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Discussion of 5.22 "The Gift" - Aired 5/22/01 (WB-US)

Buffy Summers

Yataro
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Sineya
#1
Glory has Dawn, and plans to use her blood to open the portal to her home dimension, even though the portal will cause all the hell dimensions to bleed into our own. Buffy, Xander, Willow, Giles, Anya, Tara and Spike go to confront a true Hell God with the knowledge that they may not all survive.
Source: TV.com

Discuss this episode here!
 

Spanky

Sir Spanks-a-lot
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Black Thorn
#2
The series ended for me with this episode; it was grand, epic and heartbreaking, but still left you with a sense of hope and victory. Could have done with a better lizard tongue guy, someone alittle more, worthy, but all-in-all, this was, and is a classic; now cheapened with subsequent seasons.
 
N
Nathan
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#3
I don't think the other seasons cheapened the effect of this episode, I just wish they would have waited longer to bring Buffy back. I know it was like 5 months for them, but it was not even 1 whole episode for us...

I have to say, a lot of the time, Buffy's speeches annoy me. But this one actually made me cry.
 
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#4
Even if I love the season 6&7, The Gift gave me a feeling of closure as a fan. If the serie had ended there, I wouldn't have been sad because the Gift was a beautiful end!
 
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#6
I truly felt this was the series finale (even though I just watched it for the first time, lol) but after seeing the Season 6 premiere... I don't know it just feels strange now.​
 
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#7
I also just watched The Gift for the first time. While it was a beautiful episode and I do understand how people would have been satisfied if the series ended this way, I'm glad I have two more seasons to look forward to. We'll see where it takes us, but I don't think Buffy is done just because she saved the world. As people have said, the Hellmouth is not closed. There is more to do.
 

PassionBecoming

Minuscule Redheaded One
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Sineya
#8
And my S5 re-watch is concluded. I definitely got choked up at the end. I always think it was so well done, from Buffy realizing her gift, the voice over as she dies, and the end shot with her grave.

The fight scenes are phenomenal - I think Buffy and Glory fighting on the tower is one of my favorite fights in the series. Even in desperation and seeming hopelessness, the Scoobies were able to pull together a feasible plan to beat Glory. Yay for more bonding!

Spike had some fantastic moments in this ep - telling Buffy he is willing to die to protect Dawn, "You treat me like a man", his face when he knew he couldn't save Dawn on the tower, the end when he breaks down after Buffy dies.

I feel like this is a great end to this season. Everything was stripped away from Buffy. She lost her sense of right and responsibility. She was shut down. This had to happen to get her to her destiny - The Gift.
 
Taake
Taake
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TheAnnointedOne
TheAnnointedOne
Agree with everything!!!!!
AnthonyCordova
AnthonyCordova
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PassionBecoming

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Sineya
#9
So, I was thinking today about how pivotal Anya's role was in this episode. If not for her, the Scoobies would have had no chance against Glory. She seemed to be the only one really thinking when they were brainstorming. I was wondering if anyone else would have thought about the Dagonsphere or the hammer. Those were pretty big players in the end fight.

Ironic how Anya, the "outsider" is the one who really contributed to this battle.
 
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#10
To begin, I would like to compare The Gift with The Body - these rank as my two favourite episodes. It is interesting that they are opposites of each other in the way they are made and presented; The Body is still, stripped and poignant, The Gift is grand, dramatic, and epic. The Body's lack of music gives it its power, The Gift's perfect musical score does the same. Whilst The Body concentrates on the shock and consequent agony of natural death, The Gift focuses on a big battle to save the world, considered sacrifice, destiny and love. They both, however, in their own way, create pure emotion in the viewer.

The Gift is the perfect season finale - there is constant suspense, tension and excitement and finally heartbreak. I just love it so much. There is so much to write about! I'll start with my favourite scene - Buffy's sacrifice.

