May 2002 posts

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Cordelia issues (spoilers) -- A.C.S., 06:32:33 05/22/02 Wed

Throughout the whole Cordelia "ascension" bit, I kept thinking -- you know, this would make a lot of sense if Charisma Carpenter is leaving the show. Has anyone heard anything like this?

The other thing that kept going through my mind was -- it's too bad there won't be any crossovers here, because I would love to see Buffy, Willow, and Xander's reactions to Cordelia-Angel love and Cordelia _ascending to the level of a higher being_.

Of course, in the last season-and-a-half, "Angel" has completely abandoned any continuity with regard to Cordelia's personality and character, so maybe they wouldn't have recognised her anyway. I don't know anyone else, but I liked Cordelia a lot more when she was the blunt "tact is not saying true stuff" girl and not this mushy Stepford wife who's taken her place.

[> Re: Cordelia issues (spoilers) -- Cecilia, 07:31:08 05/22/02 Wed

I was actually loving the kinder, gentler Cordelia up until she returned from vacation with Gru. Pre-vacation Cordy still had a spark in her, post-vacation, I agree, Stepford wife material.

I think the whole "ascension" thing came from out of nowhere. There was no indication that anything more was in store for Cordelia by way of her powers. I looks to me like a quick re-write to accomidate an actor leaving the show. I haven't heard anything specifically but it makes sense.

Best Season Finale I have ever seen! -TOTAL SPOILERS -- Spike Lover, 08:35:59 05/22/02 Wed

Brilliant!! Brilliant!! Brilliant!!

It was SO MUCH MORE than the Angel's Season Finale, and it was even better than last year's, and last year's was INTENSE!

I was very impressed with the Christian message: (I can't actually get over it, from what I read about Joss.) (Thanks to Rufus's post below pointing out that 'a Carpenter' saved the world.) Overall, the ending reminded me a bit of the famous passage from Corinthians... (Sorry don't have a Bible here so I can't quote it.) A man can have great wisdom, but without love, he is nothing. A man can have the gift of prophecy, but w/o love, it comes to nothing. A man can have the faith to move a mountain, but w/o love, he can do nothing. (something like that.) Buffy w/ her slayer strength and moral compass, Giles with the borrowed powers of the coven and all his wisdom- neither could stop Willow's evil. But Xander's TOTAL compassionate and forgiving love- could. -very impressive- and VERY WELL ACTED. I didn't think it came off cheesy at all (and it could have.)
Also- they actually said the 's' word "Satanic". I was impressed.

When Giles appeared, I cheered also. I screamed and hollered and celebrated all during the commercial. It just got so much better. Giles' character really adds a lot to the show, and I sorely missed him all season. (Please don't leave us again!!!!)

I enjoyed the extent of Willow's cruelty and callousness: 1) 18 wheeler truck chase 2) the fight w/ Buffy (although I wondered where Willow learned all of her fighting moves - Buffy had been trained after all 3) her comment to Buffy that 'I took you out of the earth, and now the earth wants you back.' Too Cool. 4)I was a bit surprised that Willow decided to just destroy the world- though they gave her a logical reason- that I appreciated. 5)Killing Rack- who is also probably human and a warlock. 6)Her willingness to do something bad to Dawn (try to suck power out of the Key?)

I also appreciated the writer calling a spaid a spaid. "Superbitch who needs every inch of her butt kicked" and "Whiny Dawn" were very appreciated.

I thought it was great that Giles was laughing, but I wondered what part of Buffy sleeping w/ Spike he thought was funny.

Kudos to Anya who has grown so much.

What I did not care for: 1) Buffy & Dawn fighting back to back (reference to Conner and Angel?) 2) Dawn's treatment of Clem - who did not want to go to Rack's place 3)Xander telling Dawn that Spike tried to rape Buffy & Buffy mentioning it to Dawn (Don't you know that Dawn is never going to forgive him? I suppose it does not matter if she does or not though.) 4) The duo escaping justice again. (maybe to reappear next season?)

I will continue this on another post...

[> Re: Best Season Finale I have ever seen! -TOTAL SPOILERS -- Arethusa, 08:42:35 05/22/02 Wed

>>2) the fight w/ Buffy (although I wondered where Willow learned all of her fighting moves -Buffy had been trained after all

{tongue-in-cheek font}
Which proves what I've always suspected-getting demonized also magically confers martial arts skills on the demon. Cordy will never need to train again.

[> Re: Best Season Finale I have ever seen! -TOTAL SPOILERS -- A.C.S., 08:58:02 05/22/02 Wed

> I was very impressed with the Christian message: (I can't
> actually get over it, from what I read about Joss.)

Hey! Philosophical issue! Similarities with certain aspects of Christianity doesn't mean Joss meant to portray a _Christian_ message.

You don't have to believe in Christianity or, indeed, in any god in order to believe in the importance of love -- take me for instance, an avowed atheist of Hindu background.

There are certain principles of goodness and morality that most people can agree with, even if they don't believe in the same god, or, indeed, any god at all.

My personal bias is that those of us who don't create a supernatural power in order to prop up our ethical and moral decisions actually have to develop a stronger, more complex, more stable, and more solid sense of values. After all, we don't have that easy fallback line -- "Because God says so."

This is a bit of a freshman religion class question, but -- Take, for example, this hypothetical -- Christ appears and says "God has changed his mind about the Ten Commandments. It is now imperative for all Christians to immediately go out and kill everyone who refuses to accept Christ as their savior." What then? Has the definition of moral behaviour changed? If not, does that mean god can be immoral?

[> [> Re: Best Season Finale I have ever seen! -TOTAL SPOILERS -- Ronia, 11:08:14 05/22/02 Wed

Well, the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about the end scene is...why a satanic temple? Why not some other temple? Enterring satan into the equation makes it hard to miss the biblical connection. That said, I didn't like it there. I have long lamented the writers using bits and pieces of various religions to make a shallow point, or in this case no point at all. Yes there was a slight allegory with Xander's love etc. but they could have done that a number of other ways. It is true that many other religions including secular humanism have some things in common regarding virtues etc. As a Christian I dissagree with the statement that "Because God says so" is an easy fallback line. Perhaps if you surround yourself with others who share your beliefs, that could be true. However, interacting with people who don't is another story altogether. "Because God says so" is the statement most Christians balk and cringe away from, because it declares to be true, what otherwise would not be accepted as so, even by them. It is a statement universally met with derision. Christians are people too, we don't like to be scoffed at or disregarded based on our beliefs anymore than the next person. "Your perspective doesn't count because I don't value your beliefs" was a sentiment I was hoping we here could avoid.

Your question is actually several questions and I seriously doubt that you want a lengthy answer (although if I'm wrong let me know) so I'll try to satisfy with a short one... From a biblical perspective, God does not contradict himself, so the above scenario is unlikely in the extreme....God defines what is moral, morality does not exist outside of his will. Therefore he cannot be immoral. It is possible that I am the only Christian posting here, so hopefully I answered adequately. I'll do my best with future questions provided they are presented in a respectfull manner.

[> [> [> Ronia: your header should have been "Hey, I'm standing right here!" :D -- SingedCat, 11:17:48 05/22/02 Wed

[> [> [> [> Re: Ronia: your header should have been "Hey, I'm standing right here!" :D -- A.C.S., 11:34:56 05/22/02 Wed

What I was actually objecting to was the idea that any examples of morality or ethics that are similar to ideas expressed in Christianity are necessarily "Christian." I think you realize that I'm not really interested in this point in getting into a detailed discussion on the basis of morality in Christian doctrine -- I was merely using that to illustrate an extra-Christian point of view.

The original post in this thread seemed to be saying -- Well, I know Joss Whedon is not a Christian; how pleased I am that the story was promoting Christian values. My point was he's probably not saying anything about Christianity at all. To the extent that Whedon might be promoting some value, it's entirely likely that he is approaching it from his own value system and doesn't have Christianity, specifically, in mind.

[> [> [> [> [> Re: Ronia: your header should have been "Hey, I'm standing right here!" :D -- Ronia, 11:58:50 05/22/02 Wed

I suspect we are disliking the same things from differring perspectives. I thought the writer was suprised by what he interpretted as Christian, not necessarily pleased. I agree that the values portrayed could be present in almost any value system. It is in fact likely that Whedon is using his own value system, which is why I disliked the temple and use of Christian imagery. To me that just seemed sloppy writing. The only thing I objected to in your post was the assertion that rather than have to come to terms with the reality of their beliefs and how it affects them and those around them, they have an easy, one size fits all answer to every differring opinion.

[> [> [> [> [> it is quite possible that your reading too much into his comments -- just possible Shul, 20:09:13 05/22/02 Wed

[> [> [> Re: Best Season Finale I have ever seen! -TOTAL SPOILERS -- Spike Lover, 11:33:06 05/22/02 Wed

Thank you for fielding that question (for me and other Christians). I felt the answer more than I could express it, and you expressed it beautifully.

Thanks again.
Spike Lover

[> [> God can be immoral and moral values change all the time -- Charlemagne20, 13:27:02 05/22/02 Wed

Moral values have been changed a great deal over the times. Let us not forget in the South it was considered morally justified to make 'war' on black folk in order to keep them in their place, the current hatred for homosexual men and lesbians displayed by churchs in my region, and of course the Crusades and inquisition where if you were not Christian you were evil.

These aren't even limited to Western Religious thought.

Furthermore if God came down tommorow and said all these things that would in fact mean God had turned to Evil and while he'd be an evil deity and it was your duty to rebel against him...

I doubt it's right to give God less free will than he has given us.

Christianity is a very specific moral message however and that is unconditional love for even sinners and one's enemies which in Jesus's time was immoral to many Jewish leaders and would be considered so today by many self professed christians

[> [> [> What the hellmouth are you talking about? -- Confusatron, 19:30:15 05/22/02 Wed

Huh....never mind. Wait...WHAT? Who turned God to the dark side of the force? When did this rebellion start? Do I get a lightsaber?

[> [> You should take freshman logic...and lay off religion -- I am the light of logic shining upon you....., 19:24:48 05/22/02 Wed

Nothing wrong with atheists in general. I used to be one. But the kind of atheist that looks down on those that have faith in God (spelled in caps out of deferrence and respect to believers, no matter the religion) is quite stupid, logically speaking.

If your faith in 'nothing' (which is still a kind of faith) is the basis of your condescension towards those with faith in 'something', then I repeat: you really should have taken more logic courses at university.

You are not superior, and you are not Zarathusa. I like your other posts about how season 6 was subpar, though. But on this point, you are wrong and unnecessarily arrogant given the logical basis of your arrogance.

I used to be like you. A condescending atheist who never realized the illogical basis of his condescension. But then I got a little smarter. I am an agnostic. Neither of us could prove God exists any more than we could prove God doesn't exist. I accept the possibility that God might exist and also the possibility that God might not exist, and respect people with either position--UNLESS---(see explanation of the failure of your logic above)....but perhaps you will grow out of your immature attitude some day.

And keep up the attacks on season 6. You are most definitely correct about that.

[> [> [> Re: You should take freshman logic...and lay off religion -- A.C.S., 06:32:28 05/23/02 Thu

Umm ... okay.

I think you need to take a step back and stop making assumptions about me, my maturity, my arrogance, and whatever else qualities you have pasted on me in your mind. I was deliberately using a freshman religion-type example (and in fact I labelled it so) merely as an illustration of an extra-Christian viewpoint.

As far as arrogance goes, I have to deal with the arrogance of believers every day, who express all kinds of pity, condescension, whatever, that I have "nothing to hold on to" or some such other nonsense.

My point was nothing more than it would be a mistake to assume that any moral viewpoint that has similarities with Christianity necessarily has anything to do with a "Christian" viewpoint, or the viewpoint of any religion. Religious belief is not necessary to morality.

Perhaps it was a mistake for me to toss of an example off the top of my head, but I really don't feel compelled to do extensive drafting to make a small point about a television show.

Nothing wrong with believers in general (although I never was one). But the kind of believer who makes assumptions about a person's intelligence, attitude, and character based merely on a hypothetical argument and decides he "is quite stupid" can go and shite as far as I'm concerned. (I'll start spelling "god" in caps in deference and respect to believers when they start spelling it without caps in deference and respect to me.)

Lay off religion at a site dedicated to philosophical discussion? Or maybe I need to pass your test for religious aptitude before I can start expressing my opinion?

The light of logic shining upon me?

[> [> [> [> Don't worry about it.... -- mundusmundi, 07:36:05 05/23/02 Thu

It seems excellently logical that "light" is also "Wu-men," "Darth Bored," "Nah Nah Na Nah Nah," "Disappointed...oh so disappointed," and maybe a couple other polynyms I'm not sure about. In fact, I detect a faint whiff of Boke in the air. (Peruse the Fe bruary archives if curious about that whole debacle. Of course it's not quite the same without his ginormous font and garish color scheme.)

[> [> [> Logically speaking.... -- mundusmundi, 06:46:39 05/23/02 Thu

hiding behind polynymity is the coward's refuge. Please pick one pseudonym to hide behind like everyone else and can the cheap guerrilla tactics.

(Oh, and freshman logic courses are a bunch of bollocks, but that's just my opinion.)

[> Re: Best Season Finale I have ever seen! -TOTAL SPOILERS -- Spike Lover, 09:01:28 05/22/02 Wed

To continue, this ep makes me think more and more of Tabula Rasa.


Anya was so good w/ Giles and the actors had so much chemistry, I just wonder if they will get involved. Look at the similarities: In TR, w/ no memory of who they really are, Giles & Anya believe that they are together. They are searching for a spell that will reverse the loss of memory or whatever and Anya chooses the wrong book and does incorrect spell after incorrect spell. In the finale, she has the correct book and she figures out how to use the correct spell to good ends. Xander in the finale says that A & Spike were 'varnishing' the table. In TR, after kissing Giles (and whatever else) Anya is seen scrubbing the table.

I am not certain if Anya will be able to keep her job as vengence demon as I have not seen her reek vengence yet. But she does have her powers back and she has not abused them. SHe has actually used them for good. She has really grown as a being- when the world was doomed, she did not flee but remained with Giles is a very loving/compassionate way. I like the character of Anya specifically because she has never apologized for what she did as a vengence demon. She does not apologize now for returning to it. Has she finally earned some happiness and can she find it w/ Giles? (She may have to tel-a-port) back and forth to Britian, but oh well. Maybe she will just go w/ him. Her shop is pretty much ruined. (Hope she paid her insurance premiums.)

The scene between Xander and Willow was really moving. Xander's whole-hearted love of Willow. These are the words that he has failed to say to Anya. Could this be a start of a repairing of these characters? Re-pairing. I mean, they initially broke up when their significant others found them out w/o ever exploring whether they had a real future together. In TR, W & X initially think that they are together. Xander has a new identity: Alex. Willow only finds that she is attracted to Tara. Does this mean that now that Tara is out of the picture, Willow will go back to X?

Finally Joan & Randy. Joan, perhaps an allusion to the ultimate female warrior-martyr Joan of Arc? Spike who suddenly realizes he is a vamp who has no desire to kill Joan. He stands up and thinks 'I must be a vampire w/ a soul, trying to right wrongs, etc.' Of course, Joan thinks that is a crazy idea, and she runs away. So, it would seem that Spike did get his soul back last night (but is he human or a resouled vamp that can have sex?) Will Buffy accept him? Joan runs away, after all-

I don't know what the writers are planning for poor Spike; I guess we will find out in October, but I think more pain is in store for him. I keep coming back to the same question: No matter how Spike changes, whether his behavior, his soul, his hair style, or into a human, will Buffy ever love him? Can she truly love anyone? No matter how the writers decide to handle this, I just HOPE that 1)Spike doesn't mope, guilt- ridden, like Angel did and that 2)SPIKE IS FINISHED BEING HER WHIPPING BOY. I will post more on this issue in future.

Thank you Joss and Co for another great ride!

I appreciate everyone's comments.

[> [> Re: Best Season Finale I have ever seen! -TOTAL SPOILERS -- Forsaken, 07:59:50 05/23/02 Thu

He could have sex anyway, the demon who gave him his sould wasn't a vegeful gypsy. No happy-clause.

[> In agreement. (same spoilers) -- Robert, 09:32:08 05/22/02 Wed

>> "I thought it was great that Giles was laughing, but I wondered what part of Buffy sleeping w/ Spike he thought was funny."

I was thinking about this too. The only explanation I currently have is that Buffy's body language showed that she was so concerned about losing Giles' respect. Giles found this to be ludicrous in light of the current events; Willow becoming the big bad, imminent destruction of the world, that kind of stuff.

