, granted, but… geez.


      "Angel sends his love." Oh man. πŸ™ πŸ™ πŸ™

      I'm so sure he could touch it right away without pain. Right. Sure.

      OH SHIT.

      For shame, doc. Shooting werewolves with an elephant gun.

      UGH EXACTLY, BUFFY. IT IS NOT UP TO YOU, XANDER. JFC. And don't give me any of that "he's only worried because Oz is a werewolf" bs, Xander was acting this way before they knew that. And even so, it is STILL not up to him or any of his business. Willow is fully capable of making her own choices. Deal with it, Xander. The fact that he would make her romantic choices for her if he could is extremely repellent, plus in my experience, when people say "If it were up to me…" it implies that they wish it was up to them. Ick. His behavior is just not justified at all.

      Awww, they are so cute. <3 Though I could do without the PMS joke.

      • misterbernie says:

        Yeah. I remember liking this episode a lot back in the day, and now I'm getting so annoyed at it. πŸ™ I still like all the stuff with Oz, granted, but… geez.
        I'm not sure whether it's scary or delightful how much we're brain twinning about this episode.

        Basically I want to upvote all the paragraphs.

      • Jenny_M says:

        You know, I go back and forth on PMS jokes in the public sphere, and I tend not to mind them so much when they're delivered by women (though I don't love this one from Willow). I guess it's because my own personal activism tends to be in ah…shall we say…not being ashamed of the fact that I have a period and it gives me awful, soul-crushing cramps and sometimes I have to take a day off from work for them. So part of me wants period jokes to be just as common as fart and poop jokes because…it happens to nearly half the population of the planet once a freakin' month and we're expected to act like it doesn't lest we offend someone's delicate sensibilities or someone sees a tampon box in a drawer (still bitter over that one).

        HOWEVER, I don't really think that this particular joke was the best because it was playing on the period/hormone/emotion trope that pisses me off. Like, yes, I know that on the days I have horrid cramps I tend to be a raging asshole to anyone in my radius. It's not because I'm emotional, it's because I'm in such physical pain that I want to punch you.

        I am really rambling, I'm sorry! Basically: periods being reference in public = good. Periods being tied to hormones and "hysterical" women = bad.

        Once again, I have a lot of feelings, and I have somehow made no sense of them.

        • arctic_hare says:

          No, I completely get what you're saying and feel the same way! Willow's comment came off to me as being that trope and that's why it irritated me. Also I totally sympathize on the cramps, mine are horrific too, just like that. ;_;

          • Jenny_M says:

            Writing this made me try to think of good examples of period humor, and I realized that I honest to God couldn't think of anything that wasn't tied to horrid stereotypes. That is super sad, because when you think about it, the whole process is hilarious and ripe for jokes. I demand a sitcom!

        • Seventh_Star says:

          hear! hear!

        • notemily says:

          I wish they would talk about periods EVER on Buffy, especially since their main type of villain is one that craves BLOOD. But besides a couple of throwaway references, you wouldn't even know periods exist in the Buffyverse.

          So, yeah. I share your frustration with media always trying to tiptoe around the issue so as not to accidentally remind people that this is a thing that half of the reproductive-age population has to deal with. I wish it wasn't such a taboo. And I also hate that the only acceptable jokes about periods are (usually misogynistic) PMS jokes.

          • Jenny_M says:

            That is a concept I really, seriously want to see addressed on a vampire show sometime. On True Blood the vampires heal themselves after they've been injured, and there's one character who was turned while she was a virgin, so every time her hymen breaks it heals itself, so every time she has sex it's as painful as the first time. But that's as close as I've ever come to seeing like…a frank discussion of female reproductive issues on a show about vampires, and it doesn't really address the whole period blood situation.

            I'm sure there's vampire fiction out there that addresses it, but in my years of Vampire TV viewing (which basically is Buffy/Angel, The Vampire Diaries, and True Blood), I can't recall ever seeing it.

            Wow, Willow's one liner took this conversation to a whoooooooole different place!

            • notemily says:

              My favorite Buffy fic writer (jryy, zl snibevgr Fchssl svp jevgre) has a fanfic that addresses it, but yeah, I haven't seen anything else do it. Also, that "permanent virgin" thing sounds like some straight dude's really horrible fantasy. o_O

              • Jenny_M says:

                It was handled very oddly. The character in question is actually my favorite character on the show, but when it originally happened she had some great moments of declaring how sucky that was, and how she was stuck with that suckiness for all eternity. Then like…she's had a boyfriend with a (presumably) regular sex life for two seasons and it hasn't been brought up again. I mean, continuity is not True Blood's greatest strength, but Jessica's always had fairly strong characterization and it just bugged me.

                She really is my favorite baby!vamp, though…how could you not love this face?

                <img src=""&gt;

              • Dru says:

                "permanent virgin" is not NEARLY as bad as "permanently pregnant", which is what Straight Woman Stephenie Meyer said would happen to a pregnant woman if she got bitten and became a vampire (because OH MY GOD TERRIFYING).

                • notemily says:

                  ….lol wut

                  Meyer has already proven that she has only a rudimentary understanding of the male and female reproductive cycles, so I suppose I shouldn't be surprised.

            • threerings13 says:

              In "Memnoch the Devil" by Anne Rice (the last book of hers I read, also) there is discussion of a woman being on her period and Lestat being able to smell it. Later, he tears off her panties and drains the blood out of her and that satisfies his blood-lust without killing her. On the one hand, at least some vampire fiction finally dealt with it, but on the other hand, Anne Rice was already deep in the crack at that point.

          • Dru says:

            But what we lose when we're on the rag isn't quite the same as the blood flowing through our veins and keeping our brains etc supplied with oxygen – the blood I lost when I had a massive gash across my leg did not smell at all like what emerges from my uterus during a period.

            Period blood is mainly unwanted uterine lining that my body decides it's done with – effectively, a waste product. Not the same as what a vampire wants when he latches on to someone's throat.

            • notemily says:

              The uterine lining does have actual blood IN it, though, and I can imagine a vamp would at least be able to smell it, even if they didn't crave it. (Also, do vampires have periods? Probably not in the Buffyverse, since vamps can't have kids.)

              • cait0716 says:

                I would say no, especially since vampires are technically dead and unchanging. Their bodies are stuck at the moment of death, so it wouldn't make sense for any sort of cycle to continue.

        • hamnoo says:

          To this I have to say that I do get another type of PMS which I think is the official medical description, but don't hold me to that please:
          I am extremely emotional the day(s) before I get my period, which can go various ways. I notice it earliest when I am sad because combined with PMS that makes me world-apocalypsian-depressed. But when I'm happy, PMS makes me super-duper-elated at the idea that I can walk and talk and breathe oxygen.

          It has nothing to do with the pain that I feel when my actual period comes. And while it can be annoying, I also think that one can regard PMS with humor. I make jokes about it too.

          I agree on the actual period though – I cheer whenever it's brought up in the right way.

          • Jenny_M says:

            I totally, totally understand this, and I hope it didn't come across like I was dismissing people who have hormonal and emotional issues with their cycle. I have PCOS and my hormone fluctuations are all over the place. As a result, sometimes my PMS definitely is emotionally correlated – IE I'm crying and I don't understand why. I do think there's definitely humor there as well! It's just the way that it's too often done mixes it up with all those horrid old stereotypes of the hysterical woman who can't be rational one week out of the month.

          • notemily says:

            I have read theories that say that PMS doesn't make people MORE upset about stuff, it just makes us less willing to put up with the bullshit we usually put up with, which I sometimes identify with. Interestingly, my PMS-emotions have changed since I've gone on antidepressants. Hormones are weird shit, yo.

            • hamnoo says:

              I believe that too, but sadly again, because the world knows so little about female "conditions", and many people, even women, know nothing about PMS, some people think I'm just super mean or what else, but really, my bullshit metre is simply in a different place.

              On the other hand, I really do have the best time when people are nice to me or when a small lucky incident occurs.

      • beckaboomer says:

        It doesn't help that Willow says to Buffy that she's supposed to be a "meek little girly-girl like the rest of us." That line is so horrible in so many ways: it erases strong, sports-playing girls, and connects meekness and physical weakness with being "girly", implying that girls who are neither aren't really girls, or that one can't be physically strong AND be a girly-girl without being the Slayer like Buffy is.

        Yeah, that annoyed me too. Willow! "The rest of us" are not all meek! Or girly! (Whatever the hell that means anyway, because does anyone have a clear definition of what it means to be a girl? I didn't think so. Because not all girls are the same, and gender is not necessarily fixed.) You, yourself don't really fit into the "meek little girly-girl" stereotype most of the time. So stop implying that Buffy has to act that way! I guess Willow means well here (PROTECT THE SECRET IDENTITY), but you know that thing about intent… yeah, sing it with me.

        • arctic_hare says:


        • Jenny_M says:

          The line seemed really out of character for Willow – it was definitely some bad writing. When I was rewatching it last night, I was like…when has Willow EVER told Buffy to act more girly in order to appear less conspicuous? It smacked of a writer knowing they had to get Buffy to flip Larry at some point, and that total clunker of a Willow line seemed to be the only way to accomplish it.

        • Tina says:

          What about "irony" ? Is that a concept that fly so over your heads ? XD

          • arctic_hare says:

            How about not insulting people's intelligence? Watch it with these sorts of comments, not just this one, but the one below. It is not appreciated.

            • Tina says:

              Ok so being more precise: "why don't you think this line was half "hey Buffy, remember the secret identity ?" and half irony from Willow ?"

              • arctic_hare says:

                Because it's still a really problematic line and way of expressing the need to keep her identity a secret?

                • Tina says:

                  So you don't include the tone in the line ? I mean, that's pretty much the problem with internet, the lack of tone (and apparently I forgot that we were free to rant in Markwatches, I'm sorry my bad) so if it was a written line I could understand. Here, Willow is basically telling Buffy "hey, remember that you have to keep the slayer stuff under the radar ? And then, except if you had officially a karate black belt it wouldn't look suspicious but you're not and the best thing to not blew up (again) your cover is to acting like the opposite of what you are." And what is the representation of the Slayer ? the "meeky weaky girly-girl" because yes that's what society thinks. Not Willow. Cue the irony.
                  So, I don't really get how lashing out on Willow is constructive.

      • Tina says:

        Why are you watching this show if it infuriates you so much ? :/

          • hpfish13 says:

            This is great, and it spells out exactly why I tend to critique something like Glee, which I liked when it started and want so badly to be good, much more intensely than something like Twilight, which I have no hope for it being good. (Also, sometimes I hope that if I ignore it, maybe it will fade into pop culture obscurity……please!)

            • ladililn says:

              Also, sometimes I hope that if I ignore it, maybe it will fade into pop culture obscurity……please!

              SIGH. I, too, have been attempting this for years. No luck so far. :/

          • notemily says:

            Flawless link choice.

          • arctic_hare says:

            Perfect link.

        • echinodermata says:

          I say this as a mod: these sorts of comments really aren't appreciated.

          Mark read all of Twilight and you can bet he got hatemail saying this exact sentiment. A big part of these sites are for critique and not just squee.

          • Tina says:

            Ok, I'm sorry, I totally understand the "I critic cause I care" but some of those comments are more like "line 1: it's WRONG. Line2: it's WRONG. line 3: it's WRONG why are those characters even talking because everytime they open their mouth they say something WRONG" and there is so much rant that it looks more "rant for rant" and not just constructive critics it makes me want to say "close your computer, read a book, go run in the park and breathe fresh air".

            • echinodermata says:

              Again, not appreciating this comment.

              People are allowed to rant about things that bug them, especially if what's bugging them are things that are a product of and reinforce mainstream society's marginalization of them. And again, that's pretty much what Mark did with Twilight. If that bugs you, close your computer, read a book, go run in the park and breathe fresh air. And don't post patronizing comments.

              • Tina says:

                Well with Twilight, it's not very "problematic" if I can use this term if you hate the books. I mean I can understand it very well. But saying one is a total fan and then most of their comments are about how much the show sucks (so intrinsacally, is bad), I'm sorry but I don't really get it. Especially if it's 90% of rant and 10% of lukewarm appreciation.
                I'm not trying to be patronizing, I'm trying to understand.

                • echinodermata says:

                  Uh, I don't actually think arctic_hare considers herself to be a total fan. I don't consider myself to be one, for example, but I believe I'm a bigger fan of this show than she is. Also, I believe I have not once seen anyone say on this site that BtVS sucks; some people will criticize it and do more criticizing than 'this is what I liked' comments, but that means 'I don't like these parts I'm criticizing.' When I criticize the show, I'm criticizing certain elements of it. So while I'm not speaking for arctic_hare, I do believe she would agree with me that my and her criticisms are simply how we approach talking about this show and particular moments and that those criticisms are not meant to be a reflection of our opinion of the show as a whole unless we specifically say 'this is an opinion of the show as a whole.' Also, I disagree with the idea that having flaws makes the show suck and makes it intrinsically bad. Or that my pointing out what I see as flaws means I don't like the show.

                  I love this show. I just also hate it sometimes. And that's why I'm not a total fan. I love certain parts of it passionately, but hate certain parts of it equally or more passionately. Also, we're viewing single episodes at a time – this particular episode I happen to only have some lukewarm appreciation for, but that doesn't mean I only have lukewarm appreciation for the show as a whole. And anyway, sometimes I don't want to write about why I like something because I don't think it's interesting to write about – for instance, I think there's often a lot of funny dialogue on this show but I don't have much to say about it other than "hah, funny" so I don't mention it.

                  • arctic_hare says:

                    This sums it up perfectly, thank you. How you feel about the show is how I feel about it: I love it, but also hate it sometimes, I like some episodes more than others, etc. Also word to not having much to say sometimes about stuff I enjoy in an episode.

                    tl;dr WORD to everything. <3

                    • echinodermata says:

                      Oh good. And if you've said somewhere you're a total fan of this show then I will feel silly, but I figure I should know you better than Tina and that doesn't seem like something you would have said nor do I remember reading such a thing from you, so.

                    • arctic_hare says:

                      No need to feel silly, I've never said anything of the sort – I've basically said that I like the show a lot, but nevertheless have issues with it. And you definitely do know me better than Tina, that's for sure. Your memory is quite correct. πŸ˜€

            • arctic_hare says:

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

              Like echinodermata said, I'm free to rant about what's bugging me, etc. Doesn't mean I don't like the show or that I think anyone else is wrong to like the show. I just find these various scenes problematic.

      • LadyPeyton says:

        RORY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! <3 I named my cat after him because he is awesome

    • thisyearsgirl says:

      "meek little girly-girl like the rest of us." That line is so horrible in so many ways: it erases strong, sports-playing girls, and connects meekness and physical weakness with being "girly", implying that girls who are neither aren't really girls, or that one can't be physically strong AND be a girly-girl without being the Slayer like Buffy is.

      THANK YOU, that comment really pisses me off. I've always been strong and very active in sports and I can't even tell you how many times I've been told to downplay that around guys because it isn't "feminine or attractive" URGH, because yes, my purpose in life is to be considered attractive and fit your standards of femininity!

