Buffy the Vampire Slayer/A New Man

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A New Man
BtVS - A New Man.png
Season 4, Episode 12
Airdate January 25, 2000
Production Number 4ABB12
Written by Jane Espenson
Directed by Michael Gershman
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The I in Team
Buffy the Vampire SlayerSeason Four

A New Man is the twelfth episode of the fourth season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and the sixty-eighth episode overall.

Starring: Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy Summers), Nicholas Brendon (Xander Harris), Alyson Hannigan (Willow Rosenberg), Marc Blucas (Riley Finn), James Marsters (Spike)

and Anthony Stewart Head (Giles)

Guest Starring: Robin Sachs (Ethan Rayne), Amber Benson (Tara Maclay), Emma Caulfield (Anyanka)

and Lindsay Crouse (Maggie Walsh)

Co-Starring: Elizabeth Penn Payne (Waitress), Michelle Ferrara (Mother)


Plot Overview

On Buffy's 19th birthday, Giles discovers how out of the loop he is. His dour mood shifts into a race against time when Ethan Rayne turns him into a demon. Unaware of his transformation, Buffy and Riley try to track him down while Giles tries not to disappear into the demon and reaches out to an unlikely ally to keep from being slain.


Monster of the Week

Giles is transformed into a Fyarl Demon by Ethan Rayne, who cast some spell and possibly poisoned his beer to do so. According to one of Giles' books (and corroborated by Spike), Fyarl demons are strong, simple-minded creatures who typically work for more powerful monsters. They can spray paralyzing mucous from their noses to create a hard shell around their victims. The only thing that can kill a Fyarl Demon is a silver weapon.

Body Count

There were no deaths in this episode.


  • 12 Volt Sex - "Over Divine"
  • Other Star People - "Then There's None"

Arc Advancement


  • The Initiative: Buffy is introduced as the Slayer to Professor Walsh for the first time and Walsh attempts to bring her into the fold of the Initiative, believing that they have something she can learn from (despite the fact that Buffy's amount of "hostile" kills dwarf's Riley's). It's also confirmed that the organization is, in fact, backed by the US Military and is a relatively new upstart—Giles claims they've only been in operations for 6 months.
  • 314: At the bar, Ethan Rayne warns Giles that the "new outfit" is throwing things out of balance and could be causing something more chaotic than chaos. Something about "314" has demons terrified and the implication is that The Initiative has something to do with it, especially with the last scene of Walsh entering room 314.


  • Ethan Rayne: Ethan is arrested by the United States military and, according to Riley, taken to a secret detention center in the Nevada desert. He assures them that he'll be rehabilitated "in no time" and presumably later released and deported.



The Show

  • Final Appearance: Robin Sachs makes his final appearance in the series as Ethan Rayne in this episode. The character does make an appearance in the season eight comic books, however.

Behind the Scenes

  • International: Buffy the Vampire Slayer has been dubbed into many different languages and the title translated for each different international version. Some international translations of this episode's title are:
    • French: "314"
    • Italian: "Un uomo nuovo" ("A New Man")
    • German: "Metamorphosen" ("Metamorphoses")
    • Spanish: "Un hombre nuevo" ("A New Man")
  • Cut Line: After Spike crashed Giles' Citron, a scene was shot with him limping out and saying, excitedly, "I can kill demons. I can crash cars. Things are looking up!" The line was cut for time.

Allusions and References

Memorable Moments


  • Spike grabs a yellow tape measure and Xander's radio. The two objects then switch hands between cuts.
  • When Xander is fending off the demonic Giles, you can see a pair of underwear at the far left side. They alter between hanging by two pins and by one.


  • Walsh: So, the Slayer.
Buffy: Yeah, that's me.
Walsh: We thought you were a myth.
Buffy: Well, you were myth-taken.
  • Walsh: It's only our methods that differ. We use the latest in scientific technology and state-of-the-art weaponry. And you, if I understand correctly, poke them with a sharp stick.
Buffy: Well, it's more effective than it sounds.
  • Giles: Oh, who am I kidding? Nothing is going to happen.
(Giles exits the crypt)
Ethan: I wouldn't say that. I wouldn't say that at all. In fact, Ripper, old mate, I'd say something rather interesting was about to happen.
Giles: (peaking back in) Did someone...?
Ethan: Oh, bugger! I thought you'd gone.
  • Giles: You know what gets me? This is what gets me. Twenty years I've been fighting demons. Maggie Walsh and her Nancy Ninja boys come in six months later, the demons are pissing themselves with fear. They never even noticed me.
Ethan: Who's Maggie Walsh?
Giles: Oh, she's awful. She said I was an absent male role model. Absent, my ass. But I'm twice the man she is.
  • Giles: Bloody humans!
  • Willow: It stole Giles's car.
Xander: Why would a demon steal a car?
Anya: Why would a demon steal that car?
  • Giles: How did you know it was me?
Buffy: Your eyes. You're the only person in the world you can looked that annoyed with me.