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  • "Damage" Estimate

    Now that we've learned certain things in Season 8... such as that Buffy wasn't dating the Immortal, that they are not based out of Rome but rather a castle in Scotland, that there has been no actual mention of Angel or Spike or L.A. or anything else... it's worth reassessing the previous only source of meaningful information about the Scoobies that we had -- the Angel episode "Damage".

    To recap quickly, six months after "Chosen", while on a visit to L.A. to consult with Angel and his people on the capture and recovery of a Slayer, Dana, who had long since run mad due to terrible abuse and trauma, Andrew learns that Spike is alive (and is very happy), but agrees not to tell Buffy. Andrew also tells Spike various things like that Buffy and Dawn live in Rome, where Dawn goes to school, that Xander was in Africa, that Willow and Kennedy were based out of Sao Paolo but always found in Rio.

    That's the lame, minor stuff -- and most of it, we've learned or can reasonably presume, is misinformation, for whatever purpose. There's no evidence that anyone *knew* where Willow was, we know Buffy and Dawn weren't in Rome, and it's not likely Xander was in Africa.

    The big thing that happened in "Damage" is at the end of the episode, when Angel has captured Dana, Andrew comes up to him before Angel can load her in an ambulance to take back to Wolfram & Hart...

    Angel and Wesley escort Dana's gurney out of the basement along with a group of armed guards.

    ANGEL
    Chain her into the van. I want armed guards ridin' with her in the back.

    ANDREW
    That's all right, boys. I'll take it from here.

    ANGEL
    What?

    ANDREW
    Totally 'preciate your help on this one, big guy. Never could've found her without you, but you got enough problems of your own to worry about.

    ANGEL
    Get outta the way, Andrew.

    ANDREW
    (steps in Angel's path)
    She's a slayer. That means she's ours.

    ANGEL
    Yeah. Sorry. Not how it works.
    (to the guards) Load her up. Don't hesitate to tranq her if she so much as-

    ANDREW
    (stands right up in Angel's face)
    No. I don't think you... heard me, Angel.
    (a group of young women walks out from the shadows to back up Andrew)
    Think we're just gonna let you take her back to your evil stronghold? Well, as they say in Mexico... No. We're not...gonna... let you.

    ANGEL
    She's psychotic, and I'm not turning her over...to you.

    ANDREW
    You don't have a choice. Check the view screen, Uhura. I got 12 Vampyr Slayers behind me, and not one of them has ever dated you. She's coming with us one way or another.

    ANGEL
    You're way outta your league. I'll just clear this with Buffy.

    ANDREW
    Where do you think my orders came from? News flash-nobody in our camp trusts you anymore. Nobody. You work for Wolfram & Hart. Don't fool yourself... we're not on the same side. Thank you for your help... but, uh...we got it.
    (gestures to the girls to get Dana)

    Andrew and the girls walk away with Dana's gurney.

    WESLEY
    So that's it? You're just gonna let him take her?

    ANGEL
    She's one of theirs. They can handle it. Besides... you heard the man. We got enough problems of our own to worry about.
    Yeah... Andrew, with a detail of 12 Slayers, not only threatened to take Dana from Angel *by force* if necessary, he also told him that Buffy herself had personally authorized this, and that none of the Scoobies trusted him anymore due to his affiliation with Wolfram & Hart.

    What do you think?

    To me... it's completely credible. It becomes clearer everytime I watch that scene. Andrew is a prolific liar, but not a good one. He is completely in control and serene when he is giving Angel the bad news. He looks and sounds apologetic when he gives the "where do you think my orders come from?"

    When you look at the the whole episode, it seems clear that he was feeding them misinformation early on as part of his mission, i.e. not to let W&H know too much about their operation, but that when push came to shove, he had to put it in plain english for Angel and had a lot of muscle to back him up.
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  • #2
    I have to say that I would be extremely surprised AND insulted if Buffy truly lost complete trust in Angel. This is the person that she'd always had strong ties with.. her first boyfriend.. her truest love (as far as we know at this point). I don't think the name "Wolfram & Hart" would really have to big of an effect on her because for one, she knows Angel enough and has common sense to realize that he must be using the organization for a right reason (erm.. he has a soul.. remember?). Two, the name never really was too powerful to her anyway.. considering.. tell me if I'm wrong.. she doesn't really know too much about it begin with. Wolfram and Hart was always the enemy of Angel.. and Buffy was never involved with the affairs of them.

    I don't think Andrew is completely lying, however, he may be stretching the truth to an extent. However, I'd still be cautious of that.. After seeing him in the final episodes of season 7, I truly doubt he'd resort to his word twisting ways. He seemed to mature a lot in terms of reality vs non-reality. My guess (very well brought up by Maggie and a few others) is that Giles had been telling him the wrong stuff.. because HE himself did not trust him to an extent. That would make much much more sense.
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    • #3
      I've just posted about this on another thread, and we've talked about this before. So here are my two cents:

      I've also re-watched Damage since our earlier conversations, and I agree that Andrew looks sincere. That does not, however, mean that we should take what he says straight-up:

      1. There IS a reason to not just take it at face value, and that's that by implication we have to believe that Buffy just heard about W&H and decided to write Angel off. And that's just not the Buffy we know. I don't see her giving him a second-hand blow-off without an actual discussion.

      2. On a meta-level, the purpose of the scene is to leave Angel feeling isolated and judged, which it does. But because of #1, that means there's reason to present this to him as a fait accompli, without having it actually be a fait accompli.

      3. Joss already jettisoned another difficult-to-explain A5 claim about Buffy by retconning the Immortal thing.

      4. That retcon involves portraying Andrew as a bald-faced liar. If he lied in TGIQ, it is no longer obvious that we simply credit what he says -- especially when the reality consistent with what he says does not make sense.

      5. That Andrew looked sincere can be attributed to (a) the fact that the scene is really about Angel and that's how it looked to him or (b) sheer misdirection a la telling Marsters that Spike was going to get his chip out or (c) retrospective misdirection -- it was meant as sincere at the time, but Joss is going to retcon it and we'll have to live with the resulting 'misdirection'.

      6. The slayers are there in force -- so if there's to be a retcon, it needs to account for them. Giles operating on his own is possible. Buffy authorizing a forcible retrieval of Dana -- but without authorizing the permanent kiss-off message like the one Andrew delivered is another. It does mean that Andrew's not likely to be out and out lying all on his own. But there's plenty of room for things to still be other than how they appeared.

      7. That Joss dealt with TGIQ right off the bat seems to me like a stone-cold promise that Damage/Shells will also be a part of the story to come. And I think the reason this stuff is being withheld is because it involves story about Giles and/or Andrew that Joss doesn't want to reveal to us yet.
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      • #4
        Originally posted by Nostalgia View Post
        I have to say that I would be extremely surprised AND insulted if Buffy truly lost complete trust in Angel.
        Yeah, I was just thinking that. Especially since Angel gave her the amulet in "Chosen" which ultimately won her victory and saved the world.
        Did Buffy ever send him a muffin basket for that?

        So, I too agree that Andrew used Buffy's name in order to back Angel off. I really doubt she doesn't trust Angel anymore.
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        • #5
          So you had to do this to me - just when I was about to go to bed!!

          To sum up, what you're asking (I think) is whether Buffy stopped trusting Angel when she heard that he'd taken over Wolfram and Hart, and whether she still has trust issues with him now?

          OK, lets just remember that from what we know, Andrew is in Italy with a band of slayers - he's not at the BHC in Scotland. Yes, he's in contact with Buffy and is taking orders from her, but he's running a show on his own now. It's also been made clear that Andrew likes to throw in some flavour of his own and on occasions lets Buffy know of his plans (like The Immortal misdirection).

          I agree that Andrew was deliberately throwing W&H (and therefore the souled vamps) off the trail of what the Scoobies are up to, but we seem to forget that it was Giles that sent him to LA in Damage, and it was Giles that refused to help Angel when Fred was dying (Is it OK to bring that episode up as well?).

          There is bad blood between Buffy and Giles left over from S7 it seems and hasn't been fully addressed in the issues so far. Giles was doing things behind Buffy's back in S7 with regards to Spike with the vain idea he was helping her, what's to say that he's not doing it still when it comes to Angel (and of course Spike, who he trusts a lot less than Angel)?

          I believe that when Giles heard that Angel had taken over Wolfram and Hart he assumed that Angel had gone over to the dark side. He had a phone call from Angel asking for help with a deranged slayer and obviously agreed to help, but didn't trust Angel. He told Andrew to make up a lot of lies about what the Scoobies are up to (to protect themselves) and to let Angel know that they no longer trusted him. He could've even told Andrew that it was Buffy's idea all along, but that doesn't mean he told Buffy anything.

          I strongly don't believe that Buffy had any idea about Angel's supposed defection at this point and it was all Giles' doing. If Buffy had known that Angel had taken over W&H, she would've called him to find out why, and he would've told her about the deal with Connor. Now whether Buffy would've thought that the deal was a good thing I can't decide, but my heart tells me that she trusted Angel to do the right thing and therefore would at least visit him to check out the situation, to try and understand what was going on.

          Giles' actions regarding the plot to assasinate Gigi are still up for discussion. There has been a lot of talk about whether he is actually turning rogue or reverting to Ripper in some ways, is it not inconceivable that he has been turning this way since S7 with his plot to kill Spike? Giles' love for Buffy is, as has been stated thousands of times, a father's love. He does things to protect her that are against her wishes or current understanding. If he thinks that something is a threat and she can't see it/do anything about it he will step up and make the hard decisions (Ben being a great example here). If Giles thought that Angel had turned darkside, and that Buffy had enough to deal with setting up a home for hundreds of slayers, I can definately see him acting outside her command without even informing her - I mean he believed Spike was a threat and took action without her knowledge in S7.

          I don't believe that Buffy would so abitrarilly (sp?) decide that Angel couldn't be trusted, without seeing it in person. She has trust issues with Giles herself, so why should she believe him on the strength of a phone call? Angel thought that he was trying to change W&H from the inside, and if Buffy had gone to see him she would've seen that he was, at worst, disallusioned and had lost his way, but had not turned evil again. She may fight with him about his decisions along the way, but in the end she would work out that he was trying to do the right thing. Just like Cordelia did in Your Welcome.
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          • #6
            I would personally find it a little insulting that Buffy would ignore the much-more-practically-significant fact that Angel had joined up with the most evil institution in the Buffyverse in favor of a sentimental (and negligent to her responsibilities) belief that Angel is an unchanging paragon of virtue. Not only does that make Buffy sound pretty immature, it also should remind us of how much Buffy does NOT know about Angel since he left Sunnydale. Feeding a bunch of humans to Darla and Drusilla, for example, on his little vacation on the darkside, complete with soul.

            Here are the thus-far-never-refuted in story reasons why there's no reason to doubt what Andrew has said.
            • He doesn't have the authority to go galavanting off to L.A. and pull 12 Slayers off their assignments without authorizing that with the BHC. We know this definitively from "The Long Way Home" when on two separate occasions, he gets his marching orders from Scotland.
            • With the clear evidence that Giles is out of the loop with the BHC and therefore not in position to authorize that mission or get Andrew the weapons and personnel he had.
            • What he told Angel could have been turned around on him with *one phonecall, while they stood right there* -- even if they'd just called Giles, there'd be no fast-talk in the world that would explain why Angel couldn't get a hold of Buffy for an explanation if it was a sham.
            • Andrew and his dozen Slayers took Dana somewhere. Who is she? Where did she come from? Where are they keeping her? Those are all questions that Andrew would have to answer to protect a lie about going to L.A. and confronting Angel.
            • No matter who you want to fanwank gave him his orders... *why?* Exactly what benefit is it to anyone in Buffy's organization to secretly pull a mean prank on Angel if she had no problem with the guy? Are they just... bad people?


