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  • Was the chip wrong?

    Hey

    Over on IDW forums there's been a debate about wether or not the chip placed in Spike's head was wrong. It was quite funny that even Brian Lynch jumped into the debate but basically there's two opposing sides to this. Those who believe the chip was good, the rest believing it was bad (just for the record Lynch went with good.) Areas such as free will, torture and all that fun stuff was brought up throughout the conversation.

    So I'm basically bringing the question over to these forums to try and generate some discussion. Was the chip good or bad? Now please make note here that I'm *not* asking you wether or not you believe the Initinative as an organisation was good or bad, but wether or not *the chip* was good or bad. Obviously the organisation is going to be brought up here as they created the chip but please differentiate between the two because I do believe they are two different things entirely.

    Personally I think the chip was a definite positive. It prevented Spike and any other vampire from killing innocent people and I can’t see any argument as to why that’s a bad thing. It saved Willow’s life in ‘The Initinative,’ it saved Xander and Anya’s life in ‘The Yoko Factor’ and Buffy’s life in ‘Out of My Mind.’ It also saved the girl whom Spike tries to kill in ‘Smashed’ as well as countless other victims who would have died if the chip hadn’t been working.

    Now I don’t believe free will matters whatsoever here. Why would it be considered a bad thing that we eliminated Spike or any other vampires free will to… kill a bunch of innocent people? The chip is no different than locking up a killer in prison, even Buffy makes the connection telling Spike he’s like “a serial killer in prison.” If it’s not bad to lock up human prisoners against their will to protect the public, then it’s certainly not a bad thing to put chips into *soulless vampires* heads to stop them from slaughtering innocent people. That’s not even taking into account that soulless vampires aren’t given the same rights as humans in the show, the show it titled ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ for a reason, it shouldn’t in my opinion, be regarded as a bad thing to eliminate evil demons and their ability to choose to kill people.

    There's also a distinction in how the show presented the chip in comparison to the Initinative. A few people over on IDW were claiming the show presented the Initinative as a bad organisation and thus, we're meant to view it in such a matter. That may be true, but the show never presented *the chip* in a negative light, quite the opposite in fact. In the episode 'Out of My Mind' the chance Spike could have the chip *removed* is presented negatively and in a sinister manner, certainly not in a positive manner. So if anything I'd say the show did a good job at presenting *the chip* in a positive light, not a negative.

    To be clear, I don't believe the chip should be placed into any creature *with a soul* against their consent, but that's not whom we are talking about here.

    So fire away, the chip a good or a bad?

    Vamps
    54
    Good
    64.81%
    35
    Bad
    20.37%
    11
    Undecided- Both sides make reasonable arguments
    14.81%
    8
    vampmogs
    Slayer Supporter
    Last edited by vampmogs; 29-08-08, 11:49 AM.

    ~ Banner by Nina ~

  • #2
    Well, it's more good than bad. So I went with 'good'.

    I never got what was wrong with the good old staking of an evil vampire (although ... maybe they tried it, with Riley fake stake and it didn't work.), but okay, they chipped an evil vampire. I don't see why it's bad, vampires are pure evil, it's how they work. The first thing they do when they rise is looking for blood and kill an innocent. That's why they get killed in both shows without a chance to defend themselves. I agree with Mogs that they should stay away from demons/humans with a soul (or something like a soul.).

    It stopped Spike from killing humans, and it even made him do some good things. If he doesn't want to live like that, he stakes himself ... if the vampire wants to live like this ... they do better things. It's a win-win situation.

    The only 'bad' side for me is still the intention of the iniative, what was their plan with a chipped vampire. Was it just a study object? to look if this was a good alternative of the staking. Or did they like the idea of the power they had ...

    Like I said, what is wrong with staking a vampire? Returning the soul is too cruel and the chip is not only unsafe ... it's also easy to use for bad things.
    Nina
    and her haircut.
    Last edited by Nina; 29-08-08, 11:00 PM.

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    • #3
      I really have never understood how there are two sides to this argument. Spike was a vampire, a particularly nasty one, who would have hunted and killed innocent people without remorse without that chip. The chip was a poor substitute for a stake, but it wasn't bad. Seriously, do this math... lofty existential value of Spike's "right" to be a predator.... dead people... existential predator thing... dead people. Which weighs most?

