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Buffy's choice in The Gift in consideration of April's/Joyce's deaths

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  • Buffy's choice in The Gift in consideration of April's/Joyce's deaths

    STONEY: This thread was created out of posts made in the S5 rewatch thread, comments relating to the placement there before it was moved have been greyed.

    I have no clue how I post to an ep thread, as they all seem jumbled and this will end up . . . somewhere, but I am struck anew by the guilt Buffy must have felt that she sat with April while she 'died', while Joyce was dying alone. The guilt of that, which Buffy would carry forever, would be devastating. I think that could have been a major factor in her sacrifice in The Gift.

  • #2
    I never realized the connection between those two deaths. Thank you for posting this!

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Priceless View Post
      I have no clue how I post to an ep thread, as they all seem jumbled and this will end up . . . somewhere

      These rewatches were always a long ongoing chat through the season. You can jump to the different reviews from the links on the first post of the thread, but otherwise all the general comments are just in the thread and posting at the end is fine.

      We are talking about pulling out all the individual reviews for episode threads, but might attach that to having a new board rewatch.

      You could just start a new thread on the episode, or just as a random observation of course. I can pull these posts out into its own thread if you'd like.

      --

      I can't recall, are we given a timescale for when Joyce died? I would have guessed Buffy went around the following day. She is wearing different clothes and we had the scene of Spike taking the bot supplied around to Warren, which was I'd assume once it was dark.

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      • Priceless
        Priceless commented
        Editing a comment
        Didn't even notice it had its own thread

      • Stoney
        Stoney commented
        Editing a comment
        I only just did it, less than five minutes ago.

      • Priceless
        Priceless commented
        Editing a comment
        Lol, that would explain it

    • #4
      I'm reading Buffy Goes Bad and they made the point so strongly, it broke my heart. Buffy is so compassionate towards April, no knowing what was happening to Joyce

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      • #5
        Originally posted by Stoney View Post
        I can't recall, are we given a timescale for when Joyce died? I would have guessed Buffy went around the following day. She is wearing different clothes and we had the scene of Spike taking the bot supplied around to Warren, which was I'd assume once it was dark.
        You are probably right that it doesn't happen at the same time, though the juxtaposition of compassion towards a robot and not wanting her to 'die' alone, and the guilt at not being there for Joyce, must have destroyed Buffy

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        • #6
          Yes, you're right, even if they weren't concurrent events, having been there for April and then finding her mum who'd died alone could have been really hard to reconcile.

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          • #7
            I think it's is the same day (and maybe even the same hour). Buffy wears a long black leather coat and a scarf while she is sitting on the swings with April. But underneath that coat, she wears the red v-neck jumper and the dark blue jeans we later also see in The Body. We see her sitting at a table in the Magic Box wearing that jumper and we see the same jumper again when she comes home at the end of IWMTLY.

            flow

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            • #8
              Originally posted by Priceless View Post
              I'm reading Buffy Goes Bad and they made the point so strongly, it broke my heart. Buffy is so compassionate towards April, no knowing what was happening to Joyce
              I think I will have to get that book too...

              Comment


              • Priceless
                Priceless commented
                Editing a comment
                I'm enjoying it, but so far there's not a lot about seasons 6 & 7

            • #9
              Originally posted by flow View Post
              I think it's is the same day (and maybe even the same hour). Buffy wears a long black leather coat and a scarf while she is sitting on the swings with April. But underneath that coat, she wears the red v-neck jumper and the dark blue jeans we later also see in The Body. We see her sitting at a table in the Magic Box wearing that jumper and we see the same jumper again when she comes home at the end of IWMTLY.
              I had been thinking from a glance at screencaps that she was wearing a black polo and darker jeans when on the swings. But you're right that it's a scarf and the jeans aren't that dark. It must have just been a lighting thing on the ones I looked at before. I've just had a flick through the episode and she's definitely wearing the red top earlier in the magic box and then when she calls Ben (around 25mins in). You can see the red under the coat when she's talking to Warren after and that the jeans are the mid blue (about 30mins). But the lighting at Warren's is very different at this point than it'll be later when Spike comes around.

              The shadows are quite long as she's sat on the swing and as we then see her talking to Xander as he fixes the window, red jumper still on, it doesn't look daylight outside any more. As she goes to call Ben as Xander continues to fix the window it looks early evening outside (41 mins ish). It looks dark as Warren is trying to pack up to leave whilst calling Katrina after that and its definitely dark outside behind Spike as he's stood there with his box of bot supplies (42mins).

              As Buffy then arrives at Revello it is bright. She is wearing the red top still but she doesn't have the necklace on that she was wearing in all of the scenes above. I don't think she has the same cherry lipstick on and she's offering to pick Dawn up from school, so it's early afternoon (presumably). So it must be the next day. It's unusual though (I think), for Buffy to be wearing the same outfit/same hairdo two days in a row. But I think it is the day after as those previous two scenes really look set at night.

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              • #10
                Buffy is definitely wearing the same clothes. I think she sits with April, then goes to speak to Xander while he's working, and it's dark. She probably goes out on patrol, and goes home the following morning. We can't confirm it, but I think Joyce could very well have died while Buffy was sat with April the previous day.

