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Inconsistency noticed in "After Life" or The Official Nitpicking thread -- Nino, 17:28:04 06/23/03 Mon

I just rewatched "After Life" on FX...love the ep, but I noticed that when Spike sees that Buffy has clawed her way out of her own grave, he says "I did it myself once..." With the information given in "Lies My Parents Told Me" it would seem next to impossible that Spike would have been buried after Drusilla sired him....when he walks back in the house, his mother claims to not have seen him in days...so obviously she was not under the impression he was dead. So it seems that there is an inconsistency here...i know im nitpicking, but what the hell else am i supposed to do with no new eps?

What seems even sillier then this (because obviously the writers can't remember every single line for future reference) is the stupidity of having Spike and Dru already in the house in "Lies" causing us to wonder how in the hell they got in...servant invited them? Misc. dweller? Could have been simplified by showing Spike's mom invite them in....wow....i am nitpicking...da well...anyone wanna join in, could be fun...

[> Re: Inconsistency noticed in "After Life" or The Official Nitpicking thread -- Alison, 17:39:31 06/23/03 Mon

We talked about this in chat after LMPTM aired, and agreed that a tradtionalist like Dru, who buried Darla after re-vamping her, would certainly have buried Spike.

[> Fanwank 101 -- Kitt, 17:40:08 06/23/03 Mon

I figured that Dru buried him (like Darla, only more throughly). Never bothered about the invite though - just figured they tricked a servant, then ate him/her.

[> [> Do they have to be invite in -- luvthistle1, 16:53:28 06/24/03 Tue

...considering that Spike lived there. If Spike lived there , will he have to be reinvite into his own home? I sure he had the keys to the place.

[> Re: Inconsistency noticed in "After Life" or The Official Nitpicking thread -- Rob, 17:43:55 06/23/03 Mon

Dru could have buried him in a field somewhere, a private place no one knew about. Doesn't have to be in a public cemetary. Dru's a traditionalist that way, same way she handled Darla.

As far as the house goes, you basically answered your own question. A servant must have let them in.


[> [> Re: Inconsistency noticed in "After Life" or The Official Nitpicking thread -- Nino, 17:47:03 06/23/03 Mon

Interesting...i don't recall the "Angel" ep in which Dru buried the revamped Darla....anyone wanna share...thanks for the info tho...

[> [> [> The episode was Season 2's "Reunion"... -- Rob, 18:05:26 06/23/03 Mon

CORDELIA: Okay, here's the list of local cemeteries. Funeral homes. Mausoleums.

GUNN: You telling me we gotta go to every one of these places and start digging up fresh graves?

ANGEL: Drusilla will want to put the body in the ground.

WESLEY: Are you certain about this, Angel? Burial isn't necessary for a newly made vampire.

ANGEL: It would be for Drusilla. She's a classicist.

CORDELIA: She's a loony.

ANGEL: Forget mausoleums. Stick with cemeteries. Something with a view of the night sky.

CORDELIA: So just outside cemeteries, then?

Angel knows how it sounds and it's frustrating to him.

GUNN: Doesn't really narrow it down much, does it?

WESLEY: If it's just a burial she's after, one doesn't need a cemetery for that, I'm afraid. Just dirt, really.

CORDELIA: Uh, still not narrowing. Whole planet pretty much made up of dirt.

Angel rises, paces. Thinks out loud.

ANGEL: Maybe I'm looking at this wrong. Dru doesn't see this thing as a death, but a birth. She talked about getting the nursery ready...

WESLEY: Angel, I fear you may be trying to find a linear pattern in the rantings of someone who doesn't think linearly -

Angel still pacing, still thinking.

ANGEL: Soil. Near the stars. She said she wanted to be near the stars... She used to talk to the stars. She'd spend hours in the garden at my place in Sunnydale, communing with the night sky -

GUNN: (off-handed) Maybe she didn't mean baby nursery.

The others look at him.

GUNN: Well, you said she liked the garden. Plant nursery's got the dirt, the view and it's more of a birth place than a death place. Maybe look for one up high and that'll be it.

CORDELIA: Maybe look for one that has a relationship with Wolfram and Hart -

WESLEY: Large firm like theirs, they may do business with a corporate supplier -

And as they turn their attention to this new line -



To establish. Camera, if possible, races up the side of this enormous building to find the greenhouse there.


The greenhouse sits silently on the rooftop. Now we're PULLING back... back to the ledge of the building. A DARK FIGURE poised there, long black coat flapping in the gust.

Angel hops down to the roof, eyes on the greenhouse. STAKE in hand. He crosses to -


Angel enters the greenhouse. And now we recognize it as the place where Dru was preparing Darla's body. At one end, a mound of fresh dirt. A grave. Angel approaches it as we bait the schmuck.

Angel clears away the thin layer of topsoil. Darla's face is revealed looking peaceful beneath.

Angel is moved by this sight. Girds himself, clears away more of the dirt. She's been dressed in a gauzy white gown. He (tastefully) pulls away some of the fabric over her left breast.

Now he brings up the stake. Poised. He hesitates. This isn't easy for him. He's about to plunge it in, when -

-- WHAM! Angel's hit upside the head with the business end of a garden spade. He's sent crashing into the corner. He drops the stake in the process. He looks up to see Drusilla grab up the fallen stake.

DRUSILLA: That's not a fitting gift at all for our newborn grandmother -

WHAM! She clocks him with the spade again.

DRUSILLA: I saw you coming, my lovely. The moon showed me. It told me to come into the 20th Century.

ANGEL: It's the 21st century, Dru.

DRUSILLA: (pouty) Is it? I'm still lagging.

She brings the garden spade sharply against his head again. Now MOVEMENT from the grave -


Animates with a horrible ragged GASP, her eyes popping open, wide and surprised and staring.


Reacts to that. He grabs the end of the spade. Angel and Dru struggle with it.


Bigger, uglier GASPS now. She's in big birth pain. She sits up in her grave, all the sentience of a wounded animal. She blinks like Elsa Lanchester, her head darting around the place.

Angel and Dru struggle. The spade breaks in half, leaving jagged wood in both their hands.

Dru sees the newly created stakes in both their hands. She lunges at Angel. He sidesteps her, charges toward the grave with the splintered end of the spade leading. He looms - but the grave is now empty.

Angel whips around, just as a hand CLAMPS around his throat. Angel drops the stake.

Darla stares back at him without even a hint of recognition. She cocks her head to one side, animal-like -

Dru emerges from the greenhouse shadows.

