The 511 -- More Story Arcs

Following is one of the story arcs that has to do with the characters' relationships (romantic & otherwise) on the show. While it is important and does help drive the main story arcs, it's a bit less central to the overarching mythology of the show.

Xander and Cordelia

This was quite the unlikely match-up. It was probably not even a thought in the writers' minds during Season 1. At least, I know it wasn't in mine! Xander and Cordelia traded insults on a regular basis in Season 1. One of the best was in a scene at the Bronze in the episode Angel. (I'll add that to the episode page soon.). Xander looked pained whenever he'd have to deal with Cordy; he had to question her in The Puppet Show and the look on his face is hysterical.

In Season 2, it looks like Cordy had an eye towards Xander before he ever thought about giving her the time of day. She tries to thank him for saving her life in Some Assembly Required, but he just blows her off.

They insult each other more as the season unwinds, and it's not until Halloween that we see Cordy give Xander the once-over when she sees him in a military tank top. It's in this episode that Xander tells Cordy to give up trying to get between Buffy and Angel...he should know!

Xander protects Cordy in various episodes, but it's in WML part II that they kiss for the first time. It's not exactly a romantic-type kiss; they're stuck in Buffy's basement, fearing for their lives because an assassin from The Order of Turaka is upstairs trying to kill them. They argue, tempers flare, and the heat of the moment is upon them, so they kiss. Later in that episode, they decide to pretend that the kiss never took place, and they end up yelling at each other again. Best way to stop yelling? Why, another kiss, of course...

Xander and Cordy keep their smooching a secret from everyone; they hide in the janitor's closet at school so none of their friends will find out. Willow accidentally finds out, though, in Innocence; she goes to get a book from the stacks and happens upon them kissing...Willow feels betrayed, and Xander tells her that it doesn't mean that much to just kiss Cordelia.

But apparently it does in Bewitched, Bothered & Bewildered, for it's in this episode that Xander gives Cordy a necklace for Valentine's Day and brings up the possibility that maybe they have something more than a few stolen smooches in the closet. But Cordy's recently suffered being cast off by her friends just because she's dating Xander. So Cordy breaks up with him, and Xander's moved to get back at her by having her fall in love with him so he can break up with her. Xander enlists the help of witch Amy Madison. Cordy's the only chick who's not affected by the spell, though, and when she realizes that Xander caused all of this trouble for her, she decides to tell her friends to go jump, and continues seeing Xander. In public, no less!

Cordy and Xander remain a couple for the rest of season 2, and there's some real caring there. I mean, Cordy brings him donuts whenever he's keeping a vigil in the hospital. (see Killed By Death and Becoming part II.) mmm..donuts.

Cordy and Xander spent all summer apart, and when they first meet again in season 3's Anne, each isn't sure how the other feels. They exchange some of the best is when Cordy accuses Xander of having fallen for a monster. She tells him, "...Inca Mummy Girl! Yeah, I heard about her!" (See Inca Mummy Girl.)

Xander petitions to use Cordy as bait so they can kill the vamp of Andrew Hoblich, and she reluctantly agrees, saying she's only doing it for Buffy. Anyhoo, they do get back into their groove though...after dusting said vamp. Here, have some pre-smooch dialogue:

Is this love, is this love -- Tribute to Bob Marley?:

Cordelia: "What's the plan?"
Xander: "The vampire attacks you."
Cordelia: "And then what?"
Xander: "The vampire kills you. We watch, we rejoice." -- business as usual.

Well, in a few episodes, we've learned that Cordy is kinda having the love thing for Xander. Unfortunately for her, it's in Lovers Walk that she finds out Xander's betrayed her...with Willow, no less! Cordy's shocked and horrified and...when she falls through the floor and ends up in the hospital, she tells Xander to stay away from her. I think it is probably not very likely that Queen C will get over this or forgive Xander. But we'll see. Yowch.

