Home page All episodes sorted by rank All episodes sorted alphabetically All episodes sorted by writer All episodes sorted by director All episodes sorted by season Episodes with the most polarized opinions Episodes largely forgotten by fans Best and worst streaks of episodes An analysis of what makes episodes great Buffy writers sorted by the quality of their episodes Buffy directors sorted by the quality of their episodes Seasons of Buffy sorted by the quality of their episodes Buffy characters sorted by their possible contribution to episode quality Predicted episode quality based on writer, director, characters, and when aired Episodes that are much better or much worse than predicted Tastes in episodes Episodes ranked by taste Seasons ranked by taste Characters ranked by taste Writers ranked by taste Directors ranked by taste How the results on this site were obtained Ranking important contributors Reviews and Essays Frequently Asked Questions The links page Go to the sitemap

FAITH, HOPE & TRICK (ep #3.03)

(a.k.a. Speak Loudly and Carry a Big Stake)


Written by: David Greenwalt
Directed by: James A. Contner
Starring: Sarah Michelle Gellar as Buffy Summers
Nicholas Brendon as Xander Harris
Alyson Hannigan as Willow Rosenberg
Charisma Carpenter as Cordelia Chase
David Boreanaz as Angel
Seth Green as Oz
Anthony Stewart Head as Rupert Giles
Guest Starring: Kristine Sutherland as Joyce
K. Todd Freeman as Mr. Trick
Fab Filippo as Scott Hope
Jeremy Roberts as Kakistos
Eliza Dushku as Faith
Armin Shimerman as Principal Snyder
Co-Starring: John Ennis as Manager

Plot Summary

A new slayer arrived in town, bringing a very old villain along for the ride.

Plot Details

Willow wallowed in the freedom to leave campus for lunch that all seniors enjoy, except that "enjoy" might not be the accurate word because Xander and Oz had to carry her across the street for her to dare leave the campus. They, along with Cordelia, met Buffy, who was using her free time to set up a picnic for all of them. While there, Willow pointed out Scott Hope, a fellow student who apparently has an interest in Buffy.

That night, a limousine carrying two vampires pulled into a fast-food drive-through window and ordered a diet soda. One of the passengers, Mr. Trick, was babbling excitedly about Sunnydale's high death rate. The other passenger, Kakistos, was just interested in killing the slayer. This talk made Mr. Trick hungry, so he decided to eat the fast food employee instead.

In another dream sequence, Buffy danced with Angel in the Bronze as Oz, Willow, Cordelia, and Xander watched. Her claddah ring fell to the ground and the scene flashed back to Buffy stabbing Angel at the end of "Becoming Pt. 2." Back at the Bronze, Angel told her to go to Hell and looked really ugly.

Buffy and Joyce met with Principal Snyder. Apparently, the school board overruled his expulsion of Buffy and ordered that she be allowed back to school. Snyder, however, still insisted on three conditions: (1) she make up all her exams, (2) she get a letter of recommendation from a faculty member other than Giles, and (3) she meet with the school psychologist.

Buffy went straight to the library where Giles interrogated her on what happened when she defeated Acathla and Angel. He said that he needed the details in order to do a binding spell to keep Acathla closed. Buffy gave a general description of the battle, ignoring several details, most notably the fact that Angel had a soul when Acathla swallowed him.

That night, at the Bronze, Willow pretended to be surprised when Scott Hope approached Buffy. A couple dancing a little too suggestively distracted Cordelia. Buffy figured out that one was a vampire and followed them outside. However, the woman, Faith, did not need any help other than to borrow Buffy's stake. In fact, Oz quickly determined that she was a new slayer.

Back at the Bronze, Faith entertained the other characters on her nude slaying adventures. She said that she skipped to Sunnydale to meet Buffy while her watcher went on a retreat in England.

Buffy, Willow, and Xander brought Faith to meet Giles. Afterward, Willow and Xander took Faith on a tour of the school and described events from "School Hard," "Innocence," and "I Only Have Eyes for You." Meanwhile, Giles once again interrogated Buffy on what happened when she fought Angel.

After her health exam, Buffy came down and saw Scott chatting with Faith. For the first time, Buffy decided that she might be interested in him.

Faith had dinner with Buffy and Joyce that night and continued with her stories. Joyce saw the opportunity for Buffy to pass her slayer duties onto Faith and live a normal (and safe) life. Buffy did not like that idea and started to feel even more threatened.

