A decent ‘arc episode’ as the Scoobies aim to stop The Mayor from getting his hands on
a MacGuffin the Box of Gavrok. Good focus on the gang looking to their uncertain futures. 8/10
20. The Prom
Buffy and Angel’s doomed romance finally reaches the doom on Prom Night. This one is very sentimental and melodramatic but, gosh darn it, it’s hard not to be moved by it. 8.5/10
21. Graduation Day: Part One
The last day of high school – and the Mayor’s Ascension – nears. Whedon does a terrific job of raking up the drama. Buffy and Faith’s big fight has to be the tensest fight scene in all of Buffy.
22. Graduation Day: Part Two
‘Becoming’ is probably the more personal finale, but ‘Graduation Day’ feels like the grandest. The climax is just so thrilling and the central theme is stronger (ascension = graduation).
Verdict: I love the later years of Buffy, but the final year of the Scoobies’ high school life marks the end of its true golden age. Whedon and his team largely deliver classic after classic this season, and the cast are at the top of their game, too. The Mayor is a fantastic subversive villain – all ‘gee, golly’ charm – but Faith is the real breakout star of the year. The rogue Slayer is definitely the show’s second-best anti-hero, after Spike. In terms of story arcs, season two and season three are so close it is hard to pick between them – though season two might just have the edge because it is so integral to Buffy’s story. On the strength of its standalone episodes alone, however, season three is hands down Buffy‘s greatest ever season.