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Spiral: Episode Discussion

Nov 12 2008 03:21 am   #1sosa lola

- This is the first time we see the gang having a meeting at Xander's place.

- Aww, poor Anya, her idea gets mocked by Giles. I can't blame him, though. Anya is as frustrating as teenage Xander with the ill timed joking… though I'm sure that she wasn't joking when she suggested the piano.

- Weird how Giles and Xander were hostile against Spike's presence in the RV when they were practically sympathetic toward him in Intervention and didn't seem to mind him baby-sitting Dawn when they were in the hospital in Tough Love.

- Xander feeling queasy is a nice touch. Also, I've noticed that part of his character is his inability to look at a dead body without feeling sick, (Teacher's Pet, Two to Go and Same Time Same Place are the ones that come to mind at the mo) it's been a characteristic of his since S1 and it's still part of him in S7, so it's probably out of character to have him killing someone/or bloodily torturing someone without having him heave or throw up.

- Was Xander insulted when Spike expressed his wish about running away with Buffy and Dawn and ditching the others? Or was he just annoyed with Spike's attitude?

- Giles eventually sees reason to why the need Spike. Xander is still annoyed with that decision.

- Everybody seemed to be over their aggressive attitude toward Spike –sans Xander and Giles- I loved when Willow apologized to him about Tara opening the blinds and inviting the sun in. Also loved Spike's sweet comforting of Tara.

- It's a nice thing of Dawn to let Buffy know that she's thankful for everything she'd done for her. Buffy really needs it.

- BUFFY: (voice breaking) It just keeps coming. Glory ... Riley ... Tara ... Mom.

Poor Buffy. She started the season as a happy, peppy girl with no worries at all but her slayer related issues and college. She had a boyfriend, a mom, happy friends, no responsibilities… she was actually living a normal life, but it all started to crumble once her mother became ill. 
 
- WILLOW: Don't hit the horsies!
BUFFY: Oh, we won't!

Buffy moves up next to Giles.

BUFFY: Aim for the horsies.

Hee! Always loved this. And it's interesting seeing how Willow will sacrifice an innocent animal for the sake of her goal next year.

- Awww, Spike saving Buffy's life when he held the sword before it hit her head.

- Buffy killing humans as a self-defense. I know some fans who hold it against her, but seriously, what do you want her to do? I hold Buffy no blame for killing those knights, just as I hold Giles no blame for killing Ben, simply because there's no other way. And I don't hold it against them that they felt no remorse.

- I love Giles' sweet smile when he sees that everyone is alright before he gets stabbed. Poor Giles.

- So sweet seeing Dawn informing Buffy that Spike is hurt, Buffy's aggressive gesture to check on Spike's wound is annoying but I'll let pass, because the girl is just too stressed.

- I must applauded Spike, Xander, Willow and Anya for their loyalty to Buffy. I'm sure if Tara was sane, she'd have followed them as well. Honestly, I'm not so sure I'd be loyal enough to get into such a dangerous situation just to rescue my friend's sister from a god and hundreds of knights who have no problem with killing me. Also being trapped in an abandoned gas station anticipating any sort of attack is just too much for my sanity. Buffy is one lucky slayer to have such devoted companions.

- What would Buffy do without Willow by her side? A witch is such a blessing to a slayer. 

- Giles saying that he loves that Buffy puts her heart above it all including reason won't be the case in S7. He'll be less proud of her because she's placing her heart above reason. As a matter of fact, their argument in The Gift is exactly about that. Still, I love his speech about her being everything he wished for.

- Buffy going out with Xander reminds me of S7, when they usually patrolled together in the early episodes. She did a good thing bringing him over, because he was the one that was able to convince the knights to bring them a doctor.

- Hee, now it's Spike's turn to joke in an inappropriate time when he suggests that Willow fixes the door to his crypt. Love Willow rolling her eyes at him.

- Poor Spike being jealous of Ben, not to worry, sweet, nothing will ever happen between them.

- Why did Xander put Spike's lighter in his pocket after he lit his cigarette? And how did Spike get it back?

- Everything about the Xander/Spike scene is so sweet from Xander lighting the cigarette, to Spike thanking him, to Xander advising Spike about the awfulness of smoking, to "I mention today how much I don't like you?" "You mighta let it slip in ... once or twice," to their exchange of smiles, to Xander asking about Spike's wound. Love my boys!

- Buffy not wanting to lose any of them, including Spike, is just touching.

- Poor Dawn. She's such a sweet girl, it sucks to know that she's an evil tool that opens gates to hell.

- I think Ben is a good guy trying to do the right thing, now I don't remember exactly what'll get him to change his mind about helping Dawn –I know I'll be sympathizing with him though- but up until this point, he's a very decent guy.

- Tears gathered in my eyes at Buffy's moment of defeat, her giving up. After everything she went through, she keeps losing her family one after another.

Nov 12 2008 03:34 am   #2slaymesoftly
*nods* I really loved that scene between Spike and Xander. It showed them both in such a good light, and you could see the bonding that was taking place.    I think this epi is where Spike really begins to become an accepted member of the gang, where the ground is laid for his help over the summer.
I am not a minion of Evil...
I am upper management.
Nov 12 2008 04:09 am   #3Scarlet Ibis
Weird how Giles and Xander were hostile against Spike's presence in the RV when they were practically sympathetic toward him in Intervention and didn't seem to mind him baby-sitting Dawn when they were in the hospital in Tough Love.Everybody seemed to be over their aggressive attitude toward Spike –sans Xander and Giles

What Spike did for Buffy and Dawn wasn't lost on them.  However, they didn't have to see him/spend any time with him either post the Glory kidnapping event.  But, Buffy accepted him, which meant that they had to by default.  Not only was she the wronged party (initially), but she's "the boss" as well, and put her foot down.  Yep--this line leads to one of the best self satisfied smirks ever...

BUFFY: (jumps up angrily) Look, this isn't a discussion! He stays. Get over it.

ETA:  I thought it was a smart plan to run.  Unfortunately, they took too bloody long to do it.
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 12 2008 01:13 pm   #4Guest
Running together in a giant slow vehicle was the stupid part. It would have been smartest for Buffy and Dawn to run to the nearest airport - once they're on a plane, Glory won't have a clue where to look - and the Scoobies to scatter elsewhere. They have the advantage in that they know the world better than Glory does. All they had to do was outlast Glory's timetable for the ritual, then deal with her when she's weak. It's noble for Buffy to want everyone with her, but tactically stupid.

CM
Nov 12 2008 11:36 pm   #5Eowyn315
This is the first time we see the gang having a meeting at Xander's place.
It makes sense, since Glory has already been to Buffy's house and the Magic Box, so Buffy would want to meet somewhere Glory doesn't know about, since she's probably looking for Dawn. It kinda reminds me of the sleepover in Xander's basement in season 4 when they were hiding from the Initiative.

Buffy killing humans as a self-defense. I know some fans who hold it against her, but seriously, what do you want her to do?
Yeah... there's a reason why they call  it "self-defense." The knights were trying to kill Dawn, and I don't doubt that they would've killed anyone who got in their way, so I don't blame Buffy one bit.

now I don't remember exactly what'll get him to change his mind about helping Dawn –I know I'll be sympathizing with him though
He realizes (or it's pointed out to him) that if Glory goes through with her plan to go home, he will cease to exist. So he decides he should kill Dawn to be sure that Glory can't use her and will be stuck in this dimension - being half a person is better than being no person at all. But he's all wishy-washy about killing her, so Glory makes a deal with him that when she's restored, she'll make him immortal (which I'm not even sure she can do), and that convinces him to go along with her and bring Dawn back.

