Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Fear, Itself

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Fear, Itself

Willow is still stomping through the halls, ranting about how Buffy thinks she isn't ready to be a full-blown witch. They circle back around to the front of the house and Oz notes, "this floor used to have windows." Willow notices the staircase and charges up it with Oz in tow. Oz is telling Willow that he doesn't think they are thinking clearly when he notices that his hands have begun to change into paws. He tells Will that something is happening, and looks at her with a partially werewolfed face. She says it's impossible -- there is no moon tonight. He pleads with her to get away from him as she dithers about finding ropes or doing her guiding spell. She attempts to touch him, and he growls, scratches her hand, and runs away. We hear Willow's cry of "don't leave me" echoing through the halls. Xander rounds another corner and see himself in a mirror. Behind him the severed head comes alive, which wasn't scary since I'd been expecting it since the first scene in which it appeared. Xander flees. The camera creeps into a bathroom where Oz is crouched in the bathtub, still partially wolfed out and chanting desperately, "I'm not gonna change. I'm not gonna change." Spooky horror-movie music plays as Buffy walks carefully down a hallway.

Willow sits on a table and begins her incantation to "Aradia, Goddess of the Lost." A small green light appears before her. Willow tells the light to lead her to Oz, then corrects herself and says she should try to find the people upstairs. As she talks, the light splits into two lights, then three, and then a whole swarm that flies around her. If you've seen that early X-Files episode with the tiny green insects in the forest, then you've seen this special effect. Anyway, as Willow calls for help, some of the lights fly into her mouth and she begins to choke and cough. Buffy hears Willow calling and breaks down a door trying to find her. She falls into a basement and lands on her back. FratJerk steps out of the shadows, his head all torqued to the side. ('Cause he broke his neck, you know.) He intones, "They all ran away from you. They always will. Open your heart to someone and --". Hands thrust up from the ground and grab Buffy, who screams.

Corpses burst out of the ground and menace Buffy, who screams and struggles. Outside, Giles is inspecting the former location of the door. He remarks to Anya that he'll have to create a door. Anya asks if he can do that. Hasn't this girl ever heard of carpenters? Giles stalks over to his bag and pulls out a chainsaw. He marches up to the house and gets to work. Okay, usually Giles doesn't do anything for me, but in this scene he's wearing a cute little grin and an all-black outfit and looks pretty good. Giles fans will be talking about this episode for years to come, I'm sure. Buffy fights to get away from the corpses. DeadFratJerk utters some pretty ineffective "scary" dialogue about how no matter how hard she fights, she always ends up in the same place. Shut up, DeadFratJerk. Buffy exits the basement through a small door and ends up in the Goat Room. She sees people cowering in fright, including Oz, who is no longer wolfed out. Willow runs in screaming, "Get 'em off me!" and batting at her hair, but we don't see any of the tiny lights. Oz grabs her hands and hugs her. Xander sits rocking and sulks, "I'd offer my opinion but you jerks aren't going to hear it anyway. I might as well hang out with my new best friend, bleeding dummy head, for all you dorks care." Obviously Xander is no longer invisible because Buffy snaps, "What is with you, Xander?" Buffy says that they were all brought to the attic, but for what purpose? The gang notices the rune painted on the floor and Xander finds the book from which it was copied. The scary voice says (sigh -- again), "Release me!" Willow says the rune is the mark of Gachnar and is a summoning spell for -- um, Gachnar. Somehow the beginning of the spell was triggered, and the demon, who feeds on fear, is trying to manifest itself. I find it pretty hard to believe that Willow has a workable command of Gaelic, considering that fewer than one million people speak it. I hardly think Gaelic 100 was a course at Sunnydale High. The gang tries to talk themselves out of being scared, but Gachnar continues to yell and all the doors in the room start to rattle. It's interesting to note how the Scooby Gang's fears have changed from the last time they did this episode and called it Nightmares.

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer

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