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"Never Kill a Boy on the First Date" is the fifth episode of the first season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer television show, and the fifth episode in the series. Written by Rob Des Hotel and Dean Batali, and directed by David Semel, it was originally broadcast on March 31, 1997, on The WB network.


A CRANKY SLAYER IS A CARELESS SLAYER — Buffy tries to maintain some semblance of a normal teenage social life by opting for a hot date instead of helping Giles protect Sunnydale from a violent vampire prophecy. As she's blinded by love, Buffy ignores the signs of the dark forces aligning against her. Meanwhile, while Buffy's being romanced, The Master is plotting her demise by invoking the wrath of the "Anointed One," a great warrior vampire who is The Master's most powerful weapon against the slayer.[1]


The Master reads a prophecy from the Writings of Aurelius to his minions:

"And there will be a time of crisis, of worlds hanging in the balance. And in this time shall come the Anointed, the Master's great warrior. And the Slayer will not know him, will not stop him, and he will lead her into hell. As it is written, so it shall be. Five will die, and from their ashes, the Anointed One shall rise. The Brethren of Aurelius shall greet him and usher him to his immortal destiny."

Buffy finally gets a date when sensitive hunk Owen shows an interest in her. To Giles's exasperation, all Buffy can think about is impressing him with an uncharacteristic interest in poetry. In the school cafeteria, Buffy has to fight off Cordelia to sit at one table with Owen, but it is worth it. He asks Buffy out on a date to the Bronze that very evening.

However, Giles has found out about the prophecy from the symbol on a ring they found in the cemetery. He is convinced that the Anointed One will rise that night, and so despite Buffy's protests, they spend hours sitting on graves waiting for a vampire to rise. None does, however, and though Giles is certain that his calculations are correct, he calls their stakeless stake-out quits. Buffy rushes to the Bronze, only to see Owen dancing with Cordelia. Crushed, she leaves without trying to talk to him.

At the same time, in a van on the way to Sunnydale, a young boy talks to a man, who stands up and begins to lecture the other passengers on God's judgment, quoting prophecies. Suddenly, a vampire walks in front of the van, causing it to crash. Another vampire swarm the wreck, attacking the passengers, including the religious man.

The next morning, Owen asks Buffy out on another date that night and even gives her a pocket-watch so that she doesn't miss it this time. Buffy jumps at the opportunity while Xander is left to stew in his jealousy.

When evening comes, Giles shows up at Buffy's house, waving a newspaper that shows five people died when the van crashed, among them the suspected murderer Andrew Borba, the man who was quoting prophecies. Buffy insists on going to the Bronze, though, so Giles decides to check the Sunnydale Funeral Home himself. Unfortunately, there are vampires present to get the Anointed One, and they trap Giles in a room. Xander and Willow have followed him, though, and run back to the Bronze to get Buffy.

There, first Cordelia, then Angel try to come in between Buffy and Owen. Finally, Xander and Willow manage to get her to come to the funeral home by pretending to be a couple that wants to do something daring on a double date. When Buffy figures out what has happened, she tries to dump Owen; but unfortunately, he tags along. Even worse, he is present in the funeral home when Borba rises as a vampire. In the fight, Owen is knocked unconscious. Buffy, angry that he has "killed [her] date," kills Borba by sliding him into the burning furnace.

The next morning, Owen is extremely excited about what they've been through and wants more. This is what he likes about Buffy, he says, and almost being killed made him feel alive. Buffy realizes that there is no way that she can have a relationship with him; sooner or later, he will get himself killed. With a heavy heart, she breaks up with him.

Giles tries to comfort her by telling her what a burden it was for him as a ten-year-old to find out his destiny was to be a Watcher, when he would rather have been a fighter pilot or possibly a grocer. Both agree that at least the Master will be unhappy too because the Anointed One was destroyed.

In his underground lair, the Master welcomes the real Anointed — the young boy from the van.


  • After throwing a minion across the room, the Master says, "Here endeth the lesson," which is later spoken by Spike ("Fool for Love") and Buffy ("Showtime").
  • Buffy and the gang believe they have actually stopped the Anointed One, but they will learn otherwise in "Prophecy Girl."
  • Giles asserts that he doesn't have an instruction manual; there is a Slayer Handbook, but Giles decided not to use it with Buffy, as he reveals in "What's My Line? Part Two."
  • Cordelia's line when she sees Angel, "Hello, salty goodness!", will be repeated when she reverts back to her teenage persona and first sees Angel in "Spin the Bottle."
  • Giles mentions his father and his grandmother were Watchers, which is later shown in Tales of the Vampires and Daddy Issues, Part One.
  • Giles's interest in being a fighter pilot, disrupted by beginning his Watcher studies at the early age of ten, is shown through his great-aunt's memories in Women of a Certain Age.



