July 2003 posts

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Where to Get My Future BtVS "Fix" -- Rabidharpy, 13:07:25 07/09/03 Wed

Hi everyone! I haven't posted here in a 'coons age but I knew all you lovely, intelligent ATPoBtVS-ers would be able to help me out with a few questions...

Whatever are we going to do come September in order to get our "Buffy" fix!?!? I'm guessing that (unfortunately) Eliza will not be continuing with slayer duties and that Spike won't be getting his own spin-off, (we all know supernatural "deaths" never last!), so WHAT does Joss have in the works for the future?! ("Firefly" aside, are there any other productions on the back burner? Whatever happened to the "Watcher" series they were bandying about to be shot with ASH in England?!?!)

Also, does anyone know when BtVS Fifth Season comes out on DVD? I was reading a magazine in January that said the 4th season was supposed to come out in March and the 5th in June, but that's not right...

Finally, can anyone direct me to a good BtVS fan-fiction site that deals in continuations after season 7? (Can ya tell I'm suffering withdrawal already?!?!)

Sorry I'm so "behind" on things, and thanks for your help - all the best to everyone!

~RH ;)

[> Re: Where to Get My Future BtVS "Fix" -- fresne, 14:21:23 07/09/03 Wed

Well, there's always Anna's Season Noir, which is an alternate S7 that she started writing in S6 right around the time of Gone. Like reading the characters slowly immersed in Casablanca.

Note: It's not done and Anna comes out with "episodes" very slowly. Damn her.


OT question for those who have seen Chance -- Alison, 19:03:55 07/09/03 Wed

I'm kind of embarrassed asking this- but simply put, I can't buy Chance w/o my mother's approval...and to have that, Chance has to be PG 13ish. Being 15 is such a joy. ;)
I know that it was shown at several cons...so has anyone seen it? Would you say it was PG 13ish?

[> What's "Chance"? -- Finn Mac Cool, 19:35:05 07/09/03 Wed

[> [> AB's movie, which also stars JM and AH -- Alison, 19:49:02 07/09/03 Wed

[> Saw the premire in Birmingham... -- Kitt, 05:46:22 07/10/03 Thu

and I'ld say it's at least a PG-13, probably a soft R. There's non-graphic hetero and homo - sexual intercourse, and while it's non-violent, there are a lot of adult issuses dealt with... and one very cute scene of JM spinning around waiting for the microwave to go off! I'ld say it was ok for a reasonably mature 15 year old, it's not any more explicit than say some of the more intense eps of Buffy (Gone, Seeing Red), But your mom's standards may differ from mine...

More of Manilow's Mandy, Mind Control and other mumblings (Angel Odyssey 4.19) -- Tchaikovsky, 04:23:17 07/10/03 Thu

That's just reminded me of 'the moan of doves in immemorial elms and the murmuring of innumerable bees', but that's all by the by.

Hello everyone.

A lengthy break since 'Shiny Happy People' for me personally, but the story pretty much takes up where it left off:

Previously on Angel...

Crazy higher power bewitches the earth with the need to be happy unfettered by the desirfe for free will and control of one's own life.

Fred becomes an Orwellian malcontent, as a result of Jasmine's honest blood.

Angel sings Mandy several times.

All of which prepares us for the very accomplished:

4.19- 'The Magic Bullet'

This seemed a rather Greenwaltian effort from Jeffrey Bell, who managed to dredge up amusing little interludes from all over the place in a very scattershot way. There was all sorts of playful directing from him as well, a couple of which I thought worked out very nicely.

We get the teaser, where we are once again made ot draw the comparison between Advert!World and Los Angeles now that Jasmine has arrived. When was the last time you saw an advert that you actually wanted to be in? The vast majority of adverts are so brightly overlit and uncompromisingly perfect that I know I would duck as quickly as possible from being there. I'd rather be in grey old England, but with reality and beauty and free will in there somewhere- not just a bland unquestioning surrender to the better things in life. And so we get our chirpy tune, and the teaser employs a lot of the tactics adverts might- unfeasibly bright colours, unfeasibly happy people, and the feeling that you just need to know what to buy, (a Solero, a bitter[!], a Ford, life insurance) in order that your life could be just like this. And then it is rudely, (or blessedly) interrupted by Fred the renegade, who we see at the end of the teaser back underground in the sewers. I found this a clever little mislead- I was worried that Fred was retreating to her Pylea cave once again. In fact, she does something brave and difficult and slightly desperate, which makes me view her once again as an amazingly powerful and wonderful character. She keeps trying, and she succeeds.

Here's some questions:

'Why would anyone reject love?' Connor

'Where does the darkness go when the world is bathed in light?' TCH getting metaphorical

'How far to demons represent the dark but real half of humans psyche, and is this subjugated by Jasmine in the latter half of Season Four?' from a past Buffy 101 paper at a leading American University.

'Why does it always have to be blood? Couldn't it be a lymph ritual?' Xander

And here's some addresses to the questions, if not exactly answers:

As for Connor, his question is perhaps more important than the answer itself would be. For here in this epsode, we understand even more about Connor's feeling of abandonment- in a beautfiully shaped character arc. Here we see his disbelief that Fred could shun Jasmine. This is borne of his intense feelings of abandonment throughout his natural life. Let's take a small checklist here. Firstly, he feels Angel abandoned him as a child, so that he could be given to his real Father. Then, as we find out in one of this episode's most affecting sections of dialogue, Holtz used to regularly abandon the young Steven to turn him into a hunter. This is dreadfully sad- even the relationship that Connor felt he could trust is based on a feeling of distance- of an inability to communicate properly. Next, Angel leaves Connor to fend for himself at the end of 'A New World'. For Angel at this point, I felt it a brave and correct decision- to let go of the no-longer-baby Connor, and understand he is growing up. Now it seems like he wasn't acting forcefully enough as a Father. Next Holtz deliberately kills himself, abandoning Connor just as he is trying to adjust to his new world, new paradigm even. Then we get Cordelia, who Connor, so desperate for a real connection, refuses to explicitly accept is evil, even though he knows it deep down. And hence, in 'Inside Out', we get to Darla, who crystallises all of Connor's feelings of abandonment, and lets him finally take a step into believing Cordelia's message, only for her to be turned into the empty shell of Shiny Happy Jasmine. Connor doesn't notice this- for the first time absorbed by someone who fully appears to care for him and will always be there for him. Through this idea, he can start to believe in his Father- to the extent where they can sing 'Mandy' as 'Jasmine' together in one of the best funny-yet-serious moments of the Season.

Actually, the 'funny-yet-serious' motif was Greenwalt's, which links back in to the approach of this episode. We also get the 'Four Weddings and A Funeral' like quick cuts of people telling everyone of their love for Jasmine, and the super finger-eating demon. Each serve to demonstrate a deeper theme of the episode, both of which I will return to later.

To the second and third questions. Fred in this episode is the paranoid one- but her paranoia happens to be right. This fits in very nicely and tidily with the suspicious pot-head of 'Spin the Bottle', which I thought was a clever little reference back. She then goes on to try to find someone in the dark corners of Los Angeles who might be sympathetic nd help her. She tries the bookstore owner, but he has already been taken over by a view of Jasmine on the news. Jasmine is seeping even into the darkest recesses of Los Angeles. Then we get the demon, who it appears might be more conducive to a plan of action. Here's where I wondered whether the demon's often used identity as the Rejected or the Other, or even the Dispossessed, which runs throughout Angel from 'The Ring' and is a rather different usage than in Buffy, where demons are personal fears, was being used again. Perhaps the demon represents the honest side of the human psyche, which exists. The gruesome, the small and dirty, and yet the valid, and the real and the honest. The inner demon inside Fred, which makes her have free will, and also makes her less than perfect. But this was snatched away after it transpired that the demon ate fingers and had his eyes on Fred. Once again, as with the demolition of Skip's character, the complexity of what demon's represent was cut quickly down to size.

So Fred realises that the outcasts have their reasons for being outcasts, and that some of them are already in Jasmine's thrall. And she makes the decision, and a brave one at that, to make Angel see, using a dangerous and wonderful plan rather reminiscent of the 'Go Fred!' moments of early Season Three (Fredless, Billy etc). Fred realises that the people under Jasmine's spell haven't had their free will banished, sent to a shady hollow- and that they, like her, aren't dead losses. They just need to see the truth. They have repressed their free will- their honesty, the knowledge that the world ain't all cheery bubble-gum pop. The darkness, a necessary complement to the light, is there, if only the light beam can be momentarily broken. And so Fred does so to Angel, and the dominoes can start to fall.

As to the fourth question- the lifeblood of Jasmine is what gives away her true purpose, and the connection between Jasmine and Cordelia parallels Buffy and Dawn in 'The Gift'. Neat.

The breaking of the spell reveals the personal aspects of the happening in the first place. Each person was affected in the same simple way by Jasmine, but there were still personal undercurrents washing, just as I mentioned with Connor. So for Wesley, with have the return of the uncomfortable 'Billy' like attitude. The idea of him explaining how Fred was a Siren was really scary, beacause it suggested that some of what Billy brought out is still there residually. The librarian burns his book- he has found a new fantasy world to live in- only this time it is a deformation of the real world. And meanwhile, Jasmine casually dismisses the essence of her plan to the conspiracy theory part of him. The certainty that 'there was no second gun-man on the grassy knoll- it was all Lee Harvey Oswald's own work' would probably have been refuted by him if anyone else had said so. But from Jasmine, her word is enough. And in wondering whether the world may be more complex than the simple, official explanation, the man was doing, for whatever reason, exactly what Jasmine didn't want him to. Because when people start to believe there could have been another gun-man on the grassy knoll, there is no longer trust in the simple, no-questions-asked situation. Whether there was more than one gunman on that day in 1963 is almost irrelevant- Jasmine is the proponent of something which must not be open to conspiracy theories, and so dismisses the biggest one of our time, [or perhaps second to a certain one in 1969].

The cult of celebrity seems to be another facet of what Jasmine as a character comments on. We've already had the 'Diva,deity- fine line' comment form Lorne', and here the 'convention' going on in the Hyperion reminded me of the rabid fans of various people, who let it devour their lives. It also reminded me a little bit of being a Buffy obsessive. Is this a comment by Whedon or Bell on the madness of these people- desperate to get close to their heroes. If so, fair enough. It doesn't affect my outlook, inasmuch as I am perfectly happy discussing with friends real and virtual on subjects to do with Buffy and other thoughts rising for it. Unlike the addiction to Jasmine, our fanishness can be communal, and isn't necessarily personal. Here, it is the utter devotion to one person that is damaging. Of course, Lorne gives us another hint that this is what the writers are thinking in his coy 'Anything for a fan...'

Miscellaneous points:

-The line 'Join hands' had me desperate to hear 'Start a love train'. That song encapsualtes a lot of the thoughtless cheeriness surrounding Jasmine. Of course, there's also a little bit taken from more charismatic forms of Christianity, but it's not a simple broadside- it's criticising the dangerous subthoughts that can come from unhealthy devotion rather than faith itself.

-Jasmine is not omniscient. She doesn't know the difference between a dwarf and a hobbit. But the comparison of her to Cate Blanchett in 'The Fellowship of the Ring' works nicely.

-Lorne as Judas. An ironic comment on Wesley's more torturous betrayal?

Pretty good. 'Sacrifice and 'Peace Out' coming in the next couple of days.


PS Website at http://members.fortunecity.com/tchaikovsky/, will carry this as soon as I have the time to format it.

[> Excellent! -- Rahael, 06:31:50 07/10/03 Thu

[> More Meditations on Mandy, Mind Control, and Magic Bullets -- cjl, 06:42:51 07/10/03 Thu

Notes on "The Magic Bullet":

-- The teaser. L.A. as Shiny Happy Land, Paradise on Earth, looking and sounding like the ultimate toothpaste commercial. ("Wouldn't It Be Nice"--Beach Boys, the Pet Sounds album, Track 1. A classic, kids. Pick it up.)

Yes, it does have that "advert" feel to it, but for me, the sequence brought to mind Randy Newman's classic video for his top ten hit, "I Love L.A." The video could have been produced by the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce--it's got sun-dappled beaches, swaying palm trees, dazzling thoroughfares, buxom bikini babes, everything you'd ever want in a city. The song and presentation are about as unironic as anything Newman's ever done, but it becomes ironic because--well, because it's Randy Newman singing the song. Same goes for The Magic Bullet--the irony is heightened because we're basking in pure sunlight when ordinarily, ANGEL is one of the darkest (in all senses) shows on TV.

Fred slamming into the car at the end of the teaser is taken straight from the 1956 and 1978 versions of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Nice touch. (Kevin McCarthy, we salute you.)

-- There have been complaints that SHP and Magic Bullet should have been combined into one ep to speed things up a little. I disagree--I think SHP needs to develop at a deliberate pace, to show how Jasmine's power is blossoming, to ratchet up the suspense. The SHP set up allows Jasmine's remote (mind) control Fred-hunt to knock you for a loop: when everybody starts going Borg Collective on our favorite physicist, we're acutely aware that Jasmine is taking it to another level. (We get another jump in Sacrifice, when Jaz starts speaking through her subjects.)

-- Still, I have to admit I found Fred's whole trip down the rabbit hole and her discussion/fight with the finger-lickin' demon a near total waste of time. I realize there are shadows of her old days back in Pylea and Bell is toying with the idea that SHE'S the demon now, skulking around in the sewers--but the demon just looks lame, and her realization about the blood isn't much of a payoff for a battle scene. She could have come to the same realization after cutting her finger...

-- The bookshop (and its owner) are a beautifully realized metaphor for the themes of the episode as a whole. Like the Summers house and the Hyperion, it's one of those iconic locations of the Buffyverse--place as state of mind. Too bad they had to burn it down.

-- Angel liked that kiss a little too much for my taste. Joss, Jeff, Steve? No Frangel for S5--please?

Great episode. One of the top five of the year.

[> [> Re: More Meditations on Mandy, Mind Control, and Magic Bullets -- ponygirl, 07:47:28 07/10/03 Thu

Wouldn't It Be Nice"--Beach Boys, the Pet Sounds album, Track 1. A classic, kids. Pick it up

Actually that song has had darker associations for me for a while. Ever since Michael Moore's doc Roger & Me, where a laid-off autoworker described how he had a complete breakdown listening to Wouldn't It Be Nice, and we then see street upon street of abandoned houses while the song played. I get shivers every time I hear it now.

That was great TCH! So glad to see the Odyssey continuing! I wasn't crazy about the finger food demon scene myself. Sometimes the show's back and forth between the "demons are us" and "demons are evil and going to eat us" representations gives me whiplash. Coming so soon on the heels of Skip's unmasking, and with Jasmine's true face appearing so ugly, having another creature who looks like a creepy demon turn out to be nothing but a creepy demon is a bit disappointing. Of course I also think that Jasmine's true face was meant to represent death, and the illusory one the promise of religion to help us escape death and decay, but that's a whole other thing. :)

[> [> [> And as with all Brian Wilson songs, quite deceptive in its happy tune -- lunasea, 07:59:19 07/10/03 Thu

The end of that song is just so appropriate to this episode:

Maybe if we think and wish an hope and pray it might come true
Baby then there wouldn't be a single thing we couldn't do
We could be married
And then we'd be happy

Wouldn't it be nice

You know it seems the more we talk about it
It only makes it worse to live without it
But let's talk about it
Wouldn't it be nice.

[> [> Re: More Meditations on Mandy, Mind Control, and Magic Bullets -- Rob, 10:35:38 07/10/03 Thu

There have been complaints that SHP and Magic Bullet should have been combined into one ep to speed things up a little. I disagree--I think SHP needs to develop at a deliberate pace, to show how Jasmine's power is blossoming, to ratchet up the suspense. The SHP set up allows Jasmine's remote (mind) control Fred-hunt to knock you for a loop: when everybody starts going Borg Collective on our favorite physicist, we're acutely aware that Jasmine is taking it to another level. (We get another jump in Sacrifice, when Jaz starts speaking through her subjects.)

I agree that the pacing was necessary, deliberate, and well-executed. SHP enveloped us in this Jasminey world. Since for the characters, it had to feel like Jasmine had always been in their lives (although it's only a few days of story time, they all have forgotten what the world was like without her, the same way one would say, "I can't remember my life before I met you"), and we had to feel their sense of loss acutely; any less time spent on this would not have allowed us to feel the gravity of their loss after being freed from her spell. SHP began slow, almost dream-like and sterile, and I marvelled at how perfectly it introduced Jasmine to us, and even got us suspicious fans to like her a wee bit, or at least see why all of the characters did. At times in the first few episodes, Jasmine could be so darn nice--actually more than that, completely charming, graceful, and kind--that even I felt like I was falling under her spell a few times. This was a perfect case of the writers showing, not telling. I applaud both the writers and the genius talent that is Gina Torres for bringing us who I consider to be the greatest villain(?) in Buffyverse history.


[> [> [> Wasn't there a line near the start of "Magic Bullet"... -- KdS, 11:10:08 07/10/03 Thu

... that said Fred had been on the run for weeks? Jumped out at me when I saw the ep.

[> [> [> [> Actually, just over a week. You're right about it being more than a few days. -- Rob, 11:18:01 07/10/03 Thu

ANGEL: I miss her so much. I never...

FRED: I know. It's been over a week, and I still cry. Part of me wishes I still believed the lie.