      Spike would have killed Willow in "The Initiative".
      Spike would have killed Xander in "Doomed".
      Spike tried to kill (not knowing the gun was fake) Xander and Anya in "The Yoko Factor".
      Spike would have killed Buffy in "Out of My Mind".

      Existential predator "rights" violations... dead people... hmmm.
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      Banner by LRae12

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      • #4
        Just for arguements sake I'll go with Bad. Because how can something that has no choice but to be evil, evil? Forcing the Chip on it does not make it good anyhow it just stops it doing what it needs to suvive. Remember Good and Evil are just perspectives of different people, vamps etc. Vampires are like animals. Would you say it's bad to put a chip in a Lion's head rather than mercifully killing it? I can't

        We say Vampires are evil because they are our predator just like Fish would say dolphins are evil for the smae reason. With a unbiased view you would see what I'm talking about.

        And if you say the Chip leads to getting his soul back another chance etc: first off William the man who would be getting the other chance did not commit any crimes. 2 How many vamps and Demons and Vamps tried or got a soul back anyhow none that's how many. Besides the whole point of Demons is that they can't be good because that's what a Demon is. This is arguing from a biased humane point of view
        Revan
        Hellmouth Tourist
        Last edited by Revan; 29-08-08, 03:24 PM.
        "I never learned from a man who agreed with me.'" Robert Heinlen

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
          I really have never understood how there are two sides to this argument. Spike was a vampire, a particularly nasty one, who would have hunted and killed innocent people without remorse without that chip. The chip was a poor substitute for a stake, but it wasn't bad. Seriously, do this math... lofty existential value of Spike's "right" to be a predator.... dead people... existential predator thing... dead people. Which weighs most?
          I got the impression, though, that the message of Season 4 was that science and magic are un-mixy things. A supernatural warrior like Buffy versus supernatural threats? Morally stand. Science versus the aforementioned supernatural threats? Controversial and complicated, as proven by New Moon Rising and Primeval, among others.

          So I voted for "bad".

          (set made by Francy for me)

          Comment


          • #6
            Because how can something that has no choice but to be evil, evil?
            Thankfully, it's not a question we have to resolve, because we know this isn't true for vampires.

            NINA
            But vampires kill people, and they-

            ANGEL
            Can control themselves if they want to. I do it every day, and so can you. I'll help.
            Angel 5.03 "Unleashed"

            Now, if someone wants to argue he was just simplifying things for Nina's benefit, there is still this...

            HARMONY
            I'm really, really sorry, you guys. I totally wouldn't have hit you over he head and put you in the closet if I didn't have a really good reason. It's just... I was scared, and...
            (sighs)
            (to Angel) I know you never wanted me as your assistant, and... OK, I made some bad choices. I mean, it's not like I have a soul. I have to try a lot harder.
            Angel 5.09 "Harm's Way"

            Surely Harmony isn't oversimplifying -- she's making the statement to the world's foremost leading expert on self-control of vampirism. And, in fact, her point must hit home since Angel does not fire or kill her.

            The "predator" metaphor for vampires is always a failing one -- vampire's *comprehend* good and evil and indulge the evil. A lion isn't "evil" when it kills a gazelle -- it has no notion of good or evil. But vampires do. Consider Holden's quote about being connected to evil, how watching Buffy look vulnerable made him want to bite her. It wasn't a predatory reaction, it was the thrill of exploiting her.
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            • #7
              I voted "good". Because without that chip in Spike's head, he would never have become the hero he is right now. You all know it's true.

              You may argue that his realization that he loves Buffy is the sole reason, but without that chip, Spike would have seduced her in disgusting, evil ways, threatened to kill her friends if she didn't give herself to him... the chip made him grounded and forced him to do whatever Buffy wanted to earn her respect.
              Made by Trickyboxes
              Halfrek gives Spike the curse that will change his entire life. Teenage Dirtbag

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              • #8
                Ah, so you've decided to open that can of worms again over here, have you?

                Well I think you are well aware of what my opinion is on this and going by the poll I stuck up on my own lj today I'm not the only one. This was in response to the original IDW debate rather then quite what you're asking here, although I think the two are closely related, particularly If you're looking at the bigger moral picture.







