(Aired Nov 18, 2002)
Dot, Max, and Guapo are fired from their startup company (i-bullshit.com), along with contractor Roberta and the sysadmin Leonard. It seems to be a takeover from some firm, and the new security tries to close out their access and usher them out as quick as possible. A tall eurotrash guy with a pince-nez and a ponytail (whom they dub "Hanz") heads the new security. Naturally, they are annoyed and gather at a nearby Mexican restaurant to talk.
There, Leonard reveals to Dot that he is a "Watcher" and tries to get her to help him. He says he has information that there is some real evil involved in the takeover. He refers to a dossier on Dot, whom he has been keeping track of. Dot recognizes what he's talking about, but angrily drags him by his nose over the table and tells him that she doesn't take orders. Guapo, however, is intrigued by this supernatural business and wants to learn more.
Some time later, they gather at Roberta's posh house in the hills to talk this out further. Leonard and Dot explain about Slayers and vampires, which is met with some skepticism although Dot can demonstrate her powers. However, they all agree to investigate and perhaps do some harm to the company which fired them. They investigate the firm hired to close down the operation, Wheelhouse Capital, which evidently has done this to a number of companies -- and many of the employees who were fired disappear entirely. They track down some ex-employees of Adifus.com (whom Wheelhouse also dismantled) at a nightclub in the city, Gaseous. They go outside to talk with them, and they turn out to be vampires. Dot kills them, but then two German guys with guns ("Hans and Franz") come out of the nightclub and start firing on them. Dot is hit, and the police start approaching, so the Main Cast retreat. Franz is arrested while Hans escapes.
[Alternate summary on GM's blog]
(Aired Dec 5, 2002)
In a cut scene for the opening, we see a street person desperately trying to avoid sleeping and dreaming, when a beautiful woman he calls the "Seeker" shows up in a vision to him and causes him to fall asleep.
We then move to Dot and Max, who are chatting on IM on the weekend. They haven't seen anything in the news about the arrest of Franz or the escape of Hans. However, Max was able to look up "Franz", whose real name is Gunther Werner Von Staht, and Wheelhouse Capital whose offices are on Sand Hill Road in Menlo Park. Max also heard from a friend at LucasFilm about how his mom had found private footage from a game he's working on ("Yoda's Tai-Bo Workout") using a file-sharing program, Lobachevsky. After some more checking, she hears about a short movie available through Lobachevsky which has someone who looks like Dot fighting a vampire.
Dot then installs the program, and she finds a huge number of files, many of which are suspiciously strange, like clips from movies which haven't been filmed yet. She tries to uninstall it, but it's still sending packets. She calls Max who comes over and with her mad Unix skills finds that the program installed dozens of phantom processes and trojans on Dot's iBook. Max cleans her system, but it seems that there is a real demon in it. Dot tries talking to it via Mac Help, typing "What is possessing my computer?" The demon then responds, saying that it was just giving her what she wanted and that it wasn't going to leave.
They call Leonard, who brings over a lead-lined box which they stash the posessed machine in. Meanwhile, Max traces two servers that Lobachevsky communicated with. One belongs to a company called "Red Sharif", and the other belonged to Kazadhum.com. Red Sharif appears to be the usual spyware/network traffic analysis company. Kazadhum.com just has a single page warning that if you go to Kazadhum, you will die. But they go there anyway. They find a small warehouse with a single reinforced door, which doesn't budge when Dot tries to force it.
Later, they call Red Sharif and pose as a potential customer. They talk with sales executive Karsten Smith who sets an appointment for a demo, and hopefuly contacts with reference customers. Karsten mentions Lobachevsky as one of their customers.
That night Max and Dot go to lurk outside of Wheelhouse Capital's offices. Dot is spotted by an employee, and she pretends to be waiting for her boyfriend who works there. She allows herself to be talked into having dinner with him. Over dinner, he explains that he worked for Adifus on nanotechnological sensor systems. He explains that Wheelhouse was so interested in the work that he and his group were brought 'in-house'. He tells Dot that they are going to release a product soon which will change everything. Dot strongly suspects that he is a vampire and is waiting for him to reveal himself so she can stake him. After driving her back to Wheelhouse, he finally tries to bite her, and they then fight in the parking lot. However, he proves surprisingly tough. Max rushes in to help and the vamp clobbers her. Dot's beaten-up fairly bad as well, but she manages to put vamp boy down and stake him. Dot and Max head home, bruised and bloodied, to get some rest before they go to meet with Red Sharif in the morning.
