PDA

View Full Version : Buffy 8.23 "Predators and Prey" Spoiler Discussion



KingofCretins
04-03-09, 08:45 PM
Buffy was in an untenable position. The enemy held one of her friends captive. She could give up her friend's life and thwart the enemy's plan, or she could defer her chance to avert the threat to later, even though others would be endangered, and save the person close to her. She decided, against all utilitarian pieties, to save her friend and hope for the best that they could stop the eviil later.

More proof of how amoral, selfish, and cut off Buffy has become in Season 8 (to hear her critics)? No -- a short plot synopsis of 3.19 "Choices", when Buffy traded their first real chance to stop the Ascension, maybe their only chance, to save Willow. Buffy at her most morally clear and vital, many would say. AND, it's a short plot sypnopsis of 8.23 "Predators and Prey" as well.

This issue, which seems to not do a lot of other things, makes unambiguously clear that Andrew *is* part of Buffy's circle, is an ally. It's his "Family", really. And in that, it's pretty fun. He makes mistakes, he even misleads Buffy, but at its core, he is trying to prove he has a place with her and her friends and she assures him that he does. The geeky bonding between them is actually pretty funny. And it sets the tone in which Buffy continually undermines our expectations of how she will react to Andrew. She doesn't yell at him about babbling. She doesn't despise him for lying about the Ragna demon. It speaks well of her -- she's giving him the same benefit of the doubt for lying that they all gave Tara in "Family", that she's given Xander, Willow, Giles, Dawn, and that they've all given her. "Get used to screwing up for good reasons," Buffy tells him, "it's what we do."

Some funny Andrew things -- he's wearing the same type of jacket Angel has in "The Girl in Question", which is of course the latest big fashion. Also, way to incorporate the "Twilight" lingo into the Buffyverse by having Andrew say "Team Angel" and "Team Spike" -- talk about putting that argument in perspective -- and announcing himself for Team Spike because Angel doesn't have an edge.

Buffy and Simone are very amusingly civil with each other. There seems to be an implicit acknowledgement that Simone isn't evil as such -- or, at least, isn't evil for evil's sake. She has a philosophical disagreement, and she's basically taken the same attitude as Genevieve. As such, Buffy mostly debates her on points, and even though they fence, as Slayers will, it doesn't feel urgent or deadly. Simone prevails when she draws a gun on Buffy and then we're back to "Choices" -- Simone's lieutenant has Andrew, who is all Simone wanted. To kill him, to punish him for the offense of being an unworthy authority.

Andrew is willing to give himself up, and Buffy is unwilling to give him up -- because she doesn't walk away from her people. Unfortunately, though, as Andrew's well-trained Italy team points out (respectfully, I should add) to Buffy, they can't fight it out with Simone and her gang *and* get away alive with Andrew. So Buffy has to make the trade -- get all her people out even though it means she's giving up an entire island to Simone and failing to save the homes of the people that lived there.

Big symbolism -- Buffy with a gun (I called this, although not how it played out), and she does fire it (with true aim, making the King fan in me think again that Slayers are born gunslingers), but only to turn Simone's pet demon loose on her.

I was surprised this wasn't the end of the Simone story, but it played out very well. This was a much cleaner, less eyebrow-arching plot than 8.22, and continues to develop this five issue collapse of the Slayers as the champions of the people to their enemies.

Timeline note -- Buffy says she's been friends with Xander "for eight years", so pop culture references or not, we know we're still in that year to year and a half mark after "Chosen", and that Season 8 so far has only taken weeks or months.

NileQT87
04-03-09, 11:05 PM
8 years is early 2005. I'm sorry, but I still don't buy it. It's easier to screw that quote than a whole bunch of other things that have added up. Joss also screwed up once in calculating Dawn's birthday among other things. Keeping track of timelines is probably the continuity error he makes most and FREQUENTLY.

You said that Angel and Spike finally get mentioned. But once again, if it's a jacket reference and an Andrew is a Spike fanboy moment... Kind of underwhelmed. This was such a huge chance for Andrew to come clean and Joss squandered it if that's all the mentions were.

Then again, it took about 5 years for the writers to figure out that the audience wasn't shutting up about Xander's like in Becoming, pt. 2 and had to do something about it (Selfless). It sounds like Damage is going to become the new Becoming.

XavierZane
04-03-09, 11:05 PM
Fantastic issue! Probably the best since the conclusion of WATG. It fleshes out Andrew as a character, strikes a blow to the theory that Buffy is becoming morally repugnant, has action, friendship, genetically-engineered spider-demons, girls with pink hair, lots of geek speak, and a pretty happy ending. What more can you ask for?

This issue was really all about Andrew. And, honestly, I think maybe a little bit about the Andrew haters. There are several moments in this book that seemed to directly counter some of the more popular mantras and arguments of Andrew haters:

1. Andrew isn't really trusted.
2. Andrew hasn't done anything to deserve trust.
3. Andrew isn't one of the inner circle.
4. Andrew isn't capable of leading a squad (he just sits around talking about Lando, he can't control his Slayers, etc).
5. None of the Slayers take Andrew seriously.
6. Andrew is immature/a child/living in a fantasy, and thus is incapable of taking responsibility.
7. Simone going rogue is his fault.
8. Andrew cares only about himself.

etc, etc, etc.

1. Yeah he is.
2. Yeah he has.
3. Yeah he is.
4. Not only is he described a 'kind of a drill sergeant' by Simone, but his Italian squad is portrayed as loyal to him to the extreme.
5. Ditto.
6. I think not. If anything, he takes more responsibility than he needs to.
7. No one else seems to think so. Not even Simone, really. She just doesn't like him.
8. Except he's willing to sacrifice himself for the greater good.

:D:D:D

Unfortunately, this issue only cements my belief that Andrew is about to be brought low. Nex issue will open up with him in bed with Twilight, or killing Dawn, or something.

:cutecry::cutecry::cutecry:

NileQT87
04-03-09, 11:12 PM
Apparently Buffy still hasn't learned that Andrew lied to her (and we know he did) about what was going on during The Girl in Question. Buffy has already told us that she is clueless about the event. Andrew played a rotten, horrible trick on Angel and Spike. That's not trust. Buffy might trust Andrew now, but if she knew the full facts of that event and probably Damage (particularly if Angel's situation and heroic final act against W&H was ever explained to her), the trust would be broken.

