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Buffy's behaviour in Sanctuary

Btvs fan

Scooby
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What do people think of how Buffy behaved in this episode. Justified or unjustified. Hitting Angel then going to hit him again was a bit... :confused:
Threatening to beat Faith to death then saying Faith made her feel like a Victim before finally telling Angel she had somone new in her life, who she loved and who she knows. The irony being that she (maybe the writers too) thought she was talking about Riley but it was really Spike.
Anyway peoples thoughts ?
 
Angel6
Angel6
Nah no way there was any romantic interest in Spike at that point.

Athene

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I don't like how Buffy treats Faith but it is justified and I do understand it. I think the anger that Buffy shows has a lot to do with frustration because Buffy did show a lot of forgiveness and sympathy towards Faith pretty much up until 'Sanctuary' and on all those occasions Faith unfortunately wasn't ready to be helped. So I'm sure it was frustrating for Buffy that right when Faith was ready to be helped it was right at the point that Buffy herself didn't want to help and was suddenly the villain in all this. At the end of the day, Buffy didn't let the council shoot Faith on the rooftop so I'm going to assume the 'beating to death' threat wasn't going to happen (I hope 😬).

Buffy's behaviour towards Angel though...totally unjustified. I'm a Bangel but if I were forced to watch this ep on a loop I think there's a possibility I'd jump ship.
 

thrasherpix

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Understandable, which is not to necessarily say justified. And at first it really annoyed me that Buffy would punch Angel multiple times (in his own home, damn) and then act like a weak little princess when Angel finally smacks her back. Even my mom had more pride than that.

Details: Even without counting the experiences she had, we have no idea how traumatic the actual process of switching bodies might be and that alone could be enough to ensure she was going to react badly. I think Buffy had some damn good reasons to not feel merciful to Faith, but the only reason that shows is her jealousy for Angel and Riley even though she now dates Riley, and basically acted like a crazy ex-girlfriend rather than someone whose mother was attacked, how she was almost killed by the assassins of the Watcher's Council, and who violated her body and all the other stuff we like to bring up now but didn't actually seem to occur to the writers (and thus not to Buffy, who even seemed to blame Riley for having sex with Faith in Buffy's body).

Of course Buffy walking in unannounced (guess the phone was out?) at that exact moment was contrived, but makes for great drama and gives her a reason to act that way to Angel (if only she didn't pull the wounded princess bit...), which then gets followed up on Buffy by having Angel show up in Sunnydale to "apologize" only to act like the crazy ex-boyfriend. (I believe I've said before how much the shipping drama of the show, both of them, often irritates me which I grudgingly endure to enjoy the parts I do like.)
 

WillowFromBuffy

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I think Buffy's anger is justified. Buffy is reasonable. She was willing to let bygones be bygones after Faith woke up from her coma. If Angel had been less confrontational, she would have calmed down. Buffy jumps across a pyramid skylight into rifle fire to save Faith's life.

Angel should have known that Faith's victim would take issue with his choice to shelter Faith, and I don't think he should brush away their concerns like he does. The day before, he was willing to kill Faith himself.

And when he tells Buffy "not in my city", it is such a slap in the face to someone he owes everything to. When Buffy was angry that he came to Sunnydale, it was purely because he had been skulking in the shadows. She would never tell him to stay out of her jurisdiction.

I like Faith and I want her to all right, but her redemption shouldn't come at the expense of her victims. Angel should have done a better job of being the mediator. He hardly says a word of concern when Wesley shows up for work. His over-identification with Faith seems to be blinding him from everyone else.
 

Athene

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Buffy is reasonable. She was willing to let bygones be bygones after Faith woke up from her coma.
That was after she'd put Faith into a coma though. It's clear that Buffy is so forgiving towards Faith in 'This Year's Girl' at least partly because she feels guilt over essentially killing Faith. So yeah she's reasonable but I wouldn't credit Buffy that much for it when it's born out of guilt.
 
