Recap: Buffy The Vampire Slayer S 2 E 20 Go Fish

I think we'd better find the rest of the swim team and lock them up before they get in touch with their inner halibut.

The Scoobies investigate the deaths of the school swim team.

  • Ascended Extra: Danny Strong, previously credited only as "Student," officially becomes "Jonathan" as of this episode.
  • Attempted Rape: Twice. A member of the swim team looks like he's going to do this near the beginning of the episode, but this is the Slayer we're talking about. Date Rape Averted, violently. Near the end, when Buffy confronts the coach about turning his swim team into fish monsters he attempts to have his fish monsters pack rape her.
  • Beautiful All Along: Buffy confronts Angelus while drawing out the small stake she was holding her hair bun in place with, Shaking Her Hair Loose in the process. Angelus immediately mocks the trope, saying "Why, Ms. Summers! You're beautiful!"
    • This trope could also be applied to Xander. He spends the majority of the series in rather unflattering clothes, and goes undercover ("Not under much" as Buffy says) on the swim team, and Cordelia, Buffy, and Willow are rather stunned to find out that Xander has a good body when in a Speedo.
  • Black Comedy Rape: Buffy after being thrown to the fish monsters.
    "Great. This is just what my reputation needs: that I did it with the entire swim team."
    • Then, after the coach ends up in their clutches instead: "Wow. They really love their coach."
  • Body Horror
  • Breather Episode: Between the tearjerker "I Only Have Eyes For You", and the season finale.
  • Brick Joke: The Scoobies remember that Jonathan peed in the pool moments before Xander dives into it. Also the Willow Perp Sweating Jonathan gag gets repeated in Season 3's "Earshot".
  • Bullying a Dragon: Cameron got off lucky with only a broken nose trying to rape the Slayer.
  • Bully Hunter: Buffy saves Jonathan from being forcibly dunked in a bucket of water. Jonathan is not happy at being saved by a girl.
  • Could Say It But: Principal Synder does not tell Willow to alter Gage's grade just to "look over the number"
  • Covert Pervert
    Xander: Figure I can keep an eye on Gage and the others when Buffy can't.
    Willow: Like when you're nude! (Buffy elbows her) I meant to say 'changing.'
  • Cowardly Lion: Xander runs like a girl when he first sees the fish monster; he ends up saving Buffy from being raped by a pack of them.
  • Date Rape Averted: It's generally a bad idea to try and put the moves on a Slayer. Trying to coerce or force her however...well the Jerk Jock is lucky Snyder showed up otherwise Buffy wouldn't have stopped with breaking his nose.
  • Dissimile
    Buffy: So something ripped him open and ate out his insides?
    Willow: Like an Oreo Cookie. Well, except for, you know, without the chocolatey cookie goodness.
  • Eaten Alive: Poor Nurse Greenliegh's fate.
  • Fanservice: Xander wearing nothing but speedos.
  • Fishing For Mooks: Angelus tries to sire Gage as a henchvamp.
  • Fish People
  • Fully-Clothed Nudity: Xander struts into the pool area having secretly joined the swim team, only to be confronted by the female Scoobies staring at him in surprise and some rather frank appreciation. Even though he's already wearing speedoes, a suddenly embarrassed Xander grabs a float board and a tube of lotion to cover the same region.
  • Girly Run: Xander when suddenly confronted by the fish-monster.
    Cordelia: Go ahead. Say it. You ran like a woman. (grins)
    Xander: Hey, if you saw this thing, you'd run like a woman, too.
    • And just a few minutes later,
    Xander: What about me, what do I do?
    Cordelia: You could go into the parking lot and practice running like a man.
  • Got Me Doing It
    Giles: If you're saying these killings aren't random, it would suggest someone's out for revenge.
    Buffy: And raise the possibility that someone brought forth this sea monster from whence it came to exact that revenge. 'From whence it came'? I'm spending way too much time around you.
  • Grievous Harm with a Body: Angelus escapes Buffy by throwing Gage into her.
  • Heroine With Bad Publicity: Buffy gripes that she's out breaking her nails fighting the forces of darkness while Jerk Jocks get all the glory. Not to mention her delinquent reputation means everyone takes it for granted she's either Ax-Crazy or Really Gets Around.
  • Hey, It's That Guy!: Hey, Gage is Michael Scofield, and Sean is Doctor Ray Barnett. And hey, Nurse Ruthie is Berta!
