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  • Does anyone else hate Riley?

    So i was rewatching buffy and i got to my least favourite part of the series, when Riley Finn enters the show, and i don't even know why i hate him! So what i would like to know is does any one else hate him and/or his relationship with buffy?

  • #2
    So i was rewatching buffy and i got to my least favourite part of the series, when Riley Finn enters the show, and i don't even know why i hate him! So what i would like to know is does any one else hate him and/or his relationship with buffy
    You are like my new best friend becuz Riley has always been one of my least favorite Human characters on the show. He just so boring and irritating to watch and I was soo glad when I got to "into the woods" on my series rewatch as that meant no more Riley.
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    • #3
      This is one of those opinions of the majority thing I just don't see (along with Kennedy and Dawn hate). I've never really found any character annoying or boring. In fact, I think that Riley does some pretty cool stuff, like punching Parker in the face and helping free Oz. I don't really like him but I don't hate him. I actually found myself feeling sad for Buffy when she just misses his chopper in ITW.

      You're definitely not going to be alone in hating Riley, it's quite a popular opinion. But it'd be a much more interesting thread if you expanded on why you hated him though, instead of just taking a dump on the character. In the end though it's a matter of opinion, and if you hate him you hate him.

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      • #4
        A lot of people seem to hate Riley. I don't really hate him, I always thought he meant well and was a nice guy. I thought Into the woods was a pretty good ep not only because he finally left. Although I think his appearance in season six was beyond stupid.

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        • #5
          This is one of those opinions of the majority thing I just don't see (along with Kennedy and Dawn hate)
          I Know, Ive always loved Dawn and Kennedy so I hate it when I see them getting bashed but as they say To each his own. Everyone has differing opinions on thinngs.
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          • #6
            Originally posted by Andrew View Post
            You're definitely not going to be alone in hating Riley, it's quite a popular opinion. But it'd be a much more interesting thread if you expanded on why you hated him though, instead of just taking a dump on the character. In the end though it's a matter of opinion, and if you hate him you hate him.
            I agree. People say he's boring... but why? Why do people hate him?

            I actually really like Riley and he is a favorite character of mine. I think he was right to leave Buffy and in the relationship Buffy was the bad guy. Riley did everything to try and win Buffy and for awhile they were a really good couple.
            The progression that both characters took was amazing and I think the character of Buffy would be far different if it wasn't for Riley. He was just a generally interesting character with him fighting everything he knows (the army) and breaking down when he starts losing himself.

            Him leaving and returing in season 6 was a great end to the character and I'd love to see him in Season 8 or any future Buffy work.

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            • #7
              Maybe some of the hate came not because of him but because of the season he came about in. The one right after Angel left, I sometimes wonder if he'd have come another time he might have been a bit more like. I don't know when else they could have put him in though without having to do away with a storyline either the death or the stuff with Spike. I never hugely disliked him, I just wish they'd sort of kept him as human not tried to turn him into some kind of low rate SSS Captain America with a vamp bite fetish/curisoity.

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              • #8
                I never hated him, the only character I really don't like is Andrew.

                But Riley bored me, and the writers were bored after some episodes as well. Which is probably why I never cared about Riley. So, no Riley hate here.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Nina View Post
                  But Riley bored me, and the writers were bored after some episodes as well.
                  I don't think so. Didn't Doug Petrie say they were having Riley/Buffy vs Angel/Buffy debates in the writers' room over The Yoko Factor? I remember something along those lines.

                  Anyway, I'm totally apathetic to Riley, which probably has worse connotations for his character than loving him or hating him.

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                  • #10
                    Reilly didnt really fit in with the Scoobies, he was always just awkward and annoying, his 'mr nice guy' routine, altough, by the time it got to Into the woods, i actually felt sorry for him. Buffy was out
                    of order for the way she treated him.
                    But do you remember yoko factor! When Reilly knew Buffy was going to LA to see Angel
                    and when reilly found out buffy had sex with Angel, he got all agitated and annoyed. I was like 'calm down Reilly, what right have you got to get annoyed just because your bird slept with someone else before you'. Thinking on it, reilly really was a fool.
                    Last edited by lee; 03-06-08, 02:00 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Enisy View Post
                      I don't think so. Didn't Doug Petrie say they were having Riley/Buffy vs Angel/Buffy debates in the writers' room over The Yoko Factor? I remember something along those lines.

                      Anyway, I'm totally apathetic to Riley, which probably has worse connotations for his character than loving him or hating him.
                      I have that feeling because he is without any good storyline the moment The Iniative is gone. Worse, they got him a vampire whore to get him out of the series. It would be so easy to write a little storyline about Riley who wants to go back into the army ... or back to Iowa and it would do the character more justice than making him a whiny boyfriend who gets himself bitten by a vampire.
                      Last edited by Nina; 03-06-08, 02:10 PM.

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                      • #12
                        I liked Riley but he was too nice for Buffy. Riley was still a boy scout. Spike famously said to him, "She likes some monster in her man,"--which was crude but true. What Spike did not realize at that time was that it was not enough to be a monster.

                        I think that in Season 7 Buffy would have benefited enormously from Riley had he been there. She could have leaned on him. He could have taken care of training, he could advise about leadership. He could have helped with tactical plans. There would have been no revolt,and it goes without saying that Riley would go to Hell rather than betray Buffy.

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                        • #13
                          I think i can say that i hate Riley 100%. I think it has something to do with the fact that there was so much Riley/Buffy smoochies on show... I dont really like to see that kind of thing.... Also i really hate Marc, the actor that played him, hes just so typical looking and really bland (just like Riley). I hate the army slant to the show and Riley is such a suck up/Mommas boy/Do gooder/Play by the rules guy and that just bugs me to no end.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Andrew View Post
                            This is one of those opinions of the majority thing I just don't see (along with Kennedy and Dawn hate). I've never really found any character annoying or boring. In fact, I think that Riley does some pretty cool stuff, like punching Parker in the face and helping free Oz. I don't really like him but I don't hate him. I actually found myself feeling sad for Buffy when she just misses his chopper in ITW.

                            You're definitely not going to be alone in hating Riley, it's quite a popular opinion. But it'd be a much more interesting thread if you expanded on why you hated him though, instead of just taking a dump on the character. In the end though it's a matter of opinion, and if you hate him you hate him.
                            Your right i should have given reasons, but the truth is i don't no why. I think it may be that i really liked Angels character and i felt he was replacing him, but then there's the fact that i think they tried to point out that he was Buffys first human boyfriend WAY too much by making him make mistakes all the time and not believing Buffy. It could be the nice guy act grated on me, but i just find it hard to watch episodes with him in it.

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                            • #15
                              Riley, what we know of him to this point of course, is a good man. I think of all of Buffy's long-term romances, the best fit for her overall. She was able to enjoy the fullness of a relationship, 24 hours a day. She was able to express herself sexually without having to pair it with self-loathing. I think his Perfect Boyfriend moment comes in "The Replacement" when he manages to not only perfectly anticipate what's making Buffy insecure and restless, but also put her concerns at ease about "Buffy-Buffy" and "Slayer-Buffy". And without any self-indulgent talk of seeing her heart, either. And in his Season 6 appearance, I think he did more effective work in actually getting her to start healing than anyone else did just with his simple, uncompromising confidence in her -- even when he learned of the thing that made her most ashamed, it didn't waver. Although Buffy wouldn't *really* turn the corner until "Normal Again" when "Joyce" (actually Buffy herself) reminds her of who she is, it was after "As You Were" that Buffy really reinvests in her friends, the source of her connection to life, and starts to come around. That pure confidence in her is reinforced by distance in Season 7 when, despite there being only one rational option to an outsider, he leaves it to her to determine Spike's fate.

                              Originally posted by Michael View Post
                              I liked Riley but he was too nice for Buffy. Riley was still a boy scout. Spike famously said to him, "She likes some monster in her man,"--which was crude but true. What Spike did not realize at that time was that it was not enough to be a monster.
                              Bah, it wasn't true then, isn't true now. Spike said this to psyche out Riley, period. It was a completely self-serving statement by someone who would be the only beneficiary of it being accepted as true.

                              I think that in Season 7 Buffy would have benefited enormously from Riley had he been there. She could have leaned on him. He could have taken care of training, he could advise about leadership. He could have helped with tactical plans. There would have been no revolt,and it goes without saying that Riley would go to Hell rather than betray Buffy.
                              This I definitely agree with -- he would have been ideally placed to keep things simpatico between all parties. He and Sam both, actually (yes, I know she came over cartoony to people, but she'd have been a great house-mother to the Potentials, and actually *better* suited to train them -- Buffy only knows how to be a Slayer, combat-wise. Sam knows what it's like to be a woman fighting monsters). Plus, it would have been helpful with the occasionally recalcitrant and uncooperative Spike (see "Lies My Parents Told Me"), who would only listen to Buffy, to have someone else around who could physically impose his will a little.
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                              • #16
                                King,

                                Okay already. But if Spike did not serve himself, who else was going to serve him?

                                However, I noticed that the only time Buffy came running was when Riley was leaving. It occurs to me that the way for Riley to have handled Buffy would have been to find a way of leaving without actually going.

                                I had forgotten about "As You Were" and I agree that Buffy's self healing started during this incident. More exactly, when Buffy is on the ground watching Riley and Sam ascent to their helicopter which appeared like a bright light in the night sky, I think she decided in those few seconds that she was sick and tired of feeling sick and tired.

