Buffy the Vampire Slayer/Lovers Walk

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Lovers Walk
Lovers Walk
Season 3, Episode 8
Airdate November 24, 1998
Production Number 3ABB08
Written by Dan Vebber
Directed by David Semel
← 3x07
3x09 →
The Wish
Buffy the Vampire SlayerSeason Three

Lovers Walk is the eighth episode of the third season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and the forty-second episode overall.

Starring: Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy Summers), Nicholas Brendon (Xander Harris), Alyson Hannigan (Willow Rosenberg), Charisma Carpenter (Cordelia Chase), David Boreanaz (Angel), Seth Green (Oz)

and Anthony Stewart Head (Giles)

Guest Starring: Kristine Sutherland (Joyce Summers), Harry Groener (The Mayor), James Marsters (Spike)

Co-Starring: Jack Plotnick (Deputy Mayor), Marc Burnham (Lenny), Suzanne Krull (Clerk)


Plot Overview

Spike is back in Sunnydale, this time drunk and heartbroken. Bitter that Dru has left due to the truce he made with Buffy, Spike seeks out payback. While Xander and Willow are still being torn apart by their feelings, Spike kidnaps them so Willow can perform a love spell for him.


Monster of the Week

Spike returns to town and causes some typical vampire damage in his attempts to win Drusilla back using a love spell.

Body Count

# Whom By Whom How Where
1 Clerk Spike Bitten Magic Shop
2–3 Vampires Buffy Staked Main Street
4 Vampire Buffy Staked Magic Shop
5 Vampire Spike Staked Magic Shop


  • "My Way" by Frank Sinatra: When Spike arrives in town, he's drunkenly singing "My Way", a song that was written by Paul Anka and popularized by Frank Sinatra. The song is based off the melody of "Comme d'habitude", a French pop song, and is about a man nearing death.
  • "My Way" by Sid Vicious: As Spike is leaving town, a punk cover of "My Way" by Sid Vicious plays in the background. The song was released as a single in 1979 and peaked on the UK charts at #8. The lyrics of the songs were changed because Vicious didn't actually know the song's lyrics when the song was recorded, so he improvised some on the spot about Sex Pistols bandmate Johnny Rotten.

Arc Advancement


  • Relationships: All of the romantic relationships of the main characters are shaken up by the events of this episode. Cordelia and Oz catch Willow and Xander in their affair and Buffy realizes that she and Angel cannot simply be friends after all that they've gone through.


  • Spike: Spike returns to Sunnydale after being dumped by Drusilla in Brazil. He eventually decides to stop moping and leaves Sunnydale until he can win Drusilla back.
  • Willow: This episode marks the first time that Willow immediately defaults on using magic to make her life easier. The trend continues until it culminates in season six as a serious danger to her life, as well as the lives of her friends.


  • 2x05 - Reptile Boy: Though Joyce doesn't know it, her assertion (followed by Buffy's comment of "Not really seeing the distinction") is a wry reference to when Buffy and Cordelia were nearly human sacrifices for a fraternity's demon overlord.
Joyce: It's just you belong at a good old-fashioned college with keg parties and boys, not here with Hellmouths and vampires.
  • 2x16 - Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered: Xander was briefly dumped by Cordelia and, in an attempt to get revenge on her, he blackmailed Amy Madison into casting a love spell. The spell backfired and, instead of Cordelia loving him, every woman but Cordelia was in love with him. The resulting mob scene nearly killed them both, although Amy was able to reverse the effects before anyone was hurt.
Xander: Are you nuts, or have you forgotten that I tend to have bad luck with these sorts of spells?
  • 2x22 - Becoming (2): Spike and Buffy agreed to a truce in order to prevent Angelus from destroying the world and as revenge for him stealing Drusilla away from him. The amount of help he gave Buffy was minimal, however, and amounted to knocking out Drusilla and fleeing at the opportune moment.
Spike: It was that truce with Buffy that did it.
  • When Angel claims there must be some way they can still see each other, Buffy says there is by demanding "Tell me you don't love me." This is the same thing she said to Angel when they were possessed by ghosts in "I Only Have Eyes for You".


The Show

  • Promo: Immediately after the first broadcast of this episode, a promotion for 1-800-COLLECT was broadcast on The WB starring Sarah Michelle Gellar and David Boreanaz playing their respective characters. In the promo, Buffy tells the viewer "This season with 1-800-Collect, you don't have to be alone for the holidays" and attempts to dial a pay phone. She hears something and grabs a large icicle to defend herself, but drops her guard when it turns out to just be Angel. The contest itself was a sweepstakes in which one winner would get a walk-on part in an episode of the show (The Prom).

