June 2003 posts

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Send me your Vancouver meet pics! -- Masq, 09:04:03 06/09/03 Mon

I would like any pictures anyone took. I'd like them all! I do plan to post some of them on my site, but if you don't want them posted, send them to me anyway (for my personal connection) and let me know that you don't want them posted.

[> connection = collection *ack* -- Masq, 09:21:05 06/09/03 Mon

Still recovering from 'Couver. Sore throat. Fever. Total lack of Tylenol.

Brain not recovered from 4 hours of sleep per night yet!

[> [> OMG! We killed Masq!!! -- dub ;o), 11:44:53 06/09/03 Mon

Please, please, get better soon or the Canadian Demon Cat Worshippers will get a bad rep!

(And also because we don't want you to be sick, of course.)


[> [> [> I wonder if it was all that Tofitten........;) -- Rufus, 14:05:28 06/09/03 Mon

[> Re: Send me your Vancouver meet pics! -- dub ;o), 11:36:25 06/09/03 Mon

I'll send mine as soon as I get them developed (low-tech luddite here).

Wait. That was redundant.

dub ;o)

[> [> It was great meeting you, 'dub! -- Masq, 11:47:37 06/09/03 Mon

Putting faces to names just makes this board seem so much smaller and more home-y.

That's how this weekend felt, too, like a family reunion or a party full of old friends!

[> [> [> And you, Masq--Favourite moments from the Vancouver Gathering -- dub ;o), 13:12:22 06/09/03 Mon

It was the strangest thing, walking into a room full of virtual strangers and feeling absolutely comfortable and at home.

Damn, we're good! It was a revelation to learn that every single poster who attended was every bit as wonderful as they seem to be on this Board, if not more so. And we did spare more than one thought for those of you who couldn't make it. We traded, compared, and studied photos of "absent friends," and raised a glass in your honour.

When I first arrived I sat down in the lobby for a minute to cool off (it was stinkin' hot in Vancouver on Friday!) and I was facing the glass doors when the airport shuttle pulled in and a youngish man hopped off with a bag over his shoulder. He walked from the bus, through the doors, through the lobby, right to my chair, pointed at me, and said, "Wise." It wasn't really a question at all. The Dub Recognition Primer had worked and that was how I first met cjl.

All of us stopping discussion of any kind to gaze at d'Herblay having a smoke break outside the meeting room's glass wall. He was just...being d'Herblay, but it was worth stopping to watch, believe me.

Oh, there was so much...LadyStarlight's tiaras, one for every day and one for special occasions. LittleBit's lovely dark blue nailpolished nails constantly in motion over the keys of her laptop, keeping the "minutes" for TCH. Buffyboy's quiet technical genius, keeping the entertainment running flawlessly through an incredible system of laptop-direct-to-TV dvd's. Graffiti's insistence that he be included in the list of those who would be drinking beer, and his many valuable suggestions on how to avoid prosecution. Darby and Sara's acceptance of their demon spawn, Graffiti. People's faces when Mr. Rufus was introduced as Rufus and for a minute they wondered if it might be true...and the relief when the real Rufus (who, BTW, was declared to be a hottie!) arrived. Caroline's absolutely amazingly beautiful singing voice...coming out of the absolutely amazingly beautiful Caroline. cjl's ability to mimic Spike to perfection while wearing the ubiquitous Beanie of Wisdom. anom's fantastic button and chocolate collections. fresne and Karen's costumes, and fresne's commentary on Tabula Rasa..."Wait! (says Willow) "I know a spell!" The fact that the DVD subtitles actually show "Erm" every time Giles says it. LittleBit providing us all with copies of a collection of special Buffy moments on DVD. Masq receiving her Honorary Buffyversity Doctorate, and wondering if we really got it signed by Joss and Eliza. Scroll consuming mass quantities of chips and taking mass quantities of photos. Buffyboy's inability to keep the Beanie of Wisdom on his head (which contains his massive brain, of course!).

It was all good. It was all wonderful. Then we watched "Chosen" and at some point I realized I was sitting right in the middle of my dream-come-true, where we all got together after the series ended and watched the finale together in a hotel meeting room. Brought a tear to my eye, I'll tell ya.

Ah, but then...the Once More with Feeling sing-along, where every single one of us sang (some with more feeling than talent in my case), even the men sang (is that sexist? but I was surprised!) and it sounded just great and felt just great.

There's never been a weekend like it, the songs, the discussions, the pizza, the laughs, the hugs--but that doesn't mean there'll never be another one...

Love you all,

dub ;o)

[> [> [> [> It could be a yearly event! -- Masq, 13:31:34 06/09/03 Mon

Or perhaps I'm just fantasizing...

[> [> [> [> [> Great minds think alike. See my other post. ;o) -- Rob, 13:36:25 06/09/03 Mon

[> [> [> [> [> Don't know if this is an incentive, but... -- Tchaikovsky, 13:56:59 06/09/03 Mon

If you do the meet at the same time next year, my exams will have finished, and I promise to pay the prohibitive flight costs to get whereever I've got to be. Littlebit's excellent minutes and dub's post above means I need to meet you all, even more than before.

Oh, and just how old is Graffiti again? I say you're old enough for beer...

TCH- avoiding 'fruits and various meats' from Darby and Sara.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Me too. Come hell or high water. -- Rob, 14:33:40 06/09/03 Mon

And hey, TCH, finally us "twins" can meet in person. ;o)

Oh, and Graffitti, who I met at 2 NY meetings, I believe is 13. Old enough, I say. heh heh


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Ooh, yes. We can compare genes and inaugurate the 'Give Graffiti Beer Foundation' -- TCH, 14:42:48 06/09/03 Mon

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Yes, that sounds like such a good idea... -- The even eviler alter-ego, Grafitti's Mom, 20:08:29 06/09/03 Mon

that I think you should start looking at registering as a non- profit organization immediately, and don't worry at all that I know where you live.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Gulp! She really does know where I live! LOL -- Rob, 21:25:23 06/09/03 Mon

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> And, my chocolately minion... -- LittleBit, 22:34:09 06/09/03 Mon

She has your copy of the Gathering CD. Treat her well.


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Really? Ooooh!!!! -- Rob, with mouth watering, 23:12:48 06/09/03 Mon

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> <Smiling sweetly> -- Tchaikovsky, 02:41:40 06/10/03 Tue

Oh yes, I forgot about that! I withdraw my plans graciously.


[> [> [> [> [> Oh, yes, please! Let's make this the First ANNUAL Gathering!! -- dub ;o), 14:42:48 06/09/03 Mon

[> [> [> [> [> [> Absolutely! -- Arethusa, 15:10:49 06/09/03 Mon

I was so sorry to miss this meeting. I moped all weekend. If we meet again next year I will definitely come.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Oh, yes, please! Let's make this the First ANNUAL Gathering!! -- Haecceity, 19:51:38 06/09/03 Mon

I vote that next year we meet here:


(Thanks for the rec, Neil Gaiman!)


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> **GULP!** -- dub ;o), 21:57:50 06/09/03 Mon

$295 US per night for the lowest priced room...um...okay.

So, are there, like 10 of us up for sharing a room?

dub ;o)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: **GULP!** -- Haecceity, 23:20:57 06/09/03 Mon

Actually, if you read through some of the reviews (Fodor's, etc), it says that good deals/discounts can be had. Also, most downtown hotels can swing much cheaper group rates!

Besides, the concept is just so cool!


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Not that anything's being decided now... -- CW, 07:48:22 06/10/03 Tue

But, dub has a point. The Bay area is just about the most expensive place in all of North America. It probably isn't a good candidate for a multi-day general board meeting. Especially since some of us couldn't really afford the trip this time.

[> [> [> [> Re: And you, Masq--Favourite moments from the Vancouver Gathering -- Rob, 13:32:46 06/09/03 Mon

"There's never been a weekend like it, the songs, the discussions, the pizza, the laughs, the hugs--but that doesn't mean there'll never be another one..."

Please, please, please, do another one! It absolutely kills me that I wasn't there! Maybe we can make this an annual or every- other-year event?


[> [> [> [> [> well, i did make a suggestion... -- anom, 20:11:29 06/09/03 Mon

...that we do it again when Angel ends. Or if that takes too long--wait, what am I saying?--if it takes as long as we all hope it will but we just can't wait that long, we could have one retroactively in honor of the end of the much-lamented Firefly. Maybe we can have a gathering every time a Mutant Enemy production bites the dust. OK, yeah, morbid...but somehow that seems appropriate, doesn't it?

[> [> [> [> Gosh...our meeting is now an ATPo legend. Can't wait to awe the newbies. -- cjl, 13:35:15 06/09/03 Mon

From the Book of Masq, Chapter 3 verse 9:

9 "...and lo, the Adept traveled for many hours with naught but his meager bag of possessions on his shoulder. He navigated the borderlands until he came upon the land of otters, and journeyed to an oasis in the hinterlands of the city.

10 "He broached the gateway and saw the muse seated in the chair resplendent. The Adept put down his burden, for he knew that he had come upon the one most Wise.

11 "He was Home."

And whaddaya mean, "even the men sang"?! Men can't like musical numbers? If Joss can write it, we can sing it...

P.S. Masq--photo-Luddite here. I'll need to ask my local photoshop to make numerous copies. Tell me where to send.

[> [> [> [> [> Re: Gosh...our meeting is now an ATPo legend. Can't wait to awe the newbies. -- jane, 22:25:09 06/09/03 Mon

I'm so disappointed I couldn't be there! Since Vancouver is home, I really wanted to go; alas, the need to keep my job meant I was working instead of having fun. My friend, a lurker like me, went and had a great time. If there's another meet sometime, I will be there! Glad you all had a great time.

[> [> [> [> [> I'm so sorry I didn't get a chance to say good-bye, cjl -- Scroll, 23:02:08 06/09/03 Mon

I was upstairs packing my backpack in preparation for going into Vancouver with LadyS and the others, on the same shuttle you, Masq, and anom were going to be on. But I guess I had too much stuff and took too long, cuz by the time I got down to the lobby, your shuttle had already left! But I hear that you and anom got to stretch out the Board Meet a little on your subway ride back into the city. I was very glad to meet you, and I hope to see you again soon! ....If I can save enough money in time for the next Board Meet!

[> [> [> [> [> [> There will be more chances...for hellos, too. -- Darby, 12:37:29 06/10/03 Tue

We (as in all of us watching cjl) are going to be setting up a summer-in-the-City meet - cjl is looking for just the right Brooklyn event. If you can get down to where Sara and I live - maybe 2/3 of the way to NYC - we can give you a place to stay over and a ride the rest of the way down and back.

Oh, by the way, there will be a summer-in-the-City meet, folks! Stay tuned!

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Wow, that would be so cool! -- Scroll, 23:33:59 06/10/03 Tue

Thanks for the offer, Darby, it's incredibly generous of you! And if I can raise enough money to travel to the states, I'd love to see all of you again! I had so much fun meeting you and Sara and the Hellspawn (hey, Graffiti!) and I've always wanted to see NYC. It's one of those places I most want to visit in the U.S. Can't wait! :)

[> [> [> [> [> [> That's OK, Scroll. We'll say hello at the next Meet. How's that? -- cjl, 14:14:15 06/10/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Looking forward to it, cjl! -- Scroll, 23:35:36 06/10/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> [> and deservedly so!... -- anom, 23:10:16 06/10/03 Tue

...for it was indeed the stuff of legends! I knew it augured well for the Gathering when, on my way to change planes in Toronto, I stopped at a Lush (body care products) kiosk & found a product called (for real--I have witnesses!) "Buffy the Backside Slayer," described on the label as "Body conditioning bar to give you the smoothest backside ever." Not sure I really want my backside slain, though....

Scroll & I met at the airport shuttle stop, rode the shuttle in together, & traipsed around looking for the meeting room, LadyStarlight & any other early arrivals, & supplies. As LadyS said, I did leave out our room no. when I left her & LittleBit a message...sheesh. But we eventually found each other, as well as Buffyboy &, later, Masq!

Most of the rest has been described by LittleBit in her livejournal (see above). But I have to add 2 personal notes: 1) My posting-name costume was indeed what I said it would be in d'Herblay's wonderful thread "1st Anniversary Posting Board Costume Party!!" If you don't want to read the whole thread (though I highly recommend it!), search on "minstrelsy" for the final costume decision or on my posting name in quotes for how I got to that idea. 2) My record stands: I've still never met a poster I didn't like. I had a fantastic time, spent w/a fairly large no. of people who were all nice, fun, smart, funny, creative, &...all sorts of other good things that I'm too sleep- deprived to think of the words for.

The only thing I didn't like was that it had to end. But even that was softened a little by sharing the ride to the airport w/Masq & cjl. I'm just sorry I missed goodbyes & last hugs w/Scroll, LittleBit, & Caroline! And there was even a coda-- another shuttle stop meeting, this time at Kennedy Airport. A few minutes after I got there, I heard my name...& there was cjl! We rode the A train together & probably kept each other from falling asleep & missing our stops (after bumpy, sleepless overnight flights). It was kinda as though the meet wasn't quite over yet. Never woulda thought there'd be an upside to having my luggage miss the connecting flight...there was none to having it delivered at 1:15 in the morning, though (hence my continued sleep deprivation)!

[> [> [> [> The Super Evil Gathering Review -- Darby's Wife, 20:01:00 06/09/03 Mon

Usually only the poor, unfortunate Darbsy-Poo (calling him that is my favorite of all evil activities, hee! hee! hee!) gets to see the evil alter ego, but Sara is somewhat tired from the weekend so I decided to let her take a nap and shamelessly steal Honorificus' trademark posting function, since she was too busy wreaking vengeance within her own locality. (Hey, Honorificus, do you have any good minion recipes - I'm so tired of minion stew, minion roast and sauteed minion over angel hair, a nice dessert would be a pleasant change.)

