Season 4, Episode 5 - Beer Bad
Original airdate: Nov. 2, 1999
Project 310 re-watch date: Feb. 19, 2009
Ya know, I got the “Beer Bad” message back when Buffy and Cordelia almost died after one drink in “Reptile Boy”. I didn’t need another entire episode, called “Beer Bad”, to get the message across that nothing good comes from drinking.
Yet, we get exactly that here, in a complete waste of an episode. This isn’t quite as bad as Season 1’s “The Pack”, because it’s not entirely painful to watch, but it’s a stupid episode. It’s nearly 43 minutes long and there are only two things I like about this episode, so let’s talk about those instead of focusing on the bad (like the drunken cavemen, the warlock-y beer, Xander’s lame attempts at employment, etc.).
First off, the way the end with Parker mirrors Buffy’s dream sequences at the beginning of the episode is well done. Plus, it ties in to the whole psychology theme of the episode. In the beginning, we never saw Buffy’s reaction to Parker wanting her back, so we had no sense of what her mind was actually thinking. In the end, with Buffy in a caveman-like state due to the beer (again, read that part and try and convince me that wasn’t one of the dumbest plots ever), Buffy acts on her inner desire, and just hits Parker on the head with a stick. That’s funny.
The other good thing is the introduction of Veruca. Sure, most people see this as bad, since it leads to Willow and Oz splitting up, but I actually thought this was handled pretty well.
Also, one of the boys who turns into cavemen is played by Kal Penn of “Harold and Kumar”. It’s funny, because I remembered he was on “Angel” as a demon, but his part in this episode is so small that I’d totally forgotten about it. Considering that he was in both shows though, I should probably add his birthday to my Ultimate Buffy Calendar.
Willow: “I mean, you men! It's all about the sex. Find a woman, drag her to your den. do whatever's necessary, just as long as you get the sex. I tell you, men haven't changed since the dawn of time.”