[> [> [> [> Closest thing -- lunasea, 11:23:23 07/10/03 Thu

She was in Magic Bullet Books three days ago.

[> A conspiracy theorists worst nightmare -- lunasea, 07:53:44 07/10/03 Thu

This was one of the episodes that was a victim to my daughter's experimentations with the VCR (the other was Inside Out). I was greatly upset at its loss, but luckily I had seen it more than a few times before I had seen it. Still, I can't wait until it is replayed so I can retape it.

I was disappointed in the net community's general failure to even say what that title meant, let alone what the episode was hinting at with Fred. Just before Fred recreated the events of Dealy Plaza, to remind us what was going on, Jasmine even made reference to that fateful day. That day captures the imagination of American conspiracy theorists more than any other.

Jasmine's answer was very important. She could have said that there was another gun man either mafia or CIA or something else, just a name even. She didn't. She not only answered this man's most burning question, but her answer said the Warren Commission was right. The root of any conspiracy theory is the world is a horrible place and the government can't be trusted. The idea of the magic bullet really fuels this.

This episode is full of all sort of foreshadowy goodness (especially with Connor), even probably giving us a hint of where they will take Fred Season 5. One thing to keep in mind, conspiracy theorists are nuts. Fred was taken into this world and made one of them. How right is she really? Why wrap this up in the Warren Report and the events of Dealy Plaza?

I thought the executive demon was a nice touch. Can't have a conspiracy nightmare without Big Business being represented some how. Just when Fred thinks that this foe is going to help her, it turns on her because it is more interested in its own interests. Big Business only looks out for itself. You can threaten it into submission, but it will turn on you.

I REALLY liked this episode, almost as much as "Orpheus." I did a long post about the conspiracy angle that doesn't really get discussed much, but it was ignored. After watching "Home" I am even more convinced that what I say about Fred is right. I can repost it, if you want.

I do find it interesting how quickly what Jasmine did was painted black by the net community. I have a feeling some of that gray will be put back in next season.

[> [> That would be interesting -- Tchaikovsky, 08:08:30 07/10/03 Thu

I obviously haven't read any posts covering 'The Magic Bullet' and onwards, so I would be interested to read that.

I personally don't see the grey coming back in. I mean, firstly they underlined their argument rather crudely by claiming she ate the people- just in case anyone was still in puzzlement as to the motives of Fred. And secondly, free will is largely a Good Thing in the Angelverse- although it can be horridly exploited, the general worst thing that anyone can do is to restrict another's ability to choose.


[> [> [> Repost of Conspiracy post (easier than finding it in the archives) -- lunasea, 08:16:08 07/10/03 Thu

I love conspiracy theories. I don't believe them. I just find them and the people that come up with them fascinating. It isn't that I accept everything the government or media tells me, either. What fascinates me about conspiracy theories and theorists are how important these events are to them. They are practically consumed my them. They come up with these elaborate ideas (they are not fans of Ockham) in order to give their world some structure, but the world that results is incredibly dark and dangerous. It feeds their paranoia and takes away their hope.

The biggest thing in American history that modern conspiracy theorists are consumed by was the death of John F. Kennedy. The Magic Bullet supposedly went through Governor Connolly AND the President shattering two bones and causing seven different wounds, yet emerged pristine to be found on the stretcher carrying Gov. Connolly. (that is from memory, so excuse me if I got details wrong) It was the magic bullet that caused conspiracy theorists to suspect a government cover-up. Arlen Specter is an idiot.

Fred plays Oswald and uses a magic bullet on Jasmine AND Angel, with that bullet emerging pristine from Jasmine except for it carrying her blood. Fred is from Texas. I am sure she is familiar with what happened at Dealey Plaza (as should any American). For the audience, just to make sure that we are on the right page, Jasmine tells the book store guy that Oswald acted alone before this happens. This does several things. First, it gives him the answer to his most burning question. Second, it makes the world a nicer place. No more government conspiracy to either murder the President or cover it up. Third, it makes a statement about conspiracy theories.

What I love about conspiracy theories are how they are always about control, or rather lack of it. The government lies to us. The government does whatever it wants. How can we fight that? These elaborate schemes are concocted by those in power (government and industry) in order to do what they want and get us to do what they want us to do. The ultimate in paranoia is the idea that we are implanted with various things so we can be controlled. A really funny idea, when the bookstore guy said it, but in the Buffyverse this has happened, with Spike. The Initiative is a conspiracy theorist's dream, or rather worst nightmare.

When Jasmine said that Oswald acted alone, she debunked all those conspiracy theories surrounding the biggest mystery in modern American history. What is that saying about herself? Prior to "Shiny Happy People," the gang was coming up with a pretty involved conspiracy theory to explain what was going on. When Angel gets hit with the magic bullet he is back in conspiracy land.

I love where Fred turned when she needed help. She didn't go to the occult places. She knew they had nothing on Jasmine. Instead she went to the people obsessed with control, conspiracy theorists. The bookstore's name tells what its specialty is. The conspiracy guy has been affected by Jasmine though. "I've still got the implants in my head....CIA still listening (whispers) it just doesn't bother me anymore. Instead I..I just beam Jasmines love up to their satellite, you know share the love with those M K - ultra bastards." (thanks Rufus for the transcription) He still has all his theories, but he doesn't care if they are trying to control him.

Why? He says nothing is good on radio "since Art Bell retired." Are Bell used to have on people who studied UFOs, psychics and conspiracy theorists. The program was about all sorts of unexplained phenomenon. That is the world that conspiracy guy lives in. Jasmine shows him something else. She gives him hope that a "utopian wonderland" not only is possible, but is here. His theories are now infected by hope. So what if the CIA is listening in. They aren't going to hurt him.

Angel is hit with the magic bullet and doesn't feel this way. His world is dangerous again. The utopian wonderland is just a cover for something sinister. It doesn't help that Jasmine knows her blood has this effect or what she says to Connor about Angel being as dead to them as Fred.

Poor Angel. His world has been turned upside down again. Don't think he has to worry about being happy for a while (at least a couple of episodes any way). He is now in the position that causes people to come up with conspiracy theories in the first place. What will Angel come up with? Will it be right?

[> [> [> Making things grayer (not spoilery much) -- lunasea, 08:36:59 07/10/03 Thu

Not sure if you are following my Wolfram and Hart posts. I'm only up to season 2, but the whole thing is leading up to season 5.

Fred plays the conspiracy theorist in "Magic Bullet." In "Peace Out," Angel will find out why he is really fighting. In "Home" Fred is the one that asks "We ended a nefarious global domination scheme, not world peace...right?"

With that one line, Fred comes out of the nightmare she was in earlier. Fred will probably be the one that starts to question what they did. I see her being the character with the second most screen time next season. They really built her up this season and her story is just getting really interesting.

I'm not saying that Jasmine will come out looking good, but the idea of free will and choice won't be an absolute good. This was underscored with what happens in "Home."

I hope that wasn't too spoilery. We can revisit this after "Home."

[> [> [> [> No- that had perfect spoiler restraint! -- Tchaikovsky, 08:43:03 07/10/03 Thu

I will keep my eyes open. I certainly wouldn't object to Fred having the second most screen time next year. As long as it's after Spike of course...;-)

Actually, I'm pretty amazed by the balance they've struck between Angel, Gunn, Fred, Wesley and Connor this series- all five of them have had super character arcs.


[> [> Actually -- ponygirl, 08:12:59 07/10/03 Thu

I'd say that a conspiracy theorist's worst nightmare would be to find out that the world is random, that there is no grand plan or shadowy organization controlling everything, that we are on our own and that lives can be altered by one person acting on their own impulses. That one bullet really can do all that damage. In my opinion grand conspiracies are not that different from the desire to believe in fate or in some types of religion - here's a world where everything happens for a reason, the conspiracist just sees it happening for a very dark reason. The irony for me in Jasmine's statement about Oswald is that on some level she's saying there is no God (and yes, I'm extrapolating wildly!) and thereby giving Fred permission to act, to become Oswald.

[> [> [> Thou Shalt Not Have Any Gods Before Me -- cjl, 09:14:56 07/10/03 Thu

I think you're right, because it fits in well with what we know about Jasmine. Our diva of a deity is a very "thou shalt not have any gods before me" sort of entity, and she seems intent on sucking out any previously established belief systems from her followers, replacing them with an appreciation of her own divine essence.

On the radio, we find that the Catholic Church has been converted to the Church of Jasmine; Jasmine makes it a point to remove Connor's pain--the one aspect of the world he knew was true, the one thing he "believed in"--even though he's already following her without question; and the book store owner completes the pattern. By telling him that Oswald acted alone, she destroys the central conspiracy in his belief system, and replaces it with Jasmine. Even as Fred embraces the ethos of the Magic Bullet and becomes Oswald, the owner of the store has "outgrown" his old belief system completely and happily burns it to ground...

