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Who should have been Dawn's guardian?

nightshade

Your grandfather is a cat
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Black Thorn
So Buffy died at the end of season 5, but after that who should have been Dawn's guardian?

Willow and Tara seemed to take on the role, but they were unemployed students

Xander and Anya were probably better suited, they had their own place, were engaged, and both had stable jobs.

Spike, dead and English!

Giles, not sure of his legal status, I'm guessing the Watchers got him some kind of visa to live and work there?

Angel, also dead, but does own the hotel and his car, plus pays the bills.

Cordelia, does have her own place, kinda employed, but does have health issues then.

Gunn, well he does have experience raising a sibling, but also has a criminal record.

Wesley, same issue as Giles.

Fred, has been missing for 5 years, kinda hard to explain that part!

What do you think, I'm not including her father or aunts?
 

Spanky

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No one. She should have filed the paperwork and became an emancipated teen.
 
NeonSlayer
NeonSlayer
At 15, Dawn couldn't even use a spatula.

white avenger

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Most likely, if things had gone on for more than just the few months that they actually did, (depending on how long Willow could keep the Buffybot in good repair) Dawn would have been taken by Family Services and given a foster home until Hank could have been located. Remember, one of the major reasons for covering up Buffy's death and using the Buffybot was to make it appear that she was still alive and capable of taking care of her sister.

As for the months between the end of Season 5 and the beginning of Season 6, I would say that Giles was fulfilling the role of guardian for all practical purposes.
 

AlphaFoxtrot

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In headcanon, I assume Hank has custody, but Buffy talked him into letting Dawn live with her in Sunnydale, at least until Dawn finishes school, since Hank's never around anyways and he's kind of self absorbed. Hank does send some money, but his income is variable, and he's unreliable, so it's a feast or famine situation. That explains why Buffy is short on money some weeks, but has nice hair otherwise. But either way, it's definitely a plot hole. I don't know what the long term goal would have been if Buffy hadn't returned from the dead. I mean, was Sexbot, Vampire and Witches supposed to raise Dawn for the next five years? I know Willow seemed to think that keeping Crazy Tara locked up in her Dorm room was a long term solution to screaming like an idiot for the rest of her life, so maybe Will is playing this by the seat of her pants? So my choice is, change her back into the Key, have Buffybot sell the Summers house, and the Harris's and the Rosenberg-McClay's meet up for dinner, wine and Shakespeare every Sunday.
 

thrasherpix

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Robin did well enough being raised by Crowley, the Watcher of his mother.

I can personally see Giles as an excellent father figure, though plot overcame his character in season 6 that contradicted how he used to be so it's hard to say. Two things instantly come to mind headcanon wise (as my way of explaining s6 writing, knowing full well this did not occur to the writers) on why he didn't step in on Dawn's behalf.

One, Giles wasn't willing, because he felt awkward that Dawn was the Key (and may have been distressed to form a genuine attachment and bond to her to fear that she would one day die and he'd never remember her).

And two, that he subconsciously blamed Dawn for Buffy's death and could barely stand the sight of her while Buffy was dead (and may have been tempted to "end the Key in case it could bring back Buffy" similar to how Wes would later destroy that magic box hoping it would bring back Fred, but did honor Buffy's wish to see Dawn alive...and probably because he realized it would almost certainly never work). In this case he would not want to be tempted, especially after he's had a bit too much to drink. On a colder level, he may have stuck around primarily in the hopes of Dawn getting killed to see if, just maybe, it brought Buffy bad and it all faded (Wishverse style--and though he had no memory of that, seeing Vampire Willow certainly should've alerted him that there are alternate worlds easily shifted by magic).

On a related but much less likely note, Giles may have even briefly considered using the Key (by killing her as Glory tried) to "find Buffy" but realized that such was beyond his power and he could easily destroy the world (perhaps all of them) in the process, and again, didn't want to tempt himself while in a weak state of mind (as everyone gets into at one point or another, especially if living on the Hellmouth). This line of reasoning could also tempt him to have "Dawn removed and locked away for the protection of us all" and might very well have arranged for that to happen if it wouldn't have disrespected Buffy's sacrifice so much.
 

NeonSlayer

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Giles spent the s5 finale wanting to preemptively murder Dawn. Would you want her raised by someone who could so easily say "She is NOT your sister"? In Bargaining he took off back to England since he was only in the States to be Buffy's Watcher. In Lies My Parents Told Me he brought up Dawn to prove why preemptive murder is a good thing.

