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8.13 "Wolves at the Gate" Part II Preview & Discussion

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  • 8.13 "Wolves at the Gate" Part II Preview & Discussion

    Already? Thanks, Dark Horse!

    Preview

    Oh, and here's a link where you can read "Antique", which takes place some time between "Chosen" and "The Long Way Home."

    First question: What the hell is Butterfield?
    Second question: Where can I get one?
    Last edited by Weredog; 07-03-08, 01:21 AM.
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  • #2
    Probably a reference to 'Renfield' from the original Dracula story.

    Let me just state again how much I hope that they don't BM Xander for this arc. Please GOD NO!

    Still, I think that Drac may be interesting as an ally for the rest of the season, or for longer term than this arc, I dunno why, but I do get that feeling.

    As far as a preview though, geez, one of the shortest ones on memory, and tells us NOTHING about the issue.

    Comment


    • #3
      though it looks like dracula has been being a bit of an old hobo (who hasn't dyed his hair in a good long while) as of late. he also looks like his real face is probably the old man persona (meaning a lot more of his look is a gypsy glamour than we may have thought).

      i personally hate "buffy vs. dracula", so i hope this isn't too much of the same. butterfield's renfield act is amusing though. let's just hope (like those above) that xander doesn't get buttmonkey'd again.
      Last edited by NileQT87; 07-03-08, 01:19 AM.

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

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      • #4
        Only thing more effing annoying than buttmonkey would be dracu-slash, which would, after 8.12, probably succeed it reducing the size of the Buffy fandom to around the size of the "Kindred: The Embraced" fandom.

        They can tell this story without making Xander the house jackass like they did in "Buffy vs. Dracula" -- with Renee along for the ride, it could even be a nice character/relationship driving arc. He's showing her himself at his most vulnerable.
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        • #5
          Yeesh, so much new Buffy season 8 news this week, I can hardly keep up!

          I don't know why people are so inclined to assume the worst about these things. Has Xander been "butt monkey" Xander at all this season? Nup, he's been treated with more dignity than ever before. So why would they suddenly reduce his character to a BM again? Why would they bring Renee along for the ride, if as King mentions, they're not trying to show Xander at his most vulnerable and actually address the issue head on? Why would they have Xander's very gruntled "master" or "oh no" if they weren't trying to set it up that Xander is going to have his very own BM concerns about meeting Drac?

          And why would they have all these issues surfacing if they didn't want Xander to have problems with being a butt monkey. Do we honestly believe by the end of this arc Xander will be BM Xander again, and not have grown past that? I'm going to look into this arc with far more optimism. So far I haven’t seen anything I haven’t liked, even the Buffy/Satsu thing which just continues to grow on me.

          When Xander was the butt monkey for most of the series you got the feelings the writers, a lot of the time, didn’t even realise how they were portraying him. This time, we’ve already got pretty much confirmation that Xander knows this could be what he’s reduced to again. Which means not only will the character deal with these issues, but that Drew and Joss are fully aware of these issues and intend to put the spotlight on them.
          Last edited by vampmogs; 07-03-08, 04:58 AM.

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          • #6
            I think a lot of it comes from 'Antique' which was Goddard's last Buffy comic that pissed the ever loving hell out of me for the portrayal of both Buffy and Xander. I realize it was supposed to be a silly one shot, but it has now been cannonized. I am hopeful, but still worried.

            Vampmogs, I think you have to understand that a lot of this comes from having to deal with this when the show originally aired. Every season post S3, there was talk of Xander actually getting a storyline of real worth, and most of that talk never happened. After 'The Zeppo' which BMed him to a pretty bad degree in order to show that he was pretty together, it looked like his BM days were behind him, S4 proved that they were just beginning. S5, said it was going to un BM him, but only partially succeeded. S6 sucked for everyone, and in S7 he was barely part of the scenery (though oddly enough, the only character to have actually grown that season.) Then in the one story that shows what had been happening to the Scoobies post-S7, you find out that he is Dracula's bitch, again, and Buffy had been ignoring him for a year.