>> "What I did not care for: 1) Buffy & Dawn fighting back to back (reference to Conner and Angel?)"

I actually liked this one. First, I don't consider it a reference to Angel and Conner/Stephen, because they never had the same kind of relationship as Buffy and Dawn. Plus, the show has presented a theme in the later part of this season that Buffy has excluded Dawn from the most important part of Buffy's life. The scene resonated for me. I've been wanting to see Dawn to have a more active part of Buffy's life, as the slayer.

My huge concern was that Dawn would become the "key" to stopping Willow. I was afraid we would lose Dawn as a character, and after losing Tara, I don't believe my poor heart could stand to lose another beloved character. I know that many people on this board don't like Dawn, never liked Dawn, but she represented for me the kid sister I never had.

>> "Kudos to Anya who has grown so much. "

yes, and in only the last 6 or 7 episodes. She has been forced to see and acknowledge both sides of vengeance. As I wrote in a previous posting, I think that Anya is totally corrupted as a vengeance demon. I wonder if she'll keep her powers into the next season.

>> "5)Killing Rack- who is also probably human
and a warlock."

Yes, he was a truly loathsome character. I had been waiting for him to receive his poetic justice. I particularly that the scene with Willow and Dawn. The way she mocked Dawn showed how little of Willow remained at that point.

What did you think of the scene with Willow, Buffy and Dawn, where they morphed from Rack's hangout to the Magic Box? I found that to be the most impressive special effect of the whole evening.

>> "1) 18 wheeler truck chase"

I loved this scene too. My wife was annoyed, because a police car is definitely faster than a big rig. I didn't have a problem with it because it maintains continuity with pasts scenes where Xander was unwilling to drive fast. Also, I assumed that Willow was augmenting the trucks speed with her power, thus draining her.

>> "It was SO MUCH MORE than the Angel's Season Finale, and it was even better than last year's, and last year's was INTENSE! "

I'm not sure I would go that far. Every season finale on BtVS and AtS is different, and I appreciate it.

[> [> Two things that makes sense -- SingedCat, 10:33:37 05/22/02 Wed

1) That Giles at, this laundry list of agonizing and uncertainty, recounted all at once, would be struck by the absurdity of it, and respond in a way that demonstrated both detachment and love, and

2) That those amongst us who are neither as old nor as detached, would wonder what he thinks is so funny?


[> [> [> Re: Surprise Guest Guy: Nahhh. -- Darby, 10:55:29 05/22/02 Wed

That scene to me is the ultimate "tell" of what was lacking this season - the presence of Joss on set to make sure that the nuances come across. He had been the de facto director for the first five seasons (that's why we almost never pay attention to who the actual sirector is, or haven't 'til now), according to the actors, making sure that things "played" right, an incredibly important aspect of the ME style of scripting.

I believe that the only way we get to the laughter in this scene naturally is to build to it, with a more slowly- recited list of what's been happening and cuts between Buffy and Giles, so that we can see the absurdity growing with each new addition, we can see Giles' reaction go through concern through shock into disbelief and laughter, while seeing the same occur to Buffy as she piles on detail after detail, and she should have been moving toward laughter with him. As shot and edited, it flows much too quickly for Giles' reaction to be anything but cruel or just plain nuts. And I've gotta believe if Joss was on set that day, we would have seen the exact same script lines make much more sense.

Am I the only one who finds surprises in the shooting scripts from lines that made it to air?

[> [> [> [> Re: Surprise Guest Guy: Nahhh. -- Rattletrap, 11:29:08 05/22/02 Wed

I completely disagree here. I felt like that scene was perfectly built because the laughter came as such a sudden and unexpected surprise, but didn't really come across like Giles laughing at her, but ultimately laughing with her. A long, slow build would have cheapened the moment and looked very strange on film. The seemingly inexplicable laughter, IMO, is the mark of two people who have years of intimate friendship and rapport connecting with each other at a level beyond what the words are saying. This scene struck me as an almost perfect bookend to the scene in Giles' car at the end of "Innocence" in which he professes his love and support to Buffy after learning that she's slept with Angel. He does something similar in this scene, but in a completely different way, and he gives her an opportunity to smile and laugh again, something we've sorely missed all season.

[> [> [> [> [> I guess I agree with both of you -- matching mole, 12:11:15 05/22/02 Wed

I do agree with Darby that the scene could have been shot with a bit more care. It seems to me to be a (perhaps the) crucial scene in all of season 6. Giles return is less important for stopping Willow than it is for putting the events of the season in perspective. A week ago I posted about the lack of a sense of the ridiculous in season 6. Giles' laughter filled the void. Maybe I'm callous and heartless but as Buffy recited the woes of the Scoobies it sounded pretty hilarious to me as well. Sad certainly but ludicrous as well.

[> [> [> [> [> [> BAHH! Switzerland! -- Nah Nah Na Nah Nah, 20:19:35 05/22/02 Wed

[> [> Re: In agreement. (same spoilers) -- dream of the consortium, 10:51:00 05/22/02 Wed

I think you are right about Buffy's concern about sleeping with Spike being part of what make Giles laugh - after all, she does save it for last, as if an affair with someone who did after all suffer torture on her behalf was somehow the most shocking part of her list. But I think the larger part of the laughter was the absurdity of it all. Have you ever had so many things go wrong in a day that finally one last thing goes wrong and instead of responding with anger and frustration, you laugh. Laugh because it's all just too much to be serious about? He certainly wasn't laughing at Willow, or Buffy's depression - but Dawn being a "total klepto"? Buffy slinging hamburgers? Buffy sleeping with Spike? Yeah, that's pretty funny.

That was my favorite scene in forever. It was cathartic for the characters and for the audience. I have a friend with whom I play a certain game called "Who's writing it?" When she calls me all upset about something, I will say something like, "Oh, but you're seeing this like Raymond Carver is writing it. Imagine Cheever instead. Or Wodehouse." Or whichever pairing of authors make sense. She does the same for me. It's easy for people (especially those of us with depressive tendencies) to get wrapped up in melodrama. Buffy has this problem. The thing is, of course, that everything is a matter of perspective. Charlie Chaplin said "Life is a tragedy when seen in close-up, but a comedy in long-shot." Giles came from outside, with the prespective of someone who had some distance on everything.

[> [> [> That's a great quote. -- Traveler, 12:32:40 05/22/02 Wed

"Life is a tragedy when seen in close-up, but a comedy in long-shot."

Thanks for sharing it :)

[> Re: Best Season Finale I have ever seen! -TOTAL SPOILERS -- Ronia, 10:15:05 05/22/02 Wed

here are a few others that come to mind...
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good...Romans 12:21
Love does not act unbecommingly; it does not seek it's own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong sufferred....1Corinthians 13:5

No one who tried to fight with Willow was successful, they only fueled her rage and self righteousness, but Xander ( Faithful are the wounds of a friend, Proverbs 27:6...A gentle answer turns away wrath, Proverbs 15:1) approaches Willow with a spirit of love. Love is not what was being acted out by Willow. Vengefullness and bitterness and loss of joy are symptoms of a person caught up in a self centerred cycle of thought. Willow didn't say "think of all the things Tara will be denied" she said "Tara will never look at me again and make me feel good about myself" Since love or lack of love has been a common theme this season, it gives me pause...did Willow love Tara, or did she love what Tara did for her? I have seen examples of love between the two on previous seasons...but the whole tone of the relationship was differrent this year. Xander's method for approaching Willow was nonthreatening, and he forced her to think of someone besides herself. She has to remember a child Xander who comforts her and remembers her fear and embarrassment, can she look into his eyes and kill him? Has she come that far? I'm of the mind that there is no Line...just a bunch of little ones that were probably crossed unnoticed by everyone until they saw the distance between them.

[> [> Re: Best Season Finale I have ever seen! -TOTAL SPOILERS -- SingedCat, 11:26:55 05/22/02 Wed

"No one who tried to fight with Willow was successful, they only fueled her rage and self righteousness, but Xander ( Faithful are the wounds of a friend, Proverbs 27:6...A gentle answer turns away wrath, Proverbs 15:1) approaches Willow with a spirit of love. "

Beautifully said, Ronia. And from another perespective, I have to say Xander turning aside all Willow's attacks- verbal & magical-- put me in mind of Buffy (+Giles/Willow/Xander) facing Adam, turning the oncoming bullets into escaping doves, like the Bodhisattva facing the arrows of the army. But I'll freely admit, yeah-- Satanic temple, compassionate carpenter saving the world (except weithout the dying part)-- the tilt here was definiely Christian, which is fine with me-- they certainly give the other faiths a lot of equal time. ;)

[> [> Interesting! Did Willow ever LOVE Tara? -- Spike Lover, 11:50:43 05/22/02 Wed

I had the same question when I heard Xander telling Willow he loved her. Had Xander ever truly loved Anya? If Anya had been there and heard it, what would she have thought?

Are any of these characters capable of real hard-core love? Or do they just think they are? Are they still youths 'playing house' or is it for real?

All of these characters are so very much longing to be held and loved (Buffy + Giles w/ Anya saying she was blond.)

PLease, please, please, read and respond to my above post about Tabula Rasa. I really want some feedback.

[> [> [> Re: Interesting! Did Willow ever LOVE Tara? -- Ronia, 12:40:30 05/22/02 Wed

Spike Lover, I don't have time right now...but if it stays out of archives I'll try to do it tonight..ok?...Ronia

[> [> [> I wondered that, too... -- belle, 22:02:28 05/22/02 Wed

About Willow, anyway. Her line about Tara looking at her and seeing her as wonderful was touching and sad (especially as delivered), but when all's said and done, is that love? Or is that simply a narcissist who's found a good codependent? Where's Tara in that equation? Also, back in Wrecked, I thought it was telling that she didn't know that Tara really loved her. I thought then, and still think, that that said more about Willow's degree of love than of Tara's. Basically, Willow's never loved herself (her real self), and has been using other people to patch the "hole in her soul." It's not uncommon, and it doesn't make her a "bad" person, of itself, but it does mean that she can't *truly* love anyone, as she can't let them truly love her (or even see her). Hopefully, Xander's (platonic) speech finally broke through that.

As far as Xander goes, like Buffy, he's got a weak spot when it comes to romantic love, apparently; but of all the characters, as just shown, he's the most open- hearted...which suggests that at some point he is capable of being in "real love" in a relationship. Not with Anya, I'm thinking. (Either Buffy herself or a nice boy, but that's just me...)

[> [> [> [> Interesting -- Spike Lover, 08:38:22 05/23/02 Thu

[> Christian? -- DickBD, 12:11:49 05/22/02 Wed

I liked your post, and I, like you, loved the episode. However, love as redemption is not restricted to Christianity. That theme goes back through ancient religions no longer extant, so it probably is part of human biology.

[> [> Why not Christian? (Spoilers) -- Scroll, 14:21:47 05/22/02 Wed

While I thought it was little ridiculous that there was suddenly this satanic temple on a cliff above Sunnydale, I won't deny that the strongest allusions were to Christianity versus any other religion. And I don't see why not. After all, Buddhism has been used for Tara, Ancient Egyptian gods are now being used for Spike, Greek mythology for Dawn/Sweet... It's fair that Joss would use Xander, who already holds the title of carpenter, to represent and demonstrate unconditional love. Of course, this isn't to say that other religions don't have unconditional love, but obviously ME has to pick something with which to make references, and they picked a carpenter loving his friend unconditionally. No harm, but maybe a lot of good, can be done with this allusion.

[> [> [> Sorry -- DickBD, 15:13:00 05/22/02 Wed

I went off half-cocked there. (I hadn't read the other posts yet.) I was concerned that the idea was that it was only through Christianity that love was possible. Obviously not. I mean that wasn't the idea. Joss and his writers make all sorts of use of mythology and religion and fantasy, and I missed how richly layered it was. (I taped it, so I'll watch it again.)

[> What was so funny? (Spoilers for Finale) -- Traveler, 12:40:49 05/22/02 Wed

When Giles started laughing, I immediately remembered Drusilla's reaction when she found out that Spike was in love with Buffy. Considering that Drusilla didn't know what Spike was going through in season 5, her reaction does make sense. The vampire who killed two slayers, thought Angel/Buffy was sappy, and had been trying to kill Buffy for two years falls in love with her. Giles' reaction may have been similar. After telling Spike, "there IS no way to Buffy," he learns that, apparantly, he was wrong. You gotta love irony.

What happened there in the middle of Grave? (spoilers) -- Farstrider, 09:06:03 05/22/02 Wed

I just wanted to ask three quick questions -- things that have been bugging me about the last episode.

1. Aren't vampires really flamable? Didn't Spike burn one up in a few seconds in Becoming?

2. Why did Willow want to destroy the world? Wasn't that a rather abrupt switch from the internal conflict of the rest of S6 to external conflict? It sure made my eyes roll. Was it meant to be a self-referential (like in Normal Again) joke (you know, the world is about to end every May)? Or was it meant to be taken seriously?

3. Next season, are we going to have to suffer through several episodes of Spike and Willow self-flagellation and guilt over their bad behavior? Any chance they could get that out of the way over the summer?

All in all, I really liked the episodes, until Willow went all world-destroying.


[> Seeking the Void - Willow's Jump (spoilers for TTG/G) -- Solitude1056, 09:38:45 05/22/02 Wed

It caught me off-guard at first, but it started to make a wierd sort of sense - and more so, once Giles explained the hidden dose inside his borrowed power. Keeping in mind that while Rack called Willow "running on pure fury," Giles nailed the real reason behind Willow's power: grief. The seer in England (and his/her coven) had specified that the new power rising was one powered by grief, and grief's first step is denail (did that), then anger (did that), and then... nothing. A state of non-existence, emptiness, numbness. So that's was the next logical step when Willow pulled Giles' power from him.

Whatever his source, she was now tapped into a kind of Tara- magic (in the sense of being grounded in joy/humanity/life, not grief/demon/death) and so naturally she was suddenly opened up to more than just her own grief, but humanity. And since she was in primarily pain-feeling mode, it didn't surprise me on first watching (or on second watching) that she would automatically attune herself to the strongest emotion: pain. Love is a bit more subtle, after all - pain, grief, anger, tend to be thunderous. Now put this together with the fact that so far, three different characters - Dawn, Buffy, and Anya - had all emphasized that Willow "could stop this"... IMO, Willow had that in her brain, along with all her own pain (amplified by humanity's natural pains), as well as the next step in grief: numbness, emptiness, void.

The first time I watched the episode, I thought: geezuz, doesn't Giles realize where Willow is heading, with all her protestations that she can't take it, must end it, must stop all the pain? Why is he encouraging her with the phrase "you can stop it," spoken yet again, and even included (I think) the nail-in-the-coffin phrase of you can end this. It seemed logical that she'd think in global terms, seeing as how she was feeling in global terms. How the hell could he push her like that? But on second watching, I realized, Giles was playing a dangerous game, betting on the fact that he knew the players well. Hence his pushing - because sometimes, you've got to really hit bottom in grieving before you can claw yourself up again - and hence him sending the message with Anya, betting on Xander being there to hear it as well. Dawn's pleading did nothing, Buffy's fighting go nowhere, Anya's separateness backfired, and it was down to Giles as the deliverer of humanity-magic, and Xander's love. Giles couldn't save the day, and didn't - he just created the door and could only hope Xander would step through it. In second viewing, I can see how touch-and- go it was, and strangely, as a result the whole thing affected me much more than it had the first time around.

Hope that explains things a little better.

[> [> Re: Seeking the Void - Willow's Jump (spoilers for TTG/G) -- yez, 10:21:38 05/22/02 Wed

Really good point about the stages of grief.

I immediately thought of how, when someone you love dies, it just seems incomprehensible that the world doesn't stopped to take notice. Doesn't just stop -- because to you, it feels like the world has stopped. And it seems incomprehensible that you can surive that kind of pain. And in a way, you don't want to; it's almost as if it's disrespectful to "get over it" and plod on. So I was looking at Willow's behavior as a literal manifestation of that emotion.

Re: Giles' big plan, I can't help but wonder if this isn't a case of the SG putting the world at risk to save one of their own. Literally "risking it all" to save someone they love. Because before Giles'/the coven's power, Willow didn't seem intent on destroying the world -- she was avenging Tara. But if she would've done that, then as Buffy said, she would be crossing a line. (Btw, I thought she'd already crossed the line with Warren -- apparently, there are several lines.) Presumably, illing the Duo would've destroyed Willow, at least in the sense that the SG couldn't let her "get away" with it. And then how would they have gotten Willow back.

