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More of a Good Guy? Spike or Faith

thetopher

Member of the Church Of Faith
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Messages
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Location
The Moot, England
Sineya
Buffy's decision to NOT kill Spike was correct, and she is rewarded for it by Spike's support. On the other hand, Buffy's lenience about the trigger was wrong, and she gets punished for it by being deposed in 7x19.

Hmn, I think Buffy getting deposed had very little to do with Spike to be honest, it was about Buffy's judgement that season, pushing people away and acting rashly.

I've never been one to hate-on the Scoobies for usurping Buffy- I understand some of them and dislike others for what they did- but it was probably necessary for her to get the kick in the pants.
But overall I don't think it was 'punishment' exactly, and certainly don't link it to what happens in this episode (apart from the Giles thing obviously).

Everyone can love 2 things at the same time, sure, but Nikki's decision was still unfair and victimizing to her son, and Robin needed to acknowledge it so he could stop idealizing her and stop obsessing over her ("she was my world"). So, I don't see the problem here.

Again, I don't see enough evidence to judge if Nikki was a 'bad mother' or not.
I mean, obviously; 70's New York, Afro, kick-ass Slayer, she was clearly one Bad Mother- in those terms but, you get what I'm saying.

The way I see it, Spike's killing of Robin is not something he has any reason to feel bad about, because it was entirely a result of his vampire nature, which he didn't have a choice about. Spike's relationship with Buffy in season 6, however, is something more blurry and complicated - it wasn't just Spike being a vampire, it was also Spike's human side, his obsession with romanticism, that was at work there. So he obviously feels more guilty about that, after he's ensouled.

Again I disagree. Something in Spike's 'vamp make-up' wanted him to go and hunt down super-women who kill his kind. That something had to come from somewhere in his personality, and that 'something' is revealed in 'LMPTM'- Mommy issues that explains lots about his relationships with all kinds of women.

But really, Spike shouldn't feel guilt about ANYTHING that he did while soulless, logically.

While I agree to an extent- for example Spike doesn't have to feel guilty for killing slayers or keeping demon eggs or trying to kill Buffy. The relationship in S6 is different though, he loved her then and he loves her still.

And his story isn't about guilt, the way Angel's is.

I don't want Spike to be like Angel. There are other ways to tell redemption stories. Faith, Wesley, Andrew....nah I'm kidding screw Andrew, but there are other ways.

You're not supposed to "condemn" Nikki. She was in a complicated situation, and tried to do what's right. But the apt metaphor here isn't a working mother - the apt metaphor is a WORKOHOLIC working mother.

Again, I don't see enough to GET that distinction. Do we know- at that time- that Nikki was some workacolic slayer? Not really.
And its all muddled up by Spike talking about things he can't possibly know about. Does Spike know anything about being a mother/parent? Nope, he was a coddled son. Does he know about slayers? Again, no, he just killed a couple.

I think in all honesty by this point in the series I've just had it with him mouthing off about things he doesn't understand. He's like...Season 3 Faith going on about Angel or something. 'You don't have a clue so shut-up.'

First of all, I really don't remember Robin saying that his mom never loved him. Not in season 9, and not ever.

Buffy goes to see him about her 'situation' and he mentions it off-hand I'm sure of it. And its not that Nikki didn't love him- she HAD him after all but the fact that Robin now thinks this is very sad.

First of all, there's a BIG difference between a teenager and a baby.

Dawn is technically one year old. And kind of a whiny brat to boot (and I like Dawn-y).

Second of all - did Buffy's life as a slayer not affect her ability to raise Dawn too?

So you're saying that Buffy was wrong to keep Dawn around? Or anybody she loved and put at risk?
I dunno, a slayer is alone enough as it is. Let them have ties to the world. As far as I'm concerned Spike messed Robin up, not Nikki.

'Becoming' isn't a Buffy-centric episode? I disagree completely.

Well. ALL episodes are Buffy-centric to a degree. Even ones that aren't about her illustrate something about her or her relationships or something- that's just the writing of the show.
But Becoming is more about destiny and choice and they interact and mess things up. There's stuff in there about Buffy, sure, but we find out so much about Angel and his destiny- then yeah, its mostly about him in my view.

When is Spike's opinion about "she was a slayer, I was a vampire" contradicted? Well, in the next season, in AtS.

I tend to thing as AtS S5 as a massive repair job when it comes to Spike. They get him away from Buffy and try and 'fix' his character a bit.

It's actually surprisingly similiar - both Spike and Faith are saying true things, in nasty ways, to characters they're fighting against.

Faith is trying to 'talk Gigi' out of fighting/break through her anger and try and make her think. Faith- in the context of the fight- doesn't want to harm Gigi anymore than she has to. I think that's where I see a difference.

And again - Honestly, Spike isn't really responsible for his bad acts toward Buffy, either. It's more blurry there, but it's still unfair to blame him for it. He wouldn't have tried to rape her if he was ensouled.

But, as he said, he got a soul for her and wants recognition for that act. But 'he' didn't do that, his demon did. He's not responsible for any of it. But he never acts that way, he acts like it was all part of his reformation.
Plus he still loves Buffy- as he tells her- and that blurs the line even further.

Well, first of all, AtS season 5 Spike is not the same as BtVS season 7 Spike. He changed over time. And he tends to regress whenever he's near Angel, really.

Yep, repair job like I said. I'm not a fan of Angel in that episode either btw. The Spangel regression thing? So, so tiresome.

So... You DON'T think that Angel is even the same person as the guy who killed all those people, And yet you like it when he's blaming himself for it?

It's not like I cheer when I see his guilt or anything- I tend to find the brooding tiresome at times- but I UNDERSTAND it in the context of Angel's story. 100 plus years of being conditioned to blame himself/see himself as a monster is going to effect anyone, no matter what.

Hmmm. I think I get it - You love Angel for the same reason that I love Buffy - she constantly tries to be a good person, and when she over-blames herself, it just makes me want to hug her. I mean, it's hard not to admire idealism, right? Idealism is what makes Buffy and Angel into heroes.

That's part of it. Also that their essentially isolated because of their condition. There is a fundamental lack of connection because of their place in the world. I think I root for them because they a) get crapped on the most because their the title characters and b) their both pretty fascinating characters, with lots of layers and neuroses to poke at and explore.

Granted, Angel just doesn't WORK for me as a hero, but that's a seperate issue...

I find some of Angel's character traits problematic. It's safe to say that I have big problems with both Angel and Spike and how they see themselves and a couple of their key relationships.

And if I may presume - I think that the reason Spike doesn't work for you as a character is that you're trying to like him in the same way that you like Angel, when Spike is a fundamentally different type of character. Spike's past as a soulless killer is almost irrelevant to his character, once he gets a soul. Especially compared to Angel. Spike's story isn't interesting as a story about redmeption, it's interesting as a story about obsession, and as a story about the idea of love

I used to like Spike a lot. But yeah, I find him mostly shallow by the time he gets a soul. He doesn't seem to grow that much with his added humanity, its still 'Buffy, Buffy. Buffy'. I blame Spuffy for that.

Plus he gets SO MANY breaks over the course of the series without many consequences or going through that many hardships (in comparison to others). Mostly he gets to say/do what he likes and get away with it.

He gets better over on Angel- he seems to grow up a lot (eventually)- and I don't mind him in the comics, so that's something.

and as the story of an insecure person who built a facade of badassery to mask his insecurities.

I would have more sympathy for the guy if he wasn't over a century old by this point. Shouldn't immortals get over the whole 'poseur' thing. I guess I have as little time for Spike's posturing/insecurity that you do for Angel's hand-wringing. ;)

Spike's cruelty toward Robin was, well, cruel. Very understandable, but cruel. If BUFFY acted that way, I would see it very differently. Buffy is a character that I ADMIRE, and if she did such a cruel thing, it would be harder for me to admire her.

Agreed. I don't want to see anybody act that way toward somebody. And I don't even LIKE Wood, the guy's a smug, petty, backstabbing, deceitful jackass most of the time. But if a character is a jerk, I call him (or her) a jerk I guess. Lol
 

DeadlyDuo

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Hmn, I think Buffy getting deposed had very little to do with Spike to be honest, it was about Buffy's judgement that season, pushing people away and acting rashly.

I've never been one to hate-on the Scoobies for usurping Buffy- I understand some of them and dislike others for what they did- but it was probably necessary for her to get the kick in the pants.