DRUSILLA: Now everybody's home.

~~~~from the original shooting script from Psyche's


[> Why would Spike need an invite? -- Finn Mac Cool, 18:36:53 06/23/03 Mon

It was Spike's home; he's automatically welcome, and he would also have the authority to invite Drusilla in.

[> [> Re: Why would Spike need an invite? -- Alison, 18:58:46 06/23/03 Mon

In the Prodigal Angel only entered his home after rising as a vampire because his little sister invited him in. The rule of invitation differentiates between a human and the vampire they become.

[> [> [> But Angel was declared dead -- Finn Mac Cool, 19:11:33 06/23/03 Mon

Funeral and everything. Since Angel was declared legally dead, he ceased to have a place of residence, thus he needed an invite. In the eyes of the law and of Spike's mother, he was still a resident of her house, and so didn't need to be invited.

[> [> [> [> Re: But Angel was declared dead -- O'Cailleagh, 19:18:18 06/23/03 Mon

I don't think it has anything to do with legality. The point you make about Spike's mother not knowing that he was dead is a valid one, however it goes to help the theory that he and Dru were able to trick their way in, because the servant (assuming that's who let them in) didn't know he was dead, and therefore wouldn't have had much of a problem with his reappearance.


[> [> [> [> [> Let's skip legality, then -- Finn Mac Cool, 20:49:52 06/23/03 Mon

Angel's parents viewed him as dead, meaning they no longer considered him a resident of their home, thus he needed an invite. Spike's mother thought he was alive, so she considered him a resident, making an invitation unnecessary.

Or, of course, there's the fact that Angel's father seemed aware he was a vampire, and so might have taken precautions (it's possible the anti-invitation spell we saw in "Passion" was well known in Galway, Ireland).

[> [> [> [> [> [> In an mid-S3 AtS ep... -- KdS, 03:32:55 06/24/03 Tue

... Loyalty I believe, one of Holtz's crew describes, we are led to believe truthfully, how her son returned home after being vamped, and she refused to let him in purely on suspicion until the sun rose and he combusted.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Exactly, Audrey didn't even know vampires *existed*... -- Scroll, 11:07:28 06/24/03 Tue

...until *after* her son burst into flames with the rising son. So it's not that she knew he was dead and therefore didn't consider him a resident of her house anymore. Her thinking didn't have any bearing on the metaphysical rules her son Timmy had to obey as a vampire.

Angelus' prodigy, Penn (the Puritan) had to be invited in to his family's house after he was vamped, even though his family didn't even know he'd been killed (or vamped).

My opinion is that even school dorms (i.e. Buffy & Willow's room in S4) is also considered a place of residence and requires an invitation to get in. (I realise this in particular has been debated, but that's how I see the rules working.) I also see that vamps don't need invite into other vampires' lairs. I don't think we've seen any *explicit* example of a vampire being able to enter a demon's lair without an invitation. This one could go either way.

But human dwellings definitely need an invite, for *all* vamps... even Spike ; )

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> The Freshman -- Masq, 11:56:28 06/24/03 Tue

Started the vampires-in-dormitories thing, in that it was the first example of it, and the vampires went in and stripped Buffy of all her belongings. Buffy was still very much alive when this happened, as was Cathy (although she was technically a demon and probably didn't invoke the invite-only magic).

So on my site, I decided to fan-wank this as "Dorms need no invite". So Angel was under the illusion that they did in The Yoko Factor, but he was wrong.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I fanwank the other way... -- Scroll, 16:31:28 06/24/03 Tue

Considering Kathy had absolutely no worries about inviting Parker into their dorm room in "Living Conditions", I figure Kathy might've invited one of Sunday's minions in without even realising it. Either that or it takes time for Buffy's dorm room to feel like "home" to her (or Kathy), and thus gave vamps free access those first few days/weeks.

Spackle, spackle. Heh, sorry Masq, I like my theory and I'm stickin' with it!

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I don't think that works -- Philistine, 18:16:34 06/24/03 Tue

Don't forget that Spike was able to enter Buffy and Willow's dorm room in "The Initiative" - if you can rationalize that one, I'd like to see it. (Seriously - I really would.)

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Yeah, I think Masq's works best. -- Rob, 18:34:53 06/24/03 Tue

Dorm rooms aren't exactly a "home" the same way an apartment would be. Also, the school retains control of the room. At any time, they can come in and do a search for drugs/alcohol, etc.


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I don't think that works -- tost, 19:21:30 06/24/03 Tue

Spike knocked Willow said "come in"

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> That's cuz Willow said "Come in" when he knocked! -- Scroll, 20:37:10 06/24/03 Tue

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> And no fanwankery required! ;o) -- Rob, 09:58:44 06/25/03 Wed

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Or maybe... -- Rob, 11:40:19 06/25/03 Wed

...the fact that Cathy, a demon, lived in the room along with Buffy, it overrode the ownership rule. A vamp can enter a demon's abode w/o invitation, after all.


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I always thought... -- ponygirl, 13:06:42 06/25/03 Wed

That for large multi-person dwellings like a dorm, a person needed to live in the place for a while. To personalize it and make it their home.

Didn't Angel say something to this effect when he tried to enter Fred's room in the hotel after she had decorated it? That since she had really moved in, he now needed an invite? I figured Buffy and Cathy, having lived there only for a couple of days, hadn't really felt at home yet. I also use this to explain why Angel was able to enter Faith's motel room - despite her having lived there for months, she never really considered it a home. Reaching I know, but there does seem to be some sort of psychological component involved with these ideas of ownership - as in Touched when Spike is able to enter a house after the owner has surrendered his ownership, not legally, but in the owner's mind.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Makes sense to me, ponygirl! -- Scroll, 14:26:28 06/25/03 Wed

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Especially since you say the same thing above! Sorry I didn't read your post more closely! -- ponygirl, 14:34:50 06/25/03 Wed

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Ooh, just thought of a solution -- Finn Mac Cool, 12:38:26 06/24/03 Tue

What if Spike was the one who owned the house? While it might seem more natural to assume his mother did, we can't rule out that Spike might have been the owner. All of the cases mentioned above involve vampires who once lived in the house needing an invitation after vamping; none of them were actually owners of the property.

How does this make a difference? Well, Buffy said in "Real Me" that only someone living in the house could invite someone in. Since vampires aren't alive, they cease to technically live in the house, and so need an invitation. However, in "City of . . .", we were shown that vampires are able to enter houses they own without an invitation. Since ownership doesn't necessarily entail the person be alive, if Spike owned his mother's house, he could both enter it without needing an invitation and invite Drusilla in as well.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Would it make a difference, though... -- Rob, 15:53:19 06/24/03 Tue

...if Russell Winters had purchased the house after he'd been sired? We don't really know whether he got that mansion before or after, so we can't tell whether the fact he can enter w/o an invitation is because if you owned something in life, you own it in unlife, or whether he wouldn't be able to enter w/o an invitation had he bought it as a human.


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I think Finn's referring to Tina's apartment -- Scroll, 16:37:02 06/24/03 Tue

Russel got into Tina's apartment without her issuing an invitation. He said he found her because he owned the building. But we *still* don't know for sure that she hadn't invited him before, maybe made an off-hand invitation the way Cordy did in "Room w/a Vu". She wouldn't have thought anything of inviting him even if she did her best to make sure he didn't follow up, since she didn't know he was a vampire.

I'm starting to suspect that Joss is being deliberatly vague in pinning down his metaphysical rules, or he's just really sloppy. Either way, it gives him creative leeway so that he can "break" his rules for plot purposes and nobody can cry foul.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Re: I think Finn's referring to Tina's apartment -- Rob, 18:29:52 06/24/03 Tue

Oh, okay. That was never a problem for me, because I just assumed he'd been there before, since their story did take place before the episode began. There might have been a problem had they met in that episode, but they did have history. The fact that the two had an affair (or was that only implied? haven't seen the episode for about 6 months) just led me to assume he would have been invited in her place before. Or is it possible too that since the landlord holds ownership rights over the apartment, even when it is being rented, that that is why he could still enter the place. We haven't in any other case seen a vampire who owns a building. So even though the apartment is her home for the time she is renting it, it is still his. Another vamp couldn't enter it if not invited, but perhaps he could.


[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Btw... -- Rob, 18:31:47 06/24/03 Tue

...legally, I know this wouldn't be true. A landlord as far as I know has no right to enter an apt. he's renting out. But perhaps the mystical rules would still consider this his place.


[> [> [> That wasn't Angel's home -- Xaverri, 19:41:23 06/23/03 Mon

Angel had been kicked out of his parents' home before he turned into a vampire. That was no longer his home, so he needed an invite. It was never clarified for certain whether or not a vampire could enter their old home after turning. Regardless, it is very likely that a servant answered the door with something like, "Oh, come in Master William, your mother has been worried sick about you."

[> [> Re: Why would Spike need an invite? -- O'Cailleagh, 18:59:44 06/23/03 Mon

Not if he was already a vampire by that point, which he was!


[> Re: Inconsistency noticed in "After Life" or The Official Nitpicking thread -- Artemis, 18:08:10 06/24/03 Tue

I guess I never thought of this as an inconsistency. I 've always assumed that things happened in their lives that we aren't privvy to. I guess you could call it fanwanking but when Spike said he had dug his wasy out too I just assumed that an incident happened somewhere in his 126 years where he got buried. Short cut/theory- A mob - He's hiding- In a coffin- under a body- He gets buried - He claws his way out.
It's just like we have to give ourselves a back story as to how Giles went from Ripper to his stodgy self at the beginning of the series. Yes There is the accidental death , but you have to create much more to get him from hippie type, to almost scared of women. I don't really see it as inconsistency as much as depth of character. A back story unanswered. If that makes any sense.

WttH and the Harvest: Friendship -- lunasea, 18:00:27 06/23/03 Mon

Now that I am back, here is just a bit of what I wanted to say last week.

One day, I was looking for a particular part in "Welcome to the Harvest," so I did a search for the word "friend." Here is where the word appears in the script. Thanks to Psyche for making this essay possible.

Joyce: Have a good time. I know you're gonna make friends right away, just think positive.

Xander: Oh, me and Buffy go waaay back, old friends, very close. Then there's that period of estrangement where I think we were both growing as people, but now here we are, like old times, I'm quite moved.

Buffy: Well, *I* wasn't! It's my first day! I was afraid that I was gonna be behind in all my classes, that I wouldn't make any friends, that I would have last month's hair. I didn't think there'd be vampires on campus. And I don't care.

Buffy: Prepares me for what? For getting kicked out of school? For losing all of my friends? For having to spend all of my time fighting for my life and never getting to tell anyone because I might endanger them? Go ahead! Prepare me.

Angel: Let's just say... I'm a friend.

Buffy: Yeah, well, maybe I don't want a friend.

Willow: No, we're just friends. We used to go out, but we broke up.

Lyrics: I feel love with my friends / I feel love in my songs / If I could just hold love / Then all the answers might come / I said, oh, if we're all children of God / And we just turned away / I got a lack of belief / I said a world without faith / It's time we turn back around

Buffy: ...that the Harvest is coming. I know, your friend told me.

Buffy: You know, I just wanted to start over. Be like everybody else. Have some friends, y'know, maybe a dog... But, no, you had to come here, you couldn't go suck on some other town.

Now for "The Harvest"

Buffy: I've got a friend down there. Or at least a potential friend. Do you know what it's like to have a friend?

Another song, "Ballad For Dead Friends", starts.

Giles: You listen to me! Jesse is dead! You have to remember that when you see him, you're not looking at your friend. You're looking at the thing that killed him.


That is some raw data. Now for the analysis.

My favorite moments in these episode are either Buffy/Willow ones or Buffy/Angel ones and they all have to do with the same thing, friendship. The big bad for season 1 is the Master, but in "The Harvest" the monster of the week is Jesse, a potential friend. Besides wonderfully introducing the characters, the main theme of these shows is friends.

I will start by contrasting Buffy's interaction with Willow with her interaction with Angel. Buffy sees friends as key to a normal life. When Buffy yells at Giles about vampires on campus she mentions academics, friends and fashion. When she yells at him again, her concern is academics, friends and her life. As Spike will say later in FFL, friends are key to Buffy. Joss sets this up right from the premier.

Buffy's first and best friend is Willow Rosenberg. How she befriends her shows that she is a bit more than superficial Cordelia. Cordelia has gone from ditz to hero over on Angel, but I'm not sure that was the original plan with her. All the other characters, even in their immaturity, showed some sort of potential. If anything this lack of potential contrasted her with Buffy. Buffy's potential was shown with how she befriended Willow.

Willow was the shy nerdy girl, not what you would expect a beautiful, outgoing fashion plate like Buffy to be attracted to. Buffy is comfortable with Willow. She is uncomfortable with the way that Cordelia talks about others. Willow is insecure and puts herself down, but Buffy won't be like Cordelia and talk bad about Willow. Later in the Bronze, Buffy shares her life philosophy with Willow and tries to bring her out of her shell.

Contrast that with Angel. Angel isn't a potential friend. Buffy thinks he is Giles' friend. The word friend is very important to their interaction. He says that he is "a friend." He really does want to help Buffy. That is why is in Sunnydale. Buffy doesn't want him to be her friend. She wants normal friends.

In WttH we met Angel as this cocky guy who was probably some type of demon hunter. The cross was a nice touch. Buffy is cold to him, completely the opposite to how she is with Willow. The gift is also nice because she is being such a bitch and he still gives her something.

Then in "The Harvest" the cocky demon hunter gets a bit of depth. As with their first exchange, there is a pattern. First Angel engages in a bit of self-deprecating humor. Then he gives her a back handed compliment (Angel/us is particularly good at those). After that, they get down to business. In their first meeting, Angel presents himself as an ally that Buffy turns down. Compare that to what happens in "The Harvest." First we get a bit of self-deprecation. Then he gives her a back handed compliment. Before they get down to business, she 1. accepts that he is going to be hanging around and 2. asks him his name. This changes the tone of their exchange after that.

In the first exchange, he is cocky and covers his feelings very well. In their second exchange, things get a bit more personal between them. In WttH he wants to "kill them all" and in "The Harvest" he mentions that he doesn't because he is afraid. In the first one he says that he is a friend, but when Buffy asks if he knows what it is like to have one, he is hurt. She feels bad that she hurt him and they connect. He helps her by telling her where to go, but he still isn't comfortable enough to wish her luck. He whispers it after she is gone.

That's just a beginning of how WttH and The Harvest start to explore the theme of friendship that will carry 7 seasons of incredible television. There is plenty of other material in the shows such as:

Cordelia is the only major character that doesn't use the word in either episode.

Lots of stuff about Jesse, such as his relationship with Xander, the difference between Jesse and vamp Jesse, what Buffy being unable to save him means.

Giles and his lack of friends.

Xander and whether he is a friend to Buffy (an interesting discussion is at what point would you consider Xander to be Buffy's friend)

Willow and Xander's relationship

Also why the word appears more in WttH then it does in The Harvest.

How they each met and how that symbolizes their various relationships. Ex: Xander hits on Buffy and picks up her stake, Willow and the water fountain, Angel and knocking him flat.

More stuff about Angel and how Buffy was going to rescue a potential friend, when that is really what he wants to be.

Contrast the human friendships and relationships with the vamp ones, especially when it comes to the Master's relationship with Luke and Darla.

Just some thoughts to generate discussion. So discuss.

[> Re: WttH and the Harvest: Friendship -- O'Cailleagh, 19:12:26 06/23/03 Mon

"Cordelia is the only major character that doesn't use the word (friend) in either episode"

Found this interesting, especially as the one point during theses eps where she could have used it, she doesn't, and quite pointedly. The actual line, of course, was "Excuse me, but I have to call every person I ever met right now!"


[> Friendship and first meetings -- manwitch, 20:37:55 06/23/03 Mon

Very interesting and very helpful for me. In a thread a week ago lulabelle and I were discussing Buffy's "clinging' to normalcy in season one. I tended to see it as narcissistic and see Buffy's clinging to normalcy in a negative light. That she must let go of that "normal" life she wants and embrace her spiritual calling.

lulabelle was making the point that while Buffy is narcissistic, she can't let go of that 'normalcy.' That part of that is what makes her Buffy, and that she cannot allow Buffy to be erased by The Slayer.

In the same thread I had talked about the statue of Shiva in Buffy's dream and how the drum represents life in time and the flame represents life in its eternal aspect. And in light of what lulabelle was saying, I feel compelled to acknowledge that the Shiva statue does not advocate primacy of one aspect over the other, but rather that one must live in the knowledge of both. You are this mortal creature. And you are also not.

And I think your "friendship" analysis really points the way for me. Its through these friendships that Spike will say anchor her to the world that she maintains her knowledge of herself as Buffy alongside her knowledge of herself as Slayer. So I think lulabelle is right.

While there is a narcissistic aspect to Buffy's desire to cling to normalcy, valuing friendship will ultimately be the grounding that makes her the slayer she is. Its her ability to incorporate Buffy into the Slayer that makes her special.

Also interested in the whole idea of how they all met. Buffy meets Giles in the library, the guardian of knowledge which she comes seeking. Mind.

She meets xander in the hallway, Xander, already having a crush on Buffy (the heart is the organ of desire), behaves chivolrously in helping her with her dropped stuff and ends up with her stake, the thing she drives through heart's of those she wants to slay. Heart.

She meets Willow at the water fountain. Hmmm. Somebody help me out here. I will offer that water is representative of the energies of the subconscious, which one could call the spirit, and it is flowing and bubbling and Willow is drinking it. Also, only when meeting Willow is Buffy given a choice. Soulless, spiritless, compassionless Cordelia is also present and Buffy seems to be given the choice between following a soulless, spiritless and compassionless path or following a flowing nourishing spirited path. Willow is a tree, weeping willow contains a suggestion of compassion, and also roots that are being watered at the very fountain where Buffy meets her. The potential of spiritual growth. Spirit.

Anyways. I'm just having fun. Somebody help me out with Willow.

[> [> Re: Friendship and first meetings -- Valheru, 23:04:32 06/23/03 Mon

Buffy meets Xander in the hallway and Willow at the water fountain, but they actually encounter her before that. Maybe that's the encounter we need.

Xander is on his skateboard, maneuvering and zig-zagging through the crowd, several times barely crashing into someone or losing control. Then he sees Buffy...and promptly collides with the railing. As the Heart, he is wild, uncontrollable, easy to distraction. When the Heart sees something it wants (Buffy, who represents the object of desire in this sense, not herself), it does not think...and promptly gets broken. So at first, the Heart is a raw, untamed thing that gravitates toward polar extremes of bliss and pain.

And then Willow shows up. Notice that Willow is introduced after Xander, that she trails him almost puppy-dogish up the steps. The Spirit follows the Heart, clinging to it and pleading for attention. But the Heart already notices, and more, it asks for guidance (Xander asking her to help him with math). The Heart is as confused as the Spirit. Early in development, the two are very symbiotic. But they both need to grow up, to mature. How? Well, where are Xander and Willow going? To school, not only where they'll learn, but where they'll get to know the member they never knew they needed: Giles, the Mind.

[> [> [> Is Xander the heart at this point -- lunasea, 10:31:29 06/24/03 Tue

Later on he becomes the heart, but I wouldn't give him that role in season 1. His function tends to be to voice things that Buffy cannot. I don't think at this point they are so neatly seperated into heart-spirit-mind. That comes more as the show uses season 4 to transition to something a bit more mythical and less Party of Fivey.

Xander is purposely introduced on the Skateboard. He is showing off and promptly gets knocked flat when he sees Buffy, just as will happen with Angel. Both guys figuratively and literally are knocked flat by Buffy. The difference is that Buffy physically interacts with Angel and talks to him afterwards. Xander just gets to see her.

This initial interaction foreshadows how the three will be for a while. When Xander looks up, it is Willow that he sees and he starts to chat with her, asking for her help. Willow tells Xander to go to the library to get a book. It is in doing this that Xander finds out that Buffy thinks she is the Slayer. Xander is later drawn into the world of the supernatural because Willow is taken by a vampire from the Bronze.

Willow knows that Xander is looking at another woman and as we later find out she has this massive crush on him. Willow pushes all that aside and agrees to help Xander. Willow is a big doormat, as is shown repeatedly in this episode. Buffy is a doormat when it comes to Slaying. Even though she doesn't want to, she has to help people. (Being a doormat isn't always a bad thing)

Buffy doesn't really interact with either until later. Xander want to "have you." He isn't one with the words when he first meets Buffy, which is even funnier because he tends to have this wonderful sense of humor and is great with words. Buffy is polite and Xander is left holding her stake. When he helps her later in "The Harvest" she hands him a cross. A stake is a offensive weapon, the tool of the Slayer, of Buffy. The cross is defensive. Even though the Scoobies are at "The Harvest" just to get people out, Xander actually does end up staking Jesse.

Briefly back to that stake that he picks up. He returns it saying "And to return this. The only thing I can think is that you're building a really little fence." We get his wonderful trademark humor which he uses to cover up things he doesn't understand.

Willow's first eye contact with Buffy is at the water fountain and right from that moment I loved Buffy. Before she actually meets Willow, she meets Cordelia. Cordelia is representative of old Buffy, Hemery High Buffy. Buffy rejects this in favor of the softer side of sears that is Willow. In her first interaction with Willow, Buffy doesn't talk. She still has one foot in Hemery High and isn't quite ready for that in front of someone like Cordelia. Still she doesn't feel right about how Willow is being treated. Xander is more forward and his second meeting with Buffy involves speech. Willow is shy and it takes a third meeting before they actually talk and then Buffy initiates it.

The water fountain is the water cooler, where office gossip is traded. Later when Cordy finds out how weird Buffy is, her first thought is gossip. Willow is actually using the water fountain to quench her thirst. Cordy thinks she owns it. The interaction is as important for Cordy's character as it is for Willow's.

The three of them interact later at lunch with Jesse. So we have a three tiered introduction. First they see Buffy, but she doesn't notice them. Then there is some sort of brief interaction which will set the tone. Next comes all three (four) of them getting together. The first meeting of the Scoobie Gang will be held in "The Harvest."

Now for Giles. Running through this whole thing is Buffy wanting to keep her secret identity a secret. The stake thing with Xander unnerves her a bit. When Giles knows who she is, she doesn't think that he is her Watcher. Giles slams down a book that freaks her out, just as her calling is. Possibly that was the Slayer's handbook. Giles is all excited about meeting his own Slayer. When she flips out, he tries to modify his methods. As he will say in "What's My Line Part 2" "After meeting you, Buffy, I realized that, uh, the handbook would be of no use in your case."

That is their first meeting. Like with Willow and Xander, their introduction is a three parter. As much as Buffy hates her calling, when she finds vampires on campus, she retreats to Giles. They have a great exchange in which Giles tries to explain about the Hellmouth. He also lays out the dynamic of their relationship. Exposition man does a great job explaining the supernatural component of the show.

What is important in that exchange is that while Giles is trying to get Buffy to accept her destiny, Xander is in the stacks and hears everything. Buffy totally blows off Giles. It will be Willow in danger that causes Buffy to accept her calling. Buffy will again blow off Giles in "Prophecy Girl" and will only accept her destiny because Willow is freaked.