Anyway, here is my super-evil review of the Gathering. Fashion was surprisingly good, given this is an Internet crowd, with, as test results show, a high geek quotient - proving that there are geeks who dress well, who would have thought it? Lady Starlight looked quite fetching in a grayish blue dress which went perfectly with her tiara. Kudos to Lady S, who clearly knows how to accessorize. Speaking of accessorizing, the Beanie of Wisdom is clearly the accessory of the season, looking fabulous on everyone who wore it - even that rotten kid Graffiti. (who is objectively speaking pretty damn cute, by the way.) Anom gave us a beautiful rendition of the music River danced to in Firefly, on her recorder while dressed in her charming costume. Fresne was lovely and dramatic in a velvet gown with a lace up bodice, Caroline was oh, so elegant in a Diane vonFustenberg slacks ensemble, and of course my not so-fearless alter ego dressed in her usual nondescript style, if I could just get that girl on a treadmill sometime, we might be able to look at something like those hot leather pants Karen was wearing, but probably not, since not-so- evil has an unreasonable fear of chafing.

The high point of the weekend was the Once More With Feeling sing-a-long where I must say I'm in agreement with dub that Caroline has a beautiful voice. There were many other lovely voices in the crowd, and of course some not quite as lovely ones, such as the napping alter-ego who could not carry a tune if you put it in a basket for her.

Overall, I would even in my most evil mood, have to rate the weekend as an unqualified success, and would say that probably the only thing I and the less than evil side of me can agree on is the idea of making it an annual event! Count us in!

- Darby's Wife, thinking it may be time to remind him of how long we've been married, it's been a while since I heard him whimper...

[> Oh, duh! <baps self on head> -- Masq, 14:29:35 06/09/03 Mon

[> Me too, me too.....for pics that is.......:):):):):) - - Rufus, 15:25:25 06/09/03 Mon

Specially any pics with Mr. Rufus in them.....cause, you know.....blackmail....;)

[> [> Re: Me too, me too.....for pics that is.......:):):):):) -- Rufus, 15:41:33 06/09/03 Mon

[> Now that most of us have voiced our desire to make this an annual event... -- Rob, 21:30:28 06/09/03 Mon

...what are the chances that it could be held on the East Coast this year? ;o)

I'll even do research on hotels with cheap group or convention rates in the NYC and outlying areas when it gets closer, if it's a real possibility. Okay, I know, jumping the gun a little. But as one of the few New Yorkers who didn't make it, I feel like it's kind of my responsibility to...um...bring the party to me, so to speak. ;o)

Rob (who will go anywhere it is held, even at the top of Mt. Everest, but would still not mind only having to travel half an hour or so)

[> [> Not too early at all! -- d'Herblay, 22:20:44 06/09/03 Mon

Let's get cracking on this. I'm not sure about New York -- though it would provide a nice excuse for the "let's all go to d'H's favorite restaurants via subway" tour which nearly made Rah's feet fall right off, it is a bit pricey. I checked out Haec's suggested venue, and that's just too expensive even without taking the Erotica Package. What are the rates like at Mohonk Mountain House? They host all sorts of special events (I'm not sure whether I'm more tempted by the Donald E. Westlake mystery weekend or by the "Wonderful World of Words" with Will Shortz).

Ok, I've checked Mohonk's rates and they're almost as expensive as the Library Hotel's, so I guess we should keep casting about. I'd like to offer the following suggestions:

So, let's get cracking now! Rob, I'm designating you to be in charge. It's a tough job, but there are certain benefits: I believe you get to wear a tiara. And I know you've always wanted a tiara!

[> [> [> Re: Not too early at all! -- Dedalus, 22:41:59 06/09/03 Mon




Evergreen Resort and Conference Center


Stone Mountain Park


[> [> [> Don't worry. Physical force will not be necessary. I'm already on my way. -- Rob, 23:11:01 06/09/03 Mon

East Coast is preferable for me, obviously, but I really don't give a sh&% b/c it just kills me that I missed this one! Las Vegas sounds kind of cool, but the fact that it's Las Vegas may overshadow our meeting. Too much glitz, glamor, and gambling to do there. Phoenix is nice, but I was just there this year on vacation, and by Memorial Day it might be really, reeeeelly hot. Haven't been to San Francisco since I was 8. Sounds cool. But then again, almost all of them do...Somebody else decide (keeping in mind that East Coast would make my life a lot easier ;o) )


[> [> [> [> Just thought of something... -- Rob, 23:16:26 06/09/03 Mon

There's tons of hotels in Newark, near the airport, too. Just something to chew on. Should I do some price-investigating?


[> [> [> Seconding the water slide vote. -- fresne, 23:51:41 06/09/03 Mon

That abso-freaking rocked. And quite refreshing too. Just the sort of thing to prep for staying up till 4am talking the Buffanoniusness.

I just have this vision of bringing Singing in the Rain and Gay Divorcee to the next meet, so we can really disect some of the dance sequences in OMwF.

I'd actually like to vote that we go somewhere, where I won't feel compelled to do some sight seeing. It's a sickness. I know. Then again, we walked forty minutes to see a cranberry bog and look at banjo sounding frogs, because you know, it was there and well, there was the vim and the vigor. So, it may be a lost cause.

Yeah, something on a hub. Near an airport. With a free shuttle. And a water slide.

[> [> [> One note on Memorial Day -- Tchaikovsky, 02:53:35 06/10/03 Tue

It's too early! If you do it on the weekend leading into the last Monday in May, I will certainly still be doing exams. I mean you can take me there by physical force if you like, but I'd fail my degree! Not saying you can't do it then, just that I won't be able to make it.

[> [> [> [> Re: How about Anya's Birthday? -- Brian, 04:10:12 06/10/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> [> That I could certainly make -- Tchaikovsky, 06:36:17 06/10/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> We can't not have TCH there! Um...how about July 4th? -- Rob, 07:51:27 06/10/03 Tue

It's on Sunday next year. Not really a 3 day weekend per se, but it being a holiday, maybe it'll be easier to plan around work? Just a thought.


[> [> [> [> [> Incidentally... -- Tchaikovsky, 07:58:11 06/10/03 Tue

Just thinkin'...

If you did it then, the following Tuesday- Tuesday 6th July 2004, would be my 21st birthday! This would be an interesting pre-party for it, I can tell you!


[> [> [> Well, thanks for the attention -- Cactus Watcher, 08:28:20 06/10/03 Tue

But, I'm not really all that exciting in person! I would like to meet you, too. I'd certainly go if it were held in Phoenix, but Rob's right. It's way too damn hot here from May through September, when I'm sure the most people could get off for a meeting. I'd drive to Vegas, but that's not much better heatwise. On the other hand, unless you need to go outside with your stogies, who needs to go outdoors during a Buffy meeting? Just kidding! Someplace in the midwest is okay with me. But whatever, I'm probably going to have to do a little extra saving to go.

[> [> [> [> Me too! -- ponygirl, 09:39:50 06/10/03 Tue

Oh, I had fantasies right up until Friday of maxing out the credit card and showing up in Vancouver at the last minute... but then I'm planning on maxing out the credit card this weekend and buying a new computer. Damn my practical yet big- spending nature!

I'll start saving up for next year. I know the greatest dive bar in Vegas, East Coast I can work in a visit to my brother, and Atlanta has the Coca-cola headquarters. It's all good!

Though I'm thinking that we should do a Buffy enclave at Burning Man for Labour Day. Just imagine... [imagining]

Back to the Beginning Question. or two (June 10th) -- neaux, 11:53:12 06/09/03 Mon

Can anyone elaborate how this is going to work?

Are we, the fans, to watch Episode 1 tonight for discussion tomorrow? (as I understand it)

Will there be structured posting or will it be a free for all/many topics for discussion board as usual?

will I wake up to the board tomorrow with waaay too many posts from people who posted at midnight? due to this being a world wide board.. will people out of the U.S. start posting today? I'm confused.

Is anyone else slightly upset (but not too much) that it is interfering in their rewatching of season 4 on DVD. Sorry it's just a minor whine. But since I got season 4 on DVD this weekend I've been more anxious to rewatch.

any takers to answer these annoying questions?

[> Here are the rules! -- Masq, 12:15:09 06/09/03 Mon

New episode of "Buffy" each week, starting with "Welcome to the Hellmouth" tomorrow.

"The Harvest" will the episode for Tuesday, June 17th, "The Witch" for June 24th, etc.

I will post this week's episode title at the top of the board. People can start the posts on that day whenever they want, we won't wait until 8 pm. ; )

We will treat the weekly episode like we did the new aired episodes of "Buffy" in times past (*sob*). People can start multiple threads on different aspects of the episode. It will be the "official" episode of the week.

Of course, people can start threads on anything else they want, too, as usual.

There won't really be a spoiler policy for this, since we can assume most people have seen Season 1. You can relate this episode to any other episode/season/literary work/metaphor/etc you want. People might label Season 7 BtVS/Season 4 AtS spoilers and of course any Season 5 AtS speculative spoilers.

Try to watch the new episode Monday night or Tuesday to prepare. A bunch of us watched "WTTH" at the Vancouver meet on Sunday.

If you don't have the DVDs/tapes, ASK OTHERS to borrow/buy them for cheap. How many of us have this on tape and could make tapes for others!! Lots of us!!

[> One Suggestion -- Darby, 12:55:05 06/09/03 Mon

Would it be fun to take a break at some point and make folks rent and critique the movie? Well, that's my suggestion...

[> [> <stunned silence> -- KdS, 13:18:51 06/09/03 Mon

If you have seen the movie, that goes beyond humour into sadism. If you haven't seen the movie, yes, it is that bad.

[> [> [> In a really meek voice... -- Kenny, 13:32:26 06/09/03 Mon

Uh, I liked the movie. I didn't want to watch the TV show because I didn't think SMG was a "Buffy" as Kristy Swanson. I changed my opinion on that, obviously, but I still like the movie. Although, gotta say, there's no way Buffy's mom in the movie was named Joyce. Pike as proto-Xander I can see. But that certainly was not Joyce in the movie.

[> [> [> [> No need to be meek about it-- I liked the movie too. - - OnM, 20:04:31 06/09/03 Mon

In fact, it is unlikely that I would have tuned in the show from the very first ep if I hadn't liked the movie. No, it wasn't reflective of what Joss had wanted to do, and I feel for him because of that, but taken all by itself without the comparisons to the series, it's really pretty funny and clever.

So there.


[> [> [> [> [> My favorite line in the movie, Buffy's mom yelling "Kiss noise!" on her way out the door. -- Rob, 21:24:15 06/09/03 Mon

[> [> [> [> [> Re: No need to be meek about it-- I liked the movie too. -- MaeveRigan, 10:18:11 06/10/03 Tue

Exactly. The movie is what it is. Don't take it seriously. Forget everything you know about how Donald Sutherland wanted to ad-lib, and how Fran Rubel Kuzui turned it into Valley-Girl- 90210-the-Vampire-Slayer. Just sit back and laugh at Paul Reubens and the absurdity of Rutger Hauer and--admit it--the unsinkably perky Kristy Swanson.

[> [> [> Come on! It'd be funny! (I like your suggestion, Darby) -- ponygirl, 14:25:09 06/09/03 Mon

Must we not study all the sacred texts?

Though since my roommate has a copy (purchased ironically she claims) I wouldn't have to actually pay money to see it again.

[> [> [> [> I agree--It's a good idea. What's more appropriate than the apocryphal text! -- Arethusa, 14:53:28 06/09/03 Mon

[> [> Uggghh -- mamcu, 13:24:05 06/09/03 Mon

I saw it before I'd ever seen any of the TV series. It seemed harmless then....butI think it would really be a horrible experience now that we know what Joss had in mind--but fun too, in a noirish sort of way (revenge too for MOLOJ).

[> [> Well, if we can do the snarky MST3K version! -- Masq, 13:25:15 06/09/03 Mon

[> [> [> "Look, it's Donald Sutherland! Go Donald! What the hey--who needs Joss' dialgoue, anyway?" -- cjl, 14:17:23 06/09/03 Mon

[> [> Buffy--The Movie: What Might Have Been -- Rob, 21:21:53 06/09/03 Mon

Probably the best place to see what might have been had Joss truly had the control he wanted and deserved over his original screenplay is the comic book, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Origin." It's a really great book, which collects all three issues, and is based on Joss' original screenplay. It takes the basic story of the film, but casts it in the more serious tone of the show that the it always deserved. For me, it's the definitive prequel to "Buffy" the Series, whereas the movie is not, but more just a variation on a theme.

I would highly recommend it to everybody here. And it would make a nice counterpoint to discussing the film. Writer's intentions vs. film production team's results. Could be very interesting.

If anyone's interested in ordering from Amazon, for $9.95 click here.


[> [> [> Re: Buffy--The Movie: What Might Have Been -- sdev, 15:55:39 06/10/03 Tue

When was it written?

[> [> [> [> It came out a year ago. The screenplay was written 8 or 9 years ago. -- Rob, 18:11:53 06/10/03 Tue

[> Make that a rule in chat -- 3man, 05:26:44 06/11/03 Wed

I want to join too.

Welcome to the Hellmouth: My Grade: A -- Q, 00:18:47 06/10/03 Tue

Welcome to the Hellmouth

When you look back to the beginning of many TV series', you will find the series to be a little awkward. Characters were still being formed, and were not true to what they became (Homer Simpson, George Costanza, etc.). The series is often in a learning and growing phase, and is not what we come to love.

I think Buffy is different. Right away the characters are strong and like the old friends we remember (Angel is my exception, his character was a little colder than he eventually became-and not through natural development, in a Homer Simpson sort of way).

The opening scene with Darla lets us know the theme right away-traditional gender roles and conventions be damned-the female can and will be the predator, and can and will be the toughest hero in the battle.

All of our characters and the mythology of the slayer are set up in a compelling way, and without boring exposition.

Cordelia steals every scene she is in, which BREAKS my heart because of what the character will eventually become. I LOVED "Why, do you need to attack her with a stick, too?", " I need to call everyone I have ever met right now!", and " you won't be meeting coach foster, the woman with the chest hair..." so much I could cry from laughing so hard!

The Master is a great villain, with excellent minions in Luke and Darla.

This is just a great episode!

The negative: Most of the extras were HORRIBLE actors! Some cheese was still left over from the movie, effects were not the caliber they would become, and the pre-Chris Beck music was a little weak.

Other than that, a very formidable beginning!

Grade: A

[> One quick comment -- Scroll, 00:30:32 06/10/03 Tue

Just something a few of us were discussing during the meet this weekend after watching WttH...