(Aired Dec 17, 2002)
Dot, Max, and Roberta go and have their false-pretense meeting with Red Sharif in San Mateo. They talk but find little of importance. Meanwhile, in San Francisco, Dots brother Chip finds a homeless person who turns out to be a hotshot programmer whom he recognizes. Chip brings him back to Roberta's house, where they talk to him. Putting the pieces together, they eventually discover that Lobachevsky is a demon which is stealing people's dreams which are uploaded as sharable files. The way to fight it is to force the fight to be on the physical plane.
They then go back to the warehouse where the Kazadhum.com servers are located. (Dot had tried these in Part One of this episode, but was deterred by the reinforced security door.) Now trying all-out to get through the door, they find their way into the servers. It at first appears like an ordinary data center. However, when Dot looks in a cabinet in the back, a huge demon emerges from it -- shaped like a flying manta ray with a spiked tail. A fight ensues amidst the server racks. With Chip, Max, and Roberta's help, the demon is eventually dusted and all its stolen dreams are returned to their owners.
The campaign went on hiatus for several months (Jan to August 2003) after the initial three episodes. Think of them as extended pilots. In the restarted series, it is agreed that Roberta has lead the other in forming their own startup company -- Vampster.com. It is an analog to Friendster which ostensibly helps vampires, wannabees, and groupies to connect. Behind the scenes, this is actually a trap which helps Dot and others to track down and slay the vampires who sign up.
(Aired Sep 21, 2003)
Dot's brother Chip runs into a girl, Tiffany, when going to buy drugs in Redwood City. They run into a couple of vampires, when Tiffany shows unusual powers. She is still messed up, though, and they are eventually saved by a drug dealer, Drake. Chip calls Dot to say that Tiffany should be recruited for their company. They meet at Tacos El Grullense where they talk to her and Drake. Some vampires barge in to attack Drake, the meeting, though. After beating them, they go to Drake's where he contracts the company for his vampire problem.
Tiffany then goes as an intern with Dot to help a woman in Mountain View (Kathy) whose ex has apparently turned into a demon. They find a vengeance demon named Marissa in a bar, who did the curse, and she agrees to change him back. The company wait at a park in Mountain View with Kathy and Marissa.
(Continued on Oct 5) Cletus shows up and Dot and Tiffany defeat him, but a strange flying woman (Ifurita) shows up to collect him for Dr. Ben-David. She is extremely powerful, but a man with a ray-gun on his Mini-Cooper distracts her while Dot and Tiffany slip off with demon-Cletus. Marissa's boss D'Hoffryn changes him back and he is turned over to the police, but all are left wondering who Ben-David and Ifurita are.
(Aired Oct 5, 2003)
The next day at work, several people notice that all highway billboards have been replaced with "Illuminant for Governor" ads. It quickly becomes clear that something isn't right. As a test, we have Chip watch some TV -- and he soon declares that he intends to vote for Phil Illuminant. Max confirms that there is a spell on him. That night, Tiffany and Dot go on patrol in SF, when they encounter Angel, who is delivering a package from Wolfram & Hart to vampster. It is a bio of Phil Illuminant, including his attending a communication retreat in Big Sur just after registering for the recall election.
Roberta calls an immediate corporate meeting to plan. We then head for an off-site: Dot (with Roberta) and Tiffany (with Chip) drive down to Big Sur -- racing each other (Dot's stolen BMW vs Tiffany's vintage Camaro). Max and Drake are staying behind to follow the electron trail some more. Tiffany gets pulled over by a cop, but Chip talks him out of it with the line "What would Phil do?" After completing the race, Chip and Tiffany slip off to do some drugs while Roberta and Dot arrive at the retreat office. Dot at first pretends to be a customer, then strongarms the guy into reversing the effect. Tiffany and Chip arrive a bit later, and we agree to set a meme to "Don't vote for Phil". We call Wolfram & Harte to get help in distributing it. In the middle of the process, though, we hear Ifurita coming out to interrupt it, and Tiffany and Dot go out to stop her.
