April 2003 posts

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No medical care for Cordelia? (spoilers for MB) -- MissouriGirl, 16:28:48 04/18/03 Fri

Hi Everybody! This is my first post here, although I look at the board all the time.

I wanted to point out that any human being in a coma for more than a couple of days without any medical care would die of dehydration. It was probably several days after Jasmine's birth that Fred was "infected", and Fred says in MB that she has been running for over a week, so Cordelia has been in the coma for 10-14 days. It's clear in MB that she has received no medical care of any kind. Cordelia must be primarily demon at this point or she would be dead.

Also I'm now convinced that Jasmine's intentions are completely evil even by her standards. Her self-control slipped after Fred shot her and she was almost rude to her followers, and then she lied about why Fred and Angel had turned against her (she said her love had made them hate her- -she didn't want to tell them about the blood even though she had already figured it out). To me this was proof that she has an undisclosed evil agenda. Lying, killing, she's working her way through the ten commandments pretty quick.

One more point: the time between Jasmine disappeared after her birth and the time she showed up at the hotel--I speculate that she went somewhere to feed on some people and she didn't want Angel to know this.

[> Welcome -- Cactus Watcher, 17:43:18 04/18/03 Fri

Thanks for the info. With most people under Jasmine's spell, medical care for Cordy seems to be the last thing on anyone's mind. I wonder if Cordy's recovery, not just her blood, is a key to Jasmine's downfall.

OT article: Use it or Lose it (Buffy discussion groups good for the brain) -- Rufus, 21:57:42 04/18/03 Fri


Use it or lose it: Gray matters! Is your brain in storage? Unwrap its potential with a regular dose of mental gymnastics.

By Patricia Corrigan


Friday, April 18, 2003

Doctors say that by the time we reach 85, half of us will have some form of dementia. That's not good news -- but doctors also say there are ways to delay the onset of mental deterioration.

Quick -- what's a six-letter word for "group within a group?" What is Peer Gynt's mother's name? What is the three- letter prefix that means "ear?"

If you answered all three questions correctly (subset, Ase and oto), you're an aficionado of crossword puzzles, one of many activities proven to help keep the brain fit.

Think about it: Just as you build muscular strength by physical exercise, your brain is strengthened through mental exercise. Exercising your brain does not require shelling out for new sweats or fitness equipment, but you will have to fill your spare time with something better, or at least more mentally gymnastic, than, say, "Andy Griffith" reruns.

"When you live in front of a television screen, you're not using your brain. Instead, you need to consistently challenge your brain so it will age healthfully," said Dr. John Morley, director of geriatric medicine and a professor at the St. Louis University School of Medicine. "When we look at the aging process, we see that our ability to learn decreases with age. It's another case of `use it or lose it.' Like the body, the brain goes quicker if you don't use it."

In a study done 16 years ago on the School Sisters of Notre Dame, researchers found that a college education and an active intellectual life could offer protection from the effects of Alzheimer's.

So, how do you challenge your brain? Morley recommends reading newspapers and books, listening to the radio, working crossword puzzles or anagrams, undertaking new projects and taking an active part in meaningful conversations.

Other activities that may reduce the onset of Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia include playing bridge, learning a foreign language, woodworking, metalworking and needlework. More brain-boosters: Visit a museum, do volunteer work or take up the study of music, painting or dance.

No matter what activities you choose, Morley emphasized that you mustn't rush through them.

"In that regard, brain exercise is no different from physical exercise," he said. "Five minutes of mental gymnastics is not enough. To build endurance, you have to use your brain actively throughout each day."

Don't expect to see any tangible progress. Unlike fingering your pumped up biceps or finding yourself able to squeeze into jeans from five years ago, there are no ways to measure whether you are exercising your brain enough to fend off dementia.

"The gains are not enormously obvious at any age," Morley said. "We also don't know at what point it's too late to make a difference, but we do know that pet therapy and regular activity can help maintain brain function in older adults. Basically, it's important to exercise your brain throughout your life."

Full-body workout

You already know that exercising your body throughout your life is a good idea. But physical fitness may also enhance brain fitness.

"Although the development and organization of the brain are amazingly complex, taking care of it is really quite simple. The basics include sleeping well, staying fit, drinking in moderation and taking routine precautions like fastening seat belts and wearing bicycle helmets." So it says in "The Dana Guide to Brain Health," edited by doctors Floyd E. Bloom, Flint Beal and David J. Kupfer (Free Press, $45).

Physical exercise is particularly important because moving the body promotes blood flow through the brain, and that blood flow supplies nerve cells with more oxygen and nutrients. Also, regular exercise helps you sleep better, and scientists say the brain processes the experiences of the day while you sleep, consolidating learning and memory while your body takes it easy.

Dr. John C. Morris, a professor of neurology and director of Alzheimer's research at the Washington University School of Medicine, said there is more research on the direct benefits to the brain from mental fitness than from physical fitness, but keeping active physically as well as cognitively makes sense.

"If we say that the things that we do when we are middle-age or younger may provide some protective potential effect decades later, we do have to take physical fitness into consideration," said Morris. "After all, hypertension, poor diet and other cardiovascular risk factors all are associated with a higher risk of becoming demented."

Morley, of St. Louis University, said weight-resistance exercises, specifically, appear to improve the ability to think. "In studies where we read you a story and then ask you to recall details about it, we've seen that weight- resistance exercises seem to improve mental functioning, though that could be due to the extra oxygen that gets to the brain."

In general, physical exercise does reduce stress, and scientists are studying the role of stress in brain function.

When the body reacts repeatedly to stress, a hormone called cortisol builds up. Studies in animals have shown that high levels of cortisol can be harmful to brain cells in the hippocampus, which is involved in learning and memory. That means that a buildup of cortisol may damage the brain's ability to learn and remember. But Morris, of Washington University, issued a caveat: "It's not clearly known whether the chronic elevation of cortisol in humans will damage us," he said.

Feed the brain

Good nutrition is as important to brain fitness as extra oxygen from physical exercise. Morley noted that 16 to 20 percent of people 70 or older lose weight dramatically. Sometimes older adults don't eat well because they don't feel well. Sometimes, they may forget to eat, and sometimes, they simply can't or don't want to go to the trouble to fix meals.

"When you're not eating healthy meals, you don't get a good mixture of vitamins," he said.

Making up for those lost vitamins is not easy, even in a country where 30,000 products are marketed as dietary supplements, a $17 billion business in 2002.

In the Feb. 3 issue of Prevention Magazine, writer Douglas Schar looked into five "brain booster" supplements sold over the counter at many groceries, health food stores and pharmacies: bacopa, cordyceps, ginkgo, Chinese club moss and periwinkle.

Schar noted that all five herbs have things in common. Each is an antioxidant, a "brain feeder" that increases the supply of oxygen and glucose to the brain, a "neurotransmitter helper" and a "neuroprotector."

Schar recommended avoiding products that combine more than one herb. "You're much better off trying one herb at a time than using these everything-but-the-kitchen-sink" combos, he wrote.

Members of the American Dietetic Association urge caution regarding use of any dietary supplements.

"Supplement use is still largely a `world of the unknown:' unknown benefits; unknown interactions with food, medicines and other supplements; undetermined standards; unknown levels of safety and effectiveness," writes Roberta L. Duyff, a registered dietitian in St. Louis and author of "American Dietetic Association Complete Food and Nutrition Guide" (Wiley, $24.95).

Morley sides with the dietitians. "Taking a vitamin or mineral won't do it," he said. "The nutrients in food are better than popping any tablet."

For people who enjoy a drink with dinner, Morley had this good news: "Studies show that drinking one or two glasses of alcohol a day improves brain function," he said, then added this cautionary note: "Beyond one or two drinks, you lose brain function."

Turn mind numbing to brain building

How you spend your free time can determine whether you go through life with a brain that's sharp and savvy -- or dull and flabby.

Empty mental calories: Gazing at `Law & Order' reruns on TNT.

Big brain buffet: Twisting your mind around the interactive 3-D `Law & Order' game at www.nbc.com.

Empty mental calories: Crawling through the Warehouse District singing `In Da Club' after drinking your weight in tequila.

Big brain buffet: Ordering just two alcoholic drinks and making a more dignified exit.

Empty mental calories: Staying up all night pondering -- well, what exactly?

Big brain buffet: Working and playing hard enough that by bedtime you go out like a light (and recharge your brain while you're sleeping).

Empty mental calories: Lazing around the living room so often that your couch sports a crease in the shape of your rump.

Big brain buffet: Hitting the Blanton Museum of Art at UT to immerse yourself in the Renaissance and Baroque masterpieces.

Empty mental calories: Stressing out over grad school applications/the termination of `Buffy the Vampire Slayer'/who invented spike heels and why.

Big brain buffet: Taking a yoga class/joining a `Buffy' discussion group,/embracing the trendy return of ballet flats.

Empty mental calories: Paging through photos in a pile of spring fashion magazines to pick out your new swimsuit.

Big brain buffet: Gently quizzing yourself with J. Crew's swim finder (what's the difference between a hipster, a bikini and a lowrider?) at www.jcrew.com.

Empty mental calories: Chowing down french fries, which clog your arteries -- and, therefore, your mental agility.

Big brain buffet: Popping herbs (ginkgo, Chinese club moss) to boost your intake of antioxidants and increasing the supply of oxygen and glucose to your weary brain.

-- American-Statesman staff

[> Mmmmnnnn. -- AurraSing, 22:23:58 04/18/03 Fri

I agree 100% with this article. I was totally shocked a few months ago by an article that pointed out that many individuals are turning away from reading printed matter and relying on the tv or the internet for all their information,citing a busy lifestyle that leaves them no time to read the paper let alone magazines or novels. So how do they keep their brains exercised if they only use them for work??

I look at the children my kids play with and only two of them read outside of school for pleasure on a regular basis...what kind of lifestyle are we encouraging when our children get all their stimulation from tv or the computer??

My kids are avid readers and spend at least two hours a day reading books,magazines and non-fiction,while they only watch on average about 1/2 of an hour of cartoons in the morning. (My son watches "Enterprise" with me once a week but since we dropped watching BTVS together partway through season 6,they don't really watch tv during weeknights) They are both articulate well beyond their years,a fact which I firmly thank their love of reading for.

Now I can tell them they are doing mental pushups as well,lol!

[> Tongue firmly in cheek -- CW, 07:32:23 04/19/03 Sat

Having grown up with the Post-Dispatch (which, incidentally, before the age of cheap computers used to have a higher percentage of typos than my posts here), I developed a healthy suspicion of anything it publishes. Since the people over 80 grew up in the days before TV, perhaps the source of their demetia lies elsewhere. Maybe it was all that radio they listened to growing up or the toxic the smell of stale popcorn from attending too many in-theater movies. However, I will not deny the brain-rotting qualities of MTV, ESPN, and daytime TV in general.

[> "Chinese club moss"? -- Celebaelin, 12:10:01 04/19/03 Sat

Some thoughts on Caleb (spoilers DG) -- Tyreseus, 22:37:25 04/18/03 Fri

I've been thinking about som eof the anger and upset expressed on this board about Caleb. He's a stereotype of the bible-spouting Southern preacher/serial killer...

But the thought hit me... are we quick to judge Joss? I mean, look at the other "common" movie monsters that Joss has shown us over the years that have later developed into much more profound and interesting things. Certainly, we've had anything but typical stereotyped view of werewolves, witches, and vampires.

The southern/bible-beating serial killer is a horror movie convention. A stereotype, true, but still a movie convention.

We've only had one episode to get to know Caleb. Maybe we should wait and see what more we learn about him before we get to heavy-handed with the criticism.

Just my $.02


[> Evil is as evil does. -- AurraSing, 22:58:13 04/18/03 Fri

I think it's his misogynist nature that initially repulsed me so much-it's one thing to have a Buffy villian who hates and kills because he/she is pure evil and hates all humanity but quite another to have a serial killer who apparently targets women as beings that are born evil and are only going to find "salvation" at the end of a knife.

Caleb presses a few raw nerve endings,whether it's the clergy as sexual predators or the serial killer preying on innocent women that strikes fear into us all. By combining the two,Joss has created a human monster that certainly won't be romanticised or be enjoyed the way a character like the Mayor or Glory ever was,at least IMHO.
( I still miss Glory-she might have been a Hell-Bitch but she was a lot more fun in her own demented way than the FE has ever been)

[> [> Re: Evil is as evil does. -- lcolford, 00:22:02 04/19/03 Sat

Caleb is the most terrifying Bad since the Mayor, esp when played with such gusto.
The mayor had to wait for his Ascension to realize his mission to wreck havoc on the school. He needed agents to accomplish the ultimate goal, indescriminate murder. But his smarmy affability and comic tics lulled the viewer away from his true mission.
True, Caleb is a stereotype, a cliche. But one with contemporary currency. We are experiencing the destructive power of fundamentalism in our world, a legacy probably as old as ancient fertility rites. Having a clergyman with a southern accent spouting biblical sounding passages evokes US fundamentalism, a recognizable element we live with. His choice of accent? Most US religious media have a predominant southern accent, even the ones based in California.
Caleb's singleminded gleeful seduction and murder of girls also resonates. Although some have dismissed genre shows as unreal, Caleb is very real and terrifying personality. His soulful eyes framed with soft hair is designed to lure his prey. This man is a woman murdering machine, in some sort of alliance with the FE, not its minion.
Adam, the amoral killer hybrid, was a laughable comic character in comparison. For once Buffy has an adversary that will keep me interested until the final battle.

[> [> Re: Evil is as evil does. -- Wizard, 00:31:51 04/19/03 Sat

Agree with you about Glory. As a matter of fact, most of the major BtVS villains have been fun- the Master in that stereotypical vampire way (but with a few vicious twists and clever lines), Spike, Dru and Angelus (do I even need to explain?), the Mayor and Faith (the Mayor was a riot, and Faith was as cool bad as she is good), Glory (while compared to Cordelia, she was even more self absorbed than the Queen C at her height), and the Nerds were funny losers right up until "Dead Things," when that front became a lot more serious. Caleb was introduced too late to be developed like these were. Too bad- he would have made a far more credible threat if he had been brought in sooner. Maybe that's why ME had him... ah, but that would be telling for those who haven't seen the ep... but this thread is clearly marked with a spoiler warning, so... maybe that's why they had him kill two Potentials (Molly, and was that other one Chao- Ahn?) and ruin Xander's eye. Which brings me to the next question- what the hell is he? To all appearances, he's human, and he hasn't yet given us any major indication otherwise, but he's at least as strong as Buffy (okay, maybe that's major indication, but the only demons we meet that look human are vampires, and I doubt he's a vamp). We haven't seen a non-Slayer that strong since Glory, and she was a god.

[> [> [> The true nature of Caleb (spoilerish theories) -- RadiusRS, 04:49:44 04/19/03 Sat

