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March 7, 2002

Buffy - Hell's Bells - 03/05/02

Jeez, Joss, can't you let anyone be happy?

Lou was hoping for the one shining moment of happiness to a season of depression, and was yet again whacked off at the knees.

But you know, in retrospect, I should have seen it coming. When Anya, re-making her vows, finally comes down to the "I get it now. I get love now" bits, I should have been able to see it.

Yes, spoiler away, they don't get married at the end of the episode.

And we finally get to see Xander's family. And we now know why he stays as far away from them as possible.

But damn...why couldn't Xander have seen this before, and talked to someone about it? We saw in the previous episode that they loved each other, that they were doing the ceremony for the family, but the rest of the time was for THEM.

And yet, when a fake future version of himself shows up with false visions of the future (admittedly fed off of his fears), Xander cuts and runs. He sees his parents, comic cariactures of the worst kinds of parents, and thinks he'll become like them. And runs away from the possibility.

I would have liked this episode better if, at the end, Anya and Xander went off to talk. It's good for engaged couples to TALK before they get married, about their fears, their plans, their hopes. I have experienced (not me, but watched in someone close to me) what happens when two people get marrieid who have different goals in mind after the wedding, and don't talk about it. I do have to give Xander credit for not getting married if he was worried.

But to run away...and not stay and talk...what was THAT about? Xander, who faces down demons with no special powers? Xander who laughs in the face of danger, and THEN hides until it goes away? He cuts and runs.

They're doing some not-in-character things with him this year (the first being him summoning the demon Mr. Sweet in "Once More, With Feeling"), and this was one of them.

If he comes back next week (which is not likely from the previews), and tries to work it out, I'll be happy. But I don't see it happening.

And of course, Anya gets made the offer from D'Hoffran again. My bet? No, she won't take it. If she does, her heart won't be in it. She's experienced real love, she "gets it" now. And for her to throw that all away - she's not that angry young girl anymore. I hope she doesn't take it, anyway.

I was pleased with the Buffy/Spike minor plot points. Yes, it's hard, and yes he wants to hate her, but it's not his first instinct anymore. And I don't think it will be ever again.

Overall, 7/10. I may have sounded like I hated it more than I did, but it was still fun.

Posted by Julia at March 7, 2002 7:55 PM


A vengeance demon who has tasted the bittersweet of real love would be a very interesting character. After all, it's not just the pain you would have vengeance against...

I'd like to see it resolved. Real love has sadness as well as joy: but fear and doubt belong somewhere else.

Posted by: MT Fierce at March 8, 2002 12:26 PM