KingofCretins
04-03-09, 11:36 PM
The difference between "Becoming" and "Damage" is that in "Becoming" the lie was textual, and in "Damage", the lie is fanon, completely manufactured and not based on the text of the episode. The fans can get as upset as they want for as long as they want about something that fans invented without the writers feeling any pressure to do anything about it.

As for the timeline, the alternative that makes the least sense would be Season 8 sprawling over 2 or more years, since that just completely disrupts the logical flow of the story so far. 8 years would actually be... early 2005, which is about exactly what would follow from a October or November of 2004 start to Season 8. The only things incongruous to that are the pop culture references, which demand the least suspension of disbelief.

NileQT87
04-03-09, 11:51 PM
Actually, there's more wrong with it.

Harmony is the big problem. You don't get a show contract, magazines and a reality show shot overnight. Actually, Soledad is the bigger problem. Dawn's already a centaur when Soledad is called. Reality shows are shot from August to November. Dawn also was in 3 months of college. If Dawn is a normal student, she should start college in fall 2004. 3 months after September is November. It is actually completely impossible to put The Long Way Home through Time of Your Life in November. You simply run out of days. See the issue here?

Okay. So, let's put Dawn in summer school. The good, old, timeline-fixing favorite. Now we can get her out of there in time for September. This means that Time of Your Life must be before the end of November (but not before) and close to Hanukkah. Now we come to the fact that at least 4 episodes of Harmony Bites come after the Soledad episode. Suddenly, we need to be in about late October in production time.

Get where I'm going with this?

This quote is more problematic than a 2-year timespan where all other issues are taken care of. It also makes more sense in a timeline manner for it to be more spread out.

And the events of The Girl in Question are just as problematic with Buffy trusting Andrew as Damage. Damage would just be pain on top of Andrew's PROVEN lies surrounding the decoy Slayer in Rome. We know he lied to Buffy about that already. The question is if Damage has Buffy just as out of the loop as she is about The Girl in Question. The Rome situation alone is a loss in trust.

KingofCretins
05-03-09, 12:14 AM
Any single interview of Joss or any other writer about the Buffyverse would make clear that "natural flow of plot and character development" > "strictures of proper production schedules of reality TV". There's just no organic way to squeeze months and months between the arcs of Season 8 without making it seem like the characters were in emotional suspended animation. Ergo, the banalities of TV show contracts and Dawn's school schedule yield entirely to what flows for the characters. Putting Harmony's show on the fast track = tunnels all around Sunnydale and Los Angeles. Dawn having graduated and being off to college = city planning and police records being accessible on the computer and "Demons Demons Demons". Those are the things that don't matter.

I can't see what is supposed to date "Time of Your Life" to Hannukah, I really don't, let alone what it has to do with Dawn. What tracks with how the characters behave are that it's a few days or a couple weeks at most after "Wolves at the Gate".

XavierZane
05-03-09, 12:17 AM
Get where I'm going with this?

I get that you and many others have completely missed the point of 'comic book time'. Joss stated explicitly at the very beginning of this series that any and all attempts to do what you're doing (i.e. making the story fit a specific number of days) would be impossible. It's not meant to add up. It was never meant to add up.




And the events of The Girl in Question are just as problematic with Buffy trusting Andrew as Damage. Damage would just be pain on top of Andrew's PROVEN lies surrounding the decoy Slayer in Rome. We know he lied to Buffy about that already. The question is if Damage has Buffy just as out of the loop as she is about The Girl in Question. The Rome situation alone is a loss in trust.

How has Andrew lied to Buffy? She knows there's a decoy slayer in Rome. She knows that the decoy is dating the Immortal. She knows that Andrew finds that hilarious for some reason. She's just never asked why he finds it hilarious. She trusts him to run his operation without her looking over his shoulder every second.

KingofCretins
05-03-09, 12:27 AM
At this point, there is nothing left to hang the "Damage" fanon on, at all. As for Andrew concealing Spike's return, that's him doing Spike a favor. As for setting up the decoy with the Immortal, he has a built in defense -- the last he knew, W&H was not on the list of allies, and a cover that would only put them off even more is actually in line with what the purpose of the decoy is, to maintain her cover.

Rowan Hawthorn
05-03-09, 02:26 AM
Reality shows are shot from August to November.

If that's what you're going by, you need to rethink your timeline; there is no "standard shooting schedule" for reality shows, it all depends on the show, and can actually vary even within seasons of the same show:

The current "Survivor: Tocantins" shot between October and December of last year, but "Survivor: China" shot in June to August.

"Amazing Race 12" shot in summer 2007.

"The Real World: Brooklyn" shot in summer 2008.

NileQT87
05-03-09, 02:59 AM
I went by MTV's scheduling (Harmony Bites is on MTV). And those months are Real World: Brooklyn. You actually proved my point. They are all the year before, usually in the Summer/Fall.

We're still left with the fact that Dawn starts college in fall 2004 and was with Kenny for 3 months.

KingofCretins
05-03-09, 03:17 AM
Yep, which lines up perfectly with her being back in Scotland as a giant in October or November.

She's finishing her sophomore year in May 2003. Fall 2003 they put her in a block scheduling school somewhere (we don't know where they are at this point, so we can allow this), she takes her GED (perhaps with some magical assistance from Willow, since getting her out of high school is in their interest), moves up to Berkeley, meets Kenny in early August before school is starting, date in August, date in September, date in October, boom giant, she gets zapped home for her safety and they withdraw her from school.

NileQT87
05-03-09, 03:33 AM
Dawn's age group are those born in 1986. She'd be a freshman in fall 2004, not a sophomore. She was 14 in season 5 (mentioned in Real Me) and was still 14 at the end of the season (mentioned in Tough Love or the whereabouts). Her birthday is in late-May or early/mid-June.

I don't think you realize how many days you have to count out of events that take place. It doesn't fit in October/November.

KingofCretins
05-03-09, 03:36 AM
Except that she *was* a freshman in Season 6, whether the trivial details of the timeline support it or not. It's the story that prevails, not the idle fact and trappings of school admittance and TV show production. Taking her stories of school and her shifting age in generally, the most logical conclusion is that she came to the new Sunnydale High as a sophomore, either changed from consolidation, districting, or a school that's just grades 10 through 12.

NileQT87
05-03-09, 03:39 AM
In fall 2002, where she started at the newly rebuilt Sunnydale High (having transfered from the school we saw in season 5), she was a junior in high school. In fall 2004, she is a freshman in college. There's been many high schools and colleges mentioned as being in Sunnydale other than Sunnydale High.

