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Spoiler! Thoughts on Season 9 and hopes for Season 10

Discussion in 'Season 9' started by The Bronze, Mar 11, 2014.

  1. The Bronze

    The Bronze Rogue Demon Hunter

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    Black Thorn
    Just about every episode of the series involves Buffy being physically attacked. It's going to be a pretty short show if you cut that out.

    We see Buffy handle the attempted rape in exactly the same way we see her handle it every other time the same thing happens on the show. The same way she handles being physically attacked. She moves on quickly.

    Spike isn't called to account because he's gone by the time anyone is available to call him to account. He's a soulless vampire that has committed atrocities for a hundred plus years. The scoobies feel no need to stake him before because they don't believe he's a threat. After the incident he gets a soul so the guy who attempted to rape Buffy is no longer around to face the music. Much like Hyena Xander.

    Hmm I wasn't familiar with that term. I've had a read of the article but I'm not really sure it applies here. Buffy isn't taken out of the show and doesn't stop being a hero either. On a more general point I don't really agree with the idea of the term. Bad stuff happens to all sorts of people in comics and stories in general. It affects them and motivates others involved in the stories in numerous different ways. Not sure why it's a story telling problem.

    That abortion storyline was appalling. No argument there. Doesn't mean it's something that should be avoided in future though, not that I'm in a great rush to see it repeated.

    I don't see how the rape storyline supports rape culture but I'm absolutely no expert on the subject. It shows a soulless vampire being evil, as you'd expect. It shows Buffy fighting him off, which is a good thing. Then the soulless vampire disappears which is also a good thing, one less evil in the verse.
     
  2. thetopher

    thetopher Member of the Church Of Faith

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    Sineya
    These weren't just attacks, they were violations, specific to the female form. (guys can't get pregnant after all, and how many male protagonist characters have almost been raped?) therefore its a factor. This isn't somebody beating Buffy up, that happens to any protagonist wheter male or female, this is about using sensitive female issues to make other points for other, often male, characters.

    And the Spike thing...we are told by the writers that Spike is different than other vampires, that he loved Buffy before he had a soul. Therefore he should be held somewhat to account, because the writers have chosen to blur the lines with his character.
    And when he comes back, with a soul, he refers to his relationship with Buffy in self-pitying terms. :mad: It's obvious to me where the sympathy of the writers lie in regards to character. It's dangerously close to 'Buffy abused him, she had it coming'- hence Keans comments on rape culture, blame the victim. :mad: (I've heard some Spuffy's pull this card as well, to support Spike)
     
  3. The Bronze

    The Bronze Rogue Demon Hunter

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    Black Thorn
    Well off the top of my head Xander was almost raped and murdered twice. First by the bug teacher and then by Faith. Then there's Riley who was raped by Faith.
     
  4. Kean

    Kean Professional Bangel

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    Sineya
    No, she isn't killed but she is depowered and her agency is compromised by how the entire plot point is based on further Spike's story, not Buffy's. That's the crucial thing with the trope. The term can be applied to Tara too, when she is killed to send Willow out of control.


    Yes, bad stuff does happen to characters. But this trope was created because it was happening disproportionately to female characters.

    If they are willing to give the topic the time, respect and dignity it deserves, I have ZERO issues with them telling a meaninful story that involves abortion. My issue, with all of this, is being reckless and cavalier with subject matter that requires sensitive and thoughtful handling.

    It reinfornces rape culture because of how it links violence to sex (though that is an on going problem with the verse.) Because of how it normalises the attack in a way that Buffy just gets up and carries on like it's a regular day. In the way that we never get any real, clear idea of how Buffy handles/reacts to this. A sexual assault is a very different thing than a slayer doing her job. It's in the way that Spike can never be challenged for the attack because he gets his soul and so it creates a problematic visual of Buffy caring for her attacker (even though he has a soul now.) It has to do with how the story suggests that Buffy is partially to blame, that she led him on. It's in suggesting that a once consenting physical relationship means that sexual advances are always welcomed. And the worst reason: because Spike got a soul the attempted rape is portrayed as a positive, character building moment.
     
