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Awhile back, I gave you six reasons for the ‘hate’ part of my love/hate relationship with Buffy’s 6th season. I also promised the ‘love’ part would be coming. As part of my new throw-back day here, I’m here to keep my promise. Read on to see what I loved about the season….

6) I loved how the season started. It showed the gang all coming together to try and keep the Hellmouth in check without a Slayer there. They also rallied around Dawn to help take care of her.

5) Tara became a much stronger character this season, showing a fire and strength that was largely absent for most of her run. She became the conscience of the group and provided a much-needed grounding force.

4) The episode “Tabula Rasa”. This episode provided a bit of a break from the drama of the season by wiping the slate clean for an episode. I loved watching the gang interact with each other on a new level, without all the years of baggage they were carrying up to that point.

3) Halfrek. The show had some problems at times with continuity. For example, this season features the episode “Normal Again”, in which Buffy is infected by a demon that causes her to suffer from hallucinations of being a mental patient. Now, Joss and Company will tell you that Sunnydale is the real world. If that’s the case, that means Buffy was actually put into a mental ward for a brief time. Should Joyce have reacted a bit differently in Season 2 if that were the case? Either way, Halfrek is an example of the show remembering and referencing its history. Before becoming a vengence demon and hanging with Anya, she was a human girl named Cecily. During his own human days, Spike (or William, as he was known then) had a crush on her, something Cecily was not pleased with. She broke his heart, leading to him falling into Dru’s clutches. The two characters, after everyone is brought together, actually appear to recognize each other.

2) Xander as the hero. Xander took more than his fair share of abuse during the show. While he had his occasional moments, he was the only member of the gang without any sort of magical power and suffered frequent humiliations. Starting with season 5, he began to find his way and get more respect. He’d found a field he excelled in and found confidence in that. This, however, was only the lead up to the biggest moment of glory yet. Xander was the one who was able to talk Willow down from her destructive ledge, making this the only season in which Buffy actually had no real part in saving the world. It ended up being all on Xander’s shoulders.

1) “Once More, With Feeling”. This is easily in my list of the top episodes of the whole series. A demon is summoned that causes the town to break into song. While the scoobies are busy trying to solve the crisis, they’re also advancing the season’s plots by pouring their hearts out in some really catchy/beautiful tunes. The added bonus? Discovering Anthony Stewert Head isn’t the only cast member with a set of pipes on him.

I leave you all today with Joss talking TV, writing and horror: