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Thread: Spuffy in Season 9

  1. #21
    Slayer ubi4soft's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reddygirl View Post
    [..] or Buffy having a child with anyone. I'm willing to bet there will be no more mystical pregancies and think Buffy would be very hesitant to become a mother knowing her odds of surviving on a day-to-day basis are much, much lower than the average person's prospects of being around to raise a child.
    With no magic maybe the apocalypses are gone also, Buffy may think she has a chance for a somehow normal longer life and take a chance to have a baby.

    Do you want Spike to have moved on? If so, what would you want that to look like? If not, what do you think Spike should be doing?

    I want him to be happy; if not "get up, get out, beat some nasties, repeat as needed"

    Do you think the transition from Chosen to #36's "crazy studly" should be addressed/revisited in S9?
    "Gunn dies, Illyria Survives, Spike shanshus, Angel looses an arm and Xander looses an arm too, which is odd because he wasn't even there."
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  2. #22
    Slayer TimeTravellingBunny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reddygirl View Post
    Darynthe, your art work is lovely. Welcome back to fandom!

    I doubt we'll be seeing a Spuffy baby, or Buffy having a child with anyone. I'm willing to bet there will be no more mystical pregancies and think Buffy would be very hesitant to become a mother knowing her odds of surviving on a day-to-day basis are much, much lower than the average person's prospects of being around to raise a child.

    I doubt we'll be seeing any traditional "hearts and flowers" romantic from any future Spuffy, which is fine with me. As I've mentioned in other posts, I hope Spuffy Mach III will be on the lines of Nick and Nora Charles.
    ITA (except that I don't know who Nick and Nora are, so I'll have to google that one).

    Joss could definitely decide to completely revamp Bangel, so to speak, and of course that would have to include honestly and remorse between Buffy and Angel over the whole Twilight mess.
    I really doubt it. And that's because the issue of Angel having been Twilight, having killed Giles, B/A spacefrak causing the world nearly to end a lot of deaths, Buffy feeling that she committed a betrayal by sleeping with him and not being able to look at him not just because of what he did but also because he made her complicit in the whole disaster and because he reminds her of the most shameful actions she's ever committed in her life... is not the only obstacle to B/A. All those things are huge obstacles in-universe, and it's highly questionable if they could ever be convincingly overcome. However, this isn't the only problem that stands in the way of B/A being revamped as a romantic option.

    The other huge problem - which is insurmountable IMO - is the way that B/A was portrayed in the Twilight/Last Gleaming arc. Bangel romance was presented as based on the idea that some people are simply "meant" to be together, and this is what love is all about - "destiny" you can't fight, an eternal connection that has nothing to do with trust or support or actual emotional closeness or growing as persons or even knowing each other, and that is forever unchangeable and unchanged, no matter what, and trumps every other consideration. That's the essence of what Angel told Buffy in #33 and what she accepted to believe, for a while. #36 mocks that Twilighty idea of romance, and we get another reminder of it in Twilight-posessed-Angel's words to Buffy in #39 that she can't fight her destiny.

    This second problem is not just about the characters, but about the storytelling itself. To revamp Bangel as a romantic option after season 8, would ultimately end up justifying the Twilighty idea of love that season 8 was satirizing and destroying. No matter how you portray it, it would seem like Twilight!Angel was correct, Buffy and Angel really are and always have literally been meant to be together, Buffy will always love Angel no matter what because he's her destiny and it's a given that she'll always want him back whatever he does, it really was never even a question if, just when (as some B/A fans on this forum claim). It might also imply that there's just one 'true' love in a person's entire life, and even that a woman can never love anyone as much as her first lover. And with that, you can kiss Whedon's feminist beliefs goodbye, together with the idea that BtVS was never Twilight, or that BtVS shows people having actual character growth.

    It wouldn't just be Buffy betraying herself, it would be Whedon doing the same.
    Last edited by TimeTravellingBunny; 10-06-11 at 11:30 AM.
    You keep waiting for the dust to settle and then you realize it; the dust is your life going on. If happy comes along - that weird unbearable delight that's actual happy - I think you have to grab it while you can. You take what you can get, 'cause it's here, and then...gone.

  3. #23
    Scooby Gang Tennyoelf's Avatar
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    Do you want Spike to have moved on? If so, what would you want that to look like? If not, what do you think Spike should be doing?

    I have to say, I want Spike to be happy too. However I think that even if he did move on, he'll always have a large place in his heart for Buffy.

    If Spike has moved on, I think it'll look like he is there for Buffy because he cares for her still and he'll keep his distance (so not that much interaction between them unless needed for battles, info, peep talk, but nothing else, nothing personal maybe). And if Spike hasn't moved on he'll be around more often, trying his best to be there for Buffy but also keeping her at a distance to protect his heart.

    But in terms of story telling, I think they have a lot of things unresolved between them and that there is too much drama there for it not to be used. So I think he may seem like he has moved on but deep in his heart he hasn't.

    As times continues, my hope for future romance between the two (in the far future) is dwindling.

    Do you think the transition from Chosen to #36's "crazy studly" should be addressed/revisited in S9?

    Oh yes, hell yes. From "I love you" to (paraphrasing) "oh yeah, that was crazy studly, whatever..." is one heck of a leap.

    I can understand defensiveness and maybe a tad rudeness (because, no matter what, Buffy can be a bitch, though she is one of my favorite characters, so I say that with love) I can't understand the dismissive-ness of the whole scene. Maybe it was supposed to be defensiveness but came off as more dismissive. Buffy knows he died a hero's death, so to treat it like it was nothing seems so wrong.

    I suppose the fact he didn't call (nor she) and the fact that so much time passed that their close relationship they had in season 7 was shot to hell. But still, how did it get there? How did Spike's memory not even register in those memory cubes? Why was Spike hardly mentioned? I really want to know why, since he had a huge impact on Buffy for almost the entire show (seasons 2-7).

    I know of some spuffy theories, but I really want the truth, even if it's anti-spuffy because I care about the characters themselves and to see this happen makes my heart ache.

    And the more I think about it, the more I wonder if Scott Allie means that what is "worth waiting for" is something worth waiting for for the anti-spuffies.
    Last edited by Tennyoelf; 21-06-11 at 02:32 AM.



  4. #24
    Slayer shipperx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ubi4soft View Post
    With no magic maybe the apocalypses are gone also, Buffy may think she has a chance for a somehow normal longer life and take a chance to have a baby.
    I can't imagine that apocalypses are gone. There are still demons around and so bad things can happen, still.

    And in many ways Buffy's situation now is worse than it was at the beginning of the Season 8. At the beginning of Season 8 there was an army of slayers battling demons and vampires. Now, there will never be any new slayers called because magic has been cut off. So, now there's an ever diminishing number of Slayers and demons and vampires have very long (to virtually immortal) life spans. Slayers don't have lifespans like that.

    It's kind of like the end of the last Trek movie where after they destroyed Vulcan that there are so few of them there aren't any to 'spare' as it were (except as older Spock pointed out, younger Spock lucks out because there are two of him). Buffy can never retire now. There is no 'next generation' . Heck many of the ones left are angry with her, and we see at least one going rogue. Buffy isn't expendable. Buffy can't quit. Buffy can't even take a sabbatical (as she arguably could've when there was an army of them). Buffy is now well and truly stuck with the Slaying gig until the end of her days.

  5. #25
    Slayer Reddygirl's Avatar
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    Tennyoelf, I'm the one who asked Scott the Spuffy question and I think he answered it honestly, though I have no idea what exactly he meant and I refuse to get my hopes up too high.

    I don't need to have the "crazy studly" scene directly addressed; it's possible we'll find out Buffy was deeply hurt by Spike's neglecting to tell her he was alive and his silence made Buffy even more vulnerable when the Twilight reveal happened.

    I'm really more interested in how Spuffy is treated in the future than having all the past dots connected for me. Would I love a panel where we see Buffy's face upon learning Spike was alive? Sure, but I'm okay with not having it further explored.

    Bunny, Nick and Nora Charles are characters created by Dashiel Hammet in The Thin Man, a great mystery novel that was turned into a terrific classic movie. I bet you'd love both.

    Another couple that reminds me of Spuffy is Rosie and Charlie from the African Queen, a movie I just love to pieces.

