||Moral ambiguity in BtVS/AtS
|"Nothing's ever simple anymore. I'm constantly
trying to work it out. Who to love or hate. Who to trust. It's
just, like, the more I know, the more confused I get." --Buffy,
Lie to Me
|Moral issues are rarely depicted
as black and white on BtVS. Joss is King of moral ambiguity,
and it comes out in the personality traits of his characters.
Good characters are not entirely good; bad characters have their
charms and emotional weaknesses. Here are some of the baddies
we love to love, the goodies we sometimes wonder about, and issues
that are sometimes depicted as good and sometimes as evil.
Warning: this page contains info about episodes up through
season 7 BtVS/season 1 AtS. If you're in danger of being spoiled,
proceed with caution.
passion the source of Buffy's finest moments? Some consider
it a vice, others consider it a virtue. However you look at it,
Buffy often leads with her heart.
Buffy's tragic flaw, in
the tradition of Sophocles, et al, would be her feelings, her
emotions. As Kendra said to Buffy, they're a weakness, and as
Buffy said to Kendra, they're her assets. They function both
as her downfall and her strength (Closet Buffyholic, Nov 6 08:02
| Saving friends | Buffy's slaying style | Anger
human body count | Fan
views on Buffy vs. human villains | Moments
of moral weakness | Buffy's
finest moments |
friends: Buffy's normal impulse
is to save her friends and the innocent at all costs. And she
owes her life to her friends for bailing her out of the subsequent
"A slayer with family
and friends. That sure as hell wasn't in the brochure." --Spike
- going into the crypt without a plan of
attack to save Willow and Jesse (WttH).
- not hesitating to go into the Master's
lair to save Jesse, whose capture she feels responsible for.
- having trouble defeating psycho-vamp Andrew Borba until he claims to have
- feeling unmotivated to kill the vampire
she has feelings for until she believes he's attacked her mother
- Buffy vs. her
destiny in Prophecy girl
- running head-long into the bomb shelter
to save the vampire
wanna-bes and getting herself trapped--exactly
what Ford wanted.
- ignoring Giles when he tells her
unequivocally that Eyghon is his fight, and that she should stay
out of it.
- When Angel is kidnapped by Spike, Buffy's priorities are
clear--saving Angel. If that has the
side effect of stopping Drusilla from regaining her health, fine. "You
can attack me, you can send assassins after me, that's fine.
But nobody messes with my boyfriend!"
- Angelus gets away from Buffy in
the burning factory by playing on the loyalties he knows
only too well--Buffy won't let Giles burn to death just to make sure that Angelus is
- embracing her calling with enthusiasm
when she realizes a real monster, der Kindestod, is killing some
children and their
- relating to James because of the "purgatory" of being unable to forgive
herself for Jenny and Angelus.
- charging out to face Angelus because she
doesn't want him hurting any more people. Fool me once,
shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me: Angelus is playing
the same trick on her the vampires did in WSWB--he's just a decoy
to get her out of the library.
"No weapons... No
friends... No hope," Angelus taunted
her in B2, "take
all that away... and what's left?"
"Me," she replied. Out of all the things she
has done, sending Angel to hell was
the most significant because she condemned her lover to save the world,
and she did it alone.
- working with Spike
to prevent him from killing Willow and Xander (Lover's Walk).
- friends count: Bizarro-world Buffy's death
in The Wish
- jumping into the cave of the Harbingers
(who are torturing Angel) without a plan of attack.
- taking the children's
murder personally when her
mother's emotions become involved (Gingerbread).
- heading into an unsupervised version of
her Cruciamentum test to save her mother
- The Mayor on Buffy: "A
dog's friendship is stronger than reason, stronger than its own
sense of self-preservation. Buffy's like a dog."
- insisting they return the
Box of Gavrok to the Mayor in exchange for Willow's safe return,
even though destroying it will prevent the Ascension.
- snapping out of her post-break up depression
when the hell-hounds threaten her friends'
- rushing in to discover what happened to
her new, equally confused Freshman friend Eddie and getting
her ass kicked by vampSunday.
- Why does Buffy have such
a hard time defending herself?
- The end of days beckons unless Buffy can
best the Mohra demon! Buffy's beef?
"You hurt my boyfriend!"
- not backing off the Fyarl-hunt just 'cause
Maggie says to when Buffy believes the demon they're after has
- being willing to help Faith until she
puts Buffy's mother in danger and makes a move on Riley.
- Spike does an Angelus when he tries to
weaken Buffy by dividing her from
I suspect that the PTB realize that [the first slayer's methods are] not the most effective way
for the Slayer to operate at this point. When they called Buffy
as Slayer, I think they knew what they were doing. They knew
she would rebel
against the WC,
and perhaps against FS as well. I think that Buffy needs her
friends ...and even though everything that's known about Slayers
says she is wrong, she is changing all that. The FS doesn't like
that. ...her friends will be the strength that saves her, and
not her fatal weakness (Sapphire, May 24 15:37 2000).
- Does Buffy love
- taking on the job of protecting
an innocent helpess entity when it is turned into her sister.
- stands up for Tara's right to make
her own choices when Tara's dad tries to bully her.
- doesn't die at the hands of a
lucky vamp because Riley chases him off.
"The only reason you've
lasted as long as you have is you've got ties to the world...
your mum, your brat kid sister, the Scoobies."
- "She's tricky...
baby likes to play" --Spike on
Buffy's tactic of refusing to just "plunge and move on".
- Buffy's trademark teasing and punning
at her prey disappear when she's Helpless.
- Philosophy of slaying: Buffy vs. Kendra,
reacts on instinct. There's no discipline there"
never really been one to tow the line"
Buffy quips to Adam. She does things her way. No wonder she
- How much of Buffy is Primal
Anger girl: Buffy is capable of violent anger, and this side
of her personality is usually reserved for human beings.
- being baited into
a fight, leaving her friends to
be abducted (WSWB).
- Buffy on Ethan Rayne: "I really wanted to hit him until he bled."
- "I did not kill him," Kendra
says of Angel. "And
I don't need to kill you" Buffy
replies. Would she have?
- kicking her mother's boyfriend so hard
he fell down the stairs and "died". "Can you say 'sucking chest wound'?"
- marching to school, shoving Jenny
down on her desk, and accusing her of changing Angel into Angelus.
She did hear her out, though.
- to the watcher Quentin "I think you better leave town before I get
my strength back."
- offering to show Professor
Walsh (TIIT) and Forrest (TYF) slayer strength up close and
really don't know what a Slayer is. Trust me when I say you're
gonna find out."
- ...threatening Angleman
while searching for Riley in the Initiative. ...She say something
like "I usually don't kill humans but I'm willing to make
an exception in this case" (jengod, 19 Nov 2000 15:28).
- Buffy to Faith:
me and I will beat you to death."
- Hey, chill, babe: when Graham tries to
urge Buffy to find a deteriorating Riley
sooner rather than later, Buffy interrupts with "If you tell me to hurry,
I'll kick your ass."
The dead people that have beng hanging
out in Buffy's life lately have been almost uniformly
incoporeal. But when Buffy sees Warren Mears, she decides
to take a swing at him anyway. And ends up knocking
her best friend on her ass.
This season, Buffy has
been resorting to violence more and more frequently as a means
of dealing with her personal problems ...A few examples: slaughtering the vamp-pimp and his feeble minions, beating the snake construct
taking her frustration
with her History teacher
out on a vamp (25-Feb-01 22:54).
of moral weakness:
To paraphrase Douglas Adams,
It's one thing to
think that you're the center of the universe (as she did before becoming the
slayer) -- it's
another thing entirely to have this confirmed by an ancient prophecy (anonymous, 04-Nov-00 19:17).
- When she was dancing with
Xander to make Angel jealous and hurt just about everybody in
the process (Fly-by-Nite, Dec 20 20:20 1998).
- I have to go with her
failure to stake Angel in Innocence (aardwolfe, Dec 20 22:33
- giving into lust
with Angel in Revelations, even knowing the possible consequences.
- [when] Angel finally decides
to kill himself... and Buffy stops him. ...Buffy should ...realize
that by asking Angel to stay she is keeping a viscious killer
on the planet, and yet she goes to stop him anyway, betraying
her duty (Jade, Dec 20 20:37 1998).
- Buffy's impatience with Wesley borders
on rudeness as he tries to tell her about a previous Ascension
- pining for the "Poophead",
even after Parker's motives are made blatantly obvious. Do Buffy's
feelings sometimes make her a wimp?
- leaping in to destroy the
mark of Gachnar before Giles can finish telling her not to.
- Was Buffy too self absorbed
her freshman year of college?
- ...her treatment of Angel in "Sanctuary". I think this was her
worst moment (anonymous, 04-Nov-00 19:17).
- search[ing] for her friends
rather than tear down the wall between her and her mom [in Restless]
(meara 8:48 am, May 24, 2000)
- Buffy was a little neglectful of Joyce
her Freshman year. Waiting until May to introduce her to the
guy you CAN bring home to mother?
- not letting Riley help her deal with all
"the life stuff" when her mother was sick. Was
Buffy wrong for neglecting Riley?
- contemplating down-playing her slayerness
to attract a man
- extending her loner-hero mode to loner-head-of-the-family
mode after Joyce's death--and neglecting the healing she
and Dawn can do together.
- over-doing the
Mom thing when she fears she may
lose custody of Dawn.
- Was showing Ben
mercy in The Gift heroic or just plain stupid?
- spending all her time after her resurrection
trying to "be okay" for
her friends. Coming clean might be less exhausting.
- handing over her adult responsibilities--like
paying the bills and disciplining
- Buffy and sex
with Spike: good thing or bad? It starts as an escape from
the realities of post-resurrection life.
- giving in to
the asylum reality and nearly killing
- Buffy's superiority
complex, and her inferiority complex
Buffy vs. the First
||At first, Buffy's watcher
Rupert Giles seemed like a learned but rather stodgy British
librarian. The running joke (e.g., Inca Mummy Girl) was that
this apparent wimp was charged with training the slayer
in the methods of combat, and he usually ended up on the floor
for his trouble. But all is not what it seems with Mr. Giles.
| The Ripper | Moments of moral weakness | Giles and The Watchers | Mid-life
crisis | Giles' finest moments |
Joyce: So how come they, uh, call you
Giles: Wouldn't you like to know. --
Highlights of the Ripper:
(AKA Mr. "I spent the [early 70's] in an electric Koolaid
funky Satan groove")
- running with a
group (including Ethan
Rayne) that practiced "magicks" and who were initiates
of the demon Eyghon.
- finding the glass half-full with the cornucopia
of ghouls and demons to engage at the Hellmouth.
- going to Ethan's costume shop and beating
on him until he revealed how to reverse the spell on the children.
Ethan, on the floor and bloodied, says, "And you said the Ripper was long gone."
- The Ripper reveals himself to the gang
when he picks up Ethan by the neck and threatens him for almost
hurting his friends.
- finding grave-robbing "new and interesting"
- The Ripper vs.
Angelus: Jenny's death in Passion
- enduring Angelus'
- getting Buffy back into school by grabbing
Snyder by the lapel and shoving
him into a filing cabinet. He also seemed rather adept at hot-wiring
- The Ripper up close and personal: Band Candy
- picking a lock well with Cordelia's hair
- kicking some vampire butt. including beheading
one over Wesley's head (Bad Girls).
- stabbing the Mayor with a fencing foil
(futilely, but with righteous rage)
when he threatens Buffy.
- going all Hugh
Hefner over the summer of 1999. This is the man who couldn't
bring himself to ask Jenny Calendar on a date?
- slicing into the frat house with a chain
saw to save the gang (Fear, Itself).
- The Ripper made pretentious claims in
order to impress girls--telling them (true) stories about supernatural
monsters and (untrue) stories about how he was an original member
of Pink Floyd.
- giving obsessive
Spike a piece of his mind--and a good toss across the floor.
- doing something
(?) to a Glory-minion that makes him spill the beans
- killing the human
Ben to end Glory's evil.
- slitting the throat
of a Bringer after it has revealed
information about the First Evil's plans. Was it to stop the
Bringer's taunting of the Potentials?
of moral weakness:
Although Giles works well with Buffy and
Willow, he has always had trouble tolerating Xander and Cordelia:
- ordering Xander to
"get out of my sight" when Amy's spell turns Buffy
into a rat.
- snipping at Xander's simplistic rendition
of Giles' suggestion in Passion, but not doing the same to Buffy's.
