Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Fool For Love   Rewatch 
November 4, 2015 8:56 PM - Season 5, Episode 7 - Subscribe

When a random vamp almost stakes Buffy, she searches for accounts of the deaths of her predecessors, and turns to Spike for information on how he killed two of them. He tells her of his human life as a spineless poet, his siring by Drusilla, and his attraction to the challenge of a Slayer.
posted by yellowbinder (3 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Now this is a good cross over episode! What's clever about this is that it works as a standalone, but the accompanying Angel episode adds very interesting context for the behaviour of Angel in these flashbacks. We get here a history of who Spike was and is: pure unrestrained emotion. He defeats the Slayers by simply not caring about dying, by surprising them, by being willing to attack them without fear. His argument here, that all slayers have a death wish, that they only hold on via their attachments to the world, is quite important, as Buffy is going to lose some of them this series [although, while Spike doesn't have to be right here, this is kind of expressly contradicted by the New York slayer (Nikki I think?) having a son!].

I like Buffy's mini story here. She wants to find out about why she lost, sure, but maybe she also wants to escape from problems she can't control. Her mother is ill, and there's nothing she can do about it: she tried a trance but that didn't help, so finding answers for one problem with Spike is away to keep her mind off her problems. Her final slam down of Spike here is incredibly cruel, but perhaps deserved. She will, by seasons end, have changed her mind.

-Riley patrolling with the gang is great, although his later rambo attack is deeply creepy. Xander will call him out in it, but Buffy will be too caught up in everything else to notice.
-Cecily the vengeance demon here :)
-"I'd rather have a railway spike through my head". Really writers? Really?
-"I do see you, that's the problem. You're beneath me."
-I really like some of the cross framing between Buffy fighting Spike and fights in the past
posted by Cannon Fodder at 12:15 AM on November 5, 2015 [3 favorites]

I find this episode really enjoyable, mostly because James Marsters is so much fun in it. Spike's approach to life (well, undead life) is intriguing and even before the whole chip thing, he always seemed to be someone who enjoyed being a vampire in a way others didn't. I think this episode illustrates why very well. He didn't fight the slayers because he was evil -- he wanted to fight someone who he felt was worthy of fighting.

I have my issues with the way the Buffy/Spike romance was handled (not so much problems with it happening, though) but I like their chemistry here. They feel like equals to me -- that's something Spike recognizes and Buffy doesn't want to admit. They are more alike than different.
posted by darksong at 5:42 PM on November 5, 2015 [4 favorites]

Arrrrgh I have so many feels about this episode. I love the writing so much (railway spike comment aside... that was ouch). The frame narrative works very well, and I still think about the "I'll slip in" monologue and the parallel between sex and death, as well as its implications for Buffy's attraction to Spike. The moment of disgust is wonderful on both their parts; you really get that she is just as disgusted with herself as with him. And he is so low and pathetic and broken... This is the episode I really find their relationship compelling because they function so well as mirrors for each other.
posted by annekate at 5:20 PM on November 25, 2015

« Older Mystery Science Theater 3000: ...   |  Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Shad... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments