"Reptile Boy" is the fifth episode of the second season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer television show, and the seventeenth episode in the series. It was written by David Greenwalt and Joss Whedon, and directed by David Greenwalt. It was originally broadcast on October 13, 1997 on The WB.
A girl jumps out of a second-floor window of a frat house. She is chased into a cemetery, where she is caught.
Meanwhile, Buffy and gang are happy with the apparent lack of activity at the Hellmouth. Giles presses her to train harder, but she just wants to be a teenager. Meanwhile, Cordelia tries to look and sound sophisticated, because she has started dating a college guy, part of her plan to become rich and elite. She demonstrates her efforts by laughing uproariously at anything that such a guy might say to her.
The next day at school, Richard Anderson comes by the school to see Cordelia, and his friend Tom Warner becomes interested in Buffy. Cordelia introduces Buffy to them, and Tom invites her to the party, but she turns him down claiming she is involved with someone.
At night, during patrol, Buffy encounters Angel. He smells blood on a bracelet Buffy finds on the ground. Angel tells Buffy that their age difference is a problem and that she does not know what she wants in life. She runs off. Upset at being rebuffed by Angel, Buffy agrees to go to the frat party with Cordelia. She chooses not to tell Giles or Angel about her plans.
Later that night, Giles and Willow discover that the bracelet is from Kent Preparatory School, just outside of Sunnydale. Several girls are missing from the school, which is located near where Buffy is partying. Angel appears at the library and asks about Buffy. Willow reveals to the two men where Buffy is and her reasons to have lied to them. They rush off to save Buffy and Cordelia.
At the party, Buffy notices immature behavior by drunken frat guys. Xander has sneaked in to protect Buffy, but other party-goers recognize him for a crasher They force him into another room where he must put on some women's clothing and dance. Meanwhile, Buffy decides to accept a drink after Tom calls her "too mature." The drink is drugged, and she stumbles her way up to a bedroom to lie down. Richard comes in and starts touching her, until Tom pulls him off, saying that the girls are not for him, but for he who they serve. Cordelia, meanwhile, is lying unconscious in the same room. When the girls wake up, they find themselves chained in a basement as an offering for a demon named Machida, along with one of the other missing girls, Callie. Cordelia is chosen to be the first victim, but Buffy distracts the demon and breaks out of her chains just in time.
Willow, Angel and Giles head to the frat party and meet up with Xander. They enter the house and beat up the frat guys. Willow realizes the girls are in the basement, and they enter as Tom and Buffy fight. Buffy kills the demon, and the frat guys are arrested. Though Giles is still not entirely happy that Buffy lied to him, he nonetheless realizes that he's been pushing Buffy too hard, and promises to take it easy on her from now on.
Afterward, everyone gathers at the Bronze, where Cordelia has changed her standards and is now advocating dating younger men. Holding a newspaper, Xander reveals that the Delta Zeta Kappas have been sentenced to consecutive life sentences, and that the bodies of past victims dating back fifty years have been found. Additionally, many corporations founded by former Delta Zetas have suffered because of the fraternity's inability to feed Machida. At that moment, Angel appears and asks if Buffy would like to get coffee with him sometime, and she agrees.
- The term "patrolling" is first used in this episode. Prior to this, Buffy's graveyard exploits are referred to as hunting. Furthermore, this marks the first time that she patrols with no specific purpose. From this point on, she will patrol nightly.
- This episode has Cordelia reiterate her belief that older boys are the ones she wants to date, as first mentioned in "The Harvest".
- Giles asks Buffy how many people her age can say that they have a purpose, a commitment in life. Although she answers "none," five years later in episode "Potential", she says a similar thing to the Potential Slayers — that although most people have no idea why they exist, the potentials do: they have "a mission, a reason for being here."
- Buffy and Cordelia will once again find themselves targeted together by demons in "Homecoming". They were tied together as well and about to be victimized in "Out of Mind, Out of Sight".
- A similar worshiping scenario is seen in episode "Help", when another group of young men attempt to sacrifice a girl to the demon Avilas to improve their success in life.
- Buffy agrees to have coffee with Angel, marking the beginning of their formal dating relationship. They will ultimately break up one year later in episode "The Prom".
- Callie Anderson
- Richard Anderson
- Cordelia Chase
- Rupert Giles
- Alexander Harris
- Jonathan Levinson
- Brittany Oswald (Only mentioned)
- Kelly Percell (Only mentioned)
- Willow Rosenberg
- Buffy Summers
- Tom Warner
Organizations and titles
- Anderson Cosmetics (Only mentioned)
- Anderson Farms (Only mentioned)
- Anderson Textiles (Only mentioned)
- Delta Zeta Kappa
- Scooby Gang
Weapons and objects
Rituals and spells
- Unknown number of girls, including Brittany Oswald and Kelly Percell, devoured by Machida (only mentioned).
- Machida, cut in two by Buffy Summers.
Behind the scenes
- In his DVD commentaries for this episode, writer/director David Greenwalt says that when he wrote the episode he thought that he had invented a great demon name, Machida. He later realized that "Makita" was the brand of some of the equipment used on the show. Machida is also the name of a city in Japan.