  6. #26
    Scooby Gang Tennyoelf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shipperx View Post
    Spoiler:
    I can't imagine that apocalypses are gone. There are still demons around and so bad things can happen, still.

    And in many ways Buffy's situation now is worse than it was at the beginning of the Season 8. At the beginning of Season 8 there was an army of slayers battling demons and vampires. Now, there will never be any new slayers called because magic has been cut off. So, now there's an ever diminishing number of Slayers and demons and vampires have very long (to virtually immortal) life spans. Slayers don't have lifespans like that.

    It's kind of like the end of the last Trek movie where after they destroyed Vulcan that there are so few of them there aren't any to 'spare' as it were (except as older Spock pointed out, younger Spock lucks out because there are two of him). Buffy can never retire now. There is no 'next generation' . Heck many of the ones left are angry with her, and we see at least one going rogue. Buffy isn't expendable. Buffy can't quit. Buffy can't even take a sabbatical (as she arguably could've when there was an army of them). Buffy is now well and truly stuck with the Slaying gig until the end of her days.
    Maybe she'll end up immortal and doing the slayer gig forever? That would suck big time. But yeah, Buffy is a really bad spot right now. Honestly, in my opinion there should be no romance or babies of any kind for her for a while.

    Quote Originally Posted by Reddygirl View Post
    Spoiler:
    Tennyoelf, I'm the one who asked Scott the Spuffy question and I think he answered it honestly, though I have no idea what exactly he meant and I refuse to get my hopes up too high.

    I don't need to have the "crazy studly" scene directly addressed; it's possible we'll find out Buffy was deeply hurt by Spike's neglecting to tell her he was alive and his silence made Buffy even more vulnerable when the Twilight reveal happened.

    I'm really more interested in how Spuffy is treated in the future than having all the past dots connected for me. Would I love a panel where we see Buffy's face upon learning Spike was alive? Sure, but I'm okay with not having it further explored.

    Bunny, Nick and Nora Charles are characters created by Dashiel Hammet in The Thin Man, a great mystery novel that was turned into a terrific classic movie. I bet you'd love both.

    Another couple that reminds me of Spuffy is Rosie and Charlie from the African Queen, a movie I just love to pieces.
    I'm really not that picky, yeah I would like for it to get addressed but I'm fine as long as we get good spuffy stuff, though like you I don't have (or not anymore) my hopes up too high.

    Oh, thank you for the movie recs, I always need good movie recs. I definitely will take the time to watch those.
    Last edited by Tennyoelf; 21-06-11 at 03:02 AM.



  7. #27
    Slayer TimeTravellingBunny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tennyoelf View Post
    But still, how did it get there? How did Spike's memory not even register in those memory cubes? Why was Spike hardly mentioned? I really want to know why, since he had a huge impact on Buffy for almost the entire show (seasons 2-7).
    Spike was mentioned just as much as Angel was before #33, but somehow that fact gets forgotten.

    The memory cubes thing has been blown out of proportion. We know that it was left to Jeanty to choose what to draw, and that he did it with the help of friend of his. This is what he said:

    9. Enisy: Is the presence or the absence of scenes/characters in Buffy's dreamscape in Issue #3 of The Long Way Home in any way significant (indicative of Buffy's current state of mind, or the events and people that generally shaped her life the most, or anything like that), or did you and Joss pick them pretty much randomly?

    Georges: That was a weird Page to do at the time because I was still very young to the world of Buffy. I had seen the last 2 seasons and that was it. When Joss wrote out that page he said I want these cubes to represent Buffy's mind visually, so put moments in her life that would be relevant. I have a good friend by the name of Crystal who's a huge Buffy fan and she helped me with the more important moments in Buffy's life and from there I had a stack of the Buffy magazines so I went through all of them and just started to pick out images that I saw multiples of. Joss said he could give me descriptions for the cues but I really wanted to impress him so I told him I could handle it. When that page came out he sent me an e-mail and said he was looking at that page and he congratulated me on a job well done, and that he especially like that handsome young devil in the bottom cube. I was high the rest of the day. I did right by Joss. Yay!
    27. moscowwatcher: You told once that Joss didn't give you specific notes on who should and who shouldn't be included in Buffy's dreamspace in issue #2. Did you know about Spike's role in the seasonal arc when you were selecting the images? If not, would you have included Spike in Buffy's memory cubes today, when you know his role?

    Georges: That's weird. I don't know why I didn't include Spike in that cube montage. But, no. I didn't know then that Spike was going to be coming to the series
    So, that's what the content of the cubes depended of: the opinion of Jeanty's friend, and the magazines he found.

    And IMO it doesn't really matter what ended up in the cubes - you know why? Because those cubes we get to see in the panel are just some of the many cubes that are supposed to be in Buffy's mind. I don't understand why people are acting as if things we didn't see in the memory cubes in that particular panel don't exist in Buffy's memory. The panel just shows some random cubes, others are obstructed from view, and others we don't see it all. IIRC, Buffy's jump from the tower in The Gift is also missing. I wouldn't be surprised if those magazines were from early seasons.

    Anyway, that same dream has other Spike references, and I don't mean just the threesome panel: after the big fakeout with the mystery man (is it Spike? is it Angel?... no, it's Ethan?!), you get Dream!Ethan talking Spike-ish - "pet", "lamb", and explaining that "my love" is "just an expression, like 'pet'" (which, of course, it isn't, but it would make sense to say that if he had said "love", another Spikeism).
    Last edited by TimeTravellingBunny; 21-06-11 at 03:19 AM.
    You keep waiting for the dust to settle and then you realize it; the dust is your life going on. If happy comes along - that weird unbearable delight that's actual happy - I think you have to grab it while you can. You take what you can get, 'cause it's here, and then...gone.

  8. #28
    Dedicated Spike Fan Maggie's Avatar
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    Joss had the final word on the pages, which means that Joss signed off on a page that was missing Spike.

    Joss structured the whole story, which means that Joss signed off on a story which assumes that it makes no difference in our understanding of Buffy to know whether she knows Spike is dead or alive.

    If you are into quoting Jeanty on this stuff, you have to include his report that Joss DID intervene to correct his drawing of the threesome so that Buffy was leaning into Angel more.

    Notice that. Spike awol in the dreamcube space that has not one, but two mentions of Angel ==> no intervention. Spike and Angel being treated as equally important to Buffy ==> intervention to make it clear that Angel is the guy.

    I'll give you that Buffy has picked up some of Spike's verbal tics. She's picked up some of Xander's as well. She has fond memories of Spike's sexual prowess. And she's willing to throw him into the general pile of tales of Buffy-love gone wrong, though again -- in a list that begins with Angel.

    The story tellers have gone out of there way to hammer home that we can totally and seamlessly tell Buffy's story post-Chosen without any reference to Spike. I think that speaks for itself. They aren't writing a story about a woman who has big time feelings for the guy. By contrast, they are writing a story about a woman who still dreams of Angel as being all handsome-y.

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    Scooby Gang Tennyoelf's Avatar
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    Pet, love and lamb pet names could be just English slang though and might not be directly Spikeism (I gotta go back and reread that scene). Now, I admit that I have not read all of the comics, just things here and there, but from what I saw and read it seemed different, that some relationships were underplayed while others were hyped. Again, I'll have to go back to them, because I didn't spend too much time looking into it.

    All in all though, I understood that the images that were drawn and the way some things were written were done by new writers and etc. so we had a new perspective of the show from different people. And everyone sees the show a bit different.

    Like I said before, I'm not that overly picky, I just hope for something and that anything important from season 8 or 7 is addressed that needs to be addressed and anything irrelevant is discarded is fine. I suppose maybe I just want some things to be a little bit clearer and a little less vague. Again, not picky.

    I just feel that the Spike/Buffy relationship has been shown to be irrelevant and I just want something to confirm that it isn't.
    Last edited by Tennyoelf; 21-06-11 at 04:22 AM.



  10. #30
    Slayer TimeTravellingBunny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tennyoelf View Post
    Pet, love and lamb pet names could be just English slang though and might not be directly Spikeism (I gotta go back and reread that scene).
    They are English slang, but Ethan has never used them before on screen and never talked to Buffy before that way. You really think that Dream Ethan constantly using those words was just accidental?

