Season 4, Episode 16 - Who Are You?
Original airdate: Feb. 29, 2000
Project 310 re-watch date: March 2, 2009
In this episode, after Buffy and Faith’s bodies have been switched, we get to see the two actresses try and play each other. Eliza Dushku is even credited as “Buffy”, which is really cool.
After watching this episode again, I’ve confirmed my opinion that Dushku does a better job playing Buffy than Gellar does playing Faith. Aside from the fight scene, Gellar’s rendition of Faith is basically just the crazy side. She parties, she’s wild, she offends people. There are a couple of glimpses of Faith’s conflicted inner turmoil, but mostly she’s a one-dimensional Faith.
Dushku, on the other hand, does a great job as Buffy. She’s got all the mannerisms down, especially in the scene with Giles. There’s not as much dramatic depth needed for playing Buffy in this episode -- SMG gets the one big dramatic Buffy scene with Riley after they’ve switched back -- but Dushku still nails the role.
As for Faith herself, in her fight with Buffy, we see some of that inner conflict. Up until this point, she really was portrayed as just a sociopath, but we find out, when she’s in Buffy’s body, beating up her own body, that there’s a lot of self-loathing there. She really doesn’t like who she’s become. We won’t see the result of that until she appears on “Angel” in a couple episodes (and again, if you’re not watching “Angel”, you don’t see it at all).
I like where this episode took Faith’s character. Also, as almost a side note to the whole Buffy-Faith conflict, we got a glimpse of Adam’s plan. Sure, all he’s doing is getting demons to follow him, but I guess that’s something of a plan (let’s be honest, the writers didn’t seem like they knew what to do with Adam, and it shows as the season winds down).
Favorite Quote:Faith (in Buffy’s body): “I could do anything I want, and instead I choose to pout and whine and feel the burden of Slayerness? I mean, I could be rich, I could be famous, I could have anything. Anyone. Even you, Spike.....I could ride you at a gallop until your legs buckled and your eyes rolled up. I've got muscles you've never even dreamed of. I could squeeze you until you popped like warm champagne, and you'd beg me to hurt you just a little bit more. And you know why I don't? Because it's wrong.”