I'm rambling, but basically, if Willow hadn't tried to destroy the world and been stopped, she would have remained beyond their ability to save her. Don't know if I'm making any sense here...


[> [> [> Re: Seeking the Void - Willow's Jump (spoilers for TTG/G) -- clg0107, 11:51:29 05/22/02 Wed

Re: Giles' big plan, I can't help but wonder if this isn't a case of the SG putting the world at risk to save one of their own. Literally "risking it all" to save someone they love.

Like so much this season, this is the "normal" situation for our Scoobies (normal as in SNAFU...) turned inside out. The internal big Bad(s) required a human solution. And instead of risking those they love to save it all...doing as you say, the opposite.

That was a nice insight that set me thinking. Thank you!


[> [> [> Re: Seeking the Void - Willow's Jump (spoilers for TTG/G) -- ahira, 19:44:41 05/22/02 Wed

I think the new line Buffy talks about is the difference between killing Warren, who shot Buffy and killed Tara, and killing Jonathon and Andrew, who weren't involved in any of that. They might have been part of the trio, but Willow would have killed innocents. I think that is a path she really didn't want Willow to tred. Just a thought.

[> [> Re: Seeking the Void - Willow's Jump (spoilers for TTG/G) -- Rattletrap, 10:38:08 05/22/02 Wed

Great insights, Sol. I was thinking along those same lines but hadn't worked it out quite that far yet. Like you, I was far more impressed with this sequence the second time around. I also agree with your point that Giles was taking a high stakes gamble on some pretty long shots, but one that ultimately pays off.


[> Those burns on his chest weren't from cigarette butts... -- cjl, 09:43:20 05/22/02 Wed

1. Spikey was in grave danger of incineration, but I guess he managed to survive a few shots to the chest and well- muscled torso from Action Figure Demon before finally dispatching him. If AFD had managed to get Spike in a bear hug, we might have had that "poof!" you were expecting

2. When Willow sucked out the coven's magic from Giles, she also absorbed a little "sweetener": a heightened empathic sense that Giles thought would re-awaken her humanity. Ripper didn't count on her superempathic state to drive her nuts and call on Perspexa(?) to end the world and her suffering. (Little slip by the G-Man there.) Eventually, though, Xander nudged Willow in the right direction.

3. Spike is not the type to self-flagellate. As for Willow, that W/X "you're my best-est friend in the whole world" hug looks really cozy. Wouldn't be surprised if they're both still hugging (metaphorically, that is) when the season starts in October. Unfortunately, Xander can't protect Willow forever, and when she has to face the real world again, she'll have real problems.

Let's hear it for the boys! Masc & Fem; age & youth (Finale spoilers) -- SingedCat, 09:20:24 05/22/02 Wed

No apologies, I'm still high on the roller coaster. My quibbles are so small I can't even bring myself to bring them up. It was all good.

My first subject to comment on this season finale has a bit to do with perusing "Reading the Vampire Slayer" recently. There are in fact a few really good essays in that book, though the first half of them were yawners IMO. I read several very scholarly , well-spoken articles dealing with Buffy as feminist icon, viewing the show through the paradigm of female empowerment (no, really?) While I don't usually go in for that POV, they made some good points about a lot of the men in the show leaving after a certain point, most glaringly Riley and his issues about Buffy's superior prowess. Somehow I never believed that Joss intended to let the female empowerment theme override his main theme, which of course he has always claimed is love. My POV involves the return of balance, not because the men came back, but by the gifts these particular men brought with them.

In the past couple of seasons we've seen the men drifting away from the show stuff drifting away from something else, use your imaginations. The point is they leave. Angel, Oz, Riley, Giles, Spike. This season everyone was their own Big Bad-- entropy increases, things begin to fall apart. Rather than last seasons 'Spiraling' out of control, there is more of a sense of a loss of balance. Everyone is unhappy all at once, there is little relief in switching from one character's storyline to the next. The imbalance leads to distraction, the sleeping of vigilance, a decline, an attack, an accident-- and Willow's terrible, unconscious choice of self-annihilation. Things are about to fly apart permenantly when Giles walks in that door.

I have to stop here and clarify my point carefully, because I am not interpreting this return of balance as some anti- feminist return of order catalyzed by the typical patriarchal power figure. Such an interpretation is anathema to my mind-set, and I belive that of ME. The season closer sees two supporting figures stepping forward, saving Willow and saving the world; dramatically changing the situation by giving their gifts. Here's my point: The real gift borne by each of them is not order, it is not power, it is not valour. It is love, and deeper understanding. Giles returns with great power and struggles with Willow, but he gives that power over to her, along with the gift of insight. Xander stands in front of Willow's destructive stream of power, not because he wishes to stop it with his body, but because he has hope that Willow will stop, just because it's him. And he reaches through her pain to touch her reawakened humanity, and finds his own real Willow. (sure, tell me you didn't cry.:)

Giles in particular gave something so very important to the group by his one generous, joyful, loving act of laughter. The problems everyone has been facing, supernatural or not, are the problems and struggles of the young. Confusion and fear, self-doubt and moral uncertainty are terrible and painful to experience, but they happen to us all as we grow. All I could think of when I saw the two of them, doubled over, gasping about the whole insane asylum vision, was how very much he must have missed her.

And I can't help but notice he made a point of telling Anya that Xander had saved us all, and she looking suitibly impressed, bless them both. Saved us all, indeed. Thank you, Xander(or should I say, Joss?), our messenger of love.

[> Re: Let's hear it for the boys! Masc & Fem; age & youth (Finale spoilers) -- DEN, 09:38:21 05/22/02 Wed

Exactly: Giles and Xander don't affirm patriarchy. They deny it, each with a special kind of love that is given with hope. And yes, I began crying as I saw Willow's hair turn red again! Over a damn TV show!

[> Re: Let's hear it for the boys! Bravi, bravi, bravissimo! -- pr10n, 09:46:34 05/22/02 Wed

Xander says, "I was the heart," and it was never truer than last night.

And I agree, there is a maturity expected of us by the writers, and Giles was their avatar. He seemed to resolve many of the struggles of S6 with laughter and a "Sucks to be you!" attitude that Buffy (finally) related to and responded to.

The serious stuff, that was taken seriously, too. "I am so sorry about Tara," he says. That's when I got all misty.

Pity me: Since this is my first season watching all the way through, this is my first Hiatus Summer. I'm not sure what I'll do, but I imagine my lawn will look pretty nice and my kids will recognize me. Maybe I'll write that book, or paint something.

Who am I kidding? I'll watch Buffy on tape and DVD two or three times a week -- that should help the lull!

[> Re: Let's hear it for the boys! Yay! -- ponygirl, 11:04:49 05/22/02 Wed

Doing my happy dance over your post 'Cat! How wonderful to see the boys of Buffy come through, and all of them won through surrendering, and through their love. Giles and Willow's battle which was in many ways about patriarchy, but a fight in which the patriarch willingly gave up his power and his life. Xander able to do what Buffy never could because Buffy the warrior would never back down. Even Spike after all the violence, rose up from his seemingly defeated posture on the floor of the cave to offer himself up for transformation... out of love. Maybe Joss is a big softy after all.

[> [> Joss on why do a musical: "Because I'm a great big girly-man.":D -- SingedCat, 11:36:03 05/22/02 Wed

[> Wonderful points all around...Great post! -- Rob, 11:34:35 05/22/02 Wed

Let's give the boys a hand, indeed! :o)

And to quote more from the song, Xander "may be no Romeo" but he saved Willow by being her "loving, one-man show"!

But seriously, I love what you said about the fact that the guys saved the day being (1) a concept that doesn't happen all that often on "Buffy and (2) not reinforcing a patriarchal view of the world, but reestablishing the importance of the secondary characters. In this case, they happen to be men. But they bring with them a gift that many would deem to be feminine in nature--the gift of love and understanding. So, as always, gender roles are subverted on this most brilliant show, and good wins out over evil.

I love these characters.

I loved this episode.

I loved this season.

I love this show.



[> [> Let's hear it for Rob! Rox 4 ever! -- ponygirl, 11:47:22 05/22/02 Wed

[> Leave it to me to compare the season finale to a Video Game -- neaux, 11:57:07 05/22/02 Wed

When you bring up the power of laughter, I cant help but think of Final Fantasy X. In particular the scene between Yuna and Tidus. They both sit on a cliff laughing out loud. Using laughter as an act of cleansing and warmth. Making the long road forward and behind a little easier to deal with. The scene with Giles and Buffy really seems similar.

If you havent played the game, you are missing one of the most gripping stories that the Final Fantasy series has ever told..

[> [> Never played the game... -- Scroll, 13:58:02 05/22/02 Wed

but my housemate did and showed me the video clip of them laughing, and you're right... very cathartic.

[> [> [> That's how I would describe the entire feeling of these episodes--extremely cathartic. -- Rob, 21:17:40 05/22/02 Wed

Unconditional Love (spoilers for "TTG" and "Grave") -- Rob, 09:37:16 05/22/02 Wed

I just wanted to make a note of how touching Xander's final scene with Willow was. I agree with many other posters here that what could have come off as a tad bit sappy worked absolutely perfectly, based both on the strength of AH and NB's performances, and on the unconditional love Xander gave to Willow. He did not tell Willow, as the others had, that they love her the way she used to be...and they want her back the way she was. He told her that, no matter what she does, he will love her. She can be a shy girl who breaks a crayon and cries about it, and he loves her. She can be a powerful witch hell-bent on destroying the world, and he will still love her just as much as before. No matter who she hurts and how she hurts herself, he will love her. She can kill him; he would still love her. And that is a very powerful message. Magic is strong and powerful, but it is also temporary, and can give out, as it does to Willow in the last scene. But Xander's love for her remains just as it always was.

In "Two to Go," Willow talked about herself in the third person, as if she were someone entirely different, trying to completely separate herself from the "mousy loser" she used to be. Xander, however, will not let her make that separation here. He reminds her, and will not let her forget, that Willow the wallflower and Willow the witch are one and the same.

One might ask why Willow didn't break down similarly when Giles asked her how Tara would react to her behavior. But the reason is simple. When Giles did that, it was in the form of scolding. He was reprimanding her behavior. Xander does not do that, or at least not in such a straightforward manner. He tells her that what she's doing may be "stupid," but he also supports her decision, whatever it may be. He tells her that if she wants to complete her goal of destroying the world, he wants to be right there with her. He wants to be the first to go.

With this simple statement of unconditional love, Xander accomplished the seemingly insurmountable task of defeating arguably the strongest villain the Scoobies have ever faced. And it was very fitting for this season that the evil, which derived from within the Scoobies' own souls, was defeated, finally, by humanity. I had read spoilers that Xander would gain superpowers to defeat Willow...These spoilers were misguided but not wrong. After all, Xander's powers were stronger than Willow and Buffy's superpowers combined, and that's saying a great deal for our beloved, former Zeppo.

This season has given us many situations where we expected a magical solution to a problem, and were surprised when it was resolved by completely human means. For example, we assumed when we heard that Buffy had "come back wrong" that she had returned part-demon; part-angel; what-have-you--and she turned out to be completely normal, only with a slightly- altered molecular structure. This revelation that Buffy was normal was far more emotionally relevant than had Buffy come back part-demon, etc, because it made us realize that the problem with Buffy was not supernatural, but psychological.

Another example was when Anya regained her veangance demon status, and we expected her to smite Xander when she had the chance by getting someone to make the wish for her. But when Spike finally prepared to make his wish, she stopped him. The fact that she had the power to harm him mystically, but didn't, since a non-magical action (sleeping with Spike) ended up harming him more than anything supernatural she could have thrown at him, is, again, more emotionally and psychologically relevant and profound than taking the "magic" way out.

And here, we see that the greatest superpower of all isn't the dark arts...but friendship and love. And I like that message a lot.


[> Re: Unconditional Love (spoilers for "TTG" and "Grave") -- DEN, 09:48:52 05/22/02 Wed

A great post--and just a small point. I had the sense not that Willow's powers as such were eroding there at the end, but that it was her will to use them that faded when confronting Xander's love. Will--Willow? Or have I been watching this series too long?

[> [> Re: Unconditional Love (spoilers for "TTG" and "Grave") -- Rob, 09:55:53 05/22/02 Wed

I had the same reaction. I'm not sure if I made that clear enough in the post. I think the failure of her powers may have partly been against her conscious "will," but subconsciously, her "will" to use the powers was gone.

And maybe I've been watching the show too long too, but I like that "Will/Willow" point you brought up a whole lot! ;o)


[> [> Re: Unconditional Love and Earth Based magic -- Dochawk, 11:14:35 05/22/02 Wed

I thought it was different. Giles said that the magic he was given by the coven was "positively charged" (since I can't remember the word he used) which would speak to the humanity in Willow rather than the dark magic she had absorbed from the books. I took this to be very Tara like essence. Remember what Xander gave back to Willow was unconditional love, which is the same love that Tara had offered her. Even though they were back together I wonder if willow was ready to accept that kind of unconditional love at that point.

[> [> [> Re: Unconditional Love and Earth Based magic -- SingedCat, 12:11:11 05/22/02 Wed

He said that what they gave him was an essence of the "true magics" (which I take to mean linked to this earth/this dimension), and not the demonic magics Willow had invoked. Nicely said in any case, andf I agree.

[> Re: Unconditional Love (spoilers for "TTG" and "Grave") -- maddog, 10:25:32 05/22/02 Wed

I wouldn't say they were wrong...they just need to be interpreted correctly. Love's definitely a big power when used correctly. It just took the one without the superficial powers to show us that.

[> Great! -- SingedCat, 10:49:47 05/22/02 Wed

Rob, we're on the same page in different books, and I love swapping. Read my post below! :D

[> [> We certainly are on the same page... -- Rob, 11:21:24 05/22/02 Wed

We must have been typing up both our posts, on essentially the same topic, simultaneously! Cosmic coincidence? Hmmm...

Rob :o)

[> Great! -- SingedCat, 10:51:45 05/22/02 Wed

Rob, we're on the same page in different books, and I love swapping. Read my post below. :D

[> Re: Unconditional Love (spoilers for "TTG" and "Grave") -- i-jingle, 12:50:05 05/22/02 Wed

That was one of the best and most touching scenes i've ever seen on an episode of ANY tv show, not just Buffy.
I don't cry when i watch tv or movies, and i started bawling.
I agree with the concept that love has the power to eliminate evil. (Yes, i believe in good and evil, and in absolutes one way or the other. I'll talk about it if i'm asked.)

God bless

[> Re: Unconditional Love (spoilers for "TTG" and "Grave") -- Buffyboy, 13:45:14 05/22/02 Wed

I very much liked your post, but I do have one quibble. You write: “ He tells her that what she's doing may be "stupid," but he also supports her decision, whatever it may be.” I don’t believe Xander supports Willows decision at all. He believes her decision to be stupid, incredible stupid. What he does support is Willow, not her decision. He opposes her decision with both his life and his love. But if she does in fact carry out this horribly stupid decision he will still love her in spite of it.

Synchronicity & Xander's song -- Solitude1056, 10:04:09 05/22/02 Wed

Just finished reading some of the posts on Xander, and flipped on the radio... they're playing "Superman" by R.E.M. Go look up the words, and you've got my nomination for Xander's song - the ultimate irony, our Zeppo, always having showdowns where he wins & no one is around to applaud, but he's proving the heart really can do anything. ;-)

[> Re: Synchronicity & Xander's song -- maddog, 10:19:43 05/22/02 Wed

He's the ultimate hero in this whole group...simply because he has no special powers and yet he effects everything, and this time he stopped the end of the world. Not bad for the "glorified bricklayer". :)

Spike, Beetle symbolism and Nietzschean dichotomies (spoilers) -- alcibiades, 10:16:04 05/22/02 Wed

Here is some information from "Gods and Myths of Ancient Egypt" by Robert A. Armour about the Egyptian symbolism of the scarab beetle.

Some commentary below

"The Ancient Egyptians had observed that scarab beetle laid its egg in dung and then pushed it around on the ground until it became a ball. [I may be dirt, Slayer, but you're the one who likes to roll in it.] The Egyptians imagined that the ball symbolized the sun because it was round, gave off heat and was the source of life, and because it seemed to represent the self-creative powers of the sun-god. They then pictured the sun being pushed across the sky by a giant beetle. Eventually this imagery became associated with
death and rebirth too, since it appeared that the beetle had died and was born again when the larva emerged from the ball.