Buffy’s Sacrifice

This is a perfect resolution to the questions plaguing Buffy and us from S4's Restless - what exactly a slayer is, their nature and true purpose. We’ve had assessments by Dracula, Spike and even the First Slayer. Dracula insisted that a Slayer’s power is rooted in darkness; The Original Slayer stated that death is Buffy’s gift and Spike insisted in Fool For Love that every slayer has a death wish – a moment when they want it all to stop. We see this at the end of Spiral when Dawn is taken from Buffy, she shuts down and in Weight of the World, where Willow – in Buffy’s mind – is repeatedly taken to the same scene in the magic shop when Buffy admits that for a second she realised that Glory would win and wanted to give up. Spike says in Fool for Love that Buffy’s ties to the world (including specifically her mother and Dawn) prevent Buffy from experiencing this death wish. We have seen such ties severed throughout the season; the death of Joyce and then the taking of Dawn and prospect of her death add further credence to Spike’s assessment.

However, I see The Gift as a kind of rejection of Spike’s contemplation of the Slayer’s nature and their death wish – she overcomes this. She moves onto a stage from that feeling she admits she had in Weight of The World. The Original Slayer and ultimately Buffy do not equate death with this craving for annihilation and resignation that Spike talks about but with something greater - it is about love and sacrifice. Spike calls death Buffy’s “art,” the Original Slayer calls it her “gift” – there is a difference.

Dawn’s insistence that “it has to have the blood” sparks off a chain of flashbacks for Buffy which are perfectly juxtaposed to the present scene and the music. It is an epiphany for her. Spike has said earlier in The Gift that:

“Blood is life... Why do you think we eat it? It's what keeps you going, makes you warm, makes you hard, makes you other than dead. 'Course it's her blood.”

This supposition that blood equals life echoes the scene in Buffy vs Dracula when Dracula offers her some blood to taste, to experience what vampires crave. That stunning scene in Blood Ties about Dawn having Summer’s blood, being just like Buffy’s and finally Buffy’s insistence that Dawn is a part of her, makes her realise her true gift. Death is her gift – for Dawn, for the world. The Slayer’s gift is light, not darkness. It is loving sacrifice, not a primitive kill. As the Original Slayer in Intervention says, “you are full of love, you love with all your soul. It's brighter than the fire... blinding.” When Buffy says “tell Giles I’ve figured it out... and I’m okay” she expresses a deep sense of peace and reconciliation she hasn’t had all season. That scene where she turns and sees the light and clouds in the sky as if forming a set of steps to a higher place is so beautifully done and the music is excellent. Beck's Sacrifice song perfectly complements these themes; it is a deeply moving piece, building up to a crescendo and ends on a peaceful note.

Buffy may be at peace with her decision, but I’m not – I am in tears when I watch it. Dawn’s reaction gets me as Buffy takes that leap. She has just lost her mother and now she looses her sister - I feel so much for her. Buffy's dive into the portal is epic and you can feel her pain as she falls. Then the following scene is so emotional – they all stumble upon her. She is there lying on the ground, eyes closed. Seeing Buffy like that really gets me. Giles’s and Willow's reaction and Spike’s breakdown with Buffy’s speech and Sacrifice playing is pure utter emotion on screen. The camera phasing out to Buffy's grave - with a slight pinch of humour “she saved the world a lot” - and the final fade leaves me with chills every time.

Other Highlights


• I love the flashbacks over the past 99 episodes in the “previously on BtVS” section. In a flash you see the whole history of the show and it leaves you with a sense of something great having been experienced. I love the first scene, with a vampire never having heard of Buffy and the guy she saves stating, “but you're just a girl” – it puts everything into perspective.

• I love Buffy’s devotion to Dawn – throughout the season we see the girls becoming closer, and they are in fact two parts of one whole.

• Anya’s reaction to the toy bunny –

ANYA: And don't frighten me like thaAAAHHHT! G-d! Who would put something like that there, is this supposed to be some kind of sick joke? (pulls out toy bunny) I mean things aren't bad enough? This is an omen!
XANDER: Hey, hey, shhhhh...
ANYA: No no no, it's an omen, it's a higher power trying to tell me through bunnies that we're all gonna die! Oh G-d!

