Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997–2003)
7 user 2 critic

Listening to Fear 

As Joyce's sickness makes her begin doing odd things, a demon emerges from a meteorite and begins killing the mentally ill.


David Solomon


Joss Whedon (created by), Rebecca Kirshner (as Rebecca Rand Kirshner)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Sarah Michelle Gellar ... Buffy Summers
Nicholas Brendon ... Xander Harris
Alyson Hannigan ... Willow Rosenberg
Marc Blucas ... Riley Finn
Emma Caulfield Ford ... Anya (as Emma Caulfield)
Michelle Trachtenberg ... Dawn Summers
James Marsters ... Spike
Anthony Head ... Rupert Giles (as Anthony Stewart Head)
Charlie Weber ... Ben
Nick Chinlund ... Major Ellis
Kevin Weisman ... Dreg
Randy Thompson ... Dr. Kriegel
Amber Benson ... Tara Maclay
Kristine Sutherland ... Joyce Summers
Paul Hayes ... Older Nightwatchman


While Buffy and Dawn stay with Joyce in the hospital, Giles, Willow and Xander patrol the cemetery chasing vampires. Later, while watching the stars, Tara and Willow see a meteor crashing nearby Sunnydale. The Scooby group realizes that a demon called Queller has just landed on Earth. Joyce returns home since her surgery will occur only two days after, and the Queller arrives in the hospital attacking crazy people. Due to the compression of the tumor to her brain, Joyce acts strange having hallucinations, but she also sees the truth about Dawn and makes Buffy promise that she will take care of Dawn if she dies in the surgery. When the Queller arrives at Joyce's home chasing her, Buffy fights with it to save Joyce and Dawn. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Release Date:

28 November 2000 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


[All trivia items for this title are spoilers.] See more »


(at around 57 mins) Willow begins to say "Uh guys, I've got some stuff" but her mouth is closed for the first couple of seconds. See more »


[Visiting Joyce Summers in the hospital, Dawn helps herself to the Jello on Joyce's lunch tray]
Dawn Summers: It's good and wiggly. This girl at school told me that gelatin is made from ground-up cows' feet, and that if you eat Jello there's some cows out limping with no feet.
[Joyce and Buffy grimace]
Dawn Summers: But I told her I'm sure they kill 'em before they take off their feet.
[Apprehension dawns]
Dawn Summers: Right?
Buffy: [to Joyce] You're the one who insisted on teaching her to talk.
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Featured in Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Gift (2001) See more »


Buffy the Vampire Slayer Theme
Performed by Nerf Herder
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User Reviews

Who else thought Joyce was hilarious...
28 October 2008 | by JWaveBabeSee all my reviews

...in an inappropriate way when she got really aggressive or angry? Especially Doctor - "Joyce, there's no reason to get upset". J - "I'm sorry I must just think there is because of my BRAIN TUMOR". Sorry, but I couldn't help it...

Anyway the episode was alright. The whole 'thing from outer space' theme was a little unfamiliar. But Xander did have some great lines. And the scene where Buffy breaks down and cries is very moving. Plus Tiny Jewish Santa was priceless.

The Riley storyline isn't very interesting to me. I never thought he was a very good match for Buffy to begin with. So I wasn't disappointed to see him drifting back to old habits.

-- Go west for the black setting sun.

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