Buffy and Faith went on patrol. Things got very tense between the two when four vampires attacked to relieve the tension. Faith got a little to into punching one of them, which left the others to take on Buffy. Buffy staked three vampires, but she was not happy at Faith.

Giles was not as disturbed by Faith's actions as Buffy was. He recognized the name that one of the attackers referred to, Kakistos, as being a very old vampire. Buffy did not think that it was a coincidence that Kakistos and Faith arrived at the same time.

On the way out of the library, Buffy ran into Scott Hope, who made one last effort to ask her out. Unfortunately, he also gave her a claddah ring like the one that Angel gave her. She was rather upset.

Giles came back to her and said that he found out that Faith's watcher was not at a retreat in England. Instead, the watcher was dead. Buffy decided to visit Faith to find out what she knew. Faith wanted to leave town, but Kakistos, Mr. Trick, and two other vampires arrived at her motel room. Fortunately, they were dumb enough not to surround the room, so Buffy and Faith managed to escape through a window.

Unfortunately, they fled into Kakistos's lair. Mr. Trick showed his loyalty by leaving with one of the other vampires as soon as he was able. Buffy staked the other minion while Faith cowered. Buffy tried to take on Kakistos but found that her stake was too small. Fortunately, Faith found a much larger piece of wood that did the trick (pun unintended but not unwelcome).

The next day, Giles announced that Faith was to remain in Sunnydale with Giles as her watcher for the time being. Buffy admitted that Faith did come through at the end of the fight. While in the confessing mode, Buffy also volunteered the fact that Angel had a soul when he was sucked into Hell. This was apparently the information that Giles was looking for. Once Buffy left, he admitted to Willow that there was no binding spell.

Buffy waited for Scott outside class and said that she would be interested in him. That night, she went back to Angel's mansion and left the claddah ring that he gave her on the floor as her way of saying goodbye to him. As soon as she left, there was a bright light, and Angel fell to the ground, wearing an outfit (or lack thereof) that would be sure to please most female fans.

The Good

The point of this episode is to introduce the three characters in the title. Two of them, Faith and [Mr.] Trick appear to have potential as characters.

The Bad

I understand that Cordelia's exposition on how Faith could be a slayer was necessary for new viewers, but it was a little too obvious. My guess is that all of the characters knew exactly how Faith could be a slayer and did not need Cordelia to explain it to them.

I know that the plot is not as important to this episode as the new characters are, but it did have the feeling of a two-sentence description that was stretched to fill space.

The fight in the construction area was poorly shot or poorly edited. Buffy threw two vampires off of her, but only bothered with one of them when she got up. We were told that Faith staked a vampire, but we never saw it on screen.

Overall Rank: 103

Action: 7

Faith staked a vampire near the Bronze.

Four vampires attacked Buffy and Faith in a construction area.

Kakistos, Mr. Trick, and two minion vampires attacked Buffy and Faith in Faith's motel room. Buffy and Faith fled into Kakistos's lair where Buffy staked one of the vampires and Faith staked Kakistos.

Comedy: 1

Joyce and Buffy apparently enjoyed their meeting with Principal Snyder.

Faith had some amusing anecdotes.

Drama: 6

Buffy once again had to deal with her fears that another slayer will replace her.

Faith had to overcome her trauma of watching Kakistos kill her watcher.

Buffy said goodbye to Angel in her heart.

Romance: 2

Scott Hope may be the next love interest for Buffy.

Character Development: 8

Buffy once again is not happy about having a second slayer in town. Even worse, unlike Kendra, Faith has attracted the attention of her friends and mother rather than just Giles's attention. Furthermore, she is sticking around rather than returning to her watcher.

Faith is the slayer who was called upon Kendra's death in "Becoming Pt. 1." She is very enthusiastic about her slaying and made Buffy seem like Kendra. However, not everything was what it seemed. She was traumatized by the death of her watcher at the hands of Kakistos. She seems to be fond of food and sex and beating on vampires and does not like structure or restrictions.

Scott Hope is a fellow student who appears to be attracted to Buffy and has been conspiring with Willow.

Mr. Trick is a new vampire in town. He appears to be more technologically savvy than any vampire we have seen previously. He accepts the minion role, but loyalty is not his strong suit as he abandoned Kakistos as soon as it looked like Buffy and Faith were going to win.

Importance: 7

This episode is important mostly for introducing the three characters mentioned in the title. All three of them will be seen again. It also represents the return of Angel to Sunnydale.

