Our subject this time out is Buffy the Vampire Slayer's "Ted". I have to say this one was tough, as I didn't really find much in the way of strong character moments going on. We also have a caveat with this one.
I didn't include any moments that could have been attributable to Ted's drugged desserts, which further limited our optional moments. But let's see what I've come up with:
Our Strong Moments-
For Buffy: I like Buffy's verbal jabs at Ted when he's trying to take over her household, when clearly it is too soon for him to think it's his house.
For Willow: I want to give Willow a kudo for figuring out the drugged snacks, but I can't. The script bungles the reveal and makes it too obvious
for her. No kudos for Willow.
For Xander: I cannot give Xan and special credit.
For Giles: Giles' pulling the crossbow bolt out of his back and dusting a vampire with it is pure Watcher-training awesome.
For Cordelia: Cordelia's got a super-sense... of style! It allows her to pick out a rug as the wrong decor, which leads to the discovery
of Robo-Ted's secrets.
For Angel: Angel really didn't do anything worth mentioning.
Our Weakness of Character -
Against Buffy: Buffy is pretty unpleasant in this episode toward Ted, even before she has reason to not like him. But for her
weakest character moment, I'm going to have to go with her pulling out the Slayer-Fu and knocking Ted down
the stairs. Yes, he punched her and she had the right to respond. And, yes he is a robot -- but she didn't know
that. There were ways she could have lashed out at Ted for hitting her without going to the Slayer-place, which
even she acknowledges.
As she says, "I'm the Slayer. I had no right to hit him like that." ... at least before she knew he was a psychotic robot.
She just plain loses control of her temper.
Against Willow: I'm pretty disturbed by how fast Wills blows off the fact that Buffy thinks she killed somebody.
Against Xander: Ditto for Xander, once Buffy tells him straight out that Ted was just a guy and not a monster [before they find out
he's a homicidal robot]. Like, what is wrong with these kids??
Against Giles: Ditto to Giles... you'd think he'd at least be a lot more concerned about the Watchers Council's reaction.
Against Cordy: And to Cordelia, too. NOONE seems to be dealing seriously with the fact that Buffy apparently knocked a regular
person down a flight of stairs and KILLED him.
Against Angel: Angel didn't do enough to annoy.
I also want to note here that I didn't give any special demerits against Joyce, even though some of her behavior would certainly deserve it. This is because I think there is a clear enough indication that Ted has been plying Joyce regularly with his 'special cooking' by the time that Buffy first becomes aware that her mother is getting seriously involved. It's possible that you may want to dock Joyce for not speaking to Buffy beforehand about dating Ted in the first place, but I don't feel that way. I don't think it was necessary for Joyce to list every guy she was going to dinner with for Buffy's approval and by the time that things had progressed to where there was an obligation to let Buffy know about her not-single status, she was already being drugged by Tedbot. So, for these reasons I've let Joyce slide. Your Mileage May Vary -- general fandom is harder on Joyce than I generally am.