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Thread: Did Joss Whedon think we’d essentially forgive Angel after BtVS S8?

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    Default Did Joss Whedon think we’d essentially forgive Angel after BtVS S8?

    This has essentially been in my head since the end of A&F S9.


    * I don’t know what Joss Whedon’s plan was. He makes Cursed Angel be Twilight. In A&F S9, it turns out that AngelTwilight did worse and was even more evil than we thought – the whole Pearl and Nash thing –, and almost everyone in A&F S9 is as okay with Cursed Angel as he or she was in AtS s5 or better than he and she was in AtS s5.

    Did Joss actually assume Cursed Angel’s being catatonic for months and then helping to resurrect Giles going was going to be enough for the audience to forgive Angel? Did Joss actually approve of how everyone in A&F S9 regarded Angel?

    Moreover, Angel received less than zero punishment for what he did in BtVS S8. He’s actually rewarded. He got to live in Rupert Giles’ former house free, he got Faith as his ‘sidekick’, Connor loves him more than ever, Willow hugs Cursed Angel (something I don’t remember her ever doing), Drusilla tells him she’s happy he made her a vampire, Spike commends Angel for they way he was able to ‘move on’ from Buffy (given what Angel did in BtVS S8, that made no sense), Giles forgives Cursed Angel, and by the end of A&F S9, Angel thinks he still has a chance with Buffy.

    Compare that to:

    BtVS S2: it turns out Cursed Angel was in a hell dimension for a long time. Cursed Angel tells his Fang Gang that it was 100 years. While Drusilla other than losing Spike is never really punished, she’s also not a regular in the Buffyverse and we’re not asked to consider her one of the main heroes of the Buffyverse. Spike helped Buffy save the world; he’s later chipped.

    BtVS S3: While Faith was helping the Mayor to eat the town of Sunnydale, population around 35K, what she actually accomplished was killing a professor, killing an evil Deputy Mayor, and poisoning Cursed Angel. She was in a coma for many months and later goes to prison for years. She ends up doing a lot of good in BtVS S7 and after.

    BtVS S4: Spike betrays the Scoobies to Adam but he’s also likely the only reason the Scoobies were even alive in “Primeval” (B 4.21) given that Adam would have simply killed Buffy’s Scooby Gang. In addition, the Combining Spell would have been broken had not Spike defended that door. Buffy and the rest of the Scoobies would have died. Moreover, his returning to Sunnydale resulted in his being chipped.

    BtVS S5: Dracula is Dracula and ends up being helpful at times to the Scoobies. Other than biting and drinking from Buffy and killing at least one person, he didn’t do much damage in “Buffy vs. Dracula” while in Sunnydale.

    BtVS S6: Willow after “Grave” (B 6.22) thought Giles was going to kill her and she accepted that. She goes to magical rehab. All she actually managed to accomplish was beat on some Scoobies including Buffy, kill the evil Warren, and kill the evil Rack. Before that, he had put Dawn’s life in danger and has to give up magic possibly forever. After attempting to rape Buffy, Spike goes away and goes through Trials to get his soul back, then he’s away for 4 months, then he’s used by the First Evil, then he’s almost murdered by Buffy’s quasi quasi quasi boyfriend and Rupert Giles. Spike then dies destroying Sunnydale and closing the Hellmouth.

    BtVS S7: Jonathan Levinson was evil anyway and Andrew Wells ends up being very helpful during the BtVS S7. Buffy was determined to kill Anya because Anya killed 13 people and Anya was still dangerous. Anya is turned into a mortal, her BFF is killed by her father figure, and her father figure for months sends assassins after her. Anya ends up dying in “Chosen” (B 7.22).

    BtVS S8: AngelTwilight’s actions resulted in 100s of Slayer deaths, many soldier deaths, there was the Vampy Cat thing, there was the blowing up of the Slayer headquarters thing, etc. What AngelTwilight did before glow-sexing SuperBuffy was more than enough to kill Angel. It is possible that no one but Twilight, Angel and Buffy know that AngelTwilight tried to keep SuperBuffy in Twilight and allow the world and all its life to be destroyed so that Buffy and Angel would be able to stay in Twilight together. I consider that Spike knows. Anyway, Buffy knows. SuperBuffy in BtVS 8.39 now considers that Angelus, Angel, AngelTwilight, and TwilightAngel are all the same person. Yet, Cursed Angel wasn’t killed in the Seed Chamber. Somehow, Faith is able to take Angel to London. The only negative thing that happens to Angel is that Nadira and Co. wanted to kill him. Nadira ends up asking Cursed Angel for help. The actual consequences come to Faith as Nadira and Co. leave Faith. Nadira over in A&F S10 seems to want to be BFFs with Cursed Angel.

