Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Season 2, Episode 7
Lie To Me infobox
Air date November 3, 1997
Written by Joss Whedon
Directed by Joss Whedon
Episode Guide
"The Dark Age"
Sarah Michelle Gellar Buffy
Nicholas Brendon Xander
Alyson Hannigan Willow
Charisma Carpenter Cordelia
David Boreanaz Angel
Anthony Stewart Head Giles
Guest Starring
Robia LaMorte Jenny
James Marsters Spike
Jason Behr Ford
Jarrad Paul Diego
Juliet Landau Drusilla
Co Starring
Will Rothhaar James
Julia Lee Chanterelle
Julie Michaels Julia
Todd McIntosh Sunset Club "Vampire"
Joseph Stewart Sunset Club "Vampire"
"Lie to Me" is the seventh episode of the second season of television show Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and the nineteenth episode in the series. This episode was both written and directed by Joss Whedon. It was originally broadcast on November 3, 1997.

Buffy is lured into a trap by a group of vampire wannabes, including her friend Ford, who hope that Spike will turn them into vampires in exchange for giving him the Slayer.


Drusilla approaches a little boy in a playground with an intent to feed on him. Angel stops her and sends the boy home, realizing that if Drusilla and Spike remain in Sunnydale, a fight with them is inevitable. He tries to persuade Drusilla to leave town with Spike, to no avail. While Dru and Angel are talking, Buffy sees them from a distance, sparking her curiosity and her jealousy.

The next day, Ms. Calendar is teasing Giles about their date, which she is planning but won't give him any details on. Buffy reports her patrolling but omits any Angel references. Later in class, she passes notes to Willow about the Angel-Drusilla sighting while the rest of the class is discussing Marie Antoinette. In the hallways, Xander tries to make his way into the conversation but fails, just as another young man sneaks up behind Buffy and surprises her. She introduces him to Willow and Xander as her friend Ford from L.A., with whom she attended school for 7 years. He explains that his dad has been transferred and he's finishing his senior year at Sunnydale High. They make plans to go to The Bronze that night before Buffy walks Ford to the Admissions Office.

That night at the Bronze, Ford entertains Willow and Xander with embarrassing stories about Buffy, claiming to know all her darkest secrets. While getting drinks, Buffy runs into Angel. She asks what he did the previous night, to which he answers that he stayed in and read. This makes Buffy even more suspicious since she had seen him out with Drusilla. She introduces Angel to Ford, whom Angel obviously doesn't trust from the beginning. The awkwardness prompts Buffy to ask Ford to take a walk with her and she says goodbye to her friend. As the two walk out, Angel is clearly jealous and confused as to what he's done to make her angry.

In the alley behind the Bronze, Buffy hears suspicious clattering around a corner. She asks Ford to go back and get her purse and then runs around toward the sound. Ford heads toward the Bronze just for a second before turning back and following Buffy, where he watches her stake a vampire. She makes up a lame story about cats but Ford reveals that he knows that she is the Slayer, having found out shortly before she was expelled from Hemery High, although the episode provides no details on how he learned Buffy's secret.

Later that night Buffy and Willow are discussing the incident on the phone. Meanwhile, Ford goes to an industrial warehouse or building of some type. The door opens to a platform with stairs leading down to a large room, which looks like a dance club full of teenagers dressed oddly, many in Gothic styles, listening to industrial music. Ford walks down the stairs and begins discussing the details of some unnamed event with his friend Marvin (aka Diego), who is upset about not knowing the details of the plan. In the background the 1974 version of Dracula is playing on several monitors. Ford quotes some of its better lines.

Also, that night Angel shows up on the balcony to Willow's bedroom. She invites him in although she awkwardly explains that she isn't supposed to have boys in her room. He asks for help tracking down Ford on the Internet. Willow indirectly accuses him of being jealous, which he partially admits but insists that he knows Ford is trouble regardless. She quickly finds that Ford is not actually registered at Sunnydale High. Angel has to leave before her mom finds him, but Willow agrees to keep searching and to not tell Buffy what they are doing.