    Quote Originally Posted by Maggie View Post
    The story tellers have gone out of there way to hammer home that we can totally and seamlessly tell Buffy's story post-Chosen without any reference to Spike. I think that speaks for itself. They aren't writing a story about a woman who has big time feelings for the guy. By contrast, they are writing a story about a woman who still dreams of Angel as being all handsome-y.
    Uh, she wasn't dreaming about Angel, she was dreaming about being back to her season 1 self (before she died the first time, before Angelus, when her mom was alive and everything was simpler and more innocent). How on Earth was she going to dream of Spike in that context?! She dreamed of Joyce and S1 Giles and Willow and Xander and Cordelia as well. Of course Angel was going to be in that dream, too. So she remembers how he was all handsomey and in the same breath that this was before she knew him as Angelus, and the other things she remembers about their relationship is that they were never good with the talking stuff, and that he turned into "baddiest bad" and made her "saddiest sad"... Hardly seems like she thinks of it as this wonderful relationship she'd like to renew.

    And apart from the dream in which she goes back to being her season 1 self in which Angel logically had to appear, the only time Angel is ever mentioned or appears is: in a threesome with Spike, in Always Darkest in an equal role with Spike*, and being thrown 'into the general pile of tales of Buffy-love gone wrong'. I never, for starters, thought it was important if it 'starts with Angel' - well it has to start with something, and if she mentioned Spike burning up first, I really don't think anyone would be listing that as a proof she loves Spike bestest. Personally I assumed it was by severity of the predicament, because her speech was about the terrible things that had happened to people who loved her, not on things that happen to her, since she was warning off Satsu. Being in a hell dimension for a hundred years is by far the worst of the three things she listed, since Spike resurrected shortly after burning up, which we now know Buffy knew. (Although, she actually started it by saying that people she loves tend to die, which if you want to get technical didn't actually happen to Angel.) But hey, if you want to think it's because she loves Angel the bestest, OK, it's always possible to read things the way they support the position you've chosen.

    I just think that, if your evidence that Buffy was totally in love with Angel all the way through season 8 and dreaming about getting back with him, unlike Spike who's not all that important to her, based on:

    - Buffy calling Angel 'all handsomey' while seeing him in a dream where she's back to season 1,

    - Buffy having a dream about him where he appears alongside Spike and their roles are equal,

    - Buffy having a dream of having a threesome with Angel and Spike... where oh, she's leaning closer to Angel!

    ...that's... well, kinda really lame. If Angel came up to me and told me "See, that's the evidence that I'm the one she really wants!" I'd tell him: "Yeah... right. It's important that you really think that. " and think to myself that Buffy obviously wants them both and hasn't made any kind of choice or shown actual preference.

    Maybe it's just me, but when you're so totally in love with some guy as you think she was with Angel, can you at least have a dream/fantasy about him that's just about him and not constantly about him and another guy? If the story was about Buffy being in love with Angel all along while not that bothered about Spike, why couldn't they just show Buffy have one single dream or fantasy about Angel that's all about Angel?

    It's not like it was a parade of all her former lovers. Buffy had feelings for Riley, too. Why didn't he appear in those dreams and fantasies as well?

    *And that's something you still haven't been able to explain: if Spike's death was so unimportant and not at all traumatizing to Buffy, if she was just relieved to not have to talk to the guy, why does she have a dream about him blaming her for leaving him in the Hellmouth? And why is it shown as having the same level** of trauma and guilt for Buffy as Buffy having to kill Angel in Becoming II - which we know was one of the most traumatic experiences of her life? And why does she see him rejecting her, just as Angel did? If one of those guys is supposed to be a love of her life and her big trauma, while the other one is not really important... Then that dream really doesn't make sense?!

    ** Oh, and Spike appears first, if you think the sequence of mention/appearance is that important.

    - Not to mention that Willow says her "her truest loves" were vampires in a panel that shows Angel and Spike. She either based that on her observation of Buffy pre-Chosen (even though they never talked about Spike) or more likely on the observation or talk with Buffy post-Chosen. In any case, why didn't Willow just say that one vampire was her "truest love", if Angel is supposedly the one Buffy loved, while Spike was just that other guy she kinda had feelings for, but they weren't all that strong? It's not like Willow was ever shown to be particularly in favor of Buffy's relationship with Spike, or showing any kind of interest in it, in the show. Unlike the way she acted like a B/A cheerleader in early seasons.
    Last edited by TimeTravellingBunny; 21-06-11 at 12:19 PM.
    You keep waiting for the dust to settle and then you realize it; the dust is your life going on. If happy comes along - that weird unbearable delight that's actual happy - I think you have to grab it while you can. You take what you can get, 'cause it's here, and then...gone.

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    Slayer Reddygirl's Avatar
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    The reveal of Twilight would have been meaningless if Buffy still wasn't pining for Angel as being the Perfect Man of her dreams, partly because she had given up on reality giving her another shot at love.

    Just because 8 wasn't about exploring any residual feelings Buffy might have for Spike doesn't mean she doesn't still care for Spike in a deep way.

  12. #32
    Slayer TimeTravellingBunny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reddygirl View Post
    The reveal of Twilight would have been meaningless if Buffy still wasn't pining for Angel as being the Perfect Man of her dreams, partly because she had given up on reality giving her another shot at love.

    Just because 8 wasn't about exploring any residual feelings Buffy might have for Spike doesn't mean she doesn't still care for Spike in a deep way.
    She was still dreaming about him and pining for him, but that doesn't mean she thought he was the Perfect Man of her dreams. Judging by that 'going back to season 1' dream, she didn't see their relationship as that perfect and wonderful, and she couldn't see him in S1 without thinking of Angelus straight away. And the way she was pining for Angel and dreaming of Angel in S8 wasn't different from the way she was pining for and dreaming of Spike. She might be leaning closer to Angel, but they're both presented simply as past loves gone wrong that have left her with feelings of romantic failure, abandonment and guilt that we see in A Beautiful Sunset, Always Darkest, and even in the dream in The Long Way Home. The past is the operative word. There's no indication that she thought of either of them as realistic options for a relationship at that point. And most of the time she just sucked it up, didn't talk about either of them to anyone, and focused on being the Army general. And she thought at one point that Xander was the right guy for her and her best shot at love.

    She didn't have to be in love with Angel and constantly dreaming about getting back with him for the reveal of Twilight to be meaningful. Angel was her first love, a great love from the past, someone she still had residual feelings for...and maybe in the back of her mind she still occasionally thought that he might be the one 'meant for her', especially when other relationships failed. But I just don't think that this is what she would have told you if you asked her during season 8 before #33: "Oh, I love Angel, he's the love of my life and if we only could be together everything would be perfect!" In early season 4 - yes, in season 8 - no.

    I don't think that Buffy was actively in love with anyone throughout most of season 8, before the period when she thought Xander was the guy, and the glowified period when she went back to thinking Angel was the guy. In A Beautiful Sunset, she talks about being in love in past tense. "I do remember what it's like to be in love. I know how much it can hurt." I think that Buffy had residual feelings for both Angel and Spike in S8, but it's the residual feelings for Angel that were going to be explored more because it was crucial for the Twilight story. That we still got to see hints of her residual feelings for Spike during S8 and even saw her fantasize about him shortly after having sex with Angel and telling him he's the love of her life etc., means that her feelings for Spike are important and will be explored in the future.
    You keep waiting for the dust to settle and then you realize it; the dust is your life going on. If happy comes along - that weird unbearable delight that's actual happy - I think you have to grab it while you can. You take what you can get, 'cause it's here, and then...gone.

  13. #33
    Dedicated Spike Fan Maggie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TimeTravellingBunny View Post
    Uh, she wasn't dreaming about Angel, she was dreaming about being back to her season 1 self (before she died the first time, before Angelus, when her mom was alive and everything was simpler and more innocent). How on Earth was she going to dream of Spike in that context?!
    Uh, dreams aren't tethered to reality.

    Buffy chose to dream of season 1. She could (a) have dreamt about a time when Spike was around or (b) she could also have dreamed Spike into season 1 since dreams are fluid that way.


    So she remembers how he was all handsomey and in the same breath that this was before she knew him as Angelus, and the other things she remembers about their relationship is that they were never good with the talking stuff, and that he turned into "baddiest bad" and made her "saddiest sad"... Hardly seems like she thinks of it as this wonderful relationship she'd like to renew.
    Well, I think that's all evidence that she shouldn't want to renew that wonderful relationship. But it does mean she wishes she could go back to the time when their relationship wasn't all messed up. He's still the one she sighs over. She sighs about him even before seeing him.

