1. Welcome to the Hellmouth/2. The Harvest
Written By: Joss Whedon; Directed By: Charles Martin Smith (Part 1) and John T. Kertchmer (Part 2). Guest Stars: Mark Metcalf as the Master, Brian Thompson as Luke, David Boreanaz as Angel, Ken Lerner as Principal Flutie, Kristine Sutherland as Joyce Summers, Julie Benz as Darla; with Mercedes McNab as Harmony.
Buffy Summers and her mother, Joyce, have moved from LA to Sunnydale, California. On her first day at a new school (she was kicked out of her last school for burning down the school gym because there were vampires in it) is when she meets many different people who will have a significant effect on her life. Cordelia (Miss Popular) befriends Buffy at first, but ditches her when she starts hanging out with shy, computer nerd Willow, and her friends Xander and Jesse. Giles, who is the school librarian knows Buffy's secret identity and is actually the Watcher assigned to her.
Later on, Luke is bestowed with the power to transfer the life force of his victims to the Master, to give him the strength to break free. He and Darla and other vampires attack the Bronze in search of victims, and most of them get killed including Luke, by Buffy and Jesse by Xander, although Darla escapes.
Episode Rating: 9/10
actor who plays Luke later appears in the Season 2 episodes 'Surprise'
and 'Innocence' as the big blue meanie, The Judge.
Written By: Dana Reston; Directed By: Stephen Cragg. Guest Stars: Kristine Sutherland as Joyce Summers, Elizabeth Anne Allen as Amy Madison, and Robin Riker as Catherine Madison; with Amanda Wilmshurst, Nicole Prescott, Jim Doughan, and William Monaghan.
Cheerleading tryouts go pear-shaped when favourite for the squad, Amber Grove, spontaneously bursts into flames, prompting Willow's outburst: She's on fire! and Cordelia's jealous retort: Enough with the hyperbole. Amy Madison, daughter of the legendary Catherine Madison, who was the cheerleader in her high school days, also tries out, as does Buffy, but Amy will only get on the squad if something happens to three people on the team. Without any further ado, Cordelia is blinded (typical of witches according to Giles), Lishanne has her mouth sealed shut, and Buffy is turned silly (Macho, macho man! I want to be, a macho man!) then seriously ill from a Bloodstone Vengeance spell.
Episode Rating: 7/10
sums up his philosophy of life with the line "I laugh in the face of danger
- then I hide until it goes away."
Buffy is encouraged by her biology teacher, who turns up the very next day minus a head. The substitute chosen to replace him is Natalie French, who is obsessed with Praying Mantises and sends all the boys wild with passion. Buffy thinks that her teacher was killed by Claw, a vampire who has a claw for a hand, but rethinks when she sees him run away from Ms. French and she sees her head do a "full on Exorcist twist."
Episode Rating: 6/10
*Buffy Fact* For length, this extract was cut from the original script:
Dr. Gregory didn't chew me out or anything. He was really cool. But Flutie
showed him my permanent record. Apparently, I fall somewhere between Charles
Manson and a really bad person.
Willow: And you can't tell Dr. Gregory what really happened at your old school?
Buffy: I was fighting vampires? I'm thinking he might not believe me.
Willow: Yeah, he probably gets that excuse all the time.
Cordelia (just arriving): Here lies a problem. What used to be my table occupied by pitiful losers. Of course, we'll have to burn it.
Buffy: Sad, you spent so many memories here. You and Lawrence, you and Mark, you and John. You spent the better part of 'J' through 'M' here.
The Master is planning to raise the Anointed One, who will be his primary weapon against the Slayer. While this is going on, Buffy is patrolling the cemetery and kills a vampire, which is identified as a member of the Order of Aurelius from a ring he is wearing. This gives Giles a clue as to what the Master has in store. Giles hits the books and tries to research the relevance of the Order and the Anointed One, while Buffy arranges a date at The Bronze with Owen Thurman, a shy student with a passion for the morbid poetry of Emily Dickenson.
Episode Rating: 8/10
time a vampire is 'dusted' on screen, the computer graphics cost the producers
*Buffy Fact* All the books in Sunnydale High Library are real books
Buffy and the rest of the Slayerettes are on a school trip to the zoo, where among other things such as the zebras mating (like the heimlich manoeuvre with stripes) the school bullies, Kyle, Rhonda, Tor (well cool name, absolutely no sarcasm intended, I really do love it!) and Heidi, as well as Lance, a nerd who is their victim of the day, enter the forbidden Hyena House and become possessed by the spirits of hyenas, including Xander, who goes to save Lance. Xander starts to hang with the bullies and acting out of character, abusing Willow, and eating the school mascot, a pig called Herbert. Principal Flutie accuses the bullying Quartet (minus Xander), so they eat him as well.
Episode Rating: 7/10
the zoo scenes were filmed at Santa Ana Zoo.
finally reveals his secret identity as a vampire. He only does this after
he and Buffy admit their love for each other and they have their first
kiss. Buffy first thinks that it is part of his elaborate plan to earn
her trust then kill her, especially when she finds him holding a bitten
Joyce after Darla has had her share and framed Angel for the crime.