We can tell a lot about Caleb by focusing on what he isn't. He isn't noble, he's cruel, he's a mysoginist, a sadist, and a psychopath. Buffy is noble, tough but fair (though that bone has been picked with her this season with everyone from Anya and Kennedy to Xander and Giles telling her she's going too far), an empowered woman, professional slayer, super hero. In short, the exact opposite of Caleb. Now let's examine what they have in common: both are apparently supernaturally endowed, and as one of the above posts mentioned, Buffy hasn't faced anyone with this kind of physical power since Glory and SHE was a God; Caleb believes the First Evil is God, and that he is therefore doing God's work, adding to the fanatical preacher archetype pursuing the "dirty girls" for being witches (some good exchanges with Willow and Faith should be in future episodes, especially with the possibility of The FE as The Mayor reminding everyone of the events of "Bad Girls"). This pretty clearly shows that he is not a God. Therefore, he is either part demon and/or supernaturally endowed (and I don't mean THAT you dirty minded people you). Buffy is supernaturally endowed with demon power, as established in "Get It Done" as well as numerous moments since the First season. Now if you ask me (and I DO realize no one did), Buffy and Caleb are foils to each other, complete opposites. Some might argue that Buffy and Faith are polar opposites but screw em, I don't care. Faith was (still is?) Buffy's dark side, the Angelus to her Angel, the id to her ego. Faith crossed those lines Buffy knows she herself is capable of crossing yet chooses not to. And besides, Faith is a girl, Buffy's polar opposite would have to be male.
Caleb is also meant to evoke the male father figure that has been mostly absent from Buffy's life, except by Giles on occasion and, in some kind of creepy ways, by both Angel (protector, Elektra complex perhaps?) and Spike (wants to give her what she deserves, and he DEFINITELY has an Oedipus complex); but they're both vampires, and vampires are creepy by nature, even if they do have chips and/or souls so I guess it makes sense without being too icky. Besides, they're all older men. Joss himself has stated he is an atheist but is fascinated with the Judeo-Christian ideology and mythology. Ever since the beginning, Buffy has been represented by a flaming heart, a recognizable Christian symbol (the Holy Spirit I believe) and a cross. Other than sunlight, fire, stakes, and beheading, the only other weaknesses vampires seem to have are crosses and holy water. And Joss has definitely been playing up that angle this season what with the Goat's Head on the Seal pretty obviously representing Satanism, and those five high school kids that were turned into Bringers when the school was crazed (hmm...Bringers dress in black robes...reminiscent of the Trenchcoat Mafia; it's also the age-old american story of vulnerable teens being brainwashed by satanic cults).
Ever since It first appeared, The First has mostly taken female form (Jenny Calendar, Buffy) and Nathan Fillion referred to It as a She in an interview linked to from WHEDONesque.com, though it has also taken plenty of male forms. Male villians tend to be more blunt and direct in the Buffyverse while females tend to be more subtle and manipulative and that fits the FE's profile; oddly enough, that profile also fits The Beastmaster/Jasmine over on Angel....hmmm...they have both said they are vast, endless, and will always be here...the FE supposedly brought Angel back, maybe for the Beastmaster, or for itself so that it could make a body for itself. Besides, Darla was brought back before the Trials, by Wolfram & Hart, who were then slaughtered to cover up a lot of things (but that one is the Prime Reason, imho, especially with Lilah out of the picture and probably Lindsay too if Lilah is right when she said EVERYONE associated with the firm was dead) RIGHT AFTER "Jasmine" was conceived and they had served all their purposes. Both the FE and Beastmaster/Evil Queen C/Jasmine are used to last minute improvisations and complete overhauls of the situation depending of how vulnerable they are at the moment (Evil Cordy's various flip flops to Connor (Kill Angel! No, don't Kill Angel! Actually, yeah do it! No wonder the kid went over to the Dark Side), the FE deciding to let Angel die at the end of "Amends". And Joss has said that the two Big Bads are somehow related. Bear with me:
The rain of fire freaks everyone out, allows for Jasmine's body to be created (and setting a tone of fear, with the appearance of the Beast (a biblical reference and damn if he doesn't look like the Judeo Christian devil) and the Cordmary's baby anti-Madonna with Antichrist deal going on; I mean, this whole arc is right out of Revelations!...also...Jasmine = Jesus?...think about it....). The sun goes out and gives a preview of what will happen to the rest of the world next. Angelus brings the sun back, putting a crimp in Jasmine's plan but it's ok because the First Evil is over in Sunnydale trying to crack open that hellmouth and REALLY unleash Hell on earth, which is what ALL the Buffy villains have tried to do, either directly or indirectly, so that demons can reclaim the earth they were probably forced out of by the Powers That Be. Meantime, Jasmine starts working her Mojo and REALLY eating people, who willing go to her. Jasmine sets them up, and the First Evil unleashes all the demons to chow down on humanity!!!
Now I diverge again. I think the Medicine Men were represented as fairly patriarchial and sexist. So maybe that means that they tried to first imbue a MALE with the power to fight the darkness. But maybe he went sour, and became something of an anti-slayer, connected to the same darkness she is but corrupted by it (this also parallels the themes of season 4 with the Initiative and Adam (another damn Biblical reference?)). So maybe there is a line of male slayers that fight for evil the way female slayers fight for good, except these baddies kill good guys instead of demons and further the agenda of the First Evil much as Buffy and Angel are Champions for the Powers That Be. Caleb would therefore be Buffy's opposite in the Good and Evil Department but it would also make him equal to her in almost every way: a superpowered human. And "Fray", which is considered canon because it's from the pen of Joss Whedon himself, shows that Melaka and her fraternal twin, a male, split some of the slayer powers with him inheriting the psychic aspects and Melaka inheriting the physical aspects (no pun intended). He was turned into a vampire and therefore was like an evil slayer, with the psychic abilities of a slayer and the physical abilities of a vampire. Could Caleb be similar to Melaka's brother somehow, a male slayer? (I call them Players). And in order for Buffy to defeat him, she will probably have to kill him: a human. Something Faith, Giles, Angel, Spike, Willow, and Anya have all done as they played their parts in the Good vs. Evil struggle, but that Buffy never has. Buffy has also revealed that if it was the world or Dawn again, she would sacrifice Dawn this time around. This sets up the questions I think the Finale will ask: Can Buffy kill a human being, maybe more similar to her than anyone else in the world? And can she sacrifice an innocent like Dawn? Is it truly the mission that matters? Or the cost?

One last note, in the windy dark dimension with the multi- eyed orb, we learned that Buffy is responsible for the circumstances that have allowed the First Evil to attack. In my opinion, this is not because, she defeated death twice, thus spreading the slayer juice a bit thinner (maybe why both Kendra and Faith weren't strong enough to bear it and either died or went bad, though Faith has recovered nicely, R.I.P. Kendra...we miss ya, womon.), but because there is some unique quality within her that has nothing to do with her being a slayer. She's an American. He he. No, but really, Buffy is possibly the first or one of the first slayers to have been born and raised in a post feminist environment. And she's from a country and background where she has had the freedom to do whatever she wanted since her parents were too busy fighting to pay attention to her. This independence is a quality that all slayers share but it mostly manifests as loneliness. Buffy IS Special, she has been Chosen for a reason. Nikki Wood is probably the only other post feminist slayer we've seen, and she sacrificed herself to the mission, succumbed to the death it brings. Setting up one of the many mother themes of the season with Principal Wood, Spike, Dawn and Buffy all having visions of or dealing with mother issues this season (Willow and Xander have already faced their mother issues in past seasons and we wouldn't want to have those characters raked over those coals again, they deserve better.), and the vaguely female First Evil wants to open the Hellmouth and let all the monsters out, essentially opening Pandora's Box. I think She respresents, Lilith, the mother of monsters and biblical Adam's first wife, the source of all evil, always creating more evil (evil begets evil you know?). And Caleb is her pet boy (and a man who hates women, DEFINITE mothering issues there; also, Fillion mentioned Caleb as having "incestuous" qualities of some sort in the aforementioned WHEDONesque.com posting.). Now it seems to me that he sort of resembles Hank, Buffy's dad...what if he's Buffy's cousin? And he wants to rape her? (echoes of Spike's assault last season, the Medicine men in "Get It Done") Wouldn't that be the creepiest nemesis for Buffy? A southern guy who's a psycopath, AND a killer, AND super strong, AND a woman-hater, AND a religious freak AND a Bad Boy who wants her (notice how he refers to the Bringers as "my boys", too)AND HER COUSIN???? Even I wouldn't blame Buffy if she ran away screaming from THAT twisted freak, little overwhelming huh? Maybe the First Evil is trying to create a body of it's own so it and Jasmine can gobble up the world by getting a child from Buffy and Caleb. Because Buffy is CHANGE. Buffy is destined to redefine what it means to be a slayer, she's like a magnet for goodness and can bring out the best in people. Isn't it weird that Buffy's mentor is probably the most senior Watcher left in the world? Her female best friend is the most powerful mortal EVER, her male best friend is a simple human that has been directly AND indirectly responsible for saving the world on various occassions, his ex-girlfriend was a vengance demon with one of the best 1000 years track records in her business who has been reborn as human and redeemed, has given one vampire with a soul his reason for existing and choosing the side of Good (Angel) and another a reason for going in search of his own soul (Spike) and thus begining his own redemption, and made her the template and protector for the human form of the Key, giving her (Dawn) the tools to be able to protect herself. Ripple effects could be the redemption of Darla (anyone realize how Dru is the only one of that bunch that stayed Evil?) and setting in motion events that resulted in the the birth of Connor and Jasmine (she did convince Angel to choose living in "Amends"), adding creedence to my belief that she is responsible for the First attacking now. Buffy is an agent of radical change in the Whedonverse, and I believe that is where she will end up in the finale. Maybe she IS destined to be a mother, give birth to someone unique (it was never clear whether Nikki had her son before or after she was Activated as the Slayer, a line that almost ended with her since she was the last to possess the Slayer Handbag and it wasn't passed on to the next slayer), someone like Connor or Jasmine perhaps. Could this be the next step for our slayer? She has been a mother to Dawn for the last two and a half years...is that it, or do we have more surpises in stores?

I know some of points are way far out but take what you will and feel free to add, argue, or correct anything.

Um, sorry for the long post.

[> [> [> [> Re: The true nature of Caleb (spoilerish theories) -- Wizard, 23:44:13 04/19/03 Sat

Well, I don't know about the cousin bit, but you really hit something with the anti-Slayer possibility. The only thing I hate about this show is the limitations of the television medium. There is so much we don't get to see, and so much that we don't know. That usually doesn't bother me, but with Buffy and Angel it does. But that's actually to their credit- they make me care enough to speculate about how much we don't know. Anyway...

The question of why the Slayer is always female is one I've always asked myself. PLEASE HEAR ME OUT! For thousands of years, and even to the present day, there has always been a gender bias that favours the male. It would make sense, then, that the great warrior would be male. So why female? Well, it might make sense if the shamans were planning for stealth- who would suspect a teenage girl to be super-strong and have insane fighting skills? The problem with that argument is that over time, the advantage would be gone, and Slayers, while special, are all too mortal. Enough demons can take them down, and sometimes just one is enough.

The concept of the anti-Slayer would answer that. Perhaps something about the magic which makes Slayers drives men towards darkness but doesn't affect females either way. It can't drive them toward light- Buffy has demonstrated free will in abundance, and Faith went completely to the dark side for a time. Which would lead to another question- are 'anti-Slayers' all evil, or are they pushed that way just like Slayers are pushed towards good. If anti-Slayers have a choice, then what would happen if one of them went rogue- to the good side? Talk about evil's worst nightmare- a powerful warrior sworn to the destruction of evil demons, but with a knowledge of demonic tactics and secrets that a Watcher would envy. Do any good anti-Slayers get killed immediately? I would presume so. Oh, but I wish Joss thought of this. An anti-Slayer would be Buffy's perfect nemesis, even more so than Angelus or Faith, and what would happen if the anti- Slayer secretly longed for the light but had his free will crushed? Damn, but I wish Joss thought of this!

And Buffy as mother for a messianic figure? Not bad- do you mean the last Slayer until Melaka Fray? The next question would be: who's the daddy? A shanshued Angel? A shanshued *Spike*? Xander? Riley? Someone we haven't met yet?

I don't think Lindsay bought. He's too important a character to die offscreen. My bet is if Angel is renewed- please God let that happen!- then Lindsay will reform Wolfram and Hart in this dimension in S5. He's caved before, so the precedent is set for him to cave again.

It also makes sense that Dru is the only member of the Scourge to not have gone good. Her origin was the most tragic, and she's not only soulless, but completely insane. She is the embodiment of all the damage Angelus wrought in the course of his unlife. Dru going good, if it ever happens, will almost have to be a prelude to Angel's shanshu. Angelus' greatest creation, his greatest sin, would have been made right.

[> [> [> [> "christian" isn't always "judeo"! (slight rant) -- anom, 23:38:38 04/20/03 Sun

"...the appearance of the Beast (a biblical reference and damn if he doesn't look like the Judeo Christian devil)...."

I don't know of any image of a "devil" in Judaism that looks like the Beast, or like any of the horned, pointy- tailed, cloven-footed humanoid beings whose identification w/each other Solitude1056 has been trying to debunk lately. As far as I know, there's no physical description of "the satan" (more of a job title--kinda like a prosecutor or accuser--than an identity) in the Hebrew Scriptures. Jewish folklore does include demons, but again, they don't look like the classic "devil" image. Seems to me I read a long time ago that this image in Christianity was based on Pan &/or satyrs, as part of an effort to literally demonize pagan beliefs. If I'm wrong on this, I'm sure there are folks on this board who can set me straight!

Rant time! I remember when "Judeo-Christian" became a popular term. It was a response to the Jewish reaction to the assumption that all good things could be described as "Christian"--Christian charity, Christian virtues, etc. "Hey, don't assume you're the only ones who believe in those things!" "OK, OK, we'll call them 'Judeo-Christian!'" (This was before any other religions had enough followers in the U.S. to make similar protests heard.) Before long the term was reflexively used wherever "Christian" would have been used...w/out regard for whether it was really something the 2 religions had in common. It went from a recognition of similarities to an ignoring of differences. Now it's "Hey, don't assume we believe in that just because you do!" The whole devil concept & the idea of the role of Satan are in the "not in common" category.

Oh, rant time over? Already?

[> [> [> [> [> Re: "christian" isn't always "judeo"! (slight rant) -- O'Cailleagh, 12:32:57 04/21/03 Mon

Anom is indeed right, there is no description of the devil in the Bible that matches contemporary images of him. It was the early Church fathers who, in an attempt to scare people into Christianity (before they thought of murdering us) in order to secure more land/money/etc, took images of the Horned God of the Pagans and called them the devil.
To this day, horned creatures are thought of as demonic when originally horns were a symbol of fertility and power. Moses, for example, and maybe (don't quote me!) even Jesus, were often pictured with horns as a symbol of their power.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Oooh, question about horns... -- dream, 13:28:14 04/21/03 Mon

I remember being told back in my college art history classes that Moses was frequently shown with horns because of a mistranslation of the Old Testament passage in which Moses comes down from the mountain to find the people worshipping idols and becomes enraged. There was some sort of expression about "wearing horns" which meant "feeling anger" but was translated literally, leaving a lot of horned Moses in the Western art canon. I've always felt quite pleased with myself for remembering this (it doesn't take much) whenever I come across a horned Moses. Now my self- satisfying bit of trivia has been called into question! Was it really common to just add horns to a image of a human figure to denote power and fertility? Has anyone else heard the "mistranslated phrase" story?

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> I heard essentially the same story. -- Sophist, 13:59:23 04/21/03 Mon

The version I got was that the Vulgate mistranslated a phrase referring to beams of light around Moses' head as "horns".

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> half right, dream -- anom, 18:53:25 04/21/03 Mon

But the "horns," which as Sophist correctly notes is a mistranslation of Hebrew karan, in this case meaning "sending forth beams," are seen the 2nd time Moses comes down from the mountain, w/the replacement tablets. Looking at the Hebrew, I notice that the verb form is actually used, not the noun karnot, meaning "beams (or rays)." Moses is literally beaming! So literally that it scares people, & he starts wearing a veil except when he goes to talk to God (Exodus 34:29-35).

Keren does also mean "horn," so the mistranslation is understandable. So is use of the same word for both--a common depiction of the sun's rays is as elongated triangles that can look a lot like horns if you're just looking at 1 or 2 of them. (I've actually heard Michelangelo accused of anti-Semitism for putting horns on his Moses statue; I think the absence of horns on his David disproves that idea.)

"There was some sort of expression about 'wearing horns' which meant 'feeling anger' but was translated literally, leaving a lot of horned Moses in the Western art canon."

I'm trying to think of what expression this might be. The only thing I can come up with doesn't have to do w/horns but w/nostrils, or at least the nose. Charah ahf means "be angry" (often translated as "his anger waxed hot"); this phrase is used when Moses comes down from the mountain the 1st time, sees the people worshipping the golden calf, & smashes the original tablets. Charah by itself means "to be angry, to kindle/burn," & ahf by itself means "nose." The contrasting expression erech apayim ("patient") literally means "long of nostrils"! I have no idea why anger is associated w/the nose, but just to bring these 2 words together, in my wanderings through the Hebrew-English dictionary for this post, I came across karnaf, which apparently is composed of the words for "horn" & "nose."

It means "rhinoceros."

[> [> About Caleb's attractiveness (for Darby as well) -- KdS, 03:59:00 04/19/03 Sat

I would have posted this in response to a Darby post that got archived, but it'll fit here.

There have been some complaints about just how repellant Caleb is, and suggestions that the FE should be more about seduction to evil. I believe that that isn't the face of evil that ME are dealing with this season. S6 was all about seduction to evil, and they didn't even have to portray a visible tempter, just leave the characters to follow their own internal demons. By contrast, the point of S7 is the temptation to do evil in fighting evil, to believe that you're in a battle for survival and nothing matters, so you can plot to have one of someone's friends murdered behind her back and tell yourself that it's because she's not seeing the big picture. Hence you need the evil to be completely frightening and repellant, to make that temptation realistic.

[> [> [> Great point -- Sophist, 10:37:18 04/19/03 Sat

[> [> [> Re: About Caleb's attractiveness (for Darby as well) -- Darby, 17:59:20 04/19/03 Sat

But isn't that what Season 5 was about - temptation to do evil against a near-unbeatable foe - Willow stepping over the line, the possibility of sacrificing Dawn, Giles murdering a sort-of innocent? If we're going to have what's essentially a Satan-style story with all-encompassing Evil that Can't be Fought, the Bringers and Caleb seem to belie that.

Add to that the fact that all of the evil done last season by the core characters has largely been unresolved, and it makes sense to continue that story with the evil that's really the enemy is the evil that tempts the good.

Just my feeling, of course - I kinda like your idea about what's going on, too. I'd really like to believe that this is part of a plan, that Caleb isn't just a very transparent poke at a group (remember when you had to figure the imagery out?) that's a simplistic target. It would be nice if it was more than that.

[> Previous villains are fake; Caleb is real -- BlueStem, 12:01:44 04/19/03 Sat

A lot of people say they enjoy the previous villains a lot (with exception of Adam), and they hate Caleb because of cliche, stereotype, or whatever. But people need to remember that people like Caleb do exist in real life. The fundamentalist threat is quite real, even in the US. The fundy priests may not kill girls, but the things that they want to do in their hearts are not much different from what Caleb is doing on screen. This character may strike nerves, but shouldn't real life villainly make people angry?

[> [> True, BlueStem, but what about... -- Q, 13:26:38 04/19/03 Sat


He was very *real*, and was just the misogynist that Caleb is.

So past villains WERE real, but Warren didn't seem as stereotyped.

That being said, this will deal with the fundamentalist aspect that Warren didn't cover, which is a giant evil in and of itself.

[> [> [> On Warren -- BlueStem, 20:37:49 04/19/03 Sat

Personally, I didn't see Warren as misogynist. He was more about the sex and pleasure. All he wanted was his girlfriend back. He may have used a controlling method, but it wasn't about controlling women in general. Besides, if he was such a misogynist, why would someone as strong willed as Katrina go out with him in the first place?

I would also imagine that if you give any man the ability to control minds, he would target more women than men. Why? For the sex, of course! But would this make the person misogynist? I wouldn't think so.

