Enemies (Buffy the Vampire Slayer)

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode
Buffy 3x17.jpg
Faith and Buffy prepare to fight as it is revealed Faith is working for the Mayor
Episode no. Season 3
Episode 17
Directed by David Grossman
Written by Doug Petrie
Production code 3ABB17
Original air date March 16, 1999
Guest appearance(s)
Episode chronology
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List of Buffy the Vampire Slayer episodes

"Enemies" is the 17th episode of season 3 of the television show Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Plot synopsis[edit]

Buffy and Angel go to a French erotic arthouse movie. They both get worked up, then talk about how they can never act on what they're feeling.

Buffy and Faith meet a demon (named Skyler in the script, though his name is not spoken) who offers to sell "the Books of Ascension" for $5000. When Faith reports this to the Mayor, he asks her to kill the demon and take the books.

At the library, the Scooby Gang discusses "ascension" but they know very little about it until Willow suggests checking in a book which Giles was trying to hide from her due to its magical content.

Faith finds the demon, who is desperate to get out of Sunnydale before the Mayor's ascension, and kills him. She goes to Angel, saying she is upset over what she has become, and tries to seduce him so that he will lose his soul through happiness, but she cannot distract him from his devotion to Buffy. The Mayor therefore hires a mysterious cloaked sorcerer to take Angel's soul in the "most painful way imaginable."

Xander gets the demon's address by bribing Willy the Snitch; Buffy goes to find him, and Faith tags along. They find the demon dead and Buffy is worried by Faith's strange behavior about it. Buffy tells Willow that she saw Faith kiss Angel; Willow urges Buffy to talk to Angel about it.

Faith approaches Angel at his mansion, on the pretext of apologizing for her behavior the night before. She pours blood onto his shirt; the cloaked man then steps out of the shadows and chants a spell; lights flash and Angel yells as his soul is taken away. He pulls Faith to him and they kiss before Angelus starts beating her up. The two fight and Faith ends up on top, holding a stake to his heart. A truce is made as Angelus agrees to meet the Mayor and the two kiss.

Willow reports to the Scooby Gang that the Mayor's computer files were emptied before she was able to access them. With both Faith and Angel missing, Buffy leaves to find out what's going on with the Mayor while Wesley takes a very eager Cordelia and the rest of the group, minus Xander, to the Hall of Records to find information on the Mayor.

Faith takes Angelus to meet with the Mayor, and Angelus learns that the Mayor can't be killed. He tells the Mayor of his plans to torture and kill Buffy. Angelus and Faith walk to Buffy's house; on the way they meet Xander, whom Angelus knocks to the ground with a punch. Angelus and Faith lure Buffy to the mansion, where they reveal that they're fighting for the other side now. Angelus knocks Buffy out cold.

Buffy wakes up chained to a wall; Angelus and Faith plan to torture her. Faith talks about her painful childhood with a mother who drank too much, and her life as a Slayer living in Buffy's shadow. She reveals what she knows about the Mayor's master plan, which will culminate in his Ascension on graduation day.

Having learned all that Faith knows, Angel then reveals that his disensoulment was a sham and that he only pretended to be the evil Angelus. Buffy then shows that her hands were not really chained. The rest of the Scooby Gang arrive as Buffy and Faith fight and end up with knives at each other's throats. Telling Buffy that she can't kill her without becoming her, Faith gives Buffy a kiss on her forehead, breaks away and runs off.

At the library, Giles thanks and bids good-bye to the cloaked man, who faked the spell to repay an old favor: Giles had introduced him to his wife. Wesley is angry that Giles arranged this behind his back, and plans to tell the Watchers' Council about it. Now that everyone is fully aware of Faith's switch to Team Evil, they have to prepare to fight her as well.

Buffy and Angel are both shaken by what they had to do and Buffy says she needs a break from him. But as Buffy leaves Angel's mansion, he asks, "You still my girl?" and she responds, "Always."

Cultural references[edit]


Arc significance[edit]

  • Faith's turn to the dark side becomes public knowledge by the end of this episode.
  • Wilkins shows again his strange father-daughter relationship with Faith when he asks Angel to bring her back before 11 o'clock. Faith reveals the deep resentment she has kept behind her happy-go-lucky face.
  • After meeting the nameless demon, Buffy allows him to depart unharmed rather than slaying him, noting that he seems harmless. This marks the widening of one of the Buffyverse's overall themes, that demons are capable of being benign whereas soulless vampires are not, a concept introduced in "Becoming, Part One" and explored more fully in the Angel spin-off.
  • A sorcerer very similar to the cloaked man in appearance and power appears in the Angel episodes "Awakening" (where he does in fact remove Angel's soul, as the cloaked man in "Enemies" only pretends to do) and "Calvary".
  • For the first time, the name "Angelus" is used to refer specifically to the soulless, evil Angel.

External links[edit]