    And how often has she sighed about Spike. "oh Spike". Let's see -- I count zero times.

    And apart from the dream in which she goes back to being her season 1 self in which Angel logically had to appear, the only time Angel is ever mentioned or appears is: in a threesome with Spike, in Always Darkest in an equal role with Spike*, and being thrown 'into the general pile of tales of Buffy-love gone wrong'. I never, for starters, thought it was important if it 'starts with Angel' - well it has to start with something, and if she mentioned Spike burning up first, I really don't think anyone would be listing that as a proof she loves Spike bestest.
    Hey -- I *wanted* to find evidence that she loved Spike the way she loved Angel. I'm not some Bangel out to dismiss every bit of evidence. But unlike you, I couldn't wank my way past the fact that every time there was a choice to prioritize, the priority went to Angel.

    To recap, since you may have missed it: Angel shows up not once, but twice in the dream cube space. Joss does not override Jeanty's choices. Jeanty portrays Spike and Angel as equally important in the threesome. Joss overrides Jeanty's choice and insists on Buffy leaning towards Angel. She's wearing the ring Angel gave her. So, yeah, by the time we get to the list of traumas, I thought it was a problem that Angel got listed first. It wasn't a chronological listing, because Riley came last. So I think it was straight order of importance.

    But the real bottom line is just this. Get a stranger to the show to read the comics, and ask them who is The Significant love interest in Buffy's life. Buffy + Angel 4 eva; Oh Angel; My vampire (singular) was better than Twilight. There's *nothing* to point to which would lead someone not already committed to Spuffy being a done deal that would suggest that Buffy was pining over Spike rather than or at least as much as Angel.

    Personally I assumed it was by severity of the predicament, because her speech was about the terrible things that had happened to people who loved her, not on things that happen to her, since she was warning off Satsu. Being in a hell dimension for a hundred years is by far the worst of the three things she listed, since Spike resurrected shortly after burning up, which we now know Buffy knew. (Although, she actually started it by saying that people she loves tend to die, which if you want to get technical didn't actually happen to Angel.) But hey, if you want to think it's because she loves Angel the bestest, OK, it's always possible to read things the way they support the position you've chosen.
    I've tried reading it your way. But I could feel myself wanking when I did -- and when I feel myself wanking too much I eventually drop the position.

    I just think that, if your evidence that Buffy was totally in love with Angel all the way through season 8 and dreaming about getting back with him, unlike Spike who's not all that important to her, based on

    - Buffy calling Angel 'all handsomey' while seeing him in a dream where she's back to season 1,

    - Buffy having a dream about him where he appears alongside Spike and their roles are equal,

    - Buffy having a dream of having a threesome with Angel and Spike... where oh, she's leaning closer to Angel!

    ...that's... well, kinda really lame.
    (1) I think that Buffy is in love with her ideals about Angel, not really deeply in love with him. But yeah, if someone asked her who the love of her life was, season 8 Buffy was for sure going to say Angel.

    (2) I spent three years arguing that Buffy couldn't have known Spike was alive because that was the only way I could account for the Dead Silence about the guy. Namely that the stunning failure to do any kind of continuity between season 8 Buffy and the Buffy who said ILY in Chosen was because Spike mattered a great deal and was a big shoe to drop. Well -- there was no shoe to drop. She knew Spike was back the whole time. And there is not a single solitary thing you can point to that says that the dead silence about Spike meant anything about where Buffy was at. Maybe season 9 will backtrack and make it turn out to be the case that Buffy was traumatized by Spike's non-call, etc. etc. But based on the text so far -- that huge dead silence wasn't because Spike was a Very Big deal. Since I am committed to not altering my logic just because it delivers a conclusion I don't like, my position forces me to say that the dead silence instead speaks volumes to how unimportant Spike is to Buffy -- at least in any conscious way.

    (3) How many times did Allie tell us that it didn't matter? A gazillion. I worked so hard to wank around what he said. Did it turn out to matter? Nope.

    Like John Maynard Keynes once said, when the facts go against my theory, I change my theory. What do you do?

    You weren't on-line until late in the season's run. So I don't have any record of how you handled the question of Spike's absence. But I will tell you this. The Spuffy fandom almost en masse left the comics immediately. I was the weird one who held on to the "bizarre silence = big shoe" theory. Enisy bailed. Moscow was a nay-sayer. The current pro-Spuffy/pro-comics people all appeared or returned well after the comics run began. Empirically, most Spuffy fans looked at the first half of the season and concluded that Joss had bizarrely forgotten that he'd written the Spuffy relationship. The ones who are now pro-comic/pro-Spuffy are so on the strength of #37 and after. The worm has turned for Spuffy. But not in the sense of validating that Buffy has been mooning about Spike the whole time. Rather, in the sense of saying that we just had a story where Buffy's failure to outgrow her juvenile notion of love got massively exploded with the trashing of Bangel, and that her snark and so on with Spike means that we can (and probably will) revisit Spuffy in season 9.

    I think we will get Spuffy in season 9. I think Spike has mattered to Buffy all along. I just don't think she's realized it or admitted it to herself. But I insist on the point that if you'd asked her at any point in season 8 who the love of her life was, she'd have given you an answer. And that answer would not have been Spike. It still wouldn't be Spike. In fact, I'm pretty dang sure that if you asked her at the end of #40 if she were in love with Spike she'd not say "of course". I'm pretty sure if you asked her how many men in her life she'd really loved -- at the end of #40 -- she'd still say, just the one.

    It's not like it was a parade of all her former lovers. Buffy had feelings for Riley, too. Why didn't he appear in those dreams and fantasies as well?
    I think it's obvious that Spike is a bigger deal to Buffy than Riley. That doesn't help the argument that Angel isn't a bigger deal to Buffy than Spike

    *And that's something you still haven't been able to explain: if Spike's death was so unimportant and not at all traumatizing to Buffy, if she was just relieved to not have to talk to the guy, why does she have a dream about him blaming her for leaving him in the Hellmouth? And why is it shown as having the same level** of trauma and guilt for Buffy as Buffy having to kill Angel in Becoming II - which we know was one of the most traumatic experiences of her life? And why does she see him rejecting her, just as Angel did? If one of those guys is supposed to be a love of her life and her big trauma, while the other one is not really important... Then that dream really doesn't make sense?!
    Deep down in her subconscious her feelings about Spike are more complicated. I'm willing to go with that.

    Although my Big Shoe theory got gutted (along with the requisite I told you so from King), I don't think Joss forgot that Spike had mattered a great deal to Buffy. I just think that the story telling choices reflect where Buffy was. Spike creeps in around the edges a lot. But mostly the story avoids him. Buffy has avoided thinking about Spike. Probably for jumble of reasons. We'll find out in season 9 just where she is with the guy. But for sure we've ruled out any story where Buffy sat around thinking to herself "I was so in love with Spike, and it's a major tragedy for me that he's abandoned me." Her narrative in season 8 was all about Angel as the Main Event in her life. Her narrative isn't all that reliable. But it's still her narrative.

    Anyway, I don't think my position is lame. It's something I've thought about far too much. And the bottom line is that I was (I think) one of the most vocal and insistent "Spuffy still matters" apologists -- until the fact that Buffy knew and there was no shoe forced me to admit that I was wrong. I had thought that Buffy realized in Chosen that Spike was at least as important to her as Angel. But if she did hit that realization, it was one of those many faux epiphanies she's had. The Buffy of season 8 doesn't think Spike matters as much as Angel. She had to not think that in order for the major arc of the season to work at all.

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  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maggie View Post
    Uh, dreams aren't tethered to reality.

    Buffy chose to dream of season 1. She could (a) have dreamt about a time when Spike was around or (b) she could also have dreamed Spike into season 1 since dreams are fluid that way.
    Dreams are tied to the subconscious, so nobody chooses what they'll dream about, and even what they dream about may not be obviously or directly related to the thing that they are working out.