Rowan Hawthorn
05-03-09, 04:24 AM
I went by MTV's scheduling (Harmony Bites is on MTV). And those months are Real World: Brooklyn. You actually proved my point. They are all the year before, usually in the Summer/Fall.

sigh... "Survivor: China" aired beginning in September of the same year that it filmed in June - August. "Real World:Brooklyn" was being shot in July 2008 for a 2009 premiere. "A Shot At Love with Tila Tequila" premiered on October 9, 2007, and was filming in September of that year (only a month before.) "The Hills", Season Four, started shooting sometime in late April or early May 2008 for an August 2008 premiere. 'The Real World Philadelphia' was canceled March 16, 2004, three weeks before shooting was supposed to start (that would be April...)

Shall I dig up some more? I'm not trying to be argumentative, I'm just pointing out that there is no such thing as a "standard" schedule that applies to every show - on MTV or anywhere else. It's pretty safe to make general statements, as the majority of shows of a given genre on any given network probably do have fairly similar schedules, but as soon as you apply that to ALL shows, exceptions start popping up.

Rowan Hawthorn
05-03-09, 04:38 AM
In fall 2002, where she started at the newly rebuilt Sunnydale High (having transfered from the school we saw in season 5), she was a junior in high school.

In "All The Way", which aired in October of 2001, she was a freshman:

JUSTIN: So you're like, what, a sophomore?
DAWN: (laughs) I wish.
JUSTIN: Uhhh, freshman.
DAWN: Yep, way down there at the bottom of the rung. Actually? Kinda under those little rubber feet they use to keep the ladder steady.

This would be just a few weeks after the beginning of the school year. "Lessons" aired at the beginning of the next school year in September 2002. Unless she got skipped a grade, she'd be a sophomore, which means she wouldn't normally graduate high school until around May of 2005.

NileQT87
05-03-09, 04:42 AM
She is said twice to be 14 in season 5 [Real Me and Tough Love (?)] with the exception of one incident where she turned 10 in 1997 rather than 11, and then we got the season 6 episode using the alternate age.

We've got multiple times for both a 1986 and 1987 birthdate. If you prefer 1987, Dawn doesn't start college until fall 2005. Which puts an even bigger crimp in Joss' timeline.

cheryl4ba
05-03-09, 05:05 AM
I really liked this issue quite a bit. Andrew wasn't as grating as he usually is and had some pretty funny moments. Buffy's response to Andrew was that of dealing with an immature little brother that you are proud of, on the rare occurance he does something smarter than usual. Still can't shake the feeling that there is a lot more going on than what's on the surface, surrounding Andrew. I can't wait to find out how all these puzzle pieces fit together.

Andrew is still lying to Buffy. His reasons are understandable. We'll have to wait and see if he takes Buffy's trust and does the right thing from here on out or if there are more lies coming.

I got the impression that Buffy did not know Andrew met Angel until he just told her. Why else make that statement. That he met Angel. Had Buffy known about Damage, she would have already known that he met Angel. I have a feeling Giles is going to be in more hot water about that situation before all is said and done. If Buffy didn't know about Andrew being sent to get Dana, the question in my mind becomes, how did she know about Spike being alive?

It was very interesting that Andrew mentioned Spike in a positive light and then in the next breath referenced Buffy cutting her hair as a good thing, which was a reference to Buffy's feelings surrounding Spuffy in season 6. Goes to show that Andrew is still living in his fantasy world OR it means more than that and we just don't have the information needed to figure it all out yet. Speculating is fun though, so no complaints here.

This issue was loads better than the last, imo.

Rowan Hawthorn
05-03-09, 05:38 AM
She is said twice to be 15 in season 5 [Real Me and Tough Love (?)] with the exception of one incident where she turned 10 in 1997 rather than 11, and then we got the season 6 episode using the alternate age.

We've got multiple times for both a 1986 and 1987 birthdate. If you prefer 1987, Dawn doesn't start college until fall 2005. Which puts an even bigger crimp in Joss' timeline.

From "Real Me", October 2000:
BUFFY: Wait. So what you're saying is if I can get an acceptable babysitter here before you leave, I can go patrol?
DAWN: (OS) Babysitter? I'm fourteen! I'm old enough to *be* a babysitter!

From "Blood Ties" February 2001:
DAWN: How old am I now?
JOYCE: You're fourteen, sweetheart, you know that.

From "Tough Love", May 2001:
DAWN: Yeah? Those monks put grades K through eight in my head. Can't we just wait and see if they drop nine in there too? (This is almost at the very end of the school year; no point in waiting to see if "they drop nine in there" if she's already about to finish anyway, so she must be in grade eight at this point.)

This makes Dawn's birthday sometime near the beginning of the school year, maybe just before, maybe just after, and consistent with her being both 15 and a freshman in Season 6's "All The Way". She's also referred to as being 15 at least twice during "Once More With Feeling".

The earliest she could be ready for college if she goes through a full four years of high school would be summer 2005, which would mess with the stated time for Season 8. Personally, I turned 14 just after the start of my freshman high school year - but I also took college classes between my junior and senior year, and between my senior year of high school and starting college full-time. So, there are a lot of possibilities. Given Sunnydale's demise, though, I'd think the most likely thing would have been for her to get her GED early and not even return to high school - we've seen that she's a very good student when she applies herself, so it's entirely possible for her to do that and get into college ahead of where she normally would.

NileQT87
05-03-09, 05:52 AM
(Wait. Sorry. Gak. But hey, I knew the episodes. Agh. I'm tired. I was right with the exception of a typo.)

14 in 2000/2001 = 1986, which means Dawn would be 13 in Real Me/Tough Love in the 1987 version of the date. My point still stands. If she were 15 (my typo) she'd be born in 1985 (which MT was--I was thinking of MT's age, I think).

14 is a 9th grader. That's already a freshman. If she's a freshman in season 6, she'd have been 13 in season 5. There's definitely still two dates in question for her age.

Granted, I was in college at 15 1/2 and graduated high school (tested out as a senior while doing self-study/charter school) at 16 1/2, so I'm not really one to talk about what age Dawn should start college, but it is still something that Joss didn't think through completely.

