shipperx: (Spangel - Soul Men)
Sometimes (thanks to time, distance, and the ignore feature on message boards) you forget some of the irrationality of some people's views of the BtVS character of Spike.  Occasionally, though, you run across a bit and after the 'whu...?' you shake your head and think, "typical."

I was reading a review of the last issue of the Angel & Faith comic and there was OTT whinging in the comments claiming that Spike continuing to remember Dawn after Angel & Faith forgot her was an 'irritating' development and claiming that the comic was irrationally saying that Spike was  'closer to Dawn than anyone ever' (stated with what looked like quite a bit of bitterness.  After all, we 'know' Spike didn't actually give a shit about Dawn, right?  [/sarcasm]) Clearly, the A&F comic is all about propping Spike. (*snort* [eyeroll] *laughter.*  I read the previous two issues.)

Er...uh...guys?  I think some Spike bitterness / pigeon-holing myopia might be getting in the way of a rational read of the comic.  Nothing anywhere in it indicates that Spike is 'closer to Dawn' than  'anyone' much less 'ever.'  Seriously? Overreact much?

At last glance, Buffy, Xander, Willow, and Andrew also remember Dawn.  Andrew, people.   Andrew!

Someone reading such a Spike-resentful interpretation into the Angel & Faith comic requires quite a bit of determination (and, in this instance, unwarranted Spike negativity).  Nothing in either comic indicates that Buffy or Xander are not substantially more important to Dawn than Spike.  What the Angel & Faith comic does is highlight that Spike's relationship with Dawn is more real than Angel's and more substantial than Faith's ... which should be eniterly uncontroversial (and is for most).

Spike's relationship with Dawn was more real than Angel's.

Angel never even met the real Dawn on either show.  Then, in the comics, his sole interaction with her was as Twilight.  (Remember?  It was his masked villain/martyr/toga phase.)  The sum of Angel's relationship with Dawn is the spell and a one-off incidental use of her as a pawn while playing supervillain.  That's it.  That's all.   Spike remembering Dawn after Angel forgets her makes perfect sense (in a comic that isn't known for great sums of it).  All it took to remove Angel's memory is for the spell to fade. There was no there there.  Spike has real memories (and unresolved issues) with Dawn, so -- DUH!

Faith, on the other hand, never had a relationship with Dawn beyond brief aquaintance.  Her reaction in the comic was to blend Dawn into the sea of Slayers/ "Potentials"... which, again, makes perfect sense in the context in which Faith knew Dawn.  Once the spell fades, easy enough for her Dawn memories to merge with the memory of the sea of faces of other girls Faith briefly knew in Buffy's overcrowded house.  (Even during 8, Faith was most often in a different location from any Scoobs other than Giles.)

Again, Spike had an actual one-on-one relationship with Dawn.  He felt a lingering sense of failure in the summer post 5 for not protecting Dawn adequately enough so that Buffy didn't have to die (remember his "every night I save you?"  What exactly in that string of events could he have changed?  *Hint* It's Dawn-related.)  Even if someone wants to piss all over the Spike/Dawn relationship by making it entirely about Buffy, this was still an incident that he angsted over for quite some time.)  Then he kept his 'promise to a lady' by babysitting Dawn for substantial periods of time while Buffy was an ex-Buffy.)  There actually was a frame of time where these two were close.  Then came the second half of 6 and they... weren't.  Then came 7 and they really weren't.   But, where the Spike bitter/pigeon-holer-types take that as an indication that Spike didn't give a shit about Dawn, I took it as 1) an indication that the writers didn't give a shit about the characters' relationship. 2) That given what Spike was thinking and feeling while being crazed in the basement, that Spike took Dawn's threat to torch him as an indication that Dawn was really, really pissed with him and his comprehending that Dawn had every right to be really, really pissed with him.  She did have every right to feel pissed and to feel disillusioned by him.  And he respected the gravity of that by not pressing the issue with her (and it carried some gravity because otherwise he would snark.  Spike naturally snarks about most things.  That he never has about the impasse means that Dawn's fury carried weight).

And, to be fair that there was weakness involved, it was easier to let sleeping dogs lie.  There was no way to have that conversation without it being really painful and really incomplete (because there was no way for Spike to relate the labyrinthine issues that Spike/Buffy had.  Hell, most viewers who watched it --and Buffy and Spike themselves -- can't easily explain all of it. The simple part, Dawn has got.  She knows what Spike did. And I cannot imagine that the ones most predisposed to griping about anything Spike-related would take kindly to any efforts a writer would make to expand these topics.  It would only muddle and/or add complexity, depending on one's point of view (because the status quo is Dawn having  the gist of the truly bad stuff, leaving Spike responsible for SR in an unambiguous way.)

Beyond that, how in the hell would one explain the rest of Season 6's Spike/Buffy to a teenaged Dawn in a way that didn't oversimplify it or tread into some decidedly ...er...thorny(?) TMI?  It's not like it was just Spike who couldn't explain the messy interdynamics.  Buffy never really managed to explain it to Dawn either.)

Yes, it would have been brave and honest to bring the issues out into the open.   It would have been helpful and more healthy for Spike to address it in the light rather than avoid.   But it would also be painful and extremely difficult, and Dawn had a right to be pissed. It makes sense for Spike to step back, respect her righteous anger, and just let the situation go unchanged.  That doesn't mean that he did not care.  That means that he reacted in a comprehensible -- and humanly flawed -- way.

As a viewer and fan, though, it was hella unsatisfying that the whole realtionship was never again addressed.  In a sea of Dawn haters (Spike isn't the only character who people sometimes take a negative -- and only negative ever -- attitude towards) there actually were some Spike fans who valued Spike/Dawn interaction.  Honestly, I think the pair deserved some sort of follow-up that Mutant Enemy never found time for (though, we sure as hell got a lot of pointless Potentials).  The lack of resolution in that relationship -- leaving it perpetually unaddressed -- was a loss of a dramatic beat that was...well... a loss.

Now, I remain unchanged in thinking that these comics mostly suck.  But if they'll give any sort of follow-up to the Spike/Dawn situation, I'd like to see it (I'm not expecting much.  But, hey, anything would be a tiny improvement)

Still, it makes perfect damn sense that Spike would remember Dawn after Angel and Faith.

