February 2003 posts

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how embarassing for Xander! (spoilers for Get it Done) -- Clen, 07:41:08 02/24/03 Mon

Anyone notice how when Willow reached out for extra energy, she instinctively chose Anya and Kennedy? And not Xander? Anya is a has-been, and Kennedy is a not-there-yet, so arguably, their power is rather dim to nonexistent. Surely Xander could take Anya in a fight, and surely his life force must be relatively strong, not to mention his karma if he's still alive after all this time. He's an odd-beater, and at times as been the "heart" of the group. But yet not chosen, like Dawn's lament in 7.12.

It appears that Xander's main difference is that he has no direct connection to demons. Anya became one (twice) and Kennedy is due to inherit demon energy. Despite having no immediate purchase of monster power, they are members of an exclusive club Xander isn't, the man/monster club. This fits in well with my own thoughts on the man/monster arc of the whole series, as well as the revelation in GiD that Slayers are part-demon.

Otherwise, how embarassing for Xander! Of course, there are also ties to the "girl power" arc, since Xander is the original guy sidekick for the girl power of the series. It would almost be anathema for Xander to rise up and be counted like that.

[> Ah, but you'll notice.... -- cjl, 08:23:09 02/24/03 Mon

When Willow was really gearing up, and looked like she might take a bit more out of Kennedy and Anya than would be healthy, it was Xander who yanked Willow out of the circle and her hair switched back to its normal, healthy red. Yep, same thing he did for her in BotN and Grave; the heart/spirit team worked its wonders again.

And as for why Willow took the energy out of Anya rather than Dawn and Xander, check out my post below.

[> [> Emotional Attachment -- Mencius, 12:14:18 02/24/03 Mon

I wonder if Willow by not taking energies from Zander and Dawn did in fact indicate that Zander and Dawn possessed less spiritual energy then Anya and Kennedy. I have two theories on this, both related to Willow's emotional attachments:

Theory #1

Zander and Dawn are (with the exception of Warren) the two people whom Willow hurt the most during her Dark Willow phase. Willow is still traumatizing by this and when she again lost control, she recoiled from doing further harm to those who she wronged the most before.

Theory #2

Willow was not exactly thinking clearly, caught up in the rush of magical energy, and forced to act on the spur of the moment. Perhaps in this state she instinctively avoided doing harm to the two individual with whom she shared the strongest emotional connection. Anya has never been as close to Willow as Zander and Dawn, nor has she know Willow as long. Although Kennedy is Williow's new girlfriend, Kennedy is rather new, and may not receive the same emotional recognition during a period of intense stress as the friends that Willow has had for many years.

[> [> [> Re: Emotional Attachment (spoilers for GiD) -- Clen, 15:09:30 02/24/03 Mon

this may be so, but afterwards when trying to talk to Kennedy, Willow claims the process she was involved in sought out the most powerful ones in the room for the needed energy to complete her shortcut of a dimensional rift. "It's how it works...it's how I work."

Funny though, if Dawn is still "The Key", albeit maybe one that has passed its expiration date, wouldn't she be a logical choice??? Or was she too far away (certainly off-camera)?

[> [> [> [> "Nearby" -- not "In The Room" -- V, 17:22:36 02/24/03 Mon

[> [> [> [> What's the same in Anya as in Kennedy? (GID spoilerish) -- WickedBuffy (severe brainfog flu victim), 20:10:47 02/24/03 Mon

Coming from another angle of the "why did WIllow suck energy from Anya and Kennedy instead of...." what qualities or similarities *do* Anya and Kennedy share? (or possibly/speculatively share) are they linked somehow? ... or what does everyone else share that was present that Kennedy and Anya *don't* have? umm, I don't know, but it was bothering me lately. Anyone have some ideas?

It also makes me wonder what Willow means by "power" regarding what will most effectively feed her magic.

[> [> [> [> [> they both have the demon link -- Clen, 07:28:20 02/25/03 Tue

I don't think the other SiTs were present (funny how the house can be so full one minute then become curiously vacant when trouble's a brewin', interesting trick that) and maybe Dawn is mystical energy, but not demonish energy.

[> [> [> [> [> [> ?? Kennedy has the .... (spoilerish thru GOD) -- WickedBuffy, 10:08:38 02/25/03 Tue

demon link?

I thought SITs didn't have demon in them until they were officially The Slayer and the person gets the "super" powers?

I understand Anay has a demon link... but Kennedy?

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> I meant GID not GOD (gid dang it! I give up!) -- WickedBuffy, 10:20:39 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: ?? Kennedy has the .... (spoilerish thru GiD) -- Clen, 11:16:58 02/25/03 Tue

I don't mean they HAVE the demon powers. Arguably Anya doesn't have any at all either. But Kennedy is intended to have some, circumstances permitting. Like I said, Anya is a has-been, Kennedy is a not-yet. But they both have a direct link to demon power (makes me think of the Japanese cartoons -- DEE MAN POW WAAAAA!!!)

Kennedy has the link because for whatever reason, she was "chosen". Anya was chosen deliberately, Kennedy's choosing seems more automatic (or might not be, no way to know), but they were both chosen to be "blessed" with the infernal mojo. If time is left aside, they both are part-demon, Anya in the past and Kennedy in a possible future. Maybe there is some "suitability factor" that made them candidates, and maybe that factor has its own power, which drew Willow's "hunger".

Or maybe Xander is just THAT weak...

Slayers (spoilers for Get it Done) -- Clen, 07:50:26 02/24/03 Mon

this is just random thought on my part, but according to Get it Done, Slayers were originally put together to fight "the demons". To that end, girls were infused with demons. And yet, when we get to modern history, they are largely known as vampire slayers, though their original job description far outstrips that. Why?

Of course, one reason is that the show itself grew, and ME grew it to accomodate more variety. But leaving such practical reasons aside for a moment, I also notice how Slayers are somewhat similar to vampires: human-demon hybrids, despised by the demon world, given to recreating themselves.

If they ever continue to explore Slayer history, it would be interesting to explore their first recreation when it was passed on for the first time, and at what point they became seemingly more engrossed with vampires (possibly because vampires reproduce faster, possibly because they are more driven to prey on humans, but it would be neat if they also explore the parallel man-monster nexus they share).

[> Re: Slayers (spoilers for Get it Done and fray) -- VampRiley, 17:52:13 02/24/03 Mon

Well, if the watchers are the decendents of the shamen, they may have viewed vamps as the most direct threat since they use humans to feed on and make more of themselves. When you have to fight a war with untold numbers of enemies, it's best to limit yorself to at least a few.


[> [> Also -- Darby, 07:20:51 02/25/03 Tue

Way, way back, Giles' original exposition indicated that for a while, only vampires were around, the spawn / infection of the last departing demon driven out of this plane. To the shaman, "vampire" would have been synonymous with "demon." Until other sorts of demons found their way back.

[> Should BTVS have had a different title? -- Gyrus, 09:16:06 02/25/03 Tue

In an interview accompanying the episode "The Witch" on the S1 DVD, JW says that the point of the ep was to demonstrate early on that there would be non-vampire baddies on the show. Limiting themselves to vampire foes would have really cut down on the number of potential storylines.

I think the main reasons the show was named "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" were (1) to make a connection with the movie, and (2) because it sounds spoofy. As I understand it, the people at Fox Television REALLY wanted a different title, but JW wouldn't budge on that.

My question to you all: Do you thing BTVS would have attracted more viewers if it had a different title?

[> [> perhaps "Buffy...the slayer of vamPIRES" -- Clen, 11:08:08 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> Uh...I don't get it. -- Gyrus, 12:05:34 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> that's 'cause it's a minor spoiler for tonight's episode. -- Ete, 13:07:08 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> [> calling it a spoiler is stretching it, perhaps a tongue-in-cheek reference -- Clen, 17:10:14 02/25/03 Tue

As I was flipping through... -- neaux, 09:10:22 02/24/03 Mon

While flipping through the channels this weekend, I paused on E!'s week in review and they said there was some bad news for Buffy Fans??

I didnt watch the report for fear of spoilers, did anyone catch this.. and was it spoilery??

If it WASNOT spoilery please tell what was said please.

[> Not spoilery. I saw it. -- Rob, 12:38:41 02/24/03 Mon

Or not specifically spoilery. The two things were

(a) that with the film SMG's gonna be making, "Buffy" will most likely not return next year, in its current incarnation, as we basically knew already and

(b) a statement from JM that he's afraid the finale will "piss off" a large portion of the fans. I can't wait to see what it is! I love controversy!


[> [> I heard an interesting little end of the season spoiler somewhere... -- Masq, 16:40:24 02/24/03 Mon

a statement from JM that he's afraid the finale will "piss off" a large portion of the fans.

...that Spike will die in some noble sacrifice in episode 7.22.

Don't know where I heard that spoiler, so I have no way of knowing it's truthfullness.

But it works for me. The Spike fans get to see him redeem himself in one final act of Good, and the non-Spike fans won't have to see him in any current or future spin-off shows (except possibly as a wise-cracking "ghost Spike").

But I could see that "pissing off" a lot of fans.


Maybe JM was talking British English and he meant that the fans will all want to get drunk because of the finale. That'll happen anyway.

[> [> [> I think there may be more (no further spoilers but spec) -- Dochawk, 17:31:37 02/24/03 Mon

First off that was my supposition based on the fact that Joss only tells his actors early about an episode when they are to die.

But I think there may be more that will piss off Spike fans, but I think I am just keeping my mouth shut regarding any souled vampires at this juncture.

[> [> [> Does death really equate to redemption? (no spoilers) -- VampRiley, 18:07:46 02/24/03 Mon

This is a matter that I've never understood. You willfully give up your and that's supposed to make up for all the bad you've done in the past? That doesn't make sense.


[> [> [> [> Re: Does death really equate to redemption? (no spoilers) -- Masq, 18:43:30 02/24/03 Mon

You willfully give up your [life] and that's supposed to make up for all the bad you've done in the past? That doesn't make sense.

I knew I should have used my tongue-in-cheek emoticon when I was speculating about Spike. I should always remember to use my tongue-in-cheek emoticon when talking about Spike. *sigh*

Answer: I honestly don't know, VR. I think it might if you only committed one grave sin, and your death balanced it out somehow. Thinking here of Doyle (*sob*) and how his death saved a clan of demons, just as in life his inaction lead to the death of a clan of demons.

[> [> [> [> [> What I heard about JM saying. . . -- Finn Mac Cool, 20:46:07 02/24/03 Mon

He said that, when Joss told him about the finale, he said it sounded like bost the most awesome idea he ever heard, and the worst idea he ever heard, but also that, upon hearing it, it seemed almost inevitable, and wouldn't be what anyone suspected. I doubt it will be Spike sacraficing himself (been theorized a lot before), and I'm personally not gonna try to guess. I'll just wait and see it happen.

Aw, heck, I'll guess anyway: the First Evil is destroyed/defeated in 7.21, but the army it amassed doesn't just go away, and battling them is 7.22

[> [> [> [> [> [> Thank you Finn, completely agree -- sk, 21:00:52 02/24/03 Mon

The above posts almost sent me to the spoiler boards. (Nasty people) Your post stopped me. (Thank you!!! .) I agree. When Whedon told him about The Gift - JM argued with him and said people would be pissed.
And least we forget? JM thought Spike wanted to get the chip removed last year. He is not the most reliable source in the world. LOL!

At any rate? I think you have the wisest and most mature approach of any of us on the boards:

I'm personally not gonna try to guess. I'll just wait and see it happen.

Followed by humor.

Aw, heck, I'll guess anyway: the First Evil is destroyed/defeated in 7.21, but the army it amassed doesn't just go away, and battling them is 7.22

Hope your right. That just sounds really cool. Best spec I've seen on the boards today.

[> [> [> [> [> Re: Does death really equate to redemption? (no spoilers) -- lunasea, 06:14:21 02/25/03 Tue

Answer: I honestly don't know, VR. I think it might if you only committed one grave sin, and your death balanced it out somehow. Thinking here of Doyle (*sob*) and how his death saved a clan of demons, just as in life his inaction lead to the death of a clan of demons.

Is redemption life for life though? I don't think it is about a balance sheet so much as it is about a change in attitude. Angel's sort-of human child resulted from his epiphany, not him saving lots of people.

I didn't find Doyle's death to be about saving a clan of demons to balance out his inaction earlier. You can never make up for a lost life. Instead it was about Doyle finding out how strong he really was. "You never know until you've been tested."

That is how I see redemption in the Buffyverse. It involves finding out what your strength is. That is what AtS and BtVS are about. It isn't about power. It is about strength. There is a difference.

It would be interesting if Spike discovered what his strength was (heck I would be interested if he had any), but I don't see how his death would show this. He might get some dramatic sacrifice, but that seems to be continuing with the trend and his weaknesses, rather than finding some sort of strength. If love's bitch goes out being that bitch, he hasn't learned anything.

[> [> [> Re: I heard an interesting little end of the season spoiler somewhere... -- amber, 22:37:42 02/24/03 Mon

James Marsters has also been one of the most vocal cast members when it comes to being on a future spin-off of Buffy. I'm guessing Joss won't kill Spike off because he'll want Spike on that spin-off, if it happens.

Spike has a lot of fans in the Buffy community, combine him with Eliza and I'm sure the spin-off would have a pretty big instant audience.

[> [> [> [> Spike needs to die (no spoilers, just biology) -- Vickie, 00:08:14 02/25/03 Tue

James Marsters is a magnificent specimen, but even he will show his age eventually. He has no future in the Buffyverse, since he portrays an ageless vampire.

His only choices are a magnificent death scene, or silly excuses for why he appears to be aging, a la Data in the Next Generation (Star Trek) movies. I vote for the former.

MIRACLES: Death by asphixiation? -- Gyrus, 20:02:43 02/24/03 Mon

This is the second week in a row that MIRACLES has appeared in the TV GUIDE and then failed to appear on the screen (pre-empted this time by THE BACHELORETTE or something). Frequently, that sort of treatment means that, by the time it gets back on the air, most viewers won't remember what time or channel it's on.

[> It's almost like it was a FOX show (Firewhat?) -- GreatRewards, 20:22:16 02/24/03 Mon

[> Firefly, we hardly knew ye -- Vickie, 23:46:30 02/24/03 Mon

[> I, too, am pretty darn torqued off. -- MaeveRigan, 08:08:41 02/25/03 Tue

[> If Miracles dies . . . -- tomfool, 09:34:03 02/25/03 Tue

... does Greenwalt come back to the ME fold? He could be included in the production/writing team for a Buffy spinoff or go back to a S5 Angel. Would this be a good thing? Did he leave on good enough terms to come back to the family? Just wondering.

[> Or Death by Reality TV phenomen -- s'kat, 11:26:36 02/25/03 Tue

I missed the last two. Finally got chance to tune in again - and we have Reality TV all the time. UGH!!

Anyone else getting the feeling that ABC has decided to revamp itself as the Reality Show network??

We have: I'm A Celebrity Get me out of Here (Basically Fear Factor meets Survivor with out of work, C list celebs)
The Family - the new George Hamilton thing.
The Bachelor
The Bachelorette
Fear Factor
The Mole

ugh. I switched to BBC AMerica on Mondays to watch old Cracker shows. Maybe I'm weird or something - but I despise Reality Television.

