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Did Angel leaving make Buffy a better show or better with him on it

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  • Andrew S.
    replied
    Angel leaving definitely made the show better. Buffy/Angel resulted in what is, IMO, the show’s best storyline and fueled some of the best episodes of the entire series. But by the end of S3, there was nowhere else left to go with their relationship.

    S3 is one of the most universally loved seasons of the show but a common complaint I see about S3 in fandom is how superfluous Angel is and how repetitive the Buffy/Angel is at that point. They had played every possible angle they could have played with the two of them. Buffy and Angel were in love, then had an epic rivalry, he had gone evil, she killed him, he came back, they got back together and made up, then broke up, then made up again, etc. They had been involved in numerous triangles already - Angel/Buffy/Xander; Buffy/Angel/Darla; Buffy/Angel/Drusilla; Buffy/Angel/Cordy; Buffy/Angel/Faith; the retroactive Angel/Buffy/Spike. What else was there to do with them?

    Their relationship had simply run its course. Both Buffy and Angel grew and developed as characters post-S3 in ways that they wouldn’t have been able to had he stayed on BtVS. If there had been 7 whole seasons of Buffy and Angel going back and forth, BtVS would have been a vastly inferior show IMO.


    Originally posted by BtVS fan
    Would you have been up for a Buffy Angel Riley Love triangle though as I'm guessing that's what they would've gone with ?
    I feel it's important to mention that we did get a triangle between Buffy, Angel and Riley. It was in "The Yoko Factor" and it was fun and enjoyable for that one episode. But if it had been a whole season, it would have dragged IMO. Buffy is way too interesting of a character to be trapped in a pointless romantic triangle.

    Leave a comment:


  • Priceless
    commented on 's reply
    I think the comics are part of the whole. If you want the whole story you have to count the comics. Unless you're like Willow and you stop the movie at chapter 32 to get a happy ending

  • TriBel
    commented on 's reply
    flow - a mixed bag. I watched it twice and enjoyed it more on re-watch.

  • TriBel
    commented on 's reply
    You can ignore the comics. S8-12 simply confirm what's apparent in S1-7 (there's a reason Touched is called Touched - there's a reason hands figure strongly in S7...and AtS5 - though I've never thought AtS through).

  • flow
    commented on 's reply
    It's not yet available in Germany. It will drop sometime in October. However, I was hugely disappointed with season 5b and don't even know if I want to watch season 6.

  • BtVS fan
    replied
    Originally posted by TriBel View Post
    BtVS fan

    I'm not convinced. She's unsure how she feels about him in S10 and is still moping after him in S12. The ring's symbolic - her decision to leave it is conscious - as such it doesn't accommodate her unconscious fantasies and fear. It can't because she doesn't know them herself. The Claddagh ring is clasped hands but they're not real. Compare with the iconic Spuffy hand clasp - they're real hands, tangible hands that actually touch. They're of the body - not the mind. At one level, partly because Western philosophy elevates mind over body, they're "inferior".* Spuffy never achieves the highs/lows - the heaven/hell of Bangle but it's "realer" in the sense it's figured as "real", as a relationship that can - and does - exist on a physical plane. Angel/Bangel is a necessary illusion - something to strive towards - that can't be achieved because it never existed in the first place. At one level she knows this...at another level, she doesn't. It's kinda how desire works and you don't get to say goodbye to desire until you're dead (when you effectively achieve your desire).

    *I don't think Spuffy is inferior - one relationship doesn't take the place of another and neither takes anything away from the other. They're tangled together in a way that resembles a Borromean knot. I'm really talking about how they're represented and their textual, psychosocial function. Spuffy is figured as more - perhaps pragmatic - less imaginary? I think it's what Whedon was getting at when he said: "I’m a Buffy/Spike shipper. I always felt like he was a more evolved person, but that’s like saying Juliet’s going to be so happy with Benvolio and everyone will love it. Buffy/Angel is for the ages; Buffy/Spike is maybe for me."

    So no...I don't think she gets over Angel...I think she feels the "lack of Angel" but the lack is imaginary. You could probably say that desire consists of faith and hope but ultimately it's a trick...an illusion.

    (Sorry...minor digression flow, American Aurora I'm a bit ambivalent about Lucifer S6 - I found the early episodes a bit boring but I think there's a reason it starts with Lucifer not wanting to see the trick and ends the way it does).
    I don't count the comics, they're crap.