Caleb is different in that he is excercising power to specifically target women. There's no carnal driving force; it's pure power for power's sake. And it's focused, too. There are at two big holy books that condones such behavior (the Bible and the Qur'an). Caleb's misogynism is a way of life for many, many people in the world. And this kind of behavior isn't even the same kind of behavior that Warren exhibits.

[> [> [> [> Perhaps Caleb is LESS than he appears? -- RadiusRS, 18:03:39 04/21/03 Mon

The following quote for the above post gave me an idea: "Caleb is different in that he is excercising power to specifically target women. There's no carnal driving force; it's pure power for power's sake. And it's focused, too."

The theme of the season from Lessons on is about how one uses power to acheive one's ends. The First Evil is the perfect example of this in that it has quite limited power on this plane (intangible, can only turn into Dead people) yet maximizes this advantage at every opportunity it can, therefore maximizing the damage it causes. Chloe, the Winnie the Pooh loving SIT that was talked into suicide by the FE is an example of this. If Caleb is directing his hatred and power towards the goal of killing the embodiment of the feminine principle, he is like a blade that has been sharpened repreatedly until it's as sharp as it can possibly be. I think that Buffy denying the power the Shamen offered her in "Get It Done" will force her to do the same: focus all her power on the FE's Weakest moment at the most advantageous moment.

[> My thoughts are similar. -- HonorH, 12:58:07 04/19/03 Sat

Initially, I was rolling my eyes at Caleb and thinking that if Nathan Fillion wasn't playing him, he'd be too tiresome for words. However, you're right: a lot of the previous villains, and especially the Master, were cliches to some degree. I'm not going to get upset over him before his role is played out.

[> [> Exactly what I was thinking -- Alison, 18:38:43 04/19/03 Sat

[> Didn't realize he was a stereotype -- Finn Mac Cool, 20:53:55 04/19/03 Sat

Maybe I just haven't seen enough horror movies to pick up on the cliche of preacher/serial killer. However, he doesn't seem to fit the traditional stereotype of southern preachers, as I always thought the traditonal presentation of them was of shouting, fire and brimstone guys. Caleb seemed very soft spoken.

I personally loved Caleb. He gives the First Evil a physical presence on the show, as well as someone to play off of. The hints about his past make me sufficiently creeped, as well as curious. Also, when a character is insane, almost every line of dialouge they have is quotable, which is of the good. But, what probably really won me over was when we first saw him and the First Evil together. That moment when he realizes the First is in Buffy's form and tries to touch her face hints at a certain level of feeling to him beyond simple hate and insanity.

And I'd just like to mention that, while it is pretty clear Caleb is misogynist, he is like Warren in that his misogyny is only a part of his general misanthropy. Caleb makes many comments about humanity and seems to view everyone as wicked, even though he reserves special blame for women.

[> Re: Some thoughts on Caleb/real villains, etc. (spoilerish along lines of discussion) -- CrookedMind, 21:50:48 04/19/03 Sat

I'm in agreeance with the idea that Caleb is by far one of the most horrifying villains to rise from the Buffyverse.

Look down the list of "biggies"--The Master, Angelus/Spike/Dru, The Mayor, Adam, Glory, The Troika/Willow. Now look at who inflicted the most direct damage on Buffy & crew . . . and think about what the "goals" of each "big bad" were. The Master, The Mayor, Adam, and Glory dealt relatively little directed "close to home" damage because they all had a "bigger picture" they were shooting for. For these bads, Buffy & Co. were just a "bump in the road" to their greater glory, and hence were dealt with in kind. The net result of this was that none managed to inflict much real damage on the gang; yes, there was some collateral damage and Buffy died at The Master's hand, but again, means to an end.

Now shift to the remaining past BB's--Angelus and The Troika. We see a difference here because even though these bads had bigger plans in mind, their primary focus was Buffy and to an extent the SG. As a result, we see more "personal" damage--Kendra and Jenny (sp?) killed off with the latter death being incredibly vicious, Giles tortured, Tara killed (albiet not a direct attack) and Willow turned dark with all the subsequent sequelae. The pain here is both directed and felt more "close to home" because the actions of these bads were focused on Buffy more so than on a larger plan.

And now, step up to Caleb. We see in the interactions of one episode that Caleb's "unholy grail" is Buffy! Everything he's done, every murder of a "dirty girl" has been foreplay for "cleansing" The One, Her, Buffy. More so than in any other plot arc, we now have a meaningful, powerful, driven evil focused dead-square at extinguishing Buffy's spark, and as a result we've seen in just one episode arguably more damage to Buffy's circle than any other bad has purposely visited on the crew. Two potentials killed, Zander hideously maimed, countless others injured-- all while Buffy stood powerless and watched as Caleb calmly preached and struck at will.

Yes, I know that the FE is the force behind this and that It does have a more universal agenda, but in Caleb Buffy is for once facing an unrelenting evil obsessed with her personal mutilation and destruction.

In tracking with this, I'm on-board with the idea that Caleb is the "anti-slayer", Buffy's negative reflection, whatever term you like. He's her universal opposite, and thus I'm betting the most difficult opponent she's faced . . .

[> [> Although, Caleb appears to be stronger -- Finn Mac Cool, 23:05:19 04/19/03 Sat

Of the three strongest people in that battle (Faith, Spike, and Buffy) neither lasted more than five seconds against Caleb. Buffy was unable to get to her feet for about thirty seconds after Caleb decked her, which is more than any villain besides Glory (the invincible, immortal god of a hell dimension) has been able to do with one punch. So, while Caleb may function as Buffy's dark opposite, he is a more powerful version. Just thought I'd bring that up.

The question of Connor....spoilers for Magic Bullet -- Rufus, 03:04:15 04/19/03 Sat

In Magic Bullet we got a short conversation between Connor and Angel that I left out of the last post because I think it deserves seperate consideration.

Angel: How old were you when you realized you could track so well?

Connor: I don't know...5..6...didn't exactly celebrate birthdays in QuorToth. Holtz made up a game so I could practice.

Angel: Oh...you mean he'd hide things for you to find.

Connor: Kind of....tied me to a tree, then run away....

Angel: What??

Connor: You know...I'd have to escape and then find him. One time it only took me five days.

Angel: Five Days?? He abandoned you and ......Connor! that's terrible....

Connor: Why I'm so good at tracking.

Can you imagine the panic a five or six year old would feel at being abandoned? Not only abandoned but tied up then abandoned. Holtz has alway been a bit south of normal, but this proves that even his ability to love Connor never got in the way of the big picture as Holtz saw it. Connor was brought up in hell, he doesn't know what a family is because he only had a task master instead of a father. But he still wanted to see what his demon father looked like.

I see Connor as representing a longing for something he doesn't totally understand. Holtz marinated the kid in wacky thinking, and Cordy (master) picked up where Holtz left off. If Connor had been raised in a family atmosphere would he have done the things he has, from sleeping with Cordy, to helping kill an innocent girl? What do you do with this kid who never had a chance, and has no clue how to find what he is looking for. I may feel sorry for stuff Angel has gone through but Connor got the ultimate shaft.

So, what would you do to Connor? Cure or Kill?

[> The question of Connor is can he be cured? -- RadiusRS, 06:50:08 04/19/03 Sat

Angel said Connor wasn't a Champion but had the potential to be one because of who he is. What Connor doesn't understand is that he has a purpose in life, which very few people ever get. Instead, he looks at himself as a victim. It might be fair to say that the Beastmaster/Evil Cordy/Jasmine planned for Connor to have such a terrible childhood, by using Sahjhain and Holtz either directly or indirectly), but Connor still has to understand the responsibility his power comes with (shades of the Power themes from Buffy in here too) as well as the potential for good or evil he has (he IS the child of two vampires). He wants to be told what to do, perhaps it's the only way he knows how. But I believe he has reached the point where he has seen enough and the vision of Darla was proof of this, not to mention the virgin's blood on his face and hand. It's clear he has a choice. Also, all the suffering and lying that Connor has experienced have been mostly orchestrated by Jasmine, perhaps to make him more susceptible to her wiles. But Connor prefers a Master to tell him what to do since that's how he was raised...but he has a choice, and he has chosen the easy way rather the the more difficult right way. Is he still redeemable? I think so. Is he bad? Absolutely, he's Jasmine's pet and does her bidding. Is he ready to change? I don't think so...he's a long way from recognizing his own faults and getting farther by the second. I think whatever happens at the moment of confrontation will decide whether to save or kill him.

P.S. He was immune to Cordy's blood because he also shares blood with Jasmine...or maybe because, since he is Jasmine's father, he must receive blood from his side of the family to break the spell rather than the mother's...Do you realize that now all of the AI gang and Jasmine are essentially blood brothers and sisters? All seven plus Jasmine now have a physical and probably mystical bond that can't be severed...THEY ALL have demon, vampire, and human blood in their veins. My thought is this is a big part of what the future reorganization of Angel is all about. Did everyone notice how Skip said that EVERYONE at Angel Investigations had been manipulated into becoming part of the gang? (true, he could have been lying) With Lorne's spell in "Spin the Bottle", something came out of the six of them, over the spot where Angel had performed dangerous magic last season and opened the portal for Connor's return. When the fake spell to re-ensoul Angelus happened, there were the seven of them there plus Lilah, and something came out of their Talismans...my guess is Jasmine is trying to strengthen the bond between them and has some specific purpose in mind as evidenced by how she gathered the group (except for Fred, Cordelia, and Lilah) when trying to sense Fred.

Anyway, those are my ramblings. Please discuss, challenge, or correct.

[> This was a surprising revelation, but not so surprising in retrospect -- Masq, 06:53:30 04/19/03 Sat

There have been several times when someone in the A.I. gang has gotten rough with Connor, and he's always said, enigmatically, "You get used to it". Two that I can think of, Fred zaps him with a taser and Gunn ties him to a chair in "Deep Down", then in "Supersymmetry", Angel pins him to a wall thinking he's an intruder in the Hyperion. And Connor makes his little comment after Angel apologizes.

Many of us speculated at such times that perhaps Holtz abused him, but their relationship in the last couple of episodes of Season 3 seemed loving. Perhaps in the early years of their relationship, all Holtz could see was the son of Angel and Darla, and he treated him as such. Then as time went by and Holtz started to see Connor for who he was, a vulnerable, brave human being with a soul, "hate turned to love".

And of course Connor, like so many abused children, loves Holtz despite that. He was utterly dependent on him for so many years--Holtz was the source of food, shelter, approval, snippets of love if they were offered. Of course Connor is still devoted to Holtz after 17 years of that. Of course he can't see the love the vampire father he was raised to hate has for him.

Of course, Angel doesn't really help. He's been stand-offish with Connor, believing that's what Connor wants and not wanting to be overbearing in his desire to reconnect like he'd been in "A New World". He let jealousy of Cordelia keep him even further apart. Angel needs to seriously grow up before he can be a real father to Connor.

And of course, Connor doesn't help. He's the proverbial angry young man, shutting down every attempt Angel makes to connect with him. Living out Holtz' lies like a religion. Responding to the hands-on manipulative authority of Holtz, "Cordelia", and Jasmine more than the hands-off goof-ball love of Angel.

But I think if Angel isn't renewed for Season 5, the thing I will regret not seeing the most is the further growth of this relationship. Forget Angel "Shanshu"ing or whatever-- the next step in his quest for humanity is having a human relationship with his child.

If Connor is killed off at the end of this season, the writers will have missed an important opportunity in Angel's character growth. Yes, Angel can grow from the sadness and regret over his son's death, but what does that get us? More brooding! What was it Angel told Faith in Orpheus? It's living day to day that's the real challenge, being willing to make mistakes.

[> [> Attachment to Abusers -- Rufus, 12:05:32 04/19/03 Sat

We know what Holtz was capable of....look at the icepick scene where he pinned Justine's hand to the table and left. Her test was to endure that pain and prove worthy of his attention. It became clear that she was living with Holtz in an intimate way...remember Fred's comment about there being "no happy here". Holtz was a zealot in the war against the demon threat to humanity. He became worse than some of what he fought in how he treated others.

Connor was taken by a man who wanted to even a score with Angel, but he did have affection for the boy. Question is, what is affection to Holtz? I had an opportunity to talk to a psychiatrist about abused kids and their loyalty to the one who abused them. He said it was one of the hardest bonds to break. The kids are abused physically and mentally, one facet of the mental abuse is the constant threat of abandonment the kids face. Holtz used this type of threat to tie Connor so close to him that the boy would never have a real life of his own. Buffy has a mission, but Holtz's mission is very different from hers...there is a fine line between a mission with a valid purpose and a mission that starts with some nut-job with a dream. Holtz abused Connor physically, mentally, and though he may think he loved the boy, he used Connor to get even with Angel from the grave.

What remains is a kid who has no idea what a family really is, which you can see by his facination with family units. They are a foreign idea to him. What will someone do to get what they don't understand? I think we are in the process of seeing the lengths that Connor will go to. I wonder if he will ever recover from being that kid tied to a tree, or will his actions escalate to a tragic end?

[> [> [> Great post, but... -- Masq, 13:01:54 04/19/03 Sat

I think we are in the process of seeing the lengths that Connor will go to. I wonder if he will ever recover from being that kid tied to a tree, or will his actions escalate to a tragic end?

It drives me nuts when you do that, Ruf! Now I'm going to sit around and worry about what "tragic end" Season 4 and Connor might get into.

I'm not really complaining about your teasy little hints, my dearest trollop, especially since you don't tell us which or either might happen, it's just my anxiety level over AtS and the character of Connor is already through the roof! ; )

[> [> [> [> Connor and our hearts -- luna, 19:06:55 04/19/03 Sat

After being a long-time BtVS devotee, I'm beginning to see the light of AtS, and Connor is one of the reasons why. We don't have anyone in Buffy whose is so clearly a victim but still has the chance of creating his own salvation--if only he can find the way to do so. He really pulls at our minds and hearts.

[> [> [> [> [> And he is clearly in need of salvation -- Masq, 19:20:04 04/19/03 Sat

Those who see our pity and our good wishes for him shouldn't think for a second that we are overlooking the wrong he's done, especially in recent episodes.

I'm just really, really hoping he doesn't go the way of Lilah--killed off before he gets a chance to see his life for what it is and before he finds the inner strength to turn it around.

And I like him too much to want to see him "redeem himself" in some final deadly act of courage. He's a little too far gone at the moment for that to be realistic by the end of this season, anyway.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: And he is clearly in need of salvation -- Wizard, 03:30:12 04/20/03 Sun

Could it be Connor's actions in Inside Out which will finally make him a Champion? I know it's horrible, but it does sort of fit the trend- the characters on Angel all seem to have to hit bottom in some way or go through some horrible experience in order to get on board with the whole Champion thing. We saw it most clearly with Angel, but we also saw it with Cordy, Wes, Gunn, Lorne, Fred, even Lindsay after a false start or two. We also see it in BtVS- Giles, Spike, Anya, Willow, Andrew, FAITH... BtVS tends to be a little more judgemental than AtS, but most of the supporting casts are murderers- not killers, but murderers. If they can be accepted back into the fold...

Where BtVS focuses more on saving lives, AtS focuses on saving souls. This being the case, I can't see how they can NOT try to save Connor. He's still a victim, but now he's got innocent blood on his hands. It makes him all the more needing of salvation. And if Angel is renewed for S5, then there's a certain demon in a jar Connor is slated to kill...

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> That's right!! -- Masq, 08:05:52 04/20/03 Sun

Hey! Connor can't be killed off by Joss and company until AFTER he kills Sahjhan!

So there!

Unless Spike is planning on fathering a little pup of his own soon...

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: And he is clearly in need of salvation (spoilers Magic Bulllet)e Out) -- lunasea, 08:43:01 04/20/03 Sun

Unless on Angel we are going to see an end to the prophecies, for a while at least. Sounds like Jasmine has been speaking Sumerian. In Sumerian, Shanshu is death. Don't really think that Angel is going to die (or become human, though being able to be in the daylight might be interesting and would go with the symbolism of the Ra-tet this season. A vampire with a tan. Wouldn't that annoy Spike to no end?).

Something tells me when/if Connor dies, it will be Wesley that does it. We are looking for Angel to do it because the father will devour the son. I can see Wesley doing it to spare Angel from having to do it, much like Giles killed Ben. Wesley was the one to get Connor in Magic Bullet. I asm sure Wesley feels responsible for the man Connor has become and the effect that has had on Angel's life.

Why else set up Wesley and Angel as being so tight before Jasmine is born? Originally I thought that that relationship would break Jasmine's hold over Angel. As usual, I was wrong. I'm running out of ways to be wrong.

[> [> [> [> Me??????Make you worry? -- Rufus, 22:03:58 04/19/03 Sat

It was a logical question to ask when you consider in any Joss series tragedy plays an important part....but in now way take my question as a spoiler or a hint cause it isn't.

[> [> [> [> [> Thanks, my anxiety is my own... -- Masq, 08:02:32 04/20/03 Sun

Ever have close to sleepless nights over a television show?

sobs in sheer patheticness

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Thanks, my anxiety is my own... -- Rob, 15:21:14 04/20/03 Sun

"Ever have close to sleepless nights over a television show?"

*Rob meekly raises his hand*

The first time I realized in my life just how obsessed I can become with television shows was when I woke up the next morning after seeing the third season "Xena" episode, "Maternal Instincts," where Xena's son was killed and her relationship with Gabrielle all but completely destroyed, and I was still upset! And with "Buffy" or "Angel"...fughedaboutit! Can't even count the number of times pondering them have kept me awake at night.


