July 2002 posts

Previous July 2002  

More July 2002

Buffyless Buffy - Idle Speculation. (Plus - Emmys tomorrow!) -- Darby, 07:49:55 07/17/02 Wed

It's looking more and more like SMG will not be around for S8 of BtVS - her contract only goes through S7, she has said some things intimating that she wouldn't be back, her movie career is on the upswing (hey, you know it was the property, I know it was the property, but that isn't how things seem to work in Hollywood), etc., etc. There is also one compelling piece of evidence, or at least an assertion:

Sarah Michelle Gellar can't come back, or there won't be a season 8.

Think about it: UPN grossly overpaid for Buffy, and is reaping peripheral benefits for it, but they won't make the same deal a second time, it'd make them look like chumps - the side benefits mostly accrued from the original deal, renewal on the same basis will look like tossing money down a hole. No one else will pay close to what ME is making now on the show, but how can they take a cut and continue? They can take a cut if the show is no longer the original show, which it won't be without SMG. With her gone, there is a way to work out less money and keep the franchise, which will be important to UPN.

So what will Buffy the Vampire Slayer be without Buffy? Gotta figure the name'll be different - maybe they'll go for something respectable this time. Does anyone think Michelle Trachtenberg can carry a show? Should the focus shift to Faith? A totally new Slayer (coincidentally named Buffy)? Willow? -Kind of torpedoed that possibility, didn't they?

And on another topic, the Emmy nominations get announced tomorrow morning, so confirm your fawn orders for tonight's sacrifices, and sharpen those knives!

[> FAWN orders? is that a Faith/Dawn Ship? -- neaux(whoisobviouslykidding), 08:42:01 07/17/02 Wed

[> Re: Buffyless Buffy - Idle Speculation. (Plus - Emmys tomorrow!) -- darrenK, 09:15:09 07/17/02 Wed

All good points.

Dawn the Key is a lousy title. Dawn the Vampire Slayer is redundant.

I bet they'll go with something like Slayer . I guess Smallville put Sunnydale out of the question.


[> [> Re: Buffyless Buffy - Idle Speculation. (Plus - Emmys tomorrow!) -- darrenK, 09:17:18 07/17/02 Wed

Just thought of more...

The Vampire Slayers
The Slayer Gang
The Joss Whedon Variety Hour


[> [> [> How about "Hellmouth"? -- Vickie, 10:13:10 07/17/02 Wed

Or is that too rough a title for eight in the evening?

[> [> [> Re: Buffyless Buffy - Idle Speculation. (Plus - Emmys tomorrow!) -- Purple Tulip, 10:16:10 07/17/02 Wed

"The Vampire Slayers" is actually a title that makes perfect sense if they continue the show without SMG. I mean, Dawn isn't a slayer (at least not that we know of), and if the show were to shift from Buffy and her friends fighting evil, to Dawn and her new friends, then there would be no one particular slayer that the show would be focused on. Dawn, of course, would be the star, but she and her friends would all take over the job of slaying; thus, "The Vampire Slayers".

Of course I also like the simplicity of "Slayer", but wasn't that the name of an '80's metal band? And then of course we WOULD need a new slayer, so Dawn of Faith would most likely have to be the star of that one, or a new slayer altogether, and then would it really even be a spin-off? I don't know....

[> [> [> [> one problem w/that -- anom, 11:03:36 07/17/02 Wed

"'The Vampire Slayers' is actually a title that makes perfect sense if they continue the show without SMG....Dawn, of course, would be the star, but she and her friends would all take over the job of slaying; thus, 'The Vampire Slayers.'"

It's been made clear on the show that "The Slayer" has a specific meaning. Dawn & friends might slay vampires, but they're not the ones Chosen to do it. So I don't think it would work to call them "the vampire slayers" (even w/a lower-case "s"), especially as the title of the show.

On the other hand, "The Scoobies" would just be lame....

[> [> [> [> Re: Buffyless Buffy - Idle Speculation. (Plus - Emmys tomorrow!) -- leslie, 11:05:31 07/17/02 Wed

This isn't something that I am particularly chomping at the bit to see, but given that there has been an emphasis all along on the tendency of Slayers to die young, it seems to me that there is a certain amount of meat in the idea of continuing the story past Buffy's (final) death, just to explore the repercussions. How does having known her affect the lives of Xander, Willow, Spike? How do they carry on without her? How does Dawn cope? Not just in the sense of experiencing grief, but in the long run.

[> [> [> [> [> But how do you have Buffyless Dawn? That is the problem. -- John Burwood, 11:29:55 07/17/02 Wed

Impossible to have BTVS without Buffy - true. But also rather hard to have Dawn show without Buffy - unless you fast forward a couple of years to Dawn being 18 & going away to college away from Sunnydale.
To have Dawn the Vampire Slayer/Key/whatever set in Sunnydale you would first have to eliminate Buffy from Sunnydale - not necessarily totally if SMG is open to the odd guest spot.
How? I have come up with 4 options.
!) Kill Buffy for good. Only likely if SMG absolutely insists never again is my guess.
2) Put Buffy in a long coma - like Faith but for how long? Doubtful.
3) Put Buffy in prison as she nearly was in Dead Things - possible but hope not.
4) Put her in a job taking her away from Sunnydale, but what would make her leave Dawn unless forced? Unless she is forced to go work for Riley's Black Ops as an alternative to prison - as per La Femme Nikita? What short of blackmail could make her leave Dawn?
Tis a puzzlement. Any better suggestions?

[> [> [> [> [> [> Sorry - minor spoilers for eps 6.13 & 6.15 in above! -- John Burwood, 12:45:21 07/17/02 Wed

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: But how do you have Buffyless Dawn? That is the problem. -- Purple Tulip, 13:03:01 07/17/02 Wed

You have a point---how can we have Dawn but no Buffy? Well, if Buffy does in fact die for good this time at the end of season 7, and they continue with just Dawn, then Dawn will have to go stay with someone who could act as her guardian until she's 18. She could move to England to be with Giles and then she could be on "Ripper" if that ever gets off the ground. Or, if Xander, Willow and even Anya are sticking around, she could continue to be in Sunnydale and have her own spin-off there. OR, she could go live with her father in LA and become part of Angel the Series, possibly becoming the love interest for Angel's son (they're about the same age, right? I don't watch the show). Then we would have a tragic and engulfing love story a la Buffy and Angel the next generation.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Trying to imagine Dawn and Connor together... -- Masq, 16:11:39 07/17/02 Wed

Not really getting a mental pic here. Anyone?

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Trying to imagine Dawn and Connor together... - - Arethusa, 16:32:17 07/17/02 Wed

Both have parental issues. Both are lethal. (Connor- knives; Dawn-whines). Both are very pretty. Both get into trouble every time they leave the house.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Trying to imagine Dawn and Connor together... - - Wizardman, 21:33:06 07/17/02 Wed

It depends on how it's played. Big sis and daddy never really worked out, but neither of those two have their problems. Not that Dawn or Connor are issue-free, oh no, but they have different problems than their forebears. If they got together (note- will probably never happen) they will either end up more or less permanently together, or we will have a repeat of S3 Buffy's Wesley & Cordelia- lots of attraction, but no real chemistry. I think that they'd work out though- they both have had really screwed up lives, so they can probably relate to each other in ways that they couldn't relate to their parental figures. Also, Dawn could serve to lighten Connor up, and Connor could show Dawn that yet, someone actually HAS had it worse than she (which will do her a world of good- don't get me wrong- I like her very much, but she does rather whine a lot).

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> this goes into a .sig file -- skeeve, 08:13:21 07/19/02 Fri

Absent objection, this goes into a .sig file.
Is Arethusa the desired attribution?

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Sure. But what's a .sig file? -- Arethusa, 11:27:23 07/19/02 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Sure. But what's a .sig file? -- skeeve, 14:10:30 07/19/02 Fri

It's the witty stuff or other stuff that gets appended to e- mail.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Cool. I always wanted to be a wit. -- Arethusa, 18:34:26 07/19/02 Fri

Some days I only reach the half-wit stage!

[> [> [> [> Slayer Blood (Spoilers S5 & S6) -- meritaten, 22:45:30 07/17/02 Wed

Here is something I've been wondering about for a while....

Dawn was created out of Buffy. Blood is the key to pretty much everything in Buffyverse. Dawn and Buffy share the same blood, thanks to the monks. That is why Buffy was able to die in her place to close the interdimensonal portal. So, couldn't Dawn be a slayer also? (Buffy didn't know about her own calling until Merrick found her.) Dawn did pretty well for herself once she was allowed to fight.

[> [> [> [> [> Only if slaying is literally in the blood. -- Arethusa, 06:57:01 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> [> Sunnydale RFD -- Cactus Watcher, 21:37:53 07/17/02 Wed

As someone who watched the 'Andy Griffith' show try to soldier on without Andy Griffith, 'All in the Family' try make it without the family, etc, etc, I can say with some certainity that any version of BTVS without SMG is doomed to mediocrity. It isn't just her presence or absence that's important. Joss' contribution to the show is already pretty vague, beyond the eps he may write. I think many of us have our breath held about 'Angel' this coming year. We all knew Buffy was mortal when it all started. Let's have a great 7th season and let BTVS go out a winner.

[> [> [> [> Re: Sunnydale RFD -- Wizardman, 21:47:37 07/17/02 Wed

YES! I don't want Buffy without SMG. Star Trek the Next Generation lasted seven seasons, and as the last episode said, "All good things must come to an end." When Buffy ends, I want it to be with a bang, but most of all, I want it to end well: a little untimely, perhaps, but while still at the top of its game. Not that I'm objecting if SMG signs for S8, though...

[> [> [> [> [> Re: Sunnydale RFD -- meritaten, 22:54:03 07/17/02 Wed

I agree. Our best hope is for SMG to return. If not, it is probably best for the show to end on ahigh note.

However, I admit I'd probably keep watching, hoping the show could revive its former glory.

[> w/Buffy wo/SMG -- skeeve, 09:27:08 07/19/02 Fri

Considering Buffy's death rate, she won't have to work at Doublemeat Palace for very long. On her last day at DP, coincidentally the last episode of S7, Buffy doesn't go to heaven or hell, she stays on earth. The last thing we see is Willow staring at Buffy in an Orb of Thessela and muttering something to the effect that she hadn't expected it to happen so soon.

Willow has been spellcasting again (duh). In S8, we discover that Willow has learned at least a little about permission. Willow tells Buffy that she will cancel the spell if Buffy wants her to. Willow offers to go body*- shopping for her, but reminds her that since most live ones are already occupied, she would probably have to share. Buffy knows just where to look: the WC.

Another way is for Buffy to become a title a la Caesar. Without Willow, the Scoobies aren't all that good at vampire slaying. Even with Willow, half of them were getting away. Admittedly this was because their strategy sucked, but since Willow isn't available anymore, that doesn't really matter. Somehow they need another slayer, whether it's Faith or someone else.

Buffy Summers has a legacy, the notions that a slayer can have friends, that a slayer can have assistants, and that the two can overlap. Future slayers might well be titled Buffy. Of course, the original Scoobie gang might want to reserve the title for a slayer who's come back from the dead twice, or saved the world four times. In season 11, whenever the current slayer refers to herself as "the Buffy", someone reminds her that she has only saved the world twice, and hasn't come back from the dead at all.

If the title is broad enough and the death rate high enough, the continuation could be called Buffys, the Vampire Slayers.

* human bodies. This will not be my slayer, the Giles- mobile.

Find the pun, B. -- Arethusa, 11:02:51 07/17/02 Wed

With all the sex and lies on our BtVS videotapes lately, we could use some summer punnin'. Usually when I want plays on words, I just stand on a book and play, but I'm willing to start the action here. Come on, take the punning and run.

[> "And we'll have pun, pun, pun...." ;o) -- Wisewoman, 11:12:33 07/17/02 Wed

Not really fast enough to pun around with you guys (especially anom!) but I'm looking forward to reading the thread!

[> Dare I ask, "what's at stake?" -- neaux, 11:48:15 07/17/02 Wed

[> [> Thank you, neaux! -- Arethusa, 12:05:11 07/17/02 Wed

You've given me an excuse to ask a question that dropped like a plot anvil last time I posted it.

If I took a Doublemeat burger, which is mostly cellulose, let's say from sawdust, and dropped it from a great height onto a vampire's heart, could I stake (if not steak) the vampire, thereby literally killing him with fast food?

[> [> [> That's a DMP skorcher.. We'll all be playing Ketchup after that. =O -- neaux, 12:14:48 07/17/02 Wed

[> [> [> [> I was afraid you'd say Lettuce alone. -- Arethusa, 12:30:47 07/17/02 Wed

[> [> [> [> [> My op-onion is... -- Dead Soul, 13:10:51 07/17/02 Wed

Don't really have one, just wanted to say op-onion

Dead Sole

[> [> [> [> [> [> Thanks for the Soul food. -- Arethusa, 13:27:28 07/17/02 Wed

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> "it's a fishy requisit-t-t-t-t-te" -- Dead Sole, 13:38:42 07/17/02 Wed

[> [> [> Gives "stake & shake" a hole neaux meaning (NT) -- Fred, the obvious (and abashed) pseudonym, 14:11:35 07/17/02 Wed

[> [> [> [> Fred! No one's bashing your pseudonym. -- Arethusa, 14:38:23 07/17/02 Wed

[> [> [> Re: -- aliera, 14:50:15 07/17/02 Wed

The neaux whole in your query is unmistakable; since, from "dust to dust" as a theory is quite unplateable.

Was VampHarmony in "Disharmony" really any worse than Spike from S4 or S5? -- Earl Allison, 12:42:25 07/17/02 Wed

Did VampHarmony get a fair shake in "Disharmony"?

I ask because she behaved very similarly to Spike when Adam offered to remove his chip -- Spike was more than happy to break up the Scooby Gang to make Adam's job of killing Buffy easier.

VampHarmony was more than happy to turn on Cordelia and the AI team to facilitate her being a part of the vampire pyramid scheme.

Both backed the losing side, and upon realizing it, tried to switch sides again; with VampHarmony trying to win her way back into favor with Cordelia once the other vampires were killed or driven off, and with Spike attacking the demon that almost attacked the Scoobies while under the Gestalt Slayer spell -- largely so that they wouldn't stake him for betraying them (said by Xander or Giles, and agreed to by Spike).

I guess the question is, were the writers unfair to VampHarmony, and to a lesser extent, to the canon? Would (or could) VampHarmony have been able to change if Cordelia HAD taken her back, so to speak, and let her be a part of AI?

Say what you want about the hostility Spike faced from the Scoobies, especially Xander, but he had it a LOT easier than VampHarmony did -- Cordelia was the ONLY one to stick up for her at all. Angel, the one person who might have reached out to her, pretty much held her in disdain and told Cordelia so indirectly. Gunn's interest melted like an ice cube in a blast furnace when he realized she was a vampire, and Wesley had no use for her at all.

So, if VampHarmony had been given the repeated second chances and support Spike had through S4, S5 and even S6, could she have reformed? Could she have risen above her pettiness, and been convinced she had self-worth, and that she could actually be something better?

Sure, Harmony had her (numerous) faults -- but after almost two years of evil, SANS chip or love of Slayer, Harmony TRIED to be something better -- largely on her own. Personally, (again, IMHO) that puts her higher on the list than any other vamp in my book -- except maybe Drusilla -- the TRUE tragic victim of the Buffyverse -- but that's another post :)

I know a lot of it came down to story viability -- no way they could have TWO reformed vampires in LA, and the main reason Spike is still around isn't because he's a swell guy, but because James Marsters brings in viewers (if not, he'd have been dusted in S2, as mentioned more than once in interviews) -- but that's a cop-out for this debate :)


I should make this clear -- this is NOT an opportunity to bash Harmony, VampHarmony or Mercedes McNab. If that's all you have to add, do me a favor, and don't -- it will end badly for you.

Take it and run.

[> Re: Was VampHarmony in "Disharmony" really any worse than Spike from S4 or S5? -- AngelVSAngelus, 13:13:31 07/17/02 Wed

No, she wasn't any worse than Spike at that time. In fact, the similarity of the circumstances of she and Spike at that time led me to believe the episode (written by David Fury I think) was written as a commentary on Spike himself.
My answer is that she couldn't have changed her nature, even if she thought she wanted to try at the time. She was acting more selfishly than with virtuous entent, wanting to get back to life as it was in high school, when she was powerful and didn't have to deal with pesky things like a Slayer.
As soon as it was in her favor, she turned back to evil. Personally that's my, and from the interviews I've read Fury's, position on Spike as well, but I guess his getting a soul changes the rules of the game, now doesn't it?
Spike, at least, had the benefit of a chip that forced him not to be able to turn back to that side no matter how much he wanted to. Harmony had no limitation on her capacity for active evil. I thought it was insane that Cordelia of all people would've been around the girl without a crossbow, but she learned soon enough. *sigh* Only to make the same mistake with pregnant Darla.

[> [> What about just not doing evil? -- Earl Allison, 13:16:59 07/17/02 Wed

Yes, VampHarmony was largely not doing evil because it was hard, and she was lazy. However, with the proper support and friends, I DO think she could at least be convinced NOT to do evil and KILL, even if she opted not to actually do good.

Take it and run.

[> [> No, just more dangerous -- auroramama, 14:35:32 07/17/02 Wed

I figured it was a number of things, but not a judgement that Harmony was "worse" than S4 Spike:

1) Harmony can kill people.

2) AI had already experienced the joy of working with Harmony, and they weren't eager for more. She wasn't just infuriating, she was an obstacle to getting work done.

3) She turned on them so fast that she never showed them she could be useful, unlike Spike.

4) They just weren't equipped to give a second chance to a vamp who'd have to be babysat every instant to make sure she didn't kill anyone. But Cordy did let her go, and I don't think she would have if Harmony had been all grrr, argh from start to finish.


[> Do you really want me, a known redemptionist, to agree with you? -- Sophist, 13:17:56 07/17/02 Wed

[> [> I want you to be honest, and not bash -- but you don't bash, so fire away :) -- Earl Allison, 13:21:49 07/17/02 Wed

Not at all, I guess, being somewhat more favorably inclined towards VampHarmony, the fact that one got "screwed" by the canon while the other didn't is what bothers me most about the Spike arc.

We were told one thing in "Disharmony," and quite another in Buffy -- and it SHOULD be one or the other -- again, IMHO.

So, no, agree or disagree, your posts are always worth it.

Take it and run.

[> [> [> Living bash free these days. -- Sophist, 13:39:54 07/17/02 Wed

I love Harmony. I agree with you -- she was entitled to the same treatment as Spike. Of course, if they wanted to explore the different outcomes when one gets positive reinforcement and the other doesn't, that would be ok. It's pretty clear they didn't do that.

ME's intentions about Spike are now unclear to me (and to us all I suspect). I assume from his re-souling that they are taking the same position with The Vampire Formerly Known As Spike as they did with Harmony. In that case, at least they are getting equal treatment.

Personally, I'd like them to bring back Harmony and pair her, at least temporarily, with Xander. I think it'd be hilarious.

[> [> [> [> Yes, Yes, I know I know, redemption for soulless vampires is where we part ways -- AngelVSAngelus, 13:44:54 07/17/02 Wed

So I guess its a fundamental disagreement on the nature of the canon. Or maybe whether or not the canon is important in the first place.
As well known a Redemptionist you are, so too am I known as the Resident Spike's-Better-As-A-Villain-Or-Reluctant- Anti-Hero-and-Can't-Be-Redeemed-Without-A-Soul touter. Heh.

[> [> [> [> [> We need a name -- Masq, 14:47:54 07/17/02 Wed

"Resident Spike's-Better-As-A-Villain-Or-Reluctant-Anti-Hero- and-Can't-Be-Redeemed-Without-A-Soul touters" need a name.

Because we are not, I repeat NOT "Spike haters"

[> [> [> [> [> [> I believe it's "fundies" -- Ete, 14:51:30 07/17/02 Wed

because you believe in the show's fundment that without a soul a creature is evil

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> I know Masq is but what am I? -- d'Herblay, 14:57:43 07/17/02 Wed

I prefer Spike as a villain or reluctant anti-hero, but think the whole soul thing is just propaganda and think redemption is for aluminum cans, like to see Spike snarky but don't much care to see him naked, was an enthusiastic supporter of the Spuffy 'ship up until the moment it actually happened, at which point I decided that it coincided with the worst run of episodes in the show's history. Is there a convenient label for me? Because I'm not sure what to put on my calling cards.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Sensible? -- erythro-kitty, 15:18:51 07/17/02 Wed

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Not sure what to call ourselves, but does anyone else think its odd... -- AngelVSAngelus, 16:18:33 07/17/02 Wed

That it seems, at least in my experience, that those in the Yet-To-Be-Named camp seem to have watched the series since its beginning, and those I've talked to in the Redemption camp started midway through and went backwards? Anyone who's a Redemptionist and started from the beginning correct me if I'm wrong here, that's just how I remember it as I've encountered them.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Crotchety old man speaking -- d'Herblay, 16:51:08 07/17/02 Wed

Hmmm . . . I'm not so certain that one can find a clear-cut correspondence between how long one has been watching the show and how one feels about certain themes such as redemption. For one thing, I, who watched pieces of the premiere and would tune in sporadically until I got hooked by "Nightmares," still don't know quite how I feel about redemption. I do think, however, that there is a clear connection between being new to the show and being more accepting of recent plot developments. Someone who started watching during Season 6 will form his or her first impressions of Spike in the new-semi-redeemed version. Those of us with longer memories may have more problems with it. This is akin to the old men sitting around playing dominos talking about how things were in the good ol' days, as opposed to children emerging from the womb with the ability to program the VCR.

Anyway, I've never had too many problems with Spike's journey to redemption, if that is his journey, per se. My real problem is that a large chunk of that journey (actually, a detour away from that journey) took place during a whole bunch of crappy episodes. I wonder though if my willingness to see the "Wrecked" to "As You Were" doldrums as "crappy," though, is just another example of how I, at age thirty, am already a crotchety old man.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Crotchety old man speaking -- shadowkat, 06:54:17 07/18/02 Thu

Well I agree with you on everything but the impressions.
My Buffy watching is to be honest exactly the same as yours.
I didn't get interested until the Pack and Nightmares.
And I'm also on the fence redemption wise. I honestly don't know where I stand. The whole soul canon confuses me and feels like a device and to be honest a rather clumsy one to separate characters Buffy can kill from characters Buffy can't kill. (Notice did not say good/evil or chaos/order...because this no longer seems to be clear- cut.)
I've read all the arguments and debates and continue to change my mind on this one.

"I've never had too many problems with Spike's journey to redemption, if that is his journey, per se. My real problem is that a large chunk of that journey (actually, a detour away from that journey) took place during a whole bunch of crappy episodes. I wonder though if my willingness to see the "Wrecked" to "As You Were" doldrums as "crappy," though, is just another example of how I, at age thirty, am already a crotchety old man."

Yep, me too..except I'm 35, so crotchety older woman? ugh.
Agree, was for Spuffy until the creepy Wrecked to As You Were thread. (Otherwise known as MN's attempt to show everyone her horrible bad-boyfriend relationship, sorry could have done without this, been there, done that, seen it, not original...) Found this rather painful to watch.

I like Spike b/c I haven't the faintest idea what the writers are going to do with him and b/c I think he is such a complex
fascinating character - actually the most complex in both shows.

As for the impressions of recent viewers? I know several who fall into your camp and mine. Or somewhere in between.
Most like Spike as reluctant anti-hero.

What do we call ourselves? Fence sitters?

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Counter-example -- Sophist, 17:04:12 07/17/02 Wed

Sorry, but I've watched from the beginning. Seen every episode when it first aired.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Since Surprise -- Ete, 20:56:11 07/17/02 Wed

and needless to say, I'm a redemptionnista.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I Stand Corrected -- AngelVSAngelus, 21:18:17 07/17/02 Wed

I'd just talked to a bunch of people who were down with Spike-As-Good-Guy, and they'd, as you said, formulated that perception by seeing him from Season 4/5 onward.
One could ask if my own young age has anything to do with things as well, but in the end it truthfully all boils, beyond generalization, down to simple matter of opinion I guess.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I believe it's "fundies" -- Masq, 15:03:56 07/17/02 Wed

I believe demons on the show can be good. There are many examples. Whether they have souls or not has never been addressed on the show. Vampires are the only demons where the soul-no soul question has been directly addressed.

As for Spike, I don't enjoy Spike as a "good" character. He was my favorite villain until they emasculated him. In Seasons 5 and 6, he was just just a big, fluffy puppy with bad teeth.

But hear me, people, Spike was NEVER 100% evil! He was the best villain in season 2 and before he got his chip in season 4 because he was morally ambiguous and complex--his love for Dru, his willingness to work with the Slayer if it got him what he wanted!

I want that Spike back. The half-assed "good" Spike of the end of Season 5 was one-dimensional and boring.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Errr -- Ete, 15:15:14 07/17/02 Wed

Fans of evil Spike, what were the name of the fans of evil spike... nah, I can't remember sorry. But I know that you're not alone about that :)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I believe it's "fundies" -- Rufus, 21:03:18 07/17/02 Wed

As for Spike, I don't enjoy Spike as a "good" character. He was my favorite villain until they emasculated him. In Seasons 5 and 6, he was just just a big, fluffy puppy with bad teeth.

But hear me, people, Spike was NEVER 100% evil! He was the best villain in season 2 and before he got his chip in season 4 because he was morally ambiguous and complex--his love for Dru, his willingness to work with the Slayer if it got him what he wanted!

I agree with you, none of the vampires are 100% evil and that is why even Buffy is conflicted about killing them at times. As for the Spike of season two being a better villian I think that is a personal preference cause I like the evolution of Spikes character better than leaving him a one note villian. I don't think that the restoration of a soul is going to make Spike 100% good and we will get to see the adjustment phase of being ensoulled we never got with Angel. Spike can never completely go back to the villian of season two anymore than Buffy can go back to being the 15 year old she was when she discovered she was a slayer. All characters evolve and some will long for the character that once was (think Cordy) and some will want to see where the story leads. As for the ship with Buffy...I can take or leave it. I liked her with Angel and Riley but not with the Spike with a chip in his head and no soul......who knows what I'll think of the Spike with a chip and a soul.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> My point was, Spike was NEVER "one note" -- Masq, 21:52:09 07/17/02 Wed

Certainly not as a villain.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I guess that's where we differ....;) -- Rufus, 22:44:42 07/17/02 Wed

There were only a few things he could possibly do and to stick around Sunnydale they were going to have to quit kicking the sh*t out of him. His character is evolving and you just may see some of the "old Spike" traits in this new ensoulled vampire. At least he will be a bit less conflicted about his actions. I may be one of the few that found the early Spike boring, he may have had a few snarky lines but he had more bark and less bite and was a character type I see all the time....it becomes tedious. When they made him more and more conflicted it was more interesting for me. I'll reserve my judgement til I see what they do with him as to how I feel about the "ensoulled" Spike.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Not the only one Rufus -- shadowkat, 07:10:28 07/18/02 Thu

"I may be one of the few that found the early Spike boring, he may have had a few snarky lines but he had more bark and less bite and was a character type I see all the time....it becomes tedious. When they made him more and more conflicted it was more interesting for me. I'll reserve my judgement til I see what they do with him as to how I feel about the "ensoulled" Spike."

You weren't alone. Spike was briefly interesting for me in Becoming and Lover's Walk. Season 4 Spike got old, fast. I found him a better villain than the master in Season 2, but like you, he's Season 4 character type, was one I'd seen before. And after awhile tedious. I think they've gone as far as they can with the whole Spike as villain thing. Much further than they ever did with anyone else. And there was no way they could keep the character alive unchipped. And I'd rather have Spike than see him killed or pushed to part- time/recurring status like Darls, Harmony or Dru.

Spike didn't get really interesting for me, nor did the show until the second half of Season 5. He stopped being just the 1930's black and white snarky villain played for laughs. He got more complex.

Now the odd thing is - I prefered Cordy as snarky, self- absorbed cheerleader type. The new saintly Cordy bores me.
I also found Angel more interesting as evil, either in the couple of episodes prior to Epiphany or as Angelus.