- becoming "tact guy" (not)
when he is forced to research der Kindestod with Cordelia: "Why
do I have to have...?"
- snapping impatiently at Cordelia for assuming
that Buffy is going back into the haunted school to be the "big
- yelling at Xander when he falls asleep
during Oz-watch, while giving a fatherly
smile to Buffy for doing the same.
- getting testy when Xander refuses to help
find information on Lagos.
- when Xander remarks that (a presumably
dead) Willow was "Way better than me," Giles responds:
"Much, much better."
- In Enemies, Giles becomes distinctly Xander-like,
making flippant comments while munching on fruit. Is that how
he pretends to be out of the loop?
- getting annoyed at Xander's little hunting
fantasy in The Initiative.
- snapping at Xander's negativity as they
approach the Initiative to defeat Adam, even though the odds
really are against them.
- suggesting extensive research on robot
April just to scare Xander.
nor Buffy are keen on helping Angel
or letting him help them after he takes over Wolfram and Hart.
They assume he is, or will become, corrupted.
I think Giles is tough
on Xander because he thinks that's what he needs; he knows Xander
isn't an idiot, and it pisses him off that Xander's always making
excuses (I'm dumb, I'm a loser) rather than not acting like a
dumb loser. Remember in [Beer Bad] - Giles has a go, Xander whines
about how Giles was demon worshipper, Giles snaps "you know
better". I think he feels Xander needs to grow up, and coddling
him won't help. Standard Brit parenting (J. Eaton, 1:39 am Oct
- summoning Eyghon (Ms. Alucard, Feb 14 20:20 1999).
- believing the poltergeist in IOHEFY was
Jenny despite evidence to the contrary.
- helping make Buffy helpless
- Giles is upset when he finds out that
Wes is chaperoning with him at the Prom.
- Giles' mid-life crisis
- cleans his glasses so he won't have to
see what people are doing (like Xander and Anya french-kissing)
- giving Buffy too
much help after she returns from the dead--she needs to stand
on her feet, not keep lying on her back.
and the Watchers:
- rebelling against the Giles' family business
as a youth--being a Watcher.
- never getting invited to the annual Watchers'
retreat in the Cotswolds. To
clear it up: Giles was not invited BEFORE becasue he was a rebel.
He's not invited NOW cuz he's too busy (joss, Oct 13 22:20 1998).
- allowing Mrs. Post
to be condescending to him (an indication that he is easily cowed
when it comes to the Watcher's Council).
- The council didn't hesitate to fire
Giles when he "interfered" in Buffy's rite-of-passage
because of his "useless" fatherly affection for her.
- They also didn't do much to thwart his
interference in Wesley's supervision
of the slayers. Maybe because Wesley never told them about it.
- giving Buffy his full support when she resigns from the authority of the
Council, saying she doesn't need a watcher.
- Giles was a little lost
without his watcher role. When Buffy asked him to resume
it, though, he became a rogue Watcher outside the authority
of the Council.
- When Buffy stands
up to the Watcher's attempt to bully themselves back into
authority, she gets Giles his official position restored. Plus
*cough* retroactive pay.
- After Giles returns
to England, he keeps his position on the Watcher's Council
despite the fact that he is no longer Buffy's Watcher and doesn't
trust the Council any further than he can throw them.
- Has Giles adopted
the worse traits of the now-defunct Watcher's Council?
"I'm an unemployed
librarian with a tendency to get knocked on the head."
Giles was out of sorts after the gang's
graduation. Although his apartment became Scooby central when
it was time for bad-guy research, he was unemployed (by choice,
it seems) and had no formalized role
in the rogue slayer's life. He had to decide when it was appropriate
to perform the tasks he's done for Buffy in
the past--research, fighting, or giving fatherly advice. It
was hard for Giles to define who he was relative to a group of
young people he's known for years:
- "Our grown-up friend"?
He hung out with them at the Bronze or Buffy's birthday party,
but it was awkward.
- "My high school librarian"?
And you're still hanging out with him because...? Inadequate.
- Surrogate father? That works much better, yet Giles let Maggie
Walsh's uninformed implication that Buffy suffers from lack of
a male role model get under his skin.
