Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Season 6, Episode 15
As You Were Riley Buffy 01
Air date February 26, 2002
Written by Douglas Petrie
Directed by Douglas Petrie
Production Code 6ABB15
Episode Guide
"Older and Far Away"
"Hell's Bells"
"Sleep Tight"
Sarah Michelle Gellar Buffy
Nicholas Brendon Xander
Emma Caulfield Anya
Michelle Trachtenberg Dawn
James Marsters Spike
Alyson Hannigan Willow
Special Guest Starring
Marc Blucas Riley
Guest Starring
Ivana Milicevic Sam
Co Starring
Ryan Raddatz Todd
Adam Paul Skanky Vamp
Marilyn Brett Lady
Alice Dinnean Vernon Baby Demon Puppeteer
Mitch Morris Cute Boy

"As You Were" is the fifteenth episode of the sixth season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and is the 115th episode altogether. Written and directed by Douglas Petrie, it originally broadcast on February 26, 2002 on UPN.


Consumed by professional and personal disappointment, Buffy is jolted from ennui by the reappearance of her old beau Riley, who needs her Slayer skills to track down a demon called the Doctor. He also has some startling news to share about his private life. Meanwhile, Anya and Xander struggle to finalize their wedding arrangements.[1]


Buffy is at work, cleaning the grill with her coworker Todd, who talks non-stop about college and then leaves Buffy to finish cleaning alone. On the way home from work, Buffy runs into a vampire, but once he finds out that Buffy was working at Doublemeat Palace and smells like it, he tries to escape and instead is staked by an offended Slayer. Finally home, Buffy finds Spike waiting in front of her house. She knows what he's there for, but with Dawn waiting inside, she refuses to let him follow her into the house. Instead, he persuades her to stay outside with him and they drop to the grass together.

Later, Buffy apologetically presents the not-so-appealing bag of Doublemeat Palace food to Dawn for their dinner. Dawn is trying to explain nicely that she can't stand another meal from the fast food place when Willow arrives to take Dawn to the Bronze. Willow notices Buffy's rough appearance and grass stains on the back of her outfit, but Buffy blames it on work and a battle with a vampire. Tired and a bit depressed, Buffy allows her sister to go, but doesn't join them. At the Bronze, Anya and Xander snack on chips while agonizing over the seating arrangements for the wedding reception and other jobs that need completing before the big event. Dawn and Willow sit and have drinks while discussing Xander and Anya's wedding and Willow's newly changed relationship with Tara. Although the two are far from getting back together, there's an open door on communication. Meanwhile, at home, Buffy works to remove the grass stains from her coat.

The next morning, Buffy wakes up amidst her unfolded laundry to the sound of the garbage truck. She rushes to get the garbage outside in time, but the truck drives away. Dawn prepares to leave for school as Buffy returns inside and finds a letter from UC Sunnydale waiting for her. As her sister leaves, Buffy reads the letter from the assistant dean and finds that her application for re-admission has been rejected because she missed the deadline. At work, Buffy tends to the grill like a depressed robot with life offering her little more than her fast food job. Todd decides to send Buffy up to the counter while he prepares the food. Her first customer though is not someone she expected to see: Riley.

Buffy leaves her position to help Riley. They battle but lose track of the monster on the streets of Sunnydale. Riley and Buffy pursue in his car. They talk of catching up as she changes into more appropriate clothing Riley had brought along. A brief interlude show Xander and Anya having a spat while sitting in traffic. At a dam, Riley and Buffy have further battles and lose the demon yet again. Buffy meets Riley's wife.

Sam, as Riley later introduces as her, quickly jumps into a fight with the Suvolte demon. Buffy recovers from the shock of Riley being married and Riley starts to catch her up on his life since he left as they watch Sam deliver quite a beating to the demon. The demon strikes Sam and Riley rushes to help her as Buffy approaches the demon from behind and snaps its neck. Riley's shocked that she killed it and Buffy soon finds out from Sam that they weren't trying to kill it. Improvising, Sam takes a knife from Riley and cuts into the demon's gut as Buffy watches on, still confused. Sam observes that they're too late and the three head for Buffy's home where it should be safe. Riley mentions that Sam's good cutting skills are because she's a doctor and promises Buffy that he'll take the time to fill her in on everything.

At the house, almost everyone greets Riley with open arms — though Dawn is cool with him because of the way he left the last time. Privately, Willow offers to hate the new wife for Buffy but Buffy,who is unable to really hate her herself, doesn't want to be petty. Sam and Riley begin to describe the gory details of the demon and the mission and although Riley's concerned about Dawn hearing about it, Sam sticks up for the teen and she gets to stay with the "grown-ups." Sam explains that the deadly Suvolte demon multiplies quickly and can destroy towns full of people in no time at all and has come to Sunnydale to lay a nest full of its offspring. A demonic dealer in Sunnydale by the name of the "Doctor" is suspected of holding the eggs in exchange for money. The topic of Willow doing magic to help is raised, but Willow explains that she cannot.

