As a season finale it is great - as it ties up a lot of the story lines, but leaves a few unanswered questions, and as we find next season a few stories that continue on.
A few points I do love ....
Firstly I love the colour effects that were used for the Master's cave ... as Buffy walks through, it is really well done. The Master himself is a great "traditional" baddie ... ugly, evil, puffed up on his own importance.
In my meme I did yesterday I said I would slap Xander ... well in this episode I have to actually give him points in a couple of places. He pushes Angel into helping him find Buffy ... and then does the CPR (with or without arguments about Angel being able to breath), Angel could have done the heart massage, while Xander did the breaths .... that's once Angel was persuaded to try to save Buffy's life!!!
Buffy was great as she rose up and fought the Master - was a true slayer.
Giles was someone I grew to dislike, yet in this episode he shows his love and respect for the daughter-of-his heart. He is someone to be proud of.
As was Joyce, who tried to support Buffy's high-school life. She is a great mum here.
Sadly there are some downsides ....
Angel is not a favourite of mine, and this episode shows one of his many problems. He loves Buffy, yet is willing to let her die because it is prophesied ... we see this in other episodes ... he watches from the shadows, or even hides away ... why doesn't he fight with his girl ... even if it meant he died, it would mean he would go down for the best of reasons.
The creepy hellmouth monster ... and all the wandering vampires ... what happens to them? It's only as I type this it occurred to me that they just disappeared at the end of the story ... great for a 45 minute film, but where did they all go? *g*
So, all in all ...
I enjoyed re-watching this episode. It is a great episode, with some real action, yet some thought-provoking moments ... Buffy saying that she was only 16 and didn't want to die brought home to me her calling. She has had a hard year or so ... and more to come.
One girl in all the world ... yet soon to find out that she isn't as alone as she thought!