I still think 2006-2008 is the most working timeline. So far we have multiple canon reasons why 2006-2008 is the only one that works (Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, Heath Ledger, Battlestar Galactica, Mad Men with Don Draper starting in 2007, Dawn's age, some sketchy timeline work with how long it takes Harmony to get everything going and Dawn being a centaur that may not mix with the Soledad timeline, etc...) and 1 reference against it that is pro-2004-2005.

And there is nothing but that one comment that says it couldn't take 2 years to tell this story. It makes way more sense to me if it was because the stuff happening takes way more time than a fall through spring season.

KingofCretins
05-03-09, 07:29 AM
I can't think of anything making less sense than the idea that months... and months... are going by between Season 8 arcs. There's just no narrative flow to it at all. How many *months* do you figure Willow took no action to follow up on her lead about New York between 8.15 and 8.16? It just doesn't make sense. There have no been two issues of Season 8 so far that it would make narrative sense for more than... a month to have gone by. Tops. And arcs like "Wolves at the Gate" and "Time of Your Life" clearly run more or less continuously. Really, if you ignore the insignificant trappings of TV schedules and the pop culture references that we've been told repeatedly are not being written with any intent to establish a timeline, there's no way you can read 8.23 as being more than 6 months, at the extreme, from 8.01.

As for the time between 7.22 and 8.01... we've been told that pretty plainly, too, and despite the details absolutely nobody writing this book or making the televised seasons care about (when school years start, for instance), it's been confirmed in dialogue to be about a year and a half. The timeline actually fits Dawn being a freshman at Berkeley in the fall of 2004 before withdrawing on account of turning into a giant.

Comic book time is now a fact of the Buffyverse. We've been given context to establish when this is in relation to the televised season, but pop culture references will *not* have any significance in determining time from now on, and only the behavior of the characters and what works for the story will dictate how much time is passing in the comics.

Rowan Hawthorn
05-03-09, 01:35 PM
14 is a 9th grader. That's already a freshman.

Well, except for this:


From "Tough Love", May 2001:
DAWN: Yeah? Those monks put grades K through eight in my head. Can't we just wait and see if they drop nine in there too? (This is almost at the very end of the school year; no point in waiting to see if "they drop nine in there" if she's already about to finish anyway, so she must be in grade eight at this point.)

14 is 9th grader only if something doesn't screw up the schedule (like birth dates.) My birthday is in September, which is after the school year starts, but I moved into the school district before the school year started but after the cut-off date and wasn't allowed to enter school until the next year. Which should have made me turning fifteen in the 9th grade, except that I was skipped up a grade later. Realistically? Yeah, it's a continuity error. But there's just too many possible ways to make it work in the Real World for it to matter.

Stackhouse
05-03-09, 06:13 PM
Comic book time is now a fact of the Buffyverse. We've been given context to establish when this is in relation to the televised season, but pop culture references will *not* have any significance in determining time from now on, and only the behavior of the characters and what works for the story will dictate how much time is passing in the comics.

In the Xenaverse, we had a name for something like this - a rubber-band timeline. One week, Xena would help David do battle with Goliath, the next week, she'd be helping to end the Trojan War, and three years later, she'd be whispering doubts into Brutus's ear to spur him to assassinate Julius Caesar. We didn't get a strict timeline bringing us through Greek and Roman history - we got wonderful adventures with the conflicted heroines and their various sidekicks and nemeses.

In my own humble opinion, there are far worse problems with Season Eight's storyline than its lack of adherence to a linear timeline. But that's neither here nor there.

NileQT87
05-03-09, 06:28 PM
K-8 were dropped in her head already. 9th, the one she's already in, she wants to see if they drop it in there, too, rather than attend it (which means she's in it--the school year isn't over). She actually says that she's already finished 8th, which proves that she's NOT a freshman in season 6.

KingofCretins
05-03-09, 06:36 PM
If she's a sophomore in Season 6, that's great -- it only makes it *more* easy to accept the timeline the writers are presenting us without having to concoct imaginary months and months between issues and arcs, and makes it easier to *also* accept when the writers tell us they're basically just too lazy to date their pop culture references to 2004/2005.

-beardo-
05-03-09, 07:22 PM
The comics and the show call for a suspension of belief. Everything does.

I am one of the people that believes that Season 8 is currently taking place in early 2005 which fits in with the reference in this issue.

Alot of the comics feature flash backs for instance alot of the story in the chain was a flash back.


So lets say that Season 8 started in November.
It seems Dawn has just turned into a giant, seeing as Willow doesn't know about it until she turns up.
Lets say some of Harmony's issue takes place before season 8.

-Harmony proposes the show-August 2004
-Dawn Turns Giant, Long Way Home-November-2004
-The Chain-November 2004
-No Future For You-November-December 2004
-Anywhere But Here-December 2004
-A Beautiful Sunset-January 2005
-Time of Your Life-January 2005
-Soledad's Story-January 2005
-Harmony Bites Airs-January 2005
-After These Messages-February 2005
-Harmonic Divergence (Scenes of People watching Harmony feed on Soledad)-February 2005
-Swell-March 2005
-Predators and Prey-March 2005
-Safe-March 2005
-Living Doll-March 2005
-Oz Arc-April 2005
-Penultimate Arc-April 2005
-Last Arc-May 2005

Like i said before the show calls for a suspension of belief.

The Pop Culture references do not show the timeline. We just have to accept that things that happen in pop culture happen earlier in the Buffyverse e.g. Casino Royale etc. If we followed the rules of the real world then there would not be vampires or demons, its not a real world, its fake, accept that things happen differently.

NileQT87
05-03-09, 07:26 PM
Soledad's story doesn't happen in January. Harmony Bites wouldn't still be filming. And if Soledad's story happened in November with at least 4 episodes left to air, we'd be in April or May just at the airing of that episode.

Also, completely impossible to count days and squeeze that many days into November/December. Absolutely impossible if you've actually DONE the counting.

Anon
05-03-09, 07:27 PM
If she's a sophomore in Season 6, that's great -- it only makes it *more* easy to accept the timeline the writers are presenting us without having to concoct imaginary months and months between issues and arcs, and makes it easier to *also* accept when the writers tell us they're basically just too lazy to date their pop culture references to 2004/2005.If it was just the pop culture references, that would be one thing. However, everything seems to be happening faster than I would have thought possible, even in the Buffyverse. I ignore it for the most part, but whenever the issue of timing is brought to my attention, it strikes me as a flaw in the premise behind the season.

