Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 2 (1997 - 1998)


Season 2
Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Critics Consensus

Buffy finds its footing in season two, crafting a season that balances supernatural hauntings and high school happenings with ease.



Critic Ratings: 11


Audience Score

User Ratings: 257

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Air date: Sep 15, 1997

Everyone returns from summer vacation with unresolved issues that they're just itching to uncover. Willow (Alyson Hannigan) and Xander (Nicholas Brendon) flirtatiously eat ice cream together, and after Xander licks ice cream off Willow's nose -- perhaps about to kiss her -- they are rudely interrupted by a vampire who wants something other than sweet treats. Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar), who spent the summer with her father, saves them from the attack, the first such attempted biting since the Master's death. The trio's happy reunion is short-lived though, as Buffy is clearly distant, irritable, and wanting to get on with her Slayer training. She is overly mean to Cordelia (Charisma Carpenter), blows off Angel (David Boreanaz), and seductively slow dances with Xander at The Bronze, making everybody uncomfortable. Her bad attitude is exacerbated after having a nightmare in which Giles (Anthony Stewart Head) attacks her while Willow and Xander idly watch. This all karmically leads up to the disappearance of the Master's bones. Giles researches a revivification rite, suspecting that someone might be trying to resurrect the Master. Giles accidentally mistranslates the text and he, Willow, Cordelia, and Jenny (Robia La Morte) are taken by the Anointed One (Andrew J. Ferchland) and his new minion Absalom (Brent Jennings) to complete the ceremony. Buffy comes to save them, and in doing so, cathartically takes a sledgehammer to the Master's bones. This episode is the first in which Angel was listed as an official cast member.

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Air date: Sep 22, 1997

After staking a vampire in the Sunnydale cemetery, Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) and Angel (David Boreanaz) discover that someone has dug up a grave and taken its inhabitant. An icked-out Buffy soon discovers that the corpse was a cheerleader from another school who was killed in a car crash along with two other cheermates. Giles (Anthony Stewart Head) and Xander (Nicholas Brendon) dig up one of the other girls' graves to do a little research, and as they suspect, the body is missing. Angel and Cordelia (Charisma Carpenter) then happen upon the dismembered bodies of all three of the missing pom-pom corpses. Apparently, Chris Epps (Angelo Spizzirri) -- the Science Club's default Dr. Frankenstein -- is attempting to fashion a Cheer-stein of sorts for Daryl (Ingo Neuhaus), his football jock brother. Very sweet, except that his brother is also a monster brought back to life! The gruesome twosome just need one freshly hacked off head to complete Daryl's new patchwork girlfriend -- and who better than Cordelia? Xander assists in saving Cordelia, thereby sowing the seeds for a future romantic entanglement, but misses his chance in this episode by ignoring her gratitude. Giles is also caught trying to compose a pick-up line for Jenny (Robia La Morte). Finally, as a continuing complication from Buffy's dance with Xander in the season opener, Angel admits to being jealous.

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Air date: Sep 29, 1997

Crashing his DeSoto Sportsman into the "Welcome to Sunnydale" sign and proclaiming, "Home, sweet home," viewers meet the vampire named Spike (James Marsters), along with his equally sardonic vamp girlfriend, Drusilla (Juliet Landau) -- a fitting introduction for two vampires who will become among the show's most memorable and reliable villains. Apparently a vampire couple -- a first for the show -- these love bats have a history with Angel (David Boreanaz). The audience learns that Spike (aka "William the Bloody") is a 200-year-old vampire sired by Angel, who earned his name by killing his victims with railroad spikes. He is utterly devoted to "Dru," who is sickly, possibly insane, and subject to psychic visions. At a meeting of vampires with the Anointed One (Andrew J. Ferchland), Spike brags about having killed two slayers in his "life," and manages to slide in some of his soon to-be-characteristic humorous asides. Unable to contain himself until the Festival of St. Vigeous, Spike and some vampires attack Sunnydale High on Parent-Teacher Night; Buffy fights them off with some help from her mom, who repels Spike with an ax. In the aftermath, Principal Snyder (Armin Shimerman) discusses the need to hide the real story from the press -- a hint that he might know something about the supernatural occurrences in Sunnydale.