Xander will say that Buffy only thinks she is the Slayer. This will later be examined in "Normal Again." In the exchange where Giles is trying to get Buffy to accept things, Doubt (one of Xander's roles that season) is present.

Before Giles' third meeting with Buffy, Buffy meets Angel, who also tells her she has to accept her destiny. Angel, as a minor character, gets one meeting this episode and one next. In his first meeting, as with her first two with each Scoobie, their dynamic is hinted at, but not quite set up.

By Giles' third meeting with Buffy, Buffy is friends with Willow, but not really Xander. Buffy still blows off Giles, as she will tend to do, but she does accept her responsibility when Willow is in trouble.

One more character, Cordelia. I already discussed their first meeting. Their second interrupts Buffy's lunch with Willow and Xander. Cordelia is how Buffy finds out about vampires on campus. Cordelia will later be the one first taken by the Annointed One when they are trying to resurrect the Master.

Their third meeting really sets their dynamic. Buffy is looking for Willow and she grabs Cordy. Cordy is her usual Queen C and procedes to trash Buffy's reputation.

[> [> Re: Friendship and the formless -- lunasea, 09:12:01 06/24/03 Tue

You are both right and both wrong. What Buffy needs to do is what we all do in order to be whole. She needs to stop compartmentalizing herself into Slayer-Buffy and Regular-Buffy. This is what will ultimately undermine her relationship with pretty much everyone, but most especially Riley as shown in "The Replacement."

This compartmentalization will be the main cause of her problems for seven seasons. It will be resolved when she can no longer do that because being Slayer is no longer abnormal. That is how she reaches the formless. She has to transcend all the parts of herself that are shown in "Restless." It isn't so much an acceptance of the parts as it is a realization that the parts aren't real.

To illustrate this I will use what Spike says about how necessary friends are to Buffy in FFL. "The only reason you've lasted as long as you have is you've got ties to the world... your mum, your brat kid sister, the Scoobies. They all tie you here but you're just putting off the inevitable." The falacy of this statement is illustrated in "The Gift" when it is her brat kid sister that leads her to give her life. Spike's statements have a kernel of important truth that Buffy needs to understand. There is also always some sort of rebuttal to it, usually in another show. For example, Love's bitch needs to be taken with love's dog from "Beauty and the Beast." Angel and Buffy may never be just friends, but neither are love's bitch.

The important truth is that the people in Buffy's life are important to her survival. Spike is incapable of understanding why just as he is incapable of understanding why Buffy has to turn herself in in "Dead Things." In "The Wish" we learn why the people in Buffy's life are important to her. Without them, we get Wishverse Buffy. The people in Buffy's life don't tie her to the world. They keep her humanity alive. Our humanity isn't mundane. It is what ties us to the divine. It is what makes us divine.

This humanity is important to both Slayer-Buffy and Regular-Buffy. It makes her into the wonderful person that befriends everyone. It also motivates her to be the Slayer. Her ability to love, her humanity leads to her gift. Buffy thinks that being Slayer means giving up her humanity and she fights so hard to keep it. As late as season 7, in "Get It Done," she won't sacrifice any more of her humanity to get more power.

There are several episodes where Buffy visits this perception. Each time the show is consistent in what it says, being slayer is not killing Buffy's humanity. It gives her wacked circumstances, but unlike any other superhero, she cannot isolate herself in the fortress of solitude and protect humanity from the outside. That is what makes Angel and Buffy such amazing stories. There is one line in "Becoming Part 1" that to me sums up why these shows resonate more than your typical superhero. Whistler says it to Angel and when great lines are given, it is never mentioned. "This isn't gonna be easy. The more you live in this world, the more you see how apart from it you really are."

This is where friends and normalcy come in. They are how Buffy lives in this world. That part is just as important to being Slayer, her spiritual calling, as it is to normal Buffy. That is because there isn't a regular Buffy and a Slayer Buffy that can be split in two like Xander was. There is only Buffy Buffy. She has barely begun to understand that. Most never do.

We take her apart to try and understand her. She does the same. The reality of it is there is only Buffy. At the end of "Chosen" the various Scoobies and Faith are talking about the various aspects of Buffy. Willow talks about all the new Slayers and changing the world. Giles mentions another Hellmouth. There is talk about the mall. Faith wants to sleep. Behind her are all the compartments of Buffy. In front of all that is Buffy, just Buffy. She isn't thinking about the world, Cleveland, the mall or sleep. She is just Buffy now. She has started the formless. She doesn't need to integrate her parts. She is the whole.

Western psychology is so big on individuation and integration. The problem is when I say I am a mother, I am ignoring everything that is not-mother. When I am Jeanie, I am open to anything. When my kids are hungry, I don't think I am their mother, I should feed them. I just feed them. When they smile, I don't think that is my daughter. I just enjoy the smile.

The formless is nice. The series premier sets up how not-formless Buffy is. For me the ultimate misdirect has always been the title, Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It isn't the silly name the is the misdirect. It is identifying Buffy as the Vampire Slayer. There isn't a name for her. It has been her focusing on this identity rather than just being that causes her problems.

Buffy's Spiritual Journey 1.2 (The Harvest) -- manwitch, 20:17:28 06/23/03 Mon

Buffy's Spiritual Journey 1.2

I apologize for still being behind. Its been a very busy time for me. And then I had to go to Portsmouth.

But I did get around to watching The Harvest the other day. I completely agree with whoever it was that said The Harvest was campy. It does get a little silly at times, like Buffy giggling over Xanders little quip while she's still fighting Luke.

Being a continuation of Welcome to the Hellmouth it continues to use basically the same images and to explore the same themes. But there are some points that I think are worth highlighting.

There is further emphasis of the distinction between body and whatever it is that animates it. One might think of it as the mortal and the immortal. I had mentioned this last week in relation to the statue of Shiva that appears in Buffy's dream, a statue that reveals both the aspect of life in the field of space and time (living, dying, being born again) and the aspect of life that is eternal. Again, the mortal and the immortal. In The Harvest, we hear the first discussion of "the soul," and it clearly implies this same issue. There is what we are in terms of our bodies, and there is what we are in terms of what is behind them, animating them, giving them life. Giles describes the birth of vampires with a story in which someone's body was "infected by the demon's soul." And later, as The Master prepares Luke for the ritual, he says, "My soul is your soul." The acts of Luke's body will feed something that is behind it. So again, particularly with the story Giles told about the origin of vampires, there is this notion of a body that is inhabited by something else, something that is distinct from the body, yet nourishes it and gives it its character.

Now interestingly enough, both of these references to the soul are at odds with what will later come to be canonical. Ultimately it will be understood that vampires do not have souls. As of these first two episodes, this does not seem to be the case.

But be that as it may, the general theme of the relationship of mortal to immortal in a single being is what I want to emphasize.

Another point to emphasize is what I think is the theme of the whole season. Buffy has a destiny-being the slayer. That destiny is primarily spiritual. It is about her moral conduct, her stance on issues of right and wrong, good and evil, her compassion for other people, and quite explicitly her selflessness in this commitment. She is not to receive accollades for this, not even thanks. At least, these cannot be reasons for her moral conduct, as they would up-end the morality of it. In these first two episodes, Buffy explicitly and strongly rejects this destiny. "I was a slayer. I'm retired," she says to Giles. "I was afraid I'd be behind in all my classes, that I wouldn't make friends, that I'd have last months hair. I wasn't afraid there would be vampires on campus." She suggests to Giles that, "I know, why don't you slay them." She immediately challenges his authority as watcher, "Go ahead, prepare me," and he sees his primary task as making her understand the importance of her "sacred duty."

Now, The Harvest, can be seen in two ways here. In one way, it is sort of a microcosm of the whole season. Buffy, having been resistant to her charge, finally recognizes her duty as the slayer and goes to perform it and save the world. And to a degree that happens. But at the same time, The Harvest continues to indicate that Buffy is not functioning as the Slayer. At least not as the Slayer she needs to be. She initially rejects Xanders help. She goes to save Willow in Welcome to the Hellmouth and Jesse in The Harvest, because she feels directly responsible for their danger, not out of deep sense of spiritual commitment. The fact that she gets grounded by her mother emphasizes that Buffy is still a child, unprepared for the spiritual responsibilities of her adult life. Buffy defeats Luke through trickery and a stab in the back, which is effective and all well and good, but should be considered in contrast to her performance in Prophecy Girl where she will stand literally toe to toe with the Master and take him by the throat. And of course, that is the major distinction, that in Harvest she is fighting Luke, not the Master. And it's the Master that the episode reveals as symbolic of Buffy's issue.

Buffy has come to Sunnydale to start a new life. She thinks and wants it to be a normal life. But in reality, the opportunity she has is to start life as a new sort of being, with a deep spiritual commitment. Her resistance to being the Slayer shows that she is afraid of this commitment. In a sense, she is blocking her own spiritual power with her fear of what she might become and of the normal life she might lose were she to make the commitment. And so we begin to see Sunnydale as a landscape of Buffy's soul. On the surface is her conscious life, normalcy, the life she wants to live, the life she clings to. But underneath there is a dark and mysterious power that is attempting to break forth into her consciousness. The Master, he whose arising Buffy fears, is stuck in an underground church, a house of the spirit, stuck there like a cork in a bottle, preventing all the powers within from breaking free. As a literal image, he is evil and bad and we don't want the powers lurking behind him to break free. But at another level, when seen as part of the landscape of Buffy's soul, it seems like he is the personification of Buffy's fear and he represents, like a dragon to Seigfried, the mysterious powers that Buffy might reveal in herself if she did not keep them shut tight, as though corked in a bottle. Those powers are evil only because Buffy fears them. So the Master represents both a literal and a psychological problem. Buffy must not only slay the Master to win the season, she must also assimilate the power that he represents.

And as of The Harvest, she ain't there. As she says at the end when asked if they won, "Well, we averted the apocalypse. Give us points for that." But she does not answer in the affirmative because they haven't yet won. They got a couple of points for effort. That's all.

Finally, I would point out that Giles, Xander, and Willow are already functioning as Mind, Heart and Spirit of Buffy. I don't know when we will first get our incontravertible evidence that they are meant to so function. I am not sure that the writers are even aware at this point that Willow is Buffy's spirit. But Giles guards the books, the storehouse of knowledge. He attempts to train and to a degree control Buffy, just as the mind trains and controls the body. His first comments to her are his knowledge of who she is, and "I know what your after." And following her rejection of the great tome he offers, he says, "I have to make you understand." He is already functioning as the representative of themind, the cerebral aspect of Buffy's spiritual journey. And interestingly enough, while he knows she must go on the journey, and even knows something about the journey itself, he has no experience of it. When the action starts, Giles turns to Buffy for guidance, not the other way around. As Joseph Campbell has said, the mind is a secondary organ.

Xander is already showing his heart in his visible crush on Buffy, his loyalty to his friend Jesse, and his courage to help Buffy even though he is terrified. All of which are, metaphorically, the same traits Buffy is exhibiting. She is frightened, but she is showing loyalty to her "potential" friends. The crush on Buffy part is interesting, and will be clearer later in the season. Xander's crush on Buffy is basically a metaphorical representation of Buffy's problem with her spiritual destiny. Her heart is turned inward towards herself. She is sort of "stuck" on herself, one might say, clinging to who she already is rather than embracing the spiritual incarnation that she might be.

I think Giles and Xander are already performing these functions deliberately, by which I mean the writers intend it.

I'm not so sure with Willow. The Willow/Xander dichotomy seems in these first two episodes more akin to the Spock/McCoy dichotomy, the scientific logical side and the emotional caring side, neither of which, by itself, is competent to run the ship. An assimilation of both is required, and that is, of course, Kirk. These first two Buffy episodes, it seems to me, give almost no indication that Willow is intended to be more than the smart scientific side of Buffy. But nevertheless, as we see Buffy resist her spiritual calling, in fact, exactly when she is arguing with Giles about her resistance to it, what is placed in danger? Willow. If Willow were to be thought of as a metaphor for Buffy's spirit, and we know she eventually will be, than what we see in the first episode is that by resisting her spiritual obligations, Buffy risks killing her spirit before it even begins to develop. Buffy is not ready to close that door, and moves quickly to save it. She's not ready to commit, but she's not ready to lose it either.

As a last comment, I will just say that I like early Angel. I don't see him as out of character at all. (I know at this point we don't know about Angelus yet, but since we've all read ahead...) Its as though he doesn't know how to relate to people except as Angelus, so he lets his Angelus personality dominate even as he tries to help her. But when she stumps him with the question about having a friend, he softens right up. Boreanaz is at his best when Angel is letting Angelus out a little bit or when Angelus is masquerading as Angel. Its when he's doing both characters at the same time that he really shines, much more than either of them alone.

The Top Ten Percent (so far)

1. Welcome to the Hellmouth
2. The Harvest

[> Unifying layers of meaning in BtVS -- lulabelle, 21:56:44 06/23/03 Mon

These posts are really great manwitch! I'm enjoying them so much (as evidenced by the fact that last week's caused me to delurk after almost 3 years). I like the analysis of characters as extensions of Buffy. Its interesting because, when watching the show, its necessary to find a balance between how much you take at a symbolic level and how much at a literal level.

To take each character as purely a character in their own right, is surely to miss the richness of the BtVS. It isn't your ordinary tv show. Its symbolically dense and exists on so many levels. But at the same time, Willow, Xander, and Giles are great characters in their own right. They are not merely symbolic reminders of the different parts of Buffy, that she as the hand, must forcibly incorperate into herself. They are rich and appealing characters.

So how exactly do you unify all the layers of symbols as well as the literal and character based levels of BtVS? How do you put it all together so they exist at the same time without contradicting eachother. Afterall, how can Willow only be one aspect of Buffy, a metaphor for power, and also a fully developed person, who you are able to identify with? One answer is to accept the layers of meaning as seperate. The literal is differnt from the figurative, and BtVS can be appreciated on many differnt levels.

But I think it can all be brought together if we view the show from inside Buffy's mind. Through Buffy's pov we can see a person as both a full human being and as a symbol simaltaneously. To clarify this, think of your father. He's a person and you love him and can appreciate him for who he is, but he is also, to some extent a semi-unconscious symbol of authority, patriarchy, and order among other things. The symbols he takes on vary throughout your life as as you mature and the realtionship changes. Additionally, at different times in your life, your appreciation of your father changes, sometimes he is unidimensional, and sometimes he is more understandable and real to you.

Is this perhaps the way we are meant to look at BtVS? And even if we aren't meant to look at it in this way, can it give us a better appreciation of the layers here. Characters play lkarger and smaller roles deprending on their importance to Buffy. They become less funny formed based on Buffy's feelings towards them. Could this be why s1 Angel is such an enigma? As a 16 year old girl she is having trouble understanding this older guy, and thus, he comes accross unclearly to the audience, too?

Maybe this explains, for example, why s6 Willow is fairly unlikable and uni-dimensional. This is how Buffy sees her because of her anger about her ressurection and then later her need to see Willow as an addiction (not power hungary) because that is the metaphor that Buffy wishes to identify with, NOT the metaphor the writers want to show us. I mean, ultimately, the writers didn't make it about addiction. They made it about power for Willow. Then why all the addiction stuff? Maybe it wasn't a mislead, so much as Buffy's desire to perceive a certain symbol which she needs to connect with at that point in her journey.

I'm not sure if this is how we're meant to see it, but I viewing the whole series through Buffy's lense, gives us a new outlook on it where we need to think less about what the writers are trying to do and more about what Buffy is trying to do. And I think, at least for me, it helps bring together the incredibly rich text of BtVS. It also points out that within one human being there is a constant struggle for understanding and connection, and shows how astounding it is that within each person there can exist so much simultaneously.

[> Another good one, manwitch -- Valheru, 23:27:24 06/23/03 Mon

I really don't have much to add. These Spiritual Journey posts are always enlightening, showing me parts of the story that I never imagined existed. Only 142 to go!

I did want to say that your take on Angel was exactly how I saw it. It really wasn't until this viewing that I realized who Angel was at this point (Orpheus really helps). After 70 or so years of minimal human contact, followed by 30 years of complete aviodance, Angel's people skills really suck. When he meets Whistler, he isn't trying to be social at all--what comes through is 100% undiluted-by-personality Angel, so he doesn't seem much different from the "recognizable" Angel. But in WttH/The Harvest, he's trying to be a people-person. His only experience at being outgoing is from boorish Liam, then a long time as Angelus, so even though he's trying to be a nice guy, he really isn't. It's kinda sad.

Buffy's comment about Angel not having friends is extremely cruel in retrospect of knowing Angel's history up to this point, but it actually serves to help him. His demeanor becomes less and less Angelus-like as S1 progresses because he desperately wants to be friends with Buffy and since she doesn't like his attitude, he learns to ease off. By the time Surprise comes around, the Angel persona has completely shed all the vestiges of Angelus, almost as if it isn't until then that Angel clean-slates himself so he can start growing again. Which makes his reversion in Innocence particularly saddening.

It's SHOWTIME! -- JBone, 20:43:40 06/23/03 Mon

I know I usually introduce these things with a funny quote from one of the characters, or a quote about them. But I'm really busy trying to get tomorrow's matchup and bracket ready. I'm thinking it still is going to be pulled off. Although, significant portions of the site, like the index page, links, and a rules page I wanted to have up, will just have to wait until the coming weekend. Unless everyone just abuses the rules, but the idea of that is just ridiculous.

Good News: vote here


Since I don't have many links up yet, the region of today's vote can be found here.


If you can't vote, let me know by posting here right away, I haven't tested a lot of this yet. Let me know what you think so far, just keep in mind I'm trying to build this thing as I post it.

Tiebreakers, I know who you are, email me.

[> That first link isn't working for some reason; try this -- JBone, 20:47:11 06/23/03 Mon



[> [> Handicapping the "Slayer" Region -- cjl, 10:43:47 06/24/03 Tue

(1) Buffy Anne Summers/Joan vs (16) Vi

Absolutely no contest here. Buffy is tough, seasoned, an experienced fighter--and she's the freakin' hero of the series. Vi is toast. The Buffster's self-imposed emotional isolation in S7 and anti-SMG factions might hurt her in later rounds, but she's got to be the odds-on favorite to win the region. (ODDS to win the region: 4-5)

(3)Faith/Prisoner 430019 vs (14)Kennedy

Kennedy is one of the most universlly despised characters in the Buffyverse, an astounding accomplishment given her status as lesbian superhero and Willow's SO. Faith will clean her clock. Depending on how matchups go, Faith has the best shot to knock off Buffy in the regional finals, but I wouldn't bet on it. (ODDS: 4-1)

(9)Captain Daniel Holtz vs (8)Principal Robin Wood

The board is split on Principal Wood, and his negatives will prove too much of a handicap against the supreme vampire hunter of the Buffyverse. If our contestants were judged on verbal presentation, Holtz would obliterate the competition. Unfortunately, he's going to have to settle for one-victory-and-out.

(11)Caleb vs (6)Agent Riley Finn

A case of sour apples vs. rotten oranges. The small but vocal segment of Riley supporters will give him an easy win over the dixie-fried cliche that is Caleb, but Solider Boy ain't going nowhere. (ODDS: 100-1)

(5)Joyce Summers vs (12)Justine Cooper

Buffy's momma will kick Slayer wannabe Justine's ass. Joyce might climb to the regional semis--but no farther. (ODDS: 50-1)

(7)Mayor Richard Wilkins III (10) Lindsey McDonald

A superb matchup, with Road to Sunnydale winner Richard Wilkins against perennial fan favorite Lindsay McDonald. If Christian Kane did a promotional concert for ATP during the contest, old Tricky Dick wouldn't stand a chance; but I'm still betting our politically savvy Mayor will pull out a close election and head for the semis. Slight chance he could overcome Faith and/or Buffy and win the regional finals. (ODDS: 15-2)

(13)Kendra vs (4)Charles Gunn

Bet big on J. August Richards' street-smart demon hunter/black Bond steamrolling over Bianca Lawson's island slayer 'tude and inexplicable accent. Gunn is well-liked, but doesn't have the support to overcome the heavy hitters in this region. (ODDS: 25-1)

(15)Amanda vs(2)Wesley Wyndam-Pryce

Wesley is the dark horse to win the region. Unlike the previous contest, both BtVS and ANGEL are in play, so his status as Buffy S3/ANGEL S1 dork recedes into the distance and his enormous appeal as Scruffy Wes comes to the fore. Poor Amanda doesn't stand a chance. (ODDS: 5-1)

[> No way is Duke a number 4 seed! -- manwitch, 21:11:27 06/23/03 Mon

I had not seen the bracket before. I don't know if you had already posted it. But in keeping with traditional whining about seedings, What's with Wesley??!! There's an upset worth picking. And where's Giles? Is he in the NIT or something?

Perhaps he's in a different bracket, but Wood, Wesley, Buffster, Kennedy, Amanda, Vi, Faith and Kendra are all in this one. Sounds like the Watcher should be here.

By the way, is this just a popularity thing, or is this like thunderdome. Is it just do we like Wesly better, or are we actually supposed to imagine his girlish screams as Amanda kicks his ass?

By the way, I voted and it worked fine.

[> [> this is but one of four brackets -- JBone, 21:36:30 06/23/03 Mon

This is something that I expect to put into my rules, ect... page. But Giles is nicely seeded, trust me. I really hesitate to get into this before the whole tournament is laid out, but, I was trying to keep characters within a seed or two of where they belong, while keeping them in a bracket that they do belong in. Of course, some seeds are in brackets that they have no business in, mostly so I could seed them at a certain level. Like I said, this is something I hoped to address in a few days.

As far as popularity vs thunderdome, that is for the voter to decide.

Have fun, and thanks for voting.

[> [> [> Besides... -- Wolfhowl3, 00:19:39 06/24/03 Tue

The real fun is reading the comments made by the voters! (Shameless Plug)

[> Tough Bracket -- Rook, 23:38:57 06/23/03 Mon

I predict a Buffy/Mayor showdown at the end, but with Faith, and Wes to get past, the East is really anyone's game.

The First and the Bringers -- O'Cailleagh, 08:23:17 06/24/03 Tue

Apologies if this was mentioned earlier in the year, it was probably before I came back!

Now that season 7 has finished here, Sky One has taken to showing key episodes of Buffy, and last week they showed 'Amends'. Since then a couple of things have been bothering me. Namely, the first appearance of the Bringers shows them engaged in a ritual in which they are chanting, kinda tricky when you're missing your tongue.
Secondly, the First Evil/Jenny manages to be quite corporeal, at one point 'she' removes Angel's hands from his ears.
I'd been wanting to rewatch this ep since S7 began for the foreshadowy goodness, etc, but now that I have, I find its just added to the plot-holiness of the past season.
I suppose one could reason (I do so hate the term 'fanwank'!) that the Bringers only recently started losing their tongues, as a means of stopping them from revealing the plan through torture, or even to set up the link between Andrew and the Bringer hive-mind. But why show the First as being able to touch when it is supposed to be non-corporeal?


[> I've fanwanked that... -- KdS, 08:35:57 06/24/03 Tue

And the similar differences in Bringer appearance and fighting ability between Amends and S7 by postulating that there are different castes of Bringers, and that the ones in S3 were the mystic caste and the ones in S7 the warrior caste.

[> Re: The First and the Bringers -- JCC, 08:52:40 06/24/03 Tue

I watched Amends too and noticed the First touching Angel. It also seemed to put it's hand on his arm. I suppose that it put it's hands up but Angel brought his down from his face before it touched him. That would make things easier. :)