I think the Scoobies were wrong to usurp Buffy especially in the way they did it. It would be fair to say that Buffy was under a lot of pressure especially with the First playing mind tricks on everybody and the impending apocalypse that she had to fight in which the likely outcome would be everybody died. This wasn't like Glory where even if she won, the consequences would only be temporary until the portal closed. If the First won, the whole world would've gone to hell and the responsibility to try and avert that was all on Buffy's shoulders.

Willow, Xander, Giles and perhaps Dawn (Spike and Faith are optional) should've sat Buffy down and had words because they are the people closest to her or understand what she has to go through. Having a whole room of potentials gang up on her plus Kennedy mouthing off was not the way to do it. Buffy was right about the vineyard and she said she was open to suggestions on how to go about it. Thing is though, it wasn't the Scoobies' actions that gave her the kick in the pants she needed, it was Spike and his words of encouragement about trusting her instincts. She went to fight Caleb alone because she knew she was right but didn't have the support of the others. It was Buffy doing that that gave her side a fighting chance of winning the battle with the First.

Again, I don't see enough evidence to judge if Nikki was a 'bad mother' or not.
I mean, obviously; 70's New York, Afro, kick-ass Slayer, she was clearly one Bad Mother- in those terms but, you get what I'm saying.

LOL

Again I disagree. Something in Spike's 'vamp make-up' wanted him to go and hunt down super-women who kill his kind. That something had to come from somewhere in his personality, and that 'something' is revealed in 'LMPTM'- Mommy issues that explains lots about his relationships with all kinds of women.

I disagree about "Mommy issues" being the reason Spike was like he was pre-soul. Post-soul, "Mommy issues" was the reason given to explain why the First had such control over Spike. Up until that point "Mommy issues" didn't play a part in Spike's character. As for why he went after Slayers, Spike liked the thrill of the fight, he even said to Angelus something along the lines of "Don't you get tired of fights you know you're gonna win". Whilst Angelus considered killing an art, Spike considered it a sport.


So you're saying that Buffy was wrong to keep Dawn around? Or anybody she loved and put at risk?
I dunno, a slayer is alone enough as it is. Let them have ties to the world. As far as I'm concerned Spike messed Robin up, not Nikki.

It's been hinted/mentioned in the show that the only reason Buffy has survived as long as she has is BECAUSE she has ties to the world. I think it might've been Spike that mentioned it in either season 5 or 6? Something along the lines of "You've got your mom, brat kid sister, Scoobies" I can't remember the exact line.


I tend to thing as AtS S5 as a massive repair job when it comes to Spike. They get him away from Buffy and try and 'fix' his character a bit.

I agree. I think they realised they'd made him to Buffy-focussed in season 6 and 7 to the point where that was the sum of his character. They needed to separated them in order to expand Spike's character again.


But, as he said, he got a soul for her and wants recognition for that act. But 'he' didn't do that, his demon did. He's not responsible for any of it. But he never acts that way, he acts like it was all part of his reformation.
Plus he still loves Buffy- as he tells her- and that blurs the line even further.

To be fair, Spike is a demon, whilst his soul may have given him a conscience, he is still a demon who made a choice to get his soul back.


I used to like Spike a lot. But yeah, I find him mostly shallow by the time he gets a soul. He doesn't seem to grow that much with his added humanity, its still 'Buffy, Buffy. Buffy'. I blame Spuffy for that.

Agreed except I STILL like Spike a lot. About midway season 5 is where he starts to become all about Buffy and that just continues into season 6&7 which is disappointing. JM's acting is what saves the character though.
 

thetopher

Member of the Church Of Faith
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Sineya
Willow, Xander, Giles and perhaps Dawn (Spike and Faith are optional) should've sat Buffy down and had words because they are the people closest to her or understand what she has to go through. Having a whole room of potentials gang up on her plus Kennedy mouthing off was not the way to do it.

I tend to agree, but then Buffy picked the venue and when to make her announcement. Ideally there would've been a smaller conference held in the basement- like what Faith did later- to talk strategy away from the troops.

Buffy was right about the vineyard

But her reasoning was incredibly faulty. It hinged on The First and Caleb being so stupid as to lead Buffy to where they least wanted her to be, a place she didn't even know existed until Caleb set up show there..
I mean, luckily she was right but I can't blame (some) of the others for their reactions, especially given how Buffy had been acting.

Some of them wanted Buffy to simply take a break and think for a second, then it escalated into a full on coup.

she said she was open to suggestions on how to go about it.

Buffy was fairly dictatorial actually, until she realized she was losing all her support, only THEN she mentions compromise. But even then its not about what their going to do, just about the how.

Thing is though, it wasn't the Scoobies' actions that gave her the kick in the pants she needed, it was Spike and his words of encouragement about trusting her instincts.

Actually it was both.
Buffy comes back and she acts very differently towards her friends/allies. She now listens to suggestions and makes use/acknowledges support whereas she didn't before. She doesn't shut people out and now asks opinions.
Spike may have given her the boost to go with her gut, but it was the conversation about HOW she was acting previously that gave her perspective. That Buffy was not the Buffy of previous years, and she recognized the fact.

I disagree about "Mommy issues" being the reason Spike was like he was pre-soul. Post-soul, "Mommy issues" was the reason given to explain why the First had such control over Spike. Up until that point "Mommy issues" didn't play a part in Spike's character.

I disagree a little bit. Soulless Spike went from 'guy who loves him Mum' to driving spike through people's head'- his 'Mum' did that, spun his head and- as Spike himself said- those issues have weighed on him for quite a while.
The way he tends idolize some women (Buffy/Dru) and resent disparage others (Harmony and also Buffy), his macho swagger screams parental issues to me- and he's had that a long time pre-soul.
 

Guy

Scooby
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Black Thorn
Hmn, I think Buffy getting deposed had very little to do with Spike to be honest, it was about Buffy's judgement that season, pushing people away and acting rashly.

I've never been one to hate-on the Scoobies for usurping Buffy- I understand some of them and dislike others for what they did- but it was probably necessary for her to get the kick in the pants.
But overall I don't think it was 'punishment' exactly, and certainly don't link it to what happens in this episode (apart from the Giles thing obviously).

Of course Buffy's isolation was a season-long storyline, but her treatment of Spike played into it in a pretty big way - it directly led to her rift with both Giles and Robin, who were two of the loudest voices against her in 7x19, and it was constantly called out as an example of Buffy's hypocrisy by Anya and Rona and others.

And I don't hate the scoobies for 7x19 either (they had good reasons to depose Buffy at that point, and Buffy needed the wake-up call. Not that they were all perfect in it... But that's a huge seperate issue), but I think it's clear that it was a form of narrative punishment.

Again, I don't see enough evidence to judge if Nikki was a 'bad mother' or not.
I mean, obviously; 70's New York, Afro, kick-ass Slayer, she was clearly one Bad Mother- in those terms but, you get what I'm saying.

She wasn't a "bad mother", but I think it's clear that she was torn between her slayer duty and her family duties ("the mission is what matters"), just like Buffy, and Robin suffered for it. Does that mean that she didn't love Robin? Not at all. Just "not enough to quit" slaying, as Spike says.

It's not about Robin realizing that his mother was an asshole, it's about Robin realizing that he wasn't Nikki's whole world, and she shouldn't be his whole world either. As Buffy and Nikki both say in this episode:

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Again I disagree. Something in Spike's 'vamp make-up' wanted him to go and hunt down super-women who kill his kind. That something had to come from somewhere in his personality, and that 'something' is revealed in 'LMPTM'- Mommy issues that explains lots about his relationships with all kinds of women.

But Spike would have never done these things if he was ensouled. And he didn't choose to be a soulless killer (I mean, he said yes when Drusilla asked him, but he clearly had no way of knowing what she was talking about), So, I don't see how he's guilty of those murders.

While I agree to an extent- for example Spike doesn't have to feel guilty for killing slayers or keeping demon eggs or trying to kill Buffy. The relationship in S6 is different though, he loved her then and he loves her still.

It is different in some ways, yes. But not different in a way that makes him responsible for the attempted rape or any of those other crimes. He would have never done these things if he was ensouled, so I don't see how we can blame him for it.

I don't want Spike to be like Angel. There are other ways to tell redemption stories. Faith, Wesley, Andrew....nah I'm kidding screw Andrew, but there are other ways.

Aww, I like Andrew :)

Wesley's story is about redemption? Huh? For what? I always saw Wesley's story as more of a coming-of-age story, as he learns about the darkness of the world, and struggles to keep his idealism despite it, kinda like Buffy. It is also a story about an insecure person who wants to prove himself, like Willow and Xander and Spike and (kinda) Gunn. Redemption is not much of a factor in Wesley's story, IMO.

Anyway, the difference between Spike and these others is that Spike (like Angel) has the soul-excuse - he doesn't actually have anything significant to redeem himself from. When Faith talks with Wesley about that time she tortured him, it WORKS as a story, because Faith has no excuse - she CHOSE to do horrible things of her own free will, and she SHOULD suffer the consequences of it. When Robin blames Spike for killing Nikki, however, it's different - Spike had no soul at the time, so he shouldn't be blamed for it.

Again, I don't see enough to GET that distinction. Do we know- at that time- that Nikki was some workacolic slayer? Not really.
And its all muddled up by Spike talking about things he can't possibly know about. Does Spike know anything about being a mother/parent? Nope, he was a coddled son. Does he know about slayers? Again, no, he just killed a couple.

I think in all honesty by this point in the series I've just had it with him mouthing off about things he doesn't understand. He's like...Season 3 Faith going on about Angel or something. 'You don't have a clue so shut-up.'

Heh, yeah, Faith's early rants could get kinda annoying sometimes. I still loved her, though. :)

Spike, on the other hand, DOES know what he's talking about - he knows Buffy very well, and if I wanted to get creepy, I could say that he knew something deeply personal about Nikki and the chinese slayer, because killing is a very personal thing... But let's leave that creepiness aside:confused:. Spike knew Buffy very well, and Nikki's problems were of the same sort as Buffy's. Buffy and Nikki were both torn between their humanity and their duty, and they both started pushing people away because of it. One might make an analogy between Nikki leaving Robin to go out patrolling and Buffy telling Giles in season 7 that she would sacrifice Dawn to save the world.

Buffy goes to see him about her 'situation' and he mentions it off-hand I'm sure of it. And its not that Nikki didn't love him- she HAD him after all but the fact that Robin now thinks this is very sad.

Not to be a nitpicker, but I checked the issue, and nope. It's not there. He never says that Nikki didn't love him, and he doesn't even say that she didn't love him enough to quit. He simply says that she wasn't strong enough to quit slaying.

Dawn is technically one year old. And kind of a whiny brat to boot (and I like Dawn-y).

Heh, I freakin' LOVE Dawn. And her technical one-year-old-ness (Oh, Buffy...) doesn't matter - Dawn wasn't a BABY when Buffy became her de-facto mom, as Robin was when Nikki had him.

Well. ALL episodes are Buffy-centric to a degree. Even ones that aren't about her illustrate something about her or her relationships or something- that's just the writing of the show.
But Becoming is more about destiny and choice and they interact and mess things up. There's stuff in there about Buffy, sure, but we find out so much about Angel and his destiny- then yeah, its mostly about him in my view.

Excluding flashbacks, Angel makes literally ZERO choices in 'Becoming', whereas Buffy makes TONS and TONS of choices. He's just a side player in her story at that point, and his flashbacks are just used to illuminate Buffy's own journey - there are countless parallels between Buffy and Angel in the episode. Fact is, Angel's story simply STOPPED in 'Innocene' whe he lost his soul, and it doesn't continue until he comes back in season 3 (I mean, he comes back for like a minute before Buffy kills him in 'Becoming', but he doesn't do anything and he's just there as a way giving us more Buffy angst). So, I completely disagree - 'Becoming' is almost completely about Buffy. Come on, it's obvious - she's the one who makes all the really big choices, and she's the last character we see in the episode, and she's the one who saves the world, and she's the one who does all of the heroic self-sacrificing (No, Angel, you did NOT signal her with your eyes!). LOL, this post reminds me of the Angel-Spike argument about who stopped more apocalypses in TGIQ...

I tend to thing as AtS S5 as a massive repair job when it comes to Spike. They get him away from Buffy and try and 'fix' his character a bit.

...By turning him into Angel's buddy cop? I mean, it's fun, but it's so much less interesting than Spike on BtVS. Oh well, to each his own...

But, as he said, he got a soul for her and wants recognition for that act. But 'he' didn't do that, his demon did. He's not responsible for any of it. But he never acts that way, he acts like it was all part of his reformation.
Plus he still loves Buffy- as he tells her- and that blurs the line even further.

Spike wants recognition for it? I don't think so. He only says it when Buffy asks him why he's so weird (in 7x02), and later in his defence when Buffy's blaming him for killing people in 7x08 - which was a desperate defence by someone who didn't want to admit (not to Buffy, but even more to HIMSELF) that he might be guilty of even MORE things.

Anyway, Spike's attitude about it in season 7 doesn't really matter - he's not responsible for it because he didn't have a soul at the time. Spike's attitude about it changes over time (from tormenting himself on a cross in 7x02 like a crazy person, to being a relatively normal, healthy person by 'Chosen'), but it doesn't change the situation - Spike isn't guilty of it, anymore than Angel is guilty of killing Jenny.

Yep, repair job like I said. I'm not a fan of Angel in that episode either btw. The Spangel regression thing? So, so tiresome.

Heh, I love the Spangel regression thing (it's always fun - "I'm from Wolfram & Hart" "I'm his date" *eyeroll*), and I ADORE 'Destiny' (amazing drama, and it's just such a huge adrenaline rush). I think that season 5 of AtS kinda wasted Spike by turning him into nothing but Angel's foil, but he's INCREDIBLY entertaining and moving in 'Destiny'.

I find some of Angel's character traits problematic. It's safe to say that I have big problems with both Angel and Spike and how they see themselves and a couple of their key relationships.

Aye, that's true of every character. But my problem with Angel isn't his character flaws - it's that some of his character VIRTUES don't work for me. Like, when he breaks the ring of Amara in 1x03, I don't feel like admiring Angel's nobility, I just kinda don't care. He does the right thing, yeah, but I don't really feel his self sacrifice the way I feel Buffy's... It's weird.

I used to like Spike a lot. But yeah, I find him mostly shallow by the time he gets a soul. He doesn't seem to grow that much with his added humanity, its still 'Buffy, Buffy. Buffy'. I blame Spuffy for that.

Plus he gets SO MANY breaks over the course of the series without many consequences or going through that many hardships (in comparison to others). Mostly he gets to say/do what he likes and get away with it.

He gets better over on Angel- he seems to grow up a lot (eventually)- and I don't mind him in the comics, so that's something.

I'm really fascinated by the fact that Spike is so controversial. Like, there are tons of people who consider post-Dru Spike to be an abomination, but there are also tons of people (including me) who freakin' adore him. I mean, I remember him being WatchMojo's number 1 Whedon character ever. Not that there's anything defining about anyone's list, but still. What is it that some people love so much and some people hate so much about him? There are tons of controversial characters in the world, but I don't think I've ever seen one as divisive as Spike... It's really something.

:DI mean, how can anyone hate that charming face:

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BTW - ensouled Spike isn't my favorite version of him either. My favorite Spike is the one in seasons 5 and 6 of BtVS, when he's just so complex (and at the same time so understandable) and so morally grey. I dislike the soul canon when it is used as a way of exploring ensouled characters, but in those seasons it is used as a way of exploring a SOULLESS character for a change, and they do it for a very long time, and it's just endlessly fascinating to me. It really gets into the question of "where is the moral line drawn?", and that's always interesting to me.

And obviously, I disagree about him not growing in season 7. I mean, how do you interpret his last words in 'Chosen', if not as a huge sign of growth? The obsessive romantic finally hears Buffy telling him that she loves him, and he REJECTS THAT? When he says "No, you don't, but thanks for saying it", how do you see that if not as growth? Remember, Spike was forever defined as "love's bitch" up until that point. The fact that he rejected Buffy's declaration of love (and it doesn't matter whether she meant it or not) is HUGE.

I would have more sympathy for the guy if he wasn't over a century old by this point. Shouldn't immortals get over the whole 'poseur' thing. I guess I have as little time for Spike's posturing/insecurity that you do for Angel's hand-wringing. ;)

Spike may be over a century old, but he is clearly still a child, mentally. I mean, come on:

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But yeah, I guess different people just find different things to be charming.

Agreed. I don't want to see anybody act that way toward somebody. And I don't even LIKE Wood, the guy's a smug, petty, backstabbing, deceitful jackass most of the time. But if a character is a jerk, I call him (or her) a jerk I guess. Lol

Aww, I like Robin. He's essentially an african-american Batman, but more tunnel-vision-y. And I love how awkward his official-ness looks next to the scoobies' quirkiness.

