Guest Starring: 
 Kristine Sutherland: 
 Clare Kramer: 
 Charlie Weber: 
 Kevin Weisman: 
 William Forward: 
 (Dr Issacs) 
 Amber Benson: 
 Megan Gray: 
  8. Shadow.  
  Glory summons a demon from a snake in order to search for 'the key'.  
  Great quotes:  
  • Xander: "Am I right Giles?" Giles: "Almost certainly not but to be honest I wasn't listening."
  • Giles is talking to a customer: "Alistair Crowley sings? No sorry I don't carry that..."
  • Xander to Buffy: "This chick creamed you last time!"
  Fantastic moments:  
    Buffy and her mother in hospital.
  • There is a crushing moment for Buffy in the episode as she is told, "Your mother has ... a brain tumour." She merely sits in stunned silence while the doctor tells her as a form of comfort "... nearly one out of three patients with this condition does just fine." Yikes; now that's horror.
  • Glory's minion (Dreg) is hilarious; thankfully there will be plenty more of them with lots of great sycophantic platitudes.
  • Dawn tells Riley that Buffy "... sure cries a lot less with you than she did with Angel.", ooh, a veritable stake through the heart.
  Duff Bits:  
  • Tara and Willow come very quickly to the conclusion that Glory is so old that she doesn't appear in any book and is therefore well evil
    Big evil snake thingy.
    and ancient. If the 'Glory' plotline is going to last all season there's no need to rush the exposition.
  • The snake demon is rubbish; it looks like it has come right out of the BBC Doctor Who SFX department. It is so bad that its arms can't be moved properly; Buffy chases it down and kills it anyway.
  Dean's comments:  
This episode is very depressing, but then how could an episode dealing with the discovery of a terminal illness in the main character's mother not be depressing. This is new ground for BtVS, the viewer has never before been expected to follow the plot into such an emotional dark place over something as non-mystical as a tumour. In a sense then this is the hardest plotline the viewer has ever had to deal with, Joyce's illness being something not of the fantasy genre, but of real life. The scene in which the news of Joyce's tumour is revealed to Buffy is very depressing and lengthy; although the scene is necessarily dark and tough, repeated viewings make it seem rather tedious. The episode suffers from having to establish the boundaries of what can and cannot be done about non-mystical illnesses in the BtVS world. This makes for a number of tiresome exchanges between Buffy and the Scoobies in which we discover that magic can't help Joyce (mainly because that would ruin the plot). The episode then ends with Riley taking a turn for the worse, Buffy shuts him out of her life and he turns to vampire prostitutes for comfort. The problem is that I have rather stopped caring for Riley by this point in the series because he has become such a whiney idiot who can't appreciate other people's feelings or points of view.
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