- “Couldn’t pass through Sunny Cal without looking up old Ripper.”
- ―Olivia Williams[src]
Olivia was a student of Giles, and she was familiar with his nickname “Ripper”. In 1999, she visited him in Sunnydale on at least two occasions. In the first one, she met Buffy Summers by surprise, while walking in Giles’ clothes at his apartment.
For her second visit, Giles had the imprisoned Spike to Xander’s care so he could receive her in his apartment again. During her time in town, the Gentlemen came to Sunnydale and stole everyone’s voice, including Olivia’s. She assisted Giles in researching the demons, displaying an artistic talent by drawing an accurate portrait of a Gentleman. After the ordeal, Olivia told Giles that all the times he had talked to her about witchcraft and darkness, she thought he was simply being pretentious, and the experience and revelation was maybe too scary to her.
Giles dreamed about Olivia when Sineya, the First Slayer, tried to kill him and the Scooby Gang in their dreams. In the dream, Olivia was married to him and was heavily pregnant, but was crying and chained to a baby stroller, while Giles was at a loss of what he was supposed to do. At some point, the two went ghost hunting in the Langham Hotel in London, but ended up in the bar drinking cheap wine and singing Clash songs. They then rented a room they couldn’t afford, but Giles would describe it was more than over the cost. With Giles’ death, Olivia attended his funeral, and was described as devastated during the function.
Olivia was then contacted and invited by a resurrected Giles to San Francisco, where she stayed at Hotel Luxe. At the time, she was based on Los Angeles and in liaison with the San Francisco Police Department, into the supernatural crimes unit division due of her prior experience with the occult. However, in her encounter with Giles, Olivia was dischanted to see him looking like a child. Although Giles assured her he was the same person she remembered, and insisted on continuing their relationship, Olivia refused, arguing he his insistence itself was an indication that he was not the same and the age difference was still not ethical. Olivia was supportive of him and still was his friend, but the event left Giles frustrated with his condition.
At his first opportunity to have a temporary spell to make him an adult again, Giles immediately contacted Olivia so the he could see her again, and the two had a romantic evening.
Behind the scenes
- She was portrayed by Phina Oruche.
- All three episodes in which Olivia appears were written and directed by Joss Whedon.
- Olivia also appears in the non-canon novel series The Lost Slayer, in which Giles’ occupation in helping Buffy find information about a vampire cult led by the Aztec God of Bats distracts him from paying proper attention to Olivia during a visit. She appears as well in "Blood and Fog", in which Olivia leaves Giles after he spends his time with her — during the period when he has returned to England in season six — carrying out long-distance research to help Buffy identify a demon that had once acted as Jack the Ripper.