Unlike the bitterista-ing overstatement on this, Spike remembering after those two is not an indication that he is more 'special' or 'closer than anyone else ever.'  He was, however, closer to Dawn than either Angel or Faith. His memories were actual, substantive memories.  If the spell is being undone, of course his real memories are substantially more difficult to undo than Angel's 99.5% fake ones and Faith's insignificant, incidental ones.  That shouldn't be controversial, making the bitter comments a decidedly unconvincing source for carping.  It rather comes off as "it's something that Spike fans like -- I hate that!")
shipperx: (Spike: It's a big rock)
Read it. Liked it.

But, as a caveat, I've also been a fan of Red Dwarf and Farscape...which is my admission that I'm somewhat amenable to these types of stories.
Read more... )
shipperx: (Spike: It's a big rock)
Read it. Liked it.

But, as a caveat, I've also been a fan of Red Dwarf and Farscape...which is my admission that I'm somewhat amenable to these types of stories.
Read more... )
shipperx: (Default)
* I read "Mark Watches..." I Will Remember You recap which brings to mind memories...

Okay, the truth is, I don't remember what I thought about the episode the first time I watched it when it aired. I was still riding the Bangel train (yes, there was a time), so I probably went with the flow. (I jumped off during the episode Sanctuary. That was where it became perfectly clear to me that Buffy and Angel not only did not know what made each other tick... they didn't actually want to understand what made each other tick).

Anyway, I don't think "I Will Remember You" is a particularly good episode. Read more... )


* Obvious observation is obvious...

A week or two ago I was listening to The Modern Scholar series "History of Ancient Israel", a lecture series given by the same professor who did a series on "Archaeology and the Illiad". I think he did a somewhat better job with Troy and the Illiad, because he was willing to discuss it a bit more frankly. The history of Israel (even the ancient history of it) is more controversial because it's still in contention today and because while it's uncontroversial to call the Illiad "mythology," there are people that are dead serious about Old Testament being absolute, unquestionable (and it's a sin to question any bit of it) history. The professor is very, very tactful about all of it and stresses time and again that "absence of evidence doesn't mean that something didn't happen." Anyway, generally, I think it's a pretty good lecture and actually a rather good addition to his previous lecture on the Illiad (and also to the Modern Scholar Series on the Ancient History of Anatolia(Turkey) that was up for download earlier this year although it was done by a different professor).

Why do I bring all of this up? The part of the lecture discussing the Essenes (the Jewish religious sect who were the ones to hide the Dead Sea Scrolls) quoted some of their more apocalytic passages, and I swear they sound exactly like some of the incantations and prayers for the god R'hollor in G R R Martin's "Song of Ice and Fire" series. I know that to a certain extent, all apocalyptic cults have some similarities. But the whole "god of light" bit is really, really similar. Similar enough that I wonder if the Dead Sea Scrolls weren't an influence.

In some interview/quote I read of Martin's recently he said something about how his Game of Thrones series came about because the problem with historical fiction is that you go into reading it knowing how things turned out. He thought it would be interesting to have historical fiction where... you don't know what will happen. And, admittedly, that is one of the interesting thing in the series, finding historical parallels that may have influenced something.

I believe Martin when he says that there are no direct parallels. It seems to draw inspirations from events but never direct parallels. So you can point to Henry VIII and King Robert Baratheon in some aspects... but King Robert isn't Henry VIII and really... there's some Henry VIII in King Stannis Baratheon as well (just an entirely different aspect than King Roberts.) Margeary's situation also reminds me some of Queen Isabella she-wolf of France as told in Alison Weir's biography. Not a direct parallel.... but there's some inspiration. For that matter, it's possible to see some bits of Princess (later Queen) Elizabeth I in some of Sansa's story, even though she's definitely not Queen Elizabeth. And so on. There are historical bits that sort of serve and "see! Some of this sort of thing actually happened!" in ASOIAF, but none of it is exactly the same and no character/story seems to be a direct retelling of a historical story, but there are tantalizingly similar moments occasionally.

Anyway, my "obvious observation is obvious" is that Stannis is a theocrat. Read more... )

And now I'm really tired and not sure that anything I wrote made sense (although it made sense to me when it originally struck me). Hopefully it made some sense to someone that isn't me, but who knows.
shipperx: (Default)
* I read "Mark Watches..." I Will Remember You recap which brings to mind memories...

Okay, the truth is, I don't remember what I thought about the episode the first time I watched it when it aired. I was still riding the Bangel train (yes, there was a time), so I probably went with the flow. (I jumped off during the episode Sanctuary. That was where it became perfectly clear to me that Buffy and Angel not only did not know what made each other tick... they didn't actually want to understand what made each other tick).

Anyway, I don't think "I Will Remember You" is a particularly good episode. Read more... )


* Obvious observation is obvious...

A week or two ago I was listening to The Modern Scholar series "History of Ancient Israel", a lecture series given by the same professor who did a series on "Archaeology and the Illiad". I think he did a somewhat better job with Troy and the Illiad, because he was willing to discuss it a bit more frankly. The history of Israel (even the ancient history of it) is more controversial because it's still in contention today and because while it's uncontroversial to call the Illiad "mythology," there are people that are dead serious about Old Testament being absolute, unquestionable (and it's a sin to question any bit of it) history. The professor is very, very tactful about all of it and stresses time and again that "absence of evidence doesn't mean that something didn't happen." Anyway, generally, I think it's a pretty good lecture and actually a rather good addition to his previous lecture on the Illiad (and also to the Modern Scholar Series on the Ancient History of Anatolia(Turkey) that was up for download earlier this year although it was done by a different professor).

Why do I bring all of this up? The part of the lecture discussing the Essenes (the Jewish religious sect who were the ones to hide the Dead Sea Scrolls) quoted some of their more apocalytic passages, and I swear they sound exactly like some of the incantations and prayers for the god R'hollor in G R R Martin's "Song of Ice and Fire" series. I know that to a certain extent, all apocalyptic cults have some similarities. But the whole "god of light" bit is really, really similar. Similar enough that I wonder if the Dead Sea Scrolls weren't an influence.

In some interview/quote I read of Martin's recently he said something about how his Game of Thrones series came about because the problem with historical fiction is that you go into reading it knowing how things turned out. He thought it would be interesting to have historical fiction where... you don't know what will happen. And, admittedly, that is one of the interesting thing in the series, finding historical parallels that may have influenced something.