So clearly I'm not consistent in my tastes. ;-)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Not the only one Rufus -- Rufus, 22:35:16 07/18/02 Thu

I have to admit to wishing that Cordy became less a Saint and a little more of a well dressed sinner. But she isn't a bad guy so the worst she can do is wear that purple shirt again, or to go overlimit on her credit card....;)At least then she seemed more honest than the sleep walking and talking Cordy of late last season.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> It's funny.... -- shadowkat, 07:01:12 07/18/02 Thu

You prefer Spike as a villain and I much prefered Angel as one. I find Angelus a far more interesting character than Angel with a soul. Meanwhile I find Spike chipped and moving towards a soul far more interesting than he was as a villain. Maybe I'll change my mind once I watch tapes of Season 1 and 2 Ats. But doubt it. DB just is more fun to watch evil. And JM can do the range between good and evil so brillantly. But it is a subjective view I think - some people identify more closely with the Liam's and Cordy's
while others identify more closely with the William's and Willow's.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Ditto -- Sophist, 08:16:03 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Spike was NEVER "one note" -- aliera, 10:12:53 07/18/02 Thu

As usual, all good thoughts.

It's a bit apples and oranges as we practice the ATPo drift here. Masq is very correct though; for the screen time he was given as part of the "mis-menage et trois" he was a very interesting and exciting character (popular too, I believe, thus he survived the initial stake-after-a-few- episodes plan.) My other faves the Mayor and Glory were BB's with much more attention paid to them-also extremely fun to watch.

Season-end, I was, in fact, truly rooting for chip-removal not soul-retrieval and a chance to see what would happen THEN. (I'm over it; but, I still have pangs.) My quibbles don't really have to do with his demi-good status (whihc like SK and Rufus I am enjoying) but more the weakened aspect we found him in. I believe JM when he says this is in part a natural side effect of dating Buffy, not to upstage the slayer that is. Just not so fun to watch.

None the less, I will be quite happy to watch whatever new contortions he gets up to this season(as long as he's not martyred, THAT would be truly be annoying.)

Anyone else feel like we've been put into more of a literal rather than metaphoric mode this year? I think that's affected some of the viewing experience.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Quote of the Week candidate here! -- Darby, 10:41:25 07/18/02 Thu

...or at least the Label of the Week:

"The ATPo Drift."

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Continents have drifted less than we. -- Arethusa, 11:10:30 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Well...I agree with everything you say -- shadowkat, 11:11:20 07/18/02 Thu

Yep...have the same quibbles. PArt of me wanted the chip- removal. Still have pangs they didn't do it. Dang it.
Didn't want it to happen - if they turned him totally bad...that would be dull. Complexity is what I like.
His weakened state made it painful to watch.

"Anyone else feel like we've been put into more of a literal rather than metaphoric mode this year? I think that's affected some of the viewing experience."

Yes. I think it confused some people b/c so many tried to find metaphorical meanings in props. Myself included.
If Joss is to be believed I think they are going back to that next season.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> My point was, Spike was NEVER "one note" -- Masq, 21:54:15 07/17/02 Wed

Certainly not as a villain.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I believe it's "fundies" -- Darby, 06:49:02 07/18/02 Thu

I would never join a group whose name basis I have to look up in the dictionary. But it might be good that I did...

But shy away from "fundies" - the other definitions of "fundament" are "buttocks" and "anus."

And, on topic, Harmony applies to the old story of the frog and the scorpion, but muzzled Spike doesn't. Makes the situations too different to compare, I think.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I believe it's "fundies" -- Finn Mac Cool, 09:06:04 07/18/02 Thu

Also, it's a name sometimes used to describe Christian Fundamentalists (ie believing the entire Bible is absolutely and totally true). I would NOT want to get myself confused with THOSE guys.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Ironic, considering 2nd meanings... -- Darby, 10:43:41 07/18/02 Thu

But I am so not going there!

I'm sure that those so inclined can flesh out their own snarky comments / nasty jokes on their own.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I believe that was the point... -- Masq, 13:31:01 07/18/02 Thu

To imply that we are simplistic, knee-jerk thinkers who haven't considered all angles of the Spike story line and who are trapped in black-and-white thinking.

An ad hominem argument, of course. Proving nothing, since Spike still graces the front of my "Moral ambiguity" page as the reigning King of Gray.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I believe that was the point... -- Malandanza, 21:38:37 07/18/02 Thu

"To imply that we are simplistic, knee-jerk thinkers who haven't considered all angles of the Spike story line and who are trapped in black-and-white thinking."

Ete's French (hence the words used a "shade too precisiely" in her posts) -- I doubt "fundies" has the same connotation in France that it has here.

All the same, I'd rather be called an Anti-Redemptionista than a fundie.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I merely repeated a word I had stumbled on before - - Ete, 07:30:42 07/19/02 Fri

And I though it was the name those people gave to themselves... I should have think that since I found that word on pro-Spike boards it could have bad conotations, sorry :(

I try to respect different opinions on the subject, usually, not to make fun of it.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> No need for you to apologize -- Sophist, 09:05:49 07/19/02 Fri

The word itself is just a shortened form of fundamentalist. In the Buffy sense, this should mean that one accepts the "soul canon", and that Spike, like any vampire, can't be redeemed without a soul. In that sense, it's a good term.

Unfortunately, the term "fundie" has some bad connotations that go with the strict definition. It suggests someone narrow-minded and intolerant. Cynical note: generally, it's the other guy's fundamentalism that's narrow-minded and intolerant. Our own is open and tolerant. Hehe.

How about the term "strict constructionist"? Lots of people like that when it comes to, say, constitutional law. For the religious, the term "literalist" is used. I don't like that as well in the case of BtVS, but since I'm on the other side, it doesn't seem fair for me to choose.

I'll call them whatever they want in public. In private, you and I can make fun of them as fundies. :)

[> [> [> [> [> [> Snarkists -- Arethusa, 15:15:41 07/17/02 Wed

Not to be confused with lovers of tuna.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> *****CUTE*****<g> -- Rufus, 23:47:48 07/17/02 Wed

[> [> [> [> Question about Harmony? -- shygirl, 14:40:26 07/17/02 Wed

I've not seen all of the early episodes sooo, was harmony that dippy blond vampire who kept following the Scoobies around and they acted like she was the village dork? I vaguely remember a scene of a blond vamp following the scoobies car???? Can you find my memory for me?

[> [> [> [> [> Re: Question about Harmony? -- meritaten, 15:19:36 07/17/02 Wed

Reader's Digest Version:

In the beginning of the series, Harmany was a living human high school student. She was one of Cordelia's friends, and was brilliant for her stupidity and snobbiness. She got bit (at graduation, I believe), and returned to the show when Spike moved back to Sunnydale (S4). She and Spike, at this time, were lovers (although Spike was clearly only using her). Being a vamp did nothing for her IQ. She and Spike parted ways, she moped and whined a bit, and eventually left town. She went to LA and dropped in on Cordelia, hoping to regain the joys of being a total snob and bitch (as in high school). Cordelia learns that Harmony is now a vamp. Cordy decided to maintain the friendship despite this development, as Harmony declares that she wants to become good. Harmony agrees to spy on a big vampire meeting for AI, but falls for the rhetoric of the vamp leader. Harmony betrays AI, and almost gets them killed. Cordelia spares her life, but tells her to leave.

[> [> [> Difference betweeen Buffy and Angel characters (BtVS S6 and AtS S3 spoilers) -- Mistress Keldari, 15:45:45 07/17/02 Wed

I have to wonder if the inconsitency of the canon is due to the nature of the characters on AtS versus BtVS. On Buffy, there is more often a greater focus on forgiveness and redeption; whereas on Angel, the charaters have a tendency to hold grudges.

On BtVS, the characters are willing to forgive Buffy for attempting to have them killed (Normal Again). On AtS, no one is even considering forgiveness for Wesley for the Conner incident (Season 3).

I think it is a fundamental difference in the nature of the characters on these shows, and would be my guess as to why Harmony was not supported more in attempts at goodness. I wonder what the result would have been if Harmony had tried to become good in Sunnydale...

[> [> [> [> Things weren't always like that though.... -- AngelVSAngelus, 16:24:52 07/17/02 Wed

and still to this day, the characters that are forgiven on Buffy tend to be the human ones with a reputation of goodness, i.e. Momentarily-Murderous-Buffy.
Granted, on Angel vengeance is more of a factor than forgiveness, because of the nature of its title character. Angel can't forgive others because he can't forgive himself.
But I don't think that theme bears pertinance to the non- tolerance of vampires without souls. That particular non- tolerance was born of the show the series spawned from, originally.
I remember the times when Buffy looked on in deadpan apathy at a crying and reminiscing Spike, before telling him how much she didn't care and hated him.
Or when she mocked his relationship issues with Dru/Angelus, calling Dru a big ho.
Fun times.

[> [> [> [> Actually, IMHO, quite the opposite in some ways ... -- Earl Allison, 04:52:39 07/18/02 Thu

Actually, I've always seen Angel the Series as far more grey than Buffy the Vampire Slayer -- especially given the main character of Angel, former scourge of Europe as Angelus, and his support group -- Cordelia, the attempting-to-repent former acid-tongued princess, and Wesley, the former Golden Child of the Watcher's Council who lost his Slayer to Darkness. AI is made up of people seeking redemption or atonement of one sort or another -- and annoying or not, VampHarmony should have probably been received a little better in that light (all IMHO, of course).

Buffy and her group, on the other hand, were far more black- and-white. Vampires (except for Angel) are evil. Everything was far more cut-and-dried.

True, SOME of that changed, especially in the changing perceptions towards Spike (and to a lesser extent, Anya/Anyanka), but really, if anything, VampHarmony should have been MORE likely to be accepted at AI, and Spike should have met the business end of Buffy's stake in S4, simply because it was more in keeping with the tones and characters of the series in question.

I just think that the canon was juggled a bit to facilitate keeping a popular actor on BtVS when the "implied canon" was more adhered to, even if it was OOC for the AI crew, in respect to VampHarmony.

Does any of this make sense, or am I babbling incoherently?

Take it and run.

[> [> [> [> [> Re: 'Angel' more realistic -- Liam, 08:47:25 07/18/02 Thu


What you say makes perfect sense. I prefer 'Angel' to 'Buffy' at the moment because that show is more realistic - more 'grey' as you put it - for example, in terms of how the group deal with infractions of members.

Angel, in season 2, was rejected by the group because of his actions. Even though he was later forgiven, he was not accepted back as leader, that job falling to Wesley. In season 3, Wesley forfeited both his leadership and membership of Angel Investigations because of what he did with Connor. In short, the bad actions of members affect the group dynamic, with resulting consequences, particularly long-term ones.

It is with this in mind that I wonder how the Scoobies are going to function as a group in season 7, thanks to Buffy the sex-addict, whose neglect led to the death of Tara, and Willow the magic-addict and murderer, who attempted to wipe out the entire human race.

[> Not really a double standard... -- Malandanza, 19:27:19 07/17/02 Wed

"So, if VampHarmony had been given the repeated second chances and support Spike had through S4, S5 and even S6, could she have reformed? Could she have risen above her pettiness, and been convinced she had self-worth, and that she could actually be something better?"

I think the difference lies less with Harmony and Spike than with Buffy and AI. Can you imagine Buffy staking Harmony if Harmony had showed up on her doorstep weeping and begging for sanctuary? Angel, Wesley and Gunn would have had no problems staking Spike, but Buffy is different. She is discriminatory in her slaying -- she let harmless vampires escape when Spike led her to their lair on their first date, she let Spike live in spite of his frequent betrayals (like placing Riley's life in jeopardy to try to get his chip removed) -- she really isn't a killer. She slays those who cause trouble and leaves the Clems of the world alone. The demons that have assimilated have a pretty comfortable life in Sunnydale (when Spike isn't killing them for sport, anyway).

Could Harmony have been reformed? Probably -- sort of. She didn't have much of a personality to begin with and, like Andrew, she likes taking orders. She'd be less likely to betray the Scoobies simply because she lacks an imagination. She gravitates to the strongest personality (and that would be Buffy). She'd be a good minion.

So, not really a double standard -- Buffy has one standard, AI has another. They have each acted with reasonable consistency.

[> Harmony was better than Spike in season 6 -- change, 04:04:32 07/18/02 Thu

In Smashed, when Spike thinks that the chip has stopped working he immediately tries to kill some girl he finds in an alley. He spends about 2 minutes debating with himself it before he puts on his game face and goes in for the kill even while his victim is pleading for her life. In Disharmony, Harmony apparently hadn't eaten in a while and was quite hungry. However, she behaves herself and does not attack Cordy for several hours even though she is alone with her. When she does, it is only with obvious reluctance and Cordy is able to talk her out of it easily. Harmony even apoligies. She then leaves Cordy alone for the rest of the night and then stays with the rest of AI for part of the day without attacking them. She had much better control than Spike.

Harmony is a sheep (BBB). She finds a leader and follows them. She sought out Cordy because Cordy was the leader of Harmony's high school clique. I think if she had been accepted into AI, she would have done what the other members of AI wanted. They could have dominated her without too much trouble. However, she would be doing good only to stay in AI, not because she really wanted to be good. She could also have been recruited by other vampires which is what happenned in Disharmony. She will simply ally herself with the strongest group., whoever that is.

**SPOILER** - villian for S7 -- meritaten, 15:03:08 07/17/02 Wed

I just read that Glory will be back. Not sure of source though.

What do you think?

P.S. I still think Glory was the greatest villian!

[> Continuing the spoilers, but spoiling them -- Darby, 15:28:19 07/17/02 Wed

There are a lot of rumored returns, but remember that every major dead character has come back in some form of other, and we have no idea how the returnees will be used.

...But Joss is supposed to be writing the premiere, which should be shot next week, and both "Warren" & "Glory" were available for the press this week...we could be seeing someone contact the Other Side looking for Tara and run into some Big Bad Trouble...

[> I disagree ... -- Wolfhowl3, 19:35:25 07/17/02 Wed

The Mayor was the Greatest Big Bad!


Things we don't want to see... (spoilers maybe for 6) -- Lilac, 17:40:48 07/17/02 Wed

I've been pretty quiet, board-wise, since the end of the season, but I have been reading a lot of what has been going on, and, not surprisingly, thinking about it. The thread below about SR and Spike's actions therein, and those about the sad loss of Tara have me thinking about ME showing us things we don't want to see. I think that this actually demonstrates a lot of creative integrity. Nothing is worse than a show that panders to what the audience wants and loses its original goal. Two that come to mind are Good Times -- started out as a show about a family, but changed its focus to the goofy son when that character proved to be popular -- the other show's name I can't even remember, but it's the one with Urkle, which I guess shows how the same thing happened there. A character that was supposed to be secondary to the family story became the driving force. (I realize that these are both black family comedies, and I really hope that no one assumes I am trying to say anything I am not trying to say in using them as examples -- the tendency to pander is pretty universal in most TV shows, these two just happen to be blatant examples that pop into mind.) My point is that ME doesn't just play to what the audience wants -- even considering Spike's increased air (and skin) time.

On the issue of Tara and Willow's relationship, and Tara's tragic death -- I think that ME did something truly significant by providing a gay relationship that was open and accepted by everyone in the Scooby gang. I suspect that for many people, it was the first time they had ever had such a positive, accepted, and routine gay couple presented to them. People accepted and cared about Tara and Willow, so it really hurt when Tara died. To me, if the point of art is to engage us, this was successful because it did engage us. We cared about whether Tara would come back to Willow, we cared that they seemed to be happy, and we felt the loss when Tara was taken away. That's how loss happens in real life, and it is how it should happen in good drama.

I understand the feelings of those who feel politically betrayed by Tara's murder -- if you see no one who is like you in media, it means a lot when a good representative shows up. But I think it is worth noting that it is a sign of tremendous respect for Tara and Willow's relationship that Tara's loss was shown to be so important and felt so deeply by everyone around them. I think it is important that Tara's character transcended being a "gay" character and became a character that so many cared about.

On Spike in SR, I certainly didn't want to see that. While I am a supporter of the Spuffy relationship (with the hope that it could get healthier), I think it was a valid artistic choice. I believe it is the first time I have ever seen an attempted rape in a story that made me understand why the man tried to do it, to feel some sympathy for him. That is not to say that I thought it was OK, or that it is something that can just be forgotten about. It was wrong, wrong, wrong, even though it may be understandable based on things that had happened earlier in the relationship. It certainly demonstrated the extreme low point Spike had sunk to.

What gives ME productions value, to me, is that they challenge us in ways that few other programs do. People we care about do bad things, people we care about die. ME doesn't pander to what the audience wants -- if they did Buffy and Angel would still be exchanging smoldering, star crossed gazes in Sunnydale cemeteries and how boring would that be by now? Life often makes us experience things we would rather not, but we are often better for it. I think ME does the same thing.

[> Re: Things we don't want to see... (spoilers maybe for 6) -- trebor, 20:20:59 07/17/02 Wed

Two interesting (to me) follow ups:

NYPD Blue, when the show began, was supposed to be about David Caruso's character, and his partner was supposed to be killed in the pilot. Of course, audiences (and Steven Bochco and David Milch to some extent) actually liked Dennis Franz's character, and he was rewritten back into the show. In this case, it didn't really effect the other characters. Caruso's character didn't change, and none of the other characters had that deep of relationships (at that point) with Franz's, who was an alcoholic, bigot, and all around unpleasent person.

When the ER pilot premiered, Julianna Marguilles character (Carol Hathaway) was supposed to die on the ER table by O.D. Again, the character tested well, the writers were able to use her to balance the boy/girl ration of the cast, and she had a very good three or four year story arc with George Clooney's character.

The difference, of course, was that these were early on. ME felt the only way to bring out the truly Evil Willow was to kill Tara. It was a character that we mostly grew to love or care about, but it also made us (the viewer) very passionate about it in some way or another as well. That's good writing, and that's good character development. We're interested in seeing what else will happen. And it was still true to the ME vision of this season, whether that was Joss, or Marti or both.

I wish there was still a Tara, but not at the cost of developing the other, central, characters. Or for the story that this season told.

[> [> Re: Things we don't want to see... (spoilers maybe for 6) -- Wizardman, 21:44:11 07/17/02 Wed

I agree- while ME killed one of my favourite characters on the show, the story arc kept me interested, and I am waiting impatiently for the season premiere. Most importantly of all, Tara's was not a stupid death- it was senseless, but not stupid. I couldn't forgive ME if it was stupid, and I believe that a lot of people may agree with me. And it's not like Tara is gone forever- no major character has left BtVS without at least one last good hurrah. Well, except for Cordelia and Wes, but that's because their busy on Angel. I know that ghostTara will be back. Although, come to think of it, Robia LaMorte hasn't actually returned as Jenny Calendar yet...

[> [> [> "Becoming" and "Amends" don't count? -- d'Herblay, 02:40:02 07/18/02 Thu

Could We See An Evil Xander (some possible Spoilers) -- trebor, 20:57:44 07/17/02 Wed

I had what I thought was an interesting theory.

We've seen glimpses of each character's very evil side. But, we can never see an Evil Xander. To try to explain:

Willow is obvious. Her Evil was built into her Magic and her emotions.

Spike, Angel, and Anya are obvious, we're actually seeing their Good sides after hundreds of years of being Evil.

Giles had a history as a Black Hat in England before becoming a Watcher. We've seen consequences of his actions, and have met Ethan Rayne, which could be a representation of what "Ripper" would have been.

Oz/WolfOz is pretty obvious. Oz or Tara were probably the truest characters in the show, but we saw Oz's Evil side.

Cordelia, IMO, was actually the "Evil" side. But, she was a different kind of evil, not the living dead. She was the classic High School villian, Miss Popular who could have done anything to ruin your reputation. "Cordy" is actually BTVS's Good persona. AtS has good Cordy, but she really had to get Demon DNA to really reach that side. (my AtS history isn't as up to par as it should be)

We haven't seen Buffy's truly Evil side, but, we've seen what Faith could do. Faith, IMO, represents the Evils a Slayer could hold. But, we've seen glimpses of Bad Buffy and naive Buffy, not a true Evil Buffy. Though, you really can't have the Hero of the story go Evil, can you?

Dawn hasn't really been flushed out as a character yet, though it may be, since she is essentially Buffy, the same theory holds for her. But, is she human? Does she have power that may be untapped?

But, that leads us back to Xander. Xander, the only true human character on the show. A Zeppo. He has no magic, no slayer abilities, just a big heart. Lots of love for his friends. No special powers. Can he be Evil?

We've seen the two sides of Xander. There's the one we see every week, sometimes unsure, sometimes afraid of what may happen or what may be. We've seen a glimpse of the other side of the coin, though. A confident Xander, a cool, calculating one. The one who got the promotion, the apartment, and kept the girl. That was also the side we saw in the vampXander. Vamp Xander was cool and calculating, and had a vengeful side, but what Vamps don't?

So, his Vamp side has nearly the same persona as we saw in the confident Xander from The Replacement. But, as we also saw in The Replacement, once the two Xanders were together, the dominant personalit won out: The sometimes annoying, sometimes unnerved, unsure Xander. That's the dominant personality. Is that a side that could leave to Evil, though?

I don't think there could ever be an Evil Xander. All of the other characters in the show have had an evil side, or we've seen glimpses of what their evil sides could be, but not Xander. Xander could never be evil. Flawed, yes, Evil, no.

Any thoughts?

[> His father -- Vickie, 22:56:48 07/17/02 Wed

[> Re: Could We See An Evil Xander (some possible Spoilers) -- Caesar Augustus, 06:05:43 07/18/02 Thu

One of the messages of s6 was that anyone is capable of Evil. Xander's evil lies in rash, angry impulses. His issues with Angel in B2 and Revelations are an example. The darkest we see of him in s6, I belive, is in the Stewart Burns' orb. But then again he fears his own darkness, maybe that prevents it from having too much chance of coming out. I think he's capable of evil, e.g. VampXander, but I'd wager there's no chance of us seeing that in s7 which will turn away a bit from the darkness within.

[> Re: Could We See An Evil Xander (some possible Spoilers) -- LeeAnn, 06:42:28 07/18/02 Thu

When Buffy beat a person who loved her until he couldn't stand and then left him to fry in an alley, that was evil to me.

[> Mr Judgemental? Not evil? -- Dochawk, 10:46:34 07/18/02 Thu

Have you watched Xander? He is the most judgemental charactr on the show. Someone else mentioned how he thought about Angel (and Spike for that matter), but watch Dead Man's Party and tell me that wasn't a prelude to evil? His flaws were much more frightening than anything Willow did in the first 4 seasons. And even after he started dating a former demon he couldn't let go of his judgementalness (boy is that a word?). Look at his reaction to Buffy and Spike. Based on his attitudes he could easily be portrayed as a bigot and a racist (lilly white Sunnydale, so representative of the southern california I live in hasn't given us a chance to see that side of Xander yet).

[> [> Agreed. -- Sophist, 12:24:06 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> Re: Mr Judgemental? Not evil? -- Majin Gojira, 16:28:31 07/18/02 Thu

Yes, Xander is a Bigote and racist TOWARDS DEMONS. true, there are good demons, but they are few and far between. He loaths them for a rather logical reason: Jessie.

In the Words of Cordelia: "What's your Childhood Trama?"

Xander's is Jessie.

So, If Xander does go Evil, it would be something like: "I'm going to rid the world of all demons...and Magic...and anyone who gets in my way"

Interesting concept - but I just can't see Xander that far gone without being 'tainted' somehow. be it from magic or Emotional Pain.

[> [> What Sophist said -- Dead Soul, 16:50:49 07/18/02 Thu

Evolution of Evil in the BuffyVerse from Simple Evil to Pogo, Part Three (1 of 2) -- LittleBit, 22:48:49 07/17/02 Wed

Evolution of Evil in the BuffyVerse from Simple Evil to Pogo, Part Three

[Preface: to avoid misunderstanding of the terms as I am choosing to use them, the Big Bad is the one who drives the season an the story arc; little bads are anyone/anything else, regardless of their degree of 'badness'.]

Season 3: Evil comes from trusted authority

In season 3 the Big Bad is the Mayor of Sunnydale. He initially appears as a genial, caring person who guides Sunnydale but very quickly shows the side that we have suspected from Principal Snyder's innuendos and interactions. He's able to shift from hail-fellow-well-met to psychotic menace in mid-sentence, most times quite entertainingly which actually adds to the menace. We learn he is responsible for the town of Sunnydale being built on the Hellmouth a century ago and that he had fairly diverse demonic assistance for which he pays tribute. He controls vampiric and demonic activity, after ousting the other demonic powers, and uses it to his own ends. And those ends are the only things that matter to him until he meets Faith. He forms an affectionate attachment to Faith, perhaps seeing the same reckless disregard and bravado he once had. She becomes both his protégé and his weakness. His attitude towards her is very much that of a doting father. He gives her affection, security, and approval and in return gains a fierce loyalty. He's been around for at least a century as the man in charge of the playground of the Hellmouth, and has been working toward what he perceives as the ultimate goal — Ascension to full demon-hood himself. In pursuit of this goal he becomes impervious to harm. With Faith, he is the one who undermines the relationship between Buffy and Angel. Ultimately his attachment to Faith becomes his undoing, Buffy is able to use this weakness to distract and defeat him. The Mayor was a dichotomy, alternately the man and the evil Mayor. He was very charismatic in both characters, very disturbing in that even when he is clearly in the persona of the ascender, it is easy to see how he draws people (of all species) to him. After the dedication he positively revels in his invulnerability; he shows it off, to Angel, to Buffy and the Scoobies, to Principal Snyder and the police. He was a worthy foe, creative and unpredictable, giving them a challenge beyond any they have faced. His mercurial nature gave him an advantage against the Scooby Gang until Buffy decided to do something equally as unexpected; she recruited the entire student body in an effort to thwart the Mayor's ascension. With the students battled the Mayor's henchmen, Buffy gained the time advantage she needed to get his attention and enrage him. Ultimately the mayor's demise not only ended his reign as a demon, but with the destruction of the library and the resultant damage to the school, it very firmly marked the ending of their high school days.

