Never go for the kill when you can go for the pain
- Apr 12, 2019
- all around
I read this article and mmmhh… ok, everything that she says is technically true, but I think that she misses the context and that gives a very partial and biased view of Xander. The first time I watched BtVS, I was terribly annoyed with him (before S7). I still hate the way he passes judgment in other people’s lives (well, mostly on Buffy, Angel and Spike) and I dislike the way he treats Cordelia and Anya as partners —regardless of whether they are annoying themselves or not, it is not right.You can read for yourself all the logical and undeniable points NOT in Xander's favor here:
Least Favourite Characters Awards: Xander Harris is Terrible
But tbh, he is like my male friends in high school. A big hormonal dork with a huge heart and annoying habits that reflect his insecurities and a difficult personal life. I no longer dislike him as I did at first, I still feel annoyed at times, but I tune it out (all of them have many flaws). I also think that it is good to have him as a character. I get the argument that a feminist show should do better and blah blah blah… but I think it does pretty well. There is no malice in Xander’s actions as misguided as they might seem at times. He’s immature but his intention is never to harm. I think the takeaway shouldn’t be “we need better feminist male characters,” it should be: “what does he reflect from our society that is wrong and should be addressed? He belongs to a period where ‘boys will be boys’ was the mantra and he comes from a dysfunctional family, so he’s the product of his environment and the culture of the time period. If we feel annoyed by him and his actions, it suggests that as society, we were doing something wrong and maybe we still are.”
Last year, there was a very interesting article in The Atlantic about masculinity in the USA and the pressure to fit in among high-school and college male students. Sadly, it seems that there’s still a lot of work to be done, they are still pressured to show a lot of the problematic behaviors that we keep discussing about Xander.