Dawn has candles burning in the living room and she sits on the floor, preparing to cast the Frogman out with a spell. She tosses pinches of powder in the air in preparation, but is slammed back against a wall by an invisible force. Undeterred, she begins her incantation but is interrupted by being slashed across the face, by the candles blowing out, and by all the windows in the living bursting inwards and covering her in glass shards. I know the number of a certain bunch of sisters in San Francisco who might be able to recommend a good glazier for Dawn.
Buffy and Holden are talking. Buffy's explaining about Spike: "And the joke is he loved me. In his own sick, soulless way, he really did care for me. But I didn't want to be loved." She continues that because she doesn't "serve" her power, she felt the need to be punished and hurt like she thought she deserved. Holden listens sympathetically as Buffy unravels the tangles of her psyche. She talks about how she feels "beneath" everyone, including her friends and boyfriends. She feels unworthy, but also that their love and opinions don't matter, because they can't know or go through what she has gone through as the Slayer. This leads her to realizing that she also sometimes feels superior to everyone else. "You do have a superiority complex, and you've got an inferiority complex about it," diagnoses Sigvamp Freud. But I think he's wrong. Buffy's inferiority complex isn't about feeling superior; it's about guilt and shame and feeling isolated, as if she can't ever measure up to whatever existential burden that she or life has placed on her shoulders. And actually, I don't find her situation all that uncommon. I'd say many of the bright people I know have warring feelings of inferiority (usually about living up to their own expectations) and superiority. Or so they tell me. I wouldn't know anything about it myself, of course. Ah, back to the show. Holden communicates his wonderful message of hope: "Everybody feels alone. And everybody is. Until you die." Okay, thanks for sharing. When on God's green earth is Buffy going to learn to stop talking to goddamn vampires about her goddamn problems? I can't think of a worse segment of the population for Buffy to seek a sympathetic ear from, considering her line of work. I mean, do you think the head of the CIA wanders the nighttime streets of Baghdad or Bilbao looking for junior terrorists to share his dark night of the soul? I don't think so! Except...wait huh, that might actually explain a few things I've been wondering about recently. Moving on. Holden warms up for the fight, and Buffy thanks him for listening. She continues, "That stuff with Spike is pretty --" Holden interrupts her, "Hold it. Did you say Spike?"