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Faith's arc in S3

r2dh2

Never go for the kill when you can go for the pain
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Apr 12, 2019
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I have a few questions about Faith’s arc in S3:
  1. Do you think that Angel was getting to her in Consequences before Wesley took her away? Or do you think that she had already crossed to a point of no return?
  2. I feel that she goes really fast from misguided/jealous to psychotic/homicidal. At the beginning of Doppelgangland, she is not ready to kill Buffy when the Mayor bring it up, but by Enemies, she is all in, ready to hurt, torture and slowly kill Buffy. What are your thoughts about the speed of her transition?
  3. Had they succeeded unleashing Angelous, do you think that he would have teamed up with the Mayor and Faith for the Ascension? And/or do you think that he would have started a “relationship” with Faith?
I don’t have clear thoughts about these questions.
 

DeadlyDuo

Scooby
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Faith probably always had psychotic tendencies and it was only a matter of time before they came out. The Mayor just indulged them.

As for Angelus, that's one instance where Faith was dumb as hell. If Angel had really turned into Angelus, she'd be dead.
 

Faded90

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1. I think he was, it would have taken a LOT of work but I think she was ‘getting it’

2. I definitely think it was rushed, I do think a lot of it is Faith’s self loathing and how that warps her thinking. By this point she’s absolutely convinced herself that Buffy looks down on her and hates her. When Buffy’s nice to her she sees it as ‘she’s just pretending to like me, she hates me really’ then when Buffy bites back in Enemies she sees it as ‘see knew she hated me!’. I definitely think there should have been another episode between Consequences/Doppelgangland and Enemies. It’s clear that in spite of her seething jealousy and resentment that she’s still wanting to be in Buffy’s life, I think she’s just taken all of her pain and troubles and directed them straight at Buffy. Even The Mayor can see at the end of Enemies she’s hurt that Buffy etc have fallen out with her, I don’t think she’d thought everything through as she would have known eventually they’re going to fall out after she joins with The Mayor but she’s still upset when it happens. I agree it is rushed from ‘Buffy gets everything!’ To ‘I’m going to torture her to death’

3. I think Angelus would have had zero interest in joining up with The Mayor. He’d have went back to his manipulating Buffy techniques, he could possibly have used Faith as a pawn/weapon against Buffy but I don’t think that as a partnership would have worked out. There is also a chance he may have just tried to kill her, I think he’d have made fun of her and The Mayor for having the audacity to think he’d become a minion
 

Athene

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Sineya
Do you think that Angel was getting to her in Consequences before Wesley took her away? Or do you think that she had already crossed to a point of no return?
It depends on what Buffy and Angel's longer term plan was for Faith such as how long they were planning to keep her locked up and have Angel counsel her. I don't think based on what Angel said alone she would have been okay if they just let Faith walk soon after, but Angel was on the right path and I think what he was saying were the right things that could have gotten through to Faith if Wesley hadn't ruined it and completely undermined what Angel was telling her.


I feel that she goes really fast from misguided/jealous to psychotic/homicidal. At the beginning of Doppelgangland, she is not ready to kill Buffy when the Mayor bring it up, but by Enemies, she is all in, ready to hurt, torture and slowly kill Buffy. What are your thoughts about the speed of her transition?
It was a bit quick but I buy it. The way I see it, from Faith's first episode she had these violent urges inside of her because she was already a damaged and unstable person who took a bit too much pleasure in beating things up (vampires). That is established from day one about Faith so after the accident I think Faith just snapped and it gave her the perfect reason to lean into the dark parts of herself. Faith and Buffy are very complicated, their whole S3 relationship should be summed up by the scenes of Buffy stabbing Faith, and then the scene of Buffy kissing Faith in the hospital. So I totally buy that Faith would save Buffy in Consequences and be messed up enough to tie Buffy up and try to torture her in Enemies.

Had they succeeded unleashing Angelous, do you think that he would have teamed up with the Mayor and Faith for the Ascension? And/or do you think that he would
I could see Angelus wanting to be on the Mayor and Faith's team to gain power and backstab them so maybe he would start a relationship with Faith if he thought that would be useful.
 

thetopher

Member of the Church Of Faith
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Sineya
I tend to think Faith's S3 makes a lot of sense as a logical progression: accidentally kills a guy, is branded a murderer, brutally assaults Xander who tries to help, is arrested by Wesley, escapes and tries to leave but is persuaded to stay by/then saves Buffy, becomes spy for the Mayor, then becomes more of an active agent for Mayor and is outed, then becomes lackey, threatens Willow who calls her out on being a lackey, then becomes strong right hand/daughter of Big Bad by Graduation, fights Buffy to the (almost) death.

Do you think that Angel was getting to her in Consequences before Wesley took her away? Or do you think that she had already crossed to a point of no return?
Angel seemed to think so and I agree. He was getting past her barriers and getting through to her and then Wesley came to arrest her. From Faith's pov it seemed natural to think that Buffy and co had gone and had her arrested, and when that arrest failed (and Faith escaped) they all scrambled to find her again and.
In Faith's mind everyone in the group had blown the last vestiges of her trust and she felt justified in betraying them.

I feel that she goes really fast from misguided/jealous to psychotic/homicidal. At the beginning of Doppelgangland, she is not ready to kill Buffy when the Mayor bring it up, but by Enemies, she is all in, ready to hurt, torture and slowly kill Buffy. What are your thoughts about the speed of her transition?
If you watch Enemies closely then a few things become clearer.
- Unleashing Angelus was The Mayor's idea, not Faith's. Faith is unclear/ignorant about how bad Angelus is, she's just heard the war stories about 'Angel did this, Angel did that' from Willow and Xander.
- When the Mayor then asks Angelus 'what do you want to do?' and 'Angelus' says 'I wanna kill Buffy'. The Mayor thinks this is a great idea and tells him to make it slow. 'Angelus' then makes to torture Buffy with Faith by his side. So the distinction is that Faith is two steps removed from this evil scheme. In her mind she can distance herself passively from what's happening. She's really just along for the ride.

- Faith taunts Buffy with 'you think about that while your boyfriends cutting into you', so she herself doesn't have any intention of inflicting pain, just watching the show.

- Faith has many opportunities to hurt the 'defenseless' Buffy and yet only hits her once when she loses her temper. Several times she has a blade to Buffy's throat and does nothing. All talk. She rants and rages and vents but for all her anger she does little damage.
(Given what we know this is all incredibly lucky regarding Buffy and Angel's secret plan, since Faith's seeming reluctance/inability to hurt Buffy means that Buffy can goad her with little risk to herself and get the information that's required)

So then do I think Faith's could've sat and watched Buffy die if it had all been real? I doubt it, given what we see in the episode.
I actually don't think killing Buffy was her real intent but Faith is a person who never thinks very far ahead and is rarely clear on her own true motivations.

So I still think Faith is on the downward slope here, still passive enough to sit by and assist evil rather than carry out evil on her own intiative. That happens in 'Choices' where The Mayor tells her to bring the magic spider-box to him so she just kills the delivery guy (who was haggling about price). The Mayor didn't ask her to do that, that was her own choice.

Had they succeeded unleashing Angelous, do you think that he would have teamed up with the Mayor and Faith for the Ascension? And/or do you think that he would have started a “relationship” with Faith?
No and no. Angelus wouldn't want any part of the Mayor's little ego trip plot. I suspect he would've maybe had a little fun with Faith (after ending Buffy of course), killed her and then blown town for pastures new.
 
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