Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Season 4, Episode 14
414 GoodbyeIowa
Air date February 15, 2000
Written by Marti Noxon
Directed by David Solomon
Episode Guide
"The I in Team"
"This Year's Girl"
Sarah Michelle Gellar Buffy
Nicholas Brendon Xander
Alyson Hannigan Willow
Marc Blucas Riley
James Marsters Spike
Anthony Stewart Head Giles
Guest Starring
Amber Benson Tara
George Hertzberg Adam
Leonard Roberts Forrest
Bailey Chase Graham
Jack Stehlin Dr. Angleman
JB Gaynor Little Boy
Saverio Guerra Willy
Emma Caulfield Anya
Co Starring
Amy Powell Reporter
Andy Marshall Scientist #1
Paul Leighton Rough-Looking Demon
Karen Charnell Shady Lady

"Goodbye Iowa" is the fourteenth episode of the fourth season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and is the seventieth episode altogether. It was written by Marti Noxon and directed by David Solomon. It originally broadcast on February 15, 2000.

Buffy discovers The Initiative's secret weapon. Riley becomes unstable due to the death of Professor Walsh and drug withdrawal. Adam reveals some information about himself while trying to learn about people by investigating their insides.


414 GoodbyeIowa1

Adam escapes.

Buffy fills the gang in on everything that's gone on since she started to work with The Initiative, and they question whether Riley was involved in the trap Professor Walsh set for Buffy. Buffy arms the group with weapons and makes plans to hide out in Xander's basement. Riley shows up at Giles' place asking Buffy for information, and becomes upset when he recognizes Spike as "Hostile 17." Riley does not want to accept what the rest of them are saying about Professor Walsh and The Initiative.

Leaving Professor Walsh's lifeless body, Adam escapes The Initiative through a vent. He approaches a young boy playing alone and questions him about his nature. Dr. Angleman slips in a pool of blood as he enters Room 314 and finds Professor Walsh stabbed to death. When Riley and Forrest see Walsh's body, Forrest accuses Buffy of staking Maggie.

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Buffy: That probably would have sounded more commanding if I wasn't wearing my yummy sushi pajamas.

Giles is grumpy when he wakes up in Xander's basement the next morning. The girls are watching cartoons when a news story comes on about a young boy who has been killed and mutilated. Believing it to be the recently captured Polgara Demon, Buffy goes after it. Riley - against Dr. Angleman's orders - also instructs the commandos to search for the Polgara. He and Buffy both end up at the park where the boy was killed. While Buffy tries to apologize to Riley, Riley informs her that Walsh is dead and asks if Buffy is happy about that.

Willow goes to Tara's dorm room, planning to find the Polgara by calling on Thespia in a spell that shows nearby demonic activity. However, Tara secretly sabotages the spell and it fails to work. Meanwhile at Willy's Bar, Spike is badly beaten by demons for associating with the Slayer and hunting their kind. They tell him if he is seen around again, they will kill him.

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Buffy: You're sick. You just need to get some sleep.

Buffy searches for information at Willy's but Riley also shows up, very angry. He is shaking and sweating and scratching his hand so badly that it bleeds, as he questions Buffy's intentions and pulls a gun on an innocent woman. Buffy consoles Riley as she sees that he is sick and only getting sicker, leaving him at Xander's to rest. When Riley wakes up, Willow tries to stop him from going after Buffy but he pushes her to the ground and runs.

Disguised as a scientist, Buffy gets herself and Xander - dressed in fatigues - into The Initiative. They overhear Dr. Angleman talking to another scientist about their commandos having withdrawals from the drugs they had been secretly putting in their meals.

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Buffy: Everything he's ever believed in has been taken away or... He's alone. He has nothing to hold on to.

Buffy grabs Dr. Angleman, demanding information about 314. Riley arrives to help Buffy, but is still unwilling to accept Professor Walsh's sinister motives. Adam drops a dead body to the floor, revealing his presence.

Adam is searching for answers about the world, and has returned to The Initiative so he can get answers about himself and who he is. He has a disk drive in his chest and when he inserts a disk labeled "Adam" he offers information that reveals that he is part human, demon, and machine. He explains that even though Riley had a real mother, Maggie was also his mother as she shaped and built him into a human machine for The Initiative. Adam kills Dr. Angleman and injures Riley before escaping again. The other commandos enter and take Riley away.