The next day at school Willow is awkward and jittery when she runs into Buffy and Ford, but Buffy attributes it to coffee when Willow runs away. Next Buffy and Ford run into Giles who makes up a lame reason for giving Buffy the pager number of Ms. Calendar in case she needs to reach him, prompting Buffy to tell Giles that Ford knows about her secret. He accuses her of using her identity to impress cute boys, but she explains that Ford already knew.

That night Buffy gives Ford a tour of Sunnydale, which brings them back to the school. While they are discussing how dull a place it is, they see two vampires run onto campus. They follow the vamps, but somehow one gets behind Buffy and attacks before she sees him. Buffy and Ford get separated in the scuffle, each one taking one of the creatures. Ford pins his vampire to the ground, telling her that he'll let her go if she tells him what he wants to know. After killing her vamp, Buffy finds Ford, who is now alone, asks where the other one went. Ford claims, with surprise and puzzlement, that he has killed it and it turned to dust.

Meanwhile, Xander, Willow, and Angel visit the industrial building used by Ford and his freaky friends whose address Willow found associated with his name online. Claiming to be friends of Ford's they are let in and see the strange cult living there. They notice a pro-vampire motif just before a girl named Chanterelle starts a conversation with them about those she calls "the lonely ones." She explains that they are elevated, misunderstood creatures and Angel can't help but scoff at her delusions. She is offended and walks away. Angel claims to have seen cults like this before, and that they don't know anything about how real vampires live or dress. At that moment, a teenager dressed just like him walks by. Ranting on their way out, they are overheard by Diego, Ford's friend.

Buffy goes back to the library and meets Giles, who is obviously not too upset about the interruption of his mystery date with Ms. Calendar that turned out to be monster trucks. They try to think about what the vampires could have been up to when Buffy sees a picture of Drusilla among Giles' research things. She recognizes it as the girl with whom she saw Angel two days before, and asks who she is. Giles explains that she was Spike's lover, allegedly killed by an angry mob in Prague, but Buffy tells him that she is still alive and that she saw her with Angel. While they are discussing what Drusilla's meeting with Angel could mean, a vampire storms out of Giles' study with a book. She sprints for the door and makes it before anyone can stop her. Buffy recognizes her as the vampire Ford said he had killed.

At that moment, Spike and Drusilla are also discussing her meeting with Angel but are interrupted when Ford sneaks in. After annoying Spike with horror movie clichés, Ford asks to be made a vampire, but the idea doesn't interest Spike ("I've known you for two minutes and I can't stand you. I don't really feature you living forever") until Ford explains that he can give them the Slayer.

Later that night Angel comes to Buffy's house to tell her about Ford's group, but she starts interrogating him about Drusilla before he can explain about Ford. Buffy demands the truth about her and her relationship with Angel. He explains that Drusilla was the worst of all the terrible things he did as a vampire. He is Drusilla's sire, but before making her a vampire he took his time in torturing her into insanity by killing everyone she loved and subjecting her to every cruelty he could think of. She fled to a convent but he followed her and killed her the day she took her Holy Orders. Buffy is obviously upset by the intensity of Angel's past life, but accepts it. He tells her about the vampire cult Ford is in, but that he doesn't know their plans. She is upset that he, Willow, and Xander were doing reconnaissance behind her back, which creates an awkward silence.