[> [> [> [> Speaking of the Catholic Church... -- Rob, 10:47:03 07/10/03 Thu

...I was pretty surprised about hearing of the religious groups speaking out against Buffy because of Caleb, when the image of Christians rejecting their "false god and idols" and worshipping Jasmine, IMO, was much more controversy-worthy. I haven't heard of any religious groups being angered by the Jasmine arc. They may not have been aware of it. Not saying that I agree that they shouldn't have done this (I personally loved how shocking and effective that was in truly showing what all-encompassing aspirations Jasmine had for deityhood), because I obviously don't. But I just think it's interesting that people were so up-in-arms about a villain who used to be a priest but wasn't any longer, while, meanwhile, Jasmine was converting Christians by the multitudes on the WB. ;o)


[> Preserving... -- Masq, 22:26:52 07/10/03 Thu

OT Neil Gaiman signing/reading in Manhattan... -- Angela, 04:46:46 07/10/03 Thu

Sorry, if it's already been mentioned:

"It looks like I'll almost definitely be doing a signing for WOLVES IN THE WALLS in New York on Friday, August the 8th 2003, at the new Borders in Lower Manhattan. I'll probably do a reading of Wolves as well." --NG


---courtesy of Deadsoul

[> OOh NG he's so cute .. er I mean (lowers voice pitch) such an interesting writer -- MsGiles, 05:17:51 07/10/03 Thu

[> Marking calendar (and saving $ for new NG book) -- cjl (who suddenly appreciates NYC again), 05:48:27 07/10/03 Thu

[> So gonna be there! -- Rob, 08:01:14 07/10/03 Thu

[> "almost definitely"? -- anom, 16:08:54 07/10/03 Thu

When will it be definitely definitely? & how do you get to the bookstore? (I live in Manhattan but don't know downtown very well.)

[> [> Re: "almost definitely"? -- aliera, 18:14:50 07/10/03 Thu

anom: Did you follow the URL to his website? I would expect he's going to post a follow-up. He seems to be posting fairly regularly. I've got a link into my journal from there and if I see the word 'definitely' or something close I'll put it up... all the time I'm envying you lucky folks down in 'the city' of course. :-)

[> [> [> yeah, i'll check it closer to the target date -- anom, 20:05:01 07/10/03 Thu

And why envy us? Can't you get down here & join us? Then stay over for the official NYC meet! Um, OK, the date's not actually set yet, but 8/9 was mentioned as a possibility...don'tcha think this strengthens the case for it? Huh, kin we, huh?

[> [> [> [> Re: yeah, i'll check it closer to the target date -- aliera, 04:25:41 07/11/03 Fri

Well, I would think Gaiman strengthens the case for almost anything.

I'll keep the signing in mind and keep an eye on the Board too to see what you all are up to as we get closer OK? My current project goes live August 1st and the deadline has been moved three times now already, so I'm a little hesitant to make any plans lest I jinx myself.

Any invocations/sacrifices/witty limericks to Bella Fortuna anyone has in mind would be greatly appreciated... most recently they shifted things to accomodate a month end closing that they "forgot" about during the last two reschedulings... and it's start to feel a bit like a twilight zone episode with an edge of keystone kops or perhaps, the three stooges.

But I'll definitely keep it in mind! And thanks! :-)

What If . . .? -- Rina, 09:25:51 07/10/03 Thu

Someone brought up the topic on an ANGEL and I could not help but speculate. What if Buffy had not sent Angel away at the beginning of "Chosen" and allowed him to wear the amulet?

Would Angel's soul and the amulet had been able to save Buffy and her army from destruction by the Ubervamps? Or would disaster have followed, instead?

[> No way to tell -- KdS, 09:43:52 07/10/03 Thu

I suspect that your answer to this question will depend very much on your ideas re Spike/Angel and the amulet. Personally, I think that the people who are writing very romantic ideas about it being fired by true love, sacrifice et al are forgetting the source. I suspect that it was a very amoral device that would have blown if any souled vamp had worn it, even one Buffy had never met ;-)

If you do believe it was powered by True Love, then I think it would have worked for Angel. YMMV.

[> [> Don't forget that source also had -- lunasea, 09:55:03 07/10/03 Thu

the Scroll of Aberjian. Not to say the two are connected, but Vocah refers to the Scroll as one of Angel's connections to th PTBs. I wouldn't say just because Wolfram and Hart have something that is it even amoral.

I think the key to the amulet is the soul. Spike says he finally feels his. Is that because the amulet cleansed him or is that what finally activated the amulet? I suspect it is a bit of both. The amulet worked its magick on Spike so that he could be cleansed of Buffy as his moral compass and could feel his own soul. Once that happened, we get a nice light show.

Angel has felt his soul for quite some time. He wouldn't need to be cleansed, so he probably would have activated it sooner. Just a guess.

[> [> Have to agree with KdS here -- LadyStarlight, 11:45:22 07/10/03 Thu

To quote from Chosen (which should be pretty accurate) about the person who should wear the amulet: Someone ensouled. But stronger than human. A champion.

So basically there are 3 main points.

1. Ensouled. Now Wesley's said that demons have souls. Does Angel mean "a demon/vampire with a human soul" or simply a demon that does good. Prio Motu, anyone?

2. Stronger than human. Vampire, demon, or...the Slayer?

3. A champion. Arggh. The surfeit of 'champions' finally makes its way to Buffy. Really, what does 'a champion' mean? Someone who fights for the side of good? Someone who fights for the 'right' reasons? Or someone dumb enough to put on an amulet of dubious origins, not knowing what it could do?

My feeling is any being who had these three traits could have used the amulet effectively. Spike was just handy.

[> [> [> Agree with this. (AtS S5 casting spoiler) -- HonorH, 13:02:47 07/10/03 Thu

We just don't know enough to do much speculation, even. From the three qualifiers above, Buffy or Faith could've worn it, or any of the Junior Slayers once they were activated. Maybe even Willow, for that matter. It looked like it would've burned up anyone who wore it, vampire or human, but we don't even know that.

It's possible we'll find out more about it when Spike comes to AtS next season. After all, he saw it through to the end. *Then* would be a good time to start wrangling over the concept.

[> [> [> I am sooooooooooooo dense! -- Anneth, 15:42:10 07/10/03 Thu

Of course!

2. Stronger than human. Vampire, demon, or...the Slayer?

I understood that Spike, by telling Buffy she didn't love him, was freeing her emotionally - what I just realized is that he was also freeing her from any final, fleeting thoughts of self-sacrifice. She could have worn the amulet instead of giving it to him. It's impossible to say whether or not she'd considered the idea. But the fact remains, she didn't; she gave it to Spike. My epiphany upon reading Lady S's post is this: in those final moments, with the hellmouth collapsing all around them, she may have had a last thought of taking the amulet from him and offering her own life and soul in his stead. (an act arguably foreshadowed by Hallie's death in Selfless.) But by that critical moment, Buffy was no longer one of only two slayers in the world, and one of only a handful of creatures who could wear the amulet; she had become one of hundreds, if not thousands.

mmmm, let me see if I can put this another way. Buffy's words to Dawn in The Gift were "This is the thing I have to do." While her death was her gift to the world, to Dawn, she perceived it as her duty. I think she may have had thoughts in that direction by the end of Chosen, but Spike's final words reminded her that death was no longer her gift nor her duty. She was not the only person in the entire world who could act to save it in that particular instance or in general. By telling her she didn't love him, he released her from any emotional duty she felt towards him, and any "chosen one" duty she may have felt towards the world. As the slayer, she (may have felt that she) had to save the world (again). As a woman, she (may have felt that she) had to save the people she loved. She could have torn the amulet from him and thrown it aside; it would have ended the Hellmouth's collapse and put the world at peril. She could have grabbed the amulet and held it to herself, freeing him but destroying herself. By telling her she didn't love him, he gave her the choice to let go of him - and of her duties as The One.

They'd have had no real idea the amulet would kill the wearer; it probably only became obvious to her in those final moments. So, I think, her first impulse would have been to take that death unto herself, as her duty. By telling him "I love you" she gave him the opportunity to let her sacrifice herself for him. By telling her "no you don't, but thanks anyway" he freed her from that lingering sense of duty, to him and to the world.

Arg, does this make any sense at all? It seemed so clear in my head!

[> I think they'd all be dead. Spike was a fresher; purer Champion. Angel's tainted. -- WickedPessimist, 09:51:32 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> Are you *Trying* to start a shooting war? -- Doug, 10:09:27 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> Yes, because that is my path. We'll be using paintball guns, though, right? -- WickedBuffy, 10:55:49 07/10/03 Thu

hmmm, I forget....

.... was it a souled Spike or a souled Angel who, entirely of their own volition, drank fresh human blood from someones still-warm throat?

