|Buffy the Vampire Slayer|
|Season 5, Episode 20|
|Air date||May 8, 2001|
|Written by||Steven S. DeKnight|
|Directed by||James A. Contner|
"The Weight of the World"
|Sarah Michelle Gellar||Buffy|
|Anthony Stewart Head|| Giles |
|Wade Andrew Williams||Gregor|
|Amber Benson|| Tara |
|Jack Donner||Cleric #1|
|Bob Morrisey||Crazy #1|
|Paul Bates||Crazy #2|
|Carl J. Johnson||Crazy #3|
"Spiral" is the twentieth episode of the fifth season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and is the ninety-eighth episode altogether. It was written by Steven S. DeKnight and directed by James A. Contner. It originally broadcast on May 8, 2001.
With Glory now possessing knowledge that Dawn is the Key, Buffy and Dawn run for their lives, escaping thanks to Willow's magic and a large semi-truck slamming into Glory out on the street, causing her to transform into Ben.
The gang gathers in Xander's apartment to discuss possible plans of action. Buffy surprises everyone by proclaiming that they will never be able to defeat Glory, and that they must leave town in order to stay alive. Spike solves their transportation problem by procuring a sun-protected Winnebago, and Buffy allows him to accompany them. Though Giles and Xander are anything but pleased by this decision, Buffy informs them that she and Spike are the only ones who stand a chance at protecting Dawn in the event that Glory catches up to them, and makes it very clear that the subject is not open for discussion.
Ben talks to one of Glory's minions, revealing that he is just a human body encasing Glory's god form. The Knights of Byzantium retrieve their crazy member, Orlando, from the hospital, who babbles that the Key is a shiny girl, prompting the Knight's leader to realize that the Key is the Slayer's sister. Giles, driving the RV, talks with a motion-sick Xander about Buffy's state of mind.
Depressed and worried about their future plans, Buffy is comforted by Dawn until the Knights attack. A sword through the roof nearly kills Buffy, but Spike stops it with his bare hands. While Buffy battles the Knights from the top of the RV, one knight impales Giles with a flying spear, causing the RV to crash onto its side.
The Scoobies rush to an abandoned gas station, where Buffy fends off the attackers until Willow erects a barrier spell. Meanwhile at the hospital, all those left crazy by Glory repeatedly mutter, "It's time."
Spike suggests to Xander that they run, but Buffy refuses to let anyone die. Buffy captures the General, who reveals that Glory once ruled over a hell-dimension alongside two others, only to be banished by them when they grew to fear her. As a result, Glory was trapped inside a mortal body in which she was meant to lay dormant. Buffy realizes that this is her only weakness... kill the mortal, and Glory dies as well. However the General explains that Glory's mortal host has never been found. He also reveals Dawn was created to open up the gateways between dimensions, and Glory intends to use this power to return to her own dimension. However, this will also dissolve the boundaries between dimensions and destroy all of them. Buffy promises Dawn that she'll protect her.
Realizing that Giles is seriously injured, Buffy arranges a deal with the Knights to allow Ben to safely pass; he stabilizes Giles, and then is left alone with the General, who suspects Ben is an outsider and tempts him with the idea of killing Dawn. Ben realizes that Glory is about to take over his body and tries to leave but before he can get outside the force field, Glory comes forth.
Glory kills General Gregor, fights off the Scooby Gang to take Dawn, and bursts through the force-field. By the time Willow releases the field, Glory has disposed of all the Knights and disappeared with Dawn. Knowing they have to move fast, everyone heads for Ben's car to chase after Glory. Buffy, however, is left emotionally shattered after going through so much to protect Dawn only to lose her to Glory, and collapses to the ground.
- This is the second time Buffy uses a sword as a weapon; the first was in "Becoming, Part Two". Both instances involve a character catching a sword-blade in their bare hands: Buffy in "Becoming, Part Two", and Spike in this episode.
- Buffy mentions Adam's death by pulling out his Uranium Power Core in "Primeval".
- This is one of the only occasions in the series where the Scooby Gang actually decide to avoid confrontation with a Big Bad by fleeing Sunnydale.
- This marks the first time in the series that Buffy has intentionally killed a human despite her repeated insistence that the Slayer does not do so: while fighting the Knights of Byzantium on top of the Winnebago, she throws an axe into one's chest.
- While encouraging Ben to murder Dawn so Glory would be stopped, the General said "She will fade, a distant memory." Several years later, Dawn would literally begin to fade from the world because of the loss of magic in Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine.
- Buffy is starting to crack under the pressure of the multiple obstacles thwarting her (Tara's insanity, Joyce's death, Giles' near-death, Glory's invulnerability, Dawn's capture), foreshadowing her eventual depression in Season Six.
- The effects of being brain-sucked by Glory seem to have taken their full effect on Tara. In the previous episode, she was much more coherent and less child-like after being brain-sucked.
- Willow's eyes turn black when she casts powerful spells in this episode, the third episode in which this effect occurs. ("Becoming, Part Two" and "Tough Love").
- Xander makes a reference to The Judge and the episode Innocence.
- Orlando, mercy killed by Dante
- Ten Knights of Byzantium, killed by Buffy
- Gregor, killed by Glory
- Two Clerics, killed by Glory
- Dante Chavalier, killed by Glory
- Hundreds of Knights of Byzantium, killed by Glory
Behind the Scenes
Pop Culture References
When Buffy and Xander first confront the Knights of Byzantium, Xander says, "If there's one thing I learned from Sergeant Rock, in war, there are rules." Sgt. Rock was a DC comic book hero.
The Winnabego with blacked out windows is very similar to an image from Kathryn Bigelow's vampire film 'Near Dark'
- Thomas Wanker - original score
|Giles - "There must be something in the Book of Tarnis that we've missed, something that we can use against Glory."|
|Anya - "Piano!"|
|Xander - "Because that's what we used to kill that big demon that one time. No, wait, that-that was a rocket launcher. An, what are you talkin' about?"|
|Anya - "We should drop a piano on her. Well, it always works for that creepy cartoon rabbit when he's running from that nice man with the speech impediment."|
|Giles - "Yes, or perhaps we could paint a convincing tunnel on the side of a mountain."|
|Giles - "Weapons?"|
|Spike - "Hello! You're driving one!"|
|Willow - "Don't hit the horsies!"|
|Buffy - "Oh, we won't!" [to Giles] "Aim for the horsies."|
|Anya - "'Overwhelming?' How much more than 'whelming' would that be, exactly?"|