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Buffy Fashion Roulette: “Bad Girls”

July 19, 2010

While creating these Buffy Fashion Roulette posts, I’ve found that I tend to pigeonhole myself into a comfort zone. That comfort zone exists specifically from the first episode of season 4 until the last episode of season 7. There’s something about those four seasons that compels me, and I’m not sure quite what it is. The film quality seems to be better in later seasons,which could have something to do with it; this doesn’t affect my viewing in and of itself, but the later the episode, the better the screen capture. Also, the Scoobies generally wore better fashion after they graduated from high school, which makes my job less Hellmouth-y. Nonetheless, I suddenly feel compelled to eventually dissect all 144 episodes, from “Welcome To The Hellmouth” to “Chosen”, so I need to make sure to spread my fashion recaps out a little more evenly.

That said, you can imagine my delight when “Bad Girls” came up on the roulette wheel. It is positively full of debatable fashion; it covers a lot of ground; it’s a fun episode to watch; it pushes me outside of my comfort zone. Fortunately for me, there was plenty of girl-on-girl innuendo to push me right back into my comfort zone. So join me, friends, as we set off on an especially challenging Buffy Fashion Roulette adventure.

But first. Announcements! I am abridging the Buffy Fashion Roulette rules a bit. There has been a little debate about what types of fashion expression merit discussion. Although they weren’t originally up for skewering, I’ve decided that costumes and period pieces are now on the table. Costumes will be judged as costumes; period pieces will be judged because technically this whole sojourn into Buffy fashion is one big time travel, so there’s no reason to get all specific. Characters’ uniforms, however, will not be counted for or against them, as they’re just trying to do their jobs and if we judge them for it we’re officially The Man.

The results from “Empty Places” are in! Faith was Best Dressed with a pretty solid majority of votes. She received almost a quarter of the vote. The only other person who came close was Giles, with 18% of votes. This is Faith’s first appearance in a Buffy Fashion Roulette poll and it’s her first win. She wore some trashy-ass outfits y’all. I see by her outstanding margin of victory that my trash-appreciative readers are some people I can fully get behind. Kudos to Faith, and kudos to you.

Notice how Faith’s bag o’ chips is blocking Kennedy’s outfit in that last photo? That’s a metaphor for you guys, because you freaking hated what Kennedy was wearing. In fact, three Slayerettes were the top vote-getters for Worst Dressed. Kennedy was third-worst with 20%. For awhile it looked like Rona was going to run away with the anti-title, but over the weekend Amanda started sneaking up on her. At poll closing time, Rona is officially Worst Dressed with 27% to Amanda’s 26%. All three had never appeared in a Buffy Fashion Roulette poll before. As you can see by the close results of this poll (the closest ever!), every vote counts! Truly!

Sweet, merciful Zeus.

Let’s get to some vintage Faith, shall we? “Bad Girls” style.

We kick off the episode with Faith and Buffy slayin’ in the cemetery. This episode is an exploration of the dichotomy that the essence of the Slayer has transformed into, and the fashion in “Bad Girls” reflects that. What I mean by that is that the costumers dress Buffy like a stereotypical good girl and Faith like the stereotypical teenager that your mother suspects is corrupting you when you hang out together. Exhibit A.

For once, Buffy is dressed to slay. Her hair is a bit messy post-staking; she’s wearing a pretty simple red zip-up hoodie and comfortable, baggy jeans. In contrast, Faith is dressed like Peg Bundy on a windy day. Leopard print pants? Really? And is that lipstick called Harlot? Because I think I’ve seen it in the future.

Hey hey hey, it’s Mayor Wilkins and Mr. Trick! Despite his name, Mr. Trick looks pretty classy. Any descriptors I could use for Mayor Wilkins have already been spent on Ted, so maybe I should just quit while I’m ahead. (Ooh, I rhymed on accident!)

The Scoobs are meeting up before school on those ridiculously unrealistic-for-public-school leather couches that Buffy and her friends always manage not to have to fight other students for the privilege of sitting in. Xander and Oz look perfectly alright, even though Seth Green had his hair dyed black for some movie role; I can’t remember which. Anyone know what Oz’s shirt is of?  If you can explain both of those Ozisms to me, you can pick the next Buffy Fashion Roulette episode (truly!).

Willow and Buffy are another story. Willow is wearing a Christmas sweater and brown tights. Buffy has that omnipresent Palin hair of the olden Buffy days, and she has stuck a flower in it. Her top makes her look like a Farmville avatar and her skirt doesn’t match it at all.

Cordelia stops by for some quick snark. With that outfit, she has earned the right; the shoes are pretty dated, but the top and skirt are timeless. Go Cordy!

ZOMG, we meet Wesley Wyndam-Pryce! Yess! He doesn’t look half bad, except that his suit is a little boxy. Giles, as you can see here, is taking one of his baby steps into Toned Down Casual Giles. That’s what getting canned by the Watchers’ Council will do for a man. Check out Buffy’s skirt in its full-on awfulness. In other news, someone must have whispered to Buffy about her top’s rural-ness; she has Thrown A Sweater Over It.