It's noble for Buffy to want everyone with her, but tactically stupid.
I think Buffy was afraid for her friends. She knew that Glory would kill or brainsuck anyone she caught that didn't cooperate, and she didn't want to take the risk that they split up and Buffy and Dawn get away, but Glory catches one of the others. She'd never get over that guilt. She can't help wanting to protect everyone, and she could only do that if they were all together.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 13 2008 02:00 am   #6EveryLastDrop
I understand Buffy killing the human Knights of Byzantium, but I wish the writers had included some scene or discussion about how it was necessary and the fact that Buffy made the choice to kill to protect Dawn. Especially as, later,  she refuses to kill Ben, who is a much larger threat as he houses a God inside himself. Also, I think having a scene talking about that would underline Buffy's struggle and her absolute love and loyalty for Dawn, which comes up later with Giles. It would be a great way to show Buffy is picking her sister over her duties as a Slayer, and how she had to struggle with the idea at first, and how love is her reason. it always bothered me inn season seven when Giles asks if Buffy would sacrifice Dawn to save the world now, and she says yes like it's an obvious thing. But then, a lot of things bother me in season seven and we can talk about that later.

Plus, I think CM is right. Glory seems to be insanely strong in a confrontation, but she spends so much time just hanging out trying on shoes in her penthouse apartment! Through most of the season, Buffy isn't training or asking the witches for spells or tring to find a weapon or anything to help her face Glory, she just worries about Dawn and patrols regularly. She ignores how Glory is reaching into people's minds and making them crazy the whole time, effectively ruining their lives if not killing them. Shouldn't Buffy have been more concerned with finding a wa to stop her than with letting the fashionable threat hang in the background for so long? Then, when Glory knows who the Key is, they finally run and they should have split up or tried to meet up later at a certain place. Glory wasn't even chasing them, they called Ben! They could have tried to get away, and how would Glory know they'd even left or how to track them? Keeping her friends around Dawn was putting them in much more danger than sending them off alone, too.

I do remember what I said. The promise. To protect her.  If I had done that... even if I didn't make it... you wouldn't have had to jump. But I want you to know that I did save you. Not when it counted, of course, but after that. Every night after that. I'd see it all again. Do something different. Faster or more clever, you know? Dozens of times, lots of different ways...
   Every night I save you.

Nov 13 2008 02:49 am   #7Scarlet Ibis
I understand Buffy killing the human Knights of Byzantium, but I wish the writers had included some scene or discussion about how it was necessary and the fact that Buffy made the choice to kill to protect Dawn. Especially as, later, she refuses to kill Ben, who is a much larger threat as he houses a God inside himself.

Well, though I agree, in a sense it was different.  By the time Ben came back around, he was beaten and laid out on the ground--it wasn't a battle.  He wasn't directly trying to kill her.  And though Buffy knew in her logical mind that that meant Glory's survival, well...I guess she figured if she beat her ass once, if and when she became a problem again, she'd deal.  Now if Ben had been up, slinging a sword at her or something, I'm sure it would have ended differently. 

As for the Knights, well, I don't think that has to be explained.  They were trying to kill not just Dawn, but all of her friends.  Also, I don't think she killed as many of them as you think--punching someone and throwing them off a moving vehicle won't necessarily kill them.  I know she killed some, but it wasn't like a massacre of the Knights or something.  As for the ones she did kill, I don't think it was necessary to have shown a discussion about it, since it was pretty obvious why it was done.  I don't see her (or anyone sensible), stopping to cry over that.  Buffy and her people were essentially being hunted down to be killed.  There was no other choice.
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 13 2008 03:50 am   #8Spikez_tart

CM - the plane thing makes sense.  In fact, practically anything that Buffy can do to stall Glory until the window passes, makes sense.  Although, the fact that Ben says earlier that he is cleaning up Glory's mess, as he always does, indicates that there may be more than one opportunity to open the dimensions etc.

Ben is an interesting and flawed character.  You see pretty early on that while he's cute and he's a nice guy, he's not at all afraid to do what's necessary to keep Glory from getting her way.  He summons the Quellar demon who, as he must know, will kill all the crazy people.  This, gruesome as it is, would successfully prevent Glory from doing the ritual because she would have no crazy people to build her tower.

Why couldn't Willow do a spell to lock Ben in control?  Oops that would blow the story.  Its interesting that Willow, who is always saying I can do it I can do it, suddenly gets some humility.





 

If we want her to be exactly she'll never be exactly I know the only really real Buffy is really Buffy and she's gone' who?
Nov 13 2008 08:15 pm   #9Eowyn315
I understand Buffy killing the human Knights of Byzantium, but I wish the writers had included some scene or discussion about how it was necessary and the fact that Buffy made the choice to kill to protect Dawn.
I really don't think a discussion was necessary. Why should the writers have to spell out something that's fairly obvious and that we can figure out ourselves? I don't know about you, but it bothers the heck out of me when writers feel like they need to talk down to the audience and drop enormous anvils because they think the viewers can't pick up on subtleties. I'd much rather be allowed to figure out the morality myself, rather than be hit over the head with "killing people is wrong, and should only be done if it's the only option."

it always bothered me inn season seven when Giles asks if Buffy would sacrifice Dawn to save the world now, and she says yes like it's an obvious thing.
Why does that bother you? She's already sacrificed someone she loved once (Angel), when she was much younger and much less hardened and practical. She was ready to kill Anya when she was slaughtering people as a vengeance demon, and I think she would've killed Willow if she had to, if that could've stopped her. In the end, she's even willing to sacrifice Spike. So really, Dawn in season five is the exception.

Buffy knows now that one person's life doesn't outweigh the greater good, and if someone she loves has to die to save the world, well, that IS an obvious choice for her. It's her duty to save the world, and she hates that these are the sacrifices she has to make, but she's accepted them. She didn't think she could, back in "The Gift" - and ultimately, she didn't choose, she avoided making the choice by killing herself instead - but by season seven, she's older and wiser and been through a hell of a lot, and she knows differently.

Why couldn't Willow do a spell to lock Ben in control?
I don't think she's capable of that. It has to be pretty serious magic, beyond even Willow's ability, to create the Ben/Glory being. If it was that easy to do a spell so that one person was always in control of the body, wouldn't Glory have tried to find the spell and have it done so she was in control all the time? Then she wouldn't have to worry about Ben messing up her plans. Or why wouldn't Ben try to find a spell, so that he could stop Glory from coming out and he could live a normal life?
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 14 2008 04:24 am   #10Spikez_tart
Buffy knows now that one person's life doesn't outweigh the greater good, and if someone she loves has to die to save the world, well, that IS an obvious choice for her. - If we except this theory, then why doesn't Buffy kill Ben?  And, why does Giles say that Buffy could never do such a thing?  Writers on drugs?

wouldn't Glory have tried to find the spell and have it done so she was in control all the time?  - Which makes sense, although I think Willow is sufficiently arrogant at this point to try it and a spell like that would seem to be comparable to putting a soul back in a vampire. Of course, no one but Spike realizes the switch back and forth is happening and he doesn't know it until very late.

