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How would season 6 have been different if Giles had stayed?

Albion

Townie
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Feb 13, 2019
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I was wondering this and honestly couldn't decide how I though the plot would have changed.

Would he have been able to stop Willows magic addiction from spiralling?
Would Buffy and Spike still have gotten together?!

I don't knowww so please share your thoughts :D
 

Cohen

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For starters, I don’t think Buffy would have gotten overwhelmed with Dawn. I think he would have observed more of the others’ spirals. He was the father figure for the group. Losing the maternal and father figure so quickly is what allowed all the downward spiraling. Though, Tara did begin to fulfill a maternal role for Buffy during the latter half of the season, but I think Giles being there would have helped. However the story Marti wanted to tell required less Giles, and ASH asked to be reduced.
 

white avenger

white avenger
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It would be easy to say that, if Giles had stayed, things would have somehow worked out better, but I'm not really shure that that would have been the case. Buffy's was depressed, almost to the point of being suicidal, before he ever left, and if he didn't recognize it then, I'm not really sure that he would ever have. His solution of, "I'll leave you here on your own, and you will come up with the solution of all your problems without me," is, in my opinion, pretty much the same as throwing a child into the deep end of the swimming pool believing that that is the best way to teach them how to swim. As for Willow and her maic addiction, there was no indication that he had a clue about it until it was almost too late.

I really don't think that Giles' presence would have significantly changed the story line of Season 6 appreciatively.
 
Angel6
Angel6
I’m inclined to agree. The fact he leaves her in that state at all shows his perceptiveness wasn’t at an all time high

WillowFromBuffy

Buffering...
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People forget that Giles is not always a stabilising force. It's not a given that he would have made everything better. They could have given him his own issues in S6, much like he had during his S4 midlife crisis.

Giles is wary of helping Buffy too much with Dawn. He believes strongly in self reliance. Already in S5, he wants Buffy to stand on her own.
Giles has never been able to stop Willow from using magic, and he certainly didn't help anything by shouting at her in "Flooded."
 

DeadlyDuo

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I don't think Buffy would've spiralled as badly if Giles had stayed. I don't think Giles would've gone if ASH hadn't wanted to go back to England. Giles was going to leave in Season 5 but then changed his mind, it doesn't make sense that he would leave in Season 6 when Buffy could've actually done with him around. He literally just found out that she was pulled out of heaven, the Giles of Season 1-4 wouldn't just leave Buffy after that revelation.

Circumstances forced the character to be written out but he could've been written out in a better way.
 

white avenger

white avenger
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Circumstances forced the character to be written out but he could've been written out in a better way.
Definitely. They could have had the Watchers' headquarters blow up (foreshadowing Season 7) and Giles, being the senior Watcher left alive, would have had no choice but to return. That, or ANYTHING better than just, "I'm leaving so that you can finally learn how to stand on your own two feet and take command of your mission," would have been preferable, plus, it would have made more sense in Season 7 when he did (arguably, I know, but I agree with Spike on this) question her authority. "She's SURPASSED you, and you can't handle it!" You can't have it both ways, Rupert. Either she's all grown up and ready to take charge, or she isn't.
 
Joined
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Black Thorn
I like to add this to my little head-canon of the Something Blue spell never wore off and Giles did in fact become figuratively blind - it makes me hate him a bit less.

But anyway, I think Buffy would not have been as bad as she was, and she could have really done with the extra help as well as the other scoobies. I don't think she would have hated herself any less though. Buffy losing her last parental figure did hit her pretty hard so I think if he was there Dawn would have been more under control.
 

DeadlyDuo

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Dawn would have been more under control.
I think Dawn was quite selfish in Season 6. There are kids in the world who are carers to parents with disabilities and medical conditions yet Dawn plays up because she's not the centre of attention. Everyone had issues going on in Season 6. Buffy was ripped out of heaven yet Dawn is all "me, me, me".
 

Athene

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Sineya
I think Giles had the semi-right idea by leaving but he should have given the gang a specific date for when he’d be back and he should have taken Dawn back with him to England for a while so Buffy could breathe and pay more attention to Willow and Xander. That may have solved the spuffy, addiction and stealing storylines respectively.
 

r2dh2

Never go for the kill when you can go for the pain
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I think Dawn was quite selfish in Season 6. There are kids in the world who are carers to parents with disabilities and medical conditions yet Dawn plays up because she's not the centre of attention. Everyone had issues going on in Season 6. Buffy was ripped out of heaven yet Dawn is all "me, me, me".
I’m inclined to agree with you. Dawn was written to be childish and immature in S5 and they kept going down the same path in S6. There are times that I truly dislike her (in general, I don’t hate Dawn like many fans, I think she adds layers to Buffy as a character), but if you think about Dawn, it’s understandable how she feels.

She has no parents, basically it’s implied that her father didn’t even care about Joyce’s death. Her only real family died and was pulled out of heaven, meaning that Buffy was happier dead than being back with Dawn. I understand it but really let’s talk about abandonment and rejection issues for this kid. Then we have Tara as a mother figure who leaves Willow and then dies. And of course, Willow who is herself kinda immature during S6 and is dealing with her addiction, which also endangered Dawn often. Then, we have Anya and Xander planning their future together and then trying to deal with their break-up. After them, we have Giles leaving twice. And, finally, Spike who was a brotherly figure for Dawn and who spent a lot of time with her pre-resurrection, then just pretty much disappeared from her life because he was spending all his time with Buffy.