    Leave a comment:


  • TriBel
    replied
    BtVS fan
    No, she literally gets over it at the end of Faith Hope and Trick, leaving the ring there as her way of saying goodbye .
    I'm not convinced. She's unsure how she feels about him in S10 and is still moping after him in S12. The ring's symbolic - her decision to leave it is conscious - as such it doesn't accommodate her unconscious fantasies and fear. It can't because she doesn't know them herself. The Claddagh ring is clasped hands but they're not real. Compare with the iconic Spuffy hand clasp - they're real hands, tangible hands that actually touch. They're of the body - not the mind. At one level, partly because Western philosophy elevates mind over body, they're "inferior".* Spuffy never achieves the highs/lows - the heaven/hell of Bangle but it's "realer" in the sense it's figured as "real", as a relationship that can - and does - exist on a physical plane. Angel/Bangel is a necessary illusion - something to strive towards - that can't be achieved because it never existed in the first place. At one level she knows this...at another level, she doesn't. It's kinda how desire works and you don't get to say goodbye to desire until you're dead (when you effectively achieve your desire).

    *I don't think Spuffy is inferior - one relationship doesn't take the place of another and neither takes anything away from the other. They're tangled together in a way that resembles a Borromean knot. I'm really talking about how they're represented and their textual, psychosocial function. Spuffy is figured as more - perhaps pragmatic - less imaginary? I think it's what Whedon was getting at when he said: "I’m a Buffy/Spike shipper. I always felt like he was a more evolved person, but that’s like saying Juliet’s going to be so happy with Benvolio and everyone will love it. Buffy/Angel is for the ages; Buffy/Spike is maybe for me."

    So no...I don't think she gets over Angel...I think she feels the "lack of Angel" but the lack is imaginary. You could probably say that desire consists of faith and hope but ultimately it's a trick...an illusion.

    (Sorry...minor digression flow, American Aurora I'm a bit ambivalent about Lucifer S6 - I found the early episodes a bit boring but I think there's a reason it starts with Lucifer not wanting to see the trick and ends the way it does).

    Leave a comment:


  • BtVS fan
    replied
    Originally posted by TriBel View Post

    If Angel hadn't returned she'd have been in (metaphorical) Hell with him rather than in the dark with Spike (just as she could have been in (metaphorical) Paradise with Angel in S8).

    I'm not sure she ever gets over him - though she gets over what she did to him. Joyce's death (and her imaginary role in it) is the one she doesn't get over.




    Nice - that's exactly how I read the end of S12 and it's why I hate it so much (but concede the aspic effect is realistic).

    Yes, BtVS is better without Angel - and Angel/AtS is better without Buffy.
    No, she literally gets over it at the end of Faith Hope and Trick, leaving the ring there as her way of saying goodbye .

    Leave a comment:


  • TriBel
    replied
    Originally posted by Priceless View Post
    Can you imagine if Angel had never returned from hell? Poor Buffy would never have gotten over him or what she had to do. What a terrible concept. She's be set in aspic at that moment and how could she ever move on. I'm very glad Angel came back, if only to free Buffy from that terrible guilt.
    If Angel hadn't returned she'd have been in (metaphorical) Hell with him rather than in the dark with Spike (just as she could have been in (metaphorical) Paradise with Angel in S8).

    I'm not sure she ever gets over him - though she gets over what she did to him. Joyce's death (and her imaginary role in it) is the one she doesn't get over.


    She's be set in aspic at that moment and how could she ever move on.
    Nice - that's exactly how I read the end of S12 and it's why I hate it so much (but concede the aspic effect is realistic).

    Yes, BtVS is better without Angel - and Angel/AtS is better without Buffy.

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  • Brendan
    replied
    Yes, for me, BTVS did get a lot better without Angel.

    Buffy, the character she became far more admirable and inspirational.

    Leave a comment:


  • flow
    replied
    vampmogs
    I do sometimes imagine what the series could have done with Angel had he never left. He could have been incorporated into the Initiative storyline quite easily either as being held captive or on the run.
    I like that storyline and think it would really have worked. It would have gotten even more interesting if they had kept Maggie Walsh as the Big bad instead of Adam. Buffy would then have found herself in a position where she defends a vampire against humans. I also think Angel on the run would have made for some interesting character growth for him. I don't think I would have liked to see him chipped but that part could have played out with Spike as it did on the show.

    However, I do think that Angel would have been killed off in season 5 so they could pull the rug from underneath Buffy's feet in season 6. Season 6 wouldn't have worked if Buffy had had emotional support from Angel throughout the season.

    flow.


