Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The Season Seven Showdown - The Reckoning Part III

We're winding down now to the final countdown! If you're just joining us, we've taken longer than we should have to determine whether Supernatural Season Seven was as truly awful as Buffy Season Seven was. Since last October we've been pitting each episode against each other in a battle to the death.

Now the Season 8 premiere Supernatural starts tomorrow night, so we've got to get through the final handful of episodes in the next 24 hours. Luckily, we'll have a guest blogger tomorrow to help out with that and then the finales!

So excited! Here we go:

Supernatural Episode #19 - "Of Grave Importance"
The Lightning Round Recap:
Annie Hawkins, an old hunter friend who just happened to sleep with the whole crew, calls Sam & Dean to pass them some of Bobby's old books and stuff. They high tail it to Bodega Bay, California, only to find she's missing. This leads them an old Bordello, where ghosts are getting ganked and unfortunately, Annie's now gone and got herself all dead as well. The boys run around town trying to figure shit out, all while Ghost Bobby makes bitchy remarks  because he's ten steps ahead of them, but can't contact them unless he calms his spirit ass down. Finally, while Dean is naked in the shower, Bobby exclaims "I can kill werewolves, fix a Pinto and bake cornbread. I will be damned if I can’t get Zen", and succeeds in writing a helpful note on the steamy bathroom mirror.

So now the boys know Bobby's a ghost and they're led back to the house where it turns out it's former owner, Whitman Van Ness, was a killer in life and in death. He's keeping the bodies of former hookers and current teenagers in a hidden room and sucking their ghostly life force, or something, as needed. Annie & Bobby plan on burning the bodies and putting the souls to rest (including hers at her request), while Sam & Dean visit the Van Ness grave so they can burn the murderer's bones just in time before he destroys Bobby. This works out nicely. When the boys return to the house, Bobby is now visible to them, but they are furious about his choice to hang back on this spectral plane and proceed to yell at him for a while. A hurt and angry Bobby disappears, but eavesdrops on the boys worried conversation anyway from the backseat of their car that isn't Baby.  Dean wonders aloud "What are the odds this ends well?"


Buffy Episode #19 - "Empty Places"
The Lightning Round Recap:
Sunnydale's a crazy zone and Buffy's acting like a bitca! She's totally insensitive to the fact that XANDER LOST HIS EYE and ditches him and Willow at the hospital to cry on each other's shoulders, but it seems like this behavior is coming from a guilty place. She takes a time-out to reflect on this over at Sunnydale high, where Caleb shows up and beats her senseless. My my, Fillion is terrifying in this role. Back at the Summers home, other members of the gang try to gather info about Caleb, the Ubervamps, The First and the rest of the impending doom.

Even though the bulk of Sunnydale's townfolk have fled, The Bronze is still packed and a band is playing...Nerf Herder, to be exact! So Faith takes the Potentials there to have a little pre-apocalypse fun while Giles sends Spike and Andrew to gather intel. All of these decisions PISS OFF Buffy pretty royally. Unfortunately, the fuzz show up at The Bronze, seemingly to arrest Faith but in actuality they just want to brush up on their Police brutality skills. After the brawl Buffy shows up and bitches Faith out big time for bringing the girls, but when Faith makes a good point about Buffy putting the girls in danger herself Buffy punches her in the face! Luckily, we're treated to famous the Spike/Andrew "Onion Blossom" scene to diffuse that tension. Then Spike and Andrew reach their destination and find an engraving on a creepy wall that says "It is not for thee, it is for her alone to wield."

Xander arrives home and Buffy takes this moment to tell the group about her plan to go back to the scene of the crime: the vineyard where Xander lost his eye and a few Potentials lost their lives. Everyone (except for Andrew and Spike who haven't arrived home yet) tell Buffy to stick it. And even though I sort of get their fear and lack of trust of Buffy at this point, it's majorly fucked that they kick her out of her own house that they've all been living in. Especially Willow and Dawn. But in the end Buffy does walk out and leaves Faith in charge.

