I so called the mind control. I think i like that she's using the magic again no problem.
Xander's blinding didn't really affect me emotionally, but the scene with Willow was really moving. And Buffy's whole all-about-the-mission reminded me of Fred's thing last week ("Sacrifice" 4.20) about how a world where you're cut off from all emotion and caring is not a world worth fighting for.
Ooh, shades of Ripper.
Yes, we get a mention of Xander's Halloween costume ("All the Way" 6.05).
[edited to add: "Usually when there's a party I end up having to rebuild things." Okay, so it was before Xander became a carpeneter, but that immediately made me think of "Dead Man's Party" -- which is somewhat ironic given the ending of this episode.]
Opening shot at the Bronze? So "Dirty Girls."
Hellmouthed police -- allusion to police brutality?
Andrew-as-Dawn on Spike's motorcycle (see "Bargaining"). We know he had his hands a little lower than waist, no? ;)
"It is not for thee but for she alone to wield." Hmm.
I love that Faith manages to create sexual tension with whomever she is in a scene with.
I love Rona.
But yeah, "Ding dong the witch is dead"... "Shut your mouth." Buffy's being reckless and generally not a good leader, but she has gotten them through 7 years.
"Brat's all woman-sized."
And even Xander... all the more poignant after his speech last episode about trusting her. Not only is it a blow for her but you know it's gotta be painful for him.
All the stuff about Buffy being handed everything, not ever being told she deserved it (Anya for example was given power because she in some sense earned it)... is it just because i'm at Smith or do we think Joss hates Bush?
"Don't." And we see her crying. "Don't be afraid to lead them." I openly admit to being moved by that scene.
So, um, where is Buffy going to go exactly?
I could be writing lengthy things about character and leadership and making decisions and Buffy-as-the-law ("a girl who thinks she's a cop... favorite of my current bruises")... really lots about Buffy, about her role and how it's changed and what she's been trained to do and how one fights a battle like this (as well as the whole battle metaphor and unpacking that) and all that, because really while Angel has been about major forces and mythos and being part of something larger, this episode was really about the people. Ostensibly it may have been about gathering information and trying to avert the apocalypse, but really it's about leadership and togetherness and trust and all that. But i really don't have anything profound to say. I think it's all right there, and honestly i don't think i want to read anyone theorizing about it (though i'm sure mutant_allies will link to brilliant stuff) i just want to watch it unfold. I've mentioned this before. Whedonverse is my thing. I don't enjoy seeing it torn apart (in the sense of fans tearing apart the plot and all, not in the "Yoko Factor" sense or anything like that). I really enjoy dissecting this stuff, connecting it, theorizing, all that... but sometimes i just need to let it be. This episode made me sad, and for once i'm not up for analysis.
Oh, and preview for next week? That was not what i was expecting when i found out the episode was gonna be titled "Touched." If Angel is any indication, badness ensues. But honestly, if you think the world is gonna end, what else are you gonna do? And there's the potential for a lot of really interesting resolution of unresolved issues (Oh, and i went "aw" at Anya's bit about being, or not being, at the beside of her ex-fiancee).