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S05.E04: Out of My Mind


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Ready to embrace the controversy, not a lot of Spuffers on this board.  

 

The Good; Some great acting by Marc Blucas, best he'll ever show us. Nice to see Graham back too, my favourite of all the Initiative characters and you genuinely get the impression that he's Riley's friend. Harmony and Spike hilarious and some scenes to make Spuffers punch the air with joy. The Dawson's Creek joke had me splitting my sides laughing. Anyone else hear the rumour that Katie Holmes was offered Buffy but turned it down to go to college? Just think, SMG could have married Tom Cruise. (At least he'd have been more her height)

The Bad; Why is the operation on Spike such a complicated process? Surely his vamp healing could just fix everything, what's the problem with just hacking it out? Equally Buffy's leap of logic that Spike has left the hospital is pretty unbelievable.

Best line; Spike; "Awww, is the enormous hall monitor sick?"

Women good/men bad; Buffy "You're going to die over some macho-pissing contest?". On the bad side Harmony goes running back to Spike, have some dignity girl!

Jeez!; Spike is still awake during his surgery which must be weird beyond belief. Riley self-harms.

Kinky dinky; In return for Spike's protection/shelter Harmony will have sex with him, banging-for-rent HIMYM style. Looks like what Buffy and Willow always said about her is true? Buffy refers to Spike hanging out in his crypt and 'doing something nasty'. How right she is! Drug enhanced Riley is quite the machine in the sack. Buffy doesn't even flinch when Dawn puts her hand on her breast to listen to her heart, the closeness of Dawn to Buffy evident. Harmony says that she read in a magazine that a man's best sex organ is his brain but she seems to prefer Spike's penis. Buffy refers to herself as 'still touchable' and Riley says he'll take advantage if that fact when healed.

Captain Subtext; According to Harmony Spike can't even pick flowers, implying that he likes to? And the Buffy/Spike subtext officially becomes a text (Harmony oblivious as ever). Interesting quote from 'Harsh Light of Day' Buffy;"If Spike wants me? I go alone, lead him away from the popular spots, and give him what he wants." Spike picks up on the little look between Buffy and Riley. Buffy refers to having the strength of 10 men during sex, Riley asks could she say 10 women instead. Tara wonders about Willow's magic when they explore Sunnydale High. Buffy says that if she wanted someone with superpowers she'd be dating Spike. Riley's little look after Buffy leaves him speaks volumes. Grahme says to Riley 'You belong with us'. Ever noticed there are no female Initiative commandos?

Guantanamo Bay; The Initiative haven't gone away, just changed their spots. Dawn refers to the CIA's numerous failed plots against Castro and Buffy refers to 'Big Brother'

Scoobies to the ER; Riley gets the surgery he needs

Scoobies knocked out: Joyce passes out Buffy: 15 Giles: 10 Cordy: 6 Xander: 8 Will: 5 Jenny: 2 Angel: 6 Oz: 3 Faith: 1 Joyce: 3 Wes: 1 Anya;1

Sunnydale deaths; possibly the security guard but he might just be knocked out 83;

Scoobies shot: Riley by Harmony' crossbow. But given his drugged state it doesn't even hurt him Giles: 2 Angel: 3 Oz: 4 Riley; 1

Questions and observations; Another nail in the Buffy/Riley coffin, in fairness to Graham he is right and he is Riley's friend for saying so. A good ep, also introducing Joyce's sickness properly for the first time. Interestingly it's Dawn who discovers something's wrong with Riley and helps Buffy hit on the solution. She's also right about Castro, nice to see kids are still interested in history. And whilst fainting Joyce for the first time senses Dawn's special nature. One of the clever things about Dawn is how she's introduced out of nowhere but for the first few eps she has no special significance, all she is is Buffy's little sister, special alright but only to Buffy, Joyce and Hank. And here's Ben for the first time. Giles is actually impressed by Xander's carpentry skills. The 'Willow hand' scene between Tara and Willow is SOOOO lovely? Harmony takes up smoking, well, it's not like it'll do her any harm. That she obeys the 'No Smoking' sign at the hospital is testament to the power of group reinforcement. Ben refers to Dr Dawn, that would be cool if Dawn became a doctor and could patch up the Scoobies. The Riley basketball scene is a bit of an indulgence, Marc Blucas a pro-basketball player before becoming an actor. Tara and Willow explore Sunnydale High, the first time Tara ever goes there. According to Riley Buffy is getting stronger every day which seems to suggest that a Slayer get's more powerful the longer she lives (Buffy and Faith presumably the longest living Slayers ever). Spike refers to Buffy's 'shampoo commercial hair', at this time of course SMG was the Maybeline adverts girl. Spike says 'Oh god no', so strange that vamps still appeal to god even when they're the epitome of evil.