Cordelia was willingly putting herself in Joyce's s5 position of CAT scans & pills & brain issues. While Joyce chose to get surgery and fight for her life, Cordelia refused to transfer her tumor (the visions) because she would've felt as useless as Dawn felt, not knowing what she brings to the team if she doesn't have a superpower.

Willow managed to be a power hungry manipulator and a pushover at the same time. One week she could erase your memories and a few weeks later she'll be doing all your chores so you're not mad at her. She will think you're a traitor if you warn her about her magic use but she will be unable to discipline you the way a mother should.

Angel couldn't even take care of teenage Connor. If Dawn has a bratty fit and turns on him would he kick her out of the hotel and force her to live alone in an abandoned building?

In the comics Xander started kissing & having sex with Dawn when she was 19, that's only 4 years after The Gift. If he was the one raising her in her late teens would he....can't even.
 

Dora

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They kept Buffy's death from her father and the writers forgot about him so he is not mentioned at all ? he logically should have looked after Dawn
Giles!! what a A/hole after Buffy got his salary returned to him and back dated, he abandon Buffy and Dawn for no good reason ! totally selfish, not the fathers love we are told he held for Buffy....... of course up to S6 he would have made a great dad for Dawn , S6 his Character was so degraded you would not let him look after your goldfish .
Willow is becoming a junkie
Xander and Anya, couldn;t see the authority's allowing them to be looking after a teenager , and what would have happened to Dawn at his soap opera wedding when he left Anya at the alter
Spike and Angel are both dead and vampires so not human
Only leaves Tara not a relative or any thing, so the only option is for Dawn is to be put in care
 

thrasherpix

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Couldn't have much good in season 6 so life had to be absurdly bad...and obstacles (including all the Scoobies) had to be tweaked or removed so that the Spuffy arc could happen.

While I could add more to my previous idea, I can add that Giles would be afraid of what other Watchers would do with Dawn (and they'd surely run their own magical tests on her, just to be on the safe side even if they didn't know she was the Key), and also that it would probably look weird to being a bureaucratic nightmare for a foreigner to adopt the girl even if he didn't leave the country. And in this case the system would be sure to alert Hank in that case, though all things considered in season 6, Hank may have very well been the best choice--and get Dawn far away from the Hellmouth in the process, the town that made the worst parts of DC look like Mayberry with no one saying boo about it even with Buffy present). Despite this, I still think he's the best choice character wise if restricted to the Scoobies.

It's unclear how Angel in LA owned anything as he technically didn't exist within the system...though I guess he had something. It would still be dangerous (might as well stay in Sunnydale). Though I will say I don't see Angel kicking Dawn out as he did Connor for multiple reasons. One, Dawn doesn't have the toughness and power of Connor who grew up in a world far worse than our own (IOW, he shouldn't be thought of, or written as, some soft middle class kid in the USA). Two, Dawn wouldn't have been bold enough to take part in such a plot as Connor did. And on the meta-level, the writers subconsciously thought of females as weak and vulnerable (among other things) and that showed in their dialog and character arcs (where it took deliberate resolve to write a female character as anything else--even Buffy suffered under these biases when it was tangential to the main story they're writing about), which means it would just not do to have Angel to kick the little girl out onto the streets. But still, there was danger aplenty (and I'd be fascinated to see how Jasmine and Dawn reacted to each other). (And I'm even less thrilled with the other members of AI getting guardianship over her, at least if they remain in LA.)

As for Xander & Anya (not counting anything in the comics that I consider AU anyway), their place was smaller, and I can see the fandom (many of whom forget that kids aren't as ignorant and fragile as they think of them, and given what I recall of growing up, I think many must've blanked out much of their own childhoods) would not like to see her exposed to the likely talk and sexual antics of the pair (which she'd probably hear, though it would amuse me if Dawn learned to play the TV really loud, and occasionally make some comment in front of the Scoobies, one that would likely to followed up by Anya adding something, that caused Xander to squirm) so that would be out (unless they just want to pretend Xander and Anya's room is in another dimension, IOW, pretend Xander and Anya are, at the very least, very discrete, and what's one more character revision?). As for me personally, I just don't see Anya or Xander as parental figures willing and able to put their foot down with Dawn (though Xander would otherwise be responsible), or at least easily distracted or tricked if they do.