                Of course we don't know where Dawn is during this time. She could have been at Janice's house, or Joyce could have seen her off to school that morning, felt ill, lay on the couch and died then.

                I think either way, it's still a hell of a lot for a young woman to handle and that guilt, I think would always be with Buffy. She sat with a dying robot, while her mum died alone. Just one of the many things I think made her jump from the tower in The Gift.

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                • #11
                  I don't see that she'd even pause to think about the two given all that happened.

                  Buffy jumped to save Dawn.

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                  • #12
                    Originally posted by HardlyThere View Post
                    I don't see that she'd even pause to think about the two given all that happened.

                    Buffy jumped to save Dawn.
                    She did, but I think everything that went before made her decided that was the best thing to do. If Joyce had still been alive I'm not sure she would have jumped.

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                    • #13
                      Yeah, I'm sure she'd have just lobbed Dawn off the tower if Joyce were alive.

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                      • #14
                        Originally posted by HardlyThere View Post
                        Yeah, I'm sure she'd have just lobbed Dawn off the tower if Joyce were alive.
                        I'm not saying that at all. I'm saying that there is more to Buffy's decision making than just saving Dawn, or even saving the world.

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                        • #15
                          Whether Joyce was alive or not, there were three options. Save the world by killing Dawn, save the world by taking the bullet for her or not save the world. I really don't get the necessity to insert unsupported factors into it. Buffy isn't trying to kill herself when she throws herself over Xander, taking a bullet or when she jumps in front of Dawn, taking a crowbar in the arm or when she drank poison to save some kids or throws herself in front of a car to save an old man or gets Angel to drink from her.

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                          • #16
                            I think Priceless is right that multiple factors can have played a part in influencing how Buffy was feeling. Even if she wasn't consciously linking all of those things. I'm not sure that she will have considered having sat with April even though she couldn't be there for her mum with the time delay between them, but it is possible. It was only a day after all and you can argue that the repeated clothing/hair the day after deliberately draws a connection between the incidents and that it was possibly very deliberate to do so.

                            But even if Buffy doesn't process having been there for April, so to speak, but not her mum, she was left feeling affected by the experience with April. She talks to Xander about April having fixated on one being and having no purpose without them. Wanting to take time to be comfortable on her own. But she isn't in the position of not feeling an intense responsibility for a specific person because she takes on being the primary carer for Dawn soon after.

                            I don't think that Buffy felt so lost without Joyce that she was more willing to die but I do think that losing Joyce did make her then focus on Dawn more intensely and really increased that sense of responsibility for her. Especially after Joyce had asked her to take care of Dawn before her surgery. I do think Buffy would still have jumped to save Dawn and the world if Joyce had still been alive, but who knows how differently things would have gone leading up to that if Joyce had still been around. But I can see her feeling of doing the best for Dawn and honouring Joyce being intensified by all that led up to it.

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                            • #17
                              Originally posted by HardlyThere View Post
                              Whether Joyce was alive or not, there were three options. Save the world by killing Dawn, save the world by taking the bullet for her or not save the world. I really don't get the necessity to insert unsupported factors into it. Buffy isn't trying to kill herself when she throws herself over Xander, taking a bullet or when she jumps in front of Dawn, taking a crowbar in the arm or when she drank poison to save some kids or throws herself in front of a car to save an old man or gets Angel to drink from her.
                              We were presented with three options I agree, but there are other ways around the issue that the writers could have chosen. They could have had Ben killed much earlier, they could have had Doc killed before cutting Dawn, they could have had Giles and Willow come up with some witchy plan concerning the the coven in Devon . . .

                              I agree Buffy jumped to save the world/Dawn, but I also think there were other reasons why that decision was easy to make, and that is because she'd lost her mother and she wanted this fight to be over, that she didn't want to go on without her mum in the world. Maybe this is my own head canon, but it works for me and it makes the situation more understandable for me.

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                              • #18
                                There's no need for more to be understood. Her sister or her.

                                In S1, Buffy is all set to run instead of face the Master. Then she sees Willow traumatized by witnessing a bunch of dead bodies and then marches to what she believed was a suicide mission. It was the right thing to do and her purpose, so she thought. She has the same revelation on top of the tower. Why else would they have the same blood and death through love be her gift? The writers were never subtle.

                                You might as well headcanon that the real reason Spike didn't try to escape the Hellmouth is he read spoilers that Joey and Pacey end up together and just didn't want to live in that world.

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                                • Priceless
                                  Priceless commented
                                  Editing a comment
                                  I think there is more subtlety in this show than you do obviously.

                              • #19
                                Originally posted by HardlyThere View Post
                                You might as well headcanon that the real reason Spike didn't try to escape the Hellmouth is he read spoilers that Joey and Pacey end up together and just didn't want to live in that world.
                                I think that's needlessly sarcastic. Priceless ' point that there were other factors that might have made the choice easier, that the loss of her mother may have layered into the moment for Buffy is hardly as random, unrelated and emotionally superficial as a Dawson's Creek spoiler solidifying Spike's choice would be. We hardly had no idea how Buffy felt about losing her mum.

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