      Also agreeing with the rest of your comments, that one is just a particular sore spot of mine πŸ™‚

    • LadyPeyton says:

      Not only was there a Witch callback, but there was a Witch callback where gur gebcul pnovarg naq Bm cresrpgyl senzrq Jvyybj juvyr fur jnyxrq hc gb uvz. Jvgpu sberfunqbjvat!

    • Karen says:

      Look, Willow, you have legitimate reasons to not like Cordelia, like the fact that she's bullied you for years. Criticize her based on that! But her love life is NOT and NEVER WILL BE a legit target for your distaste, because it's none of your business and there's nothing wrong with her dating around.

      And it's also weird because later in the episode Cordelia and Willow seem perfectly friendly. So… yeah.

      • arctic_hare says:

        Yeah, it's really weird.

      • SweetVerda says:

        I think that Willow and Cordelia were so friendly with each other because they both realized that their problem wasn't with each other, it was with Xander. Willow figured out that her slut-shaming wasn't accomplishing anything, and Cordelia realized that it wasn't Willow's fault Xander was obsessed with the unobtainable.

        Plus, there was a humor element as well. As Mark said, it's not everyday you see ladies on TV moaning about how fickle men are.

    • RoseFyre says:

      "Hee, Cordy and Willow are bonding. Though, I've been wondering this since the beginning of the episode: why the hell doesn't Willow say something, or initiate the first kiss herself? There's no law that says the guy has to do it! Bleeeeeeeeh."

      True on no law, but it doesn't surprise me that Willow's not making the first move. I was a lot like her in high school in some ways, and no way would I have felt comfortable making the first move with a guy – and while some of it may have been the idea of "the boy should do it," I think a lot of it was also "but what if he says no?" Asking anyone out – whether you're male or female and whether you're asking out a male or a female – is not an easy thing to do, especially if you're not totally comfortable in your own skin. So while I agree that there's nothing that says Willow can't…it also doesn't surprise me that she doesn't. I regret now that I didn't ask out the guy I had a crush on senior year, but while it was happening…I just couldn't bring myself to do it.

  3. Jenny_M says:

    Can I just say that I'd totally forgotten HOW Oz became a werewolf? I thought for sure he was bitten in the episode or something because it's been so long since I've seen this one. But no…Oz's wolfiness came from something as nonchalant as Oz himself. I LOVE YOU, OZ.

    • Deimos says:

      I just completely love how deadpan he is about the whole thing.

      "Hey, is Geordie a werewolf?….Uh huh. And how long's that been going on?"

      Oh Seth Green, have ALL my love.

    • robin_comments says:

      But no…Oz's wolfiness came from something as nonchalant as Oz himself.
      omg, you're right! It's really perfect that way. I never appreciated that fully before.

  4. pica_scribit says:

    Oz used to be my favourite werewolf, until I met Remus Lupin. But he's still a close second. *Oz love* But will there ever be a transformed werewolf in anything that actually looks anything other than a bad special effect or costume?

    Oh, and I can't see Larry's behaviour in this episode and not think of Mark Driscoll. If you know who I'm talking about, you'll know what I mean.

    • @liliaeth says:

      Have you watched Being Human yet? (the UK version, not the shitty US version)

      • pica_scribit says:

        Yeah, most of it. Vg’f na bxnl fubj, ohg V jnf xvaq bs qvfnccbvagrq nsgre frrvat gur cvybg gurl znqr jvgu gur qvssrerag npgbef. Vg jnf fb QNEX naq NJRFBZR, naq gura vg sryg yvxr gurl jrer nsenvq gb pbzzvg gb gung sbe gur npghny frevrf.

        • @liliaeth says:

          hmm, Being Human is probably one of the best shows out there, uhm spoilerwise, is Mark going to watch it, not sure how to check, but seriously, he should.

          Ohg V npghnyyl jnf rkgerzryl tengrshy gung gurl jrag jvgu gur punatr va npgbef. Gur bevtvany npgbe cynlvat Zvgpuryy jnf cerggl zhpu lbhe glcvpny pyvpuΓ© oebbqvat inzcver. Nvqra’f yvtugurnegrq fzvyvat inzcver va pbzcnevfba npghnyyl znxrf gur qnexre fvqr bs uvz n ybg zber greevslvat va pbzcnevfba.

          Va snpg, gur punatr znqr va inzcverf, orgjrra gur cvybg naq gur npghny frevrf jnf cebonoyl gur orfg pubvpr rire znqr ol n Oevgvfu GI fubj, fvapr gur jevgref bs Qbpgbe Jub pnzr hc jvgu ertrarengvba.

          Inzcverf va gur cvybg jrer nyy tbgu, uvture pynff, lbh xabj pyvpuΓ©, jurernf gur barf va gur frevrf ner zber nirentr crbcyr, rfc. gur punatr va Ureevpx. Orfg erpnfgvat cbffvoyr.

          • @Ivana2804 says:

            I agree with you completely. Orvat Uhzna vf oevyyvnag orpnhfr vg tbrf ntnvafg gur pyvpurf. Zvgpuryy vf bar bs zl snibevgr inzcverf, naq univat fbzrbar yvxr Ureevpx nf n ivyynva jnf n travhf zbir. V guvax gung Orvat Uhzna uvgf whfg gur evtug onynapr jvgu gur jnl vg znxrf inzcverf trahvaryl qnatrebhf jvgubhg znxvat gurz vagb bar-qvzrafvbany ivyynvaf, naq vg znxrf gurz qbja-gb-rnegu naq abg tynzbebhf naq fgevcf njnl gur ebznagvpvfz ohg fgvyy ergnvaf pbzcyrkvgl naq qbrfa’g znxr gurz phqqyl.

          • pica_scribit says:

            Dunno what to tell you. The show just doesn't "do it" for me.

          • arctic_hare says:

            Mark is indeed going to watch it, so I've ciphered this conversation.

    • Smurphy says:

      Hmmm… I never thought about that… but yes. I would agree. Remus and then Oz as a very close second…

  5. settlingforhistory says:

    Random thoughts:

    First off, I’m not all that excited by werewolf stories, but I love that Oz is one.
    He is the least likely candidate, because of his lack of temper and he is so cool with it.

    Ugh, that cheerleader statue it gives me the wiggins.

    “It’s nice that he is not just being an animal” Ha ha, so much fun with the foreshadowing.

    I guess Xander babbles on about the two Scoobies because, well what are he and Cordy supposed to talk about? And of course he is used to Willow being in love with him,
    Still he should be happy that she is happy, but maybe it’s a sign that he is unhappy in his relationship.

    “Here’s a tip, move away from Sunnydale.” Why are people actually living there? I know they are intentionally oblivious, but come on, people move away when there are gangs in the area. Vg gnxrf gurz nobhg n uhaqerq ncbpnylcfrf gb svanyyl trg n uvag.

    I like the distinction Giles makes, that werewolves are people; this means we have the first not-to-be-slayed demon in this episode.

    Wow Remus was lucky that he lived in Britain and not Sunnydale; he had enough on his mind without fearing werewolf hunters collecting his teeth.

    I love that we see Angelus here, even though this episode is not about vamps, the threat is always there.

    That werewolf looks so bad, especially in close-ups. (Gurl ybbx zhpu orggre va shgher rcf naq jr eneryl frr gurz jnyx ba gjb yrtf yngre)

    A shame Angelus is backing down, somehow I would have liked to see that fight.

    I love that the way Oz infected was so innocent.
    ‘Jordy bit me! And now I’m a werewolf’

    (V xabj vg vf greevoyr pyvpué gung Yneel gur ohyyl vf tnl, ohg V yvxr gung ur obaqf jr Knaqre bire vg, orpnhfr ur guvaxf ur vf tnl, gbb. Naq dhvgr shaal, nsgre nyy gur jevgref jrer abg fher jub jbhyq or gur tnl punenpgre, Knaqre be Jvyybj.)

    (Jung jbhyq gur Fpbbovrf qb jvgubhg Ohss, lrn V jbaqre? : C)

    “He said he was going through all these changes and then he went through all these changes.” Nervous Willow is adorable.

    Isn’t it the cutest thing that a smoking Oz would have bothered Willow more than werewolf-Oz? She definitely has her priorities straight.

    • Why are people actually living there?

      Because the weather's nice?

      (Default response to any question about why people live in California; may not be appreciated by those not currently living in California.)

    • cait0716 says:

      well what are he and Cordy supposed to talk about?

      Well in that scene they're not supposed to be talking at all.

      I have fanwanked that a lot of people are still in Sunnydale because they're upside down on their mortgages and can't move. Once the Hellmouth activated, housing prices plummeted, and Sunnydale experienced the housing bubble burst a decade before the rest of the country.

      • @liliaeth says:

        hmm, I don't think it's so much that the Hellmouth activated.
        Nsgre nyy, gur znlbe unf orra znxvat Fhaalqnyr n cresrpg uhagvat tebhaq sbe qrzbaf sbe gur cnfg praghel

        It's more that people get pulled in by the low house prices, the presence of a zoo, good highschool, a pbyyrtr, museums, … and they're so pulled in by the nice town, so close to LA, that they don't bother to check up on the mortality rate beforehand.

        And then when they do find out, and they try to sell so they can leave, cause houses costed much even before the housing bubble burst, they realize that there's a reason the houses go for so cheap, because the estate agents know exactly how desperate people are to get out of the town…

        Most people simply wouldn't be able to afford to move, because they probably won't get back even half of what they originally paid to move in.

        • cait0716 says:

          Maybe it didn't activate. But I think demonic activity increased when The Master started trying to escape in the first episode. I suppose it depends on how you interpret Giles' line in WTTH: "There's a reason why you're here and a reason why it's now" V trg jung lbh'er fnlvat nobhg gur Znlbe. Ohg gur Znfgre tbg uvzfrys fghpx va gur 1920f naq gur Znlbe sbhaqrq gur gbja va 1899, fb V guvax guvf fgvyy jbexf nebhaq gung. Naq V guvax gur Znlbe jnf zbfgyl pbagrag gb whfg yrg guvatf cynl bhg hagvy uvf "ryrpgvba lrne"

        • settlingforhistory says:

          I like your explanation, Sunnydale is rather nice after all, when you have bodyguards or never leave the house without full body armor. : )
          Maybe it's just that they have no idea where the danger comes from and how can they be sure that another place would be better? (Ybf Natryrf qrsvavgryl vfa'g.)

      • MrsGillianO says:

        And they are all deep in denial.

        "The first rule of living in Sunnydale? DON'T TALK about living in Sunnydale."

      • Pseudonymph says:

        V whfg tb jvgu Snvgu'f yvar nobhg ubj gur znlbe "ohvyg guvf gbja sbe qrzbaf gb srrq" be fbzrguvat yvxr gung. Fb onfvpnyyl gur znlbe unf fbzr xvaq bs flfgrz va cynpr sbe oevatvat va arj erfvqragf jurarire gur zbegnyvgl engr trgf gb uvtu. Ernyyl inthr, lrf, ohg abg vapbaprvinoyr.

  6. hpfish13 says:

    I love this episode!!! But I don’t have much to say about it besides

    Oz is the best, everything he’s says is just perfect!

    Oz: [on the phone] Aunt Maureen? Hey, it's me. Um, what? Oh. It's, uh… actually it's healing okay. That's pretty much the reason I called. Um, I wanted to ask you something. Is Jordy a werewolf? Uh-huh. And how long has that been going on? Uh-huh. What? No, no reason. Um… Thanks. Yeah, love to Uncle Ken.

    One other thing, in honor of the character Larry’s return; there are these two guys who call my work at the same time. Their names are Vladimir and Larry. It’s such a wonderful combination of an obscure name and a completely ordinary one, that I always get the giggles when they call.

    Tvyrf: Frireny navzny pnepnffrf jrer sbhaq zhgvyngrq.
    Jvyybj: Lbh zrna yvxr ohaavrf naq fghss? Ab, qba'g gryy zr.
    Bm: Bu, qba'g jbeel. V zrna, gurl zvtug abg ybbx vg, ohg ohaavrf pna ernyyl gnxr pner bs gurzfryirf.


    • RaeBear says:

      gbgnyyl! V arire orsber rvgure! V sernxrq! Tb rivy ohaavrf!

    • settlingforhistory says:

      Ohaavrf ner rireljurer, whfg yvxr fuevzc naq purrfr.
      Qb lbh guvax gurer vf n jbeyq jvgubhg ohaavrf? Be jvgu abguvat ohg ohaavrf? ; )

    • MrsGillianO says:

      Ohaavrf, ohaavrf, vg zhfg or ohaavrf!

      Be znlor zvqtrgf.

      Well, somebody had to post it…

    • LadyPeyton says:


      Cbffvoyl sberfunqbjvat, ohg vg nyfb unccraf gb or gehr. N glcvpny uhagvat znarhire bs pngf naq fznyy qbtf gb syvc gurve cerl ba vgf onpx fb gurl pna npprff gur ihyarenoyr haqreoryyl. Ceboyrz jvgu enoovgf vf gung vs lbh (vs lbh unccra gb or n png be n fznyy qbt) syvc gurz ba gurve onpx gurl ner gura cevzrq gb pynj ng lbh jvgu gurve rkgerzryl cbjreshy onpx yrtf naq gur pynjf ba n enoovg'f onpx yrtf ner FUNNNNNEEC!!

    • notemily says:

      What's weird to me about that conversation is that his aunt KNOWS he was bitten, but doesn't make the connection to why he's calling to check on the werewolf thing. You'd think she might have warned him.

  7. Seventh_Star says:

    and today our favorite cool-as-a-cucumber character becomes the epitome of aggression (but only 3 days out of the month, whew!).

    "it's not every day you find out you're a werewolf. that's fairly freaksome. it may take a couple days getting used to."
    oh, oz. NEVER CHANGE.

    i love a good callback, and there are a couple in this episode-
    oz notices that the cheer trophy's eyes are moving. vg erzvaqf zr bs gur natry rcvfbqr "uryy obhaq" jurer gurl genc cninar. gur vqrn bs vg fbhaqf yvxr gur jbefg guvat rire. orvat nybar jvgu lbhe gubhtugf SBERIRE? *shudders*
    and xander unwittingly admits to remembering his stint as a hyena boy. no repercussions are
    had, but it's nice that the truth has finally come out, in any case.

    "today's movies are kinda like popcorn, y'know? you forget about them as soon as they're done."
    it gets so much worse, oz. SO MUCH WORSE.

    fb, yneel vf tvivat bm (n fravbe) n uneq gvzr sbe qngvat n whavbe, vzcylvat gung ur, uvzfrys, vf n fravbe. ohg…ur vfa'g.

    ybbxl urer, vg'f fnuwuna!

    some more rare but there buffy/ xander tension.

    "xander, it's not up to you."

    "i spoke to giles. he said i'll be ok. i just have to lock myself up around the full moon.only he used more words than that. and a globe."
    i imagine giles being painfully earnest and oz being painfully bored. lulz.

    oz: "i'm sorry i almost ate you."
    willow: "it's ok."

    i know you're averse to the whole biting thing because he could turn you into a werewolf, but keep an open mind for the future, willow. that's all i'm sayin'.


