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END OF DAYS (ep #7.21)

(a.k.a. Buffy's Got a Brand New Ax)

Written by: Douglas Petrie and Jane Espenson
Directed by: Marita Grabiak
Starring: Sarah Michelle Gellar as Buffy Summers
Nicholas Brendon as Xander Harris
Emma Caulfield as Anya
Michelle Trachtenberg as Dawn Summers
James Marsters as Spike
Alyson Hannigan as Willow Rosenberg
Guest Starring: Anthony Stewart Head as Rupert Giles (Special guest star)
Eliza Dushku as Faith (Special guest star)
Nathan Fillion as Caleb (Special guest star)
David Boreanaz as Angel
Tom Lenk as Andrew Wells
Iyari Limon as Kennedy
Sarah Hagan as Amanda
Christine Healy as Guardian
Co-Starring: Felicia Day as Vi
Dania Ramirez as Caridad
Lisa Ann Cabasa as Injured Girl

Plot Summary

Buffy sought to learn about her new toy, a shiny ax.

Plot Details

Buffy found the neat-looking ax. Caleb taunted her by suggesting that she would not be able to pry it from solid rock. Apparently, he was not familiar with the legend of King Arthur as Buffy easily pulled it out. He suggested giving him the ax, but she noticed that he was backing away in a very un-Caleb like manner. The First Evil popped in to suggest that Buffy had better things to do than fight Caleb, like help her friends who were about to be vaporized. Buffy left without splitting Caleb's head open first.

Quite improbably (and unfortunately), everyone appeared to have survived the explosion. If anything, rather than rid the show of a bunch of whiny brats, the bomb appeared to have sprouted even more potentials. A bit of growling convinced them that fleeing might be the best option. They made it outside before the growler revealed itself as an ubervamp.

Andrew had apparently gone on a mission to loot find food at an abandoned grocery store. Xander, Willow, Dawn, and Anya returned without having found Buffy. Giles had already figured out that something went wrong with Faith's expedition.

Kennedy decided that she was in charge. She thought that they could take on an ubervamp, only to find two more. The three ubervamps downed a potential and started clawing at her. One got bored and decided to choke the life out of Kennedy. Unfortunately, Buffy came to the rescue and easily killed all three Ubervamps with her new ax. The ungrateful wretches were glad to see her.

Buffy's house turned into the only functioning hospital in Sunnydale. Andrew came up with the idea of raiding the abandoned hospital for supplies. Anya went along with him. Meanwhile, Buffy had Willow and Giles research the ax and asked Xander to do some unspecified thing that he did not want to do because it made him feel useless.

Willow and Giles went nowhere in their search for information about the ax. Apparently, neither of them thought about looking at a Fray comic book. I guess Xander and Andrew should have been given that assignment. Giles suggested that Willow use magic, but she was worried about what that would do to her.

Xander had Dawn look for a crossbow that was allegedly left in his car. They were discussing the low quality of jokes about his missing eye when he used some fast-acting chloroform on her.

Caleb was very angry about being ordered to let Buffy go. The First Evil calmed him down by suggesting "merging." This apparently involved the First transforming into its satanic form and entering Caleb.

Buffy had a heart-to-heart talk with Faith before going downstairs to find Spike. They danced around what happened the previous night. Spike got the idea that she did not want him around, but she actually appreciated what he did for her.

Andrew and Anya found first aid supplies at the hospital. They talked about how Anya was now committed to fighting for humans and about how Andrew believed that he would not survive the fight. They also had a wheelchair fight.

Buffy kicked down the door of a temple and met a woman who was much older than she looked. She was one of the ones who forged and hid the ax. She also watched watchers. She was telling Buffy that she could win and that the end was near, when Caleb showed up and snapped the woman's neck.

Dawn awoke to find Xander driving her away from Sunnydale. He handed her a note from Buffy saying that she did not want either Dawn or Xander in the fight. Dawn promptly used a taser on Xander and drove back toward Sunnydale.

Buffy and Caleb started to fight. As long as she had the ax, they appeared evenly matched. However, when she dropped it, he had the advantage. He was about to use it to kill her when an ex-boyfriend that she had not seen in about a year and a half showed up. After Angel and Buffy exchanged a few words, she picked up the ax and slashed Caleb across his torso. Angel and Buffy kissed, which did not please Spike, who was watching.

The Good

Angel had a great entrance.

The Bad

This episode was mostly a set-up for the final episode.

It looks like all the potentials survived the explosion.

Overall Rank: 65

Action: 6

Three ubervamps menaced some potentials.

Buffy, with an assist from Angel, fought Caleb.

Comedy: 4

Anya provided a bit of comic relief with her pessimistic appraisals of the potentials' chances for survival.

The Guardian did not believe that a slayer could be named "Buffy."

Drama: 7

This episode was full of heart-to-heart talks between Buffy and Xander, Giles and Willow, Buffy and Faith, Buffy and Spike, and Anya and Andrew.

Romance: 5

Much of the romance in this episode came from whatever one wanted to interpret from the conversation between Buffy and Spike.

However, Buffy and Angel had a good kiss.

Character Development: 3

Caleb is not familiar with the legend of King Arthur.

Giles really likes Jaffa cakes.

Anya, not surprisingly, has a terrible bedside manner.

