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Angel made Buffy watchable

telperion66

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Having watched BTVS for years I have come to the realisation that Angel was the main reason why the show was so great. In real terms Buffy never got over him after he left at the end of season 3. Essentially we have to endure four seasons of unfulfilled love on Buffy's part because in my opinion Angel was her true love.

Say what you want about Riley or Spike. The whole vibe of the show changed after he left and Buffy Summers was never the same. It was a slow and steady demise into coldness. From the passion and intensity of the first three seasons, she became insular and pretty much a different character in the later seasons. Once he left, it broke her heart.
 

Fool for Buffy

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I like Angel, and I think Buffy and Angel had a great story, but it was hardly the reason the show was what it is. Every character on their own and with others had things to offer that make the show amazing. Yes the vibe changed after Angel left, but in a lot of ways it changed for the better. I definitely don't see a slow and steady demise. I think Buffy as a person is always getting stronger. And the show has ups and downs, but I always love it.
 

Mylie

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I’m always incredibly uncomfortable with the idea that the success and quality of a show like Buffy should be attributed to a male character, whether it’s Spike or Angel. Buffy made Buffy watchable, as well as her relationships with her friends, lovers, her family. So I very much disagree.
 
Fool for Buffy
Fool for Buffy
Oh yeah I like this point better lol
ChaseRules
ChaseRules
I like what you said very much :)
DeepBlueJoy
DeepBlueJoy
So totally agree. In spite of everything that happened, and all the bad writing that infested the final season, Buffy SHONE. She was effulgent. She was strong. She's my hero!
MarieVampSlayer
MarieVampSlayer
Yes! The show is about Buffy's journey!

Athene

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It's Buffy's behaviour in the later seasons that is hard to watch, not the absence of Angel even if you can link those things together. I loved Buffy when she was really proud of herself and optimistic about the future despite everything, and Angel did help a lot with that because Buffy saw her whole future with Angel...and it wasn't bad at all.
 

thetopher

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I think the show survived the departure of Angel (and Cordelia) for at least another two season to be honest. Season 4 was really funny and charming and Season 5 had a really strong main arc.
Buffy in Season 5 is a fantastic character all on her own, easily the match of her high school counterpart; and she's mostly on her own romance-wise for half that season.

In terms of relationships...well, hindsight is a nice thing I guess. Riley DID make Buffy happy for a time, (or 'content' might be a better description) but you couldn't call it a waste of time.

Spuffy came at a difficult time but at least Buffy came to some important realizations about herself because of it, nothing to do with Spike really, just Buffy realized that sometimes she isn't to blame for a relationship sucking, sometimes the guy's to blame.
Still, dark time in her life and then at the end part of Season 7 that gorgeous brunette shows up and Buffy starts to get some perspective with the cookie dough speech thing. :D
And no, I don't mean Angel.
 

Anyanka Bunny Slayer

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I became hooked on AtS before I ever saw an episode of BtVS; and the funny thing is, I wasn't at all impressed with Angel's character on Buffy, not at first. Angsty/emo vampire popping up whenever...he he got on my nerves! :p

Buffy and Willow made the show great.
 
DeepBlueJoy
DeepBlueJoy
I watched Buffy before I watched Angel seriously. I liked AtS Angel, but the early Angel in BtVS was played by an actor learning his craft... emo and 'mysterious' - he wasn't interesting 'til he met Doyle, Cordelia and Wes and started to grow.

EarthLogic

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Having watched BTVS for years I have come to the realisation that Angel was the main reason why the show was so great. In real terms Buffy never got over him after he left at the end of season 3. Essentially we have to endure four seasons of unfulfilled love on Buffy's part because in my opinion Angel was her true love.