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A thing to consider when watching that episode is the POV of the story. The writers have played with that in episodes such as The Zeppo, or Storyteller, illustrating just how relevant perspective is. Here we have Buffy coming into [Angel's] city, as he harshly states, and the focus is never quite on her, which may feel off given how used we are to experiencing the world through Buffy's eyes. It's why we believed everyone was crazy at the end of the 7th season of BtVS when they kicked Buffy out. And I mean yeah, they were definitely wrong, but it comes easy for us to deny the mutineers any semblance of understanding when we forget that they didn't see Buffy showing the doubt and compassion we've had the chance to witness when, for example, she cried over a picture of the Scoobies after Xander's injury.

Going back to Sanctuary, Buffy's role shifts now to Angel and we are never quite allowed to get a nuanced view of her thoughts and feelings on the issue, no resolution for her regarding Faith. What we get instead are a few exchanges between her and Angel that almost paint her as the bad guy in the whole situation and the reason for that is the story not following her trauma and moral uncertainties, but Angel's mission of saving Faith's soul. It's true that regardless of the subjectivity of the perspective, in the end the actions themselves remain the same. Kicking Buffy out in Empty Places would be as bad a solution if Dawn was our guide through the process, just as we can't agree with Willow's decisions in season 6, no matter how we follow her every step of the way. The only difference that comes with perspective is that we gain a better understanding of why someone would reach a bad conclusion and perhaps empathize with them, even though we aren't in agreement.

So, taking into account the duality of the scenes, the question remains: was Buffy's attitude understandable? I believe it was. When your mom has been held hostage and your body's been violated and used among other things to pretty much rape your boyfriend, you may find yourself feeling not particularly joyful when discovering that your past lover is helping out the criminal who's done all those terrible things to you. Even more so when that very past lover would have died because of the criminal if you hadn't been willing to sacrifice yourself from him. Yes, being surprised when the one you've slapped slaps you back is kind of eh really and throwing current boyfriends in the face of your ex is a low blow. But was Buffy unreasonable in her anger? No. Could she have dealt better with it? Sure. She could have gone with Angel to that monastery in Sri Lanka and then return and braid Faith's hair while The Power of Love plays in the background. But no one is perfect. And Buffy and Angel have always been a bit dramatic, for better, or for worse, let's be honest.

Angel doesn't get the full picture in the moment, which is what we also don't get as viewers. However, him going to apologize to Buffy shows that he realized as well that he hadn't been entirely fair with her.
 

WillowFromBuffy

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That was after she'd put Faith into a coma though. It's clear that Buffy is so forgiving towards Faith in 'This Year's Girl' at least partly because she feels guilt over essentially killing Faith. So yeah she's reasonable but I wouldn't credit Buffy that much for it when it's born out of guilt.
Yes, but I think it is to Buffy's credit that she feels guilty, because from an outsider's perspective, it is clear that Faith had to be taken down for the Scoobies to stand a chance against the Mayor, and it was Faith herself who forced the confrontation.

Buffy's guilt can't be about the stabbing itself, because that had to happen, though maybe she felt some shame at her righteous anger as she stabbed her. I think Buffy must be wondering if she could have done something to get through to Faith sooner, because after Faith shoots Angel, it is clear that she must be taken out, not just to save Angel, but for the Scoobies to have any chance of defeating the Mayor.
 

Athene

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Yes, but I think it is to Buffy's credit that she feels guilty, because from an outsider's perspective, it is clear that Faith had to be taken down for the Scoobies to stand a chance against the Mayor, and it was Faith herself who forced the confrontation.
Even though that's true, I don't think there's many people that could go through with what Buffy did (and what she was intending to do after) without feeling guilty. It was dark and it's not something I could see Buffy rationalising after she'd gone through with it. Though Buffy rationalised the situation enough to stab Faith I think it was a totally different ballgame once she did it and afterwards. It's harder to rationalise then. I'm just saying it wasn't forgiveness completely out of the goodness of Buffy's heart at that point.
 