(Continued on Nov 4) Ifurita was narrowly beaten by Dot, Tiffany. However, after a short time down, she instantly regenerated -- saying something about "rebooting". Chip then blasted her with her own staff, giving everyone enough time to escape with the nano-stuff. It is distributed by Wolfram & Harte, and the election goes back to normal, and Arnold wins.
(Aired Nov 4, 2003)
Some time after the election, FBI Special Agent Anton Levier visits the Vampster offices and meets with Roberta and Max. He demands that they turn evidence on Drake or face investigation themselves. Meanwhile, Drake has assigned Tiffany to collect a shipment of China White for him at the Port of Oakland. The employees are generally anti-war-on-drugs, so little is done.
With Max's help, Chip and Tiffany magically disguise themselves and slip off to Oakland. However, while they are doing so Max notices on the Vampster boards that someone named Daniel is tracking Tiffany -- intent on revenge for Sabine (whom Dot killed in Episode 4). He ambushes Tiff and Chip just as they are leaving the port, while Dot and the others come to rescue them. They barely manage to defeat Daniel, ten minions, and a brother/sister pair of vampire magicians. As they are finishing, though, a horde of police show up along with agent Levier. Dot throws Daniel out onto the street and they flee to the water's edge.
(Aired Nov 16, 2003)
As part of a corporate vampire-protection plan (and personal saving-on-rent plan), Dot moves into the offices. As she scours the local area, she finds a new coffee shop nearby named "Coffee Now!" and she finds it incredibly good. Returning to work, she starts to lecture Tiffany about her drug problem. Taking it out of the office, Max, Dot, and Tiff go to Coffee Now! to talk about plans for Tiff's rehab. While there, they notice that the coffee drinkers seem unusually hard-core.
That afternoon, Max and Roberta head into SF to contact an ex-Watcher about a formula to temporarily weaken Tiff so that she can more safely go through rehab. They find him in a steakhouse (i.e. Max hell), but he says that he can't help them. He grudgingly gives them a few contact numbers.
Meanwhile, Roberta and Dot are falling under the influence of the insidiously addictive Coffee Now. Roberta realizes what is going on, while Dot does not. Tiff and Dot go on patrol, but Tiff is ambushed by Daniel while Dot goes for coffee. Tiff escapes on her own after a bunch of vampires go after Dot. Max and Drake show up to help out, and they win out. Over the next two days Coffee Now! is dismantled after Roberta clued some contacts of hers about their work.
(Aired Nov 30, 2003)
Dot and Tiff hunt down Daniel, with the help of magical tracking by Max. Meanwhile, Drake finds that his dealers are being killed by vampires and gives Tiffany further motivation. They find Daniel and eventually kill him -- Dot "accidentally" dusts him while Drake was trying to make a deal with him.
However, the encroachment on Drake's territory continues -- apparently influenced by a "Mr. X" on Vampster. Chip decides to pose as a vampire to find out who Mr. X is and what he is up to. He seems to pass a test by faking the killing of two of Drake's dealers, but his contact Victor splits. Within the hour, the FBI moves in and sweeps clean most of Drake's operation. Roberta then charms the FBI agent Anton, however, and he agrees to make a deal where Drake turns over all evidence -- but gets no jail time and even some of his money back.
(Aired Dec 28, 2003)
The weekend after Christmas, Dot gets a call at the Vampster offices, which turns out to be Arima Kenshi, a respected doctor who wants to hire Vampster to look into the disappearance of his cousin's friend Asaba Hideaki. This turns out to be slayer business. Their friend Tsubasa is a new slayer, and her friend had a vision which suggested that Hideaki was in danger from vampires.
They do some background research that afternoon, then call it a night. Chip takes Tsubasa out to a club he is DJing for. While there, though, he meets up with Ifurita and they talk some. A while later, Ifurita finds Hideaki and calls Chip. Dot and Max, who had been investigating Hideaki's apartment, go and see him. Hideaki has some sort of supernatural attraction, however, and Dot falls under his spell.