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  • Lostsoul666
    replied
    Originally posted by Priceless View Post
    Can you imagine if Angel had never returned from hell? Poor Buffy would never have gotten over him or what she had to do. What a terrible concept. She's be set in aspic at that moment and how could she ever move on. I'm very glad Angel came back, if only to free Buffy from that terrible guilt.
    I think that Buffy was at the early stages of moving on from Angel at the end of Faith, Hope & Trick. She opened up to Willow, and Giles about what happened, and there was that scene at the end of the episode Buffy returns to Angel's mansion, and places her Claddagh ring on the floor and says goodbye. So even if Angel hadn't come back I think that Buffy would have eventually moved on. It's better that he did come back since Buffy gets closure that she wouldn't have gotten otherwise.
    Last edited by Lostsoul666; 20-09-21, 07:00 PM.

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  • Priceless
    replied
    Can you imagine if Angel had never returned from hell? Poor Buffy would never have gotten over him or what she had to do. What a terrible concept. She's be set in aspic at that moment and how could she ever move on. I'm very glad Angel came back, if only to free Buffy from that terrible guilt.

    Leave a comment:


  • Lostsoul666
    replied
    Originally posted by PuckRobin View Post

    Presumably if there was no spinoff on the horizon, the Buffy/Angel relationship could have gone in different directions. Maybe they’d have broken up, maybe he’d get more involved with other characters. It’s hard to say, but given how all the other characters evolved from seasons 4 through 7, presumably Angel would have too.
    Personally I get the feeling that if the spinoff hadn't happen that Angel's "death" at the end of season 2 would have been permanent. I've always gotten the feeling that Joss never really originally planned on Angel coming back from hell.

    Leave a comment:


  • PuckRobin
    replied
    I would say not better or worse — just different.

    I think the BTVS season 3 version of Angel was in a holding pattern — keeping Angel around and the actor employed until the spin-off was ready. Having Angel taste Buffy’s blood in Graduation Day put him into a similar place that he was immediately in after the Angelus arc, where he also feasted on human blood which could have left him with a craving too.

    Presumably if there was no spinoff on the horizon, the Buffy/Angel relationship could have gone in different directions. Maybe they’d have broken up, maybe he’d get more involved with other characters. It’s hard to say, but given how all the other characters evolved from seasons 4 through 7, presumably Angel would have too.

    Of course, as it has been said, Angel leaving allowed him to grow from an interesting supporting character to an even more interesting lead character.

    Leave a comment:


  • sybil
    replied


    Uh…no. Spells to “anchor Angel’s soul?” Isn’t the point of the BTVS series not only the display of ultimate paradoxes in the “forever moment” of the ‘romance,’ but in the (real world?) “becoming” that is the “actual” setting for the change/growth or development of both characters.

    That is why the “soul,” as clunky as it may be used to shape or give a being “actual” free will or “actual” choice—the “actual” * feeling * ability to “act” (versus the “knowledge” of good vs. evil, but the inability to “feel” “actual” remorse, experience, or empathy that makes for expression –the “ability to act”—on behalf of one’s own growth/wisdom or on behalf of another being (“actual” connection).

    I do regret the change of networks that denied me seeing it originally other than on ancient VCR tapes I got from a friend--the DVDs are "different." I also regret the constant shuffle of showrunners and writers too overwhelmed with projects. Write the damn story, finish it, and "move on"--better that than "just WTF?"

    I do feel that Joss and staff took on too many shows at once and that didn’t help any of them to have the clarity and power of most of the first three seasons, and maybe "parts" of the others, but I do think that after graduation and “dealing with the Master’s “hellmouth” the series should have been placed in L.A. as that is exactly what young people do: the go to the big city, if not to college—which, miraculously, Buffy had high enough marks to “actually” accomplish. I do think the detective agency idea is not horrible, and I do think that the “Fang Gang” with the scoobies would have been interesting, especially because making human beings “boogity” in order to deal with “the powers of darkness” could have been done better, including the “horror” of crimes against humanity and crimes specifically * women * actually endure. That Buffy is a depressive is very much a ‘hell dimension’ in itself that is *within * the reality of others. I do think the “dark arts” and psychiatry go very well, hand in hand, BTW for “the watchers.”

    I have no idea if anyone else likes the “supernatural” aspect of myths in literally flying a car through the air—like the sun’s chariot—to take its path through the sky to land in an “alter verse” aka the “underworld” for “rebirth” each day, as was this land called “Pylea” with uh…* that * , but such things do offer “dimensional” alternatives to specific characters’ own journeys and struggles. I did not like Willow or Cordelia, as a goddess, unless their story requires such paradox—positive or negative in its “routing” for “telling the tale” (as was season 6 supposed to be and the “union” with Willow for the “Arthurian” version of ‘charging’ the scythe”—snicker—instead of ‘sticking with the water’ “motif” e.g. “the Lady of the Lake.” For example. And, Cordy… I honest to heaven prefer her to stay “just human” and “end up” “just normal” with Xander, as both their own lessons progressed. Everyone else is ‘boogity’—even the Fang Gang ended up like that and * that * is a problem of “boring” to me. Paradox and “special” don’t mean “boogity” alone.