    What AngelTwilight did in BtVS S8 is worse than what Uncursed Angel was doing in BtVS S2. Yet instead of being killed, going to a hell dimension, or even going to any kind of rehab, he’s mollycoddled by Faith.

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    BtVS S7: Jonathan Levinson was evil anyway and Andrew Wells ends up being very helpful during the BtVS S7. Buffy was determined to kill Anya because Anya killed 13 people and Anya was still dangerous. Anya is turned into a mortal, her BFF is killed by her father figure, and her father figure for months sends assassins after her. Anya ends up dying in “Chosen” (B 7.22).

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    Quote Originally Posted by ashellygul View Post
    BtVS S7: Jonathan Levinson was evil anyway and Andrew Wells ends up being very helpful during the BtVS S7. Buffy was determined to kill Anya because Anya killed 13 people and Anya was still dangerous. Anya is turned into a mortal, her BFF is killed by her father figure, and her father figure for months sends assassins after her. Anya ends up dying in “Chosen” (B 7.22).
    Jonathan had virtually no part in S7 aside from being used as a sacrifice for the First and eventually becoming one of the First's avatars and was hiding out with Andrew in Mexico or something, and I think referring to him as "evil" is a bit of an overstatement since it was Warren who killed Tara, plus Jonathan and Andrew both had basically been bumbling screw-up sidekicks until Season 7.
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    Additionally:

    Angel:

    * "Revelations" (B 3.07): The Scoobies have an intervention with Buffy merely because she was kissing Angel. Until Xander realizes that maybe there's another danger in town that maybe Faith should focus on; Xander wanted to go with her to try to dust Angel.

    Angel in "Beauty and the Beasts" (B 3.04) proves he's still good by killing the danger to Buffy. In "Revelations" (B 3.07), he saves Willow. Still, the Scoobies until Angel leaves town are always concerned regarding Buffy and Angel getting 'too close' again.

    In "Amends" (B 3.10), if not for some higher power, Angel would have successfully committed suicide.


    Spike:

    * After Dawn's is told of the attempted rape, she's not actually fully okay with Spike until after he helps save her in Season 9. Dawn is almost certainly the reason Spike didn't have an invite into the Xander/Dawn apartment.


    * Before that, there's the "Crush" (B 5.14) example. In "Lovers Walk" (B 3.08), it seems Willow knows Spike helped Buffy save the world. Xander and Giles already knew. Spike is the reason Giles was chainsawed by Angel. Spike saved the Scoobies in "Primeval" (B 4.21). Spike was helpful in BtVS S5. Joyce and Willow had been very against the idea of Buffy/Spike. Xander had thought the idea humorous. Giles had been literally violently and murderously against the idea.

    - Compare the above two to how Dawn acts with Angel in Season 10 and how Faith and Giles in A&F S9 and then Willow in Season 10 seem open to and possibly supportive of Buffy/Angel happening again.


    * In BtVS S7, Buffy left Spike in that basement for weeks even though she sensed that there was something evil down there.

    - Compare that to Faith's extreme mollycoddling of Angel.


    Willow:

    The Scoobies knew Willow was 'coming home' in "Same Time, Same Place" (B 7.03) yet Buffy and Dawn didn't make a room for Willow. Willow isn't listed in Buffy's phone book. Dawn is still against Willow. Buffy and Xander reasoned Willow's likely responsible for skinning the guy. Willow throughout the episode feels abandoned (she never liked Anya and Spike is currently 'crazy') and then reasons she's going to be eaten in that cave.

