Faith, sitting at the Bronze, holding a red Solo cup, and looking smug

About:

Title: Buffy S3.E03 “Faith, Hope & Trick” + S3.E04 “Beauty and the Beasts”
Released: 1998

Drinks Taken: 31
Vamps Dusted: 6

 

Follow the whole rewatch here!

Last week, we reached my favorite season, though it started off with less of a bang and more of a whimper–Buffy finally returned to Sunnydale after hiding out in LA and then saving some homeless teenagers, but her welcoming party was anything but. Thankfully, everyone’s friends again, yet Buffy continues to suffer from keeping the nature of Angel’s death a secret. 

This week, we see the return of a familiar face and the arrival of a new Slayer, who’s a whole lotta extra but we love her anyway. Cheers to Faith!

Buffy eagerly watching a pitcher of beer being poured into her glass.

The Buffy Season Three Drinking Game Rules

Drink once every time:

A vamp is dusted
A scene takes place in a cemetery
Cordelia says something cutting but true
Principal Snyder hates on students
Oz is ridiculously low-key cool
Spike has mad swagger
Willow gets witchy
You roll your eyes at Faith
The Mayor is a germaphobe

Drink twice every time:

We see the entrance to Sunnydale High
Giles drinks tea
Jonathan appears in a scene
There’s an extremely outdated pop culture reference
A vampire is invited into a house
Someone wears leather pants

I think you’ll see that last drinking game rule is now officially in play thanks to our new Slayer.

Faith, sitting with cocky posture and talking to Willow

3.3 “Faith, Hope and Trick”

The episode opens with senior lunch off campus, holla! Except off campus is… just a picnic on the front lawn? All I know is, Buffy is still kicked out of school, and Xander is a douchecanoe for jokingly calling Buffy a slut (which earns him a hard punch to the arm from the Slayer so there’s justice). While Buffy is almost back to normal with the Scoobs, she’s definitely far from okay when it comes to the trauma of killing Angel–as we gather from a nightmare featuring Angel, with a creepy dead face, telling her, “Go to hell. I did!” Ouch. 

Meanwhile, new baddies are rolling into town! Sunnydale might be too white for Mr. Trick, but he’s on a mission along with his buddy, Kakistos, to kill the Slayer. More on that in a minute, but for now, I will just say that Mr. Trick possibly has the most style of any Buffy villain.

The next day, Joyce and Buffy meet with Principal Snyder, who regrets to inform them that Buffy can come back to school, as long as she meets certain requirements (read: a ton of tests and make-up assignments). Joyce gets in a little “na-na-na-na-naaa” because she’s not above being petty, and I love her for that. 

Giles is working on a binding spell for Acathla (seems important!), and Willow, who is quickly becoming 100% that witch, offers to help (drink!). Mostly, Giles just needs the details on what exactly happened the night that Buffy killed Angel, and Buffy continues to avoid telling the truth about Angel’s soul returning. 

Cut to the Bronze, where the camera pans over the crowd and–wait a second, what’s up with THAT guy?

In the middle of the crowd at the Bronze, a guy in a 70s outfit does disco moves around a brunette (Faith)

Also, HI FAITH!

Scott, this nice, decent dude from Sunnydale, shows up and asks Buffy to dance, but she’s not ready. I get it, girl, but it would be refreshing to see you with someone who is just, like, a good person with no monster baggage? The Scooby Gang eventually notices Mr. Saturday Night Fever, because this:

A guy in a 70s outfit flashes some seriously disco moves around Faith on the Bronze dancefloor

And they follow him and his dance partner out into the alley, where they see her KICK HIS ASS. Slayer #3 is in the building, y’all! And she’s a lot. Faith immediately starts telling stories about her crazy kills, and Xander is captivated, because of course he is. Buffy… not so much. We learn that Faith’s watcher is on a retreat, which Giles didn’t get invited to, and obviously that’s because he is WAY too cool for those lame-os. 

We also learn that Kakistos isn’t in town to kill Buffy–he’s here for the other Slayer, because Faith took out his eye in a fight. I mean, I don’t think his face had much going for it even with two eyes, but whatevs. Apparently his name (which someone mistakes for Taquitos!) is Greek for “worst of the worst,” and he’s so old, his hands and feet are cloven. Not sure how vampire ageing works but okay!