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"Because the military gave him a soul?"
 
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thetopher

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Sineya
Of course Buffy's isolation was a season-long storyline, but her treatment of Spike played into it in a pretty big way - it directly led to her rift with both Giles and Robin, who were two of the loudest voices against her in 7x19

Sort-of muddied by the fact that Faith- who also had a loud voice in this scene- never mentioned Spike at all, and Rona specifically said it wasn't about Spike and nobody else did either. Anya, for example, just goes into a long speech about Buffy's superiority complex- which was weird. Xander goes 'my eye fell out Buffy, I don't like you.'
I see no direct tie between the Spike-rift and the mutiny, there are too many other moving parts to it than that to make it a direct consequence. It's more about Buffy's character this season and the pressures of leadership, isolating herself, relying too much on Spike is part of that.

And I don't hate the scoobies for 7x19 either (they had good reasons to depose Buffy at that point, and Buffy needed the wake-up call. Not that they were all perfect in it... But that's a huge seperate issue), but I think it's clear that it was a form of narrative punishment.

Narrative punishment in that a lot of people almost die and Buffy turns out to be right again?
It's hardly a humbling experience when the narrative rewards you by showing that your crazy was truth.
Faith is humbled but Buffy is not. I think Buffy realizes- just by having a little break- that she'd cut herself off too much. She could've gotten that by NOT walking out of the house at the end of Empty Places. Maybe go and sit in the kitchen and have a think. I dunno.

She wasn't a "bad mother", but I think it's clear that she was torn between her slayer duty and her family duties ("the mission is what matters"), just like Buffy says

I still don't see enough of Nikki to judge if she was that torn between motherhood and slayer-duty. Maybe if it had been illustrated better, with another Nikki/Robin flashback but we only get the one.
And again, IF that's what the episode is trying to say- and I don't believe it is- it does it incredibly badly through Spike's speech. I just have trouble with the whole 'I killed somebody so therefore I know them' thing.
Could we honestly say that- if Spike had successfully killed Buffy in S2 'School Hard' he would've known her in any real sense? Known her life or her struggles? Nope, not one bit of it.
So the episode is choosing the worst way to show that message; Spike, the unreliable narrator is 'telling it how it is' to Wood and Wood just has to suck it up.


And 'like Buffy says' Buffy has by this time shown that the mission is not what matters to her, If she did then she'd care about the trigger and want to stop the First using Spike. But she can't even be bothered to keep him chained up to see if Giles' eye-thingy worked. So she's also talking rubbish.

But Spike would have never done these things if he was ensouled. And he didn't choose to be a soulless killer

But he chose to go and get a soul, right? So which choices are his and which can't he take credit/blame for?
After all, he tells Faith that he 'reformed' way before she did. So, in Spike's own words he considers all of his past actions as part of a reformation and worthy of credit.
He tells Buffy in 'Get It Done' 'I got a soul for you. This, its what you wanted!' when she calls him a bit whiny. So he wants credit/praise for 'that' thing he did, but we should just forget about the rest?

Look, if Spike had said 'its a wipe, we're starting fresh this year, all the bad, all the good, gone. Let me be judged from now on only on what happens now' I would've said 'fine, a bit clunky but makes sense'
But he keeps on not only bringing up 'Buffy's bad several times, but also his own good- the soul thing, declarations of his love for Buffy.

So Spike, from his own viewpoint, cannot have it both ways. It's all or nothing; credit and blame or shut up about all of the past. Spike- Spike with a soul- made that choice just fine. He can be judged on it too.

It is different in some ways, yes. But not different in a way that makes him responsible for the attempted rape or any of those other crimes.

Muddied by the fact that Spike tried to rape Buffy out of (twisted) love, went and got a soul 'for her'/'to be what she deserves' and now STILL loves her. So those past actions- and how he behaves towards Buffy- affect the actions of the now.
And its not like he and Buffy never treat Spike like a stranger either.

Presumably if they had then Buffy would've staked him when it had been revealed that he'd killed all those people and is now in the thrall of the First. It's because of their past connection that Buffy even bothers to keep him alive. Because I suppose she feels obligated to help him after 'how terribly she used him' the previous year and so on.

Wesley's story is about redemption? Huh? For what?

Well, not Wesley's whole story, just the 'mistake that destroys an innocent life' thing. I agree that a lot of it is Wesley growing up and maturing, finding his place and knowing his worth.
But there is a redemptive quality to some of his arc- 3-5, how he suffers and is cast out for his mistake and then works his way back into the fold. He doesn't apologize with words, but we know and see that his mistakes have cost him, that they weigh on him very much, but he strives to do the right thing anyway.

It's about discovering that you a darkness inside and struggling about how to cope with it; Wesley has that plot much the same as Faith or Willow has it.

Spike, on the other hand, DOES know what he's talking about - he knows Buffy very well, and if I wanted to get creepy, I could say that he knew something deeply personal about Nikki and the chinese slayer, because killing is a very personal thing...

See above, if Spike had killed Buffy in 'School Hard' it just would've mean that he killed, not that he knew anything about her or her life. There is no connection there. Spike's only big revelations was- maybe- the death wish thing in 'Fool For Love' and even then that didn't apply to Buffy.

Not to be a nitpicker, but I checked the issue, and nope. It's not there.

Huh. I could've sworn...
Oh well, it's been a while since I've read S9. I'll have to check out what Wood did say.

Excluding flashbacks, Angel makes literally ZERO choices in 'Becoming', whereas Buffy makes TONS and TONS of choices. He's just a side player in her story at that point, and his flashbacks are just used to illuminate Buffy's own journey

It's about Angel's backstory, his origin, his destiny, Whistler's presence and his informing us/Buffy what Angel was supposed to be doing at that place and time.
It doesn't matter that he's passive- Angelus is NOT- its about Angel place in the scheme of things and how Buffy kinda messed that up (without meaning to)

To me Becoming is basically the writers saying' Angel's a player in big things, he's coming back'.

...By turning him into Angel's buddy cop? I mean, it's fun, but it's so much less interesting than Spike on BtVS.

No, look at it this way. Spike has to finally grow up and see the big 'outside of Sunnydale' picture. It changes his perspective and its less about 'the girl' than it has been for the past 3 seasons. That's refreshing; what does Spike have to fight for now? What do you do after you save the world and see that the world is still all messed up and dark? Where is his place in the world without Buffy? Interesting stuff- finally.

Plus, since I never really saw Spike connection with Buffy (his 'knowing her was over-hyped really) but I do think he knows Angel quite well.

Spike wants recognition for it? I don't think so.

He kinda brings it up more than once in Buffy's presence. Especially in 'Get It Done' he wants consideration for it. He wants Buffy to KNOW what he did and WHY he did it.

I always wondered why Angel didn't say 'I went to Hell for YOU!' to Buffy in S3, or maybe Faith could've rambled on about going to jail for 3 years because 'that's what Buffy wanted'. But its never brought up.
Still, I'm so glad they didn't. Pointing something out sorta diminishes the impact of it I think.

Remember, Spike was forever defined as "love's bitch" up until that point. The fact that he rejected Buffy's declaration of love (and it doesn't matter whether she meant it or not) is HUGE.

But he regresses later on in S8 and 9. Still loves Buffy and hangs around her desperate for her love. Not much of a change in the bigger picture.
At least over on Angel he gets to interact with new characters in interesting ways.

Aww, I like Robin. He's essentially an african-american Batman, but more tunnel-vision-y. And I love how awkward his official-ness looks next to the scoobies' quirkiness.

Robin Wood's very existence in S7 screams contrivance to me. He's there to be 'mysterious' and basically a red herring because his big secret is...he's a good guy! And he didn't tell Buffy immediately because...? Contrivance I guess. No good reason because he knew who/what she was all along and wanted her close to the school.

Then, with that reveal, he turns into yet another Spike-plot. Robin has yet another secret! He knows that Spike killed his Mom but he doesn't TELL anyone (just gets passive aggressive with Spike) until LMPTM where he finally tells Giles and says 'Can I have my revenge for the greater good?' And Giles, who is so cheesed off with Buffy's behavior, goes 'uh, okay'.