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    I don't believe in punishment so I don't have a problem with Angel's story post-season 8 but when a character goes full madman I expect character development and OK, it's not like Angel didn't change at all but it's not enough. Angel in season eight was all big crazy plan so I can be with Buffy™ and season nine is more of the same basically. He still has this childish idea that one day he'll do something heroic and they'll be together, still expects that happily ever after, he's still in love with her (except it's not love because Angel doesn't even know Buffy anymore) and...she's not, she's all stay in touch, check out social media loser - no hard feelings, no drama, no angst, no passion. It's over.

    At this point Angel's inability to move on, especially after season eight, is something between insane, creepy and pathetic. Characters that don't change are boring and until Angel can get on with his life he'll keep on being boring.

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    Quote Originally Posted by a thing of evil View Post
    I don't believe in punishment so I don't have a problem with Angel's story post-season 8
    AngelTwilight in Twilight wanted the entire world and all its life destroyed because he wanted Buffy and he to stay in Twilight together.

    Pre-BtVS S8, the fundamental reason Cursed Angel isn't killed in "Angel" (B 1.07) or after by the 'good guys' is because Cursed Angel wasn't likely to do something like The Judge, like Acathla, etc.

    In TV AtS, the Fang Gang was always concerned whenever Cursed Angel was acting too "Angelus" or possibly "Angelus".

    Post-BtVS S8 has been written as if Angel is still a good guy and essentially only Buffy is punished and blamed for all the horrors of BtVS S8. Even Willow somewhat only seems to threaten Angel in A&F S9 to 'guilt trip' him into helping her get her magic back.
    Last edited by MikeB; 03-01-18 at 09:29 AM. Reason: added the Willow thing

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    I think we are meant to assume that all the punishment Angel needs is self inflicted and that his mental anguish over what he's done is punishment enough. Buffy on the other hand, does not suffer the levels of guilt that Angel does, so other characters seem to feel it is their duty to verbally blame her for what happened in S8, especially Willow.

    A&F S9 was Angel trying to put right what he'd done in S8 and the writers seem to feel that is enough and the audience understand that Angel is still a champion and Twilight was an error of judgement. A huge error of judgement. Massive. But still forgiveable.

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    Look at the big picture @MikeB. It's been 3 seasons. Scoobies have become those amazing people, they've grown so much etc and Angel is still Angel, stewing in his manpain and his lack of character development. Isn't that enough of a punishment? Like, Buffy is mature and happy and amazing WITHOUT him. What more could a certified Angel hater™, such as yourself, ask for?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Priceless View Post
    A&F S9 was Angel trying to put right what he'd done in S8
    The only thing Angel worried about was bringing back Giles, and according to Joss it had to do with being OK with Buffy again.

    and the writers seem to feel that is enough and the audience understand that Angel is still a champion and Twilight was an error of judgement. A huge error of judgement. Massive. But still forgiveable.
    Not that easy...

    Let’s take a look on some of the Twilight’s– Angel’s crimes:

    1. Viciously attacked Satsu, to the point the Slayer needed medical care:



    With the same viciousness, not only attacked Buffy with brute force but also with harsh words:



    2. Working with witch Amy Madison and her misogynist, disgusting, skinless boyfriend Warren Mears, ordered a magical bomb attack to the Scottish castle where Buffy, the Scoobies and their Slayer Squad were dwelling. Angel knew Buffy wasn’t going to be there (she had traveled to New York with Willow – it wasn’t in his best interest to kill his ex-girlfriend) – and he didn’t care enough about the lives of Xander, Dawn or the young Slayers: at least 7 of them died in the attack:





    Let’s continue listing some of Angel’s crimes while playing masked man:



    Having witch Amy Madison under his command, Angel-Twilight was able to find the location of the Scottish castle where Buffy, the Scoobies, several witches, and hundreds of Slayers were hidden, and launched an attack of an army of ferocious demons, causing the death of several Slayers and at least one witch:





    Buffy, the Scoobies and the remaining Slayers and witches escaped using a submarine*; and with a powerful spell, Willow transported it to Tibet, where Oz was living with his wife and baby boy.

    *A bunch of vamps had taken it from the Koreans, and Satsu took it back!

