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Buffy and Xander: Married Couple?

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  • Buffy and Xander: Married Couple?

    Lessons: Xander's responsible appearance and usage of car to drive Buffy and Dawn to school along with Buffy's mom hair and finally paying attention to Dawn. They buy her the cell phone, Buffy doesn't give it to Dawn until Xander is there, the way Buffy pulls Xander's wrest to see his watch (I loved this moment), Xander picking Dawn and Buffy to school everyday.

    Beneath You: Again, Xander driving them to school, Dawn asking Buffy not to embarrass her like a daughter asks her mother. I don't blame Nancy for thinking that Buffy and Xander are together, they do act like a couple in these episodes.

    Him: When Dawn embarrassed herself in front of RJ, it was Xander and Buffy who were there to comfort her. Why would Xander help Buffy comfort her when Willow was living with them? Xander comforting Dawn out of school and then when he finds Buffy on top of RJ, he goes all, "Now get off the boy, Buffy. We're going home." He is taking the father role way too seriously.

    Never Leave Me: When Spike is kidnapped, it was Buffy and Xander who checked the empty basement, then it was Buffy and Xander who went upstairs and made sure Andrew was okay before they came downstairs together to check on the rest of the children…. I mean, Willow and Dawn.

    Potential: Buffy and Xander are the ones making sure Dawn is okay, before Xander takes the stage and helps Dawn to be more confident about herself. He's really the father of the season.

    I'm sure there are little moments here and there, but the most obvious one must be that Buffy doesn't trust anyone with Dawn but Xander. She trusted no one to go away with Dawn but Xander, if they all died, she preferred that Xander would raise Dawn alone and no one else. In Chosen, she paired Dawn with Xander, knowing that Wood and Giles are much better fighters, but she still trusted no one with her but Xander.

    Then we have Buffy's role as the mother of the season by taking care of all these potentials and her friends. And on top of them all, Spike.

    Icons treating Xander and Buffy as parents:

    and

    First made by adis723 and the second by Moscow Watcher

    Another point that made them feel like a family was when Willow came home she felt like out of place a little. Xander/Buffy/Dawn were this little family unit and were living life with out her and she felt misplaced. Here's a screen cap showing the "Family Numbers" And has Buffy, Xander, and Dawn's number written down. Not Giles, not willow, not even her father's number, just B/X/D.



    Also in Chosen, Xander was the only member of the core four trusted with Dawn despite Willow being more powerful and Giles being a better fighter. Not to mention the hand squeeze and eye staring:

    made by Francy.

    made by Nadia.

    Now I can see why they're so close in S8. It all started in S7.
    Last edited by Sosa lola; 27-09-10, 08:55 PM.
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    Halfrek gives Spike the curse that will change his entire life. Teenage Dirtbag

  • #2
    Good thread! I agree with all your points, and I've always contended that Xander and Buffy are basically a married couple in Season 8. They live together, they work together, they trust each other over anyone else, they confide in each other, etc. It all definitely started in Season 7.

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    • #3
      Honestly, it's always been a part of their relationship, but having Giles leave, Willow leave, and the respective break-ups with Spike and Anya all come within weeks, the gang was reduced to its very nuclear core and it stayed that way really from "Villains" on.

      The family vibe they gave off early in Season 7 was probably precursor to what had until then been the long-put off plan for the two of them to get together, referred to in prior commentaries by both David Greenwalt and Jane Espenson. When Nancy thinks they are a couple, as much as Dawn points out Xander is drooling over Nancy, there is a "he doth protest too much" quality to how quickly he gets out of that. She's not the only one, either -- in "Same Time, Same Place", even crazy Spike makes certain implications when he refers to Buffy and Xander as "the Slayer and her boy". That's more like what he'd have called her and Riley, and it at least suggests he picked up on the same thing Nancy did in the same episode.

      With few exceptions, Xander's relationship with Dawn turns pretty paternal and stays that way from the end of Season 6 on (exceptions including him realizing how sexy she is in "Him" as well as like instances in Season 8)*. The talk in "Potential" had that sort of vibe, too. He is definitely the male role-model with whom she has the most time in any season, including Giles.

      I, like Xander, once objected to Buffy sending him away from Sunnydale in "End of Days", for the same reason. It felt too "The Zeppo" with the preposterous "you'll just be in danger" attitude. But I've come to realize just how big it is, and just how much she means it when she says how important he is to her. She is acknowledging, win or lose, that she might not come back, that Willow might not, that none of them who stay might not. And in that event, if there is a world left for Dawn to live in, it's Xander that she most trusts and most wants to be there for her in that world.