When the sun god assumed the character of Khepri, he was usually depicted in human form with a scarab either on top of or in place of his head. Like Ra, he was often carrying an ankh and scepter, and he was considered a god of creation, since the beetle and was most often obseved in the act of creating itself anew. Khepris was also associated with the resurrection of the body, since that was what seemed to be
happening when the scarab was born. This fact explains why Egyptians placed the scarab in tombs and on bodies of the dead. this then was the form of Ra in the morning.

In the evening Ra assumed the form of Atum...He was specially revered because of his association with the souls of the dead.

Ra: Sun god of Heliopolis, Ra was the visible body of the sun. He assumed several forms: as a falcon-headed man wearing a solar disk on his a scarab or a man with a scarab face he was the god of the morning sun, Khepri."


Just want to point out (again) that the truly gross image of the scarab beetle climbing in Spike's nose represents his internalization of rebirth and self creative forces.

Angel is cursed and given a soul, but Spike arrives at his by a process of self-creation. And that is definitely a good.

So sun god symbolism...

Not to mix pantheons or anything but if blond haired Spike rises as blond haired Apollo next year, won't I be happy after all. And hey Apollo is the the patron of poetry and music, not to mention purification, healing and prophecy.

I'm wondering whether this means that Spike's notorious and debated truth telling will now be purged -- as in the Delphic oracle.

We could get Spike getting all Apollonian and creative and constructive after his 100 year plus arc of being all Dionysian and destructive. Someone, Shadowkat I believe, referred to Spike as Eros. But Dionysius works as well, and more to the point, the orgies of Dionysian rapture and destructiveness that Spike and Buffy enjoyed everytime they got together.

A bit on Dionysius:

"Perceived as both man and animal, male and effeminate, young and old, he is the most versatile and elusive of the Greek Gods. His myths and cults are often violent and bizarre, a challenge to the established social culture -- the god of wine and intoxication. His provinces include...the mysterious realm of the dead. He has a capacity to transcend existential boundaries. In the Greek imagination, the god whose myths and rituals subvert the normal identity of his followers himself adopts a fluid persona based on illusion, transformation and the simultaneous presence of opposite traits." **

All of which seems very apropos to Spike. But, hey, he's over that phase now.

So next year, I'm predicting Ionic capitals and lots of clean, white, rectangular shapes. And maybe some lyre music.

** quotes from the Oxford Companion to Classical Culture.

[> Re: Spike, Beetle symbolism and Nietzschean dichotomies (spoilers) -- Lilac, 10:35:06 05/22/02 Wed

Thank you -- nice to know there was meaning there beyond "ewww, gross"

[> Spike also played Dyonisos to Anya-Ariane in Entropy ;) -- Etrangere, 10:43:38 05/22/02 Wed

[> [> Re: Spike also played Dyonisos to Anya-Ariane in Entropy ;) -- Dead Soul, 22:03:45 05/22/02 Wed

Oooo! I love that! Xander as Theseus abandoning Ariadne on Naxos.

[> Re: Spike, Beetle symbolism and Nietzschean dichotomies (spoilers) -- West, 11:19:22 05/22/02 Wed

An anti-Buffy friend of mine, tired of me spearheading metaphors, had his own theory: If Spike gets filled with dung beetles, does that mean he's full of shit?

[> this is really cool. My best theory was it was the african "chip" eating beatle. -- Rochefort, 11:52:21 05/22/02 Wed

[> [> Oooh, me too! I'm glad I'm not the only one! -- leslie, 12:55:19 05/22/02 Wed

[> Re: Spike, Beetle symbolism and Nietzschean dichotomies (spoilers) -- Caroline, 12:07:39 05/22/02 Wed

Thanks for the info on scarab beetles - very interesting post. But do you still think Spike is an Nietzchean hero? He wasn't striving for a soul, he wanted the chip removed. The chip may now be fried and inoperable but the soul seemed like a gift with purchase. It looked more like his acquisition of a soul was another of Spike's schemes gone wrong. He was given a soul by a higher power seemingly against his conscious will. Smells more of powers that be or primal demon that be rather than an existential act (states Caroline, expecting to get flamed!).

[> [> Re: Spike, Beetle symbolism and Nietzschean dichotomies (spoilers) -- Traveler, 12:50:17 05/22/02 Wed

"(states Caroline, expecting to get flamed!)"

No flames here :) I agree with this interpretation, and I think a lot of other people do too. Now for my own private rant, I wanted to address the people who act as though Spike is incompetent and can't exectute a good plan. Quite wrong, I think. Rather, he is reckless and takes chances that don't always work out for him.

[> [> I agree...(spoilers) -- Dariel, 14:04:53 05/22/02 Wed

I'd love to think Spike was striving for a soul, but all evidence shows that this was an accident.

I like to think that the demon/shaman could have been a good guy in disguise. With that lizardy skin and tail, sunken eyes, and taunting of Spike's "castration," he appears to be a truly evil being. Either he was on the side of light, or he values a good joke more than he values doing evil.

[> [> [> Re: I agree...(spoilers) -- alcibiades, 15:16:12 05/22/02 Wed

But check out the glowy green eyes on the demon -- specifically changed from the script like a really good after thought. Willow was reminding Dawn constantly about her being green and glowy energy while Dawn was wearing her green jacket.

Pretty dumb evil demon if his big contribution to the fight against good is to return Spike, all hyped and primed from his testing, to fight on Buffy side against the demon's own team.

And a really bad trickster figure.

I think Spike went in knowing what he wanted - the chip out to fight against "the bitch". But his tone of voice as he makes his final request "so Buffy gets what she deserves" is significantly different than the way it started out -- exhausted and not angry. It sounds like Season 6 Spike, not Big Bad Spike or even posturing Spike. I think the trials may have purified him -- clarified to him what he was about. But I am not positive. Got to watch that scene a few more times.

In any case, his subconscious spoke louder than his words.

But no doubt, next year, he'll still have issues.

[> [> [> [> Re: I agree...(spoilers) -- LittleBit, 05:44:40 05/23/02 Thu

I thought the tone of voice and demeanor as Spike made the final request was very like his attitude in S5 when he explained to "BuffyBot" why he didn't betray the Key: stripped of all pretense, honest response forthcoming.

[> [> [> [> I gotta wonder... -- Forsaken, 07:08:24 05/23/02 Thu

If the demon tricked Spike and gave him a soul he didn't want, wouldn't that be sort of unhealthy for him? You know, the part where Spike breaks his neck or rips out his heart for the betrayal?

[> [> Re: Spike, Beetle symbolism and Nietzschean dichotomies (spoilers) -- Salieri, 22:36:59 05/22/02 Wed

Spike may have been working against himself. He may profess to hating Buffy, but he's been there done that and been forced to admit he wasn't being truly honest with himself.

His choice of language, asking... to be what he was so that he could give Buffy what she deserves... might have been a case of his inner desires finding compromise with his conscious intentions. That was the conflict and dual nature.

Adressing the Nietzschean angle... On the surface he's the Master, he wants to control or destroy Buffy. Buried beneath that, he's the Slave and wants her to accept him no matter the cost (like he says under the Broadway Musical influence... "You know, you've got a willing slave"). This conflicts with his normally aggressive posture toward her.

One clue was that he could have simply killed her whenever he really wanted to. The chip didn't prevent him from hurting her in her resurrected form. If he honestly wanted her dead he could have just done it.

A second clue exists in his relationship with Drucilla. He played the part of the Master, protecting and caring for her, but really he was the Slave. His definition of self was founded on her presence and approval. It was she that really had the power. Everything he did was to please her and he would do whatever she wanted.

His aborted rape of Buffy was the defining moment. He couldn't carry it through because, even though he had the ability and opportunity, he really didn't want to. His emotions took control of his actions for a moment but, when he stared into his abyss and saw what he was doing, he stopped. The abyss didn't get the chance to stare back through him. His inner self realized that if he forced her it wouldn't satisfy his desires and he would regret his actions.

It's what makes Spike a potential hero rather than simply an anti-hero, he reached a point where even without the immediate influence of the chip he faltered but did not completely fall.

His soul/humanity being restored wasn't a trick... it was a case of "be careful what you wish for, you might get it".

[> [> [> Re: Spike, Beetle symbolism and Nietzschean dichotomies (spoilers) -- Caroline, 08:35:38 05/23/02 Thu

I agree with a lot of what you say. I was being a little mischievous in my post, trying to provoke a few of the posters on the board who take a pro position on Spike as an existential hero. He was given a soul, seemingly against his will in the same way Angel was. Rather than becoming a self- made man, he has been transformed by some greater power in the same way Angel was.

As for Spike's unconscious motivations, I have long argued that Spike has projected all his positive, unconscious qualities onto Buffy and won't achieve a more integrated identity until he realizes those qualities inside himself. The soul he was granted, imo, is symbolic of that incorporation process for Spike.

I also found it rather funny that the guy who keeps reminding us about magic having consequences forgot his own advice and was reckless in seeking out a magical solution for his own problems. Traveler is right, Spike is reckless indeed.

[> [> [> [> Excellent point Caroline -- Rahael, 14:53:06 05/23/02 Thu

[> [> [> [> Re: Spike, Beetle symbolism and Nietzschean dichotomies (spoilers) -- verdantheart, 06:30:50 05/24/02 Fri

(Don't know that I see Spike as an existential hero, but ...)

Ah, but Angelus was not seeking to be "transformed," whereas Spike was on a quest specifically to make a change in himself -- he just had a different idea of what the change should be. He believed that his problems -- including his love for Buffy -- could all be blamed on the chip. However, there is no reason to believe that the chip did anything (er, in relation to Buffy) but serve to bring Spike in closer proximity to Buffy. His wish was based on false information, so there was no way for it to be granted as he envisioned. Removing the chip would not "make him as he was" (a powerful vampire who hates Buffy) because removing the chip would not remove that love. Adding the "what Buffy deserves" opens up the question of who decides what Buffy deserves. Spike? Apparently not ...

[> Apollo's Attempted Rape of Cassandra -- Spike Lover, 12:32:27 05/22/02 Wed

Your information made me recall the story of Cassandra in the Iliad. She had been given the gift of prophesy by Apollo on the condition that she put out for him. She spurned his advances (somehow. How does one spurn a god?) And so he cursed her with the gift of prophesy that no one would believe.

Just thought I'd share.

[> Cool, and informative. -- LeeAnn, 08:51:59 05/23/02 Thu

the Librarian (spoilers for season finale) -- skeeve, 10:21:35 05/22/02 Wed

'Tis interesting to note that Giles wasn't wearing glasses when he teleported in. Apparently he found someone (not Willow) to give him 20/20. What will he clean when he is nervous? What happens if he gets nervous and forgets that he is not wearing glasses?

Also amusing was the time it took for Giles to realize the significance of Anya's announcement of her blondness.
Does Giles realize that Buffy wasn't kidding about sleeping with Spike?

Not so amusing was the time Giles and Buffy spent chattering while they should have been paying attention to Willow. This struck me as a case of making characters suddenly careless in order to move the plot along.

BTW Xander has won before. He beat the dead guys in the Zeppo.

[> Re: the Librarian (spoilers for season finale) -- maddog, 10:39:25 05/22/02 Wed

I think the blond thing was done on purpose. Anya wanted a hug and thought of anything to get him to notice her.

Xander has won before, and he's been intrical too(bringing Buffy back to life for one). But this was the big thing...he's never had this much responsibility and nailed it before. It's what makes the ending so great.

[> [> Xander (spoilers for season finale) -- skeeve, 13:54:04 05/22/02 Wed

He was integral in the Zeppo also. Had he not beaten the dead guys, dead Buffy et al would have had a hard time closing the hellmouth. Of course, this time, the other Scoobies know that he was integral.

Yeah, the blond thing was cute. Part of the cuteness was the time Giles took to realize that Anya wanted a hug.

[> Re: Laughter -- Prophesy Girl, 14:04:39 05/22/02 Wed

I don't think Giles was laughing because he didn't believe Buffy slept with Spike. I think his reaction was that of a more experienced person hearing all the horrible woes of someone with less experience. Buffy just gives him this laundry list of things that are so horrible for her since she is intimately involved, and Giles is able to take the outsider perspective and know that things are not so horrible and Buffy will get through, and thus he is able to laugh at the situation.

Am I kind of clear?

[> [> Re: Laughter -- astrid, 15:12:00 05/22/02 Wed

I don't think Giles was laughing because he didn't believe Buffy slept with Spike. I think his reaction was that of a more experienced person hearing all the horrible woes of someone with less experience. Buffy just gives him this laundry list of things that are so horrible for her since she is intimately involved, and Giles is able to take the outsider perspective and know that things are not so horrible and Buffy will get through, and thus he is able to laugh at the situation.

Am I kind of clear?

This makes perfect sense to me. Sometimes the best thing a friend can do for you is to remind you that your problems are not, in fact, the whole world. Otherwise you just wrap yourself tighter and tighter in your own little bubble of misery, until it swallows you. That's where Buffy was, by the time Normal Again rolled around, and to a large extent, her family and friends were there too. She needed a perspective check from someone outside her circle o' depression.

[> xander winning -- anom, 22:06:48 05/22/02 Wed

"BTW Xander has won before. He beat the dead guys in the Zeppo."

I was thinking of his faceoff at the end of that ep w/Jack (not sure I remembered the name right?) when he faced Willow at the end of Grave. He had the same centered, I-know-what-I- need-to-do-here look. ('Course, the love part was different....)

The Lessons of Pain : tears and laughter (spoiler for the final) -- Etrangere, 10:38:34 05/22/02 Wed

In my 11th hour post, I said that the final will be about coming through everything that happened in S6 and reconciling the monster and the human into one self.
Well it did that, at least partially, and it did more, answering for the implicit question Season 6 and its angst raised :

Why live if it is such a pain to live ?

It is funny how some recent posts went again about wether Buffy's death in the Gift was a suicide or a true hero sacrifice.
Because of course, when the death of someone is so glorified, and even, when it is shown as such a relief, a peace of mind for the character, you can be afraid about the message it says about living and what living is worth.
I love Season 6 for this. For being this big, uneasy trip toward life. It wasn't always well done (and indeed, there were some things in the final i found were lacking - yet I love it, and I must say I love Fury :), it didn't always go smoothly and with great coherence. But it had power. A raw, gut-wrenching kind of power. Like life.

"when I clawed my way out of that grave, I left something behind. A part of me. I just... I don't understand why I'm back"

What the hell happened to Buffy who said to Willow in the beginning of season 1 that her philosophy was seize the moment ?
What happened to the girl who wanted to be normal, to dance, to flirt, to study even... who said proudly, I walk, I sneeze, I'm going to be a fireman when the flood rolls back ?
She left a part of her, indeed, and if you think her jump from the tower was part suicide, she had forgotten it a while back before even dying.
Joie de vivre, anyone ?
For Buffy it has become all about duty. All work and no play have made her a dull girl. Not only for her. They've all been forgotting.
Willow's forgotten that she started to use magic because helping people was what she wanted to do.
Xander's forgotten what love, when it was unconditionnal, was about as well as courage didn't belong to those who had great powers.
They've all been forgotting what were the meaning of their lives, the meaning they gave to it. They've all been forgotting to "believe in [themselves]"
They're all going through the motion, not even knowing why you must save the world.

"This is.. wow. It's incredible. I'm so juiced. Giles, it's- it's like no mortal person has ever had this much power. Ever. It's like I-I'm connected to everything. I can feel. It feels like... I can feel... everyone. Ohh. Oh, my God. All the emotion. All the pain. No it's... It's too much. Oh, Jeez, It's just too much." (Humm... "Jeez" ? So Willow is neither wicca neither jewish anymore, she's now a christian ?! Humm sorry, I disgress :))

So, Giles gives Willow the world. A world of people, of creatures, of living and dying. A world of feeling. And from Earshot we can remember how it feels. A world of pain. Like the pain we are all feeling all the time. Like the pain they've all been experiencing all this season.
Willow takes the next logical step. If living is pain, and dying is peace. Then let it be over already. Let's just all die and be the happier for it.

"Proserpexa... Let's the cleansing fires from the depths burn away the suffering souls and bring sweet death"

Because all the monsters in fact came from this same source of nihilism. That's why indeed all of them wants to bring upon the end of the world. That's why they are evil - unworthy. Because the reason you want to destroy the world or others is the same reason you want to destroy yourself. Self-loathing. Hopelessness. Self-hatred.
All things that they've been feeling the whole season through. And running away from to keep finding again in the same places they though they could find a haven from it. Because it came from within. Just like the inverse of this, the self-confidence, the hope, the self-esteem came also from themselves.
Evil is just this lack of anything - this big nothing, this emptyness that wants to be filled with destroying everything else (like the vampire that needs the lives of others to keep its unlife)
The Monster is just this lack of identity, of humanity, of recognicence. A mere shadow of the self that wishes to destroy it.