Kakistos is one of the oldest vampyres, so old that he had cloven hands and feet, likely pre-dating even the Master. He has been unopposed for so long that when he is injured by Faith he has no thought other than exacting his vengeance upon her. He follows the new Slayer to Sunnydale after he killed her watcher and she managed to hurt him. For a vampyre who has survived as long as he has, he showed incredibly poor judgment regarding when to back off. Perhaps being unchallenged for so long, he had forgotten what a Slayer could do, and certainly ignored the capabilities of two Slayers working together. Her fear of him showed that Faith, for all her bravado, was not quite as sure of herself of secure in her Slayer skills as she professed.
Trick on the other hand, was quite aware of the realities of facing two Slayers. When it became clear to him that Kakistos was on a suicide mission, he bailed. Trick is one of the most intriguing vampires that faced Buffy. He has control. He uses his brains, and he definitely has some smarts to use. He embraces current technology. He has his meals delivered. He's calm, cool and collected. He's a sharp dresser. He doesn't like to get his hands dirty, both literally and figuratively. He chooses not to do his own dirty work. We're never really given any background on him. If what he once was informs what he is now, then he was intelligent, capable, a good manager, possibly in 'organized crime' but definitely not at the street level. His Slayer Fest was brilliantly conceived, evil, but brilliant. He is the one recruited by the Mayor to run things in the, ah, underworld. He brings Ethan back to the scene to run the Band Candy operation [and as an ex-band member, may I say it should only have been so easy to sell the things!] and acted only as an overseer. He wisely refrains from direct confrontation of the Slayer, until the Mayor orders him to remove the threat of both Buffy and Faith. He comes close to killing Buffy though, after Buffy pushes Faith out of the way of falling crates and is hit herself. But in the end, Faith returns the favor, and slays Trick.
Lyle & Candy Gorch are in town for the Slayer Fest. Lyle wants revenge for his brother Tector, even though it was not the Slayer who killed him. He and his new wife Candy think Slayer Fest is just the best way to spend their honeymoon. Candy doesn't make much of an improvement over Tector on the maturity scale, and their behavior remains very adolescent. The two do manage to get into the library, knock Giles out and get the weapons from the cage. But neither is a match for the Buffy and Cordelia team. Buffy slays Candy with Cordy's spatula, then, after a confrontation with a brassed-off homecoming-queen-candidate and as he has done twice before, Lyle bails.
Spike is back. A broken, love-sick, rejected Spike. Drusilla has turned her back on him for what he did to Angelus, even though Spike believes he did it for her. Dru tells him he's not demon enough anymore, not for her. Spike goes looking for a nasty spell to put on the chaos demon she left him for, but instead finds Willow. After a little shop- keeper snack he finds Willow to make her do a spell to make Dru love him again. It is during this time that Spike is shown to be keenly perceptive, especially about matters of the heart. It is he who points out to Buffy and Angel that even if they are fooling themselves and everyone else, he sees that they are not friends and never will be. He recognizes the passion that they have; it is the passion he wants again with Drusilla. He doesn't show any of the leader qualities he had before Angelus returned. It is as if he needs the passion, the commitment of his romantic side, before he give these qualities free rein; that 'love' allows him to realize his potential as a 'man'. He leads with his emotions, lets them dominate him, lives through them. In the end, it is his emotions that free him. He is exhilarated by the fighting, responds to the thrill it brings, becomes eager to win Drusilla back. He knows, better than anyone except Angelus, what she'll respond to, and sets out to do it. His way.
Zachary Kralik serves as an example of the callous disregard of the council for anything other than their own goals. Kralik was a criminally insane murderer/torturer as a mortal and except for being a vampire is virtually unchanged from his former persona. The CoW held the vamped Kralik captive. They control the medication that relieves the pain he gets in his head. He is to be unleashed on a weakened Slayer to 'test' her. Instead he turns one council guard, Blair, and together they feed on the other guard, Hobson. Kralik stalks Buffy, then kidnaps Joyce to draw Buffy to him. This may very well have been his m.o. as a human. He plays with Buffy in the house, he doesn't want to just kill her, he intends to turn her. He welcomes the pain of the cross as it burns him. He is ultimately undone by one of his attacks just as he is about to bite, and finds that holy water is not a good thing to take pills with. Blair is staked by Giles. One question left hanging is whether or not the pain attacks were taken into consideration by the CoW. Had things gone as planned, once Kralik was released he would not have the pills to take until the test was over. So if Buffy had not prevailed, the pain would put him back into the Council's power; and if the test went on long enough, then the pain would even the playing field a bit.
El Eliminati are a duelist cult who became the acolytes of the demon Balthazar. They, along with Balthazar, were driven out of Sunnydale a hundred years earlier, but now they've returned. They retrieve the amulet that gives Balthazar strength, but lose it to Buffy and Faith. Their leader is sent to kill the Mayor on Balthazar's orders, but Trick is there and he fails and is captured. Another takes his place as leader and is responsible for bringing the Slayers and the Watchers to Balthazar. They succeed with the Watchers, and this brings Buffy and Angel, along with the demise of the cult and the loss of their leader.
VampWillow was inadvertently brought to the BuffyVerse when Anya has Willow assist in a spell to bring back her amulet from the WishVerse. At first she's completely disoriented as she realizes that all the places are where they should be, but none of them are as they should be. Because she has the self-assurance her counterpart lacks, she decides to change this, make things the way she knows. VampWillow recruits the Mayor's vamps away from him and starts a frontal assault on the Bronze. Anya the lets her know what's happened and she goes looking for a return ticket. VampWillow eventually finds the opportunity to confront Willow. VampWillow is returned to the WishVerse by Willow, Anya and Giles just in time to die. VampWillow has all the characteristics that our Willow is repressing: power, confidence, even to being "kinda gay." And then Willow impersonating her, stating flat out the things she finds distressing about herself: weak, accommodating, doormat, cranky. VampWillow describing Willow to Cordelia as helpless and shy. In the end Willow, being who she is, sees this as an object lesson and resolves never to be like that.

Ken is the recruiter from hell. Literally. It is his part of the job to seek out young people who have no ties, no homes, few hopes and bring them under his care. At the Family Home, where they are, as he says, not just interested in feeding the body. He had that right. He wants their life. The fruits of their labors to the benefit of his demonic brethren. He sends them to Hell where they have no hope, only despair, and sends them back when they are old and spent with nothing more to give. They become no one, they have nothing. All that is left for them is death. Buffy is now where she thought she would be, only Angel/Angelus is not there to see her, and he didn’t save her a seat. As usual, though, Buffy changes the rules. Humans don't fight back, Slayers do. Ken is slain and the portal to hell is closed.
Ovu Mobani the evil eye is a zombie demon. His mask is brought to Sunnydale as part of a Nigerian primitive art shipment. His power is the ability to re-animate the dead as zombies. It is not clear whether or not the power of the mask manifested prior to its being shipped to Joyce's gallery, or if the mystic energy of the Hellmouth enhanced its reach. He does perpetrate the ultimate 'dead cat' joke on Buffy and Joyce [apologies — just couldn't resist], as the first reanimation we are aware of. Interestingly enough, the havoc he wreaks before Buffy destroys him as he possesses the body of Pat, serves to defuse the tension, and move everyone past the accusation point to where they are truly glad to have Buffy back.
Kulak a demon of the Miquot Clan, is one of the participants in the SlayerFest. He is yellow-skinned and has a spiny ridge on his head. His weapons come from his body — long, serrated knives that he can then throw. Quite well. He corners Buffy and Cordelia in the cabin, forcing them to work together in order to save each other's lives. When a grenade is launched into the cabin he chooses the wrong window for his exit and is blown up with the cabin.
Lurconis, the glutton, is one of the demons with whom the Mayor made deals in order to gain power. The demon itself is large and snakelike, and it dwells beneath the city in the filth of the sewers. Tribute consisting of babies is made to it every thirty years. Trick is given the job of procuring and delivering the tribute for the Mayor, who meets him in Lurconis' lair (and notes that the sewers need maintenance and repair). Buffy, Giles and Joyce come to the rescue of the babies; in the ensuing struggle one of Trick's vampires is kicked into Lurconis' pool to which the snake-like demon responds. The vampire is snatched into Lurconis' mouth and the demon retreats back down his tunnel. When Giles is thrown into the pool he manages to get out before the demon reappears and Buffy is able to engulf demon in flames from a gas pipe (that she breaks) ignited by the flames from one of the torches lighting the area.
Lagos a warrior demon seeks the Glove of Myhnegon, he is searching in the Sunnydale cemeteries. He encounters Faith after she and Buffy have had a busy night and easily holds her off while he searches. He is next seen at the crypt where the glove had been (prior to its removal by Angel) where Buffy is waiting. She finishes him off rather quickly, using his own battleaxe. It was Lagos coming to Sunnydale in search of the glove that brought Gwendolyn Post to town as well.
Anyanka was the vengeance demon who responded to Cordelia's need for revenge on Xander. How Anyanka received the summons is never made clear; she may simply have been drawn by Cordy's need, or she may have been inadvertently summoned when Cordelia performed a very ritualistic purging of Xander from her life — cutting him out of her pictures, cutting the pictures into pieces, then burning them. As a vengeance demon, Anyanka is generally unconcerned about the consequences of the wishes she grants, including the consequence to the one doing the wishing. Her demonic power has few limitations as shown by her ability to create (or find) an entire alternate reality in which the Slayer doesn't come to Sunnydale. In this reality however, once Cordelia realizes what has happened, things are changed to alter the outcome of the wish and also provide the clues that allow Anyanka herself to be defeated. In the end, her power source is destroyed turning Anyanka back into a human, the wish is reversed, and Sunnydale returns to the reality of the BuffyVerse, trapping Anyanka in her current persona.
The First Evil is, simply put by Giles, an ancient power, absolute evil, older than man, older than demons. The First is causing Angel to be haunted; trying to convince him that it was the power that brought him back from the hell dimension; attempting to induce him to kill Buffy to remove one of the champions of the Powers that Be. The First uses the guise of Jenny Calender to confront Buffy directly after she defeats its high priests. It taunts her with it's power, telling her it is never seen but still everywhere, in every being, in every thought. The First states that it is inconceivable to her, beyond sin, beyond death; it is that which the darkness itself fears. It then manifests in terrifying demon form, threatening her, coming straight at her, but can do nothing! The First Evil apparently must work through the Harbingers, using others who are physically present in this world to carry out it's desires. What seems inexplicable, however, is that it warns her about Angel's impending death at sunrise, allowing Buffy the chance to prevent it.
The Harbingers are the high priests of the First Evil. They haunt people by manifesting spirits, or visions that appear to be spirits, that can then influence behavior. They are the Harbingers of death, nothing growing above or below them. At least one of them is eyeless; interestingly enough, this is the one that watches throughout the dreams they bring to Angel, that are shared by Buffy. It is they who are actually haunting Angel with images of some of the people he killed or tortured as Angelus, seducing him with the promise that they will go away once he takes Buffy as a vampire. The most effective of these spirits is the manifestation of Jenny, the most seductive of them all. It is 'she' who pushes finally to kill himself, letting the sun take him, rather than harm Buffy. The Harbingers are not fighters — when Buffy finds them she easily kills two of them while the third runs away.
The Hansel & Gretel Demon appears as two young children, a boy and a girl, who seem to have been ritually murdered, with symbols drawn on their hands. It/they then slowly takes control of the minds of the townspeople, convincing them to begin a witch hunt. Joyce, possibly because she was the first to encounter them, is the leader of the Hunt; founder of MOO (Mothers Opposed to the Occult). The longer they remain under the mind control of the demon the more severe the penalties become. The children are urging the townspeople to hurt the "bad people" they way they were hurt. Eventually the punishment escalates to the traditional burning of the witches at the stake — Amy, Willow and Buffy, with Giles' books from the HS library as fuel for the fire. Not until Giles forces the demon to assume its own aspect do the vigilantes begin to realize what they were doing. The demon goes after Buffy, who taunts it, and is impaled when the stake she is tied to breaks and he runs into it.
The Sisterhood of Jheis an Apocalypse Cult of fierce female warrior demons who feast upon their vanquished foes after a victorious battle. Their sole goal is to bring about the world's destruction, and they're in town to open the Hellmouth and release the demons held prisoner behind it. They are successful in opening it, and the first demon, who we saw when the Master opened it, begins to emerge where Buffy, Faith, Angel, Giles, and Willow battle it. The members of the Sisterhood go after the Xander and the dead boys in the building. Giles is ultimately able to reclose the Hellmouth, trapping the demon, while the others take out the Sisterhood.
The Spirit of Uurthu the Restless is invoked by Jack O'Toole in the spell of revivification he performs to bring his old gang buddies back to life. No other information is available.
Balthazar is a demon, reminiscent of a cross between Jabba the Hutt and the Baron Harkonnen, who after gathering the remnants of the Eliminati to him, was run out of Sunnydale about a hundred years ago when the Mayor gained his power. He has returned because of the Mayor's impending ascension. Balthazar intends to prevent it. When the amulet is snatched from his grasp, he sends the Eliminati after the Slayers, the Watchers and anyone else who may be in his way. He is so caught up in his own megalomania, he no longer considers the consequences of this order. Buffy and Angel follow after the Giles and Wesley are abducted, and rescue them, electrocuting Balthazar in the process. It is interesting to note that while Balthazar and the Eliminati were clearly enemies of the Slayer and the Scoobies, they were in this case working toward the same goal: stopping the Mayor from ascending. It is also Balthazar's last words that alert the Scoobies that there is something very big on the horizon.
d'Hoffryn is first seen here when Anya goes to him in supplication. She wants her powers back. d'Hoffryn refuses telling her she was unworthy and careless of the powers that were granted he by the lower beings. He is unmoved by her pleading and dismisses her. d'Hoffryn is the epitome of what the high demon over the vengeance demons should be. Implacable in the face of begging, pleading, groveling or bended knee.
Olvikan (the ascended mayor) is the demon that the Mayor aspires to become. A big, has a fold out picture, snake demon that is killable once the ascension is complete. The action that destroys the demon is also the decisive action the marks the end of the HS era for the Scooby Gang. Their 'clubhouse', the library, is completely demolished, the school itself is ruined. It is time to move on.

The Zombies are summoned by Ovu Mobani. They are necessary to provide a threat great enough to move the entire Scooby Gang beyond accusations and into their roles as support for Buffy. Although those roles have undergone some changes over the intervening summer when they acted in her absence.
Jack O'Toole & the boys are dead men walking. Jack's grandfather performed the spell that reanimated Jack, who in turn did the same for his old buddies. These boys were hell on wheels while they were alive, and continue their fun- loving ways after revivification. The first encounter is with Jack who projects the persona of the vicious school bully in all his glory; menacing, threatening, and leader of the gang. He's ready to strike back with violence at every incident, seeing each as a personal affront. No one bothers him or his things under threat of bodily harm. But stand up, for him/against authority, and he's the first to say you're an okay guy. Xander becomes a temporary part of the gang this way, by not ratting on Jack. Besides, Xander has the wheels. Jack and Xander make the rounds of the cemeteries, gathering the gang, all dead, all revivified … Bob, Dickie, and Parker. Xander, the wheelman, drive them where they want to go, including the hardware store, closed for business but open for crime, where they get supplies to bake a cake, not specifying what kind of cake. Xander, wanting to leave the group, is offered initiation into the group; unfortunately it consists of dying and revivification, which makes Machida- worship seem a bit tame. Xander opts out, driving off with the supplies. The boys are not happy about this, but there's nothing they can do except get more supplies. When next seen, the boys are in the boiler room of the school with the bomb they've constructed. Xander, trying to figure out where they'd be because he looked in the supply bags and saw what they contained, sees them outside the school. Getting the information about the bomb in the boiler room, he's asking Parker how to defuse it when he accidentally causes Parker's head to be ripped off by a mailbox. Xander runs into the school followed by the other three. Bob attacks Xander in the lounge, and in the ensuing fight his head is crushed by the vending machine which is tipped over by Xander. Xander gives chase to Dickie, and the two are in turn attacked by the Sisterhood of Jhe. Xander escapes, Dickie does not, leaving only Jack. Xander faces Jack down in the boiler room by the bomb, calling Jack's bluff, willing to die if necessary, turning the tables on the encounter the day before; it's Jack's turn to decide who has less fear. Jack chickens out at 2 seconds and pulls the wire. Xander leaves and Jack turns to go out through another door, vowing revenge, only to find werewolf-Oz in a feeding frenzy. With Jack we learn that is can be startling easy to reverse death, if there is no concern for the consequences — the boys personalities are restored, but only into the body as it is now. The longer the time in between death and revivification, the greater the physical deterioration. They also show us a struggle that, other than the spell to bring each back, involves only the human elements, intimidation, fear, loss of face. Jack is the tough guy, always challenging, always fierce; never caring, except for 'his' boys. When the time is right he assembles his gang and takes on the ultimate symbol of teen authority — the school, which he, interestingly enough, continues to attend even after his death. They encounter little resistance from most people, including Xander, until the stakes are increased. When confronted by true resistance and a challenge by strength of character, Jack crumbles at the last. None of the gang lasts the night. Each had an end befitting him: Parker, the one who goes along with everything, is killed by chance (mailbox); Bob, the muscle of the group is killed by something muscle can't overcome (falling vending machine); Dickie, who had the idea to destroy the school is killed by those whose intent is to destroy the world (demons of the Sisterhood of Jhe); and Jack, who responds in rage with intimidation and menace, is killed by a raging primal beast (werewolf).
Hellhounds are demon foot soldiers, developed during the Machash Wars, bred and trained solely to kill, their reward bring to feed of the brains of their foes. In this case, the demons are not only summoned, but trained to further specialization by Tucker Wells for the purpose of wreaking havoc at the Prom. They are hunted down and killed at the school before they make it into the dance. They do however give Buffy something to think about with and Angel- less prom night approaching.

The Killer of the Dead poison is used by Faith on Angel. It is a mystical compound used on vampires. One of the few known cases to be cured was accomplished by draining the blood of a Slayer. The poison was intended to distract Buffy from the Mayor's graduation plans but was instead the catalyst for several important changes. Buffy fires the Council of Watchers over it. She goes after another human with the intent to kill and is very nearly successful. The antagonism of two living Slayers is brought to a climax. Angel is convinced that he and Buffy are not safe together after Buffy nearly dies to save him. Buffy becomes even more determined to stop the Mayor.

The WishVerse is created by Anyanka when Cordelia wishes that Buffy had never come to Sunnydale. In the WishVerse, Giles and Oz are still good guys, the White Hats, Cordelia joins their ranks. Harmony and the Sheep just try to run from trouble. Angel is still there to help the missing Buffy, but in her absence he's just 'Puppy'. The Master is evil and in control. The WishVerse Buffy is much more focused on the slaying, still not so cooperative with her Watcher, but surprisingly willing to accept Angel's help. Then there's Xander and Willow. Together. Vampires. Involved in amusing themselves and causing chaos. Willow is no longer our sweet, quiet Willow, but is quite willing to mess with everyone else there to amuse herself and cause chaos. Xander, as a vampire, admires Willow. Together they kill Cordelia. Cordelia is 'betrayed' by Xander with Willow in the WishVerse just as she was in the BuffyVerse. VampXander helps VampWillow torture Angel, an activity that Xander would gladly have participated in on more than one occasion. VampXander chose however, after his first flaming match, to just allow VampWillow to play while he watched. Like Xander he wants to be part of the action, yet someone else is the one who carries the bulk of the work. The WishVerse showed us how critical Buffy's mission is here, specifically, in Sunnydale. And it brought us Anya, who is the only one who knows what was happened in that reality.


[> Re: Evolution of Evil in the BuffyVerse from Simple Evil to Pogo, Part Three (2 of 2) -- LittleBit, 22:53:51 07/17/02 Wed


Pete and his girlfriend Debbie good friends of Scott Hope who is dating Buffy at this time. Pete is very protective of Debbie and does the "boyfriend" things like bringing her flowers which seems so sweet to everyone. However, his attention soon seen to be very possessive and his jealousy quite obvious when we see his private interactions with Debbie. He has created a serum to increase the qualities he sees as macho, and in time no longer needs it. Unfortunately, one of the effects is a raging monster that is also easily triggered by any perceived misstep on Debbie's part. Conversations are inflated into cheating relationships; professional; counseling is all right until Pete realizes Debbie actually likes the counselor rather than seeing him as totally lame. People begin turning up dead from a vicious mauling, and it is noted that each has a relationship of some sort with Debbie. Buffy and Willow go to talk to Debbie, who they find in tears, and with a nasty bruise, after her most recent encounter with Pete who was enraged after seeing Debbie meet Oz to get his biology notes. Debbie denies any problems to the two of them; meanwhile Pete is tracking down Oz with murderous intent. He finds him just after Oz is locked up for the 3rd night of the full moon. He becomes the raging Mr. Hyde again and rips the cage door off its hinges and proceeds to attack Oz. The sun goes down and Oz makes his transformation into the werewolf and the fight becomes more even. Buffy prepares to use the tranquilizer gun on Pete but Debbie disrupts her aim and Giles is shot instead. Oz runs out and Faith and Willow follow him,. Debbie runs out as well. Buffy tries to stop Pete but he gets away with Buffy in pursuit. He heads to the supply closet where he finds Debbie waiting. Debbie believes she did a good thing by keeping Buffy from shooting but Pete rages at her because he believes she told them about him. She denies it but he is too far lost in the rage and attacks her. When Buffy arrives she finds Debbie dead and is jumped from behind by Pete. As he is attacking her, Angel comes in with full vamp face and rushes Pete. Angel breaks Pete's neck ending the fight, then looks at Buffy and with slow recognition finally says her name before dropping to his knees and holding her while he sobs into her jacket. Pete showed us the dark side of an abusive relationship, with Debbie attempting to believe everything is fine and taking the blame for making him angry. Pete believed that Debbie was not satisfied with him, that he needed to enhance himself to keep her. Everything she did was viewed with suspicion. On her part Debbie tried to please Pete, downplaying any relationships she might have so that Pete wouldn't be jealous. This, of course, didn't work; every action of hers served only to increase his rage at her. More significantly, though, Pete provided the counterpoint to Angel's journey in the episode. As Pete goes from a man at the beginning to an uncontrollable raging monster, Angel's path takes the opposite direction: from uncontrollable monster to sentient man.
Jungle Bob one of the SlayerFest participants, is the 'big game' hunter of the group. For someone who was 1) invited and 2) willing to pony up some significant dollars, he certainly didn't seem very experienced at trapping and hunting sentient two-legged game. He gets caught in his own trap, loses his rifle to his prey, can't spring the trigger to release himself, and is just left out there in the woods. He rather quickly spills the information that Buffy requests, letting her know who or what else is hunting them.
the Gruenstahler Brothers are High Tech Huntsmen who are the hired guns for a mysterious computer-using 'boss'. They are wanted by Interpol for murder and terrorism. They begin tracking Buffy before the start of the contest using high powered binoculars and parabolic listening devices. It is one of the brothers who drives the limousine that picks up Cordelia and Buffy. They've planted the homing devices in the corsages that the girls put on. Their boss is able to kill the phone line from the cabin, but not before Buffy is able to leave a message for Giles. the boss directs them to Buffy and Cordelia's coordinates at the cabin and again to the high school. However, they learn there can be drawbacks to relying so completely on technology: if the transmitter isn't attached to the target, the results can be lethal.
Ethan Rayne is contracted by Trick to run the factory where the candy bars are being manufactured with an additive that seems to make everyone regress to adolescence. He is only on the periphery if the events surrounding the tribute to Lurconis, but enough to set Buffy in the right direction after she persuades him to give her the information. Once again, we see the interaction of Ethan and Ripper, but this time with a great deal more aggression on Ripper's part, enough to begin to appreciate how Rupert came to be called Ripper. Of Ethan we still learn very little other than the fact that he's good at what he does, and that we have no idea how he got out of the handcuffs after he came to in the factory.
Gwendolyn Post comes onto the scene claiming to be Faith's new Watcher, although Giles had received no word about her coming. She is a Watcher trained, but had delved too deeply into the dark magicks and ousted from the Council. We learn that a rogue Watcher can be very dangerous. She carried herself with the necessary authority to come in, begin working with Giles and Faith, use the resources of the Scooby Gang to assist her in her goal: that of locating the Glove of Myhnegon. She advises the group that the demon Lagos is in Sunnydale searching for the glove and obtains their assistance in preventing him. What she didn’t take into account was Angel's knowledge of the glove as well as its location. When she learns it is in his possession she knocks Giles out and goes in pursuit of the glove. She gets to to Angel just before he is ready to immolate the glove with the Living Flame and presents herself as an ally, then hits him in the head intending to kill him after learning the location of the glove. She sets Faith against Buffy, continues her charade to Xander and Willow when they arrive, while securing the glove for herself and invoking its power. When this happens, everyone realizes what she is doing, and in working together defeat her; she is consumed by the power she called when the glove (along with the encased arm) is severed from her. Gwendolyn Post poses two problems for the group. The first is how easily she is able to hoodwink them; all of them are able to accept her in her role as Watcher simply because she knows exactly how to act. None of them, not even Buffy suspects she is other than she say simply because she says so authoritatively. The other relates to how much trust they can really place in the Watchers' Council, which seems singularly unwilling to provided adequate information or assistance to the Slayer(s) and their Watcher.
Faith was Chosen as the Slayer when Kendra was killed by Drusilla. It is not clear where she is from, she references South Boston and Missouri, but never really gives much away about herself, or her history. She comes to Sunnydale, full of bravado, after her Watcher is killed by Kakistos seeking the one place where she knows she can have protection from his wrath; where she knows she can find Buffy and her Watcher. Faith catapults into the Scoobies lives with tremendous panache; she is at once the center of attention. She is street-wise, she's vivacious, she brings a perspective to the group quite outside their experience. She is earthy and direct, immediately setting the tone of her relationship to the group. She is admiring of Buffy by her words, dismissive by her actions. By sheer force of personality she becomes a part of the group, generally accepted, liked and admired by everyone except Buffy, who sees a different side of her. Xander is intrigued and fascinated by her, to Cordelia's dissatisfaction, Willow is welcoming, Oz accepting; Giles is impressed with her zest, Joyce with her vibrancy. Everyone enjoys her company. Faith is very likable, but not very lovable. She rarely presents anything other that a tough façade, one that protects her from the possibility of rejection. She is really extremely vulnerable, less sure of her place in the scheme of things than any of the rest of them. She's a Slayer, but there's the 'infamous Buff' already there. She's young, but never part of any of the high school life, or friendships. As she expressed it if she'd had friends like them she might've regretted dropping out. It is interesting that she chooses to refer to Buffy as infamous rather then famous, as the expressions carry such differing connotations. It shows an admiration tinged with disrespect and perhaps more than a touch of jealousy. Faith seems to want that which she takes great pains to push away; acceptance, affection, stability. Faith is especially touching when Gwendolyn Post comes, she accepts her as a Watcher and as someone who is her mentor, as it is subtly implied she did with her previous Watcher, both of whom were female. Faith felt that no matter what she did, she would never 'be' Buffy, she would never be 'the Slayer' only one of them. Eventually she slowly started to alienate the Scooby gang … Willow became jealous of her time with Buffy, Faith was Xander's 'first' and then summarily dismissed him. When she and Buffy went on their 'bad girl' walk on the wild side, though, Faith pushed the envelope farther and farther, drawing Buffy with her, until she crosses a line that Buffy cannot accept. Faith, however accidentally, kills the deputy mayor and then flees from the responsibility. Faith claims no remorse, although we see that she is not being truthful, and worse yet, places the blame for the actual killing on Buffy, when telling Giles about it. Giles understands that Faith is in a very precarious state emotionally and psychologically that will require careful handling if she is not to be further damaged. The only one who really seems to be able to reach her, though, is Angel; his own experience with coming to terms with having killed is irrefutable to Faith, and she accepts his attempts to help her deal with it. Unfortunately, the newest Watcher, Wesley, has made other arrangements; he and others employed by the Council break into Angel's place, subdue him and abduct Faith by the orders of the Council, and prepare to take her to England for discipline. Faith is not amenable to this and threatens her way out of their clutches. She goes into hiding and makes planes to run, much like she did when she came to Sunnydale. Buffy eventually tracks her down, but is interrupted by Trick who has been sent by the Mayor to eliminate the threat of the Slayers. Trick comes very close to defeating Buffy, but Faith intervenes. She and Buffy acknowledge each other's individual choices and then go their separate ways. Faith's way led straight to the Mayor's door, with an offer to join him which is readily accepted. Faith blossoms under his approval, basks in the genuine affection he shows her, and revels in the things he gives her. In return, she gives him a fierce loyalty, and a love she has very likely given to no one else. She tries to assist him by returning to the Scooby gang and keeping him apprised of their plans, but is eventually found out. She tries to bring Angel to the Mayor's side by attempting to seduce him and fails. They then use a wizard to cast out Angel's curse, and bring back Angelus; unbeknownst to them, the wizard owes Giles a favor and does not actually remove the curse. Faith is tricked into believing that Angelus has returned and the two work with the Mayor. Eventually Faith reveals enough of the Mayor's plans while gloating to an apparently captive Buffy that Angel can reveal that he is not Angelus, and end the pretense. Faith is furious, not the least because Angel as Angelus had still evaded her attempts at seduction. Faith captures Willow when the Scoobies steal the Box of Gavrok from City Hall, giving the Mayor the leverage needed to get it back. By this time Faith is immune to anything they Scoobies have to say; she's getting the acceptance and praise she has craved from the Mayor. She poisons Angel for him, just to provide a distraction for Buffy. This action triggers the explosion that had been waiting to happen: Buffy and Faith face off one on one. Buffy is doing this because she believes she needs Faith's blood to save Angel; in truth it is the inevitable conclusion of the tensions and antagonism between them. Buffy tries to kill Faith, even deals Faith a killing blow with the knife the Mayor gave Faith as a gift but Faith slips away from her thud rendering the victory an empty one. Faith is found and taken to the Hospital, where her blood loss is remedied, but the severe head trauma is not directly treatable. Buffy is also brought to the Hospital unconscious, the result of offering herself to save Angel. While they are both unconscious their Slayer minds communicate more effectively that they ever did speaking fact to face, Faith gives Buffy the clues to defeating the Mayor, and then concedes the battle to her. Faith is the little lost girl, at once vulnerable and untouchable. She boasts of needing nothing, yet when the opportunities present themselves she invariably takes them, such as Gwendolyn Post and the Mayor. She bonds to women more easily; both her original Watcher and again with Gwen Post. Faith poses an intriguing counterpoint to Buffy, showing what can happen if the Slayer begins to think that the calling places her above the rest; there's a growing callous disregard for the rules; a disrespect for others; great delight taken in doing things, taking things, simply because she can. There are sides that Faith shows us, that we can see mirrored in Buffy. Her anger, as we see her take it out on the vampires has been seen in Buffy. Her direct insistence on being her own person has been reflected in Buffy's small rebellions against her fate. Faith is Buffy's shadow self; in her we learn more of the darkness within the Slayer.
The Cafeteria Lady is the embodiment of the bad school food cliché. In this case the food can literally kill you. She sees the student body performing the same function day after day, nothing but eating, no matter what is put in front of them, until finally, deciding that the vermin must be exterminated, she schedules Mulligan Stew for the menu and has rat poison at hand [definition: Mulligan Stew — a stew made from whatever ingredients are at hand]. When that action is thwarted she cracks completely and goes after Xander with a meat cleaver. She is stopped by Buffy who knocks her out. We assume she is then arrested, but the outcome is not known. In her we have the background person; one of the staff of the school, rarely noticed yet the most substantial threat to the students as a group that we've seen. Not a vampire, not a demon, not a witch, no supernatural powers nor invoking thereof; just plain old spite and venom, with the classic method of poisoning.
The Gingerbread Mob/MOO were under the influence of the Hansel & Gretel demon. They started out as 'concerned' citizens and evolved rapidly into vigilantes. Their cause was to eliminate all things related to witchcraft and mysticism; their goal to rid Sunnydale of the bad people. They caused Giles' books to removed from the library as unsuitable material. Buffy's mother and Willow's mother each determined that the other's daughter was a bad influence on their own. The contrast between Joyce and Sheila was marked. Where Joyce was involved in Buffy's life and had indeed joined her on patrol to learn firsthand what it was about, Sheila is so far removed from Willow's life that she doesn't even know her daughter's current appearance. Joyce allows Buffy the freedom to go on patrol and try to figure things out; Sheila confines Willow to her room and removes all sources of outside interaction. Eventually though the demon brings them to the point where only the purging of the evil will suffice, which leads to the capture of Buffy, Willow and Amy. They are tied to stakes and the confiscated book are piled around them in preparation for a ritual burning at the stake. The mob is oblivious to the import of their actions and when the demon is unmasked, they are horrified at what almost occurred. we are given a rare glance into Willow's homelife when we witness her encounters with Sheila. It is interesting to note that not everyone is affected by the demons mind control, and that the ones who are not are those who know the nature of Sunnydale and the Hellmouth. It is also intriguing to note that in the original fairy tale, the children are put out to die by their father and stepmother on more then one occasion. The demon has arranged things so that what is actually happening is the adults putting the children to death. Buffy is truly questions the point of her slaying, never winning, never even getting ahead of the game. Buffy also faces an opponent who has manipulated things so that the ones physically causing the harm are humans, no longer acting with free will and among them is her mother who conspires to kill her. They must destroy the evil while preserving the humanity.
The Watcher's Council is a group whose traditional role has been to identify, train and assist the Slayer in carrying out her duties. Giles is a member of this council. As Buffy's 18th birthday approached, Quentin Travers comes to Sunnydale with a small group to prepare for the traditional testing of the Slayer upon her turning 18. As part of the preparation, she is given an organic compound without her knowledge that slows her reflexes and suppresses adrenaline to prevent her from accessing her Slayer abilities. Giles, as her Watcher, is responsible for accomplishing this, although he doesn't like it; he is under strict orders that Buffy not know what is being done. Once she is sufficiently weakened, she will face a vampire who has been prepared for her — Zachary Kralik, who was criminally insane before his vamping. Kralik's handler, Blair, however, didn't exercise sufficient caution when giving him his medicine and was caught and killed by Kralik. The other handler, Hobson, was turned by him. In their arrogance the Council never took into consideration that this could happen. Kralik went in search of the Slayer, and very nearly catches Buffy, who runs from him. Giles is looking for her because he saw what happened to Blair and rescues her. Kralik then goes after Joyce and captures her, using her as bait. Buffy takes the bait, now knowing why her strength is so impaired. When Quentin shows up in Giles' office, he is unconcerned about the turn of events. His concern is only that Buffy has entered the house, and if she survives, she'll have demonstrated that she is worthy to be the Slayer. If not, well there's Faith. Giles is furious and goes to assist Buffy. Between them they kill both Hobson and Kralik and release Joyce. After all this In their arrogance, the Council disregards any considerations outside those of their own goals. They weaken the Slayer for their 'cruciamentum' then send her on out to patrol. When Kralik breaks loose and is out in Sunnydale, no effort is made to find him. Kralik kidnaps Buffy's mother, drawing her to the house where there are no safeguards left. Maybe Quentin is able to rationalize the potential death of the Slayer by saying she wasn't sufficient for the job, but had Buffy failed, how was he going to justify Joyce's death? When Giles intervenes and is instrumental in preventing Joyce's death, the only response the Council has is to fire him because he did not keep his distance from the situation. Of all the Council, Giles is the only one to approach the situation with compassion and humanity, stating his abhorrence of the test, of the secrecy, and of the part he is required to play. Having sent the Watcher to train the Slayer, and Buffy having developed a trust in Giles, for training, for information, for counsel, Giles is now to offer no information at a time it could cost Buffy her life on patrol. He does suggest not patrolling while she is feeling poorly, but is prevented from being any more specific. Wesley Wyndham Price is sent to be Buffy's Watcher after Giles' removal, an overly-intellectual, self- important, pompous young Watcher who believes everything the Council has told him and adheres closely to the Council's rules. He believes that his 'field experience' against vampires in controlled circumstances gives him the necessary knowledge of the foes faced by the Slayer. Wesley is never really given much of a chance by either Buffy or Faith, both of whom offered him no respect and delighted in making his life miserable in many tiny ways as well as disregarding him rather completely in matters of any importance. When Wesley informs the Council about Faith's killing of Deputy Mayor Allan Finch, their response is to peremptorily arrest her on the order of the Watcher's Council's of Britain and prepare to take her to England to accept the judgment of the disciplinary committee. Giles surmises that they will lock her away for a long time, but this is not likely because the Slayer line passes through Faith. If she is locked away and something happens to Buffy, Faith would either have to be released or killed to have an active Slayer. The Council is far more likely to take the expedient route, and take the new Slayer in hand. The Council may once have been an force for good but it's stasis and inability to make any adjustment to the realities of the world has changed it to a group that orders lives according to its own convenience, all the while feeling quite superior to the poor ordinary person whose import is so much less than their own. It is this very attitude that ultimately renders their pronouncements regarding the Slayer's fitness and Giles' unfitness moot; Buffy fires them and they become a Watcher's Council with no Slayer. To Wesley's credit, he is capable of seeing that the battle before them must be won and puts himself at Buffy's disposal.
Tucker Wells is a classmate of the Scooby gang who decides to disrupt the Prom with a little chaos and mass murder apparently because a girl he asked out turned him down. He has the ability to summon demons, choosing to bring for a group of hellhounds, demons bred for killing. He shows them teen movies with general formal dance attire and trappings, training them to attack anyone in that attire. He gives Buffy a welcome distraction from her romantic woes, while showing, once again that the source of the evil to be fought can spring from the most mundane causes.
And last but not least, Principal Snyder continues his campaign of harassment. He actively tries to keep Buffy out of school, and takes great glee in making this point quite clear. His involvement in the Mayor's plans becomes more and more evident with time, although he is clearly not in the Mayor's confidence but only one of his minions. He arranges for the band candy to be distributed by all of the students simply by making it a requirement [I should have been so lucky]. The Mayor is selected as commencement speaker for graduation. But something different occurs this season with him as well. Under the influence of the band candy, from which he is apparently not advised to abstain, he gives us a glimpse into his character. He was the guy who didn't belong and didn't know it. He wanted to hang with the kids he saw as cool, and interestingly enough, this was the Scooby gang. He attached himself to Buffy, Willow and Oz, running after them when they left him at the Bronze, trying to be cool and failing miserably. He boasts about his 'achievements' (he shook the Mayor's hand — twice) in an attempt to make the others see him as important. He hits on Joyce quite ineptly. Principal Snyder is constantly rejected by the ones he wants to emulate even now. And the ones he's the most contemptuous of as the principal are the ones he most wanted to be at their age.

