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Recap / Buffy The Vampire Slayer S 7 E 18 Dirty Girls

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"You're the one who sees everything, aren't you? Well, let's see what we can't do about that."

"You're protecting vampires? Are you the bad Slayer now? ... Am I the good Slayer now?"
Faith Lehane

Faith returns to Sunnydale and a new agent of the First sends Buffy a message.

Tropes Are:

  • Absentee Actor: Anya
  • Attack Hello: Buffy greets her 'ole Slayer pal by punching her in the face.
  • Bait-and-Switch: Lampshaded by Spike re Caleb setting a trap for them, Angelus style.
  • Blatant Lies / Getting Crap Past the Radar: Xander wakes up from an Erotic Dream and tells the girls he has a leg cramp.
  • Birds of a Feather: Spike and Faith. Over a cigarette they have a rather deep conversation, as they had both gone evil and are trying to reform, and trying to figure out just where they're at with Buffy. Between Faith talking about dressing as a schoolgirl and using a bullwhip on a guy (Spike says she can do better than that, and Faith scoffs at the whole dressing up gig) and a really vivid comment Faith made to Spike (as Buffy) it leads into Will They or Won't They? territory. Long incarceration.
    • Averted with Angel, whom Spike vigorously denies being anything like.
  • Bad Habits
  • Buffy Speak: Spike is all repent-y.
  • Call-Back:
    • Faith borrowing Buffy's stake to dust a vampire happened when they first met in "Faith, Hope and Trick". Also "Dirty Girls" to the episode "Bad Girls" where the rift between Buffy and Faith first started.
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    • Caleb reveals that he's the one who blew up the Watcher's Council.
    • Faith killed a vulcanologist who'd inadvertently stumbled across a vulnerability of the Mayor in "Graduation Day, Part I".
    • The assassination attempt on Faith's life by a fellow prisoner happened in "Salvage". Faith took a trip inside Angel's mind in "Orpheus".
    • The Scoobies suggest that Caleb could be trying to lure Buffy away from the others so they can be killed, a reference to Angelus using the same trick in "Becoming, Part I".
    • Faith mentions a famous event in "Who Are You?" where she sexually-taunted Spike while in Buffy's body.
    • Faith has trouble believing that Buffy would engage in naughty sex games. Spike replies, "Oh you HAVE been away." One suspects that Ensouled!Spike has some fond memories of Season 6.
  • Casual Kink / Whip It Good: Faith has a frank discussion of her kinky sex life with Spike.
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  • Catholic Schoolgirls Rule / Sexy Whatever Outfit: Lampshaded by Faith and Spike. Dawn wears a rather cute pleated skirt too.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Caleb burns the mark of his ring into the neck of a Potential. The mark is used to identify a place Caleb has been before in the next episode.
  • Cigarette of Anxiety: Faith, despite smoking being a universal sign of evil. Well, the Potentials acting like five year-olds was a bit much for her. And Buffy still wanting her dead. And trying to reconcile with a recently evil Willow.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Andrew's exposition on Faith's Face–Heel Turn is overly dramatized but mostly correct... until he mistakes "volcanologist" for "Vulcan" and we see a flashback of Faith fighting Spock.
    • Faith attacking Spike because he's attacking a female vampire who looks like a typical Victim of the Week.
    • Chao Ahn, as usual. After Andrew delivers a scary spiel about Faith, who's doing martial arts training on the lawn...
    (Subtitled) "There is a girl in the backyard doing gymnastics"
    [Andrew nods seriously as if he understands]
  • Conveniently Timed Attack from Behind: A Bringer is about to stab a Potential when Xander puts an arrow through his arm.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Caleb thrashes the Potentials and the Scooby Gang.
  • Daydream Surprise: Played for Laughs in Xander's fantasy; Played for Drama with Caleb's fantasy where with a little help from the First he recreates one of his past murders.
  • The Devil Is a Loser: Caleb refers to Satan as a "little man" (at least, compared to his boss).
  • Dominatrix: Faith has tendencies in this direction. She doesn't mind playing games with the boys "as long as they know who's on top."
  • Downer Ending: Though for Caleb, it's a happy one.
  • The Dragon: Caleb — Sinister Minister, Serial Killer, and a Straw Misogynist who makes Warren Mears look tame.
  • Emerging from the Shadows: Faith, and Buffy!First.
  • Evil Wears Black: Caleb's Sinister Minister outfit. It's slimming.
  • Eye Scream: Caleb gouges out Xander's left eye.
  • Fanservice Faux Fight: Xander is wakened from a dream of scantily clad Potential Slayers having a pillow fight, to the reality of the girls in frumpy pyjamas and bathrobes, complaining about a clogged toilet.
  • Flashback Cut Montage: Andrew acts as Mr. Exposition to fill us in on Faith's past.
  • Foreshadowing: "Everyone has some whack fantasy. Scratch the surface of the most crunchy granola dude? Naughty nurses and horny cheerleaders." Cue the comics where ex-cheerleader Buffy fantasizes of a bondage threesome with Angel and Spike while dressed in a Naughty Nurse Outfit.
    • Xander tells the Potentials how to attack demons, and if all else fails, "Everything's got eyes."
    • Caleb really does have something that belongs to Buffy.
    • See Good Bad Girl below, Faith pretty much becomes the good Slayer and Buffy, at least this season, is the bad Slayer.
  • Felony Misdemeanor: Faith saying that prison could be worse, then admitting that the last movie she saw was Glitter.
  • Girl-on-Girl Is Hot: Xander dreams of having a threesome with Caridad and Colleen.
  • Good Bad Girl: The new sitch back in Sunnydale causes some confusion when Faith is introduced to Spuffy.
    Faith: Are you protecting vampires? Are you the bad Slayer now? (frowns) Am I the good Slayer now?