  5. thetopher

    thetopher Member of the Church Of Faith

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    Sineya
    Okay, the bug thing maybe. It was icky, but it never actually happened. (And if we're counting this as 'rape' then what about Buffy and Cordelia in 'Reptile Boy'- attacked by phallic snake-demon...)
    Xander was strangled by Faith, there was a sexual component yes, but it wasn't rape, nor was it hardly as visceral as what happened to Buffy.
    And no, she didn't rape Riley at all, he slept with her (he was in control/intiated it) because he thought he was sleeping with Buffy. He was more...tricked, would be far more accurate way of describing it. (Did Riley really act like he'd been raped? I mean at all?)
     
  6. The Bronze

    The Bronze Rogue Demon Hunter

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    Black Thorn
    I don't know about this. For one thing she's not depowered. Her power remains the same before and after the attack. It certainly plays a big part in Spike's story but I think this also a turning point for Buffy. The whole episode is a realisation for Buffy that being with a soulless vampire isn't good for her. I'd also speculate that it's a big part of the reason why Buffy can't have a romantic relationship with Spike once he has a soul. My logic being that she clearly finds him physically attractive (all the Season 6 sex), trusts him as a friend (Season 7) but won't go near him romantically despite the new soul meaning he's not the same serial killing vampire as before which is surely preferable.

    Don't get me wrong I'm not saying it was good for Buffy or a great development or anything like that but I think it's a part of her story and I'm not sure it was completely over looked.

    I'm not a big comic book reader so not much I can add here. I'd think it would need an incredible amount of numbers to be really disproportionate though. Given the vast majority of Superheroes are straight males, it stands to reason that their romantic interests (woman) would be in the firing line as far as revenge filled plots go.

    Very fair point. It's not really an issue I'm desperate to see in the verse but should if it comes up again hopefully it's handled better.

    I think a lot of this is about interpretation. As we see around here all the time, people see the same footage and find a completely different meaning to it. The sex to violence link runs throughout the verse as you say. I'm not sure this scene adds any further link that wasn't already established by Faith in Season 3 and then Buffy & Spike Season 6.

    I don't think the attack itself is normalised. Or should I say specifically normalised. It's only normal in so far as it's a normal occurrence for Buffy. To this point in the show she has been attacked for 6 years on screen, including 3 previous rape attempts. She gets up and carries on like it's a regular day because in all honesty it's not far off a regular day for her. A central part of the show is Buffy being attacked and then Buffy carrying on.

    The problematic visual is a fair point but this all comes down to the viewer. If you're watching the show then you have to understand the differences between the verse and real life. Various states of ensoulment are not a real world issue.

    I don't think the attempted rape is shown as a positive character building moment at all. Again this is all about perception. It clarifies for anyone who was in doubt that Spike is still a soulless monster. Spike getting a soul is a positive in the verse. You lose one bad guy and gain a good guy (very loose terminology used here obviously). That doesn't make the attempted rape a positive thing.

    ---------- Post added at 03:12 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:08 PM ----------

    She absolutely did rape Riley. It's rape by deception. There's a law for this in most countries I believe. Riley's reaction doesn't change what happened to him. He might not realise that he was raped but he was.
     
  7. thetopher

    thetopher Member of the Church Of Faith

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    Sineya
    'Rape by Deception?' Never heard of it. Does that mean if you tell somebody a lie that you're a doctor (or about being some other attractive career type) and they sleep with you as a result then you've raped them? Or if you sleep with the wrong twin sister that they've raped you?
    Seems to trivialize a deeply horrible crime imo.

    Plus, you've missed the entire point of the scene. Faith violated Buffy far more than Riley, that's why Buffy is angry/hurt with Faith and Riley.

    We see Buffy act differently to Spike's attack because it was supposed to be different/worse. Treating it like just another attack is, again, trivializing it some what.

    Then the writers have Buffy go and try and leave her sister with the rapist, any way you cut it its terrible writing as only S6 can manage.
    But who cares right? Because at least Spike made his choice and got his soul because he loves Buffy so much. :mad:
    The rape scene was all about Spike, that's why it was bad writing/tasteless.
     