Say what you want about Riley or Spike. The whole vibe of the show changed after he left and Buffy Summers was never the same. It was a slow and steady demise into coldness. From the passion and intensity of the first three seasons, she became insular and pretty much a different character in the later seasons. Once he left, it broke her heart.
I'd have to disagree. The show was about way more than whomever Buffy was dating - if anything her romantic relationships were secondary to her own journey, her familial relationships and friendships - therefore tertiary overall (except like in S2 when they were brought to the fore in order to focus on that story). The vibe did change after he left, but then the vibe changed almost every season because it was a show that constantly reinvented itself - compare the tone of season 4 to season 6 - totally different yet it's got nothing to do with Angel's absence; it's to do with where Buffy is in her life. Buffy's romance/dating issues have their place in the but I think that the idea that her unfulfilled love with Angel is what drove the seasons is pushing it. This isn't Meyer's Twilight (or as Joss would call it 'Choosing Boyfriends: The Movie'). I'm with @Mylie on this one - I don't like the idea of attributing the show's success to a male character.

I think Buffy did become more insular* but it was result of the enormous stresses she was under from slaying to her mother's illness and death, to looking after dawn, to averting apocalypses. And I don't believe it was a it wasn't a 'slow and steady demise' either; there are times where she is just as fierce and passionate as she ever was. One of my favourite examples of this is in Checkpoint when she turns the tables on the Watcher's Council. I'm also a fan of her intense love for and protectiveness over Dawn.

*This is certainly the case for Seasons 6 and 7, but I'm not sure I'd go as far as to apply it to S4 and 5 outright.
 
Last edited:
thetopher
thetopher
Checkpoint-love karma. :)

Mrs Gordo

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in my opinion Angel was her true love.
I agree with this a whole lot.

Buffy Summers was never the same.
I also agree with this. Buffy was different. But then again, that is what our life experiences are all about. Loving and losing and growing and learning and making mistakes and getting back up and finding yourself. She was never the same after Angel left and that was the whole point. Losing your love, and also your friend and the person you confided in and went to for comfort is a difficult thing. But it was important for both of them to have learning experiences. Angel, too, had so much to learn about friendship and fatherhood etc. that he never would have learned if he wouldn't have found his own mission and purpose.

Having watched BTVS for years I have come to the realisation that Angel was the main reason why the show was so great.
I disagree. Listen, I'm the biggest bangel stan you will likely ever meet. My favorite seasons of Buffy are s1-3 and Angel is one of my favorite characters of all time in any fandom. But Buffy is what makes Buffy so great. And furthermore, what makes the early seasons so great is the focus that was placed on Buffy herself. Her friendships, her family, her loves, her experiences, her growth, her empowerment, her lessons. We see the world through her lens. I also think season 5 was a top-notch season for Buffy and Angel is not around. Buffy doesn't need Angel. She feels his loss, of that I'm sure, but the whole point, what makes those two so incredibly inspirational is that they can say "Yes I love this person but I have a life to live, and a purpose of my own. A calling and a mission that is more important." Even season 6 is important to Buffy's journey. It's horrible and it's sad and depressing and I hate to watch it but to the extent that it focuses on her pain and her problems, I'm on board.

Season 7, is where, I'll admit they lose me a bit. But that is less to do with Angel not being around and more to do with a lack of attention of seeing the show from Buffy's POV.
 

white avenger

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Having watched BTVS for years I have come to the realization that Angel was the main reason why the show was so great. In real terms Buffy never got over him after he left at the end of season 3. Essentially we have to endure four seasons of unfulfilled love on Buffy's part because in my opinion Angel was her true love.
I think that what made "Buffy The Vampire Slayer" great couldn't be any one single character or even one single relationship. It was the combination of actors, writers, and directors coming together to make something that was unique in entertainment in its day. Certainly, the show changed after Season 3, but how could it not? Buffy and her friends left high school and became adults. Likewise, Angel stopped being Robin to Buffy's Batman, and went out on his own (Nightwing?) The characters grew up.

Angel wasn't as much Buffy's "true" love as he was her "first" love, and that is the place that he will always hold in her heart. That in no way means that she could never love anyone else, however. The major significance of a first love is that, without it, there can never be a second love, or a third, or a twenty fifth, if the series lasts that long. Yes, Buffy truly loved Angel, and almost certainly always will, but, to say that she would be incapable of ever loving anyone else would be to unnecessarily limit the character. Likewise, to say that Angel is incapable of ever loving anyone but Buffy belittles his character.