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Oh, Rob.... -- Masq, 15:56:51 04/20/03 Sun

***warning*** What follows may fall into the realm of "too much information"

I've had an insomniac condition for about two months now. I wake up every night between the hours of 1 am and 4 am and can't get back to sleep.

Many years ago, I was diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder, which is now pretty well controlled by mild medication. I figured my insomnia was a side-effect of a recent increase in anxiety, which of course, it is. But I also assumed it had to do with added pressures at work, or the war, or something "legitimate".

But work has gotten less hectic, the war is tapering off, and I never let the media images of the war into my home in the first place. So why is it that I still can't sleep?

And then I noticed my sleeplessness and night-time anxiety were always worse on Wednesday nights. Almost invariably. And then I realized that it was about two months ago that I read how the WB might not be renewing Angel. And then I realized that half the time when I can't sleep, I hear Barry Manilow's "Mandy" playing over and over in my head.

Oh.My.God. This is so pathetic! How can I explain this to the sleep specialist if I ever manage to get in to see him? Do you think David Boreanaz is being kept up every night wondering if he will have a job come May?

Of course, I forget sometimes how much of my life is tied up in these two shows, and how much time I put into it, and emotional energy.

Luckily for me, my regular doctor knows some good sleep medication.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Insomnia's a bitch and AtS doesn't help... -- yabyumpan, 17:33:29 04/20/03 Sun

I totally sympathise masq and may I just say that this board doesn't help either ;o) Many times I've logged off, turned off the lights and found myself just laying there in bed mulling over some post, even to the point of having to get up eventually and respond. And then there's the laying in bed worrying over some character, getting angry at others, wondering if they'll be a 5th season....

Oh well, at least we know we're not alone esp with my shift work, for about 2 weeks out of 4 my insomnia probably coincides with yours :o(

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Thanks, yab! -- Masq, 18:11:49 04/20/03 Sun

I've been a little critical of season 4 lately, but I know a big part of it is that so much seems to ride on fan reaction and ratings and such. I wasn't too fond of the end of season 2 of AtS, either, but I didn't have the same trouble then because the future of the show wasn't hanging so much in the balance.

And as I pointed out in my post to CW, being on the internet and on the board some times intensifies things because you talk about it and read about it every day, day after day.

Sympathetic friends are always welcome!

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Oh, Rob.... -- CW, 17:47:23 04/20/03 Sun

With me it was Babylon 5 that first caused me to lose sleep. It happened rarely with Buffy and Angel before I began to post here, which just goes to show talking it out isn't always the greatest thing for your health. Not sleeping was a huge worry when I was working. But, now I'm retired, if I can't sleep at night I just given in and think about whatever it is, or read something. I have no problem taking naps the next day.

If you dared to tell your sleep specialist the truth, I'm sure he'd tell you to try thinking about something besides AtS for a half-hour to an hour before going to bed. Try conentrating on something that bores the hell out of you. Philosophy texts used make me very sleepy, but somehow, I think that might not work for you. ;o)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Internet fandom -- Masq, 17:57:32 04/20/03 Sun

Mmm, part of the problem is I've always gone to bed early, so I'm usually in bed directly after AtS is over, or directly after I've rewatched the ep for the second time. So I'm sure your doctor is right about that.

I know that being part of the internet community with its constant rumors and speculation (informed and uninformed) and endless articles and opinions about will-they-or-won't- they has just added to my level of anxiety.

Trouble is, I've never had this kind of anxiety over a television show before. Certainly not BtVS. I guess I didn't have as many worries about its fan base and its network support. But come to think of it, I was never part of any internet community before BtVS, nor was I really a part of fan communities in general before BtVS. I never got to hear incessant fan discussion about the fate of Star Trek, B5, Highlander, X-files or any other shows I enjoyed.

It can really enhance your experience, talking to other fans, but it's got it's down side as well.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Internet fandom -- Rob, 19:34:13 04/20/03 Sun

"Mmm, part of the problem is I've always gone to bed early, so I'm usually in bed directly after AtS is over, or directly after I've rewatched the ep for the second time.

Me too! Almost the same situation. I don't go to bed early, but I do have a night class on Wednesdays. I don't get home till 11, and that's when I lie in bed with the lights out, watch AtS and attempt to go right to sleep. It's absolutely impossible. At the end of "Inside Out," for example, my jaw just dropped, and I just sat there in bed, staring at the blank screen, my mind racing in 20 million different directions. Ditto for "Players". Probably, come to think of it, even more so for the end of "Players."

Although, BtVS does this for me, too, which ya probably guessed. The end of "Sleeper," for example, wrecked me for hours. Giles....gulp...Giles! Don't even get me started on when Glory attacked Tara in "Tough Love," or the summer after "The Gift." Don't even get me started on the end of "Dirty Girls." I'm still reeling from that!

My hours laying awake in bed are of two varieties: either (1) some incredibly shocking cliffhanger just happened, and I am completely stunned silent, trying to figure out how they're going to get out of it....very little sane thinking happens on those nights; I just keep replaying the moment in my head over and over and my mind just races or (2) there's a continuity problem or more usually just something I'm wondering about either the metaphysics of the Buffyverse or just what's going to happen in the future on the shows that my brain slowly and methodically tries to suss out.

Especially now, I am completely fascinated by every villain: Jasmine (is she a villain or not? is another issue-- depending on how her story wraps up, she may take my "Favorite Buffyverse Villain" of all-time trophy), the First and Caleb. I love the fallen preist/subverting of religion themes. I have never been more Buffyverse addicted than at this moment. Because before this year, I only had the one show to be hooked on. But now with 2 complete series to wrap my brain around, it's all Buffy or Angel all the time in the warped little brain of mine.

Although it can get a little crazy, I really am going to miss this feeling when "Buffy"s gone of being so throughly wrapped up in 2 series, in the same universe, simultaneously. I'm worried I'll never find a show I love as much again. Although with my TTMQ, that may not be such a bad thing!


[> [> [> [> [> [> I have. -- Doug, 16:58:35 04/20/03 Sun

And the TV show was Buffy.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Count me in too- its sad, but true. -- Alison, 17:08:09 04/20/03 Sun

[> Myfavorite Connor line this season (spoilers Magic Bullet) -- lunasea, 08:19:18 04/19/03 Sat

"Why would anyone reject love?"

When Angel says that Fred gets to live until they find out why she rejected Jasmine's love, that is Connor's response. Incredibly funny considering that is what he has been doing to Angel since he got back.

Now we know how messed up Connor really is. Is Angel ready to write off his hell spawn yet? Hell Spawn, what an appropriate name, not because of his parentage, but because it is hell that really spawned him.

In the Buffyverse no one has been irrdeemable. Faith got saved. Lindsey got saved. Lilah died before she got saved. Would Wesley have been able to reach her? That is what we were left with in "Salvage."

So what will happen to Connor? I would say that Magic Bullet was foreshadowing, but I haven't been right about anything so far.

[> Re: The question of Connor....spoilers for Magic Bullet -- CW, 08:59:05 04/19/03 Sat

I can remember starting to school at age five and along with my friends being embarassed at how weak and helpless our mothers thought we were. Five and six-year-olds can, given the chance (or just plain forced to be), be tougher emotionally than their parents usually imagine. On the other hand, what happened to Connor shows he is special to say the least. No six-year-old human would survive that kind of treatment on Earth let alone in a hell dimension. This is definitely a situation in which the emotional outpouring over the abandonment of poor little Connor, tends to cloud the real question, "What the heck is he?"

[> [> Re: The question of Connor....spoilers for Magic Bullet -- yabyumpan, 09:35:12 04/19/03 Sat

This is definitely a situation in which the emotional outpouring over the abandonment of poor little Connor, tends to cloud the real question, "What the heck is he?"

I wonder if it was his experiences in Quartoth that actually made him 'special'. It appeared that as a baby, before he was taken, that he was a 'normal' baby. Lilah stated in 'Loyalty' that W&H hadn't been able to find anything special in his blood and in the same episode, it's also stated by the Dr that he is a 'perfectly normal baby', when Angel and Wes take him for a check up.
All this opens up several questions :
Was it Quartoth that made him special?
Was it the PTB and /or Jasmine's plan all along that he should end up there so he could become what he is?
Which leads to -
Is 'Jasmine' somehow connected to Quartoth?
Did Cordy take on 'Jasmine's' essence when she gave Connor the 'soul colonic' in 'Benediction?

Also, slightly left of field but:
Is it significant that the last person Darla fed from before 'giving birth' to Connor was Cordy?
Is that when the connection was set up and why Cordy's body was chosen as a vessel for 'Jasmine'?

So many questions and only a few more eps to go, there better be a fifth season.

[> [> [> Re: WHAT! Aww Poor Baby - Connor-spoilers for Magic Bullet & Inside Out -- Angelina, 16:09:46 04/19/03 Sat

Hmmmmmmmm, excuse me, but doesn't any one even care at ALL that Connor is nothing more than a cold-blooded murderer? Seems to me Connor was under no "spell" to hand that poor child over to EvilCordy to be sliced and diced. And sorrier still that his "abusive childhood" MAY have caused him to become a sociopath with no conscience or remorse, but that did not stop society putting an end to Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Damer or any other nut out there that gets off by killing, raping or torturing. I really resent the way the writers have swept that little savory scene of that poor girl getting butchered under the carpet! I can only hope little "bad-boy" Conner Baby, gets more than his widdle hand slapped. As far as I am concerned, I don't want to see him get rehabilitated in any other way than prison or death. He butchered an innocent human, with full knowledge and consent. I still cannot believe that this hasn't been addressed yet. Yeah, I know the current storyline is all about mass hypnosis, but STILL.

[> [> [> [> Re: WHAT! Aww Poor Baby - Connor-spoilers for Magic Bullet & Inside Out -- Rufus, 21:24:09 04/19/03 Sat

Now that opens up the question to all the characters human or demon....we have seen characters with pasts much more colourful than Connor's yet we love them and wish the best for them be they Anya, Angel, Spike.....so, what's the difference between their experience of causing death and Connors?

[> [> [> [> [> Re: Evil does as evil sees? Don't think so. Connor- spoilers for Magic Bullet & Inside Out -- Angelina, 22:26:17 04/19/03 Sat

Demon, Vampire, Vampire. Not Human, killing is in their nature. Connor is not a vampire nor is he a demon, at least that has not been proven. He knows the difference between right and wrong. He chose to go down the path of evil. He. Chose. I also think, for me, the killing of that young girl was simply brutal. Usually we see killings and torturing by the evil in this show. Spike, Angelus, Anya, etc., are not to be excused, but technically, they cannot help being what they are. I think the full-blown "wrongness" and mercilessness of Connor's actions blew me away, and the reality of the scene, WOW. It disturbed me then and still does. I think Connor must pay for this horrendous murder. By saying other characters have killed, simply does not make Connor's actions OK. What he did was simply horrific. He consciously took a totally innocent life to further his own gain. I think it was a terrible message to send out to the fans and general public. It was complete in its mercilessness and it ruined Angel for me. I have vowed to watch till the end of this season, just to see how the writers handle the Connor thing. But if the series is renewed, I'm done with it. Once Buffy goes, the Buffyverse is closed for me. Inside Out simply pushed me over the edge. To coin a Buffyism "It was just wrong." Connor is lost to the darkside. And the fact that this act of sheer brutality has not even been addressed in the series is unconscionable.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Evil does as evil sees? Don't think so. Connor- spoilers for Magic Bullet & Inside Out -- Rufus, 22:49:48 04/19/03 Sat

Cordy(Master) killed that girl....Connor found her and brought her to Cordy but he didn't actually kill the girl. Connor is part-demon not just human. So what is the difference between him and his father who assisted in 15 murders? Both did what they did with a soul.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Rufus, how...? Don't think so. Connor-spoilers for Magic Bullet & Inside Out -- Angelina, 07:59:46 04/20/03 Sun

Rufus, I think the answer is that the killing perpetrated by Angelus, Spike, Anya (who by the way totally repented for her killings and offered her life as redemption), were demons and/or evil human beings, who had done great harm to others. The butchering of an INNOCENT little girl just does not fit in. Does not make it all OK just because his "demon" family murdered and maimed. Angel and Spike and even Darla repented and sacrificed to make amends. Connor is human, he had free will and he CHOSE to ALLOW that young girl to be kill - he offered her up to Cordy on a silver platter. It was disgusting. Really, it was. IMHO, there was simply no excuse for what he did. Has this world gotten so jaded that we look at something so completely brutal and say - "well that's OK, he's half demon, so he's justified"? No. He had at that moment FREE WILL, his own mother pleading with him to do the right thing. If what he did can be justifed, by any means, we might as well all pack it in now if that is the case. That young girl was someone's daughter and she begged for her life on her hands and knees. I don't think I will ever stop seeing that scene every time I look at Connor and Cordy. It's just a done deal for me. ME totally went over the line in that one scene.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Rufus, how...? Don't think so. Connor-spoilers for Magic Bullet & Inside Out -- Alison, 11:46:02 04/20/03 Sun

Just remember, in the Buffyverse, no one is beyond redemption... and I think we would be better off we we applied this principle to real life.
To write off Connors character based on one mistake, horrible as it was, is to deny him the chance to redeem himself through self realization and positive action.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Rufus, how...? Don't think so. Connor-spoilers for Magic Bullet & Inside Out -- Shiraz, 14:15:29 04/22/03 Tue

Remember though that 'one mistake' makes that next mistake that much easier.


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I thought it was one of the best scenes in the show's history. (IO and MB spoilers) -- Rob, 13:14:06 04/20/03 Sun

But that is not the point here. For starters, no one has obviously yet confronted Connor over the death of the girl but the answer is simple. Everyone was instantly swept up by the Jasmine spell, and besides that no one knew except Connor. But notice how Connor was the only one who didn't change after having his blood mixed with Jasmine's. As I theorized earlier, Connor did realize the "truth" about Jasmine there but decided to stay with her because it would be easier for him to continue to believe that it is right to follow her rather than to confront the hideous actions he did to bring her forth. That, IMO, is when the girl's death will be dealt with on the show. When Connor stops to think and realizes what he has done is wrong and stops being in denial, then he will be able to break free from Jasmine and join AI against her. You are being too harsh on Connor, IMHO, because he is a young boy who has spent his entire life being manipulated by evil people. He has been lost and confused and is so naive that he falls for it when parental figures (everyone except for Angel unfortunately) has told him loving words in order to control him. Holtz did this and Evil!Cordelia did this. And although his mother did come to him to tell him not to kill the girl, remember he was convinced by Cordy that this wasn't his mother. Further, only moments after doing this horrible deed, this "beautiful goddess" was brought forth. Even further f*&!ing up his conception of good and evil. Yes, he chose to do something evil....but why is that any worse than Willow flaying Warren? Than Angel locking all of the W&H lawyers up with Darla and Dru? Than Anya deciding to give up her humanity to become a Vengeance Demon and slaughter men for millenia? You are thinking from your perspective--a level-headed person with a clear definition of good and evil--why killing this young girl was wrong...But like a cult leader, Cordy had convinced him that it was the right thing to do and had gotten him to believe it. Think of Patty Hearst, who after being kidnapped by a cult and being brainwashed for months, ended up fighting alongside them. Connor may be in many ways naive and foolish......but he's not evil.


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Rufus, how...? Don't think so. Connor-spoilers for Magic Bullet & Inside Out -- Rufus, 19:43:28 04/20/03 Sun

You will have to point out exactly where I said killing people is okay? The mental gymnastics that people go through to excuse killing tends to happen once they know a person or fictional character well. Familiarity breeds excuse making. If you do a balance sheet comparing killings of everyone in Angel you will find that Angel has far outdone his son in the monster arena. But as we know Angel or understand him more the temptation to make excuses for him gets stronger. We have the luxury of knowing that everything we are talking about is based in make believe. By taking the killing of the young lady by Cordy with Connor as an accomplice and elevating it above all other killings doesn't make for a stronger case against Connor. So using what I know about Connor I feel that he isn't any less deserving of the chance to redeem himself, just like his dad.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Evil does as evil sees? Don't think so. Connor- spoilers for Magic Bullet & Inside Out -- lunasea, 08:54:19 04/20/03 Sun

Connor didn't kill the girl. Cordy did. ME could have had Connor actually kill her, but they didn't. Why?

Faith brutally tortured Wesley. Lindsy was responsible for unspeakable horrors while working for Wolfram and Hart. Nothing any of the characters do will ever make up for what they have done. You can't make amends. The best they can to is live today better than they did yesterday.

The question isn't whether Connor deserves this (if we got what we deserved, we would have nothing), but whether he can do this. What makes someone redeemable and what makes someone else a lost cause?

Making people pay for their pasts is just another form of vengeance. What is important is change, not some cosmic balance sheet.

[> [> [> [> [> Connor--the new Spike -- Masq, 13:03:36 04/20/03 Sun

Connor-"haters": "He's evil!"
Connor-"lovers": "He's misunderstood! He's the victim here!"
Connor-"haters": "You just think he's handsome-yet- androgynous! You're deluded by that fake-innocent adorable grin!"
Connor-"lovers": "And you want to condemn any character you personally don't like! Anyone can be redeemed!"

And that summation is just as over-simplistic as it was in the case of Spike. Anyone who has followed Spike's story and his complex metaphysics and personality knows what happened to Spike over the past six years is more complicated than that. The same goes for Connor.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Connor goes near peroxide and hair-gel I'll bitch slap him to another network...;) -- Rufus, 20:01:09 04/20/03 Sun

Connor's storyline is a reflection of Angels. Connor is an extreme version of what happened to Liam/Angel. Liam thought he was in a form of hell, stifled by familly responsibility, fettered by love for people that he secretly resented. His reaction was a passive aggressive version of rebellion, where he went out and drank and screwed around. If he was going to be in hell, he was taking his father with him. The only way to do that was to live down to his fathers expectations.