WillowFromBuffy

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Even though that's true, I don't think there's many people that could go through with what Buffy did (and what she was intending to do after) without feeling guilty. It was dark and it's not something I could see Buffy rationalising after she'd gone through with it. Though Buffy rationalised the situation enough to stab Faith I think it was a totally different ballgame once she did it and afterwards. It's harder to rationalise then. I'm just saying it wasn't forgiveness completely out of the goodness of Buffy's heart at that point.
But doesn't the guilt come out of the goodness of Buffy's heart?
 

Athene

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But doesn't the guilt come out of the goodness of Buffy's heart?
Yes but feeling guilty because you stabbed a person (even if you feel justified) is a pretty low bar IMO. It's easier to forgive someone for crossing lines when you've crossed a line in their name. Especially someone who's supposed to be the hero like Buffy.
Anyway sorry I don't mean to bring the thread off topic 😊
 

The Bronze

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She shouldn't have hit Angel. It's understandable due to her emotional state but not justified.

No problem with her wanting to kill Faith, in Sanctuary or Season 3. Faith was supernatural and a force of darkness at this stage, firmly within Buffys mandate.

Angel had a different take that was also justified and in the end he was proved right. Not sure if I put that down to luck or judgement but it worked out either way.
 

Btvs fan

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Yes, but I think it is to Buffy's credit that she feels guilty, because from an outsider's perspective, it is clear that Faith had to be taken down for the Scoobies to stand a chance against the Mayor, and it was Faith herself who forced the confrontation.

Buffy's guilt can't be about the stabbing itself, because that had to happen, though maybe she felt some shame at her righteous anger as she stabbed her. I think Buffy must be wondering if she could have done something to get through to Faith sooner, because after Faith shoots Angel, it is clear that she must be taken out, not just to save Angel, but for the Scoobies to have any chance of defeating the Mayor.
It was attempted murder. Joss even says he didn't have Faith die because he didn't want Buffy to be a murderer. I don't think he realises attempted murder is not ok.
 

Btvs fan

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I think Buffy is in character, but she is in you-just-tried-to-kill-my-mother-stole-my-body-violated-it-slept-with-my-boyfriend-almost-got-me-murdered-and-tried-to-kill-my-ex mode.
Which she got over by Superstar and the writers say in the episode Buffy's main issue was that Riley was comparing her and Faith in having sex , not a body violation 🤷‍♂️
 

Btvs fan

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A thing to consider when watching that episode is the POV of the story. The writers have played with that in episodes such as The Zeppo, or Storyteller, illustrating just how relevant perspective is. Here we have Buffy coming into [Angel's] city, as he harshly states, and the focus is never quite on her, which may feel off given how used we are to experiencing the world through Buffy's eyes. It's why we believed everyone was crazy at the end of the 7th season of BtVS when they kicked Buffy out. And I mean yeah, they were definitely wrong, but it comes easy for us to deny the mutineers any semblance of understanding when we forget that they didn't see Buffy showing the doubt and compassion we've had the chance to witness when, for example, she cried over a picture of the Scoobies after Xander's injury.

Going back to Sanctuary, Buffy's role shifts now to Angel and we are never quite allowed to get a nuanced view of her thoughts and feelings on the issue, no resolution for her regarding Faith. What we get instead are a few exchanges between her and Angel that almost paint her as the bad guy in the whole situation and the reason for that is the story not following her trauma and moral uncertainties, but Angel's mission of saving Faith's soul. It's true that regardless of the subjectivity of the perspective, in the end the actions themselves remain the same. Kicking Buffy out in Empty Places would be as bad a solution if Dawn was our guide through the process, just as we can't agree with Willow's decisions in season 6, no matter how we follow her every step of the way. The only difference that comes with perspective is that we gain a better understanding of why someone would reach a bad conclusion and perhaps empathize with them, even though we aren't in agreement.