I believe Martin when he says that there are no direct parallels. It seems to draw inspirations from events but never direct parallels. So you can point to Henry VIII and King Robert Baratheon in some aspects... but King Robert isn't Henry VIII and really... there's some Henry VIII in King Stannis Baratheon as well (just an entirely different aspect than King Roberts.) Margeary's situation also reminds me some of Queen Isabella she-wolf of France as told in Alison Weir's biography. Not a direct parallel.... but there's some inspiration. For that matter, it's possible to see some bits of Princess (later Queen) Elizabeth I in some of Sansa's story, even though she's definitely not Queen Elizabeth. And so on. There are historical bits that sort of serve and "see! Some of this sort of thing actually happened!" in ASOIAF, but none of it is exactly the same and no character/story seems to be a direct retelling of a historical story, but there are tantalizingly similar moments occasionally.

Anyway, my "obvious observation is obvious" is that Stannis is a theocrat. Read more... )

And now I'm really tired and not sure that anything I wrote made sense (although it made sense to me when it originally struck me). Hopefully it made some sense to someone that isn't me, but who knows.
shipperx: (Default)
* I read "Mark Watches..." I Will Remember You recap which brings to mind memories...

Okay, the truth is, I don't remember what I thought about the episode the first time I watched it when it aired. I was still riding the Bangel train (yes, there was a time), so I probably went with the flow. (I jumped off during the episode Sanctuary. That was where it became perfectly clear to me that Buffy and Angel not only did not know what made each other tick... they didn't actually want to understand what made each other tick).

Anyway, I don't think "I Will Remember You" is a particularly good episode. Read more... )


* Obvious observation is obvious...

A week or two ago I was listening to The Modern Scholar series "History of Ancient Israel", a lecture series given by the same professor who did a series on "Archaeology and the Illiad". I think he did a somewhat better job with Troy and the Illiad, because he was willing to discuss it a bit more frankly. The history of Israel (even the ancient history of it) is more controversial because it's still in contention today and because while it's uncontroversial to call the Illiad "mythology," there are people that are dead serious about Old Testament being absolute, unquestionable (and it's a sin to question any bit of it) history. The professor is very, very tactful about all of it and stresses time and again that "absence of evidence doesn't mean that something didn't happen." Anyway, generally, I think it's a pretty good lecture and actually a rather good addition to his previous lecture on the Illiad (and also to the Modern Scholar Series on the Ancient History of Anatolia(Turkey) that was up for download earlier this year although it was done by a different professor).

Why do I bring all of this up? The part of the lecture discussing the Essenes (the Jewish religious sect who were the ones to hide the Dead Sea Scrolls) quoted some of their more apocalytic passages, and I swear they sound exactly like some of the incantations and prayers for the god R'hollor in G R R Martin's "Song of Ice and Fire" series. I know that to a certain extent, all apocalyptic cults have some similarities. But the whole "god of light" bit is really, really similar. Similar enough that I wonder if the Dead Sea Scrolls weren't an influence.

In some interview/quote I read of Martin's recently he said something about how his Game of Thrones series came about because the problem with historical fiction is that you go into reading it knowing how things turned out. He thought it would be interesting to have historical fiction where... you don't know what will happen. And, admittedly, that is one of the interesting thing in the series, finding historical parallels that may have influenced something.

I believe Martin when he says that there are no direct parallels. It seems to draw inspirations from events but never direct parallels. So you can point to Henry VIII and King Robert Baratheon in some aspects... but King Robert isn't Henry VIII and really... there's some Henry VIII in King Stannis Baratheon as well (just an entirely different aspect than King Roberts.) Margeary's situation also reminds me some of Queen Isabella she-wolf of France as told in Alison Weir's biography. Not a direct parallel.... but there's some inspiration. For that matter, it's possible to see some bits of Princess (later Queen) Elizabeth I in some of Sansa's story, even though she's definitely not Queen Elizabeth. And so on. There are historical bits that sort of serve and "see! Some of this sort of thing actually happened!" in ASOIAF, but none of it is exactly the same and no character/story seems to be a direct retelling of a historical story, but there are tantalizingly similar moments occasionally.

Anyway, my "obvious observation is obvious" is that Stannis is a theocrat. Read more... )

And now I'm really tired and not sure that anything I wrote made sense (although it made sense to me when it originally struck me). Hopefully it made some sense to someone that isn't me, but who knows.
shipperx: (Spike - Fire and Ice)
Since it's come up in the comments for the web comic, I thought I would post the end of the Lynch Spike Comic. Pages behind the cut )

Text version of the end.:

Took on the Vegas mission because I was sick of playing second banana. Sick of being along for the ride. I wanted to steer the coaster...

... but no one steers the coaster. No one is in control of anything.

Innocents become dangerous. Heroes can turn on a dime. Sometimes evil can do an about face and want to help.

People come into your life. People leave. Everything is changing. Everything is always changing.

Bottom line -- the only thing any one of us is in charge of... is ourselves.





As to how Spike got the bug ship, below the cut )
shipperx: (Spike - Fire and Ice)
Since it's come up in the comments for the web comic, I thought I would post the end of the Lynch Spike Comic. Pages behind the cut )

Text version of the end.:

Took on the Vegas mission because I was sick of playing second banana. Sick of being along for the ride. I wanted to steer the coaster...

... but no one steers the coaster. No one is in control of anything.

Innocents become dangerous. Heroes can turn on a dime. Sometimes evil can do an about face and want to help.

People come into your life. People leave. Everything is changing. Everything is always changing.

Bottom line -- the only thing any one of us is in charge of... is ourselves.





As to how Spike got the bug ship, below the cut )
shipperx: (Spike - Fire and Ice)
Since it's come up in the comments for the web comic, I thought I would post the end of the Lynch Spike Comic. Pages behind the cut )

Text version of the end.:

Took on the Vegas mission because I was sick of playing second banana. Sick of being along for the ride. I wanted to steer the coaster...

... but no one steers the coaster. No one is in control of anything.

Innocents become dangerous. Heroes can turn on a dime. Sometimes evil can do an about face and want to help.

People come into your life. People leave. Everything is changing. Everything is always changing.

Bottom line -- the only thing any one of us is in charge of... is ourselves.





As to how Spike got the bug ship, below the cut )
shipperx: (Default)

I'm not sure what it is that make certain storylines 'work' for me, why they're something that intrigues me and makes me want to think and talk about them.  At any rate the three that interest me most at the moment (in no particular order).



Being Human

I'm really enjoying this plot.  It's chewy.  Those who watched last season know that Mitchell did something horrible.  I've really enjoyed how they have not let that slide, and how they have used that to reinforce their metaphors. 