    • settlingforhistory says:

      fb, yneel vf tvivat bm (n fravbe) n uneq gvzr sbe qngvat n whavbe, vzcylvat gung ur, uvzfrys, vf n fravbe. ohg…ur vfa'g.

      Gung pbhyq nyfb or zber znpub abafrafr, ur cebonoyl guvaxf gung Bm pbhyq qb orggre orvat va n onaq ur pbhyq nyfb unir gur ubg fravbe puvpxf, evtug?
      Gubhtu jub pbhyq or orggre sbe Bm guna Jvyybj?

    • claretstock says:

      vg erzvaqf zr bs gur natry rcvfbqr "uryy obhaq" jurer gurl genc cninar. gur vqrn bs vg fbhaqf yvxr gur jbefg guvat rire. orvat nybar jvgu lbhe gubhtugf SBERIRE?

      Rire ernq Fgrcura Xvat'f fubeg fgbel "Gur Wnhag"? IREL puvyyvat ohg fbbb tbbq. Lbhe pbzzrag nobir znxrf zr guvax bs vg.

  8. Feast Your Ear Tongues on These Memory Pops

    Back in 1998, I was obsessively downloading Buffy sound WAVs—Remember WAVs? They're back! In pog MP3 form!—and, in the age before fanvids, decided to have some fun making a collage of sound bites. Over thirteen years later, I'm still kind of proud of it, if only for the end.

    Thirty seconds of Buffy hilarity/adorableness.

    In conclusion, Oz's life sure is getting a little HAIRY, but after Willow kissage, he must be over the MOON. Good job, Cousin Jordy!

    <img src=>

  9. misterbernie says:

    Basically just WORD to your paragraph on grossly sexist gay guys, and how the one day U-turn Larry did was, er, slightly unrealistic.

    I had… much better memories of this episode. But on rewatch? Not much goodness apart from Oz being there, all Oz-y. Thoughts:
    – callback to The Witch! Remember when Mark was still undestroyed by Buffy? Those were the days.
    – SO UNPREPARED, btw
    – well Larry’s supposed to be gross here so, er, THUMBS UP YOU HAVE SUCCEEDED
    – rivy znfgrezvaq? Zvfgerff bs Cnva!
    – "an animal" lol geddit it’s foreshadowing because… oh why am I even bothering
    – Ew, Willow. Buffy, don’t encourage Willow’s slut-shaming language. It is g r o c e kthnx

    <img src=""&gt;

    – OH GOD LOL WHAT IS THIS COSTUME brb laughing forever
    – I’m really tiring of this bickering but GO CORDY for her Advanced Driving skills
    – Giles, never stop being adorable all the time
    – Ew, Willow. Don’t stop Buffy from hurting gross sexually-assaulting douchebags. As a matter of fact, let’s savour this moment:

    <img src=""&gt;

    – aaaand moar gender stereotyping. get on with it, episode
    – ew what is it with this episode and utterly gross people. shut up werewolf hunter guy whose name I can’t even be bothered to remember
    – poor Teresa πŸ™
    – aww, Willow and Cordelia are sorta bonding! ADORBS
    – oh god this douchey misogynist werewolf hunter guy, he’s written so flat and shit I can’t even

    <img src=""&gt;

    – aw noes Buffy thinks Teresa died because she let the werewolf escape but it’s so much worse
    – OZ! NAKED! A WEREWOLF! As a matter of fact, let’s savour this moment:

    <img src=""&gt;

    – Oz’s whole family seems pretty chill. The telephone conversation may just be my favourite bit about this episode (geddit, "bit", because Oz’s a werewolf and… oh christ)
    – no poor Oz πŸ™ I want to hold his tiny wolfy self forever and ever
    – hey isn’t it great that this hyena thing and Xander’s lie don’t have any actual repercussions?
    – Xander’s discomfort in this scene is so endearing. so. endearing
    – as a matter of fact. THIS WHOLE SCENE. THIS WHOLE SCENE U GUISE

    <img src=""&gt;

    – One, two…
    – holy fuck, I’d forgotten how much annoying gender bullshit we get in this episode. Willow, Buffy, and Xander being annoying in one scene, it’s like … a thing that is annoying… and two other annoying things together (and yeah, I get it’s realistic of teenagers in the late 90s, but it remains annoying at all)
    – Buffy’s pain is not about you, Xander.
    – filler scene with the werewolf hunter who gives a shit
    – Oz and chains and stuff, sorry I can’t but ♥
    – Willow, you’re not being supersmart here. also LOL THAT COSTUME WHAT I CAN’T
    – and flight run fight stuff happens
    – Willow with a gun!
    – Buffy can bend steel now?
    – Xander, none of these things are about you. Also look, admitting to being gay made Larry into a non-douche because ~being gay is magic~
    – Xander, none of the goings-on in this episode are about you. NONE
    – you go Buffy
    – "I’m sorry I almost ate you"
    – menstruation joke and tinkly romantic music. That’s … that is
    – let’s end on a happy note, shall we?

    <img src=""&gt;

    German title: Der Werwolfjäger – The Werewolf Hunter.
    Not really much to say about that one, except for the fact that ‘vampire slayer’ was dubbed as Vampirjägerin – ‘vampire huntress’, so there’s some unintentional parallelism going on.

    • arctic_hare says:

      this is a perfect comment. <3

    • @liliaeth says:

      it's funny, but one of the first things that comes to my mindmind when thinking about writing a Supernatural/Buffy crossover, is to use Cain as a reason why Buffy wouldn't trust Hunters*g*
      Jryy gung naq Qrna'f ungerq ntnvafg jvgpurf

  10. James says:


    • whedonzombie says:

      Seconded. Also, my favorite "wake up the next morning, confused and naked in the woods" scene. Werewolf prerequisite.

  11. enigmaticagentscully says:

    This episode had a lot of weirdly uncomfortable stuff about gender and sexuality and all that jazz, but I’m not much in the mood for deep discussion, so I’m just gonna let you all talk about that. Unless I’m just imagining it, of course?

    I’ll just say that the werewolf costume was the most hilariously bad thing I have ever seen. It looked so much like a guy wearing a Halloween costume that I thought for a moment that would be the twist of the episode. It was fabulously awful.

    Also, Oz is a werewolf. And STILL remarkably laid back about it. Nothing phases this guy! Um…no pun intended. πŸ˜›

    I love Oz.

    I also kind of like Angel more as a bad guy. He’s gotten a whole lot more interesting, hasn’t he? Does that make me an awful person?

    • Jenny_M says:

      I think a lot of people like Angel more as a bad guy. Or they like David's acting more. I think the two are easily mixed, hehe.

    • NB2000 says:

      Does that make me an awful person?

      Judging by some of the comments yesterday, not at all.

    • Dru says:

      I also kind of like Angel more as a bad guy. He’s gotten a whole lot more interesting, hasn’t he?

      YES!!! And there is the added bonus of not having to see Buffy/Angel together, because their relationship gives me quite a lot of "I don't get it, WHY do you two love each other and how did that happen?"

    • todd says:

      Re: Angel v. Angelus – DB seems to have way more fun playing the villain of the piece than the romantic hero. Which isn't to say he looked miserable while making out with SMG because I refuse to believe such a thing can happen, but Angelus gets to pun, double entendre, scare, flirt with the use of tiny cute flowers, and act like a major douche for the hell of it. Wouldn't that be the best job ever?

      I love your puns.

  12. beckaboomer says:

    Coming so soon after "Innocence," "Phases" sometimes gets lost in my mind. I remember that I like it, but little details just sort of fade away.

    Oz and Willow are still two of the cutest things ever to cute in this world. That, I remember always.

    I'm not a giant fan of Buffy and Willow's insult-Cordelia moment at the beginning, with that awful slut-shaming "skanky ho" thrown in there. I know Buffy and Willow are best friends, and best friends tend to feel angry and/or hurt on each other's behalf, but it's not a nice thing to say. There are plenty of legitimate reasons to dislike Cordelia (her bullying, her classism) rather than taking it to that level.

    I'm also wary of the way that red herring with Larry is handled. I'm not surprised that Xander exhibits homophobia, since it is a sadly common attitude in straight males who are insecure about their own masculinity. (This would be homophobia, rather than heterosexism, right? Xander seems to fear being seen as gay; when Larry makes that mistake he is visibly uncomfortable. Correct me if I'm using the terms wrongly.) It's still a little funny that they're talking at cross-purposes there without really understanding what the other is saying, but the whole plotline is.. I don't know. I like that Larry becomes more confident and more comfortable with himself as a result of that conversation, so at least some good happened there.

    Oz is still awesome, even being a werewolf. I'm glad he tried to restrain himself, but I still think the wiser choice would have been to tell Giles about it. Still, everything turned out okay.

    I like Xander comforting Buffy at the funeral home. He can be very sweet sometimes. Then he had to go and be weirdly possessive about Willow and Oz!!! I'm very glad Buffy called him out on that, though. "If it were up to me-" "Xander? It's not up to you." Thank you, Buffy.

    • msnaddie says:

      Yeah, I remember thinking that Oz was going to confess that he's the werewolf once he found out about it. But when he burst into the library (probably still thinking about it), they were talking about killing the werewolf, so I kind of get why he would quickly kill that idea out of his head. I agree that he should've probably told the Scooby gang about it though. They weren't going to kill him right there and then if he had confessed, I wouldn't think.

      But hey, I'm not the script-writer so who knows where the storyline would've gone to πŸ˜€

  13. cait0716 says:

    Oh Phases. I love you dearly.

    Well, mostly. One thing first. I really don't like Willow's "1-800-I'm-Dating-A-Skanky-Ho" line. It's slut shaming and it's starting to display the same behavior Xander exhibited when Buffy and Angel got together. What makes it worse is that, instead of calling her out, Buffy approves and eggs her on. Thankfully, Willow and Cordy seem to be bonding later on, so hopefully we won't see this again.

    Moving on to the awesomeness: Oz is a werewolf! I guess that makes him a full-fledged member of the Scooby gang now.

    I really like the whole Larry mini-arc in this episode, as contracted as it is. Back when Glee was making a mess of things with Karofsky, I kept thinking "No! Buffy already did this and they did it better. Just stop." And I love going back and watching Larry in Halloween with the new knowledge that he's gay. We talked back then about how Xander's construct of masculinity and his attempts to live up to that image drive his behavior in that episode. But now it applies to Larry, too.

    It's interesting that they link the werewolf to both closeted homosexuality (Larry) and menstrual cycles ("Three days out of the month, I'm not that much fun to be around"). I still haven't really sussed out my thoughts about those connections, and I'd love to see what other people think.

    This is one of the first call-back heavy episodes and it helps to establish a new continuity in the Buffyverse. Instead of disappearing completely for a few episodes, Angel is still stalking the perimeter of Buffy's life. He really does enjoy mentally torturing his victims. But more than that, we have overt references to a number of episodes from the first season, including "Witch", "Teacher's Pet", "The Pack", and "I Robot, You Jane" It helps build on the fact that Innocence really was a turning point for what the series could and would be doing, starting with building a more comprehensive universe. Not that it wasn't comprehensive before, but it's always nice to get acknowledgement of things that came before. It shows that the writers are paying attention and that they care about this world as much as the fans. Nyfb, guvf vf nebhaq gur gvzr gung zbfg bs gur jevgref V nffbpvngr jvgu gur fubj jrer fgnegvat gb pbzr ba obneq naq V jbhyq cbvag gb zvq-frnfba gjb nf gur cbvag ng juvpu gur jevgvat fgnss ernyyl tryyrq gbtrgure.

    That sad, we should have gotten more of a reaction from Buffy when Xander recalled his hyena days. Maybe the scene where she chews him out just got cut?

    And the episode ends with Willow-kissage! Huzzah!

    Also awesome: "Xander, it's not up to you". Buffy doesn't seem to care when Xander's acting all jealous and possessive of her, but she does shut him down when he starts to act that way to Willow.

  14. I loved this episode for all of the Oz! I really, really want him to stick around because I LOVE him with Willow, so here's hoping that by giving him a storyline we will be seeing more of him.

    In conclusion:

    MOAR OZ.

  15. In context, I do get that Xander just accidentally outed himself to Larry, so it’s not like he didn’t have something to freak out about. But just communicate that you were discussing something else and brush it off. The whole gay panic face isn’t a fun thing to see. (I’m directing that at the writers, for what it’s worth. I am actually starting to like Xander a lot more.)
    Hurrah! Vagrerfgvat gb abgr va yvtug bs gur snpg gung bevtvanyyl, Knaqre jnf tbvat gb or tnl, abg Jvyybj.

    Edit: Bbcf, V zrna gurl pbhyqa’g qrpvqr ba jurgure vg jbhyq or Knaqre be Jvyybj jub jbhyq or tnl, fb vg pbhyq unir tbar rvgure jnl.

    • cait0716 says:

      Lrnu, gung xabjyrqtr znxrf guvf rcvfbqr cynl n ybg qvssreragyl

    • beckaboomer says:

      V gubhtug gurl qvqa'g xabj juvpu bar gurl jnagrq gb or tnl (Jvyybj be Knaqre), fb gurl nqqrq fhogrkg sbe obgu! Be nz V gbgnyyl jebat ba gung bar gbb? Gbqnl vf abg zl qnl sbe zrzbel.

      • Abcr, lbh'er evtug, naq V jnf whfg nobhg gb rqvg zl pbzzrag jura lbh erfcbaqrq!

        • beckaboomer says:

          Rvgure jnl, vg'f n sha ovg bs gevivn. =Q V yvxr gur jnl guvf fubj riraghnyyl unaqyrf Jvyybj'f frkhnyvgl naq pbzvat bhg, ohg V pna'g uryc ohg jbaqre nobhg jung gung jbhyq unir ybbxrq yvxr vs vg jrer Knaqre.

          • @Ivana2804 says:

            V qba'g guvax V'q unir sbhaq vg cynhfvoyr sbe Knaqre gb or tnl fvapr ur unq orra fb pyrneyl frkhnyyl nggenpgrq gb jbzra. Ohg vs ur unq ernyvmrq ur jnf ovfrkhny, gung jbhyq'ir znqr frafr. Znlor gung'f jung gurl npghnyyl jnagrq gb tb jvgu? Gung'f, bs pbhefr, cebivqvat gung Wbff naq gur bgure jevgref ner njner gung ovfrkhnyvgl rkvfgf, juvpu V fgvyy pna'g gryy nsgre 8+ frnfbaf bs Ohssl naq 5 frnfbaf bs Natry.

            • beckaboomer says:

              Ohg, gurl qvq gur fnzr guvat jvgu Jvyybj! Fur vf frkhnyyl nggenpgrq gb obgu Bm naq Knaqre orsber fur snyyf va ybir jvgu Gnen. V qba'g xabj ubj gurl jbhyq unir unaqyrq Knaqre orvat tnl fvapr vg qvqa'g unccra, ohg gurl znl unir tbar jvgu gung byq purfgahg "ur jnf bire-pbzcrafngvat sbe uvf gehr nggenpgvba gb zra ol orvat fhcre-nggenpgrq gb jbzra!"