So, taking into account the duality of the scenes, the question remains: was Buffy's attitude understandable? I believe it was. When your mom has been held hostage and your body's been violated and used among other things to pretty much rape your boyfriend, you may find yourself feeling not particularly joyful when discovering that your past lover is helping out the criminal who's done all those terrible things to you. Even more so when that very past lover would have died because of the criminal if you hadn't been willing to sacrifice yourself from him. Yes, being surprised when the one you've slapped slaps you back is kind of eh really and throwing current boyfriends in the face of your ex is a low blow. But was Buffy unreasonable in her anger? No. Could she have dealt better with it? Sure. She could have gone with Angel to that monastery in Sri Lanka and then return and braid Faith's hair while The Power of Love plays in the background. But no one is perfect. And Buffy and Angel have always been a bit dramatic, for better, or for worse, let's be honest.

Angel doesn't get the full picture in the moment, which is what we also don't get as viewers. However, him going to apologize to Buffy shows that he realized as well that he hadn't been entirely fair with her.
That's a bit unfair. He only says that after Buffy admits she only came because she was looking for Vengence "I have a right to it" Angel was perfectly entitled to say that.
 
EffulgentBitca
EffulgentBitca
I get where he was coming from, but it's still harsh. Anyway, what I meant is that in the same way L.A. and the series were his, so was the POV. It comes natural to sympathize with him in the moment, harder with Buffy.

Btvs fan

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Depends on how you see it and since I find Buffy to be written as OOC on the spin-off as Angel is on BtVS post-S3, I just shrug it off; it's not the real Buffy, anyway.
Certainly I have big issues with the Yoko Factor crossover. The writers basically ignored all the issues from Sanctuary and created some false ones to make Buffy look the good guy in the argument. While the Angel/Riley fight's whole set up doesn't even make sense in the episode itself.

Doug Petrie saying there was big debate on who should win the fight scene when making this shows a huge twisted priority when it comes to story telling too.
 

WillowFromBuffy

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It was attempted murder. Joss even says he didn't have Faith die because he didn't want Buffy to be a murderer. I don't think he realises attempted murder is not ok.
I don't see it that way. I think it's more justified than Willow killing Warren.
Which she got over by Superstar and the writers say in the episode Buffy's main issue was that Riley was comparing her and Faith in having sex , not a body violation 🤷‍♂️
"Superstar" deals with Buffy's issues with Riley's part in it. Forgiving Riley is not the same as forgiving Faith.

I don't know what you mean when you say the writers say. Is there a disclaimer in the episode?
 

Puppet

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Certainly I have big issues with the Yoko Factor crossover. The writers basically ignored all the issues from Sanctuary and created some false ones to make Buffy look the good guy in the argument. While the Angel/Riley fight's whole set up doesn't even make sense in the episode itself.

Doug Petrie saying there was big debate on who should win the fight scene when making this shows a huge twisted priority when it comes to story telling too.
Yeah, as much as I love those S1/S4 crossovers, they reek of 'it's Angel's show, so he has to win and be right, now it's Buffy's show, so now she should be right and win'. The same thing happened in AtS S5, when Spike showed up; he was de-powered and made a laughing stock because 'it's Angel's show, so he has to be superior',
 

WillowFromBuffy

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Yeah, as much as I love those S1/S4 crossovers, they reek of 'it's Angel's show, so he has to win and be right, now it's Buffy's show, so now she should be right and win'. The same thing happened in AtS S5, when Spike showed up; he was de-powered and made a laughing stock because 'it's Angel's show, so he has to be superior',
I don't see that. In "Sanctuary", neither backs down, while in "Yoko Factor", they both apologize to each other, so there is no clear cut winner either time. Buffy does actually get her way in "Sanctuary", when Faith turns herself over to the police. And Angel gets to beat up his replacement on BtVS and make him look like a complete idiot when Buffy takes Angel out to the corridor.

And Spike is often a comical character on BtVS. On AtS he gets to beat up Angel, who used to humiliate him on BtVS.
 
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