      *The paternal vibe with Xander and Dawn is a tricky thing, because while Season 7 in particular plays on that, Season 7 and Season 8 also both at least play a viability to a Xander/Dawn romance (although I tend to think that if it's anything, it'll be Buffy/Xander). So it's an odd dance they have to do not to push the subtext too far in either direction.
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      • #4
        The problem with Buffy and Xander as a married couple in Season 7 and 8 is that it's all implicit. Neither one seems to consciously realize how much the other means to them. Xander is so convinced that he's over Buffy that he wouldn't even attempt the "kiss of true love", and Buffy continues her usual course of taking any level of comittment and devotion from Xander as normal in a friendship. I think it's important to remember that, so far as we've ever been told, Xander was the first, and is the only, member of the opposite sex with which Buffy tried to have an actual friendship. Every other man in her life either was a family member, a casual acquaintence , a mentor, a friend's boyfriend, an enemy, or a romantic possibility. Buffy just doesn't realize that there's a point at which the love she's always felt for Xander can become (or has become) the type of love one feels for a lover or a husband.

        Xander will continue to tell himself that he's over Buffy, and that Buffy could never love him, no matter how close they become, so it's up to Buffy to realize that their relationship has changed. I think that's where Dawn/Xander comes into play in Season 8. Xander and Dawn will begin a tentative relationship, or maybe just sleep together, and only when they are "together" will Buffy understand how she really feels about Xander. It will serve to both bring lots and lots of pain, and as a catalyst to make Buffy realize that her relationship with Xander needs to be reclassified.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Sosa lola View Post
          She trusted no one to go away with Dawn but Xander, if they all died, she preferred that Xander would raise Dawn alone and no one else. In Chosen, she paired Dawn with Xander, knowing that Wood and Giles are much better fighters, but she still trusted no one with her but Xander.
          To be fair, I think she would also have trusted Dawn with Willow: but Willow was otherwise engaged with the whole Slayer Empowerment Spell business...

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          • #6
            Originally posted by stormwreath View Post
            To be fair, I think she would also have trusted Dawn with Willow: but Willow was otherwise engaged with the whole Slayer Empowerment Spell business...
            Which happened in 7.22. That's when Buffy came up with the idea. So, Buffy had noway of knowing Willow would play such a vital role when she chose Xander in 7.21, the episode before.

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            • #7
              Xander's dream in Restless has him realize that Buffy thinks of him as a "brother".

              You could also interpret Buffy's "family" connection to Xander as brotherly.

              As for Dawn and Xander... Well, we know that the monks created her memories of having had a crush on Xander for years. The other crush we see her having is Spike.

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

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Thomas View Post
                Which happened in 7.22. That's when Buffy came up with the idea. So, Buffy had noway of knowing Willow would play such a vital role when she chose Xander in 7.21, the episode before.
                Good catch, Thomas. Xander gets the real vote of confidence from Buffy on the subject of Dawn.

                Originally posted by NileQT87 View Post
                Xander's dream in Restless has him realize that Buffy thinks of him as a "brother".

                You could also interpret Buffy's "family" connection to Xander as brotherly.

                As for Dawn and Xander... Well, we know that the monks created her memories of having had a crush on Xander for years. The other crush we see her having is Spike.
                Xander's dream has him realize no such thing. The Buffy in Xander's dream isn't Buffy, it's Xander -- as is the Anya, the Giles, the Spike, the Willow, the Tara, the Snyder. So when Xander's Buffy eidolon calls him "big brother", it's Xander thinking Buffy thinks of him that way, and says absolutely nothing about what Buffy herself actually thinks. And Xander's immediate reaction is to dispute it.
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                • #9
                  In 7.21 Buffy couldn't send Willow or Spike or anyone powerful because she needed them there. Frankly, I think that she sent Xander 'cause he wasn't the only one that wasn't needed (also, she does trust him). But I also noticed how in season 8 there is a certain sparkle between them (a bit like in the first two seasons).
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                  • #10
                    They really give off that married vibe. And they seem to be on a very good place with each other, but I see them more as brothers but no doubt, Xander is a support for Buffy. Remember "End of Days" when Buffy said that she couldn?t have done it without Xander. He is the glue of the group.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Thomas View Post
                      Buffy had noway of knowing Willow would play such a vital role when she chose Xander in 7.21, the episode before.
                      Not specifically, maybe, but she knows that Willow is the single most powerful person on her team, and therefore necessary to have around when it comes to the final battle. Xander, like Angel, is more someone she wants to put fray-adjacent so she doesn't have to worry about him.