KingofCretins
05-03-09, 08:09 PM
I honestly can't think of anything less important and less likely to be used by the writers, or intended to be used by fans, as a basis for establishing a timeline for Season 8 than the usual production schedule of reality television shows for MTV. I mean, just say it out loud. Of all the things to refuse to suspend disbelief on, can the shooting schedule for "Harmony Bites" be a more inconsequential one?

Beardo's timeline looks pretty solid -- it's actually consistent with how the characters behave and how the plot has been developing, which are the *only* truly relevant considerations.

"The Chain" doesn't date itself and doesn't have to. Likewise, when Harmony pitched her show and how long it was on the air is irrelevant, it won't effect the plot, so it doesn't matter. For argument's sake, MTV was trying a live reality format.

I figure it's like this --

Early November 2004 -- Dawn is turned into a giant, is brought to Scotland, withdraws form classes.

Mid November 2004 -- 8.01.

At most a week later (late November 2004)-- 8.02, 8.03, 8.04 all within about a day.

At most a month or so later (late December 2004) -- 8.06, 8.07, 8.08, 8.09 all within 3 or 4 days.

At most a week or so later (late December 2004, early January 2005) -- 8.10.

At most a week or two later, but before Buffy's birthday (early to mid January 2005) -- 8.11.

At most a couple days later, if that (early to mid January 2005) -- 8.12, 8.13, 8.14, 8.15 all within 2-3 days. The decision to sleep with Satsu was impulsive and wouldn't have been something Buffy'd have sat on for months or weeks.

At most a couple weeks later (late January, early February 2005) -- 8.16, 8.17, 8.18, 8.19 all within about 36 hours. Again, dictated by natural character development -- no way nobody's have brought up Renee for months, no way Willow'd have sat on her lead for months.

So at the absolute most, 4 months have gone by between 8.01 and 8.19.

At least a couple weeks, no more than two months later (late February 2005 to early April 2005) -- 8.20. The gang has had time to relocate, Buffy has been hunting a lot, but is still working through what happened in "Time of Your Life".

So, at the absolute most, 4.5 to 6 months between 8.01 and 8.20.

The important thing to remember about 8.21 is that the ONLY thing in this book that should affect what we do in terms of the overall timeline is the end of the issue -- when the Slayers and the world see Soledad's failed attack. Everything else in the issue (how long Soledad's story is, Harmony's production schedule) is basically irrelevant. Although, purely from a cultural standpoint, it was probably a few months back in Season 8 that Harmony bit Andy Dick, and it just wasn't big enough news for it to get on the Slayers' radar. But the important part is Soledad's attack, because that's when the Buffy's situation changed. For argument's sake, let's say it's been two weeks since 8.20.

So, two weeks later (mid March, late April 2005) -- the conclusion of 8.21.

Within a few days (call it late April 2005) -- 8.22. This would fit with the idea of a review of Satsu as a squad leader. I'm speculating completely, but it would be about a 90 day review.

Within a couple weeks (call it early to mid May 2005) -- 8.23. Just in general, it's best to assume that the least amount of time believable has passed between issue to issue and episode to episode.

All told, the "minimum" from 8.01 to 8.23 I'd be able to reconcile would be about 6 months, and the maximum would be about 8.

Rowan Hawthorn
05-03-09, 08:10 PM
K-8 were dropped in her head already. 9th, the one she's already in, she wants to see if they drop it in there, too, rather than attend it (which means she's in it--the school year isn't over).
The episode aired in May, meaning that it's within about four weeks or less of the end of school - it doesn't make sense for her to be saying she wants to know whether the monks are going to drop in the school year she's that close to finishing, she'd already know that by this time


She actually says that she's already finished 8th, which proves that she's NOT a freshman in season 6.
Where did she actually say she'd already finished 8th? Not in any of the dialogue I pulled from the transcripts.


Soledad's story doesn't happen in January. Harmony Bites wouldn't still be filming.
And again, you're assuming that every show MTV films will follow the same shooting & airing schedule. I've already shown that's not the case, that they can vary widely, so what evidence is there for the idea that "Harmony Bites" couldn't possibly be filming in January?

KingofCretins
05-03-09, 08:12 PM
Rowan, I agree with Nile on the line from "Tough Love" -- that line only makes sense to me if Dawn is talking about the grade she is in as the one she wants grades dropped into her for. She had K-8 programmed, her performance now (in "Tough Love") is what's in jeopardy, that's what she's not studying for or taking seriously, so logically those are the grades she is hoping can get programmed in.

Emmie
05-03-09, 09:03 PM
Agreed with King and Nile. If she already has K-8, that implies that she's already completed 8th grade.

But this seems like the most pointless thing to be arguing about Season 8 regarding the timeline. It's not going to line up perfectly. And all the pop culture references I just view as anachronistic.

I think the most simple answer I've read of this is that our 2009 is Buffy's 2005, yet both are still in the present. Just view Buffy's world as a place where time moves a bit differently, especially now that it's become a comic and the time passing is going to be moving along even slower.

Rowan Hawthorn
05-03-09, 09:06 PM
Rowan, I agree with Nile on the line from "Tough Love" -- that line only makes sense to me if Dawn is talking about the grade she is in as the one she wants grades dropped into her for. She had K-8 programmed, her performance now (in "Tough Love") is what's in jeopardy, that's what she's not studying for or taking seriously, so logically those are the grades she is hoping can get programmed in.

I guess, but since she's all but finished with that year, I didn't see it as her hoping to get the *grades* programmed in, but the *knowledge.* I took it as her wanting to blow off the end-of-year work and hope that she'd magically get the programming she needed to get through the next year without having to work these last three or four weeks. By May, she should have been through with everything but finals; I guess she could have been hoping she'd get the finals "dropped in", but there again, I'd think she'd know by this time whether she was going to get any kind of "gimme" for the current year. Maybe she was just grasping at straws.

NileQT87
05-03-09, 11:40 PM
Yep, you just ran yourself into a trap, KoC.


At most a couple weeks later (late January, early February 2005) -- 8.16, 8.17, 8.18, 8.19 all within about 36 hours. Again, dictated by natural character development -- no way nobody's have brought up Renee for months, no way Willow'd have sat on her lead for months.

Except Time of Your Life takes place BEFORE HANUKKAH. Hanukkah 2004 was from December 8th to December 15th.

As I said: it doesn't fit.