The way that the show was developed, it became pretty obvious that, whenever Buffy and Angel were truly "together," something along the scale of Angelus or Twilight happened. That's the tragedy of Bangel, and, unless some major change is made in the Buffyverse, that's the way that it always will be.
 

EarthLogic

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@telperion66 Wait a sec, just to clarify, are you saying that Angel's absence itself made S4-7 great because of the unfulfilled love? Or that S1-3 were great because of his presence and that the following seasons do not measure up as a result?
 
have their place in the* but I think
* should read ' in the narrative'
 

brinkster130

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Well, I agree that S1-3 are the strongest, but I think they did a decent job filling in the absence of Angel (and Cordy!). I think the show really changed post s5 and never really found it's footing again.

As much as I missed Angel, I liked his show more than BTVS, so I can't be too upset about his departure.
 

Carrie Hopewell

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Sineya
I can't comment on whether Angel's absence destroyed the show or not, because there are a lot of factors involved in its decline, but, personally, Angel was one of the main reasons why I liked BtVS, and after he left, I stopped caring about the show. Whenever Angel came back, it was like the show became fresher and better. I missed his presence a lot. He definitely added something to Buffy and the mythology of the show, and so did Cordy. Cast changes make or break shows all the time. Shows that have many seasons eventually end up with only a small portion of the main cast and lots of new characters no one cares about. I think BtVS was better with the original cast, and Anya, Spike or Tara couldn't replace Cordy, Angel or Oz.
 

The Bronze

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Having watched BTVS for years I have come to the realisation that Angel was the main reason why the show was so great.
I just don't understand that at all. My favourite period is the High School years as well but it wasn't Angel making the show great. He was a component, played a significant role, but certainly wasn't the be all and end all. Friendships, storytelling, humour, growing up, blending real issues with the extraordinary ones. A million things went into giving us something special. There's also plenty of amazing things from the later seasons that didn't require Angels presence.
From the passion and intensity of the first three seasons, she became insular and pretty much a different character in the later seasons. Once he left, it broke her heart.
Yeah alternatively she continued living a brutal life under constant attack, had her mind rewired by monks, lost her mother, died herself and was ripped out of heaven.
 

Mr Trick

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I can't comment on whether Angel's absence destroyed the show or not, because there are a lot of factors involved in its decline, but, personally, Angel was one of the main reasons why I liked BtVS, and after he left, I stopped caring about the show. Whenever Angel came back, it was like the show became fresher and better. I missed his presence a lot. He definitely added something to Buffy and the mythology of the show, and so did Cordy. Cast changes make or break shows all the time. Shows that have many seasons eventually end up with only a small portion of the main cast and lots of new characters no one cares about. I think BtVS was better with the original cast, and Anya, Spike or Tara couldn't replace Cordy, Angel or Oz.
So did Spike. Spike added just as much to that as Angel. In a way more because of him killing two slayers. Don't see how Cordy did. She was a good character, but she was a good human character outside of the mythology.

But I never considered Angel as a member of the Scooby Gang. He was important because of his relationship with Buffy, but from that point of view he was like a plot device. I'd say Tara and Anya were more fully fledged members than he was.

I don't understand the argument of this thread. If you rate Buffy as a show then you would surely like it for the reasons outlined by @The Bronze. Angel was a supporting character. He has his moments, and was a fantastic big band in S2. But the show could still function without him.
 
Having watched BTVS for years I have come to the realisation that Angel was the main reason why the show was so great. In real terms Buffy never got over him after he left at the end of season 3. Essentially we have to endure four seasons of unfulfilled love on Buffy's part because in my opinion Angel was her true love.

Say what you want about Riley or Spike. The whole vibe of the show changed after he left and Buffy Summers was never the same. It was a slow and steady demise into coldness. From the passion and intensity of the first three seasons, she became insular and pretty much a different character in the later seasons. Once he left, it broke her heart.
You have a point in a way. Though its a bit of a big statement to say she was never happen again once Angel left. She had her ups and downs, but then she had that even when he was around. To me her Angel was never going to work in the long term. In the long run I think the relationship would have made her sadder.
 

telperion66

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Having watched BTVS for years I have come to the realisation that Angel was the main reason why the show was so great.
I'm a season 1 to 3 guy and its always been a pet peeve of mine that I lost some level of interest after Angel left. His departure did coincide with them going to college for season 4, where the core concepts of the show were renewed and it was almost like a new start. Buffy had more pep and zest in seasons 1 to 3 and the core characters seemed to feed off that and have a lot more pep and zest themselves. Riley was always the rebound guy and I think Spike was exceptional only as a villain in season 2 - his character was a lot different in later seasons.
 

