Season 3 Episode 04 - Beauty and the Beasts
It's that time of month again, and Willow turns the job of watching Oz (who is in full werewolf form and locked up in the library's book return cage) over to volunteer Xander... who promptly lays down and goes to sleep. On patrol, Faith shares with Buffy her conviction that all men, no matter how sensitive they may act, are beasts deep down inside. And, unobserved by the two Slayers, a young man named Jeff Walken runs through the thick foliage, but falls, screaming as his unseen pursuer overtakes him.
The next day at school, Buffy runs into Scott Hope, and all seems well as they hang with Scott's friends Debbie and Pete, a couple. They discuss Mr. Platt, the school counselor, with whom Buffy has an appointment and who Debbie has to see because she's failing senior biology. Oz offers his notes from that class as Buffy goes to keep her appointment, kissing Scott goodbye. Oz and Willow go to the library to see Giles extremely agitated. Walken, a friend of Oz's, was found mauled to death in the woods, and Giles has to entertain the unappealing possibility that it was Oz. Xander protests that it couldn't have been, since he was there all night and he only "rested his eyes" a few times. Everyone knows the truth, even Xander, as he tries to joke away Giles' anger. And to make matters worse, the window in the book cage is open. Both Willow and Oz are quite upset. Buffy keeps her appointment with Mr. Platt, who kindly but firmly asks about why Buffy ran away. Buffy glosses over the details of her relationship with Angel, and Mr. Platt tells her that one can't stay lost in love forever, or else "love becomes your master... and you're just its dog." A troubled Buffy returns to the library to find everyone moping over the possibility that Oz killed someone, but she rallies the troops to action. When they suggest that Faith watch Oz that night, Oz gets upset and tries to leave, but it's too close to sundown, so he unhappily slouches into the book return cage. That night on patrol, Buffy sees something running through the trees. She gives chase and it knocks her down, but when she gets up she sees her assailant and her eyes go wide — it's Angel!
They fight, and Buffy manages to knock Angel out. At the morgue, Xander and Cordelia freak out at the sight of Jeff Walken's hideously mauled body, but Willow cold-bloodedly collects the necessary evidence... and then faints. Buffy takes Angel back to the mansion and chains him up. He's feral and animalistic, nothing like the Angel she knew. And there's a burned-in impression of his body on the floor where he came back. Buffy heads back to the library and relieves Faith on Oz-watching duty, and as soon as the other Slayer leaves she starts in on the card catalog. Giles arrives in the morning to find both Oz and Buffy asleep. Buffy has been reading up on some pretty heavy stuff, and after he pries a little she tells him she dreamt that Angel returned. She asks him if it's possible for someone to return from the demon dimension, and what Angel would be like if it was. Giles' answers are not encouraging to her. Willow arrives with doughnuts, but is cagey about what she found at the morgue. Buffy's too-intense questioning of Willow makes it clear: Buffy thinks Angel could be the killer. The prospect bums her out all day, and lunch with Scott, Debbie and Pete is a somewhat morose affair despite Scott's sweet attempts to joke her out of it. She runs off and heads back to the mansion where she asks Angel if he can understand her. He doesn't respond, and lashes out like an abused dog when she tries to touch him. Even more upset than before, Buffy heads back to school. She barges into Mr. Platt's office and starts to tearfully spill about Angel when she notices Mr. Platt's cigarette burned all the way down to the filter in his hand. He's dead, mauled terribly.
Pete talks Debbie into a storage closet for some make-out time, but gets upset when he notices an almost-empty jar of some green liquid. Debbie protests that she was just trying to get rid of the stuff because of what it does to Pete, but he only gets angrier, saying it's not the green liquid that does it, it's her. With that, he changes into a monstrous version of himself and starts hitting Debbie, telling her that Mr. Platt won't listen to her whining any more. Suddenly, he seems to come to his senses, and his face returns to normal. He rushes to Debbie, hugging her and telling her he's sorry. She tells him it's okay. At the library, everyone's a little happier because the coroner's conclusion that Mr. Platt was killed during the day lets Oz off the hook. However, it's almost sundown and Oz isn't there. He's meeting with Debbie to give her his senior biology notes, and he notices she's sporting a new black eye. Debbie dismisses his concern as Pete watches from afar. Oz returns to the library and, upon hearing the evidence, realizes that the link between the two victims is Debbie. They conclude that Pete could be the killer, and everyone goes off to find Pete and Debbie while Oz locks himself in the cage. At the mansion, Angel breaks free of his chains and runs off. Buffy and Willow find Debbie in the bathroom trying to cover up her black eye, and they confront her. She lets slip that Pete is the culprit, but blames herself, saying she's what makes him angry. Buffy angrily confronts her, saying two people are dead. "Who's gonna be next?" she asks. It would appear to be Oz, who is locked in the cage as Pete shows up. He accuses Oz of putting moves on Debbie, and Oz's warnings about what's gonna happen when the sun goes down are cut off when Pete's monstrous alter ego comes out.
Pete rips the door off the cage and starts to brutalize Oz, but then the sun sets, and Oz changes into a werewolf. Suddenly the fight is more even, and Oz bites Pete, whose scream brings everyone to the library. Buffy grabs the tranquilizer rifle and is about to fire, but Debbie shoves her so the dart goes into Giles, who collapses. Oz escapes, pursued by Faith and Willow, while Buffy chases Pete off. Pete escapes and meets Debbie in the storage closet. Debbie tells him to leave Sunnydale because Buffy knows, but Pete is enraged and accuses Debbie of telling. Meanwhile, Faith and Willow manage to shoot Oz with the tranquilizer rifle. Buffy tracks Pete to the storage closet, where she finds Debbie dead. Then Pete attacks, but their fight is interrupted by the arrival of Angel. In full vampire face, Angel attacks Pete, and kills him. As Buffy watches, Angel's face reverts to normal. "Buffy?" he asks shakily, hugging her as Buffy starts to weep. The next day stories of what happened are all over school, but Willow knows the truth: Pete originally made the formula to be more macho for Debbie, but eventually didn't need the formula to change. Buffy comforts Scott, who is shaken by the deaths of his lifelong friends. "It's just that you never really know what's going on inside somebody, do you?" he asks. Buffy contemplates that later as she watches a trembling Angel sleep.