[> [> Manchild? -- Gyrus, 11:45:43 02/25/03 Tue

You get BBC America -- does that mean you've seen MANCHILD? How is it?

[> [> [> Re: Manchild? -- Darby, 12:08:17 02/25/03 Tue

A friend lent us her tapes. It's quite funny, kind of Sex in the City ballpark material-wise but with a different sensibility, and ASH is fascinating to watch in this very different role.

And Sara really likes it too.

[> [> [> Re: Manchild? -- s'kat, 16:13:11 02/25/03 Tue

Based on the one episode I've seen? Incredibly disappointing. ASH is under-used. Making me really miss
early Vr5 and Btvs.

Manchild is sort of the British Male version of Sex in The City. (think Sex in The City meets Benny Hill) I caught one episode, will try to catch another one sometime this week. It's not televised very often.

In the episode I caught - ASH played a guy struggling with impotence, he gets an operation that well uhm...corrects the problem and it deals with size. And they discuss it in the steam room.

The shows about 40-something men in midlife crisis, revisiting their youth.

I wasn't crazy about it. But I've only caught one episode.
So...I guess that's too little to really write a review on.

[> [> You're not weird, and definitely not alone -- Scroll, 12:26:39 02/25/03 Tue

I can't stand reality TV. There's just something about it that affronts all my sensibilities. Perhaps because the reality TV we've had so far is all about manipulating emotions, about exploiting people's baser instincts, and putting it on display for all the world to see.

And the fact that everything on these "reality" shows is most likely scripted to some extent -- the people on these shows are just puppets, without even the professional distance of being actors to protect them. I find most of these shows to be incredibly degrading: to women, to people's self-esteem, to their morals, to their reputations.

Of course, there's a spectrum of reality shows. Some, like "The Amazing Race" are not as bad (so I've heard) while others ("Temptation Island", I'm looking at you!) make me want to hurl. Anyway, this is just me saying that you're not alone, s'kat. I find reality shows distasteful as well.

[> [> [> What reality TV is all about -- Gyrus, 13:18:37 02/25/03 Tue

It's mostly about watching other people being excluded, bullied, and humiliated and thinking to yourself, "Boy, I'm glad that's not me!" It's like the 4th grade, except you don't have to worry that the crowd that is currently making fun of Missy's name or Yuri's accent will suddenly turn on you instead.

In sum, it's icky.

[> [> [> [> Yep, you've both summed up why I hate them -- s'kat, 16:21:29 02/25/03 Tue

Both Scroll and Gyrus summed up why I can't stand reality television in a nutshell. I've tried a few here and there - mostly b/c I'm of the opinion, you shouldn't judge something until you at least have seen it, but my lord is the stuff icky. It makes me miss the old reality shows by the King of the genre in the 70s - Chuck Barris.

The Dating Game, Newlywed Game and The Gong Show seem tame
in comparison and not nearly as degrading as the 21st Century's equivalent. The one's I've seen today remind me of that Stephen King story Running Man, which does not help with the icky feeling.

Of course I don't deal well with the concept of "humiliation" in comedy - slapstick humiliation comedies squick me, I can't handle watching someone get embarrassed - since reality TV seems to be based on this concept - it's really no surprise I can't stand it. ;-)

Nice to know I'm not alone. Maybe with a bit of luck the television won't be taken over by the programs after all.

[> [> [> [> [> It is tending towards Bread and Circuses, but without the nutrition -- fresne, 17:19:53 02/25/03 Tue

Reality T.V. is appallingly pervasive and well, it's just so bizarre that people would want to fill their lives with the banal and the mean spirited. It is like watching a car wreck, only drawn out and serialized.

On a happier note, I read somewhere that reality t.v. is hitting an unexpected wall. Networks like them because they're cheap to produce and they get ratings. In order to get those ratings, as discussed, shows create more and more humiliating, violent, etc. concepts.

Cases are starting to crop up where individuals are starting to sue for physical/emotional harm, which in turn is driving up the insurance costs on these shows. Is it mean spirited of me to hope that networks start getting slapped with more and more lawsuits until reality t.v. ain't quite so cheap?


[> [> [> [> [> Re: Yep, you've both summed up why I hate them -- Tess, 23:11:27 02/25/03 Tue

I'm going to jump on the bandwagon and say I hate 'em too. I would probably enjoy American Idol if it wasn't on opposite Buffy, but that's about the only one I've ever watched once much less wanted to watch again. I figured out a long time ago I'm in the minority on what I enjoy watching. The majority enjoys Jerry Springer and The Simpsons and WWF or whatever they are calling themselves nowadays. I prefer Oprah, Buffy & Angel, and martial arts competitions (empty-handed & weapons, not sparring).

I guess its a sad thing that the majority of the world never grows out of that 4th grade 'let's see who we can pick on and make cry today' mentality.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Did you just... -- Tchaikovsky, 02:25:19 02/26/03 Wed

put 'The Simpsons' in with 'Jerry Springer' and 'WWF'? Really?


[> [> I don't watch reality tv. -- Arethusa, 13:40:37 02/25/03 Tue

It's like slowing down at accidents, looking for blood. Blech. I can't stand to see people be humiliated, or humilate others. I can't even watch I Love Lucy for that reason.

[> [> [> yep me too... -- s'kat, 16:28:45 02/25/03 Tue

I can't stand to see people be humiliated, or humilate others.

Feel exactly the same way. I think it's the reason I don't like most American sitcoms - I Love Lucy, Friends (numerous episodes I had to switch channels while trying to watch it), Three's Company (was atrocious in this way). I've even had troubles occassionally with humor on Btvs - regarding Xander, because I can't handle this.

A friend of mine mentioned that her husband could watch gunfights, people being killed in movies, but had to leave the room during scenes where someone is humilated like in the films: Dumb and Dumber (never have made it through it),
Meet The Parents, or the old Jerry Lewis movies.

Meanwhile most of my non-online friends? They love this type of comedy and think I'm nuts. Of course they don't watch Btvs or Ats either. So there you go.

[> [> [> [> Feel the same way -- Finn Mac Cool, 19:01:03 02/25/03 Tue

Well, I can handle people being humiliated, what I hate is the feeling that they're just digging themselves in deeper and deeper. After I think "Just shut up and leave already, save your dignity!", and they keep on going, burying themselves alive, I can't watch. I had to tune out for a little bit during "Lessons" when Buffy burst into Dawn's classroom.

[> [> [> Re: I don't watch reality tv. -- akanikki, 19:57:48 02/25/03 Tue

Wow - I always thought I was weird - but as a child, I could not stand "I Love Lucy" because even as I laughed at the funny, I was hiding my eyes at watching Lucy be caught and humiliated. It just never seemed funny enough to overcome the embarrassment.

On another note - hopefully, "Reality" Shows will go the way of "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire" - quick success, everywhere you look and all over the map, and soon dead and buried.

[> [> Reality TV and "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind" -- cjl, 14:31:03 02/25/03 Tue

A few weeks back, I saw "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind," the film biography of Chuck Barris, the creative genius(?) behind the Newlywed Game, the Dating Game and the Gong Show. Back in the day (the 1970s) he was one of the most powerful men in TV, and he was generally reviled as the father of what we now know as Reality TV.

Looking back on the Barris productions, they seem mild compared to today's trash-o-rama spectacles. And yet, if you get past the pastel and burgundy colored nostalgia of the sets and costumes, you can see the nihilism peeking out from behind the curtains.

According the film--and his written autobiography--Barris subsidized his game show income with occasional forays into espionage, acting as a hit man for the CIA. (Truth or delusion? If you watch the movie, it doesn't matter.) Every time he ventured into the brutal, ruthlessly cynical world of espionage, he came up with another boffo idea for a game show. Just as Barris' exploits as hit man for the government were a thin self-justification for his desire to inflict pain and his contempt for the institutions he was supposedly protecting, his role as "hit man" for the networks exhibited that same contempt. The Gong Show was originally supposed to be a variety show spotlighting top quality acts (like Star Search); when he was deluged by an endless succession of lousy acts at auditions, he turned his near-homicidal anger into ratings gold. (Years later, Simon's abuse of contestants on American Idol would mine the same formula.)

At the end of CoaDM, the real Barris shows up and he's a withered shadow of the curly topped, energetic ringmaster of the Gong Show. He pitches a new concept to the camera: three old men compare their lives and what they made of their opportunities--and the one who did the best DOESN'T blow his brains out. This is the essence of Reality TV. It shows human weakness without apology or comfort. It revels in humiliation and degradation. It has an enormous power, because there's an ugly truth to it; but ultimately, too much of it is corrosive. Isn't there a point to living? Doesn't anything in this world have a higher purpose?

If you're looking for the answers in reality TV, you're in the wrong place. Stick with BUFFY.

[> [> [> Yikes! -- Masq, 14:44:06 02/25/03 Tue

It's a sad statement about our society when fictional shows like BtVS and AtS say more that's real about life than so-called "reality shows".

But then anyone who actually believes reality shows are about reality knows nothing about getting television ratings. It's all about theater--you pick people to be on those shows that will act larger-than-life. It's fiction parading as truth.

BtVS and AtS are truth parading as fiction.

[> [> [> [> Mind if I quote you, Masq? -- Scroll, 15:09:50 02/25/03 Tue

[Reality shows are] fiction parading as truth.

BtVS and AtS are truth parading as fiction.

So very, very true. Thank you.

A little OT: Strangely, my parents worry that my interest in science fiction and fantasy will inhibit my ability to discern reality from fiction. I've tried explaining the idea of "metaphor" to them many times; I think my mom is starting to get it, though my dad still hasn't got a clue. My sister got me a VHS copy of "Fellowship of the Ring" for Christmas. My dad came in for 10 minutes, saw a bunch of inhuman looking creatures and wizards performing magic, and immediately denounced it as Not Real and Not Good For You.

It's true that sometimes I can be a little "enthusiastic" about Buffy and Angel, but obsession is very different from delusion, I think : ) Nobody ever accuses Shakespeare lovers of hiding from reality, and I defy anyone who says Shakespeare plays are strictly real-to-life.

Ah well, maybe my dad just has limited imagination -- which is kind of sad when you think about it...

[> [> [> [> [> I heard that -- Gyrus, 15:31:15 02/25/03 Tue

My dad has never believed in the value of ANY fiction, let alone science fiction. He'll always choose a newspaper over a novel. Weird that he has a daughter who wrote children's books (my sister), a son in the movie business (my brother), and another son who's a big SF fan (me).

I think the thing of it is that my father has an obsessive-compulsive streak that makes him reject anything that doesn't reflect reality as he understands it. This makes it difficult for him to understand other people's POVs and ways of doing things. Fortunately, he's not big on arguing -- he can just declare some people "nuts" in his own mind and move on.

I defy anyone who says Shakespeare plays are strictly real-to-life.

What, you've never run into the ghost of your dead father at midnight, and then had the sun rise 10 minutes later? :)

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I heard that -- Scroll, 16:08:36 02/25/03 Tue

I think the thing of it is that my father has an obsessive-compulsive streak that makes him reject anything that doesn't reflect reality as he understands it. This makes it difficult for him to understand other people's POVs and ways of doing things. Fortunately, he's not big on arguing -- he can just declare some people "nuts" in his own mind and move on.

My dad doesn't think I'm nuts, he just worries about my spiritual life (we're Christian). He has a (bad, IMHO) tendency to listen to Christian speakers expounding on things like "Harry Potter", and he takes what he hears at face value without considering opposing views. (Though I can't complain; sometimes I'm just as bad, only from the other side.) I mean, he was being all disapproving when my sister read the "Harry Potter" books and went to see the movies, but it's not like my dad even knows what "Harry Potter" is about!

Oh, and both my parents are/were in the sciences. They were both chemists, initially. My poor dad: his oldest daughter (me) went into English; his second daughter went into design; his only son doesn't seem the least bit interested in science or math (he's still in high school). If the pattern holds, my brother will end up a cartoonist or something!

[> [> [> Did anyone else see Season 7:The Contenders? -- KdS, 04:52:41 02/26/03 Wed

Came out a couple of years ago, a pitch-black comedy about a reality TV show based on literal gladiatorial combat. I saw it in the cinema and thought it was quite terrifyingly hilarious - tone was spot on. It would probably be even more disturbing to see it on a TV at home.

[> [> If I see one more new reality show commercial, I am going to puke. -- Rob, whose head is dangling dangerously close to a toilet, 14:53:15 02/25/03 Tue

They have been pushing this fad way beyond the limits of sanity. It's really sad that ABC all but completely ignores "Alias" and "Miracles" but devotes a full something like 16 nights to "I'm A Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here." Chop off the first three words, and you've got my feelings about the show. Actually, I find it kind of amazing that they actually call this a celebrity show. If the biggest headliner you can get is Melissa Rivers, then you know YOU KNOW you're in trouble!


[> [> [> Re: If I see one more new reality show commercial...RANT -- Celebaelin, 18:42:20 02/25/03 Tue

Reality TV is 'total pants' as we would say in the UK. Vicarious viewing of made for TV (commercial) semi-reality is about as pointless an exercise as it is possible to imagine. The way to experience reality is by participating in it not by sitting in an armchair pretending that anything in any way important is being decided 'before your very eyes'. If you want to experience reality GO OUTSIDE.

[> [> [> [> Hear, hear! -- Rob, 20:08:35 02/25/03 Tue

Of course, I hate experiencing reality, so I'll stay holed up in my bedroom with every episode of Buffy and Angel at my disposal, thank you very much! Hey, at least I'm not trying to live my real life vicariously through the boob tube..just my fantasy life. ;o)


[> [> [> [> [> Re: Hear, hear! WARNING, RANT CONTINUED -- Celebaelin, 22:34:06 02/25/03 Tue

Boob tube? LOL, a sparkly silver one perhaps? Oh, you mean the idiots lantern, the haunted goldfish bowl, that altar of indolence in the corner. I guess the real problem is that in real life not many people could withstand the intensive scrutiny of living on camera, that's why movie stars etc. value their privacy. People crack under the pressure for the most part and when they do they run a mile in the opposite direction. An entry I read in Meet the Posters was talking about Ronnie James Dio and the lines "I grew up quick when I felt the kick of life upon the stage" started running through my head. It takes a particular kind of personality to weather the intense experience of a vastly public life unscathed, even for a short period of time let alone relentlessly over an entire series. This is why the exploitative, parasitic, saprophytic even, nature of reality TV is particularly unpleasant. Who is making the money out of this? 'Cos it sure ain't the people onscreen as it stands currently.

That there is a market for this kind of brainless ritual humiliation is a constant mystery to me. The fact that this mind-numbing tedium can be passed off as entertainment (usually to the detriment of anybody with any real talent) only reinforces the belief that 'nobody ever went broke underestimating the taste of the public'. Don't these people have anything better to do than to try to exploit the banal experiences of a clueless group of Sheena Easton wannabes for personal gain and aggrandizement. Whoever it was who came up with the concept of hostile 'reality shows' in the first place I wouldn't piss on them if they were on fire.

I never understand why the obviously cringemaking is considered funny (although the word 'schardenfroide' [?sp.?] springs to mind). Personally I can never watch Norman Wisdom or certain parts of Fawlty Towers for exactly that reason, as for I Love Lucy I've only seen a few excerpts but I imagine it to be similar.

