30 Day Buffy Challenge - DAY 22
BEST GILES-CENTRIC EPISODE: The Wish
The Wish is arguably not a Giles centric episode but I chose it because I feel like this episode outlines all Giles’ best qualities. In the alternate reality this episode takes place in, we see a darker Giles. He utilizes the Ripper aspect of his personality that lays dormant in our current universe, but he’s not broken. Wishverse Giles is brave to a fault. He lives in a world without hope, a world in which the entire town has been over-run with vampires and he doesn’t run. He fights. Even without a slayer at his side, Giles is prepared to do what is necessary to save as many lives as possible, even though a fair argument could be made that in the end, it would all be for nought because the vampire threat is too strong and too great to overcome. He takes others under his wing and creates a small team of amateur hunters, saving Cordelia Chase from a vampire Xander and Willow with only a large cross and Oz’s handheld crossbow to hold them at bay.
One would think this Giles would be cynical, bitter and angry. He isn’t. He keeps focused, doing what needs to be done. It is Giles who figures out what Anyanka’s power center is and how to undo the wish. It is also Giles who manages to bring the slayer to town. When reason tells him the fight cannot be won, he keeps fighting anyway because he has faith. I love that in this episode, Giles got to really be the hero. He overcame Anyanka both physically and mentally – neither of which are a small feat when face to face with a vengeance demon. Giles’ actions in The Wish are directly responsible for making the world as it was, and he is also the reason we get to enjoy the character of Anya after she becomes human. Physically, I also feel the need to mention that he also looks insanely attractive in this episode. It’s the first time we really see him outside of his tweed suits and sweater vests. A stubbled, casual Giles is a good Giles.