                                Of course you understand the Near Death Experience symbolism of the light in the sky? Sorry for asking. However Buffy had been spirituality dead ever since Willow had brought her back to life.
                                Last edited by Michael; 03-06-08, 11:18 PM.

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                                • #17
                                  Ah. The Enormous Hall Monitor. At first he bore me to death. Then with the vamp whores etc I pitied the poor guy who obviously didn't have a clue. About anything. And he irritated me, too, because he took so much screen space. And his departure was long-awaited, I probably threw a small party. His reappearance in S6 I So Did Not Like (for several reasons, I really do not like the episode, the idea I get, but the execution was awful).
                                  But - at my last rewatch, being older and wiser, I actually started having warmer feelings towards him. Riley really was just "a nice, normal guy" like Buffy herself said. He probably just wanted cute perky girlfriend - and look what he got and what he had to deal with! Not only Buffy being The Slayer but also Buffy taking him from his homey straightforward Initiative to her small/informal community where things where murkier, where Hostile 17 had a name and was sitting cosily on staircase having a chat. So I don't think about him in terms of "strong dislike" anymore, I just mainly feel sorry for him. He had to do the ungrateful job of being rebound guy for Buffy and the fact that he was really in love with her just makes it worse.

                                  Originally posted by Michael View Post
                                  I think that in Season 7 Buffy would have benefited enormously from Riley had he been there. She could have leaned on him. He could have taken care of training, he could advise about leadership. He could have helped with tactical plans. There would have been no revolt,and it goes without saying that Riley would go to Hell rather than betray Buffy.
                                  Interesting thought - but do you think it really would have worked? I don't think it would have worked in the way of Riley plus Mrs suddenly returning to Sunnydale to help out with the apocalypse. They wouldn't have worked with the Buffy house dynamics very well because Spike was living in the house and I don't see Riley accepting that with ease (by S7 he still calls Spike an "assface"). There would have been too much tension in the house because of Riley and Spike being both Buffy's exes. So I'm afraid that he actually wouldn't have added much to the stability of the house. Helping out with Potentials I think wouldn't have outweighed the awkwardness of Buffy-Spike-Riley(+Sam) situation.

                                  Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
                                  Riley, what we know of him to this point of course, is a good man. I think of all of Buffy's long-term romances, the best fit for her overall.
                                  He is a good man, but "best fit" for Buffy? I don't think so. They were having major problems - that's why they eventually broke up. And the first problem with them being that Buffy didn't love him. She never said it to him. And when you're in a nice cuddling & hand holding relationship and you don't say the words despite the fact that the other one says them out loud... I'm afraid our Buffy is/was a romantic in the sense that she attributed great significance to the "I love you" so the fact that she cannot bring herself to say it to Riley says a lot. I'm afraid Riley was a rebound guy, ego-boost after Angel and Parker. Buffy saw immediately that Riley is nice and normal, "corn-fed Iowa boy" who would never cause her a heartbreak (if he loves you more than you love him he cannot break your heart) and that's why she started dating him and also having boyfriend like Riley fit nicely to her trying "to be like other girls".
                                  Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
                                  She was able to enjoy the fullness of a relationship, 24 hours a day. She was able to express herself sexually without having to pair it with self-loathing.
                                  Yeah, but how long did the "fullness" last? As long as the problems started. Also could she really have continued expressing herself sexually freely with him after the vamp whores? I don't think so.

                                  Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
                                  I think his Perfect Boyfriend moment comes in "The Replacement" when he manages to not only perfectly anticipate what's making Buffy insecure and restless, but also put her concerns at ease about "Buffy-Buffy" and "Slayer-Buffy".
                                  Yeah, but after the Perfect Boyfriend moment he himself actually became insecure and restless, about Buffy being stronger, about her being drawn to the "dark" etc.

                                  Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
                                  Originally posted by Michael View Post
                                  I liked Riley but he was too nice for Buffy. Riley's still a boy scout. Spike famously said to him, "She likes some monster in her man,"--which was crude but true. What Spike did not realize at that time was that it was not enough to be a monster.
                                  Bah, it wasn't true then, isn't true now. Spike said this to psyche out Riley, period. It was a completely self-serving statement by someone who would be the only beneficiary of it being accepted as true.
                                  I'm afraid it's not so simple. Buffy obviously is drawn to the dark, we have seen it. Her most meaningful relationships have been with vampires. The darkness is there, it's part of what she is, too. And I guess Slayer and the vampire are perfect opposites but in yin and yang sort of way. In Buffy's light there's the spot of darkness and in Angel or Spike's darkness there was the spot of light. This doesn't necessarily mean that Buffy definitely has to love a vampire. It was a chance that Angelus got cursed. It was a chance that Spike got the chip. Either of those things could as well as never have happened. But they did and I think Buffy feels more connected to these vamps than she did with Riley. They do share the same field, death is the art of Slayer, of vampire, of souled vampire. Spike for example really knows her, really gets her, everything he says in FFL is true. And Buffy knows it too.