Marks out of 10; 7/10 although that might be a bit generous, the Spike scenes make it better than it otherwise might be.

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Quote

The Bad; Why is the operation on Spike such a complicated process? Surely his vamp healing could just fix everything, what's the problem with just hacking it out?

Well, I guess it might leave him (even more) brain damaged.

This episode is in many ways the beginning of the end. Consistent characterization? We don't need this any more, we just write stuff to pander to shippers or other types of plot which hinge on the protagonists being complete morons. But the show is totally more "adult" now. Good one, Joss.

Spoiler

Riley suddenly becomes a suicidal idiot in the exact same episode Spike realizes he is into Buffy. Not contrived and manipulative at all. Spike once again proves that he is dangerous... and of course suffers no consequences whatsoever, this time we are not even given an excuse for that.

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If what we saw in Out of My Mind wasn't enough to stake Spike without a second thought, I don't know what else could be. Spike made it clear he'd do anything to get rid of the "sodding chip" and what would happen if he succeeded. And then... no repercussions, no nothing. Though Spikey's continuing unlife was nothing but a spit on the graves of his countless victims, including Buffy's two sister Slayers.

I guess there was some unspoken rule that said all those who had "a trip to the [Initiative's] vet" got immunity with a package. Or the Monks of Mindfuck (responsible for Dawn's existence) simply brainwashed the Scoobs into believing Captain Peroxide was merely annoying pain in the ass and not a homicidal maniac.

Edited by lembergwatcher
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2 hours ago, Joe Hellandback said:

The Dawson's Creek joke had me splitting my sides laughing. Anyone else hear the rumour that Katie Holmes was offered Buffy but turned it down to go to college?

Not so, after all Katie was in Capeside the very next year.  The story (as I understand it) is that they were interested in Katie (but she hadn't been definitely cast as yet), until they determined that Buffy was in just too many scenes for them to shoot with a 17-year-old Katie. (Because under-18s can only work so many hours in a day, per regulations.) 

So they passed on Katie and went with Sarah, who had already been cast as Cordelia and was already 18.  And later, when Katie was 18, she was able to hire on as Joey Potter on Dawson's.

It's nice that Kirshner, as the new writer on staff, has apparently missed the memo that Buffy and Willow aren't BFF any more and not only gives us a great B/W scene at the school but also includes Willow in the "Summers girls" scene at Revello.  But it's bizarre that Spike has a hot dream about Buffy and thinks it has to mean something more; surely in all his unlife he's been occasionally attracted to someone besides Dru?

I mean, look whom he's sleeping with, FFS…

And speaking of Spike's sleeping arrangements, with Buffy (presumably) murderously on his tail, why would he go back to the exact same crypt, which will surely be the first place she looks?  Hell, the power of the final sequence is that we think Buffy has shown up to kill Spike, until it's revealed to be nothing more than a dream…but all of that begs the question, why is Spike where Buffy can easily find him?  And where is Buffy, anyhow?

Spoiler

In the very next episode, Spike shows up on Buffy's front lawn, and she breezes right past him.  So much for revenging Riley's near-death, huh, "Slayer"?

Quote

SPIKE (re his dream):  Oh, god, no.  Please, no

And truer words were never spoken…

Edited by Halting Hex
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On ‎13‎/‎09‎/‎2018 at 7:38 PM, Jack Shaftoe said:

Well, I guess it might leave him (even more) brain damaged.

This episode is in many ways the beginning of the end. Consistent characterization? We don't need this any more, we just write stuff to pander to shippers or other types of plot which hinge on the protagonists being complete morons. But the show is totally more "adult" now. Good one, Joss.