Faith has come to school to meet up with Buffy, which reminds me- how did Faith always get to hang out at Sunnydale High without actually going there? Buffy has taken her sweater off and has Thrown A Coat Over It. By itself, I like this coat. But why does she need to wear it with a lavender shirt, lavender skirt, lavender shoes, lavender sweater and lavender hair flower? WHY? This shot also reminds me that this was The Year Of Buffy’s Bottle Blonde Hair, which I kind of miss. Anyways, if Buffy would just button up her coat I’d be satisfied. But Faith: oh, FAITH. She’s wearing a similar outfit to the one she wore the previous night during her patrol; at first, I thought it was the same one. This freaked me out. Who wants to wear last night’s sweat, stank and vampire dust? Luckily, it’s a slightly different outfit. The jacket is the same, but she’s wearing it over what appears to be a velvet shirt and velvet pants two-piece ensemble.

Later that night, Buffy and Faith head out to get that Amulet Of Whateveritscalled. Faith wears the same outfit from earlier, but Buffy has changed into a long leather duster (maybe she ganked it from her boyfriend), a white top with a red sweater tied over it, and khakis. She still has Palin hair.

Then Buffy gets almost-drowned and her Palin hair is ruined. Ruined! Her leather duster is also probably ruined. No matter; she has a new flashy accessory to take back to Giles and Wannabe Giles. Check out how high-waisted Buffy’s pants are. Faith is AMPED!

It seriously took me like ten tries to figure out if Giles and Wesley had changed clothes. They have.

Giles is all, tea.

Then it’s science class and Spock is there for like, a second.

And Willow and Xander are all, that’s weird, but it’s not as weird as Willow’s sweater, which can’t decide if it’s argyle or a powder puff football jersey.

And now, a romantic interlude. Faith has come for her beloved.

Her beloved is sporting a new leather coat, one that is not ruined, and Palin hair of 2010, rather than the Palin hair of 2008 that she wore in earlier scenes.

Clearly she is a damsel in distress and must be rescued.


Young love knows not the boundaries of chem class.

Buffy and Faith take a romantic stroll through the woods. Faith is wearing leather pants. Two slayers; no waiting….

…followed by a sexy dance-a-thon at The Bronze where the boys can dance but they cannot touch. Buffy has let her Palin hair down and is wearing the same style of top from the beginning of the episode. I feel like this whole lack of Buffy cleavage is the costumers’ revenge on Sarah Michelle Gellar for refusing to wear a push-up bra or to get a boob job. Either that, or they’re really pushing this whole good girl/bad girl contradiction to extremes.

Angel is not pleased. At least he looks comfortably Angel-y.

I love how this is the exact same scene from “Empty Places”, except that Buffy’s in the mix instead of blowing everybody’s spot.

Angel and Wesley meet at last. Amazing!


I think the grossest thing about this monster was the sounds. He talked like he had all this spit in his mouth, and the way his minion keeps ladling water all over him… ugh. I swear, sometimes when I hear those dripping tranquility fountains I think about this guy.

Anyways, Buffy and Faith STEAL a whole bunch. The next day, Buffy eschews Palin hair in favor of a simple ponytail. Also, the costuming gods bestowed some cleavage upon her. Yay!

…and Mama’s straight bathrobin’ it on her Saturday. Dang straight, Joyce.

Mayor Wilkins and Mr. Trick look pretty much the same as they did earlier in the episode. Well, alright.

Later that afternoon, Willow stops by to bring Buffy some sort of a protection charm. Aw. Willow is, like, the sweatered lifeguard. (I mean that in both a literal and a fashionable way, as she is wearing what appears to be a lifeguard’s sweater.)

Buffy thinks this is quaint and all, but really she’s just waiting for her new girlfriend to come by and take her out on a hot date. (Don’t worry Willow, you’ll do this to Buffy a lot next year at college.) Buffy looks really cute here.

Buffy throws on her coat and follows Faith, who looks like she’s going deer hunting for the weekend. It’s not just the bow; it’s the puffy vest, too.

Giles, it’s like you don’t even own tweed jackets anymore.

I know we’re supposed to think Wesley is all uptight and priggish in this episode, but I like his look. I get what Cordelia saw in him, and why she was so fooled by his clothing alone, and how once she kissed him it was something like slobbering all over octopus tentacles and she snapped out of it.

Angel, blah blah blah. Buffy’s pea coat looks good!

But then Giles and Wesley get kidnapped, and ANGEL MAD! ANGEL SMASH!

Suddenly, Faith has accidentally murdered someone and it just feels like her and Buffy’s relationship has lost its spark. She should wear more A-shirts with gently curled hair, kohl eyeliner and matte rosy lipstick. Somehow, despite the events of the previous evening, Faith is positively glowing!

Buffy, unfortunately, is doing that awkward “all one pastel shade” thing again. No wonder Faith is starting to hate her so damn much.

I mean, really. How many wool coats does a SoCal girl need, anyway?