Darla, as you say, really does subvert the helpless Catholic school girl cliche with her seductive and predatory nature. Still, most of us were watching WttH and thinking, "Whoa, she is so out of character!" We've been lucky in having Darla around for six seasons, we've seen her grow and become more three dimensional. We know she is no mere minion, but the Master's favourite and one of the world's most powerful and sadistic vampires in her own right. She is intelligent and sly, manipulative and self-serving, a survivor and a woman who knows how to shop. And her sacrifice for her unborn son becomes to be one of the most touching and powerful statements of love on either show. IMHO :)

So seeing her again in WttH, after watching Seasons 3-4 of Angel kinda brought home the fact that she really was created as a one-off character with very little depth. It was kinda jarring. Apparently she was originally slotted to be killed in the original pilot (which we also watched this weekend). Fortunately Joss saved her from that fate!

[> [> Re: One quick comment -- ponygirl, 12:29:00 06/10/03 Tue

One thing that really struck me about Darla in WttH and the Harvest (yes, I cheated and watched ahead, I can't take these cliffhangers!) was the joy she was taking in her unlife. The happy way she dove for that guy's neck, her near-skipping as she approached the Bronze, these were really interesting choices and not something one normally sees in monsters. While this quality got toned down later on, I don't think she was completely different from the Darla we got to know, in fact it made me think that her survival skills were based largely on her fierce love for life. Making her ultimate sacrifice that much more touching.

[> [> [> "400 years, and still too short." -- Scroll, 19:46:23 06/10/03 Tue

I totally agree with your assessment. Darla took fierce joy in living and in experiencing life. She was a sensualist, or like a kid in a candy store, wanting to taste it all, eat it all up. Her comment to Lindsey about life being too short, no matter that she had 400+ years of life and unlife, was so touching to me. It kinda echoes Buffy's "Life is short" philosophy, and parallels them even further, I think. Doesn't matter how many years you live, or how old you grow, life is still too short.

[> [> Darla...and differences btw Ats/Btvs characters -- s'kat, 20:31:54 06/10/03 Tue

While watching my tape tonight of WttH- which was from FX and had tons of cuts (including the opening Darla/boy scene), I also noticed how off Darla seemed to be.

I think part of the reason is as you note - she was originally created as a disposable character, much like Drusilla and Spike were in S2, and even Angel was in S1.
Angel btw wasn't supposed to last much past the first year.
According to one of the Tvography (I think it was that one), Angel was also a disposable character. But they luckily changed their minds. Whedon had intended to make the vampires more one- dimensional and completely evil, but
when fans began to really take to Angel and he realized that the "girl kills MoTW" format wasn't the ratings grabber that the episodes which focused more on developing relationships between the characters were - he switched gears. You really start to see the switch begin later in S1.
The switch from MoTW format to character's emotional arcs and interrelationships.

But another explanation, which may be fanwanking, is that perhaps we're seeing Darla more from Buffy's perspective in this episode? In Angel S1 Btvs - Darla is portrayed a little more together, still juvenile - in keeping with the view of vampires being arrested adolescents on Btvs - but she seems more mature somehow and less a minion. And later on Angel The Series - she's far more complex and far more
multi-faceted - why? Because Angel the Series isn't in Buffy's pov. It's not focused on Buffy slaying her demons, so the demons become less of metaphors for Buffy and more their own multi-faceted characters. It's why many of the greyer characters in the Whedonverse work better on Angel, the demons certainly do - b/c we are looking through a different lense. Notice how different Drusilla, Harmony,
and even Angel himself appear characterwise on btvs as opposed to Ats? It really is two totally different perspectives. Different lenses if you will. Same with Wesely and Cordelia. I have yet to see a character appear on both shows and be the same on each - the writers almost deliberately write them differently, subtle things, but there all the same - like we've shifted pov's. One pov seems more indivisible, while the other very central to the lead. It's an interesting technique that I've been noticing lately and wondering about. I don't know maybe it's just me. ;-)

[> [> [> Also, Darla is much more important on "Angel" than she is on "Buffy" -- Finn Mac Cool, 22:13:54 06/10/03 Tue

On "Angel", she's a way of examining and creating conflict in the main character. On "Buffy", she's a way of examining and creating conflict in a supporting character. Naturally Darla's going to become more developed on the show where she's more important.

[> Totally agree -- Kitkat, 01:25:47 06/10/03 Tue

Watched this and 'the Harvest' again the other day and was just amazed at how consistent the character development has been over the entire seven series. Immediately Buffy doesn't want to be the Slayer, she wants to be normal. Willow is the shy and insecure nerd who takes power where she can find it - here through her knowledge of computers. Xander is the joker, insecure, and feels useless, but is ultimately brave and loyal. Giles is intelligent and bookish, and despite his intial stuffiness (which is later challenged by what we know of his past) he is willing to break the rules from the start, although we only know this in retrospect - he shouldn't have let Willow and Xander anywhere near Buffy. Joyce is obviously loving and caring, a parent struggling to do the best for her often puzzling daughter.

The only jarring note, as Scroll observed, is Darla; who is too childish. Why is she so afraid of Luke when she is a powerful Master vampire in her own right? This can be fanwanked if we say that Luke is even older than her, perhaps so old that he cannot change his face anymore? I don't know if there is backstory written somewhere which contradicts this?

Angel also jars - his coldness is understandable given that he hasn't interacted with humans for centuries, and he is unsure of his role. And I suppose his fear is understandable - he doesn't want to go down and meet the family. But it still feels off. It is also fascinating to see how awkward DB was initially - he has really developed as an actor.

I also noticed re-watching it that the Master's appearance is the missing link between more normal vampires and the Turok- Han.

I love the Master's overblown language and attitude, which Buffy as a Slayer and as a show completely punctures. Establishing the theme of the series - to subvert the traditional horror cliches.


[> [> Re: Humor -- Brian, 05:21:23 06/10/03 Tue

What I noticed was the humor. Lots of it, from most of the characters. Many delightful lines. And was Giles' line about getting the calendar with the Time-Life series on the supernatural, a foreshadowing of Jenny Calendar?

[> [> [> Re: Humor -- tam, 06:54:25 06/10/03 Tue

i think it was the intelligent humor that got me hooked. cordelia's "softer side of sears" still makes me laugh. the scene in the class room about the black death took me back to high school (no mean feat at my age)as no reunion ever could. and the beginning of friendships that will last forever is just something i love.

[> [> On Darla -- Kenny, 08:08:35 06/10/03 Tue

I don't think that the Darla thing is too difficult to reconcile. She left the Master (her father) to run away with Angelus (her new boyfriend). It's like the prodigal son from the Bible. I don't think she would have taken back with the Master if she hadn't fallen on hard times immediately prior. And I can see the Master doing some threatening (in a loving way) upon her return. So yeah, she'd be a bit scared of him and his right hand, but we saw the stronger, cockier Darla when she was doing her own thing. So, it's not so much that she was being a minion, it's that she was being the child who "screwed up" and has come back home to get back on her feet.

[> [> [> Huh, that makes a lot of sense, Kenny -- Scroll, 22:23:13 06/10/03 Tue

[> [> [> Re: On Darla -- leslie, 15:18:47 06/11/03 Wed

I think another reason for the difference between initial-Darla and subsequent-Darla is that in between she's been dusted and god-knows-where. Angel returns from his sojourn in Acathla's hell-dimension rather deeper and more self-reflective (no pun intended) than he was before Buffy killed him, and so does Darla. The "childishness" she shows in the first episodes of BtVS seem to me very much a pose, a role she's playing; when she goes to Angel to try to bring him back to the Master, she seems to me to be the same Darla we see in later flashbacks.

[> Where do we go from here? -- Cactus Watcher, 07:12:26 06/10/03 Tue

I largely agree, except I don't think Cordelia steals every scene she's in. The reason is she's got some pretty tough competition in most of her scenes. Charisma is absolutely right on as Cordelia, no doubt about it. She's more into her part than Alyson for example, and AH isn't far from how we know and remember Willow. But, SMG is just fantastic. Her hair may be a little darker and she's got on that heavily 'armored' cantilever bra, but that person is Buffy pure and simple. ASH is a little over the top, but he is excellent in this first ep., too. NB will take a little time to get recognized, his slurred speech kind of makes him seem like the guy who's going to get killed off. In fact, I remeber distinctly when I saw the ep. the first time I couldn't decide whether it was Xander or Jesse that had been in the opening credits.

But, I think it's important to note right now, that if there is no SMG or someone almost as good as the slayer, Buffy lasts four or five episodes and none of us meet each other! Charisma couldn't have done it, and neither could Julie Benz. There are varying stories about how SMG got the part. But, you have to believe Joss when he says it was the WB network that decided SMG should be tested for the part. Thank you WB!

The night of the original first showing, the episodes (The Harvest was shown as the second half of a two-parter) were prefaced by a series of vignettes showing slayers in past times, to give some idea of the progression of slayers. It was never shown again. I believe that was also done in the movie. At this point I don't think it's really missed.

[> [> She'll always be our girl -- ponygirl, 12:51:34 06/10/03 Tue

I hadn't watched WttH in ages and certainly not since the finale so it was interesting to see it now that the series is finished. Buffy completely broke my heart last night! So young, so bratty - honestly if we hadn't been in her POV from the start I think she would have come across as an angrier, fortunately less shrill Dawn - and so open with her emotions. It was all there from the start, the shouldering of responsibility, the willingness to go it alone - part of me wanted to cheer her on while the other part wanted to get her out of there and somewhere safe.

Really it was a great start. Pacing was a bit off, technical weirdness up to wazoo, but it's amazing how many episodes have mined the pilot for images and themes.

[> [> [> Re: She'll always be our girl -- rowena, 13:41:44 06/10/03 Tue

I'm one of those who came to BtVS late, not watching my first episode until sometime into the fourth season. I liked the show in S4, but didn't get hooked until S5. Since my interest in the show was based on the young adult Scoobies, I never could understand why other fans raved so much about the first three seasons.

Earlier this year, FX began reruns, starting with WttH. I was blown off my platforms. Since then, I've seen S1-3, have taped them and rewatched them repeatedly.

Seeing the characters as just babies (that's how cast in the first season looks to me) after already knowing them from the latter three seasons has changed a lot of the opinions I had formed of them. For instance, I had thought WIllow was whiny, wimpy and annoying from Season 4 onward. Discovering the nerdy high-school Willow gave me much more sympathy (and empathy, having been a band nerd) about her and her motivations.

Getting acquainted with the younger Buffy has been pure delight. I can't help but laugh at seeing her fight vampires in platform shoes and miniskirts. And I can't help but feel for Buffy when she says she wants to be a normal kid.

[> [> Re: Where do we go from here? -- Malandanza, 06:50:27 06/11/03 Wed

"Charisma is absolutely right on as Cordelia, no doubt about it. She's more into her part than Alyson for example, and AH isn't far from how we know and remember Willow. But, SMG is just fantastic. Her hair may be a little darker and she's got on that heavily 'armored' cantilever bra, but that person is Buffy pure and simple. ASH is a little over the top, but he is excellent in this first ep., too. NB will take a little time to get recognized, his slurred speech kind of makes him seem like the guy who's going to get killed off. In fact, I remember distinctly when I saw the ep. the first time I couldn't decide whether it was Xander or Jesse that had been in the opening credits."

I agree with most of this -- SMG is amazing in this episode. When I was watching the commentaries, Joss points out SMG's facial expressions when Buffy is meeting with Principal Flutie, and he's absolutely right. SMG conveys an amazing amount of information without saying a word. There a many little moments which make Buffy seem like a natural character -- like after her mother's lecture about being nurturing (but not too nurturing) which interrupted Buffy's fashion making dilemma, when she switches back to fashion, her facial expression shows she's completely tuned out everything her mother said is fully engrossed in her wardrobe once more. Also, when Jesse and Xander join Buffy and Willow in the school yard, the scene was very believable -- NB and whoever plays Jesse came across quite real and SMG's reactions to these strange boys was right on target. Part of the praise has to go to the director for recognizing SMG's talent and using it, but I think you're right: without an actress of SMG's ability, BtVS doesn't last out the season.

With Cordelia, I agree that her lines were delivered perfectly, but I think some of the timing was off -- it sounded a little too scripted, rather than spontaneously delivered sarcasms.

AH doesn't really resemble the actress she became in later seasons. It seems like she spent the bulk of the episode with her eyes opened as wide as possible, to simulate earnestness, or fear, or both. However, the scene with the drinking fountain where Cordelia attacks her is perfect. Also, she played clueless rather well in the crypt -- really not understanding how much danger she was in from the older boy. (And it's a shame they dusted the 70's vamp -- he came across as very creepy and predatory even in those dated clothes.)

I didn't think ASH was over the top (although the balcony scene carries some unfortunate associations after Season Six). It's his first slayer and he's trying to impress upon her the importance of her sacred duty while, at the same time, is excited about his new job and its location on the Hellmouth. He did come across as rather fatalistic, though, suggesting that Buffy's arrival in Sunnydale was part of some grand, cosmic scheme.

I didn't have a problem with NB's acting -- I didn't care for the first meeting "can I have you" but that was more for the writing and, anyway, first meetings usually come off
as contrived. It wasn't any worse than Riley's introduction in Season Four.

Luke was very convincing as a threat -- the fight scene between Buffy and Luke is one of the best at conveying danger to Buffy. He was able to manhandle her with relative ease (and we see that some vampires are stronger than the slayer). There was real tension in that scene (something that has often been missing in later episodes). We also see the vampires as metaphors for rapists in this ep -- date rape for Willow, stranger rape for Buffy -- when she's been knocked into the coffin and Luke leaps in on her. For many seasons, vampires will continue to be metaphors for sexual predators (until ME decided that sexual predators are sexy and cool).

[> [> [> Nice summary of the actors. I agree. -- Sophist, 09:22:57 06/11/03 Wed

[> They had me at... -- Sofdog, 07:21:05 06/10/03 Tue

This was the first episode I ever saw. It was re-running before the Season One finale. I didn't watch the finale once I realized there was an entire season missing. Didn't pick the show up again until fall.