Eventually Hideaki takes Dot (trailed by Chip, Max, and Tsubasa) to a vampire named Percy. Percy had been using Hideaki by giving him a magical gold circlet which attracted women, whom Hideaki would bring to Percy. Tsubasa, Chip, and Max help Dot defeat magically-protected Percy. After removing the circlet, Dot disgustedly hit Hideaki and turned him over to Tsubasa who agreed to watch him after he returned to Japan.
(Aired Jan 11, 2004)
Max's softball team the Virginia Woolfs (with newest member Dot) are set to play the Valerie Solanas Appreciation Society -- known as SCUM after her manifesto. As the game approaches they learn that Ifurita is joining their team. Ifurita is pitching, but the game goes sour when a demon which was summoned to fix the game animates a bunch of balls and attacks both teams. It is eventually defeated by joint effort, including team captain Kat and star batter Jane. In the end it is blasted apart by a new spell of Max's. The SCUM lose by forfeit, since one of their team members had secretly summoned the demon in an attempt to fix the team -- supposedly to compensate for the Woolf's having a Slayer (which they had heard about).
Afterwards they go out for beers with Ifurita (although none of the other SCUM join). Chip and Ifurita hit it off, and they go off for dinner afterwards. However, Dot remains worried about it because of Ifurita's strange position. She follows them but after dinner Chip notices her and tells her off. She lets them go.
That evening, Chip and Ifurita consumate their relationship -- while Dot is determined to do something about Ifurita. She hatches a plan with Max to track Ifurita's network connection, then try to goad Dr. Ben-David into activating her. By seeing the signal, they can try to block it or understand it. So Dot goes to the doctor's Palo Alto home around midnight and threatens him. However, he plays innocent -- saying that he only works for hire and has no evil plans of his own. Dot returns disappointed.
(Aired Jan 25, 2004)
Vampster is inundated by new prospective users from the publicity after Roberta appeared on Yukino's show promoting the service. The servers have become overloaded, and it is clear that we need more money for new servers and bandwidth. Roberta goes to the venture capitalists, but she has a very difficult time. They want control of the company.
Meanwhile, on Monday Dot and Max are in Colma staking out a graveyard where a woman from Vampster is meeting some vamps. In a long protracted battle, Dot fights another vampire who doesn't turn into dust when staked. However, after continued struggle he burns up. Max was hurt in the fight, and the woman is quite scared and confused. Dot and Max rudely brush her off with phony-sounding explanations and leave.
Roberta negotiates valiantly for her company, and after a long battle gets a deal where we get a new CFO and the VC's get 40% of the company, but we keep control and get funded. Besides the new CFO, Diane McKenzie, we hire a marketting person. We eventually go with a talented woman named Laney that Chip knows -- who turns out to be the same woman who Dot and Max saved!! She is pissed but after some profuse apologies on Dot's part comes around to the cause.
In addition, Chip's girlfriend Ifurita (possible real name Andrea) shows up and has again had a blackout, and has two puncture holes in her wrist. When Max gets this news, suddenly it clicks that the nigh-unkillable vampires are being made resistant by some sort of nanobots that they get from drinking Ifurita's blood.
(Aired Feb 9, 2004)
Chip, Dot, and the others are determined that something has to be done about Andrea/Ifurita now. However, Dot feels foolish and chastened after her empty threats on Dr. Ben-David earlier (1.10 Softball Demon). At first idly, she suggests suing Ben-David for employer misconduct and medical malpractice. The idea seems bizarre, but then someone (?) points out that they have a relationship with an experienced law firm: Wolfram & Harte.
Roberta goes to talk to Mrs. Leung, the mother of Andrea -- who we think is the original identity of Ifurita. She talks about doing a fundraiser for Mrs. Leung's cancer benefit, and draws her into talking about her daughter whom she thinks died of cancer. In a twist, she discovers that Andrea tried several other live-forever schemes before Ben-David, including one which took DNA samples to clone her when the technology became mature.
Meanwhile, Max is working on a modification of the Lothario's Crown to make it a charm to allow her friend Kat to control her werewolf changes. She does a ritual at work to transform the crown into a mobius strip that will direct its control powers inwards. Chip, Laney, and Dot all try on the crown with unusual results first -- but it works for Kat.