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Air date: Oct 6, 1997

Xander (Nicholas Brendon) becomes a real mummy's boy in this second season episode. Sunnydale High is sponsoring a foreign exchange student program and Buffy's (Sarah Michelle Gellar) mom has signed up to host a student, Ampata Gutierrez, from South America. Meanwhile, during a field trip to a museum, a student attempts to steal a seal on the mummified remains of an Incan princess, and the seal is accidentally broken in the process. In classic mummy style, the mummy girl awakens and sucks the life out of the student, leaving him in her place. The mummy -- actually a princess sacrificed 500 hundred years earlier -- also happens upon Ampata waiting for Buffy at the bus station and drains his life as well. Buffy, expecting to pick up a boy, is surprised to find a beautiful teenage girl waiting for her. Nobody is more surprised though than Xander, who immediately falls for Ampata -- the mummy. Ampata, also smitten with Xander, must keep draining the life out of people to live. It is interesting to note that Oz's (Seth Green) rock band, Dingoes Ate My Baby, make its first appearance in this episode at a school dance. It is at this dance that Oz first expresses his attraction to Willow (Alyson Hannigan), but still does not talk to her.

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Air date: Oct 13, 1997

As if it weren't enough that frat guys drink too much, this episode of Buffy proves that they also worship the demon Machida. It begins when Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) and Angel (David Boreanaz) have an argument about where their relationship is going. Meanwhile, Cordelia (Charisma Carpenter) gets invited to a frat party at the local college. Hoping to blow off some steam, Buffy decides to go along. Apparently, the frat guys have to sacrifice three teenage girls once a year to their demon lord. (The third girl is a student gone missing from another school earlier in the episode.) After being drugged and chained to a pool table in a musty, fake-wood-paneled basement -- in actuality, a dungeon -- all the girls can do is wait to be rescued. Luckily, Xander (Nicholas Brendon) is jealous over Cordelia's attraction to the frat guy and sneaks after them to keep an eye out. After the girls get loose and revoke Machida's fraternity charter, Buffy and Angel decide to give their love another try and go for coffee.

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Air date: Oct 27, 1997

Everyone is preparing for the night by buying their costumes at Ethan's (Robin Sachs) Costume Shop. Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) wants to dress like an 18th century noblewoman -- the kind Angel (David Boreanaz) had the hots for back in the day. Willow (Alyson Hannigan), meanwhile, covers up as a ghost and Xander (Nicholas Brendon) plays against type as a macho military soldier. The night starts out great until Ethan, a mystic, casts a spell causing everyone to take on the characteristics of their costume. Buffy becomes a helpless weakling, Xander goes all Rambo, and Willow can run through doors -- closed doors. The spell is discovered as Cordelia (Charisma Carpenter), dressed in a cat outfit from another store, does not act like a cat -- at least not any more than usual. Giles (Anthony Stewart Head), an old acquaintance of Ethan's, uncharacteristically beats the spell reversal out of him. This encounter is the first glimpse of Giles' sketchy past with the occult.

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Air date: Nov 3, 1997

A new love and an old friendship are tested in this soap-operatic second-season episode. Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) spies Angel (David Boreanaz) speaking with a mysterious and alluring woman. Unaware that the woman is Drusilla (Juliet Landau) -- Buffy did not meet her in the earlier "School Hard" episode of the series -- Buffy becomes jealous and depressed. But when her old best friend and former crush Ford (Jason Behr) transfers to Sunnydale High, she immediately brightens up and begins hanging out with him, ignoring Angel. Ford soon reveals that he knows that Buffy is the Slayer. Angel, suspicious of Ford's intentions and equally jealous, teams up with Willow (Alyson Hannigan) to check him out. They discover that, instead of transferring schools, Ford is actually a member of a vampire-worshipping club. Ford plans to deliver Buffy to Spike (James Marsters) and become a vampire in return -- a preferred outcome to dying of his brain tumor.

