|Buffy the Vampire Slayer|
|Season 4, Episode 3|
|Air date||October 19, 1999|
|Written by||Jane Espenson|
|Directed by||James A. Contner|
"In the Dark"
|Sarah Michelle Gellar||Buffy|
|Anthony Stewart Head|| Giles |
|James Marsters|| Spike |
|Melik|| Brian |
|Band (Bif Naked)|
|Coco Culbertson||Bass Player|
|Doug McCarvell||Guitar Player|
"The Harsh Light of Day" is the third episode of the fourth season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and is the fifty-ninth episode altogether. It was written by Jane Espenson and directed by James A. Contner. It originally broadcast on October 19, 1999.
While Dingoes Ate My Baby play The Bronze, Buffy talks to Willow while also secretively watching Parker play pool. After the Dingoes wrap, Oz gets ready to take Willow home and Parker volunteers to take Buffy back to her dorm. While Willow is waiting for Oz and Devon to return to the van outside The Bronze, Harmony approaches her. The two of them talk and then Harmony reveals she's a vampire and bites Willow. Oz rescues her and Harmony goes away, threatening that her boyfriend is not going to be happy that they were mean to her. Buffy and Parker walk back to the dorm, and Parker discovers her scar from when Angel bit her (Graduation Day, Part Two). She tells him it was an angry puppy that bit her. He then asks her to a party the next night and she accepts.
At Giles' place, Xander is helping him put books away when Anya makes a surprise visit. She wants to know where her relationship with Xander is going, and not aware that they actually had a relationship, Xander is a bit confused. Back at the dorms, Buffy and Parker are just about to kiss when Willow and Oz arrive. While Oz cleans her wound, Willow fills Buffy in on everything, including Harmony's supposed boyfriend.
Harmony goes to her boyfriend who's working underground and it's revealed to be Spike. He works on plans with another vampire to dig through the floor of a crypt. Harmony persistently annoys him and he continues to yell at her. She complains that she wants to go out, and after the use of some feminine charm, he agrees to take her out to a party.
The party happens to be the same one Buffy and Parker are attending and the two couples run into each other. A thoroughly amused Buffy teases Spike about being with Harmony and the two vampires flee. Buffy pursues them and she and Spike fight. Harmony reveals that Drusilla left Spike for a fungus demon and that they'll be back as soon as they get the Gem of Amarra, to Spike's utter irritation. Anya shows up at Xander's place and after getting her a drink, he turns around to see that she's naked. Buffy calls Giles and informs him about Spike and Harmony. Giles looks up the Gem of Amarra and says it doesn't exist. Buffy says she's going to sleep but instead, goes back to the party with Parker.
Harmony annoys Spike, then draws his full attention with her sexual charm. Anya and Xander have sex because she's convinced it will help her get over him, and Buffy makes the decision that she wants to sleep with Parker.
The next morning, Buffy wakes up to an empty bed, and as she's searching for her clothes, Parker arrives with coffee. He says that he'll call her. Anya tells Xander that she's over him, and when he says he's okay with that, she storms out in anger. Spike wakes up to Harmony drawing on his back with lipstick and then leaves to get back to work. Buffy finds Willow and Giles in her dorm room; they tell her that the Gem of Amarra is real. After they get rid of Giles, Buffy tells Willow about her night with Parker.
Spike finally breaks into the crypt, and thinks he's found the Gem of Amarra in a necklace. Harmony shows up and starts trying on jewelry. Spike finally loses his control and tries to stake her, but the stake doesn't kill her. He sees the ring and after holding a cross to her, he takes the ring off of her and leaves to go outside.
At Giles' place, while they search for answers, Xander finds a TV and turns it on. They watch the news and see that there was a sinkhole caused by the erosion of dirt beneath it. They come to the conclusion that it was Spike's underground digging that caused it. Buffy tracks down Parker, but she finds him putting the same moves he used on her on another girl and that the sex they had was basically meaningless to him. She thinks it's her fault and again, feels sorry for herself. Spike then shows up in the daylight and hits her.
