"Buffy the Vampire Slayer" As You Were (TV Episode 2002) Poster

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My least favorite Buffy episode
katierose2954 September 2006
Warning: Spoilers
I hate this episode. I love BTVS as much as anybody, but this episode makes me crazy. It's one thing for season six to make me feel bad for the characters. Or to have empathy for their problems. But "As You Were" has me feeling flat out contempt for Buffy. I blame Riley. I've never liked the guy and when he started messing around with those vampire "hookers" back in season five he pretty much used up any latent "hero" potential he might have had. He deserved to have another "Yoko Factor" style beat down. Seeing him so happy now, while Buffy mopes around the Doublemeat Palace, makes him seem like an even bigger jerk and it makes her seem weak and whiny. I guess I'm suppose to be reminded of Buffy's life before she died in "The Gift" and feel like she was better off last year. All I really get out of this episode, though, is an even deeper dislike of Riley and a BIG desire to tell Buffy to just grow-up. I can't be objective, but I recommend that you skip this episode.

Basically, this episode revolves Riley returning to Sunnydale. His life is now perfect, complete with a perfect commando wife, Sam. Buffy is jealous and embarrassed by her life. Riley need Buffy to help him track some demon. Its eggs are super dangerous and being sold on the black market. Buffy accidentally kills the demon before it can lead them back its eggs and they have to search Sunnydale for them. Buffy winds up at Spike's tomb, looking for companionship and comfort. They sleep together. Soon afterwords, Riley walks and find them. He also announces that Spike is the one who has the demon eggs. Buffy doesn't believe it at first, but then they find the egg in Spike's bedroom. As the eggs start to hatch, they have to blow them up. Riley tells Buffy that he'll always have a special place for her in his heart. He and Sam leave town. Buffy tells Spike that she can't see him anymore. That she's been using him and it's wrong. Then she walks away.

There are a few cute moments in this episode. I like Willow making fun of Anya and Xander's wedding planning misery at the Bronze. And I think it's interesting that Buffy called Spike "William" when she broke up with him. Like she was saying "good-bye" to the human part of him trapped inside the soulless vampire. The part of him that she knows really loves her. Finally, it is sort of funny when Riley walks in on Buffy and Spike naked together. Spike's smug smirk in Riley's direction just makes me grin.

I have a lot of problems with this episode, but one of my main complaints is the way everyone treats Riley. Watching him be confident and successful, while the Scoobies are falling apart is just... Annoying. Why do I want to feel embarrassed for the characters who I love? Xander and Anya are pathetically grateful for Riley and Sams' wedding advice. Willow needs Sam's validation before she can feel good about her recovery. And Buffy is just pitiful as she gazes up at Riley and apologizes to him. Why is BUFFY the one apologizing for their break up? It was Riley who cheated. It really bugs me.

Plus, there's flat out NO WAY Spike came up with a plan to sell demon eggs to foreign governments. I love Spike. He's my favorite character. And I think Buffy's underestimating him when she says that he's "incompetant," because he does come up with some pretty clever ideas. But, am I really suppose to believe that Spike-- who couldn't even weigh down a body in "Seeing Red"-- has somehow hooked up with covert officials from some foreign power, smuggled demon eggs into Sunnydale, and plans to sell them to the highest bidder? SPIKE?!?! Come on! When and how did he do this? Does he have some knowledge of international politics that's never been mentioned before? Some underworld/supernatural connections who don't hate him? Because, he's still a vampire, which has him on the outs with humans and he fights with Buffy, which has the demon world out for his blood. And, even more importantly, WHY would he do this? He's too impatient, easily bored and direct to plot out a global money-making scheme. He steals everything that he needs. He lives in a graveyard and wears the same clothes all the time. I might've accepted that he was planning to give the money to Buffy, but they don't even give me that! The whole thing is completely out of character for Spike. For the sake of argument, though, lets say he DID somehow think up this grandiose plot. Would he really use the name "The Doctor" after he was pushed off Glory's tower by "Doc" last season? Spike agonized over his failure in "The Gift." Why would he adopt the name of the man who beat him and, indirectly, caused Buffy to die? Also, if he came up with this plan, wouldn't he know something about the product? Spike is the one character on the show (Well, besides Anya) who can always identify demons and their habits. He can speak demon languages, and can rattle off all the names of the demons the Scoobies encounter, and prides himself on being up-to-date on all things evil. But he somehow didn't know that those stupid eggs needed to be frozen? Nope. I'm not buying it. I can certainly see Spike coming up with an evil plan. Even, figuring out how to deactivate the chip and attacking someone. But, I'm not accepting that he concocted that convoluted demon egg smuggling scheme.