What got me on the first take was the kitschy setup. This very petite, very ordinary looking girl dressed in what amounts to send-ups of Classic Trek uniforms and '60s styles was lying in wait for a monster in an alley. The image of Buffy tiptoeing down the alley in tight flairs and boots, then handstanding on a pole waiting for her pursuer is indelibly printed on my brain.

[> [> Yep -- CW, 07:27:31 06/10/03 Tue

I saw it the first night it ran. But, once I saw that handstand, I was hooked, too, and for good.

[> A quick flashback (somewhat English and beware! Sp. 1.2!) -- Tchaikovsky, 07:50:04 06/10/03 Tue

I very nearly missed the very first episode of Buffy, airing in Britain one long Christmas holiday about 5 years ago. In fact, even that's too much. That suggests that I was meaning to watch it. The reality was, I'd probably just watched 'Eastenders' or something, and I was probably waiting until 'Never Mind the Buzzcocks' or somesuch gibberish. I remember very clearly being in the little music room in my house, hiding away from my over- turkey stuffed family. The continuity announcer came on.

Continuity announcers, I like to think to myself, are the bane of my existence. When yabyumpan sent me the video of 'Awakening' I was transfixed by the episode. Then the laugh continued eerily on into the credits, and I thought to myself, 'This is a defining moment of the series- let me stew and reflect over the beautiful title music. Instead, I got some abrasive woman telling me that I could watch 'Scrubs' after the break and that Angel was back next week. I gritted my teeth.

But back in those rich, dark days of Christmas 1998, this particular continuity announcer saved me. He was an innocuous man, of about 30, and with a voice which lacked the authoritative weight of a Peter Donaldson figure. 'Stay tuned,' he said, 'For the first instalment of what might turn into a cult hit: Buffy the Vampire Slayer'. I giggled amusedly to myself.

Truth to tell, I still wouldn't probably have watched it, if not for another circumstance. I was very snooty about science fiction in my childhood. Fantasy I could just about cope with, but 'Star Wars' and silly action science cartoons I found unbearable. Then, one day, completely out of the blue, my friend decided to reveal that he was a mad Trekky. I remember being a little confused if not all that surprised- he was always a secretive, uncommunicative person. But I was not going to let him get away with it that easily, so I asked him question after question. He really did have all the trivia at his fingertips, or in his mind's eye, or whatever.

So one evening, I caught another continuity announcer telling me that an award winning feature length Start Trek was about to be on. This might be as good a time as any- thought I to myself, and settled down to watch 'The Best of Both Worlds'.

It was marvellous. My favourite episode along with 'Darmok' and 'All Good Things' of the not particularly exhaustive collection I've watched. All about collectivism, about the individual, about how Riker must let go of his grief in order to be victorious- act as himself even though he has lost Picard as his figurehead. And because it was feature-length, it had room to breathe.

So this made me a little less cynical in settling down to watch the back to back 'Welcome to the Hellmouht' and 'The Harvest'. I don't remember much about the experience of watching it. I thought Alyson Hannigan was easily the prettiest, and didn't rate Sarah Michelle Gellar at all. I think I was simply scared of Cordelia (I was only 14 then, and I was a timid child). I really liked Giles. I was with it, though, from its supreme, hilarious ending 'The earth is doomed', which I was ecstatic they brought back for 'Chosen'.

When it finished, I thought to myself- 'Hmmmm, that's perfectly good, and I understand the characters quite well. If I'm in, I'll watch it more.' It took 'Becoming', 'Enemies' and 'The Harsh Light of Day' to make me religious. But from tiny acorns...

If you'd told me back then, after watching the pilot, that I'd write 82,000 words about the spin-off, I'd have laughed at you. But because it interested me just enough, with a witty dialogue and instantly well-realised characters, the first two episodes did their job in galvanising me to watch again.


[> [> "Beware! Sp. 1.2!"--Hee! -- Haecceity, 09:54:58 06/10/03 Tue

Oh how I envy you "there from the start" folks.

I clearly remember hearing rumors that they were making the film into a TV series and admit I was interested, only because the film had been a part of my own high school experience--

My Senior AP English teacher had the movie poster tacked up in the front of our classroom to remind us that "the ridiculous and the sublime enjoy each other's company". To this day when I think of high school I see that poster. It was a great class-- we had to cover 12 classic plays and novels, most of which he read out loud to us, doing all the voices (still one of my criteria for rating favourite people:) I've often wondered if he ever found this board--Mr. Qwalls, if you're out there I just want to say I LOVED your class and will never forget your reading of the The Wife of Bath's Tale. Ever.

--Anyway, that January I was in L.A. interning on my first feature *and* taking my final 16 credits--I hadn't the time to breathe, much less watch television. So I missed it, and over the next 5 years didn't think to turn in. It's funny, though, I seemed to know what was going on in the show from billboards and ads, because it seems I knew about Angel and his leaving and the "new" vampire, Spike (which must have been season four). But all along I had this feeling that it was a show I'd have to catch up on, so I just ignored it.

Then that rascal FX caught me with season 4 reruns. By season 5 ran, I was hooked good and proper. But I couldn't get into the early episodes. I kept thinking, "nothing's happened to them yet." Now that I know and love these characters I watch season 1 and get all, "Aww, nothing's happened to them yet."

Funny how love changes your perspective.

But my English teacher's still right--the ridiculous and the sublime keep good company.


[> [> How I managed to catch "Welcome to the Hellmouth" the first time around -- Masq, 10:04:22 06/10/03 Tue

I was working at a one-year job teaching philosophy in Montreal in the Winter of 1997 when one day, on a whim, I went into a newstand (something I rarely do) and browsed through the science-fiction magazines. I saw an article about the upcoming series, and it looked interesting enough (and different enough from the movie) that I tuned in.

"Buffy" came on a cable channel in Montreal, "Y-TV" (Youth TV). This didn't dissuade me, even though I was 33 years old at the time. I've often been interested in shows aimed at audiences younger than my own demographic.

The pilot episode "Welcome to the Hellmouth" had me instantly hooked, but I almost stopped watching after "The Pack" (the implied cannibalism was a little much). The next episode, "Angel", however, brought me right back in. The dark, brooding vampire with a soul quickly became my favorite character.

I have never been part of the fandom of a television show before BtVS, but after the heart-wrenching ending of "Becoming, Pt 2" I went to the internet seeking reassurance about Angel's fate. I lurked for a while, then started posting at the Bronze posting board shortly after "Lover's Walk".

[> [> Sadly, I was not a love-at-first-sight Buffy fan... -- Scroll, 23:24:43 06/10/03 Tue

As a child, I had always hated horror movies and anything with monsters. I hated "Gremlins". I hated watching/reading scary things, and being scared (and to a certain extent, I still do).

I remember renting the movie with some friends in high school because they wanted to see it. I don't remember being too scared, but I still looked down on the movie cuz I'd been raised in a fairly conservative Christian home where monsters/aliens/etc. just weren't part of my usual experience.

When Buffy the TV show premiered, I only watched it because my sister and brother wanted to see it. I remember feeling that same distaste for monsters... But I was also intrigued by "Welcome to the Hellmouth" and "Harvest", by the characters and the idea of a blonde California teen kicking vampire butt -- intrigued enough that I watched an episode here and there. I think "Angel" was the ep that got me really interested, and wanting more. But I still missed most of Season 1 in first, and only saw them in re-runs. By Season 2, however, I was an avid and regular watcher. Though I don't think I started taping until "Becoming" cuz my sister wanted to see it and was away. Thus began my passionate menage a trois with my VCR and Tuesday nights.

[> Buffy's Prophetic Dream -- Arethusa, 11:14:05 06/10/03 Tue

Buffy's prophetic dream and Prophecy girl make good bookends for the first season. The events of the dream:

1. The Master's lair, lighted with candles, with someone with a torch walking through-the Master?

2. A graveyard at night and during dim light, with a close-up of two carved angels on tombstones. Buffy tossing and turning is superimposed over the cemetery.

3. A partially decomposed skull with two metal front teeth.

4. A statue of Shiva, dancing. It is the same as the one here:


5. The Master in his lair, arms spread wide.

6. The skull again.

7. The Master again.

8. An Egyptian woman's sarcophagus, with a mummy's hand breaking through from the inside.

9. A very hideous, plant-like monster.

10. The Master in his lair again.

11. A very demonic face, vampiric. The first demon who created vampires? Its hands are superimposed over Buffy's sleeping neck.

12. The root monster again.

13. Buffy's hand, reaching for the cross Angel will give her.

14. The Vampyr book Giles will try to offer Buffy.

15. An illustration in an old book (wood carving?) of people meeting a demon in a forest. A stream of white flows from the demon to a person underneath, like a bastardization of Michaelangelo's The Creation of Adam.

16. Buffy picking up the silver cross.

17. Many vampires walking throug a fild at night.

18. Buffy, tossing and turning.

19. Monsterous hands, unclenching its fingers.

20. Buffy sleeping.

21. The graveyard, with a close up of the name Von Der Lohe on a tombstone.

22. A brunette vampire in game face. A hand reaches for her head, as if to caress it.

23. Detail of a wood object, perhaps the Master's throne.

24. The cemetery during day.

25. Buffy dreaming.

26. Grinning vampires in the lair.

27. The Master, first in profile than facing the camera.

28. Buffy wakes.

Buffy's dream could be both foreshadowing her battle with the Master, and going back in time to see the creation of vampires.

[> [> Re: Buffy's Prophetic Dream -- CW, 11:31:58 06/10/03 Tue

The plant-like monster is the one that comes out of the Hellmouth in "Prophecy Girl" isn't it?

[> [> [> Re: Buffy's Prophetic Dream -- Rook, 13:27:22 06/10/03 Tue

All the shots are from upcoming episodes, with some minor SFX added here and there. In order they are:

1) Shot of the Master's lair
2) Shots of the graveyard
3) Shiva statue, not sure which Ep.
4) Demon's hand coming out of the magic box in "The Puppet show"
5) Shot of the Prophecy Girl Demon
6) Shot of Moloch from IRYJ
7)Shot of Xander's hand taking the cross from Buffy in the sewer in The Harvest
8) Shot of Giles holding the Vampyr book from WttH
9)Not sure where the next 2 page shots are from
10) Shot of the page Giles reads about "The Vessel" in the Harvest (The demon with the symbol on its head)
11)Shot of Buffy taking the Cross Angel gave her out of the box in WttH
12) Shot of Vamps converging on the school in Prophecy Girl
13) Another shot of the Hellmouth Demon from PG
14) Shot of Moloch's hand about to break the boy's neck from IRYJ
15) Another graveyard shot
16) Shot of Vamps converging on the gang in WttH
17) Closeup of the Master

[> [> [> [> Aww, I should have realized -- Arethusa, 18:36:41 06/10/03 Tue

they were all scenes from that season. I still like my theory, though, even if it is baloney.

[> [> Are you sure the cheeseman wasn't in there somewhere, too? -- Masq, 13:37:06 06/10/03 Tue

[> [> [> We can but, well, dream... -- Caira, 05:29:11 06/11/03 Wed

[> [> Re: Buffy's Prophetic Dream -- anom, 00:19:34 06/13/03 Fri

"27. The Master, first in profile than facing the camera.
28. Buffy wakes."

And Buffy's head movement as she wakes mirrors the Master's in her dream.

[> The Annotated "Welcome to the Hellmouth" -- Rob, 14:36:05 06/10/03 Tue

Click here to relive the annotatey goodness!


[> [> Re: "Things" I didn't get the first time around -- Brian, 14:58:59 06/10/03 Tue

1. That the Master's rising from the blood pool was the first time that had happened since the 30's when he got "stuck" between the dimensions.

2. That vampire activity in Sunnydale was a recent event (Giles looking at the headline in the newspaper about three missing boys) brought on by the prophesy of the Master's rising.

3. That Giles was right when he told Buffy "Why are you here, now?" if not to stop the vampires.

[> [> The Philosophical "Welcome to the Hellmouth" -- Masq, 15:32:15 06/10/03 Tue


Of course you realize we can have seperate threads for these different takes on the "official" episode of the week.

[> [> can't reach the page, so don't know if this is in it - - anom, 00:26:09 06/13/03 Fri

An early meta-narrative gem: "I'm Buffy. I'm new." Yep-- Buffy is new, or it was then.

[> Thoughts and Questions -- skyMatrix, 18:56:15 06/10/03 Tue

First I had the VHS box set, then I bought the DVDs, which means I've purchased half of these eps twice! Oops. So anyway, I've seen this one a few too many times and it might just be losing a little sheen for me.

However, I would like to ask what everyone thinks of SMG's acting ability. A close friend asserts that SMG is horrible throughout S1. I disagreed on principle, of course, but watching her in WttH it does seem like there are some things she has down more than others.

A random observation I had is that Willow and Giles seem to know each other already, if not by name. Willow of course tells Buffy about the librarian, and later at the Bronze, Giles says, "isn't that...?" So it's interesting to be reminded that Willow was probably the only student to be hanging out in the library, and she would have continued to do so even without becoming a Scoobie. This only underscores how out of place Xander, the non- reader, is by comparison... although he gets let in on the secret by the odd contrivance that Willow sent him to the library at the right time! Actually, the scene where Xander overhears everything makes you wonder if the Scoobies were ever careful enough about making sure someone wasn't lurking in the background!

Joss' commentary kinda pointed out to me that Darla is the anti- Buffy in that first scene, and of course her physical simliarity will be remarked upon in AtS S2, when she will become the anti-Buffy for most of that season's plot!

Any thoughts on the Master? He's often seen as Joss trying to find his footing regarding villains, but Joss (I think) points out in commentary that the Master is actually quite sarcastic and modern in his speech. I guess Luke fulfills the role of total horror cliche, and although he is iced next ep (ack I gave it away! hehe), they replace him with the "Annointed One," the personification of absurdist vampiric formality. So Joss is making steps towards more "with-the-times" villains, but mostly we'll have to wait for "School Hard" for that! ;)

[> [> Re: Thoughts and Questions -- CW, 07:13:52 06/11/03 Wed

However, I would like to ask what everyone thinks of SMG's acting ability. A close friend asserts that SMG is horrible throughout S1. I disagreed on principle, of course, but watching her in WttH it does seem like there are some things she has down more than others.