[> Also: The Bringers can bring forth "spiritual manifestations", and ?'s about Jasmine and The First -- Q, 11:49:36 06/24/03 Tue

I watched Ammends last night on DVD. One thing that struck me is that Giles gave a speech about the Harbingers saying they were The First's grand priests, and they could use magic to bring forth "spiritual manifestations"-- this suggested to me that the people we were seeing from Angels past were not *an entity*, but spiritual manifestations brought forth by the bringers chanting. This would suggest that for The First to do any of its taunting, the bringers would need to be constantly holed up somewhere summoning spirit manifestations, and would not suggest that the first was an entity that could take any dead form.

It was a little confusing, but did not ruin anything on the show for me.

One thing I REALLY wish would be cleared up, was the main point of Ammends. Why did Angel come back? Both Jasmine and The First have taken credit for it. That is great, but I want a tighter explanation, and I want to know what Buffy's ring had to do with it.

Watching Ammends, the theory that makes sense to me is this. Jasmine, being at the time a "power that be's", brought forth Angel for the purposes she explains at the end of Angel season 4. The First, knowing about ancient propehcies and destiny, figures Angel as the "ensouled" one who could wear the amulet that will eventually destroy her plans, so she sets out to either turn him evil and destroy Buffy at once, or have him die in the process. Jasmine steps in with the magical snow and saves him, to bring forth her destiny.

This all would work fine-- but if it is going to be Buffy's FINAL season, and the first is back at the SAME TIME as the second thing taking credit for bringing Angel back(Jasmine)-- shouldn't they have tied the two series' together A LOT better last season? It just feels so full of X-filey holes, doesn't it?

[> [> About spirit manifestations -- Finn Mac Cool, 12:41:27 06/24/03 Tue

"Spirit" can mean a lot of things. It can mean ghosts, as you seem to assume, but it can also refer to certain inhuman supernatural creatures. Perhaps the Bringers use their skill of summoning spirit manifestations to make the First Evil manifest. They wouldn't need to summon the spirit of each dead person it appears as, they'd just need to summon the spirit of the First.

[> [> [> But... -- Nino, 16:24:59 06/24/03 Tue

...wasn't the whole point of season 7 that the First was not corporeal and that it had no way of taking physical form...lots of the eps hinted that the ultimate plan of the First (and the one I wish ME had come up with...) was to make it self a corporeal entity...I think this would have been a great idea, especially since the final battle seemed kind of random and unconnected with the storyline we had been following...after the whole Beljoxa's eye fiasco, it would have been awesome if the First's plan to make itself corporeal had to do with Buffy being alive, very specifically...I dunno, just kind of rambling...but I don't worry too much about the "Amends" factors, since Joss didn't flesh out the First's character until this season, he didnt feel that he should be held back by things that happened way back when...i just kinda let the whole first-touching-angel thing slide...

The Witch -- Q, 11:36:28 06/24/03 Tue

The Witch
Grade: B-

In the early seasons, I would judge an episode on whether it was part of the arc, a "mythology" episode, or if it was a stand-alone, monster-of-the-week episode. Stand alones never faired as well, so this was my first "disappointing" episode. I'm a little more accepting of stand-alone's now a days, though they still do not hold NEAR the urgency of the "mythology" episodes. As a "side" episode, with very little sense of urgency, "The Witch" holds up pretty good. Compared to more important episodes, it doesn't. There was much to like though.

*We see the first non-vampire, "monster-movie monster" episode, and see that there will be many obstacles on the hellmouth. This was a fun discovery. The introduction of Amy is good, as she becomes a rather fun side-character (although what ever the hell they did with her in season 7 is beyond me! I'll get to that later, when we discuss "Killer in Me" though).

*The love triangle between Buffy-Xander-Willow intensifies, as both Willow and Xander are given the "just one of the guys/gals" line by their love interest, and we see how deeply devoted the trio are to each other already.

*Giles gets knocked out for the FIRST time (I'll be keeping a running tally).

*The body switching uber witch story was very intriguing and compelling.

*The metaphor of living up to demanding parents expectations while they relive their wonder years is played out beautifully by not just leaving it with Amy/Catherine, but by also playing it up with Buffy/Joyce and the yearbook staff conversation.

*Giles claims it was his "first casting", which we later find out was a complete lie, thus complicating the facade of our favorite watcher.

* Cordelia is brilliant again! her "You saw that right?" pleadings to the judges followed by her menacing threats in Americas creepiest girls locker room were priceless!!!

One thing I had a hard time with was putting a finger on the exact moment that the bodies were switched. It is obvious to me that Amy is Catherine during the Catherine the great speech in front of the trophy case. Later, when Aura's mouth seals up all Twilight-Zoney, "Amy was as shocked as the rest of us". This obviously makes us believe in her innocence. But later that day we see her demanding "mom" to do her history report and casting a spell with Buffy's bracelet. The scene with Aura's mouth sealing up was obviously a red herring. I don't mind red herrings if there is a tight explanation that becomes obvious later (see J.K. Rowling-the perfect red herring MASTER!) , but if it is thrown in and left a mystery, it loses it's punch. So if Amy was already Catherine at that point (and she was), why did she looked so surprised when Aura's mouth sealed up?

Jumping to the future-In "Normal Again", Buffy admits to Willow that her mom had committed her to an institution briefly in L.A. after she had seen her first vampire. Never has there been a line uttered in Buffyverse that I wish more had not happened! That admission ruins so much for me! One example-in this episode Buffy makes a comment about being a "vampire slayer" to her mom, and then laughs it off as a joke. If she had really been committed for this sort of thing, it could never have been shaken off as a joke! Joyce would have taken this far too seriously! This will bug me forever!

[> Maybe Catherine was just acting shocked, to keep up her facade -- Finn Mac Cool, 12:44:44 06/24/03 Tue

[> From my notes at the "Annotated Buffy": -- Rob, 13:19:57 06/24/03 Tue

"CONTINUITY CHECK: In the sixth season episode, Normal Again, Buffy reveals to Willow that when she had first seen vampires, she had told her parents, who sent her to a mental health clinic, after which she never talked to them about the situation again. These words were ambiguous enough, however, to not say whether Buffy had merely told them that she had seen vampires, or had also told them that she was the Slayer. Either way, however, it does not create continuity flaws as serious as viewers first suggested, upon seeing Normal Again. If Joyce does know that Buffy thought she was the Slayer, this "what?" could be her, upset for a moment that Buffy is mentioning this, yet again, and then quickly shrugging it off. And if she doesn't know about the slayer part, she may just be taken aback by the "vampire" reference reoccuring. And then, of course, there is also the theory that Buffy's asylum revelation may have just been part of the effect of a hallucinatory drug she had been exposed to via a demon's claw. Choose your own explanation. They all work."


[> [> And there's always... -- Rook, 21:58:52 06/24/03 Tue

My own personal favorite fanwank, that ANY continuity conconflicts that involve the characters memories a S1-4 episode Vs a S5-7 episode can be written off as a byproduct of the Dawnverse.

Spike saying in S7 that he'd being held longer in the initiative than we saw in S4? Implanted by the Monks to replace removed memories of Buffy being an only kid.

Buffy's stay at the Mental institution? Implanted by the Monks to make her believe she had a sister, and was sent there because her parents didn't want her sister exposed to her "insanity".

Ahh, sweet, sweet denial.

[> [> In the comics.... -- Ray, 08:26:47 06/25/03 Wed

They're currently doing a story called Slayer Interrupted. Buffy ran off with Pike to Las Vegas and when she got back her parents were ultra concerned and read her diary. Of course these flashback stories being told in the comics incorporate Dawn into the them.

[> [> [> Interesting...I'll have to check that out. -- Rob, 09:56:58 06/25/03 Wed

[> [> [> [> And I have. Just read the first 3 chapters. What a great read! -- Rob, 12:45:18 06/27/03 Fri

[> Regurgitating the Witchy threads... -- The Voynak demon, 14:25:53 06/26/03 Thu

[> Catherine, Joyce -- dream, 11:48:07 06/27/03 Fri

RE: Catherine. It's pure fanwankery, of course, but maybe she wasn't entirely in control of her magic? Maybe this curse wasn't supposed to happen right then, but her anger took control? It would be nice as a set-up for Willow's dark magic control problems later.

As for Joyce - I appear to be one of the few people whose families were dysfunctional enough to make Joyce's behavior seem normal. Joyce had decided the asylum incident was not to be discussed. She might have modified this decision if, for example, her daughter were screaming at her about vampires. But an off-hand comment while her daughter seems to be okay isn't worth dealing with. She won't be provoked into discussing it by something that minor. I mean, her daugher burned down a gym, a joke about a sensitive topic hardly rates, right?

I actually really liked the way the earlier part of the series fit in with Normal Again - but then again, I've known a number of mothers like Joyce.** She's fascinating - her denial and her compassion are in constant battle. I wish we had seen more of her.

**I am also used to family members not discussing things. I had to watch almost the entire first season of Six Feet Under before I got that the major theme was repression. These people didn't seem repressed to me, they seemed positively chatty. They talked about lots of things - and with family members, no less!

Initial thought about The Witch -- Anneth, 12:24:15 06/24/03 Tue

I'd like to start by explaining that I have a deep and partially irrational love for this episode. Basically because Buffy sings Macho Man. Effervescent SMG is a thing of beauty; I love the Buffybot and I love CheerBuffy. That aside....

Third in the series, The Witch confronts the Scoobies (Willow refers to them as "the Slayerettes"... can't say I'm sad that didn't stick!) with two sticky new issues: parental relations and Buffy-incapacitation.

Basically, the Witch is about the age-old mother-daughter conflict, though the father-child relationship also comes into play towards the end of the episode. The Amy/Catherine conflict serves to highlight the problems that Buffy and Joyce are having. Essentially, Buffy and her mother spend two thirds of the episode miscommunicating, to a point that actually ends up hurting both. The conflict is resolved (for now...) with Joyce realizing that she can't possibly understand Buffy, and Buffy forgiving her for that.

The Giles/Buffy relationship also gets a shove in this episode; Giles cares for, and at one point physically carries, Buffy while she's incapacitated. Once Buffy recovers, she doesn't snip at Giles for being fussy, a fact which is emphasized by her episode-ending conversation with Amy. Amy complains that her dad nags her and fusses after her, and then confesses that she loves it. Thus, the burgeoning father/daughter relationships of both Amy/Mr. Madison and Buffy/Giles end the episode positvely.

The other issue that The Witch throws into the BtVS mix is this: what happens if Buffy can't fight or win? This remains a huge concern throughout the show's run. Buffy is Sunnydale's, and the Scoobies', bulwark, their first and strongest line of defense, but she can't win every time. The Witch is the first episode in which the others are forced to confront this issue. In a display that presages events throughout the rest of the show's history, Xander and Willow turn to Giles upon discovering Buffy's incapacitation, even though they have a vague idea about who and what caused it. This action also sets up a surrogate-father relationship between Giles and Xander and Willow; they, like Buffy, soon come to Giles for help with life's problems.

What happens when Buffy's incapacitated really deserves its own essay; I'm only trying to cover the basics. I apologise for not giving the subject due measure.

Anyway, those are the two biggies from the episode, at least as I see it. Some other noteworthy moments:

Willow's first encounter with witchcraft. "Do you ride a broomstick?" gives me giggles.

Buffy's squicked by the apparently graphic fertility statue, an indication of her sexual immaturity.

The Buffy/Xander/Willow triangle receives its first real treatment.

My only major quibble with the script is that Catherine-as-Amy, as first introduced, is written as just being nervous about trying out for the squad and fearing letting her mom down. As Amy-Amy would have been. But if this is Catherine-as-Amy, not Amy-Amy, it seems to me that her reaction might be different; more jazzed, less terrified and negative. I realize that the script is written this way to emphasize Buffy's problems with her mother, but it bugs me every time I watch the episode.

Anyway, I do really love this episode, and Xander's incredibly dorky, ever-so-slightly freaky bracelet gift (they've known each other for how long? And he's giving her an engraved bracelet?), and Willow's expression when Buffy tells Xander that he's just like one of the girls, thrill me to my very bones. Every time. That and Macho Man.

[> er, make that "thoughts" -- Anneth, 12:27:05 06/24/03 Tue

[> Re: Initial thought about The Witch -- CW, 14:11:59 06/24/03 Tue

I've been slowly relishing my season 4 DVD's as I go back and watch these early eps. Watching Hush just before The Witch is a little startling. Hush is such a perfect jewel. The Witch is crude and at times sloppy, but it's still fun... Cordy doing her cheerleading as Charisma did in real life... And it's a gold mine of future material. Xander worries about being invisible to Buffy. He talks about being killed by a railroad spike... It's ordinary tv cliche at this point; Buffy, the hero, is the one who is perceptive enough to figure out what happened to Amy. But, it's one of those things that started growing at this point, that didn't seem at all ordinary within a year or two... The body switch and even the language, it's talked about in, gets repeated in season three, and not in a way the made us say 'well, they've run out of ideas.' Some of Willow's first words on the subject of spells are "Can I help you with your witchcraft?" even if she isn't seroius about it. Even Buffy singing. I bet SMG wasn't thinking she'd ever sing and dance through a whole ep!

Some things do change. Giles says it's his first spell. We find out later that's a major lie. In this episode, witchcraft is limited by spell books rather than the power of the caster. Still for a stand alone, it's a lot of fun.

[> Switches and doubles -- mamcu, 19:08:27 06/24/03 Tue

Another big theme it starts is switches and doubles, something that really builds throughout the series. Here it's especially horrible, since it's related to bad parenting, but we see it many more times in various forms: Faith and Buffy switching bodies in Who Am I, Xander split into two bodies in The Replacement, all the doubles of Doppelgangland and The Wish. And it's sort of echoed by the robots--Warren's girlfriend and Buffy--the alter egos (Ripper, Angelus, Bloody William), and finally by the many, many possessions, culminating in The First in S7.

[> Re: Initial thought about The Witch -- shambleau, 10:38:46 06/25/03 Wed

nodnodnod on the effervescent Buffy thing. Ecstatic Buffy tackling Willow after Willow says she'll be going to UCSunnydale is a brief little moment that bowls me over too.
And here's one that people may not agree with: Buffy playing football at the beach with Riley and then coming over to the group for a hamburger. She's just so up and happy!

[> And what about that bracelet? -- manwitch, 17:56:51 06/25/03 Wed

What's the story on that? Is there an etiquette for that sort of thing?

Obviously, Buffy had not a doubt what Xander was doing when he gave her the bracelet. Even the most idiotic person would no they were being claimed and marked. So by wearing it, she's kinda saying yes, right? But apparently she doesn't want to say yes. Is no an acceptable answer? Are highschool girls permitted to say to a friend boy that gives them such a thing, "No, I don't want to wear that. What are you thinking?" Or does the risk of ruining the friendship put pressure on her to wear it and look for that moment to immasculate him and redefine why she is wearing it, thus putting the pressure on him to accept the new definition or risk the relationship?

Its like a little dance to keep putting the pressure on the other party as to who will risk ruining the friendship. You just keep pretending you didn't get Kruschev's other communication. And eventually everyone quietly agrees.

I was like, Buffy, don't put that on. You don't want this guy's cheezy bracelet. But I guess Buffy's a whole lot nicer than I am.

[> [> Don't forget about Angel's cross though -- lunasea, 18:20:45 06/25/03 Wed

Buffy did accept Angel's gift and later does wear it. What does that mean? The show is constantly paralleling Xander and Buffy's relationship with Angel and Buffy (or vice versa). If Angel gives her something at this point, it better be followed up with Xander doing something similar. Buffy's romantic arc is great.

In WttH: she gets the cross from Angel, a nice misdirect.
In the Witch: she gets cheesy bracelet from Xander.
In Teacher's Pet: she will get Angel's jacket
In Never Kill a Boy on the First Date: she goes outside of both of them for her first date on the show.
In The Pack: Xander tries to rape her while possessed
All that leads us into Angel

Since Xander is an actual character, we get a lot about his feelings, which will climax when he asks Buffy out in "Prophecy Girl." Xander is given credit for saving Buffy, but it is only by working with Angel that he is able to do this. It is interesting how these two characters relate to each other. Later, in Graduation Day, Xander's maturity will be shown when he goes over to Buffy at the end and lets her know that Angel made it out all right.

Season 1, Angel is but a plot device, but when that plot device gives something to Buffy, Xander can't be left out, hence the totally inappropriate gift in The Witch.

[> [> [> Re: Don't forget about Angel's cross though -- manwitch, 18:40:48 06/25/03 Wed

But I'm talking about what's up so I know what's going on when I give cheezy bracelets to highschool girls. I'm nearing 40. I'm gonna have to know this kind of thing pretty soon.

[> [> [> [> Cheezy bracelet's okay early in the mating dance. Tiffany? wait until at least sexual conquest #2.;) -- Briar Rose *lol @manwitch, 23:02:53 06/25/03 Wed

[> Preserving for the safety of witches, and puppies, and Samhain -- FE, 14:27:25 06/26/03 Thu

[> Preserving for the sake of breaking Anneth's streak of 341 straight posts archived within 10 minutes -- Random, 15:32:07 06/26/03 Thu

I wanted to thank manwitch and Caro -- lunasea, 13:59:10 06/24/03 Tue

All this talk about archetypes (or rather the forms they take) coupled with manwitch's recent posts accompanied me to nappy time. Here is what I woke up with. It is was supposed to be on spiritual journey 1.2, but I still wanted to share, so now it is its own thread.

Something about the word assimilate just didn't feel right to me. You do a great job explaning some pretty complex (or simple, depending on the perspective. Let's just say it is the simplicity on the other side of complexity) spiritual concepts and relating them to the show. I really enjoy reading your posts. However something just didn't feel right. Here is what I came up with.

We look at individuation as putting together a puzzle. We discover parts of ourselves and put them together to make a whole. That is the perception and we often speak about mind-heart-spirit as if they are separate every bit as much as Giles-Xander-Willow are separate. But they aren't.

What we are really putting together is a broken mirror. With consciousness, we shatter that mirror. The pieces each still reflect something. When we look into the broken pieces, they still function and we see various parts of us. We see an eye in this piece. Some hair in that one. A finger in another. We don't realize this is just a broken mirror and mistake it for an actual puzzle that needs to be put together. We see ourselves as broken and needing to be put back together.

The reality is that we are whole. We cannot be fractured. Only the mirror can be. If we want to be whole, all we have to do is step away from the mirror and realize that we are. Buffy wasn't the one that was split in "The Replacement."

That is part one of this realization.

Part 2 is best illustrated by what happens to Angel in "Reprise/Epiphany." If all we have to do is step away from the mirror, why don't we? The answer is a combination of fear and ignorance. In "Reprise" Angel hits bottom and wants to lose his soul. In "Epiphany," he finds that he cannot. When Angel tries to lose his soul, he isn't looking in the mirror puzzle. He is at such a point of dispair that he doesn't think of himself at all. All he wants is to stop the pain. He isn't vampire or champion. It is one thing for him not to be able to lose his soul in this moment of dispair.

It is quite another for it to lead to his epiphany. Prior to this Angel is so afraid of what he is that he can't see what he is. He stares at pieces of the mirror puzzle because he is afraid of what he thinks is the whole picture. When Angel gets away from the mirror, he is only left with what he is. It is like what he tells Buffy in "Becoming Part 2" Now that's everything, huh? No weapons... No friends... No hope. Take all that away... and what's left?

When we lose all those components, the physical (as represented by weapons), the heart-mind-spirit (as represented by Buffy's friends) even hope, what is left? Buffy's answer is dead on. ME. The whole. That is what happens to Angel in "Epiphany." He loses everything and finds what he really is, what he really believes. He was so scared of this, because he was only seeing himself in the broken mirror and wasn't able to see his total self. When he got away from that, he found out he wasn't such a monster.

The hard part isn't putting the mirror together. It is realizing that it is a mirror and what we are interested in is actually just reflected in it. It is stepping away from that mirror and just being who we are.

Thanks again.

Glory vs Snyder -- JBone, 21:52:12 06/24/03 Tue

Still no fun quotes, they'll probably come next week when I'm hopefully ahead of the game. Buffy won a landslide over Vi, I won't have the results up on the site tonight, though. On to the new match!

vote here!


demon region


On a side note to d'h, if you emailed me your vote, I did not receive it. Send it to the email link I have on my name on this post. Not the blowout that just ended, the new one.

[> Re: Glory vs Snyder -- matching mole, 09:41:14 06/25/03 Wed

This is a tough choice because while both are quite entertaining they are unusually one dimensional characters given the length time we are exposed to each of them. I actually forget which one I voted for now. Glory. I'm pretty sure it was Glory. She has minions while Snyder, despite revelling in bureacracy, usually seemed to work alone. Very odd.

I should say that I think I voted. After I clicked on my choice the screen went blank and stayed that way for a very long time until I got bored and went elsewhere.

I must say that the demon region has almost all of my favourite characters from both shows. There are agonizing decisions to be made in the first round!

[> Handicapping the "Demon" Region -- cjl, 10:33:39 06/25/03 Wed

(1) Cordelia Chase v. (16) Phantom Dennis

It seems almost unfair to pit Cordelia against the best boyfriend she's (n)ever had, but that's how it goes on the Road to the Apocalypse. Cordy may get a ton of sympathy votes for the whole S4 character assassination/coma thing. Look for her to exorcise Dennis in short order, and quickly climb to the Regional semis. However, given the extremely stiff competition in this region, her number one seeding guarantees nothing after that. (ODDS to win the region: 3-1.)

(9) Principal Snyder v. (8) Glory/Glorificus/The (Original) Beast

I would have bet money on the weasel-y yet strangely charming Principal Snyder triumphing over that gasbag goddess Glory, but I am apparently wrong, wrong, wrong. Glory is stomping Snyder into the turf with her stylish and well-coordinated shoes. No matter; her Skankiness will never make it past the first round. (ODDS: 50-1)

(11) Maggie Walsh v. (6) Krevlorneswath/The Host/Lorne

I still hold it against Lindsay Crouse for abandoning Joss mid-season, forcing him to promote Adam to big bad; Buffy S4 almost never recovered (see below). The Evil Bitch Monster of Death will be charmed into total submission by Lorne, who will triumph with a smile on his face and a seabreeze in his hand. Lorne's a long shot to win the Region, but I wouldn't count him out. He has no negatives and the sweetest singing voice this side of Ella Fitzgerald. (ODDS: 10-1)

(7) Adam v. (10) Detective Kate Lockley

Detractors have always said that Elizabeth Rohm's Kate Lockley had the emotional range of a palm tree, but I thought she was an interesting character with a fascinating love/hate relationship with Angel. My feelings for Adam definitely come down more on the "hate" side; even though I found his gruesome scientific curiosity occasionally amusing, he was easily the least compelling big bad in Buffy history. Negatives up the wazoo on both sides, so this could go either way--but whoever wins will be crushed in the next round. (ODDS: 100-1)

(5) Daniel "Oz" Osbourne v. (12) The Groosalugg/Groo

Aw. I have a sentimental attachment to both these guys. Groo went from one-dimensional Prince Valiant parody in ANGEL S2 to wistful loser in love in S3, fortified with an extra helping of snark. (Bad Cordy!) Unfortunately, he's completely outclassed by Oz, who's the dark horse (dark wolf?) to win this region. (ODDS: 5-1)

(3) Aud/Anyanka/Anya v. (14) Merle

Sob. A luminous comic presence and now a genuine Buffy martyr, Emma Caulfield's Anya (Our Lady of the Neglected Storyline) could challenge Cordy for sympathy votes, and has to be considered a favorite to take the region. She'll probably beat the stuffing out of poor Merle--which would make it a pretty typical day for Merle. Cordy/Anya regional final, anyone? (ODDS: 5-2)

(13) Skip vs (4) Winifred "Fred" Burkle

Before "Inside Out," I might have given Skip a ghost of a chance against the Adorableness that is Fred, but since he was outed as just another mercenary thug for Higher Powers, he's lost his "swell guy," blue collar appeal. As for our favorite physicist, never underestimate Adorableness as a vote getter--but I think she'll wilt in the face of major competition. (ODDS: 12-1)

(15) Gwen Raiden vs (2) Alexander "Xander" Lavelle Harris

If this were my contest, it would be Xander vs. Willow in the tournament finals--and I'd declare a tie. (Happy dancing all around!) But it's not. With his hardline anti-vamp stance and diminishing plotlines, Xander has had it tough the past few years, and his once-burgeoning legion of fans has diminished. He'll get by electro-babe Gwen Raiden (that is, if he doesn't stop to check out her ass), but he might be done in by the women He Done Wrong. (ODDS: 5-1)

