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review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-03-10 20:39
#BuffySlays20: My Favorite Buffy Episodes that You Won't Find on Most Lists on the 20th Anniversary of the Show!

 

 

 

 

Everything about Buffy is amazing, except for maybe the outfits as this Twitter account, Bad Buffy Outfits will tell you. Anyway, #BuffySlays20 and every blog/website will be listing the top ten episodes/plot points etc from the series. On most of them you will find mentions of amazing episodes, such as this one, which according to io9:

 

Hush” was nominated for a writing Emmy, even though it only has 17 minutes of dialogue. That’s all you need to know to understand how groundbreaking this season four episode was. The Gentlemen, some of the show’s creepiest villains, steal everyone’s voices so they can silently steal some hearts, and the Scoobies struggle to express their feelings to each other in the wake of losing something as integral as human communication. A bold and risky episode of TV, the episode ends up saying so much with so little.

 

and The Body, which according to News.com.au:

 

“Mummy?” All it took was one word and all of our hearts broke. Buffy finding her mother’s dead body sprawled on the couch, struck down by an all-too-human disease and not anything supernatural was one of the most wrenching Buffy moments. The sequence that followed of her wandering through the house in a daze, with no score and an almost saturated aesthetic brought home the completely uncomfortable truth of human death.

 

Of course, how can we forget the scene where Buffy kills Angelous in Season 2, which WhatCulture says is one of the iconic moments from the show! The kiss, the music playing in the background (yes, it is one of the ringtones on my phone), it was all heartbreaking!

 

All these scenes are undoubtedly amazing but the scenes that stayed with me also include those you won't find on such lists. Here are a few of them:

 

Killed By Death was one of the scariest episodes for me. It doesn't add to the overall theme of the show and the monster seems like a ripoff of on-screen villains, which it was, and yet I liked how it left me...too scared to go to sleep! 

 

Xander: You don't know how to kill this thing.

Buffy: I thought I might try violence.

Xander: Solid call.

 

 

Halloween (Second Season) is another favorite because of so many reasons. Willow was crushing on Xander and felt invisible like the ghost she dressed up as. Xander went as a soldier and the experience that he gains in this episode filters down to us in the future ones. We also get to see what Giles was like before he became so prim & proper.

 

Willow: Poor Xander. Boys are so fragile. Speaking of, how was your date last night?

Buffy: Misfire. I was late due to unscheduled slayage. Showed up looking trashed.

Willow: Was he mad?

Buffy: Actually, he was pretty unmad. Which probably had something to do with the fact that Cordelia was drooling in his cappuccino.

Willow: Oh, Buffy. Angel would never fall for her act.

Buffy: You mean that 'actually showing up, wearing a stunning outfit, embracing personal hygiene' act?

 

 

Helpless is heartbreakingly sad and damn scary! The vampire that Buffy has to fight, Gile's betrayal, the Watchers' Council politics...all of it made one helluva episode. And then there was this:

 

Angel: I saw you before you became the Slayer.

Buffy: What?

Angel: I watched you, and I saw you called. It was a bright afternoon out in front of your school. You walked down the steps... and... and I loved you.

Buffy: Why?

Angel: 'Cause I could see your heart. You held it before you for everyone to see. And I worried that it would be bruised or torn. And more than anything in my life, I wanted to keep it safe... to warm it with my own.

Buffy: That's beautiful. Or taken literally, incredibly gross.

Angel: I was just thinking that, too.

 

 
I don't remember much about Homecoming but what I do remember is that Buffy looked amazing when she dressed up for the event.
 
 
I also remember that I fell in love with Oz when he said:

Oz: As Willow goes, so goes my nation.

Band Candy is memorable for me because I can still see Giles & Joyce behaving like two teenagers and smooching in front of Buffy. Funny as heck! I realized how detail-oriented the show's creators must be when I came across this piece of trivia:

 

The Cream song that Giles and Joyce listen to is played after Joyce's funeral. Giles listens to it in the season five episode "Forever".
 
 
Pangs is another favorite because Angel comes back to visit in this episode. I loved everything about the brief return! It is also funny because of what happens to Spike and Xander.
 

Spike: A bear! You made a bear!

Buffy: I didn't mean to.

Spike: Undo it! Undo it!

 

Read other quotes here because the humor in this episode was ah-mazing!

 
As you watch the episode, you try to hate the entity responsible for the sickness and yet can't...
 
I can't leave Buffy vs. Dracula off this list for the same reason: humor! Of course, Xander would be the Count's choice for a Reinfeld.
 

Xander: Where is he? Where's the creep that turned me into a spider-eating man-bitch?

Buffy: He's gone.

Xander: Damnit. You know what? I'm sick of this crap. I'm sick of being the guy who eats insects and gets the funny syphilis. As of this moment, it's over. I'm finished being everybody's butt-monkey.

Buffy: Check. No more butt-monkey.

 

 
 
Some quips that you'll love:
 
 
Forever makes the list, as well. I loved how Dawn couldn't think ahead of the fact that she wanted her mom back. I also loved how Buffy tried to dissuade her at first and then couldn't help herself. While we never see the Joyce they raised, this was one scary episode for me!
 
