Buffy the Vampire Slayer Seasons 4-7 Review

Preface

  • Alrighty guys, if you haven’t already checked out my Review on Seasons 1-3 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, click here to check it out first, then come back here to check out Part 2, the conclusion to the series!
  • And the reason I do 2 reviews is because Seasons 1-3 were FANTASTIC television and though Seasons 4-7 were all good… That’s all they were was decent and okay.
  • I’ll go into each season (like I did in Part 1), but just know that this is a positive review, though I have more complaints with this half than I did with the first part of the show.
  • No Spoilers for Seasons 1-7, or any part of the show here!

Starting Point

  • So Season 4 starts off with Buffy going to college with Willow and that’s something I really liked.
  • We’ll get to characters in a minute, but the reason I loved the start to Season 4 is that it felt like a Repilot.
  • You’re getting a lot of the same stuff from before, but this is kind of retooling it and just making it known that the show is going in a slightly newer but different direction.
  • And I liked that, I thought it was a really solid place to start off the season, starting it off with the two most central and important characters on the show up to this point.
  • It’s important to stay with them at the beginning, because the second half of this show is going to have so many more characters…

Characters

  • So I talked about the main four in Part 1, but Seasons 5 and 7 (especially) introduce so many new characters.
  • Season 5 does it mostly effectively.
  • The first guy that I liked was Riley Finn, who’s a really cool and nice guy that goes to college with Buffy and Willow. I loved finding out more about him though, because there’s more than just ‘nice guy’ to him. Finding out more about Riley was a really intriguing part of Season 4 and 5, and he was a supporting character that was really fun to explore.
  • And then we got Spike, who was briefly introduced in an earlier Season but has a lot more to do in the second half of the show.
  • Spike was the character that I was never sure whether or not I should be rooting for.
  • He was a really fun antihero, and there’s a couple Spike episodes where it’s mostly just about him and those episodes are awesome.
  • They do this thing to him in Season 4 and some people could be like, “is that really where they’re going?”
  • But it works and it works well, because you still love Spike for the rest of the show.
  • Then we got Tara, who’s introduced as a really cool character that interacts well with Willow. I love the chemistry between all the characters on this show, but Tara and Willow are especially great. It’s awesome seeing the two of them interacting together.
  • But then in Season 5, we’re introduced to Dawn…
  • Dawn in a character that I never think I got fully used to.
  • She felt really bratty after she was first introduced. And they tried to make her super important a couple of times in the show, but you don’t care about her importance because the character is so annoying and un-fun.
  • There are points where her character works and you feel bad for her, but she was definitely a weak point in the series.
  • I’m not remembering when she was upgraded to main cast, but Anya is another character in the show that’s a vengeance demon and Seasons 5 and 6 were great seasons for Anya.
  • She was really awesome to watch, and she stole almost every scene she was in for those two. She was close behind Xander for my favorite of those two seasons.
  • But then we got Season 7…
  • I’ll talk more in just a little bit about why Season 7 didn’t quite work, but Season 7 tried to introduced all of these characters that you just didn’t care about.
  • Like I said, Seasons 1, 2, and 3 built this show off of character setup and character development.
  • Seasons 4, 5, and 6 introduced more characters and made you care about almost all of them, with only one exception…
  • But Season 7 introduced all of these characters that you don’t care about and who aren’t set up at all and who you just don’t care about whatsoever…
  • But now let’s dive into the season-by-season breakdown.

Season 4

  • Season 4 may actually be my favorite season of the show after Season 2, because I really liked the new direction that the show seemed to go in from here.
  • Everything felt like it had this new life breathed into it, and that was really cool.
  • One might argue it could have been included in the other review…
  • But even though I really did love Season 4, there were definitely some things wrong with it.
  • For example, there are some things that really just don’t feel subtle.
  • Like there’s a big reveal about halfway through the season and you’re shocked, but the show just keeps moving along and doesn’t really give you a beat to process what’s happening.
  • I did like the villain though, even though he probably could have been set up maybe one or two episodes earlier.
  • But overall, I really liked Season 4 a lot and I loved the military subplot they did, it was a cool addition to the show, and though it does have a couple issues it’s definitely the best of the show’s latter half.

Season 5

  • So Season 5 is kind of tricky…
  • There are a lot of good elements of Season 5, including Mrs. Summers especially, but there are also some lacking things in Season 5. Primarily with Dawn.
  • Dawn is introduced in Season 5 and she’s supposed to be like the new teen who the teenage audience relates to, cuz she’s currently Buffy’s age from Season 1.
  • But Dawn, again, just felt like a whiny brat. And she’s supposed to be this huge part of the story, but I just didn’t like seeing her on-screen.
  • The villain in this season had a cool concept to see, but the villain had like this ‘deformity’ I’ll say (it’s really hard not to spoil anything…) that really just felt unnecessary.
  • This is the point where we start hitting N.T.S. too.
  • Otherwise known as Network Television Syndrome.
  • T.S. is basically what happens when a lot of people watch your show, so the network commissions it to air from September to May, with 22-24 episodes over that time.
  • The reason that shows like Breaking Bad succeed is because they would only air 13 episodes EVERY YEAR.
  • It didn’t feel dragged on.
  • For Buffy Season 5, I feel like they could have cut back maybe 4 or 5 episodes and made it a bit cleaner.