It takes less than a day for pretty much everyone to embrace Faith (even Joyce, over dinner!), but Buffy is totally buggin’. “I’m the one getting single white femaled here,” she tells her mom, who then wonders if maybe Faith could take over the Slayer gig. Joyce also discovers that Buffy died (“only for a few minutes”) which doesn’t help in the Mom, Be Cool department. On patrol that night, tensions continue to rise between our two Slayers–Faith clearly has some anger issues and won’t stop beating the shit out of a vamp, even when Buffy needs help. 

Back at school, Scott asks Buffy out again, and she agrees–but then he gives her a Claddagh ring, which, like, whoa dude, maybe wait til *after* the first date. She flips out, naturally, and flees the scene.

Having discovered that Faith’s Watcher is not actually on the Cool Kids retreat but is in fact dead, Buffy confronts Faith at her (sad) hotel room, where Kakistos/Taquitos shows up and our Slayers run for their lives. There’s just enough time for Faith to confide in Buffy that she saw Taquitos kill her Watcher, and it left her paralyzed with fear. This is the first time we get a peek behind Faith’s braggadocious facade, and it’s an important reveal for her character development (and to keep us from eye rolling her off the show). As Buffy reminds her, Faith is no longer alone, and the pair take on Kakistos (Faith ends up staking him with a huge beam of wood, not sure about the physics on that one) while Mr. Trick does an Irish good-bye. 

Buffy is finally in a place where she can tell Giles and Willow the truth: that Angel was cured when she killed him. It’s a powerful moment, made all the more piercing by Giles’ admission, after Buffy leaves, that there is no spell to bind Acathla. My heart!

With her confession lifting a bit of weight from her tan shoulders, Buffy gives it another go with Scott, who amazingly is still into her! Then she makes peace with her loss of Angel by visiting the place where she killed him, whispering “good-bye” as she places her Claddagh ring on the floor. Moments after she walks away, the ring lights up and moves and OH DANG Angel appears like a freaking Terminator, naked and out of nowhere!

How many times do I have to take a drink?

21

Vamps Dusted

6

Faith vs. Buffy In a Nutshell

The Truest (Though Possibly Inappropriate) Thing Anybody Said This Week

And by “anybody,” I obviously mean Faith. Ew-ness be damned!

Giles for Life

Oz Called It

Stylish Yet Affordable Hair

I was OBSESSED with Buffy’s zigzag part (and frankly, still am) and could never figure out how to pull it off. Spoiler: It’s all about those dark roots!

Buffy, standing behind a blonde girl with her hand on her shoulder as they stare into a bathroom mirror

3.4 “Beauty and the Beasts”

Willow is being the cutest werewolf-sitter ever by reading Call of the Wild to Were-Oz, who is locked in the library cage. Xander shows up to take over and then immediately passes out. Dude, you would so get kicked out of the BSC. Meanwhile, Buffy is patrolling with Faith and enjoying a little girl talk about Scott, who seems super close to reaching Boyfriend Level. 

The next morning, a student, Jeff, is found dead (of the mauled variety), and the Scoobs discover that the window inside of the library cage is open, meaning Oz could have escaped while Xander was asleep. Kristy Thomas would be pissed, but Giles? Giles is ENRAGED. Plus now Oz thinks he killed someone and won’t let Willow comfort him and man this really sucks.

As part of her “back in school” plan, Buffy goes to see a counselor, Mr. Platt, who is… smoking in his office? He seems cool (not because of the smoking, okay?!), and it doesn’t take long for Buffy to open up to him, especially when he tells her that demons can be fought, and people can change. This exchange in particular just killed me:

I’m so glad that Buffy found her Pavone, complete with the cigarette habit!

Just when she’s starting to heal, Angel jumps out at Buffy while she’s on patrol. Really, dude? He’s completely feral, which the show tries to emphasize with this weird tribal music. A traumatized Buff takes him back to the old mansion, chains him up and sees a terrible stencil spray paint job the outline of his body on the floor where he first appeared.

Determined to prove Oz’s innocence, Willow heads to the coronor’s office, armed with, what else, a Scooby Doo lunchbox! Xander and then Cordelia show up to, like, help maybe? But Willow is a stone cold badass and examines Jeff’s body all by herself–then promptly faints.