At school the next morning, Ford asks Buffy to hang out again, but won't tell her what he has planned. Buffy pretends she doesn't suspect anything, and agrees to meet him at 9. However, she doesn't wait to meet Ford as planned and goes to his club a little after six o'clock. While Ford is explaining to his followers that they will all be changed tonight, Buffy comes in and tells him his plan isn't going to work. Someone closes and locks the door behind her, as Ford explains that it can only be opened from the outside and he was counting on Buffy figuring out his plan and coming to meet him. Ford's alarm beeps at 6:27 – sunset – as Buffy pleads with him to let the others go. Buffy explains that when you become a vampire, you die and a demon sets up shop in your body, with your memories. During her plea that he's doing something wrong, Ford interrupts to tell her that he has brain cancer and will be dead in six months and believes it better to live forever as a vampire than to die riddled with tumors. He then admits to her that the other people will not be changed. They are just fodder. Though Buffy is moved by Ford's plight, she still cannot condone his actions.

Within minutes of sunset, the vampires arrive, led by Spike, and all of them immediately begin feeding. With this, the shocked teens realize that the creatures that they had believed to be gentle and misunderstood are in fact violent, brutal, and murderous. Buffy starts fighting Ford but the scuffle doesn't last long. She swings him into a metal beam and he falls down, out cold. While the rest of the vampires are feeding, Drusilla waits on the platform above the main area of the room near the door. Buffy sees her alone, rushes through the crowd and jumps up to the platform, where she immediately grabs Drusilla and holds a stake to her heart. She yells out to Spike that he must stop or "your girlfriend will fit in an ashtray." Spike immediately orders everyone to stop feeding and at Buffy's demand lets everyone go. The former vampire worshipers flee and Buffy follows. Ford is still unconscious on the floor as Buffy closes the door, locking all the vampires inside with him. She tells Angel that they can come back later for "the body." Ford awakens and confronts Spike – the Slayer may have gotten away, but Ford held up his end of the bargain by handing her over. He demands that Spike holds up his end of the bargain and turn him.

A few nights later, Buffy and Giles stand over Ford's fresh grave, and Buffy lays flowers on it. Buffy is deep in thought about how to tell who is the enemy and who is not, and who to hate. She asks Giles if life ever gets easy, and Giles tells her she's growing up. Just then Ford emerges as a vampire and Buffy quickly stakes it. Giles asks Buffy what she wants him to say. She responds, "Lie to me." He makes up a speech about the simple difference between right and wrong, bad guys and good, how the latter always win and everyone lives happily ever after. With affection and gratitude, Buffy calls Giles a liar.


  • This is Buffy's first encounter with "Chanterelle," whom she later meets in Los Angeles as "Lily."[1] She later assumes the identity "Anne Steele" when she has encounters with Angel, who doesn't recognize her despite meeting her in this episode. Under that identity, one she takes partially from Buffy herself, Anne opens a homeless shelter for teens.[2]
  • Angel's connection to Drusilla is revealed.
  • Buffy tells Angel she loved him.
  • The book stolen by the vampire is the Du Lac manuscript.[3]
  • This is the first time Buffy witnesses a human attempting to become a vampire for personal gain.
  • Drusilla says to Angel "The girl, the Slayer, your heart stinks of her." This was a close parallel to when she eventually tells Spike "You're all covered with her. I look at you and all I can see is the Slayer."[4]
  • Willow invites Angel into her home, which later has repercussions.[5]
  • Drusilla sings the rhyme "Run and catch, run and catch. The lamb is caught in the blackberry patch," which she would often sing.[6][7]
  • Angel's investigation into the Sunset Club and Ford could be foreshadowing of his later detective agency, where he investigated paranormal events in Los Angeles. He does the investigation in a similar manner, just with Willow and Xander instead of his own team.



Organizations and titles



Weapons and objects

Death count

  • An unidentified vampire, dusted by Buffy Summers in an alley.
  • An unidentified vampire minion of Spike, dusted by Buffy outside of Sunnydale High.
  • Billy Fordham, sired by Spike.
  • Billy Fordham, dusted by Buffy at the cemetery.

Behind the scenes


  • Stunt-woman Julie Michaels played the vampire, Julia, who is freed by Ford and steals a book from the library for Spike.
  • Make-up supervisor Todd McIntosh played the "vampire" who says hi to Willow and Xander at the Sunset Club.


