Casa De Mantis Que Cazan. Miss French is in another Spiegel-catalog creation, this one a little black dress that really gives new meaning to the term "shelf bra"; she's pouring bug-tinis when the doorbell rings. When she lets Xander in, he goggles at her ledge of breasts, and she leers something about should she change, is the dress too...? Oh, no; it's the most beautiful chest -- er, "dress" Xander's ever seen. She offers him a bug-tini, which he grabs, and she says she needs to unwind; she's "a little nervous around" Xander. But he's probably cool as a cucumber, she says. Xander babbles about liking cucumbers and tzatziki and downs his whole martini and makes those "ha...ho" noises and God, get ON with it, please. Miss French hitches closer to him on the couch and wants to know if she can ask him a personal question: "Have you ever been with a woman before?" Xander's blithering response to this drags on for several weeks while Miss French strokes his face and pretends she's on Red Shoe Diaries and finally, a day or two before my fortieth birthday, Xander admits that he's a virgin. Miss French knows; she "can tell." She can? "Oh, I like it. You might say I...need it." Yes, you might say that...but please don't, because this episode is dragging on longer than the Ming dynasty already. Xander babbles some more, then asks if she hears a noise that sounds like someone crying. Miss French says flatly that she doesn't hear a thing and takes Xander's hand, moaning, "Ooh, your hands are so hot!" Xander flashes back to Buffy cooing, "Ooh, you hurt your hand!" He slumps back onto the couch: "Buffy. I love Buffy. So that's a martini, huh?" Aw. I've felt that pain. Well, not the loving-Buffy pain. Xander bolts upright again and asks about the crying; Miss French interrupts to ask if he'd like to touch her "with those hands." Cut to a shot of Miss French's hands morphing into mantis pincers as Xander says that they're "really...serrated." Heh. He mumbles something about the martini and swoons onto the floor. As we head to the break, the She-Mantis hauls him away by the feet.
Basement of the mantis -- or should I call it the "basemantis"? No, that's too stupid. But on another subject entirely, have you ever noticed that, on TV and in the movies, the refrigerators in basements always date from the fifties? What's up with that? We pan past a retro fridge and over to a cage, where Xander comes to on a bed of thinly scattered straw. He pulls himself up the bars and looks across the room; in the corner, the She-Mantis...I don't know. It sounds like she's eating Funyuns, and possibly leafing through a magazine. Hard to tell. Let's just say that the She-Mantis makes threateningly crunchy noises. "Miss...French?" "Call me Natalie," the She-Mantis says in an electronicky voice, and Xander jumps back from the bars.