"But the thing is, yeah, I love you. I love crayon-breaky Willow, and I love scary-veiny Willow"

But it's still you.
Because like the humanity creates the monster in you, the monster in you creates the humanity in you.
From the self-loathing Xander felt he could guess what Willow was feeling.
The great gift of Empathy that links the people together.
How shall we know joy if we don't know sadness ? Light if we don't know darkness, hope if we don't know despair, faith if we don't know doubt, pardon if we don't know injury, love if we don't know hatred ?

As the character's flaws - their inner big bads - sprung from their inner strength, they can find newer strength there in their flaws.

What else is experience, the lessons we learn by ourselves, as adults, if not those that comes from our mistakes ?

In laughter and in tears, because they are the two things that wash over the pride, the anger, the blindess. That helps you realise that it's all right, that's it's not so bad, that's you're not so stuck as you though you were. To relativise. Because they are the two salty things you can appreciate in life even when you don't feel so good.
And then you see it's not all about pain.

"Dawn, I've got it so wrong. I don't want to protect you from the world. I want to show it to you. There's so much that I want to show you."

So at last she remembers and they all do. All the things in the world she liked to en-joy. All the beauty and the wonder, all the feelings and colours and the infinity of variety that is life.
And yes it means pain, too, but in this pain, even, there is so much wealth, so much to learn and to see, and there would have no joy, no love, no happiness if there weren't some little bit of pain in it.

Like the salt in tears.

And you can cry of joy too.

[> So many wonderful salty things in your post! Thank you -- ponygirl, 11:20:04 05/22/02 Wed

[> Re: The Lessons of Pain : tears and laughter (spoiler for the final) -- Spike Lover, 12:07:42 05/22/02 Wed

Thank you for explaining why the monsters keep wanting to destroy the world. -Doesn't that make Spike more interesting in Season 2 when he makes a pact w/ Buffy to help save the world -for one reason -because he likes it. Including the dog races at Manchester park- ...

[> [> You've caught on that, didn't you ? :) -- Ete who loves Spike too, 12:32:34 05/22/02 Wed

Another round of Kick-the-Spike? No, not really. (spoilers for S2 AtS, and TTG/G, BtVS) -- Solitude1056, 11:32:49 05/22/02 Wed

While there's a number of threads with a few vociferous posters insisting that a soul demeans Spike's journey somehow - and I can see their point, I get their arguments - it's not like ME hasn't used this particular type of movement before, as a means to introduce change.

Back when Darla was human/returned, and Lindsey finally told Angel about the real situation - her late-stage, long- untreated syphillis - Angel tried to move heaven and earth to save her. His intention wasn't entirely pure (as I recall), since he had this buried notion that in saving her, he could somehow save himself, too. Anyway, he went through a series of trials, too - fighting, walking on crosses, sticking his hands in holy water, etc. At the end of it, he was granted permission to make his request... and the PTB could not grant it, since Darla's humanity was her second chance. She wasn't going to get another.

While it seemed pointless then, at first (and I echoed Angel's frustration at doing so much and getting nothing), the trial was still a catharsis because it made Darla realize Angel truly loved her. And it was also where she finally came to grips with what was happening, and recognized that her death might be a good thing, to finally die, with dignity, instead of instant dust. All that, of course, was knackered about by W&H intervening, naturally... but this was the movement propelled by Angel's willingness to undergo trials, on someone else's behalf.

And in rewatching Spike's tests, it seems to me that he doesn't nearly emphasize his own intentions as much as he repeats, and focuses on, what Buffy deserves. But "deserves" is a difficult word to pin down - it can be used, in english, both negatively and positively. Hard to say which one the demon interpretes it as, although it's clear how Spike is using it, by his tone of voice. And then he undergoes the trials, one by one, again markedly close - thematically - to Angel's trials on Darla's behalf.

The whole theme was grow up, as we've all been reminded over and over again... but that usually means breaking out of one's adolescent shell, changing, shifting one's power base into adulthood. Why is Spike any different? Given that it seems clear that Angel can be the "only vampire with a soul" - or at least the only vampire with a gypsy curse - not to mention Spike and Angel are radically different personalities... I'd be pretty bored if they did a retread of Angel's route, or worse - kept Spike in a standstill, vampire (with or without chip). Gotta keep moving, keep growing. It may test this fabulous "canon" some people keep quoting, but I'm not worried. I'm with the poster who pointed out that Spike's soul, and Willow's redemption, in those last few minutes just underlined that no one stands so high they can't fall, and no one lays so low they can't rise up. Curiously, it still echoes AtS, as always - the lowest rise, the highest fall. We just haven't gotten to see the rest of the movement, in AtS, since they're making us wait til next season... but it's there in BtVS.

Just think of it all like a canon - no, not the sense of "this is what's included" but in the sense of music. A canon is a particular style of composition where a melody or melodies is repeated, throughout the instruments, in varying degrees, culminating and combining in point and counterpoint. Each instrument may be on a different note of the melody-line, but somehow they still form a perfect whole. Pachelbel's Canon in D, is the best known, but there are others (mostly in ecclesiastical music). Spike's soul, Willow's fall from grace, and Buffy's realization that the world is a place she wants to be... all parts of the same melody. Spike's soul is just where one section of the orchestra has come to that point in the melody; it doesn't make it discordant. Listen to the way good composers manipulate a canon, and you'll hear the points where each instrument gets a solo, to highlight its participation in the whole before everything joins back in. Jazz has the same attributes - highlighting a single instrument in what seems discordant but is actually a variation on the entire melody - and then each joins back in. This is also how Whedon guides his story, and it's why I keep listening. Yes, if you listen only to this section, and ignore that section, Spike's movement seems discordant, but it's not. You've going to have to keep watching and listening, because Whedon's not done yet. We've had six seasons so far of this music, and there's more to go. When it's all said and done, then and only then will we really be in a position to judge whether any single note belonged or was superfluous or discordant. I'm betting we'll find we can't remove a single note - even Spike's soul - without undermining the continuity of the entire piece... and that we'll be just fine, knowing that.

[> Wow, nicely expressed as usual, Solitude! -- Dyna, 11:41:23 05/22/02 Wed

[> [> Awww, thanks! ;-) -- Solitude1056, 12:11:36 05/22/02 Wed

[> So what is Spike now?. (spoilers for S2 AtS, and TTG/G, BtVS) -- KKC, 12:16:50 05/22/02 Wed

On the subject of Spike detractors... Are we as fans at all sure of what happened to Spike at the end of the finalé? All we hear is that the demon says he'll restore Spike's soul, and all we see are pretty pyrotechnics. We don't know that this has actually happened... Maybe the unnamed demon will find that he can't restore the soul. Maybe Spike's soul will be restored by making him human (a thought I had when I noticed that the scenes in the last half hour were all shot in very bright sunlight.) Maybe the restoration of Spike's soul means his body dies and he can rest in peace. I know one fan who thinks that the demon will discover he can't grant Spike a soul because he already has one (in the fashion of Neruda, earning one through hardship.)

Talk is cheap. Somebody said that Spike can have a soul now, but that doesn't mean he's a vampire with a soul. That would lack clever irony. :)


[> Great, Thanks...My thoughts(spoilers TTG/G, BtVS) - - Kevin, 12:17:31 05/22/02 Wed

Great Post...

My take on it was that Spike will end up human and I think that will be the most interesting route they could go with his character.

The very last lines I heard last night were that he'd passed the trial so make me as I was so I can give the slayer what she deserves.

He obviously means make me a vampire so I can kill the slayer without any conscience. But in usual Spike fashion, he bungles by verbalizing a more ambiguous statement.

"Make me what I was" only has two possible meanings to me for Spike:
1)Make me a normal vampire without a chip or
2)Make me a human

Spike was never a vampire with a soul, so that would not be making him what he was.

"So I can give the slayer what she deserves" isn't as clear cut, but since the demon gave Spike a soul, it would seem to me that this statement could be what Buffy actually deserves after all these years, a decent healthy relationship.

I will be endlessly anticipating next season to see how this will develope.

[> [> I agree that is what he meant -- Spike Lover, 12:25:17 05/22/02 Wed

[> [> Re: Great, Thanks...My thoughts(spoilers TTG/G, BtVS) -- Dochawk, 14:25:57 05/22/02 Wed

I agree with much of what has been said here but I wanted to add a few comments.

1. Halfrek/Cecily - obviously she would be a player in any storyline about Spike returning as William - except that Marti in an interview recently stated that Halli Rocha was cast as Halfrek because they liked the actress (like they have done so many times before with actors) and it wasn't until she had to do a scene without makeup that they realized they would have to acknoweldge the fact she was the same person. Obviously they could still use it, but it wasn't planned (like theVampWillow/dark Willow was.

2. Joss answering a question yesterday at the bronze said:
"6) A lot of people were confused at the end when Spike wanted his fish order changed. SOLE, people. Jeez. We HAVE a vampire with a SOUL, you think we're doing that again?" We all know Mr. Whedon's honesty when it comes to future Buffy plans, so now I am thinking they may do it (though it would certainly cheapen his other show)

3. There is nothing I want less than Spike back with Buffy. Think of the message this sends: Girls (women) it ok to stay with that bad boy cause if he loves you enough he'll turn into a good guy. Perphluey!!!! it don't happen.

[> [> [> Re: Great, Thanks...My thoughts(spoilers TTG/G, BtVS) -- maddog, 17:42:01 05/22/02 Wed

I don't think the point would be about Buffy and Spike but more about Spike himself. Spike attoned phsyically for his vampire ways. And guys changing for the love of a woman...not often, but I'd disagree that "it don't happen". I've seen it with my own eyes. Never say never.

[> [> There are other possible variations. -- yez, 14:28:28 05/22/02 Wed

For instance, could the demon be using "soul" figuratively? Could he be giving Spike back his vampire "soul" -- his spirit for doing evil? When Spike first arrives, the demon refers to Spike having allowed himself to be "castrated" -- made less than what he was, had his masculinity and potential curbed.

I think that's more of a long-shot, but I think it's still a possibility.

Also, "what Buffy deserves" could be read a lot of different ways, depending on whether the demon is an agent of "good" or "evil." Maybe he's Switzerland. But what Buffy deserves from an evil demon's perspective is significantly different from what she'd deserve from TPTB's perspective or from "good" creatures' perspective. She was just pulled from a hell dimension, for crying out loud. Does Buffy still deserve to have "every inch of her ass kicked"? Or does she deserve true, lasting love?

And if Spike is made human again and gets his old soul back, what happens to the chip in his head?


[> [> [> Re: There are other possible variations. -- rose, 16:04:19 05/22/02 Wed

Im pretty shure the chip is fried after the pyrotechnic magics. But good point about the deamons side hadent thought of that . now how to explain his summer to the scoobies BEFORE Buffy stakes him for havening the nerve to show his face again?
also doesnt haveing a soul give him a clean slate it did for angel and franly angeleuses crimes were much worse than spikes (over the last seson anyway)

[> [> [> Re: There are other possible variations. -- maddog, 17:48:43 05/22/02 Wed

Answer to your first Vampires are demons...demons don't have souls. There's no such thing as a "vampire soul".

"What Buffy deserves" is deliberately ambiguous to attempt to catch the viewers who don't think through the episodes like we do. I personally was sure after all he'd gone through with Buffy that what he thought she deserves is a man she can that she has chemistry with, yet has a soul.

I would think the chip would be a non factor. If he's got a soul then he's less likely to want to bite or fight regular people and therefore the chip wouldn't go off.

[> [> [> [> I meant "soul" figuratively, not literally. -- yez, 07:17:53 05/23/02 Thu

[> Great metaphor! -- Traveler, 12:54:56 05/22/02 Wed

[> Fabulous post! -- ponygirl, 12:56:23 05/22/02 Wed

[> That was extremely well said. -- Deeva, 13:59:34 05/22/02 Wed

I especially liked the reference of this show being a piece of music. It needs everything, every little bit for it to work. Excellent.

[> Spike's intentions? (spoilers through finale) -- yez, 15:12:12 05/22/02 Wed

Is it just me, or is anyone else unsure of Spike's intention in going to the cave demon? It seems like the general understanding/interpretation is that Spike goes to the demon to remove the chip, and inadvertently (potentially), gets his soul back instead.

But I'm just having a hard time understanding why he would go through the trouble of traveling to another country/continent and agree to undergo intense trials to remove a human implant.

I mean, why all the supernatural? I haven't watched all the early eps., but as far as I know, he tries to get one doctor to remove the chip (unsuccessfully). Why wouldn't he try another doctor?

And if this cave demon has been available to remove the chip all this time, why only try him now? Why not when he was still unfriendly with the SG?

I mean, is it possible he goes there specifically to get his soul back? I mean, we've heard him refer to himself as a man before. And in "Seeing Red" he says he's not a man or a vampire -- a nothing.

I agree that his use of "bitch," etc., kind of imply he's not really feeling all warm and fuzzy toward Buffy right now. But something just doesn't add up for me.

Is this just an ill-fitting plot device to get Spike to get his soul back while still keeping evil Spike evil (i.e., he was trying to do bad, but got good instead)? Or could it be something different? Are we being thrown off track?


[> [> Re: Spike's intentions? (spoilers through finale) - - leslie, 15:57:22 05/22/02 Wed

I think Spike's soul retrieval was a purely Freudian slip, especially given that he made his request when he was completely exhausted and all defenses down. He didn't think he wanted it, but that's how it came out. (And as for the sole--jeeze, we just had to watch a beetle climb up his nose- -do we have to see a fish flapping out of his head too?) What promises to be interesting is how he deals with what his heart has gotten and what his head thinks it wants. He seems still pretty pissed off at both her and himself--I don't think a soul is just going to wash that away. Unless, of course, he really does go back to being completely William, in which case he has a big dose of culture shock in store for him, and what's he going to do with all those Sex Pistols albums?

This is my question: by my reckoning, Spike now has a soul *and* a chip. In a possible interpretation of the chip's powers, it would seem that now he can't even hurt *himself.* No easy way out through self-impalation this time, though it would be rather amusing to see him try.

As for the "we've already done that with Angel" route--Spike is such a completely different character that having another ensouled vampire would actually be quite interesting for comparative purposes. I don't see him going all broody and tail-between-his-legs-puppyish no matter what's happened to him.

Finally, in the case of Warren and the entire Band of Evil Weenies, we have just seen that having a soul is no guarantee of good behavior.

[> [> [> Re: Spike's intentions? (spoilers through finale) - - clg0107, 16:12:31 05/22/02 Wed

Finally, in the case of Warren and the entire Band of Evil Weenies, we have just seen that having a soul is no guarantee of good behavior.

And, for that matter, souled Liam wasn't much to brag about either!

[> [> [> Re: Spike's intentions? (spoilers through finale) - - yez, 07:22:30 05/23/02 Thu

"...what's he going to do with all those Sex Pistols albums?"


I was thinking about that, how he can't hurt himself, either -- if the chip still works the same way in a human head (and he doesn't just have massive brain damage...). I guess no more chest waxes, either.

"I don't see him going all broody and tail-between-his-legs- puppyish no matter what's happened to him."

Well, if he does get some William back in him, William sure seemed like a much more sensitive soul than Liam, so I'm sure about this theory. Even as a vampire, Spike seems more feeling/caring than Angelus.


[> Wonderful post, Solitude. Regarding Spike and the CaveDemon... -- Ixchel, 17:20:15 05/22/02 Wed

I wasn't sure where to post this (I didn't want to start a new thread), so I hope this is appropriate since the topic is Spike's resouling.

While I have many questions regarding the finale (still processing), the nature of the final scene (and the lead up) is puzzling to me. I realize it was all ambiguous in order to maintain suspense, but I thought I'd break it down a little to try to think it out. I'm working from the assumption that Spike is now a souled vampire (his eyes did glow like Angel's have during soul transferring processes). And I don't believe he's human now because of the demon's statement about returning his soul, not "enjoy being human" or something like that. I admit there is the possibility, but this is how I prefer to interpret it (for now anyway).