Being Human has always had that underlying subtext that vampirism is addiction (and far more clearly than BtVS/AtS ever did, because, honestly, I don't think BtVS/AtS ever did work that way... beyond lip service.  AtS might say that it was a metaphor for addiction, but it was never shown in a convincing light.  There might be 'falling off the wagon'- like  dialog occasionally, but there weren't cravings, etc. 

BtVS worked on the concept of demons representing Buffy's 'demons' (her inner demons, demons she had to face) and Angel and Spike were created and born in that context.  Angel and Spike's journeys weren't their own until further down the line.  And, quite frankly, there's always been something almost  Calvanist in the Whedonverse with all it's dependence on the Chosen/Elect and the damned (and everyone else) ...with the occasional boon given to free will. 

Vampirism in the Whedonverse always seemed to be far more about those concepts to me (and even some odd parallel to the concept of Original Sin).  Vampirism in BtVS/AtS is a curse, an edict, or a judgement.  It was more about falling prey to ones demons or subsuming (or  Spike/Angel case an effort at) overcoming some  'fate' and  fixed destiny.  Whedonverse vampirism was completely bound up in the concept of souls and curses and whether or not vampires had any choice but evil.  Were they even allowed to have free will?  {Go team Spike free will!} Basically, in the Whedonverse it always seemed to me to be more of a dialog about the struggle of free will versus a somewhat Calvanist doctrine of fate, destiny, and inevitability, thus the emphasis on souls, being "Chosen", prophecy, etc.... which was always amusing to me because Whedon is an atheist). 

Being Human's vampirism is very, very much a metaphor for addiction.  The rationalization, the backsliding, the struggle.  It's so easy to see Mitchell as some heroine addict and all that would entail.  He fits far too well the sort of thing you see when you watch "Intervention" on A&E (as well as the problems of a drug addict that grew up down the street from me who was a nice guy when sober and yet could never overcome addiction and who in the end became a very real-life monster before his suicide).   The aftermath of last year's story is being played out with this years and we see the way that Mitchell explains and avoids those things and how that is all very much a part of not only who he is but who he has always been and how that has very much informed his whole vampiric existence.  And the story has worked very much in Annie's metaphor as well.  Annie, the ghost.  Annie who denied to herself that she was in an abusive relationship, painting a happy face on it, eplaining it away, even as it killed her, leaving her trapped in that place.  She was a victim, invisible to many and unable to actualize herself.  She has a history of falling into destructive relationships, of living vicariously through others, being the kind of 'giver' that doesn't understand that she needs to stand up for herself.  Ah Mitchell/Annie your weaknesses were bound to...er... bind you.   I've liked the way this story has gone and the way it's been quite subversive about its vampire romance trope.



Big Love  

Yeah, last season was teh crazy, and this season is much the same.  However, I really enjoy just how freaking screwed up these people are. (I've even gotten my mom into loving this show.  Bill Hendrickson amuses the hell out of her).  Bill is such a self-serving douche.  He really, really is. Oh, he's so goooooood.  So righteous.  He goes on and on about serving God and begging God "why are you testing me so?" while he is so, so, so oblivious that he's a douchebag!  Dude, it's not "God" directing you to do a host of self-serving things.  It's your collosal, oversized ego!  Oh, and your penis!  "God" doesn't tell him to pick fights with wacked out cult leader Alby.  'God" didn't tell Bill to build a casino.  "God" didn't tell him to run for the Utah State Senate.  Nope.  That was all  Bill.  He totally overlooks what he inflicts on the people around him with what he does, especially his cult-o-sister-wives and for his long suffering business partner.  How much shit has he made them all take and eat?  Because he thinks he's their 'priesthood holder.'  Bill is a piece of work.  So 'good', so 'righteous' ...such a self-serving douche. 

And I've really enjoyed all the massively screwed-up sister-wives and their own dysfunctions that have led them into this life with Bill. Read more... )All these people are so very, very screwed up (and so very righteous and 'godly' about it.  "God" tells them to do all these things. 'God' really really wants them to be rich and powerful and smite all their enemies too.  And when things don't work it's because 'God' is testing their faith so they double down) . I can't help it.  It's a trainwreck that I cannot help but watch.



Fringe
Mmm.  Yummy sci-fi that hits so many kinks. 

I love Olivia as a heroine.  She's smart, competent, brave, and she tries so very, very hard.  And, her life has been such shit.  Her mother died.  Her step-father abused her.  She was used as a medical guinea pig in shocking horrific medical experiments as a kid that damaged her in ways she can't really explain but which also gave her and eidetic memory and the ability to walk between parallel universes. She has such a difficult, difficult time forming relationships, but her heart does love deeply.  And things just never quite seem to work out for her.  Yet she tries so hard to be fair and adult about it.  She breaks my heart.  I want her to be happy, damnit!  (It hurt seeing her happy last night.  It's so rare to see her happy, and we the audience know... something... is going to come down on her like  a ton of bricks soon.  So, even as she's glowing with new found happiness, I'm going "Poor Olivia"...)

And I thought that EW's Ken Tucker did a great job of explaining the show:
 

At its big, red, throbbing heart, the show tells the story of a love so powerful, it crosses universes: When Peter was seven, he died. His brilliant-scientist father, Walter, having discovered that there was a parallel universe containing doubles of everyone here, transported himself to that Other Side and brought back that universe’s Peter, to love and to cherish. In doing so, he created not just a rift in the universes (which are now dangerously, explosively out of balance), but also a rift between father and son (when Peter discovered who he really was, and grappled with the idea that he belonged to another Walter, a “Walternate”).


You've got your tortured redemption arc with Walter, the mad scientist who did such horrible things in the past in his pursuit of 'science', horrible things to Olivia (one of his test subjects) and to Peter (in an effort to 'keep' what wasn't his) and to all his other test subjects.  He has the oppressive, overwhelming knowledge that he may well have destroyed not one but two worlds and has caused untold suffering, and all he wants is to make things right.  To see Peter and Olivia happy and to prevent the apocalypse... that he caused.

And you've got that Olivia/Peter thing that  is oh-so-starcrossed... and on a ticking time clock of an apocalypse where their relationship is pivotal.. and which may require Peter's death.   This year so many of the episodes are clues to what is important to the mytharc (even if they're MOTW) or metaphors for the dynamics of the entwined relationships of Olivia/Peter/Walter... as well as things concerning the alternative_universe dopplegangers of both themselves and their friends.  