Final Ruling: 
Supernatural has a solid, classic ghost episode on their hands here that just also happens to be Bobby's grand return. On the other end, besides the "Onion Blossom" scene, I've seen this Buffy episode bashed by pretty much every faction in the fandom. "Empty Places" is infuriating and oh SO Season Seven. Supernatural takes it!


Supernatural Episode #20 - "The Girl with the Dungeons and Dragons Tattoo"
The Lightning Round Recap:
Bobby's back and has a boatload of info regarding Dick friggin' Roman's entire plan that he became privy to moments before his untimely demise. Seems Dick has already broke ground on the facility in Wisconsin that will basically be center for disease control/human slaughterhouse, helping to provide a limitless food source for Leviathan, forever. That's the gist. Then Sam receives an email auto-sent from probably dead Frank Devereaux explaining that someone is likely hacking into his hard drive full of the boys private info. That someone is our very own Felicia Day, who is instructed by Dick friggin' Roman himself to break the encryption in 3 days or else. She's a geek girl so there are LoTR, ComicCon and Potter references being sprayed around. Frank had a GPS locator on the hard drive, so the boys set off to the worldwide headquarters of Richard Roman Enterprises in Illinois, sans Bobby.

Felicia Day learns the truth of the Leviathan pretty quickly and tries to make a run for it, but San & Dean cut her off at the pass. Thy all team up, Felicia sneaks into RRE, hacks all the files in the world and they learn that Dick has unearthed what he's been looking for all season at his many archeological dig sites: a tablet. The boys hijack the tablet at the airport and replace it with a borax bomb. Meanwhile, Bobby, who hitched a ride via-flask in Felicia's bag, saves her ass from Dick friggin' Roman but also goes dark, vengeful spirit in the process, which worries the boys. In the end, Felicia changes her name, gets on a bus and says "Peace out, Bitches."


Buffy Episode #20 - "Touched"
The Lightning Round Recap:
This episode starts right where "Empty Places" finished. Potentials are bickering and Kennedy and Anya are at an all time high of irritating, I want to mash both their faces. But hey! Double dose of Felicia Day! Since Faith has been crowned leader, she makes a plan to capture a Bringer and make it talk. They learn that the Bringers are housing an armory underground somewhere. Meanwhile, an ousted Buffy walks down Revello Drive, breaks open a door with her Slayer Strength, forces a man out of his house and raids his fridge! So rude.

Spike and Andrew return from their trip and after they learn of what happened with Buffy, Spike chews them all out and punches Faith in the face! They fight, he leaves and sniffs his way to Buffy's location at the stolen house. He tells Buffy that she was right all along, that Caleb is protecting for a mystical weapon at the vineyard. She doesn't want any of it though, she's just depressed. Spike tries to help and explains all the reasons he loves her so much. They spend the night, just sleeping in the bed. Back at the Summers home, The First appears to Faith as Mayor Wilkins and tries to rattle her. Principal Wood interrupts and tries his own hand at the helpful pep talk…and unlike the Spuffy in this ep, they have actual sex. Speaking of, Kennedy/Willow and Anya/Xander seal that deal as well. The next morning, Faith leads a team to the arsenal the Bringer spoke of while Buffy goes on her own mission to confront Caleb and The First alone at the vineyard. Buffy finds the Melaka Fray's scythe, Faith finds a bomb.

Final Ruling: 
Once again I'm going to give this one to Supernatural. I mean both of these eps have tons of info and twisty, turny convoluted plots designed to set up the big finales coming up, so it's tough. But Supernatch succeeds in doing this it in a cooler, funner and more interesting way. Buffy has some good moments, The Mayor's appearance being a big one and a more compassionate point in the history of Spike and Buffy's relationship. I just hate the way the writer's have set up Faith and Giles to fall for a trap that Caleb set up for Buffy when they weren't wrong to question her. And really? Buffy really leaves her own home and sleeps in someone else's house? I guess the effects of "Empty Places" are still just wearing on me in this episode.

Season tally so far:

Got a problem with this score so far? Let me quote Dean's alliterative and to-the-point outgoing message, "Leave your name, number and nightmare at the tone." Or rather sound off in the comments.

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