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  • Which Buffy do you prefer?

    Hi

    It is fairly evident upon watching the series that Buffy grew immensely from the girl we first meet in 'Welcome to the Hellmouth' to the woman who smiles at the thought of hope and new beginnings at the end of 'Chosen.' Every season offered us something new in Buffy, in every season she was slightly different as she was faced with the things life threw at her, my question is what Buffy did you prefer?

    Was it the young bubbly girl of season one, who despite her best efforts felt compelled to act on her duties, was it the heartbroken Buffy of s2, the strong yet cautious Buffy of s3, the Buffy who was thrown out of her comfort zone in s4 who dealt with new experiences life offered after high school, the Buffy who became more unsure about the purpose of life in s5? The emotionally numb and depressed Buffy of s6 or the Buffy of s7 who was forced into the leadership position and became isolated from the people around her, yet in the end learns a lot of lessons about herself and her relationship with others?

    Feel free to include s8 Buffy and what we've seen of her thus far if she is your favourite


    Vampmogs

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  • #2
    I'd put it at a tie between Season 2 Buffy and Season 8 Buffy, personally. In season 2, she still had that bubbly irreverance and wasn't disillusioned -- she was just learning. In Season 8, she's managed, at least so far, to put most of the crap away and keep what has value from the almost relentless run of stress and loss over Seasons 5, 6, and 7. I think now that she knows that being the Slayer, that protecting the world, is her *choice*, she is much more comfortable with herself.
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    • #3
      I'm going with season four Buffy. I almost went season three but I like s4 more and liked her well enough in it. Not an overflow of angst going on....not a lot of self-loathing...not a lot of hopelessness....mostly, we got good old happy Buffy with a little bit of insecurity tacked on. But she got over that insecurity pretty fast. I don't know...I just found her....likable in s4. More so than some of the other seasons.
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      • #4
        I have to say season 5 Buffy. She changes a lot in that season and I enjoy character growth so much. With Dawn arriving and having to look after her, Joyce getting sick and then dying and Riley leaving all changed her so much.

        But I feel that her understanding of who she was, the slayer in her, was the strongest part of the season for me. In the opener even when she admits she needs a watcher, she needs to understand herself better. Everything that happened that season built up to her understanding that she had to die to save the world and that being the slayer wasn't her job, it was who she was.

        I love her friendships that season, Willow and Xander growing up and finding their place in the world helped their bond grow stronger. While she was shut down for Riley and that drove him out she was able to realise that, which made her stronger also. It is important to tell the people around you that you love them. And I think it was nice for Buffy to see that the slayer didn't have to make her cold and distant.

        While I love season 6 I think if Buffy hadn't died at the end of season 5 the seasons 6 that would have made would been really interesting!

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        • #5
          While I love season 6 I think if Buffy hadn't died at the end of season 5 the seasons 6 that would have made would been really interesting!
          Most certainly! I don't think nearly half the stuff that happened in season six would have occurred if Buffy had never died. As for instance, feeling emotionally numb, being isolated from her friends, sleeping with Spike or a deterioration of her relationship with Dawn. Though, if Dawn had died instead Buffy states in 'The Gift' that she was done and was quitting, so in that respect I think the season would have focused a lot on her coming to grips with her sister's death and finding the meaning behind being a slayer again and how to live in this world. Which IMO means Giles would have likely stuck around to help her figure out her purpose again. I also don't think Willow's magic addiction wouldn't have gone as unnoticed by Buffy for the earlier part of the season either, because as Buffy states, she was too wrapped up in her own life to see her friend drowning.

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          • #6
            Very nice thread.

