Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 7, Episode 11: Showtime
Written by David Fury; Directed by Michael Grossman
Another generic and almost completely forgettable episode. More annoying Potentials show up, more whinging from all on sundry, more speeches from General Buffy… And Giles and Anya visit a demon named Beljoxa’s Eye, who says the First Evil has been given the chance to put its plan into action because the line of the Chosen (i.e. the Slayers) has been altered, apparently as a result of Buffy’s resurrection. Um, yes, but it’s been shown already that the line no longer goes through Buffy but through Faith. If it had continued to go through Buffy after her first death at the end of Season 1, Kendra wouldn’t have been called in Season 2, and therefore neither would Faith in Season 3. The fact that a new Slayer wasn’t called when Buffy died at the end of Season 5 only compounds this. Therefore, the writers are once again ignoring their own canon simply so they can make the plot do what they want it to. If the change in the line of the Chosen was what the First Evil needed, it would have sets its plan into action at the end of Season 1 - but, of course, it didn’t.
Theoretically, it would be entirely possible to ignore errors like this, in much the same way that it was possible to ignore The Gift’s many instances of twisting the canon, but the fact that Season 7’s plot is so fundamentally uninteresting makes it difficult to simply gloss over this sort of thing. Note to writers: if you want to make your show all about the plot at the expense of character development, you’d better have an airtight plot. But no, instead we get the first of General Buffy’s many stupid ideas: last week, she fought the Ubervamp and it not only beat her but gave her a thoroughly good hammering. So this week, her grand plan is to… fight it again? What’s changed? Nothing more than the venue. She sends everyone to a construction yard where she faces the Ubervamp in an arena-style showdown - but what precisely is it that allows her to beat it this time, when she’s already injured, that she didn’t have last week at full health? Oh, she has an audience and a cool location for a fight. But she doesn’t have any advantage. She simply beats it because that’s what the script calls for. Someone really didn’t think this through.
Overall rating: 4/10.
Next time: Potential.