              V'z abg fher nobhg Ohssl naq ovfrkhnyvgl nf sne nf gur GI fubj tbrf. Wbff fnvq va n pbzzragnel gung Jvyybj naq Bm'f eryngvbafuvc jnfa'g nyy nobhg gur culfvpny orpnhfr fur vf tnl. Ohg gura gur pbzvpf unir na nep jurer Ohssl qngrf n jbzna, naq abjurer va gur fubj unf fur vaqvpngrq na nggenpgvba gb jbzra. Fb V fhccbfr Ohssl, va gur pbzvpirefr, vf ovfrkhny? Jurernf va gur GI fubj, ovfrkhnyvgl qbrfa'g rkvfg? (Urapr Jvyybj nyjnlf fnlvat, "Tnl abj!" juvpu.. bxnl.) V ernyyl qba'g xabj.

              • amyalices says:

                Orvat znffviryl plavpny, V graq gb chg gurz obgu va gur 'vg'f ubg jura tveyf ner tnl/ovfrkhny, fb guvf vf bxnl' pnzc bs punenpgre-jevgvat. :F

              • @Ivana2804 says:

                Ab, npghnyyl va frnfba 8 gurl znxr n cbvag nsgre Ohssl unf fyrcg jvgu Fngfh gung fur vf fgenvtug naq gung guvf vf jul ure eryngvbafuvc jvgu Fngfh qbrfa'g pbagvahr. Jvyybj cbvagf bhg gb Fngfh gung Ohssl vf "abg ernyyl vagb tveyf", Xraarql pnyyf Ohssl "snhk yrf" naq yngre gryyf Fngfh gung trggvat vaibyirq jvgu n fgenvtug tvey vf arire n tbbq vqrn. Ohssl oernxf vg bss jvgu Fngfh va n sevraqyl jnl naq gurl bayl unir frk bar zber gvzr nf n tbbqolr. Fur arire frrzf gb srry yvxr ercrngvat gur rkcrevrapr naq tbrf ba gb or frkhnyyl naq ebznagvpnyyl vagrerfgrq va zra sbe gur erfg bs gur frnfba (naq orsber fur tbg vaibyirq jvgu Fngfh, jr fnj ure ercrngrqyl univat frkhny snagnfvrf nobhg zra). Knaqre yngre znxrf n ersrerapr gb Ohssl "gelvat gb punatr ure frkhny bevragngvba." Va gur ynfg vffhr bs gur frnfba, Ohssl fnlf gb urefrys gung fur'f tynq gung fur pna ybbx ng gur phgr thlf ntnva abj gung fur'f bhg bs gur "tveyivyyr" (fur jnf fheebhaqrq nyzbfg rkpyhfviryl ol Fynlref sbe zbfg bs gur frnfba, jvgu gur rkprcgvba bs Knaqre).

                Fb, frnfba 8 fgebatyl fhttrfgf gung Ohssl vf urgrebfrkhny naq whfg unq n oevrs "rkcrevzragngvba", naq Wbff fnvq va na vagreivrj gung Ohssl fyrrcvat jvgu n tvey jnf whfg gur xvaq bs guvat "lbh qb va pbyyrtr"..

          • SosaLola says:

            Ybgf bs ubg ungr frk jvgu Fcvxr va gur onfrzrag bs qbbz. V'q unir ybirq gb frr gung. V'z nyernql rawblvat gur Knaqre/Pbeqryvn ungr xvffvat, Knaqre naq Fcvxr'f fprarf jbhyq unir orra jvggvre naq fanexvre. Fvtu. *tbrf gb ernq n Fcnaqre snasvp*

    • ambyrglow says:

      Uhu, V jbaqre ng jung cbvag guvf vasbezngvba vfa'g fcbvyrel? Orpnhfr rira vs jr jnvg hagvy nsgre Jvyybj pbzrf bhg, fnlvat "bevtvanyyl Knaqre jnf fhccbfrq gb or gur tnl bar" fcbvyf gung ur jba'g unir n cnenyyry pbzvat bhg fprar yngre. Fubhyq jr jnvg hagvy gur raq bs gur frevrf?

      Nyfb, ab yvr, orsber V plcurerq lbhe grkg V gbgnyyl gubhtug gung jung pnzr nsgre "Uheenu!" jnf tbvat gb or gur rdhvinyrag bs "whfg va gvzr gb fgneg ungvat uvz nyy bire ntnva va Orpbzvat!"

      Fbeel. Zl natre ng Knaqre'f yvr va gung rcvfbqr, yrg zr fubj vg gb lbh!

      • arctic_hare says:

        Zber yvxr "whfg va gvzr gb ortva ungvat uvz ntnva sbe Orjvgpurq, Obgurerq, naq Orjvyqrerq!" Zl ungr sbe gung rcvfbqr, yrg zr fubj vg… be, V jvyy gbzbeebj. V unir znwbe vffhrf jvgu gur yvr gbb, gubhtu.

        • misterbernie says:

          V jnf fb sbphfvat ba gbzbeebj'f njshyarff gung gur znal ceboyrzngvp nfcrpgf bs Cunfrf pnhtug zr pbzcyrgryl bss thneq ba zl erjngpu gbqnl. Cerggl fher gbzbeebj V'yy whfg cbfg zl pbzzrag jvgu n srj tvsf naq gura ohttre bss gbjneqf orre orpnhfr orre > gung rc.

          • arctic_hare says:

            Lrnu, gung unccrarq gb zr gbb va zl erjngpu. Gung fbhaqf yvxr na rkpryyrag cyna, gurer ner znal guvatf gung ner orggre guna gung rcvfbqr, ohg orre vf cerggl qnza uvtu ba gur yvfg. Orpnhfr ORRE VF NJRFBZR. NAQ GUNG'F ABG N FCBVYRE, OHG V'YY XRRC VG VA PBQR NALJNL.

        • SnarkyWriter says:

          Htu. Gung rcvfbqr. Frr, V qba'g fgbc ungvat Knaqre hagvy frnfba 4 jura ur fgnegf tebjvat hc. N ovg. :C

    • SnarkyWriter says:

      Gur jnl V haqrefgbbq vg, gurl jrer yrnivat vg bcra sbe rvgure bs gurz fb gurl pbhyq qrpvqr yngre. Urapr gur "naq V guvax V'z xvaqn tnl" va Qbccrytnatynaq.

    • IceBlueRose says:

      “Vagrerfgvat gb abgr va yvtug bs gur snpg gung bevtvanyyl, Knaqre jnf tbvat gb or tnl, abg Jvyybj.”

      V gbgnyyl qvqa’g xabj gung! V ybir svaqvat bhg yvggyr ovgf bs gevivn yvxr gung fb gunaxf! πŸ™‚

      Abj V’z gelvat gb vzntvar jung gung fgbelyvar jbhyq unir orra yvxr naq ubj gurl’q unir unaqyrq vg. Naq jbj, Knaqre orvat tnl vafgrnq bs Jvyybj jbhyq unir ernyyl srq gur Fcnaqre naq Knatry cbegvbaf bs snaqbz! V’z nyfb gelvat gb vzntvar jung gur thl irefvba bs Gnen’f punenpgre jbhyq unir orra yvxr. Qba’g nfx jul V’z gelvat gb svther bhg Knaqre’f glcr va zra ohg guvf pbzzrag unf zr gelvat abj. YBY.

      • Emma says:


      • beckaboomer says:

        Jryy, ur zragnyyl haqerffrf Fpbgg Onxhyn va na nggrzcg gb uryc Jvyybj "tnl [uvz] hc" nsgre nabgure qvfnfgebhf qrzba qngr. (Nyyvgrengvba!) Fb uvf glcr vf.. byqre naq qvfgvathvfurq-ybbxvat? Ur nyfb nccerpvngrf Fcvxr'f ybbxf va "Vagreiragvba." "V nz abg univat frk jvgu Fcvxr! Ohg V'z fgnegvat gb guvax gung lbh zvtug or!" vf fgvyy n snibevgr yvar.

        • SnarkyWriter says:

          Zl snibevgr cneg bs gung fprar vf Naqerj tbvat, "Pncgnva Nepure" jvgu gung "Zzzzz" ybbx ba uvf snpr.

        • @Ivana2804 says:

          " Fb uvf glcr vf.. byqre naq qvfgvathvfurq-ybbxvat?"

          Be cbffrffvat n ernyyl jryy-ohvyg, zhfphyne, unvel purfg. πŸ™‚

        • IceBlueRose says:

          Ununun, lrf nyy irel tbbq rknzcyrf! Abg gb zragvba gung nabgure zbzrag va frnfba frira vf va…Orarngu Lbh, V guvax. Jura gur tvey tbrf "Vf gurer nalbar va lbhe tebhc gung UNFA'G fyrcg gbtrgure?!" naq Fcvxr naq Knaqre rkpunatr gung ybbx gung nyjnlf znxrf zr guvax gurl'er fvyragyl tbvat "Jr nterrq gb ARIRE gnyx nobhg vg!" Gurer'f nyfb Knaqre'f "Naq qba'g lbh sbetrg vg!" jura Fcvxr pnyyf uvz n ahzzl gerng va frnfba sbhe, unun.

    • James says:

      Lrnu, vg qrsvavgryl nqqf na vagrerfgvat jrvtug gb Knaqre'f ernpgvbaf.

  16. Hotaru_hime says:

    Oz is a werewolf!! He faces it so calmly. I love that Willow tells him that "three days out of the month I'm not a great person to be around" and how happy he looks at the end of the episode. But yes, the werewolves are a joke. Here is this furry costume, run around on all fours now.
    Larry being outed looked like such a relief for him. Like, here's this kid who he's picked on for ages sort of outing himself to Larry (Oh Xander) and Larry has an epiphany. But he's clearly playing the stereotypical misogynistic jock character to protect himself.

  17. NB2000 says:

    " A werewolf in love."

    This episode could easily be retitled Why Willow and Oz are the Cutest Thing EVER! Because seriously, how cute are they?! The conversation at the beginning about their date, and then at the end when he says the above line just <3

    Hey we actually pick up on one of those tag scenes from season one with Catherine in the trophy! V jbaqre vs guvf eryngrf gb Nzl ergheavat arkg rcvfbqr.

    Be vf vg whfg bar bs gur jbefg perngher pbfghzrf V’ir rire frra?

    Fnqyl vg whfg trgf jbefr sebz urer. Gur frnfba 3+ pbfghzr vf whfg…jung gur uryy unccrarq fubj?

    "ohaavrf pna gnxr pner bs gurzfryirf."

    Fb GUNG'F jung gurl arrq fhpu tbbq rlrfvtug sbe! Qrsraqvat gurzfryirf sebz jrerjbyirf!

    • cait0716 says:

      Bbu, tbbq pngpu jvgu gur Nzl guvat. V yvxr gur jnl gurfr guvatf fbeg bs fhogyl yvax hc.

      • NB2000 says:

        V qvqa'g pngpu vg hagvy V jnf fxvzzvat guebhtu zl abgrf gb pbzzrag. V fcbggrq zl abgr sbe OO&O ba gur arkg cntr, rssrpgviryl "Uv Nzl lbh unir arj unve!", naq ernyvfrq gur gvzvat bs gur gebcul orvat zragvbarq.

  18. unefeeverte says:

    IIRC, I thought the werewolf looked like a gorilla more than anything. SADFACE. (It still looks better than that … thing in the third Harry Potter. I just hated that. WEREWOLVES ARE SUPPOSED TO HAVE FUR OKAY.)

    What? I'm picky when it comes to the looks of my werewolves.

    • theduck says:

      Oh god, the Harry Potter werewolf. That on its own was enough to make the third movie my least favorite.

    • pica_scribit says:

      Agreed. 100%. WTF was that thing in HP? Because it wasn't a werewolf.

    • James says:

      GOD, ME TOO. Oz is my favourite werewolf character, but the werewolf costume is just ridiculous. And seriously, Lupinwolf does not look at all threatening. Sigh. It's pretty bad when Twilight can legitimately be said to out-do you on something.

      • t09yavosaur says:

        The Twilight wolves are some pretty great CGI work. The only problem I have with them is that there is no "Were-" in those wolves. (Which is still true to the book though).

    • jaccairn says:

      Yes! They'er supposed to turn into wolves (perhaps bigger and stronger) not some weird mutant hybrid.

    • MidnightLurker says:

      Remuswolf is based on old woodcut prints of werewolves. IT'S AUTHENTIC.

    • todd says:

      I prefer to think of that abomination in Harry Potter as a weremonkey with howl.

  19. Raenef_the_5th says:

    Lbh xabj… V jvfu Knaqre unq orpbzr n fnffl tnl sevraq riraghnyyl.

  20. theduck says:

    I decided to start running the episode names through Bad Translator <a href="http://(” target=”_blank”>( and post them at the start of my comments every day… Interestingly, it translated "Buffy The Vampire Slayer" to "Buffy, Vampire Vampires, vampires, vampires".

    Here's today's episode:

    Original text:
    …35 translations later Bing gives us:
    "By steps"


    – I love Willow's hat (again)!

    – Okay, I love Willow in general.

    – "It doesn't get more romantic than this, so SHUT UP!" Oh Cordy.

    – For some reason that beige coat makes Xander look REALLY OLD.

    – Giles' excitement over the werewolf is kind of adorable <3

    – Oh my god, if someone ever grabbed my ass like that I would punch them so hard. *shudder*

    – "Oh behalf of my gender, hey!" Makes me giggle every time.

    – I like that David Boreanaz's portrayl of bad!Angel pretending to be good is different than when he actually is playing good!Angel. If that makes sense.

    – Someone ran out of costume budget, Mr. Werewolf.

    – Oz, you remain ridiculously chill about everything.

    – Okay, did Buffy and Xander almost kiss? Because that is WTF to me in every way possible.

    – There's a really big portion of this episode that I forgot to take notes on.

    – Oz and Willow are so cuteeeeee <3

    • @Ivana2804 says:

      "Okay, did Buffy and Xander almost kiss? "

      I wouldn't go that far. We were supposed to see some tension, but it was because she was feeling vulnerable at the time. But if they had gone with that terrible "comfort kiss with a Nice Guy best friend who's in love with you, because your boyfriend turned out to be a douche and you're a weak vulnerable woman who can't be without a man", I would've been so ANGRY. Fortunately, they didn't.

    • sporkaganza93 says:

      "Buffy, Vampire Vampires, vampires, vampires".


    • notemily says:

      LOL I tried "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and I got "Buffy the vampire and the vampire killing all-in-one," which sounds like the Anime version. I love Bad Translator.

      – Okay, did Buffy and Xander almost kiss? Because that is WTF to me in every way possible.
      Yeah I NEVER got what they were trying to do with that scene. O_O

    • Pseudonymph says:

      – I like that David Boreanaz's portrayl of bad!Angel pretending to be good is different than when he actually is playing good!Angel. If that makes sense.

      I completely agree! Boreanaz has clearly developed some acting chops because there are subtle differences there.

  21. Mez says:

    Jnf fur svanyyl trggvat gur pbhentr gb gryy Bm jung fur jnagf, bayl gb unir ure urneg oebxra whfg zbzragf yngre jura Pnva xvyyf uvz? Frevbhfyl, gurer vf nyernql fb zhpu urnegoernx ba gur fubj nf vg vf, naq abj jr’er tbvat gb nqq Jvyybj’f gb gung?