Season 6

  • For me, Season 3’s and Season 6’s either make or break a show.
  • Season 6 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer starts off just absurd and that’s kind of the season’s theme.
  • Like you can suspend your disbelief, but they do some just comically unrealistic stuff at the beginning of Season 6 that’s pretty questionable.
  • I just rolled with it though and continued to see where the season was going.
  • After the beginning, the Season was actually really good.
  • They do bring in these absolutely ridiculous and cartoony villains at a point, who either you roll with or you don’t.
  • For me, the entertainment value of the other characters the plot of each episode was able to overcome that absurdity, so I didn’t mind them as much. But they were some wacky villains.
  • I will say though: I LOVED the end of this season.
  • Probably the last 4 episodes were absolutely fantastic.
  • And before I move into Season 7, I thought of this fantastic pitch for Season 6 instead of what they did.
  • Granted, I liked what they did with Season 6 a lot, but they could have made it even better.
  • So Spike was this major issue of debate in Seasons 6 and 7, and whether or not he should be trusted and be a part of the group.
  • It would have been AWESOME if there was like a Civil War ish storyline and it just pit all of the major characters against each other.
  • Then with the absurd and cartoony villains, there could be a line where it’s like, “yeah they aren’t a problem.”
  • But then when they are a BIG problem later in the season, everyone reconnects to take these cartoons down.
  • THAT would have been cool in my eyes!

Season 7

  • Alright, but now we move into the part of the show that I actually have a problem with.
  • The only season I wouldn’t give a positive rating to.
  • I’m not saying Season 7 is bad, but it isn’t good…
  • I won’t say it’s as bad as Dexter Season 8 (because it isn’t by a long shot) but there are points in Buffy Season 7 where it feels Dexter Season 8-ish.
  • Like they just fail at making everything seem important and relevant.
  • My first issue with this season is the first episode, because after that the whole season makes no sense.
  • Spike has this bizarre storyline that I couldn’t follow, and the villain is supposed to be getting set up but it’s just utterly confusing to anyone who has a logical brain.
  • The rest of this show was so logical and so thought out (even with the absurdities of Season 6), that for this season to throw it all away just to be ‘cool’ and ‘dangerous…’ That was really disappointing.
  • Then they introduce all of these new characters who basically serve no purpose and/or are annoying.
  • When Dawn looks good compared to some of these new characters, that’s a problem.
  • There were two characters that I really liked in this season though, and those are the Principal and Kennedy. I won’t spoil why, but I did really like those two.
  • I did enjoy the series finale to an extent, but again, this whole season felt like it was set up to a huge throwdown, and the throwdown was only like 15 minutes of the last episode…
  • I was expecting an entire episode of action with heroes versus villains.
  • That does happen… For like 10 minutes.
  • And I did enjoy those last fifteen minutes of the show, the stakes finally felt higher, and it felt like a series finale.
  • Other than that though, the whole season felt like it was just over-done set up and none of it really seemed to matter in the end…
  • If this season was only like 13 episodes, then they probably could have done a lot of setup, but it would have been more clear and felt more worth it.
  • It may feel like I’ve been saying, “Seasons 1-3 of this show are so awesome and Seasons 4-7 are awful!”
  • But that isn’t true.
  • I’d say Seasons 1-4 are GREAT.
  • Seasons 5 and 6 are good.
  • And Season 7 is… Well. Disappointing.

In Conclusion

  • In Conclusion guys, Buffy the Vampire Slayer overall is a show that I had a complete blast watching and Seasons 4-6 had a lot of REALLY cool, original and thought out episodes.
  • There were some pretty annoying characters introduced, sometimes things probably could have been written slightly more concisely (though I’ll attribute that to N.T.S.), and Season 7 was just not how I wanted the show to go out.
  • But overall, this is a show that I’ll remember my 4-month odyssey of period binges on, and this particular half of the show is in no way getting a positive rating just for some regular flaws that most other shows have.
  • So I’ll say the Buffy the Vampire Slayer Seasons 4-7 (or at least 4-6…) is a Really Good Time and DEFINITELY Worth Checking Out.

 

***

So guys, there is the conclusion of a show I’ve essentially been watching since mid-May and really wanting to review for you guys! Let me know all of your thoughts on this show in the comments down below! And since I’m now in the market for a new show, comment suggestions for those too! And as always, thanks for reading guys.

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