When it comes to a Willow that both radiates on-screen Power, and that makes you want to don your “knee-high thigh length boots” (that just ooze Sex Appeal) – then there’s really no better season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, than Buffy Season Six:
Best season to watch for “Darker Evil Willow” – the “Black in Witch” – Buffy Season Six
Here do I find that Willows character is akin to a Willow Tree, that just happens to be at the edge of some “Mighty Chasm”. The Chasm is Witchcraft, and it’s “gravity” is her Quest for Power. Yet, this is no ordinary Chasm – for Willow adds two further ingredients. The first ingredient is added knowingly: her desire to “jump” into the Chasm, which comes from her desire to learn. The second ingredient is added unknowingly: her emotional state continues to fluctuate – and she has no choice, but to careen down the sides, with a great big grin on her lips! It’s a Power thing 🙂 The roots of her Quest for Power, are found in the very first episode (of season six) – where she brings Buffy back “from beyond the Grave”. It’s Willows “single minded” determination that she’s her resurrect Buffy, even when the rest of the Scoobie Gang, appear to have “changed their minds”. It’s her “single mindedness”, that sees Willow using magic more than she should, even when the Scoobie Gang voice their concerns. It’s the magic that begins to dominate Willow, even ignoring the advice of Tara – wanting to change things, “just the way” she wants them to be. It’s the darker magic that seeds itself in Willow, which along with her “revealed” friend Amy – is just “much more fun”. Yet, are we really to be surprised? For there’s a saying: Power Corrupts. And in Willow’s case, does Power not only Corrupt – for she becomes like a Sun, that radiates her “Sense of Self”, through both her friendships, and her willingness to help Buffy. Whilst Buffy seems to have “lost the plot” (such as her relationship with Spike), Willow knows exactly what she wants: More Power! It radiates through her Being. It radiates through her Soul. It radiates through her Spirit. It may be rooted in Darkness, but Willow doesn’t care! For a time: she Eclipses Buffy. It’s roots lie not in Jealousy. It’s vines lie not in Friendship. It’s leaves lie not in Morality. For it’s Revenge – a dish that’s best served Cold. And Willow, is “best equipped” to serve that dish: an Emotional Wreck, Lost in Space, no need for Friends, just “Two to Go”.
After casting a spell to track down Tara’s killer (Warren), Willow goes after him, making use of various magic’s along the way: power to recover from an axe in her back, power to turn an explosion into “nothing”, power to control vines (that hold Warren) and power to destroy Warren (by both flaying and burning him).
Evil Willow – With Black Eyes – Out for Revenge
The scoobie gang now realise that Willow has gone too far, and it falls to Buffy to track her down (and attempt to reason with her). Unfortunately, Willow’s emotions (grief/fury/rage) still have control of her, which together with her addiction to magic, have helped to give her an altered sense of reality (including the ability to harm her friends). Having cast a “Strengthen” spell upon herself, Willow intends to beat Andrew and Jonathan to death; and is only stopped when Buffy intervenes.
It is at this time (whilst having a hard time dealing with her emotions) that Willow realises how to turn Amy back from being a rat (by using a “Reveal It” spell). For a time, Willow has a new friend to practice magic with, who unlike Tara, does not have any morality concerns regarding magic (and its use).
Darker Willow – Smiling (with the “fun” in magic)
Amy helps lead Willow along a forbidden path: using magic for fun/pleasure. When this does not prove to be enough (for Willow), Amy introduces Willow to Rack (a warlock), who helps her experiment with black/dangerous magic: eventually resulting in Willow summoning a demon. Shortly after, things come to a head when Willow nearly kills Dawn (Buffy’s sister), and Willow is forced to admit that she needs help with her addiction to magic. It is here that we find the concept of a “spring clean“, when Buffy and Dawn help Willow remove all magical items from Buffy’s house (such as candles, charms and crystals), thereby removing temptation (so that Willow stands a better chance of going “cold turkey”). For a while, the tougher approach works, and “old reliable/nerdy” Willow is back (e.g. using computers for research).
Shortly after, Willows character changes as she starts to use magic for non-essential purposes. For example: Willow conjures up confetti to decorate Buffy’s house with (after Anya and Xander announce their engagement), raising concern from both Giles and Tara (as she could have just gone to the local store to purchase some).
Darker Willow – My magic couldn’t harm a fly!
Willows character then undergoes a more serious change, as she starts to use magic to make things the way she wants them to be (without regard for others). For example: Willow deliberately casts a spell on Tara to make her forget about an argument that they have had (ironically over Willow using too much magic). When Tara discovers the truth, she gives Willow a stern warning that “you know how powerful/dangerous magic is” and that “too many spells is not good for you Willow”, eventually leading to Willow agreeing to go “cold turkey” for a week (i.e. not cast any spells). Unfortunately, Willow is so addicted to magic, that she casts a spell almost immediately, and when Tara finds out, she leaves Willow.