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Buffy escapes the rape attempt and the monsters go for the coach instead.
  • Incredibly Obvious Tail: Buffy following Gage; doomed to failure given she's already drawn attention to herself by roughing up two other members of the swim team.
  • Irony: Willow accusing Jonathan of delving into black magic. By Season 6 it will be true for both of them.
  • Jerk Jock
  • Karmic Rape: The fate of the evil Coach Marin.
  • Letting the Air Out of the Band: When the Scoobies realise that the dripping wet, speedo-wearing hunk who just walked in is...Xander?
  • Meaningful Name: The coach is called Karl MARIN. (as in MARINe biologist)
  • Mistaken Confession
    Willow: You hated being pushed around by Dodd and the others. You wanted revenge. Didn't you? (leans in suddenly) (sternly) Didn't you?!
    Jonathan: (nervously) Yeah! Okay? I did!
    Willow: (with relish) So... You delved into the black arts and conjured up a hellbeast from the ocean's depths to wreak your vengeance.
    Jonathan: (confused) What? No! I snuck in yesterday and... peed in the pool.
    Willow: (disappointed) Oh. (disgusted) Eww!
  • Monster of the Week / Monster of the Aesop: The swimmers turn into monsters for consumming steroids.
  • Not So Final Confession: When Cordelia thinks Xander has been turned into a fish monster she makes a quite moving speech for someone who is portrayed as shallow and obsessed by appearance.
    Cordy: It's me, Cordelia? I know you can't answer me, but... God, this is all my fault. You joined the swim team to impress me. You were so courageous. And you looked really hot in those Speedo's. (chuckles) And I want you to know that I still care about you, no matter what you look like. And... and we can still date. Or, or not. I mean... I understand if you wanna see other fish. I'll do everything I can to make your quality of life better. Whether that means little bath toys or whatever.
    Xander: (walking up behind her) Uh, Cordy? That's not me.
  • Night Swim Equals Death: Ultimately averted: it wasn't a monster killing a swimmer, it was the swimmer who became a monster.
  • Perp Sweating: Willow gets quite hooked on this.
    Willow: The trick is not to leave any marks.
  • Rescue Romance: The previously sullen Gage is quite taken with Buffy after she saves him from Angelus.
  • Rushed Inverted Reading: Buffy attempts to watch over Gage. When he turns around to look at her, she looks back at her upside magazine
  • Save the Day, Turn Away: A rare aversion where, after saving Gage, Buffy does something she's almost never done in the series and walks him home.
  • Self-Disposing Villain
  • Shout-Out: Cordelia thinks Xander will get turned into the creature from The Blue Lagoon. He corrects her by saying it's Creature from the Black Lagoon.
  • Show Some Leg: Buffy tries to convince Gage she's a swim groupie, but lacks Cordelia's ability to carry off Blatant Lies.
  • Skewed Priorities: Cordelia as per usual. When she finds out that two members of the swim team are dead, she worries about the state championship. Later, when Xander is about to be turned into a monster, she's more worried about dating a monster
    • Played for Drama: The Coach is willing to use dangerous experimental treatments in order to win a state championship
  • Slut-Shaming: Combined with Victim Blaming. Cameron and Coach Marin blame Buffy's attempted rape on her "leading him on" and wearing sexy clothes.
  • Soviet Superscience: The formula the Coach and Nurse Greenleigh use to strengthen the swim-team and turn them into fish monsters is apparently based on Soviet experiments done on the Olympic swim-team that came to light after the end of the Cold War.
  • Space Whale Aesop: Steroid abuse leads to becoming a fish-monster. Trying to rape the Slayer will lead to either your nose being broken or you'll be torn apart by fish monsters.
  • Take My Hand
  • Team Spirit: Apparently involves steroid abuse and alteration of school grades.
  • Too Spicy for Yog Sothoth: Angelus tries to sire one of the swim team as a henchvamp for his upcoming fight against Buffy. He doesn't like the taste.
  • Very Special Episode
  • We Will Meet Again: A heroic version with Buffy saying "This isn't over" when Coach Marin forces her into the grotto at gunpoint.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: The coach feeds the nurse to his boys when she talks of quitting.