                                  She also acknowledges her concerns with "normal" guys:
                                  WILLOW: But..?
                                  BUFFY: I don't know. I really like being around him, you know? And I think he cares about me.. but.. I just.. feel like something's missing.
                                  WILLOW: He's not making you miserable?
                                  BUFFY: Exactly. Riley seems so solid. Like he wouldn't cause me heartache.
                                  WILLOW: Get out. Get out while there's still time.
                                  BUFFY: I know.. I have to get away from that bad boy thing. There's no good there. Seeing Angel in LA.. even for five minutes.. hello to the pain.
                                  WILLOW: The pain is not a friend.
                                  BUFFY: But I can't help thinking - isn't that where the fire comes from? Can a nice, safe relationship be that intense? I know it's nuts, but.. part of me believes that real love and passion have to go hand in hand with pain and fighting.
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                                  • #18
                                    Buffy acknowledges those concerns then by the end of the same episode realises she's "so over the bad boy thing" and rushes to find Riley, hoping she hasn't ruined her chances with him whilst under Willow's spell

                                    And really the whole monster in her man thing was said by one person, Spike, who in the same episode even admits to Riley he doesn't think he has a shot with her. The same guy who claims it undercuts it later on by admitting he doesn't think he really has a chance so even he couldn't have believed what he was saying really.

                                    Buffy's always really fell for humanity. She fell for Angel because of his soul, fell for Riley because he was a good guy and only really started feeling deeply for Spike after he got his soul. It's always been the humanity, not the monster.

                                    We also have to remember that Buffy was initially actually put off by Riley when she learns he isn't just a Jo Regular, she wasn't turned on by it at all.

                                    Riley was a great guy, and I don't get why people hate him at all. He sacrificed his entire career and his beliefs to be with Buffy in season 4 and in return she treat him like the rebound guy throughout season 5. And in season six he rejuvenated her, gave her the strength to end it with Spike and walk back into the light, he gave her some motivation to start putting her life back on track. What did he do to earn such hate? Let some vampires suck on him? So what? Angelus killed Jenny and Spike nearly raped Buffy and both those characters are never short of getting love and admiration from the fans so why on earth does this one thing make people hate him so much?

                                    They also complain he's whiney, but when? In the one episode he actually tells Buffy how he's feeling which is the very same episode he actually leaves? How was he whiney when he never complained to anyone how he felt during season 5 and pretty much bottled those feelings up to himself?

                                    I don't get the hate personally, thought he was a champ. My favourite character, no. But deserving of hate, far from it in my opinion.

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                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by missperoxide View Post
                                      I'm afraid it's not so simple. Buffy obviously is drawn to the dark, we have seen it. Her most meaningful relationships have been with vampires.
                                      She had two meaningful relationships. One with Angel and one with Riley. The one she had with Soulless!Spike didn't mean anything to her and she never had a romantic relationship with Soulled!Spike.

                                      Actually, Angel and Spike being vampires was probably the biggest issue she had with either of them so the 'monster in her man' thing probably isn't true. The monster is the thing that gets in the way.

                                      I don't hate Riley. He could be an idiot at times, but he was hardly the only one. I guess the fact that I've seen quite a bit of Riley bashing in the fandom has made me more sympathetic to him. I tend to feel for characters that get bashed when I don't think they deserve it.
                                      Last edited by Anon; 04-06-08, 03:18 PM.

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                                      • #20
                                        I'm not gonna lie, I'm not a fan of Riley's either. However my biggest issue with the character wasn't the character himself, it was the goddamn actor playing him. I'm sorry, but Marc Blucas has no talent. His acting range is more limited than mine is -- and I can barely do hand gestures well. It was no surprise to me when I read that whilst casting, Joss wanted Riley to be an All American Joe, and Marc Blucas does fit the physical description quite well. However he clearly isn't anything beyond looks. This guy hardly revealed any facial expressions. In all of his scenes, I felt that Blucas' face was cold and his eyes were empty. There was nothing behind the visage (unlike Boreanaz, who masters at showing pain without melting his face.).

                                        I always wished that the actor who played Ben (Charlie Something) switched roles with Blucas. Especially considering this Charlie Something originally auditioned to play Riley before getting Ben. I thought he and Sarah had much, much better chemistry in those few season 5 episodes than she and Blucas ever had in two seasons.

                                        Oh well....
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