The Long Way Home through Time of Your Life is a pretty frickin' tight fit in one month and a week.

KingofCretins
05-03-09, 11:52 PM
Two things on the Hannukah "issue" --

1) It's at least a 50/50 chance that Willow was just being glib. People will say that about Christmas presents in frickin' APRIL.

2) Even if we, for no good reason, rigidly demand that "Time of Your Life" has to be just prior to and not after Hannukah, all that tells us reasonably is to *condense* the timeline, and bring *all* of Season 8 to a stretch of time between late October/early November 2004 and early to mid-December 2004 -- which is perfectly doable.

The one thing that there is no reason to do, the thing that makes no sense at all, is to create months and months of downtime from, for instance, Willow getting a magical clue about New York and actually doing anything to follow up on it.

NileQT87
06-03-09, 12:45 AM
3 months after school starts in September isn't November. September-October = 1 month. October-November = 2 months. November-December = 3 months.

The Long Way Home through Time of Your Life does not happen in 8 days.

Thus, Dawn wasn't changed into a giant at Berkeley during the fall semester.

I knew I had a reason why I didn't map out Dawn's change as happening in the fall semester.

KingofCretins
06-03-09, 01:01 AM
You're just way too caught up in the minutia when determining this timeline stuff. Semester starts? Registration? Reality show shooting norms? They are not in any way shape or form the standard to which the writers are holding the logic or flow of this story. Whereas you are placing them far, far above what would make sense based on the characters and their behavior and the plot. I'm sure Joss would tell you that, for his part, that's completely backwards. And Cal-Berkeley really starts their fall semester in September? That's late for high school, let alone college. My undergrad had two summer terms and still started fall semester in the middle of August.

vampmogs
06-03-09, 01:02 AM
Has anyone else read the issue? I haven't managed to get my hands on a copy yet and would love to hear more thoughts about it?

NileQT87
06-03-09, 01:32 AM
Okay. U.C. Berkeley appears to be the week before labor day rather than the day after labor day (standard). The semester began on August 24 and instruction began on August 30, 2004. 3 months later is still the last week of November. Now you just have to fit 19 issues into 2 weeks.

http://registrar.berkeley.edu/?PageID=stucal0405.html

I know you think this is minutia, but it proves my point. And from a storytelling perspective, it makes sense that this took a few years to build up.

Stanford appears to be 2 weeks into September for undergraduate arrivals with instruction starting the last week of September.

http://registrar.stanford.edu/academic_calendar/

modifiedblind
06-03-09, 01:49 AM
I don't usually post, I'm more of a lurker like some other people but... I think the whole time line discussion has gotten a bit out of hand, no? Can't we just enjoy a continuation of a series we all loved, can't we all just agree to disagree!? I enjoy reading about people's opinions of the actual comic, theories that come from reading each new issue. This thread has been taken over by what seems to me, the most ridiculous discussion ever, maybe I'm in the minority but, I just can't see how what year it is matters THIS MUCH. *shrug*

And Nile... You really went to the trouble of looking up when registration begins for Berkeley? ................. Is there anyway to take reputation points away from someone? :D I'm just saying... I agree with King. Where's Sue? Feels like I haven't heard from her in a bit.


PS: I loved this issue, loved Andrew and Buffy's interaction. Not sure how I feel about Buffy leaves the slayers in the room with the Spider demon thing.. It's sort of reminiscent of when Angel locked the W&H lawyers in with Darla and Drusilla, not quite as bad as that but... in the same vein.

NileQT87
06-03-09, 02:00 AM
I'm a nerd. Okay? The only time I ever gave up on dating something was 1,000 days after the Advent of Septus. And believe me, I tried to figure out if that meant anything. I looked under every nook and cranny of the Internet. I have Google skills like you wouldn't believe. You might not be aware of my calendar project.

You think public school schedules are too geeky? Oh, boy, do you not know me. Try finding the air date of Carmen on Ice with Brian Boitano.

It might not be pointy to Joss, but it's pointy to me.

vampmogs
06-03-09, 02:05 AM
PS: I loved this issue, loved Andrew and Buffy's interaction. Not sure how I feel about Buffy leaves the slayers in the room with the Spider demon thing.. It's sort of reminiscent of when Angel locked the W&H lawyers in with Darla and Drusilla, not quite as bad as that but... in the same vein.

I've heard mixed readings of that. Pat says the same thing as you and makes the comparison between what Angel did in 'Reunion' but then thinks it's odd it wasn't presented really darkly after she does it. Elsewhere I've seen people state rather flippantly that she did it so she'd have a chance to get away, they didn't really seem to consider it as dark at all.

I haven't been able to read the issue yet but it seems like a really interesting moment. Didn’t she leave it in a room with a handful of slayers? Shouldn’t really be that much of a problem for them would it? Whereas the lawyers stood no chance against Darla or Dru.



It might not be pointy to Joss, but it's pointy to me.

But Nile you've just kinda hit the nail on the head there. It's not important to Joss so he hasn't structured his story with it in mind, so there's fat chance of anyone else being able to do it either.

I agree with King, what make sense for the story is more important what makes sense for the timeline in our world. There's no logic behind setting these arcs months apart when as King says, it'd mean things like Buffy Willow not bringing up Renee for months, Willow not following up on her lead for months ect. That doesn't make sense for the story which is more important than MTV scheduling dates.

allthings
07-03-09, 03:05 PM
i really enjoyed the issue:D

i was expectin andrew to annoy the hell out of me but i found myself warming to him like buffy did. i loved when they geek-bonded <3 (a favourite activity of mine lol)

to people saying buffy and the spider was like what angel did in 'Reunion' I would have to disagree. yes it is pretty similar but angel locked the lawyers in that wine cellar where as buffy released the spider. i dunno if im in the grey/black and white zone but simone and co were bad and so were the lawyers so they had it coming. there was no reasonin with simone/w+h so ....yeah, let em be eaten lol.
neither were helping against the fight, they're just adding to it.

sueworld
07-03-09, 03:35 PM
I found this one to be an okay issue, bordering on dull. It also seemed to be an even quicker read then normal, and for season 8 thats saying something as for me at least they hardly take anytime to go through. I'm afraid I've never had a great love for Andrews character. I don't hate him, but I just find him written as a joke thats gone on for too long. I'm sure Joss and co find him both fascinating and hilarious. Sadly I do not.