            I'd choose the Buffy in S2 and S3 Buffy and maybe S4 because she wasn't a child at these moment. She was the teenage with the dealing problems. Those problems were the tips and lessons of her life and those problems made her older. S1 Buffy was fun to watch but she was like a demi-teenage girl. she was still trying to deal with being Slayer but with the begining of S2, she knew who she really was and her thing to do. But my all time favourite is Season 2 Buffy. She was young but mature. She was dealing with a lot of problems. It was depressing but also making happy. Season 2 was overwally perfect. and I prefer that Buffy.
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            • #7
              Though Thread, umm..what can say, lets start with s1,
              Buffy was a young and unexperienced girl. Actually she was kinda like Cordelia at the beginning, it was her changing time till the end of When She Was Bad.
              Then in s2 afterwards, we see a different Buffy, who now begins to understand herself..she is mature in s2 imo,
              We see a mature Buffy in s3 and now she really shows what she is, with her behavours. However, in s4 i see a childish kinda girl Buffy, how ever she changes quickly into a depressed Buffy in s5, with knowing Glory and her aim.
              in s6, She's all solutide, but when we come to "Grave, she shows that shes not and figures out what she really wants to do. Finally in s7, I see a mature, and cooperation-lover girl. I think that way b/c until s7, she was acting like shes the only one to fight, need no help, alone, againist interdependence. Even if she didnt show that sometimes, that was what she mainly thought. In s7, especially in Chosen, she knew that she wasnt alone, they all worked together and thats why my favourite buffy is s7
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              • #8
                Even if I like her in season 6, it's more the plots than the character itself, so I'll go with season 7 because she's a grown-up, I won't say enough how much I like Buffy characters as grown-ups. I find her in peace with herself, the only season where she is imo. She's strong, beautiful, with emotionnal strenght, she gets behind her own choices, she love whoever she wants. To make it short I'd say that in season 7, she's...finally Buffy.
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                • #9
                  i like her in seasons 1-2 the most, and the majority of season 3.

                  season 4 was just too happy and light. smg really didn't have to stretch much there. plus, most of her scenes seemed to be with riley which i can barely watch.

                  season 5 was an improvement, and this is when i see adult buffy, but by this time i'm hardly watching the show for her. season 6, i actually prefer her because i'm seeing some emotions there--normal again was among her best performances. season 7, smg has dulled into cardboard and almost depression the way she acts. she's not human adult-buffy, she's slayer-buffy. slayer-buffy creeped in the last 3 seasons. she was getting jaded. she was turning into a lifeless machine.

                  her most selfless action was in becoming, pt. 2. her "giles, i'm 16 years old. i don't wanna die." in season 1 is possibly among smg's best acting moments EVER. innocence is another one of her strongest performances. imo, season 2 brought the best out of smg and it showed. her heart was fully into the first 3 seasons and you always saw it.

                  when david boreanaz left the show for his own, smg actually didn't want him to and expressed concern that her own show would fail without him. i think smg was ok through season 5, but not as happy. but she was enjoying it. season 6 she was miserable. smg expressed being happier with season 7, but she honestly looked outright downtrodden. her heart wasn't in it.

                  what i saw in season 1 wasn't cordelia, however. that left the second merrick walked up to her at hemery. her last spordelia moment was the "...huh?". after that, she was an innocent young girl who was suddenly stripped of her life, family and friends--she was forced to stand on her own. remember, her first watcher was killed. her spordelia friends dumped her because she was no longer acting like them. at first she tried to fall into her old personality with cordelia, but realized it wasn't her anymore. she felt sympathy for the rejects of the school, because SHE felt alone. SHE felt like a reject.

                  the moment she grew up was when she staked her first vampire. she became a different person.

                  i love early-buffy. what i saw was a sweet innocent buffy, but someone who was trying her best to do her duty, help people selflessly just because it was the right thing to do, and yet, still be a human, normal girl.
                  Last edited by NileQT87; 21-09-07, 05:41 AM.

                  "If there is no great glorious end to all this, if nothing we do matters, then all that matters is what we do."
                  "Nothing in the world is the way it ought to be. It's harsh and cruel. But that's why there's us. Champions."

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                  • #10
                    Buffy Season 4 - College Girl Buffy and Season 6 - After Death Buffy. Both were very pivotal points in her life.
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                    "At that point I'd love a fight and a heart to heart and then of course naughtiness and happy ever after."
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                    • #11
                      I'd have to say season three. For me this is the interesting mix of pain beyond pain- Angel having been killed, but coming back, and him breaking up with her- my heart breaks for her when she tells Willow she can't breathe- but the lightheartedness is still there to a degree in this season. In her heart, in spite of the things that happen to her, Buffy is good and light. The other thing I love is as she and Faith start to figure each other out, Buffy starts to learn her role in the world a little better, not just as the slayer but as a young woman who fights not because she must, but because she believes in what she has to offer the role.

