beginning | blinding torment | boils | lies | making me bitter | evil compounds evil | blah blah bity blah



























season three   >  Revelations

And here it is. The episode where it all begins. The big slide into the big evil. The onset of Faith’s long, dark teatime of her soul. The beginning of the end of her very own special brand of innocence. Faith go boom.


Blithely unaware of the eventual bitter end to their slayerly sisterhood, Buffy and Faith tag team vampires in one of Sunnydale’s many, many cemeteries while debating its worth as an Olympic sport. Giles joins them on this chilly eve, drinking tea on a nearby tombstone. This touching family scene of Norman Rockwellian proportions is interrupted by the arrival of the arch villain and Yoko of this piece, Faith’s new fake Watcher, Gwendolyn Post. Gwendolyn is evil. And British. And prissy. And actually more of an ex-Watcherette than a current Watcher-type Watcher (due to the previously mentioned evilness), though she neglects to tell them this. She quickly gets on everyone’s good side by criticizing the girls’ techniques and basically just spouting a lot of shit to prove she has a larger stick up her ass than Sir Giles.

You telegraph punches, leave blindsides open and, for a school night slaying, you both take entirely too much time. Which one of you is Faith?


Her most heinous crime? Mocking his book collection. Poor Giles. It’s like the British way of emasculating a man. It’s very cruel.


Anyway, she claims to be Faith’s new Watcher. Faith, who likes to put on a big show of being footloose and fancy free when really all she secretly wants is a watcher of her very own to love her that won’t be chopped up into little bits by a psychotic vampire with hooves for hands, puts up a tough front at first but is soon wooed to the dark side by Gwen’s promises of lavishing her with annoying, constant pestering and training. And something about Sparta and being spart. Not that Faith really knows who the Spartans were, they could be aliens who colonized the third moon of Jupiter for all she knows, but Gwen makes them sound all cool and warrior like, so that’s good enough for our plucky little ball of trailer trash because it makes the fact that she lives in a flea motel with nothing but the expensive leather pants on her ass sound romantic and spart and cool.


Plus, Buffy won’t tell her what it was like to boing the undead and the Scoobies are leaving her out of their super cool secret meetings. And that hurts.


What secret meetings? Well, see, Xander forgot to invite Faith when he put together an emergency demon-addict intervention for Buffy together on the fly because Xander and Willow got busted making out in the stacks by Giles when they were supposed to be researching the very bad demon Lagos and the very ugly glove of Myneghon—not the cause of the meeting, by the way. But due to this, Xander, feeling all sorts of awkward and guilty, volunteered to go look at a certain tomb for it. Instead of the glove he found Angel, and rather than hailing him with a hearty “yo, Angel. How was hell?” and reminiscing about old times—“hey, remember how I hate you?,” he switched to stealth mode, being naturally curious about why a vampire who was recently evil was doing with an evil glove, and stalked Angel home.


Angel doesn’t notice of course because Mr. Harris is rather light on his feet and Angel’s hearing is still a little whack, we assume, just returning from hell and all where we’re sure there’s lots of screaming and it’s more damaging to ones eardrums than an NSYNC concert.


Angel really went to get the glove to give it to Buffy as a present and, as it turns out, Buffy gets excited by disembodied arms in ugly gloves. I exhibit no surprise. Xander, however, does, when he peeps through Angel’s windows and finds them making out like there’s no tomorrow. A valid fear in the Dale, I’ll give them that, but please. Let’s keep those hormones under control.


Which brings up a few unavoidable questions: Is it possible for hormones to course through an undead Americans veins, seeing as the blood doesn’t flow? Is Angel an undead American? Or is he more of an undead Irishman? Can a vampire become a citizen? And if Angel knew the damn evil glove was in the tomb the whole time, why the hell did he leave it there?


You know, when you stop to think about it, it’s amazing what’s laying around Sunnydale. You’d think the Scoobs would figure out what artifacts are where and might consider, you know, rounding some of that shit up. Just a little preventive maintenance, that’s all I’m suggesting here. Nothing radical, nothing showy, just collecting all the disembodied evil arms and trinkets and whatnot laying around and putting them in a lockbox or under Cordy’s bed or something. It would just be good business. That’s all I’m sayin’.