                As to the chip, well for me it's what it represented and how that power had the ability to be misused etc, so it's not so 'cut and dried' as your intro suggests.
                sueworld
                Banned
                Last edited by sueworld; 29-08-08, 04:24 PM.

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                • #9
                  Spike would have killed Willow in "The Initiative".
                  Spike would have killed Xander in "Doomed".
                  Spike tried to kill (not knowing the gun was fake) Xander and Anya in "The Yoko Factor".
                  Spike would have killed Buffy in "Out of My Mind".
                  Seconded.

                  Also, let's add that girl in the alley from "Smashed" to that list.

                  The chip was a technology that stopped a monster from hurting people. It was a good thing. I don't see how "restricting a vampire's free will" even enters into it.



                  Revan, comparing vampires to predatory animals doesn't work because vampires don't just feed off humans to survive -they kill and torture people for enjoyment too. Vampires are inherently evil creatures, unlike say lions who just want to eat. A lion doesn't "get off" from the pain of a zebra. Also as KingofCretins has pointed out, vampires are sentient and quite aware of how harmful thier actions are.
                  Vampire in Rug
                  Arbiter of Canon
                  Last edited by Vampire in Rug; 30-08-08, 12:28 AM.

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                  • #10
                    Also, Sue I think the questions in your polls are designed to favor one side. The questions and possible choices in the poll looks pretty biased to me.


                    I think the worst case of this is the line "Yes, all demons are evil and a menace and should be controlled and enslaved to protect mankind." Is it really any surprise nobody voted for this? For starters, nobody was trying to claim all demons are a menace. I love it how you use the phrase "controlled and enslaved." You choose words with negative connotations to discourage people from agreeing with it. The chip didn't "control" or "enslave" Spike, it stopped him from hurting innocent people. Speaking of innocent people, not once in the polls did you mention the innocent lives that the chip prevented Spike from taking.




                    Quick poll people, who here is Jewish? Your two possible options are "Yes, I am Jewish" and "No! Heil Hitler!" Do you see how one side is going to get more responses than the other?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Sorry love, but the Initiative did make it very clear what they wanted to do with all demons in the show. We even saw examples of ones that had been 'wired up' and sent off to attack Buffy.

                      Also we saw some back story of where this idea came from in 'Why we fight', pushing home the point about a Vampire slave army that the Nazis wanted to create, or have you forgotten?

                      The chip didn't "control" or "enslave" Spike, it stopped him from hurting innocent people.
                      Eh, of course they did. He was their 'prototype'. For right or for wrong they had abducted him and kept him locked up whilst they operated on his brain. What would you call it?

                      Anyhoo what I'm concerned about is the bigger picture. Do you really think that the military were doing any of this out of the goodness of their heart? Do you think they would just stop with vampires, or would others suffer a similar fate , maybe even Slayers and any Human that didn't 'play ball'? Remember they wanted to use these creatures for battle as made clear later in the season and then again in AtS so I wouldn't have put anything past them in wanting to extend their reach.

                      I think based on what we saw in the show the wording on my poll was pretty fair really. Also some questions have been asked with a touch of humour as I hope you've noticed.
                      sueworld
                      Banned
                      Last edited by sueworld; 30-08-08, 01:24 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Sorry love, but the Initiative did make it very clear what they wanted to do with all demons in the show. We even saw examples of ones that had been 'wired up' and sent off to attack Buffy.
                        I'm gonna go out on a limb and assume that the "wired up" demons that the Initiative sent after Buffy weren't the nicest of guys to begin with. As far as as chipping/enslaving all demons, that was done out of ignorence rather than malace. Not an excuse I know, but I can understand why they might think that. (Plus they'd be in the right a good 90% of the time. Name me one "harmless" species of demon and I'll name you ten other nasty ones. Unfortunetly for poor guys like Lorne and Merl they are in the tiny minority when it comes to demons. Most demon species could IMO be experimentd on with no ethical dilemas.)