            S8 has been a Xander fan's dream in that he is himself, but actually important to the story and not a nincompoop. Also, there is a formula to Xander episodes, and they tend to break him down to ridiculous levels in order to show that he's actually cool. (Zeppo, the Replacement, BB&B) This season has been kinder to him than most, but I am always a bit guarded, especially after the last couple of seasons of Buffy, and the last season of Angel.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by bishopcruz View Post
              S8 has been a Xander fan's dream in that he is himself, but actually important to the story and not a nincompoop.
              And all I'm saying is embrace that, hold onto that tight. Trust that Joss will do your right after the justice you've been given thus far this season. Xander has never been cooler, never got the attention he's getting now. Trust Joss, your trust may be broken, this episode could end up completely screwing Xander over, but until it happens, just think of the positives concerning his character and this season. No point in fretting over something that has yet to happen.

              Be excited for the possibilities of this arc for his character and for Xander's character beyond that, be happy he's getting the attention he deserves. Being part of a fandom shouldn't mean your constantly worried, it should be something you embrace and get excited about it. It hasn't happened yet, and may never happen, so just relax and think about the positives of what could happen.

              'Antique' wasn't great, but this isn't 'Antique' and season 8 has been far from showing Xander in this way. Remember that, that story took place before 'Antique' and that Xander's obviously become far more respected and valuable since then, and remember that Xander probably doesn't want to go back to that, hence the worry and thus, the many positive things this could mean for his character as he passes that.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by vampmogs View Post
                Trust Joss, your trust may be broken, this episode could end up completely screwing Xander over, but until it happens, just think of the positives concerning his character and this season. No point in fretting over something that has yet to happen.
                Well said, Vampmogs. This should be a general rule of thumb for any issues one would have regarding unanswered questions one might have throughout season 8. It seems that a lot of members are going monkey shit over the shift in gears: Why is Giles a jerk?! What's with Dawn being a giant?! Buffy's robbing banks?! Why is Buffy sleeping with Satsu?! Is Xander becoming a buttmonkey again?! They're all legitimate questions, but I find strange when people go crazy (would "passionate" be a better word?) about how Joss must be insane for taking the story into a new direction. Regarding quarrels with 8.12, remember that it's only part 1 of 4. There's more to come.

                I JOSS BELIEVE.
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                • #9
                  This is the first time I've read Antique. I can see why Xander-philes would have a problem with it. But there's a poignancy at the end where it turns out Dracula really has some kind of feelings for him. And he's been pining away for Xander ever since!

                  I wouldn't lose much sleep about Xander being turned into a BM here. He's already got Renee hot for him. And now Dracula is shaving for him! I don't usually ship guys with guys but gee that's sweet.

                  The real story is going to be getting the background of how Buffy and Xander went from where they apparently were in Antique to the partnership they seem to have now. I hope that's in this arc somehow.

                  And Antique raises another issue that is likely to be in play here -- namely that underlings end up wanting to dethrone the superior. So the mole is totally a slayer. And Renee is looking likely cause she's got multiple reasons for wanting Buffy out of the way.
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Weredog View Post
                    First question: What the hell is Butterfield? Second question: Where can I get one?
                    The second question is very valid indeed. I want! I want!

                    These panels add a whole new layer to the reveal at the end of last issue - this isn't a powerful Dracula we're seeing. He's gone to seed, drinking, not dressing, never mind in his fancy cloak etc, and apparently eating cabbage. Even Angel didn't stoop that low, at least he went for Rats.

                    So, with him and Xander, the balance of power will have shifted. It seems he's almost happy to see the Scooby helicopter. It gives him a purpose. This could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship. Or, you know, arch nemesesship.


                    -- Robofrakkinawesome BANNER BY FRANCY --

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Wolfie Gilmore View Post

                      So, with him and Xander, the balance of power will have shifted. It seems he's almost happy to see the Scooby helicopter. It gives him a purpose. This could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship. Or, you know, arch nemesesship.
                      I'm getting shippier about this by the minute. Dracula fell in love with his manservant!! I'm now totally down with Renee being the mole. Maybe Dracula can comfort Xander when he finds out about that.
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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Maggie View Post
                        I'm getting shippier about this by the minute. Dracula fell in love with his manservant!! I'm now totally down with Renee being the mole. Maybe Dracula can comfort Xander when he finds out about that.
                        Ah na I agree with King, that'd be overkill. And lets face it, as sexist as this sounds girls are a lot more 'open-minded' (god I hate that word) than males when it comes to sexually exploring things. Xander's heavily into the women folk and seemed outright uncomfortable when anything else was suggested... "Do you really intend to finish that sentence!"