    But Angel – with the help of an equipment to pinpoint magical energy plus Amy’s magic – located Buffy’s whereabouts again, and supervised another attack against them, yet more violent then the first one, which caused the death of many young Slayers (among them, Saabira, who had grew up under the Taliban) and almost killed Oz’s wife Bayarmaa,







    not before ordering the death (Kill the man that found this “spikes”) of the technician who operated the machine – probably a Government employee who just believed to be doing his part in the war against the “Slayer terrorists”:





    And then, few years later, we had the complete whitewashing of Angel’s role in this particular battle, laying all the blame on the Army,



    men who clearly were following orders from Twilight!





    SHAME ON YOU BUFFY! And dont’t give me that “he was possessed” line! (I wasn’t so pissed at Buffy when I read S10, but since this thoroughly reread of S8 I did last year, I've been).

    After the big battle in Tibet, Angel/Twilight loses his three minions (not that he minds, at all, he’s now near to achieve his primary goal): Amy teleports herself, Warren and the General to the forest near the temple (where the Scoobies find them later), and in exchange Giles, Faith and Andrew are teleported into Twilight’s H.Q.

    When the Scoobies take notice that three of their own are missing, Willow does a spell to find “the Slayer who needs” her most, thinking of Faith (“she has no friends”). However, instead of being taken to Faith, Will is teleported to several locations throughout the world (Malasya, Florida, Louisiana) only to find squads of Slayers slaughtered.

    It doesn’t take much to conclude that all those deaths are the work of Angel/Twilight; we have a survivor (Nadira) who later will talk about the massacre of her own squad in the Azores – 29 girls – perpetrated by Pearl and Nash, under the supervision of their boss Angel:





    (In the end, 206 Slayers were killed.)

    Back in the H.Q., Angel finds Giles, Faith and Andrew and announces that they will die – and he is NOT kidding:



    Faith attacks him, and ends up badly injured; before making his last strike against the three people, Twilight has to tell them about the inevitable event predestined for Buffy – which gives time for the Scoobies to locate the H.Q. When Twilight is about to attack Andrew (and probably kill him), Buffy (now with super superpowers too), intervenes:



    Which soon will bring us to one more of Angel’s crimes (but not the last): he knows Buffy won’t accept what he has to offer – unless she is not in her rightful mind; so he is smart enough and keeps talking (which Buffy notices right away and yells at him: Stop talking! Your best asset was that you weren’t a talker!) to give time for Buffy getting… drugged (by the Glow).

    After the Glow, Buffy gives in, has sex with Angel, and a new Universe (Twilight) is created: a world where, according to Angel’s own words, only “the most suitable candidates will enter”, criteria that surely doesn’t match any of Buffy’s friends, because when he sees them fighting for their lives on Earth, he dismisses it by saying “they’ll survive”:



    Buffy is strong enough to see the truth, refuses to stay in the new Universe, and leaves; Angel follows her.

    And then we have all the deaths caused by the creation of the new Universe… uncountable crimes committed by a non-possessed Angel.

    Then, he gets possessed and kills Giles.

    ******

    I discovered the BtVS comics in 2014, soon ordered the S8 TPBs (8 volumes) and liked it very much.

    My only problem was with Angel being Twilight – I couldn’t believe he would be capable of becoming someone so despicable, someone who could hurt the woman he always claimed to love, and cause so much death and destruction. I even said so on a letter that was published in the Slay the Critics section of the Buffy books.

    The thing is, after going through the stages of grief – Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression – and reading a lot of metas, I finally Accepted the truth; Joss Whedon, more than anyone, knew his character and knew what he was capable of. Angel was the perfect candidate to impersonate Twilight and the grandiosity of his plan. It’s funny how Joss once said he “didn’t get Angel”…

    I think that for Angel, to be the Great Hero was always much more appealing than just “help the helpless” in a daily basis; he’s not someone for ordinary gestures, ordinary life, ordinary love.

    Angel had been ensouled for years and years; he suffered, he brooded, he partied and saved puppies, he brooded some more, and he even helped to do some good (during the War, against the nazis, but it seems the experience didn’t stuck); and then, after one bad step he wallowed in self-pity for 20 years. It took Whistler to show him The Chosen One, for him finally decide to do something usefull with his life – only then, he had a purpose in life. Why didn’t he have a purpose before?

