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Article When good TV goes bad: how Buffy the Vampire Slayer started to suck

Discussion in 'Sunnydale Cemetery' started by GwenRaiden, Mar 27, 2017.

  1. matt124

    matt124 Potential

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    Looking back Buffy season 7 may have had its bad points. But naturally over the years and the older I gotten, I have come to find so many shows after Buffy's time are much much worse in its final seasons compared to Buffy. These days shows just don't know when to end.

    Sometimes I feel season 7 was rushed, and naturally didn't get a proper build-up to finish. As if they didn't want the show to end, and keep it going but SMG wanted to move on. Sometimes I wonder, had Buffy gotten just one more season with season 8, and they knew 100% it would end in 2 years. They may have planned things better.

    I just felt the shift from season 6 to 7 changed, and I kinda felt it needed to properly resolve stories from 6 if it were not the final season, and naturally build to the ending in a season 8. If that makes sense. Because the first half was strong with the light feel from season 6 being dark. That it just felt like it was rushed.
     
  2. Dora

    Dora Potential

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    Hi Matt I think every body had a good idea Sarah would not sign on again, I remember a interview with MN not long after season six finished when she said they did not expect Sarah to extend her contract beyond season seven. Any talk of a revival the Actors always say no not with out Joss and JW had limited input into later seasons of Buffy
     
  3. matt124

    matt124 Potential

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    Hi Dora,

    Thanks for confirming this, I honestly forgot. So again, this just makes me sad they didn't plan out the season better. Although it does make me curious if Buffy did go beyond 7 and SMG did sign on for another season or two. How things would turn out, like even if WB still cancelled Angel, Angel's story would go back to Buffy for closure. It also means Angel season 5 has some changes.

    But you look at television today, and how many shows keep on going and going. Maybe we got lucky with Buffy. Imagine if Buffy lasted as long as Supernatural and went 12 or 13 seasons. OMG. But had Buffy been made today, I honestly expect it might have lasted much longer than it did back in the day. But I don't want to think about those things.

    Vampire Diaries can't hold a candle to Buffy. It is still much better, and I watched Vampire Diaries. But its last two seasons are miles worse than Buffy, it makes season 7 look like a masterpiece in comparsion.
     
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  4. The Ferg

    The Ferg Mine is an evil laugh!

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    Eh, I think that article's being a little too harsh. The potentials are clearly the problem here, but the surrounding episodes were fantastic. Episodes 1-7 were classic Scooby hijinx and really hearkened back to the high school years, and episodes 16-22 were this epic long-form arc that all lead up to the finale and actually dealt with characters I cared about like Andrew, Spike, Wood, Faith, and Caleb. The real problem with S7, in my humble opinion, is that 8-episode middle section that was just meddling and annoying as hell. How obvious can it be that, in your final season, your audience would rather have stories with the Scoobies in it, rather than some nobodies?
     
    Guy: Yep, this. Although I would add episodes 8 & 9 to the good parts, too.
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  5. The Bronze

    The Bronze GraceZ

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    Black Thorn
    Yeah pretty much this. I remember on my rewatch thinking that you could almost see and feel the quality drop from the moment they arrived on screen. I would say the end episodes have their issues as well. I think some of the character decisions are quite hard to accept. Although they have fuelled years of debate on here.
     
