Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Buffy Blog: "Bad Eggs"

Previously on Buffy: Jonathan is back and this time he is possessed by the bezoar. Poor Jonathan. He’s like a bad things happen to me magnet.

Playing with Genre: “Bad Eggs” written by Marti Noxon, is a riff on the taken over by an alien subgenre of science fiction a la Invasion of the Body Snatchers. In “Bad Eggs” a parasitic creature who lives under Sunnydale lays eggs which, when they hatch, take control of humans through neural clamping, suck the energy out of those they take control of, and use humans to do her will. The bezoar apparently intends, a la Invasion of the Body Snatchers, to send her eggs to all parts of the US (and the world) using them to take over humans and making them do her will (which is?).

Themes: Joyce (sternly) to Buffy: “A little responsibility is all I ask”. Joyce, of course, is unaware that Buffy does have responsibilities. Saving the world from vampires” being primary amongst them. Joyce also refers to Buffy as irresponsible. Whether Buffy, who is busy smooching with Angel when she should be hunting the Gorch’s is taking that responsibility seriously and is being responsible is an open question. But then we shouldn’t forget that Buffy is a teenager. Buffy is not the only Scooby who is a “helpless slave to” her “passions” in this episode. Xander and Cordy have a case of the smoochies early in the episode. They return to the closet to engage in more kissage later in the episode.

Scooby Weirdness: Both Willow and Buffy notice that Cordy and Xander are “getting weirder”. Why they are acting weirder will be revealed later in season two (“Becoming”).

Moral: Buffy episodes often have moral lessons attached to them. “Bad Eggs” is no different. The Scoobies are in a sex education class and are given eggs that they are to treat as their babies (another high school ritual?). Buffy, since there were odd numbers in the class, is a single mother with egg (Egbert). “I am doomed to lead my mother’s life!”, says Buffy. Though Buffy experiences bad sleep thanks to the bezoar preparing to take her over, Joyce interprets her tiredness as a lesson she is learning as a result of being a single mom. “Wait till it (Buffy’s baby) starts dating” Joyce tells Buffy.

Character: Willow is Jewish. Lyle and Tector Gorch are vampires from Abilene (Texas?). According to Giles they massacred a Mexican village in the 1800s, before they were vampires. Lyle seems to live by the live to fight another day motto. He runs from Buffy at the mall and at the end of the episode when Buffy kills the bezoar. He will be back in season three. When Buffy thinks of her future all she sees in it is Angel.

Who Died and Made Her The Boss?: Willow gives orders while under the control of the bezoar.

Mothers and Daughters: Joyce grounds Buffy and confines her to her room in this episode. Buffy was also “grounded” in “Welcome to the Hellmouth/The Harvest”.

Vampire Lore: Angel cannot procreate.

Slayer Lore: Tector comments that Buffy the Vampire Slayer is “so cute and little”.

Bringing the Shakespeare? Willow refers to Cordy as “soliloquy girl”.

Music: The score comes from Murray and Clement. I like the march of the possessed music that is heard when the bezoar takes over Willow, Giles, Cordy, Joyce, and others and is heard while they remove the concrete over the bezoar and take its eggs to be distributed (presumably) to all points east and west.

Popular Culture: “Bad Eggs” contains another reference to Sam Peckinpah’s The Wild Bunch. Lyle Gorch, one of the brother vampires in “Bad Eggs”, was the name of a character in “The Wild Bunch”. We see Buffy for the first time (and I think last time) shopping at the mall. Lyle Gorch is at the mall looking for victims. He finds one. Buffy saves her.

Awesome: Buffy crawling out of the pit after she kills the bezoar.

Foreshadowings: During Buffy/Angel smooches in the cemetery the camera pans right from Buffy and Angel kissing to a gravestone with “In Loving Memory” written on it. Is this a foreshadowing of what is to come in the Buffy/Angel relationship? Is it a foreshadowing of the coming of Angelus in the next episode (“Surprise/Innocence”) and the changes in the Buffy/Angel relationship this will lead to?

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