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                      • #12
                        Season 5 for me.
                        Buffy was really forced into becoming an adult, dumped with a sister, losing Joyce and her most powerful enemy to date. All representative of being dropped into the adult world. Season 5 is a piece of art in my opinion.

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                        • #13
                          Wow. A lot of variation here. I'm not really surprised though since there is definitely a group that likes the early seasons and a group that prefers the later ones. Buffy being the lead, her personality did very much define the different seasons. I prefer the older Buffy-seasons 5 onward. Although I absolutely acknowledge she was not always as pleasant those years. I liked that our heroine was difficult. Sometimes even very good people are hard to live with. It seemed realistic. I liked watching her rise to the challenges or fail to and deal with the consequences.
                          "All I ask is that... that you try to see me."

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Dorian's Kitten View Post
                            Buffy being the lead, her personality did very much define the different seasons.

                            Good point DK, when I wrote mine, I felt like it was a toss up of whether I was writing about fave season or fave Buffy... not that s3 is my fave season, but if it were, my arguements would be much the same.

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                            • #15
                              Agreed. Buffy's personality and feelings really did shape how the season would flow, though other characters did have an influence as well. When Buffy is severely depressed, season six is a pretty depressing season, when she has a happy blend of pep and pain we get a season like season three and season two.

                              I realised that I never actually gave which Buffy I liked the best. It is really hard for me because she is my favourite character and I can relate and enjoy every Buffy of everyone season for different reasons. However, she seemed to be at her happiest in s3, she had the most energy and vibrancy in that season and was still at a point where life hadn't slowly stripped away everything good to her. She wasn't completely damaged goods yet, so I think I'd probably say s3. I'm also really enjoying Buffy s8 thus far, mostly because she is focusing a lot on her friends again and illustrating how much she cares for them. I think Buffy is at her best when she is with her friends, they bring the best out of her.

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                              • #16
                                Originally posted by vampmogs View Post
                                I realised that I never actually gave which Buffy I liked the best. It is really hard for me because she is my favourite character and I can relate and enjoy every Buffy of everyone season for different reasons. However, she seemed to be at her happiest in s3, she had the most energy and vibrancy in that season and was still at a point where life hadn't slowly stripped away everything good to her. She wasn't completely damaged goods yet, so I think I'd probably say s3. I'm also really enjoying Buffy s8 thus far, mostly because she is focusing a lot on her friends again and illustrating how much she cares for them. I think Buffy is at her best when she is with her friends, they bring the best out of her.


                                I think it's about whether people like watching her as a child or an adult. For me I always connect more with characters once they are older. Not that I can't remember what it's like to be 16 but I feel life gets so much more interesting once you turn 20 and that the issues you face define you so much more.

                                So watching innocent peppy little Buffy I can't feel the same for her as I do when she is more grown up. I too remember the drama of my first love which was very much Bangel in so many ways and thinking I was going to die when we broke up, but now, having grown up, been through more I approach things differently. I can relate when I see a character do that. Still making mistakes as all people do, but letting yourself learn and grow from them.

                                As a child I find Buffy very naive, not just about the slayer in her, but about her friends/family and boyfriend, that's completely natural at that age, but still is hard to watch because for me I think naivety is overrated. Much better to be aware, smart and mature about things. Especially if you are entering into adulthood early.. having a boyfriend etc.

                                I don't think growing up damages you, or strips anything away from you. I think Buffy grew up well. She adjusted in season 4 to life away from home, that helped her grow up a lot. Episodes like Harsh Light show that she is finding her way and it's getting her down, but that does happen to everyone, the important thing is she comes out at the end of the season on top. Yes season 6, coming back from the dead is horrible, but look at Season 7, she becomes herself again, stronger, more mature, and ready to be the person she can be. Of course she's never going to be as happy and excited about life as other characters, she has the weight of the world on her shoulders, but she comes out so strong after everything, that to me is more enjoyable to watch. The journey from the beginning of adulthood in season 4 to the women she is in season 7.

