This is part of my ongoing Buffyverse Project, where I write notes/meta for every episode in an attempt to better understand the characters and themes of the shows. You can find the BTVS list here and the ATS list here. Gifs are not mine.
I loved that Something Blue allowed us to sympathize with both sides of the Willow vs. Scoobies conflict. I’m annoyed when Willow snaps at everyone and interrupts Buffy and Riley’s date, which forces me to recognize truth when Willow says no one wants to deal with her heartbreak anymore. The episode was also really funny.
We discover in the first scene that Willow has been going to Oz’s place alone. She’s clinging to the relationship and fully expects him to return. This is also when Riley and Buffy really get going, which has to be a painful reminder for Willow. I had forgotten about Willow and Buffy’s conversation in the graveyard and in hindsight find it pretty sad. Some of Buffy’s issues with Riley were already present but she basically never dealt with them. I don’t believe the implosion of their relationship was all on Riley. I think he sensed some real issues but just handled it all wrong.
Buffy: Riley seems so solid. Like he’s not the type to give a girl grief.
Willow: Get out. Get out while there's still time.
Buffy: I know. I gotta get over the whole bad boy thing. There’s no good there. Seeing Angel in L.A. - even for five minutes - hello to the pain.
Willow: The pain is not a friend.
Buffy: But then I can’t help thinking, isn't that where the fire comes from? Can a nice, safe relationship be that intense? It’s nuts, but part of me believes that real love and passion have to go hand in hand with lots of pain and fighting-
I’ve never gotten the bad boy thing. It’s all cool on television but in real life it’s dealing with a serial cheater at best and visiting a jail at worst. No, thanks. Anyway Buffy definitely has a thing with it which, if I wanted to get analytical, would say goes back to her father and her fear of healthy relationships. Riley could have been forever and committing to that is scary. But when you know Angel or Spike can’t last you don’t really have to commit or face your fears of ending up like your mother. I think Buffy has a lot of issues with Hank (made worse by her first relationship being a nightmare) that go unresolved. I’m not saying Riley and Buffy would have lasted forever, but I don’t think she ever really gave that idea a chance.
1) This is a mostly fun episode, as much as it hurts to watch Buffy struggling in every job. The bottom line is, she’s a fighter, and she’s trying her hardest even as she’s struggling with her post-heaven depression. She accepts everyone’s offers and suggestions, and she fucking tries okay? Even when she probably feels like staying home curled up in her bed, she fucking tries and she doesn’t give up. And she doesn’t really ask for help but she takes it when Giles offers it to her. Both of these things constitute a very important message. Buffy is strong, and she may be faltering and depressed and lacking the will to live. But she doesn’t give up, and I love her for it.
2) And the Buffy/Angel meeting remains a mystery…
DAWN: So… how was it? Seeing Angel… him seeing you. Was it weird?
BUFFY: Um… it was… intense.
WILLOW: Well, if you wanna talk about it…
BUFFY: I don’t. It’s… not important. Past. I’d just… rather keep this one to myself, if that’s okay.
My biggest question about their meeting is whether she told me she was in heaven or not. I guess we’ll never know.
3) I guess we had gone too long without a good ol’ fashioned round of ganging up on Buffy, hadn’t we?
GILES: Buffy, there was… some discussion in, uh, your absence about, um… what you’re gonna do now. You know, um… your plans.
BUFFY: Oh, I’ve been giving that a lot of thought actually. I think I’ve figured it out, what I should do. WILLOW: That’s good, that’s good! BUFFY: Yeah. I figure, if I hold off paying the plumber, I can pay the utility bill. And then I can wait to re-shingle the roof until we get the refund back- GILES: Um, I meant… with your life. BUFFY: Oh. Life plans. Um… well… I have no idea.
So, apparently, they all got together and bitched about how Buffy wasn’t doing anything of herself? Like, excuse you? The girl did not ask to be brought back, and now you want her to figure out what she’s going to do with a life she didn’t ask for ASAP? And you figure the best way to approach the subject is right after she comes back from meeting Angel - something that was probably extremely emotionally tiring for her - when she has had zero time to think things through? Seriously, sometimes I just want to slap the fuck out of all of them.
4) I’m probably missing something because tbh I don’t really pay much attention to what the trio say during their scenes, but WHY? Why are they going after Buffy? Just for funsies? Jonathan, I expected better of you.
WARREN: Okay, the thing is, since we’re messing with the Slayer, who could pummel the three of us into a sludgy substance, it might be a good idea for us to NOT draw attention to ourselves!
ANDREW: I could paint over it if you want.
WARREN: Yeah, well, do that! Because this time tomorrow, the games begin. And the Slayer… will never even know what hit her.
Gives nose/forehead kisses: Buffy. She likes to press kisses right where she used to punch him. A late sort of apology to his nose.
Gets jealous the most: Spike. For sure. Not that Buffy can’t get jealous she just doesn’t get jealous as often as Spike does.
Picks the other up from the bar when they’re too drunk to drive: Buffy. Though it’s mostly to make sure he doesn’t drive, she walks him home.
Takes care of on sick days: Spike. He doesn’t get sick, and is always happy to pamper Buffy when she’s under the weather.
Drags the other person out into the water on beach day: Buffy. On really hot nights she’s the one who drags Spike to the beach in the first place. They do a midnight picnic and she’ll drag him him into the water.
Gives unprompted massages: Spike. Especially after patrol.
Drives/rides shotgun: Spike drives, Buffy rides shotgun. Sometimes she tucks herself right under his arm while he drives.
