Dawn heads into the foyer to greet the arriving guests. The next entity to arrive is D'Hoffryn, who is carrying a box pierced by many holes. "May the love we celebrate today avoid an almost inevitable decline," D'Hoffryn greets her, then tries to give the gift to Dawn. However, Dawn is distracted by the arrival of Halfrek, who is also wearing one of the screaming green bridesmaid's dresses. As we've all seen in the promo, D'Hoffryn's gift sticks a squirmy tentacle out at Dawn. D'Hoffryn and Hallie continue on inside, arguing about Hallie trying to get Dawn to make a little vengeance wish. Dawn notices Spike slumping around the lobby and hurries over to talk to him, seemingly excited to see him. Spike doesn't even greet Dawn, however, and instead just truculently says, "I want you to meet the date," gesturing towards the Goth-y chick he has on his arm. Dawn politely says hello, the date just says, "Uh huh," and Spike says "date" about five more times. Looks like that whole Spike-and-Dawn rapport is as dead as, well, Spike. He cared more about making himself look like the big man here than he did about actually talking to Dawn. Dawn wanders off.
In a large gathering room, which features a bar along one side, Clem, Cousin Carol, Mrs. Harris, Uncle Rory, and a guy with tentacles on his chin are all sharing uncomfortable conversation. Carol and Rory comment on Clem and his buddy being "circus folk," and Clem admits that "there are ancient ways." He then quickly covers with, "Clowning as an occupation grew out of the Commedia dell'Arte and ancient sports," which seems like a nice topic for conversation but only leads Rory to sneer that Xander's children shouldn't be raised in any sort of cult. As the tentacle guy gets involved in the debate, we see repeated shots of Xander's mom looking apprehensive. Mrs. Harris isn't like I thought she'd be. I thought she'd be more obviously horrible because of the time Xander called home and she had no idea who he was. But then there was the time she wanted to provide Xander and Giles with snacks, so maybe she has her good days and her bad days. Mrs. Harris finally catches a glimpse of her husband, who is hunched over the bar, knocking back drinks and laughing cynically about the "'til death do us part" section of wedding vows. He instructs the bartender to give him another drink. The old man in the overcoat (remember him?) has shown up at the wedding and works his way thought the crowd, obviously looking for someone.
Still with Buffy, Xander puts on his coat and asks for an appraisal of how he looks. Buffy compliments him, and they share a hug before heading out into the hallway. Xander runs Buffy though a list of things she's supposed to do for him, the first of which is, "Don't let [Mr. Harris] near the bar." Oops, too late for that. Dawn joins them and just can't wait to tell Buffy that Spike has come to the wedding and brought a "total skank." I dunno -- Spike's date was a little surly, but I really didn't see anything too skanky about her. ["I know! In fact, she looked a lot like my hairdresser." -- Sep] I guess we're supposed to think this random girl is a skank because she has an eyebrow piercing and doesn't have shiny, shiny monk hair like Dawn. Whatever. Dawn continues to giggle about Spike's date, but Xander, obviously with more on his mind than Spike's social calendar, heads out to talk to the wedding guests. He takes some congratulations and handshakes, and everything seems fine until his mother comes over to complain that she's been seated in the third row, instead of the first. They were seated, and then they all got back up again to mingle? Is that normal? I don't know very much about weddings. Xander tries to assure his mother that it was a mistake, and then is suddenly set upon by a multitude of people who want his attention, including the overcoat guy. The camera spins around to show how overwhelmed Xander is, and then he gets dragged aside by Overcoat Guy, who insists, "You can't get married today. It's a huge mistake." Xander's confused by this, obviously, and has no idea who Overcoat Guy is. Overcoat Guy claims, "I'm Xander Harris. I'm you." Um, sure. I know people shrink as they get older and all, so that might explain how this guy could be shorter than Xander, but could it explain why he has a much pointier nose and possibly different colored eyes? (I'm not sure on the eyes, because my television is pretty small.)