I gave my comment on SMG's acting above, but I thought an extra comment was worthwhile here. The question you should ask is how good are each of the actors compared to others in similar situations. TV ep's are shot in a matter of days, very long days at that. First episodes of most series, especially those with comedy in them tend to be ragged and stilted. A good example is the very first episode of MASH which is pretty close to being unwatchable dreck. In the first episode of Friends the acting is pretty good but the jokes are mostly worthy of a canned laughter track. As series progress the actors get more comfortable in their parts and writers get more comfortable with the direction the characters are heading, everything smooths out and the quality in among the problems in the first episode or two really starts to shine.

Whether a person likes a particular actor or not is a matter of taste. But, when you hear somebody talking about consistant bad acting like your friend was saying, you need to ask yourself is there good evidence for what the person is saying? Is SMG the most beautiful young teen star ever? Well, no. Is her acting perfect in every possbile way? Well, no. Is the Buffy in Welcome to the Hellmouth, exactly the same Buffy as we see at the beginning of, say, season two? No, but she's not that far off at all. Plus SMG has been asked to show a wide variety of emotions in this episode. Can you name any she didn't convey properly? Over the course of seven years, actually I can, but not in this ep. Xander and Cordelia are very close to who they'll be, which leads to the question are the actors really acting or just showing off a side of their existing personalities. Being yourself is obviously easy. ASH isn't quite in the character we'd expect now as Giles. In "WttH" Willow really seems like a normal well-adjusted girl in bad clothes. AH isn't into the part at all, but I wouldn't call her performance bad. Ask yourself and your friend these questions: Does the series focus heavily on Buffy? Do series in which in lead actor noticeably can't act generally do well? Does the actor seem to be able to present a character, rather than project the image of some playing a character? Is it the acting that's the problem or one's opinion of the role that was written for them, the hairstyles, the clothing, the physical attractiveness?

As in the post above, I think I'm safe in saying that if SMG isn't a fine actress from the very beginning, there is nothing Joss can do to make BtVS play for seven sesaons.

[> Continuity issues -- Sophist, 10:20:33 06/11/03 Wed

In light of criticism of continuity flaws in later seasons, I thought it would be interesting to watch for them in early eps. I caught three:

1. It's impossible to believe Xander could have been in the library unbeknownst to Giles. In fact, given what we learn later of Xander, it's impossible to believe he was there at all for the purpose of getting a book. And a math book, at that.

2. The scene where Buffy drops down on Angel is slightly off on the timing. If you watch carefully, you can see that Angel has walked too far for Buffy to hit him. The scene appears to have been spliced.

3. How did Buffy and Xander find Willow in the crypt?

[> [> Re: Continuity issues -- Darby, 15:16:51 06/11/03 Wed

Giles always seemed to spend a fair amount of time in his office, and Xander is both stealthy and good at following orders.

Hey, since they brought DB back after filming the last episode of the season to refilm some of these first ones, it's amazing they got anything right.

How many crypts were full of tv lights?

[> [> [> LOL! Darby, didn't think I'd ever live to see the day that you'd defend an ep's continuity. ;o) -- Rob (whose perplexec by this new Darby w/o the snark), 18:22:17 06/11/03 Wed

[> [> [> LOL! yes it does appear as if Darb and Sophist switched places -- s'kat, 22:06:48 06/11/03 Wed

What happened? did you guys decide to ex-change posting names without telling us?? ;-) (Oh I love Darby's snark, btw makes me laugh, regardless of whether or not I agree.)

Have to say I agree with both on this one.

If you see the original pilot, the one scene that stays the same pretty much in both is the library scene. It is also oddly enough my favorite in the episode. I love Xander's "what". I'll often pause on WttH when it's replayed on FX just for that moment. So as a result I've seen it numerous times.

Darb is right - that scene is set up well. One, just prior to it, Willow tells Xander to get a math book from the library. He'd just asked for her help with MAth in the opening portion of the episode, after the skateboard scene.
Two, Giles was shown in his office when Buffy entered the library...she had to look for him, so it's possible Xander either came in when Giles wasn't looking or Giles saw him and forgot. This is something that is brought up in other episodes - Giles' absent-mindedness.

Regarding the other scenes? Yep she does appear to stay up there a tad long before taking Angel out. But it was cool.
And knowing how low their budget was - it is astonishing they got as much right as they did. ;-)

[> [> [> [> Heh. -- Sophist, 09:07:09 06/12/03 Thu

The real problem is not that Xander couldn't get into the library without being seen, but that Xander couldn't find a math book in the library if his life depended on it. He'd have had to ask Giles.

[> [> [> [> [> Perhaps he was too manly to ask for directions :) -- Finn Mac Cool, 09:22:46 06/12/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> [> Or it wasn't close to his first time needing one. -- Darby, 19:07:26 06/12/03 Thu

[> Re: Welcome to the Hellmouth: -- Silky, 20:27:50 06/11/03 Wed

I agree - a good introduction to the characters and setting the scene and conflicts up(compare with the stiff acting in ST:TNG first ep).

But, I had to laugh at two things. The first was the mention of shoes (Cordelia to Buffy about living in LA)- which, of course, comes up twice in Chosen - Spike's dream about drowning in footwear and Buffy's comment about shoe shopping. Funny and great consistency from start to end.

Second - the girls in the locker room commenting on what a strange name Buffy is - girls whose names are Aphrodesia and Aura! Great stuff I missed previously or had forgotten about...Loved the humor - glad some of it returned in S.7.

[> [> Re: Aura -- skyMatrix, 19:03:24 06/12/03 Thu

Don't forget, Aura returns! Of-screen, that is. In "Rm w/a Vu" (AtS 1.5), Cordy lets the machine catch a call from Aura, who wants to catch up. At the end (after securing the apartment) she calls Aura and we only hear Cordy's side of the conversation. I don't know if the voice we hear on the Angel ep is the same actress, however.

"Seeing Red"/"Dead Things" -- Rina, 13:01:29 06/13/03 Fri

It's interesting how so many fans ponder over the attempted rape scene in "Seeing Red", and barely talk about the beating in "Dead Things". Why is that? The acts committed in both episodes were heinous and hard to watch. In fact, I have difficulty watching both episodes.

[> Well, I don't care for either of them. But... -- Random, 13:38:45 06/13/03 Fri

When one considers that, in Dead Things, Spike tried to physically restrain Buffy from doing what she considered right -- go to the police because she killed a human being -- and then invited her to hit him...somehow, that not only doesn't really compare to attempted rape, it actually forshadows Spike's willingness to impose his will physically on Buffy. He grabs her first and tells her under no uncertain terms that he's not going to allow her to decide her own fate. After she punches him -- to get him out of the way (which is reasonable considering that he would almost certainly not have just listened to her and stepped aside) he goes into game-face and grabs her again, this time throwing her to the ground. Hard. When she fights back, he then begs her to keep hitting him -- a little different from her fighting back against his attempt to rape her. She shouldn't have done it, but he put himself in that position. Yes, it was violent. And no, it was in no way comparable to an attempt to rape Buffy.

The other point of dialogue was very telling as well: Spike argues the same point that AlmostEvilFaith argues, that Buffy should look at the balance. He really doesn't understand why she values a single life so highly, and his lack of understanding is a result of a blindness on his part. He sees only what he perceives as her benefit, and he is willing to fight her to keep her from making her own decision. Buffy believes that all lives are valuable...Spike at that point only believes her life is.

[> [> The consequences of dead things -- Sophist, 13:54:38 06/13/03 Fri

Spike argues the same point that AlmostEvilFaith argues, that Buffy should look at the balance. He really doesn't understand why she values a single life so highly, and his lack of understanding is a result of a blindness on his part.

Interesting, though, that the COW seems to have much the same attitude (from Consequences):

Giles: Buffy, this is not the first time something like this has happened.

Buffy: (confused) It's not?

Giles: The Slayer is on the front line of a nightly war. Now, it's, it's tragic, but accidents have happened.

Buffy: W-what do you do?

Giles: Well, the Council investigates, um, metes out punishment if punishment is due.

And Giles seemingly approves this. While I agree that Spike doesn't get the moral point, his actual position is harder to reject out of hand.

When she fights back, he then begs her to keep hitting him - - a little different from her fighting back against his attempt to rape her. She shouldn't have done it, but he put himself in that position.

We have 2 previous examples of similar behavior: Faith in FH&T and in WAY. In both these and in DT, I believe we were intended to see a great moral wrong. I find it hard to compare crimes except at the extremes. I doubt it's possible to call this "worse than" or "not as bad as" SR.

[> [> [> Re: The consequences of dead things-agree -- sdev, 17:18:45 06/13/03 Fri

I see it as collateral damage not murder. A possible risk in some way given the daily killing Buffy does. Faith's problem is she doesn't even show or acknowledge regret. I always suspected she had regret but never allowed herself to go there. After all, look at Faith's past- her watcher getting killed and her guilt about it. That traumatized her and she shut down.

Buffy could have felt terrible about the manslaughter,reviewed her methods and tried to change things to avoid a recurrence. But instead she turned it into a guilt fest, another way she beat herself up in Season 6. How would the police have reacted? They had no clue as to her role in the world. Her response to turn herself in was wholly inappropriate.

[> [> [> [> The Devil is in the Collateral Damage -- mamcu, 18:18:26 06/13/03 Fri

I think the whole concept of "justifiable because something big was going on" or "OK because unavoidable" killings of human beings is the point where we admit the line of reasoning that leads to lots that we hate: gang warfare, My Lai, you name it. It's the original slippery slope of rationalization, and I think that's why ME is careful with it. That's why we had the big scene of everyone abandoning the city before the end of Chosen.

OTH, I do think that Buffy's reaction to Spike is way out of line and opens the door for him to respond as he did in Seeing Red. Once you start with the games, it's hard to make a change and say--oops, no more, now it's real. On another level, she pushes the humiliation and rejection over the line. I'm not blaming the victim, but saying there are victims and there are people who set things up. Doesn't justify Spike, but does call her behavior into question.

[> [> [> [> [> volitional vs. unintentional... -- sdev, 22:27:01 06/13/03 Fri

Therein lies the difference.

Buffy in DT vs. Spike in- AR both were wrong.

[> [> [> [> [> We've seen Buffy send mixed or opposite signals, alot. But, no means no. -- Archilochian, 22:44:35 06/13/03 Fri

[> [> [> [> [> [> Keep in mind Spike didn't have a soul -- Ray, 01:47:05 06/14/03 Sat

The first time they had sex in that building, she rejected him and they fought. The same in the bathroom. The difference in the way she was acting wasn't clear to Spike. He couldn't empathize with her to realize she really meant
"no" in the bathroom.
Without a soul, it took him awhile to rerun the incident until he understood what he'd did (or almost did). I think his guilt afterwards shows a lot.
Buffy in Dead Things went too far with Spike. He wanted to stop her from making a mistake, Giles or Xander would probably have tried to stop her as well. They just wouldn't have punched her (though keep in mind that's how Buffy and Spike interacted).

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Would agree, the soul distinction is very important -- s'kat, 15:48:52 06/14/03 Sat

First off - on Dead Things - I think Buffy lost it with Spike. Remember we start the sequence with her going to his crypt, then upset with herself for doing it, then hoping, praying even for something anything to distract her from her craving for him. (Have you ever gotten it in your head you want something? Like a candy bar? And no matter what you distract yourself with - eventually you give in and get it? Well that's Buffy, except in her case the candy bar can come after her and seductively murmur...you want me Buffy, yes you do...)So someone yells help - and she says, thank you god! Something to give me, a) a purpose for being here and b) distract me from Spike. Also make me feel better, hero and all that. But time goes wonky. And she's already feeling guilty for wanting someone to be in trouble to distract her. And whoopsie didn't work b/c there's Spike again! Who's comments etc are mixed in with the time wonkiness. Someone gets killed. She believes she did it.
And within her guilt and emotional turmoil - there's Spike telling her he'll cover it, he'll take control of it, which must unnerve her, b/c in the back of her mind the whole reason she was happy about the distraction was Spike. Then she has this dream about Spike telling her "it's just their little secret" and their sex games and how she'd like to kill him yet feels guilty about wanting to kill him and guilty about wanting him and guilty about killing the girl.
Her guilt about the girl is wrapped up with Spike, the sex, and their relationship. It's all one big package. So when Spike tries to stop her from turning herself in - he's basically representing that turmoil - that frustration.
It's like Faith punching the vamp or Faith punching Buffy in her body - they are hitting the representation of their guilt and frustration. Buffy - in her head wasn't hitting Spike or herself - she was hitting the guilt and frustration. When Spike's face reverts to human, she comes back to herself and is horrified at what she's done. When he says his line "you always hurt the one you love", she's even more horrified by the implications. It's an ironic scene, because by hurting him - she damns herself further, it just makes it all worse.

Moving on to the soul bit - SR is actually pretty much the same dynamic. Spike doesn't see Buffy when he attempts to force himself on her. She, Buffy, isn't there, he is reacting, much as she did in Dead Things. In this we've built up his emotional rollercoaster ride, where he's feeling guilty and desperate and confused and frustrated.
When he sees her - he ends up losing control just as she does in Dead Things. The difference is, that in Dead Things, Spike was blocking Buffy from another goal - turning herself in. Buffy is blocking Spike from having her.
Two different things. The other huge difference is the soul.
In Dead Things Buffy's soul is making her feel guilty and making her want to turn herself in, in SR, Spike's lack of soul, is making it hard for him to distinquish between the power games they've been playing and rape. He honestly is incapable of seeing the difference. To him at that point in time - there is no difference between the Bronze Beta scene or what happened in Smashed or the countless other times they did it. He is also completely motivated by frustration.
Buffy stops herself in Dead Things - she comes out of it.
Buffy has to stop Spike in Seeing Red, because soulless he can't come out of it, he can't stop. When she does throw him off her - he comes back to himself and like Buffy was in Dead Things, is completely and utterly horrified by his actions. And in both episodes, Dead Things we get Buffy tearfully confessing to Tara, traumatized and halfway blaming Spike for it and in Seeing Red we get Spike tearfully confessing to Clem, traumatized and halfway blaming Buffy for it. It takes both three episodes to do something about it. Buffy doesn't resolve her problem until AYW - by finally telling him what she's doing and breaking it off. Spike resolves his in Grave by getting the soul.
But the difference between the two is the soul. Buffy already knows she's doing wrong and understands the distinctions. Spike gets he's done something wrong, but he doesn't understand why it matters exactly, he doesn't get the distinctions.