My favorite part of the episode: Willow cheerily exchanging e-mail addresses with Riley's wife. Then muttering, "What a b*tch" when Sam leaves.
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I disagree with the previous comments
realksagnostic14 January 2007
Warning: Spoilers
I am not a fan of this season, and I can't say I loved it but I did like it.

First of all, I have to shake my head at all the Riley hating that seems to go on from so many Buffy fans. Riley was the boyfriend that any father would want for his daughter, if his daughter was a super hero. The break-up between Buffy and Riley was inevitable, precisely for the reason Riley said in season 5. He loved her, but she didn't love him. She may have loved what he represented, sort of having it all, but she didn't love him.

I LIKED the fact that Riley was able to come back having it pretty much together. Riley was a mess when he left because he really didn't fit in at Sunnydale. His wife was a wonderful character, the sort of woman everyone wanted to hate for getting him when Buffy couldn't, but then she was so nice, and so perfect for him. The contrast between the Finns and the scoobies was intentional, I think. Riley and Sam were a mirror to which Buffy and the gang could see their own dysfunction at this point, which I think was the point of the episode.

Best part of the show? Xander's reference to Nick and Nora Fury, two pop culture references in one line.
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The return of Riley
Joxerlives1 May 2012
Warning: Spoilers
The Good; I never really liked Riley when he was a regular but in small doses I find him much more agreeable (and indeed feel the same way for Connor on Angel)

The Bad; One thing that always shakes me about this ep is that Riley's wife Sam looks so much like Warren's ex Katrina. Also rather a spoiler when Marc Blucas' name appears in the opening credits. Have a look at the scene where the demon attacks on Main Street Sunnydale, the couple sitting at the coffee shop don't react at all. Since when does Sunnydale have this huge dam just outside it? Why do Riley and Buffy have to dump most of their weapons to go down on the line together, can't they just go down one at a time?

Best line; Buffy (staring shocked at Riley);"Were you always this tall?" (yes which is one of the reasons he and petite Buffy were so ridiculous as a couple)

Women good/men bad; Riley says he is in command of Sam. She says 'He wishes'. Buffy says she's not defined by who's she with, the beginning of her cookie dough philosophy.

Kinky dinky; Riley walks in on Buffy and Spike. Buffy changes in front of him but he doesn't look (seen it all before?). Buffy and Spike against the tree right in the open outside the Summer's house. Some very risqué comments about 'Letting you in' and 'Come outside' that could be open to interpretation. But Buffy's 'He's not getting any gentler' remark gives a different aspect to all this, it seems almost joyless for her. According to Spike he and Buffy have sex for five hours straight but this is the last time they ever will.

Captain Subtext; Xander is starting to dream of flower bouquets. Riley comments that he's seen enough of Spike's 'dead body' for one night. Willow comments how as a little girl she used to dream about marrying Xander but now seems glad to have ducked the bullet. After the events of 'Older and Farther Away' Buffy and Dawn seem much closer, getting on better, Dawn happy to go to school and kissing an ecstatic Buffy before she leaves. Spike seems to revel in flashing his nakedness in front of Riley, prompting him to comment that 'I've seen enough of your dead body for one evening'. Anya comments that if Xander is such a big fan of Riley he should just marry him. Buffy says she loves Riley's wife too. Once again Buffy says of guns "These are never useful" foreshadowing the end of the season.