Organizations and titles[]





Death count[]

  • Unidentified vampire, staked by Buffy.
  • Unidentified van driver, strangled by Colin.
  • Andrew Borba, sired by a vampire.
  • Unidentified woman, killed by the Order of Aurelius (only mentioned).
  • Collin's mother, killed by the Order of Aurelius (only mentioned).
  • Collin, sired by the Order of Aurelius (only mentioned).
  • Andrew Borba as a vampire, incinerated by Buffy in a crematorium.

Behind the scenes[]


  • The episode was alternately titled "The Anointed."[2]
  • Owen was initially named "Chambers," as he was identified in the original script.[3]
  • The scene with Paul-Felix Montez was removed, but the actor is still listed as "Mysterious Guy" in the final credits nonetheless.
  • Geoff Meed, who portrays Andrew Borba in this episode, returns as Mag in "Bargaining, Part One"/"Bargaining, Part Two."


  • "Never Kill a Boy on the First Date" earned itself a Nielsen rating of 2.8 on its original airing.[4]

Deleted scenes[]

  • In the first draft of the script, Buffy and Owen would have their first date in a bowling alley, where they meet a "mysterious looking guy" whom Buffy mistakes for a vampire.[3]

Pop culture references[]


  • While the van driver has short, balding hair, the open shot of the van honking shows a stunt driver with long hair blowing in the wind.


International titles[]

  • Armenian: "Երբեք մի սպանիր տղային առաջին ժամադրության ժամանակ" (Never Kill a Boy on the First Date)
  • Czech: "Nikdy nezabíjej kluka na prvním rande" (Never Kill a Boy on the First Date)
  • Finnish: "Treffit vampyyrin kanssa" (Dating a Vampire)
  • French: "Un premier rendez-vous manqué" (A Missed First Date)
  • German: "Ohne Buffy lebt sich's länger" (Without Buffy You Live Longer)
  • Hungarian: "Elszúrt randevú" (Screwed Date)
  • Italian: "Il primo appuntamento" (The First Date)
  • Japanese: "初デートで彼を殺さないこと" (Don't Kill Him on the First Date)
  • Polish: "Nie zabijaj na pierwszej randce" (Don't Kill on the First Date)
  • Portuguese (Brazil): "Nunca Mate um Garoto no Primeiro Encontro" (Never Kill a Boy on the First Date)
  • Romanian: "Niciodată să nu ucizi un băiat la prima întâlnire" (Never Kill a Boy on the First Date)
  • Russian: "Никогда не убивай парня на первом свидании" (Never Kill a Boy on the First Date)
  • Spanish (Latin America): "No Mates al Chico en la Primera Cita" (Don't Kill a Boy on the First Date)
  • Spanish (Spain): "Nunca Mates a un Muchacho en la Primera Cita" (Never Kill a Boy on the First Date)
  • Swedish: "Döda Aldrig En Pojke På Första Dejten" (Never Kill A Boy On The First Date)



Behind the scenes[]



Giles: "All right, I'll just drop in my time machine, go back to the twelfth century, and ask the vampires to postpone their ancient prophecy for a few days while you take in dinner and a show."
Buffy: "Okay, at this point, you're abusing sarcasm."
Buffy: "We'll talk about those overdue books tomorrow."
Giles: "You're not getting off that easy."
Owen: "Wow, you're really dedicated to your work."
Buffy: "If the Apocalypse comes, beep me."
Xander: "So, Buffy, how'd the slaying go last night?"
Buffy: "Xander!"
Xander: "I mean, how'd the laying go? No, I don't mean that either."
Giles: "Buffy, when I said you could slay vampires and have a social life, I didn't mean at the same time."


  1. "The Mortuary." Buffy.com. Archived from the original on March 31, 2001.
  2. John J. O'Connor, "Just the Girl Next Door, but Neighborhood Vampires Beware." The New York Times, March 31, 1997.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Rob Des Hotel, Dean Batali et al., The Script Book: Season One, Volume 1. Simon & Schuster, November 2000.
  4. "Nielsen Ratings for Buffy's First Season." Nielsen Ratings for Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, & Firefly. Archived from the original on July 5, 2008.