The next day, Buffy talks to Willow about how Adam is out there and very dangerous. At the hospital, Riley lays in bed holding a scarf Buffy gave him earlier. Even though Buffy cannot see him, he has part of her to hold on to.


  • The reason for Tara sabotaging the spell will not be made clear until the Season 5 episode "Family", where it is revealed that her father falsely told her she was part demon on her mother's side. Tara was afraid the spell would identify her to the Scoobies as a demon.
  • This episode marks the final appearance of Saverio Guerra as Willy, although dialogue in future episodes makes it clear that the character remains in Sunnydale.
  • When Anya and Giles are arguing in Xander's basement, Buffy asks them to stop re-enacting scenes from her parents' marriage. In the Season 6 episode "Tabula Rasa", Anya and Giles think that they must be a couple because they own the Magic Shop together, when their memories are wiped by Willow's spell.
  • Forrest tells Riley "I see a demon, it dies." This closely parallels Charles Gunn's initial attitude towards demons in Angel.

Body Count

  • A little boy, mutilated by Adam
  • An Initiative agent, killed by Adam
  • Francis Angleman, skewered by Adam

Behind the Scenes

Deleted Scenes

  • This exchange was cut:
Willow: "I bet you will."
Buffy: "No. No bet. I will make it work."

Pop Culture References

  • When Buffy tells Xander about Professor Walsh's plan to kill her, she says "it's raining monsters", Xander replies "Hallelujah". This is a reference to the song "It's Raining Men".
  • After Adam escapes The Initiative's base, he happens upon a small boy playing in the woods. The verbal exchange he has with the boy is reminiscent of an exchange in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein between Frankenstein's monster and a child after he escapes the professor's laboratory.
  • When Buffy, Willow and Anya watch TV, it's a Looney Tunes cartoon featuring the duo Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner.

Goofs, Bloopers & Continuity Errors

  • Riley states that the Polgara demon was captured "last week", yet this episode takes place the day after the events of "The I in Team", meaning the demon was captured two days prior to the events of this episode.
  • Dr. Angleman slips in Maggie's blood and gets it on both of his hands. However, in the shot of him lying on the floor, it's clear that the blood has not been stepped in and that his hands are not in it.
  • When Buffy is trying to comfort Riley and wraps his hand with her head scarf, a few lines later she is shown wearing it again only to have it "disappear" in the very next shot to be seen back on Riley's hand later.
  • Spike's crib, when he gets out of the sarcophagus, is full of sunlight, yet he doesn't seem to catch fire the way he normally does.

International titles

  • FrenchStress (Stress)
  • GermanDie Kampfmaschine (The Fighting Machine)


  • Andrew James - "My Last Romance"
  • Lou Reed - "Romeo Had Juliette"
  • Mark Cherrie - "Big Ed"
  • Christophe Beck - original score


  • This episode is Riley-centric.


Xander - "I totally get it now. Can I have sex with Riley, too?"
Buffy - "That would never happen."
Willow - "Well, no, Buff. That's why they're called 'cartoons', not 'documentaries'."
Spike - "Got to hand it to you, Goldilocks, you have bleedin' tragic taste in men. I have a cousin, married a Regurgitating Frovlax Demon, has better instincts than you."
Giles - "Must we have the noise? My head is splitting!"
Willow - "Look who's Cranky Bear in the morning."
Giles - "Yes, I can't imagine why I didn't sleep well in my beach ball."
Anya - "Every time you moved, it made squeaky noises. It was irritating."
Giles - "Really? I'm surprised you could hear it over your Wagnerian snoring."
Buffy - "OK, you guys, could we not, please? Everything's screwed up enough without you two doing ‘Scenes From My Parents’ Marriage’."
Buffy - "I'm going to the crime scene to see what I can find out. You guys research the Polgara demon. I want to know where it is. When I find it, I'm going to make it pay for taking that kid's life. I'll make him die in ways he can't even imagine." (sees Anya’s and Willow’s looks) "That probably would've sounded more commanding if I wasn't wearing my yummy sushi pajamas."