Guantanamo Bay; Riley's glad to be back in Sunnydale where he knows who to beat for information. Spike objects to Riley's search of his crypt as unconstitutional.

Kills: one vamp and a dozen demons for Buffy. Weirdly the vamp wears a peace symbol on his jacket. Buffy: 104 vamps, 55 demons, 6 monsters, 3 humans, 1 werewolf, 1 spirit warrior & a robot Giles: 8 vamps, 2 demon, 1 human, 1 god. Cordy: 3 vamps, a demon Will: 6 vamps + 3 demons +1 fawn. Angel: 3 vamps, 1 demon, 1 human Oz: 3 vamps, 1 zombie Faith: 16 vamps, 5 demons, 3 humans Xander: 6 vamps, 2 zombies, 1 a demon, Anya: 1 vamp and 1 a demon Riley; 18 vamps + 7 demons Spike; 8 vamps and 4 demons Buffybot; 2 vamps Tara; 1 demon Dawn; 1 vamp

Scoobies shot: Buffy uses Riley's shotgun and tranquiliser gun but can't hit anything with either. She makes better use of his belt of grenades. Giles: 2 Angel: 3 Oz: 4 Riley; 1

Spike; good or bad? Spike is dealing in demon eggs, evil as they come. This seems to open Buffy's eyes to his true nature although she still won't let Riley kill him.

Questions and observations; Obvious allusions to Aliens and all the better for them, Angel;TS will do something very similar in season 5 (also a series with a strong female heroine until Alien3 ruined the series). Poor Buffy, you feel so sorry for her that she get's rejected for UCSD (but surely she wouldn't have the money to go anyway?). Nice to give Riley some closure after the strained nature of his departure in 'Into the Woods'. Riley comments that Dawn has grown one and a half feet, well probably just half that. Note Riley asks if Dawn wants to leave due to the gory details but Buffy now lets her stay for the grown up stuff. Check out Willow's expression at Sam's 'disposable cameras' idea.

What book is Spike reading when Buffy comes into his crypt? It's a very Angel like touch. Riley says that Buffy is the first woman he ever loved and the strongest he knows (better not tell the missus that!). Buffy's final goodbye to Spike is very emotional, especially when she calls him William, that means more than ALL the sex in the world between them.

Marks out of 10; 8/10
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Old loves
Realrockerhalloween5 October 2016
Warning: Spoilers
This lightens up the mood as Riley returns back to town having joined the initiative again. Not the only changes as he has a scar and brings with him a wife. Buffy is finally happy after months of wallowing in pity as his wife talks about how important their relationship was in his life even though it ended badly. It builds up her pride to know his heart was broken for a long time until they got together. Not only that Buffy gets back into the swing of the routine working along side him and feeling energized to take out a swarm of demons.

Now the only part that seems contrived is Spike being known as the doctor and housing demon eggs. This was the guy who fought side by side with the scoobies for months to defeat evil and now he's aiding it. Also I found it petty that he rubs his relationship in Riley's face and even tries to put him down for losing out. I find it bigger of Riley to dismiss it nor out his ex down and even say she was his first love showing why the vampire without a soul isn't meant for her.
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The One Where Riley Returns...
taylorkingston3 June 2015
Warning: Spoilers
I enjoy this episode. I love seeing Riley come back to find out that Buffy and Spike have been hooking up. It's so funny.

In this episode, Buffy's ex-boyfriend, Riley, returns to Sunnydale in need of Buffy's help. He needs to find a person who is smuggling dangerous demon eggs. We discover that Riley is now married and his wife, Sam, is actually very likable. After finding this out, Buffy goes to Spike in need of some release, and then Riley finds them in bed together. It turns out that Spike is the demon who has the eggs, although he says he's only holding them for a friend. After Riley leaves, Buffy breaks up with Spike for good.

Last appearance of: Riley Finn.