This is what Whedon says on it: Although
Spike could feel love, it was the possessive and selfish kind of love
that most people feel. The concept of real altruism didn't exist for
him. And although he did love Buffy and was moved by her emotionally,
ultimately his desire to possess her led him to try and rape her because
he couldn't make the connection -- the difference between their
dominance games and actual rape.

With a soul comes a more adult understanding.

Granted it's a bit of a contrivance or story telling device, but it is a deliberate one and when watching or analyzing the series, we should make note of it. Spike is not a man, he is a soulless vampire when SR happens. To analyze the episode like he is a man, is acting as if we are watching Gilmore Girls and ignoring a key point and metaphor within the story. In fact when I analyze it with a friend of mine, they always try to give the Whedon quote from Amends in regards to SR: "It's the man in me who needs to be killed." Sorry, doesn't work here. Because rape - while a human crime in our society - in BTVS has been a crime that is linked metaphorically with vampires. And in Spike's case - it was clearly the demon, since the soul of the man was absent, not there. Spike may have humanity in him, more than most vamps, but that's the demon and the demon's soul infects him. IF that hadn't been the point - he would not have gotten the soul, to ignore the importance of the soul - means you miss the whole point of Spike getting one or what happens with it in later episode. You may not like that contrivance - but hey, it's part of the story, just like vampires, witches, and slayers are part of the story. The writers continuously repeat this. To argue otherwise, I believe, is imposing our own story or views of the characters on top of or in lieu of what is actually there, which while fun isn't the story on the screen, it's the story in our heads. I see this happen a lot in fandom. And I think to a degree it's why so many people over- react to the Spike and Angel storylines, the writers aren't telling the story the fans have in their heads.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Would agree, the soul distinction is very important -- ECH, 16:13:45 06/14/03 Sat

Wait a second, I never saw Buffy have real remorse over the DT beating, apologise to him, or even try to change her violent first response toward him (hitting him in AYW showed that pretty clearly). Buffy never made a consious effort to change or showed me that she even saw what she did as wrong until maybe CwDP. And, only then I think she realized that she really was abusing someone that did love her enough to get his soul back for her and wasn't just a evil demonic thing.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Breaking up with him was part of a desire to change, IMHO -- Finn Mac Cool, 16:17:38 06/14/03 Sat

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Some answers, I hope and a little on AYW -- s'kat, 23:08:30 06/14/03 Sat

You want speechs and ME isn't into that in their writing, they like visuals.

Here's where I think Buffy worked to change her behavior after Dead Things...

1. OAFA - the attempt to have him interact with her friends and the decision not to throw him out or humilate him. She accepts him when he drops in on her party and makes it clear she's not really interested in Richard. She doesn't reveal their relationship...but she does discuss it with Tara in a more positive light.

No - no mention was made of the beating (a mistake MN notes in commentary in an interview in SFX - see the transcript I did of this interview in I believe the April 2003 archives?)
However - she does accept him and Clem as guests and does not hit him at all during the party.

2. AYW is the next episode. It's here that she falls down on the job and gives into the abusive behavior somewhat. But it's also here that their sex in his crypt is actually less violent, also she asks him to tell her he loves her.
Which while negative...is better than what we saw in Smashed through Dead Things. You almost get the feeling here that she is attempting Tara's suggestion of trying to move him into a relationship but is on the fence about it.
Then Riley shows up and shows her that Spike is deadly, amoral and opportunistic as shown by the melting and deadly demon eggs in his crypt, which metaphorically may stand for the spidery product of their relationship. Buffy, at first attempts to defend Spike, albeit poorly, then becomes humilated by the realization it may be true and discovery that it is. Spike is right when he accuses her of denial - that she's always known who and what he is. She has. But from Pangs forward, she keeps equating the chip somewhere deep inside with a soul or a difference - Dawn's views in S5 represent this subconscious pov of Buffy's. Remember we are supposed to be in Buffy's pov. (Now I admit AYW was a poorly plotted episode and the demon egg plot fell down out of the blue. I had zip problems believing Spike would do it, but I think it could have been built up better and would have added credence to Buffy's not seeing something that was there all along...instead - the fact it popped up out of nowhere confused 50% of the audience and caused the rest of us to bend over backwards fanwanking. AYW also destroyed Riley in my humble opinion - and that's the reason I hated it. An example of how AYW could have gone is the Riley/vamptrull arc in S5 that was expertly plotted and Buff knew zip about until Spike pointed it out to her - they didn't just have us discover him with the trulls when Buffy did (that would have thrown us for a loop) instead they steadily built it up, starting with Shadow. They could have done the same thing here - starting with Doublemeat Palace. The fact they didn't made the whole Spike/Buffy arc have a gaping hole in the center and caused the AR scene and lots of other crap. Bad writers!! You should know better!! Particularly when you did such a good job with it in Shadow - Into the Woods...sigh.)

Anyways, ignoring for a moment the mess they made of that plot arc - Buffy does put an end to it and she does in her way apologize. Stating she's breaking up with him b/c their relationship is unhealthy. He may not be complaining here.
But it's killing her that all she's doing is using him to make herself feel better and it has to end.

After that..she continues to try to be nice to him or change her behavior - Hells Bells, she confronts him like a mature adult and that brings out the best in him. She tells him that yes, his attempt to make her jealous worked and yes it hurts to let go, but it does not change things, this is for the best. And he thanks her for that.

Unfortunately - when she next encounters him, she's not at her best - that's in Normal Again...and we end up on the downward spiral again and this is where our pov splits and shifts. Up until Entropy we are ENTIRELY in either B/X/W
pov's or in W/A/J (Troika) with a few smidgens of Spike (smashed), Dawn (oafa) and Anya(DMP) thrown in, but not much. Entropy is when we suddenly jump into other pov's
Spike/Anya/Dawn and to a small degree Tara. When that happens, we are no longer really following Buffy. Buffy came out of her depression or hit rock bottom in Normal Again - she did the worst thing possible in that episode, she abused Spike, and tried to kill Xander, Willow, Dawn and Tara. She makes the decision in that episode to give up heaven in an asylum with her parents and live as Buffy in Sunnydale. She's on the upsweep. Xander hit rock bottom in Hell's Bells when he dumped Anya at the alter - episode before. And we think Willow hit rock bottom in Wrecked.

Okay - in Entropy we are focusing suddenly on the other three S/A/T. Tara on getting back with Willow. Anya on cursing Xander. And Spike on dealing with the pain of the break-up. We are seeing the other side or the consequences of the rock bottom W/X/B actions.

Now it's Spike. Tara. and Anya's turns to hit rock bottom.
Anya hits it first by sleeping with Spike and becoming a vengeance demon again - regressing to old habits, which she regrets and leads her to help B/X/G at the end. Spike hits it second by sleeping with Anya and attempting to rape Buffy, which he regrets and leads him on a quest for a soul. Tara goes back to Willow and the SG research, only to get shot but it's not Tara whose the focus here, it's Willow who mistakenly believed her power was a drug she could go off cold turkey, it's all inside her - it's how she chooses to use it that's important. OF the three SG, Willow/Buffy/Xander - Willow is the only one who hasn't in the true sense hit rock bottom quite yet - she also doesn't realize what her problem is. The point is that the narrative pov splits and we almost entirely leave the Buffy pov, Buffy in some ways becomes a secondary character here.

We pick up on both Spike and Buffy in the next year.
Spike doesn't attempt to apologize to Buffy until BY and by that time he realizes he can't really. All he can do is show her by his actions that he regrets what he's done and atones which he does do: in Lessons, BY, STSP, HElp, Him, Selfless, Sleeper, NLM, and Buffy for her part must show him by her actions that she regrets it which she does in BY, Help, Him, CwDP (to herself), Showtime, Killer in Me, Potential, First Date, LMPTM, Touched, NLM,

Does she come out and say: Oh Spike I'm so sorry I was so mean to you last year, I was wrong. (No, but would you really want that? No one does that and it's a bit dull. And a lot like Spike's apology in the bathroom or Xander's to Anya. ) Does Spike come out and say "OH buffy I'm so sorry I tried to rape you?" (No, but we don't really need that.)

Btvs has always been more visual than preachy monologues.
(Except for Buffy's speeches of course ;-)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Some answers, I hope and a little on AYW -- ECH, 23:18:50 06/14/03 Sat

I thought it was pretty clear that the soul itself was one massive oversized apology for the AR.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: Some answers, I hope and a little on AYW -- s'kat, 23:29:30 06/14/03 Sat

Yeah well...not when the two big bads from the previous season contained souls. But hey, that's what I thought too.

By the same token, Buffy's decision to help him and stand by him in Sleeper - Chosen, could similarily be considered an apology, particularly when he is seen as a horrible danger with the trigger to everyone else.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Portrayal of wrongs -- Valheru, 01:32:55 06/15/03 Sun

I think the biggest difference between the Spike and Buffy in the Spuffy relationship is how they are portrayed. Spike, for the most part, is shown as the dominant abuser, while Buffy is the confused victim. IMO, the Spuffy-aftermath controversy among the fans comes from how ME constantly switched POVs between the two; therefore, some fans got stuck in one perspective portrayed a certain way, while others got stuck in the other.

In S5, we see the precursors to Spuffy almost entirely in Spike's POV. Only a few times (parts of Crush and most of IWMTLY) do we see Spike from Buffy's POV where he is definitely less than sympathetic. But for the most part, Spike's character is designed to make the audience think "Come on, give the poor lovesick sap a break!"

S6, starting with Tabula Rasa, suddenly shifts the relationship into Buffy's POV. We see him as the ultimate no- no for Buffy that she somehow can't repress. Spike is bad, horrible, stay away from him, what are you thinking, behind the dumpster? Buffy is the sympathetic one in Spuffy. So when Dead Things comes, we aren't supposed to feel much of anything for Spike, but instead feel bad for Buffy for what she did.

After the AR in Seeing Red, the POV splits, possibly the most difficult thing ME has ever tried to convey. In the Buffy scenes, we're supposed to be angry at Spike for what he did and feel sorry for Buffy for having been AR-ed. In the Spike scenes, we're supposed to be disappointed in Buffy for having led Spike on and abusing him and feel sorry for Spike for having had his love twisted by Spuffy sex. Is it any wonder that this is such a controversy, with all this confusion?

The difference between Dead Things and Seeing Red is that SR puts us in the POV of the victim (Buffy), showing us all the emotions of a woman who has just been raped. DT, however, doesn't put us in the POV of the victim (Spike). For all we know, it was the happiest moment in Spike's entire unlife and he went home and had a party.

The real problems arise later, when we are told that, yes, Spike was a victim. Which is fine and everything, but we never see Spike as a victim, only Spike being victimized. It's show, not tell all over again: we are shown Buffy as the emotional (rather than physical) victim, then told of Spike as an emotional victim later.

So yeah, maybe what Buffy did in Dead Things was worse than what Spike did in Seeing Red, but we don't see the characters from comparable standpoints so we'll never know.

[> [> [> [> [> [> As long as it always means no -- mamcu, 13:09:34 06/14/03 Sat

Since we saw Buffy playing games with handcuffs, the kind of games where people say "no" as part of the game, it kind of makes it more difficult for the other player to know. I do think Spike knew this was really a different situation, but I also think it was confusing. It would have been a lot different if it had happened a year or two earlier, before the games.

[> [> Re: Well, I don't care for either of them. But... -- Zakalwe, 14:02:12 06/13/03 Fri

Perhaps the other significant difference is that in the buffyverse, violence is pretty much run-of-the-mill. Buffy has been endowed with the ability to heal quickly, Spike too is capable to taking a lot of punishment without seeming to suffer any long term physical harm. It is part of the conceit of BTVS that characters can withstand pretty extreme conventional violence without long term physical or for that matter psychological damage.

Whereas the rape scene seems out of place in the buffyverse - an intrusion from the real world. Which is of course, kind of the point - this scene is meant to shock us - its meant to seem out of the ordinary. Violence is run-of-the-mill in the buffyverse - the real world rules don't apply. Whereas on the other hand, you don't see vampires trying to rape characters as a matter of course.

I'm kind of ambivalent about whether it was necessary in terms of plot development- a friend of mine who has been raped certainly thought a line was crossed in that episode that shouldn't have been crossed - I can see a case for it but it doesn't make for easy viewing.

[> There is a psychological difference -- Finn Mac Cool, 20:34:58 06/13/03 Fri

On a purely physical level, a rape and a beating are just as bad. However, there is a difference on a psychological level. You often hear about people having trauma following a rape (attempted or otherwise), but I don't think I've ever heard of someone having trauma following a beating. I've never been raped, but, going by what I've heard, it usually has consequences beyond the physical. Also, while I've never been severely injured, from what I've heard, unless it results in a coma or crippling, it doesn't really have any long term impact after the physical wounds heal.

[> [> Alot of people get severely traumatized from beatings. -- Doug, 20:56:32 06/13/03 Fri

[> [> [> Interesting. Never heard of that before. -- Finn Mac Cool, 21:10:09 06/13/03 Fri

[> [> It's true, Finn. And later there's PostTraumaticStress. Violence is violence. -- Archilochian, 22:30:30 06/13/03 Fri

[> Is it to do with who it's about? -- MsGiles, 04:22:54 06/14/03 Sat

After seeing these eps the first time, I thought, it's a 'showing both sides' scenario, a role reversal. In DT Buffy is the abuser, in SR it's Spike. After thinking again, I'm not so sure. But I do think a different character is being highlighted in each ep - Buffy in DT and Spike in SR - and the one not in the spotlight is really just playing a supporting role. To explain further:

DT is showing us some of the consequences of denial, I think - not just denial of Buffy's relationship with Spike, but denial of the larger thing that drove her into the relationship: her return to life, to her duties, to responsibilities she feels she can't, and doesn't want to, hold on to any more. The internal conflicts that result, find outlet in the violence towards Spike, and the quasi-suicidal desire to give herself up. As a character, Spike is passive here. Sure, he tries to stop her, he hits her, but his arguments and his violence are not unusual, and have cropped up in other contexts throught the show without seeming more than ambiguous. Her reaction is very unusual, and not what we would expect of Buffy in any season up to 5, though it is a logical extension of her increasingly out- of-control behaviour in S6. We are seeing Buffy hit a really low point. Maybe not her lowest .. she hits so many low points in S6! But certainly a depth of self-hate, externalised as violence, that she will have to struggle back from in the rest of the series.