Very quickly, Buffy learns that Darla sired Angel (turned him into a vampire) 240 years before. 80 years previously, he killed a Romany (gipsy) woman, whose clan laid a curse on him: that his soul was restored (so he would feel unending guilt and remorse for his past actions, a terrible punishment as far as they were concerned). Darla tries to turn him evil again, but she fails, and when Buffy goes to The Bronze to kill Angel, Darla turns up too. When Buffy finds out the truth, she turns her anger from Angel to Darla, but it is actually Angel who stakes Darla, and destroys her once and for all.
Episode Rating: 10/10
takes an hour and a half to do Angel's vampire make-up
Italy, the fifteenth century, a monk imprisons the demon Moloch the Corruptor,
in the text of a book. In present day Sunnydale, Willow scans the book
into her computer as part of a computer science project, but does not notice
the message 'Where am I?' flash up on her screen. She has inadvertently
released Moloch onto her computer, and from there he swiftly finds his
way on the Internet, where he starts up an online relationship with Willow,
posing as 'Malcolm' and Willow falls hook line and sinker for him. He also
gets Fritz and Dave, 2 computer geeks to build him a robotic body to live
in, promising them untold gifts.
Jenny Calendar, the computer science teacher, reveals that she is a 'technopagan' and knows about the demon on the Internet. She and Giles work out a way of trapping Moloch by Giles reading, and Jenny typing, the words of a spell of binding. Moloch is confined to his robot body, but he proves to be too strong for Buffy to fight outright, so she tricks him into punching into an electricity box on the wall. The episode ends with Buffy, Willow and Xander discussing their past love lives. Buffy loves a vampire, Willow loved a demonic robot, and Xander loved a giant insect.
Episode Rating: 9/10
was the first episode to feature Ms. Jenny Calendar. Her first name isn't
actually used in this episode, but it was originally intended to be Nicki,
but was changed to avoid confusion with Nicholas Brendon, who is Nicky
to his friends.
Principal Snyder, who is Flutie's permanent replacement, orders Giles to organise the annual talent(less) show. Snyder also forces Xander, Willow and Buffy to appear in the show, for cutting class when they fought Moloch. When one of the talent show performers is found dead with heart removed, Giles thinks it is the work of a regular human crazy, but to Buffy it screams 'DEMON!' even though it was done with a knife.
Episode Rating: 8/10
runs off in terror midway through the drama piece at the end, which wasn't
actually scripted. It does seem prophetic however, since her main fear
in the next episode 'Nightmares' is to do with stage fright.
For an unknown reason, people's worst nightmares are starting to come true in Sunnydale, and the only common factor is a small boy (not the Anointed One though). Examples of nightmares becoming reality are when Xander walks into class wearing only his underwear, and Cordelia has a really bad hair day and is forced to join the chess club. Also, Buffy's dad tells her she was the reason he and her mother got a divorce.
Episode Rating: 8/10
Master's first words to Buffy upon facing her in 'real' life are: "So you're
the Slayer. You're prettier than the last one."
is desperately drumming up support for her to be elected as May Queen -
no surprise there. But Mitch, her current squeeze, is attacked by a floating
baseball bat in the locker room, which seems to be controlled by an invisible
force. Cordelia's friend Harmony is then pushed down the stairs by an unseen
hand, and all the Slayerettes correctly deduce that an invisible person
is running amok. Buffy searches in the ductwork and finds the yearbook
of Marcie Ross, a girl who no one, not even Xander and Willow remembered,
yet they all signed her yearbook with 'Have a nice Summer' - yearbook speak
for 'You have no friends' all except Willow, who signed 'Have a great Summer.'
They realise that because everyone thought of her as being invisible, she became invisible, and now she is out to have revenge on the people who did it to her - especially Cordelia. Marcie manages to capture both Cordelia and Buffy, and nearly kills Xander, Willow and Giles, who would be dead if Angel had not gone to find Giles to give him the Pergamum Codex, which is highly important in the next episode. Buffy manages to break free just before Marcie mutilates Cordelia's face, and beats her up before being stopped by federal agents, who take Marcie away to a class full of invisible pupils - pupils who don't study chemistry or algebra, they study assassination and infiltration, which according to Marcie is 'cool.' Then again, as Buffy observes, she is a 'raving loony.'
Episode Rating: 8/10
voice over between Giles and Buffy between scenes about listening was not
in the original script, but added after.
Giles translates a section from the Pergamum Codex which predicts that the Master will rise and kill the Slayer. Several signs, such as a cat giving birth to snakes which predict the coming apocalypse are noticed by Jenny Calendar, who appears again for this episode. At first upon accidentally hearing the news Buffy refuses to face him, but when Willow is deeply traumatised by finding a room full of dead fellow students, she decides to bite the bullet. She allows the Anointed to lead her to the Master, then briefly fights him, but gets bitten and thrown face-down into a pool of water.
the Master and Angel all complement Buffy on her prom dress, the one her
mother bought her with the money she saved from not having to feed Buffy
much of late.