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Date Posted: 17:44:47 09/20/12 Thu
Author Host/IP: nycmspsrvz3ts115-dmz.mycingular.net / 220.127.116.11
Subject: At what point did the Buffy story end for you?
For me it ended with the episode "The Gift." It was the perfect ending, with closure. It was the 100th episode--enough for syndication--the last on the WB, and it had good narrative endings for every character. The whole series up til then were told that every slayers life and tenure as slayer ends in death in battle, often violent and meaningless. Buffy dies like those before her, making it consistent and appropriate, but still a happy ending for a slayer in a way becuz her death was sacrificial and meaningful instead of at the hands of some random vampire. Also Spike had "found redemption" of a sort by becoming good and joining the gang, looking after Dawn, and he was OK with Buffy "never loving him". Xander overcame his immaturity and fears of never "getting out of the basement" by proposing to Anya. Willow got Tara back. And Giles murdered Ben/Glory, which would've dark a perfect beginning to a story arc on a spin-off about the reemergence of his Ripper personality.
Seasons Six and Seven had their moments, but both are far inferior to the rest of the series. Joss even said once that he had pre-planned the whole series up till season five, which means anything after that was just fan-service and made for financial reason
Of course I don't mean the Buffyverse ended here for me. Angel continued on, and I wanted a Giles show, but anyway...that's where, in my mind, the story ended for me. Everything after that was just fan-fiction with high production value.
How about you? Did it end with The Gift, with Chosen, or is it still going on in season nine with the comics? If a sequel series or film were ever made, do you think the events of the comics should be respected as canon?
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It's still going... -- Michael, 07:39:41 09/21/12 Fri (NoHost/18.104.22.168)
As far as a sequel film or TV series is concerned, it depends on Joss. The default would be for continuity with the comics, but if he comes up with a great plotline that breaks continuity, then he might as well go for it.
The movie "Serenity" wasn't entirely consistent with the TV series, after all.
(As far as Seasons 6-7 are concerned, I think they're at least equal in quality to the earlier seasons. And I think they make the series as a whole thematically more satisfying.)
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Re: It's still going... -- chuckit25, 10:06:47 09/21/12 Fri (cpe-76-84-128-83.neb.res.rr.com/22.214.171.124)
I have spoilers re “Cabin in the Woods” and comic seasons for anyone who cares.
I don’t think any season was a complete and utter loss. But nearly every finale bombed for me, except the end of season 3, as example, because Buffy included everyone to fight for their world. I think it was life affirming/the power of forgiveness and connection, as well as, inclusive/responsible and “humanity” in this capacity won. I already said I did identify with Angel and thus, it is easy to recognize the mythical significance of this character to Buffy and to why he remains “stuck” as a vampire.
I don’t believe in the “hero’s curse” of either the job or the “lover” or no one could be a worker in fire, police, protection services, or in space, especially in a book touting “feminism” which means “ women who are comfortable is a world in which all are comfortable.” Especially when “shoulder to shoulder” is understanding and equality in service, especially as shown with B/A, back to back and working chaos from the circle instead of the line.
This notion has to do with the idea of human lovers face each other, not “I gotcher back” and the avoidance of the “machinelle” in killing, in the strategy of “the (phalanx/robotic) line.” Besides, Spike is chaos and “now” in characteristic versus Angel’s usual end/begin and order—why Twilight was so important to me as a great conclusion in the “forever now” and the “old world” has to die; OR all have the capacity to be in Twilight and no “bodhisattva” is necessary in how to live in THIS world. What was shown was twisted into Eden and that “ruined” over 30 books to arrive at the wrong story. And I truly believe they knew it, as they felt “lost” and “over the top” in how to incorporate the “magic seed” NOW as this “power source” when clearly B/A mythically were, leaving Twilight Kitty, with a “fall back” position or “real intention all along to get the Seed” utterly “mixed messages” and confusing, especially now, with “everybody just forgets the entire world war and are okay with two-colors rainsbows. (Should have been three, at least the primary colors and to reference the three elements of life/death/love always in play, even in Buffy/Angel/Spike).
So…season 6 and 7 either bored or was opportunity wasted. And a bad finale in 7. The heroine was so scared she created an “army of her” to keep saving the world in some ache for “normal” as a real possibility. And this general suddenly decides to “kill them all” so her job is done. Forever. She actually never did take back her power as an individual woman after the rape scene with Spike. His journey “to be worthy as sacrifice” being served cost Buffy’s story/empowered female to me. And, believe me, I have had a first row seat to the difference.