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Buffy seems worried that Faith is trying to steal Spike from her, like Faith tried when she turned evil and went after Angel. Faith's comment that she took a trip into Angel's head doesn't make Buffy feel better.
  • Hell-Bent for Leather: Spike recognises Faith from her famous leather pants. Plus the hot looks and the good right hook. Love at First Punch?
  • He-Man Woman Hater: In a Feminist Fantasy series — clearly Caleb isn't smart.
  • Ironic Echo: When Wood sacks Buffy from her job at the school because she no longer serves a useful purpose there, he adds with a touch of bitterness, "The mission is what matters."
    • Caleb repeats Dawn's comment re Xander in "Potential" before gouging out his eye.
  • Kung-Shui: Lampshaded
    Faith: Whoa. Memory Lane. Same old house.
    Buffy: Yeah, well, every piece of furniture's been destroyed and replaced since you left, so, actually, new house.
  • Killed Off for Real: A Red Shirt named in the script as Dianne has her neck snapped by Caleb. Also Molly, stabbed by Caleb.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Giles wants to study this new enemy before charging in. Buffy wants to attack with large numbers, in the hope Caleb won't be expecting this — Faith has certainly no objection to the idea.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: A quite amusing variation, where Spike and Faith fight because each is unaware of the other's Heel–Face Turn.
  • Male Gaze: According to the DVD Commentary this was used deliberately to show the various ways men objectify women.
  • Mook Horror Show: For the female vampire running away from Spike.
  • Must Not Die a Virgin: Parodied in Xander's Erotic Dream.
    Girl 1 (Caridad): I've never been with a man. I could die tomorrow, and I've never been with a man.
    Xander: Well, uh?
    Girl 2 (Colleen): I've never been with a man before either.
    Xander: Colleen.
    Girl 2: I've never been with her in front of a man before.
    Girl 1: I've never been with her in front of a man, either.
    Xander: Um...
    Girl 1: Xander...
    Girl 2: We're so scared.
    Rona: Xander! Xander! Goddamnit!
    Xander: (wakes up) What's going on? I was sleeping.
    Rona: Dominique has the stomach flu, and the toilet bowl is backed up.
  • Not What It Looks Like: The chains on Spike's bed catch Faith's attention. And a short time later Buffy comes down to the basement and is not pleased to find Faith sitting on the bed with Shirtless!Spike and smoking.
    • Faith attacks Spike because he's chasing a girl in a graveyard. Of course the girl turns out to be a vampire too.
  • Obligatory Joke: Spike tells Faith he's not evil any more.
    Faith: Please. Do you think I'm stupid?
    Spike: Well, yeah.
  • Offhand Backhand: Caleb blocks a sword swung at his neck from behind, then snaps the neck of the Potential wielding it.
  • Playing Against Type: Caleb.
  • Poor Communication Kills: Lampshaded by Faith, who points out that it would have been nice if someone had bothered to inform her that the Big Bad was trying to wipe out the Slayer line before someone tried to murder her in prison.
  • Production Posse: Nathan Fillion makes the jump from the defunct Firefly to the mothership.
  • Punched Across the Room: Caleb to Buffy. Oh, Crap!.
  • Punctuated Pounding: Spike slogging it out with Faith.
  • Raging Stiffie: After being woken from his Erotic Dream, Xander says he'll be along in a moment as he "has a cramp."
  • Reformed, but Rejected: Buffy still holds a grudge after the things Faith had done. Subverted with Dawn giving Faith a Chilly Reception as they've never actually met — her resentment is based on False Memories.
  • Reminiscing About Your Victims: The First shapeshifts into a past victim of Caleb so he can kill her again.
  • Retroactive Recognition: Fans of The O.C. will recognize Summer Roberts aka Rachel Bilson in Xander's fantasy.
  • Rousing Speech / Right Behind Me: Xander gives a speech to the Potentials about how great Buffy is; the camera angle changes to show that Buffy and Faith have been listening in to the whole thing.
    Faith: Damn! I had no idea you were that cool.
  • Sacrificial Lamb / Dies Wide Open: Poor Molly.
  • Schmuck Bait: Everyone tells Buffy she's walking into a trap, but she still goes in thinking her enemy won't be expecting her to bring a large force.
  • Shaped Like Itself
    Andrew: [Faith] wrapped evil around her like a large, evil Mexican serape.
  • Ship Tease: Faith/Spike, meant as foreshadowing for a possible Faith spin-off series.
  • Sidetracked by the Analogy: For Caleb, the whole "drink for this is my blood" thing. What if someone ordered white wine?
  • Stealth Insult: Buffy tells Giles to "help the girls who still need a teacher".
  • Take That!: Faith says that prison could have been worse, then remembers that the last movie she watched there was Glitter. Cue Verbal Backspace as she claims it was as bad as it got.
  • This Is the Part Where... / Please, I Will Do Anything!: Caleb tormenting Shannon.
    "Well, now, is this the part where you offer to do anything? Because I tried to make it clear; you got nothin' I want to explore."
  • Verbal Backspace: "For years and years...or to be more accurate, months...Faith fought on the side of good."
  • What Could Have Been: Joss Whedon originally planned to kill Xander, so that the First would appear as him from then on, but decided the rest of the characters would have insufficient grieving time.
  • The Worf Effect: Caleb takes down Buffy in one punch. Faith and Spike don't fare much better.
    Caleb: So, you're the Slayer. The strongest, the fastest, the most aflame with that most precious invention of all mankind — the notion of goodness. The Slayer must indeed be powerful. (with one powerful punch, he sends Buffy flying across the room) So, what else you got?
  • You Fight Like a Cow: Buffy knocks Faith down. Faith quickly gets back up again.
    Faith: Luckily you still punch like you used to.

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