            That's *not* an exhaustive list, but it's a nice start.

            Now, narrative reasons why him lying wouldn't make any sense.
            • The only thing that happened in "Damage" that had any effect on the season long arc was the bad news that even Buffy had lost faith in Angel. It was written specifically to set up "You're Welcome" and get Angel to his lowest point. If it's not true, "Damage" barely qualifies as a filler episode.
            • If it were false, there would be a reason for it to be false -- it would have come up later as a way to give Angel some more confidence or something. Since it was never even raised again, it's fair to assume that it was accurate information.


            Reasons why Joss *could* retcon it don't amount to reason to doubt it before the fact.

            Most of the fanwank out of this canon event also involve Giles, Andrew, and sometimes Xander, depending on whose telling it, all taking part in a conspiracy to conceal something from Buffy, which is beyond merely OOC for the Scoobies post-"Chosen", it basically amounts to character-assassination of several characters in order to rationalize something that only hurts one.
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            • #7
              I don't agree with you on a lot of this but I'm too tired to discuss it all right now.

              Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
              He doesn't have the authority to go galavanting off to L.A. and pull 12 Slayers off their assignments without authorizing that with the BHC. We know this definitively from "The Long Way Home" when on two separate occasions, he gets his marching orders from Scotland.
              It is clearly stated in the episode that Giles sends him to LA to retrieve Dana. Giles could've contacted the BHC, said about Angel having a deranged slayer on his hands and asking for Andrew's help without ever mentioning that he was working for W&H. Buffy would allow Andrew to go wouldn't she?

              Most of the fanwank out of this canon event also involve Giles, Andrew, and sometimes Xander, depending on whose telling it, all taking part in a conspiracy to conceal something from Buffy, which is beyond merely OOC for the Scoobies post-"Chosen", it basically amounts to character-assassination of several characters in order to rationalize something that only hurts one.
              Is it OOC for Giles to go behind Buffy's back to do something which he believes is for her own good? Was the Giles/Spike situation in LMPTM an assasination of his character? I don't think so.

              I don't think Andrew is a willing participant to this. He doesn't think for himself too much and needs to be lead by the hand. He believes that Buffy doesn't trust Angel because that's what he's been told (and IMO not by Buffy herself). He hero-worships all of the scoobies, and wouldn't even think not to trust what he'd been told.

              I would never think that Xander would be involved in this. He is Buffy's right hand man, even though he hates Angel, wouldn't send Andrew to LA without involving Buffy. And for reasons I've stated ^^ I just can't believe that Buffy would suddenly not trust Angel on the strength of a phone call from Giles, because of her trust issues with him herself:-

              GILES: You want Spike here even after what he's done to you in the past?
              BUFFY: It's different now. He has a soul.
              GILES: And the First is exploiting that to his advantage.
              BUFFY: Oh, my God. (stakes the vampire) You're stalling me. You're keeping me away -


              She didn't believe him when he was telling her that Spike would turn evil why would she when it came to Angel. Wouldn't Buffy see Giles telling her that Angel has gone evil as a reinforcement of how she saw him in S7, and would want to confirm it herself?
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              • #8
                Originally Posted by KingsofCretins
                I would personally find it a little insulting that Buffy would ignore the much-more-practically-significant fact that Angel had joined up with the most evil institution in the Buffyverse in favor of a sentimental (and negligent to her responsibilities) belief that Angel is an unchanging paragon of virtue. Not only does that make Buffy sound pretty immature, it also should remind us of how much Buffy does NOT know about Angel since he left Sunnydale. Feeding a bunch of humans to Darla and Drusilla, for example, on his little vacation on the darkside, complete with soul.
                Well, I think that is kind of the point. Buffy doesn't know what Angel's been up to.. she doesn't know enough about Wolfram and Hart. To say Buffy would instruct all this without even giving Angel the benefit of the doubt (calling him, contacting him, questioning him, etc.) is just plain insulting to Bangel. I don't see how you find it more reliable that Buffy would give these rules rather than Giles (one who's never been pro-soul vampires).

                # He doesn't have the authority to go galavanting off to L.A. and pull 12 Slayers off their assignments without authorizing that with the BHC. We know this definitively from "The Long Way Home" when on two separate occasions, he gets his marching orders from Scotland.
                # With the clear evidence that Giles is out of the loop with the BHC and therefore not in position to authorize that mission or get Andrew the weapons and personnel he had.
                Giles clearly has everyone on speed dial though.. even demons. Giles seems to working his own loop around.. and Buffy's been too wrapped up to actually check up on Angel. The other thing that even before season 8, Giles has had a knack for finding out things. Willow turning evil is a perfect example of this. It would make perfect sense that he would once again (or pre-recent events.. but still) go behind Buffy's back and instruct orders in the name of her force. I think this is the main problem that exists between Buffy and him right now.. he's making orders and calling shots for other people, and not even passing it by Buffy.


                * If it were false, there would be a reason for it to be false -- it would have come up later as a way to give Angel some more confidence or something. Since it was never even raised again, it's fair to assume that it was accurate information.
                Really? Just because it hasn't been answered yet doesn't add points to it being entirely true. I don't know how you can back that up.. because Joss has been known for dragging out plots and leaving interpretations open for a while to keep the fans thirsty. I'm sure it will be answered soon.. but it would make sense with the tension between Buffy and Giles.. something that has been proven and would be even greater affected if Giles is in charge of this.


                Most of the fanwank out of this canon event also involve Giles, Andrew, and sometimes Xander, depending on whose telling it, all taking part in a conspiracy to conceal something from Buffy, which is beyond merely OOC for the Scoobies post-"Chosen", it basically amounts to character-assassination of several characters in order to rationalize something that only hurts one.
                Well, don't you think there's a reason so many people are doing it? You're coming from an anti-Bangel perspective.. and it seems to me that you're more hoping that this is true than actually believing it is. Buffy and Angel have been close for 7 years.. It's completely OOC for her to not acknowledge him before she cuts off ties. As brought up before, she's a pretty forgiving person.. and Wolfram & Hart, as dangerous as it is.. its name isn't as important to Buffy as you're making it. She doesn't know enough about it to realize how big of a decision it was.
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                Last edited by Nostalgia; 13-12-07, 03:52 AM.
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                • #9
                  It is clearly stated in the episode that Giles sends him to LA to retrieve Dana. Giles could've contacted the BHC, said about Angel having a deranged slayer on his hands and asking for Andrew's help without ever mentioning that he was working for W&H. Buffy would allow Andrew to go wouldn't she?

                  Is it OOC for Giles to go behind Buffy's back to do something which he believes is for her own good? Was the Giles/Spike situation in LMPTM an assasination of his character? I don't think so.
                  Honestly? I don't think there's an actual, fact-driven argument to be made against Andrew telling the truth here -- certainly not one that doesn't ignore Occam's Razor. To me, it mostly just feels like a vaguely 'shippy need to believe in the complete trust of Angel by Buffy that other characters get thrown under the bus as far as their motives and actions go.

                  Also, how does that conversation go, for Conspiracy Action Giles?

                  Giles: "Angel has a deranged Slayer on his hands, can we send Andrew and 12 Slayers there to get her?"
                  Buffy: "Why can't Angel help?" or, better yet, since the only reason not to let Angel deal with her is the lack of trust, "Why not let Angel take care of her? He has all those facilities, right?"

                  What do you propose Giles would have said back, to keep this mythical conspiracy aloft?

                  I just can't believe that Buffy would suddenly not trust Angel on the strength of a phone call from Giles
                  Why assume she'd have to? We have no idea for how long has known about Angel being at Wolfram & Hart or under what circumstances she found out. No reason to assume it would just be based on a phone call from Giles. She may have known for months and had a long time to bring her anger over it to a boil before removing it to a low flame.

                  Well, I think that is kind of the point. Buffy doesn't know what Angel's been up to.. she doesn't know enough about Wolfram and Hart.
                  Again, this assumes a fact in *contradiction* of what we're told on screen. You've already assumed Andrew is lying and come up with an argument based on a completely manufacted idea that Buffy doesn't know about Wolfram & Hart. Based on what?

                  Well, don't you think there's a reason so many people are doing it? You're coming from an anti-Bangel perspective.. and it seems to me that you're more hoping that this is true than actually believing it is.
                  I'm taking the clearly biased and ridiculous approach of "accepting what we're told on screen and fitting into the other things we're told on screen" as opposed to the objective approach of "assuming what we're told on screen was a lie because of stuff from years before that has no bearing and making up elaborate conspiracies that insult every character that *isn't* Buffy and Angel". To which one can only say "heh".

                  Also, isn't it just a... well, a lot preposterous that Buffy would be the *only* character in the *entire* Buffyverse not to second-guess and get skeptical of Angel for agreeing to take over Wolfram & Hart?
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                  • #10
                    I believe we'll find Joss retconning the conversation between Angel and Andrew. At least about the misdirects (Dawn, Buffy, Rome).

                    And I think it is very plausible for Buffy to not trust Angel after becoming affiliated with W&H.

                    The A-Team questioned Angel's decision when initiallly agreeing to work for W&H and in S5 they were all questioning his actions towards the end. So, I don't think it's too far of a stretch that Buffy - being as removed as she was from the situation and probably receiving her information 2nd or 3rd hand - would no longer trust Angel either.

                    As pointed out above she has reason to question Giles being honest with her (stalling her while Robin was to kill Spike) and now even more with Giles not cluing Buffy into his work with Faith. And I have to question why he wouldn't let her know about that?
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                    • #11
                      Nostalgia has ably handled much of this. But let me add in a few points.

                      Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
                      I would personally find it a little insulting that Buffy would ignore the much-more-practically-significant fact that Angel had joined up with the most evil institution in the Buffyverse in favor of a sentimental (and negligent to her responsibilities) belief that Angel is an unchanging paragon of virtue. Not only does that make Buffy sound pretty immature, it also should remind us of how much Buffy does NOT know about Angel since he left Sunnydale. Feeding a bunch of humans to Darla and Drusilla, for example, on his little vacation on the darkside, complete with soul.
                      We don't have to jump to a scenario where Buffy just trusts Angel no matter what to avoid the implausible scenario wherein Buffy jumps quickly to distrust of him. Her non-contact over the issue strikes me as prima facie evidence that she either doesn't have full information about what's going on or is too busy to handle it right now, but hasn't issued definitive kiss-off type orders. But to conclude that she would either totally trust Angel despite W&H association is as implausible to me as to conclude that she's written him off just because of the W&H association. BTW, the fact that Buffy does NOT know about Angel's dark side just heightens how implausible it would be for her to conclude he's gone evil based on the report of his association with W&H.