It's also weird how very little kinds of power Glory displays for a god.  She's fast and strong and she can suck brains.  Isn't that about it?  You'd think a god would have a little more going for her, even if she is trapped in a meat sack.
If we want her to be exactly she'll never be exactly I know the only really real Buffy is really Buffy and she's gone' who?
Nov 14 2008 04:35 am   #11Scarlet Ibis
If we except this theory, then why doesn't Buffy kill Ben? And, why does Giles say that Buffy could never do such a thing? Writers on drugs?
I'm pretty sure that was in reference to season 7 Buffy, and not the Buffy from s5.  She went through a lot of changes...

It's also weird how very little kinds of power Glory displays for a god. She's fast and strong and she can suck brains. Isn't that about it? You'd think a god would have a little more going for her, even if she is trapped in a meat sack.
I agree--for a god she was rather lame.  All she did was suck brains and mope about her stolen key that opens the door to her home--a home in which she was kicked out of.  Which also didn't make sense--if she was kicked out by two hell gods, why didn't they just kill her, or what was her plan upon reentering?  Either way, the whole thing would have been avoided if Buffy just told her she didn't have the key.  Glory would have been dumb enough to believe it.  As for her saving the Monk potentially looking suspicious, all she had to say was that saving people was her job, no matter who they were, and no, she didn't hear anything about a Key.

That aside, the whole plane thing would also have been a very good plan, and of course, not waiting down to the wire would have also been helpful.
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 14 2008 06:02 am   #12sosa lola
If we except this theory, then why doesn't Buffy kill Ben? And, why does Giles say that Buffy could never do such a thing? Writers on drugs?

She was talking about Buffy in S7, not Buffy in S5. S7 Buffy is clearly different from S5 Buffy.

although I think Willow is sufficiently arrogant at this point to try it and a spell like that would seem to be comparable to putting a soul back in a vampire.

The problem was that they didn't know that Ben and Glory are the same. I'm sure if it came up, Willow would research a way to make it possible. She never stopped and said, "I can't do it." She always tries to do the impossible when it comes to magic, especially when it's the way to help her friends.
Nov 14 2008 07:54 pm   #13Eowyn315
If we except this theory, then why doesn't Buffy kill Ben? And, why does Giles say that Buffy could never do such a thing?
As others have explained, that was in reference to s7 Buffy, but I also think there's a difference between killing Ben and all the other sacrifices I talked about in my earlier post. She'd already won the fight. There was no way Ben (or Glory) was going to get up and stop her from rescuing Dawn. She didn't need to kill him to stop the world from ending, so she didn't. But she wasn't thinking ahead to what would happen when Glory recovered enough to fight again, and what she would do to them when she found out Buffy had ruined her chances to go home. Giles was thinking ahead, and he was willing to kill Ben to prevent it.

That's one of Buffy's defining characteristics, and a big difference between her and Giles. Giles is willing to take action, to do bad things in order to prevent worse things from happening in the future (like agreeing to have Spike killed before he can betray them). Buffy isn't. She'll resist up until the absolute last moment, and it's only when her back is up against the wall that she'll make the hard choices. But in the end, she always does what's right. She protested, cried, and flat out refused to sacrifice herself in "Prophecy Girl," but when it came down to the wire, she went to meet the Master. She had numerous chances to kill Angelus and couldn't bring herself to do it, but when it really mattered, when the fate of the world rested on it, she did. She let Anya go on being a vengeance demon as long as she could ignore it - even when Ronnie the worm demon was right there in her face as proof of the trouble Anya was causing, it took the slaughtering of a dozen people for Buffy to finally resign herself to killing her.

I really do wonder what Buffy would have done if she'd had to choose in "The Gift" - if she hadn't been able to jump in Dawn's place, would she really have stood there and watched the world be ripped apart? Even with all her refusals to accept it, even with her promises to protect Dawn and threats against anyone who tried to stop her, could she really let the entire world be destroyed (and her and Dawn along with it) just to prove she loved her sister? Dawn already knew that, and she was willing to sacrifice herself. It was just up to Buffy to let go.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 14 2008 09:33 pm   #14EveryLastDrop
All the characters change through the seasons, which is very true of life, but so often their old beliefs are set as truth and after gaining experience and perspective and looking at things differently, they don't look back at old assumptions and question them. i know killing humans is wrong, and I don't think the writers needed to remind the audience, but the blind belief that the Slayer cannot kill humans goes back to the very early, straightforward, good-vs-evil season one and I would have liked, at any time, like the Initiative or season five or with the nerds or whenever, for Buffy and Giles or someone to have even a few lines talking about growing up and having to make such hard and even dehumanizing decisions.

Also, I am in love with the idea of fanfiction taking us places we want that the TV series didn't explore, but we are using the same characters with the same prejudices or issues they need to work past or grow out of. Deciding what the 'right thing to do' for  facing Glory or finding out your sister is a key, or any decision, is different from deciding what that particular, flawed character would think is 'right' and be willing to do with what information and beliefs they have at the time.

Eowyn, thanks for the closer look at Giles and Buffy's ways of making decisions and considering things. I didn't notice before how often Buffy does leave things to the end, where she is forced to act, and when her choices are limited. I wonder if that is a way of trying to get away from her responsibility to make so many tough calls by waiting until the events almost force her into one choice, and ease her conscience by not wondering what could have happened.

I do remember what I said. The promise. To protect her.  If I had done that... even if I didn't make it... you wouldn't have had to jump. But I want you to know that I did save you. Not when it counted, of course, but after that. Every night after that. I'd see it all again. Do something different. Faster or more clever, you know? Dozens of times, lots of different ways...
   Every night I save you.

Nov 14 2008 11:12 pm   #15Spikez_tart
why didn't they just kill her, or what was her plan upon reentering? - Maybe you can't kill a god?  And, wouldn't those two other hellgods be waiting to kick her ass when the dimensions started to collapse?   

Eowyn - I did understand that you were talking about S7 Buffy, but is she really so different than S5? (very different that S1 and 2, I admit)  She didn't have any problem killing those Byzantine guys (ten of them?) when they were chasing the bus, not to mention the horsies.  Also, she makes an extremely credible threat to kill anyone who tries to muck around with Dawn.  No one seems to be in doubt there. (Maybe protecting Dawn from Giles and the others is really what Buffy is asking Spike to do when she asks him to protect her.)   I think your point that Ben wasn't going to get up anytime soon is more accurate.  She figures the fight is done.  This is similar to what she does with Anya - runs a sword through her gut, but fails to whack off her head and finish the job.  Your points about Giles and Buffy are excellent.

I really do wonder what Buffy would have done if she'd had to choose in "The Gift" - if she hadn't been able to jump in Dawn's place - That would have been a terrific cliffhanger.  I think she might have stalled, hoping for a miracle until Giles came along and pushed her off.  Then, Buffy could have pushed him off, too.  It would still probably end up in suicide.

If we want her to be exactly she'll never be exactly I know the only really real Buffy is really Buffy and she's gone' who?
Nov 15 2008 12:09 am   #16Eowyn315
the blind belief that the Slayer cannot kill humans goes back to the very early, straightforward, good-vs-evil season one
I think your description of season 1 shows exactly how and why Buffy's blind belief no longer holds up - "straightforward, good-vs-evil." By season 5, the show isn't like that anymore. To be honest, I don't think the show has been like that since season 3. Buffy's pristine "no killing humans" rule has had smudges on it since she tried to kill Faith, and it only got grayer with the introduction of the Initiative as bad guys (thus casting vampires and demons as victims), and the subsequent human villains, not to mention the complication of Spike - a supposedly evil vampire - becoming more and more on the side of good. The whole series is a gradual breaking down of everything she believed to be true back in season 1, until she's not even sure which rules still apply.

for Buffy and Giles or someone to have even a few lines talking about growing up and having to make such hard and even dehumanizing decisions.
I think they do sort of have that conversation in "The Gift" when Buffy says, "I loved [Angel] so much. But I knew... what was right. I don't have that anymore. I don't understand. I don't know how to live in this world if these are the choices."