  8. The Bronze

    The Bronze Rogue Demon Hunter

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    Black Thorn
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rape_by_deception

    I'm hoping that I've put that link in correctly. Faith violated the pair of them and Buffy is rightfully angry at Faith. It's one of the main reasons I don't see a friendship for them in the future. She's hurt and is angry towards Riley but comes to understand he wasn't to blame.
     
  9. thetopher

    thetopher Member of the Church Of Faith

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    Sineya
    Well I stand corrected. But still, this only vaguely resembles what happened between Riley and Faith, since he still instigated it, he had sex with Buffy's body, he wasn't forced. Nobody acts like it was rape, not Buffy or Riley or Faith or anybody, there's no shock or trauma.
    It's bad, don't get me wrong, but in no way resembles the brutallity of Spike's attack.
    (Plus Faith, like Spike, strives to become a better person, so why is she unworthy and Spike isn't? I tend to think she deserves Buffy's forgiveness, she has sure as hell earned something.)

    Buffy was attacked and injured by somebody she trusted, she barely managed to fight him off and then what? He goes on his merry way and everybody Dawn, Buffy, especially Xander are shocked by his behaviour.
    That was striaght up rape, or attempted rape but only because she faught him off, and its so badly handled.
    I think its wrong to equate one with the other, the are completly different levels of crime.
     
  10. The Bronze

    The Bronze Rogue Demon Hunter

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    Black Thorn
    That is the entire point of the law though. It deals with certain cases of rape where no force is used: "Rape by deception is a crime in which the perpetrator has the victim's sexual consent and compliance, but gains it through deception or fraudulent statements or actions." You can't get any more fraudulent than stealing a body.

    Forgiveness is a very personal thing. There's not really a case to be made for deserving Buffy's forgiveness. She'll either forgive or not based on her feelings. I think Buffy has a massive capacity for forgiveness so I wouldn't be surprised if she has already or soon will forgive Faith.

    As for Faith and Spike they are apples and oranges. Spike is a soulless vampire. We get to see him act like a soulless vampire on screen up until the start of Season 7. This includes all manner of atrocities including murder and rape. That's soulless vampires for you and it's why Buffy stakes them. Once he gets his soul then it's entirely different. Spike with a soul doesn't need to be forgiven for his soulless actions. He didn't do them. He has no more interest in raping and killing people (triggered by The First doesn't count). Buffy's choice of interactions with him are again personal to her but they're not about forgiving him for something he wasn't actually in control of.

    Faith on the other hand is a human with a fully functioning soul at all times. While in full possession of her soul she commits rape (Riley) and murder (Geology Professor). She sides with the mayor in an attempt to kill everyone at the graduation and beyond. She is actively fighting for mass murder. She attempts to take Angel soul and unleash Angelus. One of the most notorious vampires in history. When she thinks she has succeeded she is delighted. She revels in the plan to slowly torture Buffy to death. She attempts to rape/kill/harm Xander. She tortures Wesley. She steals Buffy's body.

    I'm glad Faith has turned things around but she has no right to Buffy's forgiveness. That's an horrific list of crimes. There's no chance I'd be forgiving her in Buffy's position but like I say it wouldn't surprise me if she does.
     
  11. thetopher

    thetopher Member of the Church Of Faith

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    Sineya
    The crime doesn't cover a metaphysical body-swap, and take the cue from the writers- nobody screams rape in this instance- not one character. Imo, that doesn't make it rape- I'll except it's a violation violation but it's not the worst thing that Faith did. Rape is an emotive term which entirely justified in Spike's case.

    And of course you're forgetting that Spike is 'special' and 'unique' as vampires go. That's been said by the writers and he's treated as such on the show/ by his fans. He loved Buffy without a soul, he shouldn't get a pass for the things he did in S6 especially, because he gets a lot of credit for the things he did in S5, looking after Dawn, helping to save the world, helping the Scoobies after Buffy's death, etc.

    I'm fine with that, either Spike in S7 is a morally complex character, or he's just a completly different guy who's shows up to help Buffy because he has memories of being in love with her.