This season's bad brought evil from authority figures in many venues: the Watcher's Council, The Mayor, parents, and the school staff. In all of these cases the authority figure is not simply using its power to control things, but is actively attempting to kill Buffy, as well as others. The Watcher's Council puts Buffy into a situation that could very easily result in her death, endangering her mother and the population of Sunnydale as well. The Mayor wants her out of the way initially, assigning Trick, among others, to kill her, but after her fight with Faith takes matters into his own hands and very nearly succeeds in smothering Buffy when he finds her vulnerable. The parents are willing to burn their children at the stake 'for their own good'. And the cafeteria lady comes very close to poisoning a good percentage of the student body. All of these people are expected to behave in a manner befitting the trust that is implicitly given them; all betray that trust. In only one case, that of the parents, is the behavior excusable because of outside influences. Many of the little bads this season are directly or indirectly linked to one of these authorities. The Mayor hires Trick, who in turn brings Ethan Rayne back into the picture. Balthazar returns to challenge the Mayor again, bringing with him El Eliminati. Lurconis is a demon to whom the Mayor made promises in return for power. Principal Snyder remains in charge of the high school because the Mayor wants it. He seduces Faith to his cause, offering what no one else does: he accepts her for herself. He obtains the Killer of the Dead poison that nearly kills Angel. And he ascends into Olvikan, a full strength demon. The Watcher's Council is far from innocent this season. Their carelessness releases Zachary Kralik on an unsuspecting Sunnydale. Gwendolyn Post is trained by them, and knows that Faith is minus a Watcher, so if she was kicked out by the Council it was quite recently. The Council seemed to think that the Council member with the least need- to-know was the one who had both the current Slayers under his charge, which was an unprecedented situation. They mishandled Faith's situation so badly that instead of helping her come to terms with a mistake, they assured that she turn as far away from them as possible. Anyanka is significant this season in that she was not only responsible for the WishVerse, and for the events in Dopplegangland, she is also instrumental in helping them to know what they are facing in the Mayor's asxension. In this third year we see a new layer of the evil in Sunnydale; it is not random vampires and demons, it is not the occasional vampire or demon who has organized their efforts, but the entire local government is built to encourage demonic activity and allow access to the mystical energy of the Hellmouth. The entire existence of Sunnydale is due to the Mayor and his ambitions. He has arranged for the town to flourish, consorts with demons, keeps the populace in the dark, and generally treats Sunnydale as his own private playground. And the Mayor knows how to play.

Your feedback is welcomed!

[> [> Keeping it alive until I get a chance to read! Looks great! -- ponygirl, 07:07:18 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> Great Post! Lot's to ponder here -- shadowkat, 09:28:11 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> [> Thank you! (and thank you for giving it a little longer life) -- LittleBit, 09:47:39 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> Hey Rob! I hope you're saving all these for your annotations. -- Sophist, 09:35:08 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> Re: Evolution of Evil in the BuffyVerse from Simple Evil to Pogo, Part Three (2 of 2) -- ponygirl, 10:41:45 07/18/02 Thu

Wow! That was great LittleBit! And I do hope that these get saved somewhere by Rob or someone else -- it's an excellent reference! Reading over your posts makes me realize how big the anti-authority theme was in s3, from the Mayor to the CoW to MOO to the parental authority turned upside down in Band Candy to Gwennie Post it was just a bad year for putting your trust in the people in charge. It all led of course to the necessity of Buffy and the Sunnydale students rising up against this authority and taking responsibility for their own defence.

[> [> Wow! Had to print this for later..... -- aliera, 14:06:51 07/18/02 Thu

[> Though I'd see if it could make it all the way to the evening -- LittleBit, 15:43:34 07/18/02 Thu

[> Silly little quibble -- Dead Soul, 17:05:41 07/18/02 Thu

I love these - they really bring the seasons back to life for me as I stagnate here at work.

One thing though, which is probably just a difference in interpretation. I thought Spike was after the spell in the Magic Shop to use on Angel because he blamed Angel for everything going so wrong in the first place. I got this impression from his monologue while spying on Angel in the mansion just before he passes out in the couryard.

Admittedly, I haven't looked at shooting scripts or anything like that.


Dead Soul

[> [> Re: Silly little quibble -- LittleBit, 17:36:45 07/18/02 Thu

Well, DS, darn it --- you're right. I went and re-read the transcript and it is definitely Angel he's focused on.

Thanks for pointing it out!!


[> [> [> Re: Silly little quibble -- Dead Soul, 20:51:41 07/18/02 Thu

Yay! I'm right! It happens so infrequently.

Dead Soul (happy not to be eating crow - again)

[> Giles and Betrayal by Authority Figures (Season 3/6 parallel) -- cjl, 22:47:20 07/18/02 Thu

Huh. Again with the threes in the Buffyverse -- 1, 4, 7 with new beginnings, the mirroring of 2 and 5, and now the link between 3 and 6: in Season 3, the gang's viewpoint broadened from their inner circle to the community of Sunnydale, where they found entirely new levels of menace from the authority figures they had taken for granted their entire lives.

The perfect symbol of this threat, of course, was Giles. Giles was the authority figure everyone trusted without question despite his checkered past--and perhaps even BECAUSE of his checkered past. The confrontation with his wicked days in Oxford only brought him closer to Buffy and the gang because they saw he was a human being, despite all his erudition.

How much more shocking, then, when Giles actually went through with the Cruciamentum--simultaneously submitting to the Council's worst tendencies and abusing his authority with Buffy.

In a strange, sideways fashion, this theme is picked up again in Season 6, after Giles has left, and the gang is forced to define their relationship to the community on their own. Distracted as they are by their own personal problems, and taking their cue from an emotionally distant Buffy, Sunnydale gets royally screwed over. For the S6 Scoobys, patrolling was a perfunctory task at best and ignored at worst; there was all sorts of irresponsible mojo flying around everywhere, and the one good witch who could stop it was trying to distance herself from the carnage; and the Legion of Dorkness--don't get me started. If Buffy and the gang had their heads screwed on straight for two seconds, those guys would have been toast right after Life Serial. But the Scoobs keep letting the nerds slip under the radar, kept brushing them away like evil lint instead of taking them seriously, and Warren's monomania had room to grow and thrive. We know where that led. The SG's irresponsibility nearly set armageddon in motion.

So, just like Season 3, the authority figures, the people responsible for the safety of the community, screwed up.

In this case, though, the Gang had no one to blame but themselves.

Musings about S7 BB (spoilers and wild speculation for S7) -- Off-kilter, 04:11:39 07/18/02 Thu

I’ve been reading spoilers about several Big and Little Bads coming back for appearances next season. Notably, the Master, Faith, and Glory have been cited as being on the books for Season 7 at some point or another. A couple of sources seem to think that this is indicative of a possible Shape-shifter as the Big Bad of next season and it seems possible. But if JW has said that the next BB will be “Everyones worst nightmare,” why do we assume he didn’t mean that literally?

In NA we had a demon that morphed reality for one person-- Buffy. Not sure if he was able to control this reality or if Buffy was creating her own world. But if we have one demon able to do this, why not another? One that can produce an aura that will make a person visualize their own personal demons inside. Much like Fear, Itself except played out over an entire season. I think this is a much more likely type of BB than a shape-shifter ala Terminator 2 bad guy.

This could even encompass AB coming back as a Tara look- alike without *being* Tara.

If someone else came up with this theory already and I missed it, I apologize profusely. Please poke holes in my little idea!

[> Poke! -- NightRepair, 05:02:37 07/18/02 Thu

[> Re: Musings about S7 BB (spoilers and wild speculation for S7) -- shadowkat, 06:05:34 07/18/02 Thu

Cool idea. Certainly one I'm convinced they'll probably use, although I am remaining unspoiled this season!!
I swear. Have not gone to spoilerslayer. Am off B C & S.
Not reading any spoilers. I only know what Joss revealed.

Speculation? Convinced it will be a shape-shifter not unlike the first evil, which unifies all the seasons, by making Buffy fight all her past villains. This could also be a way of having Spike and Tara come back evil and good at the same time. The things they could do with this concept just boggle the mind...let's see who are the people it could shape-shift into?

1. Riley
2. Drusilla
3. Tara
4. Harmony
5. Anya
6. Cecily
7. Catherine Madison
8. Ted
9. Joyce
10. Spike
11. DarkWillow
12. Warren
13. Jonathan
14. Glory/Ben
15. Ethan Rayne
16. The Master
17. The Anoited One
18. Adam
19. Sam
20. Hank Summers
21. Dawn
22. Faith

The list you see is endless. Really starting to look forward to season 7.

s7 speculation, no s7 spoilers, based only on aired episodes of BTVS/ATS -- abt, 05:00:30 07/18/02 Thu

This post contains s7 spec, but no spoilers. Neither is the spec based on spoilers, because I don't read them.

I just saw ATS 3.19 The Price. Same as in Afterlife and Superstar, some monster thing gets made as the side-effect of dark magic. So I'm wondering if something absolutely huge is going to get made as a side- effect of Willow's use of all the dark magic at the end of s6? She had all the stuff from the Magic Box and Rack.

[> Re: s7 speculation, no s7 spoilers, based only on aired episodes of BTVS/ATS -- CW, 05:07:25 07/18/02 Thu

It's not a sure thing, but if ME's going to be consistant, you should be right. Big magic should bring big side consequences. Might be an early test of how coherent season 7 is going to be.

[> [> Re: s7 speculation, no s7 spoilers, based only on aired episodes of BTVS/ATS -- abt, 06:38:11 07/18/02 Thu

I think they could use the thaumogenesis idea if they wanted, or they could have it so that Giles' good magic cancelled it out, or something like that. If they do use it, then I assume it will be regarded as Willow's responsibility, like Angel in The Price but that's another debate, I suppose.

Snubbed Again! BtVS Emmy Nominations. -- Darby, 06:06:37 07/18/02 Thu

This is it for Emmy nominations...

Outstanding Hairstyling - Hell's Bells
Outstanding MakeUp - Hell's Bells
Outstanding Makeup (Prosthetic)- Hell's Bells
Outstanding Music Direction - Once More With Feeling

Hell's bells, indeed...

[> ARghh! I'm deeply hurt. -- neauxcrying, 06:13:22 07/18/02 Thu

[> Son of a *@#$! The Emmy's are a joke but still!! -- ponygirl, 06:36:41 07/18/02 Thu

[> The "it's just some silly show about teenagers and vampires" stigma continues to haunt -- Caesar Augustus, 06:40:53 07/18/02 Thu

[> Mediocrity triumphs again... -- Caroline, 06:49:46 07/18/02 Thu

with the exception of a few shows like Six Feet Under, Scrubs and Malcolm in the Middle. Let's face it, Joss is just too damn good for his own good.

[> The Shield Strikes Again -- SiteStalker, 07:54:48 07/18/02 Thu

OK, I have been stalking this site for awhile and have never posted, but this Emmy thing has got me irked. Anyone notice that Michael Chiklis of The Shield got nominated for Best Actor in a Drama? First we are tortured to watch the promos for months and now he gets a nomination and Buffy doesn't??? They may as well of nominated Sins of the Father for Best TV Movie to rub it in a little more.

[> [> The Shield deserves it. -- Darby, 08:12:14 07/18/02 Thu

I swore I wouldn't watch it because of the annoying promo campaign, but somehow I wound up watching it anyway and it is the best new show, possibly the best show period, this year, and Chiklis definitely deserves not just an Emmy nomination but an Emmy. CCH Pounder, too.

My wife has made me feel less guilty about watching by saying that a network should get behind its quality shows (and the campaign worked, which means we'll see more saturation marketing, sigh). Not enough to get me to watch Sins of the Father, but that was also pretty decent from what I've heard.

[> [> [> Re: The Shield deserves it. -- Purple Tulip, 09:01:02 07/18/02 Thu

I can't stand saturation marketing! I love FX for airing the old seasons of Buffy because I didn't start watching until season six---but when my roommate and I would watch Buffy at 6 or 7, I swear the only two commercials were for Sins of the Father and the Shield. I think I memorized the promos for both and could have recited them verbatim--- that's enough to keep me from watching something---I don't like to be hit over the head, if I'm gonna watch it, I'll watch it.

And Buffy and crew were deffinately ripped off. It just seems really unfair that they keep getting overlooked every year. It seems like the Emmy people just go with their same formula for choosing shows and that keeps the same ones in every year, while conveniently overlooking the real talent. I think that they were overlooked for the same reason that James Marsters didn't get voted as one of Holleywood's Best Bodies---they weren't mainstream enough nor obscure enough.

[> [> [> And how! -- d'Herblay, 10:41:03 07/18/02 Thu

In my opinion, and while the opinion is worth what you paid for it, I have watched a lot of TV, Chiklis gave not only the best performance of the year, but the best performance I have ever seen on television. Better than Alexis Denisof, better than Sarah Michelle, better than Andre Braugher, better than that bare-assed Dennis Franz ever could. I swear, if he does not win the Emmy, then I will . . . well, actually, I'll just do what I do every year and acknowledge that the Emmy voters wouldn't recognize quality if you spotted them the "Q" and the "U." I mean, Emeril gets a nomination? The West Wing gets 21? Law & Order for Outstanding Drama? They put that one in the wrong category -- it should be in Best Animation, Hour or Longer, along with Walking With Dinosaurs. Clearly they used the same actors. I'm torn between 24 and The Shield in the writing category, but Chiklis all the way, man!

[> [> It is just wrong -- terese, 22:33:12 07/18/02 Thu

I too have been lurking around this site for a year and have never posted. I have been watching Buffy since its debut. Mr. Whedon is tremendously talented and it is just WRONG that his peers do not acknowledge his gift. (but then, perhaps he has no peers) It is just WRONG!

[> Whatever -- Arethusa, 08:58:50 07/18/02 Thu

Look at the Emmy winners of the last ten years: Northern Exposure, Picket Fences, NYPD Blue, ER, Law and Order, The Practice (!), West Wing. All shows that reflect well on Acadamy voters, as sophisticated people deeply interested in moral dilemmas and social issues. (Who knows how Northern Exposure won.) To vote for a show about a supernatural woman shagging a vampire, with an gay best friend who's not just there for laughs-not likely. No God, no politics, no Social Issues (sic), no Ripped From the Headlines legal issues. No BtVS Emmy.

[> [> Actually, it's not that these things aren't addressed in Buffy ... -- Dichotomy, 09:56:05 07/18/02 Thu

...it's just that they're not presented in "stand still while we hit you over the head with a sledge hammer" fashion. Heck, it took me lurking here to start catching the analogies and symbolism. Buffy is not best appreciated by simpletons.

[> [> [> Absolutely agree -- Arethusa, 10:05:34 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> [> Yep. Why I stopped paying attention to awards shows in nutshell -- shadowkat, 11:22:37 07/18/02 Thu

They always award politically correct choices. Very seldom award risk-takers. And often the same people get it over and over again. I believe Candice Bergen stopped letting her name be sent in at one point. B/C she won all the time.
(I think it was her, can't remember...stopped paying attention to the whole thing after the Sopranos lost
their first year up and I think The Practice won.)

The Oscars also annoy me. Can never remember the winners, only the one's that should have won...which let's see is close to endless.

Best to ignore them altogether and vote with our watching habits. HAven't seen the Sheild - on too late for me.
I get up at 6am each morning and it's on at 10:30.

[> [> [> [> Re: Yep. Why I stopped paying attention to awards shows in nutshell -- Purple Tulip, 13:25:00 07/18/02 Thu

I have a friend who has refused to watch any awards show until Buffy get the Emmy that they deserve. I agree with you about the politicaly correct choices---that's the case a lot of the time. Other times they try to go with the classic choice like Julia Roberts, Tom Hanks and Titanic, figuring they can't go wrong. Very seldomly do they ever surprise me in their nominations or in their winners. Sure they might nominate the obscurity but never in a million years would that one ever win. I'm so sick of show like Friends and ER winning everything---don't get me wrong, I do watch both shows (though not as religiously as Buffy), and both are very good shows, but I just think that it's time for other shows, like Buffy, to be recognized for their insightful, daring takes instead of the mindless mainstream popularity that seems to be their only criteria in choosing a winner.

We should start a "Give Buffy the Emmy they Deserve or We'll (insert some sort of strike tactic)" campaign ---
anyone with me???? ;)

[> [> [> [> [> Re: Yep. Why I stopped paying attention to awards shows in nutshell -- CW, 14:18:03 07/18/02 Thu

I think the problem is that the nomination process almost functions like a cliche. It's as if the old high school Cordelia and the Cordettes we're choosing the nominees. It's not that they have no taste, but their tastes are so affectedly conventional, that it's difficult for anything much different to make it through the process.

I feel bad mostly, that ME really wanted more recognition for OMWF this year, and didn't get it. But, personally after 'The Body' was shut out last year, I have little, but contempt for the whole Emmy Award process. The Emmy's are not precisely about what's best in TV and we all know it.

But, Joss and ME will have the last laugh. They will be making residual money off of 'Buffy' long after most all of this year's winners are gone and forgotten.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Yep. Why I stopped paying attention to awards shows in nutshell -- shadowkat, 06:02:18 07/19/02 Fri

"But, Joss and ME will have the last laugh. They will be making residual money off of 'Buffy' long after most all of this year's winners are gone and forgotten."

Very true. Just look at the whole Star Trek enterprise.
Never got an emmy. But - has made more money than any of the shows that did at the time. It makes more than MASH.

Why? Because sci-fi/fantasy cult genre can be marketed in ways other shows can't. Really. Who buys books and shooting
scripts on Friends and ER? Or writes academic analysis?
Who buys action figures? Posters? T-shirts? Albums?
Follows the stars around? Creates websites? Yep...my guess?
The money isn't in the emmys. The longevity isn't either.

[> Upset about lack of Buffy-love, but wow for Six Feet Under! -- Rob, 09:08:15 07/18/02 Thu

I am very, very happy for my second favorite show, "Six Feet Under," which not only snagged a best drama nom, but also noms for EVERY main cast member on the show!

Best Actor--Michael C. Hall (Dave) and Peter Krause (Nate) both nominated!

Best Actress--Frances Conroy (Ruth) and Rachel Griffiths (Brenda) nominated!

Best Supporting Actor--Freddy Rodriguez (Rico) nominated!

Best Supporting Actress--Lauren Ambrose (Claire) nominated!!

Very happy day for SFU fans!


[> [> Re: Upset about lack of Buffy-love, but wow for Six Feet Under! -- trebor, 13:22:21 07/18/02 Thu

Six Feet Under was assumed to get all the nominations that the Sopranos wasn't going to get this year. It doesn't surprise me in the least. I've only seen one episdoe, but Peter Krause was great in Sports Nite, logic would dictate...

What bothers me, is that the nominations are so predictable. They're going to be shows that are in the top 20-30 watched, and their actors, OR they're going to be shows like SFU or Sopranos, on HBO, because the voters get such a hard on for anything HBO.

That's what made The Shield and 24s nominations even more interesting, to me. Both could win, but will probably get swept behind whatever momentum the mediocre West Wing or L&O come up with.

[> [> [> Question- Casting for Six Feet Under -- Wizardman, 22:28:27 07/18/02 Thu

Isn't the guy who plays Gabe on 'Six Feet Under' the guy who played Jesse way back in S1?

[> [> [> [> Good catch! -- d'Herblay, 00:09:54 07/19/02 Fri

Eric Balfour was indeed Jesse in "WTTH/The Harvest," as well as Gabe on Six Feet Under and Milo on 24. Damn, this kid can pick Emmy-bait series.

[> [> [> [> [> And The Devil in the car commercial! -- Darby, 07:06:15 07/19/02 Fri

Which car commercial? Ummmm, the one with the Devil in it?

You gotta wonder how the system stays in business...

[> [> [> [> [> [> Interestingly... -- Rob, 08:18:04 07/19/02 Fri

Three Six Feet Under cast members were in a movie together, long before the show started: Eric Balfour and Freddy Rodriguez (Rico) both had small parts, and Lauren Ambrose (Claire) was one of the leads in that teen movie from a few years ago, "Can't Hardly Wait." For those of you who haven't seen it, it's actually a fun little film and is definitely on the higher end of the teen movie genre. Not quite the top (John Hughes--the era of "Sixteen Candles" through "Pretty in Pink"--or "Clueless"), but up there.


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> "Can't Hardly Wait" -- Darby, 09:51:58 07/19/02 Fri

Didn't particularly like the movie, except for the Seth Green - Lauren Ambrose scenes, but those were great. Almost at the Whedon level, but part of that may be the elevation of material by two very good actors.

Oh, yeah - Seth Green is in the movie, too...

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> And Amber Benson, and several other "Buffy" guests -- d'Herblay, 13:16:16 07/19/02 Fri

Marcie from "Out of Mind, Out of Sight," Jack from "The Zeppo," one of the Cordettes from "The Wish," Veruca the she- wolf, Owen from "Never Kill a Boy . . . " and Pete from "Beauty and the Beasts."