    Qba'g or fvyyl, Znex. Jul oernx Jvyybj'f urneg abj jura jr pna oernx vg fb zhpu jbefr yngre ba?

  22. Inseriousity. says:

    Yeah I think Xander's expressions when faced with talking bout Larry is the only thing that ruins it. I get that he accidently said he was gay and that's likely to cause alarm but I think Larry's right (just not in the way he thinks). Larry and Xander are very alike cos they both try to hide who they really are in some warped, overexaggerated form of masculinity. I get the the transformation of Larry is very sudden but yeah I also get they're trying to fit it into one episode so I'll let them have artistic license over real life!

    Lol at your thought patterns, you go off on some weird tangents although I get all of them apart from "I'd rather have an adult werewolf than a child" lol that doesn't make any sense!! what's wrong with having a cute little puppy werewolf. I imagine it'd be easier to manage a child werewolf. Love how this episode means we have a debate over adult vs child werewolves πŸ˜›

  23. Smurphy says:

    Poor Oz… πŸ™ I forgot how close this was to the whole Angelus debacle. It's right smack in the middle of the whole Angelus debacle.

    I absolutely love this episode. A good mystery for the scooby gang, some good fighting scenes, a bad guy who things he's doing good and a good guy who thinks he's doing bad…. and Willow. LOVE WILLOW.

    Love love love.

  24. Karen says:

    The Xander/Cordy/Willow stuff is really weird this episode. I have to say, I’m really disappointed in Willow for going for the calling Cordy a “skanky ho” route. Like, dude, Willow, we get that you had a crush on Xander for years, and he never returned your feelings. But you’re moving on with Oz. It’s not really fair to attack Cordelia like that. I mean, she doesn’t have to LIKE Cordelia, since it seems like Cordy had been a bully for years even if they are getting along now. But, like, don’t go for the “skanky ho” shot, you know?

    Meanwhile Xander and Cordy are making out in a car. Xander is obsessing over Willow and Oz and makes disparaging remarks about the kind of element being in a band attracts, including Cordy in that “element”, and Cordelia asks a very legitimate question, “Do you even want to be here?”. Like Xander seriously doesn’t seem to care all that much about Cordelia as a person (though this goes both ways for sure) and he’s obsessing over both Willow and Buffy. Xander/Cordy is such a mess. But I think the entire parking scene is worth it just so that we can get that classic horror movie moment where a monster is lurking right outside a couple making out in a car and attacks them.

    The later in the episode we have Cordelia and Willow being all friendly in the Broze when earlier in the episode Willow had called her a “skanky ho” but um… ok, I guess? Idk. Maybe Willow is just holding on to old hurt because of the whole Xander thing even though in reality her relationship with Cordelia has improved? But whatever. Cordelia is right that Xander is obsessed with Willow and Buffy. And Willow is right about how Xander is looking around at what he doesn’t have that he doesn’t appreciate what he DOES have.

    That bit at the end where Xander is discussing Willow and Oz’s future is so obnoxious. Xander is being SO creepy with policing his friends’ romantic lives. YOU DIDN’T EVEN WANT TO BE WITH WILLOW. Stop trying to control her love life. I love that at the end of the episode, Buffy straight up tells Xander that it’s not up to him.

    Anyway, the main plot of this episode is werewolves! I like that this episode includes werewolves hunters too because then it’s not just Buffy vs werewolf; it becomes Buffy vs. werewolf vs. werewolf hunter. I LOVE it when Buffy intimidates him by bending the muzzle of his gun.

    I was getting so caught up in the werewolf plot that I was shocked to see Angel. But bam! There he is, preying on a woman. Poor Oz though! Thinking he was responsible for that woman’s death when actually it was Angel. I have to say that this was a really clever use of Angel, tying him into the Plot of the Week without having the whole Angelus thing overwhelm the story.

    Seriously though. Poor Oz! He’s just found out that he’s a werewolf (although how funny is his family’s nonchalant attitude about it?), and he’s going to tell Buffy to try to get help and he walks in on her talking about how she should have killed the werewolf. I mean this is seriously freaky. Oz is not only dealing with the fact that he’s a werewolf, but now he can’t confide in his friends because he’s afraid for his life. AND he’s dealing with the fact that he killed someone he KNEW. I just want to give him all the hugs and tell him that it was Angel and not him who did the killing.

    I love that Willow took the initiative and went after Oz, but EL OH EL when she sees all his chains and stuff because idk. In her mind that probably either means he’s into kinky sex stuff or he’s a serial killer with his victims chained up in his basement. But then nope, HE’S ACTUALLY THE WEREWOLF.

    • Karen says:

      The entire character of Larry is actually really hard for me to watch. Like just seeing all these elements of rape culture and the way he harasses and intimidates the girls is really upsetting to me because while it might not be to that extreme, I’ve definitely seen those kinds of attitudes in everyday life. Which is why it also feels SO good where Buffy refuses to put up with Larry groping her and just flips him. (Also, I am eternally grateful to my mom for making me take karate in high school because while I’ve never had to actually use it, I do feel a lot safer and more confident.)

      So Xander finds out that Larry is gay and now this little subplot has taken on an entirely different feel. Now it feels like this subplot is actually about how homophobia is detrimental to society as a whole. I think there’s something to be said about the fact that fear of homophobia is causing Larry to act out like he is. He’s over performing the macho stereotype out of fear of his sexuality being discovered. So I feel bad for him because of that. But at the same time, he’s STILL harassing those girls and that is NOT ok. He’s still responsible for his actions. But it is good that he seems to have changed his ways once he was out to Xander. Speaking of which, while it is obnoxious that Xander is actually all awkward and uncomfortable around Larry, I am glad that he didn’t out Larry to Buffy at least.

      A couple of more notes on Xander: I liked Buffy calling Xander on how he pretended not to remember being possessed by a hyena in “The Pack”. GETTING CAUGHT IN YOUR LIES, EH XANDER? A positive Xander moment is when he reassures Buffy that even if she couldn’t save Teresa, she still does a lot of good and has saved a lot of people.

      • Dru says:

        I liked Buffy calling Xander on how he pretended not to remember being possessed by a hyena in “The Pack”

        Me too. It's just one small example of how the show likes to keep referring back to things that happened earlier, and I do love that that old lie actually came back to bite (lol) Xander in the ass here.

    • claretstock says:

      I agree with pretty much everything you said… and then some for this…

      I love that Willow took the initiative and went after Oz, but EL OH EL when she sees all his chains and stuff because idk. In her mind that probably either means he’s into kinky sex stuff or he’s a serial killer with his victims chained up in his basement. But then nope, HE’S ACTUALLY THE WEREWOLF.

      Yeah, I straight up laughed out loud at that part… cause she is so completely bewildered in the midst of her anger. Also when she later run's up to Giles and Buffy telling them that Oz is the werewolf and they say "you sure? and she's like "TRUST ME ON THIS!"

  25. etherealclarity says:

    I'm pretty meh on the concept of werewolves (and AGREED Mark, that costume is just sad) so aside from the Willow and Oz aspect of things I was sort of lukewarm on the episode. Not a bad one, just not a super standout one for me either.

    While I do love that Willow got to make the first move from a feminism/Willow-character-progression perspective, I sort of wish Oz had kissed her first instead because he was the one who was blowing hot/cold for most of the episode and I have had crushes on FAR TOO MANY guys who did that hot/cold shit. I definitely could relate to Cordelia & Willow's conversation in the Bronze where they complained about not knowing what guys want because YES I HAVE BEEN THERE SO MANY TIMES.

    (Which is, incidentally, why I also hated that they were like "GUYS." because typically it's guys that see girls as unreadable and clearly based on my own experiences and based on Cordy's & Willow's experiences it goes BOTH WAYS. PEOPLE are like that. From the entire gender spectrum. It bugs me in real life too.)

    RE: Larry is gay reveal – Maybe this is just my own take on it, but Xander's "OHSHIT" face in the Larry is gay reveal always struck me more as "OHSHIT Larry thinks I'm gay and I'm trying to tell him that I'm not gay but then that makes things very awkward because he only told me because he thought I was gay but it is also awkward if he still thinks I am gay and tells other people that I'm gay OH MY GOD THIS IS AWKWARD I DON'T KNOW HOW TO FIX THIS." I never got the sense that Xander was worried Larry was attracted to him or anything. And that Xander's subsequent awkwardness when talking about the situation was more about the fact that it wasn't his information to share and his awkward feelings about the whole thing. But admittedly that might just be my own fanwanky spin on things.

    • cait0716 says:

      I read the Xander thing the same way. And I forever love that Larry immediately promises not to out him.

    • Yeah, I read the Xander scene the same way, especially because he couldn't come out and say, "No, I'm not gay,I just thought you were a werewolf!" It was just a world of awkwardness, plus he didn't want to burst Larry's bubble and ruin his epiphany.

      • etherealclarity says:

        Yes, exactly! How would that conversation have gone? I can imagine Xander's imagination was filled with something like: X: "I'm not gay!" L: "Wait, so what secret did you think I had?" X: "Uh……….." "So you just tricked me into revealing this intensely personal information that I had never yet shared with anyone else in my life, by essentially lying to me?" X: "Uh………. not on purpose?" L: "YOU ARE THE WORST PERSON EVER."

    • beckaboomer says:

      You know, I never read that Larry scene as Xander being afraid Larry would hit on him, or being afraid of gay people, but I did see a slight panic in his face when he realized Larry would now think HE was gay. You have an interesting take on it, though. It would definitely be an awkward situation, because how do you get out of that? Xander has an abundance of social awkwardness, so I'm not surprised he was at a loss here. I just think maybe he could have panicked a little less when Buffy brought up the situation? Twice? I don't know. Larry being all understanding about not outing him is pretty priceless. "I wouldn't do that to you." Heh.

    • notemily says:

      While I do love that Willow got to make the first move from a feminism/Willow-character-progression perspective, I sort of wish Oz had kissed her first instead because he was the one who was blowing hot/cold for most of the episode and I have had crushes on FAR TOO MANY guys who did that hot/cold shit. I definitely could relate to Cordelia & Willow's conversation in the Bronze where they complained about not knowing what guys want because YES I HAVE BEEN THERE SO MANY TIMES.

      Word to this! It reminds me a lot of How I Met Your Mother, which is always making these sort of little commentaries on relationships. One of the reasons you could tell Ted and Robin weren't going to last is because he was ALWAYS the initiator of things, always making the first move, and she was never as enthusiastic about the relationship. Sometimes that's telling.

    • Pseudonymph says:

      That's exactly how I read it and so I always mentally praised Xander for handling it so coolly (compared to how we've come to expect Xander to handle situations related to sex and masculinity).

      It really didn't occur to me for awhile that Xander's reaction could be explained another way, although I can certainly understand Mark's and others' interpretation that Xander is having a gay-panic moment.

      I never could tell whether Xander was actually doing something praiseworthy or if I had just set my bar for his behavior really low and I'm just thinking, "well, at least he's not bullying Larry or outing him to the rest of the Scoobies or rushing to assert his own straightness" all of which I kind of expected when I first watched the episode.

      Xander realizes that Larry felt comfortable coming out to him because Larry thought he was also gay. So Xander, rather than immediately going "no homo" or whatever, just kind of lets Larry believe it so that Larry doesn't have to feel uncomfortable or regret his decision to come out.

  26. LucyGoosey says:

    Oz's reaction to waking up naked in a field: "Huh". I aspire to be that nonchalant.

    Va erjngpuvat guvf rcvfbqr, V xvaq bs jvfu gur jevgref unq qrpvqrq gb tb jvgu Knaqre orvat tnl yvxr gurl gbffrq nebhaq, vafgrnq bs Jvyybj. V guvax vg jbhyq unir orra n avpr pbagvahngvba bs uvf rneyl punenpgre qrirybczrag naq znfphyvavgl vffhrf.

  27. SnarkyWriter says:

    I read the werewolf plot as a metaphor for puberty more than a sexist phase. Obviously there's more metaphor there–the expression of the animalistic tendencies of human beings, in this case, teenaged boys–but that seemed to be the bigger one. Especially when Willow says "Can't you just trust me on this? He said he was going through all these changes and then he . . . went through all these changes!"

  28. Beth says:

    Ugh, every time i think about the Xander-hyena situation just coming out and fading into oblivion, I get so mad! Naq gura, bs pbhefr, V guvax nobhg gur Knaqre-arire-gryyvat-Ohssl-gung-Jvyybj-jnf-gelvat-gb-er-fbhy-Natry guvat naq ubj gung arire rira pnzr bhg ng nyy, naq V SYL VAGB N ENTR!!

    • SnarkyWriter says:

      Lrnu, fbeel, ohg "V arire fnvq gun-" jnf ABG rabhtu bs gung. Gurer arrqrq gb or jnl zber bs gung qvfphffvba.

    • Seventh_Star says:

      vg ernyyl cvffrf zr bss gung knaqre qbrfa'g gryy ohssl nobhg jvyybj gelvat gb oernx gur phefr, ohg v guvax vg'f terng gung guvf vf oebhtug hc va frnfba 7. v jnf qhzosbhaqrq. v ybir n tbbq pnyyonpx.

  29. knut_knut says:

    WHAT JUST HAPPENED. I THINK I LOVE OZ EVEN MORE NOW THAT I KNOW HE’S A WEREWOLF. I DID NOT SEE THAT COMING AT ALL. I knew it wasn’t Larry because it was too obvious, but OZ??? Never!

    But it looks like a school mascot
    THIS EXACTLY. Could I go to school where a werewolf is the mascot? All my schools had terrible ones :/

    I was actually really disappointed with Willow this episode πŸ™ From slut-shaming Cordy to encouraging Buffy to be a meek girly-girl, it was just sad. I wish Willow had said to Buffy to tone down her strength so that she would seem like a regular person, since there’s really nothing that odd about a girl being strong. Being a girl has nothing to do with being meek.

  30. enigmaticagentscully says:

    Actually, I have to admit, I did find it kind of hilarious that Xander completely accidentally helped this guy through an incredible, life affirming experience. Poor guy can only do things right when he's not even trying!

  31. haguenite says:

    I never saw Oz being a werewolf as a metaphor. Does this make me a bad student of literature? Perhaps. But I just saw it as YAY ANOTHER SUPERNATURAL BEING WITH WHICH WE CAN HAVE TONS OF FUN.

    And oh, the fun that Giles has! "I’m sure my books and I are in for a fascinating afternoon." OH GILES. HOW DO I LOVE YOU.

    I also like the nod to the hyena episode and how Xander does remember the things he did and said after all.

  32. …That's why it's in rot13.

  33. SweetVerda says:

    So, with the Xander gay locker room thing, I think Xander is just immature and insecure. He's insecure about his own sexual identity, as all of his potential love interests have been either monsters or Cordelia (who he's not really sure where he stands with), and then accidentally claimed he was gay. And he couldn't take it back without sounding unconvincing. What should he have said, he was looking for werewolves? I think that everything in his body language says that he wants to desperately escape the awkward situation he found himself in, not that he was afraid Larry would start hitting on him.