Anyway, Giles is a wee bit stressed out and bitchy because he just HAS to find the glove before that psycho Gwendolyn does. Not because he knows that Gwen’s actually psycho, but because she made fun of Giles’ tea. And his Slayer. And because Giles has to be better than her to prove that his girly-man book collection and disobedient Slayer and pre-bagged tea are just as good—nay, BETTER, than anything ole Psycho-Post’s got.


So the next day the gang stages an intervention in the school library during the middle of the day and everyone’s really upset, man. They’re forgetting their “I” statements and feeling betrayed. Buffy gets mad at Xander for spying on her. She’s in super defensive mode, folks, and she’s totally wrong. Sure, Xander could’ve called her aside and been all “hey, Buffy, saw you hanging off the lips of a dead guy who’s supposed to be in hell. What’s up with that?” instead of the public demon intervention he grandiosely staged. But still. She didn’t tell her friends he was back. It’s not like she took the last doughnut or something. She hid a potentially severely mentally unbalanced vampire from her bestest buds and that’s just not cricket. I don’t care how well he kisses.


Excuse me. When your last steady kills half the class, and then your rebound guy sends you a dump-o-gram? It makes a girl shy.


Giles feels especially betrayed. Sadly, he specifically has to point out why he feels a bit out of sorts, Angel being the guy that killed his potential nookie and tortured him for fun, and to Buffy’s credit she seems to feel bad for 5 minutes or so after he spells it all out for her and vows to make it up to him by killing the demon of the week.


To sum up, everyone’s mad at Buffy. But not Willow! Because she knows what it’s like to have really bad secrets, ie making out with Xander when you’re dating the coolest guy at Sunnydale High, Oz. So not the same as harboring a criminal, but worse in some respects. I mean, come on. Oz.


I digress.


Willow’s on Buffy’s side because it really is only as much about their friends as it is about them. Xander’s all bitter that it didn’t go very well and that—actually, I don’t know. I think he’s just bitter that Buffy’s sucking face with Angel again when it should be him, even though he’s not only sucking the face of Cordelia, but also Willow. And yet, it’s not enough. Poor Xand, he’s so confused. So he does what men traditionally do when upset with women. He goes to a dive bar and plays pool moodily. The dive bar being the Bronze. Faith shows up, since it’s not like she’s got anything else to do, not having any actual friends or anything since they leave her out of their little gang.


She attempts to confront Xander with her feelings but she too forgets her “I” statements and instead comes on a little accusatory and as anyone trained in de-escalation can tell you, that shit ain’t getting you nowhere. Xander bristles, it’s all about him when Faith thinks it’s all about her and communication regresses to nothing. Xander’s upset that Buffy’s potentially boinging the undead and Faith’s upset she wasn’t allowed in on the group Buffy attack. Wanting to be loved by anybody, even Xander, she jumps on the chance to destroy the evil Angel, because she’s heard so much about him and he’s a vampire and Buffy loves him more than her so perhaps he should die. Plus, she hid Angel from Faith, even after Faith tried to have that serious “what’s it like to boing the undead” conversation, and I really think that hurt Faith more than she’d like to admit. She’s sensitive underneath all that glitz and glamour, folks. She is.


So it’s off to the bat cave to get supplies, yadda yadda yadda, they find Giles knocked out, but not in a coma, and Xander starts to use his brain. He doesn’t quite guess that Ms. Post is evil, like I told you, and is after the Glove to do evil, evil things—and you know, they never really said what she planned on doing wearing an ugly metal glove that shoots lightening out of its fingertips, and that’s a damn shame, because I think that’s something I’d love to hear—but he does guess that something is amiss with his whole Angel theory. But Xander isn’t pondering what I’m pondering, he just figures that since there aren’t any bite marks, it probably wasn’t Angel. Faith doesn’t really listen, because she really doesn’t care. She just wants to be loved. And to be better than Buffy. So she’s going to kill that damn, pesky, secret-boyfriend-of-her-girlfriend because she knows then that at least I’ll love her.