Giles' struggle has made
him painfully aware that he's not 19 years old anymore, but that
doesn't mean he has to act like he's 80, either. Becoming guitar-guy
in Oz's absence is cool, but other stuff isn't.
Giles has been drinking
a lot this season. From "Something Blue"'s "It's
all right, I have more scotch." to getting pissed with Ethan
in "A New Man" and now drinking at home (M. Costello,
May 10, 2000 4:19 pm)
After Buffy asks Giles to stay on as her
watcher, Giles finds a new venue for himself: he's become the
proprietor of Sunnydale's magic shop. If he can keep
he might have a great place for the Scoobies
to hang out.
Moments of moral weakness:
- the Madame Butterfly
nightmare reveals Willow's insecurities. She also seems to
enjoy Cordelia's Nightmare of being dragged into the chess club
dressed like a nerd
- acting as look out for Sheila the bad
girl when Sheila was smoking in the fifth grade
- wanting to kiss Oz to get back at Xander
for kissing Cordelia
- letting Buffy believe she'd spend time
with her, then standing her up out of discomfort (DMP)
- Betraying OZ. She loves him and he loves her
but she couldn't help herself. Like she said, she wanted it all
(Fly-by-Nite, Dec 20 20:20 1998).
- letting Buffy see Cordelia's Homecoming
- jealousy of Faith's interactions with
Xander and Buffy
- learning assertiveness from her evil
vampire counterpart when Snyder asks her to do Percy the
- worrying that Buffy's new telepathic ability
would mean that Buffy no longer needed her
- overlooking Buffy's freshman confusion
- seeing Spike's inability
to kill her viciously as evidence of her unattractiveness
- Is Willow too sentimental?
She has argued against killing bad guys Angelus,
the vengeance spirit, and neutered
- letting Percy's calling her a "nerd"
distract her from the more pressing issue of the moment--stopping
the Vahrall demons
- Was Willow wrong to keep her
friendship with Tara to herself for so
- Does Willow lack
inner confidence to match her apparent outer confidence?
- letting her sympathy for a grieving Dawn
cloud her judgment--she gives Dawn a clue to a dangerous
- Fear of her old friends' rejection and
a twinge of self-loathing lead Willow to make her and her friends
invisible to each other.
and the consequences of magic
has been shown plenty of times that her magics often have unexpected results. I think Willow likes the *power* of doing magic ...But she has been shielded from
the consequences - someone (usually Buffy) shows up to rescue
Willow from the affects of her magic. Willow has not had to grow
up. She has been protected by the rest of the gang. They have
allowed her to play at being a witch without suffering any real
consequences. Perhaps Willow needs to be "burned" ...by
her magic - be put in a position by her free experimentation
with magic that she must use her
wits and her strength,
not her spells, to escape (purplegrrl, 10-Jan-01 13:51).
"Let me tell you something
about Willow: she's a loser. And she always has been. Everyone
picked on Willow in junior high, high school, up until college
with her stupid mousy ways and now--Willow's a junkie. The only
thing going for me were those moments--just moments--when Tara
would look at me and I was wonderful. And that will never happen
again." --Willow, Two to Go
The Willow who never delved into the reasons
behind her magic addiction--her
desire to control the world around her--goes
into a tail-spin when she is unable to
reverse Tara's death.
Willow's successful witchcraft
Willow's finest moments
Xander represents the childlike
(not childish -- important distinction, childlike=good) member
of the gang, the one who points out that the Emperor has no clothes,
the one who wears
his passionate heart on his sleeve, the one who sees things in black and white (both
his strength & weakness), the one who is playful & funny,
the one who is not
afraid to make a fool of himself for love, for his convictions. I feel he adds an interesting
dynamic to the gang. Also I think in a lot of respects he is
similar to Buffy (the stubbornness, the heedlessness, wanting
to just jump in -- rashly at times -- & just chop chop).
Most importantly, he cracks me up! But I guess others may find
the Xander things I laugh at obnoxious (DeadStillPretty, Jan
4 22:33 1999).
- In the beginning, Xander put Buffy on
a pedestal, and she inevitably fell off. His disillusionment
started as early as WSWB, when he said to her (referring to the vampires who had kidnapped their friends),
"If they hurt
Willow, I'll kill you."