  6. Dora

    Dora Potential

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    I don't blame the potentials idea, I blame poor writing and poor casting and the fact most could not act ,. wasn't that the whole thing with Buffy the original casting and Writing was spot on, shaky in season one but two and three excellent, after that Joss diluted Buffy writers a little in four , not sure what happened at the end of Five. No the main problem with six and seven was the lack of Joss and his guidance, Joss and his friction with Sarah, Marti Noxious love of depressing story lines and her over use of Spike. At the end of Seven, Sunnydale gone , Spike gone, potentials activated, Faith back, when Buffy looked up the road, I always though endless opportunities to move Buffy story forward unfortunately Joss basically had also gone at the end of season 5. What of JW mind set at the time, because from what I read Angel would have gone on if JW had not demanded to Know if they were renewing Angel half way though the season pushing the TV company into a decision , Joss had two programs cancelled and his leading lady walk in a 18 month period, Obviously not seem all the photos or interviews yet from the EW get together, but from what I have seen Sarah and Joss seems still distant?
    --- Double Post Merged, Mar 31, 2017 ---
    I think you will find it dived when MN came back from maternity leave , as for the rest I feel the scoobies were sacrificed for MN love of the character Spike. Worst actual incident of all was the Scoobies expelling of Buffy from her house so Spike could ride in, give a Riley speech and save the day .
     
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  7. Geobubbles

    Geobubbles Can I play with the puppy?

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    Black Thorn


    I honestly don't blame Joss for wanting to know whether or not they'll get another season. He's had really bad luck with that kind of thing and wanted to end Angel on a good note rather than a bad one and a proper ending.
     
  8. Tome

    Tome Berktwad

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    Black Thorn
    BtVS never “started to suck”. While season 6 and season 7 had their share of average episodes, they were still enjoyable. The main problem for me in season 7 was the lack of focus on the Core Four, which should have been extremely important considering it was the last season. Add to this that the newly introduced characters were not the most fleshed out (Robin Wood, the Potentials, Kennedy, etc.) and that some characters had become unlike themselves (Giles being the prime example). It was a combination of problems. Imo, the season had started great with that first episode back in Sunnydale High and with that 'Power' speech by The First Evil. However, it eventually fizzled out for me. The finale was still great, though. That's at least something.
     
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  9. Dora

    Dora Potential

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    Not sure that there had been any sign that the company was not going to renew Angel, but I can see your point, forcing them to make a early decision...unfortunately his gamble did not pay off
     
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  10. Puppet

    Puppet My ass is not pansy!

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    Black Thorn
    Please stop assuming that all 'Spuffy girls' are exactly the same, it's hurtful and proof of 1 dimensional thinking. I'm a Spuffy shipper, but not only would I never do something as atrocious as send death threats to SMG for being a Bangel shipper, I have nothing but respect for Bangel shippers. I may not respect the Bangel itself, but people are allowed their opinions. SMG, DB and JM, and the rest of the cast, are all wonderful people and talented actors. Do not presume to know what you're talking about, especially when you aren't even a 'Spuffy girl' yourself!

    On another note :)

    I find myself agreeing with most of the OP, except for the Amanda thing. She's what I call 'annoying in the right way', so I never minded her. When a character is supposed to be somewhat annoying (like Andrew) it's not as bad as when they aren't meant to be that way (like Kennedy, for me at least)

    Other than that, very well-thought out ideas, some I hadn't even considered myself :D
     
    GraceK: I always liked Amanda. Honestly they could have just used her and Viv to represent the potentials instead of all those random girls .
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2017
  11. Dora

    Dora Potential

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    I think it could have gone on for a few more seasons and some of Sarah's work load taken off of her with the introduction of Faith and with Giles actually being Giles , no Spike if he came back then not in the first season , no MN in charge and with Joss giving it he full attention....but that was not going to happen......
    --- Double Post Merged, Aug 3, 2017 ---
    I am neither,Bangel or Spuffy. Angel hints of paedophile to me , and Spike with the sexual abuse. I agree with JM Spike was not good enough for Buffy
    As for the death threats of course not all Spuffy are that sick but some are, making death threats to someone over a make believe character ????? that is sick
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2017
  12. Puppet

    Puppet My ass is not pansy!

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    Black Thorn
    Well, we can agree on that, death threats are not okay, in any forum. I didn't mean to insinuate that you were a Bangel shipper, just meant that maybe your opinions on Spuffy shippers was a bit strong for not being a part of that community yourself. Sorry if I came off harshly, I just felt personally attacked by your comment and I'd like to think I'm generally a decent person :) wouldn't we all...
     