    After leaving Sunnydale, Angel maintained a low profile for a few years working with a small crew in Los Angeles – but soon enough, he was joining an evil law firm to be its CEO, and next he was ready to play a yet bigger role.

    So, Angel always had a penchant for these grand gestures (or according to Buffy “he’s kind of gullible when it comes to destiny”…), to make big statements without thinking much about the consequences, like when he decided to strike against the Circle of the Black Thorn – which caused LA to be sent to hell (of course it did, it should be expected that the Senior Partners wouldn’t take such an offense lightly).

    So at last but not least, let’s make it clear: Angel didn’t get possessed, he chose to play Twilight.
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    They originally intended to send him back to IDW as if nothing happened, so yes, they did think so.

    Of course, I think S8 was originally intended to end differently.

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    Not a comic reader here - but I figured more had happened than that. Angel wasn't possessed - he believed a talking dog had been sent by the PTB. This is not an excuse - this is actually the problem.

    I know this might look like an anti-Angel thread but I ship the guy. So can any Angel fans explain the why of this? How on earth was he dumb enough to believe a dog?
    Can we agree that the writers made everyone do and say everything with a thought to getting good ratings and being renewed. This includes everything we love as well as everything we hate.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bespangled View Post
    Not a comic reader here - but I figured more had happened than that. Angel wasn't possessed - he believed a talking dog had been sent by the PTB. This is not an excuse - this is actually the problem.

    I know this might look like an anti-Angel thread but I ship the guy. So can any Angel fans explain the why of this? How on earth was he dumb enough to believe a dog?
    I dunno - perhaps for the same reason Moses believed a burning bush? On reflection a) that sounds cruder than intended and b) there might be some mileage in what was intended partly to be a flippant remark. Bear with me while I flesh out the logic (for want of a better word).

    It's a visitation but having an angel appear to Angel smacks of extreme narcissism. However, note the dog is licking its balls and is quite excited to find out it has balls. Is this addressing the age old question of whether angels have tackle or not? Therefore, is licking its balls actually a signifier for masturbation - or extreme narcissism? Is the dog, in fact, an angel/Angel? I always read Twilight as the logical conclusion of Angel's relationship with his earthly father but with his real father as an amalgam of a) an Old Testament heavenly father (a severe God) and b) Freud's severe father/Primal father (killed by the younger members of the Tribe then elevated to the level of a God). The Primal father took all the women. Angelus identifies with this aspect, which would explain why he wanted ownership of Darla and Drusilla. Also, why he killed nuns - mothers and sisters - he didn't want to share them with a heavenly father). The killing of Angel/Liam's actual father and the death of the primal father is repeated in the killing of Giles. Going back to Moses, his task was to lead his people into the promised land - Angel's promised land is only for Buffy.

    Back to the dog, my guess would be that at some stage in his human life, Liam's father referred to him as a "dog", more likely a "cur", and it's an unconscious manifestation of Angel himself.

    @ Betta - loved your post!
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    Quote Originally Posted by betta View Post
    So, Angel always had a penchant for these grand gestures (or according to Buffy “he’s kind of gullible when it comes to destiny”…), to make big statements without thinking much about the consequences, like when he decided to strike against the Circle of the Black Thorn – which caused LA to be sent to hell (of course it did, it should be expected that the Senior Partners wouldn’t take such an offense lightly).

    So at last but not least, let’s make it clear: Angel didn’t get possessed, he chose to play Twilight.
    Interesting run through aspects of Angel's choices/actions betta, it's been a good number of years since I read S8 so I had forgotten some of this. I think, for me, Angel being duped into the Twilight plan was coherent characterisation. His despondency over his role, purpose, achievements that lead to the kamikaze plan at the end of AtS scans in a similar light I think and his wish for a greater purpose, a grand point of redemption and destiny is consistent enough to believe he could get himself into the situation. It definitely, as Buffy acknowledged, falls to his hubris and even more so when he had Whistler who had brought him originally onto the path of making a difference, to be heroic, pushing him to believe in the balance it would restore. Warning bells should have been sounding loudly because of the aspects of the plan which required secrecy and pulling someone down, weakening them, before you even get into the death/destruction. None of that sounds likely to be 'good' any way you angle it, but the whole plan/grandiosity of it definitely played to his weaknesses. And then we have the fact that he was possessed at some points and, as unsatisfactory as it is to just have this acknowledged but not given specifics to it, it is just a fact that he wasn't in control of all that he did. This doesn't however remove the fact that he remains culpable. He did get himself into the position to be used willingly, albeit somewhat blindly. He just shouldn't have accepted something that had such questionable aspects so readily.