 
 
 
Here are some more scary Buffy moments:
 

Chosen is both the last episode of the series and on my list. What comes to mind immediately when I think about it is the conversation between Angel & Buffy. It goes something like this but is way funnier to watch. It is also the episode where Anya, one of my most favorite characters on the show, dies trying to save Andrew.
 
 
 
IMDB lists this on the trivia page for this episode and I thought I'd share it before I ended this post:
Buffy's final line in the show is "Spike." Anya's is "Bunnies."

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review 2016-07-05 23:55
Urban Fantasy With Norse Gods YES !
Arctic Dawn - Karissa Laurel

Book Two in the Norse Chronicles series

Spoiler free review

 

I loved book one, it was the perfect mix of fantasy, action, suspense, with a tease of romance and great writing. Book two, took all that was generated in the first book and intensified it. I did not want it to stop, I dreaded the ending which came too soon. My mind carried the story into my dreams, working out some of the problems for the characters.

The story is written with such beautiful imagery, it's poetic at times. The words twisted to squeeze every emotion out of the scenes. I found myself re-reading lines just to hear them again.

 

Solina, she is a woman I can admire. She is faced with two or more hot hunky male gods and she doesn't jump on them ripping their clothes off. How she can hold back is a wonder to me. This is a character that thinks things through. It irritated the crunch off my toast a few times but I enjoyed the story more without the typical romantic tangle in the middle of a life or death brawl. This girl takes her saving the world job seriously. She'll think about the body slamming mojo after the job is done. Thank the gods for a thinking female main character.

There is so much happening in this book, when it rains it pours even for Norse gods.

Thorin, son of Thor, ancient and yet young in this human world develops into a more relatable god man. His history, his beliefs and his choices. He is a god, powerful, ancient, and sometimes an idiot. Solina, after a long time away must come out of hiding to search for her friend Skyla and track down a very dangerous weapon. her powers are still in the learning phase but she tries and never gives up. Skyla, the tough as nails Marine finds herself at a well of information, Val does a lot of disappearing, and touching. Helen, well her wicked ways continue.  There are emotional distractions on top of the world saving must do know actions that churn and drive this reader and the characters nuts. We all needed a spa day after that ending.

 

Let's talk about the ending. Naughty Ms. Laurel, you tease ! Yes, there was a terrific cliffhanger. Now I must hang and swing over the sharp edge till book three is released. That was brutal of you and I thank you for it. 

 

I was lucky enough to be given an advanced reading copy for my reading pleasure and review.

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review 2016-03-04 11:15
My Hero Academia Vol 1
My Hero Academia, Vol. 1 - Kohei Horikoshi,Caleb D. Cook

This. This was exactly what I needed last year. I couldn't seem to read anything, so anime was my staple. But I kept hearing everyone sing the praises of this new series, so I had to give it try. Superheroes in manga/anime seems to be a thing now. Not too long ago, Tiger and Bunny came out. Now, One-Punch Man and My Hero Academia have come out roughly at the same time. I've only read the last but if the others are as good as this one, I may finally jump on the Superhero bandwagon!

 

Our hero, Izuku Midoriya, lives in a world where 80% of the population has a "quirk," a superhero ability that can range from water, gigantism, explosions, and even stranger ones. With so many people holding powerful abilities, the police forces were unable to handle them and so some rose up to take the mantle of hero and keep the peace. The best known hero, All Might, is Midoriya's personal hero as well. He wants to save people with a smile just as All Might does. There's just one problem. Midoriya is one of the rare 20% born quirkless. How can someone without powers ever be a hero?

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review 2016-02-16 04:21
An Unmarked Grave (Bess Crawford # 4) [Audiobook]
An Unmarked Grave: A Bess Crawford Mystery, Book 4 - Charles Todd,Rosalyn Landor,HarperAudio

I must admit that this is one of my favorite books of this series. The mystery isn't...there isn't one really. Oh, they look everywhere for the person who killed two people at the first and who keeps cleaning up anyone who's seen them, including Bess. But there aren't really clues to follow for the reader; Bess and others merely chase after likely candidates.

 

So why do I like this book so much?

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review 2016-01-30 20:54
The Snow Globe by Jenna Nelson
The Snow Globe - Jenna Nelson

*NA Fantasy*

 

This book begins in 1875 London, but... like... in an 1875 London from a parallel dimension-one where there's magic and no one blinks twice kind of 1875 London.  The heroine, Sondrine, works for her aunt's curio/apothecary shop and is one day visited by a mysterious stranger wanting to trade an antique for herbs.  The antique in question is a snow globe which will impact her future and catapult her into a secret world she never knew existed.  Her journey is no accident though as the mysterious stranger is actually a bounty hunter sent by the king.  Turns out, Sondrine has been chosen to squash Winterhaven's evil queen.

 

I loved this book!  It was full of adventure and strong characters.  The plot was strong and I didn't always predict what was going to happen.  The writing was vivid and I loved the world(s) Nelson created.  I can't wait to see how Sondrine and Shán's relationship evolves in the next book.  =) 

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