Ep. 1, WHEN SHE WAS BAD? Buffy has post-traumatic stress disorder (from being killed by the Master last season)—and where's Spike? :-)
Ep. 2 - SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED - one of the more gruesome episodes, not necessarily visually, but just the material. High school boys collecting dead girls and cutting off their best parts to create a Franken-chick for one of their dead brothers. Bleck. And where's Spike?
Ep. 3 - SCHOOL HARD - Need I say it? Spike arrives! Yes. He drives up in a black car and steps out and the first glimpse we see of him is with grit hanging from his mouth, and the ugo-forehead, and he says "Home sweet home." I sit up on the sofa, and the TV now has my complete attention. James Marsters had the role of Spike mastered from the beginning. So much so, that when I see Marsters in guest spots now, it's almost like he's playing against type. He is Spike. What's with the brown hair and lacking Brit accent?
Anyway, The Master is dead and the Anointed One is looking for someone to take over. Meanwhile, Buffy has to set up family night at school or the principle is going to expel her. So much angst on Buffy's part trying to impress authority, and cringing that her mother may find out she's been skipping school (slayage is required). But who cares about Buffy?
Spike offers his services to The Annoying One (as he terms the vamp tyke). And when Drusilla arrives it is a very touching scene, and we immediately know how much Spike cares for her. He morphs from ugo-face to his mortal face before turning to her. Aww... "Me and Dru, we're movin' in," he says. He's after the slayer, and wants to add notch number 3 to his belt. But the funny thing? Spike is defeated by Buffy's mom in this episode! Go, Mom! And is that another glimpse into Spike's deeply buried compassion? And excellent episode.