Most Valuable Player: Faith

Faith gets the MVP for finally overcoming her fears and staking Kakistos.

Sherlock Holmes Award: Giles

Giles gets the prize primarily for getting Buffy to admit that Angel had a soul when he was sucked into Hell. He also gets credit for identifying Kakistos. Oz gets credit for being the first to identify Faith as the new slayer.

Goat of the Week: Kakistos

Nearly any vampire should do anything possible to avoid confronting one slayer. Only a complete idiot of a vampire would willingly face two. Mr. Trick was right, vengeance feuds should be history.

Random Commentary

It is too bad that Willow is no longer teaching a computer course, or it would be very easy for Buffy to get the letter of recommendation.

DVD Extras

Original Script is of interest to those who would rather read Buffy than watch it.

Memorable Dialogue

"Ooh, Scott Hope at 11 o'clock. He likes you. He wanted to ask you out last year, but you weren't ready then, but I think you're ready now or at least in the state of pre-readiness to make conversation or to do that thing with your mouth that boys like. Oh, I didn't mean the bad thing with your mouth. I mean that little half-smile thing that you... You're supposed to stop me when I do that." Willow

"All right, yes, date and shop and hang out and go to school and save the world from unspeakable demons. You know, I want to do girlie stuff." Buffy

"Sunnydale, town's got quaint. And the people, he called me 'sir.' Don't you just miss that? I mean, admittedly, it's not a haven for the brothers, you know; strictly the Caucasian persuasion here in the 'Dale, but, you know, you just gotta stand up and salute that death rate. I ran a statistical analysis, and hello, darkness, makes DC look like Mayberry, and ain't nobody saying 'boo' about it. We could fit right in here, have us some fun." Mr. Trick

"Here are the terms of your re-entry, missy. Take 'em or leave 'em. One, that you pass a makeup test of every class you skipped out on last year. Two, that you provide, in writing, one glowing letter of recommendation from any member of our faculty who is not an English librarian. Three, that you complete an interview with our school psychologist who must conclude that your violent tendencies are under control." Principal Snyder

"So let me get this straight. I'm really back in school because the school board overruled you. Wow, that's like having your whole ability to do this job called into question when you think about it." Buffy
"I think what my daughter's trying to say is 'Nyah, nyah nyah, nyah, nyah.'" Joyce"

"Have you ever noticed, though, that when he is mad but he's too English to say anything, he makes that weird cluck-cluck sound with his tongue?" Willow

"I have to go take an English makeup exam. They give you credit just for speaking it, right?" Buffy

"Sage, I love that smell. And marnox root? You know, a smidge of this mixed with a virgin's saliva does something I know nothing about." Willow
"These forces are not something that one plays around with, Willow. What have you been conjuring?" Giles
"Nothing, much. Well, you know, I tried this spell to cure Angel, and I guess that was a bust, but, since then, you know, small stuff: floating feather, fire out of ice, which, next time, I won't do on the bedspread. Are you mad at me?" Willow
"No, of course not. If I were, I would be making a strange clucking sound with my tongue." Giles

"I'm gonna go out on a limb and say there's a new slayer in town." Oz

"So, it's about 118 degrees [48C], and I'm sleeping without a stitch on, and all of a sudden, I hear this screaming from outside. So I go tearing out, stark nude, and this church bus has broke down, and there's these three vamps feasting on half the Baptists in South Boston. So I waste the vamps, and the preacher comes up, and he's hugging me like there's no tomorrow when, all of a sudden, the cops pull up, and they arrested us both." Faith
"Wow, they should film that story and show it every Christmas." Xander

"Now, you both kill vamps, and who could blame you, but I'm wondering about your position on werewolves." Oz
"Oz is a werewolf." Willow
"It's a long story." Buffy
"I got bit." Oz
"Apparently, not that long." Buffy
"Hey, as long as you don't go scratching at me or humping my leg, we're five by five, you know?" Faith

"If I'd known they came that young and cute, I would've requested a transfer." Faith

"If we don't do something, the master could get killed. Well, our prayers are with him. There's a reason these vengeance crusades are out of style. See, the modern vampire, we see the big picture." Mr. Trick

Characters in Peril

Kills

Evil Escaped

Strictly the Caucasian Persuasion

Spoiler Questions

Highlight the space after each question to find the answer. It is strongly recommended that you do not do so if you have not seen episodes through the episode indicated.

This page was last modified on November 12, 2012