[> Re: Snubbed Again! BtVS Emmy Nominations. -- verdantheart, 06:29:05 07/19/02 Fri

I'm sorry to see that happen, but I was rather surprised to see the nom for music direction. I expected a complete snub except for hair/makeup/effects (the usual for sci- fi/fantasy). However, I was extremely pleased to see the number of noms for Alias, which proved to be nearly the only bright spot for ABC (good omen for that series!) -- especially a best-supporting nod for Victor Garber (hurray!). Unfortunately he's nearly lost amongst a forest of West-Wingers (4? Give me a break! And why are there 6 nominees in the Best Supporting Actor category?). Winner or not, it's good to see the recognition. It's also nice to see recognition for Kiefer Sutherland and 24 (which may not have had the depth of Buffy, but was a nicely tight thriller that kept up the heat for 24 episodes, no mean feat; I think that's worthy of recognition). I don't know about The Shield. I wanted to see it, but there were always conflicts (it's one of the types of series that I have a potential to enjoy). The encouraging thing about the nominations is that more newer things were considered and made their way into the nominations (and no Dennis Franz this time, thank God! No one's that good! (He certainly isn't.)) -- Alias even sneaked into the writing nominations (thank goodness, no 4- nomination West Wing bloc this year!).
The discouraging side is that there are still darlings, and those darlings tend to linger even when they weaken (new darling? Six Feet Under--I haven't seen that one, but I hear it's good.). After all, West Wing just hasn't been as strong since the first season, yet it continues as an Emmy powerhouse. Voters love it because they can feel good about voting for it. After all, they like the premise, it looks good, and has a solid cast (then give it cinematography, OK?). Things like Buffy the Vampire Slayer? They're probably uncomfortable with the premise, and even if they look at enough at it to see beneath the surface, they might be wondering what "message" they're sending by voting for it. I'm always a little leery of the darlings because people seem to vote for them in every category, whether it applies or not.

Oh, well, enough free-association. Just my 2 cents.

Greenwalt-less Angel - Who is this Simkins guy? -- Darby, 07:29:53 07/18/02 Thu

Did some surfing at the Movie Database, curious about this David Simkins fella who's now running the show.

Some good news -

He's credited with writing Adventures in Babysitting, a really fun movie, and Spy Game (a show on briefly but which I really enjoyed - better than Alias, and with Keith Sza...Ssa...Zsaa..um, Holtz as a regular), and he did work on Angel's staff when it first started.

Some iffy news -

He's worked on a lot of shows, including Angel, without getting specific writing credits. He's been on Dark Angel (early), Charmed (very early, when they were actually trying something - Spelling is more innovative than people give him credit for, but he gives into the same old crap way too fast), Freaky Links, Lois and Clark, Brisco County Jr, Roswell, and Vengeance Unlimited, for which he appears to be credited for four actual scripts total, 3 of which were on Roswell. Maybe that makes him a great and valuable collaborator, maybe that makes him a detail person now in an overseeing role.

I have no idea what this means, but thought it might be interesting, and it's summer reruns and I'm desperately putting off actual work.

[> Re: Greenwalt-less Angel - Who is this Simkins guy? -- Arethusa, 08:27:18 07/18/02 Thu

Looks good so far. I checked him out at TV Tome and other sites, and evidently he's good at moral ambiguity and black humor. He worked with Sam Raimi on "Spy Game"-here's hoping they have the same wicked humor. On the other hand, he also wrote "The New Adventures of Spin and Marty," so.... He wrote one Lois and Clark, a decent episode with a spy plot. Did you know Tim Minear wrote several L & Cs?

'Buffy' Emmy Nominations -- Sebastian, 08:27:04 07/18/02 Thu

Long time, no see guys. I've been lurking around.

Here are the nods 'Buffy' received for the Emmy's:

Outstanding Hairstyling For A Series
Buffy The Vampire Slayer • Hell’s Bells

Outstanding Makeup For A Series (Non-Prosthetic)
Buffy The Vampire Slayer • Hell’s Bells

Outstanding Makeup For A Series (Prosthetic)
Buffy The Vampire Slayer • Hell’s Bells

Outstanding Music Direction
Buffy The Vampire Slayer • Once More With Feeling

The direct link to all the nominated categories are here.

- S

[> My apologies to Darby - I didn't realize you had posted this earlier..... -- Sebastian, 08:30:39 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> Understandable - The last archiving wave jumbled the thread order. -- Darby, 09:41:07 07/18/02 Thu

[> Ahhh but you put in the link to all the Emmy nominations.....good! -- Rufus, 15:56:23 07/18/02 Thu

[> That's IT?!? GRR!!! ARRGH!!! -- Wizardman, 22:24:57 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> Re: That's IT?!? GRR!!! ARRGH!!! -- skpe, 06:27:30 07/19/02 Fri


" All in all, there were more surprisingly just nominations than egregious snubs — though we might as well admit that "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" (which is wittier than "The West Wing," more suspenseful than "Law & Order" and more inventive than the slick "CSI") could cure cancer and not get a thank-you from Emmy. (It got a few minor nods for music, makeup and hairstyling.) "

Bad Writing, And where I thought the writers were going w/ Buffy's feelings this season -- Spike Lover, 10:29:59 07/18/02 Thu

I know I am opening a whole can of whoop ass on myself, but I was posting this down under the "Xander & Buffy bring out the worst in their partners" post below and feared that since I was so stirred up over this now, that no one would read it because it was so far down. So I am reposting my comments.

I have to admit, I don't understand how Buffy feels, and I am not certain that either Buffy or even the writers do.

After everything they had been through in Season 5 and the first part of Season 6, I would have sworn that she had warm, fuzzy feelings for Spike. (I did.)

I mean, all the time when she is back from the dead, and they are hanging out, drinking, talking, etc., am I to believe that she would have hung out at Willey's bar with the demon trash and so confided with them if Spike had not been around?

Am I to believe that when Giles left, she would have mugged w/ anyone and she just picked Spike out of cruelty. (I really don't like her.)(If that is where the writers wanted to go, they should have had her being indesceet with other men/demons as well. Then we the audience would have said: oh, she is just escaping her pain through sex.-- It all comes down to POOR writing.

Truthfully, where I thought they were going with all this was this: Buffy does love Spike, flawed as he is, but is so shocked that she could love a soulless and previous killer of slayers and people, that she denies it.

Instead, the WRITERS have us believe, no Buffy just has 'problems' and she is using someone she cares nothing about for sex. (Let me add here that since this is their thesis, Hell's Bells is very badly written. What would Buffy care who Spike brings to a wedding or if he bangs her afterward? Also, what would she care if Spike bangs Anya either? They have written her as such a primadonna **@#!!.)

[> Buffy's feelings for Spike -- auroramama, 11:07:43 07/18/02 Thu

Remember how the Judge described Spike and Dru? "You share affection and jealousy." He doesn't mention the great sex (is he something of a evil prude?) and he doesn't say "love" (perhaps, being what he is, he *can't*), so that's as far as he's willing to go.

I don't know whether Buffy is in love with Spike. But IMHO we've been shown both affection and jealousy. The jealousy is canonically obvious; to me the affection is more subtle but shows up in those "warm, fuzzy" moments in late S5 and early S6. In SR, Buffy says it isn't love she feels because love requires trust. To me that sounds like she's admitting to a good portion of the feelings that go into love, and to the possibility of more if the barrier of trust didn't exist.

As for her behavior: on no planet would I buy Buffy having sex with someone she cares nothing about. Even with Parker she had spent several days making a connection, and she thought their first night together was the beginning of a relationship (as he took care to imply without actually saying.)

Buffy defines what she's doing with Spike as wrong, not because she feels nothing for him, but because she isn't and can't let herself be in love with him as he is with her. Granted, it takes her a long time to get to that degree of self-knowledge.

She starts with a grudging respect and carefully concealed affection for Spike (late S5) At first she tells herself that it's all right to exploit Spike's passion because it isn't real. Then she admits that it is, but pretends the relationship between them isn't real (and isn't happening, because if it isn't happening then she doesn't have to stop it.) When she's forced to acknowledge the relationship, she can't avoid seeing the pain she's causing Spike, and she breaks it off. Afterwards she admits to feeling jealousy, but no more than that, even though jealousy without any other feelings is pretty stupid.

Finally, in SR, she concedes "feelings" for him -- the affection part of the equation -- but she can't be his lover, because she can never permit herself to lay down her obligations as Slayer for someone whose moral compass has supernatural instabilities. Angel just plain lost his; Spike doesn't have one and is steering by the stars, with Buffy his Polaris; but what if he makes a mistake? What if Buffy herself strays from her post, and he perforce strays with her?

I'm still not happy about Spike's attempting to rape Buffy (my stance is that what he *intended* was to cause her to recognize her true feelings for him, but since the way he tried to do it was to force himself on her, it would have been rape despite his state of mind) but I have to give kudos to whoever it was who said: it had to be something so far out of character that even Spike would see it was no good. He had to lose faith in himself as he was, and so it couldn't be, say, that he went out and killed Warren for his attempts to kill Buffy. She could have gotten angry and concerned about that, told him he was wrong, and thrown him out of town; but he would still believe he was in the right (and it would be morally debatable.) He had to do something *he* would see as wrong. And he had to do it to Buffy and only to Buffy, to leave the right to forgive in Buffy's hands.

But just because *I* can't think of another way doesn't mean the writers shouldn't have.


[> [> Thanks -- Spike Lover, 11:25:31 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> Great point! What else could push Spike "over the edge"? -- Darby, 12:43:51 07/18/02 Thu

auroramama, great encapsulation of the track that's been laid down so far, and a clarification that hasn't been made as well -

Spike had to do something that would make him feel that he couldn't trust himself, something that would make him want to swing his moral compass back around to the "good" side because he had realized that its "evil" setting would lead him to do things he could not stand himself doing. Forget showing the audience that Spike's bad, which was poorly done, we needed a scene that would smack Spike with the idea, which the bathroom episode does. Whether it does it well or not from that standpoint is a slightly different debate, and I feel that the whole resulting "chipectomy or resoulment?" misdirection that followed was so badly handled that it screwed up what should have been a clearer message.

But what else could he have done? Killed Clem in a fit of rage (I did fear for Clem in Spike's crypt, and I think that he would have regretted hurting his friend)? Nah, it has to be something done to Buffy, which leads me to think that it had to be in the arena that Spike and Buffy had built up a level of trust: sex, which was used, or Dawn, which was the other option. How badly would Spike have needed to hurt Dawn to acheive the same level of regret? Would emotional harm have been enough? - It is established with Spike and his women that he regrets inflicting emotional pain, and he really feels for Dawn...and I'd buy his being cruel to her when pissed better than I did Dark Willow, and he could have been the one to voice the audience's criticism.

I dunno, seen in this context maybe the bathroom scene was a good writing choice and the peripherals were badly done...

Sorry if this is bordering on bathroom-centric psychosis, but I'm amazed that we've got a fairly new perspective here after rehashing it a few hundred times.

[> [> Well-put, thanks for sharing your thoughts. -- Dyna, 14:04:44 07/18/02 Thu

[> Re: Bad Writing, And where I thought the writers were going (some spoilers) -- Rendyl, 12:09:36 07/18/02 Thu

If someone else has already said this I apologize -

***They have written her as such a primadonna **@#!!.)***

Buffy - Hello? I was dead! You know, d-e-a-d. As in not of the living. As in finally able to rest. As in never having to hurt anyone I love ever again. No more pain. Then I was clawing my way out of my own grave. Hello pain. Hello smell of death that was me. Can we say major trama?

Sigh. I don't mean to be flip. (okay, maybe a little flip) But...how can everyone hate Buffy so much? And if as so many people say the problem is just in poor writing then why should Buffy get all the bashing? Why not bash the writers instead?

More so than any other character on the show Buffy never seems to get a break. She pays (sometimes dearly) for every choice, every decision, and every lapse of judgement that she makes. Her mistakes have shaped her life and she never quite seems to be able to get over them and move on.

Maybe some people don't undestand what Buffy is feeling but I do. "I don't want to be here but now I have to be...I thought I could finally rest but now I understand I can never rest. Did I come back wrong? Did I come back okay and was just 'wrong' all along? What am I that only a monster could love me?" and looming over it all is the whole Angel/Angelus/Angel situation.

It is almost always easier for an audience to understand motivations than it is for the actual characters. We see Spike (and the others) in unguarded moments. We see the entire plot and all the happenings. They see tiny pieces of the puzzle and get glimpses into each other. We get the (no one whap me) big picture.

I guess my main complaint is we always have so much empathy for the other characters. Spike in particular(oh-oh-cough- sorry..had a cheekbone moment..cough-better now) seems to get almost unlimted sympathy and understanding from us while Buffy gets none. Some of Willow's actions this year were creepy and sleazy in ways I don't even want to try and explain and yet we find reasons to feel for her. While Buffy gets stuck with 'primadonna' or worse yet again.

Could we cut her just a tiny bit of slack?


[> [> Re: Bad Writing, And where I thought the writers were going (some spoilers) -- Artemis, 12:55:06 07/18/02 Thu

I totally agree with your statements. And thanks for stating them. Buffy is my favorite character. And yes I love Spike too. And would like them to be together. But I think the writers were right on target and true to Buffy's character considering her ordeal. Like you said," excuse me Death, pulled from Heaven" Cut her some slack.
I think she has feelings for Spike but I totaling understood her being mortified by them.

I think a lot of people understand Buffy. Or I hope they do. Maybe they're like me.They hate to type. Personally it takes me too long so I have to leave out a lot of what I really want to say. (also too many typos) Or maybe like me, they do better, discussing issues in person . But I am glad that they're some who understand Buffy and actually write about it.You're not alone.

[> [> [> Re: Bad Writing, And where I thought the writers were going (some spoilers) -- Miss Edith, 14:08:10 07/18/02 Thu

I am one of those people who has ended up slightly disliking Buffy. I did emphasise with her pain in the beginning of the season as I myself have suffered from despression. I never ended up hating the character and calling her a bitch as a lot of viewers have done. But I didn't like her behaviour in AYW. Maybe it just became a little much to see her emotionally disconnected from her friends for so long and I could only care so much. The way she and Riley slapped Spike around when he near tears tried to appeal to buffy's just did not cast her in a good light. The main problem was that Sarah Michelle Geller was directed/written to show no emotion a great deal of the time, she was just "going through the motions". Whereas Spike's pain was on screen for all to see. It just got exasperating and I did end up feeling for Spike more in the end. But certainly up until TR I was a great supporter of giving Buffy a break and making allowances for her.
I guess I ended up not disliking her as much as becoming emotionally indistant to her. When you have Spike pleading with her, trying to make an emotional connection and she is just talking about what's right and wrong with a stony expression on her face it can make things difficult for the audience to support the right character (ME were disapointed that viewers felt more for Spike and that certainly wasn't their intention).

[> [> [> [> Re: Bad Writing, And where I thought the writers were going (some spoilers) -- Miss Edith, 16:56:05 07/18/02 Thu

It think it would have helped if the character of Buffy was given something for us to relate to in order to soften the images we were presented with. I have no qualms with her dark side being addressed as all humans are flawed and make mistakes. But when I see Buffy using Spike as her sex toy and to validate her feelings about herself I am pissed at her. It would have helped if we had seen scenes of her breaking down and crying perhaps so we could have maintained our emotional connection. Even the break-up did not have the desired effect as Buffy telling Spike she was breaking things off because "its killing me" just increased the number of viewers calling her self-centered.

[> [> [> [> [> Depression -- Drizzt, 21:17:04 07/21/02 Sun

I have been depressed for two thirds of my life.

Depression for me is a lack of enthusiasm for ANYTHING.
Overwhelmed and apathetic.
Emotionless, not in feeling no emotions but in feeling no positive emotions.

SMG is very good at showing emotions of various types, IMO.
The thing is if she is supposed to pretend to be depressed this is a very hard emotion to emote; depression leads to a lack of emotional reaction to stimuli both in terms of behaviour/body language/facial expressions and in terms of how you feel. I am trying to make the point that SMG was given the impossible task of emoting the lack of enthusiasm that is part of depression. Okay, it is not impossible, but it is probably the most difficult emotion to convay.

Second is SMG herself is a cheerfull, successfull, and happy person; depression is probably the hardest emotion for her to empathise with because she has not experianced it. Ummm...she might have gotten depressed for a short time, but there is a big difference between short term depression and long term depression; maby it is inertia?

[> [> [> Re: Bad Writing, And where I thought the writers were going (some spoilers) -- celticross, 21:57:06 07/18/02 Thu

I've never been a big fan of Buffy the character, probably because I could always identify better with the supporting characters. (which, in turn, helped cause my estrangement from S6; nobody to indentify with) But I think the biggest problem with Buffy's Not Dead Anymore angst was that she internalized it to the degree that she could do nothing but wallow in it. She came oh-so-close to telling her friends what she really thought of the whole situation at the beginning of TR, only to have Willow's spell kick in. After that, not a word. Instead of continuing the rant, she started using Spike, who'd had nothing to do with her raising, as her prop. For me, at that point, it stopped being about Buffy's forced return to life.

[> [> Could I agree more? -- Rahael, 14:22:59 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> [> I'll second the agreement. -- Kerri, 18:18:19 07/18/02 Thu

I don't understand why noone seems to like Buffy. Personally, she is my favorite character, and always have been. She is the reason I am drawn to the show-yes I like all the characters but her journey is the reason I'm obsessed.

I certainly don't understand the lack of sympathy for a character who has been through so much and still remains one of the most morally good people. Instead everyone has so much sympathy for Spike. I mean he tries to rape Buffy and everyone yells at the writers. There for some reason is even more sympathy for Willow. People can forgive her trying to end the world, but they can't forgive Buffy's entering a mutally abusive relationship? I don't understand.

And let me just say I agree with aliera's post below...where are the Buffy-centered threads.

Someone help me out b/c I love the character of Buffy and find her one of the most likable and sympathetic people on the show. So please explain where all the Buffy-bashing comes from.

[> [> Re: Buffy -- aliera, 14:53:56 07/18/02 Thu

Boy and I almost didn't go in this thread;
Just goes to show...ya really never know.

"Maybe some people don't understand what Buffy is feeling but I do. "I don't want to be here but now I have to be...I thought I could finally rest but now I understand I can never rest. Did I come back wrong? Did I come back okay and was just 'wrong' all along? What am I that only a monster could love me?" and looming over it all is the whole Angel/Angelus/Angel situation."

I'm your in your minority viewership. And why I found parts of this season very challenging (please, anyone reading do not mistake challenging for bad). Except for the teenager bit, the blond bit, and of course the whole chosen one bit...Buffy is the one I most relate to. What do I relate to?

"Miles and miles to go before I sleep...."

That's one thing. Just a reality of adulthood, that we will all have to put in the time on certain things no matter if we wish to or not. Also, which of us hasn't wondered at sometime in the past if there were others out there like us? Feared abandonment? Avoided thinking about our flaws, assuming we realized we had them...avoided conflict? Threw up our hands, set aside our obligations for a brief time, and lived for the moment?

Given that you felt that connection with a main character such as Willow or Xander or Buffy, how disturbing (again not using the word bad for a reason)was it to sit through some of the episodes this year, could be pretty disturbing, at times if you're at all self reflective...there, but for the grace of god and what not...

I've heard a lot of remarks and even made a few on this issue. Personally, for me it was related to expectations. I wanted and thought I would get to see something from her that I considered more typically heroic. In the past, this is how the issues were worked through. Bad monster, fight, overcome, feel better. I knew more dark was coming; but didn't realize that it wasn't so much MORE as a completely different type of murkiness.

And how unfair and unrealistic was that? Well probably pretty high on the scale; it simply wasn't that type of a season. It was about a different type of battle.

As you can see from the first paragraphs, I don't disagree at all with your points and the issue has been niggling at me also. In fact, the even more interesting aspect of this to me is not necessarily the Buffy bashing; but, instead the dearth of posts on Buffy and the apparent *lack* of interest in the future development of the supposedly central character. When's the last time we saw a really juicy, sink- your-teeth-into-it Buffy post (present thread excepted) that didn't relate primarily to Spike?

A pity she didn't lose her soul...maybe then she would have attracted some interest.

...THAT was only a joke by the way.... ;-)

[> [> [> Excellent points -- Rahael, 15:24:14 07/18/02 Thu

Where are they indeed? great question!!

I too am someone who relates to Buffy - from the first ep I saw, right down to Grave!

[> [> [> Re: Buffy -- lachesis, 17:07:43 07/18/02 Thu

I too agree, especially since this season was the first in which I really felt myself identifying with Buffy, as opposed to being fascinated/empathetic.

It seems to me that in S6 there was 'no way to Buffy.' In previous seasons the necessary enigma of her being the hero (I would say that a mythic hero can never be a fully drawn/comprehended character) was overcome through our observation of her interaction with other characters, who provided a way to relate to her. I do not think that the lack of this in S6 was bad writing, it seems to me to have been a brave and deliberate choice, explained by the fact of her resurrection.

It would have been easy to do 'Buffy's back,' to have one spell overcome humanity's central mystery of mortality, because, hey, in Sunnydale, they have magic! Instead, it seems to me that the attempt was made to convey an experience which is beyond words. There are trite answers to these questions; of what life is that she should come back to it, of how it can even be recognised, and I'm glad they weren't trotted out.

I thought that the unspoken intimacy with Spike in the early part of the season was beautifully done, and its rejection through sex therefore even more disturbing. I've been surprised by the amount of judgement being meted out by viewers though. I saw the season as being about 'let he who is without sin ...'

Unlike physical resurrection, the process of coming back to life is one which many people have to go through. Of course it is difficult to go through, difficult to help, and painful to watch. Maybe the lack of speculation about where Buffy herself is going is due to the fact that who someone will be after rebirth is as much a mystery as after birth?

And your last point. This board has been a major factor in finally getting me to sit down and read Jung, and so I'm reminded of "abaissement du niveau mental...One no longer has any wish or courage to face the tasks of the day... it reduces one’s self-confidence and the spirit of enterprise, and, as a result of increasing ego-centricity, narrows the mental horizon." Also termed 'loss of soul.'

[> [> [> [> Re: Jung, Buffy, fairy tales and the female experience -- aliera, 19:19:03 07/18/02 Thu

Thank you for the responses, rahael and lachesis. I find often when posting that it is difficult to anticipate if your words will be seen and once seen, and even more difficult to predict how they will be interpreted. And this of course, is also part of the difficulty of communicating about Buffy. For we truly each view the world through the tint of our own spectacles. It continues to be a credit to the show that we feel the interest in discussing these issues and attempting to create understanding.

Also, lachesis, I was given a pause because after posting this afternoon, my thoughts have been much with Jung in regards to Buffy's struggles especially. Synchronicity!

I am trying to play with my dogs who resent the computer time (go figure!); but a few responses to your thoughts:

If we look at the two Bargainings in conjunction with Tabula Rasa and Grave one of Buffy's primary issues has to be the relationship with Dawn. However, despite the focus in these eps (and I am not forgetting that she was with Randy in much of TR) the resolution was quite relatively...easy.

However, if we look to OMWF, the bulk of the intermediate eps, culminating in the crisis of Seeing Red, the focus is on Buffy's relationship with Spike. The strongest images from the season (at least for me) also come from here. I tend not to read the emphasis, the dialogue or the action literally. It's meaning more truly lies in the realm of symbolism; symbolism of Buffy's continued avoidance and then confrontation with her continued pyschological dislocation.
I can't pull it together anymore than that. (I am missing Age's and others posts from earlier in the year which were enlightening) My understanding of Jung is very slight; but, I believe that these issues if suppressed come back much stronger and more violently. Anyone want to chime in? Would be much appreciated.
On to what You wrote,

"I thought that the unspoken intimacy with Spike in the early part of the season was beautifully done, and its rejection through sex therefore even more disturbing. I've been surprised by the amount of judgement being meted out by viewers though. I saw the season as being about 'let
he who is without sin ...'

So true, and the spoken. After last season's "you treat me like a man", who would have thought that they would top that? But they did. Several times. Sigh. Unfortunately, with the apparent purpose of making Buffy and Spike's problems even more striking... and perhaps in answer to the fans who viewed this as an already perfect match?

You also mentioned,
"Unlike physical resurrection, the process of coming back to life is one which many people have to go through. Of course it is difficult to go through, difficult to help, and painful to watch. Maybe the lack of speculation about where Buffy herself is going is due to the fact that who someone will be after rebirth is as much a mystery as after birth?"

That seems to have been part of what they tried to convey, again unfortunately, with mixed success. We felt the difficulties; but balked at the extent of the struggle, the season long arc without the release of the huge physical battle at the end where Buffy defeats the BB. Perhaps, the lack of speculation is due to this; cliffhangers were more about Willow and Spike. Perhaps due to the mystery of rebirth. Perhaps due also to a distaste with the Buffy's actions this season also? I also have had the strongest sense that there was a direction change made mid-season; but that's just a visceral feeling about what we saw.

"And your last point. This board has been a major factor in finally getting me to sit down and read Jung, and so I'm reminded of "abaissement du niveau mental...One no longer has any wish or courage to face the tasks of the day... it reduces one’s self-confidence and the spirit of enterprise, and, as a result of increasing ego-centricity,
narrows the mental horizon. Also termed 'loss of soul.'"

Thank you for picking up on that. For those who have trod this path, sometimes the hero's journey is also about descending to the the depths so we can again start to come back and sometimes about continuing to put one foot before the other, past the point of what we think is our last strength, just moving through this time until we can get to a place where the way becomes clear. This too was part of Buffy's journey to continue to "go through the motions" until she finally reached a place where part of her purpose became clear.

My disjointed thoughts have been affected this week by this board... often funny, always thought provoking, and sometimes heart wrenching. Thank you all. Also, today, by a very good site on fairy tales and the female experience and other topics at www.endicott-studio.com; much of the contents are very pertinent to Buffy-studies. I would have liked to quote some of the essays in this post; but the site owners have asked for their essays not to be quoted without permission, which I'm not sure would be received before Voy (in it's mysterious wisdom) archives this thread. So I invite you to visit and join in the sense of wonder and dislocation (lol).


[> [> [> [> [> You've invoked Jung so I couldn't resist... -- Caroline, 09:48:07 07/19/02 Fri

Lovely posts Rahael, lachesis and aliera. I feel that the perspectives that Jung brings to human behaviour are incredibly relevant for any discussion of BtVS, precisely because of the metaphoric nature of the storytelling. We had a lot of posts in February and March about Buffy with a Jungian/mythological/symbolic take on the show for anyone who wants to go back to the archives and check those out.

The theme of this season has been growing up. While much of the action has been less 'metaphoric' than previous seasons, there's till plenty there to chew on. Growing up is a process of going from innocence/ignorance to knowledge - about self, about the world. There are many myths, fairy tales and folk tales that relate to this them. Many of them show innocence as a paradise, with a subsequent expulsion (by kidnapping (Persephone and Hades), as punishment for sin, (Adam and Eve, Ereshkigal, Tamuzi), or voluntarily taking the risk (Inanna). Whatever way it happens, it's not pretty. And we know that there is great suffering and pain when one is expelled (mythically raped?)from the paradise of innocence/ignorance/childhood. This is Buffy's journey is season 6. Just as Joss gave us an unrelentingly real episode dealing with a loss of a family member in The Body, he gave us a whole season of the journey from adolescence to adulthood and how that is negotiated (not just by Buffy, but all the characters, but right here it's all about Buffy).

Getting more specifically to the Jung part, the process of growing up and forming a new identity is complicated by the fact that we have an unconscious that has its own rules and desires which can often contradict, undermine and sabotage our conscious rules and desires. For Buffy, the pain and suffering she was going through after her resurrection (entry into adulthood) was precisely because of this conflict. Her pain and suffering showed her that there were dark, hidden depths within her that made her capable of behaviour that her conscious self found utterly wrong. Instead of being able to accept the disparate parts of herself and integrate them (an incredibly difficult thing to do without lots of pain and misery) she chose to project those onto an Other (Spike) and thereby ignited the platonic friendship they had begun to form at the end of season 5 and beginning of season 6. Buffy stuck by her adolescent oppositional thinking ('fire bad, tree pretty'), judged whatever attraction or affection she had for Spike as wrong (and there the part of her that was projected was wrong) and continued her struggles in the dark place.

The heros of myth who undergo this baptism also undergo much pain and suffering. Inanna is stripped of her identity as she enters the underworld, is killed by her sister and saved only when Ereshkigal is appeased by Enki's mourners. We know less about Persephone's trials in the underworld but an innocent maiden kidnapped by the god of the underworld couldn't have had an easy time of it (all that stuff about initiation into the feminine mysteries, menstruation, blood, childbirth). Both Persephone and Inanna come back transformed and this affects the people around them too. Change one part of a relationship and you change them all. Persephone's mother Demeter must move beyond her identity as a mother after he child has grown up. Inanna's consort Tammuzi must also descend to the dark place - Inanna has changed therefore her relationship with Tammuzi must also undergo change.