                      Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
                      So when Xander's Buffy eidolon calls him "big brother", it's Xander thinking Buffy thinks of him that way, and says absolutely nothing about what Buffy herself actually thinks. And Xander's immediate reaction is to dispute it.
                      He sounds more surprised than angry, though. And that whole scene is showing Xander's sense of isolation: Giles is the father taking his two children (Spike and Buffy) to the playground, and Xander is left standing at the other side of the park watching them in isolation, drifting apart from them.

                      We can tell what Buffy thinks about Xander from the hugely important role he plays in her own dream in 'Restless'.

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                      • #12
                        Agreed with Storm and cliomiao - Buffy chooses Xander to take Dawn away because a) she trusts him as one of her oldest friends and b) she cannot spare Willow due to her powers, but can spare Xander because while he is very helpful with organising, suporting etc, he is of much less use in a battle than others.

                        Personally I don't see Buffy and Xander as a couple. They are best friends, they have come to know each other very well and to rely upon each other, but in S7 it is very obvious that each has a different love interest, despite both of them technically being single: Xander rather wants Anya back (he could have started "courting" Buffy in the meantime, yet he clearly didn't), and Buffy is showing a certain interest in Spike. Like Buffyholic just said, they are more like brother and sister.

                        That they have formed a "core family" is logical, what with Giles and Willow gone. Those three are pretty much all that is left of the Scooby Gang at the beginning of S7. Xander is the one closest to Buffy, and since they are pretty much like siblings to each other, Xander feels a certain brotherly responsibility for Dawn (his behaviour was more fraternal than paternal to me, though an elder brother may start looking paternal in his behaviour when the age gap is as large as between those two - 6 years if I'm not much mistaken).
                        That Xander's number is under "family numbers", yet not Hank Summers's - well, duh. Hank is not around, he is hardly available at all to his daughters. Still in Spain, most likely. Whereas Xander is nearby and, as said above, has taken on the role of a brother to them.

                        I can't say anything about their dynamics in S8 of course, since I have not yet read the comics, but I assume they continue a lot like they were shown in S7, from what I've heard until now (and where the source wasn't an ardent shipper ) - as best friends or brother and sister.


                        Storm, this is slightly off-topic, but I thinkt he reason for putting Angel in a fray-adjacent position is a lot different: Unlike Xander, Angel can not only handle himself perfectly well in a battle, but is a leader in his own right. If I recall that correctly, Buffy explicitly tells him that there should be someone around to do battle against evil if they should fail, and Angel would be that one, the one to lead the "second attack".
                        Sin is what I feast upon
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                        Your tomb is waiting here for you
                        Welcome to my ritual

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                        • #13
                          I got the 'married couple' vibe in season 7 but in season 8, and after looking through the "Wolves at the Gate" issues recently, Buffy and Xander seem like a version of "Dracula his manservant" to me.
                          Buffy and Dracula are both 'legends' that are set apart from their own kind. And the way Xander's been with Buffy this season, he's seems like a caretaker to Buffy's domestic problems like Dawn or arranging a party for her slayers and has just been supportive all around.
                          I guess I'm just suspicious about their relationship this season.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Bloodsucker View Post
                            Storm, this is slightly off-topic, but I thinkt he reason for putting Angel in a fray-adjacent position is a lot different: Unlike Xander, Angel can not only handle himself perfectly well in a battle, but is a leader in his own right.
                            I don't dispute that. Buffy's motives for sending Angel away weren't identical to her motives for sending Xander away, but I do think that deep down (and perhaps not even recognised by her), they were similar in nature. Having Angel or Xander around in the final battle would have distracted her, given her something else to worry about when she should have been paying full attention to the First and its minions.