In SR on the other hand, I think the focus is Spike. Since the start of the series, the character's arc has been suspended - in s5, he began to move towards the good, via a combination of the chip and a crush on Buffy, but in S6 she began to use him to escape her own issues, and that progression ceased, even reversed. In AYW Spike began to move again, and the end of S6 sees him seeking to redefine his life, possibly redefining Buffy as his muse rather than his crush. SR is the turning point for that change. Here Spike's motivations and feelings are to the fore - the way he goes to see Buffy intending to apologise, and instead, seeing her vulnerable state, finds himself giving in to a desire to control her, to attempt to kick-start her feelings for him by violence. However, through the show, Buffy has always been too strong for this kind of thing to happen, and even the pretext of a slaying accident doesn't really cause us to suspend disbelief. This means, I think, the the pathetic picture of Buffy as victim, cryiing 'No, don't' and struggling to get free, is both unconvicing and a little offensive. We have, after all, learned to trust in her inviolability as a safety net, in the many depictions of violence and threat she has experienced (including being tied up and threatened with a cattle prod by Spike in s5). This picture of the unempowered Buffy is necessary to allow Spike his lowest point, and his own, self-initiated, return from it. The chip is obviously no longer working on Buffy, but now Spike realises he's going to have to take over from it himself. She's not going to turn to the dark with him. He goes back to it on his own, or he moves on, towards her world. This is not something we really expect him to do, at this stage, so SR seems very bleak - but when Spike's movement becomes clearer, so does the rationale.

I think perhaps both episodes were deliberately made hard to watch, as well. There's a lot of difficult stuff in S6 despair, betrayal, mental illness, murder. I think think perhaps the 'Oh, grow up!' theme doesn't just refer to the characters, but to the audience. Joss, Marti, are going something like 'you're grown up? You want adult material? Well, you can have your sex scenes, and then you can have this! So face up to it! No more comfortable Big Bads to kill, just people, doing what people do.' Welcome to the hellmouth!

[> [> Re: Spike as rape-capable -- DEN, 09:00:02 06/14/03 Sat

Just to toss a white chip into the pot (pun intended), Spike shows (not tells)what he's capable of in his invasion of Willow's dorm room in s4. It has IMO a clear sexual element significantly greater than the usual vamp assault. It's correspondingly clear that he is restrained from killing/vamping/raping his victim ONLY by the chip. And while there is some humor in the impotence riff that succeeds this AV/AR, it seems to me significant that Willow's self esteem at that point is so low she questions whether she's even worth raping!

[> [> Come to think of it, there was inconsistency -- KdS, 09:31:47 06/14/03 Sat

I think what makes people see the rape scene as inconsistent is the way slayers and vampires have always been treated almost like cartoons or computer game characters in terms of physics - knocking each other across rooms and into walls hard enough to smash concrete and so forth, with no apparent injuries and little apparent pain. In the Seeing Red scene both Buffy and Spike are shown as having purely human levels of strength and endurance - it's not just Buffy - until the final moment when she kicks him off her, and it's a little jarring.

[> [> Re: Audience, Grow Up! -- Laura, 11:13:16 06/14/03 Sat

We have always know that Joss and co. like lulling us into certain and then pulling the rug out from under us.

Look what happened with Angel in season three. Joss got many of us to deny that fact that the Angel-Buffy situation wouldn't with that pesky happiness clause. (Sorry Joyce, I don't buy the sunshine and 2.5 kids reason.) Using our logic we know that it is too dangerous for them to stay together, but somehow we thought it would eventually work out. Joss pounced on our misconceptions. Shocking a good portion of us.

In season five and six, we've watched Spike become more or less one of the good guys. At the same time, we've been left clues here and that this doesn't mean he himself is good. "You know what I am. You've always known," says Spike to Buffy in AYW. This line is as much to her as it is to us. Perhaps foreshadowing? None the less, we've been lulled into thinking that this is the worst he currently is capable of.

When the attempted rape scene is played out it is both a realisation for Spike and for us. Spike honestly doesn't get why Buffy doesn't respond sexually to him. She's attracted to him so why not? In vampire society this isn't such an unusual thing. Torture and sex isn't so strange, Spike tortured Dru until she "loved" him again, and they were together again for a time. He suddenly realises he's missing something that allows himself to fully understand her: a soul. Meanwhile, we came to realise that even with a chip Spike simply can't be completely good and if given the chance can do horrible things. Also, we've seen Buffy above this type of abuse, but once again we've been delluding ourselves. She is, after all, human.

I think Joss loves killing our misconceptions.

[> [> Nice analysis. I agree. That's part of what I saw. -- s'kat, 15:10:20 06/14/03 Sat

[> Re: "Seeing Red"/"Dead Things" -- ECH, 11:01:26 06/14/03 Sat

Yes, both the AR and the DT beating were terrible acts of out of control people that weren't totally aware of what they were doing. My problem with it was the Buffy never apologised, felt sorry, or faced any reprocussions for the DT beating while Spike without a soul was horrifed and did everything in his power to keep it from happening again. Maybe, that is why I find it so hard to sympathise with Buffy. It is not the act that really made me mad it was her acting justified and rightious about it by not seeing a need to change her behavior, hell he punches him 2 eps later just because she is mad with him. I also don't at all believe the statement that the AR showed Spike was irredemably evil. There was no evil harmful intent in the AR, which is why IMHO it would have been a moronic decision if ME wanted to use it to try to say Spike was evil. But, I don't believe they were using it to try to say that, I think they were using it to turn people against B/S (have the audience finally get Marti's bad boyfriend arc) and manipulate the audience into creating sympathy for Buffy after her use and abuse of him. That is why IMHO that the scene could have happened the same if Spike had a soul or otherwise. ME based the AR on a violent, confusing, and out of control relationship and not on an evil monster trying to force himself on the weak helpless Buffy. Hell, I could even see Buffy trying to force herself on Spike like she did in Gone, and him getting pissed and telling her no, and her not taking no for an answer which forces him to beat her off him. If that female writer really wanted to show a gray AR scene, IMHO they should have had Buffy do it to Spike. I do believe that JM was right when he said that the writers didn't think hard enough about how different things would be viewed by reversing the sexes.

So both DT beating and SR attack were bad, but not planned acts of evil, but IMHO it was the reactions of the attacker in each case afterwords was what mattered. I don't mind people failing or doing something bad and seeing it and trying to improve, but I hate the fact that the writers just blew off the DT beating where Buffy was conserned.

On the metaphysics of dusting -- Veronica, 10:06:01 06/10/03 Tue

I was rereading the season one episode details on ATPo, and I saw the following under Never Kill a Boy on the First Date:
"But somehow, the ring on the finger of the vamp in the opening sequence remained."

It's fresh in my mind from rewatching seasons one and two on my DVD, so I'm pretty sure of this... The clip is from the dream Buffy has of Drusilla staking Angel in the Bronze. The ring in symbolic of their relationship, and so is given special attention by her psyche. It's not representative of a true staking.

On the other hand, I notice in most scenes that when fighting multiple vamps, Buffy is usually careful to pull the stake out of the dusting vamp - so she has something to fight the others with!

Just some observations from the early days...


[> No -- CW, 11:24:56 06/10/03 Tue

This is the moment when after Buffy slays vamp-in-graveyard, Giles picks up the ring. Buffy says the famous words, "That's great! I kill 'em. You fence their stuff."

It appears that all manner of cloth is subject to dusting, but not necessarily jewelry.

[> Re: Joss interview on dusting (Spoilers for Pangs) conversebuffy list help -- VampRiley, 13:38:40 06/10/03 Tue

I read a recent interview with JW, I forget where. I got it from a link in a post on the conversebuffy list. In said interview, Joss said that they thought about dusting. he said that they decided upon this. When a vamp get's staked, he creates a temporal field of energy around itself. That's what causes them to dust.

But, I got to thinking. A temporal field? That would mean that, with the passage of time, vamps do get dusted if they don't eat blood. Long after the insanity sets in. This almost flies in the face of Spike's comment in Pangs about vamps becoming "living skeletons" if they don't get to feed. Spike just may not have been aware of the eventual dusting. For me personally, there would have been less thinking afterwards if Joss said a disruption field (one that breaks the molecular bonds in the vamp's body) is what's made and not a temporal field.

If eventual dusting does occur from not feeding, it seems blood does a lot more for vamps than what, at least I, originally thought. Just another example of not that different a vamp's body is from it's human origin.

Anyone remember where that interview was?

[> [> Here's the interview. -- afterlife, 14:53:16 06/10/03 Tue

http://actionadventure.about.com/cs/weeklystories/a/aa 041903.htm

I've always wanted to ask, when a vampire is slain, why do the clothes disappear? Convenience. We didn't want to be picking up clothes all the time. We imagine that it creates a sort of temporal field that sort of turns everything to dust around it. We thought about it.

[> [> [> Thanks AL -- VR, 18:20:42 06/10/03 Tue

[> Hokum metaphysics of dusting Add Orpheus & Eurydice -- solo spinout swings bye, 18:51:25 06/10/03 Tue

I thought I would share an observation that connects Tabula Rasa with the Orpheus & Eurydice myth, and what happened in the basement in Chosen....Veronica has really good insight on how Joss wants to use Dusting (and in lots of different ways).

I suggest In the teaser of Tabula Rasa the end of Chosen is seen, and that Buffy fated Spike to die/disappear.

There seems to be a lot more to the this teaser, but I am keeping it simple. The teaser opens up with SPike chasing down buffy, and he talks to Buffy about *Rising Music* twice (Well that happens in CHosen's final Battle; and we hear the battle music crescend twice). In TR's teaser Buffy and Spike meet up, and Buffy finds herself quickly flinging herself on to Spike, knocking him down (saving him, not ready for him to leave), and she is in the same sexual position of Something Blue, when she was on top SPike in the SB Crypt. TR just has it from a different POV. Listening to the TR dialog, Spike again switchs his voice to show he takes the Female Role in Relationships, and Buffy is on top. In TR Buffy metaphorically has sex w/Spike, jumps up, and Dusts herself off. YEP, Sex in the Basement, Buffy knows she is sending SPike to his fated death. Just watch TR' Teaser. The Dust Buffy cleans off herself is that of Spike.

The Orpheus Eurydice ending is played out there too. The shark henchman says Spike has Split. Buffy *Looks Back* and indeed her Eurydice is gone.

In Chosen, when Buffy jumps off the bus, SHE LOOKS AHEAD, Up the road. Then looks back, and indeed, Buffy's Eurydice is Gone........

The really good foreshadowers can connect this whole teaser into The episodes 7.20 thru 7.22. And there Are direct Connections into Restless *everywhere*. But you guys know that.

Post-Buffy Stress Syndrome! Your Top 2 Vampire/Buffy-related Reads? -- WickedBuffy, 11:29:40 06/10/03 Tue

Part of my post-Buffy survival strategy has been to read vampire books. A few of them have been specifically about Buffy and more of them have been just based on vampire life. (Anita Blake series-yahh, World on Blood -ugh).

(Anne Rice doesn't count, ok? That's an obvious one.)

But there are so MANY Buffy books and hundreds of vampire novels - so I thought I'd just ask the smartest, most vampire and Buffy saavy group in the universe - you!

Your top two Buffy books for post-Buffy Stress Syndrome? And also, your top two vampire books in general to help ease the withdrawal pains? puleeeeeze?

Many thanks ahead of time!

[> Re: Post-Buffy Stress Syndrome! Your Top 2 Vampire/Buffy- related Reads? -- Rendyl, 12:10:06 06/10/03 Tue

I haven't read many of the Buffy books but for anyone pining a good Buffy read I would have to recommend "When Hellmouths Collide" by Kimberly Rector and Martha Wilson.

It is up at the Less than Legendary Journeys site - http://www.rtis.com/nat/user/chimera/legends.htm

The characterization is great and Giles gets some of the best lines ever written for BtVS. It is also 30 something chapters long so it makes a good read.

I don't read much vampire related fiction. One of the reasons I like Buffy so much is it never left me feeling either 'been there, done that' or 'oh gawd will the squicking never stop'. But since you asked (grin) I really like "Those Who Hunt the Night" by Barbara Hambly. Ysidro is probably my favorite vampire. I also have a soft spot for Strahd, from "Ravenloft".

(if you are suffering both 'Buffy' and '24' withdrawal I would suggest "The Lost Boys" cause..you know...vampires...Keifer..drool...duh.) ;)

Rendyl - are we shallow because we drool, or do we drool because we are shallow... -

[> Re: Post-Buffy Stress Syndrome! Your Top 2 Vampire/Buffy- related Reads? -- Rob, 14:04:32 06/10/03 Tue

Top 2 Buffy books:

Origin (if you don't mind a graphic novel)--based on Joss' original screenplay of the "Buffy" movie, meaning similar story, but without the camp. Instead, it has the more serious tone that the show has, and which Joss originally inteded for the movie. So it's basically the definitive prequel to the TV series.

Spike and Dru: Pretty Maids All in a Row--Fun read, about Spike and Dru at the start of the 20th century. Unfortunately, it hasn't fit into the continuity of the show since before "Fool For Love," but still it has a great grasp of the characters and is really well-written.

Top 2 Vampire Books:

No Anne Rice, huh? This is gonna be a tough one, since those would be my choices for best, but, um....actually, gonna have to get back to you on that.


[> It's not a Buffy or a vampire book... -- ponygirl, 14:23:51 06/10/03 Tue

But I had a lot of fun rereading Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere and picturing Xander as Richard, Spike as de Carabas, and Dawn as Door.