Riley directs Sam and Buffy to search for the nest while he investigates the dealer. In the kitchen, Sam tells Willow about a couple of shamans she knew that got addicted to magic and literally didn't survive it. She's amazed that Willow is strong enough to beat the addiction and Willow says nothing, but really takes the words in. Buffy and Sam patrol and talk about Buffy's honorable reputation as the Slayer and of course, Riley. Sam explains how she met Riley for the first time and how much Buffy mattered to him for so long. Sam questions whether Buffy regrets losing Riley and although Buffy does a little, she certainly wouldn't try to change things now. After Sam tells Buffy that Riley did get over her — after a year — she brings up the subject of Buffy's current love life and the Slayer dodges that subject.

Buffy suggests they split up and as Sam heads off to find Riley, Buffy aims directly for Spike's crypt. Upon arrival, she questions his knowledge about the Doctor, but when he has no immediate answers, she changes the subject to his feelings for her and eventually pulls him to her for some physical comfort. Later that evening, Buffy and Spike sleep under a blanket together and Spike wakes to find Riley has walked in on them. The vampire takes the opportunity to emphasize his having Buffy with him. Riley pretends not to care although he clearly does; he identifies Spike as the Doctor and demands to know where the eggs are.

Spike denies knowing anything about the code name "Doctor" or the whereabouts of the eggs, but Riley is confident with his information and starts to tear the place apart. Buffy is unable to believe that Spike could be involved, but as she and Riley go to the bottom level of the crypt and find the eggs everywhere, Spike's cover is blown. Spike and Buffy exchange harsh words and as Spike leaves, the eggs begin to hatch. Little demons crawl out and begin to attack Buffy and Riley. The two escape and Buffy throws a live grenade down where the demons are, effectively destroying them and much of Spike's underground lair.

With family and friends causing mayhem in the apartment, Anya and Xander huddle together in the bathroom. Anya's bugged by the fact that Xander's so interested in Riley and Sam's marriage. Xander reassures her that while he's scared of the wedding, he's confident that the marriage will be great and last forever. Buffy and Riley talk privately and Riley asks her if she wants the "Doctor" to be taken out. Verbally admitting to her involvement with the vampire, Buffy denies his offer and accepts the fact that her life sucks and her ex-boyfriend is there to see it. Riley though tells her that struggling with life like a human being doesn't make her any less of a woman. Buffy tries to apologize for what happened when he left, and again Riley acts stoic, hiding his feelings.

The whole gang gathers to say goodbye to Sam and Riley. While Riley explains to Xander where and how his brief and unromantic wedding took place, Sam and Willow confirm that they have each other's e-mail addresses for future contact (although Willow still calls Sam a 'bitch' for Buffy's benefit). A helicopter arrives and carries the married couple off into the night. The next day, Buffy finds Spike at his crypt and although she doesn't care about his being the Doctor, she brings with her news he does not want to hear. Buffy tells Spike that although she has feelings for him, she can never love him; it would be wrong to keep using him the way she is, so it is over. Spike thinks that this is her usual routine of playing hard to get, but Buffy is serious and walks out with a final goodbye.


  • Buffy says "I have a house, I think it's safe, sometimes you can't leave" referring to her birthday party in "Older and Far Away".
  • The outfit Willow is wearing is the same outfit that Dawn wears in "Lessons".
  • When Riley catches Buffy in bed with Spike, Spike quips "What can I say? The girl just needs a little monster in her, man." This is almost the same thing Spike said to him once before: "The girl needs some monster in her man, and that's not in your nature." in "Into the Woods".
  • When Buffy breaks up with Spike, she calls him "William" for the second time, the first time having been in "No Place Like Home", when she found Spike lurking outside her house.
  • When talking about their marriage lasting forever, Anya says to Xander: "That works out nicely then." Spike says those exact words to Buffy in "Flooded".

Death countEdit

  • One unidentified vampire, staked by Buffy.
  • One unidentified Suvolte demon, neck snapped by Buffy.
  • One unidentified Suvolte baby, staked by Riley.
  • Nine Suvolte babies, exploded with a live grenade by Buffy.