But then it gets worse after he fails to kill Spike. Wood says to Buffy 'you should test the girls, their ready to fight, ya dig?' Off that key bit of advice Buffy gets the girls and her super-squad and goes up against Caleb in the vineyard, walks straight into the (kinda obvious) trap and then suddenly in the big meeting Wood goes 'we should have somebody else in charge because Buffy sucks. What about Faith? she's hot, and she's a slayer too.
Then he tries it on with Faith, gets used and then later pulls the classic 'nice guy' tactic of the insult/compliment ('that dress makes you look fat but I love your curves' kinda thing) to get her insecure so she'll give him another chance.
Like I said, douche.
 
Carrie Hopewell
Carrie Hopewell
Ugh Wood... He's the type of character I hate. He's the Riley of season 7. Or worse, the Parker of season 7!
DeadlyDuo
DeadlyDuo
Agreed about Wood. Guy is such a douchebag.

DeadlyDuo

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But then it gets worse after he fails to kill Spike. Wood says to Buffy 'you should test the girls, their ready to fight, ya dig?' Off that key bit of advice Buffy gets the girls and her super-squad and goes up against Caleb in the vineyard, walks straight into the (kinda obvious) trap and then suddenly in the big meeting Wood goes 'we should have somebody else in charge because Buffy sucks. What about Faith? she's hot, and she's a slayer too.
Then he tries it on with Faith, gets used and then later pulls the classic 'nice guy' tactic of the insult/compliment ('that dress makes you look fat but I love your curves' kinda thing) to get her insecure so she'll give him another chance.
Like I said, douche.

It always annoyed me that Wood never questioned WHY the First told him it was Spike that killed his mother. The First was obviously going for a divide and conquer tactic and Wood was merrily playing into the First's hands. How did Wood know the First was even telling the truth? It could've just been trying to get Spike out of the way. There is no way in hell that Robin would've remembered Spike's face from when he was 4 years old. He saw Spike briefly in the dark whilst he hid behind a bench as Spike and his mother fought, meaning Spike wasn't even stood still long enough for Wood to memorise his face but again Wood was 4! As you said, after he fails to kill Spike and Buffy defends Spike, Wood give Buffy bad advice about testing the girls, then completely abandons her when everyone else is ganging up on her. Do you think Wood was maybe punishing Buffy for siding with Spike and therefore he set her up to fail whilst stoking the discontent that was building around the rest of the group?
 

thetopher

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How did Wood know the First was even telling the truth? It could've just been trying to get Spike out of the way.

To be fair Spike 'loves' to brag and I'm sure he never really kept quiet about the fact that he did kill a slayer in New York in the 70's. Secondly I always thought Nikki's Watcher told Wood who exactly killed his Mom sometime in those intervening years, thirdly it IS possible that the night his Mom died was well seared into Wood's memory for ever after given its significance- I remember a couple of brief moments from when I was four so that isn't impossible, fourthly Spike is wearing his Mom's signature coat (Spike even confirms that he got it in New York) and lastly Giles pretty much confirms what Wood already suspected before Wood takes any action.

But I agree it would've been nice for Wood to express even some doubt that Spike was 'the vamp in question' before their confrontation.

Do you think Wood was maybe punishing Buffy for siding with Spike and therefore he set her up to fail whilst stoking the discontent that was building around the rest of the group?

Oh I think Wood was absolutely being petty and scoring points. He knew next to nothing of all the others concerns, he wasn't even AT the vineyard when the defeat happened and he hadn't spent enough time at the house to witness the tension and see the obvious stress that Buffy was under.
It was pure opportunism, the worst of the bunch in my view because he had even less stake that somebody like Kennedy or any of the other Potentials; they were fighting for their lives, he just 'showed up' and wanted to join.
Basically Buffy should've done what Faith did; dismissed him with a 'I'll call you if I need you.'
 

Guy

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Sort-of muddied by the fact that Faith- who also had a loud voice in this scene- never mentioned Spike at all, and Rona specifically said it wasn't about Spike and nobody else did either. Anya, for example, just goes into a long speech about Buffy's superiority complex- which was weird. Xander goes 'my eye fell out Buffy, I don't like you.'
I see no direct tie between the Spike-rift and the mutiny, there are too many other moving parts to it than that to make it a direct consequence. It's more about Buffy's character this season and the pressures of leadership, isolating herself, relying too much on Spike is part of that.

Exactly - Buffy's thing with Spike is a PART of Buffy's arc and the whole pressures of leadership thing. And the Spike thing ruined Buffy relationships with Robin and Giles, who are two of the loudest voices against her in 7x19. So, yeah - Buffy gets punished for her mistakes in 7x17. It works for me.

Narrative punishment in that a lot of people almost die and Buffy turns out to be right again?
It's hardly a humbling experience when the narrative rewards you by showing that your crazy was truth.
Faith is humbled but Buffy is not. I think Buffy realizes- just by having a little break- that she'd cut herself off too much. She could've gotten that by NOT walking out of the house at the end of Empty Places. Maybe go and sit in the kitchen and have a think. I dunno.

Buffy was punished by getting people hurt in 7x18, and by having everyone depose her in 7x19. And she was rewarded AFTER she changed her ways, in 7x20. That's just good storytelling - characters making mistakes (Buffy cutting herself off throughout season 7), paying the price (Buffy getting deposed), recognizing where they were wrong ("people are always trying to connect to me, and I just... slip away"), and learning from it ("I'm not asking you for anything. When I say I love you, it's not because I want you or because I can't have you. It has nothing to do with me" - Which motivates Buffy to rejoin the fight despite being alone).

I still don't see enough of Nikki to judge if she was that torn between motherhood and slayer-duty. Maybe if it had been illustrated better, with another Nikki/Robin flashback but we only get the one.
And again, IF that's what the episode is trying to say- and I don't believe it is- it does it incredibly badly through Spike's speech. I just have trouble with the whole 'I killed somebody so therefore I know them' thing.
Could we honestly say that- if Spike had successfully killed Buffy in S2 'School Hard' he would've known her in any real sense? Known her life or her struggles? Nope, not one bit of it.
So the episode is choosing the worst way to show that message; Spike, the unreliable narrator is 'telling it how it is' to Wood and Wood just has to suck it up.

And 'like Buffy says' Buffy has by this time shown that the mission is not what matters to her, If she did then she'd care about the trigger and want to stop the First using Spike. But she can't even be bothered to keep him chained up to see if Giles' eye-thingy worked. So she's also talking rubbish.

Spike knows Buffy, so that's how he knows slayers. Makes sense to me. Buffy and Nikki are clearly paralleled in this episode, which is why it works for me.

But he chose to go and get a soul, right? So which choices are his and which can't he take credit/blame for?
After all, he tells Faith that he 'reformed' way before she did. So, in Spike's own words he considers all of his past actions as part of a reformation and worthy of credit.
He tells Buffy in 'Get It Done' 'I got a soul for you. This, its what you wanted!' when she calls him a bit whiny. So he wants credit/praise for 'that' thing he did, but we should just forget about the rest?

Look, if Spike had said 'its a wipe, we're starting fresh this year, all the bad, all the good, gone. Let me be judged from now on only on what happens now' I would've said 'fine, a bit clunky but makes sense'
But he keeps on not only bringing up 'Buffy's bad several times, but also his own good- the soul thing, declarations of his love for Buffy.

So Spike, from his own viewpoint, cannot have it both ways. It's all or nothing; credit and blame or shut up about all of the past. Spike- Spike with a soul- made that choice just fine. He can be judged on it too.

Muddied by the fact that Spike tried to rape Buffy out of (twisted) love, went and got a soul 'for her'/'to be what she deserves' and now STILL loves her. So those past actions- and how he behaves towards Buffy- affect the actions of the now.
And its not like he and Buffy never treat Spike like a stranger either.

Presumably if they had then Buffy would've staked him when it had been revealed that he'd killed all those people and is now in the thrall of the First. It's because of their past connection that Buffy even bothers to keep him alive. Because I suppose she feels obligated to help him after 'how terribly she used him' the previous year and so on.

Sure he can have it both ways - Spike did bad things because he was soulless, but he did good things because of the remnants of his human personality. That's entirely logical, based on what we know of the soul canon. Is it convenient? Yep. But it's also true.

Well, not Wesley's whole story, just the 'mistake that destroys an innocent life' thing. I agree that a lot of it is Wesley growing up and maturing, finding his place and knowing his worth.
But there is a redemptive quality to some of his arc- 3-5, how he suffers and is cast out for his mistake and then works his way back into the fold. He doesn't apologize with words, but we know and see that his mistakes have cost him, that they weigh on him very much, but he strives to do the right thing anyway.

