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18 June 2014
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Episode Guide


Amends is Buffy's first Christmas episode, (it originally aired in the US on December 15th 1998), so a degree of schmaltz can be forgiven. But even so, chocolate box scenes of snow in Sunnydale are likely to evoke nausea from British audiences for whom inclement weather is a matter of routine.

There’s an intriguing idea lurking at the core of Amends: Joss's creation of The First, ancient, intangible creatures intent on destruction. Here The First is embodied by a series of Christmas Carol-like spooks, including Jenny Calendar who appears to Buffy and gives her a stark warning: "You think you can fight me? I'm not a demon, little girl. I am something that you can't even conceive. The First Evil. Beyond sin. Beyond death. I am the thing the darkness fears. You'll never see me, but I am everywhere. Every being, every thought, every drop of hate…" It’s worth remembering that The First is not defeated here, merely banished by some greater power.

Buffy’s rescue of Angel is brilliantly written, acted and directed, but, like the episode itself, it seems to be over all too quickly. The idea that the arrival of snow would somehow prevent the sun rising is somewhat odd, but - hey! – this is Sunnydale, right?

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