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What are your issues with Riley?

Discussion in 'Season 4' started by Merrick, Mar 19, 2014.

  1. CharlieGunn1

    CharlieGunn1 Ready for battle...

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    Riley could have been fixed by the removal of his chip. He could have turned away from the pouty, "why can't Buffy love me" character we got in Season 5, we could have had a straight up good guy, out of his depth. But he would have been too much of a copy of Xander, without the ironic wit and sarcasm. He should have realized on his own that Buffy was beyond him, and that she would never truly get over Angel, and give her time to figure out who she was without him.

    He's a prototypical college jock boyfriend...with only occasional flashes of changing.

    I liked Riley a lot more then most, but honestly a lot of the things were shown about him never really work. Were told that he's a good' ol' farmboy from the Midwest, a cowboy with honor and respect and decency, but all of that is undercut in the moment he acknowledged for the first time that Buffy was 'stronger then him' and that he didn't think he could take her. Then he straight up says "give me time", Dude! Not cool to even joke about beating up your girlfriend! That part always makes me see red.

    When he comes back in Season 6, it's only marginally better, but he still feels like a slightly less whiny version of himself.

    Sometimes this show makes the most amazing characters, and sometimes we get Riley.
     
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  2. Slayrunt

    Slayrunt Oh ho! Aren’t you Mr. Dicey Semantics?

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    He couldn't handle buffy was stronger then him. He had a macho man attitude about it. Also he was blah
     
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  3. Bluebird

    Bluebird two by two, hands of blue

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    Black Thorn
    I don't think Riley was served well by the writing in season 5. He got progressively less likeable to the general audience.

    That aspect and exploration of his character I really liked though. His idea of his role/image and his insecurities over his masculinity made him more human to me. I think that's why I like Xander so much. Insecurities of masculinity are an interesting subject to me. I like seeing how people deal with the societal norm and how they fit in it.
     
  4. DeadlyDuo

    DeadlyDuo Scooby

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    Riley had even more pressure to be masculine than Xander did, not to mention that Spike was starting to sniff around Buffy so Riley had that to contend with.
     
  5. Alara

    Alara Townie

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    I think he just didn't quite fit into the Buffyverse much like Oz didn't quite fit. I was so glad when those two left the show. Everyone on the show had a quirkiness to them and always a good one-liner that both Oz and Riley just didn't master well. Even Angel who is mostly boring to me had some quips every now and then but Riley never did and Oz tried but failed miserably.
     
  6. Puppet

    Puppet My ass is not pansy!

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    Black Thorn
    I tend to say I despise Riley when I haven't watched the show in a while, but tbh I like him a tiny bit more with every rewatch of S4, and then that gets utterly destroyed in S5 and I'm right back where I started; it's a cruel circle.

    For me, it had nothing to do with him being a replacement Angel, since I was never a fan of Bangel. It was really all about Riley himself. As a character he was boring, and that's not what you want in a world of extraordinarily well-written and unique characters. One of the reasons BtVS is one of my all-time favorite shows is the complexity of each character and Riley just doesn't fit in that slot.

    As someone once said, he's about as exciting as watching paint dry.

    That being said, he does, admittedly, have his moments. My issues with him also stem from the fact that the writers didn't seem to be able to figure out exactly who he was, and it showed on screen. One moment he's one guy, next episode he's completely different, and then he bounces back yet again in the next episode. Really annoying and makes it difficult to appreciate his character.

    My least favorite parts of his character's arc, from S4 to S6, is that he somehow had enough power over Buffy to make her feel like it was her fault that he cheated on her, put himself in danger (thus putting her family and friends in danger) and moving on from her too quickly for what he said was the love of his life...ass...
     
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  7. Athena

    Athena Belinda Staff Member

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    Black Thorn
    Yes! Same here. You realise he's not so bad in S4 and then S5 comes around and he starts trying to control Buffy and slut-shaming her and I'm like.... "What happened to the sweet country boy from S4?!" :confused:
     
  8. flow

    flow Will you just hold me ?

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    I always liked Riley. He wasn`t Mr. Right for Buffy but that doesn`t make him a bad guy at all.