- Xander's change in attitude is clear when
Angelus killed Jenny. He defended Giles' attack on Angelus, and
was disappointed that Buffy hadn't done something before this
- The "Angel" problem seemed taken
care of in B2, but Buffy disappointed him again by leaving town
(fan debate on Xander's lie to Buffy in
- Upon her return, Xander berated her for it: "...taking off like you did was incredibly
selfish and stupid."
- When the gang found out that Buffy had
been keeping Angel's return from them, Giles and Willow understood
Buffy's reasons, but Xander expressed both his
belief that Angel should die and his disappointment that
Buffy had once again "let them down" by kissing Angel
and lying to them.
- Post-Revelations, Xander lightened up
on Buffy, and Angel as well. In Enemies, however, he wasn't afraid
to say "I told you so," when it seemed Angelus was
back. He also blamed Wesley for not keeping good tabs on Faith
(his jealousy of Wesley's interest in Cordelia was obvious in
- He worried openly about Angel's health
in G1, but when Angel announced in the hospital that he had fed
on Buffy, Xander assumed Angel selfishly took Buffy's blood.
"It's nice to
know that when the chips are down, you'll feed off the girl that
loves you to save your own ass."
- Xander's ability to be disappointed by
Buffy would not and could not happen if he didn't admire her
as a slayer and a person as much as he admires her as a beautiful
woman. He finally admits this outloud in The Freshman when he
tells her "you're
- Xander is more like Buffy than he is different
from her--emotional, impulsive, loyal, and likes a good fight.
During his first year of post-high school
life, he needed one.
- Xander has gradually matured since his
high school graduation, but sometimes stress takes us back a
step. When Buffy's mother dies,
Xander's anger has nowhere to aim itself, except a wall.
- Xander is quick to withhold the benefit
of the doubt from the morally ambiguous Spike when he comes
to pay his respects to the recently deceased Joyce and when
he is kidnapped by Glory. If these
two boys can't get along, someone might just have to separate
- is back to being judgmental of Spike's
motives concerning Buffy when Spike discovers her resurrection
- Should Xander be
more accepting of Anya's little demony foibles?
- Verbally and
physically attacks Spike after
a Spike/Anya post-wedding-dumpage tryst the assails Anya for
sleeping with the evil undead.
- plays good-cop to Anya's bad-cop to find
out what Andrew is doing back in town
buying blood in NLM. Xander calmly tells Andrew scary stories
about Anya's vengeance demon acts. Even if he is making them
up, he must know she's done worse.
- To his chagrin, Xander bonds with loser-villain
Andrew over superhero comics.
the lost boy
Xander's first year of post-high school
life may have seemed puzzling, but it's not uncommon. Some graduates
who decide not to go to college find their future in the military,
job training, or family life. For others, high school graduation
comes as something of a shock--no matter how much they looked
forward to it, they never thought beyond it. They never gave a
lot of thought to who they would be in the adult world.
Xander needed time to figure
himself out. Recall Oz's assessment in the Zeppo as Xander
searched for "his thing": "You've got some identity issues." Xander defined himself in opposition to
his friends "I'm
non-college guy"--but saying what
you're not is not the same as saying what you are. So for almost
a year, Xander was pretty aimless. His wake-up call came when
Spike claimed to overhear Buffy and Willow making fun of him.
They hadn't, of course, but Spike's words still got
under Xander's skin.
Being so easily
used by Dracula didn't help, either. Gradually, Xander is
facing up to himself--both literally
and in a more figurative, but direct,
adult way. And becoming a grown-up.
Moments of moral weakness:
- In NKABOTFD Xander tries
to peek a little at Buffy when she's getting dressed (Nikki,
23 May 2000 14:12).
- Perhaps the love spell in "BBB"? "This time, the hellmouth
is going to be working for me." And to make matters worse,
his motive was revenge (Mircalla, Dec 20 20:36 1998).
- Xander's lie to Buffy in Becoming,
- sleeping during Oz-watch (B&tB).
- Hypocrisy. Too many incidents
to choose from, really, but one that sticks out is his calling Buffy "selfish"
in DMP. Also, his
condemnation of Buffy for her weakness in Revelations, coupled
with his own selfish behaviour in Homecoming and LW (aardwolfe,
Dec 20 22:33 1998).