It's about discovering that you a darkness inside and struggling about how to cope with it; Wesley has that plot much the same as Faith or Willow has it.

If Wesley goes through a redemption arc, then it's a little weird... Because Wesley never has that "moment of realization" where he realizes that he messed up. When he's thrown out for kidnapping Connor, he seems to think that he's being wronged ("what happened to you, man?" "I had my throat cut and all my friends abandoned me"), and he never really seems to change his attitude about it. When he rejoins the group, it's more about Angel making up for his treatment of Wesley. Angel is the one who comes to Wesley for reconcilliation in season 4. Did I simply miss Wesley's "what have I done" moment?

It's about Angel's backstory, his origin, his destiny, Whistler's presence and his informing us/Buffy what Angel was supposed to be doing at that place and time.
It doesn't matter that he's passive- Angelus is NOT- its about Angel place in the scheme of things and how Buffy kinda messed that up (without meaning to)

To me Becoming is basically the writers saying' Angel's a player in big things, he's coming back'.

Yes, all of these things are in the episode... But they are so very MINOR compared to what Buffy goes through. I mean, 'Becoming' isn't legendary for showing Angel's backstory, it's legendary for showing the moment where Buffy sacrifices her boyfriend to save the world. That's what the episode is ABOUT.

Also, "Buffy kinda messed up" Angel's destiny? The flashbacks show us that if it wasn't for Buffy, Angel would have never left the sewers, So...

No, look at it this way. Spike has to finally grow up and see the big 'outside of Sunnydale' picture. It changes his perspective and its less about 'the girl' than it has been for the past 3 seasons. That's refreshing; what does Spike have to fight for now? What do you do after you save the world and see that the world is still all messed up and dark? Where is his place in the world without Buffy? Interesting stuff- finally.

Plus, since I never really saw Spike connection with Buffy (his 'knowing her was over-hyped really) but I do think he knows Angel quite well.

Yeah, that's good stuff. It's interesting. It's just that Spike's arc in seasons 5-7 of BtVS was even MORE interesting, to me. WAY more interesting. But I guess that's subjective...

Also, Spike kinda gets redundant in AtS after 5x11, so his arc never really gets resolved in an especially satisfying way.

He kinda brings it up more than once in Buffy's presence. Especially in 'Get It Done' he wants consideration for it. He wants Buffy to KNOW what he did and WHY he did it.

He's bringing it up because Buffy told him that she wants him to be more like his old self. It was simply relevant to the argument. He didn't say it as a way of getting into Buffy's pants.

And anyway, 'Get it Done' is hardly one of my favorite episodes.

I always wondered why Angel didn't say 'I went to Hell for YOU!' to Buffy in S3, or maybe Faith could've rambled on about going to jail for 3 years because 'that's what Buffy wanted'. But its never brought up.
Still, I'm so glad they didn't. Pointing something out sorta diminishes the impact of it I think.

Heh, your Fuffy is showing. ;)

Anyway, Angel couldn't say "I went to hell for you" because he never chose it, Buffy chose it for him. And Faith actually DID take credit for stuff she did - like in 7x18, when Spike asked her what stopped her from breaking out of jail, and she says "I stopped me". And when Wesley talks about how she used to like torture, she says "that's not me anymore", just like Spike says in season 7. And like Spike, she DOES take credit for the not-evil things she did in her evil days - like when she talks about how she flirted with Spike when she was in Buffy's body. Spike and Faith are really pretty similiar, actually... Although Faith's story is a lot more focused on the redemptive aspects, because she doesn't have the soul thing as an excuse.

But he regresses later on in S8 and 9. Still loves Buffy and hangs around her desperate for her love. Not much of a change in the bigger picture.
At least over on Angel he gets to interact with new characters in interesting ways.

That's not regression. 'Chosen' isn't about Spike learning to not love Buffy anymore (that would be ridiculous), it's about Spike learning to do the right thing even if it is not the romantic thing. It's not about abandoning love, it's about replacing selfish love with selfless love. And that doesn't regress in the comics.

Robin Wood's very existence in S7 screams contrivance to me. He's there to be 'mysterious' and basically a red herring because his big secret is...he's a good guy! And he didn't tell Buffy immediately because...? Contrivance I guess. No good reason because he knew who/what she was all along and wanted her close to the school.

Then, with that reveal, he turns into yet another Spike-plot. Robin has yet another secret! He knows that Spike killed his Mom but he doesn't TELL anyone (just gets passive aggressive with Spike) until LMPTM where he finally tells Giles and says 'Can I have my revenge for the greater good?' And Giles, who is so cheesed off with Buffy's behavior, goes 'uh, okay'.

But then it gets worse after he fails to kill Spike. Wood says to Buffy 'you should test the girls, their ready to fight, ya dig?' Off that key bit of advice Buffy gets the girls and her super-squad and goes up against Caleb in the vineyard, walks straight into the (kinda obvious) trap and then suddenly in the big meeting Wood goes 'we should have somebody else in charge because Buffy sucks. What about Faith? she's hot, and she's a slayer too.
Then he tries it on with Faith, gets used and then later pulls the classic 'nice guy' tactic of the insult/compliment ('that dress makes you look fat but I love your curves' kinda thing) to get her insecure so she'll give him another chance.
Like I said, douche.

Aww, the "I am so much prettier than you" bit was adorable, and you know it! (even if Faith is CLEARLY prettier than him)

7f4b48459a4242970b84dbabb11e8d4c.jpg


LOL.

I also love what Joss said about it in the DVD commentary - apparently, Eliza asked him if this scene was his way of dealing with his resentment about his ex-grilfriends, and Joss was like "if that's what this show was about, 7 seasons wouldn't have been enough". :D

I like Robin, but he isn't perfect or anything. I just think he's an interesting, charming character ("gotta start deadening young minds" "Look at that. It's not even noon, and I've already bullied my first family member into helping out. I'm going to be the best principal ever"). YMMV. I also liked Riley. Really, I like almost every character... I even like Angel, I just think that he's not good ENOUGH to be a lead character.
 

thetopher

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Buffy was punished by getting people hurt in 7x18, and by having everyone depose her in 7x19. And she was rewarded AFTER she changed her ways, in 7x20.

Even if I saw this cause and effect thing, which I don't- did Potential really have to die to make the point? What exactly did Faith get punished for exactly?- she almost dies to trying to lead and also gets to feel like a failure. Again.

But at least Buffy learned that lesson that she learned way back in Season 4 and again in Season 5- that she should rely on her friends more instead of barking orders and shutting people out.

Basically Buffy 'learning her lesson' came separately to all this other bad stuff that happens to other people because they didn't follow Buffy. Kinda misses the point doesn't it?

Spike knows Buffy, so that's how he knows slayers.

The problem with that is that Buffy is not a typical slayer, that's the entire point of the show.
Also I reject the notion that Spike does in fact know Buffy at all. Even in S7 he doesn't seem to know her very well 'you like men who hurt you' et all. Way off, pal.

Sure he can have it both ways - Spike did bad things because he was soulless, but he did good things because of the remnants of his human personality.

YVMY. Spike killing slayers and his treatment of Buffy during their relationship is part of his personality- it is intrinsically linked to it- not only the fact that he was soulless. He loved Buffy, he still loves her, and he hurt her because of that love. So he;'s still culpable for all those actions that led up to his change- i.e the relationship with Buffy.
If he wants her to recognize that he's changed, then he should expect her to remember and react to what he was before and act accordingly.

Did I simply miss Wesley's "what have I done" moment?

Huh, there were a few moments of introspection I think, both in S4 and 5.
When he's alone with Lilah's body, his talk with Willow about darkness, his conversation with Illyria after the spell is broken much later on. Wesley is dealing with what has done in the past and who he has become, and makes a choice to change his behavior/attitude.

I mean, 'Becoming' isn't legendary for showing Angel's backstory, it's legendary for showing the moment where Buffy sacrifices her boyfriend to save the world. That's what the episode is ABOUT.

Clearly we see this differently. Becoming strips Buffy down of everything that had come before but that's not what its all about, but its not just her story, its bigger than her.
It's about big moments, those moments that change you; we are shown some of the ones that Liam/Angel went through to show the magnitude of what Buffy will have to give up.

Also, "Buffy kinda messed up" Angel's destiny?