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  13. Dora

    Dora Potential

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    Never seen one on a forum they would I trust get removed A.S.A.P I get the impression they come personal and though social media.....I think something happened at a New York comic con when Sarah was the seventh sister, there was a post that was quickly taken down on her twitter page of a person apologising to Sarah about some incident at the comic con. Sarah posted that night she loved James equal with David and always had a good relationship with him ...If you listen Sarah mention death threats at the EW 20th get together ...No doubt beautiful women in the public eye attracts their fair share of general nutters but without Sarah no Buffy and no Buffy no Spike
     
  14. Puppet

    Puppet My ass is not pansy!

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    Black Thorn
    Sorry, I meant to say form, not forum, my bad.
     
  15. TriBel

    TriBel Scooby

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    Dora - please stop doing this. You make some good points but remarks such as "Spuffy girls you are sick" completely undermine their credibility. I don't want to imply this is a homogenous community so I'll speak only for myself. I'm not a girl - I have sons too old to be thought of as boys. I'm women, a feminist, and a professional with a career and qualifications that, IMO, enable me to make considered (though rather long) comments on this forum. All the comments I've seen on this site have been equally considered and I've learned a lot from them. I've seen nothing that warrants the label "sick".

    Personally, I have no problem with Season 7. On the contrary, I admire S7. IMO, both in terms of content and form (particularly the latter) it's a piece of art that references other works of art and itself. It's revolutionary in the Kristevian sense. Does it not occur that SMG doesn't know who Buffy is anymore because BUFFY doesn't know who she is anymore? That rather than being "poor" or distracted acting, it's very good acting underscoring the main thesis of the content?

    I do. Would you like a 50,000 word monologue on the topic?
    --- Double Post Merged, Aug 11, 2017 ---
    I think that's a really interesting point - would you care to give examples? IMO, you're absolutely right to look to arms and hands. However, we differ inasmuch as I'd argue the writers knew exactly what they were doing.
    --- Double Post Merged, Aug 11, 2017 ---
    And she has very bad hair! :)
     
    Fool for Buffy: I wasn't on this thread because I disagree with the topic but thankfully I accidentally clicked and saw this perfect post.
  16. RomanticSoul

    RomanticSoul Scooby

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    The writers had no clue what to do at all that Season. Too many cooks, for one. The Season started off ok, going back to basics which a lot of people had missed. Then Marti comes back from maternity leave and it's back to Spuffy and all the icky that comes with it, Willow is a dishrag too scared of her own shadow, Giles was replaced with a robot and Xander becomes window dressing. Then you have Whedon still messing with scripts to make Spike the victim and Buffy the bad guy (ala 'Beneath You). And Whedon then comes back towards the end with a nonsensical finale that throws the Season's plot under the bus, makes Buffy an idiot with a stupid plan, has her and Willow violate thousands of girls without consent, pretends the Scoobies suddenly are friends again after 2 Seasons of hating each other and gives Spike the hero moment because the show is no longer called Buffy (complete with the last word Buffy said on the show being 'Spike').

    I don't need to give examples really. That's all SMG was allowed to do in terms of expressing emotions as the Season went on. And it's not like it's her fault for suddenly sucking as an actress because she did fine as The First. But to get even an inkling of what Buffy was feeling, I have to looks what SMG does with her arms/hands.
     
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  17. TriBel

    TriBel Scooby

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    I wasn't being critical. I asked because I think what's happening with hands/arms is fundamental to the season. Since Galen, hands have been a sign of humanity and agency. My argument would be that looking at hands / arms is precisely what the text wants you to look at. The reason I said I thought the writers knew what they were doing is because it is an over-arching theme. Giles - I think - is to do with a shift towards a different idea of knowledge - one based on all the senses - not one that privileges sight (also to do with the fact that she doesn't need a father figure anymore). I agree there's a different feel to the text and some characters are side-lined but I read this as indicative of what happens in life - ie. once there's a love interest priorities change.

