Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1996–2003)
7.7/10
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Xander and several other students are possessed by the spirit of a demonic breed of hyenas that wreak havoc at the high school

Director:

Bruce Seth Green

Writers:

Joss Whedon (created by), Matt Kiene | 5 more credits »
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Sarah Michelle Gellar ... Buffy Summers
Nicholas Brendon ... Xander Harris
Alyson Hannigan ... Willow Rosenberg
Charisma Carpenter ... Cordelia Chase (credit only)
Anthony Head ... Rupert Giles (as Anthony Stewart Head)
Ken Lerner ... Principal Bob Flutie
Eion Bailey ... Kyle DuFours
Michael McCraine ... Rhonda Kelley (as Michael McRaine)
Brian Gross ... Tor Hauer
Jennifer Sky ... Heidi Barrie
Jeff Maynard Jeff Maynard ... Lance
James Stephens ... Dr. Weirick
David Brisbin ... Mr. Anderson
Barbara Whinnery ... Mrs. Anderson (as Barbara K. Whinnery)
Gregory White Gregory White ... Coach Herrold
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Storyline

On a school field trip to the zoo, Kyle DuFours's gang of bullies taunt good boy Lance, till Xander stops them balancing the nerd over the fence of still quarantined hyena's- suddenly they are all eerily effected by the evil beasts' magical stare. Willow is completely smitten with Xander, but he chucks in her maths tutoring when the hyena spell progresses, as sensed by the piglet Herbert principal Bob Flutie introduces as mascot for the Sunnydale Highschool's 'Razorbacks' football team. Next Xander dumps Wilow, fully joining Kyle's 'hyena pack' of bullies. When the four known bullies are called in Flutie's office for devouring mascot Herbert, they eat him too. Luckily Xander was enforcing himself upon Buffy, so she knocked him down and locked him up. Giles, who first thought Xander was just suffering from pubertal hormones, now realizes it's a Massai 'primary' cult soul transfer, and Buffy tells him about what zoo keeper Dr. Weirick told them about the nasty hyenas, so they go talk to... Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

hyena | bully | zoo | piglet | dodgeball | See All (14) »


Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 April 1997 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Buffy says that "Apparently Noah didn't want Hyenas on the ark because he thought they were an evil, impure mixture of dogs and cats." Hyenas are cats or at least, they're feliform, rather than caniform. They're related to cats, weasels, ferrets, and mongooses. Their doggy shape and pack behavior is convergent evolution. See more »

Goofs

Principal Flutie at one point says it costs a fortune to feed the new school mascot, Herbert the Piglet. This is strange since any pig would be perfectly happy to eat any leftovers and slop from the school cafeteria. On the other hand, it is of course perfectly in character for Flutie the confused intellectual not to be aware of this, and possibly even being scammed by whoever is in charge of feeding the pig. See more »

Quotes

Rupert Giles: Testosterone is a great equalizer. It turns all men into morons.
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Connections

Referenced in Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Phases (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Theme
Performed by Nerf Herder
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User Reviews

 
It's Nicholas Brendon's turn to shine.
14 June 2015 | by BA_HarrisonSee all my reviews

After the disappointingly routine Never Kill a Boy on the First Date (#1.5), it's great to get something that is a little more original, this episode revolving around demonic animal possession, with Xander and a group of bullying alpha students becoming hosts to evil hyena spirits while on a school trip to Sunnydale Zoo. Once back on campus, the pack prey on the weak, moving from killing and eating the school mascot to attacking and devouring the principal. Buffy realises what is happening and enlists the help of the zoo-keeper to try and reverse the transmigration of the spirits back to the hyenas.

The Pack's success owes more to great performances than showy special effects (all we get here are glowing eyes), with Nicholas Brendon as evil Xander being this episode's best asset, the actor ably proving that he can play dark and threatening as well as dorky. Standout scenes include Xander attacking Buffy and belittling Willow, and a creepy attack on a family in a car. The best quips comes from Giles ("He's turned into a sixteen-year-old boy. Of course, you'll have to kill him") and Willow ("Why couldn't Xander be possessed by a puppy? Or-or some ducks?"). A neat twist towards the end adds to the fun of this very entertaining episode.


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