    I think Oz being a werewolf sort of parallels Angel. The debate on whether or not Angel deserves to be punished for what he did without a soul should keep in mind that no one would have held Oz responsible, although a werewolf and a vampire are described the same way, "It acts on pure instinct. No conscience, predatory and aggressive."

    • @Ivana2804 says:

      Vampires don't act on pure instinct, though. They are intelligent and very well aware what they're doing and, as we see with Angel, can make complicated schemes on how to torture people out of pure sadism.

      Werewolves, on the other hand, act just like wild animals.

    • marn says:

      I'm with you on the parallels to Angel. Oz has a dark side that Willow didn't know about– and neither did Oz, before this episode.

  34. Delta1212 says:

    During Willow's complaints about Oz, I kept hearing Katy Perry's Hot N Cold in my head.

    Amusingly, I'm now hearing it out of my head as it's playing over the speakers in the place I'm currently eating.

  35. ek_johnston says:

    This episode has one of my favourite Buffy-isms ever: "I didn't jump! I took a tiny step and there conclusions were."

    I do not get to use that enough in daily conversation, though I give it my all.

  36. t09yavosaur says:

    -Oz is a foot shorter and yet twice the man of them put together.
    -Aw and he is taking things slow with Willow. Looks like Willow is going to have to take charge in that situation.
    -While Cordy is taking charge of hers! Go Cordy!! Also Xander, get priorities.
    -WEREWOLF!!!! I AM SO EXCITED even if the costume looks pretty bad ITS A WEREWOLF!
    -“Full Moons” are sometimes more than one night but I am happy that Giles is looking forward to his research. Werewolves that don't need the moon are more fun anyway.
    -Larry looked scared that Buffy was in his group even though she is “supposed to be a meek girly-girl”.
    -Go away skeevy wolf murderer.
    -Willow/Cordy girl-talk!!!
    -I just want everyone to be nice to each other and get the bad guys. Thanks goodness for Werewolf interuptions.
    -Go ahead and eat Angelus, Wolfy! Not the girl! The Vamp!
    -Poor Oz. Poor Theresa. Stupid Angelus. Poor Baby Wolfy. Poor Baby Wolfy's parents. Poor Willow. :/
    -So what is Larry's actual secret?
    -Oh Larry…I understand you now.
    -And he won't out Xander! Larry's actually sweet inside.
    -Noooo! Bad Advice! No being daring! No making the first move! No seizing the day!! Not for 24 hrs at least.
    -That was actually a sweet Xander/Buffy moment.
    -Where did you get those, Oz? Where are your parents? And OH NO WILLOW GO AWAY!
    -Seriously that costume is pretty bad. Why is it's muzzle stuck in a snarl. If they changed that it would look 100x better.
    -Skeevy guy in a creepy van. Way to be a stereotype.
    -Don't be weird Xander, you helped him become a better Larry.
    -I have to admit the Werewolf jokes were pretty good. It is also good for Xander to hear that it isn't up to him.
    -<img src=""&gt;

  37. shoroko says:

    I'm too busy dying of the too-much-stuff-I-have-to-do this week to make any substantial comments. But I will say that though I didn't care for the underlying gender essentialist point, I did enjoy Buffy's line of "I just took a small step and there conclusions were!"

    Nyfb, V qba'g guvax vg jnf zhpu bs n fhecevfr gb zr rira ng guvf cbvag gung bs pbhefr Knaqre vf vagb Jvyybj. Gur fubjvat-ab-vagrerfg-hagvy-fur-znl-abg-or-gurer aneengvir vf cerggl glcvpny, naq Knaqre frrzf gb jnag rirelguvat gb or ninvynoyr gb uvz, naq jnagf jungrire ur qbrfa'g be znl abg or noyr gb unir 100k zber.

    And yeah, Xander's gay panic was super tiring. I get that he sort of put himself into a situation from which it was difficult to extricate himself ("Oh, I thought you were a werewolf" may not go over well, though apparently Oz's relatives weren't that weirded out by it), but even if he couldn't just tell the truth or othewise communicate the misundertanding, there's no call to revert to Xander's "humorous" discomfort. I mean, geez, you just helped someone in a very scary situation to accept who they are and have pride in their identity – be happy about it!

  38. Laneswitch says:

    After the season two finale, watch all the way to the end of the credits!

  39. IceBlueRose says:

    Oz and his reaction to being a werewolf is pretty much my favorite thing ever. "Huh." Actually, Oz's reactions in general rock. And I think his family must be the most laid back family in the world with the way that phone call went.

    And I totally get why people hate Willow and Buffy's exchange about Cordy but I also get why that exchange happens that way – it's probably the most realistic portrayal of the way a high school girl reacts when a girl she doesn't like is with the guy she did/does like. Not many high school girls are going to go off about how she's a bully or how she treats people like dirt because of her money (unless they're like Joey Potter or something). It's easier for them to call her names like skanky ho. So while I don't think it's fair of them to do it and I understand why people don't like that line, I get why the writers had it happen that way.

    Gnyx nobhg rneyl sberfunqbjvat jvgu Ohssl naq Knaqre xvffvat. Bs pbhefr, ol gur gvzr Ohssl npghnyyl unf srryvatf sbe Knaqre naq qrpynerf ure ybir sbe uvz va gur pbzvpf (naq V'z cerggl fher ur jnf gur bar gehr ybir xvff gung jbxr Ohssl hc ohg V unira'g ernq nyy bs frnfba 8 fb V pbhyq or jebat ba gung), ur'f qngvat Qnja juvpu vf whfg fb jrveq sbe zr. Gurl znxr vg n cbvag gb unir Knaqre gerng ure yvxr n xvq be n yvggyr fvfgre va gur frnfbaf gung fur nccrnef naq gura va gur pbzvpf nsgre rirelguvat, ur'f tbg srryvatf sbe ure? V qba'g rira xabj jung gung jnf nobhg.

    • etherealclarity says:

      V gubhtug gurl unq erirnyrq jub gur bar gehr ybir xvff jnf va gur pbzvpf fvtavsvpnagyl cevbe gb Ohssl qrpynevat ure srryvatf sbe Knaqre… yvxr, irel fbba nsgre gur bar gehr ybir xvff npghnyyl bppheerq?

      • IceBlueRose says:

        Bu gurl qrsvavgryl zvtug unir. Yvxr V fnvq, V qvqa'g ernq nyy bs frnfba 8 fb V cebonoyl zvffrq vg vs gurl qvq. V jnf whfg fnlvat vs vg raqrq hc orvat Knaqre gura vg'f jrveq sbe zr, whfg yvxr gur vqrn bs uvz orvat jvgu Qnja jrveqf zr bhg. V'yy qrsvavgryl unir gb ybbx vg hc abj gubhtu orpnhfr V'z phevbhf ba jub gur xvff jnf sebz!

    • @Ivana2804 says:

      Gur gehr ybir xvffre jnf erirnyrq cerggl dhvpxyl – gurer'f n uvag va vffhr #4 naq vg'f erirnyrq va vffhr 10, ybat, ybat orsber gur Ohssl/Knaqre guvat. Vg jnf Fngfh, gur Fynlre jvgu gur chaxvfu unvefglyr. Fur jnf va ybir jvgu Ohssl, naq gurl raqrq hc univat n fubeg syvat (cerggl zhpu n gjb-avtugf fgnaq).

      • IceBlueRose says:

        Bbbu, tbgpun. Gunaxf! V guvax V'q nyernql fgbccrq ernqvat ol gung cbvag fb V pbzcyrgryl zvffrq gung erirny. V fubhyq cebonoyl ernq gubfr ohg V'ir ernq fhzznevrf naq zl zvaq vf obttyrq ol gur penml bs gur pbzvpf.

  40. Kickpuncher says:

    You know, I don’t really get the appeal of Oz. He just seems like he was brought in originally to be Willow’s love interest and say quirky sarcastic things and never got developed beyond that. Even now, being a werewolf is something that happens to him, but isn’t about him. Oz seems more like a list of things (plays guitar, is unflappable, likes Willow, is werewolf) than a cohesive character. At this point in the show, I get why Xander is Xander, why Willow is Willow, Buffy Buffy, Angel Angel, Cordelia Cordelia, etc, even why Joyce is Joyce and Larry is Larry, to a lesser extent, but I can’t say the same thing about Oz. He gets good lines sometimes, but I dunno. He just feels like he doesn’t have as much of a past as the other characters, like he was created fully formed in “Inca Mummy Girl” so he could say “Who is that girl?” I don’t hate him, but I think he’s the weak link of the cast.

    Why is Oz Oz?

    • cait0716 says:

      Naq guvf vf jul Frgu Terra qrpvqrq gb yrnir gur fubj ng gur ortvaavat bs frnfba sbhe

      • arctic_hare says:

        Uhu, V arire xarj gung.

        • cait0716 says:

          Gur jubyr Irehpn fgbelyvar jnf fhccbfrq gb cynl bhg bire n zhpu ynetre puhax bs gur frnfba. Ohg V guvax nabgure cebwrpg pnzr hc gung jnf zber vagrerfgvat, fb Frgu Terra nfxrq gb or eryrnfrq sebz uvf pbagenpg rneyl naq gur sbeprq gur fgbel vagb gjb rcvfbqrf

          • robin_comments says:

            Lrc. Juvpu V'z crefbanyyl tengrshy sbe, orpnhfr jbj qvq V abg rawbl gur Irehpn punenpgre. GUNAX H FRGU TERRA. XVFFRF SEBZ ZR.

        • IceBlueRose says:

          Lhc, Frgu Terra jnf npghnyyl nyernql gnyxvat gb Wbff Jurqba nobhg yrnivat ng gur ortvaavat bs frnfba guerr orpnhfr bs bgure cebwrpgf gung jrer pbzvat hc. Gurl cerggl zhpu pbhyqa'g svther n jnl gb qb vg naq ur nterrq gb fgnl naq gura gurl pbaqrafrq gur Irehpn fgbelyvar fb gung ur pbhyq yrnir gur fubj. V pna'g erzrzore juvpu srngherggr gung gurl gnyx nobhg vg ba gubhtu. V guvax znlor frnfba svir rira gubhtu Bm jnf nyernql ybat tbar ohg vg jnf n srngherggr nobhg pnfgvat sbe gur fubj naq gurl gnyxrq gb Frgu Terra naq jrag gb gur frg bs Natry gb gnyx gb Punevfzn Pnecragre nf jryy.

      • Kickpuncher says:

        It’s pretty interesting that Green is Terra in rot13. That’s probably the coolest rot13 thing I’ve come across. Also Oz is Bm, lol I’m 13.

    • ambyrglow says:

      Lrnu, vs jr rire yrnea nalguvat nobhg uvf snzvyl yvsr (orfvqrf gung ur unf n jrerjbys pbhfva) V qba'g erzrzore. Jvyybj naq Knaqre'f cneragf znl oneryl or cerfrag, ohg jr bppnfvbanyyl trg zragvba bs gurz. Rira Pbeqryvn'f arire-frra cneragf raqf hc orvat n ovt cybg cbvag yngre.

      Bm . . . zvtug nf jryy or yvivat bhg bs uvf ina. Znlor ur vf yvivat bhg bs uvf ina. Naq gura gurer'f uvf orvat znqr gb ercrng gur ynfg lrne bs uvtu fpubby fb gurl pna xrrc uvz nebhaq va frnfba guerr, juvpu whfg . . . qbrf abg znxr frafr. Ur'f nyernql orvat pbhegrq ol uvtu-grpu pbzcnavrf va Jung'f Zl Yvar. Ur qbrfa'g ARRQ gb tenqhngr. Vg jbhyq srry jnl zber va punenpgre sbe uvz gb qebc bhg naq gnxr gur TRQ.

      V zrna, V yvxr gur punenpgre. V yvxr gur punenpgre n ybg. Ohg onpxfgbel naq qrirybczrag, pna jr unir, cyrnfr?

    • Seventh_Star says:

      guvf fgevxrf zr nf shaal orpnhfr bm vf gur bayl punenpgre gung'f onfrq bss fbzrbar gung wbff npghnyyl xarj.

      • robin_comments says:

        Npghnyyl, znlor gung rkcynvaf n ybg? Znlor gur ceboyrz vf gung Wbff vf cvpghevat guvf crefba ur xarj, jub vf bs pbhefr n shyyl sbezrq crefba va Wbff' urnq, naq fb jura ur nqqf nyy gur oebnq fgebxrf gung erzvaq uvz bs gung crefba… ur qbrfa'g ernyvmr ur'f sbetrggvat gb nqq nyy bs gur punenpgre-ohvyqvat arprffvgvrf sbe gur nhqvrapr. Znlor ur qbrfa'g fgbc gb jbaqre JUL gur punenpgre qbrf jung ur qbrf, naq ernpgf ubj ur ernpgf, qbrfa'g arrq gb cflpubnanylmr naq bssre engvbanyr… orpnhfr ur pna whfg nfx uvzfrys ubj gur crefba va uvf zrzbevrf jbhyq cebonoyl erfcbaq.

        • Seventh_Star says:

          v jnf npghnyyl guvaxvat fvzvyne gubhtugf jura v jebgr gung pbzzrag :)"jryy, V xabj guvf thl, fb fheryl GURL'YY cvpx hc ba vg, EVTUG?" gung jnf zr abg qbvat n tbbq wbo bs orvat wbff.

          naq v nyfb guvax gung bm'f punenpgre whfg anghenyyl tbg chfurq gb gur fvqr. gurer jnf whfg gbb zhpu tbvat ba jvgu gur znva punenpgref gb nppbzzbqngr uvf.

    • robin_comments says:

      I feel like you raised an excellent point here about the character that I hadn't really considered before. I tend to really enjoy his "vibe" and dialogue, but you're right… In this episode that could have really explored Oz and added layers to his character and important flaws/motivations (like the 'Angel' episode did for Angel)… the writers didn't choose to do that. I can't offer you a special Oz-specific reason for why he does what he does, even after he's now appeared in several episodes.

    • James says:

      I find this odd, because Oz is my favourite character on the show. He's not a complex character, but that doesn't make him less cohesive, imo. He's very intelligent and introspective, but he doesn't want much from life so he just sort of exists in a state of being chill. The conversation with his aunt is enough for me to get that his family are similarly laid back and pragmatic about things, which explains the way he is further. Naq nf fbzrbar cbvagrq bhg, ur'f onfrq bss fbzrbar Wbff xarj; creuncf gung'f jul ur frrzf gb or vagebqhprq, nf lbh fnl, shyyl-sbezrq? Gur bguref ner orvat qvfpbirerq ol gur jevgref nf gur fubj tbrf ba, ohg Bm vf onfrq bs fbzrbar jub rkvfgf naq vf, nf fhpu, nyernql qvfpbirerq. Cyhf vg svgf va jvgu uvf punenpgrevfngvba bs orvat vagebfcrpgvir naq cuvybfbcuvpny (naq n ovg byqre) gung ur jbhyq nyernql unir svtherq uvzfrys bhg. Maybe it's because I identify with him that I can get a better handle on him? IDK.

      • Seventh_Star says:

        yeah, this is how i have always seen him. fher, fbzrgvzrf uvf punenpgre trgf gur funsg orpnhfr gur bgure fgbelyvarf ner zber vzcbegnag, ohg v fgvyy TRG uvz, l'xabj?