                      [*]What he told Angel could have been turned around on him with *one phonecall, while they stood right there* -- even if they'd just called Giles, there'd be no fast-talk in the world that would explain why Angel couldn't get a hold of Buffy for an explanation if it was a sham.
                      If we are thinking about scenarios involving out and out deception, this is easily answered by saying that Buffy has refused to take Angel's call. We already know that Angel does NOT know how to get a hold of her, cause he thinks she's really in Rome dancing it up with the Immortal. There are also scenarios where what happens in Damage is the result of a series of misunderstandings, in which case nobody had to think about what would happen if Angel asked for a call.

                      [*]Andrew and his dozen Slayers took Dana somewhere. Who is she? Where did she come from? Where are they keeping her? Those are all questions that Andrew would have to answer to protect a lie about going to L.A. and confronting Angel.
                      Nah -- all you have to do is tell Buffy that they had reports of a psycho slayer and went to get her. The issue isn't about the decision to retrieve Dana, it's about the report that Buffy no longer trusts Angel.

                      [*]No matter who you want to fanwank gave him his orders... *why?* Exactly what benefit is it to anyone in Buffy's organization to secretly pull a mean prank on Angel if she had no problem with the guy? Are they just... bad people?
                      People who are overly protective of Buffy and think that the last thing she needs on her plate is news that her ex-lover has now playing for the other team. And, again, there are plenty of scenarios that just involve misunderstandings, so that this isn't a 'mean prank'. Finally, notice that the reason that we're having this discussion is because 'fanwanking' has to happen one way or the other. Either we 'fanwank' what Andrew said, or we 'fanwank' a Buffy who has suddenly written off Angel without speaking a single word to him. The whole problem is that what we saw doesn't add up.

                      To your narrative problems (props for taking these sorts of issues into account!)

                      [*]The only thing that happened in "Damage" that had any effect on the season long arc was the bad news that even Buffy had lost faith in Angel. It was written specifically to set up "You're Welcome" and get Angel to his lowest point. If it's not true, "Damage" barely qualifies as a filler episode.
                      No. All that matters is what Angel believes to be the case. Mission accomplished on that score.


                      If it were false, there would be a reason for it to be false -- it would have come up later as a way to give Angel some more confidence or something. Since it was never even raised again, it's fair to assume that it was accurate information.
                      Dramatically on Angel 5 the whole point is for him to feel like Team Angel is completely, 100% on their own. There's no narrative reason to interfere with that point. The dramatic questions fall on the other side of the 'verse -- namely what's really going on with Buffy -- and they only become narratively relevant when we go back and start telling her story again. So now is the time to explore the question of what was really going on with her, not earlier.

                      Reasons why Joss *could* retcon it don't amount to reason to doubt it before the fact.
                      The reason to doubt it is because it doesn't add up. I'm NOT a Bangel -- as you well know. But even I cannot believe that Buffy turned on a dime against Angel. She'd demand some 'splaining before she cut off all ties. It's how the girl works.

                      Most of the fanwank out of this canon event also involve Giles, Andrew, and sometimes Xander, depending on whose telling it, all taking part in a conspiracy to conceal something from Buffy, which is beyond merely OOC for the Scoobies post-"Chosen", it basically amounts to character-assassination of several characters in order to rationalize something that only hurts one.
                      And again the 'fanwanking' is to avoid concluding that Buffy is behaving radically OOC. Things don't add up. I think it's more likely that Giles was doing his over-protective gig or that Andrew was taking a feeling and blowing it up for dramatic purposes than I do that Buffy just ditched Angel without a comment.
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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post

                        Giles: "Angel has a deranged Slayer on his hands, can we send Andrew and 12 Slayers there to get her?"
                        Buffy: "Why can't Angel help?" or, better yet, since the only reason not to let Angel deal with her is the lack of trust, "Why not let Angel take care of her? He has all those facilities, right?"

                        What do you propose Giles would have said back, to keep this mythical conspiracy aloft?
                        Buffy doesn't have to ask that. It would seem obvious that Team Slayer should take care of slayers. (I wouldn't have bought the slayers leaving Dana in LA even if they fully 100% believed him to be their ally).

                        Why assume she'd have to? We have no idea for how long has known about Angel being at Wolfram & Hart or under what circumstances she found out. No reason to assume it would just be based on a phone call from Giles. She may have known for months and had a long time to bring her anger over it to a boil before removing it to a low flame.
                        I don't see any world where the Buffy we know wouldn't take the matter to the source -- Angel. She'd have called him or gone to see him. But she's not going to just sit there and hear that kind of news and stew about it. The only time Angel did something surprising to her that she knew of (lurking around in Pangs), she was on the next bus to LA to demand an explanation. And while they've not been so close in some time -- the atmosphere in the Chosen was still very much an assumption that they are two champions fighting the good fight. Cookie dough or not, she's NOT going to just write him off without finding out what the heck is going on. We've never seen anything remotely resembling that level of disinterest in Angel on Buffy's part.

                        Also, isn't it just a... well, a lot preposterous that Buffy would be the *only* character in the *entire* Buffyverse not to second-guess and get skeptical of Angel for agreeing to take over Wolfram & Hart?
                        Of course she'd second-guess. And she'd be in contact with him right away to hash out what was going on. She didn't do that. Either she doesn't know or something else is going on. But if it's left the way you'd have it -- then we have a different character running around answering to the name "Buffy".
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                        • #13
                          But to conclude that she would either totally trust Angel despite W&H association is as implausible to me as to conclude that she's written him off just because of the W&H association.
                          I don't assume she's written him off -- I assume she's probably perfectly happy to bring him back into the circle of trust once he packs up his desk and fires himself from Evil, Inc. And, please, don't try to tell me that that's not the kind of ultimatum driven thinking that Buffy takes with her morning chai.