And one more problem that is a strike against everyone but Willow and Tara: if Dawn moves then that draws attention. Pretending that season 6 approaches realistic, then at the very least they'd have to PRETEND Dawn lived in the Summers house (and she'd probably go there on her own anyway) as otherwise that has to be noted on school records and the like, and if Buffy isn't around to give her signature as well as fill out other paperwork involved (like say a lease which would likely require selling the house, etc) in the move (the Buffybot wasn't up to that task) then that could cause problems right away (and if Scoobies got killed on patrol, she was technically safe from vampires in her own home--that is, IF it still counted given that the legal owners and guardians were dead), and that's in spite of stupid cops and Sunnydale Syndrome. Granted, Willow could use magic and we can pretend it doesn't have consequences beyond Tara whining about it, but it still seems like a lot of risk to move her somewhere else.

But Willow was increasingly reckless and hubristic, while Tara didn't strike me as someone who could do more than wag her finger (even if Tara could keep from shriveling up should Dawn say something mean because Tara put her foot down, she might still find herself drowning as an empath in Dawn's intense feelings). Still, there's plenty worse out there, and I can see the situation being as it is at the start of season 6 with Dawn living in the Summers home under the two witches.

I'm still wanting to know more of Hank who was far from the Hellmouth, though Dawn would have issues of "not being real" so that her father's love wasn't real--and his love seems selfish and fickle which would exacerbate that feeling--whereas the Scoobies knew what Dawn was and accepted her anyway. Perhaps that alone made Hank unsuitable for Dawn, despite living far away from the Hellmouth (and there's really not much else to know about him).
 
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J

joseph

Guest
So Buffy died at the end of season 5, but after that who should have been Dawn's guardian?

Willow and Tara seemed to take on the role, but they were unemployed students

Xander and Anya were probably better suited, they had their own place, were engaged, and both had stable jobs.

Spike, dead and English!

Giles, not sure of his legal status, I'm guessing the Watchers got him some kind of visa to live and work there?

Angel, also dead, but does own the hotel and his car, plus pays the bills.

Cordelia, does have her own place, kinda employed, but does have health issues then.

Gunn, well he does have experience raising a sibling, but also has a criminal record.

Wesley, same issue as Giles.

Fred, has been missing for 5 years, kinda hard to explain that part!

What do you think, I'm not including her father or aunts?
okay Tara & Willow made great parents for dawn but they r kinda young I mean could you raise a 15 year old at twenty I know I could not same with Xander Giles would make a great father but he would not be allowed a single man trying to adopt a child DSS would never allow that.
 

Ethan Reigns

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He and Dawn got along well and there was never any suggestion of anything sexual and being an all-American demon, there would be no issues with national origin. If Child Protective Services demurred, he could get after them for racism. We don't see any income other than from kitten poker but he has managed to keep body and non-soul together for a long enough time that he has to have something.
 

NeddaSai

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Her father. I really don't see why it should be anyone else.

You know I would've loved it if everyone's memories of the first four seasons came back after Buffy's death for one reason or another, and Dawn dissapeared from others' memories (the ones who didn't interact with her in S5 like her dad and Angel)

The scoobies would get thier original memories back but they'd still know S5 Dawn and why she's there. In that case I can see them trying to care for her and one of them (probably Giles or Tara) stepping up as guardian.
 

NeonSlayer

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Her father. I really don't see why it should be anyone else.

You know I would've loved it if everyone's memories of the first four seasons came back after Buffy's death for one reason or another, and Dawn dissapeared from others' memories (the ones who didn't interact with her in S5 like her dad and Angel) In that case I can see the Scoobies trying to care for her and one of them (probably Giles or Tara) stepping up as guardian.
Hank didn't even attend Joyce's funeral. Buffy was the one who cooked her breakfast, picked up her medication, went over the grocery list, spent time with her in the hospital, talked about her final wishes, waited for her biopsy & surgery & autopsy results, picked her coffin, and planned the funeral.

In s5 Hank was in Spain with his (probably younger) secretary.
 
NeddaSai
NeddaSai
I understand. Just saying he should step up.

AlphaFoxtrot

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Regarding Angel's legal status; go watch Highlander. But remember, legal identity was a lot easier to establish at one point. There are still rural elderly alive in the United States who were born at home, and have no documentation except for a family Bible recording their birth. Baptism Certificate was proof of ID for children in Canada in the 90s. And some states didn't keep any records until the 1950s, you published an Ad in the Newspaper. Angel was active in the 1940s, he probably either stole an ID or made one up at some point. He could have a bearer share corporation somewhere. But it's entirely doable, but it would be more difficult today.
 
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