Why did the CaveDemon give Spike a soul?

a. It did this for its own amusement. It's been in that cave for centuries and doesn't have cable, so it makes its own fun by putting petitioners through trials and then not giving them what they want (in fact giving them something they don't want). Yet somehow word still gets out that you can get what you want from this demon by going through tests (it has good PR people).

b. The demon "read" Spike's true desire (maybe the same way it knew about Buffy) and gave him what he really wanted. Spike's behavior in TR would seem to support this idea. So whether or not Spike was aware of what he really wanted, the demon knew and so a soul it was.

c. At some point, off screen, Spike changed his mind and specifically asked for a soul. I'm not sure if the dialogue can support this theory though.

d. The demon misinterpreted what Spike wanted. This doesn't seem likely. As others have pointed out, Spike asking to be what he was would mean either vampire sans chip or human. Unless the demon took a strange approach and decided that Spike meant he wanted to be a being with a soul again (as he was as a human) and so the demon made him a being with a soul (this seems very unlikely and too convoluted).

My choice is b., mainly on the strength of TR.

As a final note, did anyone else think it was odd that a reptilian, glowy-eyed demon had long, thick eyelashes, or am I the only one?


[> [> Re: Wonderful post, Solitude. Regarding Spike and the CaveDemon... -- manzanita, 20:07:57 05/22/02 Wed

I'm finally delurking after visiting this board for almost a year. I have a few thoughts about Spike in TTG and Grave:

First, I don't think Spike really knew what he wanted. After SR, he is overcome with remorse, anger, maybe love for Buffy, and frustration. He's not really thinking straight when he goes to Africa to make things change and shake the slayer up. He didn't need to go to Africa to get the chip removed if he wants to hurt Buffy. I think he is just overcome with difficult and conflicting emotions and he tries to run away literally and figuratively. So he is not being rationale and thoughtful about asking the cave demon to restore him to what he was. In fact, Spike might not know what he wants from the cave demon, other than to not be in his current conflicted, limbo, emotional state.

Also, I can't help but think of two Spike references from Seasons 4 and 5. In Xander's dream in Restless, he is in the playground with Buffy, Giles and Spike. Spike and and Giles are on the swingset and Giles tells Xander that he is training Spike to be a watcher.

In Season 5, in Forever, when Doc first meets Spike, he says that he recognizes him, but not as a vampire. Doc tells him that he knows Spike as a human with different hair playing dominoes.

Those two scenes from Seasons 4 and 5 suggest to me that (1)Spike might be a human after the cave demon gives him what "he wants", (2) it is not clear that if Spike returns to Sunnydale with a soul or as a human that his relationship with Buffy will necessarily be a romantic one.

By the way, I always enjoy reading your posts Sol!

[> [> [> Welcome, manzanita. Good points. -- Ixchel, 21:03:50 05/22/02 Wed

[> [> [> Wow, thanks, and welcome to the board! -- Solitude1056, 07:50:10 05/23/02 Thu

[> Re: Another round of Kick-the-Spike? No, not really. (spoilers for S2 AtS, and TTG/G, BtVS) -- maddog, 17:32:19 05/22/02 Wed

You bring up an interesting point about Spike's maturation. Because we think he wants the chip out, and in the end(I believe) he gets what he really wanted, what Buffy deserved, a man with a soul. Spike's maturity came from the fact that he no long wanted what was best for him(the chip out) but what was best for the ones he loves(ie getting his soul back so Buffy could love him).

[> Some spoilers from the Jane Espenson interview at the Succubus Club -- Rufus, 19:54:14 05/22/02 Wed

The basics before I listen to the tape again.....

Spike is a vampire with a soul
He still has a chip

The attempted rape was to bring Spike to a point that he would seek a way to not be that man/demon again.

The failure of the S/B relationship was a result of Buffy being closed off.

She thinks of S/B as one of their couples as well as W/T, and X/A.

So I was wrong about them making him human but not about them returning his soul, and the fact that he goes in search for one.

[> [> Thank you, Rufus, for posting this. -- Ixchel, 20:50:55 05/22/02 Wed

I really wanted to hear this interview (and the last succubusclub until fall), but kept losing my connection.

A question, did JE say Spike wanted the soul (I'm not clear on your last sentence)?

Thanks again.


[> [> [> Re: Thank you, Rufus, for posting this. -- Rufus, 21:17:32 05/22/02 Wed

Someone was kind enough to give me this

"Very worried about the attempted rape...not something you play around with, and very hard to come back from. Luke and Laura did but that was twenty years ago, and these are different times. We have to be very careful that we're not saying anything about humans. But it was that moment, in the bathroom, when Spike looked at the demon in him, that's what made him want to go get a soul."

"We did mislead on you all, led you to believe it was the chip. We knew all the time. If all he wanted to do was hurt Buffy, he could have hurt Buffy. so it was inconsistant anyway"

I will have more later when I hear the rest. What is above is paraphrasing....when I have more I'll post it.

[> [> [> [> Thanks again, Rufus. That really clarifies things. -- Ixchel, 21:57:43 05/22/02 Wed

[> [> [> [> Thanks Rufus! Doing my dance of justification! -- ponygirl, 06:29:34 05/23/02 Thu

[> [> [> [> Yes, please post an accurate transcript if you get one -- Masq, 06:43:42 05/23/02 Thu

This is obviously important stuff. Surely someone out there is making transcripts of the Succubus club interviews?? I would like to have the most accurate information from the various horse's mouths on my site.

[> [> [> [> [> I'm waiting on a transcript and the MP3's of the Fury and DeKnight interviews are at -- Rufus, 13:05:19 05/23/02 Thu

The MP3 of Jane Espensons interview should be up sometime today at

Anything more I hear should be up at my Yahoo site

As soon as I find stuff it will be posted.

I already have some reviews of the season finale up.

[> [> Yes, thanks! If anyone finds an audio file or transcript of that, please post the location. -- Dyna, 21:09:55 05/22/02 Wed

[> [> [> I believe the Succubus Club will have both on their site fairly soon. -- Ixchel, 08:55:55 05/23/02 Thu

[> [> Re: Some spoilers from the Jane Espenson interview at the Succubus Club -- Dochawk, 23:02:09 05/22/02 Wed

This is about the worst news you could have given. We are going to be faced with more of the horribleness that was Spuffy. They've countered their own canon, meaning Buffy is a mass murderer. And anything that makes Angel's story special, its not. Willow should have succeeded at destroying the world for that.

[> [> [> Some spoilers from the Jane Espenson interview at the Succubus Club -- alcibiades, 23:50:55 05/22/02 Wed

You have to be careful before believing these writers. First of all, they all have different things to say and disagree with each other quite a bit it appears. If MN or DF had given the same interview all they would have said five different ways is Spike is evil.

And it is also amazing the stuff they miss -- if you can believe them. Frex, JE claims she didn't realize that the theme of the carpentar saving the world through pure generous love of his friend, agape not eros, had Christian overtones.

Yeah right. Tell me another.

[> [> [> [> I agree -- lele, 08:25:55 05/23/02 Thu

the writers tend to mislead or offer their own interpretations of storylines that may or may not have anything to do with what is actually going on. The DF interview at succubus club contradicted hers alot e.g. DF said he believed that Anya did not have a soul since she was a vengeance demon again. He didn't offer any insights into spike's motives during or after 'the scene' but he did confirm we'd find out if spike would become human via the finale(one of the interviewers speculated that spike would b/c human). In either case, the attempted rape is going to be problematic whether they decide to have buffy and spike involved romantically or not. I read somewhere that it was written in to counter buffy beating spike in Dead Things, but overall it doesn't b/c it seems the audience would be way more accepting of her violence towards spike than of his towards her. I think the point about spike not being a good guy should have been more integrated in the season than his attempt to separate buffy from her friends in DT and cheating at kitten poker. I think the subplot of him as the Doctor in As You Were should have been developed more in previous episodes so that we could see some of his amoral activities without buffy seeing them. That's just my gripe though. However, the acquisition of a soul seems to be an important transformation in the buffyverse so maybe that does clear the way for spike to b/c a watcher or companion to buffy and the SG.

[> [> A few words on Tara from the Succubus Club Interview -- Rufus, 03:06:04 05/23/02 Thu

A bit of a collection of some of the things that Jane said about Tara and her death..

As we intended we were upset ourselves
I didn't think Joss was going to be able to do it, he really had to struggle with killing her, the fact it was so painful was what we knew would make it work we knew it would hurt, and that's what we needed because otherwise we just can't just take Willow to where we needed to take her.

I hadn't been aware that there had been backlash, although we did talk about it What we knew had been done with gay characters was that you introduce one just to kill them. We knew that wasn't what we were doing with her. Tara had been on the show a very long time, not as long as Buffy, but she clearly had not been brought in as cannon fodder. Umm because when you do that you bring them in and kill them right away...and when you do that it's a punishment we felt that this was so clearly not a punishment for being gay her being gay. She wasn't gay bashed she was shot accidentally. Umm we did talk about it we did talk about we were doing that thing we're killing the lesbian. But it didn't feel that way to us because she wasn't the lesbian character anymore Willow and Tara both lesbians Willow didn't die Willow is a main character if you wanted to make some horrible message about killing lesbians you kill her. She did go evil but she went evil out of deep loving grief umm we knew we were going to make her evil we had to figure out how, that seemed to be the best way how. We really do think of them as one of our couples you know we have Buffy/Spike, Xander/Anya, and Tara/Willow and we really don't when we think of a story for them a situation for them we never go from what should happen to the lesbians it's just what should happen to that couple. Um so we really stopped thinking of them as a gay couple and just thought of them as a couple.

Well I think we would be shirking our responsiblility if umm Willow goes out and gets herself a boy umm then that seems to me that we have said something about Lesbianness...what we have said instead are we view our characters as such real and three dimensional characters that good things can happen to them bad things can happen to them they aren't templates anymore these are people we hope we have created people.

We didn't kill Lesbianosity we killed one lonely girl who we feel we miss too who happened to be gay and we miss her terribly. and ahh there is no reason to not think that we won't be seeing a little or more of Tara or something that looks like Tara.

[> [> [> Re: A few words on Tara from the Succubus Club Interview -- Cydney, 08:37:07 05/23/02 Thu

I would have liked the penultimate scene to have been Tara's funeral, with Giles giving the eulogy with words like unconditional love, redemption, solace, forgiveness, etc. Focus on Buffy at graveside obviously thinking about Spike- then go to the Spike scene.

The writer's failed to honor Tara's character by not having this closure scene, IMO. The effect of her death and its aftermath weren't shown after resolution. And Giles should have left with Willow for some 'coven rehab' in England.

Plus, Buffy crawls out of the 'grave' and is all tra-la-la with Dawn - but at the time she didn't know if Giles, Willow or Xander were alive!! Illogical. Glad she wants to live again, etc., but the scene didn't fit in some ways.

I did on the whole love S.6.

[> [> [> Perhaps JE is cruel to give us hope of seeing Tara again, but I'll take that hope anyway. -- Ixchel, 09:06:50 05/23/02 Thu

[> Very Eloquent Post, Solitude - Thanks! -- Belladonna, 09:50:17 05/23/02 Thu

Was Wu-men watching the AtS finale? (spoiler) -- Ryuei, 11:45:46 05/22/02 Wed

I just came across the following commentary on koan #48 in the Gateless Gate by it's compiler, Wu-men. The koan itself would not really be relevant here, but the commentary seems strangely applicable to the Season 3 finale of Angel. Here it is:

"One goes deep, deep to the bottom of the sea, and winnows the mud and pumps up the sand. The other goes high, high to the top of the mountain, and raises foaming waves that spread over the entire sky. Maintaining, releasing, each using but one hand, they safegaurd the vehicle of the Tao. They are like children, running from different directions, who collide with each other."
(Cited in Original Dwelling Place by Robert Aitken)

Make of that what you will...

Namu Myoho Renge Kyo,

[> Ryuei! Good to see you! -- Masquerade, 12:49:35 05/22/02 Wed

Stop by and hang a bit. We could use some Buddhist wisdom on Season 6 btvs/Season 3 AtS.


[> [> Re: Ryuei! Good to see you! -- Ryuei, 13:09:16 05/22/02 Wed

Sorry to have been away for so long. I've been so busy with my website, and working for the Nichiren Shu, and with my day job and family that I have hardly been able to even keep up with the posting here, let alone make any meaningful contributions.

In addition, the angst and anguish in both Angel and Buffy this past season were almost too much to bear. I did enjoy both seasons (though I don't think either topped the second seasons of both), but I just found that I didn't have anything to add that hadn't already been said and said better by other posters here.

I did miss interacting with everyone though, and hopefully I can chime in a little more in the future. I might even take some time to reflect on the past seasons(s) especially as I get the DVD of seasons past.

Namu Myoho Renge Kyo,

[> [> [> Another "Second seasons" lover -- Masq, 13:32:48 05/22/02 Wed

Glad to see I'm not alone!

[> [> [> [> Re: Another "Second seasons" lover -- matching mole, 10:45:37 05/23/02 Thu

Nope - not alone at all. AtS S2 is definitely number 1 for me. And for BtVS S2 and S3 are virtually neck and neck as my faves.

[> No, I missed it -- Wu-men, 12:55:47 05/22/02 Wed

[> hi, ryuei--you've been missed! -- anom, 21:42:13 05/22/02 Wed

[> [> Re: hi, Ryuei--you've been missed! - Ditto!! -- Brian, 07:52:17 05/23/02 Thu

Metanarration Question -- Kimberly, 12:26:18 05/22/02 Wed

For those who understand this term, would a title which appears to be aimed at a character but can also be seen as aimed at the viewer be an example of metanarration?

The example is Welcome to the Hellmouth.

Thanks for the assist.

[> Re: Metanarration Question -- alcibiades, 16:00:51 05/22/02 Wed

Yep, but not in an ironic sense.

I prefer the ironic meta-narration myself in the Jossverse

[> [> irony is in the eye of the beholder -- redcat, 11:00:11 05/23/02 Thu

Seems to me like "Welcome to the Hellmouth" is a specifically intriguing example of ironic meta-narration. It's just more subtle, perhaps because it's more imbricated, than the most obvious example, "And you can sing along," (see O'Cailleagh, just below).

[> Re: Metanarration Question -- O'Cailleagh, 16:14:50 05/22/02 Wed

As I understand it, meta-narration is when a character in a story says something which refers to their knowledge of the fact that s/he is a character in a story. An example would be in the episode 'Once More With Feeling', in the song 'Life's A Show' Buffy sings the line "...Its alright, If some things turn out wrong, We'll sing a happy song, And you can sing along..." while looking to the camera. Another example of this can be found in the same episode after Sweet's minion has told the Scoobs that Sweet has Dawn. Buffy says "So. Dawn's in trouble. Must be Tuesday."
So, by this definition, the title of the show, as it is directed at the audience anyway, and is not uttered by the characters, cannot be considered meta-narration.

[> [> thank you for explaining that =) -- Shul, 19:32:31 05/22/02 Wed

If you do not learn at least one true thing a day, it's because your not paying attention.

[> [> Thank you for the info. -- Kimberly, 06:30:42 05/23/02 Thu

Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- neaux, 12:30:42 05/22/02 Wed

I looked for any notes on Jonathan today and found none. So i hope to start a thread to discuss the magic shoppe scene.

I really hope I wasnt the only one who hoped that Johnathon would play an active role with the Scoobies. He seemed to have more insight than what was lead on, in the magic shop. I was waiting for him to decipher the text to produce anti- willow magic. Yet he was shot down twice by Xander and Anya.

The reason? I'm not sure.

Was it that Xander and Anya are so self absorbed that they cant see help when its there for them. Is it like Giles said? about asking for help. Xander and Anya are too stubborn to ask for help?

While that probably is the correct answer, I will also say that its just not Jonathon's story. He did have his day a couple season's back, and I secretly wished he had a more active part in the season finale's story, but Its Just NOT His story. This was about Willow.

If you think about how Jonathan and Willow parallel, it would have been easy to "replace" Willow with a spell casting, techie nerd Jonathan. Here is the point.

The scoobies did not want to replace her. They wanted to save Willow, and I believe by asking for Jonathon's help would have been the death of the entire gang.

Maybe though.. must maybe.. Jonathan will come back one day and the gang will look to him as a resource or a friend and not as the villian or the nerd.

hmm... anyone else have anything to add?

[> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- leslie, 12:40:58 05/22/02 Wed

Just a couple of points: 1) I'm glad Jonathan is potentially still available as a character. 2) I, too, was expecting him to be able to translate that text--and I suspect that he could have, but was cowed by the response to his tentative opening. 3) I think the point he made about knowing Willow almost as long as they had (and given that Xander seems to have known her since birth and Buffy only came to town 6 years ago, that suggests he may actually have known Willow *longer* than Buffy) sounds like a plot twist waiting to happen--he can't be just written out of their lives because he belongs to Sunnydale.

Also, more practically, these guys need a resident magician, and with Tara gone and you sure as hell don't want Willow messing with this stuff unattended any more, Jonathan is a good candidate.