When Darla found Angel she wanted a boy toy to to the heavy chores and created a monster with issues as deep and lasting as her own. So focused on payback, Darla had forgotten her own name. Vengeance the thing, identity lost to the quest for that definative win against everyone.

Angelus was that inner part of Liam which never got expressed because of a conscience. Once that restraint was gone Angelus set about creating for the living the hell he felt he lived through. I don't say that the character is totally aware of what he does anymore than Darla was. In this contest against the father, Liam/Angelus was distracted from maturing into a decent person. The writers show that vengeance or violence taken to an extreme removes your basic humanity.

Connor is Angel taken to an extreme. Where Liam thought he was living in a hell, Connor actually physically lived in one. Where Liam/Angelus became fixated on winning a contest, and divesting himself of family ties, Connor is fixated in creating a family, and stuck in a contest with his father. For Connor, Angel ruins everything. As both characters are of equal power the only way they can hurt each other is emotionally. Angel is reliving that conflict with his father in a way I hope gets worked out for the betterment of he and Connor. In Spin the Bottle it's clear in the conversation between the spellbound Angel, and Connor, that they have much in common emotionally. Come to think of it....if Connor really really wanted to piss the old man off, the peroxide route would pretty much do it....;)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> And I'll stand on the other side of him and bitch-slap him! -- Masq, 20:17:09 04/20/03 Sun

And he'll just look at us with that genetic sneer and grumble, "You get used to it."

Several people have commented that if we get a season 5 and the rumors about Spike coming over to AtS are true, Connor would have an ideal way to rebel against Daddy--befriend Spike!

It would certainly have a subversive irony to it, in that I think Spike might actually help Connor come to terms with his vampire parentage and would help Connor get a different perspective on the sins he committed in season 4. As long as Connor does it without the hair gel, I'm good with it.

Of course, Connor in leather might be an overdose with Angel and Spike both around.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I say bring on the scissors and product! The Shaun Cassidy 'do has got to go! -- ponygirl, 20:23:19 04/20/03 Sun

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> You stay away from his Shaun Cassidy 'do! -- Masq, 06:46:00 04/21/03 Mon

Go Connor with the grunge-70's retro hair and clothes!

Stand out in the crowd, boy!

And never, ever, ever use "product"--it's too much like your old man!

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> So, what's your position on a little Highlighting....safer for the scalp....;) -- Rufus, 06:50:52 04/21/03 Mon

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I like Connor just the way he is.... -- Masq, 10:25:00 04/21/03 Mon

Oh, I'm so dangerously close to admitting I have a big woping crush on him. I just *cringe* at the thought of him with short hair or tailored clothes. Blech!

Really, really perverse considering that my crushes on fictional characters usually run along the lines of Faith or Darla or Kennedy. But of course, Faith makes me drool. Connor just kind of tugs at my heart-strings. You can't be a poor confused lost-boy waif with short hair and tailored clothes.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> His looks, that is, not his semi-psychotic aiding and abetting an evil pregnant lady -- Masq, 13:33:05 04/21/03 Mon

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> All I'm saying is there are many fine hair products out there -- ponygirl, 16:39:50 04/21/03 Mon

He doesn't have to venture into the realm of nancy-boy hair gel. Just a little something to add texture, definition, and possibly even increase the drool-worthy waif factor...

Can you tell I'm getting my hair cut tomorrow?

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: All I'm saying is there are many fine hair products out there -- Wizard, 00:23:47 04/22/03 Tue

What? he's got a great hairdo! Keep him away from the nancy- boy hair gel! He's fine just the way he is! Let him remain a role model for those of us that don't like putting any overpriced gunk in our hair!

How can you tell I have issues? :)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Go wizard! -- Masq, 06:55:12 04/22/03 Tue

These fashion nazi-istas with their hair gel and spritzes and sprays and bleaches and shudder whatever it is that plasters Spike's hair to his scalp, they just don't have any appreciation for walking around with the hair God gave ya'.

There was a time when men let their hair grow wild in every which-way and no one told them to take product to it. And no, I'm not talking about the '60's or the '70's.

Little-known fact: That hair-gel craze was all a marketing ploy cooked up in the 1980's to make people part with their hard-earned dollars for fear of being rejected by potential dates and employers because they wouldn't cave in to fickle, ever-changing styles like a bunch of mindless meat puppets!

Ahem. No issues here. ; )

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> You stay away from his Shaun Cassidy 'do! -- Masq, 06:47:45 04/21/03 Mon

Go Connor with the grunge-70's retro hair and clothes!

Stand out in the crowd, boy!

And never, ever, ever use "product"--it's too much like your old man!

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: MURDEROUS FIEND OR BAD HAIR DAY? You stay away from his Shaun Cassidy 'do! -- Angelina, 07:56:39 04/21/03 Mon

OK, since I am in the minority here, I won't continue to belabor this subject of Connor as a MURDEROUS FIEND.

However, I draw the line on the dippity doo to look like Dad. Now That would be beyond belief.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: MURDEROUS FIEND OR BAD HAIR DAY? You stay away from his Shaun Cassidy 'do! -- Rufus, 00:38:03 04/22/03 Tue

Yes he is a murderous fiend in good company being that everyone on the show is a murderous fiend, perception is all in the eye, or the many eyes (in some cases)of the beholder.....but gel....that would be the deciding factor in killing him.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> aw, go easy on him--remember who cut his hair before he got to la! -- anom, 11:50:27 04/22/03 Tue

Namely Holtz, for maybe the first 4 years...after that, considering when his tracking training started, he probably made Connor do it himself! And w/no scissors, they probably hacked his hair off w/a homemade knife a couple of times a year, & did they even have mirrors? Taking all that into account, he didn't look half bad even when he 1st showed up in the Hyperion lobby.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> His hair was better groomed right after emerging from Quortoth than it is now ; ) -- Masq, 12:20:50 04/22/03 Tue

Not that I'm judging. He can have his hair any way he wants it!

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> aw, go easy on him--remember who cut his hair before he got to la! -- anom, 11:52:27 04/22/03 Tue

Namely Holtz, for maybe the first 4 years...after that, considering when his tracking training started, he probably made Connor do it himself! And w/no scissors, they probably hacked his hair off w/a homemade knife a couple of times a year, & did they even have mirrors? Taking all that into account, he didn't look half bad even when he 1st showed up in the Hyperion lobby.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I am Haunted by Mental Imagery -- Doug, 08:36:57 04/21/03 Mon

Remember the scene from "Bad Girls" with Buffy and Faith dancing after Slaying and all the men in the room trying to dance with them? For over a week now I've been getting a similar image, except with Connor and Spike in the place of Faith and Buffy, and all the women in the room trying to dance with them. This imagery is, to say the least, moderately scary.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> And very slashy, I must say -- Masq, 09:31:58 04/21/03 Mon

I wonder if anyone has fic on that particular pair yet?

OT: From the New York Times "I Feel, Therefore I Am" -- Rufus, 12:31:06 04/19/03 Sat


April 19, 2003
I Feel, Therefore I Am

In the middle of the 17th century, Spinoza took on Descartes and lost.

According to Descartes' famous dualist theory, human beings were composed of physical bodies and immaterial minds. Spinoza disagreed. In "The Ethics," his masterwork, published after his death in 1677, he argued that body and mind are not two separate entities but one continuous substance.

As for Descartes' view of the mind as a reasoning machine, Spinoza thought that was dead wrong. Reason, he insisted, is shot through with emotion. More radical still, he claimed that thoughts and feelings are not primarily reactions to external events but first and foremost about the body. In fact, he suggested, the mind exists purely for the body's sake, to ensure its survival.

For his beliefs, Spinoza was vilified and ó for extended periods ó ignored. Descartes, on the other hand, was immortalized as a visionary. His rationalist doctrine shaped the course of modern philosophy and became part of the cultural bedrock.

But it seems history may have sided with the wrong man. For more than a decade, neuroscientists armed with brain scans have been chipping away at the Cartesian faÁade. Gone is Descartes' lofty Cogito, reasoning in pristine detachment from the physical world. Fading fast are its sophisticated modern incarnations, including the once-popular "computational model," according to which the mind is like a software program and the brain like a hard drive.

Lately, scientists have begun to approach consciousness in more Spinozist terms: as a complex and indivisible mind- brain-body system. And now Dr. Antonio Damasio, the head of neurology at the University of Iowa Medical Center in Iowa City and leading anti-Cartesian crusader, says that Spinoza was right in other ways as well. In particular, Dr. Damasio argues in his new book, "Looking for Spinoza: Joy, Sorrow and the Feeling Brain" (Harcourt, 2003), the philosopher anticipated one of brain science's most important recent discoveries: the critical role of the emotions in ensuring our survival and allowing us to think. Feeling, it turns out, is not the enemy of reason, but, as Spinoza saw it, an indispensable accomplice.

"Science is proving Spinoza more current," Dr. Damasio said over tea at his hotel during a recent visit to New York. "He intuited the basic mechanism of the emotions."

A slight, fine-featured man with elegant manners and a shock of white hair, Dr. Damasio, 58, exudes old-world charm. His conversation is a velvet murmur that hints at his Portuguese roots; his passion is in his hands, which slice the air in quick, graceful movements as he speaks.

And these days, his pronouncements carry considerable weight. His theories are technical (he distinguishes between feelings and emotions and talks of an elaborate "body loop"). And in their details they are sometimes controversial. But his general emphasis on affect ó or feelings ó strikes most experts as beyond dispute. "His contributions at the human level have been remarkable," said Jaak Panksepp, a neuroscientist and director of Affective Neuroscience at the Falk Center for Molecular Therapeutics at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill. "He's done some of the most spectacular brain-imaging work that shows us what emotions are like in the brain."

In short, Dr. Damasio is at the forefront of what neuroscientists are calling an "affect revolution" that is turning decades of scientific wisdom on its head and reverberating through other fields as well.

"Academics are throwing themselves into the study of emotion with the rapturous intensity of a love affair," The Chronicle of Higher Education reported in February, in an article that included a list of 25 recent scholarly books, from philosophy and history to literature and political science, all devoted to affect in one way or another.

And while Dr. Damasio hardly deserves all the credit for this trend, thanks to his breakthrough research and two previous, surprisingly accessible books ó "Descartes' Error: Emotion, Reason and the Human Brain" (1994) and "The Feeling of What Happens, Body and Emotion in the Making of Consciousness" (1999) ó he can take a good deal. He is required reading in literature seminars. Writers like Ian McEwan and David Lodge have acknowledged his work in their novels. He's even inspired a piano concerto, "Body Loops," and a quintet that was given its premiere at Lincoln Center last week..

"For students of the humanities, the key neurophysiological insight of our time is that which has been so eloquently expressed by Antonio Damasio," declared Jonathan Bate, a Shakespeare scholar at the University of Liverpool in the Times Literary Supplement last December. "The division between reason and passion, or cognition and emotion (an opposition that goes all the way back to Aristotle), is, from a neurological point of view, a fallacy."

Dr. Damasio and other researchers, he added, "have brought us close to the possibility of a scientifically verifiable investigation of the hypothesis ó which in various forms has a very long history ó that literature may have been genetically evolved to do cognitive work precisely by stimulating the emotions."

All the talk about affect marks the demise of a long-upheld scholarly taboo. In the late 19th century, science's leading lights regarded feelings as a natural subject for exploration. Darwin devoted a book to emotional expression in humans and animals, Freud based his theory of mental pathology on unsuccessful emotional repression, and the American psychologist William James weighed in with a body- based theory of emotion strikingly similar to Spinoza's own.

But by the early 20th century, science had fallen sway to behaviorism and affect was off limits. Human beings, it was thought, could be understood purely by observing what they did. Internal mental states were dismissed as irrelevant. As Dr. Damasio put it, "Neuroscience gave the cold shoulder to emotion." Feelings, he said, were considered "elusive, indescribable, too subjective."

When Dr. Damasio began to study affect in the late 1980's, it was by accident, not design. He had moved to the United States from Lisbon in the 1970's to work with Norman Geschwind, a Harvard neurologist and expert on brain lesions. In 1976, Dr. Damasio and his wife, Hanna Damasio, also a neurologist, became professors at the University of Iowa, where he acquired a reputation as an authority on language, memory and Alzheimer's disease. But it was his work with brain-damaged patients with impaired decision- making skills that led him to wonder about emotions.

"I was forced to think about emotions because of those patients with frontal lobe damage," Dr. Damasio said. "They had incredible problems with social behavior that had normally been attributed only to cognitive disturbances. I was very struck by the fact that they had clear disturbances of emotion. I started thinking that emotions might play a role in making decisions and choices in a normal way."

Typical of his patients was Elliot, a man in his 30's who had suffered frontal lobe damage as a result of a brain tumor. Elliot performed normally on intelligence tests but could no longer make choices, prioritize tasks, manage his time or ó as a consequence ó hold down a job. To make a living, he embarked on hare-brained business schemes with shady partners that ended in bankruptcy.

Then Dr. Damasio discovered that Elliot was unable to feel. He spoke of the tragic events of his life without emotion. Shown pictures of gruesome accidents and natural disasters, he registered no reaction. When Dr. Damasio tested other patients with similar brain damage he found the same striking combination of impaired reason and impaired affect.

When Dr. Damasio presented his findings in "Descartes' Error," the book was greeted as a breakthrough. (An international best seller, it has been translated into 24 languages.) "It's one thing to have a speculative theory about the role of reason and the role of emotions," said Patricia Churchland, a neurophilosopher at the University of California in San Diego. "For the first time, his lab really showed" that "you can't shut off all the emotions from rational decision-making."

Neuroscience has since converged around the idea that emotions are central to cognition ó and thus survival. But just why and how remain more open questions. In his second book, "The Feeling of What Happens," Dr. Damasio speculated that emotions and feelings were crucial to the evolution of consciousness and, along with it, a sense of self. In "Looking for Spinoza," he tackles the mystery of how affect works.

His theory is both elaborate and counterintuitive, involving a chain reaction that begins when an emotion (defined as a change in body state in response to an external stimulus) triggers a feeling (the representation of that change in the brain as well as specific mental images). In other words, feelings do not cause bodily symptoms but are caused by them: we do not tremble because we feel afraid; we feel afraid because we tremble.

Still more provocative is his Spinozist conclusion, that the mind's primary focus is the body: "The mind exists for the body, is engaged in telling the story of the body's multifarious events, and uses that story to optimize the life of the organism."

Such a notion, he concedes, "departs radically from traditional wisdom and may sound implausible at first glance." After all, he points out, "we usually regard our mind as populated by images or thoughts of objects, actions and abstract relations, mostly related to the outside world rather than to our bodies."

And despite Dr. Damasio's assurances that he has neurobiology on his side, not every expert is willing to endorse the notion yet. Writing in The New York Times Book Review in February, Colin McGinn, a philosopher at Rutgers University, called the theory "unoriginal" and "false," arguing that it had been thoroughly debunked when William James and another psychologist, Carl G. Lange, introduced it 120 years ago.

Scientists, however, have been less dismissive. "Damasio's data is very important and very robust," Mr. Panksepp said. "His theory is more controversial. But his approach, by focusing on the nature of body representations of the brain, is essential to make progress on how affective experience emerges in the mind."

Most delighted, perhaps, are Spinoza scholars. Heidi M. Ravven, a professor of the philosophy of religion at Hamilton College, said his work prompted her to write a 70- page paper on Spinoza and neuroscience. "I realized everything he said confirmed Spinoza," she said. "I was just jumping out of my skin."

[> Thanks, Rufus -- Cactus Watcher, 13:01:11 04/19/03 Sat

I would probably not go so far as to accept Spinoza without question, but it was clear that when scientists of the twentieth century were almost robotically rejecting the possibility of thought or even emotion in animals other than humans, something was desperately wrong with the approach of understanding the mental processes of humans solely through their immediate physical manifestations.

Thanks again, Rufus. Keep them coming.

[> Ah, my latest obsession... -- dub ;o), 15:24:02 04/19/03 Sat

...consciousness. I keep hoping I'll find something that offers a logical, rational argument for consciousness being something more than strictly neurophysiological processes in the brain, something that equates consciousness or mind with soul, rather than brain. So far, no luck. Dave Chalmers, a philosopher of mind in, I think, Arizona? comes closest with various papers and a recent book on what he calls "the hard problem" of consciousness. Briefly, the hard problem is not one of those problems that Chalmers believes we will eventually find neurophysiological answers to; it is the problem of why consciousness arose at all. (NB: this is consciousness in the sense of "mind" rather than just "awareness.") IOW, it's not a question of how come we can see the color red, but a question of why do we experience the "redness" of red?

Difficult, but fascinating. Thanks, Ruf!


[> [> Maybe not what you're looking for , but -- luna, 18:54:33 04/19/03 Sat

Julian Jaynes' "The Evolution of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind" is my favorite consciousness theorist:


Jaynes thinks that there was once much more separation between the brain's hemispheres, and that consciousness arose very late, post-Homer, as communication within the brain developed.

However, Damasio wrote an interesting book called "Descartes' Error" that doesn't seem to be cited in the article above.

[> [> [> Thanks, luna--I'll check it out! -- dub ;o), 20:47:41 04/19/03 Sat

[> [> [> [> What with the consciousness and all... -- cougar, 00:00:39 04/20/03 Sun

My latest venture into the nature of consciousness was Laurens Van Der Post, "Jung and the Story of Our Time", It was magnificent and I was deeply moved by it. Perhaps it is more about the meaning of consciousness. Now I'm off to read about the science of buddhist psychology.