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                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Nikki View Post

                                  I think it's about whether people like watching her as a child or an adult. For me I always connect more with characters once they are older. Not that I can't remember what it's like to be 16 but I feel life gets so much more interesting once you turn 20 and that the issues you face define you so much more.
                                  I agree it really does depend on what you find more interesting to watch. Personally I enjoyed both just that in her teenage years I felt that she was a stronger person emotionally than she was a great deal of the time in later seasons. As for example in 'The Gift' when she talks about sacrificing Angel to save the world because she knew it was right, she states she doesn't have that anymore, she doesn't see the point. As she grew older life through more challeneges as her, as does it to all of us, but in it took its toll on Buffy unlike many of the other characters.

                                  So watching innocent peppy little Buffy I can't feel the same for her as I do when she is more grown up. I too remember the drama of my first love which was very much Bangel in so many ways and thinking I was going to die when we broke up, but now, having grown up, been through more I approach things differently. I can relate when I see a character do that. Still making mistakes as all people do, but letting yourself learn and grow from them.
                                  I enjoyed all these aspects of her character as well, it is just if I had to choose I found highschool Buffy more enjoyable to watch.

                                  As a child I find Buffy very naive, not just about the slayer in her, but about her friends/family and boyfriend, that's completely natural at that age, but still is hard to watch because for me I think naivety is overrated. Much better to be aware, smart and mature about things. Especially if you are entering into adulthood early.. having a boyfriend etc.
                                  On some level I agree with you but then I think Buffy often showed maturity way beyond her years. It took great maturity for her to kill Angel, and to give up her own life in 'Prophecy Girl' at just the age of 16. Not to mention how well she could handle a crisis in comparison to older people like Snyder and even Joyce.

                                  [COLOR=#575757]I don't think growing up damages you, or strips anything away from you.
                                  I used the word stripped because that is the word she chose to use in 'The Gift' to describe her views on the world. "If everything just gets stripped away I don't see the point." And lets face it the things Buffy dealt with whilst growing up was more than one ordinary person would get in a lifetime. She had the weight of the world on her shoulders, she lost her mother, was nearly raped, was kicked out of her own house by her friends and was torn out of heaven.

                                  I think Buffy grew up well. She adjusted in season 4 to life away from home, that helped her grow up a lot. Episodes like Harsh Light show that she is finding her way and it's getting her down, but that does happen to everyone, the important thing is she comes out at the end of the season on top.
                                  She turned out remarkably well given the circumstances of the things she had to go through, but I still can't help but feel when it was all over she became more cynical and worn out the world. Realistically that is likely to happen however in terms of enjoying watching her character, it wasn't always pretty. I find every facet of her growth extremely interesting it is why she is my favourite character but it is just little things that make me like her more in her highschool years, like the reason I stated above about Buffy not understanding the point of this world anymore.

                                  Yes season 6, coming back from the dead is horrible, but look at Season 7, she becomes herself again, stronger, more mature, and ready to be the person she can be. Of course she's never going to be as happy and excited about life as other characters, she has the weight of the world on her shoulders, but she comes out so strong after everything, that to me is more enjoyable to watch. The journey from the beginning of adulthood in season 4 to the women she is in season 7.
                                  I don't think you are a season eight reader from memory, but I actually find her character in season eight as enjoyable as when she was in highschool years. She has eased into her role as a slayer and as a person as gained back that solid friendship and connection with her friends. Growing up for her and dealing with some really horrible things wasn't always pretty but she's come out the better for it, so I agree that all these things had to happen and she came out stronger for it.

                                  Though IMO her journey towards adulthood happened in the highschool years, for me the decision she made in 'Prophecy Girl' was her first step into becoming more mature and responsible when others her age simply wouldn't have progressed that quickly.
                                  Last edited by vampmogs; 21-09-07, 05:16 PM.

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                                  • #18
                                    to reiterate: angel was NOT buffy's first crush/first love/relationship. he's actually quite a ways down the line. there were billy fordham, jeffery kramer/taylor and oliver pike. i'm guessing that people who say angel is always her "first love"/naive/etc... don't really know the pre-show canon, but it is canon. oliver pike, was, in fact, a serious relationship. as for your first love leaves you and you feel like you're going to die--stupid jeffery/taylor already showed up to prom with one of her fake-friends and dumped her, if you remember.