Buffy and Willow waltz in to find the EMTs rolling the G-man out. He mumbles something about the glove, Xander looks ashamed and Buffy runs to save Angel. Run Buffy, run! Run like you’ve never run before. Meaning quickly! Fast! Expediently!


Gwendolyn arrives at the mansion, because everyone seems to know where that fucker lives, and she fights Angel for a bit before he slams her to the wall like a little rag doll. Faith, of course, comes in at this moment, because acts of extreme stupidity are all about timing of the bad sort, sees Angel vamped out attacking her watcher and proceeds to kick his ass. Tossing him over a couch like the little bitch he is, she goes in for the stake and is stopped by Buffy.


Fucking Buffy. Couldn’t leave well enough alone. Had to let Angel live. Had to let him leave Sunnydale. Had to let him screw Darla and bring about Connor. Which led to Cordy and Connor copulating. Which led to Jasmine. Which led to the gang destroying world peace in LA and being hired by Wolfram & Hart. When is this girl going to start thinking about the consequences of her actions?


Not anytime soon, apparently. So Buffy tries to convince Faith that Buffy’s good and Ms. Post croaks something to Faith about how Buffy’s blinded by love, and it’s on like Donkey Kong.*  Buffy kicks Faith’s face in, Faith kicks Buffy’s face in, they fly through a glass door and kick each other’s faces in some more. And it is a pretty kick ass fight. I always liked it when these two solved their differences the mature, Slayer way.

Xander and Willow jog on in with some smelly sand to destroy the glove with, Willow goes to help Post, still not realizing she’s evil, Xander futilely attempts to stop the playground brawl and Angel is apparently laying around off screen, possibly napping on the couch or something just as useful. Whilst the Slayers brawl, Post grabs the glove, assaults Willow and starts yelling Ta Frim and shooting lightening all over the place. Angel saves Willow, since Buffy and Faith are too busy trying to kill each other to care. Buffy and Faith eventually pull their shit together, their attention being caught by the lightening bolts flying willy nilly about the place, Buffy sends Faith in <s>as cannon fodder</s> to draw her fire, then tosses a big shard of broken glass at Post and cuts off her arm. Post goes boom literally, to nicely mirror Faith’s sketchy moral character symbolically burning up on the inside, and the gang silently stares at each other. You can almost feel them wanting to burst into “Where do we go from here”, can’t you? It’s beautiful, really.


She was kicked out by the council two years ago for misuses of dark power. They swear there was a memo...


Back at school Giles finally calls the WC and they’re all “oh yeah, she’s evil. Read your memos, dammit. What, you think we send them out for the fun?” Buffy skips school to walk to the po’ side of town to apologize to Faith for kicking her in the face, and to tell Faith that she can trust her. Faith, crying on the inside, brushes Buffy off. I shed a single, sad tear.

This may sound funny coming from someone who just spent a lot of time kicking your face, but you can trust me. 


Poor, misunderstood, maligned Faith. Plucked from her cozy trailer and white trash existence to be the one and only Slayer to find out she’s not the one and only Slayer but the second, less talked about Slayer whose Watcher is violently murdered before her eyes and who travels to Sunnydale to ingratiate herself in the first Slayer’s life who’s never even heard of her, only to be looked down upon and ignored and just generally kicked around once her shiny newness and stories of naked slaying get old. Oh, no one comes right out and says it, no one’s all “we love Buffy best”, not outright, but I’d say allowing her to live in a hotel that hookers wouldn’t even use by the hour says it clear enough.


She’s not even given a vampire of her very own to screw. Can we blame her for going evil and killing a few red shirts?? Can we?


I think not.


*Bonus points and massive adulation to anyone that can explain that saying to me. I hate it. Despise it. Generally abhor it. Yet, for some reason, I cannot stop using. But what does it fucking mean? On like donkey kong? It’s on like I’m dodging fireballs and climbing ladders and hopping barrels and smashing the shit out of them with hammers? The hell?




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