Behind the Scenes

  • Spike singing along to "My Way" at the episode's end was going to be the Sid Vicious cover of the Frank Sinatra song, but the rights couldn't be obtained. Instead, they wound up using the song as sung by actor Gary Oldman from the soundtrack to Sid and Nancy, the film in which Oldman plays Vicious.
  • 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:
    • Czech: "Cesty Lásky" ("The Ways of Love")
    • French: "Amours contrariées" ("Thwarted Loves")
    • Italian: "Il sentiero degli amanti" ("Lovers' Path")
    • German: "Liebe und andere Schwierigkeiten" ("Love and Other Difficulties")
    • Japanese: "恋人達の散歩道" ("Koibito-Tachi no Sanbomichi" - "Lovers' Walk")
    • Spanish: "Los senderos del amor" ("The Paths of Love")

Allusions and References

  • The Simpsons: While bemoaning her test scores, Willow compares herself to Cletus the Slack-Jawed Yokel. Cletus Spuckler is a hillbilly who occasionally appears on The Simpsons. He was first introduced in the episode "Bart Gets an Elephant" and is voiced by Hank Azaria.
Willow: I'm Cletus, the slack-jawed yokel!
  • La Nausée: The book that Angel is reading while Spike snidely threatens him from afar is La Nausée by Jean-Paul Sartre. The main theme of the novel is existential angst, a component of the philosophy of existentialism. Existential angst occurs when the gaze is turned onto one's self and an attempt to realign the gaze's lens is made.

Memorable Moments


  • Both times Spike grabs Willow by her hair, her hair gets in her face, but then isn't in the very next shot.
  • The broken glass bottle Spike threatens Willow with changes around in his hand from one shot to the next.
  • When Buffy pins Spike down on her kitchen counter, you can see that she has her right hand on his throat and her left hand on his torso. However, it cuts from showing her left hand touching his black shirt and then his red shirt back and forth with a final shot of this with her left and right hands now switched places.


  • The Mayor: I swear, I would sell my soul for a decent short game. Of course, it's a little late for that. I don't suppose I could offer your soul, huh? Really help me on the green.
(Finch is uncomfortable)
The Mayor: I'm just funning.
  • Spike: She wouldn’t even kill me. She just left. She didn't even care enough to cut off my head or set me on fire. I mean, is that too much to ask? You know, some little sign that she cared? It was that truce with Buffy that did it. Dru said I'd gone soft, wasn't demon enough for the likes of her. And I told her it didn't mean anything, I was thinking of her the whole time, but she didn't care. So we got to Brazil and she was... she was just different. I gave her everything - beautiful jewels, beautiful dresses, with beautiful girls in them, but nothing made her happy. And she would flirt! I caught her on a park bench making out with a chaos demon. Have you ever seen a chaos demon? They're all slime and antlers. They're disgusting! She only did it to hurt me. So I said, "I'm not putting up with this anymore." And she said, "Fine!" And I said, "Yeah, I've got an unlife, you know!" And then she said... she said we could still be friends. God, I'm so unhappy!
Willow: There, there.
Spike: I mean, friends! How could she be so cruel?
  • Spike: We killed a homeless man on this bench, me and Dru. Those were good times. You know, he begged for mercy, and you know that only made her bite harder. (chuckles)
Buffy: I guess you had to be there.
  • Xander: So, what are our options?
Willow: Well, I figure either I refuse to do the spell and he kills us, or I do the spell and he kills us.
Xander: Give me a third option.
Willow: He's so drunk he forgets about us and we starve to death. That's sort of the best one.
  • Spike: (to Buffy and Angel) The last time I looked in on you two, you were fighting to the death. Now you're back making googly-eyes at each other like nothing happened. Makes me want to heave.
Buffy: I don't know what you're talking about.
Spike: Oh, yeah, you're just friends.
Angel: That's right.
Spike: You're not friends. You'll never be friends. You'll be in love till it kills you both. You'll fight, and you'll shag, and you'll hate each other till it makes you quiver, but you'll never be friends. Love isn't brains, children; it's blood - blood screaming inside you to work its will. I may be love's bitch, but at least I'm man enough to admit it.