Yay! New Buffy! And quite promising new Buffy, too. Despite the unpursued beginning sequence and the shopworn “something big is coming” talk, it looks to be more than just an intro for the Dawn/Kit/Carlos (wow, normal names!) trio or an attempt to return to the series’ Sunnydale High roots.
I like Spike with the William hair. William the Bloody Crazy, that is. Interestingly, that wasn’t an option in the survey I saw: unchanged, tortured, superhero, or William? Should get some good lines off him this season. Quoting off-their-rocker vamps is great for scaring your friends. I wonder what he’s been eating? Can’t be too many rats in a new school. Oh, and Harry Potter, anyone? First Giles is “go[ing] all Dumbledore,” then there’s crying in a bathroom that leads to a secret passage opening up, and you have a trio forming on grounds where another famous group once walked. I’m not against this by any means, but if it gets to Dawn going to an international Academic Decathlon with dragons and merpeople involved, I’ll be the first to say it’s gone too far.
It took me way too long to twig to the villain regression at the end. Took me till the Master said it, in fact. But in the beginning, there was Buffy. At least it didn’t turn into Tara–Kelson and I were both afraid of that. But the big questions: is Spike’s headmate, in fact, the seventh big bad? How did it get there? Why Spike? It could be like Buffy’s hitchhiker from the grave, or something different. One of our co-watchers put forth that maybe it’s just Spike’s demon in invisible-friend form, as his way of dealing with the war between his good and evil bits. I like that one a lot, but it doesn’t have much potential. I do find it interesting that Spike referred to “the three of us” as being the only ones who ever come down to his little cell. At the time I thought he meant Buffy and some unseen person (or headmate) as the other two, but now I wonder if he might not mean there’s something besides his headmate in the area–maybe the person responsible for the talisman? (Or the spirit responsible for making Spike put the talisman there.)
Prediction: Dawn will discover Spike. She’s on campus more regularly than the rest, she had a connection with him before, and it’d be interesting to see if the new loony version of Spike can see her as glowing green energy. It’d also be interesting to see if the Villain Morph-O-Matic knows anything about Key powers. (Caution: may be volatile when combined with Slayer blood.)
And they better get Willow back from England before her Paraguayan flowers crowd out the native wildlife.