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                        • #13
                          Just having read Antique, it would have worked for me a lot better if only they hadn't stuck in the 'year' as a timeline. And since they're retconning it into cannon...I think I'll just ignore that bit...

                          And that context does make the preview for the next issue even better...I do kind of like the idea of Dracula pining away after Xander. And even though I do love the odd (or not so odd) slash moment, I don't even necessarily feel like it has to be in a slashy way...it could just be in a master/manservant way...ok, writing that realized it HAS to be slashy, but yeah, I'm for it.

                          I do hope that they don't bring Xander back to that character tho...it would seem out of character for the Xander of season eight, and very backwards-motion in terms of character development. I don't think they will though.
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                          • #14
                            Going slashy with Xander and Dracula would be about the stupidest and most OOC piece of horsesh*t that I think Joss has ever come up with. Let's leave aside, as apparently we always must, that Xander is straight, has never been kinda sorta anything other than straight (it's not like there's a Buffy/Faith dynamic that people can point back to) -- how about "Dracula is a vampire", which we know is a problem for him. How about "Dracula kept him as a brainwashed slave. Sometimes I think people are more interested in canonized slash than in legitimate character development or decent behavior by the characters (see Buffy using Satsu).
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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
                              Going slashy with Xander and Dracula would be about the stupidest and most OOC piece of horsesh*t that I think Joss has ever come up with. Let's leave aside, as apparently we always must, that Xander is straight, has never been kinda sorta anything other than straight (it's not like there's a Buffy/Faith dynamic that people can point back to) -- how about "Dracula is a vampire", which we know is a problem for him. How about "Dracula kept him as a brainwashed slave. Sometimes I think people are more interested in canonized slash than in legitimate character development or decent behavior by the characters (see Buffy using Satsu).
                              Though, actually, canonical gay sex is the death of slash. It's not slash, as Spike once said about murder, if you say yes (ok, the murder thing's still murder, but slash dies as soon as you legitimise it!).

                              Nitpicking aside, I don't think they're going to go there. What I'm hoping for is a fun return to the Xander/Dracula dynamic with the new dimension of Xander being more sure of himself... and Dracula being a bit of a washed up old codger, it seems! I'm thinking the Keith Richards school of faded, addled rockstar...though one who can pull it together when needs be.


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                              • #16
                                I just read this last night. Did Goddard ever make any statements or interviews in re: to his reasons behind the story?

                                Funny thing, I think I'm more bothered that it took Buffy a year to get her friend than the whole Buffy/Satsu thing. And Willow? Giles?
                                I'm really hoping there's some explanation about that.

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                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
                                  Going slashy with Xander and Dracula would be about the stupidest and most OOC piece of horsesh*t that I think Joss has ever come up with. Let's leave aside, as apparently we always must, that Xander is straight, has never been kinda sorta anything other than straight (it's not like there's a Buffy/Faith dynamic that people can point back to) -- how about "Dracula is a vampire", which we know is a problem for him. How about "Dracula kept him as a brainwashed slave. Sometimes I think people are more interested in canonized slash than in legitimate character development or decent behavior by the characters (see Buffy using Satsu).
                                  I think a bit of slash from Dracula's point of view, ie, the pining that we see in the preview, is completely reasonable. The opposite of stockholm syndrome, perhaps?

                                  I just read this last night. Did Goddard ever make any statements or interviews in re: to his reasons behind the story?

                                  Funny thing, I think I'm more bothered that it took Buffy a year to get her friend than the whole Buffy/Satsu thing. And Willow? Giles?
                                  I'm really hoping there's some explanation about that.
                                  And that is SO the problem with canonizing stories that weren't meant to be canon when written! boo. I continue to ignore the year thing.
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                                  • #18
                                    I'm loving this preview. I'm very impressed that Dracula's "true form" is a hideous old man. I suspected this ever since I first read "Antique" about a year ago -notice how Dracula looks in the last panel we see him.

                                    Also in Bram Stoker's novel "Dracula" he was a hideous old man and over the course of the book, he gets younger and healthier looking the more blood he ingests.