Okay, Cordy's letting her pain setting pics of Xander aflame, and not returning any of his 60 or 70 calls in The Wish. And she's also dressing her best to woo other guys to make Xander jealous. Xander's trying to get Cordy to talk to him, but he's failing miserably. Guess that's what they mean when they say "the phone works both ways." Who knows..maybe Cordy can forgive him. Right.

Well, Cordy's still giving Xander the cold shoulder in Amends. Literally. In the few minutes they're in the same lounge area at school, Cordy shames Xander by letting one of his big secrets out. The secret? The reason that Xander camps out on his lawn for Xmas is because of the fights his folks have, courtesy of alcohol. Not cool, Cordy.

Okay, so Cordy's gone 'round the bend with her insults, belittling, and just plain nastiness. It would be a return to Season one insults (Angel and other eps. had plenty of verbal sparring), but these are way too much..In The Zeppo, Cordy attacks everything about's way harsh and destructive. Sure they're not dating now and there was not a clean break and the cheating, put someone's self-worth into question totally bites. The bitca's back. If this relationship ever became anything more than civil -- if it reaches Civil -- I'd be one surprised chick.

In Enemies, Xander gets to watch Cordy make a big play for Wesley in the library. Call me nutty, but he seems upset by it. Makes sense to me. He's also bugged when she starts yammering about how Wesley's running the meeting, has a good voice. Later when the gang goes to do research, Xander begs off, saying that five's a crowd, and Cordy agrees with him. Okay, not looking like this couple will be back on track ever...I can't see the writers making them have a long-distance 'ship once Cordy moves off the show and into Spinoff Land. But who knows.

Update! In Choices, Cordy and Xander do more of their usual sparring. During lunch, Cordy overhears Xander talking about the open road, etc., and makes fun of him. So Xander boasts to Cordy that Willow's gotten into Oxford (only he calls it "Oxnard"), Duke, and MIT. Cordy makes snide remarks about all those schools, and jumps down Buffy's throat saying that the convo is reserved for people who actually have futures to plan. So later Xander spies Cordy in a dress shop and says she must be sour because she didn't get into any good schools. When he finds out that she did, he remarks that they must have seen a different side of her father's money, and then tells her he has to go help save the world, she should get back to accessorizing. Brr. It just got cold in here. No kidding. So again, future outlook is grim for these two. I kind of wonder what's going to happen at the prom, assuming that both are gonna make the scene...with other people of course. Time's a-wastin' till the season ender, you know, and then Cordy's off to la-la land with Angel. So much for this 'ship, eh?

Update!! In The Prom, Xander discovers Cordy's secret..that she's broke and working retail just so she can buy a dress on layaway. Cordy lashes out at him, I guess it's a defense mechanism thing, and Xander's just stunned by it all. He did leap out of the stunned syndrome when the hell hound came through the window, though. Anyhoo, this episode sort of puts both Xander and Cordy back on track. Like they finally got past all the hellishness and hurtful stuff. Xander keeps Cordy's secret from the gang, and he secretly pays for the rest of Cordy's dress, using some of his road trip money. Probably the most satisfying moment is when they see each other at the prom...Cordy pointedly thanks him for the dress, and Xander says it looks good on her. Cordy's "Well, duh" and her smile, followed by Xander's smile, are just great. You have to like that. I'm not a big 'shipper for anyone, but I still appreciate what this couple's been through and how it's ended up for them. (Er...I mean, I like how it's turning out. The whole "be petty until there's a real problem..then be cool." Xander was cool. Cordy knows it. It's all good. I'm not saying they're going to get together. Sheesh! Can't we just all get along??)

More 511/Relationships!

(Buffy and Angel are in The 411/Mythology section.)

The 411/Mythology

The 511/Relationships

The 611/Slayerships

The ABCs of Sunnydale

The Episodes

Dingo Action!


Main Entrance

Missing Lynx

This page last updated on May 15, 1999.

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