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Twilight: An Effective Big Bad?

Cohen

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Sineya
I'll admit, it's been a long while since I have read season 8. I read through once, upon initial release, and then pretty much never read it back again. I still have the original comics in my house, somewhere and I think it's time a brought them back out again. I made a comment in another thread making fun of Twilight, because I know this baddie gets a lot of hate on here. But I think it's time to revisit and re-analyze.

Was Twilight an effective Big Bad? If you were to rank Twilight with the other Baddies of Buffy seasons 1-7, where would Twilight rank? What makes Twilight effective or ineffective? Could the writers have changed Twilight to be slightly more effective?
 

Plasma

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I think Twilight would have been a better big bad if it wasn’t
Angel
. Having him backpedal on 8 seasons of character development through both shows and get to a point where he literally
kills Giles
is just stupid.

It’s been a minute since I read it, but as far as I remember, Twilight became a villain because he was encouraged to do so by outside forces? Granted, they did become big bads in subsequent comics, better ones might I add, but it feels weird that Twilight’s motivation is basically, “because I was told to do this thing, I’m doing it.”

S8 had a lot of problems, largely to do with the lack of restrictions, and Twilight is just one of the more apparent issues. If it was an original character or even somebody that was jilted by Buffy & co. in the past, then I’d be more on board. Having it be who it is was just a bad choice, though it did lead to a great series involving Faith drawn by Rebekah Isaacs, so sort of a small redemption? 😍
 

Cohen

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Okay so what if Twilight was Riley, having seen too much demonic trauma. Does this change Twilight for the better? Or does it only work if we would have had Twilight as an original villain?
 

Plasma

The Second Sister
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I think Riley would be a better choice, and his military background would lend itself to having a large enemy force. Would be a good mystery too
 

Btvs fan

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I think Twilight would have been a better big bad if it wasn’t
Angel
. Having him backpedal on 8 seasons of character development through both shows and get to a point where he literally
kills Giles
is just stupid.

It’s been a minute since I read it, but as far as I remember, Twilight became a villain because he was encouraged to do so by outside forces? Granted, they did become big bads in subsequent comics, better ones might I add, but it feels weird that Twilight’s motivation is basically, “because I was told to do this thing, I’m doing it.”

S8 had a lot of problems, largely to do with the lack of restrictions, and Twilight is just one of the more apparent issues. If it was an original character or even somebody that was jilted by Buffy & co. in the past, then I’d be more on board. Having it be who it is was just a bad choice, though it did lead to a great series involving Faith drawn by Rebekah Isaacs, so sort of a small redemption? 😍

Twighlight also killed a lot Girls and Buffy and Joss (who was bored with them) and Twilight didn't seem bothered by that all only about Giles
 

Buffy Summers

Yataro
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Twilight doesn't work because it puts the villain acting out of character. It's just not believable. You can't just pick a twist because you think it will be shocking, it's got to make sense. Now, if they had actually made it make sense, then it would have been an okay turn of events. But because we've already seen him be the big bad, it's not that much of a surprise really. And we've seen this tale before, not just with him but with Willow, Faith, etc - it's like a crutch.
 

Cohen

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I agree, I thought the mystery of twilight was great at the beginning of the season and felt very Buffy. The placement of the twilight symbol in various places in the first few rounds of issues and trying to determine who it was. Even when you saw Twilight (before the “behind the mask” reveal), it wasn’t bad because you didn’t know who it was. But the twist was a bad call.
 

Plasma

The Second Sister
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Sort of an addendum to my earlier post.

After starting to read the story again, I did want to give some actual praise to Twilight. I think the actual reveal and character motivations are poor, but the one thing I will applaud Joss for doing is making the Initiative work, basically.

At the core of the story, Twilight is just the Initiative with a different face and with better fleshing out. S4 is known to have stumbled because of production issues, but I feel like S8 was able to take the idea of “large force that wants to stop/control magical/demonic entities” and use it effectively. That was a thread that felt like it went nowhere in S4, up until someone rang the Initiative’s hotline and told them that they were the big bad of the season. With Twilight, it feels much more focused and the whole idea of a grand conspiracy works to its benefit.

I also wanted to say that the idea of there being too many Slayers and that tipping some cosmic balance is one that I actually really like. Had Joss given that sort of motivation to a more ethereal or powerful villain a la Glory or the First Evil, I think the story would have been better for it. Twilight is just too material of a villain for that thing to work. You need something that is far beyond the Slayers in both power and metaphysical presence.
 
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