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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the money
People are continally bashing season 4 - I don't get it. This season contains some excellent episodes - take "Hush" for example, which was an interesting premise to begin with, but then superbly carried out! I think we see Buffy and her friends (and foes!) growing up more - following on from season 3, which was when they stopped being "school...
Published on 3 Sep 2000

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not at its best but still very buffy.
This season of Buffy had alot to live up to. It lost Angel and Cordelia to the spin off show. This series of buffy moved alittle bit away from fantasy and more into sci fi. The iniative was the weakest plot line. But the transfer from school to college went well. Its a pitty that the villian Sunday had to be disposed of so quickly in "the freshman". She could...
Published on 5 Sep 2000


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the money, 3 Sep 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season 4 (Box Set 1) [VHS] [1998] (VHS Tape)
People are continally bashing season 4 - I don't get it. This season contains some excellent episodes - take "Hush" for example, which was an interesting premise to begin with, but then superbly carried out! I think we see Buffy and her friends (and foes!) growing up more - following on from season 3, which was when they stopped being "school kids"
While I originally didn't like the idea of Riley, I have to admit that it was all done so well - and showed a new aspect of Buffy. Angel is doing much better in his own show - in BTVS he was always overshadowed - he was "Buffy's boyfriend" and didn't get a lot of chance to shine. Having Angel leave also left the door open for some fantastic crossovers, and led to interesting scenes between Buffy and Angel. The re-introduction of Spike was a stroke of genius, although it would've been nice to see a bit of Dru as well.
The whole Willow/Tara arc caused some controversy, and a lot of people have criticised it. Personally, I thought it was a great idea - it dealt with an issue that is very real in today's world, but did so in a tasteful, discreet way. Alyson Hannigan does a superb job as Willow - she's really brought her on from the computer geek with frog fear!
All-in-all, season 4, I feel, keeps the BtVS flag flying high - it's kept the original feel of the first 3 seasons, while adding new flavours that have matured the show - mixed metaphors aside! I just can't wait for season 5!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Some great television (with a few ups and downs), 21 Aug 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season 4 (Box Set 1) [VHS] [1998] (VHS Tape)
Major changes abound in Season 4 of BtVS. Now Buffy is in college and sharing rooms with Willow, and the season is sadly lacking in Angel, Cordelia and stories focussed on Giles and Xander.
However, accomplished storyteller Joss Whedon has some great tricks up his sleeve, including Spike (an absolute treasure), Anya, heartbreak for Willow and Oz, magic spells going wrong (again) and mysterious commando guys running around in the shadows. I liked the gentle and clever introduction of Riley. It was rather obvious that he was destined to be Buffy's new love interest when he kept on popping up, but the relationship between Buffy and Riley doesn't quite pull off on screen. I think he's too young for Buffy, who has already lived through years of very tough growing up.
Still, nearly all the episodes are fun viewing, with #3 The Harsh Light of Day, #6 Wild at Heart, #7 The Initiative, #8 Pangs, #9 Something Blue and #10 Hush, being top watches and well worth the money to buy them.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buffy's fourth season is amazing!, 20 Oct 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season 4 (Box Set 1) [VHS] [1998] (VHS Tape)
Although Season Three is my favourite ever season, Season Four comes a close second. As a huge Buffy fan, even I have to admit the show needed a refreshing change of scenery. And that's what we get as (most of) the Scooby Gang head off to UC Sunnydale, home to some of the nastiest demons Buffy has ever faced. There's more of what we Buffy fans love. Super scripts, exciting action scenes, excellent characterisation and amazing performances. As well as this, there's the return of Spike and Harmony (who's a little different this time around). Tara, who will become an important part of Willow's life later on this season, is introduced as is Riley, part of a little thing called the Initiative... Hush is the standout eppy on this box, if not the whole series. It is truly nightmarish, scary and tense yet funny. The whole cast do a great job, and although there's less Giles and Xander than we'd like, they're still around for light relief as is the hysterical Anya. Make sure you purchase this boxset as soon as it hits the shelves! Your life won't be worth living without it......
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended!, 5 Sep 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season 4 (Box Set 1) [VHS] [1998] (VHS Tape)
I give this set of episodes 5 stars to make up for the previous 2 reviews, both of which gave it 1 star. Most episodes during this fourth season are still brilliant. I agree that Riley was not the best addition to the show, but that alone should not lead to a rating of 1 star.