                          If we are thinking about scenarios involving out and out deception, this is easily answered by saying that Buffy has refused to take Angel's call. We already know that Angel does NOT know how to get a hold of her, cause he thinks she's really in Rome dancing it up with the Immortal. There are also scenarios where what happens in Damage is the result of a series of misunderstandings, in which case nobody had to think about what would happen if Angel asked for a call.
                          So your best case scenario here is to get us back to where we have a simple explanation (he's telling the truth) and a convoluted one (he's part of the Complex But Pointless Deceive Buffy About Pranking Her Ex Conspiracy and Giles will cover his back). My argument has a first name... it's o-c-c-a-m... my argument has a second name...

                          Nah -- all you have to do is tell Buffy that they had reports of a psycho slayer and went to get her. The issue isn't about the decision to retrieve Dana, it's about the report that Buffy no longer trusts Angel.
                          I doubt they flew commercial, what with a Slayer to retrieve... now we're adding a falsified flight plan to the list of completely baseless assumptions to support the fanwank.

                          People who are overly protective of Buffy and think that the last thing she needs on her plate is news that her ex-lover has now playing for the other team.
                          Which, again, we have *no* basis to assume she didn't already know. Other than, of course, by assuming we're being lied to and then making up facts to explain why.

                          Either we 'fanwank' what Andrew said, or we 'fanwank' a Buffy who has suddenly written off Angel without speaking a single word to him. The whole problem is that what we saw doesn't add up.
                          Accepting the canon events at face value is, in fact, the opposite of fanwanking. That's what I'm doing, taking the scene at face value. I'm still not seeing a compelling argument not to; everything else that happens in Season 5 that relates to the Scoobies reinforces the idea that this was true -- that the decoy cover would be maintained against Angel and Spike, that Giles wouldn't send Willow to help. Every event that fits perfectly well with the face value explanation becomes yet another element of an increasingly ridiculous conspiracy theory.

                          She'd demand some 'splaining before she cut off all ties.
                          Why? Explanations imply that there are two sides upon which reasonable people might differ. You don't ask someone to "explain" why they are smoking a cigarette and blowing the smoke into a baby's face and using its bottle as an ashtray -- you just order them uncompromisingly to stop, if they want to still have anything to do with you. Same thing with taking over an evil law firm. There *is* no good reason to do it. And, yes, I would include the actual reasons Angel did it in the list of 'no good reasons'.

                          The only time Angel did something surprising to her that she knew of (lurking around in Pangs), she was on the next bus to LA to demand an explanation.
                          Founding international organization of Slayers with no preexisting infrastructure, finding and recruiting Slayers, presumably trying to avoid unpleasant questions from American civil authority about the giant hole in California... all she had to do after "Pangs" was skip class. Some things are more important than giving in to an impulse to go check in with your ex's business.

                          Of course she'd second-guess. And she'd be in contact with him right away to hash out what was going on. She didn't do that. Either she doesn't know or something else is going on. But if it's left the way you'd have it -- then we have a different character running around answering to the name "Buffy".
                          No... it's Buffy. "The mission is what matters", I believe she so aptly quoted. Dealing with Angel would have only been a distraction, especially if she'd known enough to know that it was true, and that he was, figuratively speaking, using the baby's bottle as an ashtray.

                          It's high and deep, guys -- what is *so* impossible or out of character about the face value facts of this thing that we need a dog and pony show of fanwanked ways out of it?
                          KingofCretins
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                          Last edited by KingofCretins; 13-12-07, 05:00 AM.
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                          • #14
                            Originally Posted by KingsofCretins
                            Accepting the canon events at face value is, in fact, the opposite of fanwanking. That's what I'm doing, taking the scene at face value. I'm still not seeing a compelling argument not to; everything else that happens in Season 5 that relates to the Scoobies reinforces the idea that this was true -- that the decoy cover would be maintained against Angel and Spike, that Giles wouldn't send Willow to help. Every event that fits perfectly well with the face value explanation becomes yet another element of an increasingly ridiculous conspiracy theory.
                            But by coming at it at face value, you're ignoring everything that resembled their relationship in the past.. You still haven't answered either me or Maggie to how this isn't OOC for Buffy herself.. Do you honestly see her that cold of a person to just shut off still one of the most important persons in her life? Giles was always the one to make hard decisions.. ones that require a person who is less committed to relationship.. something that is very important to consider since you know.. it's Angel.

                            Why? Explanations imply that there are two sides upon which reasonable people might differ. You don't ask someone to "explain" why they are smoking a cigarette and blowing the smoke into a baby's face and using its bottle as an ashtray -- you just order them uncompromisingly to stop, if they want to still have anything to do with you. Same thing with taking over an evil law firm. There *is* no good reason to do it. And, yes, I would include the actual reasons Angel did it in the list of 'no good reasons'.
                            If this was someone that Buffy didn't trust, and Buffy didn't have such a strong relationship with.. then yes.. you're right. She would just toss him aside.. there's a bigger picture. However, this is Angel.. I can't help but question whether or not the fact that you have such anti-Angel passion is blinding your point. Let's say it was your favorite.. Xander. Let's say Xander made some radical decisions that look bad on paper and Buffy was told about this... You think Buffy would get other people to tell him that they're not friends anymore? You don't think she'd want to hear face to face what was going on? These are her friends we're talking about.

                            You keep using taking over an evil law firm as such a big bad thing.. but the matter of the fact is that this means practically nothing to Buffy. She doesn't know what's at stake... she doesn't know much about what's been going on it the past couple of years for Angel and co. Therefore, don't you think she'd want to be filled in? And honestly.. if we're assuming your route, whoever told Buffy this information..

                            1. It's coming from Andrew..
                            2. It's coming from Giles

                            Not the two best people in Buffy's trust bank right now.
                            Nostalgia has ably handled much of this. But let me add in a few points.
                            Thanks ..
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                            • #15
                              But by coming at it at face value, you're ignoring everything that resembled their relationship in the past..
                              No, I'm embracing the unsettlingly realistic fact that people's relationships are forced to change.

