With the magical side of things momentarily under control, Buffy and crew have a chance to deal with their personal lives: things heat up between Xander and Dawn, young Giles is visited by an old flame, Andrew introduces some new friends, and the Slayer is totally set for round one of speed dating! Then the bad guy shows up.
- Buffy is publicly recognized as leader of the extinct Slayer Organization.
- Xander and Dawn go to the movies to watch The Princess Bride, as he had invited her in I Wish, Part Two.
- Willow and Aluwyn meet each other in Earth dimension for the first time.
- Olivia has her first appears since "Hush". She was mentioned in "Who Are You", seen in a dream in "Restless", and mentioned in Death and Consequences, Part Two.
- Olivia also learns about Giles' resurrection (What You Want, Not What You Need, Part Two).
- Olivia reveals to be working for S.F.P.D. Supernatural Crimes Unit.
- Andrew recognizes himself as gay for the first time; his sexuality had been previously hinted in comical contexts.
- Andrew reveals his sexuality with "I think I'm gay," as Willow did in "Doppelgangland" and "Tabula Rasa".
- Spike rescues seven cats from Kitten Poker and adopts them with Xander; this contrasting with when Spike himself gambled them in "Life Serial" and "Tabula Rasa".
- Anya replicates Anya Jenkins' dislike for rabbits ("Fear, Itself," "The Gift," "Once More with Feeling," "Tabula Rasa", "Chosen").
- Buffy and Spike kisses for the first time, as pointed out by Dawn, since he got a soul ("Grave"). Their relationship had ended in "As You Were".
- Buffy Summers
- Willow Rosenberg
- Xander Harris
- Rupert Giles
- Dawn Summers
- Andrew Wells
- Olivia Williams
- Drusilla (Only mentioned)
Organizations and Titles
- Scooby Gang
- San Francisco Police Department
- Xander and Spike's cats
- Slayer Organization (Only mentioned)
- Los Angeles Police Department (Only mentioned)
- San Francisco, USA
- London, England
- Langham Hotel (Only mentioned)
Weapons and Objects
Behind the Scenes
- This issue celebrates the 34th Birthday of Buffy Summers with a special cover by Georges Jeanty.
- The tile "Love Dares You" is based on a verse from Queen and David Bowie's song "Under Pressure".
- Megan Levens debuts as guest artist for Buffy the Vampire Slayer in this issue.
- About Dowling mentioning that he "and a lady from the L.A.P.D. really hit it off" on a convention of supernatural law enforcement agents, Christos Gage said: "The funny thing is that I did have in the back of my mind that it could be Kate [Lockey], but after talking with my editors I agree that it would be too coincidental for those characters to just happen to meet. If there were a specific story reason, great, but without Angel being part of the book, there’s not much mileage to get out of it. So, probably, we won’t see Dowling’s lady friend. But if you like to think it’s her, go nuts!"
Pop Culture References
- Buffy mentions TV series Portlandia.
- Xander and Dawn watch The Princess Bride (1987) movie.
- The Asclepian Vial is a reference to Asclepius from Greek mythology.
- Julie mentions sparkling water Perrier.
- Andrew compares himself to actor Chris Evans as the character Captain America.
- Andrew quotes "No time for love, Dr. Jones," from the movie Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom(1984).
- Andrew mentions the supervillain Doctor Doom.
- Dowling mentions Anne Rice's The Vampire Chronicles book series.
- Spike mentions sparkling vampires, from Twilight novel series.
- Anya mentions Sisyphus from Greek mythology.
- Xander mentions the character George Bailey and fictional city Bedford Falls from the movie It's a Wonderful Life (1946).