- In "A Buffy Bestiary," a special features video packaged with the Season Two DVD set, Marti Noxon acknowledged the "phallic imagery" in this episode and confessed, "Yes, it's a metaphor."
- "Reptile Boy" had an audience of 3.5 million households.
Pop culture references
- Buffy says "There's a kind of hush all over Sunnydale," paraphrasing the song "There's A Kind Of Hush" by Herman's Hermits in 1967, and The Carpenters in 1976.
- Xander's line "Okay, boots, start-a walkin'." paraphrases the song "These Boots Are Made For Walking" by Nancy Sinatra in 1966.
- Cordelia teases Xander by saying, "You could belong to a fraternity of rich and powerful men. In the Bizarro world." This is a reference to DC Comics' fictional home planet of the Superman enemy Bizarro; also, in "The Wish," Cordelia refers to the Wishverse as "Bizarro World."
Goofs, bloopers & continuity errors
- When Buffy is fighting Machida, her shoes are black flats. Her shoes are chunky black heels when she is finished talking with Giles and walking up the stairs.
- Even though the frat boys were just caught, Xander reads in the paper that "they've all been sentenced to consecutive life sentences."
- Louie Says — "She"
- Act of Faith — "Bring Me On"
- Shawn Clement & Sean Murray — "Graffiti Sound"
- Shawn Clement & Sean Murray — "Devil's Lair"
- Shawn Clement & Sean Murray — "If I Can't Have You"
- Shawn Clement & Sean Murray — "Wolves"
- Shawn Clement & Sean Murray — "Secrets"
- Czech: "Hadí chlapec" (Snake Boy)
- Finnish: "Liskomies" (Lizard Man)
- French: "Dévotion" (Devotion)
- German: "Der Geheimbund" (The Secret Society)
- Hungarian: "A hüllőember" (The Reptile Man)
- Italian: "Festa macabra" (Macabre Party)
- Japanese: "気持ち悪い男の子" (Disgusting Boy)
- Polish: "Gadopodobny"
- Portuguese (Brazil): "Garoto Réptil" (Reptile Boy)
- Romanian: "Băiatul Reptilă" (Reptile Boy)
- Russian: "Парень-рептилия" (Reptile Boy)
- Spanish (Latin America): "El Réptil" (The Reptile)
- Spanish (Spain): "El Demonio Serpiente" (The Snake Demon)
- The book The Angel Chronicles, Volume 1 includes a novelization of this episode.
- The episode script was included in The Script Book: Season Two, Volume 1.
- David Greenwalt provided the DVD commentaries for this episode.
- An illustration of the scene of Machida being summoned was included in the Big Bads & Monsters Adult Coloring Book.
- Robin Atkin Downes, the actor who portrays Machida in this episode, returns in Angel to portray an unidentified Pockla demon in episode "Dead End".
Behind the scenes
|Buffy - "I was... just thinking, wouldn't it be funny some time to see each other when it wasn't a blood thing. Not funny ha, ha."|
|Angel - "What are you sayin', you wanna have a date?"|
|Buffy - "No."|
|Angel - "You don't wanna have a date?"|
|Buffy - "Who said 'date'? I never said 'date'."|
|Angel - "Right. You just wanna have coffee or something."|
|Buffy - "Coffee?"|
|Angel - "I knew this was gonna happen."|
|Buffy - "What? What do you think is happening?"|
|Angel - "You're sixteen years old. I'm two hundred and forty-one."|
|Buffy - "I've done the math."|
|Angel - "This isn't some fairy tale. When I kiss you, you don't wake up from a deep sleep and live happily ever after."|
|Buffy - "No, when you kiss me I wanna die."|
|Willow - "Buffy!"|
|Giles - "We don't know that it's concrete. Uh, let's not disturb her until..."|
|Willow - "Is there! With Cordelia. They went to a party at the Zeta Kappa house."|
|Giles - "She lied to me?"|
|Willow - "Well..."|
|Angel - "Did... she have a date?"|
|Willow - "Well... Well, why do you think she went to that party? Because you gave her the brush-off! And you [Giles] never let her do anything except work and patrol! And I know she's the Chosen One, but you're killing her with the pressure! I mean, she's sixteen going on forty! And you [Angel]! I mean, you're gonna live forever! You don't have time for a cup of coffee?! Okay, I don't feel better now, and we've gotta help Buffy."|
|Buffy - "I told one lie, I had one drink."|
|Giles - "Yes, and you were very nearly devoured by a giant demon snake. The words 'let that be a lesson' are a tad redundant at this juncture."|
|Buffy - "I'm sorry."|
|Giles - "So am I. I... I drive you too hard because I know what you have to face. From now on no, no more pushing, no more prodding. Just, uh, an inordinate amount of nudging."|
|Cordelia - "You did it! You saved us! I've never been so happy to see anyone in my whole... You guys. I just... hate you guys! The weirdest things always happen when you're around! And you! You're going to jail for fifteen thousand years!"|