Brings the other lunch at work: Spike. Even though he typically has to rush inside under a blanket.
Has the better parental relationship: Probably Buffy with Joyce, but this one is really a hard call.
Tries to start role-playing in bed: Both. It’s a pretty mutual thing.
Embarrassingly drunk dancer: Buffy. Sometimes on tables.
Still cries watching Titanic: Spike, that romantic sap. Buffy has sworn not to tell any of the scoobies.
Firmly believes in couples costumes: Buffy, and she does insist that they wear them.
Breaks the expensive gift rule during Christmas: If he has enough money to, Spike usually does.
Makes the other eat breakfast: Neither. Spike is usually asleep when Buffy eats. And Buffy doesn’t have to remind him to eat when he gets up.
Remembers anniversaries: Spike. He also makes a very big deal out of them.
Brings up having kids: Neither really figure it’s a possibility so it doesn’t get brought up.
makes the bed in the mornings - Angel, Buffy couldn’t care less about the mess, but Angel is a neat freak, who not only makes the bed, but picks up all the clothes Buffy has thrown everywhere, organises her weapons and straightens up the whole room before starting the day.
has sole posession of the T.V. remote - Buffy. Angel doesn’t really mind and is happy watching whatever Buffy wants to.
is the bigger cuddler - Buffy, who loves to snuggle with Angel. Angel loves holding her, but she is often the one who initiates physical contact.
does the laundry - Angel, because he loves that “fresh laundry smell”.
mows the lawn - Buffy. Angel never learned how to work the mower.
shops for groceries - They shop together. Angel selects healthy food, which Buffy sneaks out of the trolley before the hit the register.
comes home drunk at 3am - Buffy. Angel greets her with coffee, water and aspirin and then tucks her into bed.
makes breakfast - Angel, who brings Buffy breakfast in bed.
remembers to feed the fish - Angel. Buffy tries but too often forgets.
decorates the apartment - They decorate together, although Angel indulges Buffy’s tastes and usually lets her make the final decision because it makes her so happy.
initiates duets - Angel and the songs are always by Barry Manilow.
falls asleep first - They are both night owls and tend to fall asleep together, in each other’s arms.
Spike, much to his chagrin, because Dawnie gave them to him, one every Christmas. sometimes she’d give them matching ones, but that didn’t really bother Buffy as much as it did Spike. Dawn always insisted it was because it was the only time she could really embarrass them the way they did her. Buffy actually kinds of loves it whenever Spike grumbles in his sweater, because moody vampire + bright green wool + awesome cheekbones was one of the most adorable and sexy things she’d ever seen, even if he didn’t really suit wooly snowmen.
who picks out the holiday movies and who makes the hot cocoa:
buffy picks out the movies, because she’s had a system ever since she was a kid, but they always watch Die Hard at the very end because he loves it and he sat “so patiently” through Frosty the Snowman and The Grinch. Buffy actually kind of loves the movie too. She makes the cocoa because she makes it just the way Joyce did, but Spike always adds the marshmallows.
who starts the snowball fight:
Buffy, when Spike’s busy grumbling about something with his back turned. She nails him the back of the head and runs cackling all the way back her preplanned hiding place complete with ready made snowballs. Spike has usually seen her setting this up the day before and manages to sneak up behind her. It always ends up an afternoon of a roaring Spike, a giggling Buffy, a laughing and swearing vampire and a make out session in the snow.
who drags the other under the mistletoe:
it’s usually pretty even. Spike does because Buffy thinks it’s silly or because it’s situated in a dark corner at a party, and Buffy does it when she’s in trouble. She holds in above her head with a pout in place until Spike rolls his eyes, shakes his head in exasperation and kisses her. Spike’s also known to hide it in obvious places, like above the bed or in the shower.
who decorates the house:
Spike does the outdoor lights and yard decorations, but Buffy and Dawn always decorate inside, including the tree, because it’s been tradition since they were kids. Even once Dawn’s moved out and has her own family, she still comes home every year for Christmas and to decorate the tree. Spike isn’t allowed back in the house until they’re done, meaning he either does patrol alone, or hides from the sun at Willow’s or Giles’. She always lets him put the star on top of the tree (no Angels of any kind in his house, thank you very much).
who hangs up the ornaments on the tree:
as said, Buffy. Spike doesn’t mind though. Christmas traditions like that don’t matter as much to him, not since he was turned.
who cooks christmas dinner:
because they spend christmas with the gang, it’s usually a shared responsibility: who ever doesn’t cook, cleans. But Buffy’s a pro since her first thanksgiving, and Spike’s happy to do the dishes to allow the original scoobies some time together alone. although sometimes xander surprises him by helping with them instead of joining the others.
who invites the other to sing a christmas duet:
spike, drunkenly. despite the fact that he doesn’t know all the words and usually makes up his own.
if they have any holiday traditions:
besides, Die Hard. They open one gift from each other (usually ones not suitable for Dawnie’s eyes) on Christmas Eve (and celebrate early *wink*) and Spike always makes breakfast Christmas morning: chocolate chip pancakes with banana, nutella, strawberries and bacon.
who would start a food fight during baking:
buffy, because spike is concentrating way too hard on his gingerbread men, although it’d be worth it when hers come out wonky and his all have matching outfits and fangs, except for one with yellow frosting for hair and a toothpick in her hand.
who would get drunk off of eggnog:
buffy, because spike spiked the nog and told her as much, but she insisted that she couldn’t taste the alcohol so it couldn’t be that strong, and besides she was the slayer, so there.