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Air date: Oct 10, 1997

After a tweedy British gentleman gets his neck broken by a demon, Giles (Anthony Stewart Head) reveals that he knows the man as Philip Henry (Stuart McLean), an old friend who has a tattoo oddly identical to one on Giles' arm. Soon after, Philip awakens from death, possessed by the demon that killed him, and leaves the morgue. Meanwhile, Giles descends into a state of brooding drunkenness and misses a meeting with Buffy. She discovers Ethan Rayne (Robin Sachs) sneaking about the library, and he informs her about the Mark of Eyghon -- the tattoo on Giles' arm. A reluctant Giles soon reveals that as a young man he rebelled against his Watcher duties and formed a circle with five friends, including Ethan, to dabble in the occult. They summoned the demon Eyghon, who then killed one of them. Moving from victim to victim to stay alive, Eyghon is now attempting to kill everyone bearing his mark. Giles' relationship with Jenny (Robia La Morte) is also endangered as she becomes possessed by Eyghon.

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Air date: Nov 17, 1997

Horror of horrors -- it's career week at Sunnydale High! While everyone else is excited about planning their future, Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) is simply reminded that, as a Slayer, her future is predetermined. Angel (David Boreanaz) tries to cheer her up by taking her to a skating rink. They barely get in some cheer-up necking when Buffy is attacked by a rough Hell's Angels type of guy. A member of the Order of Taraka -- supernatural assassins -- he was apparently sent to kill Buffy by Spike (James Marsters). Meanwhile, Spike is attempting to cure Drusilla (Juliet Landau) of her sickness with the du Lac manuscript, an ancient text he stole from Giles (Anthony Stewart Head). Angel is attempting to find out what is going on with Spike, when a mysterious woman attacks him and locks him up in a cage. Buffy, hidden from the Order of Taraka in Angel's apartment, is also attacked by the woman, who introduces herself as Kendra, the Vampire Slayer, (Bianca Lawson). Also, Willow (Alyson Hannigan) and Oz (Seth Green) finally meet, but in a less romantic fashion than hoped, as they are both being wooed by a computer mega-corporation out of Seattle.

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Air date: Nov 24, 1997

Confused about how there could be another Slayer, Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) figures out that when she briefly died (see "Prophecy Girl") -- Kendra was activated as Slayer. Buffy is jealous at first of Kendra's dedication to her duties, but soon discovers that Kendra really doesn't care about helping people as much as she does. Meanwhile, Angel (David Boreanaz) is rescued from his cage by Willy the Bartender (Saverio Guerra) only to be handed over to Spike (James Marsters). Apparently, Spike needs Drusilla's (Juliet Landau) sire -- Angel -- to complete the ritual to restore Drusilla's health. Realizing this, Kendra and Buffy beat the location of the ritual out of Willy. They manage to end the ceremony before Angel is dead, but not before all of Drusilla's powers have been restored. Spike is injured in the fight, and subsequently the couple switches roles, with Drusilla having to care for Spike. This episode marks the actual beginning of Xander (Nicholas Brendon) and Cordelia's (Charisma Carpenter) relationship, as they argue, and then kiss, while trapped in a basement.

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 2 Photos

Tv Season Info

Series 2 of the sci-fi series where a cheerleader is chosen to battle the forces of evil as she weathers the storms of young adulthood.

News & Interviews for Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 2

Critic Reviews for Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 2

All Critics (11) | Top Critics (5)

As always, this "Buffy" works so well because, in addition to its primary supernatural plots, it treats high school as a horror flick all its own.