Willow is worried that using magic would alter her appearance in a negative way.

Faith admits that she was always envious of Buffy.

Importance: 7

This episode is largely a set-up for the final episode of the show.

Buffy has a brand new ax.

Buffy has moved back into her house despite what the ungrateful wretches did to her in "Empty Places."

Xander and Dawn are out of town, but probably not for long.

Angel, on the other hand, is in town.

Caleb does not look like he is in good shape.

Most Valuable Player: Buffy

Buffy gets the MVP for recovering the ax and rescuing the ungrateful brats. Angel gets a lot of credit for helping Buffy in her fight with Caleb.

Sherlock Holmes Award: Buffy

I am tempted to give this to Caridad because she was the only one who seemed to realize that Buffy recovered an ax rather than a scythe. However, Buffy gets the award for finding the Guardian and getting a bit of exposition.

Goat of the Week: Caleb

Caleb gets the Goat for letting Buffy get away with the ax and for his performance in the fight at the end of the episode.

Random Commentary

Many people take Dawn's comment about crossbows as an explanation for why Miss Kitty Fantastico has disappeared from the show. However, if Dawn truly quit messing around with crossbows after the incident in question, then it must have taken place at least two years after we last saw Tara's cat. Dawn was hardly careful with the crossbow in "Conversations with Dead People."


When Buffy fled the room where she found the ax, she ran up a stairway right past Caleb. Why did she not plant the blade in his skull on her way out? It would have taken her only a half-second. For that matter, why did Caleb stand in a place where she could have done so?

I can accept the notion that Faith, being a slayer, is made of stronger material than most humans, so it is only mildly implausible that she would have survived the blast. However, the other potentials around the bomb should not merely have been killed, but they should have been mostly vaporized, with little or nothing left of them. Instead, we saw even more potential slayers than we did in the end of "Touched."

Memorable Dialogue

"You're my strength, Xander. You're the reason I made it this far. I trust you with my life." Buffy

"If you die, I'll just bring you back to life. That's what I do." Xander

"If I tried something big, I'd change, and then it's all black hair and veins and lightning bolts. I can hardly do a locator spell without getting dark roots." Willow

"I don't leave crossbows around all willy-nilly, not since that time with Miss Kitty Fantastico." Dawn

"Somebody has to lead. Let's vote for Chao-Ahn. It's harder to lead people into a deathtrap if you don't speak English." Faith

"Me, by myself, all the time and looking at you, everything you have, and, I don't know, jealous. And there I am. Everybody's looking to me, trusting me to lead them, and I've never felt so alone in my entire life." Faith

"There's only supposed to be one [slayer]. Maybe that's why you and I can never get along. We're not supposed to exist together." Faith
"Also, you went evil and were killing people." Buffy

"Thank God we're hot chicks with superpowers." Faith
"Takes the edge off." Buffy

"Do you see this? This may actually help me fight my war. This might be the key to everything, and the reason I'm holding it is because of you, because of the strength that you gave me last night. I am tired of defensiveness and weird mixed signals. You know what, I have Faith for that. Let's just get to the truth here, OK? I don't know how you felt about last night, but I will not..." Buffy
"Terrified." Spike

"It was the best night of my life. If you poke fun at me, you bloody well better use that, because I couldn't bear it. It may not mean much to you, but..." Spike
"I just told you it did." Buffy
"Yeah, I hear you say it, but... I've lived for sodding ever, Buffy. I've done everything. I've done things with you I can't spell, but I've never been close to anyone, least of all you, until last night. All I did was hold you, watch you sleep, and it was the best night of my life. So, yeah, I'm terrified." Spike

"This one has oxygen tanks." Andrew
"They'd only be useful if something big was attacking, and then we could shove one down their throat and blow them up, like Roy Scheider did with that shark in Jaws. What?" Anya
"You are the perfect woman." Anya
"I've often though so." Anya

"How come you're here? I mean, you could just go, right?" Andrew
"Yeah, I did once before." Anya
"Before what?" Andrew
"Well, there was this other apocalypse this one time, and, well, I took off, but this time, I don't know." Anya
"Well, what's different?" Andrew
"Well, I guess I was kind of new to being around humans before, but now I've seen a lot more, gotten to know people, seen what they're capable of. I guess I just realized how amazingly screwed up they all are. I mean, really, really screwed up in a monumental fashion." Anya
"Oh." Andrew
"And they have no purpose that unites them, so they just drift around blundering through life until they die, which they know is coming, yet every single one of them is surprised when it happens to them. They're incapable of thinking about what they want beyond the moment. They kill each other, which is clearly insane, and yet, here's the thing: When it's something that really matters, they fight. I mean, they're lame morons for fighting, but they do. They never quit, so, I guess, I will keep fighting too." Anya

"I'm sorry, what's your name?" Guardian
"Buffy." Buffy
"No, really." Guardian

"Use it wisely, and perhaps you can beat back the rising dark. One way or another, it can only mean an end is truly near." Guardian
[Snap] "I'm sorry. I didn't catch that last part on account of her neck snapping and all. Did she say the end is near or here?" Caleb

Characters in Peril


Departed Characters Remembered

Buffy and the Law

Strictly the Caucasian Persuasion

Unusual Pairings

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 January 13, 2013