I wonder if that is a way of trying to get away from her responsibility to make so many tough calls by waiting until the events almost force her into one choice, and ease her conscience by not wondering what could have happened.
I think that's probably true. Buffy would rather wait and keep looking for any possible alternative so she doesn't have to make the choice. It works for her in "The Gift," when her reluctance to kill Dawn gives her the chance to realize she has a third option. Also in Anya's situation, Buffy ends up being rewarded for her hesitation by not having to kill her after all when the situation is resolved by D'Hoffryn. But in other cases, like with Angel, hesitation only makes it harder - if Buffy had killed Angelus sooner, it might have saved Jenny Calendar, and she wouldn't have had to face the heartbreak of sending a resouled Angel (rather than Angelus) to hell. (But on the plus side, if she'd dusted Angelus, she'd never have gotten Angel back at all, so...)

is she really so different than S5?
Depends in what context. In terms of being willing to kill someone that's trying to kill her? Not really. In terms of what she's willing to sacrifice? Maybe so.

The one thing I noticed is that when you compare her big sacrificial decisions - s2, s5, s7 - all three seasons have been about Buffy's world breaking down, everything she knows and loves getting chipped away until she's left alone (literally or figuratively). But in two of those cases, she has an epiphany moment that all is not lost, that life is worth living beyond this despair. In "Becoming," it's this: "Take all that away and what's left?" "Me." And in "Chosen," it's "I just realized something... We're gonna win."

But in season 5, she never has that moment. Instead, she doesn't know what's right, and she doesn't know how to make these choices. She can't see the "greater good" of killing Dawn (or just letting her die) because she doesn't see that kind of world as worth living in. She takes that uncertainty and despair with her up to the tower, and I think that affected her decision-making. What good is saving the world if the world doesn't include her sister? But she forgets all of her friends down on the ground - not to mention the other six billion people in the world - who DO think the world is worth living in. In other seasons (both before and after this), she's always been able to put them ahead of herself, so why not here?

I think probably a lot of it has to do with her losing her mother, and feeling like Dawn is all she has left. Probably some of it also comes from the "Dawn is made out of me" connection. But I do wonder if they'd stayed on that tower a little longer, if she'd had to watch the sky ripping apart and demons descending on their dimension, maybe she still would've had that moment. Maybe she would've remembered her friends, and the reason she's always tried so hard to save the world, and she would've let Dawn jump. I'll admit, I do find it pretty hard to believe that Buffy - the Buffy we know and have seen give everything she has through numerous apocalypses - would just let the world be destroyed, even for Dawn.

I'm sure she would've hated herself for it, and I'm sure she would've considered herself a failure for not preventing it, but just like with Angel and Spike, she'd know it was the right thing to do. She'd grieve, but eventually she'd move on.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 15 2008 02:19 am   #17slaymesoftly
Somebody should do a nice angsty fic about life without/after Dawn...oh wait! Somebody already did! *g*
I am not a minion of Evil...
I am upper management.
Nov 15 2008 05:03 am   #18Eowyn315
Oh, you're a laugh riot, you. Although in my fic, Buffy didn't actually choose to let Dawn die; Dawn kind of made that decision for her by jumping off the tower. I wonder if anyone has ever written Buffy making the choice... it'd be interesting, but then again, might seem like a retread of Buffy sacrificing Angel, which is why I'm not at all surprised they didn't go that route on the show.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 15 2008 05:14 am   #19Scarlet Ibis
Haven't seen one, but there is a great drabble where Faith makes the choice here: http://www.fanfiction.net/s/2267751/1/Two_Live_As_One
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 15 2008 11:47 am   #20sosa lola
Also, she makes an extremely credible threat to kill anyone who tries to muck around with Dawn.

I think she was just threatening them. I don't think anyone would sacrifice Dawn, except Giles, I believe he'd do it if it was the only way. I can also see Anya grumbling comments about it, but I don't think she'll do it.

(Maybe protecting Dawn from Giles and the others is really what Buffy is asking Spike to do when she asks him to protect her.)

Doubt it. I believe she meant Glory and her minions.
Nov 16 2008 01:03 am   #21Spikez_tart
I think she was just threatening them. I don't think anyone would sacrifice Dawn, except Giles, I believe he'd do it if it was the only way.  - Giles is probably the only one who would seriously consider it and the threat is meant for him.  It's possible he could convince someone else (Anya, since her ties to Buffy are weakest?) to help him.  I think Buffy would have killed Giles if he went after Dawn. 

Another alternative - Buffy could have jumped with Dawn.  If there was no other way to close the portal but with Dawn's death, I think she would have gone with her.
If we want her to be exactly she'll never be exactly I know the only really real Buffy is really Buffy and she's gone' who?
Nov 16 2008 01:21 am   #22Scarlet Ibis
I think Buffy would have killed Giles if he went after Dawn.
I disagree.  There's no way Buffy would kill Giles.  She'd cut him out of her life for that, sure, but she wouldn't kill him.  She has a hard enough time killing humans as it is.

Also, if Dawn was the only way to close the portal, and there was nothing Buffy could do, I'm not so sure she'd jump with her.  If they both died, there'd be nothing left of Joyce.  I think Buffy was okay with jumping alone because Dawn essentially is apart of her and her mom.
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 16 2008 02:40 pm   #23Spikez_tart
She has a hard enough time killing humans as it is.  Buffy didn't have any trouble gutting Faith like a fish.  She was perfectly prepared to kill her by feeding her to Angel.  I think it just depends on how mad she gets (Want to see my imitation of Gandhi?)

I could see her committing suicide with Dawn so she wouldn't have to make that jump alone.  Buffy's in a pretty bad place - exhausted and depressed.  She tells Giles if she makes it she's going to quit. 
If we want her to be exactly she'll never be exactly I know the only really real Buffy is really Buffy and she's gone' who?
Nov 16 2008 03:15 pm   #24Scarlet Ibis
But Faith is more than human--Buffy can disassociate herself from that because in her mind, Faith doesn't count as human.  Faith isn't only going around killing others--innocents, she's also super strong.  She's a slayer for evil, and therefore, a special case.  If Faith had been just a regular human doing those things, Buffy wouldn't have went after her the way she did.

Also, exhausted and depressed doesn't mean that one is going to commit suicide.  Quitting slaying/being the slayer isn't quitting life.  Technically for Buffy, it'd be a step forward in attempting to live a normal one.  She'd no longer have to worry about making the hard decisions or fight for her life.  She would have been deeply wounded emotionally had Dawn died, sure, but then she would have went home, grieved, and then try to live her lfie as best (and as normally) as she could because that's what Joyce wanted for her.    In fact, she says as much in her catatonic state (I mean the grieving and moving on part).
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 16 2008 03:24 pm   #25sosa lola
Buffy didn't have any trouble gutting Faith like a fish.