While I agree that 1-5 was the power story, and it ending at the point it did would have been okay for Buffy. Preferable even. I was “good” here.
However, “they” changed the use of Angel from Herald, now go away and die, to the story of “union of opposites” and I wait for the promise of the full myth/narrative, which I will never get. Especially using fairy tale motifs throughout, as well.
Thus, the promise fulfilled again arrived in season 8, and again was denied. I appreciated the Twilight use of myth (and the 50’s, it would seem) in season 8. It was a difficult book and “OOC” was the biggest complaint I heard of in this new world of comics and to me, “feminism” continues to show up by the lack of its presence. Not drawing “big boobs” is not sufficient for feminism, as feminism includes all people as females “create” every cell of every single person on the planet and, mythically, she is active principle, as well as “the slayer” in the darkness.
“Obsession” and god knows what became the “story” of season 8. Kinda like those Gods/beings “Upstairs” allowing or “in balance as some untold opposition” to what and who went on “Downstairs.” And, just maybe that “Upstairs” was about life affirmation in the “change of systems” in “Cabin in the Woods.” After all, free will and the instinct to survive are not exactly seen as the “exercise of free will,” TOO.
Joss leaves out half the universe he builds in each story for an agenda and most certainly a POV that really ignores “truth” in his version of telling it. That is why his “finales” don’t work for me. I hated everything from PowerPlay to NFA in ATS and it took Brian Lynch to “get it” and tell the story more mythically and correctly. ATS ended with his series. And, yes, Joss hated it. Tough sack and shriveled nuts to him. If he didn’t want the complexity of “which world” of the avatar and the “real world” he shouldn’t have dished out Dawn and Connor and most certainly what “the slayer” as female principle is about.
And, “Joss got the girl” as he always planned before he “invented” the union of opposites in Buffy/Angel. It was supposed to end with Buffy/ Xander, as Joss didn’t want his heroine with vampires. And it actually did with Dawn, the everyman and real girl, with Buffy now as the avatar. Fine. That means she better NEVER die, as “female principle” is the key to the darkness and what to do, what to learn, and how to draw help within every human being. And that means Death must become her friend, not just the cursed lover—which is why the two vampires will never have a resolution to their own stories and everything remains stuck and even “regressive” with adventures going nowhere and learning never sticking.
Joss admitted he never liked the good guy who was also good looking and admitted he never had an idea what to do with Angel. And the reality of the “backstage/suits” stories utterly twisting the reality of canon has to be part of understanding that canon, which defeats the “story.” People who see it now have utterly bizarre views on this verse nowadays. The shipper wars are old guard versus the new kids on the block. They “move on” and shippers don’t handle this well. Further, the plot nowadays isn’t mythical, so the gossipy nature of the story is soapy/boring (hack hack) to me. Angel and Faith is again Osiris and Isis. Besides Apollo and Athena.
Season 9 has been a regression of unbelievable proportions—Buffy was more mature at 17 than she is now. It doesn’t help that they are trying to make someone who was a general into clueless 20 again, in order to have her eternally telling comic book stories. The point of her story was originally “growing up” and that means she MUST die. Which is why the Gift was perfect, as she recounted her lessons and all those who gave her the insight, with thought of WWJD: what would Joyce do.
The death metaphor allows the transformation that allows someone into the “world/dimension” of adulthood. And the transfiguration of the vampire. Spike should have been mortal, had the necklace not been a trick by W&H to trap him. However, Spike himself did not will himself into his mortal body. (Or W&H allowed only a vampire body within their walls/dimension. He has always wanted to remain a vampire. So that is fine, as Angel longs for mortality. And since Angel is Death, how does Death die? Obviously, Buffy. That is what Twilight was also about for him. The world/plane of the psyche versus the world of dirt is in play as “timeline/dimensionality”
Now the grown up world is simply universally “out of balance,” and we can expect Whistler to be evil, so that is boring; and the decay is being counteracted by Willow to restore the magic to a “neverland/oz” sort of place; and avoid Fray’s timeline of final, utter, decay. I fully expect the “Cabin in the Woods” “ Ancient Gods” to rear their heads. It’s just all stupid, while Angel & Faith’s book is at least exciting, inclusive of the latest crossovers, and Gile’s world rolled into the mix.
Spike played the role of shadow or tanist, so his relationship with Buffy and Angel is mythically and scripted not to be the major relationship or plotted journey/character, which, actually, he is even acting upon. He’s tired of a half relationship. Cracked half an eye lid at the succubus and Sebastian, the bug.