    Hey -- I *wanted* to find evidence that she loved Spike the way she loved Angel. I'm not some Bangel out to dismiss every bit of evidence. But unlike you, I couldn't wank my way past the fact that every time there was a choice to prioritize, the priority went to Angel.
    As tempted as I was to run this up the flagpole back around 8.33, I left it alone -- I can speak firsthand of that sense when, right around the time everything has gone against you romantically and you feel adrift, an ex, or maybe "one that got away", will appear and the very fact that they appear feels like the moving hand of destiny and you should pity the walls, cars, or slow-running bystanders between you and your Obviously Destined One. My take has been that anything that the "glow" didn't cause in 8.33, that feeling did. I don't think it was a referendum even on her much more immediate Xander feelings, so I certainly don't think it was a referendum on Spike.

    To recap, since you may have missed it: Angel shows up not once, but twice in the dream cube space. Joss does not override Jeanty's choices. Jeanty portrays Spike and Angel as equally important in the threesome. Joss overrides Jeanty's choice and insists on Buffy leaning towards Angel. She's wearing the ring Angel gave her. So, yeah, by the time we get to the list of traumas, I thought it was a problem that Angel got listed first. It wasn't a chronological listing, because Riley came last. So I think it was straight order of importance.
    The dream cubes need to DIAF, honestly. It means nothing and never has as far as I'm concerned. Indeed, the mere fact of a 4th wall destroying easter egg on that page renders it self-evidently meaningless for serious in-context interpretation.

    But the real bottom line is just this. Get a stranger to the show to read the comics, and ask them who is The Significant love interest in Buffy's life. Buffy + Angel 4 eva; Oh Angel; My vampire (singular) was better than Twilight. There's *nothing* to point to which would lead someone not already committed to Spuffy being a done deal that would suggest that Buffy was pining over Spike rather than or at least as much as Angel.
    I don't think a disinterested party would be able to conclude she has a one and only Significant Love Interest, actually. I don't think a stranger to the show could be anything other than vomitously revolted by her sleeping with Twilight, after all, about whom that same stranger would have no backstory. I think a stranger to the show would A) agree with Satsu's reaction, vis a vis caring about the protaganist's love life, B) think that Satsu girl was actually pretty nice, and C) it's a shame I guess she didn't move on that Xander guy a long time ago, but he and her sister are adorable.

    Although my Big Shoe theory got gutted (along with the requisite I told you so from King), I don't think Joss forgot that Spike had mattered a great deal to Buffy.
    I so didn't. I tried to be much more Alfred about it --

    "Today, I don't want to.




    But I bloody did tell you."


    I just think that the story telling choices reflect where Buffy was.
    And this is also something I'd consider a mistake. There is no massive secret editorial on Spuffy and its worthiness hidden in the fact that the story Joss conceived of for Season 8 didn't lend itself to a big Spuffy remonstration. That's not how he writes, from anything he's ever said on the subject. And moreover, Buffy's love life has never appeared to be the 1st, 2nd, or maybe even 3rd most important thing to him when he's deciding what the big theme is for a season and where it's going and his purpose in writing it.

    To choose a plot for Season 8 that lended itself to Big Shoe, for instance, romance would probably be T1 with whatever other goal he had for the season. When Joss thought to himself "Self, we really should write a 'Buffy' story that launches the present day story on to the 'Fray' story so that they no longer exist out of context with each other, because 'Fray' was a lot of fun" (or something similar), I just don't think it would have crossed his mind, "and I better make sure I design that story so that fans get a lot of sturm and drang about that season 7 finale I wrote four years ago" which is basically how, based on his commentaries and interviews and overall style, I think he'd have processed it.

    Sigh, I don't know why I typed 200 or 300 words on the subject again because I don't think I've convinced a single person in four years on this argument, even though it feels in retrospect like I must have been pretty close to spot-on about how he approached Season 8.

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  15. #35
    Slayer Supporter vampmogs's Avatar
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    Well, I think you're both arguing from two extremes and I find myself somewhere in the middle. Spike isn't 'unimportant' to Buffy and Joss said so himself in a S8 interview ("Spike, like Angel, is incredibly important to Buffy"). However, at the same time I think it was clear that she was still most focused on Angel and that's part of what the Twilight story line was about. Granted, I think a major point of S8 was to dismantle B/A so it was 'un-repairable' and Buffy will have to move on in some fashion, but in order to get there Angel first had to be The Guy she prioritized.

    I think Ethan was clearly meant to represent Spike. He dressed just like him and he called Buffy names (such as "pet") that he's just never used before in the show. Joss is a master at these character's dialogue so that would have been totally intentional, and we know those references were put in there for a reason because he teased us at the end of the #2 with the "my love" fake-out. He wanted us to think it would be one of Buffy's exes and, if I remember correctly, he was wearing a red shirt under a leather coat. That's vintage Spike. Using Spike's nicknames for Buffy in #3 just confirmed that and then of course we had that great line -- "Twilight is falling. You're going to need all the help you can get, pet" -- which is clearly a reference to Spike showing up at the end of the season. So, Spike might not have been there in the dream cubes but he did have a major presence in her dream.

    Spike also crops up beside Angel again during Always Darkest so he's obviously significant to her. As I said, I definitely think that Angel was still 'The One' in Buffy's head but that's even more reason to see how important Spike must be to share headspace with the guy. I said this on my LJ a while back, but if Buffy/Angel was meant to be 'true love' then it's a terribly overrated concept because since when does it involve a third wheel that just won't go away? And not because Spike won't stop following Buffy around, it's because she can't stop thinking about him. He's obviously made such an impression on her that she no longer just dreams of Angel anymore. She dreams of both of them together. And this is further supported by the fact that in #37 Buffy was still so unfulfilled that rather than fantasy about the guy she just had sex with, as Spike expected her to be, she's daydreaming about Spike instead. It speaks volumes about what kind of impression he's made on her and it's rather ironic that her deep feelings for Angel are used a way to emphasize how important Spike is to her, but that's the way it is.

    Not to mention that in S7 it's quite clear Spike is of extreme importance to Buffy. He's so important to her she even makes me mad at her when she risks everything for him over the trigger. It takes a lot for me to get that frustrated with Buffy so I can't fathom how anybody could come away from that season questioning if Spike mattered to Buffy when I think she went to such great lengths to defend him. Buffy isn't the type of woman that can just switch those kinds of intense feelings off so I honestly think it goes without saying that Spike mattered greatly to Buffy, obviously, without the comics having to further reinforce it.

    But at the same time I agree that Angel was still the person Buffy would think of as the 'love of her life.' I think Joss deliberately tried to show this when he made Jeanty redraw the threesome panel and I agree with Maggie that the "Oh, Angel" moment in #20 was important too. I think Buffy was still in love with him but I agree that at the same time she was very much in love with the ideal of them and what he represented. And that's what S8 deconstructed when it tore down that fantasy and shattered it into a million pieces. But in order to do that she still had to hold onto it and she still had to view Angel as the love of her life. If she didn't feel that way then there would have been no point in dismantling it and having to damage it beyond repair.

    But I agree with King that there's an overemphasis on Buffy's love life to begin with. Part of the reason S8 didn't have to spend a great deal of time exploring Buffy's feelings for Spike prior to him showing up, is because the story was focused on different things than that. The only reason B/A was more established in those first 32 issues was because Joss was setting up the necessary groundwork for the reveal in #33. And even then B/A was only used to get the story to where it needed to go and it certainly wasn't the only fantasy/ideal that was tore down or subverted. I think it's really easy to loose perspective on how integral Buffy's love life was to her arc in S8 because it played a significant role in the final two arcs. However, when you group the whole season together it really is just another piece of the puzzle and there's a lot more going on with her (and the story). And that's my biggest regret when people reflect back on Buffy's arc and talk as if it only began from #33 onwards. One of the things I loved most about #40 was how it brought it all full circle and reminded us that her love life wasn't the focus of the season. There were so many other things going on with Buffy (her role as the general, compromising herself for her Slayers, dealing with the hateful reactionary blowback, her estrangement and loneliness etc) that her love life is just a small part of what was going on with her that year.
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  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maggie View Post
    Uh, dreams aren't tethered to reality.