Thought Buffy's character came across more likable in this one, and the 'rogue' Slayer clan were reasonably entertaining, but as per not enough was done with them in this. Hopefully that will be rectified as the plot moves on.

sunnydale_alumni
07-03-09, 07:52 PM
Andrew's still on my suspect list for Twilight. This issue didn't change my opinion. Especially when it was revealed that he made the spider demon. He's capable of bringing back a demon, then he could probably make a super-villain outfit, fly round and kick slayer butt. He's romanticized Buffy's life and has absorbed so much James Bond/comic book/sci-fi junk that maybe he thinks he's doing the right thing. Living out some plot from a movie ,comic book, whatever in order to help Buffy because he thinks she's now tarnished her role as 'hero'. Or maybe Riley & the military are the real villains and Andrew was recruited, allowed to create his own Legion of Doom with Warren and Amy unleashing over-the-top vampycats that go "Hail Twilight!".
To me, those vampycats fit into Andrew's world.

Plus, Twilight's outfit...with the boots and the long coat, reads "Team Spike".:lol:

stormwreath
07-03-09, 07:52 PM
The scene where Buffy closes the door to the room, locking a group of people in with a demon, did remind me of 'Reunion' in its staging - and also of 'Potential', where she did something similar. But morally it's more on the level of the latter comparison. She wasn't locking in a bunch of helpless lawyers; she was doing it to 20 fully-armed Slayers and Wiccans. It's actually the demon I feel sorry for. :(

Full review here. (http://stormwreath.livejournal.com/70652.html)

BAF
07-03-09, 08:20 PM
The scene where Buffy closes the door to the room, locking a group of people in with a demon, did remind me of 'Reunion' in its staging - and also of 'Potential', where she did something similar. But morally it's more on the level of the latter comparison. She wasn't locking in a bunch of helpless lawyers; she was doing it to 20 fully-armed Slayers and Wiccans. It's actually the demon I feel sorry for. :(

Full review here. (http://stormwreath.livejournal.com/70652.html)

Nice review of the issue.I saw the discussion going on about Andrew's line to Buffy about Spike and Angel and the debate on Buffy's reaction or whether there was a reaction and if it means anything.

For what it's worth,Scott Allie has been doing a question and answer session over at Slayalive since the issue came out on Wed. and here are his comments on this.

http://www.slayaliveforums.proboards50.com/index.cgi?board=pandp&action=display&thread=6564

5. bamph: Are we supposed to read anything more into Andrew's line about having met Angel and liking Spike more because he's edgier? Buffy doesn't have a reaction really. She gives a weird look after the whole thing including Andrew's comments about liking when her hair was cut. So should we infer anything from that about how much details Buffy knows about the events of Angel season 5 and Andrew's meetings in Damage and TGIQ with Angel and Spike or is this just a throwaway jokey line to once again show Andrew has fan crush on Spike? Was there any real purpose to that bit other than for a little joke to break tension before the showdown with Simone and to acknowledge fan expectations of a Angel/Spike mention in a issue featuring Buffy and Andrew teamed up in Italy?

Scott Allie: I think you're reading more into it than you need to, but I do think you can assume that there's been conversations about this stuff that you haven't heard. But I think what this was here was Andrew thinking it might be the end for him, and wanting to tell Buffy everything of consequence that he hadn't yet had the chance to tell her.

sueworld
07-03-09, 08:26 PM
Aha! So I was right it seems. Nothing of any importance should be read into that panel.

Thanks for that BAF. Most enlightening. :D


Where's Sue? Feels like I haven't heard from her in a bit.

*waves* I'm still hanging on in there. Just. :lol:

Skippcomet
07-03-09, 10:23 PM
Aha! So I was right it seems. Nothing of any importance should be read into that panel.

Pretty much what I thought, although I've seen a few on both sides of the Angel-Spike fence try to interpret it as "official" support for either one.

I've got a feeling that Buffy's remarks about losing faith in people only when they lie to her, and "that's what we do, mess up with good intentions" might end up being pivotal to how some things work out this season, at least as far as some fans wanting this or that character to be "punished" for various offenses goes. I could be wrong.

stormwreath
08-03-09, 02:05 PM
As I said back on my LJ as well:

Scott is saying that bamph's convoluted question asking if the scene was directly related in a specific way to the plot of 'Damage' and 'The Girl In Question' was over-thinking it. This wasn't supposed to be Drew Greenberg's answer to the fan debate on whether Buffy knew that Andrew lied to Angel on an episode of 'Angel' that was broadcast over five years ago. It was just a scene about Buffy and Andrew.


Andrew thinking it might be the end for him, and wanting to tell Buffy everything of consequence that he hadn't yet had the chance to tell her."Everything of consequence" does not mean the same thing as "Nothing of any importance"...

sueworld
08-03-09, 02:12 PM
"Nothing of any importance"...

Sorry, I really do think that the above is the case here. It's a throwaway gag, which means nothing in the grand scheme of things. It's fun shout out nothing more.

If it were, in comic terms I believe we would have had a tighter frame on Buffy's reaction, or lack of it in this case.

KingofCretins
08-03-09, 08:49 PM
The only thing that line tells us, plot wise, that isn't "overthinking" is that Andrew having met Angel was *not* the "big secret" he was getting out, just that he preferred Spike. She didn't react to him having met Angel at all, and she totally would have given her track record (talking to Faith about Angel in "Dirty Girls", for instance). Ergo, she knows he met him. That shouldn't be surprised, since we already knew textually that Buffy ordered that meeting herself.

vampmogs
11-03-09, 02:30 AM
This issue was very nice, it was great to see a warmer Buffy and a break from the morally ambiguous Buffy they've been feeding us of late. If anything this issue just proves Buffy is one complicated character this season (and any season before her) and I'm very relieved they're continuing to show both the positives and negatives of her. It really rekindled some of my Buffy love!

The issue was actually really good for Andrew’s character and proof that he has indeed grown and changed. He took responsibility for his actions, so much so that he was prepared to sacrifice himself for Buffy’s well being and for the Ragna demon. And whilst he was wrong to create the demon in the first place I can understand his actions as could Buffy, he did it because he believed Simone was his mess and he wanted to clean it up. It’s a new Andrew and fleshes out the Andrew of season eight, a guy a lot of people were unsure as to why Buffy and the gang should suddenly trust him. It was good Joss showed and didn’t just tell because whilst he may have said in an interview Andrew was a changed man, that’s not good enough. And Andrew’s squad bursting in to save the day.. Warmed my heart.