It just occured to me that dub, Rufus and I actually constitute a sort of Bermuda Triangle effect here on our little stretch of the coast. Some pretty powerful Bufffy Brain power, even though some days I only limp along.

[> [> [> [> [> coug!! I didn't know you were on the Coast! -- dub ;o), 10:03:31 04/20/03 Sun

Where was I when that came out? D'oh! Well, good to know.

I have Van Der Post's book, but haven't read it in years. I think I'll give it another look. I think if I could ever really understand Hofstadter's Goedel, Escher, Bach, along with anything of Ken Wilber's, I might be able to put the consciousness issue to rest. Not going to happen any time soon, LOL!


[> [> [> [> [> [> Yes I'm in Victoria, the apex. Aren't we a cute triangle? -- cougar, 11:26:42 04/20/03 Sun

I found Van DerPost's book compelling but I could only read it at about one third my normal speed. I had to feel and internalize what he said. I was on the plains of Africa, trembling before the rising sun. If I read any faster I would have rattled something loose.

Towards the end when he talks of the Trojan horse he lost me for a while, the thread was hard to follow and I've heard others say the same. Then it picks up again.

Jung or Vanderpost never "put the issue to rest", so if you have enegy inside you that wants to learn, I say let it!

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> So, coug....gonna hop the ferry to the Gathering??? ;) -- LadyStarlight, 08:19:28 04/21/03 Mon

[> [> [> On J Jaynes-- Yikes! -- dub, 10:08:48 04/20/03 Sun

Checked out several websites and reviews of Jayne's work, and it definitely makes a lot of sense to me. Another strong vote for the materialist perspective.

Does anyone know if there has been convincing rebuttal to Jaynes's theories? I'm sure many have risen in defense of Homer's consciousness, but I'm thinking more about criticism of the bi-cameral mind giving rise to consciousness theory.



[> [> [> knew this sounded familiar -- anom, 22:42:12 04/20/03 Sun

Last year I copyedited a book by John Skoyles and Dorion Sagan (yes, son of Carl) called Up from Dragons: The Evolution of Intelligence, sort of a follow-up to/update of Carl Sagan's Dragons of Eden. They cite the book by Jaynes that luna mentions, & posit that human use of abstraction dates back only to the time of the Classical Greeks (not sure how closely that equates to consciousness-- maybe they're paraphrasing Jaynes here).

If anyone wants to check further into this, when I Googled for the book to check the authors' 1st names I found there's an associated website.

[> [> [> [> Interesting site. Thanks, anom! -- dub ;o), 09:34:16 04/22/03 Tue

[> [> I came across an odd theory recently . . . -- verdantheart, 07:19:46 04/21/03 Mon

. . . in one of those Discovery Channel/History Channel programs they have about near-death experiences (don't ask me why it would be on History Channel, but since they moved almost everything but home improvement off of TLC . . .).

There were some researchers who have been studying near death experiences for many years and theorize that consciousness is not part of the corporeal body, but that the brain is, instead, designed in such a way that consciousness (an electromagnetic or spiritual (?) entity) can "inhabit" it, so to speak. In this way, consciousness remains even when the brain doesn't function. An alternate theory was proposed that suggested that quantum theory allowed for consciousness to continue in some kind of non- chemical quantum state during the time the brain is not functioning (as with all quantum theories, this was very sketchy and difficult to follow--you pretty much had to take it on faith that the physicists did their math).

Unfortunately, I was mostly listening to rather than watching this broadcast as I had some overtime work to do that day. But it was much more interesting than the usual program about that topic.

[> [> [> Does this sound like it? -- dub ;o), 10:04:57 04/22/03 Tue

I googled some of the terms and came up with the following information on a program that showed on the BBC in February. I don't know if it would have made it across the pond that quickly, but it sound like it might have been the one:

Near Death Experience
Near Death Experiences lead to some very interesting ideas being explored that are at the edge of our currrent ideas of consciousness and notions of mind/body. Two main sites that explore the area are:

The International Association for Near-Death Studies
Near-Death Experiences and the Afterlife
A programme that explored this topic was "The Day I Died" which was shown on BBC2 on the 5th February 2003. This programme included research work of the following people.

Visions of a Dying Brain or Visions of a New Science of Consciousness review of a lecture by Drs Sam Parnia and Peter Fenwick.
Here is an an Australian radio interview with Dr Sam Parnier.
Dr Michael Sabom's Research of life and death experience in operating theatres.
Dr Stuart Hameroff has collaborated with Roger Penrose to produce a quantum level theory of consciousness called "Orchestrated objective reduction" or Orch OR, which is said to occur in the microtubules in the cells of the brain. See the Penrose-Hameroff Orch OR Publications. I personally find this latter particularly exciting as a possible model of consciousness.


[> The "True" Descartes beat Spinoza to it! -- frisby, 17:58:48 04/19/03 Sat

Descartes learnt from Galileo's persecution so he presented a position somewhat acceptable to the Christian authorities, but writing esoterically (Discourse, part 6, #62) he says "for even the mind depends so greatly upon the temperament and on the disposition of the organs of the body, that were it possible to find some means to make men generally more wise and competent that they have been up until now, I believe that one should look to medicine to find this means."

Also, in his _Passions of the Soul_ he presents the possibility for a full science of behavior. He continues the charade of his Christian mask because the errors of God's existence and the soul's immortality are necessary for "weak minds" or they will stray from "the straight road of virtue" -- only the strong minds know we are really not different from the ants, a part of natural history.

Descartes and his other co-conspirators were successful in bringing down the Kingdom of Darkness (Christendom) which involved at first an alliance of science with protestant christians but which later evolved out of christianity into modernity.

Leo Strauss articulates this position. So, Spinoza, Descartes's pupil, merely articulated an aspect of Descartes's true face. Both are classic Platonic political philosophers (directing the destiny of humanity).

[> Gotta love that psychoneuroimmunoendocrinology! -- O'Cailleagh, 20:34:08 04/19/03 Sat

SFX magazine interview with David Boreanaz "Dead Man Talking" no spoilers -- Rufus, 13:26:20 04/19/03 Sat

A big thanks to SETJE from the Trollop Board for transcribing this article....:):):):)

DEAD MAN TALKING - SFX # 104 - May 2003

By Meg Wilde - transcribed by SETJE

Don't typecast me, warns David Boreanaz, who reckons that after playing various aspects of Angel for seven years he's acted out just about every kind of role possible...

What's the best thing about playing a vampire with a conscience? "The role is very sexy," says David Boreanaz, without a moment's thought. It's a typical Boreanaz-style answer. Short, pithy, slightly laddish; almost self-concious in its avoidance of aggrandising his job into some form of artistic endeavour. You could pseudo-intellectualise about this attitude being some kind of inverted-snobbery resulting from Boreanaz's three easy steps to stardom (budding actor spotted by talent scout whilst walking his dog goes from supporting cast to main cast to own series). But only if you've never met the guy.

Boreanaz loves having a laff. That's not to say he's indifferent about his job - "I want to work in theatre," he'll let slip in rare and all-the-more-earnest-for-it moments of actorly luvvie-ness - but essentially he's a guy who knows his bread's landed butter side up and he's celebrating the fact. Adoring girls scream his name at signings or conventions; people stop him in the street to ask for his autograph; female interviewers swoon at his feet. And that's just the half of it.

"There are fanatical fans, too," Boreanaz laughs. "Some are pretty scary, sending letters threatening to kill you. They seem to be tapping into that 'dark other side', instead of looking at Angel as a fun show with off-the-wall sarcasm."

See. Angel. Fun. But don't get Boreanaz wrong. He's serious about what he does, if not always serious about how he does it. Especially now, with season four of the show, and (without giving anything away) a plot line that reminds us that Angel wasn't always a hero. "He's definitely a man on a mission, still trying to find some salvation," he says, defining his vampirism alter-ego as he currently sees him. "He mixes better with people now, but he's still searching for someone or something to make him feel accepted. He looks for acceptance every day - something he obviously doesn't feel he has, and it detracts from his life."

This journey to find acceptance has taken the vampire through all sorts of trials and tribulations since the series began in 1999. Angel became human again - albeit briefly, but long enough to discover ice cream; he lost Buffy (and got over it, much to his guilt); he fell in love with Cordelia, fathered an ungrateful son and lost his best friend, Doyle. Both Angel and the series have coped with a lot over the last four seasons. How does Boreanaz feel when he looks back at the start of it all?

"When I watched the first episode I was very much impressed," he confides. "I do remember how difficult it was to make, physically and mentally. When it first aired, I was too close to it and couldn't make a fair judgment. But, when I watched it again recently, I was impressed with everything we did for the time that we had, and the way Joss directed it, and the way everything worked. I loved it."

Did he cringe at his performance, watching it today with the benefit of four more years of characterisation and familiarity?

"Not at all. I think I felt a cringe at the time. I remember, looking back at three years ago, watching it and saying, 'Jeez.' I watched a rough cut of it. It's hard to watch something like that when you know how everything ends. But, no, I loved it."

Boreanaz has an advantage most actors just don't have, no matter how long their careers: he can play the same character in two different ways - good or evil, Angel or Angelus. In the past he's done everything from killing all of Willow's innocent fish to snapping the neck of Jenny Calendar.

"Angelus is definitely in my bag of tricks," Boreanaz chuckles, when we bring up his alter-ego's alter-ego. "I keep him in my repertoire. It's something I enjoy playing." And, with Sarah Michelle Gellar saying in a recent interview that her favourite ever Buffy villain was Angelus, it seems that the bad guy has his followers. Which side of our heroic/demonic vampire does Boreanaz prefer to play?

"Playing Angel is great because I learn more about the character every episode," grins Boreanaz. "There's always something new and different with him. With Angelus it's pretty much 'out there'. I enjoy playing them both, but Angel definitely gives me more excitement."

Another challenge for his acting skills is the progress that the character has made over the years. "If you take a look at Angel in the first season, he was very removed from society," Boreanaz explains. "Extremely shy, not wanting to get involved with people. Look at him now and Angel is very confident in his ways. He's very strong - you know, going out and mixing with the people - so that there is a drastic change for his character. If you have somebody who's open to other people, I think it expands his personality even more. Meaning his humour, his sarcasm, his zest for life and his taste for adventures. They just take him to a higher level."

Angel's gallows humour has always been one of his greatest facets. It usually takes the form of sick jokes ("My parents were great. Tasted a lot like chicken.") or blunt statements ("There are three things I don't do: tan, date and sing in public"). The quips are as much a part of the character now as his brooding ways and gloomy wardrobe. Boreanaz is quick to acknowledge the benefit humour has had on the role, which could otherwise have been miserable to play... and to watch.

"I think it was a combination of the writers and myself taking it to a different level, looking at it and creating something new and different," he says, with pride. "We were doing something recently where I was cast under a spell and doing a whole different kind of character than Angel was meant to be [in the episode 'Spin the Bottle']. I was able to take a step back and say, 'Yeah, I'm fortunate, because I'm playing a character who's got so much history to him.' That's what's kept it alive and fresh for me, doing the show for four seasons."

Has he ever had any serious discussions with writers and producers about places he wanted to go... or, more interestingly, didn't want to go? "No, I just always let it unfold and take it for what it's worth," Boreanaz says mildly. However, it may come as a bit of a surprise to hear that there was one recent storyline he wasn't too happy with. Was it Wesley's betrayal? Connor's murderous plan to sink him to the bottom of the ocean? The lack of scenes with him shirtless this year ("I guess it's just the way they're writing it; less is more, in my book!")

Nope. It's all about Angel's love life. "I think the romance that I had with Cordelia was not for me," he tells us. Ooh, controversial. Angel and Cordy have been falling in lurve for a while now; in fact, their attraction has become the crux of the show (or, to be more exact, the universe's attempts to thwart them has become the crux). This must have been a bit difficult for Boreanaz to deal with - how do you play at being in love if you're not utterly convinced by the plotline? What didn't he like about it, specifically?

"I don't think it was okay for the character," he replies, with somewhat uncharacteristic vagueness. "I'm not saying me personally. I'm saying, speaking as Angel, in terms of where he's gonna go with it..." He pauses.

"There are times when I think Cordelia wouldn't provide the kind of gratification that Angel is looking for."

Perhaps what he's saying is that he doesn't think Cordy has done enough to earn Angel's respect; after all, it's not like she's the Slayer. The writers see it otherwise: they've imbued Cordy with enough special gifts and powers to put Buffy to shame. Will that ever be enough for Angel? Boreanaz is optimistic, and summarily dismisses his concerns in case we're taking him far too seriously. "You know, it's not really something to obsess about. It's just a choice and I enjoyed every move that the writers have decided to make with the character."

He also has nothing but nice things to say about Charisma Carpenter, who's recently been battling through the series with a pregnant tummy that simply refuses to hide from the camera (which is, no doubt, why the Powers That Be - the real ones - chose to write her pregnancy into the plot). "She's always been great. Hers is a struggling character to begin with. We're two champions in our own right, and I think that's where the chemistry lies. We've had fun and developed a relationship with our characters that's had an impact. We'll see what happens with that."

Given that he wasn't too keen on the Angel/Cordy plotlines, what would Boreanaz like to see happen? "Hmm..." he muses, thoughtfully. "I'd have him travel a bit more to Europe, New York, wherever - to get outside the bounds of Los Angeles a bit more. I think it would open up the show a lot. We shot in Las Vegas this past season," Boreanaz nods. "We might be going somewhere this year to shoot some finale stuff, so we're open to things. A change of scenery is nice once in a while!"

Not that poor Boreanaz gets to see much of it, if you take into account the fact that Angel can't go out in the daytime; dismal alleyways and the insides of buildings are more his forte. With the interiors all shot at Paramount Studios, in the heart of Hollywood, the only exteriors Boreanaz usually gets to see are those of LA at night. He might work in sunny California, but Angel is hardly Baywatch. Although it could be Baywatch Nights, if you want to be picky.

"We're all over the place," Boreanaz says of the show's nocturnal wanderings. "We comb the city. Every alleyway - we've been there."

Anyone who's ever been to the City of Angels will no doubt empathise with any person forced to roam the alleys after dark, fighting their way through the rats and garbage... not to mention the winos. "You see homeless people screaming, and wandering into your shot all the time," the actor admits. "But we have decent security personnel and they don't come too close."

With a whole city to choose from, what's the strangest location they've used so far? "To be honest, they're all pretty scary and sketchy," Boreanaz laughs. "Downtown LA at four or five in the morning can be scary! Shooting on top of buildings and roof tops all over the city - that's been great; there are some really cool areas."

With the focus at the moment on the future of Buffy, it's easy to forget that Angel has been plodding away nicely on its own channel, as solid and entertaining as ever, getting decent ratings. All this is despite the departure of co- creator David Greenwalt this year. The producer moved onto new show Miracles, leaving Angel in the hands of some competent successors. Boreanaz is philosophical about the change.

"He was such a great writer, so some of the stories may have been affected; but we have such a great group of writers, with Stephen Deknight now, who came from Buffy and who has done a great, fantastic job. Two new girls writing for us have been wonderful [Sarah Fain and Elizabeth Croft] and Joss still oversees everything. However, missing David as a friend, on a personal level, has been tough."

Rumours have been rife that Boreanaz would be in the final Buffy episode, joining the cast for the first time in two years. It would make sense: whatever the writers have in store for the Slayer, it would be rather poetic if Angel were at her side (or even against her... who knows?). Will it happen? "Half the stuff that's written is false anyway!" Boreanaz says, dismissing the rumour mill, but just when we're grinding our teeth in frustration, he goes on to confirm what we've all been wondering. "I've agreed to go over. We have Alyson [Hannigan] coming over to our show, which is going to be really cool. I think the shows leading up to me heading over there should be really interesting..."

Additionally, everybody is still waiting to hear if Angel will be given a fifth year and the chance to continue being one of the best programmes on television. "We don't know yet. We go through the same thing every year - we wait until we're given the official word by the network in May. Like I said the first season, ' You just get another job' It's not easy, but at the same time it's the business, you know. I'm not gonna sweat over it, 'cos life's a little bit more important than sweating over whether or not you're gonna get picked up. I tried that before and it's too stressful.

"I think we're in a position where we feel optimistic that the show will return. We feel that the show's on a crest. Joss is very, very behind it. I think the show's ready to explode, and we're going to see that happen towards the end of this season. From episodes 18 - 22 we'll see a new beginning with the show. I think our fans will be really excited about it."

It seems that all we can do is keep our fingers crossed until May, when the announcement comes from the network. The thought of Angel disappearing from our screens is a sobering one, and Boreanaz is not interested in returning to Sunnydale full time for any potential Buffy spin-offs. "No, it's over with," he says firmly. "I just don't see that happening."

He also feels that whatever happens to the show - either show - he could hardly have had a better start to his acting career. "I really feel like my experience is going to help me with future roles. You watch the show - there's the demonology and the romance and action-adventure. The show has every genre! Of course it's labeled as 'scifi'... whatever. People go, 'what's your show made of?' There are so many things going on. I feel comfortable in that and playing all those different roles. If we were back in the '70s and '80s, [coming from television] would dampen your career. Today, it's opened so many doors to the big screen and that will continue... I hope! And I think the cult status of the show is so under the radar that it's also enabled the show to live even further beyond its years - which is cool and interesting to see."

