Lie to Me - Analysis of Buffy the Vampire Slayer Episode
Lie to Me is the third episode of Season one of the TV series Buffy the giant slayer, written and directed by Joss Whedon and used to be broadcast originally on 3, November 1997. The episode is a spectacular part usually considered a pivotal episode of the entire Series. One of the pertinent issues that come to the limelight is the query of whether Eternal life is worth of loss of self. Before making any conclusions, it turns into critical first to try to establish what the episode desired to accomplish starting with the title.
Of course, the episode has something to do with lies as the title suggests. For instance, in the early scene between Jenny and Giles discussing a planned date, it becomes apparent that Jenny is keeping a secret on Giles when she refuses to disclose information concerning their date destination. Also, Angel keeps a secret concerning his encounters with Drusilla from Buffy and always lies whenever the topic about his whereabouts emerges. He only does that to protect Buffy from knowing how horrific his past was. Buffy pretends to believe him (Frances 15).
The episode begins when a vampire called Drusilla approaches a little boy with the intention of attacking him on the playground. Luckily Angel intervenes and saves the kid then later he tries to convince Spike and Drusilla to leave the town of Sunnydale since a fight between them is inevitable. Buffy watches them from a distance, and her jealousy and curiosity are sparked. The next day Giles is teased by Ms. Calendar about the date she is planning but refuses to give details on. In class, while a discussion about Marie Antoinette is going on Buffy communicates to Willow through a note disclosing the Drusilla-Angel issue. Later on, in hallways, Xander attempts to join the conversation to no avail just as another guy sneaks on Buffy's back and surprises her with news of being transferred from Hemery high to her school. Buffy introduces him to Xander and Willow as an old time friend. Later at the bronze to the profound irritation of Xander and the delight of Willow Ford jumps into embarrassing stories about Buffy. Ford is introduced to Angel by Buffy, but Angel doesn't seem to like him. Later on while Ford and Buffy are alone, two vampires emerge where she stakes one leaving the other for Ford to kill. He pins it down and threatens to kill it unless he gets the information he is looking for. Ford spares it and lies to Buffy that he killed it and it turned into dust. Ford realizes that Buffy is a vampire slayer and she is relieved that he knows.
Later on, Ford geeks out the place saying that it is nice, Spike rhetorically wants to know if anyone is with him on watch. Ford has information about Spike, and he wants a favor in return of goodwill from him. Ford strikes a deal of offering the vampire slayer if he will be made a vampire. Initially had just realized that Ford is not a student at Sunnydale high and there isn’t much information concerning him on the internet.
The Theme of Eternity and Self-loss
As seen there are several scenes of lies, betrayals, and secrets. But the episode is more than just that. The topic of lies helps to craft the main issue which is Eternity and Self-loss. The revelation is about dealing with characters whose motives for doing morally ambiguous things remain complicated. Taking a good example, going by the fabulously shot conversation in the summer kitchen between Buffy and Angel where Angelus is forced by Buffy to reveal his past encounters with Drusilla, it becomes open that his past is so horrible. His game on an epic scale appears to have been psychological torture which adds to the delicious mystique that Drusilla finds herself in. He admits having sired Drusilla and torturing her into insanity by subjecting her to pain and cruelty by killing anyone she ever loved. Angel also reveals to Buffy that Ford had just got into a vampire cult and she doesn’t like the fact that they have been spying things on her back. The surfacing of the information about the terrible history of Angel is important in building the foundation of the future expectations. It is also painful for Buffy to realize that Angel had a hand in the killing of Jenny Calendar. Their relationship is complicated because Buffy has to love a guy who carries the heavy moral guilt of his past and whose existence he doesn't seem to value (France 20).
Coming back to the question as to whether eternity is worth self-loss, it becomes necessary to consider the role played by Ford. As seen in the episode Ford wants to be made to live forever because he has brain cancer and he will die in six months. He is ready to sacrifice his life with the promise of eternity. He wants to stay beautiful and die young; he is also willing to sacrifice his friends to ensure his gets what he wants. He reveals the motives for his actions which puts Buffy in a tricky position.
Ford sacrifices his life to live like a vampire forever. He is willing to go through the hardships of vampire life as long as he will live for eternity. He would rather live to eat human flesh and drink human blood. He would rather live under the fear of being hunted all the time as a vampire and kill people to sire them by corrupting their personalities with evil and mayhem. Ford chooses to live a sad life as a vampire forever than a decent and a shorter life as a human being. He loses himself to the yoke of being a vampire because he wants to live for eternity. As per my stand, I hold that Eternity is not worth of self-loss owing to the kind of life that one has to live in eternity.
Early, Frances H. "Staking Her Claim: Buffy the Vampire Slayer as Trangressive Woman Warrior." Journal of Popular Culture 35.3 (2001): 11-27.