Best part of the episode: Riley's face when he sees Buffy and Spike in bed together.

Worst part of the episode: When Buffy breaks up with Spike.

Overall, I give this episode a 9 out of 10, which in my ratings book is: Amazing.
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I'll have MY eggs sunny side up, please
skay_baltimore4 August 2010
Warning: Spoilers
The Double Meat Palace claims another victim -- or saves the day -- your choice. The vampire in the graveyard who decides NOT to bite Buffy because she stinks from having worked at the DMP? Funny stuff!!!

Some really UNfunny stuff? 1.) Buffy, the 21 year old vampire slayer, giggling about Riley's "James Bond stuff", when he's in the middle of tracking demons -- something you'd THINK she would take a little more seriously. 2.) Buffy, to Spike: "Tell me you love me. Tell me you want me." (Now let me use you because I'm so insecure about Riley being back and being married to Sam.) But then again...she's Buffy.

Riley returns to Sunnydale with his beautiful wife, Sam, in order to fight demons and capture demon eggs. It causes Buffy to confront some things about herself that she constantly runs from. The problem is...when it comes to the end, and the big climax (no...not that kind of climax)...she runs again. As she's giving her ice queen speech to Spike about how she can't love him -- she leaves out the main part -- the WHY part. She can't love him because she can't ALLOW herself to love him -- not because he she doesn't REALLY love him. She remains, hers truly, Buffy.

Oh, and as a total aside...does Buffy wear THE BUTT UGLIEST COATS that have ever been made, or what?!!!
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It is over for Buffy and Spike
radonjicsandra22 February 2009
Warning: Spoilers
In this episode I fill sorry for Spike.I really don't know why he still loves Buffy when she is hiding there relationship from everybody and she treat's him like dirt!!!Don't get me wrong,I love the show with all my heart,I love Buffy but I can not except the fact that Spike is making her miserable.She trusted him with her sister in the end of season five,she told him everything about her experience with death and she used him to fill something.Maybe she felt more then pure lust.I think she started to grow stronger filling's for Spike and that scared her to death.That is why she broke up with him and that is why I do not fill sorry for her when Spike tried what he tried in "Seeing red".I'm not happy that he tried to rape her,but I think that that was her's fault.And I do not like Riley at all!!!!
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Buffy Gets Caught
Samuel-Shovel18 July 2018
Warning: Spoilers
In "As You Were", Riley returns to town tracking a dangerous demon. The demon is in search of her eggs that are soon to be hatched. Someone in Sunnyvale calling himself "the Doctor" is planning on selling said eggs for a good price. Buffy kills the demon before they can locate the eggs.

Riley comes back a changed man; he seems happier and now has a demon-fighting wife. This leads Buffy into a fit of depression and straight into the arms of Spike for some affection. But, after doing do some recon around time, Riley learns that it's Spike attempting to sell the eggs on the black market. Riley shows up and finds the two in bed together. Riley and Buffy find the eggs and kill them. Now clear-eyed, Buffy breaks up with Spike, this time for good.

This wasn't a great episode but I'm surprised just how much hate it's received in prior reviews. There are a few odd/bad things in the script. Riley failing to tell Buffy that they aren't trying to kill the demon is highly convenient. This leads to Riley finding Buffy and Spike in bed together later. That's obviously the purpose of this but it's very sweaty. A trained soldier like Riley would never just forget something like that.

And then there's Spike's great scheme of selling off these eggs. Some argue that he's too stupid to do this but I disagree. He's come up with some complex ideas in the past but they always don't work out... just like this one. It's classic Spike that he doesn't even think to keep the eggs cold to keep them from hatching. He's no mastermind... but he tries to be.

While not a great episode, it seems to be significant. If this really is the end of the Buffy/Spike romance it never really went anywhere. Maybe there will be a second chapter but this sort of felt like a complete waste of time. All it does is reinforce Buffy's kink for the undead that's tied to her slaying. What a strange subplot...
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