Does he feel that Hollywood actors can cross successfully from TV to film? "I just look at it as a job," he smiles. "I don't look at it as a television show or as a film project. The mediums are different and I've worked in both. It's the same thing with stage and theatre, which I prefer over all of them. It's me. It's working. It's working on a character, knowing the level of commitment that it takes in order to go through it. I don;t look at it as, 'How am I going to make a transition? How am I going to take aa character that I've been playing for four seasons and get out of this stereotypical character that he is?' That he's 240 years old and walking around in the shadows helps a lot. And, I mean, there's so many personalities to this guy...!"

Boreanaz's last film was 'I'm With Lucy', which hasn't yet made it to general release in the US, although it's been shown in Europe. "It was a great cast: Monica Potter, Henry Thomas, Harold Ramis and Julie Christie. I was supporting. We shot it in Miami and New York. I play an orthopedic surgeon who's on the fast track to self-destruction. It's an excellent part."

Prior to that, the teen horror movie 'Valentine' didn't exactly set the world alight. "It just allowed me to work with Warner Bros, a major studio," the actor admits, citing it as a learning experience. "Lucy was an independent feature; this was a studio motion picture. They provide different working environments just by the way they are grounded and the way they operate. To me, Valentine was a studio film, allowing me to build a relationship with Warner Bros. Doing a movie for them and being a part of their players was very important. We're talking about other projects now."

Obviously, a good working relationship with Warner Bros - currently the proud owners of Angel - could herald big things for Boreanaz's future. Where does he see himself in ten years from now? Big screen star? Small screen hero? Out of the business altogether? "Just being happy, hopefully," he returns, honestly. "I don't put a limit on it. I just want to be in a good place, then I know that work will be there. I can't say 'I'll be doing this, this and this'. I just want to be content and happy and really in tune with my work."

Does this mean that he has no master plan? No desire to conquer the universe with his acting skills? Other actors aspire to greater things...

"There is a master plan, but it's more of a spiritual master plan than it is a concrete master plan," he grins, adding that he's not averse to stepping behind the camera. "I think, when you're part of it and you see it unfold in front of you, you want to dabble in a lot of things. I do what I'm good at and I'm gonna focus on that, and other areas that I'm interested in. Such as directing, producing and developing my own projects. I think it will come to fruition with that."

In the meatime, he'll continue to play the vampire seeking redemption for as long as he can - hopefully into another season. Never one to miss winding us poor viewers up with tantalising titbits of information, he can't resist hinting at what he'd like to do in season five...

"I think that with the new beginning for the show that's going to happen at the end of this season... it's important for the characters to go somewhere different and see where it takes them. I can't really tell you what's going to happen, but it's going to be a blast. And so I can't really tell you what I want to do, because what they're doing is what I want to do."

He won't say another word. Bah, humbug.

[> BtVS Casting spoiler above. Well known? Little known? Best to be safe. -- Rahael, 14:01:16 04/19/03 Sat

[> When did the interview take place? -- Masq, 14:10:52 04/19/03 Sat

It seems mid-season 4, as opposed to more recently.

[> [> Re: When did the interview take place? -- Rufus, 21:28:59 04/19/03 Sat

I'm not sure but it does sound like mid season 4.

[> Hate to say "I told you so" -- cjl, 12:09:51 04/21/03 Mon

Has he ever had any serious discussions with writers and producers about places he wanted to go... or, more interestingly, didn't want to go? "No, I just always let it unfold and take it for what it's worth," Boreanaz says mildly. However, it may come as a bit of a surprise to hear that there was one recent storyline he wasn't too happy with. Was it Wesley's betrayal? Connor's murderous plan to sink him to the bottom of the ocean? The lack of scenes with him shirtless this year ("I guess it's just the way they're writing it; less is more, in my book!")

Nope. It's all about Angel's love life. "I think the romance that I had with Cordelia was not for me," he tells us. Ooh, controversial. Angel and Cordy have been falling in lurve for a while now; in fact, their attraction has become the crux of the show (or, to be more exact, the universe's attempts to thwart them has become the crux). This must have been a bit difficult for Boreanaz to deal with - how do you play at being in love if you're not utterly convinced by the plotline? What didn't he like about it, specifically?

"I don't think it was okay for the character," he replies, with somewhat uncharacteristic vagueness. "I'm not saying me personally. I'm saying, speaking as Angel, in terms of where he's gonna go with it..." He pauses.

"There are times when I think Cordelia wouldn't provide the kind of gratification that Angel is looking for."


But I told you so.

I never found the DB/CC love scenes (or "are we in love?" scenes) convincing. Apparently, DB wasn't enthusiastic about those scenes, either. But as much as I disapproved of the whole plotline, I kind of wish he'd sucked it up and sold the love thang a bit more, because his reluctance may have turned the whole A/C 'ship into a self-fulfilling doomsday prophecy.

Unhappy news... -- Rob, 15:11:28 04/19/03 Sat

So I was all ready to book tickets and hotel room for the Vancouver trip when a family emergency regarding my grandma's health came up. For those of you who remember, I posted last year about the problems she was having. Well, she's having them again, and with her health up in the air at the moment, my mom told me that she knew how much I wanted to go, but asked me not to. (Just so you know, although my grandma's not great at the moment, so far her chances are very good, but still...she's not completely out of the woods yet.) While I understand and agree with my mom that the timing isn't good to plan a trip, I'm still very disappointed. I'm so sorry I'm not going to get to meet everybody. I was so excited about going!

Rob :o(

[> No spoilers whatsoever, btw, in my above post. -- Rob, 15:13:12 04/19/03 Sat

[> Oh, I'm so sorry, Rob! -- dub, 15:26:43 04/19/03 Sat

Of course we understand. Your family concerns must take precedence, but I'm sure we'll all miss your personal interaction desperately.

Hoping all goes well for your grandmother...


[> Healing thoughts to your Grandmother and to you! Hang onto the ticket for a week - you never know. -- Briar Rose ( just a feeling~w~), 15:48:01 04/19/03 Sat

[> Re: -- aliera, 16:11:15 04/19/03 Sat

Oooh Rob I'm so sorry and the very best wishes to you and your family... is it possible that things could change closer to the meet? If not, maybe we might think about doing something for those of us on the East Coast who can't go. In the meantime, I'll just keep all appropriate digits crossed that something works out for you and most importantly for your grandmother.

[> Best wishes to all Rob -- Tchaikovsky- another Vancouver absentee, 16:58:29 04/19/03 Sat

[> Loving thoughts to you and your family -- yabyumpan, 17:01:40 04/19/03 Sat

[> I'm sorry I won't meet you, Rob! -- Masq, 17:50:58 04/19/03 Sat

[> Hope for the best for you and your grandmother -- luna, 18:42:48 04/19/03 Sat

I'm sorry not to meet you too, but family comes way ahead! I know you'll treasure those times with your grandmother, and hope for the best for her. But you're such a great member of this board, and I was really looking forward to seeing you IRL.

[> My sympathies Rob. -- s'kat (also unable to go to Vancouver), 21:00:32 04/19/03 Sat

[> You have all my sympathies, Rob. I've been there. Hope everything comes out okay, my friend -- Random, 22:51:44 04/19/03 Sat

[> Very sorry to hear this, Rob... and good thoughts for your grandmother -- LittleBit, 23:18:46 04/19/03 Sat

You'll be missed, my minion.

[> I'm so sorry to hear this. You're both in my thoughts. -- LadyStarlight, 08:32:50 04/20/03 Sun

[> Thank you so much! You guys are the best, and I'm so sorry I won't get to meet you all in person! -- Rob, 08:43:20 04/20/03 Sun

[> Hope she's better soon, Rob -- ponygirl, 11:05:45 04/20/03 Sun

I probably won't be able to afford the flight myself, so maybe we Van City absentee's will have a little board party of our own that weekend! We could all wear hats and drink a lot before posting. It'll be fun!

[> [> Sounds good! :o) -- Rob, 13:15:08 04/20/03 Sun

[> sorry to hear it, rob! hope she'll be fine... -- anom, 13:59:47 04/20/03 Sun

...preferably in time for you to go to Vancouver after all! That would be the best of both worlds. But as things stand, I understand & agree w/your mom too, as well as completely understanding your disappointment. Best wishes to your grandma for the best possible recovery.

[> Sorry about this, with hope for a speedy recovery. -- Dariel, 18:34:46 04/20/03 Sun

[> Sorry, Rob. Best wishes -- MaeveRigan, 08:14:33 04/21/03 Mon

I won't be in Vancouver, either, but I want to be with friends and fellow-fans for the last ep. of Buffy.

But the last time you spend with your grandmother is even more precious, in the long run--as you obviously know!

You're the best!

Harmony Question. Any Help Out There? -- Angelina, 15:51:11 04/19/03 Sat

I am trying to remember the name of the episode where Xander and Harmony have that "bitch-slap fest" in slow-mo and for the life of me cannot remember. Any help? Please.
Thank you!

[> "The Initiative" -- KdS, 16:17:41 04/19/03 Sat

Still the single funniest scene in the whole of BtVS, IMHO.

[> Re: Harmony Question. Any Help Out There? -- miriam, 16:27:50 04/19/03 Sat

It was in "The Initiative", Season 4.. I think. She was caught by Xander trying to burn Spikes stuff. One of my favourite moments too.

Hope that helps

[> [> Re: Thanks You Guys, but what about Earshot and.... -- Angelina, 16:38:30 04/19/03 Sat

Thanks for the info. Yup, one of the ALL time Xander moments. But how about the ending of "Earshot"? Where Xan and the Rat Poison Lady look at each other for like 6 full seconds? I even think about that one and I die laughing. Oh, and the scene between Giles and Buffy, when Giles returns in Season 6 and Buffy tells him about everything that's happened and that she's slept with Spike. And then Giles is silent and Buffy looks totally dejected and then Giles just bursts into laughter till he cries. Oh, how I love that scene. Or the Andrew Rocket Man Scene?????

Loose Ends - Spoilers & Spec on BtVS thru 7.22 -- Angelina, 16:32:06 04/19/03 Sat

OK boys and girls we are nearing the end, actually less than four actual hours of air time to tie up the saga that is Buffy. I love this show. I haven't always loved each character, each episode or each relationship. I've hated the fact that certain characters died and others were allowed to live. But I love this show. And I will always love it, no matter what the finale brings. I think Joss Whedon, and his collaborators, have created a timeless masterpiece that will live on forever. Honestly. However, there are some basic, simple little things that need to be tied up, just to give me peace. I know some of you have your own gripes about these loose ends, and please share. I'd be glad to know I am not the only one out there.

#1 - Buffy finding out once and for all about Xander's lie in Becoming and confronting Xander.

#2 - Buffy finding out about the events of "I Will Remember You" and confronting Angel.

#3 - Can the phrase "From Beneath You it Devours" REALLY only refer to the fricking Hellmouth or is there a deeper meaning??????

#4 - Joyce's "warning" to Dawn - "in the end she won't choose you - she'll be against you". WTF. I gotta know. Was this actually "Joyce" and/or an actual vision of goodness or the FE?

#5 - Dawn as "The Key," that's all folks? Finished?

#6 - Buffy telling Spike: "I forgive you".

#7 - Buffy telling Buffy: "I forgive you".

# 8 - The Scoobies telling Spike: "Thanks".

#9 - Giles telling Buffy about Ben, on the other hand....nah, I don't really care about this one.

And last but not least

# 10 - Buffy and Giles' estrangement. OH MY GOD. This has to be resolved before series end. I could not bear it if they don't kiss and make up. To be this is Buffy's most important relationship. I treasure Giles and I know he treasures Buffy. If Buffy had to walk into the sunset with anyone, I would want it to be Giles. sigh.

OK, trivial, maybe, but very important to me. Anyone else feel the same about some other minor points?

I know there are hundreds more things, I would love to have explained, but I guess I have all those endless hours of DVD goodness ahead of me.

[> Re: Loose Ends - Spoilers & Spec on BtVS thru 7.22 -- Juliet, 19:58:37 04/19/03 Sat

It's been a long time since I've posted anything here...

I think the Xander lie came out in the beginning of the season..."Selfless" or thereabouts.

The IWRY thing is probably going to end up the show's biggest secret that will never come out. I'd love for him to tell her, but somehow I just don't think it will happen.

Also...I have a little bit of a feeling that the "she won't choose you" is going to be left unresolved. They haven't followed up on it at all.

And ditto on the Giles thing...it can't end with her hating him!

[> Re: Loose Ends - Spoilers & Spec on BtVS thru 7.22 -- Alvin, 20:00:16 04/19/03 Sat

1. Faith showing remorse to Xander for almost killing him back in S3.
2. All the little hints in S7 that still seem to mean nothing: "From beneath you it devours" and "she won't choose you" like you said but also "keep your ticket, you'll need it",and the whole Bejoxal eye statements.
3. The whole d'Hoffryn sending demons after Anya thing. Is there a point to it except to keep Anya at Buffy's?
4. Is Riley's wife Sam evil?
5. Some explanation as to what Amy's up to. Why hang out with the wicca wannabes, why the spell on Willow (Was she a pawn of the FE), and is her mother still a statue?

[> [> Re: Loose Ends - Spoilers & Spec on BtVS thru 7.22 -- O'Cailleagh, 20:26:56 04/19/03 Sat

And didn't the Giles/Ben thing come out in First Date? Somewhere around the flashcard monsters bit? Unless it was a dream.....which it could have been in all fairness! (one of mine that is and not on the show!)


[> [> [> Re: Loose Ends - Spoilers & Spec on BtVS thru 7.22 -- Dochawk, 23:14:40 04/19/03 Sat

Nope - it was in the "shooting script" but not the final product, which should remind everyone that the shooting script is not a definitive source.

[> [> [> [> Re: Loose Ends - Spoilers & Spec on BtVS thru 7.22 -- O'Cailleagh, 13:27:19 04/20/03 Sun

Really? 'Cos I haven't read any shooting scripts. It must have been a dream then....which is strange and spooky...


[> Re: Loose Ends - Spoilers & Spec on BtVS thru 7.22 -- manwitch, 20:50:34 04/19/03 Sat

Allow me first to echo your love for this timeless masterpiece of a show. Now I shall offer my own thoughts, take them for what they are worth, on the items in your list.

#1 - Buffy finding out once and for all about Xander's lie in Becoming and confronting Xander.

I understand why this would be a nice scene, but unfortunately I don't think it matters. Is this an unresolved issue? Everybody is pretty well past it. And Buffy had to do what she had to do anyway.

#2 - Buffy finding out about the events of "I Will Remember You" and confronting Angel.

Again, I would love to see it. I love for them to talk about what we've seen earlier. But I think this particular case is nothing to do with Buffy. Its not that Angel had a moment of true happiness, but that he surrendered an eternity of it in order to do something good for others. Its not important that Buffy know.

#3 - Can the phrase "From Beneath You it Devours" REALLY only refer to the fricking Hellmouth or is there a deeper meaning??????

I think it has deeper meaning. Spike has twice been told that he was "beneath" someone. Buffy said in "Conversations" that she feels her friends are beneath her. So I just feel that phrasing has been too prominent. Couple that with the imagery of Spike and Buffy as the First Evil and something is up with this idea. How it will be explained I don't claim to know.

#4 - Joyce's "warning" to Dawn - "in the end she won't choose you - she'll be against you". WTF. I gotta know. Was this actually "Joyce" and/or an actual vision of goodness or the FE?

I think this is touching on the resolution of the entire series. I think it was really Joyce and I think its really gonna happen, but perhaps not as we expect. I also find it interesting that we assume the First Evil is what visited Dawn in the House in Conversations, but whatever it was was able to physically move furniture and to physically touch and harm Dawn. Which supposedly the first can't do. I think there was great significance to that encounter, which is why it has been alluded to a number of times since. "Buffy won't choose you." And the title of the final episode is "Chosen." Hmmmm. And I still think that the episode title "Potential" is a reference to Dawn, not Amanda. Dawn is what Buffy has the potential to be. What Buffy might have been. Perhaps what Buffy will utltimately choose.

#5 - Dawn as "The Key," that's all folks? Finished?

I'm thinkin yes, in those terms. As she said in Bargaining, she's not the key anymore, and if she is, she doesn't open anything anymore. But I still think she's the key to this season.

#6 - Buffy telling Spike: "I forgive you".

She's gonna tell Spike she loves him. I think she's gonna do it publicly, in front of everybody. And I think they are going to recognize finally that she is saying the right thing to the right person.

#7 - Buffy telling Buffy: "I forgive you".

# 8 - The Scoobies telling Spike: "Thanks".

Not till the very end. I think Spike will make the ultimate sacrifice before this Season ends, whether by actually being dusted for some greater good, or whether he himself descends into the abyss to stop up the hellmouth I don't know. But he has been indicated as the representation of the psychological obstacle Buffy must overcome this season. Once she overcomes that obstacle, that which represents it will be superfluous. Plus I remember reading an interview in which Alyson Hannigan and others were talking about the jump to the Big Screen for Buffy and were taunting James Marsters that he wouldn't be going with them. The eplanation they gave was something about his aging and Vampires don't age so they couldn't use him, which is clearly a load of nasty stuff.

# 10 - Buffy and Giles' estrangement. OH MY GOD. This has to be resolved before series end. I could not bear it if they don't kiss and make up. To be this is Buffy's most important relationship. I treasure Giles and I know he treasures Buffy. If Buffy had to walk into the sunset with anyone, I would want it to be Giles. sigh.

This one is very interesting. Which of them needs to change? I think this will be resolved before series end, one way or another. Giles point is that Buffy must be willing to sacrifice any of them. Perhaps she will sacrifice Giles. Or perhaps, she will sacrifice all of them, either by sacrificing herself to stop up the hellmouth or perhaps by curing herself, and finally leaving the asylum with her parents. Or maybe she will find another way altogether. She usually does.