I don't think I'll be throwing the box away just yet (not till after I find that only SF/Fantasy is worth watching on an LCD screen the size of a pool table anyway) but don't think I haven't thought about it.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Hear, hear! WARNING, RANT CONTINUED -- Rob, 22:44:28 02/25/03 Tue

My TV is safe for the time being for 5 reasons, and they are

1) Buffy
2) Angel
3) Six Feet Under
4) Alias
5) Farscape

Unfortunately, Buffy, Angel, and Alias are all in danger of cancellation, Farscape's already been cancelled, and Six Feet Under is only new 13 weeks out of the year. So I may be having a lot of free time next year!


[> [> [> [> [> [> requested spelling -- anom, 22:50:00 02/25/03 Tue


Those German spellings, huh?

[> [> Surreal World -- dream, 09:26:15 02/26/03 Wed

My roommate told me there was a new reality show out called Surreal World, in which various B-level celebrities had to live together in some house. I was terribly excited until I found out that nothing surreal was actually going to happen. I briefly imagined fish falling from the chandelier, all-blue meals at 2 A.M, unexplained women in long white gowns playing catch with balls of yarn under the vines growing across the ceiling, all observed by a captive audience of former sitcom stars and professional athletes. THAT I would have tuned in to see...Sigh....

"Get It Done" Revisited, with spoilers -- Darby, 21:39:37 02/24/03 Mon

Okay, by now the Summers house should definitely be under surveillance by Homeland Security - how'd they get visas for all of these minor girls with no parents or guardians?

The most annoying thing about this season is the details that would be immediately followed up on in a real situation that are laid down and never picked back up (like the Eyeball Oracle visit). Buffy, Miss Prophetic Dreams, never gives a second thought to Crying Chloe?

There's yet another plant (more than one now, in fact) in Buffy's office. Message or mistake? Are the First and the Hellmouth not really connected? Well, yeah, "It's all connected," but still...

So one Slayer (after hundreds of predecessors) had this handy "Meet the Parents" kit, but there's no record of it and the Watchers' Council never came looking for it??? Do these guys even care about internal logic anymore?

Like the explanation that, of the more than a dozen proto-Slayers collected, their Watchers were killed but they survived. Huh? How?

Speaking of the protos, couldn't they have put a few more of the girls in red shirts and had Andrew comment on it?

Why does it seem like Wood is looking specifically at Rona?

It's very interesting to watch Spike's reactions to Wood's grilling. Leading later to, is he a different person or has he just decided to act differently?

Okay, now Buffy died but was revived through some quick thinking, but let's all stand around and watch Chloe swing for a while...hope they made completely sure before they buried her.

Buffy's speech works much better on a second viewing. Damn, I was all ready to mock it. Well, the Spike stuff is still stupid - "Hey, I don't have enough enemies, Mr Don't Leave Yet, I need your Big Bad Self back." Yeah, that's reasonable.

The Shadow Casters is a classic BtVS scene, no question about it.

The Exchange Demon - was I the only one who thought that killing it might be a bad idea? Does it somehow relate to the Slayer? Its "hair" and markings are reminiscent of the First Slayer.

I have a huge problem with applying physics to magic. It's never adhered to physical laws before (even the action - reaction one is rarely actually followed), especially conservation, why is it suddenly doing it? And if it's physics, is it really magic?

Buffy's the Hellmouth's last guardian? Who the heck was guarding it before she came along? I'll grant that "Guardian" and "Slayer" may not be the same, but no one's ever spoken about previous Sunnydale superheroes before.

The Three Clueless Men show the basis on which the Council was formed. And originally, watching was about all they could do.

The Willow spell was eerily reminiscent of the Angel resouling, where the power just seems to show up and fill her.

In the cave, the Slayer power (Hand) is connected to the demon Spirit and Heart. Mind is conspicuously absent. Is that what the guys offering no knowledge are supposed to represent?

One week after a reiteration of Xander "Heart" Harris' continued romantic interest in demons, can it be accidental that the Slayer power is derived from a Demon Heart?

So the First Slayer didn't get all of the available power? Hmmmm...

Buffy only really gets upset when the demon dust tries access through her, as Angelus puts it, "nether regions." Bathroom flashbacks? I'm serious here. But it also seems very much about Buffy's problems with authority, especially male authority figures. Wish they weren't wimping Giles out, they really could use at least one non-useless male figure here.

So is Giles doing research at the library in Alexandria this week?

When Buffy returns, does the demon disappear? Does it even matter? It didn't seem like Willow was necessary, either - Buffy was done, Buffy came back.

Spells requiring power parasitism is new and inconsistent. Willow would have sucked everyone in Southern California dry trying to end the world last year, wouldn't she? And Willow suddenly seems to know all about these new rules - how?

If Buffy wasn't shown the Turok Han multitudes - man, they must be hungry with all that flailing and silly running about - then the writers are not playing fair.

- Darby, feeling there's not so much to comment on this week that hasn't already been covered...

[> Nitpicks nitpicked -- HonorH, 21:50:44 02/24/03 Mon

Buffy, Miss Prophetic Dreams, never gives a second thought to Crying Chloe?

You know, I didn't give it a second thought until Chloe's suicide, either. The appearance of the First Slayer, I think, would pretty much distract Buffy from anything else in the dream.

When Buffy returns, does the demon disappear? Does it even matter? It didn't seem like Willow was necessary, either - Buffy was done, Buffy came back.

No. Spike brought the demon back and threw it into the portal. That was the "exchange"--demon goes to Shadow World, Buffy returns to this world.

[> [> Re: Nitpicks nitpicked -- Darby, 04:48:22 02/25/03 Tue

So the portal was set up to permanently strand the Slayer in Disney's Desert Adventure? There's no way your typical lone wolf Slayer (plus ineffectual Watcher) could have arranged to have the demon tossed back in. If Wood's mother had ever used it, she wouldn't have been around for Spike to kill. It's really just another S7 deus ex machina fanwank.

[> [> [> Re: Nitpicks nitpicked (GiD spoilers) -- Rob, 07:29:26 02/25/03 Tue

I wouldn't exactly call it a deus ex machina, because Buffy refused the power. It didn't solve the problem. If anything, they're worse off, because now Buffy knows what's coming to get them. And is even more down than usual, wondering whether she should have accepted it.

And, also, I don't think we know enough about the bag to just write off what the bag contained as retcon or fanwank. How do we know that previous Slayers, with trained watchers, wouldn't be aware of the demon that would come, and be ready to trap it? (I don't think we can just assume a Watcher will be ineffectual) Or that it wouldn't only be activated the way it was now when the time was right? It's possible that a previous slayer could have connected the shadow puppet pieces and not been sent to the desert. Maybe nothing would have happened. We don't really know because Wood kept it from being passed on to the other Slayers, as it was supposed to. For all we know, the shadow puppet pieces weren't in the bag before. After all, the words in the book changed and then disappeared. Maybe the bag always contains what that particular Slayer needs at that particular time.

And, in the end, I really don't think it matters. The bag was plot device. The important thing was the origin of the Slayer, the continuation of the desert metaphor, Buffy almost being turned into a demonic, primal force like the First Slayer and her refusing to have it forced on her.


[> [> [> [> Boxes unopened, dormancy/activity (GiD spoilers) -- Ixchel, 10:05:25 02/25/03 Tue

Could it be that the box had never been opened and the rules surrounding the use of of the shadow puppets came from a time when the Watchers had or used more magical backing?

If the box had never been opened before, because Slayers never quite lived long enough to consider it (and were too busy with the day to day slaying) and if Watchers were at first loath to try it and later forgot about it (was Giles even aware of it?). This could explain why Wood keeping it didn't cause any trouble or questions. Also, it seems there would be no reason to try it _if_ the majority of Slayer deaths were caused by regular vampires.

Presumably the Hellmouth hasn't always needed the degree of attention it has required in Buffy's time. If it is like a volcano, with dormant and active periods, which is suggested by the fact that Wood's mother was never sent to it, nor was the Chinese Slayer, then perhaps most Slayers have only had to contend with standard vampires and assorted demons? This is not to say that _some_ Slayers may have had to guard the Hellmouth in times past (as implied by the Shadowman's statement about Buffy being the _last guardian_), but maybe not many have had to and those that did never used the box for one reason or another? Possibly because their Watchers knew something we don't (Dawn didn't)? That there was some danger associated with using this (aside from the demon)?

And that it was necessary to have a powerful witch (or witches) to open the portal and bring the Slayer back (as well as return the demon)? Or that the Shadowmen expected their "descendents", if they are the precursors to the Watchers, to have magic power (as they seemed to)? Willow stated that this kind of operation could take days, maybe it was supposed to at the time this ritual was setup?

Also, I don't find it unreasonable to suppose that a Watcher (or Watchers, as it would seem this type of emergency should call together the CoW) with a complete translation and idea of the "exchange" couldn't devise a way to contain the demon until it was time to send it back.

Just some random musings...


[> [> [> [> [> Great points! I think I agree with you more than I agree with me! ;o) -- Rob, 10:40:34 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> [> [> Thanks, Rob. You're very kind. -- Ixchel, 11:16:39 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> :o) -- Rob, 20:05:39 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> Re: Nitpicks nitpicked -- SugarTherapy, 08:24:40 02/25/03 Tue

I just assumed that if Buffy accepted the demon power and was sent back, the demon would go back to where it came from. It's the whole physics balance thing. You're sending demonic power between the worlds, you just have to have the balance. Trade Buffy for the demon, and when Buffy accepts the demon dust and goes skipping back to our world, the exchange demon pops back where he belongs.


[> Re: "Get It Done" Revisited, with spoilers -- CW, 05:19:16 02/25/03 Tue

Part of the problem with discovering Chloe and letting her dangle is the visual. Usually in movies, they never show the face of someone who'd been hanged or hanged themselves because the reality is pretty damn gruesome, and not as if the face just looks asleep. I think we should understand that we saw the prettied up version, and in the 'actual' version it was clear Chloe was gone.

It is very disturbing about the slayer bag of tricks. Especially the part about a watcher deciding to let a four-year-old boy have it as a keepsake.

You weren't alone in your thinking about the exchange demon. And I'd have the say that the spell to reopen the portal and the killing of the demon were both probably a waste of time within the context of the rationale of the exchange. But, those things are what we'd expect the scoobies to do.

I mentioned Willow being possessed again while casting in my reply to Masq's announcement about having her analysis up. I think it's very significant.

[> [> Re: "Get It Done" Revisited, with spoilers -- anom, 21:54:27 02/25/03 Tue

"I think we should understand that we saw the prettied up version, and in the 'actual' version it was clear Chloe was gone."

Once the 1st shows up in someone's form, that's sure sign they're dead. Kinda like Spike punching someone to see if they're human, back when the chip was working. But I agree about the prettification of choking victims. It's always bugged me.

[> Re: "Get It Done" Revisited, with spoilers -- dream, 09:36:29 02/25/03 Tue

**Spells requiring power parasitism is new and inconsistent. **

Well, no. Willow sucked Rack and Giles. It's probably a pretty unpleasant thing for the person losing power - so GoodWillow hasn't done it much.

As for the demon and the portal - it might not have been necessary. Of course, there's no way for the Scoobies to know that. As viewers, we know Buffy is in the Restless desert, talking to the guys who set up the Slayer shop. All they know is that she is gone, and they need her back. I can't imagine them just sitting around, assuring one another she'll be back once she's done. Also, there is the possibility the work they do was supposed to have been done by the Watcher. They may not have foreseen the length of time that would pass before their survival pack was needed.

Agree thoroughly that the Watcher's Council would have been looking for the satchel. The only thing that I can think of that would make sense of that plot point would be a flashback showing a young Wood telling the kindly Watcher that he had never seen it, while the camera reveals it hidden somewhere. This seems unlikely - there would have to be some accounting for the age discrepancy, a few years where the bag is hidden away without Wood finding it - but it's possible. I'm not expecting this scene, though.

I don't mind the occasional absence of a character. I mean, these episodes have covered single day spans of time. I can accept that Giles in particular is likely to be off doing things without needing to be told.

I assume the Watchers were killed because - hey, no superpowers.

I don't understand who was guarding the Hellmouth before either. The Mayor hardly suits....

I think Buffy's speech - well, it's supposed to work. And not work. I think we're supposed to be uncomfortable with it. I think we're supposed to be worried that she's not thinking clearly.

I think/hope the Demon Heart/Xander thing is significant.

I don't have a problem with the Crying Chloe thing either. She seemed to symbolize all the scared girls. Turned out it was more significant.

Maybe Wood was looking at Rona because she is the only black slayer - the one most like his mom? I dind't notice it, but it would be a nice touch if he was.

[> [> Re: "Get It Done" Revisited, with spoilers -- Liv, 10:25:01 02/25/03 Tue

"I don't understand who was guarding the Hellmouth before either. The Mayor hardly suits...."

I know it's been posted somewhere by someone (more likely many someones) before that since it was Buffy who inadvertently uncorked the Hellmouth in Prophecy Girl by allowing the Master to rise, its possible that she is in some way responsible for its hyperactivity since. Therefore, if the Slayer Line ceased to run through Buffy after her first death, she's been the Guardian of the Hellmouth all along. Prior to that, the Hellmouth wouldn't have necessarily needed guarding. (Though, I'm not sure how to explain the Wishverse in that case).


[> [> [> The Wishverse -- Gyrus, 11:26:10 02/25/03 Tue

In "The Harvest", the Master had a chance to escape the Hellmouth but was foiled by Buffy. Since Wishverse-Buffy was not in Sunnydale during the Harvest, the Wishverse-Master probably rose at that time.

[> [> [> I think it was the Mayor... -- KdS, 04:59:13 02/26/03 Wed

While he was evil and so on, it was fairly clearly implied that he was using the Hellmouth energy for his own purposes and had been working in the background to try to stop things from getting really out of control. He probably stopped a few apocalypsi that would have interfered with his plans for world domination - can't rule a cinder. And since the David Fury story in Tales of the Slayers shows him founding Sunnydale in the late 19th century he was probably "guardian of the Hellmouth" for quite a while.

[> Re: "Get It Done" Revisited, with spoilers -- Sophist, 10:02:04 02/25/03 Tue

And if it's physics, is it really magic?

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." Arthur C. Clarke (who, I'm sure, stole it from Rah).

Spells requiring power parasitism is new and inconsistent.

dream is right about Rack and Giles in TTG/Grave. That said, I saw it as inconsistent too. Not so much because of the sucking itself, but because of Willow's statement to Kennedy that "It's how I work" (paraphrased). It isn't at all how Willow works; she never did before TTG, and that was designed to be different.

[> [> I agree, but maybe from Willow's POV (spoilers) -- Scroll, 10:55:10 02/25/03 Tue

I saw it as inconsistent too. Not so much because of the sucking itself, but because of Willow's statement to Kennedy that "It's how I work" (paraphrased). It isn't at all how Willow works; she never did before TTG, and that was designed to be different.

Since the events of "TTG/Grave", Willow has been seriously doubting her magic abilities. In GID, Buffy pushes her to reach her full potential; unfortunately, Willow believes that her full potential is a dark and scary one (and she might not be wrong). So to me, it makes sense that she "flashes back" to what she did to Giles and Rack -- suck the ever-lasting life out of them. And when she tries explaining it to Kennedy, Willow then seems to believe that all she is is a user who often sucks the life out of those nearest and dear to her (which is at least in keeping with the drug-addict metaphor).