[> [> Masterful analysis above; also "ass" = :) -- pr10n (g-o-0-O XANDER!), 14:52:43 06/25/03 Wed

Potential spoiler from Conversations with Dead People (and a rant too!) -- Earl Allison, 10:15:33 06/25/03 Wed

Got this off TWoP;

"I think it was clarified at the Harvest con this past weekend that in CWDP, it was FEJoyce that appeared to Dawn, not GhostJoyce or some FGJoyce."

I can't say how much this, coupled with the "Spike was seeking his soul" interview from last season, ticks me off.

I already put forth that ME simply didn't seem to care this last season -- I think this helps makes the case, IMHO.

I can't assume that it was painfully obvious that Joyce in CWDP was the First. I can see a case being made, but not that it was obvious -- so why wasn't this addressed in some meaningful way (aside from Willow's claim, and given what she saw in Cassie, I understand it, but the wholesale destruction and flying objects -- when the FE was INTANGIBLE, tends to run counter to Willow's claim) during the season?

Surely one or two of Buffy's bitter speeches could have been shelved for this?

I can't think of but one or two items that have caused this much fan assumption in the past; Xander's "Lie" in S2, and maybe the speculation on the Slayer Line after Buffy's death in S5 (allegedly the Line ran through Faith, but was never addressed onscreen in S6 or S7).

Maybe I'm being unfair, but I think this speaks to ME's (lack of, IMHO) ability to tell clear stories. Fans still argue over Spike's soul quest -- was it legitimate, or did Spike seek to get the chip removed?

Take it and run.

[> Or...(and I think this is more likely)...Joss decided, in the end, to leave it ambiguous. -- Rob, 10:20:30 06/25/03 Wed

[> [> If he did ... -- Earl Allison, 10:31:44 06/25/03 Wed

If that is true, why (and I admit, I wasn't at the 'Con, so maybe it's wrong) say it was supposed to be the First?

I admit, my view isn't particularly mainstream, but I think if you are giving items out later, either you didn't do your job in telling the story originally, or you did it very poorly.

The close of S6 is a good example, IMHO. I can't reconcile that JM was asked to play the scene as if he were getting the chip out with contentions that it was a clever mislead.

I saw Spike wanting the chip out (the bitch comments added to my perception), and even now, I don't know how I feel about the interview -- clever reveal? Or introduction of new character at last page of murder novel?

This seems, to me, to be in the same vein. Since the Joyce issue never panned out either way, I think it might have been better to simply say nothing, and let fans make up their own minds.

But once something is said, it needs to be weighed against what was seen and heard.

The poltergeist-like manifestations fly in the face of what we saw and heard that the First could do, so I do have some issues with the claim ...

Issues that could have been resolved in the actual show. Since they weren't; some, like me, might conclude poor Quality Control due to the discrepancies.

I don't claim to be automatically right, but I also don't think I'm automatically wrong, either :)

Take it and run.

[> [> [> Re: If he did ... -- Rob, 10:45:58 06/25/03 Wed

The poltergeist-like manifestations fly in the face of what we saw and heard that the First could do, so I do have some issues with the claim ...

We also know though that there were other demons/magicks, etc. on the First's side, from Hallie, who at the beginning of the season said that everyone in the demon world is choosing sides. I don't think it's too far out to postulate that another magical being (witch? sorceror?) working for the First created this illusion.

And who, btw, said this at the con? Because unless it came from Joss' mouth, along with an explanation for why they didn't answer it on the show, I wouldn't put too much credence in these words. As far as I'm concerned, if it didn't appear on the show, it didn't happen. I personally like the ambiguity the way it is. They never answered it on the show, therefore I don't accept any answer divulged to people at a con.

I personally like the ambiguity. The audience can decide for themselves whether they believe this could possibly be a heavenly vistitation or not. With the glowy white robes and shiny light, it seemed almost too heavenly to be real, like a cliche of what an evil being might create to give the illusion that it was from heaven...or maybe that's being too cynical. I haven't yet decided for myself whether I believe it's the First or not.

The main argument for it being the First is that it was trying to sow seeds of untrustworthiness for Buffy in Dawn, leading to Dawn turning on Buffy at the end of "Empty Places." Others claim that it isn't the First, because sending Buffy out of the house actually ended up helping her in the end. However, the fact that this plan seemed to fail didn't mean it wasn't the First. Most of the First's plans failed because it doesn't understand humans. It can do impressions of their dead, but doesn't understand when it goes too far. In that very same episode, the First messed up by going too far with Willow, until Willow realized that Tara would never behave like this. And then of course there's the possibility that the First wanted Buffy kicked out of the house so that she'd be separated from her friends, easier to corrupt. Still haven't decided either whether the First wanted Buffy to have the Scythe or not. I think it's a possibility that it did, since it told Caleb not to go after Buffy right away. Perhaps it was planning all along on abandoning Caleb and using Buffy as its vessel in the end. Which ties in to Darby's too quickly archived theory that that is why the First approached Buffy in "Chosen" after she was stabbed.

If the "she won't choose you" actually referred to Buffy trying to send Dawn away at the end, I think it's more likely that it was the real Joyce.

So, after all this rambliness, I guess I'll just restate what I already said: I don't care what was said at the con. There is no proof either way whether this was the First or not, and I kind of like it that way.


[> [> [> [> KS also said so. -- Sophist, 11:09:12 06/25/03 Wed

In the current BtVS magazine, there's an interview with KS that includes this quote about CwDP:

"I knew that I was mom, but I also knew that The First , the evil one, was speaking through me. It also felt kind of brief, because we did it with me in front of a green screen."

[> [> [> [> [> Again, though, wasn't confirmed on screen. Although I lean towards "The First" anyway. -- Rob, 11:14:18 06/25/03 Wed

[> What difference would it make whether we found out or not? -- Finn Mac Cool, 10:28:53 06/25/03 Wed

Whether it was the First Evil as Joyce or if it was the real Joyce, what does it matter? What matters isn't what she was, but what she said, and whether it was true. Considering that the First Evil often uses the truth to its best advantage, knowing that it was the First Evil wouldn't make much difference in that category. So, again I say, why does it matter?

As for Spike's soul quest: after the demon gave him a soul, why would we believe that Spike wanted the chip out? Yes, Spike never mentioned specifically what he wanted, so some fans took this to mean that the demon interpreted his words differently than he meant. That obviously ignores "Villains", where the demon clearly shows an ability to read Spike's mind (while this technically shouldn't be possible, there's a precedent for it on "Angel", and I do have a post planned explaining how I think there might be different types of mind reading in the Buffyverse). Since the demon could read Spike's thoughts, Spike didn't need to say he wanted his soul back, the demon just knew. Frankly, I've never understood how people could see it otherwise.

[> [> Regarding the Spike quest -- dream, 12:20:47 06/25/03 Wed

I'm with Earl Allison on that one. The Joyce thing, in my mind, doesn't matter. It works in the storytelling if left ambiguous, and I tend to ignore everything that isn't on-screen. Unfortunately, the Spike quest was mentioned on-screen, so we have to deal with it.

The reason that some people (myself included) have a problem with that scene was that they find it impossible to reconcile the way Spike was acting with a deliberate attempt to go get a soul. I mean, I EXPECTED Spike to go looking for a soul before the episode, and I spent that scene thinking - huh, I guess they're going to go the other way with this. That's unexpected. Then, of course, they didn't. I rewatched, and just couldn't accpet that Spike would be acting that angry, calling Buffy "bithc" and so on if he intended to go get a soul. I suspect that James Marsters wouldn't have believed it either, hence the need to lie to him about his character's motivations. The fact that they felt they needed to lie to him is, I think, a very bad sign.

So we have Spike with a soul, having just acted as if he was angry and determined to get his chip out. My natural assumption was that Spike thought he was asking for his chip out, but the demon (yes, mind-reading - we only know that humans can't read vampires, no issue with that) knew that deeper down, Spike really wanted to have a soul. Considering the complications of Spike's character, I was perfectly willing to believe that he was confused enough not to know what he really wanted, and there's a lovely fairy-tale quality in asking for what you think you want, and getting what you really want, which is far messier, but also far more beautiful. Alas, this is not what was intended. According to an interview (which I was going to ignore) and then a later mention on the show itself (hich I can't), we have to accept that the ranting, angry, "bitch"-calling Spike was lpanning out going in search of a soul. I can't accept that, and as a result, I found that segment (unfortunately, a highly important one) to be one of the biggest failings of the whole run of the show. [Want the others? Sure, why not? Giles, season seven, right up to Chosen; the failure to introduce the idea that Willow might be mistaken in defining her problem with magic as addiction during season six itself; Wesley's character (though I hear he's much better on Angel); the overpopulation of characters in season seven, leading to the downplaying of several major characters; and the werewolf costumes. Some of these are not trivial, particularly the werewolf costumes, but considering all the chances they took, it's not a very long list.]

[> [> [> Re: Regarding the Spike quest -- Finn Mac Cool, 13:17:14 06/25/03 Wed

Well, Spike wanted a soul to get Buffy, not because he actually liked the idea of having one. Thus he'd probably be a little pissed at her, since Spike has often held Buffy responsible for his feelings and what he does as a result of them. "Once More With Feeling" is a good example; Spike's on his way to save Buffy's life, but still calls her a bitch and says he'd be free if she died. Same dichotomy between Spike's words and actions arises in "Villains" through "Grave".

[> [> [> Well said. I agree on every point -- Sophist, 13:31:05 06/25/03 Wed

[> [> [> Re: Regarding the Spike quest -- lunasea, 13:36:06 06/25/03 Wed

JM has this tendancy to play Spike very sympathetically. If they wanted Soulless Spike to actually act soulless for a change, I can see why they told JM to play it as if he was getting the chip out.

They wanted the act of getting his soul to be in line with how a soulless creature would act. It had to be in line with the obsessive, possessive nature of vamp love. To give the kind strong Buffy (imagine if RRK wrote those episodes. Violins would have played in the background as Spike made his declaration of love) what she deserves just wouldn't have fit with this. To take the "love" as shown by the word deserve and to couple that with bitch turned it into that obsessive, possessive creepy vamp love.

The thing to keep in mind is he isn't in search for his soul, the means to be good. He is looking for change and sees the soul as a means to that. He admits in "Beneath You" he didn't know what he was getting himself into. You also have to keep in mind what does Spike think that Buffy deserves. He is mad, mad that she won't let him dote on her like he did Dru. He is willing to do anything for her and she completely rejects that. That makes him damn mad. For him to turn into a defanged puppy about this would have been completely out of character. The object of his obsession isn't there. He isn't acting for her. He is expressing his feelings.

The other thing to note is how his words change throughout the trials. He talks about bitch (after having his demonhood questioned), (interesting when he sees the demon with his hands on fire he says son of a bitch), slayer and then Buffy. I really liked this transition and thought it was done very well. Keeping the anger while modifying the words was a great way to convey the emotions going on.

It seems completely in character, the character I see. It might be out of character with the romantic Spike that is good for Buffy that some see. It might be out of character for the noble man that was seeking redemption. Since it wasn't written or played that way, I would venture that romantic Spike and the redemption angle are what isn't there.

Just me though.

[> [> [> [> With lunasea and Finn -- shambleau, 13:58:13 06/25/03 Wed

Nothing much to add,though. Resentment and obsession in equal measure, leading to getting a soul for "that bitch"? That's my Spike. YSMV

[> [> Re: What difference would it make whether we found out or not? -- Earl Allison, 13:42:34 06/25/03 Wed

I was one of the people who saw what he thought was Spike wanting the chip out -- that's not an attack on you, nor is it meant to imply I thought you attacked me. That's what I thought I was being shown, from the situation, body language, and word "bitch." I also felt ... vindicated might be too strong a word ... maybe justified? when I read that JM said he was told to act as if the chip was coming out -- in other words, he wasn't told Spike's
motivations, either. Now, I don't have any links, so I cannot support that, just to be totally honest :)

I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer, I admit that freely, and have said so here repeatedly, in prettier words. Now, that being said, I generally can see a clever twist after it is revealed, and will do the equivalent of
smacking my forehead or going "nooooowww I get it," or somesuch.

That didn't happen with the chip/soul bait-and-switch (my words, not anyone else's). I felt it was a cheap reveal along the lines of introducing a new character in the last page of a murder mystery -- to me, it wasn't clever.
Now, reading things here after the fact, I could see where others saw that Spike wanted a soul, but that was posters here, who are intelligent and drew lots of good conclusions and analogies. Me? I saw a cheap GOTCHA! that people smarter than I saw through, but that didn't make it less cheap.

Conversely? I couldn't see how anyone could forget that Spike was an evil, soulless monster in S5 or S6. That being said, I don't begrudge anyone who saw differently.

It's all subjective, but I still contend that it is the storyteller's job to clarify, not mine. If I (and in some cases, MANY people) misinterpret something that dramatically, maybe the fault for not being clearer is the
writing/execution, and not the fans.

Or, to steal a GREAT quote from Shao Lin (Captain Simian and the Space Monkeys);

"Until I develop telepathy, I must rely on ACTUAL communication."


Take it and run.

[> [> [> Re: What difference would it make whether we found out or not? -- manwitch, 18:28:27 06/25/03 Wed

The official Buffy the Vampire Slayer site at UPN always posted synopses (synopsises) of the episodes after they aired. The synopsis for Grave on the official site ended unequivocally with the story that Spike went to get the chip out and was surprised.

Of course, I know from my own place of employ what kind of disconnect there can be between the people doing the web information and the people creating the product. But it was clear that the web people wanted the audience to feel Spike had been surprised or at least interpreted it that way themselves.

[> Re: Potential spoiler from Conversations with Dead People (and a rant too!) -- Chris, 15:05:52 06/25/03 Wed

It was Jane Espenson at the Harvest con this past weekend who was asked the question about Joyce, whether or not she was FEJoyce or not. As stated above, she answered in the affirmative (I read this in several first hand accounts of the con on the More Than Spike board). She also stated the same thing during her Succubus Club interview. In addition, Kristine Sutherland stated in the Buffy Magazine #8 June/July 2003, that Joyce was the FE (pg. 61 "It was really terrifying and Michelle [Trachtenberg] did a great job of being in the center of all that and really creating the terror of that situation. For me as an acress it was just sort of strange being a ghost. That's when you're not quite sure who you are. I knew that I was mom, but I also knew that The First, the evil one, was speaking through me."

[> Re: Potential spoiler from Conversations with Dead People (and a rant too!) -- shambleau, 16:45:04 06/25/03 Wed

See, I don't remember that many fans assuming that Joyce wasn't the First. Most at the time assumed just that. There was debate, yes, but a genuine ghost!Joyce warning Dawn not to trust Buffy at that particular time has just as many believability problems. Wouldn't she warn Dawn about the First, or give her advice in how to bridge the gap? Why would ghost!Joyce so clearly be doing something that helped divide the scoobs?

As I recall, the stage directions for the scene included the observation that the plant in the room had now shriveled, but that no emphasis was to be put on that. Since the dead Christmas trees were how Buffy found the First's lair in Amends, it seems clear that the First was there. I'd always assumed that, but after I read those directions, there was no doubt.

It doesn't rule out fanwanking that something else was there contending with the First, though. Whatever told Dawn to get out and hurt her, could have been something trying to protect her. It's a stretch, I know. Still, even if the First was moving the furniture around, I have no trouble fanwanking that its powers are a little more extensive than the Scoobs are aware of. Their knowledge of vampires was always flawed, there could be something that the First can do they don't know about.

At least if Joyce was the First, it makes sense that Buffy not choosing Dawn didn't happen. Just another fakeout to sow doubt.

[> [> But the prophecy did come to pass (Spoilers for "Chosen") -- Finn Mac Cool, 17:25:43 06/25/03 Wed

Buffy sent Dawn away from the battle in "End of Days". She didn't choose Dawn to be one of her soldiers and tried to get her to safety. What the prophecy didn't tell us was that Dawn would turn the car around and join in whether Buffy wanted it or not.

Really interesting Joss interview up at Trollops -- ponygirl, 11:19:17 06/25/03 Wed

Just back from a long weekend so sorry if this was mentioned already, but I must plug the two part IGN interview up on the Spoiler Trollops as a really good read. A bit different from other interviews in that it focuses almost entirely on Joss' school experiences. Also some interesting stuff on being alone:

I lived my life feeling alone. That's just the way of it. I always did. As soon as I was old enough to have a feeling about it, I felt like I was alone. No matter how much I loved my family - and I actually got along better with my family than I think most people do - but I just always felt separate from everybody, and was terribly lonely all the time. I wasn't living a life that was particularly different from anybody else's, a pariah - it wasn't like I didn't have friends, but I just... we all of us are alone in our own minds, and I was very much aware of that from the very beginning of my life. Loneliness and aloneness - which are different things - are very much, I would say, of the three main things I focus on in my work.

...I wanted to be a part of a group. But I felt like Luke Cage in the Fantastic Four, you know - no matter what. That's just always been the way. You know, very often you'll be in a group and you'll discover that every single person in it feels like they're the one on the perimeter. It's like everybody has their own moment that's going on, some more than others. It was just a huge theme for me, and it was a huge theme that sort of crystallized in adolescence...

Nothing very spoilery up on Trollops right now, so virgin eyes should be safe! Sadly my Fantastic Four knowledge isn't good enough for me to get the Luke Cage reference, but I think that this adds a bit of fuel to the Joss as Buffy argument, at least in the sense of the Slayer being alone.

[> One of my favorite Joss quotes, that never makes any lists -- lunasea, 11:32:39 06/25/03 Wed

Whistler from Becoming Part 1 to Angel: This isn't gonna be easy. The more you live in this world, the more you see how apart from it you really are.

[> Part II on the interview is up now, link inside -- s'kat, 11:43:37 06/25/03 Wed


And there are no spoilers in it. It's just about Whedon's
education and personal influences. That's it. No talk about Btvs or Ats directly.

[> [> The original source is (link included) -- lunasea, 12:04:09 06/25/03 Wed


Next installment will be up tomorrow. It will go into Roseanne and the genesis of the Buffy movie.

[> [> [> Part III is now available - link inside, includes a sample -- s'kat, 19:22:15 06/25/03 Wed


And again no spoilers - all about Whedon. Goes in depth on Roseanne.

And a host of other things.

A little sample:

"IGNFF: What was Roseanne like, going in at that time? They were on, what, the fourth or fifth set of producers by that point?

WHEDON: No, it was just the second set, and it was total chaos. I mean, it was like a studied chaos. Which was good, because it meant that I got to write a bunch of scripts.

IGNFF: Whereas, on other shows, you would have been locked in the writer's room as a junior writer...

WHEDON: You know, I remember one of my father's friends saying, "Have they let you start to write a script yet?" I was like, "Yeah, I'm on my fourth." Because they just... they had nobody. I ended up writing six scripts that year. Interestingly enough, the other staff writer I know who's done that was Marti Noxon. She did it in the second year of Buffy.

IGNFF: Because it was just complete chaos?

WHEDON: It wasn't not chaos. It was slightly more controlled chaos, but it was really chaotic."

[> [> [> [> Re: Part III is now available - link inside, includes a sample -- ponygirl, 06:51:52 06/26/03 Thu

The idea of somebody that nobody would take account of, who just had more power than was imaginable. Which is such a pathetically obvious metaphor for what I wanted my life to be. Like, "I'm the guy that nobody paid attention to. What they didn't know was that I'm really important. I can save the world. So, you know, that's pretty cool, too." In the interview, you have to say, "He whined." [Interviewer's note: Joss whined.]

Sometimes you gotta just love that guy.

[> Fantastic Four -- Kenny, 14:53:37 06/25/03 Wed

Here's the FF scoop, for anyone who doesn't understand the allusion in the article. Four people, a scientist, his best friend, his girlfriend, and her little brother, go up in a rocket to beat the Russians to the moon. The run into cosmic rays, and the ship crashes back to earth, where they find they have superpowers. They become the Fantastic Four, and the thing that's always set them apart is that they're a family (Ben's the only one not related, but he went to college with Reed and has known him for years...he's pretty much adopted).

Over the years writers have tried to interject new characters into the FF. It doesn't work. Luke Cage, also known as Power Man, joined for a while (replacing the Thing, I assume). But they're a family, and he was just there to make a nice even number. Unless you're dating one of the members, you just don't feel like you're part of the group, even though the team never makes a member feel unwelcome. And that's pretty much it.

[> [> Scooby roll call thereby -- pr10n, 15:04:24 06/25/03 Wed

Lots of fringeScoobies went through that: Anya, Tara, Riley, Spike, Andrew, and Kennedy are examples I can think of without trying.

Not that BWXG was ever the "in" crowd, of course. They were the core "family" and newcomers had a tough time. Even Dawn, manufactured memories or no, fought for acceptance as a core member. The exceptions to me were Oz and Faith, and maybe Cordy. Were those three seem more self-assured than the others? Were they able to keep up other relationships? I wonder what that says about characterizations in the Jossverse.

[> [> [> Agree about Oz & Cordy, but not Faith so much -- Scroll, 19:05:48 06/25/03 Wed

I see Faith has having an incredibly hard time fitting in with the group, or finding her niche in the already well-oiled (kinda!) Scooby machine. Other than her opening ep "Faith, Hope, and Trick" in which she pretty much enthralled the gang with her stories and attitude, Faith hasn't really been able to play well with other kids. That's why I find her friendship with Angel so touching. They were the outsiders in that S3 gang of outsiders.

Cordy, I think, kinda wormed her way into the group through sheer stubbornness and the amazing ability to be completely oblivious to Xander's barbs -- most of the time, at least! It helped that she was a "cool kid" who was deigning to hang around the losers. It made her Scooby contributions seem like a surprise, a welcome surprise, whereas somebody like Andrew seems more like a burden.

Oz had the unique ability to get along with everybody. I think even Giles would've considered him somebody easy to talk to, or just hang around listening to old records with. Oz was the only non-Core Four to fit in without any problems or even a big transition period. Maybe the fact that he maintained his own social circle outside his Scooby involvement -- the Dingoes, his gigs, and his older friends (since he's a year older than B/W/X/C) -- helped him with this? Or maybe it was just his totally calm, zen attitude : )

Btw, I just saw "The Italian Job" today. Pretty good flick, though not as good as "Ocean's Eleven", IMO. No Julia Roberts though! And Seth Green was in it, and he was fantastic. He's such a sweetheart! So I'm kinda big with the Oz-love tonight : )

Old rumour confirmed -- KdS, 14:23:04 06/25/03 Wed

Just a quick word to say that the issue of SFX currently on sale in the UK has a BtVS chunk. Most memorable bit is that Bianca "Kendra" Lawson unambiguously confirms the rumour, challenged some time ago on this board, that she turned down Cordelia due to other commitments before CC got the part. Also, her story on Kendra's infamous accent - she was told at the last minute to do a Jamaican accent and when she tried was then ordered to tone it down to make it easier for Americans to understand. Sort of like what reportedly happened with GQ's accent on AtS.

Real "what might have been" - would Cordelia have still been developed as she was? Certainly would have stopped the complaints that the cast was too white, especially if her Cordy was softened as CC's was.

[> Are you sure Cordelia was white? -- Finn Mac Cool, 15:27:47 06/25/03 Wed

From her skin tone I always assumed her to be either Hispanic or a white/black mix. Of course, she might have just kept herself very, very tan.

[> [> Very optimistic, Finn, but I think it's a deep tan : ) -- Scroll, 15:58:01 06/25/03 Wed

Or maybe I'm the one being pessimistic. (I mean about the lack of black, Asian, etc. people in the cast.) Cuz I saw Cordy as being very cookie-cutter in S1. She was the spoiled rich princess of a nice upper-middle class white family. I suppose she could've been mixed or Hispanic (I actually see the mixed thing more than the Hispanic) but it's not very likely, IMHO.