                                    And am I the only one who thinks Butterfeild looks like the Count from Sesame Street?

                                    It was hinted at in "Antique" (and shown onscreen in Blade 3 ); I think that Dracula is quite upset that his legend has become somewhat of a joke. I think he regrets that after a hundred years his fame and legend have been reduced to Count Chocula cereal and cinematic crap like "Van Helsing". I think Dracula might be the Buffyverse equivilent of a star who got too much fame, too quick and is now all messed up as a result.

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                                    • #19
                                      actually, buttersworth looks like peter lorre from tex avery's "hollywood steps out" (1941):



                                      lol.

                                      "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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                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by vampmogs View Post
                                        Yeesh, so much new Buffy season 8 news this week, I can hardly keep up!

                                        I don't know why people are so inclined to assume the worst about these things. Has Xander been "butt monkey" Xander at all this season? Nup, he's been treated with more dignity than ever before. So why would they suddenly reduce his character to a BM again? Why would they bring Renee along for the ride, if as King mentions, they're not trying to show Xander at his most vulnerable and actually address the issue head on? Why would they have Xander's very gruntled "master" or "oh no" if they weren't trying to set it up that Xander is going to have his very own BM concerns about meeting Drac?

                                        And why would they have all these issues surfacing if they didn't want Xander to have problems with being a butt monkey. Do we honestly believe by the end of this arc Xander will be BM Xander again, and not have grown past that? I'm going to look into this arc with far more optimism. So far I haven't seen anything I haven't liked, even the Buffy/Satsu thing which just continues to grow on me.

                                        When Xander was the butt monkey for most of the series you got the feelings the writers, a lot of the time, didn't even realise how they were portraying him. This time, we've already got pretty much confirmation that Xander knows this could be what he's reduced to again. Which means not only will the character deal with these issues, but that Drew and Joss are fully aware of these issues and intend to put the spotlight on them.
                                        Actually, for most of the series, when Xander was being a buttmonkey, the feeling I got was that the writers knew full exactly how they were portraying him, and that they were enjoying it entirely too damn much. I've always felt that the buttmonkey-fication of Xander was rooted in, at best, a severe case of writer disinterest in the character and, at worst, a gleefully open contempt for the character. David Fury's comment from a season-four-era interview that "it's fun to humiliate Xander!" speaks of, IMO, a fundamental lack of respect for the character, not an appreciable level of love or even like for the guy. I don't recall once hearing or reading any writer for the show ever saying that Xander was a favorite character, or that they found his "arc" or "journey" compelling or emotionally resonant. After season two, they've always treated his characterization and growth as the least important of virtually all the characters, even the recurring ones, and always, ALWAYS, stick him in an undynamic role. He's been a "comfortador," "the heart of the Scoobies," "support-o guy," "Buffy's boy," or "Buffy's right-hand man," and for the most part, the writers have demonstrated either a failure to, or a lack of interest in, making that actually interesting or dynamic. I'm sick of him always being stuck in the background, reacting to other characters plots or helping to further them, and not having any actual plot or character growth of his own.

                                        Please understand, vampmogs, that diehard Xanderfans are fundamentally sick of, and disgusted with, the writers' obsession with "breaking" Xander down to the most hamfistedly humiliating level possible, because we don't find it entertaining, funny, or even anything to do with building his character. We're sick of it, we simply don't want to see it anymore, and we don't find it remotely necessary. We want him to be treated with the same level of authorial interest and respect as, if not Buffy, than certainly Willow -- but the continual resorting to "buttmonkey," with or without Dracula, has always spelled out that he's not, whether it's because the writers simply don't care or aren't interested, or because Xander doesn't have a "va-jay=jay," or because the writers are convinced that most of Buffy fandom hate the guy, who knows?

                                        One last thing -- before anybody says, "well, Xander's there for comic relief," once upon a time, ALL the characters were open to be used for comic relief, just as ALL the characters were open to being used for drama and character growth. Even then, though, a comment I once read over at TWOP says it best: there's a difference between laughing with somebody because they're funny or in a funny situation, and laughing at somebody because you enjoy their humiliation. And I hate being told that humiliating a character I like is "fun."

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