Buffy Fashion Roulette: “Empty Places”
The roulette wheel has spoken. The episode to be dissected today is season 7’s “Empty Places”, one of the show’s last episodes ever and the first from season 7 that I’ve tackled. But first, our results from “Buffy Vs. Dracula” must be weighed.
For best dressed, the only two candidates with a substantial, double digit percentage of votes were Anya and Buffy. Despite sulking her way through the episode, Buffy was the winner, grabbing 40% of the vote to Anya’s 30%.
There were three solid finalists for Worst Dressed- Xander with his rhinestone Hawaiian print shirt, Riley with his flowing muscle tee, and Willow with her everything. Riley held down 17% of the vote, Willow came in second with 26%, and Xander bedazzled the competition with a very solid 40%, making him the winner of his very first Buffy Fashion Roulette Worst Dressed award. Congratulations, Xander!Now, “Empty Places.” Because the apocalypse looms and every episode only lasts for a day or so, there isn’t a lot of fashion variety among the characters. Some of them only wear one outfit, which is tragic. Luckily, there are like eight hundred people in “Empty Places”, meaning there’s a point to this. Whew.
We begin the episode with Buffy pensively patrolling the streets, which are packed with cars full of Sunnydale citizens desperate to make their way out of town. It looks like a hurricane evacuation, or maybe REM’s “Everybody Hurts” video.
Strangely, Buffy is wearing a coat, and beneath the coat she has tied a sweater around her waist. Is that a real thing that people do? I definitely live in a region of the country where layers are of paramount importance, and I can’t recall ever having seen someone wearing a sweater tied around their waist underneath their coat. I’m not sure what is going on with this outfit. The coat’s all exposed seams-y, which could be a metaphor for Buffy’s impending vulnerability, but it’s probably not because everybody wears exposed seams on this show. The pants are an odd choice, as well.
Hey look, Clem’s here! We can’t see much of his outfit, but it ain’t bad. It’s very Clem. He dresses like a burnout who temps at construction sites, or maybe a freelance editor. He drives a cool car, too. Punch bug!
Meanwhile, Giles and Willow are pretending to be from Interpol, which makes me get Interpol stuck in my head (Interpol the band, not Interpol the agency/FBI warning folks from VHS tapes/Carmen Sandiego stalkers). Giles looks goooood! He’s a very classy dude, that Giles. Check out the trenchcoat/turtleneck sweater combo. Only someone like Giles could pull that off. Willow doesn’t look so bad. Her hair looks good- the color is impeccable in the sunlight. The outfit isn’t terrible by Willow’s standards, although really, who knows what paisley horrors may lurk beneath her jacket? The cuffs seem to be an ominous giveaway that something is typically amiss.
Willow and Buffy are visiting Xander in the hospital because ohmigosh, it’s the one right after he loses his eye and how could the roulette wheel DO this to me, make me get all teary-eyed while I’m trying to make fun of people’s clothes all immature-like? It’s just not fair. NOT FAIR.
Buffy has taken the sweater from around her waist and put it on, and she’s taken her coat off and is holding it. That’s more like it, Buffster. Sarah Michelle Gellar seems to have a cold in this episode and her voice is all scratchy, so she sounds like Lindsay Lohan. Tee hee.
Hey, d’ya wanna feel really horrifyingly depressed really quickly? Yeah? Okay, check out Willow’s face when Buffy told her that she’s not gonna stick around to play card games, even though she said she would.
Back at the house, Anya and Andrew are giving the Slayerettes a news update about ubervamps. Andrew’s in a hoodie and jeans, which is fine and good. Emma Caufield’s comic timing really hit a peak in season 7, didn’t it? I am a bit baffled by her outfit, though. I think they bought a dress and added trim to it. Of course, the trim does not match the dress at all. I’ve included two photos for your perusal.
I can’t tell what’s going on with Rona. All I can tell is that she has on some black jeans and a t-shirt. Well, at least it’s not the Ronoveralls.
Kennedy’s hair looks pretty awful, but hey, she’s just hanging around the house so whatever. Pass.
Faith and Kennedy are in the kitchen sharing a slightly-altered bag of Ruffles. Faith’s shirt is diabolically misleading. It looks like a nice prep school shirt, but when you peep it from the side it has those trashy criss-cross shoelace-looking weaves where the seams should be. That is soooo Faith.
Later in the day, Buffy heads back to now-deserted Sunnydale High.
Caleb dresses so poorly. He mismatches his blacks (sooo pedestrian) and wears jeans that look pleated even though they’re not. He’s such a failure.
Faith has taken the Slayerettes to “let off some steam” at The Bronze. This seems to have translated into “underage drinking.” Faith looks, you know, classic Faith. Midriff bared, tight jeans, surrounded by fratty dudes. Personally, I love it.
Kennedy is wearing a jean jacket which would normally look all badass on her, but her hair makes it look a little soccer mom-y. In this screen capture she looks like she wants to jump Dawn’s bones.
I know, that’s creepy. Look at how cute and lively Dawn looks here! And don’t you know Michelle Trachtenberg was absolutely THRILLED to wear this top and to curl her hair? It shows.
Bad Buffy is in the shadows as usual, so I can’t snark on her too hard. The ruching is a little silly-looking. The best part of this scene is that Evil Buffy has the same scratchy throat-inducing cold that Buffy has. HMMMM…
Back at Da Club, Amanda is underage-drinking in a giant sweater coat and ill-fitting khakis. No wonder she didn’t get carded.
One time I ripped something in my shoulder and I had to wear a sling for weeks. It sucked and I hated it and I had to ask my roommates to help me get dressed for at least a week after it happened. I had to drape coats over one shoulder and I wore as many sleeveless and button-up items as possible to make getting dressed as tolerable as possible. That said, I have no idea what Rona was thinking here.
Faith took out some cops and Buffy helped. Since she’s no fun, everybody has to go home. Check out the sparkly shirt-wearing Slayerette on the left who’s being carried out of The Bronze with a bottle in her hand. That’s my kind of woman right there.
The Special Spike Accessory Of The Day is Andrew riding bitch with a football helmet on. I give it high marks.
Hey hey, it’s Principal Wood! He looks pretty sexy in that leather jacket.
Oh man, Xander’s home. But he looks really good! Willow still has not revealed what she’s wearing under that jacket. I think I like it better that way. Anya has changed into a sweater t-shirt and I’m not sure why. It is midriff-baring. Also, her belt has lots of shit on it. I’m not saying that we should regulate our outfits based on our partners’ hospital release status, but were I in her situation, I would not wear this outfit. At least it didn’t have a big picture of an eye on it, though. Were Willow circa season 4 bringing Xander home, she’d totally make that mistake. The eye would be on a surfboard and beneath the eye it would say, like, “Calfornia Eyeball Surfing Co” or something.
Ok, so NOW Buffy has ditched both the coat and the sweater and is wearing only the sheer white long-sleeved shirt that was beneath it all. I think the costumers did this on purpose, to make it look like she was wearing many different outfits throughout the show while managing to preserve some semblance of continuity. This is a good idea, except that the sweater worn ’round the waist beneath the coat is completely and utterly ridiculous.
Oh yeah and check it, drunk girl is right behind her, and it looks like she’s already hungover. Between this Ke$ha lookalike and the sideways-belted, go go boots-wearing Slayerette to her left, Buffy could start a band.
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