                            As far as Buffy/Xander goes, I did get the impression they were playing around with the idea in early S7, or at least hinting at it visually, but they pretty soon abandoned that concept. Uncoincidentally, it was just about the time that Spike showed up in Sunnydale again. In S8 I think they've gone back much more to a middle-seasons TV series vibe with Xander as the loyal, supportive friend.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by stormwreath View Post
                              In S8 I think they've gone back much more to a middle-seasons TV series vibe with Xander as the loyal, supportive friend.
                              Don't you think it's the same vibe in S7? I find S8 Xander the closest to S7 Xander, only not as lifeless, but S8 Xander is a natural development to S7 who finally accepts his limits and doesn't beat himself for being less than the others.
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                              • #16
                                The scene between Xander and Buffy could easily be explained away using all the reasons that have been employed. Yes, it could be because he'd just been greviously wounded and had just been released from the hospital; yes, it could be argued that he's more expendable than Willow or Giles; yes, it could be argued that Buffy trusts Willow just as much as Xander; etc, etc, etc. But that only serves to rob the scene of it's purpose and meaning. The sole reason that scene was made was to let us know how much Xander means to Buffy. She trusts him above all others, he is her strength.

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                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Sosa lola View Post
                                  Don't you think it's the same vibe in S7? I find S8 Xander the closest to S7 Xander, only not as lifeless, but S8 Xander is a natural development to S7 who finally accepts his limits and doesn't beat himself for being less than the others.

                                  Why should Xander "accept his limits"? That's quite a disempowering thing to suggest. It would be more empowering for him to acknowledge current limits, and then strive to surpass them.

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                                  • #18
                                    That's not where logic-Buffy was at mentally in season 7.

                                    Logic-Buffy sent Angel away to start up a second front to fight off the First Evil if she failed. Logic-Buffy sent off Xander to take care of Dawn because if there were any characters who were the most helpless in a fight, it was them. And she trusted Xander to take care of Dawn.

                                    "Above all others" is a stretch. You could say the same about her trusting Angel "above all others" to lead a battle in her absence. Willow was needed by logically-oriented battle-Buffy to cast her spell and could actually do something in a fight. Who else was left? Giles has more fighting skills and training than Xander and Dawn. Spike was needed in Angel's absence and because he was the strongest person other than Buffy. Xander and Dawn were the weak links. Buffy probably could care less about Anya and Andrew.

                                    The only options to take Dawn away were Xander, Anya and Andrew. Dawn would end up taking care of Andrew and Anya wouldn't be someone she'd trust with Dawn, though Anya's non-vengeance mode is probably more limited than Xander's. It's like when Spike made the crack about who else was going to wear the amulet besides him in Angel's absence--Andrew? Buffy didn't have a lot of mystical allies to choose from other than Spike and Willow. And she needed the fighters like Robin and Giles. That doesn't leave many options for taking Dawn. Xander was simply the logical choice. He was a low-level fighter that wasn't completely necessary and he could still protect and care for Dawn.
                                    Last edited by NileQT87; 03-03-09, 08:39 PM.

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

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                                    • #19
                                      Guys, the scene I was talking about was in Chosen, not End of Days. Why didn't Buffy pair Dawn with Giles or Wood? They're better fighters than Xander? Why not leave her with Willow in the room while she did the spell? Willow is powerful and could protect Dawn if an Uber Vamp walked in? But she still paired her with Xander.

                                      Originally posted by Skippcomet View Post
                                      Why should Xander "accept his limits"? That's quite a disempowering thing to suggest. It would be more empowering for him to acknowledge current limits, and then strive to surpass them.
                                      I think it's positive because Xander can work on what he's capable of, like being the leader/watcher whatever he is in S8.
                                      Spoiler:
                                      When Buffy went to rescue Willow, Xander suggested she'd take a better fighter than him. That's Xander being wise, rational and accepting that his fighting skills are no match for a slayer's. If it was S5 Xander, he would have jumped into that portal with Buffy and probably gotten killed instead of being helpful.
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                                      • #20
                                        Sosa is right, this wasn't about being "logical" if it were she'd have never paired Dawn up with Xander in 'Chosen.'

                                        She paired Xander/Dawn together because she trusted Xander above everyone else to do everything in his power to protect her. As she states in 'End of Days' "you're my strength Xander, you're the reason I made it this far, I trust you with my life."

                                        Buffy holds Xander as the guy responsible for getting her through the years and she's transferring that sense of deep trust and that feeling of security she has with him onto Dawn. Through her experience Xander's the one guy who "she can trust with her life" so it makes sense he's the guy she'd want protecting her little sister, regardless of the odds stacked up against them.
                                        Last edited by vampmogs; 08-03-09, 12:32 PM.

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