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Joss Whedon Top Ten episodes that werent directed by him

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  • Joss Whedon Top Ten episodes that werent directed by him

    Actually it should be top 12.
    Anyway I wonder if people agree with this list or not. Personally I certainly wouldn't have the Pack and Ted (wasn't he part writer for this anyway) as 1 and 2
    Anyway what's people's thoughts on the list Agree or disagree or both ?

    https://imgur.com/a/lPj5Jet

  • #2
    It's actually his 12 favorite episodes that weren't directed by him, and if you pay closer attention, you'll notice that they're listed in chronological order, not by which are his absolute favorite.

    Comment


    • BtVS fan
      BtVS fan commented
      Editing a comment
      Fine we both overreacted then I can deal. Do you agree with the list though ?

    • Skippcomet
      Skippcomet commented
      Editing a comment
      I don't agree with some of them, but I do with others. When was this list made?

    • BtVS fan
      BtVS fan commented
      Editing a comment
      I think it was a list he did for the Chosen DVD set that came out a few years back

  • #3
    Originally posted by Skippcomet View Post
    It's actually his 12 favorite episodes that weren't directed by him, and if you pay closer attention, you'll notice that they're listed in chronological order, not by which are his absolute favorite.
    I already pointed out it should be 12 but regardless. Yeah that's fine chronological order though it didn't say that when I copied the list but again whatever but do you agree with it ?

    Comment


    • #4
      I'm moving this thread to the BtVS subforum since there are no Ats episodes or comics on this list.

      Comment


      • #5
        Originally posted by Nina View Post
        I'm moving this thread to the BtVS subforum since there are no Ats episodes or comics on this list.
        How do you change the Title to Directed as the edit button only does the post itself not the title ?

        Comment


        • Nina
          Nina commented
          Editing a comment
          I supect that regular users can't change the title of their own threads. I just checked if that is something I can switch on, but I don't think it's possible. So I changed the title for you instead.

      • #6
        I don't agree with his description of Pangs considering what happens in the episode. Unless he means he's going against the Native Americans were oppressed narrative and that it was right for Buffy to kill them, make jokes about them and then forget about them as shown in the episode.

        Comment


        • #7
          There's some great episodes on the list and others I wouldn't agree with.

          The Wish, IOHEFY, Passion, Fool For Love and Pangs are some of my absolute favourite episodes of the series. I adore all these episodes so much

          Ted isn't quite at the level of the others but still really great and very underrated. Ditto for The Zeppo and Earshot. And I do really like The Pack but theres many other non-Whedon episodes I'd pick over it.

          The only ones I really disagree are CWDP and Tabula Rasa. The former is great on first watch and I still really like elements of it but a lot of it reeks of unfulfilled promises/potential and dropped plot points for me. Some of it's biggest scenes go nowhere ("When it's bad Buffy won't choose you") and The First comes across as really threatening here but never is this great again. A lot of the scenes make no sense in hindsight (The First can't touch anything so how was it attacking Dawn? Why did The First need Jonathon and Andrew to return to Sunnydale? etc). And I just plain dislike Tabula Rasa - one of my least favourite episodes of S6.

          Overall a solid and pretty unsurprising list, IMO. They contain most of fandoms favourites and I can see why he likes all of them.

          ~ Banner by Nina ~

          Comment


          • #8
            Originally posted by vampmogs View Post
            There's some great episodes on the list and others I wouldn't agree with.

            The Wish, IOHEFY, Passion, Fool For Love and Pangs are some of my absolute favourite episodes of the series. I adore all these episodes so much

            Ted isn't quite at the level of the others but still really great and very underrated. Ditto for The Zeppo and Earshot. And I do really like The Pack but theres many other non-Whedon episodes I'd pick over it.

