From the list...


Lisa said:

So Buffy decides that she wants to live again, to show Dawn the world, yadda, yadda, yadda. . . I guess. Well maybe. . . I mean surely this time she meant it when she said it. Except someone want to explain to me why Epiphany No. 306 differed from Epiphany No. 204? Why should *this* one stick other than it's just the end of the season? What was different *this* time? I'm not seeing it?

And queller responded:

Because, of course, all of those other epiphanies were in fact, "Un-piphanies".

The Un-piphany was discovered in the far regions of deepest, darkest Santa Monica in the late 1990's, I believe. Prof.'s Whedon and Greenwalt are given credit in the writers' journals to the widespread usage and application of this strange phenomenon.

After copious amounts of research and analysis, I have come up with the top 4 ground rules for spotting these nasty little un-piphanies and distinguishing them from actual epiphanies.

A. Don't be fooled by just any music montage that comes your way.

An actual *Epiphany* will always occur in conjunction with a Sarah McLachlan song.

B. Never be distracted by Buffy's facial expressions.

Un-piphanies are usually preceded by a bug-eyed Buffy making that little "oh" thing with her mouth. This means nothing -- unless of course Spike is in the near vicinity, and then the "oh" expression usually connotes a whole different deal.

C. Never be distracted by Buffy moving toward the "light".

This moving toward the "light", in a visual context, started with Buffy's sacrifice in The Gift. And she wasn't moving toward the light, she was jumping into the light of the *Dawn*, with all of the obvious and anvil-like associations. But in retrospect, I believe she would have *never* come back from the dead *if* a Sarah McLachlan song was scored over the portal jumping/weeping Scooby montage. (just sayin')

D. The "Gee wiz, I'd like to live!" un-piphany.

These are some of the trickiest to catch. Because we as the audience, want so badly for her to get off her a --uh, -- make some positive actions toward her own betterment. No such luck kiddies. Take the last scene of "Gone". There sat Buffy and Willow in the alley outside of, what, the video game place? Sitting in the dark, on the sidewalk (almost in the gutter, I might add), worn out from the nerd bashing and talking about Buffy wanting to live. PISHAW! I shouted "Un-piphany! UN-pipany! UN-PIPHANY! (in a somewhat Dawn-like fashion) at my television screen.

I plan to continue my research into season 7.
Undoubtedly I will have all of the nuances of the un-piphany cataloged and filed with cross-referencing just in time for the series to end.


(who really liked season 6, despite some glitches)
(and who is still dancing up a storm of happiness at Spike *asking* for a soul) (and who plans to keep dancing, until my shoes wear out or season seven proves me wrong) (anyone for a *cha-cha* ?)

Caro kindly supplied the definition of an Un-piphany:

"a plot device designed to give the illusion of forward movement while holding the character in place."


Home ... Episodes ... Essays ... FAQ ... Thoughts ... Wendy's Spoiler Zone ... The list itself!