17 Comments leave one →
  1. Smeleanor permalink
    July 19, 2010 6:44 AM

    Well unless I’m mistaken, I think Oz’s hair is from his Scott Evil phase in Austin Powers but I wouldn’t swear to it.

    And his t-shirt looks like it says Eater who were a British punk band from the late 70s. Their drummer Dee Generate was like 14 or 15 which, as a 14 year old punk who deseprately wanted to play the drums, was a source of inspiration for me. They sound a bit like the Buzzcocks, if you can stand a few sexist lyrics I recommend them.

  2. July 19, 2010 8:19 AM

    I am officially obsessed with Buffy’s clothes S3–and I LOVE her Easter egg outfits. The good girl/bad girl coded clothing can get to be a bit much with Buffy and Faith, but I think Buffy is seriously at the top of her bottle-blonde game in season 3.

    • buffyanne permalink
      July 25, 2010 4:26 PM

      I agree. I love almost every outfit Buffy wears in Season 3. I thought the pastel colors helped to convey her lighter, valley girl side contrasted with the darkness she had to deal with.

  3. July 19, 2010 10:02 AM

    what about that episode where xander gets turned into two xanders.

  4. Emily permalink
    July 19, 2010 10:18 AM

    t-shirt = Eater
    hair (best guess) = Idle Hands
    Bad Girls = fashion? not so bad.

  5. July 19, 2010 6:13 PM

    There’s so much leather on this show that I’ve often wondered if Wilsons Leather is headquartered in Sunnydale.

    Or perhaps Giles has a side job taking the hides of the demons Buffy slays and he makes them into leather goods (this weeks demon alone could easily have outfitted the entire casts of Buffy, Angel and Guns ‘n Roses for at least a farewell tour or three). It would also explain what he was doing for income all throughout season 4.

    • msjacks permalink*
      July 19, 2010 7:01 PM

      HOLY CRAP. Do you realize that you just solved two mysteries we’ve all had as Buffy Fashionistas?! You’ve come up with a very plausible explanation for where the bodies go AND where Giles gets his money from in season 4! Maybe it’s also why he left in season 6!! International demon leather dealer, much?!

      • July 20, 2010 12:32 AM

        This could also explain why Buffy owns so many leather separates. Giles, knowing Buffy would be seen about town by both the forces of good and evil, would want to make sure she’s dressed in the newest “Ripper Leather” fashions.

        It may also be the reason why he has such an unwavering hatred toward Spike. Since Spike refuses to wear anything but the same leather duster he’s had since 1977 he’s not doing his part to stimulate the economy.

        Anya must be jealous of Giles’ economic genus.

  6. Joey permalink
    July 20, 2010 4:29 PM

    Buffys lavender on lavender on lavender is almost as bad as tara’s light blue eye shadow on necklace on blouse business.

  7. July 22, 2010 3:58 AM

    I always thought that last Buffy outfit was so weird, so First Lady-ish. Where was she wearing such a thing, church? Tea at the ladies auxiliary?

    I just watched “Entropy”, the one where Anya bones Spike, and noticed that they totally put a very visible black bra on her just for that scene, I swear she isn’t wearing it earlier with the same outfit. Even without the bra, it’s the worst thing she ever wears I think. But in just the bra she looks smokin’, so I get why they had her wear it. And Spike is wearing a really stupid giant button down shirt with like, gold fleur de lises on it. It’s always a giveaway that Spike is going to end up naked when he wears those big button down shirts. Anyway, I thought of you.

    • msjacks permalink*
      July 22, 2010 3:45 PM

      haha yessss! Can I use that Spike big buttons quote at some point and attribute it to you? It’s pretty genius. Plus, you know what they say about a guy who has big buttons…

      • July 22, 2010 3:52 PM

        Haha, of course. But I mean the shirts are like, enormous, not the buttons, haha.

      • msjacks permalink*
        July 22, 2010 3:56 PM

        Haha why did I miss that? You said it like two times. I just spent 4 hours in the blazing sun. I think I’m sunstroked. Haha.

  8. stella permalink
    August 2, 2010 5:22 PM

    love this buffy fahion roulette!!
    i heard back in the day that SMG was being a huge bitch and basically said that if eliza was going to be on the show she had to be super-trashy so buffy looked better. but… i guess we’re seeing here that that wasn’t always the case. i was really confused when she shows up at faith’s motel dressed for the winter formal.
    in a sad side note, i totally dressed like buffy in 1999 and rocked the palin hair. still kind of love it on her, esp the homecoming ep.

  9. captainhammer permalink
    August 19, 2010 1:00 PM

    I don’t think Faith’s hanging out is unrealistic.
    I do the same thing (well not the sneaking out of class part).
    My friends from private school come to visit me at my public high school sometimes. Teachers would probably notice if you snuck someone into a class but there’s no way they can keep track of all the students so one extra teenager hanging out in the hallway or eating lunch will always go unnoticed.

    • msjacks permalink*
      August 19, 2010 4:15 PM

      Well, captainhammer, I will defer to your expertise here, as I haven’t been in high school since 1997. Faith can go to the library all she wants, and I shan’t bat an eye at it!

      Thanks for commenting!

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