How's that for fanwank? ; )

[> [> [> Sounds plausible -- Sophist, 12:11:30 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> Could be -- Darby, 12:04:27 02/25/03 Tue

I thought the implication clear that it was magical energy sucked from Giles and Rack (but none from Anya or Xander, who were present at critical times). Sucking someone's magic out seems to pull life force with it, but pure life force directed through Willow is new. Buffy and maybe Tara have lent her some, but that's different.

And if you think about it, this is easily as dark, maybe worse, as anything she's done. Rack was a back-and-forth, self-interested pusher / conduit that she overwhelmed, and with Giles it was a sort of self-defense, but with Anya and Kennedy she just extracted it without asking - what if the power taken was enough to kill them? Does Willow get off with an "Oops - greater good"?

[> [> [> You're absolutely right about that last point. -- Sophist, 12:18:22 02/25/03 Tue

Though, perhaps, no long term harm was suffered, in which case it's less offensive. Can't say I'd be volunteering to be in the neighborhood of the next spell, though.

[> [> [> That's true -- dream, 12:22:29 02/25/03 Tue

I don't tend to get caught up in the mechanics of magic, so to speak, but you're right - a life-force is different from a well of magical energy. I see a two major possibilities here:

a) You can take all sorts of power from others in a variety of ways. We've seen strength borrowing from Buffy, sharing with Tara, energy suckage with the magically enhanced Giles and Rack, and now life force taking. Willow's comment allows for all of these - she works spells, in many cases (though not all) by taking from others. Some spells don't require it. Others do. Because I tend to assume the writers are far more concerned with what the spells say about Willow's personal issues than about consistency of the mechanics across spells, I tend to assume this is the answer. Yes, it's a dark thing she did. She was just encouraged to get in touch with her inner bad-ass, and she obliges. I also got the impression that some of her willingness to take this step came from the fact that she was frustrated at her inability to open the portal. She was failing - and like the A+ student she is, Willow can't bear to fail.

b) She drains magical energy from the two people who have small amounts - Anya's residual demon magic and Kennedy's potential Slayer magic. The life force comes with. There's a big discussion of this below. It's possible, but would require some sort of follow-up, I think. If none comes, I'm going with the vaguer answer above.

[> [> [> [> Good points, dream. One thought regarding Kennedy... -- Ixchel, 16:12:02 02/25/03 Tue

Both your ideas work for me, but I did have this thought about Kennedy. All we know is her perception of the event, it _felt_ like she was having the life sucked out of her. Willow doesn't correct her (probably because it's true). However, it wouldn't be surprising if she didn't go into details of why it wasn't (if it wasn't) the "life" that was sucked out of Kennedy, but rather some other "force". Especially since Willow has killed in this fashion (Rack).

Just a thought...


[> [> [> Re: Could be -- Gyrus, 12:24:20 02/25/03 Tue

with Anya and Kennedy she just extracted it without asking - what if the power taken was enough to kill them? Does Willow get off with an "Oops - greater good"?

I think the point was that Willow was close to the limits of her self-control at that moment, and she made a decision that she otherwise might not have made. What Kennedy didn't understand before was that, when Willow works magic, the magic works her, too -- maybe even to the point of doing something evil.

[> [> [> Re: Could be -- Shiraz, 12:41:03 02/25/03 Tue

"And if you think about it, this is easily as dark, maybe worse, as anything she's done. Rack was a back-and-forth, self-interested pusher / conduit that she overwhelmed, and with Giles it was a sort of self-defense, but with Anya and Kennedy she just extracted it without asking - what if the power taken was enough to kill them? Does Willow get off with an "Oops - greater good"?"

Well, its been my view that Willow essentially thought she was 'under strict orders' to do whatever it took to get Buffy back.


"The big man was already reaching for another knife. Rincewind looked around wildly, and then with wild improvisation drew himself up into a wizardly pose.

His hand was flung back. "Asoniti! Kyorucha! Beazlebor!"

The man hesitated, his eyes flicking nervously from side to side as he waited for the magic. The conclusion that there was not going to be any hit him at the same time as Rincewind, whirring wildly down the passage, kicked him sharply in the groin."

T. Pratchett, The Color of Magic, on the practical applications of wizardy.

[> The Slayer Emergency Bag -- grifter, 03:46:28 02/26/03 Wed

Where does it say that the bag is something the WC passes along? I think Nicki wanted to pass it along. Some stuff that she found useful and thought would be of use to the next Slayer also.

Donīt know how everybody got the idea that the WC was involved with the Bag, it doesnīt say so anywhere in the episode.

[> [> I think we all assumed this because..... -- dream, 08:05:48 02/26/03 Wed

Those three guys seemed to be a proto-Watcher's Council. The shadow play seemed to be their way of keeping an emergency connection line with the Slayer open. That implies something handed down through the long line of slayers and watchers. If Nikki found it on her own, that would seem to merit a story - where was it waiting all those years, how did she find it, did she use it, and so on... Not impossible, and could be a fun backstory, though a bit unlikely this late in the game...

A thought on Dawn: -- HonorH, 21:43:46 02/24/03 Mon

I've been tearing my hair out over the fact that Dawn's "Key" origin seems to have been forgotten this season. After all, what was the point of the monks hiding it in the first place if we're not shown a positive application of its power? What's the point of Dawn's whole existence, then?

But then I thought: maybe Dawn *is* the point. Maybe the monks were wrong that the Key's energy in its raw form could be used for good. Maybe the Key's goodness is that it has been formed into the flesh of Dawn.

Say that Joyce was slated to die all along. Without Dawn to be taken care of, who knows but that Buffy, without her strongest tie to the world, might have lost the fire and died even earlier than "The Gift"? I certainly think that without Dawn, Buffy would've died in "Bargaining", or, if not then, shortly afterward. She'd have committed suicide either actively or passively. Dawn kept her here. Now, that might not be such a great thing if Giles' guess was right and Buffy's return from the grave in "Bargaining" was what opened up the Slayer line to the First's machinations, but if he's wrong? Dawn has been the key to Buffy staying alive for almost two seasons now. And we don't know what else her function will be for Buffy and the world at large before the end.

The point is, even if the Key's energy won't be used for anything big and grand before the season is out, it has already been used for good. It's become Dawn. That might be its ultimate purpose.

[> Re: A thought on Dawn: -- Vickie, 23:35:18 02/24/03 Mon

I agree. Dawn is a good person in her own right. That may be all the good she will do/needs to do.

[> Excellent point, HonorH. -- Ixchel, 03:07:35 02/25/03 Tue

[> That chimes with my thoughts -- Tchaikovsky, 03:19:08 02/25/03 Tue

This is only a personal hunch- and I wouldn't be entirely annoyed to be proved wrong- but I've always considered that 'Bargaining' hailed the end of the 'Dawn-as-Key' plotline. I think when she says to Spike: 'I'm not a Key. Or if I am, I don't open anything any more', it's a hint to the viewers that the plot-line has run its course in Season Five.

Of course, many other posters on this board believe it is an important point that will be brought back, and I respect their opinions. But I personally think that the scene in 'Potential', bracketing Dawn so closely with The Zeppo, is a genuine indication that she is being used in the arc as a 'normal' girl. I don't believe there's time to resolve a 'Dawn IS The Key' storyline now.

And the idea that Dawn's real power distilled itself into something innately human is tidy and rather lovely.


[> [> Agreed. And it acts as a counterpoint to Buffy (GiD Spoilers) -- Rahael, 06:24:47 02/25/03 Tue

Both were transformed/created by men. Buffy/the Slayer from the darkness, Dawn from the light.

hitler, stalin and the first evil (maybe some spoilers) -- 110v3w1110w, 22:12:10 02/24/03 Mon

i was thinking about how the first evil had no actual power it can't hurt anyone all it can do is convince them to follow it. Infact beyond its rather nifty party trick of being able to apear as various different people it can't do anything that you or i can't do in fact even less because it can't touch anything. this is not a new threat to the world there have always been evil people who have had the ability to get others to follow them hitler and stalin to name only two and they were just as fragile as you or me and look at the evil they did and the power they commanded if you look back at most empires and wars they were caused by 1 person whos only power is to inspire other people to do evil. another thing they have in common is that they were all defeated in the end the nazis lost the soviet empire fell because there were good people willing to fight to the last to defeat them, buffy's mistake IMO is that she is keeping it all secret like she has done before but this threat is not like the other she has faced and the only way she can defeat the first evil is by exposing it show it to the public and let the good people fight for what they think is right. also when willow was standing next to buffy when they were telling andrew he had to go to the school she looked perfect.

P.S. i guess most people on this board are liberals and may think that i have a rather simplistic view of history but being liberal you know no better and i will forgive you

[> Uh, Rome? -- not a liberal, necessarily, 23:58:41 02/24/03 Mon

[> Why are antagonistic posts characterised by a lack of punctuation? -- Helen, 01:40:32 02/25/03 Tue

I have found it is foolish to make assumptions about the beliefs, political, religious or whatever of posters on this board. The people here are complex intelligent individuals who cannot be dismissed with "being liberal you know no better."

As for the point you are making about tyranny being overthrown by mass movement - you have a good point here but IMHO it wouldn't really fit with the general modus operandi of the Scooby Gang, or the conceit of the show in general. The Slayer and her duty are a secret - she protects the ordinary people not only from the things that go bump in the night but from having to confront the idea that things that go bump in the night are real. Although currently in Buffyverse, LA, no one could really delude themselves about that anymore.

[> [> I think possibly... -- Tchaikovsky, 03:13:13 02/25/03 Tue

...that the lack of punctuation may have been an homage to Joyce's Mollly Bloom speech in 'Ulysees'. See how 110v3w1110w's message goes effortlessly from how to defeat the dictator metaphor First Evil, to how good Willow looked. It's a critique of our oppressively over-structured posting. And that liberal line? Just a red herring...;-)


[> [> [> You think? You're very generous in spirit. -- Helen, 03:18:21 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> Re: I think possibly... -- 110v3w1110w, 05:56:57 02/25/03 Tue

nah i was just drunk when i posted it and one of my socialist house mates started on about how i see history so i added that to get back at him. sorry. on another note i would usualy agree that buffy should keep the vampires and demons secret and try to protect people from it all but this threat is different from anything else they have faced and thats why i think a different way is needed this time

Is Buffy the Vampire Slayer still a "horror" show? -- cjl, 22:25:49 02/24/03 Mon

A little controversial question before the U.S. crowd sees "Storyteller" tonight.

I've been a fan of BtVS for the entire length of the show, and I'm wondering if anybody else gets the feeling that the horror elements that sustained the show for the first six years have been pushed aside as Joss leaps headlong into the metaphysical.

Sure, there is still a great of suspense and anxiety floating around Casa Summers, but the traditional staples of BtVS--vampires, demons, ghouls and the like--have been downplayed and the more abstract menace of the First Evil and untangling the Buffyverse's complex mythology have been played up. To a certain degree, Buffy is now working on an almost purely symbolic level; there are certain plot elements that just lay there on a "real-time" basis, and only make sense if you grasp their metaphorical content. (Xander's entire S7 plotline, for example.)

The only show in my memory that matches up with BtVS S7 is The Prisoner. For me, that's a compliment--35 years on, the 17 episodes of The Prisoner are still some of the richest, most resonant pieces of TV in the history of the medium--but some people thought that (in some cases) The Prisoner didn't work on the simple narrative level of spy/espionage program and there were dull stretches where symbolism was the only thing worth studying on the screen.

So, I guess this is a two-part question:

1) Has Joss dumped "horror" for metaphysics?
2) If so, is this a bad thing (i.e., does it work on screen)?

The floor is open to comments.

[> Re: Is Buffy the Vampire Slayer still a "horror" show? -- pr10n, 23:32:29 02/24/03 Mon

Quick answers:

1. Yeah, JW dumped horror. However, it's been a natural dumping process, in that Buffy's grow too, er, grand? smart? subtle? for only one genre.

2. It's not bad if he doesn't blow the "new level" he's on; it still works but lately some core fans have grumbled.

Longer answers:

1. Horror for metaphysics?

I don't think that was the original swap. There may have been some discussion regarding what was happening to "my little show" (a quote from Joss that I read recently) around _Restless/BvsD_ that we have a mythos buster here, and we are really gathering steam to tell classic herop stories with a horror look and feel. Let's say the swap was "horror for 1000Faced Hero-ness", and then ME were hell bent for metaphysics before they knew it.

2: Is this a bad thing; Does it still work?

Damnall. This is the toughie, because we don't know if it DID work, you know? Fan speculations, including the fabulous cjl spec below, seem to have a high percentage of internal conflict. We don't know what ME is planning, but there are several probable storylines and some seem to conflict with each other and with expressed core beliefs of the Buffyverse (easy example = Angel is the souled guy, au contraire, but what of Spike, blahblah).

So for me, things are still working and In Joss We Trust. I don't mind that aspects of the story have grown beyond S1 Scoobies into mythic proportion; even better to me! Bring it on!

Other viewers are pining for a simpler storyline and more puns and dating, which hey, cool too.

If Joss doesn't pull off the grand multi-satisfactasm, I'll be "disappointed" but eh, it's tv. If he DOES pull it off, well then, to quote ZachsMind from several weeks ago, that makes Joss a steely-eyed missile man, and a tv legend.

[> [> I don't think horror's been completely dropped. . . -- Finn Mac Cool, 04:38:25 02/25/03 Tue

This season there have been many moments I would find ver appropriate for a horror show. There's Gnarl eating some of Willow's skin, there's the moment in "Sleeper" when all the vampires burst out of the ground, the manifest spirits were pretty creepy, and others. Horror isn't the focus of the show anymore, but it's still there.

[> [> [> And you can't forget... -- SugarTherapy, 08:04:53 02/25/03 Tue

Conversations w/ Dead People! Freaky, freaky stuff. That episode actually has one of the scariest creatures on Buffy - the one holding Joyce down. My friends and I decided we wanted to see what it looked like so I played it on slow and paused when he came on. OMG!! That thing is *freaky*!!


[> [> [> [> There's always some scene that horrifies me. ==:O -- WickedBuffy, 10:05:12 02/25/03 Tue

[> Re: Is Buffy the Vampire Slayer still a "horror" show? -- Darby, 06:52:48 02/25/03 Tue

Was it ever? BtVS has always been a multi-genre show, to its credit and detriment, and the blend has shifted considerably. Horror became a more background element when they ran out of classic images to twist into new metaphors (although they haven't shrunk anybody yet - Dr Cyclops scared the daylights out of me when I was a kid). With just the core vamps and demons, they've shied away from the repetition. Of course, a related question is, if the opponent is a metaphysical concept, is the horror element removed or just shifted slightly?

My basic problem with this season is that the idea factory has stagnated - the basic season arc may be interesting but it's playing out in a very erratic way. I'm often getting the feeling that the individual episodes are being used to a) answer prevailing questions the fans have, and a1) actually integrate the ME-penned comics into the main show reality. Both Nikki the Slayer's possible motherhood and the 3 shaman story connect directly into Tales of the Slayer.