            The only ones I really disagree are CWDP and Tabula Rasa. The former is great on first watch and I still really like elements of it but a lot of it reeks of unfulfilled promises/potential and dropped plot points for me. Some of it's biggest scenes go nowhere ("When it's bad Buffy won't choose you") and The First comes across as really threatening here but never is this great again. A lot of the scenes make no sense in hindsight (The First can't touch anything so how was it attacking Dawn? Why did The First need Jonathon and Andrew to return to Sunnydale? etc). And I just plain dislike Tabula Rasa - one of my least favourite episodes of S6.

            Overall a solid and pretty unsurprising list, IMO. They contain most of fandoms favourites and I can see why he likes all of them.
            I agree, kind of, about Tablua Rasa, I love the end scene with Michelle Yeogh singing with Buffy and Spike kissing but the rest I could skip. I actually think Spin the Bottle on Angel, is a better version of the same story.

            For CWDP I do agree though in fairness I think some things were beyond there control. Amber Benson refused to come back and the Willow story of the episode didn't work without the First being Tara. Willow hadn't even had a single scene with Cassie in Help which didn't help either, so from Willow POV she has the random person she's never seen or met before telling her she spoken to Tara. Straight away she should be suspicious

            For the Dawn/Joyce scene not only does it not go anywhere but I remember even at the time of the episode there was confusion among viewers over whether that was Joyce or the First pretending to be Joyce.

            I actually like the Andrew/Jonathan scenes and its tragic end. Andrews point to Jonathan about no one cares what he's doing is true as well. Sure it never goes anywhere but that was true with a lot of S7 plots. See Wood burying Jonathan body.
            They all seemed to get dropped in favour of the Potentials and trying to get a spin off out of one of them instead.

            Comment


            • #9
              Originally posted by BtVS fan View Post
              I don't agree with his description of Pangs considering what happens in the episode. Unless he means he's going against the Native Americans were oppressed narrative and that it was right for Buffy to kill them, make jokes about them and then forget about them as shown in the episode.
              That was the only comment on the list I'd like to hear more about. What did he mean by deconstructing and repeating?

              flow

              Comment


              • #10
                Originally posted by flow View Post

                That was the only comment on the list I'd like to hear more about. What did he mean by deconstructing and repeating?

                flow
                Yeah I'm not sure how jokes, that they can have Casinos now and the bike/cavalry scene deconstruct US History about Native Americans
                Especially as what Willow mentioned that they kill the demon and they go tra la la did happen

                Comment


                • #11
                  When he talks about deconstructing and repeating he's basically saying that the episode examines the horrid history and ugly truths of Thanksgiving but ultimately the episode has the characters repeat the war with the Native American spirits all the same. Willow specifically comments this on the dinner table afterwards and feels guilt-ridden about resorting to violence.

                  I know a lot of people have issues with the portrayal of the Native American spirits but Pangs is the only TV episode I can think of that actually touches on the truth about Thanksgiving. There's quite possibly more but my experience with the US TV shows is treating it as a family, jovial holiday and nothing more.

                  And I agree with him about the shot of the Scoobies 'the calvary' coming to the rescue on bicycles. Honestly, it is one of my favourite moments of the entire series. I adore it.

                  ~ Banner by Nina ~

                  Comment


                  • #12
                    Originally posted by vampmogs View Post
                    When he talks about deconstructing and repeating he's basically saying that the episode examines the horrid history and ugly truths of Thanksgiving but ultimately the episode has the characters repeat the war with the Native American spirits all the same. Willow specifically comments this on the dinner table afterwards and feels guilt-ridden about resorting to violence.

                    I know a lot of people have issues with the portrayal of the Native American spirits but Pangs is the only TV episode I can think of that actually touches on the truth about Thanksgiving. There's quite possibly more but my experience with the US TV shows is treating it as a family, jovial holiday and nothing more.

                    And I agree with him about the shot of the Scoobies 'the calvary' coming to the rescue on bicycles. Honestly, it is one of my favourite moments of the entire series. I adore it.
                    Thanksgiving is like Christmas. It has very little root to what it actually was but in different ways. The term is just a formal name and date given to the annual harvest feast that virtually every agricultural society has. It wasn't even a set holiday for the country until Lincoln made it one. Before that, different regions in different latitudes had different dates just like Canada, naturally because different areas harvest at different times. Which is a long way of saying there's nothing wrong with it being about family and it being jovial because that IS what the day is meant to be about.