[> [> [> [> Ooh! The first shots ring out! -- Rob, 11:56:38 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> Re: Yes, because that is my path. We'll be using paintball guns, though, right? -- joining the fray, 12:08:26 07/10/03 Thu

And was it a souled Spike or souled Angel who under his own free will, with soul, stalked a 15 year old girl, followed her to Sunnydale, seduced her,
lost his soul and tortured everyone she knew?

[> [> [> [> [> Exactly, J.T. Fray! Another direct hit on The Tainted One. -- WickedBuffy, 15:58:47 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> Duck and cover! Cover your ducks! -- ponygirl, 12:11:14 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> Duck? There's a duck? -- LittleBit [now running and hiding], 12:44:33 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> I expect lots of cookies tonight -- lunasea (who will not allow herself to be baited like this), 12:26:06 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> Only if yee reciprocate oh lunatic one and send cookies to Spikelovers -- the KArmic queen of demons, 12:35:11 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> [> Only the ones that behave get cookies -- lunasea, 12:43:06 07/10/03 Thu

Guess I won't have to warm up my oven. :-)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> "The cookies art done. Buffy hath risen. Remove her from the Oven of Celibacy." -- WickedBuffy, 15:19:26 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Hurry!Before her cookies get burned! -- J.T fray, 19:43:16 07/10/03 Thu

Although some people like crunchy cookies ;-)

[> [> [> [> Ok, I'll bite :o) -- yabyumpan, 15:37:24 07/10/03 Thu

was it a souled Spike or a souled Angel who, entirely of their own volition, drank fresh human blood from someones still-warm throat?

After being a souled Vampire for over 70 years and resisting the temptation all that time. (with the acknowledged exception of China, but then Angel was totally on his own for the first 2 years of soulfullness. The story could have been very different if he'd had the patronage of a friendly slayer when he was first re-ensouled. We have no way of knowing how Spike would have turned out if Buffy had run him out of town and tried to stake him as Darla did to Angel) Different Vamps, different stories :o)

[> [> [> [> [> "the patronage of a friendly slayer when he was first re-ensouled." What Slayer was that? -- WickedBuffy ::biting back:: };>, 15:48:57 07/10/03 Thu

Who was this friendly slayer who took Spike under her wing?

And though Angel drank that blood back when his hair was at its worst - what about the big lie he kept alive proclaiming he never drank human blood after resouling? That was a very conscious decision on his part and he kept it up until he was caught.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: "the patronage of a friendly slayer when he was first re-ensouled." What Slayer was that? -- yabyumpan - baring nashers- ;o), 16:45:15 07/10/03 Thu

Who was this friendly slayer who took Spike under her wing?

Maybe we got a different version of BtVS S7 in the UK but the version I saw had Buffy show concern for him when she first found him in the basement even though their last meeting had been, shall we say, 'difficult', accepting he now had a soul, defending him from the Scoobies and others and finally making him her 'champion'. I consider all that to be pretty 'friendly'. I think the fact that she didn't 'stake first, ask questions later' was also pretty 'friendly' considering what had happened the last time they'd met.

And though Angel drank that blood back when his hair was at its worst - what about the big lie he kept alive proclaiming he never drank human blood after resouling? That was a very conscious decision on his part and he kept it up until he was caught.

I think there are probably many, many things he's done over the course of 250 years that he's never spoken of. Shame and guilt are the mainstays of Angel's existence as is loneliness, isolation and needing to connect. When he told Buffy he hadn't fed off anyone since being re-souled, she was the first person he'd connected to in nearly 100 years. Imagine spending even a tenth of that time isolated, not fitting in with either vampire or human society, I think you'd probably downplay the stuff you were ashamed of if it meant the possibility of putting a dent in the loneliness.

As to the drinking of freash blood in 'Orpheus', I personally don't have a problem with it. The guy was dead, regardless of what Angelus said, there was no way Angel could have got help for the guy before he died, it was just to quick. I don't really see how Angel drinking from someone who is already dead is any different from harvesting organs from people so that others can live. The blood wasn't any good to the dead guy any more, why let it go to waste? The fact that Angel obviously did feel shame about it and spent the next 20 years as 'rat boy' because of it says far more about him for me than the actual freeding off someone who had just died and not confessing it.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Wasn't Angel also eating criminals? Judge, jury, executioner..and diner? -- LeeAnn, 19:25:26 07/10/03 Thu

I haven't kept up with Angel till last season but wasn't he eating live people as well, just people he judged deserved to die?

"Muggers deserve to be eaten." Right?

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Wasn't Angel also eating criminals? Judge, jury, executioner..and diner? -- J.T. Fray, 19:36:25 07/10/03 Thu


he locked lawyers in a room with two vampires and they got eaten.

But no, I don't think he was eating muggers with a soul.

Just the lady in the street. The guy in the diner.
That we saw. He did help keep down the rat population.

So that's two shots! But one dude.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Wasn't Angel also eating criminals? Judge, jury, executioner..and diner? -- yabyumpan, 20:28:27 07/10/03 Thu

I haven't kept up with Angel till last season but wasn't he eating live people as well, just people he judged deserved to die?

Yeah he did chow down on murders and other 'low lifes' in China (I'd give you exact quote from 'Darla' but Psyche's site is down), I sort of covered that in my original post. After being on his own for 2 years post-souling he found Darla in China and tried to get back with her by trying to convince her that he could be 'Angelus' again. It was Darla that pointed out that he only killed 'wrong-doers' and tried to get him to prove himself by eating the baby he'd previously saved (with it's family) from Darla. He couldn't do it and fled with the baby.

As I said before, he went through the first 90+ years of being souled totally alone. Pretty much like being the only member of a totally new species. I'm certainly not saying that he didn't screw up and do wrong during that time but I am willing to give him special dispensation because of his circumstances. He was, for over 100 years, the only one of his kind, the only vampire with a soul, having to deal with the guilt and shame as well as the constant blood-lust, for most of that time, on his own.

Where, for me, the 'which vamp is better' argument falls down is in their circumstances post-souling. Regardless of how he came to have a soul, Spike also had Buffy there for support. He also had the knowledge that he wasn't 'the only one'. Whether or not he would actually get to meet Angel again, Spike knew that there was another Vampire out there in the same position, he knew that it was possible (even without Buffy's support) to survive and deal with the guilt and pain, he had Angel's example. What would Spike have been like if it were he who had recived the gift of the gypsy girl from Dru (not that unlikely, she was Angelus's offspring), if it had been Spike who'd been re-souled by the gypsy's and then rejected by Dru, If it had been Spike that had spent 100+ plus years as the only vampire with a soul? Obviously no way of telling but I don't think there is any evidence to suggest that Spike, pre-chip and pre-soul, would have been any less likely to slip up and 'do bad things' during that time?

Of course, we can never know but to compare their actions post-souling when the circumstances were so different just seems futile. Spike may have chosen to get a soul but does any one really believe that a pre-chipped Spike would have made the same choice? A Spike who's last actions we saw in Sunnydale pre-chip were to dig up the Gem of Amara so he could do the killing thing 24/7. Spike had 2 & 1/2 years of enforced behaviour therapy coupled with the close proximity of Buffy, that made a hell of a lot of difference IMO.

Just the lady in the street. What lady?
The guy in the diner who was already dead

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Wasn't Angel also eating criminals? Judge, jury, executioner..and diner? -- JT Fray, 21:33:31 07/10/03 Thu

Just the lady in the street. What lady?

See the episode Five by Five, flashback - he's wandering the streets with a soul, a lady comes out and he attacks her and chows down.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Yes, but what about the Muppet that he killed and... -- fresne, 21:42:50 07/10/03 Thu

then wore upon his head?

Although, in all fairness, it is a crime that both of the gentlemen in question share. Why oh why were these poor defenseless Muppets slain in the prime of life. What was their crime?

Briefly contemplating dissolute Muppets turning to a life on the streets. Drugs. Gangs. Violence. It's a sad story. But an old one. If only they had been given a chance at dare I say it, Redemption.

Perhaps, in my current state of reality deficit, Muppet Treasure Island was a bad idea.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> that's right he killed muppets...we forgot the muppets! two points fresne! -- JT Fray, 21:55:22 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Duh, I forgot about the muppets.... -- yabyumpan, 01:56:09 07/11/03 Fri

....ok, that brings all my other arguments crashing down into meaningless pile of..er...meaninglessness...I see the light. I take it all back, he deserves to be tortured with everlasting visions of Buffy/Spike and Cordelia/Connor shagging like rabbits (with his hands tied behind his back) and then staked with a thousand wooden tooth-picks. I mean, everyone knows that muppet head wear is so last season...