                              it's Angel
                              And it's not Season 2 anymore. Buffy has long since aged past the kind of emotional immaturity that she would just ignore *every* responsibility she has to go all Melrose Place with Angel about his evil new job.

                              Let's say it was your favorite.. Xander. Let's say Xander made some radical decisions that look bad on paper and Buffy was told about this... You think Buffy would get other people to tell him that they're not friends anymore? You don't think she'd want to hear face to face what was going on? These are her friends we're talking about.
                              The thing would go so thoroughly without I'd be surprised if he would *need* someone to tell him. Keep in mind, we've seen that very nearly play out in the past with them. And if Buffy lived *7,000 miles away* had was responsible for more than 500 peoples lives and training, yeah, I think it would get tabled.

                              You keep using taking over an evil law firm as such a big bad thing.. but the matter of the fact is that this means practically nothing to Buffy. She doesn't know what's at stake... she doesn't know much about what's been going on it the past couple of years for Angel and co. Therefore, don't you think she'd want to be filled in? And honestly.. if we're assuming your route, whoever told Buffy this information..
                              Why are you assuming she doesn't know about Wolfram & Hart? Spike did. Why assume that she doesn't have this information first hand? I played this out in fic that she found out about W&H by leading the survivors from Sunnydale to LA thinking they'd find shelter at the Hyperion and learning the happy news first hand. I don't see why that would be an implausible scenario.

                              1. It's coming from Andrew..
                              2. It's coming from Giles

                              Not the two best people in Buffy's trust bank right now.
                              Because you're presupposing a completely imaginary conspiracy against her. Only reason to consider them untrusted on that matter at that point. No textual basis of any kind.
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                              • #16
                                It's not 2003 anymore.. Buffy has a responsibility, but I wouldn't say that lives are at stake right now.. not to an extent that it would disable her from going out to patch up questions with her friends.
                                The thing would go so thoroughly without I'd be surprised if he would *need* someone to tell him. Keep in mind, we've seen that very nearly play out in the past with them. And if Buffy lived *7,000 miles away* had was responsible for more than 500 peoples lives and training, yeah, I think it would get tabled.
                                If that's the case, I question your personal opinion of Buffy. Many lives were in grave danger last year, considering the First could have made an action at any point and if Buffy left, who knew what could have happened. This is why Buffy gave the whole mission matters attitude.

                                Things are different now though.. yes there's a new enemy.. but they haven't been threatened in a way where they should be keeping their guard up at all seconds. Things are at a safe period for the moment.. it's not like Buffy has her hands full.

                                Point in case, Buffy's care for her friends (Xander, Willow, etc.) and more-than-friends (Spike, Angel) in far greater than her defense mechanisms. Danger is not evident enough to hold her back from visiting LA or even calling Angel like it was last year. I could maybe maybe expect this last year.. but even so.. I'd still be very very surprised and think that it'd be unlikely.
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                                • #17
                                  It's not 2003 anymore.. Buffy has a responsibility, but I wouldn't say that lives are at stake right now.. not to an extent that it would enable her from going out to patch up questions with her friends.
                                  I just realized how wrong-minded your approach here is -- you're thinking she should be concentrating on what she thinks is true of the person and not focusing on what she can take from their actions. That's not the right thing to do.

                                  If I recall, thinking that Angel was still good despite him doing things that were obviously wrong backfired quite badly for Buffy once before. And, if I'm in Buffy's situation, the very first thing I'm thinking of if I hear Angel has joined a manifestly evil company is whether or not she should be pronouncing his name with an -us at the end. More to the point, whether she suspects Angelus or just good old fashioned corruption of Angel, when talking about going over to chat at manifestly evil company's offices, a smart Slayer in that situation is thinking trap -- even if he *isn't* bad, it could be a trap.

                                  She doesn't have the luxury of assuming, despite the hard facts in front of her, that everything is perfectly fine with Angel and put her own life in danger just to satisfy her curiousity on that subject.

                                  If that's the case, I question your personal opinion of Buffy.
                                  The answer is: I'm the one who is showing her the respect of not thinking she would react just on emotion like she's still 17 and "doesn't see anything in the future" except Angel. And that's what trusting Angel and ignoring her safety enough to go in person to check out Wolfram & Hart would be -- an emotional, irrational decision.

                                  Many lives were in grave danger last year... This is why Buffy gave the whole mission matters attitude.
                                  Many lives are put in danger if a powerful champion has switched sides and taken over the most dangerous evil institution on the planet, enough to *stay away* unless necessary.

                                  My personal opinion is that they sent Andrew to get Dana with the orders he had specifically because they knew Angel *wouldn't* take him seriously, and he'd be able to get the most honest look at what they're up to in L.A., whereas if Buffy or Xander had gone, they'd have been likely to put on an act. The fic I referred to that I wrote specifically to articulate my theories about "Damage" took the position that Andrew had the Slayers with him in case he needed them, and that the threat of force was a last resort. My thinking has always been that if Angel had been fully cooperative and let them take Dana without an argument, it would have gone a good distance to proving he wasn't at Wolfram & Hart because he'd gone bad.
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                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
                                    I just realized how wrong-minded your approach here is -- you're thinking she should be concentrating on what she thinks is true of the person and not focusing on what she can take from their actions. That's not the right thing to do.