    I also think “the law” that infiltrates every aspect of life itself to the point of “nonsense” in trying to “generalize” or to create deep specifics is simply “impossible.” That is ‘Ssyphus’ if I ever saw it. The fact the show treasures “choice” and “love” and “self-sacrifice,” especially, is the “means” to ‘end’ a journey. It doesn’t have to be shown as ‘heaven’ or ‘hell’ but is to be understood, they grew up and are *ever becoming * adults—even if ‘death/change’ is the “standard” to show this ‘paradox.’

    And...p.s. "sex" is not evil. That is * not * the problem with "youth doing it" too soon or with even the "consequences" to adults. Face that, writers.


    No character needs to be excluded or included “forever” other than the “Protagonists” which include the Scoobies, especially, (and the “fang gang” if ‘joined in L.A.). The biggest question to me is Xander--the * only "just human." (Joss much?) And, Cordy… I honest to heaven prefer her to stay “just human” and “end up” “just normal” with Xander, as both their own lessons progressed. Everyone else is ‘boogity’—even the Fang Gang ended up like that and * that * is a problem of “boring” to me. Paradox and “special” don’t mean “boogity” alone.

    I would have “bought” it re the “wonky soul” in * all * of us; who else creates such “hell on earth?” Nature does, without care, for even itself, but so do we in all claims of caring or even “lawful.” I wouldn’t mind the series ending on a spider within one of those dishes of a “legal scale.” (No. Not a “feather.”)


    HUGS
    sybil
    Last edited by sybil; 16-09-21, 04:42 PM.

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  • HardlyThere
    replied
    Originally posted by BtVS fan View Post

    When even the writers are making fun of what they are writing (see the Zeppo) you know a relationship is played out. I don't see what they could have done next that was any different
    They've admitted publicly they really didn't have much to say about the relationship. It's an interesting discussion because having Angel leave was the only real reason he came back in S3. I guess it might be a better way to look at is as if Angel was quickly cancelled and they brought Cordy and Angel back to BTVS.

    Originally posted by BtVS fan View Post

    But wasn't that cliche a trend in the show. Hell both shows , like in Expecting where Cordy sleeps with the guy and gets a demon pregnancy (Joss really didn't like women being pregnant did he)
    I guess they thought they were doing the opposite the following season where Angel sleeps with Darla then has moment of clarity while treating her like crap but that's seen as ok
    Well, yeah. It's one thing among many. Buffy was meant to be a subversive character and series. It's hard to really do that when the show never really delves into the building blocks of the tropes its meant to subvert, so in the end it ends up using them all the same. Buffy's the pretty blonde murdered in an alley. It doesn't seem as though Joss ever asked the question of why that trope and others are so prevalent in horror to begin with. Much of his explanations about that arc only sound to me like he's doing a bit of fan meta on his own work. That's why there are contradictions like him complaining about characters being punished for sex then admitting he's punishing Buffy for having sex.

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  • vampmogs
    replied
    Originally posted by BtVS fan View Post

    Would you have been up for a Buffy Angel Riley Love triangle though as I'm guessing that's what they would've gone with ?
    Doubt Spike would've been a regular either
    There's very few storylines I object to without giving the writers the opportunity to convince me so, honestly, this doesn't deter me at all.

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  • BtVS fan
    replied
    Originally posted by HardlyThere View Post

    I think that was possibly intentional. The Angelus metaphor really isn't a very good one and kind of undermines things. The reality is sex doesn't turn a guy into a jerk. He was always a jerk. Like Parker. But by directly linking sex to the guy turning evil, it not only doesn't subvert the cliche, but actively doubles down on it.
    But wasn't that cliche a trend in the show. Hell both shows , like in Expecting where Cordy sleeps with the guy and gets a demon pregnancy (Joss really didn't like women being pregnant did he)
    I guess they thought they were doing the opposite the following season where Angel sleeps with Darla then has moment of clarity while treating her like crap but that's seen as ok

    Leave a comment:


  • BtVS fan
    replied
    Originally posted by Lostsoul666 View Post
    Angel leaving made Buffy better since by season 3 the whole Buffy/Angel relationship was played out. Plus we got another show out of the deal.
    When even the writers are making fun of what they are writing (see the Zeppo) you know a relationship is played out. I don't see what they could have done next that was any different

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