                        Eh, of course they did. He was their 'prototype'. For right or for wrong they had abducted him and kept him locked up whilst they operated on his brain. What would you call it.
                        I'd call it putting a serial killer in jail. The chip didn't turn him into a mindless drone, he still had free will, he just couldn't hurt anyone. This is the only thing the chip did -it hurt him when he was trying to hurt someone else. Its only function was to shock him into not hurting humans. What the Initative intended to eventually do with Spike is a whole nother kettle of fish but as for the chip itself (*points to title of thread*) I'm all for the idea of putting chips in vampire heads.

                        Anyhoo what I'm concerned about is the bigger picture. Do you really think that the military were doing any of this out of the goodness of their heart?
                        I'm sure protecting civilains was a part of thier plan. It's not a stretch to assume that the Initiative didn't approve of students being eaten by vampires.

                        Do you think they would just stop with vampires, or would others suffer a similar fate , maybe even Slayers and any Human that didn't 'play ball'?
                        Slayers? Bearing in mind this is season 4 and Faith was still a crazy murderur, I don't see why putting a chip in her head would be a bad thing. I mean if it's going to protect innocent lives...

                        As for doing it to Slayers out of principle? Well once again, if they did that it would probably be out of ignorence. It's a moot point anyway seeing as how viewing Slayers as "demonic" or "subhuman" sounds more in line with Twilight than it does with the Initiative. The two organizations have some similarities, but they are not the same thing. For a while the Initiative worked alongside Buffy, so I doubt they view her as subhuman. Walsh tried to kill her because of her influence over Riley, it had nothing to do with her being the Slayer.

                        As for Joe Regular who doesn't "play ball"? I don't think so. That's speculation in its purest form.
                        Vampire in Rug
                        Arbiter of Canon
                        Last edited by Vampire in Rug; 30-08-08, 01:31 AM.

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                        • #13
                          I'm sure protecting civilains was a part of thier plan. It's not a stretch to assume that the Initiative didn't approve of students being eaten by vampires.
                          This being the same organization that were quite happy torturing Oz, trying to kill Buffy and who stuck a chip in Riley and fed him and his team body altering drugs without their knowledge. Yeah, sounds like they could really be trusted to do whats right.

                          Walsh tried to kill her because of her influence over Riley, it had nothing to do with her being the Slayer.
                          Oh thats alright then....

                          Slayers? Bearing in mind this is season 4 and Faith was still a crazy murderer, I don't see why putting a chip in her head would be a bad thing. I mean if it's going to protect innocent lives..
                          *sigh* I can't even begin to explain to you whats wrong with that idea......

                          I know you're looking at the original thread over on IDW that started all this. I suggest you go and look at Nata's posts over there as she manages to explain my problem with this whole idea far better then I can.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            This being the same organization that were quite happy torturing Oz, trying to kill Buffy and who stuck a chip in Riley and fed him and his team body altering drugs without their knowledge. Yeah, sounds like they could really be trusted to do whats right.
                            Oz is a werewolf who was on a rampage through a college. I don't approve of what they did to him, but I can understand why they might do it and if anything it supports my point that the Initiative does not approve of monsters eating people.

                            Putting a chip in Riley and feeding him drugs was not cool at all. But it was the result of Maggie Walsh's meddling. That's one person, not the whole organization. I'm pretty sure Walsh (and Adam) were the only ones who knew about the (unrealisticly stupid) chip in Riley's heart.

                            As for trying to kill Buffy, once again that was Walsh's doing. Walsh did it because she believed that Buffy was influencing Riley. I never said this was right, I was pointing out that it had nothing to do with Buffy being the Slayer. The Initiative had no problems with the Slayer. The Initiative never showed any interest in putting a chip in Buffy's head. You seem to be confusing the Initiative with Twilight.

                            *sigh* I can't even begin to explain to you whats wrong with that idea......
                            Please try.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Please try.
                              Lets just say it involves a little thing call 'free will' and leave it at that. To be honest I'm quite stunned that someone would even think doing that to another human is would be a good idea.

                              You seem to have a lot of faith in a secret organization that was shown to be morally very, very dodgey at best which is quite surprising given how they were depicted in that season.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by sueworld View Post
                                Lets just say it involves a little thing call 'free will' and leave it at that. To be honest I'm quite stunned that someone would even think doing that to another human is would be a good idea.
                                Free will? Once again, we're back to the question of whether someone's right to free will outweighs Joe Average's right to safety. I'd argue that Joe Average has the right to walk down the street without getting drained by Spike or his neck snapped by Faith.