I’m still digging Simone in a whole “love to hate” her way. It pisses me off a lot that she lived to fight another day but I understand why Buffy did it. Her character is definitely interesting and I thought it was great that she actually respected Buffy because of the power she was able to control. That wasn’t something I expected but now realise I totally should have. I loved the clear dichotomy they played with in this issue with the “it’s who I am” statements. I’m sure there’s a few people out there who think Buffy and Simone aren’t all that different because of some of their actions, like bank robberies, but it’s such a more sophisticated story when you point out that hardly makes them the same. It makes me think back to Buffy’s “not being evil is what separates us from the bad guys” line in ‘No Future For You.’ She was spot on about this. Your actions are one thing but your intentions can be just as important. Buffy and Simone aren’t one in the same even if their actions are similar. Do I think it’s a coincidence that they have written Buffy/Simone has doing some of the same questionable things? No. But do I think they want us to think Buffy is as bad as Simone? No.

I’ve seen a couple of people speculate this issue was Buffy’s epiphany, I’m not sure I’d go that far. At least I hope it’s not, I wanted something a bit clearer and dramatic than that and I don’t think her beige story as quite ended just yet. But this issue did provide some positive growth for Buffy and they did it in the best way possible. Having an ordinary little girl come out and speak to Buffy helped Buffy connect with the rest of humanity, something she’s been unable to do of late. Buffy’s only viewed the whole picture from one perspective wherein slayers appear to be the victims. This time she got to hear from an innocent’s mouth how it’s not that clear cut and how this time they’re the victims of the slayers. That was great and I hope Buffy learnt a lot from that, seeing her connect with humanity in that way is very good for her in a season where she considers herself something else entirely.

And there was most certainly some poignancy in the girl’s line “everything in our life has changed, it’s not fair” in which Buffy replies “I know.” On Stormwreath’s LJ he linked this with the opening line of the entire season, “the thing about changing the world, once you do the world’s all different.” I loved that connection and I think he’s spot on. This line is pretty telling of how Buffy views everything that’s changed in her life, “it isn’t fair.” And it’s pretty great they had her to say this line as they’re watching the sun setting.

Overall a really good issue with positive growth for Andrew which the character needed. It had a very sweet ending between Buffy/Andrew which made me fall in love with Buffy and it raised some very interesting questions about Buffy and Simone and the slayers in general.

This is by far my favourite issue out of the arc so far, can't wait for Giles/Faith coming up next! :D

Emmie
12-03-09, 04:01 AM
I've got a question for everyone who's read this issue - who do you think is doing the voice-over at the beginning of the issue?

Vampire in Rug
12-03-09, 05:22 AM
Emmie, I'm pretty sure the voiceover at the start is Andrew. Or at least that's how I read it.

I liked this issue. So now we've got Buffy's camp, Twilight's camp and Simone's camp.

I liked the Ragna Demon, I wonder if we'll be seeing more of it? It's unlikeley that it could have escaped 16 slayers and a wiccan, but maybe it got loose on the island and will show up again at some point. Sort of like Aaragog from Harry Potter.

Emmie
12-03-09, 05:50 AM
Emmie, I'm pretty sure the voiceover at the start is Andrew. Or at least that's how I read it.

Yeah, that's what I think too. I've just been reading on another board that some people think it's Buffy. I was wondering if there anyone over here thought the same thing and why. I remember that being brought up when the previews were released also. It didn't even occur to me that it was Buffy - it just doesn't sound like her to me.

XavierZane
12-03-09, 07:03 PM
I thought it was Andrew as well. In the beginning he's saying what amounts to the "company line", basically. It's something he believes is true for the Slayers and he wants to be true for himself, but which he doesn't actually think is true for himself. I read your interpretation over at Slayalive, Emmie - that he was taking his status as a member of the family for granted - but I have to disagree. All of his actions from before the issue began (creating the ragna, obsessivly monitering demon hot spots, capturing Nisha) were because he wasn't secure in the fact that Buffy wouldn't withdraw her trust because he "lost Simone". Only through his actions in this issue does he come to believe what he stated with such assurance at the outset.

Emmie
12-03-09, 09:34 PM
I meant taken for granted in a superficial sense - that he has it now but doesn't fully understand what it means to be a part of the family. That by making mistakes, he's just becoming even more a part of the family.

blue_peroxide
05-04-09, 09:14 PM
I got the impression that Buffy did not know Andrew met Angel until he just told her. Why else make that statement. That he met Angel. Had Buffy known about Damage, she would have already known that he met Angel. I have a feeling Giles is going to be in more hot water about that situation before all is said and done. If Buffy didn't know about Andrew being sent to get Dana, the question in my mind becomes, how did she know about Spike being alive?
I've always thought that Buffy knew very well what happened in Damage (Andrew: "Check with Buffy? Where do you think my orders came from?"). Only thing about Damage that Buffy does not know, to my mind, is about Spike being there. And Andrew didn't tell her because Spike told him not to.

The thing Andrew wanted Buffy to know before they entered the opera house was not that he has met Angel. He wanted her to know that he is definitely "Team Spike".
And Buffy still does not know that Spike is alive.

Or, as KingofCretins says:

The only thing that line tells us, plot wise, that isn't "overthinking" is that Andrew having met Angel was *not* the "big secret" he was getting out, just that he preferred Spike. She didn't react to him having met Angel at all, and she totally would have given her track record (talking to Faith about Angel in "Dirty Girls", for instance). Ergo, she knows he met him. That shouldn't be surprised, since we already knew textually that Buffy ordered that meeting herself.
Yeah, this was just Andrew announcing that he prefers Spuffy over Bangel.

Overall, I really liked 8.23 - mainly because of my irrational love towards Andrew. It was great to read Andrew babbling (I really could hear Tom Lenk in my head!) It was great that Buffy and Andrew bonded over Bond (hehe). And I continually appreciate Buffy's good taste - liking hot blonde blue-eyed British men :xd

And it was good to see Spike's name finally appearing in print in Buffy S8.

Slayer+
17-04-09, 12:11 AM
Re-reading the issue and I still can't understand why Buffy went looking for Simone without backup.

saturn5
20-04-09, 09:41 PM
Buffy 23
Not that interesting. Liked the Andrew stuff. I note that he's got a poster for Dr No on his wall, obviously come around to Warren's argument?