What I meant is Whistler told Buffy that Angel was destined to stop Acthla but now he's waking him up to start the apocalypse, all because of Buffy and her adorable pout, the seductress.

Also, Spike kinda gets redundant in AtS after 5x11, so his arc never really gets resolved in an especially satisfying way.

Again I really disagree. Angel S5 is finally where Spike does right simply because it is right. He is needed so he stays. Spike wasn't bound to W&H so he could've walked away. He didn't, that's probably his most important step as a character imo.

He's bringing it up because Buffy told him that she wants him to be more like his old self. It was simply relevant to the argument.

Like I said it wasn't the only time he brought up the soul-thing. And its the way he brought it up; 'this is what you wanted'. No Spike, Buffy never said that's what she wanted. She just didn't want you as you were.

Anyway, Angel couldn't say "I went to hell for you" because he never chose it, Buffy chose it for him.

My point is he never brings up the past like that, throws it in Buffy's face to get credit/reaction. Neither does Faith either.

And Faith actually DID take credit for stuff she did - like in 7x18, when Spike asked her what stopped her from breaking out of jail, and she says "I stopped me".

Again, that isn't TO Buffy is it? The person who demanded that she go to jail?
A moment of quiet reflection with Spike- who she doesn't actually know at this point- is quite different. I more thought of it as more exposition anyway, two characters shooting the breeze for those who hadn't watched Angel's show and didn't know where Faith had been for 3 years.

And when Wesley talks about how she used to like torture, she says "that's not me anymore",

How is 'I don't torture anymore' taking credit for being good? Pretty low standards really. lol

Faith is simply stating that she has changed. To be like Spike she'd have to point out how Wesley had wronged her first, y'see. ;)

Spike and Faith are really pretty similiar, actually

I disagree entirely; they view their past actions very differently. Faith is much more like Angel in that regard.

And like Spike, she DOES take credit for the not-evil things she did in her evil days - like when she talks about how she flirted with Spike when she was in Buffy's body.

That was simply flirting. Plus the body-swap is in no way a good thing to take credit for, she was hitting on Spike, that's all.
It's actually one of the things I dislike about that scene.

That's not regression. 'Chosen' isn't about Spike learning to not love Buffy anymore (that would be ridiculous), it's about Spike learning to do the right thing even if it is not the romantic thing.

Personally i think that comes later when Spike is actively away from Buffy deciding to do good, rather than just wearing something because Buffy believes in him.
And Spike going from good guy out on his own making a difference to stalking Buffy around SF? Definite regression. He's simply the boyfriend now.

Oh, and Wood still sucks. :p

...But Riley's okay. ;)
 

Guy

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Black Thorn
Even if I saw this cause and effect thing, which I don't- did Potential really have to die to make the point? What exactly did Faith get punished for exactly?- she almost dies to trying to lead and also gets to feel like a failure. Again.

But at least Buffy learned that lesson that she learned way back in Season 4 and again in Season 5- that she should rely on her friends more instead of barking orders and shutting people out.

Basically Buffy 'learning her lesson' came separately to all this other bad stuff that happens to other people because they didn't follow Buffy. Kinda misses the point doesn't it?

Well, that's not how I see it. Buffy already knows that she needs friends, she learned that long ago. Her journey in season 7 is about learning the lesson that Jonathan foreshadowed in 'Conversation With Dead People':

JONATHAN:
I hope Buffy'll have some idea of how
to destroy --
(realizing something)
Thirty-six, nineteen, twenty-seven!
That's it! That was my locker
combination. That's been bugging me
all night...

ANDREW:
Dude, we've spent the last few years
trying to forget high school. Why
are you trying so hard to remember it?

JONATHAN:
I don't know... I guess I miss it.
Don't you?

ANDREW:
(sarcastic)
Yeah, I really miss it. You know, I
don't think they even knew my name
back then.

Jonathan stops digging, leans on his shovel.

JONATHAN:
I'm serious. I really miss it. Time
goes by -- everything drops away.
All the cruelty, all the pain, all
the humiliation. It all washes away.
I miss my friends. I miss my
enemies. I miss the people I talked
to every day. And I miss the people
who never knew I existed. I miss 'em
all.
I want to talk to them. You know?
I wanna find out how they're doing.
I want to know what's going on in
their lives.

ANDREW:
Yeah? Well, you know what? They
don't want to talk to you. All those
people you just mentioned -- not one
of them's sitting around going, "I
wonder what Jonathan's up to right
now?" Not one of them cares about
you.

Jonathan thinks about this for a while. A peacefulness washes over him. He shrugs. There's an almost Zen-like clarity about him when he says:

JONATHAN:
Well I still care about them.
(softly)
That's why I'm here.

Buffy knows that she needs her friends, but she struggles because she knows that her slayer role will inevitably lead her to be alone. In a sense, she always knew that 'Empty Places' will happen. She foreshadowed it all the way back in episode 1:

BUFFY:
Prepares me for what? For getting kicked out of school? Losing all my friends? Having to spend
all my time fighting for my life and never getting to tell anyone because it might ‘endanger’
them? Go ahead. Prepare me.

The job of being the slayer is a recipe for loneliness. People don't want to be around a person who might lead them to being killed, or who might sacrifice them for the greater good when she has to. The catch is that despite being doomed to loneliness, the slayer also NEEDS friends to have a will to fight (as we've learned in earlier seasons). And the series always dealt with this conflict, since episode 1. And in season 7, Buffy finally solves it by accepting her loneliness (The First Evil: "There's that word again. What you are. How you'll die. Alone. Where's your snappy comeback?" Buffy: "You're right"), and by deciding to love people regardless. As Jonathan said - no one may love me, but I'll still love the others, because that's why I'm here. It's about selfless-ness.

And Buffy needed all of these things to happen before she could learn this lesson - she needed to push away her friends (for fear of hurting them and being abandoned by them), and she needed to cling desperately to the one person who's support was guaranteed ("love's bitch" Spike), and she needed to be abandoned in 7x19, so she could accept her loneliness and decide to love anyway.

And Faith's role in season 7 was basically about showing that the problem isn't in one slayer's personality or another's, it's about the slayer role itself. Buffy may be bossy and responsible, and Faith may be reluctant and irresponsible, but they both inevitably make the same actions and suffer the same consequences, when they take the role of the slayer. Buffy leads her people on a failed mission in 7x18 just like Faith does in 7x20, and Buffy pushes people away throughout season 7 just like Faith does when she replaces Buffy in 7x20 ("I'm sorry if it seemed like I was blowing you off the other day. I was just trying to, you know, blow you off").

Well, that's at least what it all means in my head.

The problem with that is that Buffy is not a typical slayer, that's the entire point of the show.

Buffy still faces the same challenges as every slayer, and she still has a lot in common with previous slayers. The series deliberately draws parallels between Buffy and other slayers - Faith, Nikki, Kendra, the first slayer, and others. Buffy does some things differently, but she still has a lot in common.

Also I reject the notion that Spike does in fact know Buffy at all. Even in S7 he doesn't seem to know her very well 'you like men who hurt you' et all. Way off, pal.

Does he know EVERYTHING about her? No, obviously. And his understanding in the beginning of the season is obviously not as deep as his understanding in the end of the season. But Spike still knows Buffy a lot. How could he not? They fought against each other, they fought together, they were lovers, for years. Spike knows her pretty damn well.

YVMY. Spike killing slayers and his treatment of Buffy during their relationship is part of his personality- it is intrinsically linked to it- not only the fact that he was soulless. He loved Buffy, he still loves her, and he hurt her because of that love. So he;'s still culpable for all those actions that led up to his change- i.e the relationship with Buffy.
If he wants her to recognize that he's changed, then he should expect her to remember and react to what he was before and act accordingly.

Well, I'm sorry to bring up the age-old argument, but... Is Angel responsible for the actions he did against Buffy when he was soulless? His personality was at play there too - as Willow said, "You're stil the only thing he thinks about". The way I see it, soulless vampires are like drunks when it comes to responsibility (drunks who are only drunk because someone spiked their drink) - they do bad things in ways that relate to their personality, but they can't really be blamed for these bad things, because they wouldn't have done these things if someone hadn't spiked their drink. They're victims. And when they're ensouled, it's unfair to blame them for the things they did when soulless

Huh, there were a few moments of introspection I think, both in S4 and 5.
When he's alone with Lilah's body, his talk with Willow about darkness, his conversation with Illyria after the spell is broken much later on. Wesley is dealing with what has done in the past and who he has become, and makes a choice to change his behavior/attitude.