[> Re: Old rumour confirmed -- Rook, 16:38:02 06/25/03 Wed

The accent story doesn't Jibe at all with the DVD commentaries for WML/WML II. Of course the person giving the commentaries is Marti, but she was pretty detailed about the origins of the accent, involving an dialogue coach that they brought in and such.

Haven't read the article, but "turning down" may have been "turning down an offer to come in and read for the part." It's not uncommon for celebs to try and attacth their names to any succesful project they had even the most remote interest in.

[> [> Re: Old rumour confirmed -- Sofdog, 17:57:57 06/25/03 Wed

As I recall from some old article, BL was offered the role but couldn't take it because she was contractually bound to another show which didn't last long. Can't remember the name.

And as for CC's complexion. She looks white to me. Nothing about her features (not coloring) suggests a Latin or Mediterranean origin. Understanding of course that the concept of "white" has expanded with assimilation. When the immigration influx from southern Europe started, Italians, Spanish and Portuguese were uniformly considered not-white and other. Over the years Italians have become white while Spaniards have been lumped in with Central/South Americans. This is an inaccuracy given that the Latin and Chicano peoples descend from a blend of Native Americans, European settlers and African slaves.

Sorry. Brain fart.

[> [> [> Re: Old rumour confirmed -- heywhynot, 07:04:08 06/26/03 Thu

The lack of diversity on Buffy while very annoying, it was understandable being Sunnydale was portrayed as a small but middle class suburban town in California within a day's drive from Los Angeles on the coast. Many of such towns lack the diversity that is found in the rest of California. My hometown while being a ten minutes drive from San Francisco for example was 90+% white. Where my little brother goes to college it is well over 80% white. BtVS was reflecting the segregation that still occurs, which is horrible, but pretending it doesn't exist won't help it go away.

Now when they went to college in season four the lack of diversity was bad. I mean it was a freakin' UC campus They draw the top 3% from each public school (in addition to whomever else applies and is qualified). UCs tend to be more diverse than say a town like Sunnydale. You would expect to see many more characters of color than were shown in the background let alone as major characters on the show. Personally that is when the issue of diversity was a major problem on Buffy in my opinion. The only Black given major screen time in season 4 was in the army for goodness sake & went evil. The show kinda redeemed itself with Wood, who was shown as a human being warts and all.

In terms of racial classifications. There is really never any inaccuracy because well it is all arbitrary anyway. Social norms placed upon people that have a certain physical attributes. Hispanics are lumped together nevermind the fact latinos are a blend of different groupings, while Spanish are European in origin. None of it really makes sense once you sit down and think about it. What is too bad is that we have made race important because we have oppressed certain people because of their physical attributes creating an imbalance that still shows itself in major ways (like the lack of diversity on Buffy).

[> [> [> Re: Old rumour confirmed -- grrlzone, 11:15:58 06/27/03 Fri

Just a reminder that there's a difference between ethnicity and race (socially constructed as they might be), ie: I'm Latina and I have blonde hair and blue eyes.

Cordelia could be Latina even if she doesn't "look" Latina (whatever that means-- Rita Moreno, J-Lo, Mariah Carey, Salma Hayek, Cameron Diaz, and Lynda Carter are all Latinas and they look very different from each other).

And as Raquel Welch, Jamie-Lynn Sigler (Meadow Soprano) and Christy Turlington prove, you don't have to have a Spanish surname or a bowl of fruit permanently plastered on your head to be Latina. Remember the blonde-haired, blue eyed mom from "Growing Pains"? Yup, Joanna Kerns is Mexican-American and Irish-American.

And Cordelia could also be "Hispanic" in the Iberian sense or be multi-ethnic/racial/national or cultural and "look" white (whatever that means). Rita Hayworth, for example, was of Spanish and Irish heritage.

And in Hollywood, ironically enough, it's a Spaniard, Antonio Banderas, who plays "Latino"-- often Mexican (or, if it's a drug movie, Columbian-- how's that for stereotyping?) in almost all of his U.S. films.

Race, ethnicity, nationality and identity-- it's a complicated and sometimes not readily identifiable thing.

I do wish that in the Buffyverse that characters could have been _more_ overt about how their various racial and ethic identities colored their world. There were some good examples of how this could be done well: Willow as secularly Jewish and later as a gay (her preferred self-identification); Faith and Xander as working class; Giles as British and as an immigrant. And sexuality and gender are explored pretty well, I think, in the show-- there's no trans stuff, which sucks, but there is quite a bit of soul searching about what it means to be a man, a woman, a lover, a vamp (soul-free and otherwise) overlapped with sexual orientation, behavior and the complications of desire.

What bummed me out was that here were some real opportunities to explore race and ethnicity and this didn't happen as often as I would have liked. For example, Mr. Trick was really interesting to me. What would it have been like to be a black vampire? One take on this is explored in the book _The Gilda Stories_ but in the Buffyverse, Trick got killed off before his time. He had alot to say about racism, tho, in the few episodes he was in-- almost every line of Trick's counts.

Moreover, in Angel, we come to understand that the Demonverse has all sorts of interesting cultural identities and mores-- we get the hint that maybe there are all sorts of rich heritages in the sewers and in dark, dank places that we don't know anything about.

Remember Doyle's wannabe brain eaters?-- heck, just think about Doyle period! What does his story say about self-identification, identity dev't, "passing", assimilation, selling out and giving back to the community you're born into. There's some deep stuff happening here that is a parallel for racial identity and relations in the US, even if (like Star Trek's aliens) it's all couched in monsters and phantasms.

As Gossamer says, "Monsters make the most interesting people."

[> Judging from S1 and early S2 Cordy... -- Rob, 19:17:16 06/25/03 Wed

...I'm not sure that hiring a black actress would've been such a great idea. Whether intended or not, it might have sparked controversy that the only character of color was a bitch.


[> [> Re: Judging from S1 and early S2 Cordy... -- O'Cailleagh, 08:30:07 06/26/03 Thu

Probably the same reason they killed Kendra off. Controversy, I mean. They wanted the 'other' Slayer to turn Evil and didn't think they could do it with a black character. Thats how its seems in retrospect anyway.


[> [> [> Maybe, but I don't think Kendra's character... -- Scroll, 09:16:07 06/26/03 Thu

...could've been reworked to go "evil" the same way Faith went evil. Kendra's core personality was pretty well-established in "What's My Line" and it was one of a strong work ethic, presumably with strong ethics to back her up. She obeyed her Watcher, who would've kept her in line, and wasn't exactly the hungry-for-the-kill Slayer that Faith was. So I think character-wise Kendra couldn't have done anything but die a noble death -- well, I mean considering the amount of character development spent on her.

A new Slayer, however, could be molded differently. But I do agree that Joss probabaly wouldn't have cast a minority actor in the role of an evil Slayer. Might've been too controversial. Though nobody seems to have complained about Jasmine being black and evil. (Which I think is a good thing...) So maybe I'm making more of Joss' decision to get another Slayer that wasn't black. In fact, I'm pretty sure the main reason for Kendra's death was to amp up Buffy's guilt and angst quota!

[> [> [> [> But then again Jasmine truly was color-blind casting, which negates the fact that she's evil... -- Rob, 12:59:47 06/26/03 Thu

Both parents having been white and all. ;o)


[> [> [> [> [> Gina Tores thinks of herself as Hispanic -- Cleanthes, 13:48:20 06/26/03 Thu

She's Cuban-American - but she doesn't deny her skin color, of course. I met her at a *very* sparsely attended Xena convention some years ago in Jacksonville, Florida, so I had time for even more awkward silence and dumb questions in the autograph line.

She acted so very well opposite Iolaus on Hercules, too. She played a Sumerian princess, which was cool.

Leda and the Swan -- Brian, 14:47:22 06/25/03 Wed

"Did she put on his knowledge with his power
Before the indifferent beak could let her drop?"

I've been thinking about the Potentials. When Buffy shared her power with them, did they become aware of her knowledge, her past history, her memory of the whole line of slayers and watchers back to the beginning? (Watchers? We don't need no stinking Watchers!) Did they become aware of demons, vamps, and all the other creatures that go bump in the night? If so, then the First Evil really did fail, utterly and completely. Now across the world are Slayers with all that inherited training putting the deadly moves on all the nightmare nasties. Perhaps this is what led to the world being free of demon influence until we reach the time of Fray. Perhaps, now, the Scoobies really can retire as all those other Slayers are hard at work ending evil, giving the First Evil an everlasting set of nightmares.

I can see the folks of Angel Investigations hard at work in their high tower offices. "Ah, evil is afoot in Iowa. Quick, to the Angelmobile. Oh, nevertime, there's a Slayer already on it. Rats. Okay, Lilah, let's get back to that quarterly report on feeding the homeless. Sigh!"

Harry Potter chat? -- Alison, 20:44:34 06/25/03 Wed

since lulabelle's suggestion that we discuss Harry Potter on a certain night was archived, I'm putting the idea back out on the board. does anyone have a prefered time/day?

[> how about thursday night at 10ish? -- lulabelle, 21:18:16 06/25/03 Wed

[> [> works for me..anyone else have a comment? -- Alison, 22:28:34 06/25/03 Wed

[> [> [> i banked on there being more than 2 HP fans on the board...piffle, piffle... -- lulabelle, 22:48:20 06/25/03 Wed

[> Love to chat HP. -- HonorH, 23:17:41 06/25/03 Wed

I'll be there if I can.

Giles vs Gavin -- JBone, 21:13:56 06/25/03 Wed

vote here

today's bracker

I'm almost up and running on everything. Things seem to be going along swimmingly in the mean time. Except for all those undefeated characters. How will we ever resolve all that? They ALL can't win!

I want to give a shout out to cjl's handicapping. It's like looking at the Road to the Apocalypse through a whole new set of eyes, and liking what I see. Thank you. Oh, I've noticed you comment makers, but I've just haven't enough time yet to put the results up yet. After this opening week is over, I'll be able to devote more attention to you. Because you drive this bus. Well, not all of you at the same time, because a bus only has room for one driver...

[> Handicapping the Wiccan Region -- cjl, 08:18:00 06/26/03 Thu

(1)Willow Rosenberg v. (16)Holland Manners

Holland gave my all-time favorite Whedonverse speech in "Reprise," mocking Angel (and every other earnest dogooder in the universe) all the way down on their Elevator Ride to Hell. Besides Lilah, he was probably the best (worst?) possible leader for W&H's Special Projects Division. Given all that, Willow is still going to flay him alive. My favorite red-headed witch will wipe out all comers, and will unquestionably win the Region. Can't say I'm going to enjoy the regional finals, though. Willow v. Tara? Willow v. Giles? Ouch and double ouch. (ODDS to win the region: 2-3.)

(3)Dawn Summers/The Key v. (14)Chanterelle/Lily/Anne Steele

Believe it or not, I can see an upset here. "Can I be" Anne has gone through more changes in a limited number of appearances than almost any other character in the Buffyverse, from airheaded vampire groupie to L.A. community leader. Dawn, although attractively woman-sized and wielder of hypnotically shiny hair, has never lost her rep as a whiner, and Joss' radical plotline-ectomy in S7 didn't do her popularity any good, either. She'll probably edge by Anne, but she'll never make it into the finals. (ODDS: 15-1)

(9)Ethan Rayne v. (8)Janna Kalderash/Jenny Calendar

As a member of MOLOJ, I cannot offically comment on this bracket. (Unofficially, Jenny handily beats Wizard of Chaos Ethan, but runs into either a red-headed buzzsaw up top or the other "dead lost love" in this region.) (ODDS: 25-1)

(11)Jasmine v. (6)The First Evil

What was exactly was the First Evil's plan again? Eliminate the Slayer Line? Overrun the world with Turok-Han? Taunt Buffy to death? Laaaaaaaame. Jasmine had a far more organized strategy for world domination, and let's face it--wearing Gina Torres' body, she looked a heck of a lot better doing it. I would love for my favorite PTB to spread her divine beauty to later rounds, but she's going to be crushed, either by Tara's transcendent niceness or the awesome power of Willow's cuteness. (ODDS: 50-1)

(5)Allen Francis Doyle v. (12) Quentin Travers

Much as I like Harris Yulin as an actor, Quentin was simply too much of a pompous ass to even mourn his untimely demise. Doyle, on the other hand, is still mourned by many Angel fans--myself included. He's not going to make it to the finals, but he'll be around long enough for us to show that we miss him. (ODDS: 50-1)

(7)Jonathan Levinson v. (10)Amy Madison

Everybody's favorite nerd vs. the Wicked Witch of the West. As much as I sympathize with Amy about her lousy childhood, there comes a time when you've got to stop blaming your parents (or your peers) and just suck it up. Her whining about Willow in "Killer in Me" proved she learned nothing from her time as a rat, and she's probably scoring at the newest magic crackhouse as I write this. Jonathan, on the other hand, learned his lesson at the End. He died an unsung hero. Easy winner over Amy, but will probably fall to Tara--who will feel really bad about it. (ODDS: 25-1)

(13)D'Hoffryn v. (4)Tara Maclay

I'm currently writing a fanfic about D'Hoffryn, and I love the character. He's a combination of all-powerful demonic overlord, sleazy pimp, and perverse surrogate father figure to Anya and the rest of his "girls." You can write him a dozen different ways, and none of them would be OOC. Of course, he doesn't stand a chance against St. Tara, who could face off against her beloved Willow in the regional finals. (Did I say ouch?) (ODDS: 3-1)

(15)Gavin Park v. (2)Rupert Giles/Ripper

Admire DDK as an actor, but the role of Gavin never gave him anything to chew on. Better off dead and available for other projects (he's got a cameo in the new Hulk movie). As for Giles, not even the pod-ness of S7 can diminish his glorious Rippertude. He's the only one in this region who could conceivably pull off the unthinkable and upset Willow. (ODDS: 3-1)

[> [> Thanks for these run downs. It's like watching sports center. -- Rochefort, 13:04:21 06/26/03 Thu

[> Got me thinking about computer games... -- KdS, 08:44:23 06/26/03 Thu

If the BtVS/AtS computer game had been a Street Fighter type one-on-one fighter, what would be the special moves?

Xander - special PsycheOut! attack where his steadfastness and bravery reflects his oppponent's attack back on them.

Willow - need I write?

Cordelia - glows and levitates to the top of the screen, replenishing her energy to maximum.

Dru - hypnotic attack

Lorne and Dawn - both do Ultrasonic Scream


Caleb - RapidMisogyny! inflicts double damage with all attacks on female opponents

Jonathan - MarySueSpell! attack copies a randomly chosen special move from any of the other characters.

Wes - MultiTool! attack with his Swiss Army Knife weapons from Spin the Bottle

[> Can there be any doubt? The G-Man is, along with the Mayor, the favorite dark horse of this tourney -- Random, 11:29:42 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> Um, Ran? They're BOTH "G-Men" LOL -- dub ;o), 13:05:15 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> [> Heh...nah, Giles is the G-man, Gavin is the g-man...important distinction -- Random, 13:14:45 06/26/03 Thu

[> Gavin? Mr. "I'll get AI. I'll smother them in paoerwork?" -- LittleBite, 11:30:15 06/26/03 Thu

I want to know how many times we're allowed to vote against Gavin. [grins evilly]

[> [> Sigh... -- LittleBit, 16:01:03 06/26/03 Thu

Pay no attention to 'Bite. I keep explaining that the idea is to vote for a choice not against one.

Dreamer Easy in the Chair That Really Fits You - Thoughts on *End of Days* & *Chosen* - Part V -- OnM, 21:42:38 06/25/03 Wed

~ ~ ~ ( Continued from Part IV ) ~ ~ ~


There is no dark side to the moon. Matter of fact, it's all dark.

............ Pink Floyd


Many Buffyverse fans have commented that there often appear to be parallels in the events of the current
Angel series to that of BtVS. When you think about it, there has been one very primal positive energy
force has always been present through every year of both programs-- the sun.

Part of the key to understanding the First Evil is to realize that it only exists as the negation of
something real. Joss' choice to make the FE incorporeal isn't just a handy plot device-- it's making the
point that if you stop feeding energy to the FE, it weakens and drifts away, like the sun rising in the
morning drives back the darkness-- darkness which in physical reality is simply the absence of the
Another way of stating this precept: You can feed air into a vacuum, but the vacuum doesn't give
anything back-- it just takes in. It's all about power, and while we can talk about 'sides', there is often only
one real side, and the apparent other is only the vacuum of its absence.

This year on A:tS, we had The Beast, who literally took away the sun from Los Angeles, and presumably
from the rest of the world in due time, had he not been stopped. But wait just a moment-- was the sun
really gone, removed from the cosmos? Even though the beast had destroyed the Ra-Tet, and then
subsumed their collective powers, he did not actually remove the sun-- he only blocked its light and
heat from reaching the denizens of Los Angeles. A neat trick to be sure, and one requiring great power--
but despite this display of immense power the sun was still shining behind the curtain of the magicks.

Meanwhile in BtVS, the FE is raising an army of ubervamps, creatures who literally, physically cannot
survive in the light of day, and is pinning its hope for gaining corporeality on having their numbers grow
and grow, eventually outnumbering humans. Why vampires? Why not some other demon? Why not
demons in general?

On a purely rational basis, this makes no particular sense, but symbolically the ubers represent a primal
form of living negation. Vampires, after all, are "the undead"-- creatures defined not as being
independently alive, but only existing as reanimated dead bodies powered with a demon engine. 'Modern'
vampires often have many of the advanced characteristics and complexities of the humans they infect.
Some are clever, resourceful, talented, wealthy, powerful, devious. In season four, Adam chose a (modern)
vampire to be his 'First', because he identified with the hybrid nature of the creature-- one "who walks in
both worlds, but belongs to neither". This kind of creature really does not serve the First Evil all that well.

Returning to the practical from the symbolic, The First doesn't want minions that are clever unless such
cleverness suits its ends. The Turok-han aren't ever likely to question or rebel against the First, as Spike
did, or Caleb might have if he ever thought the FE was going to betray him. Caleb sold his soul to the FE
because it granted him immense power in return, but did he really expect it to honor the bargain if it
became inconvenient? Apparently so, but as I mentioned just a while ago, the FE seemed as impressed with
Buffy's violence directed at Caleb as it was with Caleb. As it comments to Buffy when it appears before
her in the Casa Summers basement, "Who needs a right arm when you have an army?"

So for the FE, culturing 'Primal Negation' of and by itself is both sufficient and highly desirable-- make the
vacuum intense enough, and everything positive gets sucked in. The multitudes of Hells that exist in the
Buffyverse may themselves represent a vacuum in the metaphysical sense-- how many times during seasons
past have we heard the phrase 'sucked into hell'? If the FE succeeds in its plan to eventually outnumber
humans with its army of undead, then it will have accomplished the equivalent of having the sun blotted out
completely. If this occurs, and the Slayer line has also been destroyed or crippled, then humanity is unlikely
to ever re-tip the balance in its favor, much like at some point the intense gravity of a black hole will not
even allow light to escape its event horizon.

Thus, both metaphorically and literally, the sun is a type of god to us by virtue of making our human
existence possible, and Buffy can be seen as a channel for the sun's power. So what's with the moon, then?
If we consider the two scenes in Chosen where Buffy is staring at the moon and/or bathed in its
light-- which in reality is the reflected light of the sun, it could be reasoned by extension that Buffy
is a channel for light, even in the midst of darkness. The moon was often seen as a celestial
counterpart for the sun in many ancient human mythologies, but millenia ago it wasn't understood that the
moon is not a self-luminous body. The Buffyverse may have the presence of ancient beings in it, but it is
fundamentally a modern story, and in modern times we comprehend that the moon is a mirror that keeps
part of the sun alive even if is on the other side of the world from us. As before, consider the last seven
years, and how many times we have seen Buffy under moonlight, and you'll realize that this sun/ mirror/
Buffy metaphor is every bit as pervasive as the vacuum/negation one. Think in particular to
Conversations with Dead People and the opening scene with the brightly moonlit graveyard that
was so strangely beautiful despite the somber reality of the setting-- and who was that tiny figure
wandering about, keeping hell at bay?

Now Spike's part in the all this becomes clearer. Spike has slowly evolved from a creature of the night into
one who has embraced the sun, even if only in reflection, with Buffy as the mirror. The crystal amulet he
holds in his hand is the final link that will take him fully into the bright light of day, a physical manifestation
of the spiritual link that Buffy has provided. As the dawn nears, he looks up and over to Buffy, who is
standing at the foot of the basement stairs looking intensely back at him. The scene is framed so that Spike
is at far stage left, and Buffy is at far stage right, just barely inside the edges of the screen. In a previous
year, this visual phrasing would likely have contemplated a face-off between enemies, but this time it surely
indicates that despite the apparent space between them, they are now connected and of a common purpose.
It's a compellingly dramatic scene despite its brevity and starkness, and it reminds me of Hush in
that great meaning is conveyed without a word being spoken.


It is now full on morning, and we see the exterior of Sunnydale High. Robin Wood appears, leading the
'army' of protos up to the school entrance and then on inside. (I take particular note of the fact that it's
Dawn and Faith as the very first persons walking fast right behind Robin, then the protos and the other
Scoobies. We don't see Buffy just yet.) As they stride down the hallway and come to a stop, Buffy appears
and along with Wood begins directing who will go where. Faith and Spike lead the protos to the basement
and the Seal of Danthalzar. Kennedy goes off to Wood's office and starts to set things up for Willow.
Wood then makes suggestions as to where the 'civilians' will be stationed, and Giles follows up:

Giles: Teams of two then, and I suggest you and I take the lounge.

Wood: I concur.

Buffy: Xander, I want you with Dawn.

Xander: I concur.

Dawn: We'll take the atrium.

Anya: So that leaves me and the dungeon master in the north hall.

Andrew: We will defend it with our very lives.

Anya: Yes, we'll defend it with his very life.

Andrew pauses to pull out a wrinkled sheet of paper, and haltingly tries to give an awards-show type
speech saying how honored he is to die for the cause, but after a few patient moments (for Anya anyway),
Anya herds him off to their spot. As Wood heads off to his station, Dawn steps up to Buffy, all cool
purpose and intensity. The great scenes that this ep is crammed with just keep on coming, as Dawn proves
that Buffy was dead on in Grave when she predicted that Dawn "will grow up to be powerful":

Dawn: I'm gonna check out our field of engagement.

( She starts down the hall. Buffy goes after her. )

Buffy: Dawn...

Dawn: No.

( Dawn turns back, not waiting for Buffy to speak. )

Dawn: Anything you say is gonna sound like goodbye.

In the opening scene of the 7th season, we saw Buffy teaching Dawn how to defend herself against
vampires and other attackers, along with the critical need to understand "who has the power". In this last
act of this final season, we see that Dawn has fully come in to her own power. As the fate of the world is
about to hang in the balance, there is no hesitancy, only a fierce determination and maturity that belies
Dawn's mere 16 years of life. Buffy is awed, but keeps a lid on it while Dawn pivots about and
purposefully makes her way down the hall, her cache of weapons resting as naturally on her frame as if she
was born to carry them. As Buffy turns back to Giles, Willow and Xander, we get to see Sarah in her prime
acting element as a short but sharp look of abject pride beams from her face-- you can almost hear Buffy
think Damn, is she the coolest sister in the world, or what??

It is now only the 'core four' remaining, and as promised we really are back to the beginning, as the
scene setup mirrors the end minutes of The Harvest, the second part of the series opener. The old
comrades stare at one another silently for several long seconds, then Buffy breaks the pregnant pause with:

Buffy: So. What do you guys wanna do tomorrow?

Willow:Nothing strenuous...

Xander: Mini-golf is always the first thing that comes to mind.

Giles: Well, I think we can do better than that.

Buffy: I'm pretty much thinking about shopping. As usual.

Willow:There's an Agnes B. in the new mall!

Xander: I could use a few items.

Giles: Well, no, aren't we gonna discuss this? We're saving the world to go to the mall?

Buffy: I'm having a wicked shoe craving.

Xander: Aren't you on the patch?

Willow:Those never work.

Giles: And I'm just here, invisible to the eye, not having any vote...

( And the kids are headed off, leaving Giles to watch them. )

Xander: See, it's the eye-patch thing.

Buffy: Right, do you go with the full black secret agent look--

Willow:Or the puffy shirt pirate-slash-poet feel. Sensitive yet manly.

Xander: Now you're gettin' a little renaissance fair on me.

Buffy: It's a fine line.

( Giles turns away from them. )

Giles: The earth is definitely doomed.


We are down in the school basement at the Seal of Danzalthar, and all of the potentials are tightly circled
around it, along with Faith and Spike. Buffy enters the room and moves over next to Faith in the circle.
Faith offers Buffy a knife, presumably the one that Andrew used to open the seal before. Buffy cuts herself
on the hand, and holds the wound out over the Seal after passing the knife along to Faith, who does the
same and then passes it to Amanda. We cut to a shot of the Seal opening in its usual Hellraiser-inspired