Add to that mix hormones and you have Dawn S6. I’m not a fan of the angry teenager stereotype that lashes out at the world because she/he feels neglected, but it does happen often. And to be fair, Dawn was initially the only one trying to lighten the load for Buffy but that changes soon.

Sorry, a brief digression from the Giles’ topic.
 

white avenger

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(Giles) should have taken Dawn back with him to England for a while
I think that that would have been an excellent suggestion, and beneficial to all concerned. In the real world, of course, it probably wouldn't have flown with the courts, unless Joyce had somehow left Giles with partial custody of Dawn, but this is the Buffyverse, where a girl barely of legal age can be appointed guardian of her 15 year old sister. About the only real argument that I could see would that the whole point of creating Dawn in the first place seemed to be to create new problems for Buffy and her friends. Eliminate Dawn, and you reduce, if not eliminate, all of Buffy's financial worries and reduce her responsibilities to be, basically, not much more than whether to carry a stake, a crossbow, or a sword on patrol tonight. Can't have that, it would make the show boring.
 
BuffyLover88
BuffyLover88
Agree, Dawn adds to the show.

Athene

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I think that that would have been an excellent suggestion, and beneficial to all concerned. In the real world, of course, it probably wouldn't have flown with the courts, unless Joyce had somehow left Giles with partial custody of Dawn, but this is the Buffyverse, where a girl barely of legal age can be appointed guardian of her 15 year old sister. About the only real argument that I could see would that the whole point of creating Dawn in the first place seemed to be to create new problems for Buffy and her friends. Eliminate Dawn, and you reduce, if not eliminate, all of Buffy's financial worries and reduce her responsibilities to be, basically, not much more than whether to carry a stake, a crossbow, or a sword on patrol tonight. Can't have that, it would make the show boring.
I thought that with Buffy’s permission, Giles would be allowed to take care of Dawn for a few months or however long it would be seeing as it’s not permanent but as you said it’s a show so they bend the law all the time 🤷🏻‍♀️

I don’t think that taking Dawn away would make the show boring exactly because Buffy would still have to work at the double meat to keep her house, she’d still have depression and be dealing with losing all her parental figures suddenly. It’s just that she wouldn’t have a child to care for. I just think Giles leaving without Dawn made him seem really irresponsible because if he’s really a father to Buffy then he should be one to Dawn too and I don’t think we ever saw him step up like that. Buffy was left to drown where without Dawn she could have learned to be more responsible as things would be more manageable.
 

thrasherpix

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I have experience here in two ways that are beside the point. Long story short, the legal parent or guardian can give permission to another. There are forms to fill out but it's easier than most forms.

(That said, this is in the US. It's possible the UK itself wouldn't accept it...and in the Buffyverse I expect it would actually be up to the Watchers whether to allow it or not, and now I'm thinking of some possible side plots of Dawn in Danger in the UK...and maybe Dawn messes with the magicks to perhaps try to scry on Buffy in Sunnydale as she misses her and worries only for the spell to go haywire requiring Giles to get some Wiccans since he doesn't trust the Watchers, and then the Wiccans discern the problem and send Giles back to stop Dark Willow, and he might be forced to take Dawn with him back to the States, or Dawn finds her own way as unlikely as that seems.)
 

FaithLehane16

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I am those people that wasn't against Giles leaving because it was realistic.. I mean parental figures die, and kids move out from their parents' house and start fending for themselves.
 
thrasherpix
thrasherpix
It's also realistic to put away one's aging parents in a place to forget about them while getting an early start to divvying up their stuff, but it's still not right.
spikenbuffy
spikenbuffy
Me too!

katmobile

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I think Dawn was quite selfish in Season 6. There are kids in the world who are carers to parents with disabilities and medical conditions yet Dawn plays up because she's not the centre of attention. Everyone had issues going on in Season 6. Buffy was ripped out of heaven yet Dawn is all "me, me, me".
I agree with this and it's very annoying especially since Buffy died to save Dawn. However adolescence isn't easy at the best if times and Dawn has often struggled because she has issues with being real and being wanted because she was created to be something that's no longer relevant.
 

white avenger

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I don’t think that taking Dawn away would make the show boring exactly
I didn't actually mean that a Dawn-less Season 6 would have actually been exactly boring. How could a show that features monster-of-the-week fights, usually with multiple monsters, be boring? I just meant that all the teenage drama and trauma would have been eliminated, or at least cut to a minimum.
 
Athene
Athene
Oh then I agree :)

AlphaFoxtrot

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I remember reading somewhere that Season 6 was your twenties with out a Mentor's safety net was the lemonade they were going to make from ASH's departure. So I have to assume that with Giles around, a lot of the really bad life choices are averted.
 

thetopher

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Sineya
Leaving behind any debatable character benefits it definitely would've affected the plot; Giles was always more focused and research oriented which means that they all would've been onto the Trio sooner (no looking for a frost monster or whatever) and so the Trio would've been easier to catch.
With him gone and Willow being a self-indulgent junkie then the research/investigation initiative was woefully lacking, they all just meandered about. There was nobody to give any impetus to the pursuit of Warren and co.
Giles stays and the Trio get caught much sooner which in turn means no death of Tara and no Dark Willow rampage (yet).
 
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