                    The whole 'first thanksgiving' crap is baloney, that's true enough, but that's the thing. It has as much to do with the day as evergreen trees and the birth of Jesus have to with each other. So there's little truth to this depiction, either.

                    The episode gets a star for me because it honestly asks the question of 'now what?' Spike and Giles are right. Vengeance is cyclical. Should the avenging spirit be allowed to kill people? Should the families of the people it kills be allowed to kill in response?

                    It's why I prefer the shows take on things like redemption and absolution. On Buffy, there is none. Just like in real life. There's no getting back to square one.

                    Comment


                    • #13
                      vampmogs
                      When he talks about deconstructing and repeating he's basically saying that the episode examines the horrid history and ugly truths of Thanksgiving but ultimately the episode has the characters repeat the war with the Native American spirits all the same.
                      I was wondering if he was saying "We tried to deconstruct the fairy tale of Thanksgiving by giving the victims a voice but in the end, we repeated the same mistakes because we only showed them as the stereotypical cliche they have long since become in American folklore.

                      Willow's comment does take it in the wrong direction. Like HardlyThere said - what was their alternate option? Should they have let themselves be killed because of the California Genocide that happened roughly 150 years earlier?

                      IF JW wanted to deconstruct the fiction American history has become, he shouldn't have started with a Native American killing innocent people.

                      flow

                      Comment


                      • #14
                        Originally posted by flow View Post
                        vampmogs

                        I was wondering if he was saying "We tried to deconstruct the fairy tale of Thanksgiving by giving the victims a voice but in the end, we repeated the same mistakes because we only showed them as the stereotypical cliche they have long since become in American folklore.

                        Willow's comment does take it in the wrong direction. Like HardlyThere said - what was their alternate option? Should they have let themselves be killed because of the California Genocide that happened roughly 150 years earlier?

                        IF JW wanted to deconstruct the fiction American history has become, he shouldn't have started with a Native American killing innocent people.

                        flow
                        The problem is Joss isn't a student of history, despite his mother teaching it. He's a student of literature and folklore.

                        I don't think Willow's comment goes in the wrong direction. It's just providing a not unpopular viewpoint, especially now. It supports the discussion pretty accurately. Both Giles and Spike point out the uselessness and Willow displays the hypocrisy involved that's rampant when talking about sins of the past. There a lots of Willows running around but you don't see them signing over the deeds to their land back to the original owners, do you? I guess it's a question of what we think is being deconstructed. Or how much Joss even remembers of it. This is the guy who forgot his favorite character ripped a guy's skin off and he played the First prominently in S7.

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                        • #15
                          Originally posted by HardlyThere View Post

                          The problem is Joss isn't a student of history, despite his mother teaching it. He's a student of literature and folklore.

                          I don't think Willow's comment goes in the wrong direction. It's just providing a not unpopular viewpoint, especially now. It supports the discussion pretty accurately. Both Giles and Spike point out the uselessness and Willow displays the hypocrisy involved that's rampant when talking about sins of the past. There a lots of Willows running around but you don't see them signing over the deeds to their land back to the original owners, do you? I guess it's a question of what we think is being deconstructed. Or how much Joss even remembers of it. This is the guy who forgot his favorite character ripped a guy's skin off and he played the First prominently in S7.
                          Plus fans sometimes tend to over theorise things I'll remember the time of fans constructing theories about the hidden sub text between Faith and Buffy and Joss had no idea and then went and saw it on TV and was yeah I agree.

                          It should be said that the jokes that Indians can have Casinos now is not great and Hoose even has the decency to turn into a Bear so Buffy can stab him with no repercussions.

                          Comment


                          • #16
                            Originally posted by BtVS fan View Post

                            Plus fans sometimes tend to over theorise things I'll remember the time of fans constructing theories about the hidden sub text between Faith and Buffy and Joss had no idea and then went and saw it on TV and was yeah I agree.