You can't really compare Faith to Giles. Their value to Buffy is way different. She could care less about Faith, but she does care about Giles to the point where she trusts him the most (at this point, anyway), so while it'll hurt her and anger her that he killed Dawn, I can see her cutting him out of her life. Nothing more.
Nov 16 2008 03:26 pm   #26Scarlet Ibis
You can't really compare Faith to Giles. Their value to Buffy is way different.
Yeah, that too--Buffy loves Giles.  He's like a father to her.  And even if he wasn't, the act itself isn't for the purpose of destruction or evil--it would have been to save the world.
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 16 2008 03:58 pm   #27Guest
I don't think Buffy could quit being the slayer and I think she knows that. She can't know people are being murdered every night she stays safe at home and do nothing about it. Like all the other slayers, I think she really thinks the only way to end the struggle and escape from that awful half-life is to die. In her catatonic state, Buffy is really upset about being just a killing machine and that she has to kill Dawn and is talking about how she is expected to kill her sister, grieve, and get over it, and how that shows she really is losing all of her humanity and ability to love to be a slayer.
Nov 16 2008 07:49 pm   #28Eowyn315
and is talking about how she is expected to kill her sister, grieve, and get over it
No, she's not saying she's expected to do that. She's saying that's what she will do if Dawn dies. She knows that she can get over her sister's death, and she hates that part of her is hoping for that option because it'd be easier on her. That doesn't mean she wouldn't take that option when faced with the choice. I think if Dawn died, she might take time off from slaying, the same way she did after she sent Angel to hell, but she'd eventually recover enough to come back to it.

I don't see her needlessly committing suicide just to escape the hard choices. When she dies, she does it for a purpose - she's saving the world, and saving her sister in the process. If Dawn dies, then there's no reason for Buffy to jump with her except her own self-pity, and Buffy's stronger than that. She doesn't just give up when things are hard - or if she does, she always changes her mind and comes back to save the day in the end. If she's going to die, she's going to go down fighting, not throwing herself off a tower because life's just too hard to go on.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 16 2008 09:29 pm   #29Guest
Buffy is exhausted, depressed, feeling helpless, feeling unable to love, still grieving for her mother and having trouble dealing with the everyday drags of living, and risks her life every night in an endless, unbeatable war, cut off from people who have futures.  Remember Fool for Love  : Death Wish
Nov 18 2008 02:11 am   #30Spikez_tart
Faith doesn't count as human.   Faith is totally human and if Buffy doesn't think Faith is human, what does that say about Buffy?  I'm not saying Faith didn't have it coming, but Buffy's motives are a little shaky - is she going after Faith to take her off the evil team or to save Angel?  Both, I supposed, but leaning more to saving Angel.  

Remember Fool for Love  : Death Wish - exactly Guest.  Buffy has reached the point of no return.  The writers have indicated that Buffy's jump off the tower could be considered a suicide.  For those who like to compare it to the Anaeus story - Anaeus the soldier (Riley) goes back to his own country and his Queen (Buffy) jumps off a tower to her death.   If Buffy is ready to kill herself to save Dawn, I think she'd be ready to kill herself if she failed to save Dawn and would be willing to jump with Dawn to make it easier for her. 

Threat to Giles - I don't think Buffy would kill Giles in a cold blooded sort of way, but would kill him if necessary to protect Dawn, maybe during the heat of battle.  She killed her own lover.  She could kill him too.  With disastrous consequences no doubt.





If we want her to be exactly she'll never be exactly I know the only really real Buffy is really Buffy and she's gone' who?
Nov 18 2008 03:37 am   #31nmcil
One point to consider is - how many viewers actually ever believed or accepted the premise that The Slayer would actually allow the entire world to be destroyed for the sake on one person - It was simply never going to happen - there was always going to be an alternative - like the well known James Kirk demand  "find me another choice" (paraphrase).   You have to remember that this is really a rite of passage trial for Buffy, just like she demands her "freedom and choice and separation from her adult rulers, the CoW, she had to resume her full responsibility and freedom of choice - to let Dawn Die or to sacrifice herself.  That she and Dawn share the same blood, that she is now the parental figure and The Slayer protector all lead up to her jump off the platform.

Here is an interesting description of Glory's power from "The Gift" -

GLORY: Don't be so hard on the boy. He just wants to live -- most guys'd do the same. 'Sides, he's probably the reason your sis and her little cartoon pals are still alive. That little nagging pinch of humanity that makes me go for the *hurt* instead of the kill. Lowering myself to trade blows with a Slayer when I shoulda just put my fist through her heart. It's gotta be Ben.
” Recent evolutionary models have demonstrated what politicians have long known: the best way to get people to collaborate and to think like a group is to identify an enemy and charge that “they” threaten “us.”

Michael Tomasello is co-director of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.
Nov 18 2008 07:35 pm   #32Eowyn315
Faith doesn't count as human. Faith is totally human and if Buffy doesn't think Faith is human, what does that say about Buffy?
Faith doesn't count as human in the sense that the Slayer can't be punished by the police. The reason Buffy doesn't kill humans (even evil humans) is because humans who do bad things have a justice system to handle that kind of behavior. They don't need a Slayer going around doling out vigilante justice. But the police are pretty much powerless against a Slayer. Remember, Faith was only in jail because she wanted to be there - an unrepentant Faith who doesn't think she deserves prison surely wouldn't last very long in police custody. Buffy is the only one who can take her down.

I'm not saying Faith didn't have it coming, but Buffy's motives are a little shaky - is she going after Faith to take her off the evil team or to save Angel? Both, I supposed, but leaning more to saving Angel.
I think it had to be the combination of both. I don't think Buffy would've tried to kill Faith if she hadn't been trying to save Angel. However, I also don't think Buffy would've killed some random innocent person in order to save Angel. She feels justified in killing Faith because Faith is evil.

If Buffy is ready to kill herself to save Dawn, I think she'd be ready to kill herself if she failed to save Dawn and would be willing to jump with Dawn to make it easier for her.
I think we're just going to have to disagree on this one. It's a completely different mindset to sacrifice yourself to save the world than it is to kill yourself out of grief. Just because Buffy was willing to do one doesn't mean that she automatically would do the other. Also, I can't see Dawn ever asking Buffy to jump with her to make it easier for her. As much as Buffy is willing to sacrifice herself for Dawn, I think Dawn is willing to sacrifice herself for Buffy, and I think Dawn would see it as a terrible waste if she were to jump and Buffy died anyway.

how many viewers actually ever believed or accepted the premise that The Slayer would actually allow the entire world to be destroyed for the sake on one person - It was simply never going to happen - there was always going to be an alternative
True - I don't think anyone could see Buffy letting the world to be destroyed, but I do think ending things by killing off Dawn was an acceptable premise. Joss has killed people for a whole lot less than saving the world, and most shows would rather kill off a supporting character who's only been around for a year than their star heroine. It makes a better ending if Buffy dies, but if I'd been watching the show when it first aired (and thus didn't know what would happen), I think I'd have fully expected her to let Dawn jump, and then been surprised when Buffy came up with the idea of jumping in Dawn's place.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 20 2008 02:28 am   #33Spikez_tart
The reason Buffy doesn't kill humans - I get why she doesn't want to kill humans, I just don't think Buffy is so prissy pure that she might not do it one day.  Yeah, she'd feel bad later, but it could happen if she was in a funky place as in S5.  She's got that wiggly little dark place that let's her beat the crap out of Spike.  Maybe there's enough dark to kill somebody, too.

