We open with the previouslys, and it seems that the entire Buffy crew is more and more environmentally conscious, because the intro is at least fifty percent post consumer waste footage. Is there anyone out there by now who doesn't know what's going on? Because I'm getting sick of typing up descriptions of the same scenes.
Buffy and Riley are making out on Buffy's bed. As soon as Riley ascertains that Willow is going to be at the library until late, he puts his hand -- I'm sorry. I can't go on. Luckily I don't have to because Willow bursts into the room wearing a cute little red shirt that says, "As seen on TV." I want me one of those. Willow tells them that something is afoot in the rec room. The three of them make their way there and Buffy snits at Willow that she has "better things to do tonight than kill." Buffy enters the darkened rec room, stake in hand, and as the lights flick on the gang yells, "Surprise!" It's a surprise party for Buffy's birthday, see? A second later, Riley enters through the back door with a crossbow. Willow guesses that Buffy "won't be killing anything tonight after all," but Buffy tells her not to be so sure about that. Buffy, I'm sorry, but you've exceeded your snotty attitude quota for one episode so you'd better be on your best behavior from here on out.
I'm boycotting the credits now that Marc Blucas is in them. Especially since he's billed before Spike.
In the rec room, Giles is reminiscing about his youth when Anya declares that she's bored and wants to eat. Xander, dressed in an ugly light-blue sweater vest, reprimands her that they've talked about her bluntness. I'm hoping that whatever Xander said doesn't sink in, because Anya consistently cracks me up. Anya apologizes to Giles and looks to Xander for approval. He nods at her and she tells Giles to continue his story and says that "hopefully it involved treacle and a headmaster." I read a lot of British children's literature as a, um, child and I always wondered what the hell treacle was. I had "lorry" and "lift" all figured out, but not treacle. I always pictured it as clear, sticky jam that didn't taste very good. According to my dictionary, however, it's basically syrup. Giles disgustedly dismisses them and they make a run for the grub. Giles takes a seat and Willow bounds up to him and asks if he's having a good time, and she brings him a slice of cake. Buffy approaches Giles with Riley in tow and introduces Riley as her boyfriend, which seems to come as a surprise to Giles. Buffy explains to Riley that Giles is her old librarian, and Riley tries to make a funny, saying that the place has "gone downhill" without him. Then Riley does his contortionist act for us, asking first if Giles is retired, then if he has another job. Gosh, I didn't think anyone could fit that much foot into his mouth. Buffy tries to save the situation by sending Riley to get Giles cake (what happened to his first piece?) and as soon as he's gone she explains to Giles that Riley is just nervous. They talk a bit about the party and Giles says that Willow and Xander did all the planning, adding that he wouldn't have gone with a surprise party since Buffy has "enough things jumping out" at her. Buffy then parrots a saying of Professor Walsh's about adrenaline and says that Walsh is the smartest person that Buffy knows. Giles is obviously perturbed by this when he suggests that they should have invited her. Buffy still isn't picking up on the big gaping hole in Giles's pride as she informs Giles that Walsh is too old and has more important things to do than hang out with teenagers. Gosh, I was wrong about Riley. Buffy can fit much more foot into her mouth. I'm also a little confused. Does Buffy still have a class taught by Professor Walsh, or is her admiration carrying over from last semester? I was excusing Buffy and Riley dating based on the assumption that he's no longer her TA, but it looks like I could be mistaken. Bad Riley! Bad!
Over at Xander's Basement of Debasement, Xander is complaining about how long it's taking for Spike to get his things together. He protests Spike's attempt to take his radio and Spike (bless his -- soul? Soul hole?) says, "And you're what? Shocked and disappointed? I'm evil." Anya asks what sort of place Spike is looking for, and he replies that he'd like something "dark and dank. But not as dark and dank as this." I'm going to assume that Xander's bright orange pants are an attempt to cheer up the place. Anya agrees that Xander's place is "depressing," and after another Spike-insult, Xander tries to throw Spike out, but he's stopped by Anya, who picks up a floor lamp and offers it to Spike. Xander returns it to its rightful place as Anya insists that "a gift is tradition, I read about it." Xander clarifies that housewarming gifts are only for friends, and as an immortal enemy, Spike doesn't qualify. Spike condescendingly tells Anya that a crypt isn't going to be wired for electricity anyway. Anya wants to know how he's going to keep his blood fresh without a fridge and tells him he should try to get a hotel room. Spike thinks "demon girl's got a point" and hits Xander up "for a few bob," but Xander tells him to get out before he invites Buffy over to kick him out. Spike wonders why Buffy didn't come over to say goodbye. I'm wondering why they're letting Spike get his own place all of a sudden. Xander says that Buffy has an appointment with "someone who is still scary."