Buffy and Spike have a spectacular fight outside. She tries to stake him, to no avail. Xander shows up, but Spike quickly knocks him out of the way and continues to beat up Buffy. He talks very vulgarly about her relationship with Parker, with just enough truth in his comments to sting. Then, Spike makes the mistake of bringing up Angel and mocking their relationship as well. An enraged Buffy pummels Spike and takes the ring from him. Smoking from exposure to the sun, he dives down into the sewers. Later, Buffy and the gang sit around at Giles' place and Buffy decides that she wants Angel to have the ring. Oz volunteers to take it when he goes to L.A. for a gig.Buffy, Anya, and Harmony all walk separately around campus, incredibly depressed.
- Parker noticed Buffy's scar from being bitten by both Angel and The Master in which Buffy replies saying she was bitten by an angry puppy. Willow's vampire twin also referred to Angel as "the puppy" in 'The Wish'.
- When Buffy woke up in Parker's bedroom was reminiscent of when Buffy woke up in Angel's room after they sleep together in 'Surprise'. Both times Buffy woke up alone, wrapped in red sheets. Buffy seemed to sense this and worried that Parker was gone, as happened with Angel, until he walked in with coffee. A similar circumstance would later occur with Riley in 'The I in Team'.
- Harmony was sired during graduation.
- Spike began an obsession with Buffy.
- When questioned by Parker if Spike was an ex-boyfriend of hers, Buffy laughed hysterically at the idea. Ironically, two years later, she entered a sexual relationship with him and later in S7, developed genuine romantic feelings for him.
- While Anya tried to seduce Xander into having sex, he referred to her being blunt as "still more romantic than Faith," referring to when he slept with her 'The Zeppo'.
- Willow is bitten by Harmony, the third Scooby to be bitten by a vampire.
- This is the last appearance of Devon MacLeish in the series.
- The victim chained to the wall is actually 'Asian Joe', a recurring extra in the series who features in the background at Sunnydale High (notably in 'Earshot' when Buffy overhears him thinking about becoming a 'software gillionaire'). Harmony acknowledges this saying she had a class with him a year previously.
Behind the Scenes
- Joss Whedon has mentioned in various interviews that Sarah Michelle Gellar disagreed with Buffy sleeping with Parker. She thought that it was too soon after Angel had left her, and she didn't think that Buffy would do something like that. Whedon told Sarah that when you "go to college, you do stupid things."
- This episode set up a crossover with the Angel episode "In the Dark", broadcast the same evening, on which Oz guest stars. Spike and Oz are the only characters to appear in both episodes.
- An exchange between Willow and Buffy:
- Willow: "You know what else I love about college? How when the professor comes in, the class gets all quiet."
- Buffy: "Oh, I hate that. I'm always like, what? Did something scary come in? Do I have to kill it?"
- When they see Harmony again:
- Devon: "Man, that looked like Harmony. Weird. I saw her get bit at graduation. I didn't tell you?"
- Buffy tells Parker, she drowned:
- Parker: "Wow, I mean, you hear about stuff like that."
- Buffy: "Yeah, well, pool safety, important. Anyway..."
- Another reference to her drowning:
- Parker: "Buffy? When you...drowned, whoever brought you back? They're getting a big kiss from me."
- Buffy: "Xander will be so happy."
- Anya talks to Xander:
- Xander: "This is just, I'd say out of nowhere, but that doesn't really capture the amount of nowhere which it's out of."
- Buffy sees Spike again:
- Buffy: "I think you two should go."
- Spike: "But the fun's just starting: old friends, lots to drink..."
- Anya visits Xander:
- Xander: "So...you're my first guest at Casa del Xander - not the final name, still working on it."
- Buffy and Giles discuss Spike and Harmony's relationship:
- Buffy: "I mean, I thought Spike and Dru were a forever kind of deal, didn't you? Where's the commitment?"
- Giles: "I'm disillusioned. I shall never love again."