Throw in some zeplins, an intact World Trade Center, an alternative-history (MLK asn't assassinated, Nixon was never impeached, Kennedy is still alive.  An Alternative Olivia, an Alternative_Walter, an Alternative_Fringe {but no FBI...})  in the same but subtly different alternative universe, and pop me some popcorn while I sit in front of a television because I'm a sucker for this stuff.
shipperx: (Default)

I'm not sure what it is that make certain storylines 'work' for me, why they're something that intrigues me and makes me want to think and talk about them.  At any rate the three that interest me most at the moment (in no particular order).



Being Human

I'm really enjoying this plot.  It's chewy.  Those who watched last season know that Mitchell did something horrible.  I've really enjoyed how they have not let that slide, and how they have used that to reinforce their metaphors. 

Being Human has always had that underlying subtext that vampirism is addiction (and far more clearly than BtVS/AtS ever did, because, honestly, I don't think BtVS/AtS ever did work that way... beyond lip service.  AtS might say that it was a metaphor for addiction, but it was never shown in a convincing light.  There might be 'falling off the wagon'- like  dialog occasionally, but there weren't cravings, etc. 

BtVS worked on the concept of demons representing Buffy's 'demons' (her inner demons, demons she had to face) and Angel and Spike were created and born in that context.  Angel and Spike's journeys weren't their own until further down the line.  And, quite frankly, there's always been something almost  Calvanist in the Whedonverse with all it's dependence on the Chosen/Elect and the damned (and everyone else) ...with the occasional boon given to free will. 

Vampirism in the Whedonverse always seemed to be far more about those concepts to me (and even some odd parallel to the concept of Original Sin).  Vampirism in BtVS/AtS is a curse, an edict, or a judgement.  It was more about falling prey to ones demons or subsuming (or  Spike/Angel case an effort at) overcoming some  'fate' and  fixed destiny.  Whedonverse vampirism was completely bound up in the concept of souls and curses and whether or not vampires had any choice but evil.  Were they even allowed to have free will?  {Go team Spike free will!} Basically, in the Whedonverse it always seemed to me to be more of a dialog about the struggle of free will versus a somewhat Calvanist doctrine of fate, destiny, and inevitability, thus the emphasis on souls, being "Chosen", prophecy, etc.... which was always amusing to me because Whedon is an atheist). 

Being Human's vampirism is very, very much a metaphor for addiction.  The rationalization, the backsliding, the struggle.  It's so easy to see Mitchell as some heroine addict and all that would entail.  He fits far too well the sort of thing you see when you watch "Intervention" on A&E (as well as the problems of a drug addict that grew up down the street from me who was a nice guy when sober and yet could never overcome addiction and who in the end became a very real-life monster before his suicide).   The aftermath of last year's story is being played out with this years and we see the way that Mitchell explains and avoids those things and how that is all very much a part of not only who he is but who he has always been and how that has very much informed his whole vampiric existence.  And the story has worked very much in Annie's metaphor as well.  Annie, the ghost.  Annie who denied to herself that she was in an abusive relationship, painting a happy face on it, eplaining it away, even as it killed her, leaving her trapped in that place.  She was a victim, invisible to many and unable to actualize herself.  She has a history of falling into destructive relationships, of living vicariously through others, being the kind of 'giver' that doesn't understand that she needs to stand up for herself.  Ah Mitchell/Annie your weaknesses were bound to...er... bind you.   I've liked the way this story has gone and the way it's been quite subversive about its vampire romance trope.



Big Love  

Yeah, last season was teh crazy, and this season is much the same.  However, I really enjoy just how freaking screwed up these people are. (I've even gotten my mom into loving this show.  Bill Hendrickson amuses the hell out of her).  Bill is such a self-serving douche.  He really, really is. Oh, he's so goooooood.  So righteous.  He goes on and on about serving God and begging God "why are you testing me so?" while he is so, so, so oblivious that he's a douchebag!  Dude, it's not "God" directing you to do a host of self-serving things.  It's your collosal, oversized ego!  Oh, and your penis!  "God" doesn't tell him to pick fights with wacked out cult leader Alby.  'God" didn't tell Bill to build a casino.  "God" didn't tell him to run for the Utah State Senate.  Nope.  That was all  Bill.  He totally overlooks what he inflicts on the people around him with what he does, especially his cult-o-sister-wives and for his long suffering business partner.  How much shit has he made them all take and eat?  Because he thinks he's their 'priesthood holder.'  Bill is a piece of work.  So 'good', so 'righteous' ...such a self-serving douche. 

And I've really enjoyed all the massively screwed-up sister-wives and their own dysfunctions that have led them into this life with Bill. Read more... )All these people are so very, very screwed up (and so very righteous and 'godly' about it.  "God" tells them to do all these things. 'God' really really wants them to be rich and powerful and smite all their enemies too.  And when things don't work it's because 'God' is testing their faith so they double down) . I can't help it.  It's a trainwreck that I cannot help but watch.



Fringe
Mmm.  Yummy sci-fi that hits so many kinks. 

I love Olivia as a heroine.  She's smart, competent, brave, and she tries so very, very hard.  And, her life has been such shit.  Her mother died.  Her step-father abused her.  She was used as a medical guinea pig in shocking horrific medical experiments as a kid that damaged her in ways she can't really explain but which also gave her and eidetic memory and the ability to walk between parallel universes. She has such a difficult, difficult time forming relationships, but her heart does love deeply.  And things just never quite seem to work out for her.  Yet she tries so hard to be fair and adult about it.  She breaks my heart.  I want her to be happy, damnit!  (It hurt seeing her happy last night.  It's so rare to see her happy, and we the audience know... something... is going to come down on her like  a ton of bricks soon.  So, even as she's glowing with new found happiness, I'm going "Poor Olivia"...)

And I thought that EW's Ken Tucker did a great job of explaining the show:
 

At its big, red, throbbing heart, the show tells the story of a love so powerful, it crosses universes: When Peter was seven, he died. His brilliant-scientist father, Walter, having discovered that there was a parallel universe containing doubles of everyone here, transported himself to that Other Side and brought back that universe’s Peter, to love and to cherish. In doing so, he created not just a rift in the universes (which are now dangerously, explosively out of balance), but also a rift between father and son (when Peter discovered who he really was, and grappled with the idea that he belonged to another Walter, a “Walternate”).


You've got your tortured redemption arc with Walter, the mad scientist who did such horrible things in the past in his pursuit of 'science', horrible things to Olivia (one of his test subjects) and to Peter (in an effort to 'keep' what wasn't his) and to all his other test subjects.  He has the oppressive, overwhelming knowledge that he may well have destroyed not one but two worlds and has caused untold suffering, and all he wants is to make things right.  To see Peter and Olivia happy and to prevent the apocalypse... that he caused.

