2000's, Alyson Hannigan, Anthony Stewart Head, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 7, Emma Caulfield, James Marsters, Michelle Trachtenberg, Nicholas Brendon, Sarah Michelle Gellar
So here it is, my review of the last season of Buffy. After spending seven years fighting the forces of evil, this is when our eponymous warrior’s journey ends. And what an epic journey it has been. I have really enjoyed revisiting one of my favourite shows and I hope my reviews have done the series justice as well as entertained my loyal followers. Spoilers will follow in this review.
Buffy(Sarah Michelle Gellar) is back to her old self after overcoming depression and traumatic events brought on by her resurrection in Season 6. She is embracing her destiny once more and helping prepare her sister Dawn(Michelle Trachtenberg) in the art of fighting. Sunnydale High is rebuilt and Dawn begins to attend. It seems that the Hellmouth still resides underneath the school and that an Ancient Evil known as The First will soon rise. The First can take the form of the dead and is a keen manipulator of those in comes into contact with. Buffy gets a job as a guidance counsellor for the students, although she is suspicious of Principal Wood. It actually transpires that Wood is the son of a vampire slayer and he joins Buffy in her fight later on. Elsewhere, Spike(James Marsters) has returned from Africa after being reinstated with a soul by a demon. The new-found soul begins to drive Spike into mania as he struggles with knowing all the hurt he has inflicted on people. Matters are also complicated as we see how Wood’s mother was a slayer Spike killed many years ago and how he now wants revenge on Spike. Willow(Alyson Hannigan) is rehabilitating with Giles(Anthony Stewart Head) in England in an attempt to harness her magic for good, before returning to her circle of friends. Giles later reappears in Sunnydale with a band of girls who are Potential Slayers in need of training for the impending fight with the First and its army of lethal and feral vampires. In other news within the gang, Anya(Emma Caulfield) is once again a vengeance demon, yet doesn’t find her old life as fulfilling as it once was. Add to that the fact she still cares for Xander(Nicholas Brendon), and she decides she wants to be human once more. Andrew returns to Sunnydale under the influence of The First who appears to him as Warren. It manipulates him into killing his only friend Jonathan. Andrew is later found by Willow who takes him to the house for information. Eventually, after much adversity, Andrew becomes a trusted member of the group. With the First rising up and intent on spreading pain and destruction, it is down to Buffy and her pals to fight in an epic battle of good vs evil in which only one will triumph. The only question is, who will survive the carnage?
Season 7 retains some of the darkness of Season 6, yet gives it an epic feel as Buffy heads towards the apocalyptic battle. With the First, we have an interesting and extremely menacing villain. It sends shivers down the spine as it takes the form of the deceased, including Buffy herself as she has died twice. Watching as it manipulates innocent people and causes them to do its bidding is indeed a chilling sight.It even manages to use Spike for killing, finding a way to avoid setting off his chip that stops him hurting humans. Spike later has his chip removed at Buffy’s request, as it begins to malfunction. The First’s helpers are the vicious vampires mentioned earlier and The Bringers, men clad in monk robes with their eyes carved into symbols who pursue Potential Slayers with the intent to kill. These two groups add further danger for Buffy and her friends in attempting to avert The First from its plans. And not forgetting Caleb, a deranged priest who works for the First and is the one who gouges Xander’s eye out in a sickening scene. The concept of the Potential Slayers is interesting as we watch Buffy become a mentor to them and develop emotional attachments whilst teaching them how to fight the impending doom. We see Buffy transfer her skills to them and give them more guidance than she had when she first became aware of her calling. It’s also great to have Faith back after she became a renegade slayer. After burying her grievances with Buffy, she agrees to help her in the fight. Emotions run high in this season, this is typified by the deaths of two main characters. The characters in question are Anya and Spike. Both of their deaths are very sad, though Spike’s is given edge by the fact that he dies being his sarcastic, bad ass self for the great good during the final battle. And speaking of the final battle, it is one hell of an emotional ride. Tears fall, bodies bleed and carnage ensues as Buffy and the gang face the apocalypse and she finally fulfills her destiny. If you’re not emotional by the finale, you clearly don’t have a heart. To say it’s an epic finale, is a huge understatement. The last moments of Buffy, flanked by friends and allies with tears in her eyes and a half-smile as she contemplates her future are the perfect conclusion to this amazing series.
For this final season, all of the cast bring their A game. Sarah Michelle Gellar rounds out her tenure as the eponymous slayer with a moving, strong and heartfelt performance. We’ve watched her grow from being a reluctant fighter trying to live a normal life to woman warrior who is capable of anything when she puts her heart into it. Gellar is nothing short of amazing as she finishes in this iconic role of Buffy that will forever be in my memory. Nicholas Brendon is reliable as the lovable Xander who now represents reason and resourcefulness, despite getting brutally injured by one of The First’s many helpers in the form of sinister Caleb. Alyson Hannigan captures Willow’s angst at attempting to control her magic, but also the goodness within her that helps her friends in times of need. James Marsters is electrifying as Spike who is now firmly on the good side but still has his wounding retorts and fierce fighting to make him a valuable ally. It’s sad to see Spike die in the finale, but at least he went down fighting and had Buffy’s care with him. Emma Caulfield is luminous as Anya who finally expresses her feelings for Xander,even after everything they’ve been through. Anya’s death is also packed with emotion and is quite an unexpected moment in the show. Michelle Trachtenberg grows up as Dawn, revealing the buried strength under the naive and vulnerable surface. And it’s good to have Anthony Stewart Head back as Giles, and a fitting time for him to re-enter the show as it draws to its end.
From action-packed opening to emotional end, Buffy has been one hell of a ride and Season 7 does the series credit as we bid goodbye to the ultimate warrior battling against the forces of evil. I hope my reviews have been informative and people have enjoyed them. Watching them again has been a really great experience and so enjoyable in revisiting one of my favourite shows.