Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Buffy the Vampire Slayer, season 3

Season 3 might very well be the greatest season of them all if I'd taken the time to look at average episode-scores. Still, there's a few things lacking that other seasons have going for them...

It's the final year of high school, a new player arrives to shake up the line between good and evil, we get introduced to The Mayor, it's the final season before Angel goes off to the spin-off world of L.A., and the Buffyverse get familiar with a whole new set of supernatural as werewolves and witchcraft are just a couple of elements taken further.

Honestly; it's increasingly difficult to say something useful about seasons without spoilers, so I'll just skip to the episode ratings if that's okay with you...

3.01 ★★★★★ Anne
3.02 ★★★☆☆ Dead Man's Party
3.03 ★★☆☆☆ Faith, Hope and Trick
3.04 ★★★★☆ Beauty and the Beasts
3.05 ★★★☆☆ Homecoming
3.06 ★★★☆☆ Band Candy
3.07 ★★★☆☆ Revelations
3.08 ★★★★☆ Lover's Walk
3.09 ★★★★★ The Wish
3.10 ★★★★★ Amends
3.11 ★★☆☆☆ Gingerbread
3.12 ★★★★☆ Helpless
3.13 ★★★☆☆ The Zeppo
3.14 ★★★☆☆ Bad Girls
3.15 ★★★★☆ Consequences
3.16 ★★★☆☆ Doppelgangland
3.17 ★★★★☆ Enemies
3.18 ★★★★☆ Earshot
3.19 ★★★★☆ Choices
3.20 ★★★★☆ The Prom
3.21 ★★★★★ Graduation Day (1)
3.22 ★★★★★ Graduation Day (2)

S.3 ★★★★★

For now I'll drop my photo-montages down memory lane, as they get increasingly spoiler-ish just by showing who's in them by now. At least for those lucky few who's yet to get into the magic of Sunnydale and the Buffyverse. My episode-wabbles might however become slightly more spoiler-ish as a result.

The big news of this season is Faith, called upon as Kendra died last season. She doesn't just shake things up, but give Buffy new challenges on most fronts throughout the season. Compared to Faith, the big bad of the season isn't all that. The other important arch is of course the Angel-kind. I for one wasn't to sad that particular saga came to an end, as his layers was mostly played out. Unlike my man Spike, Angel really couldn't hold my interest too long.

3.01 Anne

I really enjoyed the opener of the season. As Buffy ran away at the end of the last, we catch-up with her alone in the big city. Not only is her lonesome torments interesting, but also the case of the week have stuff going for it. It's only the opening of season six that starts of better.

3.04 Beauty and the Beasts

The case of the week side isn't very interesting, but Buffy's personal life get increasingly interesting with the return of her former lover.

3.09 The Wish

The second 5-rating of the season brings us an alternate reality as Cordelia Chase gets her wish. How would life have been in Sunnydale if Buffy never came there? Somewhat funny, somewhat deep and all the way enjoyable.

3.10 Amends

Some prepare for Christmas, and other struggles with the ghosts of murders past. In hindsight I clearly remember quite a few scenes and moments later on in the show that elevated far past this big one, but it did get emotional there for a while...

3.13 The Zeppo

I always found Xander's storylines mostly boring, and I quite frankly did so here as well, but the interesting part is really the way they turned this episode up-side down by following the B-story rather than the A-story. It makes playful use of cliches, and take more than a few stabs at their own 'verse. Nothing like a little self-awareness to remind us they're not full of them self.

3.21 & 3.22 Graduation Day (1&2)

The last half of the season is really all of very high standard, but it's not until the final two episodes they manage to hit top scores again. The Mayor, Faith, Angel, Ascension and --once again-- choices, are keywords to the end of another season. A season of high quality, but personally I think they managed to hit the really high heights of the show later on....

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