Entropy (Buffy the Vampire Slayer)

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"Entropy"
Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode
Buffy6x18.jpg
Willow and Tara kiss as they begin to repair their love
Episode no. Season 6
Episode 18
Directed by James A. Contner
Written by Drew Z. Greenberg
Production code 6ABB18
Original air date April 30, 2002
Guest actors
Episode chronology
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"Normal Again"
Next →
"Seeing Red"
List of Buffy the Vampire Slayer episodes

"Entropy" is the 18th episode of season 6 of the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Plot synopsis[edit]

The Trio, riding ATVs, pursue two vampires through a cemetery; one of them throws a tree branch at Andrew, causing him to fall off and the others to crash. The vampires encounter Buffy and they fight. One vampire drops the mysterious disk that the Trio were after; Warren snatches it and the Trio escapes, unseen by the Slayer. As Buffy fights, Spike seizes one of the vampires and offers to stake him, provided that Buffy agrees to tell the Scooby Gang about their sex life. Buffy rejects the deal and stakes both vampires without Spike's help. She dares Spike to spill the beans; since her friends have forgiven her attempt to kill them a little dalliance is unlikely to make them hate her.

Xander mopes alone at his apartment but eventually can't stand it anymore and leaves. As he walks away, Anya watches him from behind some bushes.

The next day, Willow waits for Tara outside of her classroom and the two talk and plan a coffee date. Buffy and Dawn stroll downtown, but there are very few stores where Dawn can show her face: she has confessed to shoplifting at most of them. They chat about all of the things Dawn stole and how they're working to remedy the whole problem.

Jonathan works on a project involving the disk they stole as Warren watches over, eager for it to be complete. While Jonathan finishes his work alone, Warren and Andrew Wells talk about their inability to trust Jonathan and how soon they won't need him anymore.

That evening, Xander comes home from work and finds Anya at his apartment waiting for him. Xander tries to apologize for walking away from their wedding. There is a glimmer of hope for them until Xander says he wanted to stop the wedding before it happened. Taken aback, Anya asks Xander what he meant by that remark. Xander, as he's done before, tries to change the subject by telling a sarcastic story until Anya cuts him off by asking if he still wants to marry her. Xander admits to loving her dearly and wanting to be back with her, but he's still too afraid of himself to marry her. With her back turned to Xander, she reveals her vengeance demon face and angrily begins to wish him physical harm – but nothing happens. Anya morphs back into her human face and, upset that her powers didn't work, she leaves while a confused Xander looks on.

The next day, Anya has coffee with Halfrek and the two demons talk about Anya's attempts at vengeance. Halfrek reminds Anya that she can't grant her own wishes and must get someone else to wish Xander harm.

At the Summers house, Buffy makes pancakes for Dawn. Dawn realizes she's trying too hard to make up for what happened when she was crazy, and eventually Buffy catches on to that reality as well. Dawn proposes the idea of joining Buffy on patrol so the two can spend some time together, but Buffy isn't interested in that.

On their coffee date, Willow fills Tara in on all of the supernatural activities that Tara has missed over the past months. Anya interrupts them and tries to maneuver them into wishing harm to Xander. She does the same with Dawn at the Magic Box and with Buffy at home; but no one takes the bait. Xander shows up at Buffy's house and Anya leaves in a huff. Buffy talks him out of following Anya and he takes his aggressions out by kicking a lawn gnome on Buffy's front lawn. When Buffy doesn't recognize the decoration as something she put there, Xander examines it and finds that it contains a small camera. They guess that it was placed by Spike, who has more than once been caught watching the house in the past.

Buffy confronts Spike at his crypt with the mini camera she found. Spike denies planting the mini camera, and he further insists that he would never do anything like that to hurt Buffy, because he believes that the love between them is real. Buffy concedes that it is, for him; this hurts Spike deeply.

At the Magic Box, Anya complains to Halfrek that all the women she knows still love Xander too much to wish him harm, despite what he did to her. Halfrek tells Anya that she needs to find someone who hates Xander to make the wish – and at that moment Spike appears, seeking something to ease his pain. Anya remembers that Giles left something appropriate: a partial bottle of Evan Williams whiskey. Halfrek leaves and wishes Anya the best of luck.