- giving into the "clothes
fluke" with Willow while dating Cordelia
- trying to get sympathy for having Playboys
in his locker as Willow and Amy are about to be busted as witches.
- Xander gets weird every
time he gets around Larry. He's so uncomfortable with the idea
that even one person, Larry, might think he's gay, it borders
on homophobia (Diajanwal, 11/17 8:22 pm).
- He gave Anya a ring and a surprise marraige
proposal--so why is Xander the one getting cold
feet? Perhaps it's all the responsibilities
that lay ahead.
- assuming Willow has fallen
off the wagon when Buffy becomes invisible
- gives into his
fears about becoming his father and gilts Anya at the alter
bad-luck lust list:
"...but then, he's
always been attracted to monsters."
"You're a demon magnet!" --Willow
- The Praying Mantis
who wanted his head;
- Inca Mummy Girl whose kisses killed;
- Cordelia, insensitive bitca extraordinaire;
- Willow, finally, after she was already spoken for;
- Faith, who didn't see a whole lot of difference between
having sex with a man and doing violence to him;
- Anya, the ex-man-killing demon.
- Lissa, the First Evil's ally
The I In Team
go off to college, they grow apart. Way of the world." --Spike,
The Yoko Factor
Who was the villain of
- The arrogant but at worst morally ambiguous
- The conniving but neutered Spike?
- The homicidal but often hidden Adam?
[Is] the lack of cohesion
in the Scooby Gang ...the Big Bad this season? Would their being more team-y have helped them get Adam before
now? (Melissa W May 10, 2000, 7:58 am)
Welcome to Joss Whedon's world, where nothing
is as it seems. One thing that has defined Buffy as a slayer is
that she fights to protect her friends, and
they, in turn, have pulled her out of many jams. Then slowly,
insidiously, things began to change. Each member of the gang became
absorbed in their own interests and concerns.
lost his job, first as Watcher, then
as librarian, The former removed the familiar roles of Watcher
and slayer, making it difficult for Buffy and Giles to define
their relationship. The latter immolated their home in an incendiary
fire. The image of the school's burnt-out husk has been a resonating
symbol of Season 4. Since then Giles has been trying to figure
out who he is outside his role as Watcher.
decided not to go to college with Buffy and Willow. He began
dating a rather tactless ex-demon
who had little use for his old friends. He struggled
to find a job he actually wanted to keep.
- When Oz left,
Willow quickly found herself alone
in her pain as her friends got involved with investigating
the Initiative and dating new people. She threw
herself into her witchcraft, and met Tara,
a friend she could call her own.
- While Willow found college an atmosphere
in which she could thrive, Buffy felt awkward from day one.
Eventually she started dating her psychology
TA, a fellow fry-cook who fought
by her side, first in the Initiative, and then against
The whole Scooby gang situation
...is an allegory for what happens when you grow up and go to
college. You get involved in new relationships and neglect or
outgrow old ones, you start discarding old character traits and
picking up new ones as you try to find out what makes you happy,
and as with any introspective journey, you
get so self-involved that sometimes you wouldn't see problems
cropping up in interpersonal relationships unless a brick fell
on your head, and maybe not even then. ...Buffy is wrapped up in Riley, Willow with
Tara, Xander with Anya, Giles in trying to find out what he wants
to be when he grows up... And let's not forget to add a healthy
dose of self-doubt, which is ever present when you're introspective,
and young (Closet Buffyholic May 10 22:19 2000).
Defeating the evil adulthood
...this year has been about
getting scattered and getting distracted, changing and wondering
if the old gang still exists, plus the freedom that college causes.
...Yes, you get freedoms when you first go to college, but life
doesn't stop happening. We want to ground them again (joss, Fandom,
| Cordelia | Doyle
| Wesley | Gunn
| Fred | Connor
| Joyce | Jenny
| Oz | Anya
| Riley | Tara
| Principal Snyder | Spike
| Jonathan | Willy
| Principal Wood | The
Gypsies | Faith | The
Mayor | The Watcher's Council
| Maggie Walsh/The Initiative |
Ben | Lindsey
| Kate | Lilah
| Lorne | Holtz
| Jasmine | Eve
| Knox | Magic
| What does Joss have against |
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