Recap: Buffy The Vampire Slayer S 2 E 9 Whats My Line Part 1
The school is decked out in balloons and banners galore, celebrating the start of "Career Week." Buffy is fatalistic because the students around her are dreaming of the future, while her career as Slayer is already set in stone.Dru is laying tarot cards whilst another vampire attempts to translate an ancient text, with Spike glaring over his shoulder. The translation is nonsensical and even Dalton (the transcriber vampire) can't figure it out. Spike is reaching the end of his patience and grabs Dalton, ready to beat him up, when he's interrupted by Dru. She looks up from her cards and says that they need a key to decode the scripture.While out on patrol Buffy witnesses Dalton chiseling something out of a mausoleum wall, but he escapes when she is distracted by another vampire. She enters her bedroom through the window out of habit (despite the fact that her mother is out of town) and finds Angel waiting, as usual. He spots a picture of Baby Buffy on ice-skates, and Buffy explains she used ice skating as an escape when her parents fought, which was often. Angel proposes they go sneak into the ice rink tomorrow evening when it's closed.At school the next morning, the test results are revealed — much to the chagrin of Buffy and Xander, who are railroaded into Law Enforcement and the Department of Correction, respectively. Willow, meanwhile, is quietly ushered into a VIP area with classical music and a white-jacketed waiter ("Try the canapé"). Some suits announce that she's to be recruited by a leading software company, along with Oz, the boy who has been watching her for weeks.Spike and Drusilla examine the key stolen by Dalton, a gold cross. Spike decides to call the Order of Taraka, an ancient guild of assassins, to keep the Slayer off his back for a while.Buffy points Giles to the crypt from earlier. Giles realizes with concern that Josephus du Lac (a theologian who was excommunicated by the Vatican) is buried there. He is the author of the book stolen from the library, and Giles believes the decoder key was stolen from his reliquary.In the meantime, the assassins begin to arrive separately. A large biker-type dude with one eye gouged out exits a bus; a young Jamaican girl stows away in the cargo hold of a plane; a nerdy, innocuous door-to-door salesman struts past Buffy's house to her next-door neighbors'. He kills the woman by disintegrating into hundreds of writhing mealworms which can reshape themselves into limbs at will.Buffy manages to keep her ice skating date with Angel. The one-eyed assassin chooses this moment to strike. Angel arrives in time to help fend him off while Buffy kills him with the blade of her skate. Angel, recognizing the assassin's ring, asks Buffy if she knows what it means (I just killed a Super Bowl Champ?), and then warns her that she should split from Sunnydale. The female from the plane watches from the shadows.Buffy is jittery and suspicious of everyone now. After sunset, Buffy trudges back home, but rethinks it, unaware of the salesman ("Norman") staking out her place with binoculars. She decides keep walking to Angel's place.Angel goes looking for information on who placed the hit on Buffy. A bar owner, Willy, finally confirms Angel's suspicions that Spike is behind the assassins, but before Angel can leave, he's attacked by the mysterious female. They fight, and she locks him in a metal cage in front of an eastern window, with only a few short hours until sunrise.Giles phones Xander and asks him to go to Buffy's house and check on her. Giles awakens Willow, who had fallen asleep ("Don't warn the tadpoles!") and reveals that the missing manuscript is a ritual to restore a weakened vampire back to health.Cut to Revello Drive, where Xander and his grouchy chauffeur (Cordelia) have just arrived. As Xander goes searching, Cordy hears a knock at the door and lets in Mr. Mealworm, again appearing as a cosmetics salesman promising free samples.Meanwhile, Buffy has decided to crash on Angel's bed. She awakens in time to dodge to the Jamaican girl standing over her with an axe ("You must be number two"). They wrestle for a bit, and Jamaican girl asks to know who Buffy is. Buffy, confused, demands her who she is."I am Kendra, the Vampire Slayer."
Brick Joke: Xander looks forward to returning Snyder's honesty with some "honest" input of his own. Well, amusingly, in "Restless" he gets his wish. ("You know, I never got the chance to tell you how glad I was you were eaten by a snake.")
Cat Fight: The Slayers continue grappling for the axe until Buffy begs Kendra not to make her do "the chick fight thing." Kendra: "Chick fight?" By way of answering, Buffy digs her nails into Bianca's wrist and pulls her hair.
Cat Scare: Buffy hilariously pegging Oz for a hitman. Who sent you?!
Continuity Nod: The book that was stolen by the blonde vampire in "Lie To Me" is one of the main elements of this episode.
Darla asks Angel in the Season one Episode, "Angel", if he believes Buffy would ever be able to kiss his 'real face'. She does in this episode.
Chekhov's Gun: The book stolen from Giles in "Lie to Me" is explained.
Chekhov's Gunman: While darting her eyes around the school corridor looking for suspicious people, Buffy unknowingly walks right past the third assassin.
Description Cut: Buffy reiterating that her future is a non-issue. Fade to Drusilla's hand turning over Tarot cards.
Digging Yourself Deeper: Xander tries to butter Snyder up with talk of going to "Principal School", but ends up calling him a tiny person with little feet and finally stops talking.