At Buffy's house, Willow uses her computer to try to trace the camera's signal. Given that it was not Spike, they correctly assume that the Trio are behind it.

Jonathan completes his work with the disk, and uses it to highlight a spot on a map of Sunnydale. The Trio are delighted, until the map catches fire. This distracts them from a red light, flashing to announce that their network has been penetrated.

Anya and Spike drink the whiskey and complain to each other about their respective relationship problems. Spike reiterates how he despises Xander, but Anya cannot get him to make a wish. Spike also tells Anya that he likes her forthrightness.

Willow finds more camera feeds: the Trio are watching her classrooms, the Bronze, Xander's and Buffy's workplaces. Buffy wants to find them even more urgently now.

Spike and Anya seek comfort in each other's arms. Anya feels guilty about what happened with Xander and Spike consoles her, which leads to much more. The two kiss and undress. Andrew belatedly sees the intrusion alarm. Willow stumbles upon the Magic Box feed as Spike and Anya are having sex on a table. Warren directs Andrew to shut down the surveillance network, but they are captivated by the action on the Magic Box camera.

Willow fails to keep Buffy, Xander and Dawn from seeing what is going on at the Magic Box. Xander is enraged. Buffy, stunned, goes to sit in the back yard. Dawn follows Buffy and they begin to talk about Buffy's affair with Spike. Their bonding moment is cut short as Willow informs them both that Xander is gone – with an axe.

Spike and Anya get dressed and act awkwardly and embarrassed about their impulsive behavior. As Spike leaves the shop, Xander attacks him. Xander is about to stake Spike when Anya comes outside, trying to stop him; she distracts him long enough for Buffy to knock him out of the way. Xander and Anya yell at each other. Xander is disgusted that Anya had "let that evil, soulless thing touch [her]"; Spike quietly remarks that he was good enough for Buffy. Xander tells Spike to leave Buffy out of it – then he and Anya see Buffy's startled face and connect the dots. This is too much for Xander; he drops the stake and walks away stunned. Buffy also walks off, angry at Spike for revealing their secret. Spike finally starts to make a wish, but Anya stops him, and they part ways.

Willow is sitting in her bedroom when Tara appears, saying that repairing their love will be a long process – which she'd rather skip. They kiss.

Cultural references[edit]

  • Referencing Indiana Jones, Warren calls Jonathan "Short Round", a character in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.
  • The scene where they use the disk to find the spot on the map references a similar scene in Raiders of the Lost Ark.
  • Summing the episode's "Entropy" theme, Tara paraphrases William Butler Yeats' The Second Coming, saying "Things fall apart, they fall apart so hard."
  • The disk is inscribed with unknown symbols in a spiral, loosely resembling the Phaistos Disk.
  • Xander references the famous quote by George Mallory when arguing with Anya about her sleeping with Spike. When she says she slept with him "because he was there," Xander replies, "What is he, Mount Everest?" The original quote was when Mallory was asked why he wanted to climb Mount Everest. He replied, "Because it's there."
  • Andrew refers to Jonathan saying, "He's got that same look on his face, though. The one he had that time I highlighted in his Babylon 5 novels..."

Continuity[edit]

  • Anya mentions Xander's "beady eyes", as she did when magically compelled to sing her true feelings in "Once More, with Feeling".
  • Willow's outfit from the musical episode can also be seen on the door while she and Tara reconcile.
  • Buffy jokes that technically Dawn is only one and a half years old, and thus much too young to go fighting demons, because she was created as a teenager at the beginning of season five.
  • Xander and Anya's fight at the end of the episode mirrors some things that were said in Xander's false visions of his future in "Hell's Bells", including telling Anya that she disgusts him and yelling to "leave her (Buffy) out of it".
  • Anya and Spike previously bonded over their problems in "Where the Wild Things Are".
  • Xander previously believed Buffy and Spike were sleeping together in "Intervention".
  • Halfrek notices Spike as his human self, William, however Spike doesn't seem to remember Cecily (Halfrek's human name).

Arc significance[edit]

  • Willow and Tara are reconciled.
  • Buffy's relationship with Spike is revealed to Dawn, Xander and Anya.
  • Halfrek reminds Anyanka that vengeance demons can not enact their own wishes.
  • The Scoobies learn that the Trio have been watching them with hidden cameras.

External links[edit]