Psst fresne, can I have some of whatever you're on ;-)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Shocking, just shocking. Alas poor Muppet, I knew yee well -- fresne of the mourning, 07:00:00 07/11/03 Fri

I thought the previously agreed upon, and completely philosophical torture, was to put both Angel and Spike, who are both guilty of Muppet slaughter (sob) and are therefore both guilty before this court, into a Foucault style prison, strip them down (for the purposes of reminting their identities), apply oil, and make them wrestle out their issues (purely for their own psychological good. Because how can either one of them really resolve any of their long standing issues, if they don't carry out a strict regimen of exercise, pizza and philosophical conversations in between wrestling bouts.).

As to my drug, why I'm high on life, lots silly fiction, my current writing project, and possibly exercise endorphins. See, if Angel and Spike exercise, and are isolated in a round prison with unseen captors (well, us), they'll both become very silly and highly amusing.


Why are you looking at me like that?

We could use other prison designs.

I'm just sorry, for those of the board so inclined, that Buffy and Faith seemed to have resolved their issues. In any case, Buffy's only guilty of ugly coat syndrome, and okay those shirts (shudder). On the other hand, Faith prison time, so, clearly, well, retro-filling that prison's wrestling program is someone else's philosophical problem.

I just want to be fair.

And philosophical.

Knowledge is power
Power corrupts
Read a lot
Become evil
All the cool kids are doing it.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> It would've been interesting ::koff:: to see a few episodes of "Faith in Prison". -- WickedCellBlockH, 07:53:16 07/11/03 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> ::welcoming yab over to the ever-victorious side & pushing "Robinson Crusoe" towards fresne:: -- WickedBuffy, 07:46:03 07/11/03 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Wasn't Angel also eating criminals? Judge, jury, executioner..and diner? -- LeeAnn, 22:46:12 07/10/03 Thu

Regardless of how he came to have a soul, Spike also had Buffy there for support.

I didn't see much support when she left him in the basement for the First to torment and manipulate.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Wasn't Angel also eating criminals? Judge, jury, executioner..and diner? -- yabyumpan, 03:45:48 07/11/03 Fri

I didn't see much support when she left him in the basement for the First to torment and manipulate

Well I consider not actually staking him or running him out of town when she first met up with him in S7 to be passive support after what had happened the last time they'd met. I don't think Buffy can be faulted on not trying to actively help Spike initially. If someone tried to rape you, even if you know that it was because he was under the influence of alcohol, I would imagine that you would be pretty wary of being around him again, even if he says he's now stopped drinking. I think I would want to see evidence of A.A. meetings etc before I went large with the trust again. She also didn't know that it was the First that was making him crazy initially, all she saw was CrazySpike and from past experience she had good reason to be wary of that. Buffy may be compassionate but she's not stupid, she's lasted this long as a Slayer for good reason. She also chained up CrazyAngel when he returned from hell in S3.
But it was also Buffy that got him out of the basement and persuaded Xander to let him use the spare room. It was Buffy who pushed the hardest to try to free him from the First's influence, who defended him to both her sister and her long-time mentor as well as everyone else and who trusted him enough to let him help her to train the SiTs, helping to give him purpose and the feeling of being needed.

IMO Buffy was very supportive of him throughout S7, the fact that she didn't immediatly play Florence Nightingale to him when she first found him in the basement was about her being, not unreasonably, still traumatised from the AR and having other things that were taking her attention.

See the episode Five by Five, flashback - he's wandering the streets with a soul, a lady comes out and he attacks her and chows down.

Ah yes, in the initial confusion and trauma of getting his soul and being thrown out by Darla he tries to feed off a young woman but finds he can't go through with it, I remember now. Bad, Bad Angel ;o)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> but would you go so far as to say that Buffy was FRIENDLY and supportive of Spike? -- WickedNuance, 07:50:38 07/11/03 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Only in the checking he's ok before Xander and snuggling sense :o) -- yabyumpan, 15:03:08 07/11/03 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Wasn't Angel also eating criminals? Judge, jury, executioner..and diner? -- LeeAnn, 07:56:34 07/11/03 Fri

But it was also Buffy that got him out of the basement and persuaded Xander to let him use the spare room. It was Buffy who pushed the hardest to try to free him from the First's influence, who defended him to both her sister and her long-time mentor as well as everyone else and who trusted him enough to let him help her to train the SiTs, helping to give him purpose and the feeling of being needed.

That was Buffy? I thought it was pod!Buffy.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Wasn't Angel also eating criminals? Judge, jury, executioner..and diner? -- yabyumpan, 14:54:51 07/11/03 Fri

That was Buffy? I thought it was pod!Buffy

Ahhh, so now Buffy didn't support Spike because it wasn't really Buffy!

Are them there straws I see you clutching ;o)

[> [> Don't forget that his hair sticks straight up. And he wears lifts. -- Alison, 12:51:31 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> And he's bloody stupid! -- HonorH, 14:11:52 07/10/03 Thu

OTOH, Angel can draw. Spike's apparently no great shakes as an artist. However, Spike can sing, and the less said about Angel's singing, the better. So it's pretty much a wash. *Sigh* Guess I'll have to take 'em both.

[> [> [> [> Spike's drawings of Buffy from "Crush" were quite good -- Doug, 14:21:46 07/10/03 Thu

Personally I think that the poor quality of the drawing from "Chosen" was due to a mixture of Haste and deliberately attempting to make Angel look like Butthead.

[> [> [> [> [> LOL! -- Alison, 14:24:14 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> Forget who, but someone was suggesting -- KdS, 14:35:51 07/10/03 Thu

That the pictures in question were gifts from Angel to Buffy and Spike pinched them from Revello Drive...

[> [> [> [> [> [> So Angel made extras to go with the ones he drew as Angelus and gave them to Buffy? -- Doug, 14:45:48 07/10/03 Thu

That is ****ing Creepy.

Sorry, but I find that scenario at least slightly less plausible than mine. It may be true, but if it is Angel and Buffy need serious counseling.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> I don't think it's as perverse as you seem to... -- KdS, 04:34:48 07/11/03 Fri

I can see her posing for him some quiet romantic night at Crawford Street post-Amends. He did a lot of usually romantic things to her as Angelus that were perverted by his soulless and evil state. I don't see drawing her as worse than sending flowers.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Angel likes to draw -- lunasea, 08:19:33 07/11/03 Fri

Angel made a ton of drawings of Darla. He burned them in "Redefinition" (I think it was that one). He also drew Cordy rather quickly in "Ground State." That was just a sketch. If you can draw that well, your quick stetches don't look like what Spike did.

The drawings on the shrine were in the same hand, the hand that did the drawings from "Passion." In reality, probably the same human from props. Since we get to wank it, that hand belongs to Angel/us.

It isn't hard to believe that Angel would have drawn Buffy, with or without her there. At least she wasn't naked wearing a big ass necklace. Spike stealing them was completely in character. One was the same one that Angel had left in "Passion," which just echoed the stalker nature of vamp love. It was a nice tie-back to the episode.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Associations -- Doug, 09:11:19 07/11/03 Fri

There is nothing inherently wrong about sketches as a romantic gesture, except that sketches were used to inspire fear by Angelus. I can't see doing drawings as being a valid romatic expression in Buffy and Angel's relationship after Angelus had used drawings in the same style to terrorize Buffy and her family. The later half of season 2 was a period of definite trauma, and any drawings made later in Buffy and Angel's relationship would most likely dredge up nothing but fear and pain.

Maybe your right; maybe Buffy and Angel gladly dredged up what must have been at that point the most emotionally tumutous and painful time of her life by repeatedly making drawings similar to the ones Angelus made, and that she cherished them over the years until Season 5. Or, we can assume that someone with a late 19th century middle-class education, which probably included at least some schooling in art, is capable of making sketches that are better than a caricature that he drew in "Chosen", .

Until Joss speaks both are fanwanks, but ask yourself which is the simpler solution.

[> [> [> [> [> Those weren't done by Spike -- lunasea, 14:36:54 07/10/03 Thu

For some bizarre reason, Buffy kept the drawing that Angelus did in "Passion." Spike didn't create anything in the shrine. He stole stuff from Buffy's room, including the drawings.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Sorry, but I don't think that's likely. -- Doug, 14:53:19 07/10/03 Thu

There were a whole lot of pictures in Spikes crypt, and there were photographs (which Spike probably did steal) but there were also dozens of drawings. Considering that there was no indication that Angelus made more than a few drawings in season 2 it seems logical to assume that Spike made them, particularly since one or two looked...unfinished (at least to my eye).

[> [> [> [> [> I heard on CNN that Butthead's creators used Angel as a model. -- B.S. Fabulist, 15:38:37 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> You suffer so. Having to endure both Spike AND Angel...I don't know how you do it. -- Alison, 14:22:22 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> A proposal... -- LadyStarlight, 17:00:21 07/10/03 Thu

Could we share? I'll supply the oil....