                                    imo, hemery-buffy was a child. sunnydale-buffy never was. she tried to fall into it, but she had outgrown the likes of cordelia's high school popularity games. that's why she felt for outcasts like willow and xander in the first place. buffy had GROWN UP! the whole point of nkabotfd was her last ditch effort at staying her age, but in the end, she chooses responsibility--rescuing giles and not doing dangerous things for a rebellious rush, but because it was her duty.

                                    there's a difference than growing into somebody cynical and growing into somebody optimistic, but responsible. she was more responsible and selfless, less cynical and selfish in the early years. she didn't grow up, she regressed. the fact that in season 7 she was saying selfish things like she would have let dawn die if she had to do it over again, tells me she didn't grow up--she just regressed.

                                    cynicism is NOT the same as realism. neither is optimism, but i'd rather have that than being a jaded cynic. there's always an attempt to label cynicism as realism and label optimism as fairy tales, but the reality is that neither are, in fact, realistic. cynicism is actually the least healthy of the two. there are negatives to when you lose hope for things. and to peg "true love" as something that doesn't exist is a cynical statement, not one based in reality. there's a reason it has been written about during the millennia (and the people who wrote those stories were hardly children, but they believed it exists)--there is a reason that young children are told to strive for it in the stories they hear. some people claim to have found it, others settle for 99.9% happiness (or much less) because they haven't, or because they don't believe in it.

                                    which is why i respect her so much more in the early years. "prophecy girl" and "becoming, pt. 2" were her most mature, selfless moments in the entire series.

                                    buffy faced some of her most personal battles in the early years. that was what angelus was all about. he went after the people who meant the most to her and did it with the face of someone she loved. she struggled with the decision to kill angelus, knowing that she'd be killing angel as well, who was quite innocent in the whole thing. one could say that "becoming, pt. 2" was where she lost her innocence. joss made a pretty interesting statement about the episode "innocence"--that the old idea that losing one's virginity means losing your innocence is false. she was the same person before and after that night, which is why angelus preyed on her so successfully. she had already grown up the day merrick told her about her destiny (more selflessly than a lot of adults grow up, unfortunately), but probably the greatest thing angelus stole from buffy was her optimistic belief in doing what is right just because she wanted to help people, make them suffer less, etc... which, if you'll note, is exactly how angel ran on ats--it was that same belief that drove him. angel's beliefs on humanity were inspired by that young innocent buffy who understood selfless sacrifice and had a love of humanity, even if they made mistakes.

                                    which is why i separate season 2 buffy from season 3 buffy. in season 3, buffy starts to regress towards the end. angel quickly becomes the one who understands more about selfless duty than she does, because she starts to get a bit more selfish. the cynicism starts to kick in here, but gets to its worst in seasons 6 and 7. angel falls into the same trap mid-season 5 of ats--he's losing faith in himself and becoming cynical, but in "power play"/"not fade away", you see the old buffy emerge in him again--he's going to sacrifice himself and his own future just to help people.

                                    her speech to angel at the end of "amends" directly goes against her actions in seasons 5-7, revolving her wanting a way out in many cases. the same person who said "strong is fighting! it's hard, and it's painful, and it's every day." was in a very different state than when she partially sacrificed herself not just for dawn, but also because she wanted out of the world. it's similar as if angel had just let the first taunt him into killing himself. that's how far buffy had fallen.

                                    buffy inspired and taught angel about going on no matter what you face, and he kept that part of her far longer than she did (right to his last moments on the show), unfortunately.

                                    and that is why i see early-buffy as a much truer hero. sure, she's human and fallible, but season 7 was not quite an upswing. it would have helped if the message of grave/lessons hadn't been dumped as soon as it started, and dawn hadn't gone back to being treated like crap. that would have been a start to proving to me that she had grown rather than regressed.

                                    "If there is no great glorious end to all this, if nothing we do matters, then all that matters is what we do."
                                    "Nothing in the world is the way it ought to be. It's harsh and cruel. But that's why there's us. Champions."

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                                    • #19
                                      Very tough! I really Like the Buffy in Seasons 1,4 and 6.

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                                      • #20
                                        It's really hard question... every period of time I might think diffrent.
                                        I kind of like Buffy season 2 and 5. I don't know why.

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