    Buffy chose to dream of season 1. She could (a) have dreamt about a time when Spike was around or (b) she could also have dreamed Spike into season 1 since dreams are fluid that way.
    They weren't fluid enough to feature anything else that wasn't supposed to be there in season 1. She didn't dream about season 1 because of Angel (and it's not like the dream was all about him), she dreamed about season 1 because it was a simpler time when she was happier and more innocent and so many of the major traumas of her life hadn't happened yet - her first death, Angelus... and when her mom was still alive, and she and Willow and Xander and Giles were a tight unit.

    If she was having a dream about, say, season 4 and 5, and Angel popped up, then you would have a point. This way... I really can't see why it would entail that Spike had to appear in S1 (not to mention that it would be a lot more unrealistic than Angel popping up in season 4 or 5).

    She sighs about him even before seeing him.
    Not sure what you're referring to?

    Hey -- I *wanted* to find evidence that she loved Spike the way she loved Angel. I'm not some Bangel out to dismiss every bit of evidence. But unlike you, I couldn't wank my way past the fact that every time there was a choice to prioritize, the priority went to Angel.
    And I count just one, a total of one times when there was prioritizing. I really don't and can't see the cubes in any way important, when facts indicate that they weren't. If something is important, you don't leave it to your artist to decide.

    You think that I'm the one who's "wanking my way past the facts", and I think it's you. It really feels like you're looking for any possible evidence that Buffy loves Angel the bestest. Or maybe you've just been influenced by fandom, I don't know. But when the fandom is always starting off with the default position that Buffy Loves Angel the Bestest, it's not an objective position to start with. I'm always amazed at just how much wanking the hardcore Bangels are able to do to support their position, but Spuffies on the other hand are usually always starting off with the position that Buffy Doesn't Love Spike, or At Least Not As Much, and require all sorts of evidence to the opposite before they can be satisfied.
    But the real bottom line is just this. Get a stranger to the show to read the comics, and ask them who is The Significant love interest in Buffy's life. Buffy + Angel 4 eva; Oh Angel; My vampire (singular) was better than Twilight. There's *nothing* to point to which would lead someone not already committed to Spuffy being a done deal that would suggest that Buffy was pining over Spike rather than or at least as much as Angel.
    I think a stranger who reads the comic wouldn't think Angel was a big deal, or would hardly even register who he is, before #33. The fact is that the story up to that point hasn't been about Buffy's relationships with Angel or Spike at all.

    As to who the significant love interest was, I dunno, he'd probably go with Willow's statement/panel about truest loves and Always Darkest, if he/she's read it, and say that it's those two vampire guys.

    To recap, since you may have missed it: Angel shows up not once, but twice in the dream cube space. Joss does not override Jeanty's choices.
    And would he have if Jeanty has drawn something different? Unless you have any evidence that he would have, the most obvious conclusion is that it really wasn't that important what it was in the cubes, and that Joss was going to say 'good job' either way. If it had been important, don't you think Joss would have given specific instructions what to draw?

    Buffy jumping from the tower in The Gift wasn't in the memory cubes, either. So, that wasn't important either? But on the other hand, Joss himself is pictured in one of the cubes. So, uh, Buffy actually knows him? That's how incredibly important the content of those cubes was. And Joss even joked to Jeanty that he did a really good job, especially with that handsome fellow in a close up in one of the cubes (i.e. himself).

    (1) I think that Buffy is in love with her ideals about Angel, not really deeply in love with him. But yeah, if someone asked her who the love of her life was, season 8 Buffy was for sure going to say Angel.
    Possibly, but what you or anyone else thinks she would do is not evidence of anything. Nobody asked her before #33 who the love of her life was and she didn't many any comments on this, which means that it's just hypothesizing.

    (2) I spent three years arguing that Buffy couldn't have known Spike was alive because that was the only way I could account for the Dead Silence about the guy. Namely that the stunning failure to do any kind of continuity between season 8 Buffy and the Buffy who said ILY in Chosen was because Spike mattered a great deal and was a big shoe to drop. Well -- there was no shoe to drop. She knew Spike was back the whole time. And there is not a single solitary thing you can point to that says that the dead silence about Spike meant anything about where Buffy was at. Maybe season 9 will backtrack and make it turn out to be the case that Buffy was traumatized by Spike's non-call, etc. etc. But based on the text so far -- that huge dead silence wasn't because Spike was a Very Big deal. Since I am committed to not altering my logic just because it delivers a conclusion I don't like, my position forces me to say that the dead silence instead speaks volumes to how unimportant Spike is to Buffy -- at least in any conscious way.
    I don't need the comics to tell me how she must have felt when she knew he was back but didn't want her even to know it, and what conclusions she would have drawn. I'm not going to alter my logic just because people think that the comics need to validate what I think is the most obvious conclusion. Which, incidentally, gets validated in Always Darkest, where she sees him blame her for his death and where he and Angel both reject her and choose each other, i.e. hanging out in LA together.

    And apparently the dead silence on Angel doesn't stop you from concluding that Buffy thought about him as the love of her life, so why does it only stop you from imagining her position re: Spike?

    (3) How many times did Allie tell us that it didn't matter? A gazillion. I worked so hard to wank around what he said. Did it turn out to matter? Nope.
    Well he was right. It doesn't matter to the events of season 8 whether she knew or not. There were two options:

    1) She thought he was dead. => She sucked it up, suppressed her feelings and memories and went about her business running an army. Spike was one more painful failed romantic relationship from her past.

    2) She knew he had been resurrected, but chose to stay in L.A. and didn't want her to know he was alive. => She concluded he didn't want her anymore, suppressed her feelings and memories and went about her business running an army. Spike was one more painful failed romantic relationship from her past.

    And there is not a single solitary thing you can point to that says that the dead silence about Spike meant anything about where Buffy was at. Maybe season 9 will backtrack and make it turn out to be the case that Buffy was traumatized by Spike's non-call, etc. etc. But based on the text so far -- that huge dead silence wasn't because Spike was a Very Big deal.
    If he hadn't been a Very Big deal, he wouldn't be in Always Darkest blaming her for his death and rejecting her together with Angel, she wouldn't have been that defensive and harsh with him in #36, and she wouldn't have become convinced that she's somehow wrong and toxic and the one to blame that her relationships fail and that she gets people killed. She didn't think that way in Conversations with Dead People, when she blamed her bad choices of men on the failures of her relationships, and in her cookie dough speech with Angel in Chosen, she said that she had realized that she had realized that her relationship failures weren't such a terrible thing and that the reason wasn't because she was a Slayer or that there was something wrong with her - she just needed to grow more as a person before she could commit to anyone.

    BUFFY: What was the highlight of our relationshipó when you
    broke up with me or when I killed you? Iím well aware of
    my stellar history with guys and no, I donít see fat
    grandchildren in the offing with Spike. But I donít think
    that really matters right now. You know, in the midst of all
    this insanity, a couple of things are actually starting to
    make sense. And the guy thingÖ (sighs) I always feared
    there was something wrong with me. You know, because I
    couldnít make it work. But maybe Iím not supposed to.
    ANGEL
    Because youíre the Slayer.
    BUFFY
    BecauseÖ okay. Iím cookie dough. Iím not done baking.
    Iím not finished becoming whoever the hell it is Iím going
    to turn out to be. I make it through this and the next thing
    and the next thing and maybe one day I turn around and
    realize Iím ready. Iím cookies. And then, you know, if I
    want someone to eat mó or enjoy warm, delicious
    cookie-me, then thatís fine. Thatíll be then. When Iím done.

    That turned out to be another temporary epiphany, since in season 8 she's back to thinking that there is Something.Wrong.With.Her, and she's more entrenched in that idea than ever. She only hurts people and gets them killed, and soon enough they all realize there's something wrong with her and they leave her. There are lots of experiences piled up to make her believe that - from her father, to Angel to Riley to Spike, and Giles and Willow as far as friends go - but she hadn't thought that way at the beginning of Chosen. Something really traumatic had to happen in the meantime to get her in that state of mind. In terms of friends, it's Willow staying away and admitting she blamed Buffy's presence for Tara's death. In terms of romantic failures she keeps talking about... you do the math.

    Like John Maynard Keynes once said, when the facts go against my theory, I change my theory. What do you do?
    Facts do go against your theory, IMO, but you aren't changing it.