Mr Trick

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I'm a season 1 to 3 guy and its always been a pet peeve of mine that I lost some level of interest after Angel left. His departure did coincide with them going to college for season 4, where the core concepts of the show were renewed and it was almost like a new start. Buffy had more pep and zest in seasons 1 to 3 and the core characters seemed to feed off that and have a lot more pep and zest themselves. Riley was always the rebound guy and I think Spike was exceptional only as a villain in season 2 - his character was a lot different in later seasons.
I don't agree that Buffy lost her zest in the later seasons. There's no lack of zest in either S4 or 5 for me. Part of what you are describing with her and Spike is just down to character development which any long term characters have to have. Buffy is a different character post-High School years but she needs to be. It wouldn't be credible for her to be a angsty teenager character forever. I have no issues with the Buffy and Angel relationship, but I think there is plenty more to Buffy as a character than just that.
 

telperion66

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She feels his loss, of that I'm sure, but the whole point, what makes those two so incredibly inspirational is that they can say "Yes I love this person but I have a life to live, and a purpose of my own.
The Buffy/Angel romance is the essential reason why I like BTVS. They were just meant to be together... I mean come on, Angel getting with Cordy on the spinoff - never in a million years. Buffy was the one for him and vice versa.
 

Mrs Gordo

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I mean come on, Angel getting with Cordy on the spinoff - never in a million years. Buffy was the one for him and vice versa.
Again - things that you and I agree with my friend. But wouldn't you agree that Angel grew so much in AtS being away from Buffy finding his own friends and mission etc? Similarly wasn't Buffy having different relationships, learning about her Slayer-ness etc important to her personal journey? They fell in love at a time when both of them still had much growing to do. When you love something let it free... if it comes back yah know ... :)
 
badsister
badsister
but it didn't? sorry haha

telperion66

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@telperion66 Wait a sec, just to clarify, are you saying that Angel's absence itself made S4-7 great because of the unfulfilled love? Or that S1-3 were great because of his presence and that the following seasons do not measure up as a result?
The latter. Seasons 4-7 smacked of Buffy's unfulfilled love for Angel, and over time I could almost sense her true heart's yearnings withering away within her.
 
Again - things that you and I agree with my friend. But wouldn't you agree that Angel grew so much in AtS being away from Buffy finding his own friends and mission etc? Similarly wasn't Buffy having different relationships, learning about her Slayer-ness etc important to her personal journey? They fell in love at a time when both of them still had much growing to do. When you love something let it free... if it comes back yah know ... :)
I think David Boreanaz the actor matured a lot in the spinoff. Angel is a great show and I'm really pleased he went off to do it for the reason that I get to watch it! There were many great stories told on Angel and if he had have continued on BTVS perhaps it would have constrained both Buffy and Angel's character development. The fact he got his own series was a great opportunity to expand his character and it certainly took Buffy in a new direction.
 

Cheyanne Suttle

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I disagree completely. I think the whole point of being a slayer is that everything else means nothing in comparison and we saw that truly come to light in season 7 of buffy. I dont think buffy was meant to truly be with anyone. And towards the end of Angel on BTVS, he was far too whiny and honestly kind of got on my nerves. I appreciated them giving him his own show because then we could actually focus on Angel as a character instead of Angel as a love interest. I don't think Angel made BTVS a show worth watching at all and feel like the show did better when he was out of the picture and Buffy could focus more on slaying than the exaggerated unfulfilled love that is angel and buffy. the fight between whether or not they would be together just exhausted me.
 
DeepBlueJoy
DeepBlueJoy
Once Angel left, Buffy grew into herself and I love who she became.
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