- Parker and Buffy discuss that everyone has a choice:
- Buffy: "It doesn't feel like it. To me, a lot of the time, it feels like stuff's just coming at me, you know, and I'm reacting as fast as I can, just trying to keep going. Just - just trying to be on my feet before the next thing hits."
- Parker: "That sounds exhausting."
- Buffy: "It really is."
- Buffy confronts Parker:
- Parker: "Okay, I'm a little confused now. I mean, I definitely got the idea you'd done it before. You were the one who was all over me. It was fun."
- When Buffy and Willow talk about sleeping with a guy and then he turns evil:
- Willow: "Well, from what I understand, pretty much. But it won't always be like that. You've just had some really bad luck."
- Buffy: "I don't know, Will. Bad luck just happens. I made this happen."
- Willow: "Well, why shouldn't you, if it's what you want? I mean, as long as it's safe. Oh, Buffy, it was safe, wasn't it?
- Buffy: "It was safe. It's not that. It's that the whole time, I kept thinking, hey, look at me with someone who isn't Angel. Look how much I'm not hung up with Angel anymore. Look how this is not all about Angel. God, how come I didn't see it?"
Pop Culture References
- Harmony asks Spike if Antonio Banderas is a vampire. This may be a reference to the 1994 film adaptation of Anne Rice's novel Interview with the Vampire, in which Antonio Banderas plays the vampire Armand.
- Bif Naked - "Anything"
- Bif Naked - "Lucky" (Dance Remix)
- Bif Naked - "Lucky"
- Bif Naked - "Moment of weakness"
- Devil Doll (American) - "Faith In Love"
- Dollshead - "It's over it's under" (Club Mix)
- Dollshead - "It's over it's under" (Rhythm mix)
- Dollshead - "It's over it's under"
- Four Star Mary - "Dilate"
- Psychic Rain - "Take Me Down"
- Christophe Beck - original score
|Willow - "Buffy's looking at Parker. Who, it turns out, has a reflection. So, big plus there."|
|Anya - "I can't stop thinking about you. Sometimes, in my dreams, you're all naked."|
|Xander - "Really? You know, if I'm in the checkout lane at the Wal-Mart, I've had that same one."|
|Anya - "I like you. You're funny and you're nicely shaped. And, frankly, it's ludicrous to have these interlocking bodies and not ... interlock. Please remove your clothing now."|
|Xander - "And the amazing thing ... still more romantic than Faith."|
|Spike - "I've got to get back to work."|
|Harmony - "You love that tunnel more than me."|
|Spike - "I love syphilis more than you."|
|Willow - "He's a poophead."|
|Buffy - "You're right. He's manipulative and shallow, and why doesn't he want me? Am I repulsive? If there was something repulsive about me, you'd tell me, right?"|
|Willow - "I'm your friend. I would call you repulsive in a second."|
|Buffy - "Maybe Parker and I could still work it out. Do you think that we could still work it out?"|
|Willow - "I think you're missing something about the whole poophead principle."|
|Harmony - "I don't know why I let you be so mean to me!"|
|Spike - "Love hurts, baby."|
|Xander - "I don't get your crazy system."|
|Giles - "System? It's called the alphabet."|
|Xander - "Huh. Would you look at that."|
|Anya - "You should lock your door."|
|Giles - "Believe me, I'm kicking myself."|
|Oz - "Okay, either I'm borrowing all your albums or I'm moving in."|
|Giles - "Oz there are more important things than records right now."|
|Oz - "More important than this one?"|
|Giles - "Well I suppose an argument could be made for ..."|
|Xander - "Whoa, Giles has a TV. Everybody, Giles has a TV. He's shallow like us."|
|Oz - "I got to admit, I'm a little disappointed."|
|Harmony - "Is Antonio Banderas a vampire?"|
|Spike - "No."|
|Harmony - "Oh. Can I make him a vampire?"|
|Spike - "No. Wait, on second thought, yeah. Go do that. Take your time. Do Melanie and the kids, as well."|
|Harmony - "Being a vampire sucks."|