Buffy, who has somewhat learned her lesson about the dangers of secrets, tells Giles about Angel’s return BUT pretends it was a dream. She’s fishing for an explanation, but Giles responds off the books–he remembers having dreams about Jenny after her death. Then he ruins the moment by mentioning that, if Angel ever did come back, it would be after hundreds of years of torture in hell (and we ain’t talking The Good Place). Cool cool, thanks Giles.

While Buffy is dealing with all of this, Scott continues to be the sweetest guy ever, gaaaaah. His friend Pete, however, is a total dick who makes fun of therapy and calls Buffy “the manic depressive chic.” We soon learn that Pete is way more than just an asshole–he’s a straight up mutant monster, which is extremely unfortunate for his girlfriend, Debbie. I got a little lost on the details but basically, we have a Jekyll and Hyde situation, except in Pete’s case, his Jekyll is already a jerk, and his Hyde is a roided out, veiny toxic maniac thanks to some kind of glowing green chemistry experiment. And when Hyde Peter comes out, he tells Debbie that she made him do it, because she wanted a man, then he punches her in the face.

Obviously, this is a supernatural allegory for domestic violence, and although a bit heavy-handed, it provides a chilling compliment to Buffy’s struggle over loving Angel in spite of his evil Angelus deeds. She shows up for therapy with Platt (who is facing the window) and, shaking with emotion, reaches out for help:

Once again, SMG’s performance is heartbreaking, and then it’s downright heart-shattering when she turns Platt’s chair around and discovers that he’s dead. Gah, I want to hug Buffy so, so hard. Also, RIP Mr. Pavone Platt. We hardly knew ye.

Meanwhile, Oz is making like his fellow ginger Nancy Drew and putting clues together–once he sees Debbie, acting nervous and making fake excuses for her black eye, he realizes that Jeff was friends with Debbie *and* that Platt was her counselor, so her jealous boyfriend Pete just miiiiight have something to do with the murders. 

Buffy and Willow find Debbie in the locker room, where Buffy tries to comfort her (and herself) by letting Debbie know that what happened isn’t her fault–it’s made all the more sad by Debbie’s refusal to hear the truth. Over in the library, a far more intense confrontation is going down as Hyde Pete, aggro over Oz simply talking to his girlfriend, tears off the cage door and attacks him. Things are not looking good for our Monkey Pants until HELLO FULL MOON. “Time’s up,” Oz quips, as he turns into a werewolf. “Rules change.” (Drink!) The odds turn in Oz’s favor, but then Buffy and the Scoobs show up, with Debbie right behind, and the latter tries to hit the tranquilizer gun out of Buffy’s hand, which leads to poor Giles getting tranqued! Pete and Debbie escape, and Were-Oz scrams only to be eventually brought down by Faith and the tranquilizer gun. Buffy finds Pete (and a dead Debbie, damn) and gets her slay on, THEN Feral Angel shows up?!! There is way too much male aggression in this episode. Feral Angel kills Pete and sorta kinda seems like he’s becoming more of himself–he recognizes Buffy and falls to his knees, clinging to her legs. 

The episode closes with Buffy trying to comfort Scott over the loss of his friends (and the knowledge that his pal Pete was a psycho) as they both reflect on how you can never really know someone. That might be true, but Scott, I can tell you this much: Buffy is not destined to be your girlfriend. 

How many times do I have to take a drink?

10

Vamps Dusted

0

Full-Time Oz For Life

Sweet Discman Moves

See, kids, our version of the iPod was as big as our faces but we still got down! Wait, what’s an iPod, you ask? Sigh.


So, Faith’s entrance and Angel’s reentrance feel a tad anticlimactic this go-round. Is it just because we know things with Faith get way darker and more interesting as she becomes less cartoonish? And because we know things with Angel get zzzzzz? (I mean, is anyone excited that he’s back, and so soon?) 

Hit me up in the comments with your thoughts and feels, then join Kandis for her recap of two stellar episodes, “Homecoming” (Hello, Mayor!) and the series classic, “Band Candy.”  

Sarah splits her time between Dallas and Austin, and believes there is no such thing as a guilty pleasure, which is part of why she started FYA in 2009. Growing up, she thought she was a Mary Anne, but she's finally starting to accept the fact that she's actually a Kristy.