fashion as all of the members of the circle hold their hands out over the seal, anointing it with their blood.
Buffy and company then enter the opening and descend into the space below.

Two observations here, one a question that I have no answer for, and the other more of a minor personal
button topic for your humble movie man. First, is the Seal an actual portal to another dimension, or is this
part of the Hellmouth just a great big ol' cavern under the high school? I was under the impression that it
was a dimensional portal, but if that was the case, why should the destruction of the Turok-han cavern
cause the school and later Sunnydale to collapse into it when it was destroyed? Not that it matters greatly,
because hey-- great special effects coming soon to this neighborhood, but it does wonder me a mite.

Second, the blood ritual thang where the ritualee slices their palm and then lets the blood drip out etc. is a
standard movie (and by extension TV) cliche, I know this. But like the chloroform cliche or the surviving
the close-by explosion cliche, it's fundamentally stupid. Why on earth would you cut the palm of your
Do you have any idea just how densely packed the hand is with bones, tendons, nerves, blood
vessels, etc. compared to some of the more fleshy parts of the body? And the complexity is there because
the hand has to move?? And move lot, and tightly grip things, like weapons??? Now
I grant you that Buffy and Faith would probably be healed up in a few minutes or so if they're in the proper
state of mind, but what about the protos? They're already likely shit-scared (as witness Xander's bathroom
break comment a short while back) and now you want them to be wrasslin' with Ubers or wielding swords
and suchlike with a sliced up hand? Sheesh.

Back to the cavern/other dimension or whatever it is, we see the group approach a cliff edge below which
are thousands of Turok-han partying away, or else waiting for the next Lord of the Rings flick to call for
extras. Spike expresses concern that the crystal amulet isn't doing whatever it's supposed to do yet, and
Faith points out that if Willow doesn't pull off the mojo as planned, he'll have other things to worry about
than bad Liz Taylor vibes. Buffy is valiantly trying to not look or sound nervous after seeing that the Ubie
reality is every bit as scary as the vision the Shadowmen provided her with, and failing somewhat.
Suddenly, the Turok-han notice the intruders, and turn en masse and begin scrambling up the cliff to
attack. Buffy quietly mutters, "Willow, now..."

Back upstairs, above the seal in Wood's office, Willow is sitting cross-legged on the floor, starting the
spell as Kennedy watches. Willow leans forward, places both hands on the Scythe, and begins chanting
quietly. As the spell enables, a brilliant white light bathes the Scythe and then envelopes Willow. Kennedy
is stunned with a force like nothing she has ever experienced, and we cut back to the latter part of Buffy's
earlier speech to the potentials that we didn't get to hear before, and to quote Mayor Wilkins, it's a

... What if you could have that power? Now. All of you. In every generation one Slayer is
born because a bunch of guys that died thousands of years ago made up that rule. They were powerful
men. (points to Willow) This woman is more powerful than all of them combined. So I say we change the
rules. I say my power should be our power. Tomorrow Willow will use the essence of this Scythe, that
contains the energy and history of so many Slayers, to change our destiny. From now on, every girl in the
world who might be a Slayer, will be a Slayer. Every girl who could have the power, will have the power.
Who can stand up, will stand up. Every one of you, and girls we've never known, and generations to
come... they will have strength they never dreamed of, and more than that, they will have each other.
Slayers. Every one of us. Make your choice. Are you ready to be strong?

The energy tapped from the mystical properties of the Scythe radiates out everywhere, and we cut to a
series of shots showing girls from all over the world as the gift of power envelops them. (I've adapted most
of the descriptions here from the shooting script, just condensing them together):

In Wood's office, Kennedy's head rears into frame, her eyes sparkling with power. Down below in the
cavern, the potentials are potentials no more as each and every one is simultaneously Called, the individual
reactions varying but the end results the same-- whoa!

In India, a girl has fallen to the floor, wide-eyed as the power and knowledge course through her. We cut
to an inner city school where unnoticed by the passing throng of students in the school hallway, an
African-American girl leans against her locker, breathing hard, looking almost puzzled. Then it's the inside
of a nondescript trailer in the daytime, as we see the back of a beefy fellow who is about to strike someone
-- and her hand blocks his blow. She rises into frame, with a cold fury in her eyes that suggests that won't
be happening again.

In a Japanese home, it is nighttime, and the family is having dinner as the daughter backs away from the
table, trying to keep her balance. Finally, a twelve year old girl stands uncertainly at the plate of a baseball
diamond as the power hits her: she takes it in, looking down in confusion.... then looking back up, slowly,
her stance straightening and a wicked grin on her face.

And I dearly love that last shot-- it's just so incredibly cool, and you don't have to be a baseball fan to
appreciate it. And the coolness continues unabated as Kennedy comes out of her trip and sees Willow
literally glowing (sunlight metaphor again) as the energy of the spell channels through her. No black hair
and dark matter eyeballs this time-- this is power from a different place. The spell ends, and Willow looks
exhausted but ecstatic. Kennedy looks at Willow with much the same kind of astonished awe that Buffy
directed at Dawn upstairs in the hallway, and declares that Willow is a goddess. Willow hands Kennedy the
Scythe, and tells her "...and you're a Slayer. Get this to Buffy." Kennedy rises up and races out the door,
headed for the basement. Willow flops over on her side on the floor, the after-glow effect of the spell still
permeating her being, big goofy grin on her face, and we get another unforgettable dialog moment:

Willow: That was nifty!

Meanwhile significant demon ass-kickage is taking place in the upper cavern below the Seal. The newly
reborn protos are waling away at the Turok-han pouring over the cliff-edge, while Buffy and Faith are
bringing their years of experience to bear in terms of some serious carnage. Spike is also helping out, but
so far the amulet still hasn't booted up. Kennedy enters the cavern, and tosses the Scythe to Buffy, who
effortlessly catches it and dusts several vamps in a single stroke.

Now, mystical Scythe-spell or no, newbie Slayers en masse or no, Buffy and Faith's veteran experience or
no, many fans have pointed out that the odds are still ridiculous. How many thousand Ubies are there? I
dunno, but it's a lotta thousands, I can tell you that fer sure. There are like 20 or 30 total Slayers,
and if each one could manage to kill an average of 100 Ubies, then that still only comes to 2000 or 3000
vamps. I would hazard a guess that there's more where they came from. What this means is that Spike's
shiny little who-ket needs to conjure up some additional mojo on the same level as Willow's spell, and post

And, what the hell, it does. I mean, what did you expect? This is show biz, you know!

But first, the 'civilians' are busy engaging in battle with the smaller group of Turok-han that managed to
make it up and out of the Seal. Giles and Wood, Dawn and Xander and even Anya and Andrew manage to
slow the vamps down a bit, although it's obvious that long term thery're gonna be toast. OK, Andrew will
probably be toast first, considering that according to Joss, he's 'Jerry Lewis with a sword'. But as always,
there will be the inevitable ME twist thrown in to confound us all.

Andrew: I think they're coming...

Anya: Oh God. I'm terrified. I didn't think... I just figured you would be terrified and I would be
sarcastic about it.

Andrew: (terrified, no question, but trying to be supportive) Picture happy things. A lake. Candy
canes. Bunnies.

( Anya's eyes narrow. )

Anya: Bunnies. Floppy, hoppy, bunnies.

(Her sword comes up, all of her fear gone. )

In the Dawn and Xander scene, Dawn gives me pause to wonder whether or not she was hit with the
Scythe energy also. The question of whether or not Dawn was also a potential Slayer is not answered in
this episode, but as you may recall, the issue was left ambiguous earlier in the season. In the episode
Potential, Willow's locator spell seems to indicate that Dawn could be called, but then we are lead
to believe that the glowy light thing only passed through Dawn on its way to Amanda, who was
outside the door at the time. Well, yeah, maybe, but she sure as anything can handle herself in battle-- first
the clever feint with the tarp that dusts the three Ubies in a blast of noonday sun, then displaying a wicked
way with a sword when the bad guys attack Xander. Sho-nuff looks mighty Slayerish to me.

Below the Seal, the battle is starting to take its toll on everyone, as Turok-han keep getting dusted but
more just quickly take the place of the vanquished. Buffy, whether because of exhaustion or distraction,
does not realize that an armed vamp is right behind her, and the creature siezes the moment, stabbing Buffy
through the abdomen with its sword. Buffy, in shock and pain, tries to remain standing but falls face first to
the ground in a manner reminiscent of when she fell into the pool of water in the Master's lair in
Prophecy Girl. Naturally, we cut to a commercial-- so handy, whatever would we do without them?

When we come back and soon return to the fight in the cavern, we see Faith suddenly notice that Buffy is
down, and she immediately makes her way over to the fallen leader, the look on her face filled with both
anger and fear. She quickly tries to force the negative emotions off her countenance as she crouches down
before the woman who might very well be breathing her last. What will happen now if Buffy dies? Not that
I thought for a moment that this would actually happen, but if it did, the answer is soon made plain:

Faith: Buffy?

Buffy: (weakly, but doing what must be done) Hold the line...

And she holds out the Scythe to Faith. Past is now prolog, and as she did in Empty Places, Buffy
passes the leadership torch again, trusting Faith to take over in her place. A solemn moment passes as we
watch the emotions play out on Faith's face, and then Faith takes the Scythe. She stabs the vamp behind
her without even looking at him, and then (as Joss so colorfully phrases it in the script) 'goes apeshit on the

The angle of view changes toward Spike, as pain racks his body-- the amulet is starting to do whatever it's
going to do, but it almost seems like it's a misfire or a crashing program, as if having Buffy put down is
damping out the magicks. He struggles, tosses away a vamp, confusion on his face. Another uber gets
Faith around the neck from behind her, and a mass of vamps quickly pile on top of her. Faith tosses the
Scythe to Rona, who grabs it and starts hacking away while Faith struggles to escape.

Buffy is still down, and not looking any better. As she watches, a bleeding Amanda drops right in front of
her, eyes wide open, and her body very dead. Buffy winces, fighting off the growing pit of desperation but
she's starting to lose that battle too. Two more Slayers fall, and we cut to Kennedy who is backed against
a wall, her weapon knocked from her hand, trying to steady herself. The troops are doing their damnedest,
but it just isn't enough-- the evil hoard seems truly endless. We cut back to Buffy, who looks up to see the
First Evil, who once again looks just like Buffy, bleeding abdominal wound and all. The FE can't resist the
opportunity to taunt:

Buffy/First: Ooh! Ow! Mommy! This mortal wound is all... itchy!

( The FE leans in, smiles, almost betraying something approaching real sympathy)

Buffy/First: You pulled a neat trick. Hey, you came pretty close to smacking me down. What
more do you want?

Once again, bad move on the part of the First. Buffy now looks more enraged than hurt, and as the First
stares back, smile quickly shifting to a look of sheer disbelief, Buffy begins slowly pushing herself back up
towards a standing position, absolute indomitable fury in her eyes.

Buffy: I want you... to get out of my face.

The First looks suddenly worried, as well the hell it should. The camera shifts down to slo-mo as Buffy
rises. She is sweaty and bleeding, her hair is dusty and in her face, and I instantly flash back to the image of
'Cave Slayer Buffy' in the 4th season's Beer Bad.

The First should have taken the advice that Xander gave back then-- "Don't make Cave-Slayer
. If it had just kept quiet, didn't put in that final personal appearance, didn't decide to go with
the big gloat... but it's too late now. When Buffy gets upset, mayhem generally follows. When Buffy is
angry, hell should run for cover. When Buffy is at a point where even Gandhi would be pissed off,
reality bends.

The FE is nowhere in sight as Buffy literally does her very best Neo and rises from the (near) dead one
more time. Even more incredibly, she brings everyone else back with her. Rona sees Buffy back on her feet
and immediately throws her the Scythe. Buffy catches it and stands up a little straighter. She screams, and
swings the Scythe like it's a bat, knocking a whole cluster of Turok-han back and over the edge of the cliff
in one single blow. Faith suddenly flips off the entire pile of ubers that were holding her to he ground, and
the rest of the Slayers shift into something beyond overdrive as suddenly limitless positive energy seems to
pour back into the space from somewhere, filling the women with new and even more powerful strength.

No cause to paraphrase this next part-- Joss captures the moment better in the shooting script than I could
possibly ever do:

Sauron himself would be, like, "dude..."

~ ~ ~ (Continued in Part VI ) ~ ~ ~

[> The usual ***SPOILERS*** for eps, blah-dee-blah-blah, and Ooo! .. Ooo!! Stay tuned for... -- OnM, 21:54:10 06/25/03 Wed

.. (or run like hell from) the next installment, ye aulde part the VIth, up on this Saturday sometime, followed by (really! I mean it this time-- truly, madly, deeply for real!) the big ol' Final Wrap Up Pt VII on Sunday.


You gotta suffer if you wanna sing the blues.

............ Dave Bromberg



[> [> Heeeeyyyy! I missed Part III! How'd that happen?! -- Marie, 04:47:31 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> [> Here's OnM's Part III (Hope no one minds' - if so? Delete) -- s'kat (who saved it), 08:02:06 06/26/03 Thu

Hope you don't mine my reposting this OnM. I think this may include I & II as well not sure, since the whole thing seems to begin here...I sort of saved to hard drive so I could read all together.

Date Posted: 19:28:50 06/22/03 Sun
Author: OnM
Subject: Dreamer Easy in the Chair That Really Fits You - Thoughts on *End of Days* & *Chosen* - Part III


Baptism of fire, I never knew what that meant
But now the flames are rising higher, I guess I haven't seen anything yet
Because it's coming down around me and I am rising up
Like a phoenix from the ashes, wings across the blue
The only way out is through

Forest of fury, kindling of fear
Oh see how dark the woods have grown after all these years
And now they're coming down around me and I am rising up
Like a lily from the shadows, glistening and perfumed
The only way out is through

All the detours taken never lead you home
What a maze you find yourself in and still alone
Oh you thought it should be easy so the truth eluded you
The only way out is through

Baptism of fire all happening within
Illusions burn like tall grass in a wild and reckless wind
And now they're coming down around me and I am rising up
Like a great bell resurrected, ringing loud and true
The only way out is through

............ Julie Snow


And she turns to me with her hand extended / Her palm is split with a flower with a flame

............ Suzanne Vega, from Solitude Standing


I want the fire back.

............ Buffy, from Once More With Feeling


It's about 20 minutes to 8 PM, Eastern Standard on Tuesday May the 20th, 2003. I left my workplace at
about the usual closing time, stopped to pick up a few groceries at the supermarket on the way home, and
walked in the old home door about 7:30-ish. Some frozen foodstuffs destined for my dinner go for a ride in
the microwave while I log on to the board to see if anyone else is getting revved up for the possible BtVS
equivalent of Moulin Rouge's 'Spectacular Spectacular!'.

Except I'm not really revved up-- there is serious anticipation, yea and verily and all, but it's a
controlled anticipation, desire tempered by reason. And with very good reason, I might add,
because how can whatever artistic thought taking physical form between 8 and 9 this evening possibly live
up to my expectations? It isn't even a whole hour, just a mere 42 minutes or so to wrap up oodles of plot
points (or not) and sum up the seasonal theme (or not) and furthermore sum up the entire series, all seven
years of it (or... not) and leave me all shaken and breathless and gloriously WOW!!-like.

Or Not. One of the surest ways to diminish your enjoyment of any experience is to get so high on
the theory before the principle actually connects with reality that you end up wishing reality wasn't. So I
duly note that the board is pretty quiet, considering, and then I wonder if some other fans aren't feeling the
same way. I log off, switch from defrost to cook, and start cuing the VCR's into pre-launch mode.

The Eightnight Hour arrives, and then passes, and all too soon it is 9, and I am left thinking hummm...
that was... an ending, all right. Beyond that, I wasn't quite sure what to think, except that the
24 season finale was also just starting up right now, and I had to quickly change mental gears to a
different ratio(nale) and get psyched to view what will happen on my second favorite TV show of the last 2

The next hour passes, and 24 also winds out and over, with This Year's Twist once again suitably
torquey and perverse. 10 PM, and time to rewind and re-Buffyize, since the evening ain't over until the thin
lady smiles. ( I clearly remembered how very much I liked the final scene and many other nifty bits, but the
rest was kind of a blur in between the usual miserable %&!*$# commercials. How could it have been over
so very soon? ) As I expected, the second time through the show proved much more rewarding and besides
which FAST FORWARD BUTTON past the %&!*$# commercials, bonus!!

With all the anticipatory tension gone from the vibes surrounding this last-ever-original-airing-thang, I got
to relax and release my desires and preconceptions and simply partake of the offering as presented. As I did
so, previously Jossed-over details appeared. The flow of show-time, while still very rapid, became far more
natural and right-feeling. A few odd points that had bothered me initially didn't this time, or bothered me
much less. The stuff that I really liked on first viewing I adored by the second, and I even forgot to be
pissed that my two major hoped-for wrap-up scenes didn't even remotely appear. The Mona Lisa Buffy
smile emerges once again at the end and we cut to black, and I think Oh, this is cool. He's done the
impossible again-- he ended the show without ending the shew, the really big shew, that is. As
promised, the Buffyverse lives on, although this one big honkin' portion of the neverending story has duly
concluded. The original 6.5 to 7 rating I had quickly pegged the show with on first viddy rose a solid
point-and-a-half-ish to 8.5.

10:45 PM. Be kind, rewind, and watch it again:

Dawn: Dumbass.

Xander: It's a Summers' thing. All very violent.

Giles: I think it's bloody brilliant.

Willow: That was nifty.

Buffy: I love you.

Spike: No you don't. But thanks for saying it.

The handclasp, the look in the eyes, the fire.

Robin and Faith.

The Sunnydale sign falls into the gaping crater.

That smile. So simple, so perfect. Bloody brilliant indeed.

11:30 PM and I go to sleep thinking about it. I wake up a few hours later, and noting that the show should
have aired on the West Coast by now, I log on to ATPochat and there are like 30-some people there,
which I am pretty sure is a record of some kind. All in all, a pretty good night. The Slayer lives-- long live
the Buffyverse.




It begins right where it ended, from episode last-- Angel appears miraculously with intent to smite down
the evil Caleb, but on her request steps back to watch Buffy have the last word-- or smitening, as it were.
After gut-slashing Caleb in much the same manner that the Bringers employed on the protos, Buffy and
Angel look longingly at one another and move on to some kissage. Buffy steps back to bask a little, then:

Buffy: Okay. I'm basked. What are you doing here?

Angel: Not saving the damsel in distress, that's for sure.

Buffy: You know me. Not big with the damseling.

They chat a bit more, and Angel is about to introduce the official Wolfram & Hart First Evil File Folder
and matching Elizabeth Taylor Mystical Scrubbing Bubbles Crystal Amulet, when sure enough, jenoff was
right on the money, for lo, Caleb the I'm-not-quite-dead-yet! misogynist rises up and smite-ifies Angel a
good one upside the head. Angel goes flying, apparently knocked out, and Caleb quickly reminds Buffy
that dead or not, 'bitch' is still his favorite all-time word. We cut to the (~sob! whine!~) last ever BtVS
opening credits sequence and (~Grr! Arrgh!!~) stupid opening endless commercial set.

OK, it only seems endless, because eventually we do return to the actual adventure and Buffy reasonably
requesting just how many times does she have to kill Caleb? Ballpark?

After some additional serious back-and-forth fighting, Caleb displays some of his very best book-learnin'
when he accurately comments that Buffy doesn't possess any testicles, and Buffy follows up with some
very best Scythe-matterage when she deprives Caleb of his. Now, this might seem just a little too radical
feminist for some metaphor-wise, but rest assured there is a higher purpose involved. Since Caleb doesn't
seem to have much in the way of verbal response to Buffy's (re: balls) "Who does these days?", she
follows through by yanking upward on the Scythe and apparently slicing the C-man in two.

Angel regains consciousness, ready to fight, but quickly discovers that Buffy has brandished her ultimate
weapon in the fight against Evil-- bad puns:

Angel: Okay, now I'm pissed. Where is he?

( Buffy indicates the floor to her left. Angel looks. Then she indicates the floor to her right. Angel looks,
then back at her, impressed. Buffy smiles girlishly. )

Buffy: He had to split.

One of the first of many favorite moments in this final fling is what happens next-- Buffy laughs, a goofy,
snorting, belch of a laugh that seems totally in character only because Joss had the audacity to script it and
Sarah the consummate acting ability to make it seem perfectly natural. And of course, why stop with just a
bad pun when you can make it work on yet another level, namely that Caleb was known to refer to women
derisively as 'splits'. As I said, not the act itself, but what it was leading up to-- all prime Jossian stuff.

Angel goes on to give Buffy the W&H file, and the crystal pendant, stating that he doesn't know the actual
nature of what the pendant is supposed to do, only that it needs to be worn by someone with a soul, but
more than human-- a champion. Naturally, he assumes that this means him, but Buffy points out it could
just as easily be her. Angel doesn't care for that idea, because he is afraid that using the amulet might have
bad consequences for the wearer, and he won't have Buffy risk it. (In all fairness, since W&H was the
provider of this 'weapon', Angel would have pretty good reason to be suspicious of there being a 'gift
with purchase'.)

Buffy then realizes that Angel wants to be directly involved with her and the rest of the Scoobies in the
coming battle, and she tells him calmly but firmly that she doesn't want him to help her that way. Angel is
surprised at this rejection, and wants to know the reason why. Buffy tells him that if she fails in her quest to
stop the FE and its army of Turok-hans, she will need a 'second front' to take over for her, and that Angel
would have to be in charge of that. It's a logical and reasonable plan, but Angel suspects that there is some
other reason that Buffy is reluctant to inform him of, and he guesses correctly-- it has to do with Spike.

Sometime during this exchange, Spike has snuck back out of the pyramid after hearing that Angel wants to
fight at Buffy's side, reasonably assuming that now that Buffy's old boyfriend is back, he's going to be out
of the picture, or at best playing battleground second banana to Angel. (There is a bit of a timing-continuity
problem with this scene that I'll mention in just a little while when we get to the scene where Buffy returns
to Casa Summers). Buffy leaves the pyramid, and Angel follows insisting on some clarification, wanting to
know if Spike is involved with Buffy in a more personal way:

Angel: Is he your boyfriend?

Buffy: Is that your business?

Angel: Are you in love with him?

( Beat. Buffy can't answer. )

Angel: Maybe I'm outta line, but this is kind of a curveball for me. We are talking about Spike

Buffy: It's different. He's different. He has a soul now.

Angel: Oh. Well.

Buffy: What?

Angel: No, no, that's great. (mumbling) Everyone's got a soul now.

Buffy: What are you, pissed?

Angel: No, it's great. One for our side.

Buffy: He'll make a difference.

Angel: (almost to himself) You know, I started it. The whole... having a soul. Before it was all the
'cool new thing'...

Buffy: Oh my god, are you twelve?

Angel: I'm gettin' the brush-off for Captain Peroxide, it doesn't bring out the champion in me.

Buffy: It's not the brush-off. Having both of you here would be... confusing.

Angel: For who?

Buffy: Everybody! Why are you so-- Are you gonna come by and get all Dawson on me every
time I have a boyfriend?

Angel: Aha! Boyfriend!

Buffy: He's not! But... (thinks about it) He is in my heart.

Angel: That'll end well.

Buffy: And what was the highlight of our relationship? The time you broke up with me or the time
I killed you?

This exchange leads to another of those bizarre moments when you hear something, and can't quite believe
that you just heard what you heard. Deja who? Did she just compare herself to cookie dough? Ye gods...

Buffy: You know, I've always figured there was something wrong with me, 'cause I never made it
work. But maybe I'm not supposed to.

Angel: Because you're the Slayer?

Buffy: Because... okay, I'm cookie dough, okay?

Angel: Yet another curveball...

Buffy: I'm not done baking yet. I'm not finished becoming... whoever the hell it is I'm gonna turn
out to be. I've been looking for someone to make me feel whole, and maybe I just need to be
whole. I make it through this, and the next thing, and the next... maybe one day I turn around and realize
I'm ready. I'm cookies. And then if I want someone to eat m-- or, to enjoy warm delicious cookie-me, then
that's fine. That'll be then. When I'm done.

Angel: Any thoughts on who might enjoy... do I have to go with the cookie analogy?

Way back when at the end of season five, I had a very similar reaction to the epitaph "She saved the world.
A lot." when I first saw it. Huh? Here we were, literally seconds after an emotionally devastating moment
and The Joss is being flippant. "A lot." ? Even armed with the well-known spoilery foreknowledge
that the Buffster would rise again in the fall, it just seemed too out there on first reading, like the
envelope was pushed too far. Some time and many re-viewings later, I can't possibly think of the