  41. John Small Berries says:

    "Hey straight guys, you know that we’re not all automatically attracted to you, right?"

    Homophobia: a man's fear that gay men will treat him the same way he treats women.

  42. Mary Sue says:

    This episode… does not age well.

    No, seriously, though. I remember watching this in 1998 and being very, very, VERY happy for two reasons–

    1) HOMG A GAY CHARACTER ON TV!!! WHO'S A JOCK! Yes, yes, very minor character but HOMG A GAY CHARACTER!
    2) The nerdy girl gets the totally cool dude in a band. THE NERDY GIRL CAN FIND HAPPINESS! WHAT IS THIS I DON'T EVEN

    I had to learn a lot of social cues from TV and movies, and these were new! exciting! cues I'd never seen before! I like these cues! I'm going to use these cues!

    Now, though, I have a lot more comfort in my own skin so I don't need to rely on what media tells me about relationships to actually, you know, *have* relationships. So looking back on this episode, I do cringe a whole lot, but I acknowledge how useful it was for me in my own life at that time.

  43. James says:

    I thought of another thing I wanted to say! About Xander's line: "Oh behalf of my gender, hey!"

    You know, I really wish that line and Giles' about assuming the werewolf was male was jumping to conclusions hadn't been so readily dismissed. There are worse things that go unquestioned and unaddressed in this episode, obviously, but writing all men off as uncontrollable, sex-crazed beasts is not a good thing and actually ends up hurting women. It feeds into rape culture and makes guys, like Xander and Larry, who are concerned about not being seen as traditionally "masculine" over-compensate and act like chauvinist douchebags because that's what society tells them men should be.

    • SosaLola says:

      Interesting insight. I do think that Xander and Larry's obsession with masculinity is about social expectations of them. They have to be macho to be accepted. And judging by the hints we already have of Xander's homelife, his character makes so much sense episode after episode.

    • robin_comments says:

      There are worse things that go unquestioned and unaddressed in this episode, obviously, but writing all men off as uncontrollable, sex-crazed beasts is not a good thing and actually ends up hurting women.
      IA. That's why I enjoy that it ends up being Oz who's the werewolf — the person who holds none of the stereotypical traits.

    • echinodermata says:

      Please don't use "crazed" on this site.

    • IceBlueRose says:

      Yeah at that moment, I think Buffy is really letting her experience with Angel so far color her opinion. Because for her, sex is what changed him. Granted, it doesn't happen with all guys, of course, but she's assuming that that's the way it works and that all men are animals. At least that's what it feels like to me whenever I watch this ep.

  44. SosaLola says:

    That Xander/Buffy scene was really HOT!! I wonder what it would be like if Buffy liked him back? I'd have loved to watch that. I really love how much Xander tries to be understanding and supportive to Buffy, even though he's proven right and Angel turned out to bad news.

  45. tigerpetals says:


    I’m glad Giles enjoys his job.

    I also enjoy Buffy’s pleasure in protecting against jerks.

    And Giles laughing at Xander’s joke for once. <3

    If Cain was smart, he’d follow Buffy.

    C’mon, you’re dropping in front of the girls who aren’t getting any sexual heat.

    He didn’t.

    Nice reference to Angel, and how he did just kill Teresa.

    We need SPWW for werewolves.

    No, will Oz be the cautionary bad boyfriend too?
    (No, Willow already had that with the vampire in WttH and Moloch/Malcolm.)

    Oh I don’t think that I noticed Oz wore an earring before.

    And the Pack is played for a joke.

    Buffy feels bad for Willow. And she gets penalized for defending herself against violent jerks.

    A very nice B/X friendship moment.

    Repeated lack of positive response when our three female characters want to move the physical intimacy levels up.

    Wereoz left Willow alone!

    I love that bending the gun moment.

    Willow/Oz and Buffy changing her mind about Oz!

    Plus he thought he’d killed a person.

    None of that leaving a girl for her own good nonsense!

    • tigerpetals says:

      And the internet was shitty to me today./whine

    • Kickpuncher says:

      C’mon, you’re dropping in front of the girls who aren’t getting any sexual heat.

      Nah, this is foreshadowing for the upcoming steamy Cordillow affair. I can feel it.

  46. fantasylover120 says:

    I don't know how anyone can watch this ep and not become a die hard Oz/Willow shipper. Or at least grow to like the pairing.
    Daily Buffy Quotable
    "I think you splashed on a little too much obsession for dorks."-Cordelia
    "My books and I are sure to be in for a fascinating afternoon."-Giles (and I love that TOTALLY MEANS IT)
    "I didn't jump. I took a tiny step and there conclusions were."-Buffy
    "Is Geordie a werewolf? Uh huh…and how long has that been going on?"-Oz
    "He said he was going through all these changes and then he went through all these changes."-Willow
    "How about you let the door hit you on the ass on the way out of town."-Buffy

    • notemily says:

      The quote about stepping to conclusions reminds me of The Phantom Tollbooth, where Conclusions is an island that can only be reached by jumping. Hee.

      • Patrick721 says:

        Oh god that book. I think I might need to reread it now that you've reminded me of it.

      • fantasylover120 says:

        Somebody else has read The Phantom Tollbooth?! ;hugs; I seriously was beginning to think I was the only kid that knew what that book was. Every time I mention it people are all "Phantom Tollbooth? What's that?"

        • cait0716 says:

          Really? It was required reading for me in sixth grade. I love that book!

          • fantasylover120 says:

            I wish it was required reading where I lived. Unfortunately my school teachers tended to stick with the more conventional classics which basically meant no fantasy (except for one cool middle school teacher who tried out the Hobbit on us but the students all whined about it being too hard so much that it didn't last very long in our class…sigh). The only reason I know about the Phantom Tollbooth was my Grandmother the retired English teacher who is inderictly responsible for my early love of fantasy and books in general. She introduced me to this, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, A Little Princess, and even The Last Unicorn. I loved going to her place because there was always a fifty fifty chance I'd get a new book.

        • Appachu says:

          *Phantom Tollbooth high five* Best book or best book</>?

        • notemily says:

          I was a pun-loving kid! It's basically required reading for people who like wordplay.

  47. 00guera00 says:

    The locker room scene.

    While on one hand I think it's just awkward Xander being awkward and not having a clue on how to gracefully correct Larry on his assumption that he's gay without making things worse, I also think it might have something to do with the fact that he's already bullied and picked on and him thinking if a rumor got out that he was gay it would just be more fuel for his tormentors.

    I could be way off base, of course. I guess I just didn't see anything on Larry's side that would even hint (even if I tried to see it) that he was hitting on Xander so I didn't even think that was the cause of Xander's discomfort during that scene.

  48. feminerdist says:

    OZ!! I love Seth Green. Jesus.

    I spent the majority of the episode, after the big reveal about Oz, absolutely TERRIFIED and completely certain that he was going to die by the end of the episode. PHEW. I really hope I didn't just jinx this (you know, since I can jinx a show that's been off-air for YEARS). And damn, that werewolf costume was atrocious. I know they have a limited effects budget, but shit…

  49. notemily says:

    "Phases"! A good episode to follow up "Innocence" with, I think. Not too silly and not too srs bzns.

    – Callback to "Witch"! Hee hee.
    – Larry! "You've really mastered the single entendre." πŸ˜€ I love that Oz is completely unfazed by Larry's sexist comments.
    – I would be SO pissed off if I were Cordelia here. Also, Xander, what the hell do you have against Oz? THERE IS NOTHING BAD ABOUT OZ.
    – Man, NOBODY does werewolves right. I mean the look. They either look like people with furry suits on, or some kind of really ugly dog. I don't think I've ever seen a TV/movie werewolf that was genuinely frightening to me.
    – "Some sort of holding pattern… without the holding."
    – "Couple of GUYS." I love this conversation between Cordelia and Willow. We don't really see them talk much, and especially after coming off Willow's disapproval of the Cordy/Xander relationship, it's nice to see her actually bonding with Cordelia a bit.
    – Angel vs. Werewolf in a growl-off! Werewolf wins!
    – Oh noes THE WEREWOLF IS OZ! "Huh." I love Oz.
    – Seth Green is so little and that phone he's holding is SO HUGE, it's funny.
    – So if this is the second werewolf night and Oz is only realizing what's going on now, what happened after the first night?
    – "You said you didn't remember anything about that." Heh.
    – Xander, just stop talking.
    – The Larry thing is one of my favorite parts of this episode. It's funny, but also kind of sad, because of how many people actually do go through this stuff all the time.
    – "I could hide my FIST in your FACE…"
    – Hee, Xander actually DOES help Larry with his problem, just not in the way he thought he would.
    – Improvised stake with that easel stand thingie! And score a vamp kill for Xander!
    – "And you put the tag back in my shirt! But I guess none of that means anything…" hee
    – "Why do you have… chains and stuff?" He's just into kink, Willow. It's okay.
    – "He said he was going through all these changes, and then… he went through all these changes!" Best line.
    – I like the gun-bending thing. It's so cartoony. She should have tied it in a knot.
    – Larry is nice now! Ha.
    – "Xander? It's not up to you." THANK YOU, BUFFY.
    – "You are quite the human." "I'd very still." I love Oz.
    – "A werewolf in love." Say it with me now: AAAAAWWWWWWWWWWW!

    I swear to you, my first thought was, “COULD SOMEONE ON THIS SHOW DATE AN ACTUAL HUMAN FOR ONCE?”

    Well, Cordelia and Xander are human! …as far as we know.

    • @Ivana2804 says:

      And Giles and Jenny.

    • Kickpuncher says:

      Does it count if Pbeqryvn vf n unys-qrzba ergebnpgviyl?

    • t09yavosaur says:

      "- Man, NOBODY does werewolves right. I mean the look. They either look like people with furry suits on, or some kind of really ugly dog. I don't think I've ever seen a TV/movie werewolf that was genuinely frightening to me."

      Wolves don't really frighten me so I can't comment on that part but one of the better Werewolves I have seen is the one in Doctor Who: Tooth and Claw. The only problem with it is that it is obvious that it is CGI.

  50. Dru says:

    re: the crappiness of the werewolf costume, I think it's not just a budget problem, even Hollywoof is shit at making wolves who look scary instead of funny.

    I mean, remember this?
    <img sc="; />

    Or even this fursplosion (which looks super fluffy and kind of reminds me of stuffed toys):

    <img src="; />

    • RachelFatale says:

      Real wolves ARE super fluffy and cuddly-looking, though, so it's not too bad. I don't even know what that's from. Is it Twilight? I really hope I didn't just say that something from Twilight was "not too bad".

      • Dru says:

        lol yes, that is where it was from.

        But it's not really the fluffiness that makes this hilarious, it's the expression – real wolves should probably look a little meaner, but that thing? It looks like my grandparents' German Shepherd when he's feeling frisky..

      • misterbernie says:

        …well, we could lie to you and tell you it isn't.

  51. Dru says:

    Sorry, here is the first example of a funny-looking Hollywood werewolf, my html sucks:

    <img src="; />

    • t09yavosaur says:

      Even though he looks silly I actually think that Lupni!Wolf is a pretty good representation of a Werewolf. He has the canine head and other animalistic features (fur, reversed knees(i think) for four-legged speed) but he also has the awkward look of a person trying to walk on all fours and the torso of a human, with the broad shoulders and long arms. All these features are blended together in a way that looks silly, yes, but not awkward.

      • Dru says:

        Watching this for the first time in the theatre on the day it was released, I remember feeling genuine terror/revulsion at the sight of the Remuswolf, but also disconcerted because he didn't match the book's description of Wolf Lupin at all.

        I agree that it's not awkward, it's just….weird to be pulled out of my own complete absorption in the movie by a "hey, that's supposed to be a werewolf?"

    • MidnightLurker says:

      Like I said earlier, Lupinwolf was inspired by medieval woodcuts of werewolves. He's the "classic" model.

  52. Buffy throwing Larry over her shoulder is so awesome and I love her line "I'm rash and impulsive. It's a flaw."

    I love Willow's dialogue in this!

    Willow: Great. I'll give Xander a call. What's his number? Oh, yeah, 1-
    Buffy: Meow!
    Willow: Really? Thanks. I've never gotten a 'meow' before.
    Buffy: Well-deserved.
    Willow: Darn tootin'

    Cordelia: What's he waiting for? What's his problem? (rolls her eyes)
    Oh, that's right, he's a guy.
    Willow: (disgusted) Yeah, him and Xander. Guys.
    Cordelia: Who do they think they are?
    Willow: A couple of guys.

    There's something about Willow's expression and voice that makes me laugh everytime in that scene. I don't know if it's considered guy-shaming but I'll let it slide.

    I don't see Xander reacting to Larry as being anti-gay. I saw it as that Larry thinks he's gay but he can't very well tell Larry he's not because someone just told him he's big secret but Xander can't tell him that he thought he was a werewolf. does that makes sense?

    and as far as the werewolf being a metaphor I think is it's werewolves change because of the phases of the moon. I don't think it has to do with sexism.

    • sporkaganza93 says:

      Willow: Great. I'll give Xander a call. What's his number? Oh, yeah, 1-
      Buffy: Meow!
      Willow: Really? Thanks. I've never gotten a 'meow' before.
      Buffy: Well-deserved.
      Willow: Darn tootin'

      Um no this is pretty awful actually! Slut-shaming not cool.

      I do love that Willow says "darn tootin'" though. That's so her.

  53. Fuzzysnowpuffs says:

    Wow I just found this site today… As a gigantic Buffy fan (obviously) I'm very excited to be able to read the reactions of a person who is completely spoiler free!

  54. mandy says:

    I love Seth Green to pieces, and Willow an Oz, can it be any more cute??

  55. buyn says:

    And so it is, that the svefg gay character on Buffy…
    is played by a Mormon actor.
    Sorry, just thought it was interesting.

  56. Tina says:

    OK here's my thoughts on this episode.
    First itt's one of my favourite episode ever because :

    1/Feminism : if the point with Cain was pretty very straightforward, it's not really what kept my attention the most. I was very focused on both Willow and Oz in this episode. First I find it very very interesting to see that both Xander and Willow act the same way when they see eachother with someone else. Willow basically had the same reaction Xander had when she see him with Cordelia. She was also playing the "Nice Girl" trope (a feminine version of the NIce Guy trope i think, she canonically said that she is waiting for Xander to stop dating all of those "bitches" and finally see that she is the one for him) and in the contact of Oz she realizes that it's not healthy for her neither for her relationship with Xander.

    I never shipped Xander/Willow mostly because they always gave me the sister/brother vibe.

    • Tina says:

      Also, I really liked that Willow addressed that a girl making the first step can be slut-shaming. And it's not surprising that Willow slut-shame Cordelia because she already has those representation of feminity and, as I assume, she envy her for being so "free", and because Willow thinks she couldn't act like Cordelia (because of society standards she had integrated, self-esteem issues etc) she is jealous of Cordelia, not only because Xander is attracted to her (and it's pretty logical that Xander is not attracted to Willow because with Cordelia and Buffy, he showed that he prefers women with a lot of confidence. Which is not the case of Willow), but also because she'd like to be more confident like her.