[> [> [> [> [> Oil is necessary. -- HonorH, 19:54:11 07/10/03 Thu

I say we rent a stadium, oil 'em up, and sell tickets. We'd make a mint!

[> [> [> [> And now for something completely different -- fresne, 17:37:38 07/10/03 Thu

Well, I think there would have been a horrible transporter, sorry, amulet accident and both Spike and Angel would have gone up in flames. Like the dual quickening in the Horsemen episodes on Highlander. Only less orgasmic and more flamey. Wait. Strike that umÖmore tragic.

Yes, tragic.

And then the tragic result would be that they would be merged into one, possibly corporeal body. Mixing and matching personality traits to create Anike, a high cheek boned, hair straight up, bleach blond, woman from Sweden, who is six 6'6 in heels, with a predilection for Proust and Drain STH.

A la Blake 7, the show would still be called Angel, but would revolve around Anike's confused adventures to overthrow herself, cause she works for the evil empire now. She also has two souls and two demons and can play bridge with herself. Oh, and she dresses like Ms. Peel from that one episode of the Avengers, you know the one.

This would resolve the whole gender imbalance on the show and yet, curiously, female fans would be driven into a feeding frenzy, like unto hammerhead sharks on some show that had hammerhead sharks in it. I don't know. Flipper. Lassie. Poor Tommy's down the freaking well again, who knew there was not only treacle, but sharks.

Anywho, the produ-umm, the characters, realizing the extent of the tragedy, would carry out a six episode arc where everyone sits in a conference room and discusses initial Project plans, assembling the project team, sizing the project, Impact Assessments, Technical Plans, Magical Industry Trends, scope creep (having to do accessories and hair), proper Change Control implementation, and rollout plans.

Then in the riveting season finale there would be a cliff hanger where Anike runs from the beige conference room of despair, as the team discusses starting from scratch because they aren't sure that their methodology was best of breed, and into the embrace of the sun. Since both Angel and Spike are vampires, she is one too, and quite possibly her own grandpa.

So, the viewers are left to chew on the fateful question, can Angel and Spike be separated? What of Anike and her unique life and experiences? What is up with a mix of Angel and Spike being a woman?

Oh, the humanity of it. Too bad about Timmy though. Or was that Tommy. Timmy. Tommy. Same dif.

[> [> [> [> [> Bulletin: Fresne has gone insane -- HonorH (mostly sane), 18:09:32 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> [> Mwhahahaha, I mean, blink, blink, what do you mean? -- fresne, 18:54:40 07/10/03 Thu

I'm chock full of sanity. My reality check is in the mail.



Unless, of course, you think that insanity will help me in my diabolical plan for world domination and/or getting my apartment cleaned, which I should be working on right now. Uh, huh. Yup. Course, I can't cuz, you know the voices, I mean Buffy, I mean Anike, I mean Mary Sue, I mean yeah, they won't let me.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> alert to fresne - your reality check bounced -- neelix, 20:43:10 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> didn't that happen to tuvok & neelix on "voyager" once? -- anom, 19:34:45 07/10/03 Thu

Except the being-a-woman part. Actually, I thought that ep was fairly well done, esp. the "What of Anike and her unique life and experiences?" issue. Or, you know, the equivalent. Although as a whole, I never really liked the show much.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Curses, my plagarism has been foiled again. Yeah, that was a good ep. -- fresne, 19:58:46 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> I'm really glad that none of you are God -- lunasea, 08:02:48 07/11/03 Fri

Well, not that there is an actual God, but this debate always comes down to the same thing-- the worst things that Angel did souled compared to the best things Spike did while unsouled.

People aren't fixed entities. As Angel says in "Consequences" to Faith, "And I found out that there are other types of people. People who genuinely wanted to do right. And they make mistakes. And they fall down. You know, but they keep caring. Keep trying."

That is what makes Buffy and Angel the heroes that they are. Even when people screw up, they forgive them. To go into the times that each of them have done this would take up screens and screens. They don't bring up past transgressions. They realize that people can and do change. They help people change. They empower others.

Well, Angel did X, Y and Z when he had his soul. Yes, he tried to kill that woman in Romania immediately after being resouled. Yes, he fed off of criminals for a while and tried to go back to Darla. Yes, he left all those people to the Thesulac demon. Yes, he fed off of a dead man. Yes, he fed off of Buffy when he was dying. Yes, he locked all those lawyers and their families in with Darla and Dru. Yes, he tried to lose his soul. Yes, he tried to kill Wesley. Yes, he tried to open a portal to Quor-toth which would have ripped the fabric of time and space. (Did I miss any of his major sins?)

Two words: So what.

Because of each of those actions, he learned something important and became better. He isn't the same creature that did ANY of those things. If you must judge him, judge him on what he has become, not on what he WAS. In each of those actions was also shown his potential:

He tried to kill that woman in Romania immediately after being resouled: but he couldn't.

He fed off of criminals for a while and tried to go back to Darla: but ultimately he couldn't. Not even his desire to get the whirlwind back was as strong as his conscience. That is some conscience, the soul of a champion.

He left all those people to the Thesulac demon: but to even try to help them was a huge step and he did go back decades later and clean things up.

He fed off of a dead man: his reaction to that speaks louder than the action itself.

He fed off of Buffy when he was dying: see above

He locked all those lawyers and their families in with Darla and Dru: this is what led to his epiphany.

He tried to lose his soul: but he couldn't and when he couldn't, he was saved.

He tried to kill Wesley: they have since patched things up.

He tried to open a portal to Quor-toth which would have ripped the fabric of time and space: that was because he loved his son

The man that Angel has become is because of all those sins and can be seen in them all.

I won't say the same for Spike because we haven't seen that much of souled Spike. I think Spike is in the same position that Cordy was. Cordy was initially set up as a contrast to Buffy to show us what Buffy could have been and what made her so special. When they took her over to Angel, she got to go on the same ditz to hero journey that Buffy did. I think it messes with the story. What is the big deal if everyone becomes a hero?

But it is their story. If they want to take Spike on the hero's journey, they off he goes. Still waiting for Spike to care about something other than himself or Buffy, but then again I'm pretty sure the amulet took care of that.

So continue to talk about past sins, rather than what is the heart of the character, namely his heart.

[> [> [> This specific discussion isn't a general Spike vs Angel one. -- WickedNotGod :: pointing to streetsign::, 08:50:42 07/11/03 Fri

The premise is that at the time of the grand finale, the amulet would only work for Spike, not Angel, because Spikes soul was fresher and purer than Angels.

So the comparison is specifically between what Spike did from the point of resoulment and what Angel did from the point of his resoulment.

[> [> [> [> You mean beating up and almost killing Wood? What about hitting Faith -- lunasea, 09:05:03 07/11/03 Fri

No one is April Fresh in the Buffyverse. He even offered to kill Faith for Buffy.

Spike may have been resouled Season 6, but he didn't feel it until the end of "Choosen." Angel felt his rather early (an essay that is gelling, the comparision between the three vamps who got souls and how/when they felt it and why)

But again: so what

[> [> [> [> [> Yes, exactly like that, lunasea! -- WickedBuffy, 09:15:27 07/11/03 Fri

Specific instances like that is what supports or argues the threads question.

[> [> [> [> [> [> I can play -- lunasea, 09:48:05 07/11/03 Fri

From "Darla"

Darla looking down at the baby: "I went back before dawn. They were still cowering there. Praying to their god for a salvation. (Looks at Angel, who's staring down at the baby) They didn't know that their only savior was at the waterfront - dining on rats. I won't be made a fool, Angelus. (He looks at her) Not by you. Not by anyone."
Angel looks down: "I didn't mean..."
Darla: "While Spike - Spike! - was out killing a Slayer you were saving missionaries! From me!"
Angel: "I'm sorry..."
Darla: "No. No more words. (She takes a step back and Angel looks down at the baby) Act!"

Angel is looking down at the baby in the basket.
Darla: "What do you mean you can't? You won't!"
Angel: "I can't seem to be able to uhm, I'm sorry."
Darla shakes her head ever so slightly: "You disgust me."
Angel grabs a hold of the baby and runs out on Darla, crashing through some glass doors.

Compare with from "Sleeper"

Am I right? Are you a bad boy? 'Cause I don't mind. You know, I was getting pretty bored waiting over there in that line. (nuzzles him) I hate waiting. (kisses his neck, he sighs) Know what I mean?

As Spike's kissing the young woman's neck where he would bite her, Buffy walks into the alley. Spike's eyes widen, and he looks up at her.

You know you want it. You know I want you to.

(following his glance, but seeing no one there) Um, is everything .. (he vamps, she screams, he bites her)

(smiles) There's my guy.

It isn't that Spike wasn't in control of his actions, but how the First managed to control him. If Buffy/First had given Spike a baby in a basket, he would have chowed down.