  Hide contents

Riley suddenly becomes a suicidal idiot in the exact same episode Spike realizes he is into Buffy. Not contrived and manipulative at all. Spike once again proves that he is dangerous... and of course suffers no consequences whatsoever, this time we are not even given an excuse for that.

No, no, it keeps it interesting, Riley was obviously a failed experiment so they needed something new and it was obvious what a great number of fans wanted. 

On ‎13‎/‎09‎/‎2018 at 8:36 PM, lembergwatcher said:

If what we saw in Out of My Mind wasn't enough to stake Spike without a second thought, I don't know what else could be. Spike made it clear he'd do anything to get rid of the "sodding chip" and what would happen if he succeeded. And then... no repercussions, no nothing. Though Spikey's continuing unlife was nothing but a spit on the graves of his countless victims, including Buffy's two sister Slayers.

I guess there was some unspoken rule that said all those who had "a trip to the [Initiative's] vet" got immunity with a package. Or the Monks of Mindfuck (responsible for Dawn's existence) simply brainwashed the Scoobs into believing Captain Peroxide was merely annoying pain in the ass and not a homicidal maniac.

Possibly the former, definitely not the latter. 

On ‎13‎/‎09‎/‎2018 at 8:48 PM, Halting Hex said:

Not so, after all Katie was in Capeside the very next year.  The story (as I understand it) is that they were interested in Katie (but she hadn't been definitely cast as yet), until they determined that Buffy was in just too many scenes for them to shoot with a 17-year-old Katie. (Because under-18s can only work so many hours in a day, per regulations.) 

So they passed on Katie and went with Sarah, who had already been cast as Cordelia and was already 18.  And later, when Katie was 18, she was able to hire on as Joey Potter on Dawson's.

It's nice that Kirshner, as the new writer on staff, has apparently missed the memo that Buffy and Willow aren't BFF any more and not only gives us a great B/W scene at the school but also includes Willow in the "Summers girls" scene at Revello.  But it's bizarre that Spike has a hot dream about Buffy and thinks it has to mean something more; surely in all his unlife he's been occasionally attracted to someone besides Dru?

I mean, look whom he's sleeping with, FFS…

And speaking of Spike's sleeping arrangements, with Buffy (presumably) murderously on his tail, why would he go back to the exact same crypt, which will surely be the first place she looks?  Hell, the power of the final sequence is that we think Buffy has shown up to kill Spike, until it's revealed to be nothing more than a dream…but all of that begs the question, why is Spike where Buffy can easily find him?  And where is Buffy, anyhow?

  Hide contents

In the very next episode, Spike shows up on Buffy's front lawn, and she breezes right past him.  So much for revenging Riley's near-death, huh, "Slayer"?

And truer words were never spoken…

Again, you think there's nothing more for you to learn but you always do. I think Spike knew this for a while but the dream was just putting it into context for you 

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22 hours ago, Jack Shaftoe said:

But didn't really work, did it? Despite all the claims of how Spike's the most loved of all characters by far, his expanded role didn't lead to significant ratings improvement, AFAIK.

But it did work for 

Spoiler

Angel s5? Although arguably with Buffy over fans had only that show for comfort. 

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"Dr. Wilkinson" was Buffy's doctor in Killed by Death.  Do you have a source for that surname?  

Spoiler

The hospital ID that Xander finds at Ben/Glory's apartment in The Weight of the World appears to read "Williams", but I'm open to being convinced.

Nice pic of Charlie, btw.

Edited by Halting Hex
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44 minutes ago, Halting Hex said:

"Dr. Wilkinson" was Buffy's doctor in Killed by Death.  Do you have a source for that surname?

He's mentioned like "Ben Wilkinson (Buffy character)" in The Whedonverse Catalog's index of names. Most of the links I'm familiar with claim that was his surname either. Wiki article about Charlie says his Buffy character's name was "Ben Wilkinson" (not a reliable source, I know, but nevertheless...)

Spoiler
47 minutes ago, Halting Hex said:

The hospital ID that Xander finds at Ben/Glory's apartment in The Weight of the World appears to read "Williams"

Quite possible. But AFAIK there were two different dates for Buffy's birthday in I, Robot... You, Jane, and none of them turned out to be correct eventually .