                                I know Faith is a popular character, but try to keep in mind this is season four. She wasn't some poor misguided little girl, she was a wanted murderer and a horrible person. I would not feel safe living in Sunnydale if season three or four Faith was about. If Faith had a chip back then, maybe some of the people she killed would still be alive.

                                You seem to have a lot of faith in a secret organization that was shown to be morally very, very dodgey at best which is quite surprising given how they were depicted in that season.
                                No, I just don't view them as being pure evil. I see them as an organization that tried to do something good, but ultimetly went about it the wrong way due to some very corrupt people at the top. I think they did achieve a few good things though, mainly the invention of Spike's chip.

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                                • #17
                                  Free will? Once again, we're back to the question of whether someone's right to free will outweighs Joe Average's right to safety. I'd argue that Joe Average has the right to walk down the street without getting drained by Spike or his neck snapped by Faith.

                                  I know Faith is a popular character, but try to keep in mind this is season four. She wasn't some poor misguided little girl, she was a wanted murderer and a horrible person. I would not feel safe living in Sunnydale if season three or four Faith was about. If Faith had a chip back then, maybe some of the people she killed would still be alive.
                                  But she's not a demon, she's a human being. Yes a Slayer, but she's capable of learning right from wrong, she has soul for a start. In the end she found her own path to redemption without being wired up to the mains and being turned into an army 'tinker toy'.

                                  Also considering you don't seem to have a problem chipping her, where where would it stop eh? Any human that does a crime, those in opposing political governments?

                                  Can you see now why I said it's only a small hop from chipping demons to the human population?

                                  You don't even seem to understand that Faith is entitled to use her own free will like anyone else is entitled to which is quite surprising to say the least.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    This whole subject regarding Faith is pretty speculative seeing as how the Initiative never showed any sort of indication that they didn't like Slayers or that they wanted to force chips into Slayers. I only brought her up as an extreme example where the Initiative *might* for some reason want to do it.

                                    Some other things to consider: Faith cannot be dealt with by the law. We've seen how easily she can break out of prison if she feels like it. Faith eventually found a path to redemption of her own accord. Great. Now what if she didn't? How can someone like Faith be dealt with? How high many people should she be allowed to kill before something has to be done?

                                    This is getting pretty off topic but what I'm trying to get at is: Faith was a threat that the human world was not equiped to deal with. Something like a chip would be a non-violent solution to the problem. I don't think that putting a chip in the head of a renegade slayer is really that bad of an idea.

                                    And I think it's a bit of a stretch to make the connection between chipping a dangerous, superpowered threat to chipping/enslaving an average human being.

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                                    • #19
                                      It's nearly 2am over here, so I'm getting too tired to keep this going, so I'll end on this.

                                      How can someone like Faith be dealt with?
                                      The Watcher council or Buffy herself as we saw in the series. Now there's a bucket full of Slayers with Buffy in season 8, so no problem I would have thought.

                                      I'll also end on part of the speech that we hear as a voice over by one of the government suits in Primeval...

                                      "This was an experiment. The
                                      Initiative represented the government's
                                      interest in not only controlling the
                                      Otherworldly Menace, but in
                                      harnessing its power for our
                                      own military purposes.
                                      Nuff said really.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Um... Faith actually turned herself into jail. That was how that situation was resolved. And the superpowered killer turning herself in is not a situation you can exactly rely on. Caleb anyone? Gigi? Roden? Rack? Warren? Amy?

                                        The Watcher's Council tried to kill Faith, as did Buffy. Both situations are very controversial with the fanbase (although I don't see why, but that's a discussion for another thread). Surely a chip would be better than killing someone?

                                        Not only did the Watcher's Council and Buffy both resort to trying to kill Faith, they both *failed*. The situation was only resolved when she turned herself in.



                                        "This was an experiment. The Initiative represented the government's interest in not only controlling the Otherworldly Menace, but in harnessing its power for our own military purposes."
                                        If a reasonable measure of control can be exerted over the vampires, why not? It would save human soldiers from being killed.

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