I just don't think that they're working to entertain themselves as much anymore (except Drew Goddard, and he's new, which may be significant). It has to have been tough on the long-timers this year, with some going off to Firefly just to have it go poof, and most realizing that some if not all of them are likely to be looking for new jobs very soon.

[> Re: Is Buffy the Vampire Slayer still a "horror" show? -- Corwin of Amber, 07:35:38 02/25/03 Tue

A better question would be: was it ever a horror show? The basic premise of the show was to use horror genre staples - vampires, demons etc as metaphors for other things. But did they ever really do the horror genre justice? The only time I ever got the same creepy vibe from BTVS as I do from the best horror (very few good horror movies these days, you have to go to the written word) was in Hush.

But the Hero with a Thousand Faces elements were there from the beginning. It sort of feels like season 7 is make up for the metaphysical stuff that should have been more dispersed throughout the series. They started to cover the demon-slayer connect way back in seasons 4-5.

[> Re: Is Buffy the Vampire Slayer still a "horror" show? -- julia, 09:42:25 02/25/03 Tue

Well, if the nightmare I had last night is any indication, horror is still on the menu at Chez Whedon. Evil Willow was chasing me through my house, and, as she came up the stairs to kill me, I forced myself to wake up. If you could only see the shadow on the wall that I saw....

[> Re: Is Buffy the Vampire Slayer still a "horror" show? -- maddog, 09:45:20 02/25/03 Tue

I've never seen this as "horror" really. It's always been more fantasy/sci fi. I guess I see horror as people running and screaming from the bad guy. In this show, no matter how scared, they fight back. They develop strategies as to how to rid themselves of the "big bad". So I see very little departure except for the amount of smaller bad guys. And that's only so they can focus on The First more. I don't see that as bad considering this is the worst thing possible.

Well, its not a FaithSpinoff -- Dochawk, 23:26:17 02/24/03 Mon

The following article was in today's Variety.com. This is as reliable a source as one gets in Hollywood.

The WB has found its young "MacGyver" in thesp Jared Padalecki, Eliza Dushku has signed on to topline Fox's untitled grad student project and helmers Paris Barclay and Andy Cadiff have signed up to direct several projects for ABC.
In addition, Frank Langella is checking into "111 Grammercy Park.

Here's the latest from the development front:

Barclay will direct the pilot for "Street Lawyer," ABC's Touchstone-produced drama based on the best-selling John Grisham novel. Skein revolves around a corporate lawyer who decides to join a legal aid clinic (run by Mario van Peebles).
Helmer, who's repped by CAA, directed "Chang Family Saves the World" last spring for ABC. His long list of credits includes "NYPD Blue," "The West Wing," "Brooklyn South," "ER" and "Fastlane."

Dushku, known for her steady gigs on "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and "Angel," has inked for the lead role in the 20th Century Fox TV/Original TV untitled project. The drama from Rob Cohen ("The Fast and the Furious") and Jon Feldman ("American Dreams"), revolves around a woman who graduates from college and discovers that she's able to save lives by changing the course of events. Cohen is set to direct.
Feldman said Dushku embodied all of the characteristics his lead character had.

"Eliza was always the prototype for the role," Feldman said. "To actually get the prototype is an amazing thing. She's incredibly smart, sexy and strong off-camera as well as on. She is in every sense of the word the lead," he said.

Dushku, who recently signed with CAA for representation, starred last year on the silver screen in "City by the Sea" and "The New Guy." She is managed by The Firm.

[> And this one pretty much eliminates SMG -- Dochawk, 23:38:20 02/24/03 Mon

She could still do appearances, but how do you do a movie lead and a tv show at the same time?

Gellar getting 'Romantic' for MGM, Gallen
Fri Feb 21, 2:32 AM ET Add Entertainment - Hollywood Reporter to My Yahoo!

By Zorianna Kit

LOS ANGELES (The Hollywood Reporter) --- "Buffy the Vampire Slayer (news - Y! TV)" star Sarah Michelle Gellar (news) is in negotiations to topline MGM's "Romantic Comedy" for director Joel Gallen.

Production is aimed to begin in August after Gellar wraps production on the sequel to Warner Bros. Pictures' "Scooby-Doo," which sees Gellar reprise her role of Daphne Blake.

"Romantic Comedy" reunites Gellar with Gallen -- Gellar co-hosted last year's MTV Movie Awards, which Gallen produced.

"Romantic" puts a spin on romantic comedies as a young man named Max tries to win the affections of the girl he loves (Gellar) by copying romantic movie moments. Gellar plays Kate, Max's best friend who works as a translator at the United Nations (news - web sites). Kate, who has been friends with Max for 15 years, is blind to the fact that he is still stuck on her.

Bob Cooper, Chuck Weinstock and Marc Platt are producing the project. Rob Green, Lance Khazei and Laura Lichstein are co-producing. Khazei, Jeff Lowell, Barra Garant and Bob Harting wrote the script.

Gellar, repped by ICM, the Firm and attorney Debbie Klein, has starred in such features as "Cruel Intentions," "Scream 2" and "I Know What You Did Last Summer."

[> [> This one will last 15 minutes -- Vickie, 00:04:04 02/25/03 Tue

or....two episodes, followed by preemptions during the baseball finals/Series. Followed by......


[> [> When exactly is SD2 shooting? 3 months for each film and one is in August. Aug=Hiatus time for TV. -- Briar Rose (indy news makes me dizzy), 01:31:01 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> Hiatus should start around the beginning of May, end in August -- Darby, 04:41:57 02/25/03 Tue

Remember, they're making them well before we see them.

[> [> [> [> Actually... -- Gyrus, 09:00:12 02/25/03 Tue

AFAIK, for the past couple of seasons, shooting for BTVS has finished in April and begun again in July. (More accurately, I think prep work starts in July and shooting in early August.)

[> [> [> [> [> Re: Actually... -- Darby, 09:16:18 02/25/03 Tue

I was factoring it for actors. They may need to stay around after final shooting for looping, so I stretched it to May.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Interesting thought (and I'm going with Darby's math, it's like my info.*L) -- Briar Rose, 17:30:27 02/25/03 Tue

I see a great possibility that SMG agreed to ONE more year if it's picked up again by UPN/WB....

Why did this come to me?

First ED signs for a show that is definitely NOT Buffy-verse nor even Whedon-verse while the talk was that they were wooing her for the spin-off. That wasn't too hard to see that it would make sense IF SMG wasn't returning. But I seriously doubt that if there was an opening for BtVS and ED was handed an untried, and un-contracted series that doesn't appear from the report to even have much Production Company stuff worked out (I mean, no title and no network deal and it's THIS close to the start of hiatus breaks and the beginning of pre-production for next season?????) it just sounds like ED had a rug pulled out from under her in some way to me.

When you look at the above on Hiatus dates (that the show shoot schedule finishes in May/June) and the average movie takes three months...
The math would go like this:

Filming for another season of Buffy is finished in May. May to June is filming SD2, then August is starting another three month stint of filming. But that still leaves time for SMG to fit in some "guest appearances" while ME sorts out where to go with the series without her.

In other words, one more season of Buffy with involvement of SMG - based on the network decision to make the final call on whether to take the deal for another season at all - or not.

(at least my take on it gives me some sliver of hope!)

[> [> Re: And this one pretty much eliminates SMG -- maddog, 09:00:14 02/25/03 Tue

Yeah, it's already been set that she really wasn't coming back anyway. So no shocker there...though I'm surprised about Eliza...unless she's bored with the slayer concept. But overall I have thing to say...and that's GREAT! With no spinoff that means they can make the finale as tragic and heart wrenching as need be. No characters to keep around. I wanna see gut wrenching...it wouldn't be Joss otherwise. I say that now knowing that I'm like everyone else. Leading up to the finale I'll say I don't want any of the main characters to die...but I said that before the Gift and not only was it an incredible episode, but I balled like a baby...which means it got to me...Joss always does. So maybe it wasn't a bad idea...who knows?

[> [> [> There's always the movies and there will likely be some sort of spinoff -- Dochawk, 09:23:18 02/25/03 Tue

If they can make a movie out of Providence they will make a movie out of BTVS. But I think that only guarantees Buffy. But, now Faith MUST die if the spinoff is going to be with a potential. And I am still guessing that Willow will be joining Angel Investigations next year.

[> [> [> [> Didn't JW say something about the absurdity of making a movie from a TV show made from a movie? -- Gyrus, 09:34:36 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> [> What I'd like to see... -- ponygirl, 09:51:22 02/25/03 Tue

Is Joss making whatever non-Buffyverse movies he wants, but using the actors from both series. Kind of like a theatre company of players, where they can take turns playing the romantic lead, comic relief, etc.

Of course I'd also really like to see AtS continue for another couple years, Ripper to happen, possibly the animated series. And oh yes, Firefly to return. Sigh...

[> [> [> [> [> [> What I would like to see is Joss get to make a movie out of his original script. . . -- Finn Mac Cool, 14:11:19 02/25/03 Tue

What happened to the script he wrote for the "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" movie was perhaps one of the worst failures of his career. I've even seen a fair number of positive reviews for "Alien: Ressurection", which Joss also regarded as a bad movie made out of his script. But I think I've only encountered one Internet review that spoke highly of the Buffy movie (not counting the people who blast Buffy over at JumpTheShark.com). To see him use his original idea with creative control of the movie would make me very happy, just because I think Joss deserves it.

On another note: does anyone know of a way to find the text for Joss's original Buffy movie script? I've heard a lot about it, but no one seems to have actually seen it.

[> [> [> [> Control Issues -- Darby, 10:47:01 02/25/03 Tue

Since Joss doesn't have final say, I wonder how difficult it will be to get substantive changes for the finale past the Kuzuis, and I think Gail Berman, and other suits at Fox.

If you owned the property, would you let Joss kill off Spike? What if James Marsters told you that he would only reprise Spike if Joss handled it (which he wouldn't under those circumstances)? Is the concept of Spike alone enough to wage war over? How about Sunnydale? How do the future of things like the on-again-off-again cartoon and Ripper impact decisions about the finale? The Kuzuis are foreign-rights experts - would they resist a finale that pisses large groups of people off, fearing they won't be able to market this last season overseas?

I just have a feeling that not only are all things not possible, there may be a short list of major alterations that Joss can make.

Taking into account that even dead characters can come back in the Buffyverse...next season on FX, Jenny Calendar, Zombie Technopagan!

[> [> [> [> [> Creative Control -- Dochawk, 11:26:39 02/25/03 Tue

Joss' cotnract for the show gives him total creative control. The Kuzui's have only a financial interest and Fox gave Joss that. I mean he killed Buffy thinking it was the end of the road in season 5. UPN has some control, but not alot and they want the dramatic ending.

As for Spike dying. Since when does public sentiment ever come into play with Joss, if it did Tara would have never died.

[> [> Re: And this one pretty much eliminates SMG -- Dariel, 15:36:32 02/25/03 Tue

Oh, well. But good for Sarah--sounds like her movie career has got some momentum beyond the Scoobie Doo movies!

[> [> [> This is the team that made Reese Witherspoon -- Dochawk, 16:26:16 02/25/03 Tue

If SMG is going to make it, she finally has landed with some people who at least have success creating careers, since this is the team responsible for Legally Blonde and I believe Election. I think she has a real shot at it.

When Angel was human -- Gomez, 07:14:43 02/25/03 Tue

This may be rather nit-picky, but at the end of season one on Angel, Wes recited the prophecy that said Angel would become human. Well, he was. In I Will Remember You. But since it's a huge anti-climax, I'm guessing that Joss & co. want us to forget about this.

Even though the Powers That Be rewrote history for Angel's convenience, it still happened. He was still human. And he gave it up. And yet I've seen no mention of this.

[> Re: When Angel was human -- SugarTherapy, 07:54:34 02/25/03 Tue

I wouldn't be surprised if Angel isn't the vampire with a soul who will become human anyway. We now have Spike to maybe fulfill the prophecy.

Or, it could have been fulfilled by Connor. The word "shanshu" meant the life cycle - living and dying. He was supposed to live until he died... but doesn't a child fulfill the life cycle?

Sugar - again, posting from school... I'm supposed to be researching Whitman. I am a bad, bad girl... oh well. :)

[> Re: When Angel was human -- ProjectRumor, 08:06:51 02/25/03 Tue

IIRC, the PTBs said that Angel becoming human at that point was a mistake. The prophesy said that the vampire with a soul would become human after a series of trials and lots of other stuff so it would take a good while (years, maybe???) to happen.

I thought that episode was to show that Angel is truly a champian as he would give up the one thing he wanted most (at that time it was Buffy) to fight evil.

ProjectRumor (I'm new so please don't kick me...)

[> [> Re: When Angel was human -- SugarTherapy, 08:30:15 02/25/03 Tue

The oracles told him that it was all good. That he was just human, no catch, no longer responsible to the powers.

And Angel has lived a LONG time.. he's seen, what, 14 wars? (Not including Vietman - they never declared it :) ) He's seen suffering, probably seen famine or whatever else he was supposed to witness.

It's entirely logical that that was his Shanshu.


[> [> [> Re: When Angel was human -- ProjectRumor, 10:16:20 02/25/03 Tue

I always saw that Angel's shanshu was his reward for fighting evil (or for fulfulling his destiny). While it's true that he has been around for a LONG time, a large amount of that time was spent as Angelus.

Even after he was souled he spend a good long time brooding (although he did get some goodness in- I don't remember exactly but there was that episode where Angel helped someone in the hotel back in the day) and not really caring about anything until Whistler came around. When he saw Buffy being called, he decided that he wants to make a difference and join the fight for good.

So he's got some good works in there. Then Angelus pops back into the picture and there's more killing and even a world ending attempt. After that, Angel's back with the soul. He's doing some good and moving on to LA. So as I see it, Angel's got a handful of years of real redeeming work for decades of destruction at the point when he became human.

I don't see that as his shanshu because at that point he hasn't earned it. That's not to say that he hasn't done alot of good because he has. But Angel's no where near done his work or fulfulled his destiny by then.

But that's just me...

ProjectRumor (sorry if it's a little disjointed... I started before lunch and then there was eatin!!)

[> [> [> [> Welcome, and good points! -- Scroll, 10:42:32 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> [> Thanks!! I think I'll hang out a bit... (nt) -- ProjectRumor, 12:25:05 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> Re: When Angel was human -- lunasea, 11:12:05 02/25/03 Tue

I always saw that Angel's shanshu was his reward for fighting evil

Somehow a reward doesn't seem to fit with the Buffyverse, nor does

I don't see that as his shanshu because at that point he hasn't earned it.

It isn't about whether he has earned it, but more that he doesn't feel like he has.

If anything I see Shanshu not as a reward, but more that his physical state will match his mental state. Whatever his destiny is has to do with his mental state, not just beating up on monsters (much like Buffy this season). The visions that the PTB have sent have been shaping him into something and not just into a primo fighter. They tend to be more than demon is attacking, go fight it. Angel tends to learn something from the chain of events that vision causes.

It isn't save a soul, get some brownie points so that you can make up for the horrors you did and save your own. He even tells Darla that they can't make up for what they did. Redemption isn't a balance sheet. It is a baptism. A new life. You don't earn it. Just find yourself worthy of it. As Catholic Mass says "Lord I am not ready to receive You, but only say the Word and I shall be healed." Are we being healed of our unworthiness or our feelings of unworthiness?