I think that Buffy at the end of the season has been able to understand more about her darker, hidden self and that her process of change has definitely had an impact on those around her. Like Persephone and Inanna, she has incorporated a new part of her identity into consciousness without losing the good things about childhood and innocence. Her last line to Dawn in Grave about wanting to show Dawn the world indicates to me that she has learnt a great deal about herself and the world - certainly a huge component of growing up.

As for Spike, Willow and Xander, they also have had a journey to go through. If we can bring ourselves to go beyond oppositional thinking about Spike (ie the Spike is totally good versus the Spike is so bad he eats babies for breakfast thing some posters have going) we can see that Spike is also undergoing a process of identity construction (playing Hades to Buffy's Persephone) - the mirror image of Buffy's projections. He has projected his rejected 'good' parts of his unconscious onto her (not sure you can call that a shadow!) and is now in the process of integrating that part into his conscious identity -leslie did a great post on why the bathroom scene in SR makes sense. Spike had to do something so bad that he had to jolt himself into awareness of his 'good' self as belonging to the Self that he consciously recognises and constructs.

I did a post on Willow's descent into the underworld after the finale so I won't repeat it here but the link is


if you want to take a look.

There's so much stuff here that I've missed in terms of symbolism and myth but gotta head back to work. I just have to say that the fact that Joss gave us a *whole season* to deal with these issues is amazingly wonderful. There were times I was uncomfortable and squirming in my seat and other times I was glued to the telly and stayed up late typing away to get ideas out of my head so I could sleep. But that was because Joss seemed like he had a direct line into my unconscious and made me see things about myself I don't like to see or acknowledge. Many are uncomfortable with that but to me, that is the sign of a true artist. To me this season was not lacking in any way (okay with the exception of the addiction thing), it wasn't an *interesting experiment*. It was about birth, maturation, death and love. Joss reached up to Shakespeare and ended up eye-to-eye (IMHO).

Thanks all for the great posts.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Innocence Lost, Innocence Regained -- Arethusa, 10:57:28 07/19/02 Fri

Talk about syncronicity-just thinking about Buffy, Angel and innocence. When Angel first saw Buffy sitting on the steps of her high school sucking on a lollypop, it was undoubtedly her innnocence he was attracted to. It was the same innocence that he had stolen from so many people in the past, including children. (Remember Darla's comments on how the children would scream.) His first act of atonement for his killings was to seek to preserve the innocence of this beautiful young girl. "She's gonna have it tough, that Slayer. She's just a kid. The world's full of big, bad things," Whistler says the Angel in Becoming (1). It was not her sexual innocence that attracted him, although that might be inferred from the visual correlary drawn to _Lolita_. Buffy became Angel's way to preserve, instead of corrupt, innocence, like the mirror image of what Angel had done to Drucilla. Just as when Angel tried to redeem Darla's soul to save his own, Angel tried to preserve Buffy's innocence, perhaps to atone for corrupting Drucilla's. Throughout their relationship Angel continued to protect her, often without her permission or knowledge. When he left, she began the slow journey to adulthood, ironically hampered by the lingering feelings of regret, abandonment and self-doubt their affair had created or exacerbated. By the time she is untimely ripp'd from her grave she feels as dead as the vampires she killed. (No wonder slaying lost its attraction-how can the dead kill the dead?)

But as Buffy very, very, very gradually came back to life, her innocence was reborn. She began to embrace her future, become eager to live, and feel connected to the world again. Eager to experience life, she will stop trying to hide herself and Dawn away fromn the world and its dangers. Feeling connected to the world, she'll devote more time to slayage and her friends. Most of all, she will not enter into a relationship that doesn't give her what she needs.

I think our grown-up Buffy will realize that she is living the life that is normal for her and give up the girlish dreams that could not be fulfilled. Half of being a grown- up is learning to take what you have now and make the most of it, not deferring your dreams or waiting for your "real" life to start. "Nothing is either good or bad, but thinking makes it so."

Thanks to the many great posters who give me so much food for thought.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: You've invoked Jung so I couldn't resist... -- aliera, 04:46:03 07/20/02 Sat

Thanks, Caroline. Sorry for the delay in responding;but, I wanted you to know I did enjoy your post.

Recently, I did take a look at some of the archives on redcat's suggestion and there is a lot of good material, from current posters, and also from people scarce for the summer or no longer posting. It's also interesting to look at the comments as the season progresses in light of the boards residents' changing perspectives. Not all boards have this capability; so we're fortunate to have them.

We also fortunate to have a balance of perspectives and backgrounds here. Buffy is written on several levels and it's lovely to be able to discuss all of them.

And it never hurts to use the right invocation!

[> [> [> Re: Buffy -- shadowkat, 18:48:29 07/18/02 Thu

Okay...that's it, I'm going to start reposting my Buffy
essays. Did I post Buffy/Willow - Wanting to Be the Hero?
It focused on Buffy and her pain. Or Buffy/Willow -
Fears of Abandonment? Also focused on Buffy. If you want I'll repost. Actually I started with Buffy, b/c everyone was writing about Willow...

Buffy was the character I indentified most with this year.
Everything she was feeling - I've felt at some point in my life, at least figuratively if not literally. I did not hate her. I got annoyed at times, but I felt her pain, always. Like aliera, rendyl, etc.. I felt her pain and identified. That's one of the many reasons I hated Seeing Red's attempted rape scene. So I agree with you on this. The Spuffy continues to trigger incredibly complex feelings in me.

No - she's not a prima donna. She's in pain and depressed.
Two excellent essays were on this board a month ago regarding Buffy - one on her depression by tillow, Ixchel, yuri and Ixchel - the other on the Burial of Buffy by the excellent Exegy. In both she was supported. Malandaz also wrote a very good post on Buffy.

So you are most definitely not alone. Okay...I think I will repost that essay.

[> [> [> [> Ditto ! -- Ete, 03:33:13 07/19/02 Fri

I liked Buffy this season, I deeply felt for her... and that was a first time for me, so you see, there's some good things in S6 :)

[> [> [> [> Re: Buffy and essays -- aliera, 04:09:08 07/19/02 Fri

Wow...I certainly feel awful if you think I've forgotten your essays! It isn't that there isn't good work done...it's just not what grabs us by the back of the neck right now. Just page down the board...and this board is a very balanced one comparatively...

Sorry, if I gave the wrong impression though...chocolate?

[> [> [> [> Re: Buffy and essays -- aliera, 04:17:20 07/19/02 Fri

Wow...I certainly feel awful if you think I've forgotten your essays! It isn't that there isn't good work done...it's just not what grabs us by the back of the neck right now. Just page down the board...and this board is a very balanced one comparatively...I'm not interested in forcing anyone to talk about Buffy; I just found the fact that we prefer to talk about other things kind of intriguing.

Sorry, if I gave the wrong impression though...chocolate?

[> [> [> [> [> No...no..no! You didn't! -- shadowkat, 05:39:10 07/19/02 Fri

Was reacting to Rendyl actually and Spike Lover. I decided
we had way too much Spike/Willow threads and I needed to
put Buffy back on the board. Get people talking about her in a positive way. I indentified so closely with her this year. The problem we have is when someone starts bashing or abusing a favorite character, we go after someone else's favorite character, instead of just posting something postive about the one we love. Not you of course or Rendyl.
So I thought I'd put my money where my mouth is so to speak and start reposting my Buffy essays. (The rest will be updated and re-edited...since they were written prior to Entropy...and seem out of date.)

I know I'm weird. I love almost all the characters. (Have problems with Cordy and HArmony but this is due to stupid personal reasons - so I just stay away from them until I can think about them neutrally and fairly, against bashing.)And I can argue most of the characters three ways: negatively, positively, and neutral. Must be the lawyer training.

After I posted last night - I felt really bad b/c I knew it came across the wrong way but I couldn't get back into voy and correct it! Dang home computer! So sorry aliera. Didn't mean to take away from your post or Rendyl's. Because I do agree with you. Really.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: No...no..no! You didn't! -- Rendyl, 06:04:38 07/19/02 Fri

Not a problem at all. I am looking forward to your essays. With my schedule and some modem problems I have missed quite a bit on the board the past month or so. I consider any reposting a second chance. (grin)


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: No...no..no! You didn't! -- aliera, 09:37:49 07/19/02 Fri

And I can't even begin to tell you the problems with Voy! I got locked out sending a post and couldn't get back in but the post showed up? then this a.m. a post appeared twice?

No worries though, at least not here, I'm guilty of recognizing Rendyl's name and jumping in in the middle without reading the whole thread...(becoming a bigger problem for me as July continues the bus(y)iness of June) and potential free time dwindles.

And of course it's summer doldrums time, a little more than half way to the new season...so TGIF everyone, enjoy the day and your weekend!

[> [> [> lovely sub-thread everyone! -- ponygirl, 08:50:37 07/19/02 Fri

[> [> Just adding my praise to the list -- beautifully said, Rendyl! -- Malandanza, 22:04:11 07/18/02 Thu

[> [> It's all about Buffy.....at least for me it is. -- Rufus, 22:31:33 07/18/02 Thu

If you listen to the season one DVD, Joss Whedon does a commentary on Welcome to the Hellmouth and The Harvest. He does understand that as Buffy is a "super-hero" it's hard for people to relate to her. The main reason for this is the fact the physically she is stronger than many of her opponents and she has to be unsympathetic to get her job done. The only way to get a sense of what Buffy is going through is to put her in emotional peril. What I've noticed is that people tend to get attached to the other characters that they feel they can relate to, or lust over. Spike is one of those characters. What is forgotten is that the difference between Spike and Buffy is that he was forced into helping save the world and, though forced Buffy chooses to save the world all the time. When I see posts going on about "poor Spikes feelings" I want to heave because though I like and sympathize with the character, he has spent most of his time as a demon murdering as many people as he possibly could. That is hardly a hero. Buffy has saved the world starting at an age much younger than Spike was before becoming a vampire. When her friends are going to the Malls, movies, and parties, Buffy is the lamb that is sacrificed for the greater good of all. Her work is unappreciated because it is done in secret. Buffy is human, and comes complete with all the human weaknesses of a growing female, she has made questionable choices and been forced to learn from them or repeat the lesson til she does.

This year Buffy crawled out a prison in the form of her own coffin, forced to crawl her way into this world, forced to live when she though she was done with the grind of protecting with the world. Spike was there and he does love her, but his love became selfish, confining....he wanted her to himself. It's through some very hard knocks that Spike finally discovered that, yes he is the type of monster they make movies about. He saw in an instant in Seeing Red, the reason he can't be trusted to be consistant in his pledge to be good. All of this because of his interactions with Buffy. Instead of complaining about Buffys abuse of Spike, I think the viewers should take a long look at what Spike could offer over the long term to a girl who even though the hero, is still a living human being. Even with the best intentions an unsoulled Spike could only have eventually forced Buffy to have to kill him to protect others. To appreciate Spikes trip to Africa, one has to see the restoration of a soul as a good thing, instead of a burden. I like Spike but I've never stopped my hobby of woodworking cause he said he was going "straight", without a soul Buffy would always have had to feared the loss of the chip and a return to evil doing for Spike. It wasn't Buffy who was deficient in the relationship, but Spike who could never have truly enjoyed being good as it is against his nature. Instead of constantly finding no fault in what Spike has done, some viewers should pay attention to the fact that without a soul Spike could only go so far, and in the end even he knew it...I think it may take some time for some fans to catch up.

[> [> [> Agree...good post. -- shadowkat, 05:50:43 07/19/02 Fri

"What is forgotten is that the difference between Spike and Buffy is that he was forced into helping save the world and, though forced Buffy chooses to save the world all the time. When I see posts going on about "poor Spikes feelings" I want to heave because though I like and sympathize with the character, he has spent most of his time as a demon murdering as many people as he possibly could. That is hardly a hero. Buffy has saved the world starting at an age much younger than Spike was before becoming a vampire. "

I agree. As much as I like Spike - what interests me is partly how they use him to discover more about Buffy. I think Leslie is right - they are going to use Spike's struggles next year to learn more about Buffy's struggles with abandonment. Spike I think has some of the same issues Buffy does. The other thing that interests me is the arrested development metaphor. Like you I find the "poor
Spike" posts somewhat annoying. I see Spike more like the
reluctant anti-hero or the hoodlums in ClockWork Orange.
He's an amazing character to analyze, but when I do? It
always comes back to Buffy. I don't think I've written many essays that don't somehow mention her or how the other characters give us more insight into her.

For me the series has been about her. That does not mean I don't occassionally find other characters more fascinating
or identify more with them. But in season 6? I indentified most with Buffy. Whether I'll watch the series without her, remains to be seen..

[> [> [> And Katrina had nothing to fear in her relationship to Warren -- Spike Lover, 10:03:34 07/19/02 Fri

[> [> [> [> Is that the best you can come up with? -- Rufus, 16:54:25 07/19/02 Fri

The topic was Buffy and Spike, and how both got to where they did by end of season. I haven't mentioned Warren because I was dealing with Buffy and partially with Spike. It's when I see post after post slamming all the other characters on the show to make Spike appear blameless that I take offence. If Spike were perfect he wouldn't have had to search out a soul, if Spike were perfect people wouldn't have to feel the need to bash characters such as Buffy, Xander, Angel, etc. in an effort to make Spike look good. Warren is a bad guy, but in the adoration of Spike it gets lost that so is he (a bad guy).

[> [> [> [> [> Agree. -- shadowkat, 17:24:26 07/19/02 Fri

"It's when I see post after post slamming all the other characters on the show to make Spike appear blameless that I take offence."

This annoys me to no end. I left one posting board b/c of this. If you want to defend a favorite character, find a way of doing it without bashing others. People are more willing to listen and see your pov. I know I tend to avoid threads by folks who bash, because once you bash...you lose credibility IMHO. Although...we are all a little guilty of being critical of writers. ;-)

I love Spike, he is my favorite. But I also acknowledge that he is a killer and a vampire and no better than the other characters.
I despise Warren but objectively see him as an interesting character with interesting flaws. You're tempting me to do another reaction essay Spike Lover...and the board has two of my reaction essays already...LOL! Not sure it can handle a third.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Critical of Writers? Pshaw! -- Darby, 19:04:23 07/19/02 Fri

My wife, who oversees lots of computers, is always coming home, plopping down and declaring, "I hate computers!"

I had to point out that she can hate the computers, but we peons don't so much hate computers as we hate computer people. That sort of explains my viewpoint. Maybe it does. Feel free to criticize my writing.

I've always been the sort to peek at the guy behind the curtain.

I really love the show. Really. I just hold them to the standard for writing that they should've set for themselves, which I think they've fallen short of this year in many small but distracting ways. Mostly it's been transitional stuff, getting a character from A to B, which I think only Joss could micromanage well enough to smooth the seams out. And which Giles was great for, as expositor and sounding board for the other characters - didn't we have a better feel for Buffy when we could hear their conversations? Kinda makes you realize that what she really wanted, a replacement, was available in Spike, started there but veered weirdly elsewhere.

Maybe Spike was right about Buffy and Giles after all...

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Critical of Writers? Pshaw! -- shadowkat, 20:48:03 07/19/02 Fri

On this we agree:"I really love the show. Really. I just hold them to the standard for writing that they should've set for themselves, which I think they've fallen short of this year in many small but distracting ways. Mostly it's been transitional stuff, getting a character from A to B, which I think only Joss could micromanage well enough to smooth the seams out. And which Giles was great for, as expositor and sounding board for the other characters - didn't we have a better feel for Buffy when we could hear their conversations? Kinda makes you realize that what she really wanted, a replacement, was available in Spike, started there but veered weirdly elsewhere."

I felt the same way. Even more so now, having re-seen the episodes. The mid-season episodes Wrecked - Hells Bells particularly had this problem. I kept getting lost. I found myself often confused as to where characters were headed. I certainly was confused about Spike. Now I love ambiguity, but as a fiction teacher once told me...dang used that line too many times now...but anyway, you need to let your audience/reader know where you're going. We the audience should not have been confused when Lurker gave Spike his soul or when Spike was the Doctor. (Yes I know some clever souls weren't including myself...but since 65% was..that's a problem. Particularly if the writers feel the need to explain themselves in interviews.)

Speaking of interviews, has anyone else noticed that JW seems to be doing a little apologizing between the lines.
Saying things like: "I guess not everyone wanted to be as depressed as me?" or "I wanted to explore an unhealthy relationship between two characters who couldn't stand each other..but maybe it didn't work.." Or am I reading too much into it. Also he seems to have taken over the interview duties and everyone else has shut up. Very interesting.

I'm thinking that they may have acknowledged some of the flaws and are fixing things. That's why Joss is now executive producer with Marti, and Fury was sent to Firefly.
Also may be why Joss is writing the season opener and more episodes next year? And Giles is back for more. I agree with you, Giles was missed. He is the glue. Of course I'm biased, I started watching Btvs way back in 1997 for ASH.
It wasn't until near the end of Season 5 and Season 6, that I got into Spike. ;-)

I'm hoping they do a better job with the writing next year.
Because I do agree there were some serious gaps in it. These episodes alone suffered greatly because of it:
AYW, Wrecked, OAFA, Villains, Seeing Red, Hells Bells..
and Gone.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Critical of Writers? Pshaw! -- Just George, 19:49:31 07/20/02 Sat

Darby: "I really love the show. Really. I just hold them to the standard for writing that they should've set for themselves, which I think they've fallen short of this year in many small but distracting ways. Mostly it's been transitional stuff, getting a character from A to B, which I think only Joss could micromanage well enough to smooth the seams out."

shadowkat: "I'm hoping they do a better job with the writing next year.
Because I do agree there were some serious gaps in it. These episodes alone suffered greatly because of it:
AYW, Wrecked, OAFA, Villains, Seeing Red, Hells Bells..
and Gone."

Actually, I think the problems may have been in the direction and plotting as much as in the writing. I can imagine a number of small changes that could have easily been added in post production to make transitions and scenes clearer. Some examples:

1) In Seeing Red, add a bone snapping "crack" sound effect twice, first when Buffy breaks the headstone and second when she hits the bathtub. It would have helped sell the idea the Buffy was hurt and couldn't easily fight back.

2) In Villains, show a stock shot of the Sunnydale Memorial Emergency Room entrance just before showing Xander inside watching doctors operating on Buffy. This would have explained why the OR staff seemed so small and why Buffy still had her blouse on (it was emergency surgery, no time to prep the patient.)

3) In Villains, give Willow's voice an echo sound effect twice, first when she was ordering the ER staff away from Buffy, ands second when she was ordering the Warren-bot out of the Bus. This would have helped sell the idea of her using magic to get characters to do things they would not otherwise do.

4) Have someone (maybe Spike), comment that Buffy is less powerful, and more vulnerable, when she is depressed or unfocused. One line in one episode would do it. Spike has seen Buffy up close and personal and would know. Buffy's variable abilities seem clear when we watch her fight, but I think it deserves a "shout out" in the show. It would go a long way to explaining why she is hell on wheels against some foes, but has troubles against seemingly lessor ones.

I also think the pacing of the series arc seemed off this year. Previously on BTVS (pun intended) it seemed like the show erred on the side of putting one too many sub plots into each episode. This season, it seemed as if they erred on the side of putting one too few into many shows. It made the show seem slower. Looking back, I think several sets of shows could have been collapsed and still carried the season arc. Some examples are:

1) Bargaining Part 1, Part II, and Afterlife were all about bringing Buffy back, and about how she's not right because she was in Heaven. They could have been collapsed into 2 episodes and avoided gratuitous shots of the demon road gang trashing Sunnydale.

2) Flooded and Life Serial could have been collapsed into a single episode about how Buffy is broke, can't find a place in society, and is being bugged by the Trio.

3) Wrecked and Smashed were both about Willow and Buffy giving into their respective weaknesses. Their stories could have been portrayed in parallel in a single episode.

4) Gone and Doublemeat Palace could have been collapsed into a single episode about how Buffy is avoiding her friends and not dealing with her problems well.

5) Villains, Two to Go, and Grave could have been collapsed into 2 episodes about Willow going bad and being saved.

Others would make cuts in different places. I enjoyed Bargaining P1, PII, and Afterlife, so I'm not sure they needed to be compressed, but doing so would have moved the series arc forward much faster.

If ME had actually compressed the season by 5 episodes as listed, The current finale arc would have occurred at the tail end of February sweeps and in early March. Then we could have had a 5 episode redemption arc for the Scoobies and ended Season 6 on a high note.

Here's hoping that Season 7 opens on a high note and keeps getting better.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Critical of Writers? Pshaw! -- Darby, 20:32:21 07/20/02 Sat

The thing about Buffy is that, from what's been revealed, since early on the directors have been mostly journeymen and Joss plus the writers have been on hand during shooting to supervise that the proper story gets told. Plus, the plotting is Joss on the overview and the writers' group (Marti included) on the episode breakdowns. When I look with what I consider mild criticism at what the writers have been doing, I'm including that as well.

Can't really fault your direct suggestions, they're perfectly valid choices and probably would have helped the flow, but I do have a slightly different take on some:

- I thought that Buffy's physical state was portrayed well enough in the bathroom scene, but I agree that some acknowledgement of her emotional state and connected weakness would be good occasionally. All of us have come to accept this as part of how she works (my suspicion is that the Watchers' Council have a great way to resist changing Slayer training because of how Buffy's relationships have weakened her at critical times. Plus they don't like her.), but I wonder how clear it is to the casual viewer (it was interesting to watch her head wound persist through the end of S3 as a reminder, but actual text more often would be useful).

I agree about the pacing - my theory is that the standard Buffy script often flounders without Giles, but there could be lots of reasons.

I can see blending the Bargainings, maybe Smashed and Wrecked, and the season finale (am I the only one who got tired of the "Eeek! It's Dark Willow!" - Commercial! repetition?). I see Afterlife, Doublemeat Palace (firmly convinced that personal experience affects how that ep touches or irritates people) and Gone as just regular stand-alone season episodes, and they work fine that way.

Not sure how well a multi-week denouement would have worked, though...

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Critical of Writers? Pshaw! -- shadowkat, 21:27:52 07/20/02 Sat

Agree that pacing and plotting could be better.

Would not have combined Flooded and Life Serial - like those two separate. Also liked Bargainings and After Life

Smashed and Wrecked? They could have been combined. Also we could have combined Villains and Two to Go. Agree with Darby on the Final. You weren't the only one. I blame UPN for twenty commercials in between acts. Annoying. And the commericial breaks in SR were atrocious.

Mal, Rufus, Leslie and Darby have just about convinced me that Buffy's weakeness in the bathroom scene worked. Still hate that scene for reasons mentioned at length elsewhere on the board, but these are personal reasons and not worth reiterating again. The scene worked for the reasons the writers wanted it to and I'll leave it at that.

I think AYW needed fixing. And it would have been easy. Just have Spike mention something to Clem about eggs in OAFA. Or have him keep Buffy from going downstairs at some point. Or in Dead Things show his bed upstairs. Or even give the audience a clue how much time passed. Another easy fix? Come up with a different name than the Doctor - to close to Doc from Season 5. All easy. Simple fixes.

I agree with you Darby - I think its the editing and overview that's off. And from the commentaries? I get the feeling this was what Joss did in previous seasons and is probably why he is back on board for Season 7.

That said. Season 6 is still one of my all time favorite Seasons next to Season 5. I loved the dark themes and ambitious character arcs. It made me think and inspired me to write lots of essays I would never have written otherwise. ;-)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Softening the blows -- Just George, 00:11:22 07/21/02 Sun

I've been getting an interesting overview of the entire Buffy Arc. I have watched the show from the beginning, but my wife had only seen occasional episodes in Season 4 and 5. When Season 6 began, my wife didn't want to watch it until she had seen all of the previous episodes. So I watched S6 and tired hard not to spoil the season for her.

When FX started stripping the show, I taped the entire run. (I know they are edited, but they were the best I could get.) Once I got them all on tape my wife and I began watching them from the beginning. We recently finished Season 5 and began Season 6. We have enjoyed the episodes up through Season 5 a lot.

While I understood and even appreciated the darker tone of the show in Season 6, I'm worried about viewing it with my wife. She enjoys the show for the humor and action aspects, rather than the angst and the romantic relationships. She relates to the Scoobies as "friends" and is very sensitive to cruelty aimed at them. She appreciates the "horror movie" aspects of the show best when they are obviously metaphorical rather than graphically presented.

So far we've watched Bargaining Parts 1 & 2, Afterlife, and Flooded. In B2 the demon road gang threatening to rape the Scoobies put her off. She was also disturbed by the demon killed with a pipe through his chest. She mentioned never wanting to watch B2 again. She was also put off by the use of the term "bitch" in Afterlife. She sees that as a term of abuse that people in the real world hurl at each other and therefore hurtful when aimed at Willow and Tara. After discussing the show, my wife felt that from what she had seen of Season 6 the show was no longer suitable for viewing by children.

My biggest worry is that the graphic language, violence, and sex in Season 6 will put my wife off the show for good. If that happens, she may be unwilling the watch Season 7 (which from the comments I have read I expect to be lighter and funnier.) Does anyone have any suggestions about how to "soften the blows" that I know are coming without spoiling the entire season?

I expect Kitten poker to be a problem, though played for laughs, it is cruelty to animals and she's a cat lover. Buffy beating Spike in the alley in Dead Things is sure to be a problem. I think that Willow's rants in the final arc will also be hard for her to take. Buffy, Willow, and Xander are her favorite characters. She reacts to them as friends and none come off as overly sympathetic in Season 6.

Thanks for your help. Any suggestions are appreciated.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Softening the blows -- Finn Mac Cool, 15:11:30 07/21/02 Sun

Convince her to watch the next two episodes ("Flooded" and "Life Serial", those two are much lighter and funnier. They, with the soon to come "Once More With Feeling" and "Tabula Rasa", should please her.

Now, when you reach "Smashed" and "Wrecked", you might have a problem.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Softening the blows -- Just George, 22:33:53 07/21/02 Sun

Thanks, We just watched Flooded. I think we'll be fine from Life Serial through Tabula Rasa. From Smashed on we may be in trouble.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Softening the blows -- Spike Lover, 08:11:09 07/22/02 Mon

I know what you mean. I tell people all the time how wonderfully written Buffy (has been), and convince some to watch. Some who really enjoyed the show at first, lost interest at Season 3 or 4. Another woman was put off in Season 5 by the Tara/Willow relationship.

I never apologize or make excuses for BtVS. I think your wife will have to take her lumps like we did as we endured the season.

I know that is not very helpful.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I loved Afterlife, Bargaining and Seeing Red -- Rahael, 05:26:55 07/21/02 Sun

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Fixing As You Were. -- Darby, 06:15:34 07/21/02 Sun

Buffy comes around the counter, delivers a line to the effect, "You never write, you never call..." and sends Riley sailing through the plate glass window. Sam, in parking lot, comments on how she'd like to do that occasionally, and we have the first step in the B/Sam plot that will take W/T's place after an enraged (and impotent, but we all knew that from all the guns, right?) Riley shoots Tara.

Well, maybe not. But it sure needed something.

I might accept As You Were if I had the slightest idea what the **** it was about! All I see is an hourlong deus ex machina for B/S and the Doublemeat Palace. I know that there are stand-alone episodes, but this one screams for foloww-up!

And if Marti sees her husband in Riley (I actually like Riley, when used well), does she see herself as a kick-ass Belgian supermodel who can only sort of act? Yeesh!

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> LOL! Agree totally! -- shadowkat, 07:42:33 07/21/02 Sun

"I might accept As You Were if I had the slightest idea what the **** it was about! All I see is an hourlong deus ex machina for B/S and the Doublemeat Palace. I know that there are stand-alone episodes, but this one screams for foloww- up!

And if Marti sees her husband in Riley (I actually like Riley, when used well), does she see herself as a kick-ass Belgian supermodel who can only sort of act? Yeesh!"

I was trying to be nice and non-inflammatory. But have to say thank you! for echoing and putting in words my thoughts regarding this episode. I also had liked Riley up to that episode. AYW made me wonder why I ever had liked Riley and struggle to remember liking him. I so wanted to see Riley get it in AYW. Maybe she could have blown up the crypt while he was still downstairs? Or the helicopter could have blown up? (sigh)

We know Petrie can write better. Because every other episode written by Petrie I actually liked including Flooded and Two- to-Go.

Petrie episodes: Fool For love, Yoko Factor, In the Dark (Ats Season 1), and others I can't remember off hand.