[> [> Great Points! -- neaux, 12:46:31 05/22/02 Wed

Lets hope he returns!!

[> [> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- dochawk, 13:19:12 05/22/02 Wed


great points. I think if Buffy had not made that speech about saving Willow not protecting them, they would have been a little more willing to let Jonathan help. And it seems noone knows about Jonathan helping Buffy at the amusement park (did Buffy even remember?)

As for Jonathan as a future member of the scooby gang, I think its possible, jonathan certainly shows alot of promise for rdemption, if the SG allows him too. But, remember the theme for next year: "back to the beginning". the beginning was 4 people 1 slayer, 1 computer nerd, 1 watcher/demon expert and 1 friend. No magic, no extra powers, it was the slaye as hero. My guess will be Anya, now fully aware of the dangers of vengeance, will renounce her demoness and become the demon expert (when Giles returns to England once again). We will have Buffy as watcher (replacing giles other function) and Dawn as slayer in training ("You think I didn't watch you" yea right). Spike gets the brooding angel role (without the power I think). No room for Jonathan in this scenario, yet. Pure speculation on my part of course.

[> [> [> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- skeeve, 14:29:57 05/22/02 Wed

It's not clear that Giles is returning to England. The conversation suggested that he was staying. There is certainly stuff for him to do. This one got the impression that he wasn't doing much in England. In any case, it's nice that he's 20/20 now.

I'm surprised that Anyanka could translate Babylonian that she couldn't even recognize without Jonathan's help. It's not at all clear how that was managed. Maybe the script was running long and ME cut a little carelessly.

Will Xander marry Anyanka? Giving up her demonness would shorten her life expectancy significatly. Can vengeance demons retire and just quit granting wishes?

This one cannot imagine Buffy letting Dawn be *the* Slayer. Of course, if she does and Dawn, with no superpowers whatsoever, is good at it, the Scoobie gang will have reason for embarassment.

Did Giles bring his passport?

[> [> [> [> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- alcibiades, 16:08:05 05/22/02 Wed

Not to mention that Akkadian was the official scribal/priestly language of the Babylonian empire. And those would be the people in charge of magic spells.

[> [> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- alcibiades, 16:04:37 05/22/02 Wed

But another point is tht he had allied himself with people who became murderers all season long. They were not about to trust him in something so important. He could have manipulated things to his advantage at that point and they would have been powerless to do anything about it. Jonathan hadn't proved himself -- as in Superstar Buffy says that kind of thing takes work and, unlike Spike whom they still don't trust, Jonathan hasn't done the work.

[> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- DEN, 12:44:56 05/22/02 Wed

It seems more likely that they would not trust Jonathan, who at this stage had given them no reason to take his word on anything.

[> [> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- leslie, 12:51:47 05/22/02 Wed

Not trusting someone has never stopped them from working with them anyway, if it's necessary. To wit, Spike.

[> [> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- Traveler, 12:59:16 05/22/02 Wed

Buffy seems to have forgotten that he saved her life during her fight with Warren. If he came back and showed in other ways that he was trustworthy, maybe she would remember.

[> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- Cactus Watcher, 13:02:11 05/22/02 Wed

I think the fact that Jonathan offered to help a couple of times is a good sign that he'll be coming back some time next season. He genuinely felt like he should help. Otherwise, the first rejection from Buffy was sufficient to let us know the scoobies weren't going to forgive him that day. Jonathan actually getting to help even a little would have stolen thunder from Giles and Xander. It seemed pretty rude and cliquey of the scoobs at the time, but over all it makes sense for the story.

Way off this topic- did anyone else get the feeling that the evil statue needed a lampshade and a clock in its stomach? Looked more tacky than evil!

[> [> What about Andrew? (season 6 end spoilers) -- Dichotomy, 13:54:17 05/22/02 Wed

I just finished watching the eps today (had to tape and watch) and let me just say --- I loved it!

I also think Jonathan will be back next season, but doesn't anyone else think we'll see Andrew again, too? I think we may see him turn up in a few eps, a la Harmony--someone who has a capacity to do harm but is quickly vanquished due to some flaw in his character.

More on the OT, I think my Grandma had one of those dripping oil lamps that looked sort of like that evil statue! You know the kind where oil droplets slide down wires arranged around a nude or horse or something?

[> [> [> Re: What about Andrew? (season 6 end spoilers) -- AgnosticSorcerer, 22:54:51 05/22/02 Wed

I like Andrew. I hope he comes back, but realistically, we either won't see him or he'll come as one of those inane and harmless big-bad wannabes (as the previous poster said, Harmony).

[> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- SingedCat, 14:03:06 05/22/02 Wed

Thanks, neaux; Jonathan has been on my mind a lot. I was pulling for him to come through for us in the season finale. Yay, Jonathan!

While I do identify with his status as an underdog, I also understand (as does he) that he's not the protagonist here-- he's the bad guy. As such, he has been vanquished, and accepts the consequences of his evil, and shows over and again during the episodes that he is capable of taking his lumps for it. Willow is coming for them and Andrew whines that 'they didn't do anything'-- no, Jonathan says; he knows that they are guilty, that they helped to bring about this situation by their collective actions.

In the magic shop, the gang doesn't want to trust him after he has spent the season as a villain-- they know nothing of his own doubts and ambiguity, or how much his ulterior motives might resemble Andrew's whispered urgings. ("We're in a magic shop-- you could do something...") They are competely right not to trust him at all. He could have sulked in a corner over being 'misunderstood'-- instead, he takes it on the chin, and willingly cooperates bysitting down and shutting up. When Andrew whispers that they could escape with some help from magic store elements, Jonathan throws him of (literally and psychologically) and tells him to grow up. Good for him!

Later still, Andrew tries again to escape, and threatens Xander with the swords they grabbed running from Willow. Jonathan finally moves back behind the line he crossed with the Trio: he will not have anyone hurt over what he wants. As usual, the tragedy for him is that he has more about him than he knows, and doesn't invoke it until it's almost too late.

I admit I had a moment's disappointment when they ran. But the more I thought about it, the more it was the best thing they could have done. Jonathan isn't allowed to help, and they've made it clear the main interest is Willow. Buffy and Dawn are swallowed by the earth, Xander is knocked unconscious-- their 'protectors' are neutralized. People who are nearly killed protecting them. OK, at that point, suddenly getting their radioactive asses out of town --and away from people getting hit by the shrapnel-- isn't such a bad idea.

Next season, as a sidebar, he may have some thoughts to compare with Willow, over what it was like to kill someone. And the possibility of him helping the gang-- verry interesting... I very much like the idea. "Superstar" told me that while he yearned for love and power, he preferred to be the good guy. And his 'ideal' world said a couple of good things about him. As a paragon, he also saw himself as caring and insightful, someone who could give advice to the lovelorn, and help put Buffy and Riley back together. It was the one thing that stuck in his mind after it was all over, what he repeated to Buffy when almost everything else had faded. Pretty telling. I kinda like Jonathan.

Next season... We'll see, won't we?

[> [> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- Lonesome Sundown, 19:34:39 05/22/02 Wed

Great points everyone! I too was kind of disappointed that Jonathan ran away, but it makes a great deal more sense after reading SingedCat's post. I think he'll be back next season: the show has devoted too much time to the development of his character to leave this mini-arc incomplete. Any speculation about what role he might have? I don't see him coming back as a villain or even the pawn of another villain, given the direction he took as the season progressed.

[> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- yez, 14:15:14 05/22/02 Wed

I agree with the points others have made about Jonathan being the "bad guy" even though he's likeable and he did make some first steps toward coming back to the good guy side.

I was glad that were serious in the way they treated him and Andrew, and that they were kept at a distance. You can't forget that as far as the SG go, he's part of the group that's responsible for nearly killing Buffy on a couple of occassions, killing Katrina, summoning the demon that nearly resulted in the death of the entire SG at the hands of a de- rockered Buffy, installing the spy cams that broadcast the hurtful images of Spike and Anya, and finally, setting into motion a chain of events that resulted in Tara's death and Willow's turn to the dark side.

While a lot of what the Trio did was presented comically, it really was very serious stuff, and I'm glad the gang see it that way.


[> [> very well put. -- neaux, 14:28:40 05/22/02 Wed

[> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- maddog, 14:41:30 05/22/02 Wed

Now, I would have agreed...but then he ran off in the end. He was finally getting it...finally understanding they needed to grow pay for their actions.

[> actually it made me feel bad -- lele, 18:32:13 05/22/02 Wed

that the SG rebuked jonathon's attempts to help them. If part of this season's theme or at least the finale is about unconditional love/forgiveness then why couldn't the scoobs find it in themselves to accept his help. I'm not glossing over what he did with the troika, but he was in no way involved with tara's death. Besides they knew jonathon and he even helped buffy destroy warren's orbs in SR. I can't help but think if they had reacted a bit differently to him then he may not even have ran away with andrew. Once again, i'm not making excuses for jonathon's previous actions but this was a guy who is continuously excluded by the scoobs who know more than a little about being misfits. oh well, maybe it ties into the plot for next season

[> Re: Jonathan (season 6 end spoilers) -- Artemis, 20:26:00 05/22/02 Wed

My first reaction was like yours , Let Jonathan help. But then I thought from their perspective. Even though Jonathan came through at the end I don't know if I would trust him . This is someone through the years Buffy has helped . Yet look how he repaid that through his actions this year. I might think that he would use magics against them, to save himself. Sure he 'might' have been able to help. But from their perspective I wouldn't have taken the chance.JMHO

[> [> you're probably right -- lele, 07:36:38 05/23/02 Thu

I've loved this season, but it's also been the season where the SG has done some pretty crappy stuff. It's made it really hard for me to not question their actions. You're right though, jonathon and the troika haven't proven themselves trustworthy.

Comparing season endings (many spoilers) -- leslie, 12:50:10 05/22/02 Wed

I am in the midst of a horrible crush of work, so I don't have time to read through all the posts, so I apologize in advance if someone's already raised this (and please point me to where it's being discussed, if so!)

One thing that really struck me about Crazed!Willow is how much she was paralleling Glory, which is ironic given that the issue that forced Tara to break up with her was Willow's violation of her mind *after what Glory had done to her.* Willow was sucking magic out of people (Rack and Giles) almost identically to Glory's mind-sucking, and her reaction was also virtually identical. Willow's going after Dawn also seemed mighty similar to Glory--no-one has mentioned the Key business for quite a while; I was wondering whether that would be some kind of power source that would attract Willow. Fortunately, we didn't get to find out. And Willow's reaction to the pain and despair of the world was also identical to Glory's. Both one-eyed chicklets in the land of the blind.

[> Other parallels -- CW, 13:08:21 05/22/02 Wed

She echoed Vamp-Jesse's speech to Xander about why his former life was a waste.

[> Re: Comparing season endings (many spoilers) -- Rattletrap, 14:23:56 05/22/02 Wed

AH's delivery of the "you made me forget what I was saying" line sounded just like Clare Kramer would have delivered it, that was where I noticed the Glory resemblance most.

[> you're right - I noticed that, but forgot (spoilers for S6 & S5) -- Solitude1056, 14:41:56 05/22/02 Wed

When Willow was muttering about the pain & suffering in the world, it reminded me most of Glory's almost plaintive cry to understand why anyone would want to save the world:

People. How do they function? Here. Like this, in the
world, with all this bile running through them.
Every day, it's ...
[She runs her hand up and down, "rollercoaster" style.]
Whooo... you have no control, they're not even animals,
they're just these meatbaggy slaves to hormones and
pheromones and their, and their... feelings. Hate 'em.
I mean really, is this what the poets go on about? This?
Call me crazy. But as hard core drugs go, human emotion's
just useless. People are puppets, everyone getting jerked
around by what they're feeling - am I wrong?
Really, I want to know.

It depends on the person.

So, you're saying some people like this?


Funny, 'cause I look around at this world you're so eager to be a part of,
and all I see's six billion lunatics looking for the fastest ride out.
Who's not crazy? Look around - everyone's drinkin', smokin', shootin'
up, shootin' each other or just plain screwing their brains out because they
don't want 'em anymore. I'm crazy? Honey, I am the original one-eyed
chicklet in the kingdom of the blind 'cause at least I admit the world makes
me nuts. Name one person who can take it here. That's all I'm asking - Name one.


[> Re: Comparing season endings (many spoilers) -- Ryuei, 14:47:29 05/22/02 Wed

Another parallel is how she tried to destroy the world using an effigy of a demon, which is what Angel tried to do in the season 2 finale.

Also, the very end of season 2 was when Angel regained his soul, and here again we have Buffy's vampire lover/nemesis regaining his soul at the very end.

Also, a parallel with the season opener was Buffy's hand coming out of the grave - except this time she came out wholeheartedly, fully aware, and into the daylight.

Another interesting parallel - and perhaps the most fascinating one to me - is to compare the reaction of Cordy and Willow to their sudden exposure to the suffering of all beings. At the end of season 1 of Angel, Cordy was suddenly cursed with an untrollable awareness of all the suffering in L.A. and she too was overwhelmed, but once she had regained her senses she responded with a newfound compassion. By the end of this season she has virtually become Kuan Yin Bodhisattva - the Goddess of Compassion complete with the white outfit even. Willow also received this vision of the suffering of all beings and was also overwhelmed at first - but when she regained her senses her response was to annihilate everything in order to end the suffering. It would seem that Cordy was orinally hurtful because she was just shallow and self-centered, but Willow (even from the season 1 opener of Buffy when she tricked Cordy into hitting the delete button) has always harbored a mean streak that was the dark side of her insecurities and fear of rejection. A darker, more spiteful, and much more premeditated nastiness than Cordelia was ever capable of. Come to think of it, even at the opening of seaon 2 of Buffy, Cordelia actually transcended her usual shallowness with a show of concern and insight when she lectured Buffy so that Buffy wouldn't continue to alienate her friends. So the seeds of compassion and nihilism were in both of those charaters from the very beginning and when they received the vision of universal suffering those seeds came into full fruition - one has become a living celestial bodhisattva and the other became a living engine of infernal destruction.

But again, as I have brought up in the past, there is the mutual possession of the ten worlds - from the hell realms to the Pure Lands of the Buddhas - all possibilities are mutually implicated. Cordelia's powers were presented to her initially as demonic, and we are still uncertain where her ascension will really lead. Willow retained a spark of humanity which Giles and most especially Xander were able to reach even as Dark Willow tried to destroy the world. So who knows what the next turn of the Wheel will bring?

Namu Myoho Renge Kyo,

[> [> What was the best thing to do: Will vs. Cordy -- Yellowork, 10:26:57 05/23/02 Thu

Does Cordy do the right thing in not trying to destroy the world, but living in it and trying to make things better? Is this really morally better than what Willow was attempting to do? Whatever, I don't think Willow's attempt to destroy the world can be put down to her 'mean streak': rather, she feels deeply the pain of the world, but in her hubris decides that she is entitled to destroy the world in order to end that pain. I always got the impression that there are Buddhist teachings which envisage Nirvana as a sort of 'contented annihilation', which is what Willow is trying to achieve. She is way off beam, of course, as every soul's pain is his own to overcome, and is intimately tied up to his journey towards ultimate extinction. She has no right to try to end the world, especially as there is a huge risk that she will simply increase the level of pain and the world will survive. Nevertheless, I find your reasoning above a bit puzzling.

[> [> [> Re: What was the best thing to do: Will vs. Cordy - - Ryuei, 16:26:26 05/24/02 Fri

Willow's attempt to destroy the world was not, I agree, motivated so much by her "mean streak" as I put it but rather by a misguided attempt to "nirvanize" everything. But here is the trick - in Buddhism it is clearly taught that Nirvana is not annihilation but rather the realization of the Unconditione, the Unborn, the Deathless.

The second noble truth, in fact, is the truth of the origin of suffering. This truth states that selfish craving is what gives rise to suffering, and often three examples of such craving are given. The three are: craving for sensual pleasure, craving for existence, and craving for non- existence. Many are confused by "craving for non-existence." Who ever craves that? But as the Buffy Season Finale showed so well, sometimes life's suffering is so overwhelming that people actually choose annihilation for themselves and others just to escape the pain of living. The Buddha clearly taught that such a desire is also founded on selfishness and ignorance of the way things really are. Moving forward to Nagarjuna, he taught that those who falsely apprehend the teaching of "emptiness" as a form of non-existence are making an even bigger mistake than those who believe in existence or eternalism.