[> This instance isn't sufficient for the prophecy -- Tchaikovsky, 08:18:25 02/25/03 Tue

Bear with me...

'To Shanshu in LA' is all about the extremes of life. Everything has an end, except a sausage which has two. And this playfulness is not entirely facetious. In one sense, life has one end, death. In another, it has two- birth and death.

'To Shanshu' is all about the ideas of birth and re-birth- the end of the Season but also a kind of premiere for the new Season. There's the Darla ending- re-birth. There's Wesley coming back from the mini-death of being knocked unconscious. Cordelia faces, but survives a possible death. And Angel considering his own death.

And this is the main point of the episode, encapsulated in the word 'shanshu'. In a sense, birth and death are the same things, like a piece of string joined at both ends so that both ends become the same part of a ring. Wesley 'mistranslates' 'shanshu' as 'die'. It actually means, 'to live and die'.

For this reason, 'I Will Remember You' is an insufficient example of Angel being humanised. Because he began to live, but never became human enough to accept death. So I believe we can discount it.

Of course, there are plenty other examples of birth/death cycles. 'By his death, he brings life.' There's Buffy's death giving Dawn life in 'The Gift', and there's the ME pun I tediously bring up at every possible moment where, at the end of Season Six, the St Francis/McLachlan song finishes 'In dying we are born to eternal life', and we cut to Spike, the vampire. Not what the Assisian had in mind, one suspects.

TCH- glad to be able to respond to an Angel thread.

[> [> Great point (spoiler Calvary) -- lunasea, 09:49:56 02/25/03 Tue

For this reason, 'I Will Remember You' is an insufficient example of Angel being humanised. Because he began to live, but never became human enough to accept death. So I believe we can discount it.

Do you think he has become human enough yet or are they going to string us along another season? (or will we get a season of him being human and trying to make his way in the world fighting evil in his own way) Will the handful of episodes after he gets resouled be enough to take him the rest of the way? Would they Shanshu him on BtVS rather than AtS? If he Shanshus and then goes to BtVS, what will happen?

One thing that I have been looking for is the return of the blind kids. We haven't seen them YET, but Cordy both in Angel's fantasy and when she has a "vision" for Lilah has the same eyes. Cordy's vision in Angel's fantasy showed where to find the sword. I have written previously about how the sword symbolize Angel's soul. Will the blind seer kids be the ones that tell the Fang Gang how to find Angel's soul? Is that the role they play that has been prophecized?

If I were Wesley, I would get around to translating the whole thing and not just the part about the vampire with a soul. How do you say Slayer line in Aramaic?

Interesting language to mention out of the dozen used. Angel found his mission on Christmas in Amends. The sword was behind a wall that was inscribed in Hebrew with the symbols of the Patriarchs.

The other thing that struck me about IWRY is how Doyle and the Oracles talked about Angel being human, like it was something they expected eventually. When the prophecy showed up, it made sense. Too bad we will never know what Doyle knew.

[> [> Yeah, those Angel threads get kinda spoilery for you, huh? -- Masq, 10:35:17 02/25/03 Tue

Looking forward to more of your Odyssey, an interesting choice of terms, since Angel is something of a Greek tragic hero.

Either that, or an existentialist protagonist.

Or both.

Buffy's cracking up (spoilers for 7.2, 7.14, 7.15 and 7.16, tonight's UPN ep, Storyteller) -- Clen, 08:04:41 02/25/03 Tue

I must admit, I already had an idea of what was going to happen in storyteller because some random commercial as I was flipping around showed Buffy dangling Andrew over the Seal, talk about a spoiler. Still, that episode left a bad taste in my mouth.

In Get it Done, Buffy manipulates Spike to get him to "relish the kill" again because she needs another strong fighter, but she's no fool. Buffy knows she wants the "right, bitch" Spike from Beneath You, the one that killed the big worm. Funny thing is, that Spike horrified her at the time, the Spike of her worst fears, the Spike of Spike's worst fears. Since she's no fool, as I've wondered before, did Buffy see this coming just a few days before when she had his chip removed? I think it likely. She wants him badass AND unrestricted. Of course, this behavior can be justified, since they need all the firepower they can get, to combat the First, right? Then why did Buffy turn extra firepower down when the shamans offered it? Because the first Slayer was mystically raped, in a sense. And yet, does this mean Spike's torment is any less? It must traumatize him greatly to remember what he did, and to glorify his past behavior might drive him off the deep end. But that's okay, because they need the extra firepower, even if it costs Spike his humanity. Hey, as long as it doesn't cost Buffy her humanity, right?

Some of the characters were also offended by Buffy's behavior after coming back from the SiT burial, but that's not such a big whoop for me.

Here in Storyteller, we have more manipulation. You can try to justify her behavior: she needed to seal the Seal, she helped Andrew to come to terms with his past behavior and grow up, etc. But that's a cop-out for me. She went after his tears in the most efficient way possible. She wasn't about his redemption, she was about the Seal, just like she wasn't about Spike's redemption last week, she was about firepower. Like I said, it left a bad taste in my mouth.

Also, both eps ended somewhat abruptly. There was no remorse on Buffy's part for how she used the weaknesses of the two to achieve the goals. There was no real reconciliation between her and them afterwards. Storyteller especially has the sudden end that leaves things unresolved. Maybe there was no such scene because Buffy doesn't feel any remorse, it's on to the next battle. Lucky for her that both men are so committed to the concept of loyalty (Spike must "protect the girl" and Andrew responds to strength) that they are willing to pretend it didn't happen that way, and won't confront her about it.

This isn't the Buffy that argued to Giles in First Date that they can't keep Spike in a cage if he is to be good, this is the Buffy that just wants to win. This is the Buffy that Faith would approve of, the Slayer that thinks she's above everyone else, callous to their development. Does Buffy even remember what she's fighting for anymore?

It's interesting how this has been played out in relation to two ex-agents of the First. I think that Buffy, having realized that the First "has no ass to kick", is trying to engage it on it's own terms: the game of manipulation. Maybe Buffy sees herself as THE opposer to the First, and so must steep herself in its own tactics. Consequently, we get Buffy the Manipulator.

At the start of Storyteller, I'm sure to delighted squeals everywhere, we see Nietzsche in the bookshelf. This is funny of course not only because it ties in to the whole "it's all about power" theme, but that would be a book Andrew wouldn't be able to do anything with if he had it outside of his fantasies. He's kind of a mental midget, and a lovely example of the slave mentality, so N. wouldn't have anything for him. But I digress.

Buffy's turn for the worse ties back in to N.'s famous phrase, "He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster." I see not merely the revelation that Buffy is part-monster as her legacy, but also with the behavior to back it up.

Top 10 things NOT to say to Joss Whedon if you run into him (spoiler for CwDP) -- Gyrus, 08:35:44 02/25/03 Tue

10. "Your show is a brilliant metaphor for the struggle of the white race, my Aryan brother."

9. "You want a breath mint? 'Cause you've got some serious 'Hellmouth.'"

8. "BUFFY is cute and everything, but it doesn't have the depth of CHARMED."

7. "Firefly? That movie with Kevin Costner?"

6. "Oh my God, you killed Jonathan! You bastard!"

5. "You know, one day I looked in the TV GUIDE, and ANGEL, DARK ANGEL, and TOUCHED BY AN ANGEL were all on at the same time. Why do you people keep forcing religion down our throats?"

4. "You went to Wesleyan? Isn't that a girl's school?"

3. You: "Your show convinced my daughter that she can accomplish anything she puts her mind to."
JW: "Well, that's terrific."
You: "She's in traction from trying to do a back flip off the roof of the garage. You'll be hearing from my attorney."

2. "What was the point of moving to UPN if you're not going to have any pro wrestlers on the show?"

1. "I really, really like your show. I have every episode on tape, I own all the books, and my twin boys are named Xander and Spike. Could I cut off just a little bit of your hair?"

[> Other things not to say... -- grifter, 08:58:47 02/25/03 Tue

May I be your buttmonkey?

...wait a sec, mybe you should say that...

[> And the award for funniest post of February goes to... -- Apophis, 09:01:01 02/25/03 Tue

[> "What night is your Star Trek show on again?" -- Darby, 09:14:05 02/25/03 Tue

[> Don't forget Joss' *favorite* interview question ever: -- HonorH, 09:17:55 02/25/03 Tue

"So, Angel is a vampire?"

[> [> And "where are the aliens on Firefly?" -- ponygirl, 09:25:31 02/25/03 Tue

[> Five More Ways to Irritate Joss Whedon -- cjl, 09:57:15 02/25/03 Tue

1) Compliment him on his screenplays for Waterworld and Alien: Resurrection.

2) Tell him you like everything about "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" except the title.

3) When discussing genre TV, subtly hint that Westerns are obsolete and kind of stupid.

4) Ask him if he's ever going to create a "normal" series.

5) Keep calling him "Josh."

[> Re: Top 10 things NOT to say to Joss Whedon if you run into him (spoiler for CwDP) -- Mackenzie, 11:44:05 02/25/03 Tue

That was funnier than Dave's top 10 but you realize only ME fans will get it.

[> [> Re: Top 10 things NOT to say to Joss Whedon if you run into him (spoiler for CwDP) -- Gyrus, 11:57:55 02/25/03 Tue

That was funnier than Dave's top 10 but you realize only ME fans will get it.

Is there anyone on this board who doesn't qualify?

For those who don't get the Wesleyan joke: Wesleyan University (where both JW and I went to school, though at different times) is a small, co-ed school in the middle of Connecticut. People sometimes confuse it with Wellesley, an all-women's college in Massachusetts.

[> [> [> Re: Top 10 things NOT to say to Joss Whedon if you run into him (spoiler for CwDP) -- leslie, 12:20:33 02/25/03 Tue

Well, that's a relief, because I was wondering why he would be getting #1 in the Top Ten Most Irritating Things You Can Ask A Swarthmore Grad list. (We get confused with Skidmore--which, incidentally, has been coed for about a quarter century at this point. Swarthmore, for its part, was founded on the principle of coeducation.)

[> [> [> Hey, Gyrus - Class of ??? -- dream, 12:28:43 02/25/03 Tue

I graduated in 93. When were you there?

[> [> [> [> Re: Hey, Gyrus - Class of ??? -- Gyrus, 12:56:13 02/25/03 Tue

I was there '87-'91. Of course, it felt more like the late '60s, but you'd know about that. :)

Any other Wessies here?

[> 6 more things NOT to say to Joss Whedon at the cocktail party. -- CW, 14:14:14 02/25/03 Tue

1. Aaron Spelling is a genius.
2. Donald Sutherland is such a great actor.
3. Firefly? Yes, I saw it. That was the 80's movie with Clint Eastwood, and all the Russians, right?
4. Buffy the what? You're kidding me, right?
5. Yeah, I like Angel. He always gives Jim Rockford a hard time, doesn't he?
6. There hasn't been anything on tv the last ten years that was worth a sh*t.

[> [> Tee hee! -- Gyrus, 14:27:09 02/25/03 Tue

I especially like #3. But what's the Donald Sutherland thing about? Did he hate being in the movie or something?

[> [> [> Re: Tee hee! -- Miss Edith, 14:47:03 02/25/03 Tue

Joss disliked Donald Sutherland because apparently he was a real pain. He changed the words of his script and was really arrogant. Joss has said he was unbearble to work with but people allowed him to do what he wanted because he is such a respected actor.

[> No, no, I've got the best one! -- Finn Mac Cool, 14:24:10 02/25/03 Tue

"Why'd you make Buffy into a TV show? The movie was soooooooooooooooo much better."

Granted, everything everyone's come up with would probably irritate him, and yours are much funnier. I'd just hate to see this left out, though.

[> I've got a great one!! -- Rob, 14:40:02 02/25/03 Tue

"What happens to a toad when it's struck by lightning? The same thing that happens to everybody else!"

(Extra brownie points for anyone who can tell me where that line's from and why Joss would hate to hear that.)


[> [> X-Men movie. Joss' favorite line of dialogue. Halle Berry butchers it. -- cjl, 14:45:10 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> And to think she won an Oscar not too long after! lol -- Rob, 18:27:14 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> that's too easy Rob :) -- Ete, 14:46:04 02/25/03 Tue

x men...

Now if I *actually* met Joss, I'm gonna ask him if all all the SM lesbian subtext in Alien 4 was put there by him since Caro & Jeunet said it wasn't them.

It would be so much fun ^_^

[> [> [> Oh, well, I thought it was more of an obscure reference... -- Rob, 18:25:13 02/25/03 Tue

...but it would still piss him off to hear it yelled in his face over and over, wouldn't it? ;o)


[> [> Re: I've got a great one!! -- Arethusa, 14:48:43 02/25/03 Tue

Whedon wrote an early version of X-Men, which was totally rewritten except for two jokes: the toad one and another between Wolverine and Cyclops(?)-the d**k joke. Whedon was annoyed because the director and actress gave a totally overblown reading on the lines.

[> [> [> I'd love to see that script -- Gyrus, 15:09:20 02/25/03 Tue

Do these unused scripts (or treatments, or whatever) ever get posted anywhere?

[> Ooh, ooh! Can I play? -- Isabel, 20:12:58 02/25/03 Tue

"Can I have James Marsters' home telephone number? Please!" (Must be said shrilly. Insert various preferred cast member name to suit your taste.)

"Can I be on your tv show?"

"Boy, doesn't it feel awful to have all your series cancelled in the same year? You must feel like such a failure." (Yes, I know Angel is still around, but since UPN is not required to pick it up now, I figure the WB will dump it as soon as possible.)

Oh dear. These are more cynical than funny. Poo.

Restless and Get It Done, are they related? (Spoilers for season 7) -- Mackenzie, 11:38:32 02/25/03 Tue

I was just reading the transcript from Restless. (need more work at work :))
I noticed a lot of things in Buffy's dream that seem to relate to Get It Done. Some examples are:
When Buffy is talking to Riley and the initiative guys she makes a comment about not being a Demon, or we are not a Demon or something. Now we find out that the first slayer may have been "made" with demon parts or what-not (My satellite kept freezing during the episode so some things weren't clear.)
Next thing is when Tara says that she had no idea what she is or what is to come. I know some of that ties into Dawn and stuff in season 5 but...
Does Josh think that far ahead?
Does anyone else see the connection?

[> Does Joss plan that far ahead? You'd better believe it. -- cjl, 12:04:09 02/25/03 Tue

Joss mapped out Dawn's arrival in Buffy and Faith's shared dream in Graduation Day (end S3), and had Tara's death and Dark Willow's rampage at the end of S6 pretty much locked in by the middle of S4.

So yes, I'm guessing Joss has been compiling ideas about the end of the series from S3 onward.

You could probably get more detailed answers if you read my post "On Duality, Becoming, and The End" and the resulting thread, but maybe you don't have twenty or thirty years, so I'll try to answer your questions here, point by point:

1. "Is that a fact?"

In Buffy's "Restless" dream, Riley and The Man Who Would Be Adam confront Buffy with what she has always suspected but could never admit to herself in the daylight: Slayer power has demonic origins. This was finally confirmed in Get It Done. Also, when Buffy smears herself with mud from the innocent-looking carry-on bag, she resembles the First Slayer in warpaint. The bag itself could easily be Wood's bag from Get It Done.