now-famous remembrance being anything else-- it was a perfect fit to both the show and the character, and
Joss knew it, and I just had to move my mind around to better grab the gestalt of it. So it is becoming with
the cookie-dough speech-- it really is yet another classic Buffy riff, and again kudos to Sarah for making
the words work-- with the efforts of a lesser actor, it would have remained ridiculous instead of endearing
no matter how many times you heard it.

So Angel gets with the current program, and the two old soulmates part once again, with the sitch
cunningly leveraged to neither confirm nor deny future B/A shippage. (This kind of storyline ambiguity is a
recurrent theme throughout the entire episode, and I can't help but admire how so many future possibilities
were left extant. For a series 'finale', there was relatively little finality to the universe itself. This may
bother some fans, but I greatly appreciated it. I'll be discussing this aspect of the writing in a bit more
detail near the end of the essay).

Buffy returns home, and no sooner gets in the front door than she notices that Xander and Dawn are there,
along with Anya, Willow and Giles. Xander looks kind of worse for wear, and Dawn looks... pissed. Buffy
walks over and stands in front of her sister, who, after a few seconds, kicks her in the shins. No whiny
Dawn here, dear friends-- all cool focus and intent. Just think, if the fans who had wanted Dawn killed off
sometime during the past several years had gotten their way, we would have never gotten to hear the

Buffy: Ow...

Dawn: Dumbass.

( Buffy looks over at Xander, who just throws up his hands. )

Xander: Don't look at me, this is a Summers' thing. It's all very violent.

Buffy: (looking back at Dawn) You get killed, I'm telling.

While the main focus of Chosen is undoubtably about Buffy, I admired the way that each of the
characters were given some great moments, even if they were fairly brief in terms of screen time. Dawn
gets a number of other good moments besides this one, some subtle and others less so, but the moments
collectively add up to defining her character perfectly as it currently exists at this point in the mythology.
The same is true with Anya, as in this last scene and the one following, where she shows her affection for
Xander in minor but expressive ways, such as when she gently pats his head after the 'eye-socket' joke falls
flat. While it might be questionable to presume that Anya's affection for humans extends much beyond
Xander, (despite last week's Andrew/Anya interaction) her role in the final battle proves otherwise. In
getting past Xander's past betrayal and accepting that she loves him anyway, Anya has learned that this
forgiveness stuff humans keep going on about really is more personally satisfying than vengeance ever was.

If we haven't begun to realize it already, it soon becomes more and more apparent that the overall tone of
this season finale is different than all of the ones that have come before. There has been a fair amount of
commentary posted to date that attempts to place Chosen either stylistically or thematically in
groups with previous season-enders, with varying degrees of success. I think that one of the primary
reasons why this is such a challenging effort is that Chosen really isn't like any of the previous

It is my personal observation that the ME crew in general and Joss in particular have worked hard to make
each and every year of BtVS end differently in some important way. The yearly endgame needs to serve
what are normally contradictory requirements-- the seasonal arc must have a sense of resolution or
completeness, but at the same time it can never definitively 'end' things on a macrocosmic scale, to allow
the possibility of future stories. While to some degree you can revisit the same basic human issues over and
over again as the characters grown and change, literal repetition of events quickly leads to boredom. Joss
promised that the seventh season would be about going 'back to the beginning', but at the same time both
he and we know that this can't be done, not literally anyway. It is impossible to capture the raw energy of
the first few years, not unless you are willing to let your characters live in a perpetual time-warp. If
Chosen lacks the firey energy of Becoming or Graduation Day, I'm not sure that is
because the writers have gotten tired or are running out of ideas, but more likely because the adult world
just doesn't have that kind of energy, at least not most of the time. Who the hell would ever make 30 if it
did? One of my fave ironic/funny quotes over the years has been the one another 'Blondie' penned, namely
Die young, stay pretty. Well, that may be true, but on the other hand-- dead, ya know? So
Chosen is a show who tempo modulates to a more adult rhythm, as did most of the last season. It
has allegro measures, but also counterpoints them with more evocative andante stretches.

One of which is up next, as Buffy descends the basement stairs and finds Spike has been working away at a
punching bag with a crudely drawn paper image of Angel taped to the top front of it. She seems more
amused than angry, certainly a sign of growth on her part:

Spike: So where's tall, dark and forehead?

Buffy: Let me guess. You can smell him.

Spike: Yeah, that and I also used my heightened vampire eyeballs to watch you kissing him.

Buffy: It was a... hello. I was surprised.

Spike: Most people don't use their tongues to say hello. Or, I guess they do, but --

Buffy: There were no tongues. Besides, he's gone.

Spike: Just popped round for a quickie, then?

Buffy: Good, good, I haven't had quite enough jealous vampire crap.

Spike: He wears lifts, you know.

Buffy: One of these days, I'm just gonna put you two in a room and let you rassle it out.

Spike: No problem at this end.

Buffy: (warming up to it) There could maybe be oil of some kind involved...

Spike: Where's the trinket?

Buffy: The who-ket?

Spike: The pretty necklace your sweetie-bear gave you. The one with all the power. I believe it's
mine now.

Buffy: How do you figure?

Spike: Someone with a soul, but more than human... Angel meant to wear it, that means I'm the
qualified party.

Buffy: It's volatile. We don't know...

Spike: You need someone strong to bear it then. You were planning on giving it to Andrew?

Buffy: Angel said... this amulet is meant to be worn by a champion.

( A beat, as he deflates. Then Buffy holds it out to him, and he understands her meaning. Slowly takes it. )

Spike: Been called a lot of things in my time...

Buffy: (quietly) Faith's still got my room.

Spike: (looks up) Well you're not staying here! Can't buy me off with shiny beads and sweet talk --
you've got Angel breath.

( She looks down, nods quietly. )

Spike: Won't just let you whack me back and forth like a rubber ball. I've got my pride, you know.

( She starts to go. )

Buffy: I understand.

Spike: (moves to block her) Clearly you don't, since that whole "having my pride" thing was a

Buffy: (very relieved) Oh thank god.

Spike: I don't know what I would have done if you'd gone up those stairs.

~ ~ ~ ( Continued in Part IV ) ~ ~ ~

[> [> [> [> And the link to parts I & II which are End of Days inside -- s'kat, 08:10:53 06/26/03 Thu


This half is on end of days. So the above is part III of OnM's great review.

[> Dude! -- HonorH, 23:16:18 06/25/03 Wed

Keep 'em coming, OnM!

(I just about called you "Big O" back there. That could've been Bad.)

I like your interpretation of how Buffy rose. It's always her mental and emotional state that determines how well she fights--always! In this case, she'll be sore later, but at that moment, there was no way in heaven, earth, or hell that she wasn't going to tell the First to piss off, then make it do just that.

As for the cutting-of-hands thing, no, it doesn't make any physical sense. It might, though, make emotional sense. What I thought upon seeing it, though, was that it was an initiation rite. The girls anoint the Seal with their blood, mix it, and when they descend into the midworld that is the Hellmouth, they're bonded. They're one in blood and strength.

[> [> Well, possibly because -- fresne, 09:11:37 06/26/03 Thu

They are the hands.

It's just a good thing they aren't the hearts. Cause that would have been problematic.

[> [> [> ROTFLOL!!! -- LittleBit, 12:38:33 06/26/03 Thu

[> Re: Dreamer Easy in the Chair That Really Fits You - Thoughts on *End of Days* & *Chosen* - Part V -- grifter, 04:40:49 06/26/03 Thu

Dude, you really HAVE learned from Joss...always keep ´em craving for more. Can´t wait for part VI.

I´m rewatching the episode while reading this, should have thought of that with your previous episode reviews! Duh!

[> Dreamer Easy in the Chair That Really Fits You - Parts I, II, & III -- Rosie, 09:00:33 06/26/03 Thu

Could the author of "Dreamer Easy in the Chair That Really Fits You" re-post parts I, II and III of his or her essay? Thanks.

[> Part III is reposted below Part IV and Part II & I have a link -- s'kat, 09:06:20 06/26/03 Thu

See the posts below OnM's Part IV.


Politics of Harry Potter on Slate -- mamcu, 07:21:18 06/26/03 Thu

There's an interesting discussion of the politics of Harry Potter and other "children's" fantasy books (including a good list of them at one point) on Slate today:


[> Sorry, mamcu - spelt your name wrong on thread below! -- Marie, 08:07:06 06/26/03 Thu

[> Need Charleston advice, mamcu [OT] -- Kenny, 12:09:49 06/26/03 Thu

mamcu, could you drop me an email? I little bird told me you live in Charleston. I'm moving there in August and could use some suggestions on where to look for an apartment. Thanks.

[> [> If only! -- mamcu, 14:49:47 06/26/03 Thu

Sigh--not since I was five. Now I live in the ugly stepsister town, Columbia. So I know how to hit Charleston for a great weekend (but there aren't any in August!) but not much about living there. You'll love it, though. But I do know the town a bit, so I'll email.

[> Culled these books from the article -- pr10n, 13:57:48 06/26/03 Thu

Thanks for the point-out, mamcu. That was an interesting read.

I snagged these authors and titles from the llist:

The Scottish Victorian mystic George Macdonald's The Princess and the Goblin

Turn-of-the-century Fabian socialist Edith Nesbit's Five Children and It

Susan Cooper's The Dark Is Rising series

Robert C. O'Brien's The Silver Crown

Diana Wynne Jones' "Chrestomanci" series and Dogsbody

Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials [of course, Pullman's a big favorite here, so read the Sally Lockhart books too.]

The article also mentioned Roald Dahl and Dr. Seuss and Tolkien, in passing.

Can I throw in a plug for the Lemony Snicket A Series of Unfortunate Events books? Oh so funny.

[> [> don't forget... -- xanthe, 14:13:33 06/26/03 Thu

...the mention of Suzy McKee Charnas's fabulous Sorcerery Hall Trilogy: The Bronze King, The Silver Glove, and The Golden Thread. Together they make up a great urban fantasy with just the right combination of grubby everyday details, sharp humor, and epic sorcerery as told by a high school girl who's still figuring things out. Definitely a favorite! I was thrilled that they got a mention since they are at least ten years old and haven't gotten a lot of attention.

[> [> [> Thanks for the catch, xanthe! Charnas -- to the Library! AWAY! -- pr10n, 15:02:41 06/26/03 Thu

Guess what?? -- LittleBit, Random and LadyStarlight, 07:34:49 06/26/03 Thu

There's a new Behind the Scenes entry!

Yes, we know, you can't contain your excitement, but try, okay? The neighbours don't like it when you start shrieking with glee! ;)

[> WooHoo!!!!! -- O'Cailleagh, 08:16:54 06/26/03 Thu

I can finally read these cos Buffy has finished so no fear of spoilers!
And what a treat it was too!
I must say you really are a scary bunch once all the Evils come out to play...of course I knew that already! ;-)


[> Cool! -- ponygoyle, 08:23:32 06/26/03 Thu

Finally someone realizes that I'm more of a romantic lead!

It's good to see the demons and the evils out again. I was thinking during the discussion on The Screwtape Letters that what was really missing was the demonic reader perspective. Evil alter-egos enjoy book clubs too - why do you think Oprah did so well? In any case I felt I couldn't comment on Screwtape since he and I had a history (see above re: romantic lead).

In any case keep up the good work! I mean evil work - you know what I mean. We demons need a fun summer project and I think hunting and slaughtering Voynak, hopefully with a lot of senseless casualities, could be just the thing!

[> [> Yes! -- Medusa, 09:43:57 06/26/03 Thu

I'm only half-way through the book*, but it occurred to me immediately that it's written from my perspective! As someone who sees the Eternal Struggle as a game with inexplicable rules and dubious rewards, I immediately felt a slight kinship with Screwtape. Who, may I add, doesn't have ponygoyle's scruples in discussing past affairs. (I think he mentioned something about riding crops, pg. I didn't ask him to explain.)

It's nice to know I'm finally able to call people names again. Some of the best times of my life were when I was able to give Arethusa the slip and slay trolls in her name. Watching her be overcome with remorse and guilt was icing on the cake.

*(Darn those RL intrusions!)

[> [> [> Re: Yes! -- ponygoyle, 10:51:10 06/26/03 Thu

Glad you're enjoying the book Medusa! People assume that we demons are all cable tv and tabloids. We can be as cultured as the next sub-species!

I don't want to give the impression that Screwtape and I had a capital R romance. Our letter and rating would probably be G, as in get me outta here. Sure he wrote nice letters but he was always going on about tempting humans with the subtle joys of sloth and celebrity gossip, and I was like "fine, but when do we kill someone?" And don't even get me started on his family! Wormwood was actually the sharpest scythe in that weapons cabinet. Yeesh.

[> [> [> [> Some demons just can't leave their work at the office. -- Medusa, 11:05:04 06/26/03 Thu

Screwtape is overly fond of subtlety. I find his obsession with obtaining souls via trickery to be, well, overly complicated and time-consuming. (There's no reason why immortality should be tedious.) You want another soul, just separate it from its body with a sword. There's enough evil souls in the world to not bother with the wishy-washy ones.

I had a class with Wormwood's brother, Gall. We taunted him unmercifully and he never even noticed. (Or maybe he enjoyed it, the little masochist.)

[> Apparently...me and Kds have power over voy??? What power?LOL! -- s'kat, 09:02:35 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> The struggle against Voynak... -- Masq, anti-Voynak warrior, 11:09:52 06/26/03 Thu

...is a popularity contest. Voynak cannot stand against someone whose posts get a flurry of replies. In fact, Voynak is known to get huge tumors, also known as the-threads-that-wouldn't-die.

These are, oddly, often threads started by the aforementioned folks.

[> [> [> Re: The struggle against Voynak... -- s'kat, 14:13:27 06/26/03 Thu

Ahem...we've been voy-naked quite a bit of late. I know poor KdS has - hi/r essay on Peace-Out was gone pretty fast.
So I think it's more subject matter than poster.

IF you really really want to know the trick for getting people to respond? Post something that is controversial - ie can either be completely agreed with or completely argued, divisive topic, push buttons but not to the degree that people want you to disappear off the face of the earth.
Ie - be careful to say you are open to discussion.

The essays I've posted that lasted the longest?
Sadomasochism Metaphors, Season 7 Critique, Soul Metaphors,
Angel and Spike Restraining the Monster, and Xander the Sidekick. Willow essay jumped to archives fast. My essay on anya/Spike - extreemely quickly, Fatals...made it for a while but all the responses were either off topic or on Spike, everyone ignored the Lilah/Cordy stuff, and the transcripts of Tim Minears commentary gone quick. So it
really has less to do with the poster and a lot more to do with the content of the post.

I have noticed an odd trend - if a post contains anything on B/S, B/A, C/A or Connor/cordy - expect a flurry of responses. Also anything arguing about moral character of Spike or Angel. Seems to just be what people are obsessed with. Same thing on other fanboards.

Although I'll have to admit, I'm often shocked by the things I post that get a flurry of responses and the things I post that don't. There are times...I'll go to the board, apprehensive, and zip will be there, and times I'll go and think - God, what did I do??? My authority post was one of those experiences. So yep - it all has to do with what you are posting on.

[> Random servicing the Spikebot? That I'm sorry I missed. -- Annethema, 09:35:49 06/26/03 Thu

[> A Gathering of Evils, and I wasn't invited?! You shall pay for this--all of you! -- The Unclean (more than a little upset), 09:42:30 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> Oops...a couple mistakes in the transcription. 'Bit is dedicated but sometimes a little careless... -- Random, 09:55:50 06/26/03 Thu

We've fixed them. Remember, this is a work in progress...things change from day-to-day as we strive for accuracy. Come back often.

[> [> [> BTW, is that you, Darby? We would make fewer mistakes if we recognized the voice.... -- Random, 10:00:35 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> Sorry about that, folks. DemonBrother can be very insecure sometimes.... -- cjl, 10:09:01 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> [> Heh...thanks...we can't *all* wear the Beanie of Wisdom...thanks for helping us fix the LJ -- Random, getting by with a little help from my fiends, 10:15:31 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> [> I am *not* careless... -- LittleBite, 10:03:36 06/26/03 Thu

I just choose not to have drool all over my keyboard. And it isn't that easy to remember everything.

[> Help! I can't stop the transformation!! -- Scroll, 10:27:38 06/26/03 Thu

Scroll: What the f---? "Dry piece of parchment"?!?! "Little Canadian Connor-lovin' suck-up"?!?!!!!

She gasps, chokes, fumes at the sheer audacity of CathSith and LittleBite's erroneous insults. Then -- suddenly -- brown eyes behind thick glasses roll up so only the whites show.

Scroll: Oh, my God! What's happening to me? [panicked] What's happening to me! Arrrrgh!!

She claws at her face in fear. Something slowly appears on the surface of the eyeballs. Two blue triangles bob up like bath toys in water. On the triangles, twin messages appear...


The creature within the poster known as Scroll slowly gains strength, its watery power bubbling up like a well-spring until the perfect moment of release. Soft, creamy skin turns obsidian, slick and hard. On its forehead, stamped in pasty white, is the most dreaded of symbols, the prophetic number of doom:


It is the creature of legends! The dark monster that foretells the painful and most tormented deaths of all ATPo posters!! It's the fearsome, rapacious, prophetic...


Queen of the Magic 8 Ball of Doom

Prophetess and Destroyer

who is going to

kill. you. all....

CathSith and LittleBite look around fearfully, aware that every drop of moisture, the water bottles sitting innocently on the refreshment table, the liquids in their very bodies, must obey the calling of the Water Mistress. They are doomed, and they know it.

CathSith: You hear that? That kind of... "whoosh" sound?
LittleBite: No, I -- wait. Yeah, yeah, I can hear it. What is that? Where is it...
She gasps, turns fearfully to stare bug-eyed at the front door of LadyS' velvet swagged lair. The door is closed, but behind it is the noisy, drowning sound of rushing water. CathSith clings tightly to her. And then...




[> [> Ack! Dehydration! Need some Black Frost Beer!.... -- LittleBite, 10:41:30 06/26/03 Thu

aaah, that hits the...Bite like beer....beer good....boy smell nice...[sees large tree limb, whaps Poseidonia]

That was fun!! Do it again! Do it again!

[> [> [> You *dare* challenge the Prophetess of Doom?! -- Poseidonia, the Water Goddess, 10:54:36 06/26/03 Thu

CathSith could only scream as her flesh was ground into a kind of sticky paste beneath my waves. And even her pathetic little whimpers were lost as my swells covered her worthless body.

You -- since you DARE to mock me -- can suffer an eternal torment, trapped in a steel cage at the bottom of my depths. All things considered, Connor's punishment for his hypocrite of a "father" is perfect and needs no improvement. He is, after all, my blue-eyed boy.

Poseidonia casually tosses 'Bite into a big box, slams it shut, and plops the whole thing into the middle of the Pacific.

Such is the fate of those who challenge my power! I am the Mistress of Waves, the Goddess of Storms! My wrath is like a tidal wave come to crush your puny life raft. My pets are monsters of the deep you could not even fathom, so hideous are their slick bodies and so horrific are their appetites. They will naw on your bones for all eternity...

Heh. Hope you don't grow too many barnacles on your backside. I hear that can get really itchy!

[> [> [> [> I dare. I double dare. And I have ice cream afterward. -- LittleBite, 11:07:24 06/26/03 Thu

Thanks for the lovely swim. But perhaps you've forgotten that my alter ego is Goddess of Feedback, Chat and Devilry, and First Naughty Evil. And she decided that the cage was simply the wrong color.

[Picks up Poseidonia and shakes her like an 8-ball] Ooooo...look! It says "Don't even think about it."

[> [> [> [> [> Wha? Where am I? Bit, what's going on? -- Scroll, 11:16:15 06/26/03 Thu

Why are you holding me upside down? Hey, let me up! Thanks. Whew, why are my sneakers all squishy and my hair all wet? You haven't been playing more practical jokes on innocent little ol' me, have you? Cuz I've never done anything to deserve that kind of treatment!

*blinks big brown eyes*

Why is there a fish flopping in your hair?

[> [> [> [> [> [> Nice try, Miss Big Brown Eyes -- LittleBit [removing grouper from hair], 11:53:55 06/26/03 Thu

Next time your evil self tries to cage me at the bottom of the sea, tell her Prophetess and Destroyer self for me that she'd do better to check the prophesy before destroying.

I'll let it slide this one time.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> So did Wesley find you in the ocean's depths? -- Masq, 12:01:39 06/26/03 Thu

Did he send Justine down to fetch you?

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> mmmmm.... Wesley.... -- LittleBit, 12:09:28 06/26/03 Thu

The mouth-to-mouth resuscitation was just yummy.

'Bit [who didn't mention the whole vampire thing]

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Wes didn't need Justine -- lunasea, 13:14:19 06/26/03 Thu

I would go to any depths to find my mistress and have her and her delicious cookies brought to safety.

Besides, any excuse to see Wesley. We spent an entire hour talking about how Angel's tatoo is most definitely NOT a Griffin and what incredible artists the illuminators for the Book of Kells were. He promised me a first hand look at it, if I promised not to drool. I couldn't lie to him (who could lie to those eyes) and did not get my peak.

[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Well, I'll take her then -- Masq, feeling punchy two days before *vacation*, 13:58:49 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> scroll! that's hilarious! you have unexpected...depths! -- anom, 12:09:30 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> [> I am fathoms deep, I am in the air you breathe. None can escape my power! -- Poseidonia, the Mistress of Monsoons, 12:22:01 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> [> [> Re: I am fathoms deep, I am in the air you breathe. None can escape my power! -- Masq, 12:36:25 06/26/03 Thu

Plus, she knows all the good websites for Faith/Eliza pics!

[> [> [> [> Oh, puh-leeze! If only I had a pair of shoes for every time I've heard *that* one! -- Honorificus (Who Fills The World With Her Might), 19:04:18 06/26/03 Thu

You're new, sweetie, so I'll go easy on you. Advice: get over yourself before I start finding you too annoying. You've got points for perverting that namby-pamby Scroll. Don't lose 'em.

Oh, and book club at my place next week. Bring a dish and a minion.

[> Darn! The gig's up! -- HonorH (holding back Honorificus), 11:28:09 06/26/03 Thu

Now all of you know why I disappeared shortly after the finale. My Super-Annoying Alter-Ego has been doing extra time in the body while planning her revolt. And you know what? I'm afraid I haven't been fighting her nearly as much as I should.

Plus, I stalked and killed a Mary Sue with Rhysdux. That was fuuuun.

[> ok, how did this happen? -- anom, 12:02:54 06/26/03 Thu

Not only weren't they at the meeting, but demanom & anomster aren't even on the alter evil list! I know they haven't been on the board much (well, anomster is more a creature of chat, having been born there), but demanom wrote that fine "how can *anyone* still be a redemptionista" post in the very first (& it was very First!) Evil Alter Ego thread!




See? (OK, deme, c'mon--that's enough Ripple for you!)

Aside from these CRUCIAL DEFECTS, I really enjoyed your latest--several LOL moments there! BTW, the First Naughty isn't on the EAE list either--I was a little confused till I got to the end of the piece. But you WILL correct these INEXCUSABLE omissions, won't you? DAMN RIGHT YOU WILL!!! Deme! That's enough! (Um, I've been trying to integrate my dark side lately LIKE I'D LET THAT HAPPEN!...it's a complex, ongoing process [umph!]...that I'm just at the beginning of....)

[> [> I went and listened to the tapes again. Sure enough, there you were. Blame Bit's "transcription" -- Random, glaring at Bit, 12:28:16 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> [> Wait a minute!!! There were *tapes*?!?!?! -- LittleBit [Glaring at Ran], 12:30:26 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> [> Ahh, the best kind of editing job; the kind that includes me! -- Annethema, leaning back in her chair contentedly., 13:56:11 06/26/03 Thu

[> Finally that damn cheerleader's gone for good! Mwahahahaha!!! -- RobAndMurder, 12:57:15 06/26/03 Thu

[> [> You think so? Heheh. Heheheheh. [can't contain self any longer...gales of naughty laughter] -- The First Naughty, 09:17:03 06/27/03 Fri

[> It was wonderful, being chewed in such good company -- mamcu the masticated, 14:36:21 06/26/03 Thu

Some people will die for a little attention!

[> Years of posting and that lout Saguaro Stalker gets all the glory! -- Cactus Watcher, 19:03:16 06/26/03 Thu

I warned him about messsing with Whipwowman, but what can you do when his head keeps growing back just as dumb as ever. By the way Unclean, you wouldn't want to hold hands with the Stalker, he has a bad habit of leaning against one saguaro while he's spying on another. The dumby ought to call himself Saguaro Victim or He Who Screams In The Desert Night! And they think those big cacti are defenseless, ho, ho.

[> A quick note about the name.... -- The Unclean, 20:12:57 06/26/03 Thu

I am Unclean in the sense that my very existence is a rebuke to the Mortal Realm's belief in the purity and goodness of their world.

I am the Pestilence in the Garden.

I am the Rot on the Crown of Thorns.

I am the Rust underneath the Throne of Heaven.

(All this is metaphorical, you understand. I'm actually very fussy about personal hygiene.)

[> Oh dear, how embarrassing. -- OnM, 07:45:56 06/27/03 Fri

And here I thought I had deleted all those background research files on trans-dimensional portals after I was done working on that fanfic last summer. I even reformatted the drive afterward, 'cos I know how sneaky that damn Clone is!

BTW, for the record, I do not own a paisley shirt.

[> AHA! Just as I was warned. LadyS's friendly email was just to nefariously verify my plumbing. -- WickedMoue ::tossing self & V. Rabbit into nearby chasm::, 10:11:38 06/27/03 Fri

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