Faith/police - The police could have handled Faith if they put their minds to it - tranquilizer darts, stun guns and a solitary cell with the door welded shut (and it's been done - one of the Soledad brothers got sealed into a cell because he wouldn't stop killing people in prison.)  It's just not their normal thing.  It might take somebody more competent that Sunnydale's finest.   We see that the Watcher's Council thugs are able to take Buffy (in Faith's body) out.  She gets out because she outsmarts them, not because she's strong.

the premise that The Slayer would actually allow the entire world to be destroyed for the sake on one person - I don't think she would either, which makes me believe that if Dawn had to die, Buffy would flame out with her.  Really, how could she do anything else?  Look at the way she fell to pieces over killing Angel.  Killing Dawn would be a thousand times worse. 
If we want her to be exactly she'll never be exactly I know the only really real Buffy is really Buffy and she's gone' who?
Nov 20 2008 04:13 am   #34Eowyn315
She's got that wiggly little dark place that let's her beat the crap out of Spike. Maybe there's enough dark to kill somebody, too.
Hmm... but at the same time she's beating the crap out of Spike, she's also freaking out about thinking she's killed someone. Granted, there are certainly other issues that convince her to turn herself in, but after Ted and Faith, I think she's very, very sensitive to killing innocent humans. I think she's more likely to focus that darkness on killing demons.

The police could have handled Faith if they put their minds to it
That assumes that they know Faith's abilities and that they're competent enough to pull it off. Since superpowered teenage girls don't exist in their worldview, I think it's more likely they'd be wildly unprepared. And yes, Buffy has to outsmart the Watchers' Council (though they were prepared to deal with a Slayer, meaning it'd be harder to escape from them), but Faith just busts out of prison like it's nothing, meaning she probably could've done that at any time.

Look at the way she fell to pieces over killing Angel.  Killing Dawn would be a thousand times worse.
She wouldn't actually be killing Dawn - Dawn was willing to sacrifice herself, so I think it's more like leaving Spike in the Hellmouth in "Chosen" than it is like killing Angel. But as I've already said, we're clearly never going to agree on this one.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 20 2008 04:27 am   #35Scarlet Ibis
'She's got that wiggly little dark place that let's her beat the crap out of Spike. Maybe there's enough dark to kill somebody, too.' Hmm... but at the same time she's beating the crap out of Spike, she's also freaking out about thinking she's killed someone. Granted, there are certainly other issues that convince her to turn herself in, but after Ted and Faith, I think she's very, very sensitive to killing innocent humans. I think she's more likely to focus that darkness on killing demons.

Well, she does kill the knights, who have no extraordinary powers, out of necessity.  But she lets Maggie Walsh, who tried to kill her, live (and though I'm aware Maggie is killed before anything can really occur, but she wasn't making plans to go after the woman).  I think it depends on the scenario.  Clearly not innocent innocent...But there are special cases.

Dawn was willing to sacrifice herself, so I think it's more like leaving Spike in the Hellmouth in "Chosen" than it is like killing Angel.
Yeah--there'd be no point in everyone snuffing it.  I mean, she was wicked depressed in season six, and she didn't try to kill herself then.  Losing Dawn would hurt, but it wouldn't be the end of the world.  That's the point.  Also, if Dawn had died, if Buffy had let her jump, risking that pain of losing her...she would have found that through that pain, feeling that loss, that she could in fact love greatly, and be pained at losing her sister.

I hope that made sense--I really am quite tired
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 20 2008 07:34 pm   #36Eowyn315
Also, if Dawn had died, if Buffy had let her jump, risking that pain of losing her...she would have found that through that pain, feeling that loss, that she could in fact love greatly, and be pained at losing her sister.
Hmm... interesting interpretation of the "risk the pain" advice. If you dovetail it with "the Slayer forges strength from pain," it would suggest that perhaps Buffy would actually emerge stronger from the experience of losing Dawn, rather than being so devastated she can't go on. I still think the spirit guide was talking about Buffy's sacrificing herself, but I could see how, if things had gone differently, she could look back and think the message was still applicable.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 20 2008 09:11 pm   #37Scarlet Ibis
Actually, the more I think of it, the more sense that makes.  The Guide says, "Love. Give. Forgive. Risk the pain."  If she had to jump herself, who is she forgiving?  There's no one to forgive there, so that doesn't make much sense.  But if she had allowed Dawn to jump to save the world, then she would have to forive herself.  Love Dawn enough to let her go, give Dawn's life to save the world, and forgive herself for making that decision--risking the pain of losing her.

Eh, maybe Buffy didn't figure it out
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 20 2008 11:37 pm   #38Eowyn315
Hmm, but then I think "death is your gift" takes on an unpleasant meaning - death is Buffy's gift to Dawn? In that case, I'd have to agree with Buffy there - that kind of death is not a gift. Unless it means death is Dawn's gift to Buffy... but I kinda got the impression that death was Buffy's gift to give.

"Love, give, forgive" could also mean love Dawn enough to give your life to save hers, and then forgive your friends when they bring you back against your will. Or maybe it's in reference to Giles - she should forgive Giles for suggesting she kill Dawn?

It's also possible that it has nothing to do with "The Gift" and was actually in reference to Buffy forgiving Spike in that same episode. (Is it a coincidence that Buffy's told to forgive right before she shows mercy and kindness to Spike for the first time?) No one ever said that everything the guide says deals with Buffy's death - their conversation in the first scene could be just general life advice - love, give, forgive, risk the pain - and living that life will lead her to her gift.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 20 2008 11:49 pm   #39Scarlet Ibis
Yeah, I was thinking that "death is Dawn's gift to Buffy."  But either way, I wouldn't define either of their deaths as a gift, if I were Buffy.

"Love, give, forgive" could also mean love Dawn enough to give your life to save hers, and then forgive your friends when they bring you back against your will.  I was with you till that last bit--I don't think Buffy's resurrection was foretold, especially since by it occurring, it would eventually bring about the world ending at the hands of the First.

But, and I think we've discussed this before, I agree that it could have been in reference to Spike.  She already forgave him, but inviting him back in her house was like the ultimate "apology accepted."  "Risking the pain" (of opening herself up to love--maybe his, maybe not...) could be a definite reference to matters of the heart as opposed to the physical pain of having the life sucked out of you.  At any rate, it sounds a heck of a lot nicer
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 21 2008 02:33 am   #40Spikez_tart
perhaps Buffy would actually emerge stronger from the experience of losing Dawn - I like this idea.  I have a theory that Dawn is really a Buffy split personality, so if Dawn dies, then she would merge back with Buffy and Buffy would be stronger.  It could also make sense if you buy the theory that when Dawn came into existence, Buffy lost part of her soul. 

Death is your gift, love, give, risk the pain - all this spirit advice is sufficiently vague that it can be interpreted many ways and it is up to Buffy to find the interpretation that is right for her.  Right before Buffy and the gang go out to take down Glory, Buffy goes out into the alley and kills a vampire.  In that case, death (of the vampire) is her gift to the teenaged boy who gets to live.  Love, give, risk the pain could refer to Buffy herself, who has closed herself off after the death of her mother and the loss of Riley and Angel and is now afraid to love.  Naturally, the loving, etc. should be directed to Spike.  At least on this site.
If we want her to be exactly she'll never be exactly I know the only really real Buffy is really Buffy and she's gone' who?
Nov 21 2008 03:05 am   #41Eowyn315
But either way, I wouldn't define either of their deaths as a gift, if I were Buffy.
Well, if you sacrifice yourself, I think you could consider it a gift to whoever you're saving. I think that's the way Buffy sees it when she jumps - the way she tells Dawn to live for her, it definitely has that "my gift to you is life" feel to it.

I was with you till that last bit
I was joking - that's what the winky face was for.