      I could dissert HOURS about Willow's clothes and all the issues and grow-up journey it shows and tells.

      • Tina says:

        Then, my other favourite thing in this episode: Oz.
        Oz always was my favourite character on the entire show. I find it very smart to make the laid back guy becoming the "beast without any filter, pure instincts" monster. For me it says that, as much laid-back Oz is, it doesn't make him a robot without emotion. It shows that Oz also has a breaking point, something that he can't control and it shows that sex can be a terrifying thing for both sexes and also the representation put on men. Every men being a predator and it doesn't matter how nice you are, you are still a potential rapist. I see the scene of Oz transformation a representation of that. Willow was afraid to be the one doing the first step because it was making her accepting that she wants to be "sexual" and the fact that OZ transforms when she is saying that, a representation of the nice man you love becoming a whole beast (rapist) because you (as a woman) gave him an opening. This "representation" ends on Willow shooting to sleep Oz and showing that she can "dominate" the "rapist-beast" and so that she can be in control of her sexuality.

      • Dru says:

        I could dissert HOURS about Willow's clothes and all the issues and grow-up journey it shows and tells.

        That and her hair. So much story there.

        • Tina says:

          Yep, the hair too ! And she is pretty much the only character with those two characteristics.

        • Tina says:

          Yep the hair too. I should go to sleep so I can't dissert about her clothe in the transformation scene (it's like the most "covering" and "childish" clothes she wore until now). I also really loved the symbolism with Oz trying to chain himself.

  57. My sister used to have a serious thing for Seth Green. She went away for the weekend, and my friend and I decided it would be hilarious to replace her framed poster of Chagall with this:
    <img src=""&gt;
    It was the closest thing to a naked picture of Oz we could find. We cackled over how hilarious it would be when she came home to find a framed Oz on her wall. The picture didn't quite fit in the enormous gold frame I had lying around, so we created a custom mat. We really wanted it to look professional — and holy cow it took forever, y'all. I've spent less time on term papers then we spent framing Oz.

    The next day, she came home, and we waited impatiently for her to go to her bedroom and see Oz. But she kept sitting around chatting with us about her trip despite our broad hints that she needed to unpack. After ages, she finally adjourned to her room, and we sat giggling in the kitchen waiting for her to come bursting out and . . . what? I'm not sure exactly what we expected to happen. What actually happened was that she eventually came out of her room and said wearily, "funny, you guys," while we laughed uproariously.

    But she did leave Oz up for several days.

  58. MrsGillianO says:

    I'm with some of the others in seeing Xander's reaction to Larry more one of confusion – not knowing to get out of Larry thinking he's gay too without upsetting Larry who has just confided an ENORMOUS secret. Xander is naive, gauche and frequently shallow and insensitive, but I give him credit here for recognising it is a difficult and sensitive situation.

    Oz is just wonderful here, as everywhere, and Seth Green plays him superbly. That ultra-dry wit and use of few words is offset by someone who is both sensitive and not afraid to show it. The vulnerability he shows to Willow in their final scene here is quite moving. (And I adore "I'd still. I'd very still.") He is so much more adult than the others, which is why his transformation into an uncontrolled and uncontrollable beast is so frightening. I see it as a commentary on "the Beast within" us all – and a counterbalance to the beast Angel has become. I love the fact that he rejects traditional teenage "games" in terms of role-playing; he refuses to be the predator or "take advantage" of Willow – he rejects any offered relationship that is not based on equality of consent and knowledge. He is just so COOL. And cute.

  59. quenstalof says:

    Is that the same cheerleading trophy as in the witch episode? Awesome.
    Willow adorable as always
    I kind of love that Cordy drives them around for some reason.
    Why would you even take the keys out of the ignition?
    Are Xander and Cordelia like together in public now? On purpose? Yay.
    Creeper makes me really uncomfortable.
    If the moon's gravity can affect the tides, why not people? We are like 75% water right?
    …Um Giles…that wasn't funny. What is up with you?
    OMG is he a werewolf hunter? Is that a thing? Is there like one will be chosen to hunt werewolves? With their own version of Watchers? I hope so.
    28 and 3 is 31. But…there's an extra full moon…Just use lunar months!
    Boo I guess he's just a plain old hunter.
    Yay Willow and Cordy hang out.
    What's with the double dose of misogynistic characters? Bleh.
    AHHH! Oz!
    I love how he jus asks his aunt. No this may sound weird. Just asks her.
    I"m confused. Was Angelus feeding the werewolf?
    I feel like first season they were leaving the stakes in and they would be dusted too. That's how we knew what's his face didn't kill they lady vampire. I think it was Ford.
    Eww eww eww. Bunder? Xanfy? ew
    Like silver bullets? This may be relevant to your interests.
    I'm scared for Willow and simultaneously scared for Oz. So many feelings
    All of the win forever. πŸ™‚

  60. Andie says:

    Just pointing out that today is Buffy's 31st birthday! HAPPY BIRTHDAY, B!

  61. @farwell3d says:

    On Xander. I'm roughly the same age the characters on the show would be now (BTW, happy 31st birthday Buffy!) so, I was 16 or so when this episode aired.

    And, I'll be 100% honest. If someone had gotten the wrong impression from what I said that I was saying I was gay, then, I would have freaked the fuck out. I was never "anti-gay" people, I was never "ew, gross, they should all be killed or something." Nothing like that. I was never homophobic is the traditional sense. I was never afraid of gay people. But afraid of people thinking I'm gay? Sadly, yes.

    Hell, a year or two ago, I found myself suddenly realizing I'm STILL afraid of that, and I don't know why. I wrote this in response to my own stupid bullshit:

    It's not something I'm proud of, but, I think Xander's reaction was, albeit played a bit over the top for comedy, pretty realistic and accurate to what my own experience says would have happened.


    • theDMG says:

      When I was in 8th or 9th grade, a popular bully decided to bestow upon me the oh-so-clever nickname "Funny-Looking Gay Guy." Never mind that I am decidedly straight, and as far as I'm concerned, not terribly funny looking (although, I guess I did have some long gangly arms at the time…) I tried to defuse the nickname with humor but it stuck and grew to the point where it seemed like dozens of people were calling me it and several of my friends began to ask about my sexuality. For a ridiculously shy guy with an undiagnosed anxiety disorder who had just asked out his first girl not long before it was pretty devastating – here I was trying to overcome my shyness to ask out girls and at least one didn't even think I was serious. It was frustrating because if I was gay, I like to think that I'd have been out (a few years later, when I came to terms with my atheism, I came out on that front pretty well immediately to all but a couple people.) And I'd have definitely welcomed gay friends – but to be tagged as gay when I wasn't and at that particular brutally awkward time in my life it left me miserable.

      Nowadays I do set off people's gaydars occasionally (I'm not hyper-masculine and my voice sometimes comes off a little high and nasally) and just laugh it off and let them know that they're mistaken. But in our culture, as a straight high school male, I can very much understand Xander's trepidation at his accidental "outing."

      • @farwell3d says:

        I hear ya.

        I was also a theater major who loves musicals, so, I did somewhat learn to get over be confused for gay. Or, at least I thought I had. Like I said, it's something I had to confront about myself fairly recently.

  62. cloudkittycat says:

    "I thought that this story would end with Willow seeing the guy she liked shot down in front of her."
    I love how Mark thinks Whedon would do this to poor Willow. When my friend watched Buffy for the first time last year, she didn't pick up on Whedon's sadistic ways until way into the series.


  63. John says:

    I don't think that the werewolf in particular has meanings attached to it, Mark, because Oz is the werewolf and he clearly doesn't express any of these sexist characteristics. But then again, I would not describe myself as a feminist, so I feel like I always interpret things a little bit differently from other people when it comes to Buffy, which obviously has lots of feminist things to say.

    Not that I think feminism is bad or anything. I just rarely think of things in context of gender and sexuality.

  64. Sally Amber says:

    When you think about how terrible CGI was at this point the bad werewolf costume is about all they could do :/

  65. Very astute comments, Mark! I do think that Xander's reaction to the Larry story leaves a bit to be desired, but I also understand that it is very in character for him to be worried about how he is seen by others. I just wish the situation wasn't played for laughs as much as it is. To Xander's credit though, I don't see any evidence of him discriminating against Larry for his homosexuality, only fear that he will be outed himself. So that's better than many of the people that went to my high school at least.

    This is the first Monster of the Week episode after Angel has lost his soul and I think it feels quite a bit darker than previous MotW eps for it, even though he doesn't have much physical presence in the episode itself.

    I LOVE Oz. Simple as that. He is one of my very favorites, and he and Willow are SO CUTE at the end.

    I’m still not sure what sort of metaphor the werewolf stands for, though. Is the show trying to say that sexism is a “phase” in teenage boys? That it’s in their nature to act the way they do towards women?

    I think that the werewolf metaphor is more about teenage sexuality and how uncontrollable it can seem for a lot of teenagers. Like… you're just a normal person and then suddenly all these sexual feelings happen and you become a kind of animal. I don't think it's a particularly original metaphor, but I like the spin they put on it here: Oz is normally such a laid back, calm person, so you wouldn't think he would ever be a werewolf. But even the best of us can suddenly be at the mercy of our hormones, and it is an important part of growing up to be able to accept and control that.

  66. WhiteEyedCat says:


    *cough* Anyway, I like this development, couldn't have too many Scoobies dating humans at once! It had to be either this or turning Cordy into some sort of hellbeast. I love how excited Giles gets over werewolves, and his 3D diagram of the earth and moon.

    That werewolf costume is seriously hilariously bad, and especially stands out since most of the monster effects on the show are reasonably good. Poor werewolves, they seem to be constantly stuck in the shadow of vampires.

    I agree that the freaking-out-because-somebody-thinks-you're-gay on Xander's behalf is annoying and not funny. Also Larry's complete turnabout is way too sudden, but I guess it works for the episode. He's not a main character so we probably wouldn't have seen any development from him otherwise.

  67. Hella says:

    Znex lbh jvyy or fb tynq gb xabj gung Jvyybj naq Bm ner gur ybatrfg ehaavat pbhcyr ba Ohssl, abg gung jr pna gryy lbh gung. Ohg V qvq yvxr Jvyybj jvgu Gnen zber.

    • RoseFyre says:

      V qba'g xabj, V guvax Knaqre naq Naln ynfg ybatre. Jvyybj/Bm = zvq-frnfba gjb guebhtu rneyl frnfba sbhe, fb…nobhg 1 naq 3/4 frnfbaf. Knaqre/Naln = rneyl frnfba sbhe guebhtu zvq-frnfba fvk, fb pybfre gb 2 1/2 frnfbaf. Gung'f nyfb bayl pbhagvat pbagvahbhf eryngvbafuvc – orpnhfr Jvyybj/Bm unir gur syvegvat orsber naq gur bar rcvfbqr nsgre, juvyr Knaqre/Naln unir gur cebz qngr orsber naq gur fbeg bs qngvat nsgre.

  68. @itaperaica says:

    V gubhtug gung guvf fgbel jbhyq raq jvgu Jvyybj frrvat gur thl fur yvxrq fubg qbja va sebag bs ure.


  69. Ashes says:

    Gur bayl guvat v qvfyvxr nobhg Bm orvat n jrerjbys, vf gur onq jrerjbys sbez va RIREL rcvfbqr ur punatrf va, fb v abeznyyl pbzcyrgryl qvfertneq gurfr vzntrf naq vzntvar uvz nf n irel ynetr naq fnintr jbys. : )

  70. TrampyMcBitca says:

    Random Thoughts on Phases.

    Cheerleading trophy from Witch! Is she going to be like that forever?

    "That's great, Larry. You've really mastered the single entendre". I love Oz.

    That must be some lightweight werewolf. They can't feel him on top of the car until he punches through? A convertible top, no less.

    How did you know it was trying to bite you, Xander? Did it's arm have teeth?

    Gym class (self defense class?) "uniforms"? My gym experience was just bringing your own shirt and sweats.

    Shut up, Xander.

    "I may have to attack you." Foreshadowing? Well, kinda.

    I did enjoy Buffy flipping Larry.

    Never heard of the "3 nights of the werewolf" thing before. It does help storytelling wise though since it gave them time to figure everything out without having to fastforward a month or two.

    I like when the "adversaries" talk to each other like regular people. Larry and Xander talking about the dog bite and Cordy and Willow talking about guys.

    That is one quiet werewolf. Did he climb up and come in through the roof? Not a very good hunter though. Jumps into the middle of a bunch of people and just stands around looking at them as they all run away.

    Fire drills in Sunnydale must go smoothly, they cleared out that place in no time.

    "If that thing out there harms anyone, it's going to be on your pretty little head." He's talking about the werewolf, she's thinking about Angelus. (I'm assuming)

    Does Giles call Cain a pillock? My Netflix closed captioning came back with 'BLAERG!'. LOL

    You're a messy eater, Angelus (then again maybe it was spillage from trying to turn her. Ew.). And you're a picky eater, Mr. Werewolf. Apparently, he doesn't even touch her. I remember when I first watched it that many thought Angelus was trying to lure the werewolf to Theresa's body but I doubt that since he'd want Buffy to know that Theresa was killed by him.

    Six foot tall werewolf becomes 5' 4" Oz. Where does all the extra stuff go?

    I have a little problem with the Oz = werewolf revelation. What happened on the first night? I'm assuming he woke up naked then as well. Unless "Huh" equates to "Hey, this is the second night in a row that I've woken up naked in the woods!" (xvaqn yvxr uvf gubhtugf va Rnefubg)

    Ok, Aunt Maureen knows her son is a werewolf and knows that he bit Oz but doesn't understand the implications?

    Oh look, Xander caught in a lie. Nothing comes of it. (Jba'g or gur ynfg gvzr.)

    Poor Oz, the relief that washes over him when he realizes that Xander isn't talking about him.

    How long does it take to dry your face, Larry?

    Ok, we already know Oz is the werewolf, what is Larry talking about…oh there it is!

    Oh look, Xander punches Buffy in the arm. HE LIKES HER!! Uh, we know.

    Funeral home could have done a better job on Theresa. Just throw a scarf around her neck? Lazy.

    Angel sends his love! Buffy still gets blindsided by him.

    I would figure that Cain would be stocked up on silver bullets already.

    Ok Oz, a few things. 1. You wake up naked, you might want to take off your clothes before you shackle up. 2. You're waiting until it's already dark out before shackling up? 3. You're going to chain yourself up in the dining room? 4. You have manacles lying around your house?

    When someone collapses behind a couch, groaning in pain, shouldn't you rush over to them to see if they are ok, not slowly peek over the back of the couch?

    Run, Willow, run!

    So Cain goes from scouting out "sexual heat" areas, to driving around town in a van. Makes sense.

    Shouldn't you have had the gun ready before nightfall, Giles?

    I would think still living "game" would trump a pile of meat.

    I love displays of Buffy's strength. Take that, Cain!

    I was half expecting Willow to be petting the sleeping Oz. Glad that didn't happen.

    Why would he look up your skirt, when he can look down your shirt? Wouldn't that be easier?

    Xander. It's not up to you. Thank you, Buffy!

    WIllow and Oz are so cute.

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