On December 15, 1998, The WB aired the Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode “Amends”.
Our Blast From The Past takes a look back at the Season 3 episode “Amends.” This episode was advertised when it originally aired on The WB as “A Buffy Christmas.”
Video Courtesy of Patrick Dunn
It’s Christmas in Sunnydale but everything is far from merry and bright for Angel (David Boreanaz) as he’s being tortured by visions of the victims he killed as the evil vampire Angelus. It’s a somewhat bitter twist on Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, with Daniel (Shane Barach), Margaret (Cornelia Hayes O’Herlihy) and Jenny Calendar (Robia LaMorte) being the ghosts of Angel’s past. Daniel and Margaret were a man and a maid to a wealthy family Angelus killed back in the 1800s. Jenny Calendar was a more recent victim when Angelus re-emerged after his moment of perfect happiness sex with Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar). But these ghosts aren’t what they appear to be. The apparitions are The First Evil. And the intention is not for Angel to see the error of his evil past and make amends (Which is a good take on the episode title and what Angel has been trying to do ever since being cursed by the gypsies who restored his soul). The First Evil (appearing in Jenny Calendar’s form) wants Angel to be driven completely insane that he’ll feel compelled to kill Buffy. It tells Angel that he will be freed from his pain once he drinks from and kills Buffy. Soon, Buffy appears in his dreams.
But killing the woman he loves but can’t never be with isn’t something Angel is prepared to do.
Meanwhile, Buffy and Joyce (Kristine Sutherland) are getting ready for a Summers Christmas. It’s hard finding the perfect tree; Buffy notices there’s a group of dead ones at the tree lot. Joyce doesn’t want anyone alone on Christmas and suggests Buffy invite Faith (Eliza Dushku). At first Faith declines saying she has other plans (not true). But then changes her mind and shows up. It’s obvious Faith is envious of the life Buffy has, which despite being The Slayer includes a loving mother and friends.
Angel comes to Giles (Anthony Stewart Head) for help. The vampire wants to know why he was returned when he should be in a Hell dimension being tortured. But The Watcher is watchful (no pun intended) due to Angel having killed Rupert’s girlfriend Jenny during his murderous turn as Angelus. So it’s no surprise that Giles prefers having a crossbow on hand while talking with Angel.
Angel decides he’d rather die himself than touch one blonde hair on his love’s head. So, he heads to a hilltop overlooking the city not far from the abandoned mansion where he’s taken residence. He plans to commit suicide by waiting for the sunrise. Although Angel’s death isn’t what The First Evil had in mind, it says it will do.
Fortunately the dead Christmas trees give Buffy a clue that The Bringers or Harbingers of Death acolytes of the First Evil are responsible. She goes underground beneath the path of dead Christmas trees to The Bringers’ lair. A fight ensues between The Slayer and The Bringers. The First appears in the form of Jenny Calendar and tells Buffy “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.” The First Evil tells Buffy that Angel will be dead by sunrise.
Buffy rushes to save Angel. She tries to talk him out of killing himself. But he is determined, resolved to the fact that his death will finally mean his redemption. “It’s not the demon in me that needs killing Buffy. It’s the man,” Angel tells her. He believes it’s his need for Buffy that will always make him weak and put the world in danger of Angelus returning. And for that, he needs to die. Sunnydale was experiencing a heatwave but suddenly snow begins to fall and the weatherman later reports the sun won’t appear for the rest of the day. Angel and Buffy enjoy watching the snow fall while walking through town.
Angel is given a reprieve from death, which makes him able to go to to Los Angeles (and his own series Angel) to fight the good fight and help save people from evil.
Photos Courtesy of IMDB
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