2. "You have no idea what you are...what's to come."

What is Buffy? Is she still the Slayer, or did the line pass through her when she died in Prophecy Girl? If Faith is the "true" Slayer, then why does Buffy still have Slayer powers? Did the Powers that Be bring her back for another purpose? What does it mean when the Shadowmen call her the last guardian of the Hellmouth?

3. "She's part of me."

What exactly is Dawn's relationship to Buffy? Is she a part of Buffy's soul? Is she a part of the demonic energy that started the Slayer line? Is she the embodiment of the primal energy that created ALL the creatures of the Buffyverse, demons and human? (Sorry, I have no clue.)

Hmmm...I seem to have answered your questions with more questions. But that's how this series goes...

[> [> Re: Does Joss plan that far ahead? You'd better believe it. -- Mackenzie, 13:50:14 02/25/03 Tue

Yes, you answered my questions with a question. I will call you Socrates.
You bring up lots of good points. I didn't even think to see the resemblance between the mud face and the first slayer, or that it could be Wood's bag.
I think it would be hard to fight evil and demons if I knew my power came from a demon, so I understand her not wanting to admit it.
Figuring out what Dawn "is" makes my head hurt. Joss (AKA the powers that be) wouldn't have kept her around if she wasn't needed. That seems to be the style.
You also make me wonder if there is a difference between the guardian of the Hellmouth and the slayer. There could be... Hmmmm...
How many shows make you think like this? :)

[> Restless on FX Wed. at 6, for those who don't have it on tape -- luna, 16:25:47 02/25/03 Tue

One line reaction to tonight's Buffy -- Scroll, 18:04:33 02/25/03 Tue

No words. Just tears.

[> A bit longer of a reaction to tonight's Buffy! (spoilers up to and including "Storyteller") -- Rob, 18:18:38 02/25/03 Tue

That's it, Jane! Stop right now! You're too brilliant!

This mad, freewheeling episode full of metanarration galore simply cannot be done justice by a simple recap or review. I would say that I feel like my head is spinning from the genius of this episode, but then it might actually happen and fly off! Once again, Jane Espenson has struck a perfect balance of incisive character development, great plot, and hilarious humor. And then an ending shock of true, genuine sadness.

From the first shots of this episode, you could just tell this was going to be a very different, very special type of episode. I'm sure your opinion of this episode also depends on what you think of Andrew. He's my new favorite character, so I was very happy with it, and I also hope that it might have converted some people who aren't his biggest fans.

Andrew sure tells it like it is. I thought I was going to bust my gut laughing (again, not really!) when he cut away from Buffy's speech because they tend to be long and boring. Brava, Jane! Way to address an issue that a lot of fans have been speaking (and complaining) about! And I loved the little sexual tension joke re: Wood and Spike.

There was Xander's smile at being considered the Heart of the Scooby Gang. Notice also how later, when Willow and Kennedy are making out, Andrew ignores this to focus on the great job Xander had done on the windows. Andrew really appreciates him, and notices his importance where perhaps others don't.

And how perceptive was Andrew when he said that Buffy isn't fighting for her life; fighting is her life. It really hearkened back to what Kendra told her at the end of What's My Line, Part 2, that being the Slayer isn't a job, but who she is.

And then the entire Seal-of-Danthazar plot, which played like every standalone episode from the first and second episode being aired simultaneously. All the references, such as Buffy slapping the Marcie-Ross-wannabe out of invisibility, to Buffy's mention of the swim team monsters, were wonderful. And that wasn't all.

There were the wonderful cameos from The Cheese Man (yes, I know it was just a clip), Dark Willow, and, most exciting, poor little Babe! And, excluded from OMWF, the Geek Trio finally got to do a musical number! And we got the terrific Xander and Anya scenes.

I found the ending really intriguing, as well, as it continued the fairy tale theme we got at the end of "Killer in Me." The tears of the person who opened the Seal is the only thing that can shut off its power. I find that very poetic, as it meshes perfectly with the Buffyverse concept of redemption. Andrew did not have to sacrifice himself in order to be redeemed. Like Willow before him, he had to acknowledge that what he had done was wrong. He had to stop creating fantasies to justify his actions, and truly feel sorry for what he had done. Just like "Same Time, Same Place" and "Selfless," this was an episode about a former "villain" finally confronting his demons and making a commitment once and for all to fight for good, but never to forget the evil things he had done in the past. As with "First Date," (and countless episodes before it, such as "Earshot," and "Superstar"), Jane Espenson has crafted a comedy episode that by the end, reveals a great deal of pathos. I found Andrew's admission at the end of the episode that he might not survive and the way he shut off the camera just as chilling as the army of Turok-Han at the end of "Get It Done." And that's the genius of "Buffy"-the epic and mythic, and the (for lack of a better word) mundane and human can be just as affecting.

And those of you keeping track, this was the best February sweeps the show has ever had. ;o)

[> [> Hey Rob, pass the pom-poms! -- Sara, loving every minute of it!, 18:26:01 02/25/03 Tue

Just have one question - do the writers read Nietzche or this board? hmmm....

[> [> [> Writers Reading NIETZSCHE? -- frisby (the nietzschean), 20:29:23 02/25/03 Tue

Great opening, pairing Nietzsche with Shakespeare (Nietzsche claims Francis Bacon "really" read Shakespeare, actually, he says he feels it in his bones that Lord Bacon was the true creator of those marvelous works) -- and I also like Buffy's allusion to her vision as a higher or special kind of dream, one that she had while awake. Angel was shown reading Sartre once or twice. The opening sequence ends penultimately showing Buffy on the way to becoming uberbuffy ("uber-" being a take on Nietzsche's ubermensch or superman), and Andrew's chart clearly labelled the turok-han vampire as the ubervampire. If the writers continue to use Nietzschean memes they might finish the series with "laugh" because Zarathustra defeats the (old) master of the world (the spirit of gravity) with laughter. Anything (like The First) that takes everything seriously, especially itself, does not like laughter or being laughed at (unless it itself causes it or does the laughing). Buffy might just yet laugh The First to death. As for Nietzsche being "the philosophy" that Joss said is being the show -- I think that's not clear yet, although the opening for this episode (7.15) does goes a long way to opening thought to that speculation. Only 7 more episodes -- hard to believe. And -- again -- where is Giles? Will Amy the witch return yet again or is she gone for good (her and her "its all about power"). Last, I still (again) can not but think that some new form of the uberbuffy (compare 4.21) will become necessary for the finale (or again, the penulitmate episode) of the season. Is Buffy a popular cultural form of Nietzsche's superman? I can make the associations easily, but then that's often the case -- more than synchronistic correspondence is desired. But also, perhaps its because they both share a getting at the real heart of the matter today. One last thought, if those hundreds of hundreds of ubervamps all come into Sunnydale singing "we are as gods -- we are as gods" then the only thing that will be able to defeat them will be that which is higher than any god, a philosopher (Nietzsche agrees with Plato that even the gods philosophize) -- and what is the superman or the uberbuffy, but, a philosopher?

[> [> [> There ya go! -- Rob, handing a set of pom-poms over from his enormous stash, 22:40:31 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> nietzsche right next to shakespeare? gotta be the board! -- anom, 23:30:01 02/25/03 Tue

One way or the other: either they read it or we read them right!

[> [> Laughing and crying my way through this ep (spoilers) -- Scroll, 18:55:28 02/25/03 Tue

This isn't a coherent review, just all the stuff I loved.

Andrew as Alistaire Cook was just perfect. And in the back of my mind, I kept waiting for him to stick a cookie in his mouth and go, "Cookie! Num, num, num, num, num!"

Anya: "Balance is important. People don't get that." Oh, we do, we do.

Andrew has a very vivid imagination. I respect that even though I get what Buffy needed from him, and what Andrew needed for himself at the end: cold, human reality. Still, how much did I love the floating Buffy goddess with her bran cereal!

Xander the big ol' Heart. Love him, love his carpenter skills, love all the Xander/Anya interaction and resolution. Though I'll admit that I had a not-so-secret hope that X/A would actually get back together.

Okay, about the Cheese Man. I've never bought Joss' line about how the cheese doesn't mean anything. I think it means something, even if it's as simple as "the cheese stands alone." But what does it mean here, in the context of Andrew's memories?

The Bringers are human after all. And the First Evil's "control" of them can apparently be nullified. Which means every time Buffy kills a Bringer, she is killing a human. That's kind of disturbing. (Not that she hasn't been justified in killing them so far. Clearly they have superhuman strength and can't be easily subdued.)

Was this episode slashy or was this episode slashy?

I love Andrew. I've always had a fondness and sympathy for him, but this episode really made me adore him. Tom Lenk was great!

And kudos to SMG too. We may not like Buffy's speeches but, like she tells Andrew, she's making it up as she goes along. There's no script to follow, no happy ending. And I can really appreciate her "tough love" in this episode. Firm, determined, and unshakeable -- which can easily come off as cold, hard, and "generalissimo".

Andrew may have been a weak-willed idiot in the past, but he's always been wonderfully supportive and sensitive. Like Andrew complimenting Dawn on her smile that lights up the room. Which is very true. He notices Xander's quiet contributions. He tries to bolster Jonathan's fears, even when he is in terror himself. This guy has depth, people!

Also, Jane is a goddess.

[> [> [> Re: Laughing and crying my way through this ep (spoilers) -- Jenny's Love, 19:59:26 02/25/03 Tue

I know why I believe the ep was slashy, but let me hear your reasons.

[> [> [> [> I'll start the list! ("Storyteller" spoilers) -- Rob, 20:03:54 02/25/03 Tue

The line about Spike and Wood's sexual tension.

The possible implication regarding Andrew and Jonathan sharing a bed.

Andrew's (colored) memories of Warren telling him how attractive he is.

Andrew's implied crush on Xander.

The continued Dawn/Andrew ship.

Why, even Anya and him seemed to have some sexual tension in that hallway!

Need I go on? ;o)


[> [> [> [> [> Re: I'll start the list! ("Storyteller" spoilers) -- Scroll, 20:13:53 02/25/03 Tue

While I can't technically count the het moments as slash, I agree with all the rest as very slashy.

Not to mention the canon slash of Willow/Kennedy macking on the couch!

But what I really liked was Andrew calling Jonathan "a little cutie". That just seems like such an Andrew thing to say. And so true! Jonathan is a little cutie.

Also, loved Andrew's innocent adoration of Xander. To be fair, this pairing didn't give off slashy vibes so much as little bro looking up to a big bro vibes. Still, admiration of the older guy is Andrew's trademark.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I'll start the list! ("Storyteller" spoilers) -- Rob, 20:17:25 02/25/03 Tue

I just counted the het moments, because they were non-canon pairings. But I guess that's stretching a little.

And I agree, the Xander/Andrew stuff was very innocent, but could still be interpreted as being slashy-in-spirit (if that makes sense!).


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Oooh! But when Andrew replays the X/A scene (spoilers) -- Scroll, 20:55:08 02/25/03 Tue

I take back my last comment that Andrew's admiration of Xander is strictly platonic. I was wrong! When Andrew plays back the video tape of Xander and Anya's conversation, he takes on Anya's lines and speaks as the woman to Xander's man. So very, very slashy ; )

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> He could have been thinking about Jonathan or Warren though.... -- Briar Rose, 16:31:30 02/26/03 Wed

When i watched that, I was thinking about sometimes when i see a scene in a movie and it touches me as being something I WISH I would have had the creativity to say to my lover.*S*

Andrew could have been thinking about Warren or Jonathan and not Xander while saying Anya's lines.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I'll start the list! ("Storyteller" spoilers) -- Artemis, 20:53:53 02/25/03 Tue

Re: Andrews innocent adoration of Xander and getting more of a "big bro" vibe, I might agree except for the fact that Andrew is mouthing Anyas'part when he is looking back at the tape of Xander and Anya together.

Oh yeah, add me to the list of those who loved this episode.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Ah, you got there before me! -- Scroll, 20:57:19 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> [> [> Andrew's "little brother" complex -- Gyrus, 08:00:42 02/26/03 Wed

Also, loved Andrew's innocent adoration of Xander. To be fair, this pairing didn't give off slashy vibes so much as little bro looking up to a big bro vibes. Still, admiration of the older guy is Andrew's trademark.

Given that Andrew's real big brother was mass-murdering Tucker (and God knows what sort of father they had), Andrew has probably been in need of a male role model for a long time. Warren couldn't cut it, Spike will barely talk to Andrew (except when flattered), and Giles is rarely around -- that leaves Xander as the leading candidate.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Nah, it's a crush -- luna, 17:42:29 02/26/03 Wed

I've been thinking that Andrew was looking at Xander more often than at the others, and I definitely DON'T see anything going on with Andrew and any of the women. I don't expect Xander to reciprocate, though. Repeating an observation I made earlier--last year in Entropy, Andrew was commenting on Spike's bod, not Anya's, when the trio watched them via the hidden camera.

[> [> [> [> [> Re: I'll start the list! ("Storyteller" spoilers) -- Jenny's Love, 20:55:44 02/25/03 Tue

Just wanted to hear some of what others thought. :)!!! What I noticed most was Andrew's "heart" comment to Xander AND Xander's "aww shucks" smile in return, Xander's complimenting of Andrew's creativity regarding "Buffy, the Slayer Who Knew No Fear" and Andrew's "you're sweet" return, Andrew mouthing along to X and Anya's conversation, and of course, A and Jonathon sharing a bed and their disposition as A complimented J on his evilness and J thanking him ('awww, thanks honey. you were evil too. let's get married already')! As a gay viewer, I ate it all up. hehe

[> [> [> [> [> Rob, I love you, but what? -- HonorH, 00:17:33 02/26/03 Wed

The continued Dawn/Andrew ship.

Okay, dearest, how does this count as a slashy moment?

[> [> [> [> [> [> It's not, he knows, see his reply to me above : ) -- Scroll, 03:14:59 02/26/03 Wed

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: It's not, he knows, see his reply to me above : ) -- Rob, 07:41:54 02/26/03 Wed

Yeah, I was extending the definition a little too far because D/A is an eccentric ship, in a manner of speaking.


[> [> [> Re: Buffy in this ep ("Storyteller" and GiD spoilers) -- Rob, 20:01:09 02/25/03 Tue

"And kudos to SMG too. We may not like Buffy's speeches but, like she tells Andrew, she's making it up as she goes along. There's no script to follow, no happy ending. And I can really appreciate her "tough love" in this episode. Firm, determined, and unshakeable -- which can easily come off as cold, hard, and "generalissimo"."

Exactly! And Buffy, by the end, I thought, came off as very sympathetic in the way she felt she had to diminish herself, in a way. She doesn't want all the focus on her, she doesn't want Andrew to keep going on and on about what a wonderful, mythic hero she is. I think this is because she doesn't want to become an abstract legend (something she fought by turning down the demon power last week), perhaps she also sees that as making her less human. She cannot see herself fighting and succeeding if this boy continues to be in awe of her. You could really sense her pain and fear at the huge evil that is about to occur. I have never felt this palpable sense of dread in the series before. Season 7 is lighter than the others, my tuchas! ;o)

Again, just gotta say also what a beautiful metaphor it was that while blood, death, destruction was the key to opening the Seal, the tears of the repentant sinner is what closes it. Sheer brilliance.