                            It should be said that the jokes that Indians can have Casinos now is not great and Hoose even has the decency to turn into a Bear so Buffy can stab him with no repercussions.
                            Fans that do that tend to fall into the author-is-dead category. They can think what they want if that's their mindset. I don't agree with it, but it is what it is. Where I have to top out on it is when they say that, then go on to argue that said subtext would have been capitalized upon if insert-name-here hadn't messed it all up.

                            I don't see the issue with the line because it's meant to be a lame offering of balance, not a genuine rationalization. Over-analyzing goes both ways. Both in lauding a text and criticizing it.

                            I have to say I never cared for the episode all that much. It's meant to be funny, but I don't think it is. Everyone is too jokey all the time. Every scene seems to feature a joke and byplay.
                            Last edited by HardlyThere; 02-02-21, 01:50 PM.

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                            • #17
                              I personally love it. It's my second favourite comedic episode of the Buffyverse (behind Dopplegangland) and my real 'go to' episode when I need to have a laugh and feel better. I think the humour is wonderful and I love the climatic battle scene. To be honest, it's probably one of my most rewatched episodes.

                              ~ Banner by Nina ~

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                              • #18
                                Originally posted by HardlyThere View Post

                                Fans that do that tend to fall into the author-is-dead category. They can think what they want if that's their mindset. I don't agree with it, but it is what it is. Where I have to top out on it is when they say that, then go on to argue that said subtext would have been capitalized upon if insert-name-here hadn't messed it all up.

                                I don't see the issue with the line because it's meant to be a lame offering of balance, not a genuine rationalization. Over-analyzing goes both ways. Both in lauding a text and criticizing it.

                                I have to say I never cared for the episode all that much. It's meant to be funny, but I don't think it is. Everyone is too jokey all the time. Every scene seems to feature a joke and byplay.
                                Death is the Author is the right approach, in my opinion. Or in any case, a very useful one.

                                What you put on screen/page is canon. It's what the work is. If you need to know author's intention or what the author currently claims their intention or if the author needs to give you a big explanation in an interview to understand what happened, the author failed.

                                Way too many people these days need to be reminded that Word of God =/= canon. I wouldn't put Joss in the category of showrunners who do that - he's been more flexible about what viewers can take away and usually more honest about the fact that he didn't plan some things in advance - but there are certain showrunners and authors who really think they can not only proclaim what the only correct interpretation is, but retcon their work after the fact if they feel like it, even when whatever they're saying at the moment (to make themselves look better; to try to justify some mind-boggling decisions made on a whim, to try to cater to a group of fans in interviews that the general audience won't read anyway, etc.) contradicts actual canon. (See: Jason Rothenberg always "explaining" plot points and characters in interviews to everyone's bafflement and gaslightning the fandom of his show and trying to convince people what they saw with their own eyes on screen did not happen, J.K. Rowling making proclamations about things she says exists in her books but she never put there...)

                                In this case - if fans see subtext between Buffy and Faith, let them have it. And was the subtext entirely unplanned? I do believe it was so at first or on Joss' part, but there's no way in hell Doug Petrie was not deliberately writing it that way in his episodes. There are way too many obvious teases in episodes like Bad Girls and Enemies.

                                I don't think that the Buffy and Spike subtext was planned from School Hard, either, but you can see it, and they eventually went and made it canon, because authors can do that when something happens organically even if it was not planned.
                                Last edited by TimeTravellingBunny; 02-02-21, 02:13 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.

                                Comment


                                • BtVS fan
                                  BtVS fan commented
                                  Editing a comment
                                  James said he always played an attraction to Buffy. He admitted his motivation was not to be killed off because he needed the money. He also never imagined that Buffy would reciprocate

                                • TimeTravellingBunny
                                  TimeTravellingBunny commented
                                  Editing a comment
                                  If he always played it like that , that's an example how canon can be complicated because actors or different writers may have different ideas

                              • #19
                                Originally posted by TimeTravellingBunny View Post

                                Death is the Author is the right approach, in my opinion. Or in any case, a very useful one.