"Risking the pain" (of opening herself up to love--maybe his, maybe not...) could be a definite reference to matters of the heart as opposed to the physical pain of having the life sucked out of you. At any rate, it sounds a heck of a lot nicer
Oh, yeah, I always thought "risk the pain" was in reference to emotional pain, not physical pain. It actually never occurred to me that it might be referring to the pain of jumping into the portal. Buffy is getting hard by closing herself off from the people she loves - she keeps getting hurt (her dad, Angel, and Riley leaving, her mom dying), so if she doesn't love, she can't get hurt. I took that as the guide telling her to allow herself to love, even though it might bring her more heartbreak.

I have a theory that Dawn is really a Buffy split personality, so if Dawn dies, then she would merge back with Buffy and Buffy would be stronger. It could also make sense if you buy the theory that when Dawn came into existence, Buffy lost part of her soul.
Hmm... I was thinking of it as more of an emotional thing - you know, being strengthened through adversity and all that.

In that case, death (of the vampire) is her gift to the teenaged boy who gets to live.
True, although Buffy has already rejected that interpretation in "Intervention": "If I have to kill demons because it makes the world a better place, then I kill demons, but it's not a gift to anybody." 
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 21 2008 03:15 am   #42Scarlet Ibis
It could also make sense if you buy the theory that when Dawn came into existence, Buffy lost part of her soul.
Well, since Dawn is made from Buffy, I suppose it'd make sense that part of her soul could have potentially been sucked out.  Though I don't think this is the case--I think that Dawn just doesn't have one.

I was joking - that's what the winky face was for.
Oh, pshaw.  I totally knew.  Heh, eh... *looks around*


I took that as the guide telling her to allow herself to love, even though it might bring her more heartbreak.
Me too.  But when I mentioned the physical pain, I was thinking more from Buffy's end.  If she's dead, heartbreak, well any pain really, is a moot point.  So when she had those flashbacks or whatever...yeah, I was thinking she was maybe thinking about the pain of having your life sucked out literally.

True, although Buffy has already rejected that interpretation in "Intervention": "If I have to kill demons because it makes the world a better place, then I kill demons, but it's not a gift to anybody."
But it is a gift to those she saves.  It's kind of sad that she misses out on that.  Duty, sure, but it matters to the person who gets to live.  It kind of reminds me of that moment between Fred and Spike, and Spike doesn't think that saving people is a big deal--just something he does.  And then Fred points out that it matters to her, and that he's a hero.  Not just a job, duty, or even a destiny, but it matters to the people who can't save themselves.  I'm not sure she got that, really.
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 21 2008 04:12 am   #43Eowyn315
Though I don't think this is the case--I think that Dawn just doesn't have one.
I think she does. It's stressed several times that the Key was made into a human girl - both by the monk who did it and by the Scoobies. One of the trademarks of being human in the Buffyverse is having a soul, so I think they would make that distinction if Dawn didn't have one. Despite Dawn's doubts about who or what she is, however she was created, I think she's supposed to be fully human, soul and all.

It's kind of sad that she misses out on that. Duty, sure, but it matters to the person who gets to live.
You know, when you think about it, Buffy never seems to be that concerned with the victims. The most she usually says to them is "get out of here now!" Unlike Angel, she rarely has "clients" that she interacts with, so these people are just nameless, faceless nobodies to her (even more so once she's out of high school, where at least she recognized most of her fellow students). She does what she does because it's her duty, not because she has some deep love for or commitment to the human race. Unless her friends are involved, she doesn't seem to give much thought to the people she saves. So it doesn't really surprise me that she doesn't realize what she does is a gift to those people.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 21 2008 04:24 am   #44Scarlet Ibis
It's stressed several times that the Key was made into a human girl - both by the monk who did it and by the Scoobies. One of the trademarks of being human in the Buffyverse is having a soul, so I think they would make that distinction if Dawn didn't have one.
True, but they also present the idea that a soul isn't created (at least by humans).  Humans are born with souls.  With vampires, those who are cursed or who willingly want a soul, can only have the soul that they had when they were human.  A new one isn't created.  The monks pressed the key into human form, using the slayer to make her.  I think that S_T's theory, the monks taking some of Buffy's soul to make Dawn (if that is the case), would make the most sense if she did in fact have one.  When Kathy was slowly sucking out Buffy's soul, she was more violent.  Season five, she doesn't feel as if she can love as much--being a slayer is hardening her.  Or maybe...she really is missing a part of herself.  The timing fits.
"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly."
https://www.facebook.com/FangirlNovel
Nov 21 2008 09:53 am   #45nmcil
from "The Gift":

BUFFY
: No. She's not. She's more than that. She's me. The Monks made her out of me. I hold her and I feel closer to her than... It's not just the memories they built, it's physical. Dawn is a part of me. The only part that I...

I think this is such an interesting line - Is this like the foreshadow for Season Six - "Intervention" and this line seems  to foreshadow, even  set-up Season Six and all her emotional trauma from feeling like she is falling further and further away from her connections to this world -
” Recent evolutionary models have demonstrated what politicians have long known: the best way to get people to collaborate and to think like a group is to identify an enemy and charge that “they” threaten “us.”

Michael Tomasello is co-director of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.
Nov 21 2008 06:45 pm   #46EveryLastDrop
The monk Buffy saved from Glory, for a few minutes anyway, said that they hid the Key, molded it flesh, made it human, and built memories. I always thought of that as that they created a human body using Buffy's blood so she would feel instinctually close to Dawn, not that they created a human being and manufactured a soul and then imbued it with the Key. I thought Dawn's body was human, and her memories shaped how she thinks, and feels, and what she believes so she can act as a human, but that she doesn't have a soul. Part of Buffy's love is showing that she accepts Dawn as her sister and a person she loves and wants to protect and squabble with and yell at for stealing her clothes.

I can accept the idea that people believe a human must have a soul, and as Dwan was mystically made human she'd have a soul; but I really don't think it's likely that the monks stole a piece of Buffy's metaphysical soul, the one they wanted to protect the Key and feel love for it, to stick it into Dawn. A big part of season six was the Nerds and Willow and and Buffy all being humans, soulful and raised as humans with beliefs and moral compasses, were capable of horrible things. Even Xander, the heart, left Anya humiliated and heartbroken at the altar for very human reasons. Buffy came back to life depressed and overwhelmed and in pain and shutting herself off, which can be human responses. Buffy beat Spike horribly in an alley and walked away without looking back, twice, in Dead Things, and she was horrified when Tara told her she didn't come back wrong, because it meant it was her feelings and who she was that was capable of doing it.

Something I never really understood about the Gift was that Giles read "The blood shall flow and the gates shall open. The gates shall close when it flows no more." The monks did something wholly unexpected in turning the Key into a human being with blood, when as a green glowy thing it doesn't have blood, so why would it be written to fit the Key as human?

I do remember what I said. The promise. To protect her.  If I had done that... even if I didn't make it... you wouldn't have had to jump. But I want you to know that I did save you. Not when it counted, of course, but after that. Every night after that. I'd see it all again. Do something different. Faster or more clever, you know? Dozens of times, lots of different ways...
   Every night I save you.