Hush (ep. 10) is one of the best Buffy episodes ever, and Something Blue (ep. 9) and Fear Itself (ep. 4) are hilarious. Willow's heartbreak in Wild At Heart (ep. 6) is nicely done, and Spike's return in The Harsh Light of Day (ep. 3) is excellent. Angel crosses over in Pangs (ep. 8). These 6 episodes are must-sees and provide a great reason to buy this Season 4 box set.
To sum up, do not make the mistake of hating this season just because it dared to make some changes. Some worked, some did not, but Buffy is still the best show on TV.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buffys most mature and best season, 3 Sep 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season 4 (Box Set 1) [VHS] [1998] (VHS Tape)
Although a departure from recent buffy adventures, this first half of buffys fourth season moved into more mature terroitory. the pains of growing up, relationships, and teen angst is evident. we are introduced to riley[ buffys new boyfriend].Tara willows wiccan girfriend and returns of anya + spike. Of course butt-kicking mayhem again ensues with the introductoin of one of the best monsters in buffy history{the gentleman} in the terrifying "hush" featured on this box set. The main enemy the iniative is introduced, who become more of a threat against the slayer as season progresses. Any person who underates buffys fourth season maybe because of its very different style of storytelling. College is a time of change in the slayerretes lives which moves away from high school and family to the adult world, trying to find their feet and discover themselves. Of course angel has gone, cordeila too which also maybe a source of its underated status but just because of change it does not mean its the shows downfall. First time viewers who had never watched the show before loved this, and i fell reviewers who gave it * are seriously undermining the show. Brilliant/ A must have. Embrace the change.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Some of the best single episodes yet, 17 Aug 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season 4 (Box Set 1) [VHS] [1998] (VHS Tape)
Buffy season four had a hard act to follow after the amazing climax to season 3 and the gang moving from high school to college.
As a whole season 4 is not as good as the first three. The main story arc is no where near as good as the season three story concerning Faith, the rogue slayer, however the series contains some of the best stand-alone episodes yet.
In the first box set of the season you get episodes such as 'The Harsh Light Of Day' which marks Spikes return and the first crossover with the new spin-off show 'Angel'. 'Wild At Heart' is another episode that focuses on Oz and his wolf side and episode 10, 'Hush' has recently been nominated for an Emmy.
The start of the series definatly lacks something after the departure of Angel last season but picks up as it goes on a few episodes with the return of Spike and Anya, the ex-vengeance demon, now dating Xander who is moving from bad job to bad job having not made it into college.
Overall a good buy that will make you want the second half of this series and with two crossovers the complete set of Angel videos as well.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not at its best but still very buffy., 5 Sep 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season 4 (Box Set 1) [VHS] [1998] (VHS Tape)
This season of Buffy had alot to live up to. It lost Angel and Cordelia to the spin off show. This series of buffy moved alittle bit away from fantasy and more into sci fi. The iniative was the weakest plot line. But the transfer from school to college went well. Its a pitty that the villian Sunday had to be disposed of so quickly in "the freshman". She could have given some Spike & Dru comedy to the show. The series was about breaking up the scooby gang alittle, but this just makes some episodes hard to watch. There seems to be a lack of cosy teamwork like the last three years. Riley was an ok addition to the team but never really gets to shine as a character, he`s to busy trying to be a replacement for angel. Other additions like Anya and Spike were great and made alot of comedic releaf. "hush" is the best episode. And season 5 is just a month away from its premiere in the USA. It looks asthough its going to get better. But dont dis season 4 its still essential buffy viewing. Buy It!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Buffy finally shows signs of weakness!, 6 Nov 2001
This review is from: Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season 4 (Box Set 1) [VHS] [1998] (VHS Tape)
I suspose it had to happen....a Buffy set that is less than perfect. After three great seasons (each better than the last,) expectations for season 4 were high and as often happens in life expectations were left unfulfilled! Season 4 starts weakly with the first couple of episodes. There is some attempt to duplicate the dichotomy of the slayer/schoolgirl relationship that worked so well in the first threes seasons. Buffy clearly feels uncomfortable with the new college surrounding, but it never quite works as well. Likewise, new beau Riley is at best unconvincing and at worst slightly irritating. It seems unlikely that Buffy would find attraction in such a damp squib after her tempestuos relationship with Angel. It is a clear sign of weakness when the best episodes rely on some Angel reference or season cross-over. Worst of all is the introduction of "The Initiative" which seems an ill-conceived and poorly focused "villian." Some of the episodes here are clumsy and some just plain silly. Earlier Buffy was often flippant but never silly.