  • "Lie to Me" pulled in an audience of 3.4 million households on its original airing.[8]

Deleted scenes

  • This line was cut for length:[9]
Angel: "Yeah, I eat too. Not for nutritional value – it just kind of passes the time."
  • This exchange was also cut:
Buffy: "Do they know about 'fun' in England?
Giles: "Yes, but it's considered very poor taste to have any."

Pop culture references

  • Ford's line "die young and stay pretty" is a reference to the line "live fast, die young and leave a beautiful corpse" from Humphrey Bogart's 1949 film Knock on Any Door. James Dean also quoted the line in an interview shortly before his death.
  • Xander calls Angel Bossy the Cow, one of the characters featured in a Sesame Street sketch.
  • The movie playing at the Sunset Club was Dan Curtis' 1973 television adaption of Bram Stoker's Dracula, starring Jack Palance.
  • When Buffy reminisced about Ford at her old high school, she mentioned the song I Touch Myself by the Divinyls. The same band provides much of the music for the original Buffy movie.
  • Cordelia refers to Marie-Antoinette: "She was gonna let them have cake!" Cordelia's little speech in history class gives her eloquently skewed view of the French Revolution, a violent uprising in France that began in 1789 in which the lower- and middle-classes in France demanded equal rights from King Louis XVI and the land-owning aristocracy. The Revolutionary government tried and convicted the royal family of treason, and both King Louis and Marie-Antoinette were executed at the guillotine in 1793. Her famous quote, "Let them eat cake," was not, as Cordelia believes, a generous gesture, but rather her response to the peasants' complaints of bread shortages: cake was a cheaper and much less nourishing food item than bread, and so her statement becomes dismissive rather than magnanimous. However, the only records of her having said anything close to this were Revolutionist papers.


  • Willoughby — "Lois on the Brink" (Plays as Xander and Willow play pool with Ford at The Bronze)
  • The Sisters of Mercy — "Never Land" (Plays during Ford's first visit to the Sunset Club)
  • Creaming Jesus — "Reptile" (Plays as Willow, Xander and Angel go to Sunset Club to spy on Ford)
  • Christophe Beck — original score

International titles

  • Finnish: "Valehtelija" (Lier)
  • French: "Mensonge" (Lie)
  • German: "Todessehnsucht" (Death Wish)
  • Portuguese (Brazil): "Minta pra Mim" (Lie to Me)
  • Spanish (Latin America and Spain): "Miénteme" (Lie to Me)