Nov 21 2008 07:51 pm   #47Eowyn315
With vampires, those who are cursed or who willingly want a soul, can only have the soul that they had when they were human. A new one isn't created.
Do we know for sure that a vampire gets his own soul back? I know Angel and Spike both refer to it as my soul, but are there even differences between souls that one would be able to tell one person's soul from another? I've heard the "Angel had two different souls" theory used to explain the differences between pre-Innocence souled Angel and post-Becoming souled Angel, and while I generally think that's a load of horse hooey (there are plenty of other reasons for a difference in behavior), the one question it raises is that it's never really clear on whether a person's soul is still linked to them after death and whether a specific soul can be plucked out of the ether, or if you're just calling up any old soul and sticking it back in the vampire.

My point being that if these souls are just hanging around in the ether when they're not being used, it's possible that one could be pulled out and stuck into the Key-made-flesh (maybe even the same way Willow ensouls Angel). Who knows, maybe there's just a repository of souls that get reused, and every time a new person is born, one of them automatically gets put in a body. When someone dies, the soul goes back into the ether to wait for a new body. So when Dawn is "born" (i.e. created by the monks) that's how she gets a soul.

I really don't think there's any clear way to know, but I do think it's significant that no one even asked that question when they found out Dawn was the Key. Considering how important souls are to the Scoobies in relation to vampires, you'd think at least one of them would say, "So, uh, if Dawn's actually the Key, does she have a soul?" The fact that no one asked that, and the fact that it was never made an issue, makes me think the writers intended her to be fully human, soul and all.

Season five, she doesn't feel as if she can love as much--being a slayer is hardening her. Or maybe...she really is missing a part of herself. The timing fits.
It's an interesting theory, and I've certainly seen fics based on that premise, but again, if that was the case, don't you think the writers would have made a point of bringing it up? The soul is an important concept in the Buffyverse, so if Buffy was missing part of hers, wouldn't it be mentioned, instead of viewers having to do the legwork and fanwank it? Also, I agree with EveryLastDrop that a plot like that would go against the theme of season six, in that it would excuse Buffy's bad behavior because she's not fully human, when a common thread through that season is humans with souls doing bad things.

Something I never really understood about the Gift was that Giles read "The blood shall flow and the gates shall open. The gates shall close when it flows no more." The monks did something wholly unexpected in turning the Key into a human being with blood, when as a green glowy thing it doesn't have blood, so why would it be written to fit the Key as human?
Maybe the monks thought they were doing something unexpected, but really they were doing something they were fated to do all along? The book Giles reads from is just called a "ritual text" but that section he reads could easily be considered a type of prophecy.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 21 2008 10:36 pm   #48Guest
the one question it raises is that it's never really clear on whether a person's soul is still linked to them after death and whether a specific soul can be plucked out of the ether, or if you're just calling up any old soul and sticking it back in the vampire.
Well, when Angel's soul is trapped in that glass bottle, they could only use that specific soul to re-ensoul him.  Also, the demon that soulifies Spike, says specifically, "I will return your soul," as in William's, and not "I will give you a soul" or "I will now en-soul you."  That sounds specific, and not just some random soul floating around.

I really don't think there's any clear way to know, but I do think it's significant that no one even asked that question when they found out Dawn was the Key. Considering how important souls are to the Scoobies in relation to vampires, you'd think at least one of them would say, "So, uh, if Dawn's actually the Key, does she have a soul?" The fact that no one asked that, and the fact that it was never made an issue, makes me think the writers intended her to be fully human, soul and all.
Yeah, but they also never ask whether or not Anya ever lost hers (which I don't think she did) while she was a vengeance demon for 1200 years.  I think the Scoobies purposely gloss over stuff like that, because it would be much too complicated to contemplate anything other than "humans=souls=good."

Also, I agree with EveryLastDrop that a plot like that would go against the theme of season six, in that it would excuse Buffy's bad behavior because she's not fully human, when a common thread through that season is humans with souls doing bad things.
I agree with that as well--I was just bringing it for the sake of the "Dawn has/has not a soul" conversation.  I still don't think she did.  I think her embedded memories were enough to make her a good person--a regular teenaged girl.  Just like on that same token with Anya--she didn't have to lose a soul to start a world war or kill all of those men.  Anya is just given power--nothing is taken away from who she was.  Everything she was was just enhanced by being able to create havok and bloody vengeance at the snap of her fingers as opposed to taking the long route with spells (which was how she was recruited in the first place).

~Scarlet
Nov 22 2008 01:05 am   #49nmcil

Why don't member list any episode that they remember as a "dreamscape" 

here are some of the "dreamscape" to consider:


http://vrya.net/bdb/ep.php?ep=10 -  Nightmares

http://vrya.net/bdb/ep.php?ep=60 - Fear Itself

http://vrya.net/bdb/ep.php?ep=65 - Something Blue  (while not exactly a dreamscape, the magic spell for Buffy & Spike might be good to add)

http://vrya.net/bdb/ep.php?ep=78 - Restless

http://vrya.net/bdb/ep.php?ep=99 - The Weight of the World

http://vrya.net/bdb/ep.php?ep=113 - Dead Things (another episode with great deal of important dreamscape quality)

http://vrya.net/bdb/ep.php?ep=117 - Normal Again

http://vrya.net/bdb/ep.php?ep=139 - LMPTM  (another possible episode that could be added  as  flash back imagery)

anyone have other episodes to add?


 

” Recent evolutionary models have demonstrated what politicians have long known: the best way to get people to collaborate and to think like a group is to identify an enemy and charge that “they” threaten “us.”

Michael Tomasello is co-director of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.
Nov 22 2008 02:37 am   #50Eowyn315
Well, when Angel's soul is trapped in that glass bottle, they could only use that specific soul to re-ensoul him.
I forgot about the soul-in-a-bottle. I really should stop blocking Angel s4 out of my memory.

Yeah, but they also never ask whether or not Anya ever lost hers (which I don't think she did) while she was a vengeance demon for 1200 years. I think the Scoobies purposely gloss over stuff like that, because it would be much too complicated to contemplate anything other than "humans=souls=good."
Vengeance demons definitely have souls (so says D'Hoffryn), which makes sense, since unlike becoming a vampire, Anya didn't have to die to become a vengeance demon, so there's no real reason for her soul to leave her body. I do think they glossed over issues with Anya, but there's an entire episode devoted to "what is Dawn?" and the resounding answer is "human," so I think it's a little bit different than the way they approached Anya.
Writing should feel easy, like a monkey driving a speed boat.
Nov 22 2008 02:24 pm   #51Guest
Yes, Angel has his own soul. In "City Of..", Doyle recites what the Powers have told him about Angel, and he specifically mentions that Angel was cursed with his (own) soul. Also, the demon that gives Spike back his soul says "your soul". So yeah, I've always taken in that the vamps have their humans souls that should belong to their bodies.

CM
Nov 22 2008 05:23 pm   #52nmcil
The Monks made is an imperative condition that Buffy would be connected to TheKey/Dawn as a protector - even in "The Family" it is Buffy and Dawn that take the first move as protectors and family, we also have Joyce reinforcing that Buffy must protect Dawn even with the knowledge that Dawn is not her real biological daughter.

Dawn having to have a soul as a human is only necessary to be seen as "human" in the Buffyverse - I personally don't think that TheKey/Dawn would have a "soul", certainly not one that would bring in the idea of conscience or Good vs Evil - The Key was a universal force - that Dawn can still be used in the ritual to open portals, puts her, IMO, more like a symbiotic form, universal force plus human body.  I love that scene when Giles said "she is not your sister."
” Recent evolutionary models have demonstrated what politicians have long known: the best way to get people to collaborate and to think like a group is to identify an enemy and charge that “they” threaten “us.”

Michael Tomasello is co-director of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.