So why 4 stars? Well Buffy below par is still far better than most TV and there are still a handfull of great episodes in this season including the classic "Hush." The show and it's stars still look great and there are other plusses too. The transition of Giles from (arguably) core of the show to somewhat side-lined figure is nicely handled. Spike is developed in a novel direction and has many great lines. The appearances of Angel and Faith recall the heights this show can reach at it's very best and Sarah Michelle Gellar is as good as ever.
Season 4 had a very hard act to follow and this is still very good if not quite great TV. Whether this show will be able to return to it's former glories will depend on whether the shows producers and writers can rediscover their best ideas and enthusiasm. Quite a challenge, but if anyone can rise to it Buffy can!
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5.0 out of 5 stars What is everyone's problem with Riley?, 29 Nov 2000
This review is from: Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season 4 (Box Set 1) [VHS] [1998] (VHS Tape)
Okay. I'm a fan of Angel. ...No bones there, but does thatpreclude me liking Riley too?I think not...As far as I'm concerned, Blucas is a welcome antithesis to Boreanaz's much darker, brooding soul-heavy Vampire. There's a simplicity to Riley Jacobs, coupled with a strong traditionally heroic predilection which is actually quite refreshing. Secondly, Blucas' comic timing is also reasonable. Sure, he'll never push Brendan aside, but who is likely to?
The Fourth Series takes the inevitable step towards College life for the (and I refuse to be happy calling them this) Scooby Gang. We stumble across Buffy and Willow wandering around campus, the former somewhat over-whelmed by the experience, the latter wallowing in the scholarly spirit of UC Sunnydale. I must confess to a wry smile at Buffy and Riley's first encounter, the details of which I dare not repeat for fear of ruining it for those yet to see 'The Freshman'.
There are a couple of risks taken by the first part of the Fourth Series may or may not come off. The Initiative is one and could disappoint. Maggie Walsh annoys me and is a poor character. However, Buffy's dalliance with Parker Abrahams is interesting and enthralling as much as the parting of ways of Willow and Oz is sombre and tragic. One thing to be emphasised are the fight sequences. The action is faster and more precise, sometimes lacking in previous episodes. Blucas is slow in a couple of sequences but gets better, and Gellar seems to be taking her fighting seriously.
It seems as if all but Gellar are destined to take a back seat in the Fourth series, but the welcome return to form of James Marsters is exquisitely entertaining. Darkly arid wit and scything observation on and to all concerned is wonderfully nasty. I've sorely missed Spike, despite his following Manchester United. Verbal jousting between he and Xander is nothing short of brilliant.
All in all, a good start and Blucas and Marsters are well worth their title-credits billing towards the end of the boxed set.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Shame about Oz, 2 Nov 2000
This review is from: Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season 4 (Box Set 1) [VHS] [1998] (VHS Tape)
Well, as has been said time and again - not as good as the 2nd and 3rd season. But then Joss Whedon was working with a difficult transition and managed to bring it around pretty well. The loss of some of the regular cast is a shame, but if you watch Angel you'll get your fix. Giles and Xander were marginalised - but I think that people are forgetting that the show is bigger then just one season, Mr Whedon obviously has plans for them and he set up areas for them to develop quite well. Some of the episodes were brilliantly crafted - I hope that Hush wins a whole bundle of awards. And of course there is the Riley issue - sweet guy but quite clearly under-developed. Riley wasn't the problem, the storyline surrounding him was. I LOVED the final episode and found the idea of the history of the Slayer's to be fascinating - apparently this will be developed in Season 5. My only gripe is that Oz is out of it for a while - sometimes you need the Oz sense of calm in your weekly world to make you look at stuff differently. But I also respect that Joss is brave enough to make sacrifices for a more emotionally realistic storyline - Buffy does teach us that life isn't always roses but it also teaches how to deal with this. I think I will look on Season 4 as a 'moving-on' series and save my serious criticisms for something which hasn't given me quite so much pleasure over the years. A suggestion though - Buffy is the ultimate girl-power role model for younger women right? Why not try to make her a little less reliant on having a boyfriend and see how she develops on her own for a while - independent and free. It could be interesting, and would be Joss's biggest statement yet.
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