Buffy the Vampire Slayer/Normal Again

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Normal Again
Normal Again
Season 6, Episode 17
Airdate March 12, 2002
Production Number 6ABB17
Writer(s) Diego Gutierrez
Director(s) Rick Rosenthal
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Buffy the Vampire SlayerSeason Six

Normal Again is the seventeenth episode of the sixth season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and the one-hundred and seventeenth episode overall.

Guest Stars: Amber Benson (Tara Maclay), Danny Strong (Jonathan Levinson), Adam Busch (Warren Meers), Tom Lenk (Andrew Wells), Kristine Sutherland (Joyce Summers), Dean Butler (Buffy the Vampire Slayer/Hank Summers), Michael Warren (Doctor), Sarah Scivier (Nurse), Rodney Charles (Orderly), April Dion (Kissing Girl), Kirsten Nelson (Lorraine Ross)


Plot Overview


Monster of the Week

  • Glarghk Guhl Kashmas'nik: The demon summoned by the trio is strong and fast, but most notably wields a retractable spike in his arm which causes the victim to hallucinate extremely detailed fantasies. These fantasies are so detailed that they're almost like alternate realities within the mind of the victim. The only cure to the venom in the spike is an antidote within the same weapon.

Body Count

# Whom By Whom How Where
1 Glarghk Guhl Kashmas'nik Buffy Impaling Punch Buffy's Basement

Arc Advancement



  • Buffy: Buffy was once admitted to a mental institution six years prior to this episode after she first told her parents about vampires.
  • Buffy: Finally gets to say goodbye to her mother (sort of).


  • Real Me: The doctor talks about how Buffy rewrote her own fantasies in order to create a familial bond in the form of Dawn. This is a sly reference to the initial outcry over Dawn suddenly appearing in the series as if she was always there.
  • Bargaining: The doctor tells Buffy that she had a "momentary awakening" during the summer, but her friends pulled her back into the delusion. This refers to her death and resurrection.
  • The Weight of the World: The little girl in the picture is the same little girl from Buffy's flashbacks seen by Willow.


The Show

Behind the Scenes

  • Episode Order: This episode was originally meant to be aired eighth in the season.

Allusions and References

  • The Shining: Jack Torrence was the main character from Stephen King's novel, The Shining. In the story, Jack and his family are given the responsibility to watch over a hotel for the winter. But as he grows increasingly isolated and introverted, he goes insane and attempts to kill his wife and son. The novel was adapted into a film by Stanley Kubrick where the character of Jack Torrence was played by Jack Nicholson.
Jonathan: I'm going all Jack Torrence here, you know?
  • Ken Russell: Ken Russell is a British director known primarily for his controversial and unusual films. He controversially broke taboos of full frontal male nudity on screen, homosexuality of Tchaikovsky and The Devils, a film that received the X rating. Russell also notably filmed Tommy and Lizstomania.
Warren: Got her tripping like a Ken Russell Film Festival.
  • Oceans Eleven: Ocean's Eleven was a film first produced in 1960 directed by Lewis Milestone and starring several members of Frank Sinatra's Rat Pack. The film followed Ocean (Sinatra) and his plans to steal several million dollars from the vaults of a casino. The movie was later remade with George Clooney at the helm and a superstar cast including Brad Pitt and Matt Damon.
Andrew: I still say we're gonna need at least eight other guys to pull this off.
  • One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest: One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest is a novel written by Ken Kesey and later adapted to film by Miloš Forman. The novel and film differ in very key ways (particularly in perspective), but they both deal with life in a mental institution during the mid to late 1960s. In the film a man who isn't insane attempts to change how things are done, only to end up like the patients after intensive shock-treatment is used on him.
Willow: No more Cuckoo's Nest?

Memorable Moments


  • Joyce (O.S.): We'll always be with you. There's a world of strength in your heart, honey. I know there is. You just have to find it again.
    (Buffy's panic and fear wash away).
    Joyce: Believe in yourself.
    Buffy: You're right... Thank you.
    Buffy: Goodbye.


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