So, gotta go with SV. The Gift. The end for Buffy and Brian Lynch’s ATF for Angel.
As for film, they have to all be mortal and do a flash back story, or "visiting Neverland/Oz" of vampires and slayers, using the dual time line story of season 8, which actually started when Buffy died and Faith was called. It's like the Star Trek reboot.
DB now says he would like to do it, as his movie career went no where, and he actually now could do a good job for Joss; the fandom is still there, after all, as B/A/S is the "big daddy" for all the vamp/were love stories now.
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I agree... -- Robert, 11:54:13 09/21/12 Fri (pool-98-116-59-97.nycmny.fios.verizon.net/126.96.36.199)
I always felt The Gift was the perfect ending. I know a lot of folks didn't like season 5 due to many of the plot holes, as well as a general dislike of the whiny Dawn character, but in many ways I felt season 5 was the best because it brought out the best of Buffy the character. This was the Buffy I love to remember - heroic, passionate, and willing to sacrifice even herself for both her sister and the world. Plus Glory was my absolute favorite big bad of the entire series.
Season 6 was, in my opinion, the most smartly written season yet the least entertaining/most painful to watch. Psychologically season 6 was just a dark reflection of season 5 without the "Big Bad" to distract the Scoobies from their real problems. Essentially all of the characters' issues in season 5 went unresolved at the time (e.g. Tara's concern over Willow's growing magical power, Giles' desire to return to England, Dawn's kleptomania, etc.) due to a big fat distraction named Glory. Hard to worry about personal problems when a hell-goddess intends on destroying the world. Yet in season 6, other than the nerd trio there were no crises to speak of, so all of the unresolved issues from season 5 reared their ugly head. As I said, smartly written, yet not entertaining as none of us enjoys watching our favorite characters self-destruct, most especially Buffy who went from sacrificing herself to save the world to boinking Spike in a condemned building six months later.
Season 7 started out strong, but I wished that Whedon had waited to start Firefly until after Buffy was over, because he was clearly too distracted to come up with a better ending for Buffy (as well as an alternative to the lackluster ending for Angel season 4, which ran contemporaneously to Buffy's season 7). The idea of fighting the First Evil sounded nice on paper, until you realized that the First's plan made absolutely no sense (i.e., let's sit on our hands and wait to unleash the uber-vamp army until the slayer can come up with a way to fight it by unleashing her own army of slayers, etc.).
So yes, for all of it's flaws I felt Season 5 was the "true" finale of Buffy. Though I often wish that Joss had somehow moved the evil Willow storyline from season 6 to season 4 - she would have made a much more convincing supervillain than Adam, and it would have tied in the main season 4 theme of the Scoobies drifting apart, only to come together at the end. My fantasy thought for season 4 was to have Willow's magic addiction start during her depression after Oz's departure (skipping the Tara storyline altogether, though I do love Willow/Tara), then Oz gets captured and killed by Prof Walsh after coming back to Sunnydale and finally reconciling with Willow. Willow goes off the deep end and delves into the black magic, kills Walsh and then decides to destroy all of the Initiative including Riley. Then after her recovery end the series with season 5, skipping the seasons 6 and 7 altogether (not to mention the comics, which seem to be intent on destroying every single character in the Buffyverse even more than the last two seasons of the series did).
Anyway, that's my two cents...
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Re: I agree... -- chuckit25, 11:16:11 09/22/12 Sat (cpe-76-84-128-83.neb.res.rr.com/188.8.131.52)
Those 2 cents are shiny...I find myself going through each of the character's journeys, and discover quite the “wish list,”
I find your interpretation of season 6 quite generous and sensitive. I found “everyone addicted/obsessed/depressed,” all at the same time as much fun as a nurse in a prison of flu victims, hurling at both ends. And when ideas ran out, let’s show shirtless Spike. Which was the point. But, seriously, I wouldn’t pay to see it for months on end. I never had seen “shame and blame” laid on with a back hoe, and has actually never recovered, on what had been lovingly rolled and layered in a fairy tale “pastry surprise.” But then, I find Freud and thus, existentialism bankrupt, too.
Season 4 tried to show more of “the real world,” and “Joss was doing ATS,” plus no budget. The backstage story from now on becomes part of the narrative. Those not knowing it see a completely different and deeply linear story. That’s the Dealio, peeps.