    I never disputed that Faith did horrible things when she was evil, but before that she was an ally, she save Buffy's life on occassion and helped save the world (both in 'The Zeppo'- people forget about that, and subconsciously in Graduation Day- she gives the key to defeating the Mayor.)
    When she later breaks out of prison she is quite willing to give her life to save Angel, y'know Buffy's great love. And she 's the only one who will help Angel in the comics, Add to that her risking a lot to help Angel bring back Giles- who's pretty much Buffy's Father.
    Does she do these things for Buffy? No she's not Spike, she does these things because they're the right thing to do, independant of Buffy's love/forgivness. (I, on the other hand, think that if Buffy can forgive, say Willow, for trying and almost succeeding to destroy the world, she can forgive Faith for striving to be a better person.)

    Bottom line: Faith did rotten things to Buffy, no question, so did Spike. Faith did good things, so did Spike- I will always think Faith's motives for reforming were far less selfish than Spike's, and that his 'rape crime' was far, far worse.

    I also think 'Who Are You?' is a fantastic, well-written, nuanced, character piece, and that 'Seeing Red' is a steaming pile of badly written garbage, with a rape scene as shock factor and male character agency at the expence of the heroine.

    Sorry, I thought I should try and get back to the main point of the arguement. :)
     
  12. Zeppelin92

    Zeppelin92 Potential

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    Ok so, as far as season 9 goes I enjoyed it overall. Like most of you already mentioned, A&F was by far superior to the Buffy side of it, but they both had their strengths and weaknesses. The main thing I would want to change is the whole, Billy plot. I don't see it going anywhere and to be honest its kind of far-fetched..
     
  13. Mylie

    Mylie Scooby

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    ok so I'm very late but I just (finally!) finished the season so here are my thoughts and hopes for season 10 (even though it's already written and I'll probably start it tomorrow lol) :

    Thoughts :
    -Season 9 was in general a lot stronger than season 8.
    -The Angel and Faith side was so incredibly better written than Buffy's it's kind of painful.
    -Buffy's side started off really weak and it felt like they didn't have any direction but the last 2 volumes were strong and I enjoyed them.
    -I disliked the Buffy's lack of direction arc in general (the robot and abortion stuff was horrible) but enjoyed Guarded. I felt like they had something to say and explore there that made infinitely more sense and was very much in character.
    -The Core and Dawn disappearing because of the lack of magic was a nice twist and well-thought. It also gave me season 5 feels at times.
    -I enjoyed seeing Illyria with the scoobies
    -Billy the Vampire Slayer was well-written and a nice idea but I somehow kept asking myself why should I care?
    -Angel and Faith's side was extremely well written. I felt like they had a clear understanding of who the characters were and where they wanted to go with them. They had an arc within the season (Angel going back to his acts of kindness ideology instead of focusing on the big picture, Faith realizing she needs to stop giving herself to her loved ones entirely and find some sort of balance) and I feel like this was lacking on the btvs side apart from maybe Xander who I feel like they tried with him.
    -A&F focusing on a few characters only is my favorite approach.
    -I loved every single bit of tv buffyverse references made on A&F. It made it easier for me to feel like I was in their world and to really feel like it's canon.
    -I actually enjoyed Spike on Angel and Faith...

    Hopes for season 10 :
    -better writing for the btvs side (please have more direction). Hopefully this will happen because I heard Gage is in charge of season 10.
    -don't make me miss Gage on Angel and Faith please.
    -I know Spuffy happens so please make it something I can root for.
    -No Buffy without direction please
    -More focus on characterization than shocking the audience etc. on btvs side.
    -More Buffy/Dawn and scoobies spending time together
    -Giles and his struggles being stuck in a kid's body
    -Some Buffy/Faith please
    -More references from the series
     
    The Ferg: Pretty much agree on everything, although I like S8 much more than S9.
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  14. The Bronze

    The Bronze Rogue Demon Hunter

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    Black Thorn
    Congratulations on finishing Season 9 @Mylie

    Also thanks for finding this old thread. Can't believe I finished the season nearly 3 years ago. Had to smile reading this back. Me and @thetopher used to have epic rambling debates :D
     
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