AYW was a mess and IMHO the worst episode of the year.
It may actually be worse than Go Fish, Bad Eggs, Teacher's Pet - which at least all made sense.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Careful! Some on this board will be offended at your intense feelings -- Spike Lover, 08:17:55 07/22/02 Mon

about not liking Riley in that ep! They will slam you for the 'helicopter blowing up' comment. You are not (apparently) suppose to have strong NEGATIVE feelings about any character on this board, and if you do, you are not encouraged to express them. Someone might actually tell you that they doubt you could do any better if you had been in Riley's situation.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Execution, not emotion ... again -- Earl Allison, 08:57:24 07/22/02 Mon

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Emotional -- Finn Mac Cool, 10:56:46 07/22/02 Mon

If you express very intense emotions and opinions on a subject, particularly character bashing, do not be surprised if the respones tend to be just as intense.

If someone disagrees with the original post, and the first poster used very strong feelings, the responder feels justified in being just as intense and emotional in their reply.

It's sort of a karma thing. Give a very heated opinion, and expect a very heated disagreement.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Critical of Writers? Pshaw! -- Miss Edith, 09:22:56 07/21/02 Sun

I agree Bargaining did drag a bit and the demon bikers sequence went on way to long. But actually I enjoyed the first half of the season. It felt right that Buffy's return was handled gradually and I enjoyed Bargaining, Afterlife, Flooded and Life Serial. All The Way was not that interesting but bearable. And I loved the musical and Tabula Rasa. In fact the season was shaping up to be the best yet in my mind as I love dark themes and there was humour mixed in to. I thought TR was brilliant the way it had a humerous story and a sad opening and closing.
The season lost it's focus around Smashed/Wrecked. I was looking forward to seeing where Willow threatening Giles, ordering her friends around was heading. I have to say seeing her and Amy turning people into strawberries in the Bronze was not exactly what I had in mind. I thought Willow's power struggles were handled poorly after that and I wasn't too impressed with Amy suddenly becoming a villian with no backstory. She seemed a really nice girl in Gingerbread and was doing spells with Wllow, hanging with the scoobies.
I was also looking forward to where B/S might be headed. Unfortunately the middle of the season was just a mess. It dragged horribly and although B/S was handled well in DT a lot of the time it seemed to be the same thing over and over. Spike and Buffy having sex and Buffy storming off self- righteously looking disgusted. It didn't move anywhere and that is where ME lost me. I was really hooked after the first sex scene in Smashed but there are only so many times you can flaunt Spike's body before it starts feeling gratituos and slightly tacky. I was actually arguing with people that I felt bad for James Marster's the way Marti was constantly expecting him to be naked in front of his colleges. It was an occasional treat at first but I ended up thinking if I wanted to see a naked man in every episode I would just watch some porn.
The finale with dark Willow was entertaining enough but not exactly what I had been hoping for. Making Willow look so different with her black hair and having her act out of character (threatening Dawn with no prior suggestion she had disliked Dawn) was disapointing. She seemed so flambouant I can only assume we are supposed to assume she was under the influence of drugs and that wasn't the real her, but the black magic.
It felt like a cop-out as I had been more interested in Spike's grey nature than Angelous/Angel being two seperate people almost. But Willow's story arc seems to have more in common with Angel in that she is not directly responsible for her crimes as it wasn't really her. With Willow being a recovering addict I assume that will be what season 7 focuses on rather than her power issues. It seems too easy and it could have been so fascinating. Dark Willow honestly just seemed to be there for our entertainment rather than actually exploring Willow's issues.
Dawn was also used poorly and became an horrendus whiny cliche that few people in the audience ended up relating to.
I was also disapointed with Spike's trails. It would have been nice if he had been challenged with his past crimes, hullucinated Dru perhaps. Some really gripping pshyological stuff. Instead he just has to fight some demons and show his strength off to win a soul. Isn't fighting demons something he does every day anyway?
I would now class season 6 as one of the most disapointing seasons. It had so much potential in the beginning but it was all wasted through lack of focus and no coherent on- going story.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Critical of Writers? Pshaw! -- Finn Mac Cool, 09:39:48 07/21/02 Sun

Well, without the soul, he wouldn't be bothered by his past crimes. That may happen in season 7, though. I don't think torturing him with his past loves would be a good idea, since that would only reinforce his love's bitch view of himself, which would propel him towards his goal instead of away from it, which is the point of trials.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Critical of Writers? Pshaw! -- Miss Edith, 10:12:51 07/21/02 Sun

I just wish his trials had been a bit more inventive. Perhaps he could have been tortured by something happening to Dawn or Buffy? He does understand what it's like to lose someone you love (Dru, Buffy) so perhaps the trials could have played on that and showed him how others suffered at his hands I know he didn't have a soul but he isn't exactly uncaring about all humanity.
I mean yes he didn't really give a damn in Becoming part 2. But once he had his chip and conditioned to stop fighting and live among humans we did see he had a sensitive side and could relate to others pain, whether he cared or not. He seemed to need to talk himself into biting the girl in Smashed and in Crush he looked genuinely conflicted when Dru presented him with a victim.
The problem was the trials didn't belong in the final arc. People were interested in dark Willow. Spike in Africa was just a distraction. I know that ME did that deliberetely so they could use Spike as the final clifhanger.
But I do feel it would have worked better if Spike had his breakdown and left Sunnydale earlier so more time and effort could be spend on him. Inserting him into the final just didn't work IMO. For one thing he got to Africa way too quickly and the whole thing just felt really rushed and disapointing. Spike had been building up to a major change for a while and I expected more of an event. Most of the season he was just shagging Buffy and that was about it. Some focus on his internal conflict could have helped with the poor pacing. All JMHO of course.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Critical of Writers? Pshaw! -- Finn Mac Cool, 12:40:28 07/21/02 Sun

Can you be sure Spike was in Africa? He may have been in the Carribean.

As for inserting Spike, they had to because James Marsters was contracted to appear in every episode of the season. They had to give him something.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Wrong flora for the Caribbean -- Darby, 13:49:29 07/21/02 Sun

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Flora -- Finn Mac Cool, 15:08:13 07/21/02 Sun

I didn't catch any plants surrounding the demon's cave, just sandy beach. And there sure weren't any inside it.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Flora -- Darby, 20:36:44 07/21/02 Sun

It's the establishing shot before you actually see Spike, since they didn't actually send JM to Africa - they were obviously African Savannah trees, quite distinctive but which I cannot for the life of me remember the names of.

It's in the archives from when the ep aired, matching mole recognized them too and actually remembered what they were.

Hey, I'm a zoologist, it's a miracle I can recognize a tree!

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Acacia, if I'm not mistaken -- d'Herblay, 23:11:17 07/21/02 Sun

And if I am mistaken, um, oak!

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Careful with those Strong Opinions & Feelings! -- Spike Lover, 08:26:02 07/22/02 Mon

But otherwise, we are in agreement. It could have been so much more, so deeper. But it was ALMOST like the writers did not want to go all the way. Yes, Willow has issues, but if we really explore her dark side, she will lose her following and the characters may not be able to 'redeem' her. Yes, we could really explore what Buffy's trouble is, but let's be safe and have her do mostly the same thing from ep to ep. (I will say again that her treatment of the social worker REALLY bothered me. They could have explored that more. I mean, if she is depressed enough to use sex as an escape, could she not also use her POWER abusively as an escape also? Or to similar to Willow's arc?)

[> [> I can't resist the urge to reply -- Spike Lover, 09:43:34 07/19/02 Fri

Perhaps it is all those years that I 'studied' tragic flaws in Shakespearean plays that makes me look at Buffy and shake my head.

I apologize that my primadonna comments have offended you. It was not my intention.

1) Buffy was always a Primadonna. If you watch the BtVS movie, w/o Sarah or any of the cast, Buffy is the cheerleader, popular, valley girl. She treats her watcher like he is crazy.

If you watch the first season of Buffy, she is still a Primadonna. She just got rid of her last watcher. She doesn't want another one. She will hardly listen to Giles, and she rolls her eyes at the Counsil. (Compare to Kendra.)

It is when the bid bad vampire drowns her in Season 1, that Buffy comes down a slight notch. She reacts by becoming snottier, etc. Then she gets involved with Angel and he breaks her heart after surrendering her virginity to him. Believe me, I EMPATHIZED W/ BUFFY. (I had actually had every one of those things (almost) said to me.) I CRIED DURING THE EPISODE AND I CRIED EVERY TIME I RE-WATCHED IT.
Surely, Buffy did not deserve any of that.

Then she went off to fight Angel and Dru, and Xander did not tell her that Willow might be able to re-soul Angel. I HATED Xander for that. It was an evil act, and one born of jealousy and other things. Then STUPID Joyce gave Buffy an ultimatum to stay home or leave home. When you give a child an ultimatum, don't blame them if they take you at your word. (I actually never forgave Joyce for that and was SO GLAD when she died. I was just sorry that she did not die a really painful death.)

I could go on here re-hashing all the seasons, but it is pointless. YOu have seen them all as well. I will just say that as the seasons progressed, Buffy got harder, colder, but always remained a primadonna for the most part (notice the quips she tells her victims before she kills them.) Xander and Willow too. One thing I really liked about Tara was that she brought some 'softness' to the mix. She was the one that remembered everyone's feelings. (I am sorry she is gone.)

The reason why I can not excuse Buffy's bad treatment of Spike after her resurrection is because it was equally bad in the previous season. The writers had her punching Spike at every turn, putting him down when he was clearly a victim of his MISGUIDED feelings. I hated those eps, and posted about it. Other posters thought that 'Kick the Spike' game was funny to watch. (I have also been in his situation, and to have to watch it being reinacted weekly was really painful for me.) At mid season 5, the primadonna has a close call, and is knocked down a knotch- and she asks Spike how he killed 2 slayers in the past. Near the end of the ep, she is back to her primadonna ways when she throws that famous line back at Spike: You are beneath me. That would have been enough, but interestingly they lower the primadonna another knotch with the news that her mom is going into the hospital for tests and Buffy once again has to see that she is not all-powerful.

So, I think I have a write to blame the writers and the character Buffy for my dislike of the character. She may be back from the dead and be mad at her friends for bringing her back, but does she vent her anger justly on them? No. She choses to abuse Spike who has only been kind to her because he is unable to fight back: (via the chip but also because his feelings of love for her won't allow him to really be emotionally cruel back to her.) -Remember Angelus who stalked Buffy and left her letters that scared her. ..Drew creepy pictures of her or her mom sleeping. Spike's feelings of love protect her from him even saying something mean to her. She is picking on someone who can't hurt her back. I hate her for it. (It is also why I really liked Smashed, because finally Spike & Buff were on equal physical terms again (although you could say that it still isn't equal since Spike's feelings for Buffy won't allow him to 'hurt her much'.)

Ok, enough of a rant about this.

[> [> [> Just out of interest, ( and a different perspective) -- Rahael, 10:23:17 07/19/02 Fri

"Perhaps it is all those years that I 'studied' tragic flaws in Shakespearean plays that makes me look at Buffy and shake my head"

Please enlarge! We can never have too much Shakesperean comparisons! Which flawed hero do you compare Buffy to?

Buffy's 'disrespect' for her watcher, in my opinion relates to a theme 'the challenge to authority'. I think it's a good thing, and one of the most fundamental (see, hehe, not always a negative word!) messages of Buffy, that we must question authority, and question figures of authority. Remeber 'Helpless'? when Giles betrayed Buffy's trust? Perhaps she did act like a Prima Donna everytime she challenged the Watcher's Council, but I was cheering her all the way. If that's PD behaviour, more of us need it.

The quips - I think you're in a minority disliking the quips, since everyone seems to be calling for 'quippy Buffy'. Yes, she may appear lighthearted, but there is such a thing as gallow's humour. If you are in a situation where there is a lot of death and dark things, you do make macabre jokes. I don't think that's Buffy being self centred, that's her making sense of her life, and finding the humour in it. It's one of her most attractive traits - a lot of people might wallow in self pity, but Buffy usually just gets on with the job. When she fights the hellhounds so her friends can have a nice prom, she quips "that song sucks!". That's not prima donna behaviour either! In fact, there are so many instances of Buffy sparing other people's feelings. She's one of the most accommodating, and open people in BtVS.

"(I actually never forgave Joyce for that and was SO GLAD when she died. I was just sorry that she did not die a really painful death.)"

That's a harsh thing to say. I understand why people might have the harshest reaction to the 'bad mother' since it's the richest source of conflict and resentment for human beings. But can you really go against Spike's feelings?? He liked her!! He liked her more than nearly everyone!! How can you wish a painful death on the person who gave him hot chocolate and marshmallows?

BtVS isn't here to make you love the characters. It's here to entertain you, to make you care, to provoke thought. You dislike Buffy, I love her. But having such visceral feelings against the writers? why? All their job is to provide good drama. Stuff that makes us think, and entertains us. Without them, there'd be no Spike. We shouldn't take it personally when tough things happen to the people we identify with. I welcome it. I want to see how they react, cos I think, I've been through toughness, I can identify.

You should thank the writers for providing you with a character you love so much, and for making you care SO much about him, that you have such strong feelings. That's good writing!

[> [> [> [> Re: Just out of interest, ( and a different perspective) -- Miss Edith, 11:16:23 07/19/02 Fri

Actually the seasons I have emphasised with Buffy the most were seasons 2 and 6. I know in another post in this thread I suggested that many viewers were turned off this season because Spike's emotions were on screen for all to see whereas she was the self-righteous slayer lecturing others on vengence and putting Spike down. Nevertheless I can emphasise with emotionally messed up Buffy far more than quippy Buffy from high school. My heart broke for her in the first half of this season.
But I would argue that yes she does fight for the world but in life she is certainly not a perfect being and often does treat others badly and can be worringly self-obsessed and with a lack of empahacy for others. I realise this is not always true as she was very caring towardas Faith for instance and once she conquered her initial jealousy she made an effort to invite her over for christmas and tried to rescue her from her dark side.
But Buffy could in her own way be just as snobby and elitist as Cordy. Remember Jonathon? In Earshot she made the big gesture as the slayer and prevented him from committing suicide by telling him we are all in pain and that is why we don't notice others. But at the end of the episode she worries that he is thinking of asking her to a school dance. Giles mentions the gesture would do wonders for his self- esteem and Buffy snorts "what am I saint Buffy, he's like 3 feet tall". Maybe it was supposed to sound light-hearted and endearing but it came across as very thoughtless and bordering on callous for Buffy to suggest Jonothon isn't good enough to associate with. Particularly as he had been attempting suicide because he hated his life so much.
Again in Superstar Jonathon was still emotionally messed up and did a spell to become popular/perfect. At the end of the episode Buffy and her friends are hanging out and Jonathon is hanging on the outskirts. Buffy approaches him to lecture him on treating people like sockpuppets forgetting the times Willow and Xander have misused magic (BBB, SB). Jonathon protests they were friends and gives Buffy some advice. She looks thoughtful and rejoins her friends after telling him his issues take work. I would have thought it would have been a nice gesture to invite Jonathon to join the group as he had just expressed a wish for friendship with them.
Again with Spike in season 5 Buffy came across as a user. In the beginning of the season she used Spike as a punching bag to work off her aggression when Harmony kidnapped Dawn. It is easy to argue that Spike deserved it, nevertheless it came across as sadistic to smack someone in the mouth after being given the information. (not trying to make this a SvsB post just talking of buffy's behaviour which disturbs me regardless of Spike being an arsehole and deserving it).
She later used Spike to take care of her family in Checkpoint. She didn't say thanks as she was leaving and he agreed to look after them, rather she threatened his life if anything happened to them. In Crush Spike approaches her in the Bronze and she is disbelieving that he would treat her as a buddy. Fair enough in a way as the two did have a troubled history. But to expect him to fight alongside you and search for your sister in the previous episode and then rebuff him when you don't need his help just irks me.
Again in season 6 the two wer ehaving a good relationship. But then in Smashed Buffy knew Spike had taken care of Dawn for her and appreciated being treate dlike a man so much he could hardly find the words to express it. Yet when he tried to talk about the kiss she initiated she smacked him down calling him an "evil souless thing". There was something so cold and unpleasant about the image of ehr standing over him saying that it bothers me more than the beating in DT. I understood she let her emotions get the better of her in DT and I never held it against her (though admittidly I did wince when in the next episode she made a joking reference to beating Spike again). Some remorse after the beating would have helped me appreciate her struggle with her dark side. Rather it seemed she simply didn't care. In DT when she confessed to Tara she takes no responsibility and never wonders why she is doing such terrible things, what's happenning to her etc. The audience could have relate do to that and it could have been a point of audience identification. Rather she specifically lays all the blame on Spike's shoulder "why do I let him do thse things to me".
I understand Buffy is depressed and in a poor place in life. I admired her efforts to protect her friends from the true knowledge of what they had sone. Equally however I cannot feel comfortable with her treating Spike like a robat there to validate her self-worth. In AYW I felt she came across very badly when she demanded Spike tell her he love her and we see his face light up with hope.
I am willing to admit that Buffy is good at the larger issues and has saved many people. But I still don't believe she is the sort of person I could relate to or hang out with. Season 6 is the closest I have come to relating to Buffy and even then her treatment of Spike appalled me.

[> [> [> [> Re: Just out of interest, ( and a different perspective) -- Miss Edith, 11:29:09 07/19/02 Fri

Actually the seasons I have emphasised with Buffy the most were seasons 2 and 6. I know in another post in this thread I suggested that many viewers were turned off this season because Spike's emotions were on screen for all to see whereas she was the self-righteous slayer lecturing others on vengence and putting Spike down. Nevertheless I can emphasise with emotionally messed up Buffy far more than quippy Buffy from high school. My heart broke for her in the first half of this season.
But I would argue that yes she does fight for the world but in life she is certainly not a perfect being and often does treat others badly and can be worringly self-obsessed and with a lack of empahacy for others. I realise this is not always true as she was very caring towardas Faith for instance and once she conquered her initial jealousy she made an effort to invite her over for christmas and tried to rescue her from her dark side.
But Buffy could in her own way be just as snobby and elitist as Cordy. Remember Jonathon? In Earshot she made the big gesture as the slayer and prevented him from committing suicide by telling him we are all in pain and that is why we don't notice others. But at the end of the episode she worries that he is thinking of asking her to a school dance. Giles mentions the gesture would do wonders for his self- esteem and Buffy snorts "what am I saint Buffy, he's like 3 feet tall". Maybe it was supposed to sound light-hearted and endearing but it came across as very thoughtless and bordering on callous for Buffy to suggest Jonothon isn't good enough to associate with. Particularly as he had been attempting suicide because he hated his life so much.
Again in Superstar Jonathon was still emotionally messed up and did a spell to become popular/perfect. At the end of the episode Buffy and her friends are hanging out and Jonathon is hanging on the outskirts. Buffy approaches him to lecture him on treating people like sockpuppets forgetting the times Willow and Xander have misused magic (BBB, SB). Jonathon protests they were friends and gives Buffy some advice. She looks thoughtful and rejoins her friends after telling him his issues take work. I would have thought it would have been a nice gesture to invite Jonathon to join the group as he had just expressed a wish for friendship with them.
Again with Spike in season 5 Buffy came across as a user. In the beginning of the season she used Spike as a punching bag to work off her aggression when Harmony kidnapped Dawn. It is easy to argue that Spike deserved it, nevertheless it came across as sadistic to smack someone in the mouth after being given the information. (not trying to make this a SvsB post just talking of buffy's behaviour which disturbs me regardless of Spike being an arsehole and deserving it).
She later used Spike to take care of her family in Checkpoint. She didn't say thanks as she was leaving and he agreed to look after them, rather she threatened his life if anything happened to them. In Crush Spike approaches her in the Bronze and she is disbelieving that he would treat her as a buddy. Fair enough in a way as the two did have a troubled history. But to expect him to fight alongside you and search for your sister in the previous episode and then rebuff him when you don't need his help just irks me.
Again in season 6 the two were having a good relationship. But then in Smashed Buffy knew Spike had taken care of Dawn for her and appreciated being treated like a man so much he could hardly find the words to express it. Yet when he tried to talk about the kiss she initiated she smacked him down calling him an "evil souless thing". There was something so cold and unpleasant about the image of her standing over him saying that it bothers me more than the beating in DT. I understood she let her emotions get the better of her in DT and I never held it against her (though admittidly I did wince when in the next episode she made a joking reference to beating Spike again). Some remorse after the beating would have helped me appreciate her struggle with her dark side. Rather it seemed she simply didn't care. In DT when she confessed to Tara she takes no responsibility and never wonders why she is doing such terrible things, what's happenning to her etc. The audience could have relate do to that and it could have been a point of audience identification. Rather she specifically lays all the blame on Spike's shoulder "why do I let him do thse things to me".
I understand Buffy is depressed and in a poor place in life. I admired her efforts to protect her friends from the true knowledge of what they had sone. Equally however I cannot feel comfortable with her treating Spike like a robat there to validate her self-worth. In AYW I felt she came across very badly when she demanded Spike tell her he love her and we see his face light up with hope.
I am willing to admit that Buffy is good at the larger issues and has saved many people. But I still don't believe she is the sort of person I could relate to or hang out with. Season 6 is the closest I have come to relating to Buffy and even then her treatment of Spike appalled me.

[> [> [> [> Re: Just out of interest, ( and a different perspective) -- Spike Lover, 13:59:16 07/19/02 Fri

I don't compare Buffy to any Shakespearean character. I just use the techniques I learned to analyze HER tragic flaws and I notice the technique of 'foiling' is used between the show's characters and situations. (Warren and Spike were foiled a lot this past season.)

I like the quips. I did not say I did not. I am just using them as evidence of 'primadonna' behavior. I am not saying that Buffy should not have disrespected Giles or the counsil. She is a rebel. So be it. I will say that I doubt anyone could have the kind of power a 'slayer' has without a holier than thou ego to go along. Heroism comes out of believing in yourself (and trying against all odds), not necessarily about looking at odds and weighing your chances and looking at your abilities rationally.

Also, as I went to lunch I thought of a way that the writers could very easily hurt Spike's fan base: They could do the opposite of what they did in 'Fool for Love'. They showed us 1) very likeable and vulnerable William 2) and comical scenes of killing (the gypsy camp, for instance) 3) and two albeit physical, but not necessarily 'evil' fights against slayers.

They did NOT show us the other stuff. Remember what they showed about Darla and Angel? The two of them making out hotly, biting each other, w/ virgin Drusilla gagged and watching and about to be corrupted, killed, and turned. Remember the story of Angel killing Holt's wife and son and vamping the daughter for the father to find -to his horror. These were truly evil acts. I despise Darla and Angel and am not real fond of Dru either. But Spike is different. If he is not, then the WRITERS need to show him as the same blood-thirsty killer as the rest. They need to tell Spike's "Holtz" story. (Even when Spike is telling Dawn the story of one of his killing sprees, we only get the end, and even then, Dawn thinks it is a 'cool' story.) No, the writers intentionally wanted us sympathetic to Spike. Don't blame me if it worked.

Next, please try not to be so offended that I voice my distaste for characters: Joyce, Buffy, Willow, Xander, etc. I find them far from boring. And it is because I find them true to life that it even hits a nerve. But they are not real and so there should be no sin if I wish that Buffy had her teeth kicked in most of the time, and other characters too. I once really liked the X-Files, but the writer refused to let what they had created take its natural course (in my opinion) and the show got stagnant. I continued to watch the show not because I thought it was good or gripping or even entertaining, but out of macaab curiosity of how low they could go with what had once been a decent, fresh show.

I LOVE the show, BTVS overall. I have never posted: 'they are way off this season', as some have. The writers can do what they like (and will) and will have the characters go and do what they like. I am just going to continue to watch it. I suppose Buffytvs is a bit like a soap opera. There are characters on it that I hate, (and love to hate perhaps?) but that is just part of my viewing experience. It does not have to be your experience.

As a contrast, take NYPD Blue which to me is like a police show that solves a crime and at the beginning and end they will tell you something about the cops' personal lives. Truly I am unaffected by it. I could care less about the dilemma's of the characters or the show itself, but sometimes I tune in to see what awful murder is going to be solved. I could not care less if it was cancelled.

I would be livid for months if something happened to BtVS.

I suppose I would like to know: Would you just prefer I kept my comments and viewing experience to myself?

[> [> [> [> [> Re: Just out of interest, ( and a different perspective) -- Rahael, 14:28:50 07/19/02 Fri

Ummm....I thought I responded to your post in a good humoured and respectful manner. Did I come off as offended? I just discussed the points you made from, as I prominently said, a different perspective.

At what point did you see me say that a) you shouldn't say those things b) you shouldn't say them on the board?

I post on the board and people disagree with me, and I disagree or modify my arguments. I don't come here to register my opinions on the world and have them looked at: I always hope for interesting discussions with other people that may make me change my mind, or give me a different slant on these things. OFten, I have no opinion until I read the board, see other people's comments and realise new things.

I invited you to share your views on Shakespeare because I'm genuinely interested in them. I discussed your view of Buffy as a prima donna not in a flaming way, but took it seriously enough to consider the evidence.

Exactly where did I sound offended? Its true that I said hoping Joyce died a painful death was a harsh thing to say. It is harsh. I'm only stating my opinion. It wasn't at all offended. If you post on the board, you may expect agreement or disagreement. I have garnered much of both. It is out of disagreement that some of the best threads are made (a whole thread full of "great post nt" is hardly as enjoyable to read as a twisty thread which develops a life of its own).

I don't think I flamed you, I thought I responeded in a friendly spirit. You may look down the board and see that I argued pretty trenchently with my own boyfriend.

Rahael (rubbing her glasses and saying "good lord!")

[> [> [> [> [> [> I think it's me, not you -- Bad Earl :( -- Earl Allison, 14:38:44 07/19/02 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> [> Prima Donna -- Finn Mac Cool, 15:25:58 07/19/02 Fri

In my experience, the term "prima donna" can be viewed very differently by different people. Before you call someone a prima donna, you may want to define, in your view, what exactly a prima donna is.

[> [> [> [> Which Shakespear hero would you compare Buffy to? - - shadowkat, 11:22:17 07/20/02 Sat

"Please enlarge! We can never have too much Shakesperean comparisons! Which flawed hero do you compare Buffy to?"

Okay I know this is probably hijacking the thread, but I can't resist. I couldn't stop thinking about this today - which flawed Shakespear hero would I compare Buffy to?

Me? I see a couple. Biggest one is Hamlet. Why Hamlet for Buffy? Well, Hamlet has to make all these decisions, rule his country, and deal with Betrayle. Buffy also has to make decisions and deal with the betrayle of Angel. Okay maybe
Angel fits the Hamlet comparison better.

Rosalind for As You Like It?

Any takers? Really curious...

[> [> [> [> [> Re: Which Shakespear hero would you compare Buffy to? -- Rahael, 11:42:07 07/20/02 Sat

I'm always in favour of thread hi-jacking.

I'm not yet sure of who might be Buffy. I've likened Macbeth to Willow, and Cordelia to Cordelia. Of course, Cordy could be any number of witty and spirited Shakesperean heroines.

hmmmm, thinking more about this.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Portia? -- Arethusa, 13:42:46 07/20/02 Sat

"the lottery of my destiny
Bars me the right of voluntary choosing"

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Portia? -- shadowkat, 17:14:55 07/20/02 Sat

From Merchant of Venice, right? If so that fits in with Out of Mind Out of Sight, where Cordy believes the Merchant of Venice was just a big Whiner.

Portia is a good one.

How about Viola? In Twelth Night - or is she too weak?

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Which Shakespear hero would you compare Buffy to? -- shadowkat, 17:20:41 07/20/02 Sat

Cordelia reminds me of Helena in Midsummer Nights Dream

Willow does make me think of Macbeth or Lady MacBeth.

Spike most definitely Iago - at least up until Season5.

Angel - Hamlet? Actually Angel fits Hamlet better than Buffy maybe?

Buffy? I'm thinking Henry the V, especially in the Gift. And in the Gift - Spike is most definitely Falstaff, no doubt in my mind - even quotes Falstaff's lines.

Are there any strong female heroines in Shakespear? I mean really physically strong? Cleopatra maybe?

Oh Cordy could also be Kate in Taming of the Shrew? (I've been watching Angel Season 1 episodes today)

Okay...it's time I brushed up my Shakespeare. ;-)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Which Shakespear hero would you compare Buffy to? -- Arethusa, 19:24:40 07/20/02 Sat

Cordelia as Kate is good-Kate softens considerably at the end, too. I like Beatrice as Cordy as well. Beatrice evidently had a thing for Benedict, then fell to quarreling with him before they finally fell in love for good.