Behind the scenesEdit


  • Alice Dinnean, the puppeteer who operates the baby demons, also operated the living mummy hand in the episode "Life Serial" and the Angel puppet in "Smile Time".
  • On the widescreen version, during the initial demon chase, a green bar is visible across the left-hand side of the screen, presumably where the screen is cut off for the fullscreen version.
  • Pacoima Dam, near San Fernando, California, was featured in this episode.
  • This episode marks Marc Blucas's final appearance in the show.
  • During this episode's shooting, Richard Blackwood went on location for the the "Blackwood Meets Buffy" featurette. He was alongside Sarah Michelle Gellar and "portrayed" Buffy on the legend dialogue she has with Samantha Finn (Ivana Milicevic). In the interview, Gellar mentions her initial fear of graveyards and discuss about "Once More, with Feeling" and her upcoming Scooby-Doo film.

Pop culture referencesEdit

  • Buffy's coworker references Burger World, the fictional fast food restaurant where Beavis and Butt-head work.
  • Buffy references the tribble creature from Star Trek when Riley is explaining to her that the demon they are facing is a breeder. Tribbles were a harmless creature that multiplied at an alarming rate, nearly overrunning the USS Enterprise completely.
  • Xander calls Riley and Sam "Nick and Nora Fury", a double reference to both Marvel Comics character Nick Fury and husband-and-wife detectives Nick and Nora Charles from the 1930s/40s film series The Thin Man.
  • Right before leaving in the chopper, Riley references "bug hunts," a term used by Bill Paxton's character in Aliens.
  • When Riley and Buffy track the Suvolte demon to the dam, the method the two take to lower themselves to the bottom is very similar to the way James Bond does in the opening of GoldenEye.

Goofs, bloopers & continuity errorsEdit

  • During the scene where the camera shows Buffy's rejection letter for UCSD, it shows her address as "1630 Crestview". However, in "The Body" Buffy tells the 911 operator that her address is "1630 Revello".
  • During the scene at the bottom of the dam, Sam says, "we better regroup". In the widescreen DVD version of this episode, she is visible on the right side of the screen and her lips are not moving.
  • During the explosion of Spike's crypt, it clearly shows it is a set.
  • When Riley and Buffy leave the magic shop in the last scene, the camera tracks are visible in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  • During the final scene outside the Magic Shop, the fans are visible to the right of the screen, when the helicopter is taking off.


International titlesEdit

  • Armenian: "Ինչպես են գործերտ?" (How Are They Working?)
  • Czech: "Pohov, rozchod" (At Ease, Track)
  • Finnish: "Rakkaita muistoja" (Dear Memories)
  • French: "La roue tourne" (The Wheel Keeps Spinning)
  • German: "Überraschender Besuch" (Surprise Visit)
  • Hungarian: "Csakugyan" (Indeed)
  • Italian: "Difficile da dimenticare" (Hard to Forget)
  • Japanese: "君のままで" (Just Like You)
  • Polish: "Powrót do przeszłości" (Back to the Past)
  • Portuguese (Brazil): "Última Forma" (Last Form)
  • Romanian: "Să trăiți!" (Live!)
  • Russian: "Как твои дела?" (How Are You?)
  • Spanish (Latin America): "Descanso, Soldado" (Rest, Soldier)
  • Spanish (Spain): "Tal como eras" (As You Were)


Buffy - "'Get the double treat, that’s the double sweet, oh it's hard to beat, when the meat meets—' Oh, why can't I get this stupid jingle out of my head?"
Vampire - "Least of your problems now, little girl."
Buffy - "Wait." (Puts the bag down on a nearby headstone)
Vampire - "Ooookay."
Buffy - "Okay, let's do this. Quickly."
Vampire - "What's that smell? Geez, Slayer, is that you?"
Buffy - "I've been working!"
Vampire - "Where? In a slaughterhouse?"
Buffy - "Doublemeat Palace."
Vampire - "Ohhh. You know what? Let's just call it a night. If it's all the same to you, and you've been eating that stuff, I'm not so sure I wanna bite you."
Buffy - "You're dead! You smell like it! How do you get to say I'm the one who's stinky?"
Vampire - "Really, it's, it's cool. I'll just catch you next time."
Riley - "I hear you. Got some big stories to tell you, too. If we get half a second."
Buffy - "Did you die?"
Riley - "No."
Buffy - "I'm gonna win."
Buffy - "Nice wheels."
Riley - "Came with the car."
Sam - "Buffy, I'd hate to impose further... but... you got a safe house?"
Buffy - "I have a house. I think it's safe. Sometimes you can't even leave."
Sam - "Thanks for letting me tag along."
Buffy - "No problem."
Sam - "Maybe not for you. I gotta tell you, Buffy, I'm a little bit intimidated. I mean, patrolling with the real live Slayer, you're like... Santa Claus, or Buddha, or something."
Buffy - "Fat and jolly?"
Sam - "Legendary. And it's not just slayer status I'm talking about. It's you."


  1. "Watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 6 Episode 15: As You Were Online (2002)". TV Guide. Retrieved May 10, 2020.
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