Actually, I'd compare this ep more to Selfless than to Beneath You in tone and complexity and overall importance to the seasonal arc. There was *everything* in this episode. And more to noodle out than two simple viewings will give me. Bottom line analysis: this episode was *all* about the balance, and I cannot wait to see where they take us next. Get it done...the season's statement about morality and power continues. I think there are two major themes to this season, possibly three, and they were all present here. First, this season is about being the mirror half of season 6, about rebuilding the character's selves after the horrendous destruction last season wrought. Second, the season is about moral superiority and power (not sure if that's one or two themes, really). The episode titles tell the tale better than I can, but ultimately, it's coming down to the balance. It's about the power *and* how you use it. How you 'get it done'. Spike found his balance tonight, and Buffy took another step on the road to hers. I'm predicting some kind of ascent (heh. descent) for her at this point. Trying to recall the precise steps Inanna (oh Miiiinnnntttt...) took, but she died, she came back, she was stripped of all her attributes, and ultimately she possessed her power, at a price. What will Buffy's price be?
I'm still all muddled and befuddled. God, what an episode. Slayer origins, finally finally finally. I knew she'd have to defeat the source of her power, but I wonder if this was the end, or just the beginning? Spike, back to himself. A man with a mission and joy and passion again. THANK JOSS! Willow, learning how to accept who she is, warts and all. Xander, doing what he does best of all, taking care of his women. That boys still needs to get closure with Anya, though. And how! Let's see, who else do we need to deal with. Oh. Andrew. I'm really basically sick to death of Andrew, but his moment tonight was just the right amount of Andrew. Come on, do the joke, get the hell off screen. Perfect. Just the right note of humor in an otherwise very intense ep. Giles, missing again. That man is going to have some serious karma to pay soon, I expect. One thing worries me -- Wood has now met Xander. I don't *think* there was much opportunity for plotting, but I am v. nervous about the prospect of Wood getting allies. Xander and Giles seem to be hugely likely candidates for plotting against my boy, and I don't like it one bit. The confrontation between the black and white knights needs to be mano-a-mano, imho.
Whoa. I'm still having diarrhea of the keyboard. Expect more, maybe. Wow.
Get it done, indeed! Who's in charge of locking up the network geeks and ME minions who try to appease them by stringing out a good story far too long?
Oh! And the vision? Squeeeeeeeee! The Harvest. Can't wait to see how they twist that one.