There is actually a vampire in the book. Sort of. And an Angelus! ;)

[> [> Wonderful book! -- mamcu, 19:58:44 06/10/03 Tue

[> Re: Post-Buffy Stress Syndrome! Your Top 2 Vampire/Buffy- related Reads? -- s'kat, 15:00:27 06/10/03 Tue

Let's see...vampire books.

1. The Marriage of Sticks by Jonathan Carrol. Available on Amazon and also at Barnes and Noble. It's an odd story about a group of immortals who use others like vampires - they do something or other that changes the other person's life to make their lives better. It discusses the nature of narcissitic love and is a bit rigorous. It's part ghost story, part vampire novel and part time travel. Very disturbing read.

2. Obsidian Butterfly by Laurel K. Hamilton - an Anita Blake novel and very grey. It features as one of its heros, a sociopathic hitman who has fallen in love, a serial killer, and the heroine who is struggling with the monster inside herself. The main villain is a vampire. Very interesting world. Gripping.

3. The one that started it all...Bram Stoker's Dracula which I hope to start sometime this year when I get around to it. ;- )

[> [> Re: Post-Buffy Stress Syndrome! Your Top 2 Vampire/Buffy- related Reads? -- Brian, 15:22:34 06/10/03 Tue

1. The Anita Blake series (Guilty Pleasures, The Laughing Corpse, Circus of the Damned, The Lunatic Cafe, Bloody Bones, The Killing Dance, Burnt Offerings, Blue Moon, Obsidian Butterfly, and Cerulean Sins.) I suggest reading them in order as her writing technique gets better with each novel.

2. The Sookie Stackhouse series (Dead by Dark, Living Dead in Dallas, Club Dead) by Charlaine Harris. Similar to the Anita Blake series with vampire politics, but with more humor, less clothing descriptions, and a more "human" main character. Again, they should be read in order for the various character developments.

[> Re: Post-Buffy Stress Syndrome! Your Top 2 Vampire/Buffy- related Reads? -- LonesomeSundown, 16:30:21 06/10/03 Tue

1) ATP forum
2) HonorH's fic

Yeah, I know, not books, but what the hey. Not into vampire fiction, but plan to try the Anita Blake series since I've seen recommendations on the board.

[> [> PS: You should read the board collaborative fic,... -- LonesomeSundown, 16:33:43 06/10/03 Tue

... "The Rescue", currently at the top of page 3 of the archives if you haven't done so already.

[> [> [> Re: Try Fan Fic - Dancing Lessons -- Brian, 17:52:26 06/10/03 Tue

at http://randomthought.addr.com/redemptionista/index2.html

[> [> [> thanks for the suggestion - I just read it - great!!! -- WickedBuffy :>, 11:01:33 06/11/03 Wed

[> No Books... -- Rook, 18:49:27 06/10/03 Tue

I am having fun building Sunnydale in the Sims. I don't actually care much for the gameplay part of the Sims, but's it's entertaining trying to remember all the layouts of the sets from memory...now if I could just remember where the bathrooms in the Bronze are in relation to the stage...

[> [> Not SimCity? -- Vickie, 20:15:23 06/10/03 Tue

I tried to get a summer board activity going last year, building Sunnydale in SimCity, but nobody was interested. Some nice folks in chat did help me build a city features list, though.

[> Re: Post-Buffy Stress Syndrome! Your Top 2 Vampire/Buffy- related Reads? -- mamcu, 20:02:42 06/10/03 Tue

Not a Buffy book, not strictly vampiric in the classic sense, and not romantic--but very strange: House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski. It's an unforgettable book.

[> Re: Post-Buffy Stress Syndrome! Your Top 2 Vampire/Buffy- related Reads? -- SableHart, 20:15:14 06/10/03 Tue

Read Jasper Fforde's The Eyre Affair. And the sequel, Lost in a Good Book. There's a smidgeon of vampire stuff in it, and it's a fantastic book. Fantastic, and really smart. Also, on the less cerebral side of things, Mercedes Lackey's Children of the Night was fun, and it was written well before Buffy aired.

Has anyone read the "BtVS and Philosophy" essay compliation I've seen around? Is it any good?

[> [> Buffy and Philosophy book -- fresne, 15:25:32 06/11/03 Wed

The essays are of varying quality. As is so often the case, in comparison, I ended up feeling like we're a really over educated group of people who write extremely well and that we should be given lots and lots of money. Or you know, maybe just a little money. DVDs don't buy themselves after all.

However, I wouldn't mind at some point having some threads discussing some of the articles. In particular there is a Buffy as Noire essay, which would be fun to parallel to the essay that sk produced earlier this year.

[> "The vampyre", the very first story ever written on vamps -- Andrea, 20:28:21 06/10/03 Tue

as far as i know at least, not sure how easy to find it is, i havent read it yet but im looking forwar to . anyway it was published on 1819 and there is an open debate on who actually wrote it because at firs it had Lord Byron's signature on it but he denied , and rejected any link wahttsoever to the novel, and blame all responibiliti for the writing on his secretary John William Polidori. aparently is was a way too dark book for te time.
hope you find it

[> [> ayup! I found it, it's with 2 other stories, on Amazon! thanks! -- WickedBuffy, 21:00:16 06/10/03 Tue

I'm busy ordering books or writing all these to my list of "to find".

thank you everyone!

[> Re: Post-Buffy Stress Syndrome! Your Top 2 Vampire/Buffy- related Reads? -- Haecceity, 21:44:57 06/10/03 Tue

Not generally into vampire fic, but putting in a second vote to Rendyl's rec of "Those Who Hunt By Night". There's also a sequel which I actually prefer, called "Travelling With the Dead". And the destination? Istanbul, (then Constantinople)-- for the ATPo resonance:)

Also, there's a YA series by Meredith Ann Pierce that's pretty good as I recall. I don't remember 2 & 3 titles, but the first is "The Darkangel".

And doesn't Terry Pratchett have something vamp-centric? He's my absolute fave, and that would help with the twisty fun language cravings:)

Good luck!


[> [> Re: Post-Buffy Stress Syndrome! Your Top 2 Vampire/Buffy- related Reads? -- fresne, 15:36:20 06/11/03 Wed

The Meredith Pierce books are:
Dark Angel
A Gathering of Gargoyles
The Pearl of the Soul of the World

And quite seriously, if you want to read an unexpected plot resolution, wellI'm not sure feminist is the right word, but it's a very feminine choice. The style of the books is incredibly rich. Makes me think of late afternoons in September when everything has that wonderful golden glow. Or of Ashokan's Farewell from the Civil War soundtrack.

Hmmmnow I feel like contrasting the resolution of Chosen with TPofSofW.

I believe the Terry Pratchett is Carpe Noctum. It being Prachett is quite amusing.

[> I've never been able to finish a Buffy book -- Finn Mac Cool, 21:55:34 06/10/03 Tue

On several occasions I've tried reading them and couldn't get beyond the first 50 pages. They just seem to be in way too much of a rush to get to the plot, they try too hard to create character conflict, and they just use way too many adjectives. WAY too many. They have a serious case of adjective overload.

As far as vampire fiction goes, my suggestions are:

1) Bram Stoker's "Dracula": it's got an unusual writing format where it's in the form of collected samples from the characters' journals. It makes a pretty good read considering that countless horror films since then have mimicked and pastiched it.

2) Stephen King's "Salem's Lot": King takes his time establishing a quiet, rural town and making us care about the characters before he brings in the vampires to wreak havoc. It contains many of King's trademarks (the heroic boy, the struggling writer, psychic phenomena, a house infected with evil, the power of belief/imagination over monsters), but they don't feel worn down since "Salem's Lot" is only King's second novel, and most of these trademarks didn't exist until this book came out.

[> Some good vampire comics -- Valheru, 03:08:13 06/11/03 Wed

Blood and Water (Vertigo) - A new mini-series by Judd Winick that explores how vampirism would affect real-life. There's a large focus on the immortality aspect, ala Highlander or The Sandman's Hob Gadling, about the pros/cons of living forever. It's also a rather intriguing study of depression and illness that makes a great story in and of itself. It's 5 issues (only 3 out so far), but feels much bigger.

30 Days of Night (IDW) - Steve Niles and Ben Templesmith really go for the splattergory horror in this 3-issue mini- series (now collected) about vampires in a small Alaskan town where the sun doesn't appear for a whole month. Think Insomnia meets Dawn of the Dead with vampires instead of zombies. Creepy stuff.

Swamp Thing: The Curse (DC/Vertigo) - Alan Moore's Swamp Thing run is considered one of the best horror series' in comics, and he often pulls off some short pieces that can stand alone against the best horror in prose or screen. This is just a collection of part of his run, but inside is a little story (the title of which eludes me...I'll be up all night trying to remember) about vampires that live underwater. It's a great concept (no direct sunlight, they don't need to breathe, and the running-water deterrent doesn't apply to a calm lake) that Moore pulls off with appropriate creepiness. The story itself is very similar to 30 Days of Night, but with a more Lovecraftian tilt.

The "Midnight Sons" group of titles (Marvel) - Back in the early '90s, Marvel went horror-crazy (I guess to dispell the idea that all they did was X-Men). They put out several supernatural-themed titles like Blade, Ghost Rider, Morbius, and Deathstalkers. It was all very comic-booky stuff, but they did do some good work with Blade the Vampire Hunter and Morbius, the Living Vampire. Both resemble Angel in some ways, actually (though that's probably just the Anne Rice influences). In fact, all of Marvel's supernatural bunch make a weird combination of the Fang Gang and Scooby Gang. It's like the Buffyverse, only with horrible writing!

Of course, there are many other vampire comics out there (Marvel's old Tomb of Dracula series and Vampirella spring to mind), but most of them are just rehashes of the original Stoker tale. Alas, most comics treat vampires as just another superhero with cool powers or as cannon-fodder beasties, so they limit their originality. It's hard to find the good ones.

[> [> Re: Some good vampire comics -- Rendyl, 09:53:20 06/12/03 Thu

***Swamp Thing: The Curse (DC/Vertigo) - Alan Moore's Swamp Thing run is considered one of the best horror series' in comics, and he often pulls off some short pieces that can stand alone against the best horror in prose or screen. This is just a collection of part of his run, but inside is a little story (the title of which eludes me...I'll be up all night trying to remember) about vampires that live underwater. It's a great concept (no direct sunlight, they don't need to breathe, and the running-water deterrent doesn't apply to a calm lake) that Moore pulls off with appropriate creepiness. The story itself is very similar to 30 Days of Night, but with a more Lovecraftian tilt.***

'Still Waters' and 'Fish Story'. (shivers) Underwater vamps give me nightmares. Just the thought of them hiding right under your feet while you are swimmming. It was not quite as creepy as 'Love and Death'/'A Halo of Flies' but it runs a very close second.


[> I can't just name 2...... -- Rufus, 06:25:36 06/11/03 Wed

My favorite is Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake series...love Edward....;)

Stephen King's ...Salem's Lot...It...The Shining...The Talisman....

Robert R. McCammon....They Thirst and The Wolf's Hour (I know werewolf but I liked it)

Jon F. Merz.....The Fixer

F. Paul Wilson Repairman Jack series starting with The Tomb.....he also wrote a series starting with the book The Keep.

John Steakley......Vampire$ way better than the movie

Lee Killough.....Bloodwalk

Clark Hays, Kathleen McFall ...The Cowboy and the Vampire: A very unusual romance.

Kim Newman .....Anno-Dracula

Charlaine Harris ....Dead until Dark

Dan Simmons .....Children of the Night

Kelley Armstrong ......Bitten and Stolen

Dean Koontz....Watchers....Dragon Tears..Phantoms...Twilight Eyes...Darkfall...Shadowfires...Strange Highways

Graham Masterton .....Master of Lies

[> Try the Buffy Hardcovers... -- Sofdog, 09:39:04 06/11/03 Wed

"Spike & Dru: Pretty Maids All in a Row" is a hell of a story. And "Immortal" was pretty good too. It mixes the storylines of present day (S3) Buffy and an 18 or 19th Century Slayer who defeated the same villain. The retro story is pretty compelling. They should have done a follow-up on Angelique.

Also, "Tales of the Slayer" both volumes of the short story collections. There are some real gems and some clunkers. But the range of concepts is interesting. And definitely do "Tales of the Slayers" graphic novel. There's Joss-written canon that ties to the "Fray" series and the show.

[> Re: Post-Buffy Stress Syndrome! Your Top 2 Vampire/Buffy- related Reads? -- Matthew, 20:52:14 06/11/03 Wed

I can't just recommend two books - for one thing I doubt there are two Buffy books of any quality, and there are far more non- Buffy books of high quality about vampires.

First, Buffy-related books. I would recommend Shakedown, and Angel novel by Don DeBrandt (not recommending it just because I know him slightly, it's pretty darn good). Of the half dozen or so Buffy and Angel books I've read, it is the only one that I feel got the characters' voices down right and was really funny in parts. Also, it had an Angel-vs.-Angelus scene oddly prescient of season four's. If you ever see Don at a science fiction convention, ask him about the liver-tongue scene that was cut from the book.

As a dyed-in-the-wool science fiction and fantasy geek, I've read piles of vampire and pseudo-vampire books over the years. A short list:

The Stress of Her Regard, by Tim Powers. The weirdest vampires I've ever read about. Damn good story involving Byron, Keats, both Shellys and two of the most physically beat-up characters since Powers' last book. Also, On Stranger Tides by the same author is a nice undead pirate book. Read in lieu of seeing Pirates of the Caribean.

Carpe Jugulum by Terry Pratchet. Funny vampires! And the logical extension of the vampires-are-scared-of-crosses weakness.

Fevre Dream by... I forget right now. But the title is spelled correctly. Vampires on a river boat in the 1850s.

The Dragon Waiting by John M. Ford. Weird historical fantasy with a couple of vampire characters. Set in an alternate world where the Byzantine Empire remained powerful until the 1480s. Brush up on your history, particularly the reign of emperor Julian the Apostate, before reading. Also, his 2001 book The Last Hot Time has characters addicted to drinking elf blood.

[> thankyou THANKYOU thnk-U ALL! I have a huge -- WickedBuffy, 17:31:35 06/12/03 Thu

...stack of great books stockpiled for the months ahead, thanks to your great suggestions.

I really appreciate the responses. Thanks again.

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