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'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' nostalgia react: Adults behaving badly

Season 3 | Episode 6 | “Band Candy ” | Aired Nov 10, 1998

Every Buffy fan knew, even during the original run, that any time Ethan Rayne rolled through town, it was going to be a good time. He set the bar high with his mischief in season 2’s “Halloween,” but he almost topped himself with his shenanigans in “Band Candy” (almost—can you ever really top turning people into their Halloween costumes?).

Enlisted by Mr. Trick to help distract the residents of Sunnydale so the mayor’s henchmen can collect a really special demonic tribute (SPOILER ALERT: BABIES! The tribute is babies!), Ethan starts peddling enchanted candy bars that turn the grown-ups into teenagers (mentally, at least). And what’s the best way to make sure adults are the primary candy consumers? Make it a fundraiser, so the real teens can guilt them into buying boatloads of it. It’s actually legitimately brilliant.

As great as the episode is (it’s got it all—fun plot, big season-arc significance, loads of classic Buffy one-liners), the highlight is and will always be Giles and Joyce’s fling. Make that Ripper and Joyce’s fling, because it’s definitely not Giles whom Joyce is hooking up with. This exchange between Oz, Willow, and Buffy basically sums it up:

Oz: Of course, I mean, even if he’s 16, he’s still Giles, right? He’s probably a pretty together guy.
Willow: Yeah, well …
Oz: What?
Buffy: Giles at 16?  Less “Together Guy,” more “Bad Magic, Hates the World, Ticking Time Bomb Guy.”

And let’s not forget the episode’s other highlight: Gloriously spazzy teenage Snyder. It’s a rare occasion in which the adults (you know, the ones actually playing adults) really get to steal the show on Buffy. Here are my personal picks for the best adults-as-teens moments from “Band Candy,” in no particular order:

  • Everyone wants to marry Ms. Barton: When Giles skips out on watching study hall, the elderly Ms. Barton is forced to fill in. She’s already feeling rebellious and teen-y, though, because she announces that everyone should just pretend to read until they’re sure Snyder is gone so they can all cut class. Everyone knows this is weird, but they’re too busy being happy to care.


  • The drunk guys at The Bronze singing “Louie Louie.” The group of middle-aged men (including Willow’s doctor) singing “Louie Louie” off-key, drunk, and, in some cases, shirtless, is one of the laugh-out-loud funnies moments in the episode. It also makes you wonder if that’s how they really partied as teens, and if so, it makes you wish you’d known them in high school.
  • Snyder insisting on going by just his last name. “Just a last name, like … Barbarino.”

  • Snyder calling Buffy a spaz. “Summers, you drive like a spaz” has been immortalized in needlepoint on Etsy.

  • Snyder hitting on Joyce. It’s so perfect. Everything about it, from the awkward scootch in closer, to her just rolling her eyes and walking away, is delightfully high school.

Buffy Band Candy Snyder Joyce

  • Giles being way cooler than Joyce. She’s so into him and trying so hard, and he’s just too cool to keep up with. It almost makes you feel bad for not-really-a-teenager Joyce.

Buffy Bandy Candy Giles Joyce

  • Giles getting his Ripper on. He steals a coat! He steals a gun! He knocks out a police officer! Yes, it’s all terrible stuff, but this is GILES we’re talking about. It’s so much fun to see him be anything but perfect.

Buffy Band Candy Giles

  • Giles and Joyce getting it on. On the hood of a police car. Twice. At least, that’s what Buffy hears in Joyce’s mind in “Earshot,” when she borrows mind-reading powers for a bit. Some fans shipped Giles and Joyce pretty hard, but this was the only time we got to see Buffy’s mother and her father figure hook up.

“Band Candy” is just one of those episodes that you have to look back on with a smile because it brought so many memorable and amazing moments. And here’s the best news: It holds up.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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