    It's most definitely important to not brush aside that Angel chose to be Twilight as much as it is important to accept he wasn't always steering when some of the atrocities he committed occurred. I do find Angel falling to the same hubris time and again difficult, especially when it comes with such great cost, and I really want to see some character progression and change from him. But in terms of forgiving him for S8 I truly believe he'd genuinely convinced himself it was for the greater good and that makes some difference alongside the fact that he was manipulated too. It doesn't absolve him for sure, but it isn't something that breaks the character totally for me personally. But I think it drew a very stark line on what he can/can't come out of again in future.
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    I see Twilight as Angel's bathroom scene. Something so huge and disturbing that it takes an effort of will to forgive. It equals the playing field between Spike and Angel in many ways. Both men wanted to create a world for themselves and Buffy, and many will never forgive Spike for what he did, and many will never forgive Angel. Buffy forgives both.

    As TriBel suggests, Angel's story couldn't have gone in any other direction. He's always gone for the grand gesture, saving the world but only on his terms, and he's always been the one to choose who gets saved. He even sacrificed his own son (yeah, god metaphor intended) for what he believed was the greater good, while wiping the memories of everyone around him. Twilight makes perfect sense for Angel the character.

    As for what he does while being Twilight, or being possessed by Twilight, or by trying to bring Twilight into being, well I doubt Joss could give a reasonable explanation. The season went on for too long, the writers forgot the starting premise by the time they got to the end, and Joss took his new found freedom, with no restrictions, and just ran with it. But I would say that Slayers know they're in a permanent war against evil, and Twilight killing Slayers is part of that war. It's terrible when a soldier dies, but those women were soldiers.

    I understand why Twilight might seem unforgivable, but for me it comes down to Buffy. If she can forgive, then so can I. I've been on other forums were the majority cannot forgive Spike for the AR and declare the comics to be non-canon. (In fact many declare anything after S5 as non-canon). I do not want to be one of those people. I do not want to be someone who cannot forgive a character for a crime, when I can forgive Spike for the AR, Willow for wanting to destroy the world, Giles for trying to kill Spike etc. etc. Forgiveness is one of the major tenets of the show.

    Angel was forgiven. He turned himself around and started again in London, he bought Giles back and set up his own team to fight the good fight. He has saved countless people since Twilight, and as always with Angel, he lives with the guilt and tries to do better. He will stand shoulder to shoulder with Buffy and Spike in Season 12 and although I find him to be a dreadfully dull character (Angelus and Twilight are the most interesting aspects of Angel imo) I'll be happy to see him.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bespangled View Post
    Not a comic reader here - but I figured more had happened than that. Angel wasn't possessed - he believed a talking dog had been sent by the PTB. This is not an excuse - this is actually the problem.

    I know this might look like an anti-Angel thread but I ship the guy. So can any Angel fans explain the why of this? How on earth was he dumb enough to believe a dog?
    He wouldn't. Certainly not after S4 and S5 of Angel. The comics are full of characters doing really stupid OOC things for REASONS. They spent S9 A&F rationalizing by stating that he planned to save people, but nothing really makes sense. S8 states the exact opposite of that.

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    [QUOTEI see Twilight as Angel's bathroom scene. Something so huge and disturbing that it takes an effort of will to forgive. It equals the playing field between Spike and Angel in many ways. Both men wanted to create a world for themselves and Buffy, and many will never forgive Spike for what he did, and many will never forgive Angel. Buffy forgives both.][/QUOTE]

    @ Priceless - Totally agree. Moreover, I think the text elucidates forgiveness - or the very least - offers us a viable explanation of why these things "happen". I'm not necessarily convinced that either Angel or Spike are "tragic heroes" - for me, it's the system that's flawed rather than the individual.