Dawn’s arrival changed the game into dual worlds of the psychological world and that of “dirt.” Buffy became an avatar to Dawn, the real girl and thus, the journey offered was no longer in the nature of the introvert’s experience within and without. The nature of “duality” thus changed in POV ( Thus, half the story is always missing, which is given POV by merely flipping over the narrative onto a character opposite). I found the greatest satisfaction in the paradox—I don’t think anyone thinks Surprise/Innocence and Becoming didn’t hold paradox, for Buffy, (and, therefore Angel), for example, and that is what the mythical “union of opposites” looks like in solution/dissolution, with death as the overarching metaphor, itself a paradox of endings/beginnings. So, “existentialism/atheism as the agenda” is just a bit bankrupt to me.
The use of characters also changed. Cordy’s destabilization was (funny) and brave in dealing with the realities of self, and self in the world; I wish she hadn’t gone to ATS even if Anya was funny, funny. However, Anya suffered no real consequence and she was turned into meat as “that just happens,” (when the real myth of Eurydice and Orpheus is he actually gets the girl—but Joss wanted Xander/himself to “win” Buffy, his own avatar: the 14 year old girl as “female principle” and he did in season eight.
I wish I had seen your story line, as well, as the story structure would have better knit. Even the use of Oz, the "wolf" is important to the story line of both Angel and Buffy, as the Hart; while Oz also represented something very fundamental in the “Turtle” (his laconic introversion and his van) that are specific to Buffy herself e.g. what holds up the world in one myth: Turtles: “all the way down.” Hee hee. Which they dragged into season 8 anyway. But I have no idea if Oz was indeed one of the wolves. Like real life, I guess we don’t know how things go, but the beauty of a fiction means a narrative can actually include these “side trips,” that give the back story to action v reaction, especially having the separate arcs and books available in comics that may not support an entire series spin off. (I do think Spike and Faith would have worked, BTW. They seem “same,” but actually are opposites, as well, but in protecting kids, not having them—an interesting “spiritual” journey re independence/co dependence and finding place. Oh, well).
So agree also on the First Evil. I thought it was “desire,”—inclusive of “ the sex is evil” trope, and the idea of wanting/fearing motherhood, not just “father,”—as desire is the basis of will, i.e. accepting how things are to actually “create” choice and, therefore, duality, for “free will,” i.e. the “basis” of existentialism. And it turns out it was “fear,.”whatever the face. Which, should have been good, but the “power” of it…not so much. Waxing and waning ubervamp strength had more to do with how brittle her “steel” was. So…” Buffy” still has to kill Daddy?” (scoff).
I think season 8 did a great job on showing the “loop” of timelines, the Guardian who died I think was also Willow, who also died on the other end in Fray. However, I hate it. Buffy murders her best friend. There was no reason to have to “go back to the present” as there were thousands of slayers to take on “her duty.” She should have helped Fray v Harth. Just like the counselor, who actually knew “the deal”—including don’t go down into the basement—she did nothing. Great hero, great feminism, great mercy,, great wisdom being shared. Not. And then integration of a roofied “normal” and “robot” without a glitch…just wow….creamy sewage on rye. Yummmm.
Season 5, with Joss in 4 and 5t, especially with what you have adapted, with a better handling of psychological vs “dirt” : more like Connor, who tends to “disappear” a lot, for extremely good reason, as THE STORY is the heroic struggle within to deal with inner and exterior world information/experience/imagination.
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Re: At what point did the Buffy story end for you? -- Saltygoodness, 07:28:00 09/23/12 Sun (adsl-99-62-34-196.dsl.aus2tx.sbcglobal.net/184.108.40.206)
With "The Gift." It was imperative that Buffy end her life and stay dead for the entire show to really make total sense. Biffy's character was such a sweet and courageous one that a death for something really important was imperative.
As a Buffy/Angel shipper, I wanted them to say goodby to each other somewhere during "The Gift." Just a little sentimental something like the two of them sitting all night in the cemetary after Joyce's burial.
However, I thought the first evil was the weakest Big Bad ever and Adam made my skin crawl because he was so creepy. Lindsay Crouse could have done so much more for the show had the scripts been better. She was awesome as far as I'm concerned with very little to work with.
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Re: At what point did the Buffy story end for you? -- Lewis H., 00:35:56 10/01/12 Mon (adsl-98-85-33-77.mco.bellsouth.net/220.127.116.11)
I think I have to agree with Dr. Who who tears out the last page of novels so that the story never ends.
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