Armed with knowledge of the cloners, the gang arrange a meeting with Wolfram & Harte lawyers -- as individual friends of Ifurita. They agree to take the case and begin proceedings to subpoena the DNA samples for comparison with Ifurita's DNA to establish identity.
At the same time, Vampster is preparing for a party which will be on the upcoming Friday (i.e. Friday the Thirteenth) in downtown San Francisco. It is a real-world mixer / dance event of Vampster regular users, which will be donating benefits to the cancer charity that Mrs. Leung represents.
(Aired Mar 7, 2004)
We begin right after the end of the last episode (on Wednesday, February 11). Dot gets scolded by the new CFO Diane McKenzie, who fielded a phone call from Wolfram & Harte asking for a meeting. Diane was clear that such domestic legal issues shouldn't come to office, and Dot sheepishly agreed. Dot then called them back to arrange a meeting away from the office. Chip, Dot, Max, and Tiffany then hook up with a W&H attorney and negotiate with Dr. Ben-David and his lawyers. Ben-David makes clear that he wants to settle. We demand (1) he refrain from mind control; (2) full disclosure of the mind control mechanisms; (3) continued medical coverage for problems relating to her condition. He seems to agree, but says the documents will take a week to prepare.
The next day (Thursday) goes by with more preparations to the event. In the afternoon, Dot suggests going shopping for outfits with the other women in the office: Laney, Tiffany, and Max. However, Drake has come by to visit Tiffany, and he has questions for Max about the ritual she did with the Lothario's Crown. They decide to wait, and Max talks to him for an hour about the ritual. After Drake leaves, Dot quietly complains to her about giving that information away. The four women then go out shopping, meeting with Ifurita in the city.
Early on they discover that Ken from work is following them, convinced that some conspiratorial plot is going on, but he is quickly chased away. During the shopping, it becomes clear that Laney is hitting on Dot. Dot asks Max for advice on what to do, who is torn at the question. Ifurita then secretly urges Max to make her own move. At the next shop (a vintage clothing store), Max and Dot try on clothes together -- including a bustier that Max picked out for herself. Upon trying it on, Max's image in the mirror turns into a woman with long hair: the ghost of an (ahem) aspiring actress named Candy Stripe who died in 1978.
Meanwhile, Chip visits a Santeria store and tries to put together elements for a ritual to protect Ifurita from mind-control. He also chases away Ken, and then returns to the office to try out his ritual. Halfway through, he gets nervous and calls Drake for advice. Drake is horrified at Chip's amateur meddling, and tries to give what advice he can to stem the problem. Chip's spell ends up suppressing not only mind-control but also human inhibitions, in a field extending from himself.
Dot and Max had gotten the haunted bustier out of interest but also picked a non-haunted outfit for Max. The group then broke up. Max and Dot shared a ride home, and encountered Chip at the Vampster office. Under the influence of Chip's spell, they fell into passionate embrace and spent the night together there.
The next day, everyone prepared for the party. The aura from Chip's spell made it an odd hit, drawing out the diva in CFO Diane and rude words from Roberta. Dot and Max began to make out again when an animate HumVee approached the hall. They went outside to fight it, while inside Tiff and Ifurita dealt with a half-dozen vampires whose inhibitions were also released.
(Aired Mar 21, 2004)
We begin with establishing of the "Bat Cave" in Roberta's garage. Drake and Tiff have an intruder in the night at Drake's house in SF -- a ninja who is searching for a jewel. He escapes, and the clue of a stone he threw leads to a Buddhist temple in Mountain View. On Monday, the gang go at lunch to the temple. They see someone watching them, and follow him to a hotel in SF. He introduces himself as "Mr. Cool" and over lunch says that he is trying to stop Drake from achieving his goals.
They get back late to work, having missed an important meeting with Orkut. During the afternoon, Max notices a break-in attempt on Vampster's servers, looking for info on Drake. They plant false info suggesting that there will be an important meeting at midnight at an old warehouse in Cupertino. After work, the gang hang out at a coffee shop (name?) waiting for this meeting.
Max gets a call from Laney, and she and Dot go out to meet her. It turns out that she is being threatened by a ninja, Tran, who repeats that they are to not intervene in Drake's affairs. Dot attacks him and with some help defeats him, though Tiff is wounded by a duplicate he made of himself. His employer Mr. Cool shows up, but is soon scared off by an animated glass golem which shows up, and disappears into thin air.