And you've got that Olivia/Peter thing that  is oh-so-starcrossed... and on a ticking time clock of an apocalypse where their relationship is pivotal.. and which may require Peter's death.   This year so many of the episodes are clues to what is important to the mytharc (even if they're MOTW) or metaphors for the dynamics of the entwined relationships of Olivia/Peter/Walter... as well as things concerning the alternative_universe dopplegangers of both themselves and their friends.  

Throw in some zeplins, an intact World Trade Center, an alternative-history (MLK asn't assassinated, Nixon was never impeached, Kennedy is still alive.  An Alternative Olivia, an Alternative_Walter, an Alternative_Fringe {but no FBI...})  in the same but subtly different alternative universe, and pop me some popcorn while I sit in front of a television because I'm a sucker for this stuff.
shipperx: (Default)

I'm not sure what it is that make certain storylines 'work' for me, why they're something that intrigues me and makes me want to think and talk about them.  At any rate the three that interest me most at the moment (in no particular order).



Being Human

I'm really enjoying this plot.  It's chewy.  Those who watched last season know that Mitchell did something horrible.  I've really enjoyed how they have not let that slide, and how they have used that to reinforce their metaphors. 

Being Human has always had that underlying subtext that vampirism is addiction (and far more clearly than BtVS/AtS ever did, because, honestly, I don't think BtVS/AtS ever did work that way... beyond lip service.  AtS might say that it was a metaphor for addiction, but it was never shown in a convincing light.  There might be 'falling off the wagon'- like  dialog occasionally, but there weren't cravings, etc. 

BtVS worked on the concept of demons representing Buffy's 'demons' (her inner demons, demons she had to face) and Angel and Spike were created and born in that context.  Angel and Spike's journeys weren't their own until further down the line.  And, quite frankly, there's always been something almost  Calvanist in the Whedonverse with all it's dependence on the Chosen/Elect and the damned (and everyone else) ...with the occasional boon given to free will. 

Vampirism in the Whedonverse always seemed to be far more about those concepts to me (and even some odd parallel to the concept of Original Sin).  Vampirism in BtVS/AtS is a curse, an edict, or a judgement.  It was more about falling prey to ones demons or subsuming (or  Spike/Angel case an effort at) overcoming some  'fate' and  fixed destiny.  Whedonverse vampirism was completely bound up in the concept of souls and curses and whether or not vampires had any choice but evil.  Were they even allowed to have free will?  {Go team Spike free will!} Basically, in the Whedonverse it always seemed to me to be more of a dialog about the struggle of free will versus a somewhat Calvanist doctrine of fate, destiny, and inevitability, thus the emphasis on souls, being "Chosen", prophecy, etc.... which was always amusing to me because Whedon is an atheist). 

Being Human's vampirism is very, very much a metaphor for addiction.  The rationalization, the backsliding, the struggle.  It's so easy to see Mitchell as some heroine addict and all that would entail.  He fits far too well the sort of thing you see when you watch "Intervention" on A&E (as well as the problems of a drug addict that grew up down the street from me who was a nice guy when sober and yet could never overcome addiction and who in the end became a very real-life monster before his suicide).   The aftermath of last year's story is being played out with this years and we see the way that Mitchell explains and avoids those things and how that is all very much a part of not only who he is but who he has always been and how that has very much informed his whole vampiric existence.  And the story has worked very much in Annie's metaphor as well.  Annie, the ghost.  Annie who denied to herself that she was in an abusive relationship, painting a happy face on it, eplaining it away, even as it killed her, leaving her trapped in that place.  She was a victim, invisible to many and unable to actualize herself.  She has a history of falling into destructive relationships, of living vicariously through others, being the kind of 'giver' that doesn't understand that she needs to stand up for herself.  Ah Mitchell/Annie your weaknesses were bound to...er... bind you.   I've liked the way this story has gone and the way it's been quite subversive about its vampire romance trope.



Big Love  

Yeah, last season was teh crazy, and this season is much the same.  However, I really enjoy just how freaking screwed up these people are. (I've even gotten my mom into loving this show.  Bill Hendrickson amuses the hell out of her).  Bill is such a self-serving douche.  He really, really is. Oh, he's so goooooood.  So righteous.  He goes on and on about serving God and begging God "why are you testing me so?" while he is so, so, so oblivious that he's a douchebag!  Dude, it's not "God" directing you to do a host of self-serving things.  It's your collosal, oversized ego!  Oh, and your penis!  "God" doesn't tell him to pick fights with wacked out cult leader Alby.  'God" didn't tell Bill to build a casino.  "God" didn't tell him to run for the Utah State Senate.  Nope.  That was all  Bill.  He totally overlooks what he inflicts on the people around him with what he does, especially his cult-o-sister-wives and for his long suffering business partner.  How much shit has he made them all take and eat?  Because he thinks he's their 'priesthood holder.'  Bill is a piece of work.  So 'good', so 'righteous' ...such a self-serving douche. 

And I've really enjoyed all the massively screwed-up sister-wives and their own dysfunctions that have led them into this life with Bill. Read more... )All these people are so very, very screwed up (and so very righteous and 'godly' about it.  "God" tells them to do all these things. 'God' really really wants them to be rich and powerful and smite all their enemies too.  And when things don't work it's because 'God' is testing their faith so they double down) . I can't help it.  It's a trainwreck that I cannot help but watch.



Fringe
Mmm.  Yummy sci-fi that hits so many kinks. 

I love Olivia as a heroine.  She's smart, competent, brave, and she tries so very, very hard.  And, her life has been such shit.  Her mother died.  Her step-father abused her.  She was used as a medical guinea pig in shocking horrific medical experiments as a kid that damaged her in ways she can't really explain but which also gave her and eidetic memory and the ability to walk between parallel universes. She has such a difficult, difficult time forming relationships, but her heart does love deeply.  And things just never quite seem to work out for her.  Yet she tries so hard to be fair and adult about it.  She breaks my heart.  I want her to be happy, damnit!  (It hurt seeing her happy last night.  It's so rare to see her happy, and we the audience know... something... is going to come down on her like  a ton of bricks soon.  So, even as she's glowing with new found happiness, I'm going "Poor Olivia"...)