    Let me say this: In S7 Buffy asks Riley to help, with Spikes chip. There are options: repair the chip or remove the chip.

    Riley doesn`t make the decision. He trusts Buffy enough to let her decide. And he does that even though he does not like Spike very much.

    I think, that says a lot about what kind of man he really is.

    Flow
     
  9. Mr Trick

    Mr Trick Scooby

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    I think the problem with him in S4 is him just being boring and not having enough to the character (also I don't think much to the performance) rather than the character being unlikable (there are times when he is still), but S5 and 6 do change that. He at no point had that same spark with Buffy/SMG that Angel or Spike had.
     
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  10. dcai0830

    dcai0830 You spent three weeks moaning in a basement!

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    Black Thorn
    Issues with Riley:
    1. He was written initially as an insufferably over the top stereotypical good guy. Who in the modern age of dating says things like "courting" or "say, how about that picnic". I understand he is from Iowa but is he also from the 1950's? I can only assume this was supposed to be over the top and annoying right? Were we supposed to swoon?

    2. Riley has no personality, no inner struggles, no personal flaws outside of the issues and battles that he faces when dealing with Buffy and his relationship with her. He has no personal story arc that I am personally concerned with or invested in. Who are you Riley Finn?

    3. He didn't recognize how out of character Faith in Buffy's body was acting. Even if if your mind doesn't automatically go to this isn't Buffy, why wouldn't you at least talk to her about how she is acting funny before sleeping with her?

    4. Can I be extremely shallow and say he had horrible hair? Compared to Spike and Angel the other men in Buffy's life he is just not nearly as attractive.

    5. He thought that Buffy slept with Angel when she went to go visit him during Sanctuary. I understand feeling insecure in that relationship but how could you think so little of Buffy to think she would cheat and betray you?

    6. He blamed Buffy for letting Dracula bite her? Huh? I feel like Buffy was constantly apologizing to him and reassuring him. It must have been exhausting.

    7. He felt so insecure in his own physical abilities compared to Buffy that he continued to poison himself to have super strength, that shows weak character.

    8. When it became apparent that Buffy did not feel for him the way he wanted her to feel (some sort of desperate need?) he effectively cheated on her and then BLAMED her for it. No Riley, its not Buffy's fault that you decided to get sucked off by Vamps.

    9. He gave Buffy, our heroine, our bad ass, a model of feminism, a freaking ultimatum. Pfft screw you Riley Finn. You don't do that to people you love and you certainly don't do it to my Buffy.

    10. He comes back to Buffy, married, flirts with her, fails to tell her he is married until it is uncomfortable and awkward.

    Those are some of my issues with Riley Finn.
     
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  11. nina98

    nina98 Did I get it?

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    I like Riley. Mainly, I really wanted to see Buffy dealing with the challenges of having a human boyfriend, and the human boyfriend dealing with the challenges of having a slayer girlfriend. I wish the writers had explored this more and hadn't bailed on Riley so soon. It was a huge opportunity lost, given that he was her only lasting human boyfriend of the series.

    In any case, what would have happened after The Gift? I can't see him dealing with being with someone who was dead for three months. So I think the breakup would have felt more natural and believable at the beginning of season 6, without having to come up with the contrived storyline they used to make us hate him in season 5.

    Or, they could have had Glory kill him off near the end of season 5. When Buffy came back, there always would have been the question of whether she was with Riley in heaven. Food for thought.
     
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  12. brittles

    brittles Scooby

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    Sineya
    i definitely agree that this character was waaaaay underwritten. I think I may be the only die hard Buffy fan who loves this character and I don't know why! I get it that yes sometimes he tends to be a very black and white thinker and doesn't really understand a lot of choices the scoobies make or why but I think people tend to forget that this guy is a "corn-fed Iowa boy" and maybe a bit naive to the ways of the buffyverse. I think he has good intentions but the way he goes about dealing with somethings comes off wrong to everyone else. I think he really does care for Buffy and when he can't reach her the more desperate and perhaps annoying he seems in trying to connect with her.
     
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  13. Antho

    Antho Scooby

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    Why people hate Riley ?

    Simply answer : He is after Angel and Before Spike ^^ He has the wrong place !
     
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