P.S. Once again, Jane rocks!

[> [> [> Re: Bringers (spoilers for Storyteller) -- Robert, 20:41:01 02/25/03 Tue

>>> Which means every time Buffy kills a Bringer, she is killing a human. That's kind of disturbing. (Not that she hasn't been justified in killing them so far. Clearly they have superhuman strength and can't be easily subdued.)

If we can see this situation as war, then Buffy killing the Bringers is less disturbing and more sad. Assuming that the Bringers were "possessed" into serving the First Evil, then their deaths represent an unfortunate "colateral damage". If the Bringers are serving the First Evil by their own choice, then I don't think much sympathy should be wasted on them.

If this is a war for the survival of humanity (and Buffy said just about as much in this episode), then Buffy must be willing to commit to winning the battle. How much should she be willing to commit? By my calculus, she should be willing to commit just about anything necessary to preserve humanity from destruction by the First Evil. Remember that this is not a war Buffy chose to fight. All she can do is react and defend humanity against the onslaught.

[> [> [> [> Re: Bringers (spoilers for Storyteller) -- Rob, 20:50:01 02/25/03 Tue

Also, assumably, due to their strength and power, the Bringers are demonically-enhanced humans or humans turned into demons. Vengeance demons started out as humans, too. Doesn't make them any less of demons after the change. Therefore, IMO, Buffy has every right to kill them, although it is sad if these people were possessed against their wills. But whether it was their will or not, they still did become evil and demonic.


[> [> [> [> [> Kinda like, what're those? Oh, yeah: vampires! -- HonorH, 00:02:38 02/26/03 Wed

[> [> [> [> I agree totally, but.... (spoilers Storyteller + First Date) -- Shiraz, 07:41:48 02/26/03 Wed

How does this jive with Buffy's "You can't beat evil by committing evil acts" line from First Date?

[> [> [> [> [> Ooops! Forgot My Pratchett quote -- Shiraz, 08:14:44 02/26/03 Wed

"That's what's so stupid about the whole magic thing, you know. You spend twenty years learning the spell that makes nude virgins appear in your bedroom, and then you're so poisoned by quicksilver fumes and half-blind from reading old grimoires that you can't remember what happens next."

Terry Pratchett, "The Color of Magic"
(perhaps a lesson here for Giles/Jonathan)

[> [> [> [> [> Re: I agree totally, but.... (spoilers Storyteller + First Date) -- Rob, 08:18:36 02/26/03 Wed

See HonorH's response above. Vampires also used to be human but are now evil and must be killed by the Slayer when they are attacking her. Same thing with the Bringers. Most vamps didn't willingly become vamps to begin with, either.


[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I agree totally, but.... (spoilers Storyteller + First Date) -- Shiraz, 10:33:35 02/26/03 Wed

I guess this all depends then, on what happened to those students who became Bringers.

If, once the hellmouth was re-sealed, those (brung) students reverted to their old morally ambiguous selves like all the other Sunnydale students, then the're essentially just humans under a spell, and deserving of help.

On the other hand if, like vamps and Vengance Demons, the students were permanently transformed into demons, and remain as such for the rest of their existence then the usual slayer rules of engagement apply.

But here's another 'what if' I just thought of: What if bringers are humans who voluntarily chose to serve the First, and remain more or less human afterward? In this scenario the bringers are essentially just evil people who are siding with the great evil for personal reasons. We've seen this before with human demon worshippers in "Help" and "Reptile Boy" and in both of those cases the people involved got off with nothing more than bruises and the loss of the benefits provided by their demon patrons.

Just muddying the waters a little.


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I agree totally, but.... (spoilers Storyteller + First Date) -- Gyrus, 13:01:56 02/26/03 Wed

Even if Bringers are humans with souls, their decision to pluck out their eyes in the name of their new evil master suggests that they intend to be on the side of evil permanently. It's possible that they will change their minds in the future, of course, but at the very least, killing them in immediate self-defense situations seems more than justified.

[> [> [> [> [> Re: I agree totally, but.... (spoilers Storyteller + First Date) -- Robert, 09:18:25 02/26/03 Wed

>>> How does this jive with Buffy's "You can't beat evil by committing evil acts" line from First Date?

Let us look at the context of Buffy's saying this. Giles was arguing that Spike should be kept muzzled by the chip, because Spike couldn't be trusted. The reality was that Giles didn't trust Spike, whereas Buffy did. Spike is committed to working for the side of humanity (or at least the side of Buffy).

Buffy knows that Spike can be a good man, but whether he is good or not is irrelevant if he has the chip. As an analogy, let us suppose I just left college to live by myself, and I have no credit rating so I can't obtain any credit. In order to build a record of good credit, I obtain a loan, co-signed by my parents. Guess what? The loan was worthless for my credit rating, because the lending institution considered the co-signature to be a crutch. This, by the way, is a true story from when I first graduated in 1982. Even worse, the stupid loan carried a 21.5% interest rate. I was an idiot!

Back to the situation at hand. Buffy was to the point where she felt it was evil to keep stringing Spike along. She should either trust him (and thus make him truly a member of the gang) or she should kill him (and be done with it). The vampires, demons, and bringers (who are actively attempting to kill Buffy, her family, her friends, the rest of humanity) are fair game. They can surrender to Buffy if they don't was to be killed. So far, we haven't seen any Bringers surrender to Buffy. I thought Buffy was quite restrained from killing them in last night's episode.

This brings us back to consequences. If the demons and vampires are unhappy with Buffy's response, they can stop killing people.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I agree totally, but.... (spoilers Storyteller + First Date) -- Shiraz, 11:00:55 02/26/03 Wed

O.K. then we come to the question: Are the bringer's human? If yes, even if they are completly destructive, Buffy's explicitly stated code of conduct (Villians) does not allow her to kill them.

If not, well then they're fair game.


Twoflower: "But what do you want to sacrifice us for? You hardly know us!"
Garhartra: "That's rather the point, isn't it? It's not very good manners to sacrifice a friend."

Terry Prattchett, The Color of Magic

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I agree totally, but.... (spoilers Storyteller + First Date) -- Rob, 13:17:31 02/26/03 Wed

But, as I said before, even if they are of human origin, they are not humans while they are under the spell/possession or whatever. When they are, they have demonic power and strength. Buffy when she has to, kills humans, or causes the death of humans, who have supernatural strength (Gwendolyn Post, the hyena guy in "The Pack" are two examples). The fact that they began as human doesn' t matter. Vampires and vengeance demons were originally human. Anya, even though she could turn back into a human if she wanted to, was still fair game for Buffy to kill in "Selfless."


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Absolutely -- KdS, 14:25:09 02/26/03 Wed

Despite the strength of the "Don't kill humans" prohibition, Buffy has never had a problem with killing humans who were actively trying to kill her or her friends in self-defense, especially if they had some demonic advantage (or laser-sighted firearms). She certainly didn't have a problem with killing Knights of Byzantium (who were probably the closest approximation to Bringers she's previously faced, and considerably more morally ambiguous).

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Technically... (S5 spoilers) -- Gyrus, 14:27:31 02/26/03 Wed

I'm not sure if we've ever seen Buffy kill a human outright. She tried to rescue the zookeeper before he fell into the hyena pit, and while she did chop off Post's arm, it was the lightning that killed the ex-Watcher.

I do vaguely recall seeing Buffy take out one or two of the Knights of Byzantium during the fight on top of the RV, but I don't remember the details -- she may not have inflicted fatal harm.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: code of conduct -- Robert, 16:54:00 02/26/03 Wed

>>> If yes, even if they are completly destructive, Buffy's explicitly stated code of conduct (Villians) does not allow her to kill them.

That situation does not apply to this scenario. Buffy told Xander and Dawn that it was wrong for Willow (and ulitmately self-destructive) to hunt down and slaughter Warren out of vengeance. This I would agree with. The situation here is that the Bringers are actively killing (or attempting to kill) the potential slayers and anyone who gets in their way. Buffy can (and should) use whatever force is necessary to prevent them from carrying out there mission. There is a world of difference between naked vengeance and protecting the innocent.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Try this scenario! -- Robert, 17:03:25 02/26/03 Wed

>>> Are the bringer's human? If yes, even if they are completly destructive, Buffy's explicitly stated code of conduct (Villians) does not allow her to kill them.

Imagine a man is suffering severe schizophrenia and the police know it. Imagine farther that the man has gotten hold of an automatic weapon and is actively shooting people in a shopping mall. Do the police have the moral right to stop the man with deadly force, even if they know that he is not morally responsible for his actions? Let us imagine that the police know they can stop the man short of killing him, but that will mean probable additional deaths of innocents. What option do the police of the moral obligation to take?

[> [> Re: Rob, convert here. I have totally come to love Andrew :) -- curious, 19:09:10 02/25/03 Tue

I'd even go as far as saying he's my new 2nd (tied) favorite character with Dawnie. I love Dawnie. However, my affections remains steadfast. Buffy will always be my favorite;)

I agree with alot of what you said. I love Jane. She's currently my favorite writer. Joss who? A sensitive and entertaining episode. Loved it. I'm off to watch it again.

[> [> Re: A bit longer of a reaction to tonight's Buffy! (spoilers up to and including "Storyteller") -- Cheryl, 19:23:42 02/25/03 Tue

He's my new favorite character, so I was very happy with it, and I also hope that it might have converted some people who aren't his biggest fans.

Add me to the convert list, Rob. I admit I was getting pretty sick of Andrew a few episodes back, but last week and this week changed everything.

Awesome, episode - I think this will be one of my top 20 (I can't limit it to 10). And JE has been my favorite writer for a long time so this just cements it.

There was so much packed into this one. And I don't remember laughing out loud so much with any other episode - and then being near tears a couple of times, too. So much homage to Buffy history and the fans. To quote Andrew, "Kudos."

I'm going to Seattle this weekend to see JM at the Creation con and if I have the opportunity, I might just have to ask him about this episode (if someone doesn't beat me to it).

[> [> [> Ooo, am I jealous of you! -- Anneth, 23:54:30 02/25/03 Tue

"I'm going to Seattle this weekend to see JM at the Creation con and if I have the opportunity, I might just have to ask him about this episode (if someone doesn't beat me to it)."

if you ask, he'll kiss you. (giggle.) (insert foot-shuffling.) Anyway, please be sure to share his response!

Anneth, still very pleased with her recent JM experience.

[> [> Re: Andrew's redemption (spoilers for "Storyteller") -- Robert, 20:30:42 02/25/03 Tue

First, I want to thank you Rob for a very nice review. Nearly every week this season has brought me a new favorite episode.

>>> Andrew did not have to sacrifice himself in order to be redeemed.

I took a different message from this scene, and I found it to be very Lutheran. Buffy asked Andrew if his blood and his death would redeem him, to which he tearfully answer no. The message is that Andrew cannot redeem himself. None of us can redeem ourselves. If we get any redemption, it is from God (or whatever passes for God in Joss' mind).

>>> Like Willow before him, he had to acknowledge that what he had done was wrong. He had to stop creating fantasies to justify his actions, and truly feel sorry for what he had done. Just like ?Same Time, Same Place? and ?Selfless,? this was an episode about a former ?villain? finally confronting his demons and making a commitment once and for all to fight for good, but never to forget the evil things he had done in the past.

And I agree with this. Once we have reached the conclusion that we cannot redeem (or save) ourselves, all that is left is to admit (or confess) to our sins, ask for forgiveness, and then move on to do good works.

[> [> [> Re: Andrew's redemption (spoilers for "Storyteller", Angels s2) -- grifter, 04:21:47 02/26/03 Wed

Itīs very much the same conclusion Angel came to in season 2 (Judgement and Epiphany): that he cannot redeem himself; that he will not do good to achieve redemption but just for the sake of doing good.

Btw, I remember reading somewhere that David Greenwalt left Angel because of this...will be interesting to see how Miracles plays out...

Oh, and also: Sign me in for the "Storyteller"-Pep Squad!

"In my plan, we are belt-less!"

[> [> [> [> Re: Greenwalt -- Robert, 07:47:46 02/26/03 Wed

>>> Btw, I remember reading somewhere that David Greenwalt left Angel because of this...

Now this is interesting! What precisely did you hear about this? I'm interested to know.

>>> ... will be interesting to see how Miracles plays out...

My suspicions are that the show is already dead, but that ABC hasn't yet figured it out. They show just 3 episodes and then unannounced they preempt it for 3 weeks. It doesn't look good.

[> [> [> [> [> Re: Greenwalt -- grifter, 10:09:37 02/26/03 Wed

Well, I really donīt remember where I read it, but I think Greenwalt left because he wanted to take Angel in a different direction then Joss. Having seen Miracles this could very well have been the case I imagine; I am merely speculating though. Sorry if I sounded to sure of myself.

Well, hereīs hoping. I really enjoyed episodes 1 and 3 (which was written and directed by Greenwalt, btw)

[> [> That was just . . . neat! -- tomfool, 21:02:35 02/25/03 Tue

[> [> Re: A bit longer of a reaction to tonight's Buffy! (spoilers up to and including "Storyteller") -- maddog, 07:36:09 02/26/03 Wed

I definitely agree...one of the best sweeps...if you add in" Bring on the night" to them they're my favorite shows of the season. Andrew summed up my thoughts best last night. I know it's going to happpen, I'm trying to make myself ready, but in the end, some of the characters we all love are goin to be lost in this battle. And it's going to be a very tough episode to handle. I suppose we couid all just hope they leave the core of th scoobies alive. But I digress...Andrew's character was an excellent blend of funny, annoying, and sincere. I like his intro's to everyone too. It was kinda like the montage the WB put up before The Gift. A mini reminder of who's who. He's so funny in the process too...admiting the relationship with WilloW and Kennedy but when having a chanc to tape them making out he chooses to move above them and admire Xander's workmanship on the windows. Overall a very touching yet funny episode that will lead us into the final stretch...because when it comes down to it Andrew's feelings are shared by all of them. Even Buffy isn't sure she'll pull through this. One last retrospective before all the fun begins. At least I hope it's fun.

[> [> Marvelous indeed! (slight spoilers for "Storyteller") -- Random, 16:01:33 02/26/03 Wed

At the very very beginning of "Storyteller", I felt a niggling worry that they were indeed about to jump the shark big time. The self-referential "character steps out of show to talk directly to viewer" is an almost inevitable sign of decay and desuetude. So I released a big sigh of relief (and felt terribly guilty for doubting ME -- seriously, I'm not kidding about the guilt) when the scene shifted to the bathroom.
I plan to ask Espenson to marry me (would that be too creepy? what do ya'll think?) Between FD and this ep, she has earned her place in the halls of Great Buffy Writers and Flowing Mead. These eps (especially FD) remind me of the glory days of the first three seasons. Just the right mix of character development, humor, pathos and that certain indefinable something that has made BtVS a show for the ages and an icon capable of tearing me away from the written word and commenting on a TV show as avidly as I once dissected epistemology in Langland's Middle English work, Piers Plowman. It's been a pretty damned good month, let me tell ya. This is the show I fell in mad love with. Onwards and upwards. Since we're going out, let's go out in style...and if the last two eps are anything to go by, we're well on our way to that goal.

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