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'Buffy' nostalgia react: All the things 'Doppelgangland' foreshadowed

Season 3 | Episode 16 | “Doppelgangland” | Aired Feb 23, 1999

Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned—especially when that woman is Anya. After all, not every scorned woman funnels all of that rage and hatred into becoming a vengeance demon. You can tell because if they did, there would probably be fewer subtweets and more demons in the world.

In fact, only one fury in the entire Buffy the Vampire Slayer universe has ever really rivaled Anya’s: Willow’s. More specifically, Evil Willow’s. In season six, Willow overdoses on magic and goes full Big Bad when the love of her life, Tara, is killed. But way back in season 3, the writing was already on the wall.

“Doppelgangland,” which occurs just seven episodes after “The Wish,” finds Anya (formerly Anyaka, but now just a lowly human high school student in Sunnydale, CA) desperate to get her powers back. D’Hoffryn, the demon who granted her her powers in the first place, is decidedly against the idea, but Anya vows to find a way to get back her amulet—and by extension, her demonic powers—with or without his help. So she enlists Wilow, Sunnydale’s resident Wicca, to help. The spell is meant to summon the amulet from the hell dimension Anya created for Cordelia in “The Wish,” but it mistakenly summons the evil, vampire version of Willow from that dimension instead.

What follows is a night of roller-coaster emotions. Buffy, Xander, Giles, Angel, Oz, Cordelia, and Wesley all take turns believing that Willow is dead. Their reactions range from shocked silence (Buffy, Xander, Giles) to subtle rage (Oz) to tears (Angel) to the kind of shrug most people would give when they spill ketchup on a shirt they only kind of like (Cordelia). Vampire Willow doesn’t like the Sunnydale she finds herself in. She is, after all, from a Buffy-free Sunnydale, one where the Master reigns supreme and humans are snacks and pets. She tries to recapture a little of that glory, but thanks to a little advice from Anya, she decides that she’s better off getting back to her own dimension.

Vampire Willow goes out in search of Wicca Willow to force her into doing the spell again, and when Willow declines the offer to do magic for a soulless demon, we learn a valuable lesson: The tranquilizers the gang uses on Werewolf Oz are also effective on vampires. Good Willow takes Vampire Willow’s place leading an army of lackey vamps at the Bronze. Watching Good Willow pretend to be bad is even more fun than just watching Evil Willow, which is really saying something.

As if that’s not enough of an amazing premise (Vampire Willow was amazing and proved that Alyson Hannigan could do more than stammer like a nerd in fuzzy sweaters), the episode was also one of those rare gems to be written and directed by Joss Whedon. As such, it was peppered with little clues about the future that became painfully clear in retrospective. Here are some of the biggies:

1. Willow is gay. “Doppelgangland” is memorable for Willow’s revelation that her vampy alter ego is, as she puts it, “kind of gay.” Even though Buffy assures her that vampires have nothing to do with the humans they started as, Angel starts to correct this sentiment before catching himself. It was a big, rainbow flag that was hard to ignore even in the moment.

2. Evil Willow gets bored easily. When Willow goes dark, veiny, and scary in season six, one aspect of her vampy evilness returns: Her catchphrase, “Bored now.” It’s such a cute and terrifying thing to hear her say. It sounds harmless, but the most frightening things follow that phrase.

3. Anya becomes a vengeance demon again. She vows to get back her vengeful powers in this episode, but it was hard to believe Anya would really become a demon again, especially after she started dating Xander. But in season 6, things came full circle when he left her at the altar and she got her demon mojo back.

4. Willow unlocks Oz’s anger. In season 4, Oz leaves to learn to control the wolf within himself. When he returns, he thinks he has it all under control … until he realizes that Willow has fallen in love with someone else (Tara) in his absence. His ragey jealousy causes him to change into the wolf again. The idea of losing Willow angers Oz in “Doppelgangland” as well. While everyone else (except Cordelia and Wesley) react with devastation to the news of Willow’s vampireness, usually cool Oz is angry and demands that Angel leave to get Buffy immediately.

Leave it to a Whedon-penned episode to drop so many hints about the future. And these are just the big examples!

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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