    I admit, I also have a problem with making all the potentials slayers without getting their consent. I'm not sure whether the text supports this or not (at one level it does, at another level it may be critical of it. TBH, I haven't decided). Thanks for the response.
     
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  18. RomanticSoul

    RomanticSoul Scooby

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    Galen has nothing to do with it. SMG is a better actress than arms and hands. Has been for 6 Seasons previous. Sometimes you knew what she felt just by looking in her eyes. But in S7 they don't allow her anything in terms of feelings. And I don't accept that because 'angry' and 'sad' are only 2 emotions. Buffy is capable of more than that. And I need more than that was viewer, especially when a character is as insane as Buffy is in S7.

    My problem isn't the girls that are there because they gave consent. However I'm pretty sure (though I admit my memory can be faulty) it was said earlier in the Season that these potentials were all that's left so they have to be protected. And suddenly because Whedon, as usual, wants his cool moment so screw everything else...there are still girls all over the world. And they have their body and mind violated against their will. When the shadow men did this to the first slayer and then tried Buffy, it was wrong. But it's suddenly not wrong when Buffy and Willow do it? Why? Because it's only wrong when men do it to women but not when women do it to other women? Modern feminism in a nutshell.
     
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  19. TriBel

    TriBel Scooby

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    Agree - but I thought her face was pretty expressive.


    Not sure it's "modern femininism" per se. As far as I can see, what drives the surface narrative is Liberal Feminism and LF has been criticised by other Feminisms for universalising the female experience . However, I'm not sure whether there's a subtle self-critique of the surface text (Rona's remark about the "black chick getting it first" is a valid criticism of film stereotypes. But, how am I meant to read Rona herself? The " angry black woman" is, itself, a stereotype. Is Whedon being ironic or not? That's the problem with postmodernism - the political can be overwhelmed by the playful. There are critical postmodern texts but they always risk being misinterpreted. As it is, I do think there's a critique going on - but, I think Spike is the vehicle for it. It's not as contradictory as it sounds - he's an "unruly" character, the "other". 120 years ago, the new women was "unruly" and woman have always been other. It's one of the reasons I like him (my feminist credentials out of the window - I'm also swayed by head-tilts). Sorry - having to rush this! Apologies if I've misunderstood anything.
     
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  20. Meliza

    Meliza Potential

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    This is a chronic misunderstanding of the show. The Shadow men set it up so one girl could fight the demons, no one else had to deal with them. The one girl would be the sacrificial lamb of the community and her life would be short and brutal. It could not have been a boy because they love their sons, want them to follow in their footsteps, they simply raise their daughters, women and girls are disposable but what to do as a male dominated society that ultimately wants be in control? they decide to always activate the next slayer well still very young, just adult enough to battle. The Watchers Council consider slayer power to be their power and the slayer their "tool" so they create the crematorium and pass it off as a right of passage tradition that takes places on a slayers eighteenth birthday. A birthday which signifies adulthood and independence. The crematorium is meant to serve the purpose of keeping the slayer young.

    After Buffy broke ranks with the Watchers Council I guess they figured they would only have to wait a short while. Buffy has not forced every girl who might have been called into servitude like she was, she has not given them powers either, she has only unleashed the power that already resided inside them and unleashed their destiny from being in the hands of fate or the council or outside their control. The fact Buffy and most everybody has had no clue who exactly would be called is part and parcel of the unfairness of the whole thing.

    They have diminished the cruelty of it all because now no one girl has to fight alone, they can choose not to fight at all there is no claim on them not like there was on Buffy where in, people would continue dying for as long as she was alive and not picking up the battle.

    Some might be sour, hold a grudge against Buffy but it is like hating Dawn for the memory spell the monks did. The fact of the existence of people who would rather have somebody else do the fighting for them, would rather have the sacrificial lamb so to speak, does not negate the massive good that was done.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2017
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