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Yes, but that (past data referenced with spoilered thing, under the cut) was specifically an in-joke, never meant as canon.  (And contradicted two episodes later.)  The spoilered thing would seem to be something else.

Edited by Halting Hex
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On ‎18‎/‎09‎/‎2018 at 11:46 AM, Jack Shaftoe said:

How exactly did it work, considering that

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it was cancelled that same season?

Because actually including 

Spoiler

Spike raised the ratings even when the budget had been slashed (also of course with Buffy ended many fans began watching Angel who hadn't before) but the network cancelled it anyway in favour of a new show which lasted exactly one season.  

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So I'm looking at Shan's vid for this one (about a week back) and as such I see the "Spike's fantasy" Spuffy-kiss sequence for the first time in a long time.  (It's interesting that, despite adoring Spike, Shan doesn't seem to be, as yet, a Spuffy 'shipper.  AFAICT, she just doesn't consider it credible.  Instead, what we got was one of most-shocked "WHAT?" exclamations yet. [She's prone to those.  A friend of hers puts together a compilation at the end of every season.  But I digress…])

Of course, I know what's coming, and I can't say I'm very happy about it.  So what I ended up noticing is that, right before the kiss, Spike takes off his shirt, as he challenges Dream!Buffy to stake him.  Now, why does he do that?

I mean, obviously, the show wants us to see JM's bare chest, but that's meta.  Inside the show, what's the explanation?  It's not that Buffy can't stake Spike through the shirt, she's staked through multiple layers of heavier clothing before this.  And presumably Spike (it's his fantasy, remember) has no interest in seeing his own bare chest.

All I can think of is that Spike thinks, on whatever subconscious level he's generating this scenario, that he needs to be flaunting the flesh to excite Buffy's interest.  Oh, Spike, don't sell yourself so short.  Just be emotionally abusive and you can save the undressing for when it's needed.

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Analyzing anyone's dream is risky, at best. Trying to do it for Spike borders on madness. Then again, I have rarely been accused of being sane, so I'll give it a go. Spike, being the ultimate hero in his mind, is daring dream!Buffy to stake him. So, he makes it even easier by exposing his own heart. "Knowing" that she now won't do it. Much like when you see someone in the movies or on TV aiming a gun at close range at someone, and that person takes the gun and puts it right between their own eyes. Why? Do they really think the other person is going to miss from 4 inches? Just once I'd like to see the person holding the gun say "thanks" and then shoot the idiot right between the eyes. I'd be laughing so hard, I'd miss the entire next scene.

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On ‎26‎/‎11‎/‎2018 at 6:39 AM, Halting Hex said:

So I'm looking at Shan's vid for this one (about a week back) and as such I see the "Spike's fantasy" Spuffy-kiss sequence for the first time in a long time.  (It's interesting that, despite adoring Spike, Shan doesn't seem to be, as yet, a Spuffy 'shipper.  AFAICT, she just doesn't consider it credible.  Instead, what we got was one of most-shocked "WHAT?" exclamations yet. [She's prone to those.  A friend of hers puts together a compilation at the end of every season.  But I digress…])

Of course, I know what's coming, and I can't say I'm very happy about it.  So what I ended up noticing is that, right before the kiss, Spike takes off his shirt, as he challenges Dream!Buffy to stake him.  Now, why does he do that?

I mean, obviously, the show wants us to see JM's bare chest, but that's meta.  Inside the show, what's the explanation?  It's not that Buffy can't stake Spike through the shirt, she's staked through multiple layers of heavier clothing before this.  And presumably Spike (it's his fantasy, remember) has no interest in seeing his own bare chest.

All I can think of is that Spike thinks, on whatever subconscious level he's generating this scenario, that he needs to be flaunting the flesh to excite Buffy's interest.  Oh, Spike, don't sell yourself so short.  Just be emotionally abusive and you can save the undressing for when it's needed.

Spike is a fairly shallow individual, he thinks sex is a relationship if you do it often enough and that the way to impress your crush

Spoiler

is to kill your ex for her. 

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