Dismantled MacGuffin: The Du Lac Cross can be used to decipher mystical texts, such as Spike's book. Buffy wonders why du Lac destroyed most of them, and Giles speculates that he feared what would happen if one of the crosses fell into the wrong hands.
Don't Sneak Up On Me Like That: Buffy's pleased to be the one to sneak up on Angel, for once. He spins around in shock, still clutching a stuffed pig, and this is about as precious a moment as you're going to get from Angel.
Buffy: Now you know what it feels like, Stealth Guy.
The Evil Genius: Spike's transcriber, Dalton. "He's a wanker, but he's the only one we've got with half a brain."
Exact Eavesdropping: Across the rink, Kendra observes Buffy and and a vamped-out Angel macking with distaste.
Failed a Spot Check: A dizzied Angel asks who Kendra is, and says he won't hurt her if she coughs up some information. She smirks. He doesn't get the joke (surprise, surprise) and asks what's so funny, but as she backs up a bit, we see that he's in a mesh steel cage, the door to which she slams closed.
Kendra: I tink it is funny now.
Fair Cop: Buffy can look forward to an exciting career as a police officer. Or carving stakes for a nursery.
Foreshadowing: Willow's characteristically psyched to find out her career track, but Xander complains that it takes the fun out of being young and stupid. "I'd rather live in the dark." One basement, coming up.
In his spin-off Angel meets a blonde police detective called Kate Lockley, who resembles what Buffy might have turned out to be like if she hadn't been Chosen.
Fun with Foreign Languages: It turns out du Lac's incantation wasn't really Latin, but a cipher meant to look like like it to the casual observer.
Hypocritical Humor: Buffy chiding Angel that Joyce is away on a business trip, so they don't have to whisper. Cue Angel asking the obvious question, namely why she came in through the window. Buffy's face falls through a long pause. "Habit."
Giles has been indexing the Watcher diaries, and is amazed at how "numbingly pompous and long-winded" some of them are.
Impossibly Mundane Explanation: Xander knows Buffy didn't go home, because his call went unanswered and "it's a statistical impossibility for a sixteen-year-old-girl to unplug her phone." Giles looks at Willow, who cutely nods confirmation.
My Hovercraft Is Full of Eels: Dalton attempting to translate Latin for Spike comes up with "Debase... the beef... canoe". Spike's response, as can be expected, is, "Why does that strike me as not right?"
Neck Lift: "Some people find pain very inspirational."
Buffy coming in for a landing at the rink, accidentally sliding in on her butt. She laughs, but loses her good humor when Octarus' bicep hooks around her, grabs her, and lifts her over the wall.
Later in the battle, he grabs Angel by the throat. What is his deal?
Poor Oz coming up the hall behind Buffy, causing her to whirl around, grabs him by the throat and pins him to the locker, challenging him to "try it!"
Buffy: Uh... (realizes her mistake) I-I'm sorry. Oz: Still not clear what I'm supposed to try.
No Celebrities Were Harmed: That the head recruiter's plane was delayed at Seattle/Tacoma Airport implies that "the world's leading software concern" for which Willow and Oz are being recruited is in fact Microsoft, which is based near Seattle.
Of course it was Microsoft. They had goons. And this was back in the 90s before the advent of the iGoon.
Shaped Like Itself: Buffy jogging ahead of Giles as a means of exacting revenge for his "criticisms" earlier, leaving him gasping for breath. He wheezes that she's behaving immaturely, but she points out that she's a teen, and has "yet to mature."
A Spot Of Tea: As Giles monologues about the deep crap Buffy is in, a bunch of larvae coalesce on Norman's stump of an arm. Norman uses the reformed hand to daintily pick up some tea, or coffee, or whatever it is giant larvae people drink.
Stab The Salad: A paranoid Buffy walking through school. A teacher menacingly reaches into his coat... and pulls a comb, which he runs through his hair with an audible *shing*.
Stunned Silence: Giles concedes the point about a Slayer's duty interfering with her normal job, then brightly asks if Buffy's ever thought about law enforcement. Buffy stops in her tracks, stares at him, then jerks her flashlight as a gesture to shut up and keep walking.
Tap on the Head: An unlucky baggage handler inspecting a plane's cargo hold. He quickly gets the crap beaten out of him by Kendra, and he's out cold.
Tarot Troubles: Drusilla's upturned cards display — in order — a mausoleum (de Luc's tomb), a one-eyed monster (Octarus), a giant worm (Norman), a leopard (Kendra), and an angel (self-explanatory).
Ultimate Job Security: Buffy plays the "Once In a Generation Card" once Giles starts driving her up the wall. "Y'know, if you don't like the way I'm doing my job, why don't you find somebody else? Oh, that's right, there can only be one."
Unsafe Haven: Casa Summers. Subverted, as Buffy senses something's amiss.
Vampire Dance: Dru playfully requesting a dance with Spike. He picks her up, swings her around, and promises that they'll dance ... right atop the Slayer's grave.
Villainous Demotivator: Spike motivating his translator. "Some people find pain (punches Dalton in the stomach) very inspirational."