    Buffy never talks about either Angel or Spike to anyone before #33, except to Satsu, and that's when she talks about them both, and Riley, and her friends, as a part of her painful past. When she has dreams or fantasies about Angel - twice (I think counting After These Messages is a 'dream about Angel' is a real stretch - it's a dream about Buffy's life in S1 in general), it's actually about Angel and Spike, never Angel on his own. Spike and Angel both appear to blame her for their deaths, and then reject her, in Always Darkest. These are the facts.

    I think we will get Spuffy in season 9. I think Spike has mattered to Buffy all along. I just don't think she's realized it or admitted it to herself.
    I think she's realized it, but then worked to suppress the feelings and memories, and has become much more ambivalent after she learned he didn't want her to know he was alive.

    But I insist on the point that if you'd asked her at any point in season 8 who the love of her life was, she'd have given you an answer. And that answer would not have been Spike. It still wouldn't be Spike.
    Again we're back to hypothetics, rather than evidence and facts.
    In fact, I'm pretty dang sure that if you asked her at the end of #40 if she were in love with Spike she'd not say "of course".
    Personally I think she wouldn't want to answer.
    I'm pretty sure if you asked her how many men in her life she'd really loved -- at the end of #40 -- she'd still say, just the one.
    And here I'm pretty sure she wouldn't. And I really don't see what you base that opinion on. She knew she loved Spike because she's admitted it to herself back in Chosen.

    I think it's obvious that Spike is a bigger deal to Buffy than Riley. That doesn't help the argument that Angel isn't a bigger deal to Buffy than Spike
    Not if the memory cubes are your main point of argument. Riley was in them.

    Her narrative in season 8 was all about Angel as the Main Event in her life. Her narrative isn't all that reliable. But it's still her narrative.
    No, it wasn't. If it was supposed to be, why didn't the text at any point before #33 show that Angel was "the Main Event in her life"? Instead, he barely gets a mention, constantly has to share the role of the love of Buffy's life with Spike, and gets lumped as just one of the romantic traumas of her past.

    Anyway, I don't think my position is lame. It's something I've thought about far too much. And the bottom line is that I was (I think) one of the most vocal and insistent "Spuffy still matters" apologists -- until the fact that Buffy knew and there was no shoe forced me to admit that I was wrong.
    Only because you insist that Buffy not calling Spike after learning that he didn't want her to know he was alive means that he wasn't that important to her (while somehow Spike not calling Buffy doesn't mean that she wasn't important to him). You might have noticed that a bunch of people, many of whom aren't Spuffies at all, disagree with you strongly on that.

    I had thought that Buffy realized in Chosen that Spike was at least as important to her as Angel. But if she did hit that realization, it was one of those many faux epiphanies she's had. The Buffy of season 8 doesn't think Spike matters as much as Angel. She had to not think that in order for the major arc of the season to work at all.
    I see it working very well if Spike mattered as much as Angel. Spike wasn't the one who came to her, with the glow in tow, telling her fairytales about their love and being meant for each other blah blah, after she had been rejected by Xander and feeling lonely all season. He had been staying away from her all that time and had given her enough reasons to think he wanted it to remain that way. And she still says in #36 to Angel: "Would you have preferred he showed up a few hours earlier?"

    I actually agree that she wouldn't have said "Spike is the love of my life" during S8, but I don't think she would have wanted to talk about him at all (just like she didn't seem to want to in Predators and Prey), and that this is reflective of how she felt and how much more ambivalent she was about their relationship in retrospect after finding out he stayed away and didn't want her to know he existed. With Angel, at least she always could think that he couldn't be with her because of the curse, and that he left her because he wanted her to have a normal life, etc. - and he did show an interest in being back with her in Chosen. While Spike... apparently stayed away just because he wanted to, no reason given. You seem to think that she should have concluded that Spike was still in love with her and that all she needed to do was come after him and make another declaration of love for him to be back to her. I don't see why I should assume that this should have been Buffy's interpretation of Spike's behavior, rather than one of the following: 1) he's moved on and doesn't love her anymore, 2) he is trying to move on because he realized she wasn't really worth the effort and 'pain and suffering' he said she caused him, and feels much happier without her. If Spike thinks she doesn't love him, your position seems to be that she has to think it's because he thinks she loves Angel... and that's why he's choosing to stay in LA with Angel? Wouldn't be my first assumption. She might instead conclude that it's because he finds her deficient as a woman, the hardened Slayer unable to give the kind of love he wants.
    You keep waiting for the dust to settle and then you realize it; the dust is your life going on. If happy comes along - that weird unbearable delight that's actual happy - I think you have to grab it while you can. You take what you can get, 'cause it's here, and then...gone.

  17. #37
    Dedicated Spike Fan Maggie's Avatar
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    Vamp and King -- I agree with a lot of what you guys say. I don't think Spike matters zero.

    But perhaps it's only someone who did care about Spuffy who would think it is bizarre to go from season 7 -- where Spike obviously mattered -- to a story that meandered for THREE years before saying *in passing* that Buffy has known Spike was alive all along and it hasn't been worth sparing a single bubble to report that fact, let alone give the slightest indication as to why she hasn't contacted him. We couldn't even start speculating on why until #36 when it was finally revealed that she'd known. So you can't even say we could read between the lines. The storyteller's standing assumption was that we, the readers, did not need to know if Buffy knew, in order to understand Buffy's story.

    That's only possible if Spike is NOT the love of Buffy's life. NOT a burning concern for her (or for the reader trying to understand her). Not someone who left a big enough emotional mark such that we need to know why he's not there in order to understand where Buffy is.

    I don't know how to reconcile those two facts. I really don't. Spike mattered, but it wasn't worth telling the story of where Buffy stood in relation to him. I can't think of an instance where the story carried on and we didn't know why someone wasn't around, but were forced to guess. We know why Owen, Scott, Angel, Parker, and Riley weren't around when they stopped being around. But it wasn't worth telling us why Buffy wasn't with the now-alive guy that she'd just (when last we saw her) said she loved.

    It's probably an artefact. It would detract from the story Joss wanted to tell to swerve around to talk about why a major love interest in Buffy's life is no longer on the menu. He couldn't bring Spike in for an arc early on due to the IDW conflict. But still -- fact of the matter is, the person who got Joss right on this (King), is also the guy who doesn't think Spike is the love of Buffy's life or anything close to it.

    "I don't want to be this good-looking and athletic. We all have crosses to bear." Banner Credit: Vampmogs

  18. #38
    Slayer TimeTravellingBunny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vampmogs View Post
    But at the same time I agree that Angel was still the person Buffy would think of as the 'love of her life.' I think Joss deliberately tried to show this when he made Jeanty redraw the threesome panel and I agree with Maggie that the "Oh, Angel" moment in #20 was important too. I think Buffy was still in love with him but I agree that at the same time she was very much in love with the ideal of them and what he represented. And that's what S8 deconstructed when it tore down that fantasy and shattered it into a million pieces. But in order to do that she still had to hold onto it and she still had to view Angel as the love of her life. If she didn't feel that way then there would have been no point in dismantling it and having to damage it beyond repair.
    Actually I do agree that she would probably say Angel if you asked her at some point in season 8, before the end of #39, who was "the love of her life". That is, if she would want to talk about it at all. But I don't think it reflects on how she felt about Spike at the end of Chosen and post-Chosen but before season 8 - which we don't know. We don't know how she felt and what she thought when Spike died and sacrificed himself in the Hellmouth. But knowing that he was back and doing fine in L.A. and apparently not caring to let her know, or even asking Andrew not to tell her (if she knew about that), must have changed her outlook on their relationship and made her much more ambivalent about it. It might have been a beautiful while painful memory of a dead man and lost love before, but then it became about someone who went on with his life apparently indifferent or determined not to see her again. That's why I think season 8 Spike mentions actually work better if you know that she knew. She doesn't even want to talk about Spike in Predators and Prey, and when she thinks about missing "that sex" (which most people interpreted as a Spike reference, and it's a lot more likely than the idea she was referring to Riley), it would sound callous if that was how she remembered a dead man by, but it's understandable if it's Buffy choosing to focus on the sex but trying to disassociate it from the man, and then telling herself to "suck it up, Summers".