    Having said I agree, I'm now going to question myself (and you). Can we/should we make a comparison between the deaths of so many named (and nameless) people and the AR? The AR was an attack on one women - a women who could easily (as other women can't) fight off her attacker. Buffy - I think - had the right to forgive Spike (and forgiveness is a recognised strategy for dealing with sexual abuse). However, Betta's post was telling. Does Buffy have the right to forgive Twilight - given the immensity of the fallout of his actions? Is it beyond her scope?

    The one problem I have is that the AR is fully a "real life" situation while Twilight isn't. I can find parallels in real life (hence the Freudian "analysis") but ultimately - not least because of the restoration of Giles by magic - Twilight remains a couple of levels removed from reality. Why, as a Spike fan, do I question myself about his actions (in bespangled words elsewhere, "disapprove and dislike" him for it but I'm ready to understand Twilight as metaphor and forget abut it? Does it say something about fandom that fans compare the two? Does it say something about our attitudes to femininity and women's bodies (why is potential violation worse than or equal to death)?

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    I wouldn't compare the two any further than both open either condemnation or forgiveness. Spike wasn't the same being when unsouled in a meaningful way that separates him as capable of not choosing the same act on a different level when souled (though character notes stay consistent unsouled/souled that played their part, I'm not wiping the slate totally clean for him when his behaviour was partly driven from obsessive tendencies). Angel souled made the choice to buy in to the Twilight plan even though he wasn't in control for the entirety of it and, whether foolish or driven by his flaws greatly or not, he believed he was making a hard choice for the greater good. There was a wider scope of victims to one than the other but one was more personal a crime. They are different acts, different circumstances, different character issues involved. So yeah, I see them as only 'similar' in the sense of something the characters can be given the opportunity to work past or not. The show explores that we have the scope in life to take on board experiences and allow them to inform our current and our future through our next set of actions/choices. The chance to strengthen and empower others is always there as S7 showed and we often can do this through understanding and forgiveness as well as acts of kindness and support.

    As Giles said in IOHEFY "To forgive is an act of compassion, Buffy. It's-it's... it's not done because people deserve it. It's done because they need it." and I think that works positively for the giver as well as the receiver. At some point we'll all experience being on both ends.
    Last edited by Stoney; 01-04-18 at 04:14 PM.

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  33. #18
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    I very briefly skimmed the new posts--I was surprised there were new posts in this thread and it's Easter and I don't have much time to post here.


    ANGEL'S ACTIONS IN SEASON 8 AND SPIKE'S ATTEMPTING TO RAPE BUFFY IN "SEEING RED" (B 6.19) AREN'T COMPARABLE.

    Spike's actions against Buffy in "Seeing Red" aren't even as bad as his actions against Willow in "The Initiative" (B 4.07).

    Angel's actions in Season 8 are eviler than Angel's actions in BtVS S2.

    It is beyond horrifying to try to equate attempted rape with world-ending evil. Angel's plan was to allow the entire world and all its life be destroyed merely so that Buffy and he can stay in Twilight together. Before that, Angel was responsible for mass murder merely to get Buffy to a place so Twilight could happen.

    Spike and Angel aren't comparable:

    Spike: (1) The Judge would have killed anything that had any humanity. The Judge was a birthday present for Drusilla and Spike didn't seem to know the full extent of the Judge's plans.

    (2) the demon eggs things were a possible world-ending threat. Used to bring Riley to Sunnydale. The Initiative were already handling the situation and Spike likely reasoned the Initiative and/or Buffy would handle the situation.

    Angel: (1) The Judge. Angel simply indulged Drusilla

    (2) Acathla. Angel simply indulged Drusilla

    (3) Twilight



    Angel's more evil than Drusilla. Dru was following Harmony's Rules.


    And, again, Spike's attempting to rape Buffy resulted in Spike's getting his soul back, later dying to destroy Sunnydale and permanently close the Hellmouth, later helping Buffy defeat Twilight, etc.

    Angel's Season 8 actions result in Angel's resurrecting someone he killed resulting in death and misery in a part of London, England.


