School Hard is about a regime change.
We can say goodbye to the gaping void that was the Anointed, and we do it with a punk rock song in our hearts. Probably a Ramones song. Or maybe Sid Vicious.
Anyway, while Buffy has to deal yet again with the demands of real life vs. Slayer life, our focus is sort of drawn to the fundamental change in vamp life.
They go through growing pains, too, these vamps do, and it’s interesting to see how. At first, they’re preoccupied with digging up the past; their chance at a resurrected Master is gone, but hey! There’s a nifty ancient vamp holiday coming that promises lots of carnage and maybe a Slayer chaser.
Problem is, they’re approaching it from the same angle that the Master was, just one short season ago--i.e., waiting for the… I don’t know, is it called a religion?—to drop everything in their laps. And we all know how well that worked out for him.
Enter Spike (and Drusilla, but it’s not like she does anything besides look fragile and spew crazy). Not only is his way strangely not the “old” way, it’s worked before. Twice. Which suggests that the ritualism doesn’t work, especially against Buffy, who’s as modern as it gets. So a change of tack is called for. Except… it doesn’t work.
Why? Well, because despite Spike being all new and modern, he somehow still expects Buffy to be traditional and old-timey. Nope.
Plus, she’s sassy.
And let’s not mention, she has inside knowledge:
And while it may seem like this episode is all about the Slayer stuff and not so much about the growing up, consider this: Growing up is all about shedding old preconceptions and changing your views in light of new information.
Guess the lessons don’t always come from the Buffy and Friends side of the equation.
- Just how much slaying does Buffy do during school hours, anyway, that requires so much school-cutting?!
- “Is she tough?” “Ow!”
- I love how the BtVS movie vamps had to go through a whole process to find out who the Slayer is, whereas these just… know.
- Continuity error: where did the books disappear to when Xander comes back to look for a stake and wrestle with tampons?
- “Cordelia… have some lemonade.”
- Spike and Angel shouldn’t be so happy to see each other…
- Demons don’t change, eh? Oh, this is gonna be fun!
- The last Slayer he killed did not beg for her life. Exaggerator.
- Snyder knows more than he’s saying…
- I love Spike forever for killing the Annoying One, and no one can ever take that away from me. Ever.