• Spike’s speech to Buffy that he is a “monster” but she treats him like a "man.”

• Buffy’s speech to Giles about her life – it is so touching:

“I sacrificed Angel to save the world. I loved him so much... but I knew. What was right. I don't have that any more. I don't understand. I don't know how to live in this world, if these are the choices, if everything just gets stripped away. I don't see the point. I just wish... I just wish my mom was here."

This is so powerful. It does have undertones of the death-wish in Fool For Love and the “stripped away” recalls Spike’s suggestion that she has things which bind her to the world. However, this quote is before her epiphany on top of the tower.

• Tara pointing to Giles and shouting “you’re a killer!” which prefigures his killing of Ben

• SPIKE: Well, not exactly the St. Crispin's Day speech, was it?
GILES: "We few...we happy few..."
SPIKE: "We band of buggered..."

• Doc- he is just such a great character, so riveting in his evil (plus I loved how Buffy could just push him over the edge so easily!)

• Willow and Tara’s reunion – “I got so lost” and “I will always find you.” Plus that moment when they take each other’s hand to part the crowd from the entrance to the tower is reminiscent of the scene in Hush when their power is stronger holding hands.

• The fight scene between Buffy and Glory; using the troll hammer, Dagon Sphere, Buffybot, Xander’s wrecking ball and then that chase up the tower as Buffy tries to get to Dawn, whilst Glory tries to prevent her – classic scene!!

• The shocking but necessary moment when Giles kills Ben.


What an epic episode!
 
Last edited:
P
paks
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S
strawberryeve
some really great points - love the Anya quote!
Wesley Pryce
Wesley Pryce
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Taake

Bella
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Black Thorn
#11
• Tara pointing to Giles and shouting “you’re a killer!” which prefigures his killing of Ben
Agreed, a great moment. I love things that foreshadow what's to come.

Also a favorite moment of mine, it's small but lovely, is when Willow says she needs courage and Spike offers her his flask. I just love that.
 
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#12
I know it's a sad episode, but it's my favourite. It shows a vunerability to Buffy which we only see a few times in the show, and I like her devotion to her watcher, friends and family.

To me, it is Buffy in an episode, it shows all the great qualities of the characters <3
 
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Sineya
#13
I have a feeling this is going to be a long post! :rolleyes: lol

I wasn't fond of the begining of this episode, I understand that they were showing what had happened from the begining but did they have to make it happen so fast! and make it flash like that! Gave me a head ache, had to look away! :(
I love how Anya tries to help in her own little optimistic way in this episode lol :D
and her little bunny speech in the basement! lol Poor Anya lol :D

ANYA
Oh my god! Who would leave
something like that there, is this
supposed to be some kind of sick joke?

She pulls a stuffed bunny out of a box.

ANYA
Things aren't bad enough... it's an omen!
They were on the TV, there's bunnies
everywhere!


XANDER
Hey, shhhhh ...


ANYA
It's an omen, it's a higher power
trying to tell me through bunnies
that we're all gonna die! Oh, God...

I can't believe how crap the Dagonsphere was! I mean it did nothing! Glory just crushed it!! :rolleyes:
When Willow and Tara are together and they realise Tara is ok, it's such a touching moment! Makes me well up! :)
I loved Xander on the big swingy ball machine thingy! :D Kickin Glorys ass! Oh yeah! lol :D
Doc still creeped me out! :eek: Poor Spike getting thrown off the tower, can't believe he couldn't kick Doc's ass!! :(
Giles killing Ben was creepy! It was different to see Giles' dark side appear again but I believe it was neccesary :cool:
This episode has to be the only one where I actually like Dawn for one moment, which is when she actually decides to sacrifice herself to save everyone! (Which in my opinion she should have, as she wasn't supposed to be tehre anyway!! :rolleyes: )
Buffy's speech to Dawn sets me off, that's when the tears begin!! :(
I loved how they made Buffy running and jumping in slow motion, while having her speak over the top, it made it more epic and sad!!!!! :cry:
Tears, Tears, Tears!!! :cry: lol
 
