Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 7, Episode 19

Empty Places (29 Apr. 2003)

TV Episode  |  TV-PG  |   |  Action, Drama, Fantasy
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 879 users  
Reviews: 10 user | 2 critic

After their horrifying loss at the vineyard, the gang turn against Buffy and begin to follow Faith instead. Meanwhile, Spike and Andrew travel to an old church to question a priest about Caleb.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Rupert Giles (as Anthony Stewart Head)
Kristy Wu ...
Police Officer


In the aftermath of the defeat and loss of Molly and a few other potential slayers, Buffy is beside herself with guilt for underestimating Caleb's powers, while the twisted ex-priest launches an attack against Buffy at the deserted Sunnydale High School just as the population begins to evacuate the town when news of the Hellmouth begins to spread. That evening, Faith takes the stressed out potential slayers out to blow off some steam, but soon they run afoul of Sunnydale's Finest police force whom are still after Faith for her escape from prison back in Los Angeles. Hurting from their last battle and unsure of Buffy's leadership, the gang makes a decision that may change everything. Written by Alex

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »




Release Date:

29 April 2003 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The inscription that Spike & Andrew are shown in the Church is written using Greek letters, but is Latin. Transliterated, it reads: NON TIBI EST EI SOLAE TRACHTARE LIXET. There are several interesting things about this inscription. First, because Greek literature pre-dated Roman (and even during the period of the Roman Empire, Greek continued to be the lingua franca of the Eastern Roman Empire), virtually all transliterations were from Greek into Latin, not the reverse. Second, the transliteration uses the Greek letter chi (X) instead of the correct letter kappa ("K"), and so the transliteration contains two words (TRACHTRARE & LIXET) which aren't actually words (but would be if the chi's were replaced by kappas, yielding the Latin NON TIBI EST EI SOLAE TRACTARE LICET). Third, the Latin is inauthentic (i.e., it is not something a person who knew Latin would write, but is more akin to an elementary translation of the desired English meaning that Spike tells us). Fourth, Spike interestingly renders the Latin into archaic English: "It is not for thee, it is for her alone to wield." The portion of the inscription that Spike translates as "It is not for thee" is "non tibi est", and there is no lexeme (word) in the Latin that corresponds to the English "it". Like many languages, the subject is implied by the form of the verb, in this case "est" (the 3rd person singular indicative active form of "sum"; the Latin verb "to be". Spike renders "tibi" as "for thee", although there is no reason to use "thee" rather than you (or yours). Finally, a more accurate but less interesting translation would be "it is not yours [not for you]; only she may handle it". See more »


At 9:38 you can see the reflection of the camera operator in the oven door above the stove. See more »


Kennedy: You have to pretend there's a big party here.
Xander: That's fine. Parties in this house, I usually end up having to rebuild something.
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References The Wizard of Oz (1939) See more »


Buffy the Vampire Slayer Theme
Written by Nerf Herder
Performed by Brandon K. Verrett
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User Reviews

Way to stab us in the back.
12 May 2009 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

So yeah, season 7 wasn't as great as the previous 6 seasons, but it was still brilliant in its own way. It has been stated before that Joss looks over every script for each episode to approve of it and perhaps make some additional changes of his own. When I first watched this episode, I was so angry. I was in tears. It felt like I was punched in the gut for no words could describe the disbelief I felt at the Scoobies behaviour towards Buffy. Sure they've had interventions and disagreements before (see season 3, when they "attack" Buffy once they find out she's been keeping Angel being alive as a secret) but never have they full out turned against her like that. It just did not fit. I watched it and thought to myself "who the hell are these people?!?!?! Joss Whedon, what the frack is going on?" But now, (after 6 years lol) I have come to the conclusion that Joss did it on purpose. He wanted this effect to happen to us. He wanted us to feel exactly how Buffy felt. The entire episode builds up from the aftermath of the last episode, which started out with everyone on Buffy's side, trusting her, following her only to have it end badly. REALLY badly. Having Xander, the heart of the group, lose an eye was like a slap in the face for everyone. And in "Empty Places" you can see Buffy shutting down. You can tell how awful she feels about Xander and doubting her ability to lead these people, to then realizing that she was right all along about Caleb and the cellar, only to THEN have the closest people to her turn their backs on her. And having Dawn (that biotch) kicking her out of her own house (again, i really hate Dawn at this moment).

In this episode, we are Buffy. We hurt, and we're so tired that we give up at the end.

Joss makes us realize that sometimes, during dark times, the people you care about just might not be there for you. That things can indeed, get worse.

Of course, they also had to end the episode with Buffy so despondent because then in the next episode Spike can swoop in and be the big hero, thus again further developing the "new" relationship between Buffy and Spike.

Well done. I hated this episode with every fibre of my being, while realizing just how good it was in it's intent to make me feel this way. (Does that even make any sense?)

35 of 40 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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