They go back to the Bat Cave to interrogate Tran. He reveals a little more about Drake -- that he is some sort of creature who was cursed to remain in human form, and that he is trying to break that curse. Drake then kills Tran in a surprise move. The others are shocked and demand explanation. After some minutes of arguing, a huge golem animates the driveway and the sorcerer "Mr. X" shows up, offering Drake a chance for escape -- which he takes.
(Aired Jul 30, 2004)
We start with discussions over the phone with Roberta who is returning back to the peninsula from a vacation in Hawaii. Dot and Max fumblingly try to explain and deal with the dead body which is in the garage. However, they would like some explanations, so they eventually decide they want to talk to the dead buddhist ninja (Anthony Tran). Max researches a speak-with-dead spell, but she find that they have to go to a place of spiritual significance for the deceased -- which means the Buddhist temple. We agree to talk to him, then dump the body and then turn over the evidence to Agent Levier, leaving out the place of death. (As Dot tells Roberta, "After all, you need to have some mystery about you to keep the spice in the relationship.")
Dot, Max, and Chip sneak into the Buddhist temple with Tran's head in a bowling bag. Max and Chip are surprised by a priest there. Max lamely attempts to explain her presence, aided by even more lame explanations from Chip. Dot then abruptly knocks the priest out from behind. Max casts the spell, which works but leads to difficult negotiation with the dead Mr. Tran. They all apologize for his death, and he eventually gives some information on Mr. X.
Over the next two days, Roberta arrives back and we do more research into this. We discover that Mr. X is actually Rene Xavier, an English alchemist who lived in the 15th (?) century. He was working on a perfect alchemical process, but he found it would take more than his lifetime. He thus agreed to become a vampire. Hundreds of years later, he found an answer in Dr. Ben-David's nanotech. He thus hired Ben-David, and tested out the early, flawed versions of the formula on vampiric allies of his.
At work that day, Dot gets a call from Drake. He says that they have to talk, and he is holding Dr. Ben-David hostage at the doctor's house in Palo Alto. In the meantime, though, Agent Anton Levier shows up at Vampster. Roberta, perhaps embarrassed, had not talked things out with him. He is angry and determined to detain those who appear involved in Anthony Tran's death. She also has had a nightmare of the world being swallowed up by grey goo.
Max, Chip, and Dot slip out the window of the conference room. They drive down towards Palo Alto, but find that there is a police APB on them. Dot loses the police in a car chase, and they slip to Ben-David's house. There Drake tells them that Mr. X kidnapped Tiffany, and he needs Dot's help to rescue her. Dot then punches him, naturally. The police surround the house, but Ifurita arrives and plays havoc with them outside. They eventually escape by her airlifting them out to one of Drake's hideouts.
In the meantime, Tiffany escapes from Mr. X's lair in San Francisco. She is interrogated by Agent Levier, but eventually escapes.
Unaware of this, the others are planning a trap for Mr. X. He wants Drake to give Ifurita to him to get Tiffany back. They plan to have an area with illusionary objects, so that X cannot animate them into dangerous golems. Meanwhile, they also plan on an injection of drugs to interfere with his magical powers -- which will telepathically tie him to Chip's confused mental state.
Short form, the plan works, X is intercepted and injected before he can get to captive Ifurita. However, as his mental state starts to alter, the illusions and hallucinations start to turn into reality. Max knocks him into the construction site with her Fist of Air spell. Tiff shoots him with a crossbow, and Dot pins him to the ground with it. Chip also piles on. Thus held down, Tiff beheads him. However, Ifurita is starting to melt down into her own reality vortex. Chip grabs her. Max tries to draw them out as well but doesn't succeed. Dot panics and grabs Max, also being drawn in. Tiff then talks Drake into helping and he magically stabilizes the vortex, sacrificing his amulet. He is then taken into custody by Agent Levier.
<<BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER ©2002 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. All Rights Reserved. The Buffy the Vampire Slayer trademark is used without express permission from Fox.>>John H. Kim <jhkim-at-darkshire-dot-net> Last modified: Fri Mar 18 01:19:41 2005