That better :-)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> See? Knew you could do it! :> -- WickedBuffy, 10:23:44 07/11/03 Fri

playing more "ifs" off of yours:

Though I don't agree it's a sure thing that Spike would have chowed down on a baby if it he was the dad and the mother was handing it to him.

And if Angel was being controlled as thoroughly as Spike was being controlled by FE, I feel there's a very good chance he would have bitten the alley-girl as well.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I doubt it -- lunasea, 10:53:57 07/11/03 Fri

Angel's soul hit him hard and it hit him fast. The only way he was able to feed was that he could justify to himself that the person deserved it. Alley-girl didn't deserve it.

Spike needed no such justification. All he needed was Buffy's approval. Look what happens in "Get It Done," when Buffy prods him into being the old Spike. Buffy WAS Spike's soul. Whatever Buffy wanted, Spike would do, whether he was souled or unsouled.

The First tried to work its mojo on Angel. He was newly returned from Hell, totally abandonned by Buffy and totally vulnerable. Holland got Angel to such a point of dispair that he wanted to lose his soul and he actually did something about it. Even with that, he couldn't. The First almost had Angel to this point. In Buffy's bedroom, he was very close to going over, BUT he pulled himself back and didn't.

It was something Buffy showed Angel. He may want to do something on some level, but more importantly he can't. He wanted to feed on Joyce, but he couldn't feed on defenseless Buffy. He wanted to lose his soul in Amends, but he couldn't become the monster again. He wanted to lose his soul in Reprise, but he couldn't be happy, so he couldn't.

THAT is Angel. I'll take that over Buffy's whipping boy any day. Like I said, Spike's soul wasn't fresh. It was unused.

[> ".... and the other side still searches hopelessly for their non-existent ammo." -- WickedBuffy ::doing the 'Angel's Tainted' dance::, 14:34:09 07/10/03 Thu

[> [> Alright, maybe I'm just not fun enough, but.... -- AngelVSAngelus, 23:24:16 07/10/03 Thu

does this NOT count as character bashing? An entire thread dedicated to calling Brood Boy tainted and listing (some validly and some not) his morally ambiguous/reprehensible moments?
Man, I've got some ammo for EVERY character, but lack the energy nor the patient fortitude that would keep me from becoming enraged and offended to respond with any.
Maybe I'm just not "feeling the fun, B."

[> [> [> The entire thread is a comparison about what happened after resoulment. -- WickedChill, 08:54:14 07/11/03 Fri

Stating facts isn't bashing - we're comparing what Spike did and what Angel did after each was resouled based on the premise that the amulet in the last episode would only work for Spike, not Angel because of the state the soul was in at that time.

And that is why you lack the energy and the patient fortitude to be enraged. There's nuttin' to be raging about.

Unless you're still upset about not getting to wear the necklace. Or about that cookie dough speech. ::ducking::

There's "ammo" on everyone, of course. But it only makes sense to use it when it's required for a specific situation. Otherwise it's off-point and irrelevant to the thread.

[> [> [> [> Since you insist on doing this -- lunasea, 09:14:00 07/11/03 Fri

From "Calvary" Lilah says:

Big magic, taking a champion's soul. Makes ripples. I still know some people that like ripples.

Taking Angel's soul makes ripples. Debate over. Over on AtS, it was answered.

One, the soul is just a moral compass. The state of it is either have or not have. The soul doesn't get dirty.

Two, Spike doesn't even feel his soul until the amulet starts to work. His soul isn't clean. It is unused. It doesn't even start its light show until Spike does feel it. What would have happened if he didn't?

Three, whatever ME wants to work would work.

Four, who cares.

[> [> [> [> [> awww..don't be cranky. We love Angel too.....right guys? -- Alison, 09:26:54 07/11/03 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> [> Of course! It's just so fun to communicate back and forth freely -- AngelRocks!, 09:33:33 07/11/03 Fri

rather than:

1) have a silent or censored or dictated board

2) have a board compiled entirely of 6,000 word essays

[> [> [> This is why I'm staying out of it -- Masq, 15:18:16 07/11/03 Fri

I feel no need to defend my broody-boy against that bleached blond twit.

Demonic Powers in "Get It Done" -- Rina, 14:08:41 07/10/03 Thu

It still bothers me that so many had criticize Buffy for not accepting the demonic powers that the Shadowmen had offered her in "Get It Done". Their main complaint was that she was being hypocritical in not accepting the powers, considering that she nagged both Willow and Spike for not utilizing their own dark powers.

I was among the few who had expressed relief that Buffy didn't accept the powers. And who believed that Buffy had every right to nag both Willow and Spike. What she wanted those two to utilize was something that was already within them (in Spike's case, it had been within him for over 120 years). All they were doing was holding themselves back. Buffy, on the other hand, also had darkness within her. Whether she was utilizing all she was capable of . . . I cannot answer. But (and I had said this when "Get It Done" first aired) that she made the right choice in rejecting the additional powers. It is one thing to use whatever is within you. It's another to threaten one's own humanity with extra powers that were not within you, to begin with.

Reply to TCH's Odyssey now archived! Re: JFK and Magic Bullet -- Scroll, 21:37:47 07/10/03 Thu

Okay, wow, this is the very first time I've heard of this "magic bullet" that killed JFK. Perhaps cuz I've never really studied modern American history -- and I'm not a conspiracy theorist : )

TCH, you say that "Fred becomes an Orwellian malcontent, as a result of Jasmine's honest blood." And I saw the magic bullet as a take on the long-hoped-for bullet from 1984. Now that I know what the "magic bullet" actually is, I'm wondering if my explanation is too much of a stretch.

From 1984:

"Winston, sitting in a blissful dream, paid no attention as his glass was filled up. He was not running or cheering any longer. He was back in the Ministry of Love, with everything forgiven, his soul white as snow. He was in the public dock, confessing everything, implicating everybody. He was walking down the white-tiled corridor, with the feeling of walking in sunlight, and an armed guard at his back. The long-hoped-for bullet was entering his brain."

So I kinda saw Fred's bullet that hit Angel as a subversion of the 1984 bullet that brings oblivion to Winston. Fred's bullet brings revelation to Angel instead. It takes him away from the happy shiny world that Winston was embracing, and brings him into Fred's scary, Big Brother is Evil world.

Now, clearly "The Magic Bullet" is referencing the JFK assassination, which I hadn't picked up on. Good to know, thanks guys! But perhaps there's some element of the bullet as a bullet of knowledge/truth/revelation as well? A subversion of Big Brother's bullet that took away free will/self-knowledge/truth? Just a thought...

[> Masq? d'H? Can one of you unarchive TCH's thread? -- Random, 22:12:16 07/10/03 Thu

Seems that a couple monstrous threads knocked off TCH's excellent stuff. They were fun and all, I suppose, but TCH deserves more time on the board.

[> [> It's back, below -v- -- Masq, 22:28:00 07/10/03 Thu

[> No, that's plausible -- Tchaikovsky, 04:43:54 07/11/03 Fri

I definitely got the Fred=Winston vibe at the end of 'Shiny Happy People', after we see Jasmine being the Big Brother on the telescreen, and then she walks down the dark street alone. Whether it's an opportunity for a 'Bring Your Own Subtext', rather than textual, I don't know. But certainly the inversion works- and considering how many literary references there have been this Season, it could quite well have been meant like that behind the JFK overtones.


[> There's pictures of it on the net, if you want -- lunasea, 07:17:22 07/11/03 Fri

Most of the controversy of the Warren Report revolves around the so-called Magic Bullet Theory. The show makes pop-culture references all the time. It also makes some great ones from literature. This season was just a cornucopia of them. Every once and a while a great history one comes up that is actually accurate. The assassination of JFK is historical, but has also become a part of pop-culture. Art Bell was another great reference. Whoever knew that had to be familiar with that world.

My Hubby, who is an American History Grad student got the reference, in terms of the bullet that hit Angel, but he missed the way the whole episode was like the movie "Conspiracy Theory." He then went back and rewatched the episode (which he rarely does on purpose) and concurred with my assessment. By putting Fred in Oswald's position, and if you believe what Jasmine said, Oswald was the lone gunnman, if you know a bit about Oswald, you know a more about what they were doing with Fred and that episode. Cordy could even be the missing brain of Kennedy.

Hubby and I actually had a pretty good talk about why a lot of people missed the reference, even over on this side of the pond. We figured it had a lot to do with age. Even though I wasn't alive at the time, JFK and his brother Bobby are heroes to us Liberals. Their tragic deaths are something we are familiar with (I can't watch either without crying at the lost potential).

The episode was so enjoyable that getting this wasn't completely necessary. It just added another layer to it, but then again that is why I come to the boards. I love seeing all these layers that people get. It adds to my enjoyment of the show.

That isn't to say that the Orwellian bullet is completely off the mark either. It could also be the red/blue pill of "The Matrix."

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