    EDIT:

    Arguably, Souled Spike has been less evil than Buffy (twice risks the entire world merely to save Dawn, possibly risks the world to save Spike, refuses to allow Xander to dust Angel post-BtVS 8.39) and Willow ("Grave" (B 6.22), risks the entire world merely to try to keep the Seed, wants magic back in the world even though that would result in magical apocalypses being possible again, decides to make a new Seed instead of keeping the Seedling inside her).

    The extent of Spike's evil is he is attracted to partly evil beings: Drusilla, Buffy, Faith, Illyria, Spider and Co., Morgan, Harmony, even Beck is partly evil.
    Last edited by MikeB; 01-04-18 at 05:08 PM.

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    Having said I agree, I'm now going to question myself (and you). Can we/should we make a comparison between the deaths of so many named (and nameless) people and the AR? The AR was an attack on one women - a women who could easily (as other women can't) fight off her attacker. Buffy - I think - had the right to forgive Spike (and forgiveness is a recognised strategy for dealing with sexual abuse). However, Betta's post was telling. Does Buffy have the right to forgive Twilight - given the immensity of the fallout of his actions? Is it beyond her scope?
    I don't think Buffy is asking anyone else to forgive Twilight, or Spike for that matter. But I do think there is a sense of 'those without sin may cast the first stone'. Who in the Buffyverse can really stay angry at Angel, considering what they themselves had done. I think each character has to individually make a choice to forgive or not. Dawn couldn't forgive Spike for a long time. Twilight hurt Buffy, so I think she does have the right to forgive him for that. Compassion is one of Buffy's greatest and most important traits.

    The one problem I have is that the AR is fully a "real life" situation while Twilight isn't. I can find parallels in real life (hence the Freudian "analysis") but ultimately - not least because of the restoration of Giles by magic - Twilight remains a couple of levels removed from reality. Why, as a Spike fan, do I question myself about his actions (in bespangled words elsewhere, "disapprove and dislike" him for it but I'm ready to understand Twilight as metaphor and forget abut it? Does it say something about fandom that fans compare the two? Does it say something about our attitudes to femininity and women's bodies (why is potential violation worse than or equal to death)?
    It is a different situation, with the AR being 'real world' and Twilight not. I wonder how they could have made Angel so hated in the same way Spike was after the AR, especially because of course Angel has a soul? Turning him back into Angelus would have been difficult to make believable and he's already done terrible things as Angelus and has been forgiven (such as killing Jenny). So I understand why the writers went for a different approach in attempt to achieve the same emotional reaction from fans.

    - - - Updated - - -

    It is beyond horrifying to try to equate attempted rape with world-ending evil. Angel's plan was to allow the entire world and all its life be destroyed merely so that Buffy and he can stay in Twilight together. Before that, Angel was responsible for mass murder merely to get Buffy to a place so Twilight could happen.
    In many ways I agree with you, but I do also think there are similarities between the AR and Twilight. You have two vampires in love with a woman, both of whom want to make a space where they can be with that woman, create a new world for them. One attacks the woman in an attempt to force her admit her feelings, while the other attacks the world so he can persuade the woman to help him create a new world. One vamp attacks the individual woman the object of his affections, while the other attacks all women. One is soulless, so controlled by a demon, the other has a soul, but is being controlled by a philosophy/prophecy. The attack on the woman, if it had worked, would have shattered the show's universe/mythology. If the attack on all women had worked, the 'real' universe would have been destroyed. in both cases, it's about a man attacking women and not understanding why what he is doing is wrong, or not caring.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I guess you could argue that the result of both attacks are that Spike 'resurrects' himself, and Angel resurrects Giles, both are attempts to make up for what they did in attacking Buffy/the slayer army.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TriBel View Post
    It's a visitation but having an angel appear to Angel smacks of extreme narcissism.
    And it's not just about a talking animal; Angel is suddenly superpowered by the "dog", and heroically saves an airplane from crashing.


    @ Betta - loved your post!
    Thank you so much!

    Quote Originally Posted by Stoney View Post
    Warning bells should have been sounding loudly because of the aspects of the plan which required secrecy and pulling someone down, weakening them, before you even get into the death/destruction. None of that sounds likely to be 'good' any way you angle it, but the whole plan/grandiosity of it definitely played to his weaknesses.
    As Buffy said, you can't beat evil by doing evil.
    My Tumblr: Dog is My Copilot


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