                                    If I recall, thinking that Angel was still good despite him doing things that were obviously wrong backfired quite badly for Buffy once before. And, if I'm in Buffy's situation, the very first thing I'm thinking of if I hear Angel has joined a manifestly evil company is whether or not she should be pronouncing his name with an -us at the end. More to the point, whether she suspects Angelus or just good old fashioned corruption of Angel, when talking about going over to chat at manifestly evil company's offices, a smart Slayer in that situation is thinking trap -- even if he *isn't* bad, it could be a trap.
                                    I think you're getting your Buffys mixed up with your Kendras. You honestly think she'd cut off all of her friends and relationships in an attempt to protect the slayer line without even flinching?
                                    Despite whether it's right or not, Buffy always engaged in friendships and let her emotions feel out.. she was concerned with her friends and family just as much her mission. This is evident when Dawn is at stake in season 5.. and she chooses her over her mission. Now like I hinted towards.. things were different last season.. and Buffy was at her most pressured time she's ever been. That's my main explanation towards her mission matters attitude. Yes, there's a new villain in town.. but there always is. This didn't stop her from going out to visit Angel in season 4, to figure out what was going on with him and Faith. This didn't stop her from just relaxing and spending time with Angel in the graveyard when her mother died. Glory could have been setting up a chance to nab Dawn right at that point while she was resting with Angel.. and Buffy never would have known it. Point is, Buffy's not an "all work, no play" kind of gal. And it's not her job to be at the desk 24/7. Now whether this is the correct way of living for a slayer her or not.. the ball's in your court.
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                                    • #19
                                      I think you're getting your Buffys mixed up with your Kendras. You honestly think she'd cut off all of her friends and relationships in an attempt to protect the slayer line without even flinching?
                                      When did that even enter the discussion? The Slayer line is an abstract -- Buffy is responsible for actual people's actual lives... at least 500 at last count, and no telling how many already by the time she made the decision to send Andrew to get Dana.

                                      This is evident when Dawn is at stake in season 5.. and she chooses her over her mission. Now like I hinted towards.. things were different last season.. and Buffy was at her most pressured time she's ever been.
                                      People don't, in real life, flip on/off switches on their responses. You think she just gets to change hats to "The First isn't threatening" and all that goes away? Why isn't the real explanation that her behavior changed because she was pushed into the position of being in charge of a large number of people and responsible for their well-being? Because, that part didn't change -- she still is, and, thus far in Season 8, she has looked pretty damn unrelenting on that subject. If she's a way in Season 7, and the same way in Season 8, stands to reason she's the same way in between them.

                                      Now whether you agree with whether this is the correct way of living as a slayer her or not.. the ball's in your court.
                                      Let me clarify this -- I'm talking 'is', you're talking 'ought'. I'm the one who is backing up the actual canon information of Season 7, Season 8, and Angel Season 5 and saying that, yes, they make sense, yes, they are consistent, yes, it is in character. Ergo, I'm not the one whose argument is based on how Buffy *should* be acting but, rather on how she rather apparently *is* acting. You're the one making a normative argument here, and so far, it hasn't been a compelling one.

                                      In part, I think, because you keep wanting to shift the burden of proof to me for supporting the canon as stated. I don't have to prove that the episode says what the episode says, I just turn on the episode. You have to come up with some kind of reasonable argument for not believing it. And we'll be going back and forth on this thread for quite a while, I imagine, waiting for someone to come up with one.

                                      Logistically, Andrew and Giles couldn't have pulled it off as a fraud, and the stated facts are perfectly reasonable behavior for the Scoobies, including Buffy, given the circumstances.
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                                      • #20
                                        In part, I think, because you keep wanting to shift the burden of proof to me for supporting the canon as stated. I don't have to prove that the episode says what the episode says, I just turn on the episode. You have to come up with some kind of reasonable argument for not believing it. And we'll be going back and forth on this thread for quite a while, I imagine, waiting for someone to come up with one.

                                        Logistically, Andrew and Giles couldn't have pulled it off as a fraud, and the stated facts are perfectly reasonable behavior for the Scoobies, including Buffy, given the circumstances.
                                        No, your interpretation of the episode is just as invalid as mine is. You haven't supported any evidence to how it would fit her character to disregard Angel without any consent once so ever. While I've at least tied back to times when she gone out of her way when lives were at stake in the importance of her friends. The entire light of your approaching of things is making Buffy seem to be some cold hearted hard ass, when she never acted this way. You also use Wolfram & Hart as some big defensive example as if a reason why Buffy wouldn't contact Angel.. when nothing has EVER been said in either Buffy or Angel that Buffy finds Wolfram and Hart threatening..

                                        You make mention that she would consider Angel turning evil again.. Buffy wouldn't consider him becoming evil because she doesn't know what has even happened the last 5 years in LA.. she's in a different town. I'm confused to your ideas right now.. because I see a balance of wanting to to question his motives and assume he's evil, yet you're stating that she has every right to write him off and rid all contacts.. and go as far as to get other people to talk to her.. as low as someone as Andrew. Both to which are extremely anti-Angel. Back to what I stated before.. it seems more hope of a crashing relationship than any evidence or support for it.

                                        Logistically, Andrew and Giles couldn't have pulled it off as a fraud, and the stated facts are perfectly reasonable behavior for the Scoobies, including Buffy, given the circumstances.
                                        Hm, how is that even possible? Me, Maggie, and ciderdrinker have all listed examples of how Giles has been notoriously going behind Buffy's back.. so I'm not going there.

                                        What circumstances, anyway? Buffy is the slayer.. but protection defensive mode is not needed from now. There's nothing holding her back from contacting Angel.. if that's what you meant anyway. You keep making it seem like Buffy's too wrapped up in her life to actually deal with Angel's problems.. and that considering he's joined an evil organization she hardly knows anything about.. she has to do the logical and temporarily exclude him in the chance of a worst case scenario. That's fine.. and would make sense if things were actually dire right now.. but they're not. Buffy has plenty of time to at least discuss with Angel what has happened and why he's done this.
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