So allow me to add to your list

#11 - Why are the de Hoffryn's after Anya?

#12 - Will Xander ever mature and make things right with Anya?

#13 - Why oh why oh why did Dawn cut her beautiful hair, and does that have anything to do with why Buffy won't choose her? (Although Dawn does win back a coupla points for the pleated mini)

#14 - Was Willow jumping the gun or was she reading Fred's mind?

#15 - What happens to Potentials who don't get called? Surely there have been some. Do they get decommissioned at some point? Or are there 50 yr old potentials out there somewhere?

#16 - Does anyone else think Caleb should have had a Boston accent?

Anyways, hope you're all well. I had to go to France for a couple of weeks. Its a hard life I live.

And, just as an aside, I was stopped several times by the locals and thanked graciously and profusely for being there. I saw a number of monuments and museums dedicated to Americans, to American Soldiers, to 9/11, tended and attended by French people too numerous to count.
They don't seem to have forgotten anything.

[> [> #15 -- Finn Mac Cool, 21:05:55 04/19/03 Sat

I have a suspicion that Gwendolyn Post (Faith's evil second Watcher from Season 3) was a potential slayer. It might explain her strength (it took Angel a little bit to get up after Gwen Post hit him on the back of the head, which is quite impressive, and is one of the few people who's knocked Giles unconscious and actually aroused medical concern about it). Also, I suspect that a potential slayer who was never called might start to resent the actual Slayers and seek for replacement power (both of which fit Ms. Post very well).

[> [> [> Re: #15 -- Wizard, 03:10:25 04/20/03 Sun

I've been wondering about this all season. I don't know why- it's been implied ever since S2, but Joss has just taken until now to give us the last piece. The girls that are found and are passed over become Watchers. Think about Kendra: if she was never called, what the hell else was she going to do with her life? As for the girls that aren't found and are passed over, they do whatever it was they were going to do.

But this leads to a question: while I can under stand that no women over a certain age were called, what about the ones under? Buffy was Called at fifteen. Who's to say that the powers that call Slayers wouldn't endow a younger girl? Or was this dealt with in one of the eps I missed?

Gwen Post a Potential? Possible, very possible, and it would explain why such a young Watcher wouldn't raise Giles' suspicions- after all, she would know the training far better than any ordinary Watcher would- she lived it.

[> [> [> [> Re: #15 -- Tyreseus, 03:34:38 04/20/03 Sun

It also occurs to me that even without super-slayer- strength, having a few people around with the know-how to kill vampires isn't a bad idea.

Think about Kendra... her family turned her over to the watchers council at a young age. She was trained from very young to know how to fight evil forces. Even if she was never chosen, well, someone had to keep the vampire population down in Jamaica.

I think about the episode "The Wish" and the White Hats doing their best to fight the vamps. Maybe watcher-potential combos who don't get chosen still do their share of fighting. It would make sense, the actual slayer can't be everywhere.

But I have a burning question, what's happened to the watchers of all the potentials now in Sunnydale? Has Caleb killed them all off? Why didn't those watchers come to Sunnydale as well? Wouldn't a lower student-teacher ratio be more effective?

[> [> Re: #16 -- KdS, 06:35:44 04/20/03 Sun

Are you suggesting that Caleb and Faith might be related? Cool...

[> [> [> A Caleb/Faith connection....? -- LadyStarlight, 08:31:14 04/20/03 Sun

Are you suggesting that Caleb and Faith might be related? Cool...

This got me to thinking, so I checked out babynamer.com and this is what I found:


The original Hebrew expression might have referred to humanity's faithful companion, the dog.

Source Language:




I thought this was interesting, that the bad guy and one of his biggest opponents have names, that when it comes right down to it, mean almost the same thing. (leaving out the bit about the dog, of course. ;) )

[> [> Re: 16? -- dream, 09:09:10 04/21/03 Mon

Were you actually trying to make a conncetion between Faith and Caleb? Or were you just pointing out that my fair city might hold more than an adequate supply of creepy Catholic priests? If the latter, I agree thoroughly, though I expect ME would rather offend a lot of people in a general way that a few people in a particular way.

[> My favorite Loose Ends - Spec on BtVS thru 7.22 -- Cactus Watcher, 06:42:39 04/20/03 Sun

Personally the question I want answered is, 'What happened when Buffy and Angel met at the beginning of BtVS season 6/AtS season 3? The two were clearly desperate to see each other again after Buffy returned from the grave. After that 'goal' was accomplished, Buffy lost all sense of direction and purpose, and she slipped into depression. I don't think the meeting was in any way the source of Buffy's emotional problems. But, did it contribute? If it was a just a matter of telling each other nothing had changed, why didn't one of them take two seconds to mention that? It would certainly make sense, so why not say it at the time?

It's getting later in the season. So what's happened to my great secret theory? It's still intact. I will reveal at this point that it's all about Buffy. Caleb says he has something of hers. We all ought to know what he means by that, now. The question isn't what he has, but how he got it. At this point I'm guessing 'taking' it from him is one of the final pieces of the puzzle in defeating the First Evil.

[> [> Re: CACTUS - WOW - My favorite Loose Ends - Spec on BtVS thru 7.22 -- Angelina, 07:40:12 04/20/03 Sun

WOW, Cactus, I totally forgot that one, and it used to be #1 on my list! That entire scenario reeks of resolution! Both Angel and Buffy were deliberately vague as to what happened, not only vague, but totally blase and NOTHING about the B/A relationship was ever simply blase, so hopefully this isn't a red herring and we will finally find out about that meeting. AND...don't forget, when Buffy told Giles about the meeting..."not LA, somewhere in the middle, there's a place." Remember????? Wondering if they used "this place" to occasionally meet in secret during the course of the past two years?????? Interesting stuff. I love Spike and I know he's changed, and I want so much for him to be recognized as a changed "MAN" and a hero in his own right, but when I look at those old B/A eppies - *heavy sigh* - my romanticism just kicks in and I simply cannot see Buffy with anyone else ever. Anyhow, I hope we all see our little "thorns" resolved in the end. Thanks for responding everyone!

[> A couple more - Spoilers & Spec on BtVS thru 7.22 - - ponygirl, 10:57:50 04/20/03 Sun

It's a good list Angelina, though personally I'm only banking on #3, 4 and 10 being addressed. I'm ok with that but there are a couple other things that are still bugging me:

The time/date stamp in CwDP and subsequent time wonkiness. Is there a deeper meaning or was it part of a now abandoned attempt to sync up the show with AtS?

There were all sorts of spider references at the beginning of the year, now not so much. Did they mean anything or are spiders just cool?

Who did leave that talisman in the high school bathroom in Lessons?

[> [> Re: A couple more - Spoilers & Spec on BtVS thru 7.22 -- Jay, 20:29:46 04/20/03 Sun

My kittens are on Amy for planting the talisman at the school. Otherwise, why bring her back for The Killer In Me?

[> [> I'm with you, as usual, ponygirl -- dream, 08:54:54 04/21/03 Mon

The time thing is driving me crazy. There is no way that time/date stamp meant nothing - so what the heck did it mean? And the spider thing - I had forgotten about that!

The dropped item I would most love to see addressed? Catherine Madison. Please, please let her get loose when the Hellmouth gets all all rumbly.

I have no doubt that the Giles/Buffy thing and the Joyce/Dawn thing will be addressed.

[> [> [> Time warp -- ponygirl, 16:30:34 04/21/03 Mon

The time thing is driving me crazy. There is no way that time/date stamp meant nothing - so what the heck did it mean?

I know! This is the thing that messes up all of my finale spec. I think I have a plausible, suitably tragic, scenario worked out and then I stop and think, so how does time travel work into that? Sometimes I do believe that the date stamp was ME trying to show that AtS and BtVS were in synch before the networks royally screwed that up... but then I keep thinking of other time references and William the Poet's constant capitalization of Time (I've had to abandon the spoilery confines of the Stakehouse so I don't know if he's still doing it). I also remain convinced that in Selfless, the sympathetic Buffy Spike was talking to was not a manifestation of the FE. Could have been a hallucination but I've had my eye out (ooh horrible Xander pun!) for the braided bang-length concealing hairstyle she wore in that scene. If I see it, then I'm expecting a little time travel mojo!

[> Are there future spoilers here, or is it just spoilers for aired eps + spec for the future? -- Dyna, wondering if it's safe to go in..., 13:47:48 04/20/03 Sun

[> ALL the ANSWERS. (With so few spoilers you might not even notice.) -- WIckedEvilEvilEvilEvilEvilEvilTwin, 17:39:31 04/20/03 Sun

#1 - Buffy finding out once and for all about Xander's lie in Becoming and confronting Xander.

Xander and Willow already told her through the secretive "mind jabber" that we've only been privy to hearing outloud a few of the times they've used it. Though at first Xander tried to get out of it by saying he said "Lick" not "Kick".

#2 - Buffy finding out about the events of "I Will Remember You" and confronting Angel.

Buffy does remember that night, somewhat hazily, and has simply attributed it to one of the many strange things she did and doesn't want to talk about from "Beer Good, Fire Bad" phase. We've all had something like that happen to us, eh?

#3 - Can the phrase "From Beneath You it Devours" REALLY only refer to the fricking Hellmouth or is there a deeper meaning??????

For years the entire state of California has been flushing those cute little alligators they bought on vacation in Florida, down the toilet. Thanks to various legislations banning waste to be dumped in the ocean, it is sent elsewhere. Sunnydales Hellmouth is more than just a metaphor for cesspool of evil. Some say the size of these alligators have reached gargantuan proportions, and are rapidly running out of room in the town sewers. Add these to those huge ants that escaped from THEM and several other horrid beasties that have been breeding underground - and you get the picture. "From beneath you, it devours." (It's that or about the termite problem in the Summers basement.)

#4 - Joyce's "warning" to Dawn - "in the end she won't choose you - she'll be against you". WTF. I gotta know. Was this actually "Joyce" and/or an actual vision of goodness or the FE?

None of the above. This was actually a benevolent visit by Artemis, Goddess of Hunting and Dodgeball. Dawn was simply being warned that the next time they played, Buffy wouldn't choose Dawn to be on her side. (Fortunately Xander DOES choose Dawn and Harmony is the last one picked this time.)

#5 - Dawn as "The Key," that's all folks? Finished?

No. Dawn is still "The Key". When she gets a job, she will earn a new title. Such as Xander "The Construction Worker", Buffy "The Vampire Slayer", Willow "The Witch", Anya "The Capitalist" and Joss "The God". Rumors that she has already been renamed Dawn "The Really Annoying One" are untrue, so far.

#6 - Buffy telling Spike: "I forgive you".

She usually said it in the scenes we never saw that came between Buffy and Spike beginning to boink and Buffy and Spike catching their breath.

#7 - Buffy telling Buffy: "I forgive you".

See # 6

# 8 - The Scoobies telling Spike: "Thanks".

They do it incessantly. Again with the mindtalk. It's unfortunate that Spike doesn't pick up that frequency, yet - BUT!! after the interns at ME tally up each stars fanmail and find out who has REALLY been carrying the shows ratings for the past three years and providing their paychecks - not only will he be thanked, but they will also throw him a party.

#9 - Giles telling Buffy about Ben, on the other hand....nah, I don't really care about this one.

Ben cares. Rather, the guy who PLAYED Ben cares. He really needs work, bad. If Buffy aka SMG knew Ben even existed, she could probably pull some strings and get him some acting jobs.

# 10 - Buffy and Giles' estrangement. OH MY GOD. This has to be resolved before series end. I could not bear it if they don't kiss and make up. To be this is Buffy's most important relationship. I treasure Giles and I know he treasures Buffy. If Buffy had to walk into the sunset with anyone, I would want it to be Giles. sigh.

Don't worry. Giles writes Buffy a very long song about friendship, love, family, honesty, proper etiquette and forgiveness. As he sings it to her in the final episode, she begins to cry (because it's about her - remember, she cries when it's about HER ::koffxanderspeechkoff:: and they run into each others arms, reunited, promising it will never happen again and exchanging email addresses to keep in touch. Of course, as usual, ME abruptly cuts off most of Giles song, so they both just vigorously shake hands. (kiss and make-up??? that would be SQUICKY)

#11 - Why are the de Hoffryn's after Anya?

She never returned the expensive wedding gift they sent her.

#12 - Will Xander ever mature and make things right with Anya?

Yes. But his road to maturity is full of one-night stop- overs at various cottages along the way. Cottage de Barb, Cottage de Rachel, etc

#13 - Why oh why oh why did Dawn cut her beautiful hair, and does that have anything to do with why Buffy won't choose her? (Although Dawn does win back a coupla points for the pleated mini)

See #4. Though Dawns long hair often got in her eyes, and the eyes of her teammates during many a crucial dodgeball play and shorter hair would be an asset - she's still a klutz on the courts. The pleated mini is, of course, why Xander chose her.

#14 - Was Willow jumping the gun or was she reading Fred's mind?

Willow is SO full of herself just because she's had two whole girlfriends - she thinks EVERYONE is lusting for her. Willow did similar things to Cordelia, Anya, Buffy, Faith, Rosie O'Donnell and every other she-demon who crossed her path.Poor Fred was just excited to have another non-evil or comatose or dead female around the hotel to girltalk with. Sheesh.

#15 - What happens to Potentials who don't get called? Surely there have been some. Do they get decommissioned at some point? Or are there 50 yr old potentials out there somewhere?

Only Potentials with at least a 1700 on their SIT scores go to the next level. This alone weeds out about 60 percent of them. Since they are never told why they took the test or what a slayer is - they just blissfully continue their lives to become Olympic Gold Medalists or contestants on Fear Factor.

Those who DO pass are then given personal interviews to make sure they have the neccessary inner angst, ego-centered thinking and eclectic fashion sense. Extra points if your head is wider than your shoulders.. (Most successful Slayers turn out to be Leo's with Cancer rising.) Complete confusion about interpersonal relationships is important, also.

Then there is a brief physical testing, including, among other traits:

Visual acuity (which boy/girl/vampire is cuter? A, B or C?)

Manual dexterity (must be able to frenchbraid their hair under 20 seconds without using a mirror)

Verbal Creativity (has to invent 12 different entirely new slang words for "I made a mistake" in under 2 minutes. Extra points to those who can also create original slang for "calm down", "I'd like to jump his/her/it's bones right now", and "It's dead."

Those who score perfectly on all these tests (officially called SITs) get a Watcher - only about 7 girls a year. Slayer death tolls are kept tightly under wraps, so it's impossible to say how many of these SITs become The Slayer. The number is very, very small. Those who aren't called have several choices - become a Watcher-in-Training, have their memory of the whole process erased, be killed by their Watcher, or go to Hollywood and become a writer/producer. (This last option may or may not include a sex change.)

It's even been rumored that a few of the uncalled SITs become very involved in the internet, web design, messageboard admins and starting up really cool forums.

Yes, there are 50 year old SITS, but they prefer to remain anonymous and just enjoy a nonslayer life far from any demon activity.

#16 - Does anyone else think Caleb should have had a Boston accent?

Personally, I think he should have a western accent, wear dustier clothes and be in charge of a crusty old spaceship.

#17. There were all sorts of spider references at the beginning of the year, now not so much. Did they mean anything or are spiders just cool?

It was a passing fad to honor the second Harry Potter movie. Not many people "got it" though.

#18. Who did leave that talisman in the high school bathroom in Lessons?

Carrie. If you looked close enough, a lock of John Travolta's hair was tied up in it.

#19. How did you know all these answers?

I'm a tenured Professor of Real Important Tomes at Sunnydale Law School. Several of my books have been written about the Buffyverse and its effect on otherwise normal human beings. In addition, I'm now nearly finished with one of my many thousands of dissertations dedicated to the show: Harmonys Epic Journey "Accidental Heroine or Extremely Lucky Airhead"

I usually write my posts in much longer, multisyllabled arcane words. "Pedantic" really IS my middle name. But this time I chose to write to those 'other people", the ones who struggle just to understand some 2,000 word post had just said "Buffy likes sex with Spike".

This is for the gentle reader who falls over exhausted after spending the night thumbing through countless archaic dictionaries looking up words in order to understand even one sentence of a post. You know who you are. ::koffwbkoff::

It is for you I have answered these questions without citing specific episode dialogue or ancient historical text. I was going to write this as a poem - but so few words rhymed with de Hoffryn's (except "the coffins") or vampires (except campfires.). I'm no Dr. Seuss, so I humbly offer this tome, instead.

(Note: I'm just now finishing up my theory about Lust, Love, Hair, Hope, Evil, Bunnies, Morality and Decent Hair Gel in the Dating Patterns of Sunnydale. I've set it entirely in Haiku. I hope to post within the week!)

PS Caleb and Faith aren't blood relatives. But a long time ago, as teenagers, they did have a brief fling. Though it meant nothing to Faith and she merrily went on her way, Caleb was heartbroken. In fact, he utterly crushed. But after many years in mens sensitivity training groups and expensive therapy, he recovered and is the handsome, confident, woman-gutting man we see today. (He thought it would really miff Faith if he pretended not to know her, but she had the last laugh because she didn't even remember him!)

[> [> LOL!! Now I understand everything.... -- LadyStarlight, 17:59:10 04/20/03 Sun

[> [> I hate to admit it...But that made some sense...(NT) -- Vesica, 06:38:39 04/21/03 Mon

[> [> Re: HYSTERICAL BUT YOU FORGOT ONE THING-ALL the ANSWERS so few spoilers -- Angelina, 07:47:22 04/21/03 Mon

THEY ALL SING "WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE" and shuffle off to Cleveland?

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