And I thought that EW's Ken Tucker did a great job of explaining the show:
 

At its big, red, throbbing heart, the show tells the story of a love so powerful, it crosses universes: When Peter was seven, he died. His brilliant-scientist father, Walter, having discovered that there was a parallel universe containing doubles of everyone here, transported himself to that Other Side and brought back that universe’s Peter, to love and to cherish. In doing so, he created not just a rift in the universes (which are now dangerously, explosively out of balance), but also a rift between father and son (when Peter discovered who he really was, and grappled with the idea that he belonged to another Walter, a “Walternate”).


You've got your tortured redemption arc with Walter, the mad scientist who did such horrible things in the past in his pursuit of 'science', horrible things to Olivia (one of his test subjects) and to Peter (in an effort to 'keep' what wasn't his) and to all his other test subjects.  He has the oppressive, overwhelming knowledge that he may well have destroyed not one but two worlds and has caused untold suffering, and all he wants is to make things right.  To see Peter and Olivia happy and to prevent the apocalypse... that he caused.

And you've got that Olivia/Peter thing that  is oh-so-starcrossed... and on a ticking time clock of an apocalypse where their relationship is pivotal.. and which may require Peter's death.   This year so many of the episodes are clues to what is important to the mytharc (even if they're MOTW) or metaphors for the dynamics of the entwined relationships of Olivia/Peter/Walter... as well as things concerning the alternative_universe dopplegangers of both themselves and their friends.  

Throw in some zeplins, an intact World Trade Center, an alternative-history (MLK asn't assassinated, Nixon was never impeached, Kennedy is still alive.  An Alternative Olivia, an Alternative_Walter, an Alternative_Fringe {but no FBI...})  in the same but subtly different alternative universe, and pop me some popcorn while I sit in front of a television because I'm a sucker for this stuff.

Season 8

Jan. 19th, 2011 01:10 pm
shipperx: (BtVS: S8)

Let me see:

The world can't handle there being more than one empowered woman (possibly two) in it. Such a thing  throws the balance of the entire universe so out of whack that a sentient universe convinces a man to think for the poor little woman, lying to and manipulating her,  while the universe places her in what looks a lot like heat so as to 'birth' an apocalypse that has extreme mommy-issues. 

And the only way to stop this apocalypse is to strip another set of women of their magical powers.

What's wrong with this picture?

Season 8

Jan. 19th, 2011 01:10 pm
shipperx: (BtVS: S8)

Let me see:

The world can't handle there being more than one empowered woman (possibly two) in it. Such a thing  throws the balance of the entire universe so out of whack that a sentient universe convinces a man to think for the poor little woman, lying to and manipulating her,  while the universe places her in what looks a lot like heat so as to 'birth' an apocalypse that has extreme mommy-issues. 

And the only way to stop this apocalypse is to strip another set of women of their magical powers.

What's wrong with this picture?

Season 8

Jan. 19th, 2011 01:10 pm
shipperx: (BtVS: S8)

Let me see:

The world can't handle there being more than one empowered woman (possibly two) in it. Such a thing  throws the balance of the entire universe so out of whack that a sentient universe convinces a man to think for the poor little woman, lying to and manipulating her,  while the universe places her in what looks a lot like heat so as to 'birth' an apocalypse that has extreme mommy-issues. 

And the only way to stop this apocalypse is to strip another set of women of their magical powers.

What's wrong with this picture?
shipperx: (Default)
[livejournal.com profile] green_maia  was asking about BtVS meta and that brought to mind the old fan-project "Spike Thesis" based on the Watcher named Lydia announcing  "I wrote my thesis on Spike."  At the time, several of us got together and wrote the thesis for her.  Alas, both of the links where it was stored are now defunct.  So I thought I'd poke around yahoogroups and I see that the group is still there, and the files are still there (though I'm not sure whether they were the final product).  I'm wondering whether I should contact Klytemnestra, who I know is still around LJ, and ask if she has the final copy anywhere or whether it's okay to snag the old files.  It seems a shame for all of that to simply evaporate.

And Rahirah has provided the link:  www.scribd.com/doc/16266234/Spike-Thesis  (wonder if I should download and save that somewhere just in case it goes missing).
shipperx: (Default)
[livejournal.com profile] green_maia  was asking about BtVS meta and that brought to mind the old fan-project "Spike Thesis" based on the Watcher named Lydia announcing  "I wrote my thesis on Spike."  At the time, several of us got together and wrote the thesis for her.  Alas, both of the links where it was stored are now defunct.  So I thought I'd poke around yahoogroups and I see that the group is still there, and the files are still there (though I'm not sure whether they were the final product).  I'm wondering whether I should contact Klytemnestra, who I know is still around LJ, and ask if she has the final copy anywhere or whether it's okay to snag the old files.  It seems a shame for all of that to simply evaporate.

And Rahirah has provided the link:  www.scribd.com/doc/16266234/Spike-Thesis  (wonder if I should download and save that somewhere just in case it goes missing).
shipperx: (Default)
[livejournal.com profile] green_maia  was asking about BtVS meta and that brought to mind the old fan-project "Spike Thesis" based on the Watcher named Lydia announcing  "I wrote my thesis on Spike."  At the time, several of us got together and wrote the thesis for her.  Alas, both of the links where it was stored are now defunct.  So I thought I'd poke around yahoogroups and I see that the group is still there, and the files are still there (though I'm not sure whether they were the final product).  I'm wondering whether I should contact Klytemnestra, who I know is still around LJ, and ask if she has the final copy anywhere or whether it's okay to snag the old files.  It seems a shame for all of that to simply evaporate.

And Rahirah has provided the link:  www.scribd.com/doc/16266234/Spike-Thesis  (wonder if I should download and save that somewhere just in case it goes missing).
shipperx: (Default)
:
So, I'm trying to understand the various Allie and Jeanty Q&A's:


*      In the comics we see Twangel cheering on the anti-Slayer crowd, urging his followers to find stuff to turn people against Slayers, turning up the heat on  the persecution of Slayers, and Twangel announcing that he had to do these things in order  'to bring Buffy low' ( to get her super-special super powers), so he beat Satsu  and plays 'general on the sidelines' figure at the 'epic' battle that kills hundreds of Slayers.


*     Then we get the about-face and are told that Twangel hasn't actually harmed anyone.  He's been trying to help (squints really had to see how.  Still have nothing.  We just need to take on faith that without his invisible interference things would have been worse than they are and worse than the unknown alternative... that we also didn't see.)
 
 
*      But we still had that Twangel had to don the mask to 'bring her low' [though apparently, according to the Q&A and Twangle's 'explanation,'  he actually didn't do anything to accomplish that goal and was secretly 'helping' -- in direct opposition to his stated goal (and even though we never see him helping the slayers) ]  in order to bring about Twilight.