Well, that's the kind of redemption that EVERY character goes through, though. Isn't it? His talk with Lilah's body is about how he failed to redeem her, which isn't any different than Buffy blaming herself for not saving people, which she does a lot. And I don't consider Buffy to be a character that's built around the idea of redemption. I guess my point is that Wesley isn't a "redemption-centric" character like Faith or Angel or Spike, because he never did anything really, REALLY bad. One might say that kidnapping Connor was his great sin, but Wesley never really apologized for that in any way.

Clearly we see this differently. Becoming strips Buffy down of everything that had come before but that's not what its all about, but its not just her story, its bigger than her.
It's about big moments, those moments that change you; we are shown some of the ones that Liam/Angel went through to show the magnitude of what Buffy will have to give up.

26748ea71b6f74b40865bf15aa2acde635714c3da3569f3ff749974b989dcc34.jpg


Angel's flashbacks are there to illuminate Buffy's journey. Angel's big moments are only there to show the magnitude of what Buffy will have to do. Therefore, it is a Buffy-centric episode, and not an Angel-centric episode.

Plus, there's the fact that Angel isn't even a player in the episode outside of flashbacks. He makes literally ZERO choices in this two-part episode. Even when he gets his soul back at the end, he just does as Buffy tells him ("Close your eyes" - he becomes a choice-less child again, in a way)

What I meant is Whistler told Buffy that Angel was destined to stop Acthla but now he's waking him up to start the apocalypse, all because of Buffy and her adorable pout, the seductress.

Heh, OK. Although, if it wasn't for Buffy, Angel would have just stayed at empty alleys eating rats... But I get your point.

Again I really disagree. Angel S5 is finally where Spike does right simply because it is right. He is needed so he stays. Spike wasn't bound to W&H so he could've walked away. He didn't, that's probably his most important step as a character imo.

But that decision happens in 5x16. After that, Spike doesn't learn or grow at all in season 5. He's just Angel's sidekick. Again, I love Spike in that season, but he's not explored as deeply as he was in BtVS, IMO.

I also really disagree that that was his most important step as a character, but that's nitpicking...

Like I said it wasn't the only time he brought up the soul-thing. And its the way he brought it up; 'this is what you wanted'. No Spike, Buffy never said that's what she wanted. She just didn't want you as you were.

And whenever he brought it up, it was because it was relevant to whatever situation they were in, or because he was asked about it. He never wanted to rub anyone's face in it. When Anya seemed to know that he got a soul in 7x02, Spike did whatever he could to shut her up. He clearly didn't want to talk about it. He was never like "I have a soul now, so love me". I mean, he obviously still loved Buffy and wanted her to love him, but he knew that he has no right to make that kind of argument. And that's consistent throughout season 7. Spike is never "courting" Buffy in any way, he's just around her because of necessity and loyalty.

And I read that line ("This is what you wanted") as more of a general "you wanted me to be good and not bad", which is true, but whatever. 'Get it Done' is a pretty clumsy episode, IMO.

My point is he never brings up the past like that, throws it in Buffy's face to get credit/reaction. Neither does Faith either.

Well, Angel CAN'T bring up his soulless past to throw in Buffy's face, because, unlike Spike, Angel did a grand total of NOTHING good in his soulless past.

And Faith DOES bring up her past to get credit. Like when she says "I stopped me" when asked why she never escaped prison. And she doesn't seem hesitant about talking about the body-switch (Which was a pretty horrible crime she made) in season 7. I mean, Faith is a cocky person, just like Spike. They both often use arrogance to mask their insecurity, and they sometimes bring up their past as part of that. Like when Wesley visits Faith in prison, she doesn't seem polite or apologizing in any way, despite the fact that she tortured him in the past. Instead, she's snarky ("you my lawyer?"). Faith and Spike are both not big on the forgiveness, generally, because asking for forgiveness would break their facade of coolness, and that facade masks their insecurities.

Again, that isn't TO Buffy is it? The person who demanded that she go to jail?
A moment of quiet reflection with Spike- who she doesn't actually know at this point- is quite different. I more thought of it as more exposition anyway, two characters shooting the breeze for those who hadn't watched Angel's show and didn't know where Faith had been for 3 years.

Faith is pretty cocky and un-apologetic with Buffy, too. She borrows her stake just like in season 3, and she says "luckily you still punch like you used to" after Buffy punches her, and when Buffy finds Faith with Spike in the basement, Faith says "you just know all the cool vampires", which is a reference to Angel, who Faith tried to steal from Buffy in the past, etc. Faith certainly never apologizes to Buffy in season 7, or even implies any kind of regret for the past to her.

And I'm perfectly fine with that - Faith's actions make perfect sense for her character, and they don't make her unlikeable for me in any way. Faith is one of my top 5 characters. It's just that I think Spike is pretty similiar to her in these aspects, and I don't have a problem with that either.

How is 'I don't torture anymore' taking credit for being good? Pretty low standards really. lol

Faith is simply stating that she has changed. To be like Spike she'd have to point out how Wesley had wronged her first, y'see. ;)

Well, it's similiar in that it's "taking credit" for changing into someone better. Not that I think that Faith is demanding anything for changing or whatever, but neither does Spike.

And Spike wasn't saying that Buffy's actions justify his own or anything like that, he was just talking honestly about his past... Which is something that I wish we'd have gotten with Buffy and Faith too. I wish there was a post-redemption conversation where Faith and Buffy talked honestly about their past, about how Buffy pushed Faith away, at first, because she was afraid Faith would steal her life, or about how the scoobies never really accepted Faith into the gang, or about how Giles allowed Faith to live in a dingy motel despite being responsible for her. These are things that make up a big part of Faith's psyche, and Buffy and Faith never really talked about it. I would love to see that, just like I loved to see Buffy and Spike talking honestly about season 6.
The bad things that people did to Faith don't justify her own bad actions, just like the bad things that Buffy did to Spike don't justify his own bad actions. And Spike understands this, IMO.

I disagree entirely; they view their past actions very differently. Faith is much more like Angel in that regard.

Well, she has similiarities and differences with both.

That was simply flirting. Plus the body-swap is in no way a good thing to take credit for, she was hitting on Spike, that's all.
It's actually one of the things I dislike about that scene.

Oh, I liked that... And yeah, that was flirting. As I said, Spike and Faith are similiar in that they don't have a constant desire to show shame for their past actions. Faith realizes that the body swap was a bad thing, I think, but like Spike she's not gonna show constant remorse for her past, because that would break her facade of coolness.

Personally i think that comes later when Spike is actively away from Buffy deciding to do good, rather than just wearing something because Buffy believes in him.

1) He wasn't just wearing a jewel because Buffy believed in him, he decided to sacrifice his life because it was the right thing to do, and despite the fact that Buffy didn't love him (At least, he THOUGHT she didn't love him. I personally think she DID love him in that moment, but that's another topic).

2) That part of AtS always seemed regressive for Spike, to me. Why WOULDN'T Spike go to Buffy once he could? If Spike could choose between doing good with Buffy or doing good with Angel, he'd absolutely choose to do good with Buffy. The reason the story gives is that Spike doesn't want to ruin the world-saving impression he made on Buffy, so he prefers to stay away from her... And that's something that pre-'Chosen' Spike would have done, not post-'Chosen' Spike. Post-'Chosen' Spike would have preferred to do right by Buffy, even if it meant that she wouldn't love him as much. The only way I can buy Spike's excuse for staying in L.A is if I take it as a sign of the regression-effect that Angel has on him. And I buy that, but it's a regression.

And Spike going from good guy out on his own making a difference to stalking Buffy around SF? Definite regression. He's simply the boyfriend now.

He wasn't "stalking" Buffy in SF, he was trying to help her in a time when she didn't have many allies. That's not regression, that's just the next logical step for his character. Season 5 of AtS was much more of a regression, as I said. An entertaining regression ("sleeping together is not a relationship" "It is if you do it enough times"), but a regression.

Oh, and Wood still sucks. :p

...But Riley's okay. ;)

Err, I like both...
Honestly, I have this thing where if a character is hated by a lot of fans, I automatically start liking him/her more. I guess I feel bad for them?

But seriously, Robin is alright. I liked him even before I knew he was unpopular. I like the actor, and Robin is pretty much a version of Batman, and I love Batman, so...
 
GoSpuffy
GoSpuffy
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