Chantarelle: "You guys are newbies. I can tell."
Willow: "Oh, no. We come here all the time."
Chantarelle: "Don't be ashamed! It's cool that you're open to it. We welcome anyone who's interested in the Lonely Ones."
Willow: "The Lonely Ones?"
Angel: "Vampires."
Xander: "Oh! We usually call them the nasty, pointy, bitey ones."
Chantarelle: "So many people have that misconception. But they who walk with the night are not interested in harming anyone. They are creatures above us. Exalted!"
Angel: "You're a fool."
Chantarelle: "You don't have to be so confrontational about it. Other viewpoints than yours may be valid, you know."
Willow: "Nice meeting you."
Xander: (to Angel, sarcastically) "You really are a people person."
Willow: "Now nobody's gonna talk to us."
Angel: "I've seen enough. I've seen this type before. I mean, they're children making up bedtime stories of friendly vampires to comfort themselves in the dark."
Willow: "Is that so bad? I mean, the dark can get pretty dark. Sometimes you need a story."
Angel: "These people don't know anything about vampires. What they are, how they live, how they dress..." (stops when he sees a vampire-wannabe dressed like him)
Ford: "I will become immortal."
Buffy: "Well, I’ve got a news flash for you, braintrust: that’s not how it works. You die, and a demon sets up shop in your old house, and it walks, and it talks, and it remembers your life, but it’s not you."
Ford: "It’s better than nothing."
Buffy: "And your life is nothing? Ford, these people don’t deserve to die!"
Ford: "Well, neither do I! But apparently no one took that into consideration, ‘cause I’m still dying. I look good, don’t I? Well, let me tell you something: I’ve got maybe six months left, and by then what they bury won’t even look like me. It’ll be bald and shriveled and it’ll smell bad. No, I’m not going out that way. I’m sorry, Summers. Did I screw up your righteous anger riff? Does the nest of tumors liquefying my brain kinda spoil the fun?"
Buffy: "I’m sorry. I had no idea. But what you’re doing is still very wrong."
Ford: "Okay, well, you try vomiting for twenty-four hours straight because the pain in your head is so intense, and then we’ll discuss the concept of right and wrong. These people are sheep. They wanna be vampires ’cause they’re lonely, miserable or bored. I don’t have a choice."
Buffy: "You have a choice. You don’t have a good choice, but you have a choice! You’re opting for mass murder here, and nothing you say is gonna make that okay!"
Ford: "You think I need to justify myself to you?"
Buffy: "I think this is all part of your little fantasy drama! Isn’t this exactly how you imagined it? You tell me how you’ve suffered and I feel sorry for you. Well, I do feel sorry for you, and if those vampires come in here and start feeding, I’ll kill you myself!"
Giles: (about their date) "How will I know what to wear?"
Ms. Calendar: "Do you own anything else?"
Giles: "Uh, w-well, not as such, no, um..."
Willow: "So, you two were sweeties in fifth grade?"
Buffy: "Not even. Ford wouldn't give me the time of day."
Ford: "Well, I was a manly sixth-grader. I couldn't bother with someone that young."
Buffy: "It was terrible. I moped over you for months. Sitting in my room listening to that Divinyls song 'I Touch Myself'. (realizing how it sounds) Of course I had no idea what it was about."
Willow: (about 'I Touch Myself; disgusted) "Oh that's what that song is about?!"
Angel: "Things used to be pretty simple. A hundred years, just hanging out, feeling guilty. I really honed my brooding skills. Then she comes along."
Ford: "I want to be like you, a vampire."
Spike: "I've known you two minutes and already I can't stand you. I don't really feature you spending eternity as a vampire."
Buffy: "Nothing's ever simple anymore. I'm constantly trying to work it out. Who to love or hate. Who to trust. It's just, like, the more I know, the more confused I get."
Giles: "I believe that's called growing up."
Buffy: "I'd like to stop then, okay?"
Xander: "Angel was in your bedroom?!"
Willow: "Ours is a forbidden love."
Buffy: "I am trying to save you! You are playing in some serious traffic here! Do you understand that? You're going to die! And the only hope you have of surviving this is to get out of this pit right now, and, my God, could you have a dorkier outfit?"
Ford: "What happened?"
Spike: "We're stuck in a basement."
Ford: "Buffy?"
Spike: (comes down to him) "She's not stuck in the basement."
Ford: "Hey, well, I delivered. I handed her to you."
Spike: "Yes, I suppose you did."
Ford: "So? What about my reward?"
Buffy: "Does it ever get easy?"
Giles: "You mean life?"
Buffy: "Yeah. Does it get easy?"
Giles: "What do you want me to say?"
Buffy: "Lie to me."
Giles: "Yes, it's terribly simple. The good guys are always stalwart and true, the bad guys are easily distinguished by their pointy horns or black hats, and, uh, we always defeat them and save the day. No one ever dies, and everybody lives happily ever after.
Buffy: "Liar."


  1. "Anne"
  2. Angel
  3. "What's My Line, Part One"
  4. "Fool for Love"
  5. "Passion"
  6. "What's My Line, Part Two"
  7. "Reunion"
  8. "Nielsen Ratings for Buffy's Second Season"
  9. "The Watcher's Guide, Volume One"
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.