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Black Thorn
#14
I think the opening scene was very meaningful - Buffy slaying a vampire who doesnt even know who she is yet she's saved the world countless times. I dont know how I feel in this episode. I know he says whats needed to be said but it does beg the question is killing one innocent worth it if it means saving the world. Xander makes a similar suggestion about killing Ben, but no one follows up on it. Anya and Xander's proposal scene was too cute! So was the Buffy and Spike scene. This was a very good season finale.
 

Hale Caesar

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#15
I definitely think the fact that there is a season 6 cheapened this episode. I didn't feel any emotion because I knew none of it mattered, Buffy was going to be back next season. If this had been the series finale, I would like this a lot more
 
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Black Thorn
#16
Just rewatched this episode last night and realised how much I like it. I didn't get sad watching it, because I'm a heartless wench and never cry watching TV, but it's a really well-written, well-acted and well-executed episode. One of my favourite finales, definitely. :)

---------- Post added at 11:24 AM ---------- Previous post was at 11:18 AM ----------

But in watching season 5 I've also realised how much they regressed Anya's character for comedic purposes. I mean, when she was first introduced she functioned perfectly fine, slipping into the facade of a high school student with ease, but then later on she's portrayed as being socially inept and clueless as to human behaviour. Oh well. I understand why they did it, but it just seems inappropriate for a 1000-year-old demon.
 

Wesley Pryce

Angel Investigations
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Black Thorn
#17
I love this episode and its the greatest season finale to Buffy and the greatest ep of BTVS period in my opinion. :) I think and i wish it would have been the series finale,don't get me wrong i LOVE season 6 and am quite fond of a number of episodes in season 7 even,but i just think this was the perfect way to end it. :) Gorgeous,sad,heartbreaking,lovely,emotional and heroic-the perfect ep of BUFFY :)
 

Blaze

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Black Thorn
#18
Such, such a special episode. I still remember watching it for the first time, I had to pick up my jaw from the floor. That final speech by Buffy will always be my favorite passage from the show, it's so filled with emotion, so honest. The whole storyline was just fantastically written. I honestly can't praise this episode enough, the epicness, the happiness, the sadness, all bunched up in the final 10 minutes of the best television you could get. So many favorite moments in this one, including the whole plan, Willow restoring Tara's mind, Spike and Willow crying as they see Buffy's body, Dawn wanting to jump, Buffy not letting her...

As much as I like s6-7 and Chosen, the Gift really was the perfect ending to BtVS. All along throughout the series, I actually thought to myself Buffy will only ever really be over when Buffy dies and is freed from her duties (guess I was wrong about that one), and then the gang could move on with their lives, knowing that they really did change the world, but being now free of the duties to fight evil. To me, even though Buffy died, it was a beautiful ending, still full of hope. And the last frame of Buffy's gravestone for some reason makes me content, my hero is dead, but she really did save the world a lot.
 
Taake
Taake
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AnthonyCordova

Apocalypse Engine
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Sineya
#19
I agree that this would have made a great series finale; but nothing is better than getting more seasons of a show you love. I'm looking forward to seasons 6 and 7.

There were many great quiet little moments. There were many great Spike moments too. Most of the touching moments have already been discussed in this thread; I won't repeat them. But this amusing exchange hasn't been mentioned:

Xander: Hey, I happen to be...
Spike: A glorified bricklayer?
Xander: I'm also a swell bowler.
Anya: Has his own shoes.
Spike: The gods themselves do tremble.

Nice one Spike.

And I applaud Clare Kramer's season-long effort as Glory. She was terrific the entire way.
 
M

mudslides

Guest
#20
Just rewatched this and had managed to forget Giles killed Ben. Eeepp. scary.

Loved Glory, hated Ben. Loved Buffys speech at the end =)

reptile tongue bloke seemed a bit random