I regret to inform you that “Never Kill a Boy on the First Date,” despite the title, is one of the most forgettable Buffy episodes. Ever. That title, in fact, might be the most Buffy thing about it, a play on a thing girls aren’t supposed to do, rewritten for a slayer’s lifestyle.
It’s not that it’s a terrible episode (you can pick your own; there are many lists online to help you) or one of the just plain egregious ones that will be truly painful to watch (“Where the Wild Things Are”). Like the random boy Buffy suddenly has a huge crush on, it’s just bland. Plain toast, not quite toasted enough. Rice with one drop of sriracha.
If you are struggling to remember this episode at all, I feel you. I had it mixed up with “Lie to Me,” which, while not stellar, has some heart, at least. (And that guy from Roswell.) “Never Kill a Boy” is a loosey-goosey take on the old “Can a woman have it all?” chestnut, roasted to a fine slayer crisp.
I know. That’s a terrible sentence. Kind of like Owen’s a terrible person for Buffy to have a crush on. Let’s get on with it, shall we?
Season 1, Episode 5, “Never Kill a Boy on the First Date”
Written by: Rob Des Hotel & Dean Batali
Directed by: David Semel
Original airdate: Monday, March 31, 1997
Rewatch date: Friday, March 31, 2017
“My calculations are precise.”
“They’re bad calculations! Bad!”