*      Except now Jeanty tells us that Twangel didn't know that Twilight meant space-frakking or the death of the world or... well, let's see....

Looks like Angel basically didn't know anything-- not what Twilight was, how it was activated, what it involved, what it meant, or what it did (nothing wrong with volunteering for a mission like that!).  He did, however, know that it was 'better' than the alternative (whatever that was). So, um... he 'knew'  the alternative was 'worse' than the Twilight that he had no understanding of ... because a talking dog told him so.  Makes perfect sense, right?  Who couldn't be persuaded by that?  He's not stupid at all!  And besides, he didn't actually do anything except the helping stuff that we didn't see.


*      So in pursuing the creation of the Twilight  [that he didn't know what it was but had decided  to  'bring about' by doing ... something (though we're not entirely sure what... which is okay because he had no idea what it would be either) ]

Well, anyway, after he did or didn't do whatever it was he thought he needed to do (but he didn't know what he actually needed to do) to bring about Twilight (whatever he thought that might be), we -- and he -- see that it's destroying the world.  So how does he react?  Twangel wants to stay in his special world even though he can see that it's bringing about the end of the world.  He even gives the circular logic of the present universe being replaced, but Scoobs, who are in the world that is being replaced, would be okay... somehow.  In the dead, replaced world that's coming apart at the seams.  

 
Makes perfect sense, right?  (  Huh?  )
 
 
*    And it's only because Buffy was going back to the world, leaving him in Twilight alone, that Angel decided to go back to the world that was being destroyed, that he didn't seem particularly bothered by it being destroyed (because he wasn't willing to help it until Buffy made him do it) but apparently -- we're now told -- he had no idea was going to be destroyed (other than his standing there witnessing its destruction and not caring very much).  In summary, he didn't actually know what 'bringing about Twilight' actually meant, so he didn't actually intend any of what he did (whatever that was that we're still not clear about).  And he did it just 'cause a talking dog told him to.


*    Then we get Twangel being taken over by Twilight so we can be extra doubly sure that he's really, most sincerely not in control over what he does at the end...even though he's not responsible for any of the rest of it either. 

 
So, let me sum up Twangel's 'character arc' of Season 8:

Angel didn't know anything.   He didn't do anything.  And anything he did do or it looks like he did, he's not actually responsible for except for the 'helping' stuff that we didn't see.  But he's gonna feel really bad about... something (not that he did anything, knew anything, or was actually responsible for anything) so feel really bad for the guy, okay? 

Great character arc, huh.


I give you Peggy... )
shipperx: (Default)
It's been interesting reading some of the reactions to the last comic. I've been fascinated by the ones who keep speculating that someone needs to come pick up the pieces of Buffy and put her back together again (Candidates generally seem to be Xander or Spike). Am I the only one whose reaction is... no? I think there have already been enough problems with the comics what with the apparent source of the problem being that Buffy screwed things up by empowering more than just one woman in the world. Somehow this 'threw off the balance'. Then we have guys trying to make decisions for Buffy behind her back. And we have things like Willow summoning up some earth magic phallic root to penetrate one of their enemies while she struggles against a literal vagina dentata. The feminist cred isn't as strong as it used to be. Plus there's the fact that Buffy actually needs to learn something from this four years long series of bad decisions.

And, at the risk of being labeled a 'hater' I have to think that the problem that needs to be addressed in the wake of Season 8 is the problem that is Buffy. I don't mean that in a hater sense. It's just if the character is ever going to be allowed to grow up (something I'm far from certain that Joss has any interest in doing), but if the character is ever to grow up, now is the time to put up or shut up about it.

This got me to thinking of the character arc of Season 1-2 of Being Erica. I actually liked how they book-ended Season 1 and Season 2. For those who never watched or don't know about the show, it's a female protagonist in magical time-travel therapy... and it's more interesting than weird as it sounds.

The series starts with the heroine, Erica Strange, having an incredibly shitty day, she's dumped by her boyfriend and she also gets fired. This is bookended at the end of Season 2 when in the finale Erica is fired (again) and also breaks up with her boyfriend. But, it's actually a quite good ending. I enjoyed it and thought it was great, because the point was that what's changed between the first episode and the Season 2 finale wasn't so much Erica's circumstances but the character herself. She was in roughly the same circumstances, but this time she was okay. It was all good.

In the first episode the job she was fired from was just the latest in a long series of stop-gap jobs and the boyfriend who dumped her was just yet another bad relationship coming to a bad close. Erica is directionless and lost. Over the course of the show (and therapy) she's allowed to learn from her mistakes. So, in Ep 1 she's fired and in Season 2's finale she's fired, but she's not directionless any more. She knows what she wants and she takes the chance, partnering up with a friend to launch their own business. She now has a direction. And while the break-up in the first episode had her going into the usual meltdown over being dumped, the breakup with Season 2 boyfriend was a good thing. In Season 1 she was being dumped in a dysfunctional relationship. Since then she actually 'got' the guy that she always thought she wanted. Turns out, the dream "Mr. Right" was just a human being, the kind with his own wants and needs and flaws. He really was a nice guy. She wasn't disillusioned by him, but she had to give up the fantasy and admit to herself that just because he's the guy she always wanted, that doesn't mean that the relationship actually works for her (or for him). They don't really want the same things in life. So they break up, in a honest and caring fashion, because she's strong enough to no longer cling to fairy tales, to not need a prince charming to rescue her, and to look for a relationship that will fulfill both her and her partner's needs. This break-up was a good thing.

So why do I bring this up with Buffy. The point I took from the Being Erica arc was that the problem wasn't just a matter of circumstances. Her circumstances and in Season 2 were roughly the the same as in Episode 1. The problem had been in and the change had been in Erica. It wasn't what was around her, it was her. Her learning from her mistakes, allowing herself to develop and move forward, gives her an entirely different outlook. In Episode 1 she was devestated. In the Season 2 finale, she was actually in a really good place... despite that in both instances she was unemployed and single.

So when I say that the problem is Buffy. It isn't in a haterade sense. It's that no character is ever going to fix her story for her. No character will ever fulfill her. No character will solve her loneliness, her lack of connection, her misery, etc. No character but her. No character needs to pick Buffy up and put her back together again. No character but her. (I just don't know that I trust Joss or Dark Horse to tell that story.)

[ETA: And I know that it's easy to reference that Erica has her therapist. I wouldn't be against Buffy having one of those too. (Actually I've thought that since Season 6). But I think the time for mentors for Buffy is over.]

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