Buffy the Vampire Slayer/Checkpoint

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Season 5, Episode 12
Airdate January 23, 2001
Production Number 5ABB12
Writer(s) Douglas Petrie &
Jane Espenson
Director(s) Nick Marck
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Blood Ties
Buffy the Vampire SlayerSeason Five

Checkpoint is the twelfth episode of the fifth season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the nintith episode overall, and returns to the Glory plotline with the Watchers Council's discovery that Glory is actually a god and not a demon. But this information doesn't come without a price; the Watchers have lined up another test for Buffy.

Guest Stars: Amber Benson (Tara), Kristine Sutherland (Joyce), Wesley Mask (Professor Roberts), Justin Gorence (Orlando), Peter Husmann (Mailman), Jack Thomas (Council Member #4), John O'Leary (Council Member #5), Cynthia Lamontagne (Lydia), Oliver Muirhead (Phillip), Kris Iyer (Nigel), Kevin Weisman (Dreg), Harris Yulin (Quentin Travers)


Plot Overview


Monster of the Week

  • Unless you want to consider the council or the knights a "monster of the week," there was none due to the episode being mainly plot driven.

Body Count

# Whom By Whom How Where
1 Vampire Spike Staked Graveyard

Arc Advancement


  • Glory: Glory discovers where Buffy lives in this episode.
  • Knights of Byzantium: The Knights are introduced in this episode. They are dedicated to stopping Glory from obtaining the key by destroying it. They vow to kill Buffy as well for crossing them.
  • The Watchers Council: Giles is reinstated as an official watcher and Buffy has returned to the ranks of a full fledged Slayer in the eyes of the Council.


  • Dawn and Joyce: Dawn and Joyce are moved into Spike's crypt in order to protect them from Glory.


  • Helpless: Buffy refers to the time when the Watcher's Council weakened her in order to put her through a test which nearly killed her.
  • Who Are You?: Buffy refers to the time when she and Faith switched bodies and was nearly killed by the Watcher's Council.


The Show

Behind the Scenes

Allusions and References

  • Aikido and Jujitsu: Jujitsu is a martial art most often utilized by Samurai. The art is weaponless and is often described as "the father of all Japanese martial arts" because major other arts have been derived from it (including Judo and Karate). Aikido is a derivation of Jujitsu as well which is based on holds and locks to fight. The idea behind Aikido is to use nonresistance and Daoist theory to use the strength of the opponent against him.
Travers: We assume you're familiar with the Japanese name for the Aikido and Jujitsu moves?
  • Byzantium: Byzantium was the name of the Eastern Roman Empire throughout the middle ages. It existed, roughly, between the 7th century and 1453 when it was conquered by the Ottoman Turks. The Empire was staunchly conservative and Christian; it was responsible for several of the anti-Muslim crusades. Byzantium's capital was modern day Istanbul, formerly known as Constantinople.

Memorable Moments

  • Spike practicing asking out Buffy but getting pissed off and throwing things when he completely fails.
  • Olaf attempts to make Xander choose whether he will kill Anya or Willow.


  • Nigel: Well, I need to know a little bit more about the Slayer. And about both of you. Your relationship, whatever you can tell me.
    Tara: Our relationship?
    Willow: We're friends.
    Tara: Good friends.
    Willow: Girlfriends, actually.
    Tara: Yes, we're girlfriends.
    Willow: We're in love. We're... lovers. Lesbian, gay-type lovers.
    Nigel: I meant your relationship with the Slayer.
    Willow: Oh.
  • Buffy: We are talking about two very powerful witches and a thousand year old ex-demon.
    Anya: Willow's a demon?!


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