Namu Myoho Renge Kyo,

[> [> [> [> Re: What was the best thing to do: Will vs. Cordy - - Yellowork, 06:50:26 05/25/02 Sat

Thanks for the reply: I don't think Willow was justified of course, just that your comment was a little odd. After six- odd years it is a bit TOO revisionist to assert that Willow has always "really" been mean while Cordy does not "really" have a bad bone in her body. Perhaps that was not what you intended, though. These theological terms are way shifty, by the way. Is the term 'deathless' supposed to imply a state beyond the wheel of death AND rebirth into suffering?

[> And how about the symmetry between The Gift and S6 Finale (of course--spoilage) -- A8, 16:37:02 05/22/02 Wed

Last year concluded with Buffy sacrificing herself out of love, saving the world and leaving her friends and sister behind in the process. The Slayer is buried in the ground. This year Buffy emerges from a grave reborn spiritually (finally, months after her physical rebirth) holding her sister's hand ready to rejoin her friends following Willow's attempt to destroy the world in order to put an end to her own personal pain (contrasts with Buffy's "gift").

This year Buffy can't save the world and, in fact, needs Dawn's help just to fight off the grave demons unleashed by Willow. Instead, the world is saved by the combined efforts of the rest of the SG, sans Willow, (Giles' magic, Anya's assistance, and, ultimately, Xander's unwillingness to abandon his oldest and dearest friend). Buffy's world and battle weariness last year is contrasted with her desire to show Dawn the world and see her friends happy again, bolstered by her knowledge that the sister for whom she carried the burden of protecting for so long now "has her back."

[> [> A bit of Willow helped too - also forget to mention Zeppo -- Ryuei, 21:01:01 05/22/02 Wed

Actually, you could even say that Willow helped save the world from herself, in that it was her own remaining spark of humanity which was able to respond to Xander and pull herself back destroying herself and everyone else.

Also, I forgot to mention the parallel with the episode Zeppo, when Xander faced down that undead guy to save his friends (whose name I forget) even at the risk of getting blown up as well.

Namu Myoho Renge Kyo,

[> [> [> going on a tangent, but speaking of The Zeppo... -- A8, 13:48:55 05/24/02 Fri

...the beauty of Xander's heroism is that it occurs in relative anonymity and humility. Even when he has a chance to take credit for saving the SG (in response to Cordelia's taunts) he just flashes a knowing smile and moves on.

[> [> Re: And how about the symmetry between The Gift and S6 Finale (of course--spoilage) -- O'Cailleagh, 20:32:44 05/23/02 Thu

Um..I already mentioned this in a post yesterday, but it has now fallen off the screen and it seemed applicable here too.

The scene where Willow kills Warren...the way Warren is 'arranged' in this scene resembles an X, or the rune Gifu/Gebo, which means 'the gift', or 'a gift demands a gift', and was a symbolic representation of sacrifice. Could it be that the consequences of Willow's usage of magic to raise Buffy was not Tara's death (the idea of which never quite rang true IMO), but the murder/sacrifice of Warren?

[> [> Moreover, while "The Gift" prompted a vigorous discussion as to whether (S5 spoilage)... -- A8, 23:48:05 05/24/02 Fri

...Buffy's act constituted suicide, despite its world saving effect, IMHO there's no doubt that what Willow was attempting to do in "Grave" was, in fact, suicide. Whether that serves to illustrate how non-suicidal Buffy's sacrifice was is for those who thought she was copping out to argue.

I think that this year's conclusion only further supports the nobility and selflessness of the Hero's act in last year's finale. Buffy's moment of clarity contrasts with Willow's tangle of muddled thoughts. While Buffy "knows" (intuitively) what she must do is the right thing, Willow decides (intellectually--yes it's irrational, but it's from the brain not the heart) for all of humanity that the solution to her problems is the solution to everyone's problems. Buffy surrenders her thoughts and lets the universe speak to her. Willow, on the other hand, acts selfishly. She keeps things small.

[> The Glory/Willow parallel -- AgnosticSorcerer, 22:46:42 05/22/02 Wed

In addition to the wonderful comments made about this subject from the other posters, I just wanted to add my own two cents.

Glory was a god (100% spiritual). She was supreme, divine, and ultimate power personified as her existence as a deity but she was tainted by humanity, by human emotions as she has said herself.

Humans are intricately tied to the mundane/phyiscal realms. 50% physical, 50% spiritual. Willow was human. She was subject to the essence of humanity, to pain, and suffering, to empathy... she was subject to emotion.

That is what drove them both insane and they both had admitted it so. Absolute power does not corrupt absolutely. The corruption comes from the beings inability to properly use, deal, and contain the power. Human bodies, physically, are not built to contain such power (Rack looked a mess as did Willow) and the human psyche is tainted with nasty little emotions which can corrupt the power.

I think this ties into my little two cents about the use of magick in the Buffyverse.

This entire idea reminds me of an issue of TALES OF THE WITCHBLADE that demonstrates my point perfectly.

[> familiar lines -- Kitt, 07:03:43 05/23/02 Thu

Was it just me, or did it seem to the rest of you to like every 10th line had been said (or something like it) by someone else in the show before? The bigest example I can think of:

Becoming, part 2
Spike: I don't want to hurt you, baby... Doesn't mean I won't.

Sound familiar?

[> [> not to mention... (was getting on my nerves by the fifth or sixth time) -- Solitude1056, 07:46:40 05/23/02 Thu

"I get that." or the variant, "I get it."

Hello, people, now we're all parroting the same phrase? Worse, it was in both the first hour and the second hour - by my count, Willow, Buffy, Dawn, Clem, Xander, and Giles all said it at one point or another - and I believe Spike also said it. Fer cryin' outloud! Either the writers are getting sloppy, or they're hoping that we'll say we get it, too. Yeah, I got that they needed to work on creating some unique phrases for each character...

[> [> [> "It's a thing" -- ponygirl, 07:53:34 05/23/02 Thu

What is it with the "it's a thing" phrase this year? I swear it has been used a least once in every episode and by just about every person. I suppose we could argue that it represents the characters' inability to fully articulate their needs and desires, but I'm sensing weird and somewhat annoying in-joke. Worst of all I've caught myself using it. Argh!

[> [> [> Re: not to mention... (was getting on my nerves by the fifth or sixth time) -- Cactus Watcher, 10:06:06 05/23/02 Thu

Talking in movie references is getting a little old, also. Not doing that is a part of growing up, too, isn't it? After "Willow doesn't live here anymore," I was beginning to wonder if ME writers just can't think of anything original, or they just want to work poor Rob to death with his website. ;o)

[> [> [> [> LOL... -- Rob, 11:46:12 05/23/02 Thu

And I can get two references from that line...

The book and movie, "Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore"


The Madonna Song, "Love Don't Live Here Anymore."

I love doing them, but finding all these references for the annotations could drive me crazy!!!


[> [> [> [> [> Re: LOL... -- CW, 15:26:06 05/23/02 Thu

'So-and-So doesn't live here anymore' was common jargon long before Madonna started recording. Unless you want to really kill yourself hunting down everything possible, stick to the oldest references, in this case the book/movie.

[> [> [> [> [> [> Good to know. Thanks. ;o) -- Rob, 19:16:37 05/23/02 Thu

[> [> [> Re: not to mention... (was getting on my nerves by the fifth or sixth time) -- zargon, 15:17:22 05/23/02 Thu

Not to mention that "I get that" has been used in almost every ep of AtS this season...I haven't been counting them in BtVS.

Question re: card in TTG/G -- aliera, 16:59:04 05/22/02 Wed

Someone on another board mentioned that there was an African mask and a tarot card over Giles left? shoulder at some point last night. Did anyone catch this and if so, can you tell me what the card was?

[> question re: mark on wall in TTG/G -- anom, 21:13:18 05/22/02 Wed

Sorry, no answer, just an additional q. In the scenes in the training room (back of the Magic Box), there's a mark on the wall that I don't remember noticing before. It's a vertical stroke crossed by 2 three-sided marks (like squares w/1 side missing), one w/the "arms" pointing up & the other w/them (or maybe "legs") pointing down. It does look something like a human figure, & at one point Willow throws Buffy so she hits the wall right near this mark w/the position of her body much like the shape of the mark. Does anyone know what the significance of this might be?

[> [> Re: question re: mark on wall in TTG/G -- O'Cailleagh, 22:18:25 05/22/02 Wed

It sounds like a rune, but isn't. I'll check through some other alphabets for it though. Incidentally, while looking to find that potential rune, a picture of Warren's execution almost leapt out of the book at me (I went all DarkO'Cailleagh!). It was the rune Gifu/Gebo, a rune in the shape of an X, as a symbol of sacrifice. The meaning of the rune Gifu is ....The Gift, or ' A gift demands a gift'. Intriguing, huh?

[> [> [> Re: question re: mark on wall in TTG/G -- AgnosticSorcerer, 23:04:30 05/22/02 Wed

The scene where Giles was lying on the ground there was a DECK of Tarot cards at his left ear, not a single one. I'll double check this though. I took note of it though because he was having a remote vision and the fact that a divinatory tool was next to his head made me think it was nifty/significant.

There have been symbols etched on the walls of the training room since they first made the room. I do not recall if that particular symbol was there before, but I do know that there have been symbols there before.

[> [> [> [> Re: question re: mark on wall in TTG/G -- aliera, 05:36:52 05/23/02 Thu

there are at least three symbols on the wall...I'll double check on it too...someone said the magician was the uppermost card...someone else said a blond man in a blue robes...there's also a set of runes behind Rack when Willow enters.

Quick! Give me your thoughts on the next season. -- Shul (Thank you), 20:22:42 05/22/02 Wed

I want all your thoughts on the next impending season.
Just lay them all out, and dont hold back!


[> Re: Quick! Give me your thoughts on the next season. -- Exegy, 09:29:22 05/23/02 Thu

Since the conflicts this season were primarily internal, I expect more externalized struggles. The BB will probably be introduced rather early--maybe a variation of the corrupt authority figure we saw in Season 3. Something operating behind-the-scenes, a mysterious agenda in mind, and throwing plenty of entertaining Monsters of the Week in the Scoobies' way. A dark CoW, perhaps? That would be interesting, and it would also give the writers an opportunity to delve deeper into the Slayer mythos.

If next season is indeed the last, I think that the writers will elaborate on how the Slayer's powers are rooted in darkness. A connection to vampires would explain why Dracula called Buffy "kindred." Buffy would then have to own up to the darkness inherent in her powers, but I'd expect her to come to the same conclusion that she had at the end of Restless: "You [First Slayer] aren't the source of me." Buffy would finally learn to accept her powers for what they are, darkness and all; then she'd realize that she is the shaper of her own destiny, and she'd be the most powerful woman in the world.

Buffy will probably impart a lot of her knowledge and martial arts skills to Dawn. I expect next season to be Year of the Dawn. Lots of major developments with that character, especially if MT is being groomed for her own spin-off. There might also be an emerging rivalry between Buffy and Dawn as the younger Summers starts to come into her own. Dawn might not be a Slayer, but there may be some loophole that allows her Slayer strength.

I'm not sure what will happen with Willow. She has to be rehabilitated in some way. I don't see any use of magic in the immediate future (if Willow is not drained of her powers entirely). She'll most likely return to her hacker roots, but she'll never be the innocent Willow of old. I do not think she'll "go back to Boys' Town." She'll either remain single or start seeing another girl towards the end of next season (if next season is the last). Amber Benson will probably not return as Tara, although she may appear as a Spirit Guide (sounds bad, but ME might be able to pull it off).

Anya can fill the magic void in the Scooby Gang. I am really interested in what will happen with her. I don't see her remaining a VD--she's already shown us that she has more than retributive punishment on her mind. She wanted to help Willow more than she wanted to punish Warren (the Anyanka of old would have gladly joined Dark Willow in the flaying and immolation of a man). Nope, the current Anyanka acts almost exactly as her rejected human self would have. She seeks solace in alcohol and sex, she wants to hurt Xander but she can't bring herself to do so, and she wants to help the people she has come to care for while human. (What great interaction with Giles!) I see Anya retaining her powers and becoming something other than a VD--a true Justice Demon (sorry, Hallie, you were about the vengeance). She'd continue the good actions of TTG/G (there might have to be some restrictions placed on her powers, but the writers can work something out).

I expect her to reconcile with Xander, because the issue of the aborted marriage needs to be dealt with. If they choose to work their problems out together, and if they actually do get married, then Anya might voluntarily give up her status as demon, but until that time I say she gets to have fun with lots of cool abilities!

Xander needs to face his family history down. He can't hide in the basement any more. He can't stay in that ice cream truck, thinking that he's moving forward while he's actually standing still (that fake backgroud in Restless was pretty funny). Xander needs to find his heart again, and I think he did that when he gave Willow his unconditional love. He needs to show his heart to Anya, too. I think she will be open to forgiving him then, and he should forgive her for what she did with Spike (seeking solace, not vengeance).

As for Spike, he needs to build a relationship based on trust with Buffy. That's what she deserves. This would be a platonic rather than a romantic relationship (we already had the romantic relationship this year, and I don't want to see a retread of that). Nope, Spike must reinvent himself, change so that Buffy can trust him to love him. This is going to take a long time. The relationship might be consummated at the end of the season (May sweeps) if Buffy comes to love Spike, but until then I want to see celibate Buffy and Spike!

Giles will probably stick around a little while to act as the group stabilizer. He really is a grounding presence. I expect him to help Anya, Willow, and souled Spike reintegrate into the Scooby Gang. If a dark version of the CoW is the BB, then Giles will definitely have to be involved. Oh, and some scenes in England. Cool!

Wow, that was longer than I thought it would be. Well, you said not to hold back!

[> Re: Quick! Give me your thoughts on the next season. -- leslie, 10:12:48 05/23/02 Thu

Episode One: Cleaning Up the Magic Box: Yet Again.

Giles and Anya wrestle with an Evil Insurance Adjustor who can't believe the number of damage claims they submit. He turns out to be both the husband of the Evil Child Services Worker and the brother of the Evil Loan Officer of last season, leading Buffy to suspect that the real threat to human civilization comes from the corrupt collusion of the financial sector and government, not demons and vampires. The Scoobies spend the rest of the season proving that Enron is behind it all.

[> The Spike, Buffy, and Willow story -- skeeve, 13:04:50 05/23/02 Thu

Ep. 1: Spike returns. Buffy beats up Spike. Buffy discovers that the bloody mess on the floor was human when he walked in the door. Buffy and Willow comiserate over their respective boo-boos and clean the floor together.

[> Re: Quick! Give me your thoughts on the next season. -- vampire hunter D, 13:55:56 05/23/02 Thu

Spike will be the focus of much of the S7 sdtory arc. I say this due to the way the last scene fit in with the rest of the show. Every season had a plot. This season, the end of teh season plot was the shot of Buffy and Dawn walking home. THe ep could have ended there, but tehn we had the scene with Spike tacked on, after teh season's plot was over. This tells me that this scene was not part of the S6 plot, but the beginning of the S7 plot.

What Spike will do now I don't know. Obviously, he will try to get Buffy back. He probably will spend teh Summer wrestling with the new feelings caused by having his soul back, and may not show up in SunnyD until the end of ep1. Where they go from there, I don't know.

The Season will also focus heavily on Dawn. Now that Buffy has decided to let Dawn grow up (and lets face it, it was Buffy's attitude that was holding Dawn back), we will see more of Dawn. A more mature Dawn too (no more whining). Even in a Scooby capacity. ANd this could lead us to finding out if Dawn has any powers or not. Also, Joss has said this season will be a return to the theme of S1, that this ordinary looking girl has supernatural powers. Now, while that sounds like he is refering to Buffy, and it does work for her story, it could be he is also refering to Dawn. And lets face it, we've done this already with Buffy. Let's do Dawn now. She was underused last year, so lets give her a chance this year.

Willow will be less imprtant this year. We've don at least 3 seasons of her in the fporefront a Witch girl, now maybe her role will be scaled back, as she deals witrh Tara's death and teh consequences of what she did. She might find another g/f, but not till November sweeps at eh earliest.

ANd of course, the Xanderand ANya show will be part of the season too.

ok, i have no time left, that's all from me now.

[> [> Re: Quick! Give me your thoughts on the next season. -- Rattletrap, 14:51:25 05/23/02 Thu

I think vhD has come up with a pretty good outline for what I expect to see. I think we will see a reversion to the slightly older style (say c. S3) of storytelling where there is a season-long arc and a big bad, but punctuated heavily by MotW villians and stand-alone episodes. I think we will see quite a bit more action and humor than we have in the last couple of years. As vhD said, I think more involvement with Dawn is a definite, which will probably mean more Sunnydale High centered storylines.

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