    I do think that Buffy being closer to Angel was very important - unlike the memory cubes - I just have a different interpretation. I don't believe that Buffy "felt more" for Angel (and unless Joss says so, I have no evidence that it wasn't anything but Jeanty's interpretation). Buffy's always felt too much for Spike, even when a lot of what she felt wasn't love but a mess of other complicated emotions. What I think is that Buffy thought of Angel and herself as an emotional commitment made years ago that has never been broken, and that she could still hope to go back to one day, even though they were apart for years. Angel apparently still thought so in Chosen. It was like this old, never changing thing, their 'true love', 'love of my life' that she could go back to when other attempts at love failed. Therefore the ring. She and Spike never made that kind of 'commitment'. She can tell herself that Angel is not with her just because they can't be together, not because he chose not to be (even though he actually did).

    And I don't know if Joss told details to Jeanty on how to draw the threesome panel, but in the panel itself, Buffy is closer to Angel because Angel is holding her tightly. Spike isn't.

    Quote Originally Posted by KingofCretins View Post
    As tempted as I was to run this up the flagpole back around 8.33, I left it alone -- I can speak firsthand of that sense when, right around the time everything has gone against you romantically and you feel adrift, an ex, or maybe "one that got away", will appear and the very fact that they appear feels like the moving hand of destiny and you should pity the walls, cars, or slow-running bystanders between you and your Obviously Destined One. My take has been that anything that the "glow" didn't cause in 8.33, that feeling did. I don't think it was a referendum even on her much more immediate Xander feelings, so I certainly don't think it was a referendum on Spike.
    ITA. And to the rest of your post, too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maggie View Post
    I don't know how to reconcile those two facts. I really don't. Spike mattered, but it wasn't worth telling the story of where Buffy stood in relation to him. I can't think of an instance where the story carried on and we didn't know why someone wasn't around, but were forced to guess. We know why Owen, Scott, Angel, Parker, and Riley weren't around when they stopped being around. But it wasn't worth telling us why Buffy wasn't with the now-alive guy that she'd just (when last we saw her) said she loved.
    Because it's obvious? We've seen AtS season 5, we know that he didn't contact her to tell her he was back and told Andrew not to tell her. When she found out he was back, she must have also found out that he didn't want her to know, or at least didn't care to let her know.

    edit: Also, does there have to be just one "love of X's life"? It's interesting that season 8 introduced (and during the Twilight arc, no less!) the idea that you can have more than one "true love"... and what's more, there's actually a gradation rather than a straight either or: "her truest loves" - as if, some loves are more true than others, but it doesn't mean that others aren't true at all. So, according to Willow, Angel and Spike were Buffy's "truest loves", but there are others of different degrees of 'trueness'. Say, Riley was apparently a love that wasn't as true as those two, but was probably truer than Parker or any of the guys she tried dating, let alone spell-induced infatuation with RJ, etc.
    Last edited by TimeTravellingBunny; 21-06-11 at 03:32 PM.
    You keep waiting for the dust to settle and then you realize it; the dust is your life going on. If happy comes along - that weird unbearable delight that's actual happy - I think you have to grab it while you can. You take what you can get, 'cause it's here, and then...gone.

  19. #39
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    Maggie
    Moscow was a nay-sayer.
    You know, what's interesting? I remember very clearly my first reaction to the covers of #34. That day I came back from a very remote ski resort without wi-fi; I spent a week far, far away Internet, so I think I had certain freshness of perception. I looked at the covers and thought: "OMG, Joss decided to kill Bangel." Because all my experience of Jossverse was telling me that Joss gives such enormous gifts only before permanently killing somebody or something.

    Then the interviews started and I was swayed. All PTB sounded like Buffy was about to be rewritten Stephenie Meyers way. By the time #34 was on sale I was almost sure that Dark Horse was creating their own Bella and Edward. After actually reading #34-35 I was absolutely disoriented. Bangel scenes sounded like satire. But all the creators were assuring the audience that everything was the real deal.

    Frankly, my Spuffy expectations were zero. The scene of Buffy daydreaming about Spuffy sex was a big shock to me. Since that scene, I'm cautiously optimistic.

    Right now I see two possible ways of developing Buffy and Spike's relationship. Either Spike is revamped into Giles' role of the exposition guy, or he'll be kept as a love interest. Given what Joss did to Bangel (a former sacred cow of Jossverse) I don't know what option I'd prefer.

  20. #40
    Slayer Supporter vampmogs's Avatar
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    Maggie,

    Well, I can only guess why it played out the way it did but I do think it's different to the other previous story lines that you mention. We already knew that Spike was alive since back in 2003 and S8 didn't start until 2007. So it had been common knowledge for years that Spike had returned and maybe Joss felt the moment had passed? Maybe he didn't feel he could get back into the emotional headspace required to have Buffy deal with the news for the first time when everybody else had gotten used to it? It would be one thing if S8 had been written shortly after S7 had aired but Joss always said he wants the audience to go through what the characters go through, and that would have been impossible in this case. Buffy and the audience would have been in two totally different places.

    Early into S8, Joss said in an interview that he picked up the story a year after Chosen because it had been years since BtVS had ended and Joss had always envisioned the characters moving on. He said that years had passed for him in RL (4 years) and that he had to reflect that in the story somehow. It wouldn't have felt right for him to start the story again at the edge of that crater. Which is why we got the rough 'year and a half' timeframe so it was clear a significant amount of time had passed, but not so much that the characters would have had 4 years worth of unseen development and would have been totally unrecognizable from the people we last saw. It's an interesting conflict and it inevitably means that some things, such as Spike's resurrection, are going to play out differently than they would have if S8 had been written only months after the previous season. We already knew Spike was alive but how much emotional impact could it really have had to explore it all again as if the drama was still fresh and new?

    Now, obviously there's a great many Spuffy fans that disagree with me (and I know there's others who felt a year and a half was too much time as well) but I definitely felt the series had moved on. Every possible way that story line could play out had already been explored in fanfic and, judging the way many people reacted to new canon, people were quite invested in their personal visions of what happened to the characters next. So Joss picks up S8 assuming that it's common knowledge that Buffy knows what we know.

    That's been my suspicion for quite some time now. It would explain why Spike clearly IS important enough to Buffy for him to appear, repeatedly, in her dreams and for her to clearly have a romantic connection with him in Last Gleaming. It would also explain why Joss, who thinks that "Spike, like Angel, is incredibly important to Buffy", didn't feel any burning desire to show an issue where Buffy discovers that Spike is alive. He assumes that the audience already thought she knew. And if you go back and look at #23, where Andrew refers to Damage and Buffy isn't at all stunned by his 'Team Angel & Team Spike' talk, it's quite evident the writers didn't see it as some huge revelation. In fact, I remember stating at the time that so much fuss had been made over fans needing a reference to Spike's name in the comics that when it actually happened, they barley even noticed it, and suddenly it all felt a bit trivial. They got what they wanted and suddenly it didn't seem all that important anymore, or at least that's how I remember it back when that issue came out. And when you actually go back and reread Whedon's issues, he actually includes many references to Spike, alludes to him, or even just blatantly shows him. He appeared in #3 and Always Darkest, his death was referenced in #11, and he was alluded to with Ethan and Daniel Craig. In hindsight, I really do think Spike's absence in the comics had been somewhat over-exaggerated. I really don't think Joss went out of his way to avoid mentioning Buffy's past with him and if he truly felt his character was no longer relevant he wouldn't have saved him for the big return at the climax.

    That's how I reconcile it all. S8 was taking place well over a year since Chosen, unlike the standard 3 months, and that means the characters have inevitably moved on. And unfortunately for some fans, that means the story probably wasn't ever going to answer some of the immediate questions that they'd all thought about since the series had concluded. The same way Buffy's story line in S7 wasn't still about grieving her mother and her arc wasn't focused on Joyce's death, Spike's death in S7 wasn't going to propel Buffy's story in S8. It wasn't going to be a major thing driving her arc because it had been well over a year since he had passed (and Buffy found out he was back) and, by then, Buffy had learnt to cope with it. Not completely, but enough that it's not essential to her story arc that season. It was inevitable when so much time had passed for both the characters and the writer. So it was never about Spike not being important (he wouldn't have returned at all if that were the case, nor would he be having a big role in S9) but just about Joss feeling like it would be backtracking to deal with that particular issue, and mistakingly believing the rest of his readership assumed Buffy knew. And Allie told us to assume that. Repeatedly.
    Last edited by vampmogs; 21-06-11 at 03:53 PM.

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