                                What you put on screen/page is canon. It's what the work is. If you need to know author's intention or what the author currently claims their intention or if the author needs to give you a big explanation in an interview to understand what happened, the author failed.

                                Way too many people these days need to be reminded that Word of God =/= canon. I wouldn't put Joss in the category of showrunners who do that - he's been more flexible about what viewers can take away and usually more honest about the fact that he didn't plan some things in advance - but there are certain showrunners and authors who really think they can not only proclaim what the only correct interpretation is, but retcon their work after the fact if they feel like it, even when whatever they're saying at the moment (to make themselves look better; to try to justify some mind-boggling decisions made on a whim, to try to cater to a group of fans in interviews that the general audience won't read anyway, etc.) contradicts actual canon. (See: Jason Rothenberg always "explaining" plot points and characters in interviews to everyone's bafflement and gaslightning the fandom of his show and trying to convince people what they saw with their own eyes on screen did not happen, J.K. Rowling making proclamations about things she says exists in her books but she never put there...)

                                In this case - if fans see subtext between Buffy and Faith, let them have it. And was the subtext entirely unplanned? I do believe it was so at first or on Joss' part, but there's no way in hell Doug Petrie was not deliberately writing it that way in his episodes. There are way too many obvious teases in episodes like Bad Girls and Enemies.

                                I don't think that the Buffy and Spike subtext was planned from School Hard, either, but you can see it, and they eventually went and made it canon, because authors can do that when something happens organically even if it was not planned.
                                I don't have issues with it. My issue comes when they kill the author then blame the author if the story doesn't go where they want. If the author is dead, they're dead. The F/B subtext was unintended by Joss so of course it never went anywhere. You can't say the author's intent is irrelevant then say he dropped the ball with it because he went the way he intended rather than what you wanted, know what I mean? Then there's no such thing as bad writing anymore. No retcons, no red herrings or any of that. To me, you have to pick one and stick with it. That goes both ways, of course. I've seen just as many say Joss doesn't matter then trot out a Joss quote to prove their read on a storyline--most notably about Spike and the soul quest. If someone can think what they want about F/B or S/X, then someone can think he went to get the chip out.*

                                I'm not a Joss is God person. I'm in the middle on it. What happened on screen is what happened on screen. If I think a story is going to a certain place and it doesn't, then perhaps I just misread the storyline. But I also am always aware I'm watching a TV show.

                                *I don't think he went to get the chip removed. I'm just using it as an example.

                                Comment


                                • #20
                                  Originally posted by HardlyThere View Post

                                  I don't have issues with it. My issue comes when they kill the author then blame the author if the story doesn't go where they want. If the author is dead, they're dead. The F/B subtext was unintended by Joss so of course it never went anywhere. You can't say the author's intent is irrelevant then say he dropped the ball with it because he went the way he intended rather than what you wanted, know what I mean? Then there's no such thing as bad writing anymore. No retcons, no red herrings or any of that. To me, you have to pick one and stick with it. That goes both ways, of course. I've seen just as many say Joss doesn't matter then trot out a Joss quote to prove their read on a storyline--most notably about Spike and the soul quest. If someone can think what they want about F/B or S/X, then someone can think he went to get the chip out.*

                                  I'm not a Joss is God person. I'm in the middle on it. What happened on screen is what happened on screen. If I think a story is going to a certain place and it doesn't, then perhaps I just misread the storyline. But I also am always aware I'm watching a TV show.

                                  *I don't think he went to get the chip removed. I'm just using it as an example.
                                  Joss has a tendency to forget things for a specific moment. Hence Sunnydale is a big hole in the desert in Chosen yet previously it was on the coast with Docks. Or to use another example the Iver Vamps are really hard to kill in Bring on the Night but in Chosen they drop like flies and as he says on the DVD commentary don't tell people that.
                                  Hell the guy admits on the City of commentary that having Angel save girls in Alleys goes against everything he did making Buffy. But you know what he still did it

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