Synopsis by Brian J. Dillard
The mystery of the Slayer's newfound sibling deepens as narrator Dawn (Michelle Trachtenberg) confides to her diary that she's sick of big sis Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) hogging all the attention. Buffy vents her own frustrations about having to balance her duties as the Slayer with her sisterly responsibilities -- a juggling act thrown into sharp relief when Dawn accidentally invites bimbo vampire Harmony (Mercedes McNab) into the house and gets kidnapped, necessitating a dramatic rescue. As for viewers, they may well be frustrated by the sudden and inexplicable appearance of Dawn in the surprise ending of the previous episode (see "Buffy vs. Dracula"); Buffy was an only child for the first 78 episodes of the series, but now she and her friends are acting as if Dawn has been around all along. Perhaps the truth has something to do with the mad vagrant who accosts Dawn and tells her she doesn't belong here; nonetheless, it will be three more episodes before the truth about the girl's origin is revealed (see "No Place Like Home"). In the meantime, Giles (Anthony Stewart Head) decides to take over Sunnydale's magic shop after yet another of its proprietors ends up dead. Originally broadcast October 3, 2000, on the WB network, "Real Me" marked episode 80 of the cult-favorite series. As of this episode, Michelle Trachtenberg joins the regular cast. Tom Lenk, who portrays vampire Cyrus here, would return in the prominent role of geeky would-be villain Andrew throughout the sixth and seventh seasons.