I like Giles as Prospero, especially in "Grave."

There's a lot of Queen Gertrude in Joyce. She didn't see what she didn't want to see, at times.

Spike as Romeo? Immature, hot-tempered, romantic, deadly. Or perhaps even Caliban, wanting Prospero's daughter but not good enogh for her because he's a monster.

"But thy vile race,
Though thou didst learn, had that in't which
good natures
Could not abide to be with; therefore wast thou
Deservedly confined into this rock,
Who hadst deserved more than a prison."
(Quote from http://the-tech.mit.edu/Shakespeare/)

How about Warren?

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Wesley *was* Hamlet this year -- Arethusa, 19:41:09 07/20/02 Sat

Unable to make a decision, until he made the wrong one. Not knowing whom to trust. More academic than warrior king.

This is way too much fun.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Oooh I love your choices! -- shadowkat, 21:37:45 07/20/02 Sat

Well redcat compared Spike to Othello above in the line
about "one who loved not wisely but too well" - Dru's line in Crush.

Warren? First I thought of Richard the III. But maybe that's too high...what about, Iago? No, too low.

Spike is definitely Caliban. Compared him to Caliban in my
S/R essay awhile back. Made Riley - Ferdinand. (enjoy irony of that since JM played Ferdinand and got his North London accent originally from the actor playing Caliban in the Tempest in Seattle before he auditioned for Buffy and was afraid that guy would find out about the part of Spike. - see interview on www.jamesmarsters.com)

Xander is Benedict.

Willow could also be Titus in Titus Androncious
(worst revenge play I've seen or maybe that's more like Holtz.)

What about Tara? And Anya?

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Othello and "Sleep Tight" -- d'Herblay, 00:37:00 07/21/02 Sun

Back in February, I went through a couple of sleepless nights (bah! all my nights are sleepless) working up a comparison of Othello to the "Sleep Tight" arc on Angel. I was pretty certain that Sahjhan was Iago, and Holtz Roderigo, Wesley the Moor, and Angel Desdemona. Wait, I said, Wesley is Cassio, and the translation the napkin, making Angel the Moor and Desdemona . . . no, no, no -- Gunn is Lodovico and Fred is Emilia and Wesley is, um, Iago? The faithless lieutenant? But then who's Sahjhan? The Duke of Venice, using the Moor but secretly resenting and sabotaging him? Can't be. Wesley is 70% Othello, 20% Cassio, 10% Roderigo; Angel is 60% Desdemona and 40% Othello; and Iago is 80% all of Sahjhan and 20% 40% of Holtz (the remainder the remaining 90% of Roderigo); and I am 100% buggered if I can make heads or tails of this and what's so great about iambs anyway? This is why my posting is generally limited to snarky no-texters and links to my apocryphal scenes, which I wrote back in November and December when I still had 50% a brain.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Come to think of it, Angel smothering Wesley with the pillow was important to this train of thought -- d'Herblay, 00:59:44 07/21/02 Sun

Making Wes Desdemona and Angel Othello and me absolutely bonkers.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> LMAO - oh I wish you posted more! (Spoilers - Sleep Tight) -- shadowkat, 08:01:42 07/21/02 Sun

Haven't laughed so hard in a while!

I don't think you can have an absolute connection. But the comparison of Angel to Desdemona in a nutshell may be why I wanted to knock him across the head most of the year. LOL

Angel feels more like Othello
Wesley like the well-meaning Desdemona who betrays him
Holtz - Iago who talks Wesley into it with the help of
the girl (can't remember her name been a while since I read it) who is Saijhan/Lilah/Justine

Sleep Tight is one of the best episodes in btvs/ats history.
We have betrayle after well-meaning betrayle. Loved that
episode, made me start taping Angel and pay attention to Angel for the first time since Angel went bonkers and locked Dru and Darla in with the lawyers.

First we have Saijahan and lilah's partnership, then Holtx/Justine. These two partnerships are designed to convince Wesely to betray Angel.

The first spikes the baby's punch and rewrites the prophecy and does little things to make it seem the prophecy is coming true - very Iagoish (although I think Spike in Yoko Factor was the best Iago - so good that the writers discovered as Shakespeare did before them, that they'd written themselves into a corner and had to find a way to get Spike to get the team back together - it's amusing to hear them admit this on the Primeval commentary), then when Wes' somewhat Othello like goes to Holtz and Justine to get help...(he is also reeling from Fred's Desdemona and Gunn's Roderigo's romance, so he feels isolated like Othello, cut off and Cordy, the one person he might have confided in - is gone with the Grooslaug), Justine and Holtz act very much like Iago's friend the girl who helps him in the play and re- emphasize his worries. (holtz has been planning this baby- napping since Lullaby...boy was Angel tightly written this year - Marti should take lessons from Greenwalt in editing and plotting.) Then we have the betrayle. But Wes has no interest in giving the child to holtz. So Holtz does the double betrayle - hence your confusion in the analysis.
Holtz takes out Othello who has betrayed the Angel family (Desdemona) and is left very Othello like on the ground.
Desdomona/Angel loses it's heart Connor...and starts to reel from the impact.

Not sure if that works. Find looser comparisons work better than exact ones. ;-)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Tara & Anya -- Brian, 05:05:05 07/21/02 Sun

For Tara, how about Titania, Queen of the Fairies, from "A Midsummer Night's Dream", a mixture of beauty and fire, passion and independance, and Anya as Helena, with her slavish devotion to Demetrius (Xander) until Hell's Bells, of course.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Which Shakespear hero would you compare Buffy to? -- Arethusa, 07:11:17 07/21/02 Sun

Drucilla as Isabella (Measure for Measure), before she was crazed and vamped. Perhaps Angelo as Riley; the poor stick thought he was rightous and a leader, until he met a girl that he wanted so badly he corrupted himself to have her.

Good choices, Brian.

You're hysterical, dH.

Catherine and Amy Madison-how about two of the Witches of Endor? Amy, at least, tried to corrupt Willow with the promise of power, and Will's already been compared to MacBeth.

Okay, here's a tough one: Oz.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Not sure about Oz . . . -- Finn Mac Cool, 09:20:24 07/21/02 Sun

. . . but I think Xander is a good match for Mercutio from "Romeo and Juliet". They're both the witty, best-friend character who is often outside the main action.

Also, I think that Angel of season 1 and 2 matches Ferdinand of "The Tempest". He falls in love with Prospero's daughter, and she falls in love with him, even though I can't find anything in common between them (well, Prospero's daughter had lived on a deserted island her entire life, she'd fall in love with the first man she saw).

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Not sure about Oz . . . -- redcat, 10:05:40 07/21/02 Sun

"(well, Prospero's daughter had lived on a deserted island her entire life, she'd fall in love with the first man she saw)."

hmmm...unless, of course, she was "kinda gay"...(like Willow, for instance, or Tara, or maybe some of the folks on this board...)

or unless she was prepared to wait till she met the "right" man instead of the first one who came along...

or unless, being an extremely well-educated young woman, she had decided to devote her life to poetry or music or painting or God, instead of to a man...

or unless (fill in any number of other possible blanks)....???

Not snarking here, Finn, am just reminded by your assumption that falling in love with a man isn't the only available option, even for a young woman who's lived her whole life on a (nearly [since both Caliban and Prospero also lived there]) deserted island.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Not sure about Oz . . . -- Finn Mac Cool, 12:48:32 07/21/02 Sun

Good points. However, I have little doubt that the hormones would certainly be flying.

Given the character did end up with Ferdinand, it doesn't seem like she's gay, and there was no mention of her being super-religious.

My point with that comment more was that Ferdinand was the first man she had ever seen who wasn't her father or a monster. I would just think that all her pent up lust would suddenly come to the forefront, speeding up how quickly she fell for Ferdinand. Maybe not love the first man she meets, but I'm betting extreme lust was a factor.

[> [> [> [> [> I'll try to think about it, But off the top of my head, maybe Brutus from Julius Caesar? -- Spike Lover, 08:38:13 07/22/02 Mon

Also, Rahael, I did not say that you had slammed me. But others on this board have.

[> [> [> [> [> Buffy = Hal/ Henry V Spike= Falstaff -- Spike Lover, 09:27:17 07/23/02 Tue

[> [> [> Take a deep breath, and calm down ... -- Earl Allison, 13:00:46 07/19/02 Fri

Be upset if you wish. Vent, certainly.

However, you have no "right" to blame anyone. Your perceptions are your own, and I really don't think a real case can be made that Buffy was supposed to be a primadonna to arouse viewer ire, either.

A lot of your comments are, well, scary. You HATE Joyce? You wanted her to have a painful death? For ONE comment, made in the hear of the moment? I'd hate to be held to your standards -- and I wonder if you yourself live up to them. Look at how you started the post -- that a statement wasn't YOUR INTENTION -- d'you really think Joyce meant what she said, fully understanding the ramifications? Or did she lash out, hurt, and poorly phrase her comments? But to wish her a painful death for that ONE STATEMENT, and yet defend Spike the mass-murderer -- the mind boggles.

Buffy's a primadonna? I can't say you don't have a few interesting points, but it all seems to be refracted through your perceptions of Spike.

I've said it before (repeatedly), so here it is again -- where was that outrage when it was VampHarmony being mistreated by Spike? While it might not show Buffy in the best light, one could make the case that his treatment at Buffy's hands is karmic justice for his treatment of VampHarmony -- and no matter what else, Buffy never tried to kill Spike for being annoying -- wheras he DID try to kill VampHarmony for that ...

I would also question your statement that all Spike has done is be kind to her -- trying to separate her from her friends was neither kind NOR helpful. And it sounds even worse given his conclusions in S5, that it is those connections that kept her alive and sane longer than most Slayers.

I'm shutting it off here -- I've no intention of starting a flamewar. Opinions get heated, mine included. I do think you might want to take a look at some of those statements, though.

Take it and run.

[> [> [> [> Running for life -- Spike Lover, 14:09:50 07/19/02 Fri

Sorry if I have offended (again.) ho- hum.

I will agree that VampHarm was treated badly by Spike. (Cosmic karma for her dissing people in high school?)

Read my above post about my sympathy's for Spike please.

I found her very annoying also.

He did try to stake her. AGain, a plot device to show she had found the ring he was looking for? Never mind. He tried it.

Xander tried to kill Spike with an ax when he found out about the tryst. Buffy has numerous times threatened to kill Spike (because he annoyed her). (Some were probably justified.) But who cares about any of this?

What does it mean when I can't express my raw feelings about a character on a tv show? Where is freedom of Speech? I mean, I know I can't say anything about anyone's personal religious beliefs, life styles, or political alliances/views in mixed company, but I can't have 'too strong' of feelings about what a fictional character is doing or not doing or did in a TV show?

Eeeek. The peer pressure.

[> [> [> [> [> It isn't the emotion, but the execution ... -- Earl Allison, 14:35:58 07/19/02 Fri

Spike Lover,

No, you are entitled to your feelings, by all means. We all are. You problem with the post I replied to was the execution -- it lacked, well, tact.

Is it required? Hardly -- and even so, I'm not in any position to demand it, but it helps. Sure, I'm probably guilty of it too, sometimes.

And again, it's the fact that you see things largely through one character -- for example, the staking of Harmony.

You see that as a plot device -- and to an extent, it is. but to decide to dismiss it (as I'm interpreting your comment to mean) is rather unfair.

Could one not argue that Joyce's angry threat was a plot device -- to bring Buffy to her lowest point of the season? Could one not argue the same of Buffy's pummeling of Spike in "Dead Things"? That it was a plot device to show us how angry Buffy was with herself -- much the same as Faith was with herself in S4?

Anyway, have strong feelings, certainly. But don't be too surprised if they invoke strong, potentially retaliatory responses from OTHER people who might disagree. And if those responses are over the top, it might have something to do with what they are REPLYING to.

You said you were glad Joyce died, and wished it had been more painful. That's a strong statement, and doesn't exactly leave itself open to interpretation.

I merely seized on it to make my point, that to hold someone in such low regard for that comment, and to somehow forgive a largely-unrepentant mass-murderer while condemning those around him guilty of less "evil" in the grand scheme, seemed askew to me.

You don't like Buffy, or her actions -- so be it. I don't care for many of Spike's actions -- and I find them less easy to forgive and/or let go of than you do. However, that being said, I'm not waiting with baited breath for the character to shuffle off his undead coil.

You're free to say what you wish -- but so is everyone else. And if you do so in a way that arouses others to post (to agree OR disagree), well, that's why we're all here, isn't it?

Again, I don't have a problem so much with what you believe (you're entitled, whether I agree or not) as with how you might express it.

Take it and run.

[> [> [> [> [> [> EA, Rah--you're way too patient and thoughtful. There's no reasoning with a fanatic. -- A8, 22:31:08 07/19/02 Fri

I always get a kick out of the situation where a poster threatens to leave when other posters offer reasoned responses to (what most reasonable people would consider) inflammatory statements. It's kind of like a little kid threatening to hold his breath until he gets his way.

Nothing either of you have posted could in the remotest way be construed by any reasonable person as a flame. The problem is that people who are fanatically invested in a particular fictional character tend to take it as an ad hominem attack when you even suggest an alternative viewpoint to their perspective. From that point on, the reasoned discussion is pretty much over and it's probably best to move on (although, your responses IMO always contain additional enlightening insights, so I suppose all is not lost).

Most of us here are mature enough to distinguish between a difference of opinion and a personal slight. I doubt the overall civility of the board would be compromised by resisting the temptation to indulge the hyper-sensitive with more than a "sorry you misunderstood me-no offense intended." Anything further would seem to be an exercise in futility.

Then again, in your heart of hearts you must know that the real solution is total capitulation. Draft a petition to ME! Insist that the show's name be changed to "Spike the Slayer Slayer." Demand that all characters be played by JM and that their names all contain the name Spike (e.g.-Buffy "Spike" Summers, "The Spike who was formerly named Willow" Rosenburg, Joyce "Who Grovels Before Spike prior to meeting a timely, well-served and painful death" Summers, etc.) Of course, in every scene JM must remove his shirt and all commercials must reference products that Spike might endorse. As Jon Lovitz used to say on SNL, "yeah, that's the ticket." Come to think of it, the words of Gilda Radner's characters, Roseanne Roseannadanna and Emily Litella seem even more appropriate: "it's always something...if it isn't one thing, it's another...never mind."

Peace, out.


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> And by the way, as the Archie Bunker would malaprop, "no intense offended." ;-) -- A"spike"8, 22:36:36 07/19/02 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> LOL re Spike the SLayer Slayer -- Rahael, 06:03:06 07/20/02 Sat

Though I can't claim to be patient or thoughtful today on the board. Wish I could respond as graciously as others do.

[> [> Little late to respond, Rendyl...but THANK YOU! My thoughts exactly! -- Rob, 11:12:58 07/19/02 Fri

And as president of the Buffy Character Anti-Defamation League, I salute you! ;o)


[> [> [> Re: for Rob -- Rendyl, 13:14:16 07/19/02 Fri

Er...I thought you were president of the 'Follow Anya around with a goofy and adoring smile on my face' league. Did I miss a memo?

Ren (grinning oh so evilly)

[> [> [> [> Jeeze, how many clubs does Rob belong to???...;) -- Rufus, 18:54:30 07/19/02 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> We discussed all his clubs while you were off on a chocolate donut run.. -- Rendyl, 19:49:34 07/19/02 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> [> Drool.......chocolate.....so, you were talking behind my chocolate stained back??;) -- Rufus, 20:31:36 07/19/02 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> At least you got to eat the chocolate. :) -- Rendyl, 06:29:08 07/20/02 Sat

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> uh...how do you get chocolate stains on your *back*? @>) -- anom, 22:24:17 07/20/02 Sat

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> That will have to remain a little part of the mystery that is Rufus.....;) -- Rufus, 18:31:43 07/21/02 Sun

[> [> [> [> LOL...Yes...and... -- Rob, 21:24:22 07/19/02 Fri

The Season Six Defender League

The Season Four Defender League

The Send all Bunnies to Guam Campaign

The OMWF Sing-a-long Choir

The Amber Benson and Emma Caulfield Appreciation Society

and of course...

The Keep Dawn Whiny Brigade...and the Keep Willow a Crack Addict Brigade! ;o)


[> [> [> [> [> There's a "Sing - along - Choir" a Choir for singing along???? -- Rufus, 01:22:19 07/20/02 Sat

I can't even get my husband to watch the whole musical...though he did laugh through DMP with it's unintentional penis monster.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: There's a "Sing - along - Choir" a Choir for singing along???? -- Robert, 22:02:35 07/20/02 Sat

>> "... though he did laugh through DMP with it's unintentional penis monster."

It was unintentional?

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: There's a "Sing - along - Choir" a Choir for singing along???? -- Rufus, 18:29:20 07/21/02 Sun

That's what Jane said.....

From The Succubus Club Interview with Jane Espenson:

Candy: Cool, let's get to Doublemeat Palace. Somebody wants to know, was the symbolism of the demon in DP deliberate and if so what is it a metaphor for?

Jane: It was an enormous penis, but... we did not realize that at the time. We did not know it was going to look like that, we really thought it was going to look like an eel or a lamprey. Coming out the top of her head. Now if we thought for a minute we'd realize well a lamprey looks kind of like a big penis and it particularly did the way it was realized. It wasn't intentional, now would we have a lesbian cut off a giant penis? Nooo, that's icky and uh unpleasant, and very strange. However, once it had happened, we felt free to comment on it because you would comment on it. So we had the Willow Tara conversation where they're talking about it. Which I thought worked really well, I felt. It's what's called hanging a lantern on it. When there is something obvious about what you have done, obviously flawed or coincidental or just something that you are afraid people are going to be distracted by knowing... You do what's called hanging a lantern on it, which is where the characters point it out and go oh oh ok there is that funny looking thing in the corner and now you can pay attention to what's happening with the story.

I just cracked up when Candy asked what the Penis monster was the metaphor for.....I have to wonder how Marti ever got pregnant when she doesn't even recognise a penis when she sees one.....;)

[> [> [> [> [> Re: LOL...Yes...and... -- Rendyl, 06:32:59 07/20/02 Sat

***The Send all Bunnies to Guam Campaign***

All bunnies except the Easter bunny. My daughter would never forgive me if we exiled the bringer of chocolate and peeps.


[> Sang once made a good point too -- Caesar Augustus, 16:07:00 07/18/02 Thu

That Buffy allowing herself to love a soulless creature would screw up her value system, since for the past 5 odd years she's used the human soul as the main distinguishing factor between what evil to kill outright and what evil she does not have the right to just kill. Loving a creature lacking a human soul would put a lot of doubt on all the demons and vampires she's previously killed without thought.

[> [> Thank you Caesar. -- Spike Lover, 14:13:29 07/19/02 Fri

Which brings up the next question... what would Buffy think about all the demons in Angel's LA? Surely some of the ones they encounter (and don't kill) don't have souls.

Would Buffy be confused there as well?

Besides, I thought in the Jossverse, vampires did have souls: demon-souls.


[> [> [> Souls and Demons -- Finn Mac Cool, 16:02:20 07/19/02 Fri

Here's how I see this issue in the Buffyverse:

There are two extremes: Ultimate Good and Ultimate Evil. Very few creatures ever reach either extreme. Instead, most sentient creatures fall somewhere in the spectrum between Good and Evil.

A soul is a force that pushes someone to do good. The soul is constantly reaching towards the Ultimate Good side. It rewards good behavior with satisfaction and punishes evil acts through guilt. However, different people have slightly different souls. Some souls push very strongly towards the Ultimate Good side of the spectrum, while others are very weak and easy for people to ignore. In other cases, the soul may be very strong, but a person's greed, emotion, or possible insanity are too powerful for it too fight against.

Vampires have demons. These shouldn't be confused with the creatures called demons. Just as the soul pushes someone towards Ultimate Good, the demon pushes someone towards Ultimate Evil. A vampire can feel guilt, it's just that they feel it when they do something good. Like souls, these demons range in strength from strong to weak.

Right in the middle of this good and evil spectrum is Amorality. This is where the soul or demon is so weak that it has no effect on its owner's actions. The person does whatever best benifits himself/herself/itself. There are amoral humans, or ones who are practically amoral, such as Warren and possibly the Mayor (it's uncertain if he actually had a soul or if he had a demon). There are also vampires like Spike and Harmony that are amoral for the most part; they don't have a big problem with joining the forces of good if it will help them, though they have lust for human blood that gives them a tendency to choose the side of evil.

Someone with a soul can tune out from it to such an extent that they have no qualms about doing evil. Vampires can do the same thing with their demons. However, no human is motivated to do evil for the sake of evil. Likewise, no vampire ever does something good because it is good. The vampires who come the closest to being good are as bad as the worst humanity has to offer.

Now, the question is raised about examples we've seen of good demons. My answer is that we must distinguish between the demons the creatures and demons the anti-soul. To make my point: there is a species of bat called the "vampire", there are people with a strange desire for blood who are called vampires, and, in the Buffyverse, there are mystical vampires. The three share the same name, but are different in many ways. Likewise, the creatures that look like human/animal meshes and the force in vampires that naturally propells them towards evil are two different things that share the same name. In fact, I've seen little to distinguish demons from people/animals, except that some have natural or learned mystical powers. Some species of demon have souls, others have demons. Also, if Angel protects a soulless demon, it may be because he has not yet been able to determine from its behavior if it has a soul or a demon.

Buffy wouldn't be too shocked about the good demons in LA. She's seen examples of them before. She may be shocked by the large number of soulled demons, but, then, she lives on the Hellmouth. It tends to attract demons of the soulless variety.

[> [> [> [> Souls vs Conscience -- Spike Lover, 12:34:19 07/22/02 Mon

I suppose this is why I have problems with Spike 'wanting' a soul. What you have described may very well be what Joss intends in his world, but it is not how I understand it.

To me, a soul is that 'personality'/essence that is left after a creature dies. It has nothing to do with their moral code.

To me in the Jossverse, vamps, once turned, are very confusing. On the one hand, their moral conscious and their human soul supposedly has left them. They are taken over by another creature, presumably that does not have a soul, and enjoys chaos. (It is ultimately gone when they are dusted.)

I am not defending it. This simply is the way I intrepret 'souls' in general and therefore also in the Buffyverse.

[> [> [> [> [> Vampires and Who They Once Were -- Finn Mac Cool, 20:03:08 07/22/02 Mon

There is an alternate theory I have that would meet your definition of a soul.

When someone is vamped, they die. A demon is either called or created to fill the place of the absent soul (in the process the body is remodified to create vampire physiology).

The demon retains no memories from it's life before entering the vampire (assuming the process of vamping doesn't create a brand new demon). However, the demon does get the human's memories. It absorbs them so completely it's as though they were its own. Our experiences shape who we are, so vampires are often very similar in personality to the human they once were.

But, the demon is different on a fundamental level from the human. First, its new biology gives it a tremendous urge for blood, especially that of humans. More importantly, however, the demon's basic principle is to do evil, while humans go by the basic principle of doing good (though both human and vampire can do good or evil because of varying views of right and wrong, insanity, or giving in to selfish desires).

Some vampires seem similar to their human counterparts (see Harmony) because aquiring someone's memories requires aquiring their personality as well. Some vampires appear quite different from their past selves (see Vamp Willow) because the demon is disgusted with the human and change their personality accordingly.

Some demons are good because they are aligned towards the side of good, just as humans are. Some demons are evil, though, because they are aligned towards the side of evil. Vampires happen to be of the latter variety.

This is an alternate theory if a soul is not equatable with conscience.

[> Re: Bad Writing, And where I thought the writers were going w/ Buffy's feelings this season -- luvthistle1, 02:32:27 07/19/02 Fri

I think Buffy do have feeling for Spike and it scares her. Spike is the only one, (besides Angel) who understand her . All of her. To everyone else she a "normal girl" But a normal girl do not have the type of strength that Buffy have.
He also, understand that slaying/fighting turns her on. Like it did with Faith. If you watched the past episode of BTVS, Buffy would make love after slaying with Riley. Spike accepts her dark side, I do not think anyone else have (beside Angel) , something that Buffy herself refuse to admit to she has. I do not think Xander could handle Buffy, nor accept all side of her, like Spike does. In "Dead things" Spike Allowed Buffy to take her anger out on him, would Xander had did the same thing. If it had been Xander who had tried to stop her from going to the police, would her actions had been the same? All the scoobies said the same thing that Spike said, and yet, she didn't punch none of them.

[> [> Did Angel deal with Buffy or the Slayer? -- Darby, 07:02:09 07/19/02 Fri

Luv's assertion that only Spike and Angel have accepted Buffy's Dark Side gave me one of those Eh? moments where something just feels wrong on a gut level but I'm not sure if it is, so I'll toss it back up here.

I realize that Angel knew Buffy was the Slayer, but never got the impression that he understood what that meant, beyond being a Champion, something he found he aspired to be. He always seemed to relate to her as a teenage girl, though, dealing with the sorts of small-d darkness that most teenage girls carry around. I'm not even sure that the concept of the Slayer's power originating in Dark Magics even was revealed while Angel was in Sunnydale, and the interactions since seem to indicate that Angel feels that he moves in a world of Darkness that Buffy deals with but isn't part of. He understood Faith as part of that, but would have connected that aspect to the Faith part and not the Slayer part.

Just to draw on this as if it were true, what effect would this have had on Angel on his own? Broody, sure, racked with guilt, yep, but not very adept at dealing with his own Dark Nature. If Angel's understanding of Buffy had continued to advance as our has, I think that he would have been less conflicted about his role as a Champion with a Dark Side (can I just mention that the term "champion" bugs me? Too trumpet-flourishy!). He is just now letting himself, nasty side and all, settle into the role.

And if we ever get another cross-over, this would be a worthy theme, a metaphor for hooking back up with a First Love and finding that there were important things about them that you just had not seen when you were together, which makes you doubt the validity of the whole relationship and totally rethink your "what if" scenarios. I'm not the only one who has lived through that, am I?

[> [> [> Good point. I'd like to see that too. I have certainly had that 'moment' of realization myself. -- Spike Lover, 10:14:44 07/19/02 Fri

[> [> Good Point, luvthistle -- Spike Lover, 10:09:04 07/19/02 Fri

[> Re: Bad Writing, And where I thought the writers were going w/ Buffy's feelings this season -- Silky... delurking, who should be working, 09:28:07 07/19/02 Fri

Lurked here for a few months after my roommate told me about the board - love the thoughtful and enlightening posts.

Joss said before S.6 started that Buffy would have a hard time coming back from the grave - little did we know it would take all season for her to deal! Lots has been said about her being depresssed. I saw it more as the process of grieving - her grieving for what she lost and what she had to come back to. The process takes months as anyone who has gone through it knows, and results in what I call emotional anethesia. You just can't deal, so you run and hide inside yourself. But Buffy, being the hero, didn't really want anyone to know how much she was suffering - though she told Giles and he left anyway.

Spike seemed to be the only one who understood and accepted that she felt that way. Willow and Xander just thought everything was back to as before. Dawn was very needy - which Buffy had a hard time with.

I think the writers made Spike more sympathetic and Buffy less so than they realized at first and then tried to 'correct' it. I love the character of Buffy, I love Spike, too. My main problem with the writing/season/characterization was that the Scoobies were so utterly disrespectful of Spike, and somewhat to Anya. [A huge problem in our society, IMO] If vampires and demons are partially a metaphor for those who are unlike us, then perhaps the gang needs to mature enough to be more tolerant of others and recognize the good in them - as in get over the black-and-white judgmental attitude. Hope to see some forgiveness all around next season.

[> [> Me too! That would be refreshing. -- Spike Lover, 10:11:25 07/19/02 Fri

[> [> o/t--i feel a limerick coming on... -- anom (not really silky's boss), 23:03:46 07/22/02 Mon

Don't know what's come over me, & I haven't had time to read the actual content of this thread, but here it is:

Well, Silky, I see you're delurking
When we both know you should be working
Now, who is your boss?
Is it me, or this "Joss"?
I don't want to see any more shirking!

[> [> Thanks to silky...and to anom for the limerick -- aliera, 09:39:49 07/23/02 Tue

I missed your post the first time around, silky; thanks for delurking...the greying of Buffy space is part of what was going on this year (not to everyone's liking, I know, at least in terms of how it was presented). In any event, we lived through it...which is how I sort of view my early twenties.

And anom, thanks for the pun...a mid-day chuckle, much appreciated, especially since I'm sharing in shirking.

Current board | More July 2002