Nov 17, 2017 | Rating: 3.5/5 | Full Review…

Its second season has so far been fabulous -- even funnier and scarier than the first.

Nov 17, 2017 | Rating: A- | Full Review…

It's where the show fully hits its stride and shows its storytelling chops for the first time.

Nov 21, 2017 | Full Review…

Season two is where Buffy best balances Buffy's save-the-world destiny and just-fit-in daydreams without letting her descend into pouty self-pity.

Nov 21, 2017 | Full Review…

Plot-wise and structure-wise, "Becoming" is a marvel, weaving together all of the season's major threads and seamlessly introducing new ones into a concluding chapter as assured and well-realized as any in TV history.

Nov 17, 2017 | Full Review…

After a solid but patchy first season, it rounds off those rough edges to fully become the show it promised.

Nov 22, 2017 | Full Review…

Season two managed to build on and continue all the character development from season one, more fully fleshing out characters like Xander, Willow and Giles while still keeping the focus squarely on Buffy and her personal journey.

Nov 22, 2017 | Full Review…

Season two is the quintessential season of Buffy.

Nov 22, 2017 | Full Review…

This season had some fairly stupid monster-of-the-week episodes. But the overall arc, especially the way it zigs when you think it will zag is awesome.

Nov 22, 2017 | Full Review…

The show finally starts to find a groove, begins to get comfortable in its own skin.

Nov 21, 2017 | Rating: 8/10 | Full Review…

I'm on the fence about how they defeated the demon. Forcing a transfer was a smart plan and an interesting twist to incorporate Angel into the storyline. However, it wasn't the most exciting climax.

Nov 17, 2017 | Rating: 2.9/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 2

  • Aug 31, 2020
    Best season of the greatest TV Show!! A massive step up from season 1! Worth sticking around if you are thinking of quitting
  • Jul 29, 2020
    Season 2 is much better than Season 1. There's much more character development, and, where Season 1 consisted of an endless stream of fights, Season 2 features more interesting elements of the characters lives.
  • Dec 22, 2019
    Best big-bad in the show
  • Oct 12, 2019
    Season 2 of Buffy is the most intense, dramatic, and satisfying season in the series. The only issue with this season is its own lack of cohesion. Episode 13, "Surprise," offers a dramatic and satisfying turn in the series. The issue with this is that certain episodes after the turn do not fit the overall tone of the second half. Episodes like "Go Fish" offer nothing to the overarching storyline and are largely considered filler episodes. Issues aside, when this season shines, it shines bright and makes for excellent television. The season finale "Becoming" is one of the best episodes of the series and possibly one of the best written episodes in television history.
  • Oct 02, 2019
    Buffy sleeps with Angel and he loses his soul. The shit hits the fan and some supporting characters don't make it to season 3.
  • Mar 27, 2019
    This rating is for the original TV series, not the HD remaster. Try to see the original version if you can, they messed with the artistic integrity of the original by messing up all the color screening in the remaster which makes night time look like day, the actors look like plastic, etc. Buffy the Vampire Slayer started off as a campy and cheesy show comedy show but quickly developed into a show with great drama in it and quickly became one of my favourite shows as I watched it over the seasons. It never takes itself too seriously, sometimes poking fun at itself, yet it delivered a surprising amount of character development and drama for a show that started as a silly premise based on the original movie (the original movie was pretty boring, the show is way better)..
  • Mar 21, 2019
    Season 2 of Buffy The Vampire Slayer is one of the highest points for this cult classic. The metaphors about the dangers of puppy love and unsafe sex can feel shoe-horned in during One-Off episodes, but the overarching Big Bad plot for season two was played out wonderfully.
  • Aug 11, 2018
    One of the best TV shows for Sci-Fi! Can’t wait for new show!
  • Dec 22, 2017
    i liked it from the beginnig, but the second season made me love it.
  • Oct 28, 2017
    one of the best tv shows of all time

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