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Question Why did Buffy try to keep Spike's lighter?

Joined
Feb 23, 2019
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593
Black Thorn
I think I'm probably being really stupid, but I still don't understand why Buffy picked up his lighter, put it in her pocket and proceeded to lie about it in the episode 'gone'. It's really bugging me because I can usually understand what she is doing to some extent but for this I have no idea.
Does anyone know/ have their own ideas about what she was doing or trying to do?
 

thetopher

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Sineya
Wasn't she trying to hide the lighter from other people whilst at the same time being preoccupied about Willow's addiction/moving all the mystic stuff out of the house and Dawn's moodiness. And then also wasn't the social worker visiting?

The main thing I remember about the whole lighter thing is Spike refusing to leave her home when Buffy told him to several times.
 

r2dh2

Never go for the kill when you can go for the pain
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I think that the lighter per se was a way of showing that Willow’s addiction and Buffy’s addiction were mirroring each other to some extent. We see Buffy taking the lighter from the couch and putting it in a box when she’s explaining to Dawn that anything related to magic could be a temptation for Willow. Buffy sees the lighter and obviously remembers her hot night with Spike – that’s the temptation for her.

How and why it made it from the box to her pants, I don’t know. Maybe to show the audience that she was gonna keep indulging her temptation despite her own words? Or maybe I’m reading too much into it, and it was merely a plot device for making Spike touch her in the following scenes?
 
Willow Tara
Willow Tara
Yes! Thought that too!
gnarl
gnarl
that was my reading of it :)

Athene

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Sineya
I think Buffy meant to give it back to Spike but then didn’t because she didn’t want it to seem like she was holding on to the lighter and the time they spent together. She didn’t want to be caught red handed with it I’d say.
 

SunnydaleGlitz

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Sineya
You're spot on @r2dh2, it was meant to parallel Willow's addiction by keeping away all objects that reminded her of her temptation. The lighter represented her hot night with Spike, so Buffy places it in the box but then ends up keeping it because temptation proves, you know, tempting.

Spike ostensibly arrives to look for his lighter (well, that's part of the reason, the main reason is that it's also an excuse to see Buffy), and Buffy could have returned it right then and he'd have had no excuse to linger (or would've had to think up a new excuse in haste.) The lighter was the main reason he said he'd come ("don't flatter yourself love, bloody fond of that lighter.")

When he asks Buffy about the lighter she quickly (and nervously) lies to him: "Haven't seen it." She didn't want him to know she was still holding on to it. As to WHY she was still holding on to it...well, she obviously had conflicted feelings. That's how the whole scene was set up.
 
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r2dh2
r2dh2
You took the words right out of my mouth. I also remembered later on that she had
deliberately lied to him about not seeing it when he arrived looking for it.
TriBel
TriBel
Completely agree SG! :)
Willow Tara
Willow Tara
100% agree! That's what I always thought too!

white avenger

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Maybe the lighter is some kind of metaphor for what Buffy was actually trying to get from Spike. I've heard that the final scene in "Chosen," when Buffy and Spike's hands burst into flame was actually him giving her back the fire that she first sang about in "Once More With Feeling."

Or maybe she was just wanting it in case Faith ever came back to town and needed a light.

Then again, antique Zippo lighters command a premium with collectors. Maybe she just planned on pawning it.

Nah, Spike probably was just practicing a little slight of hand, and he planted it there earlier just as an excuse to come by.
 
TriBel
TriBel
The metaphor works. Fire's there from the beginning. It's still there in S11. Don't know why you didn't quote your own banner! :)

DeadlyDuo

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Spike has called Buffy goldilocks before, back in Season 4.

I think she did intend on giving him back his lighter but then bailed on it at the last minute which then backed her into a corner.
 

Joan the Vampire Slayer

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Does anyone know/ have their own ideas about what she was doing or trying to do?
Personally, I think she kept the lighter to have a little something to remember Spike by. It's an item he loves, that undoubtedly she's seen him use multiple times, and it probably gave her some comfort to have it on her body. Maybe it made her feel closer to him.

Beyond that, yeah, it's an excuse to call Spike again. Or to drop by his crypt. To "return" this lighter. To hace an excuse to put herself near him again. Despite what she tells herself, she clearly wanted him.

The question is why would Spike get himself another lighter?
Why wouldn't he you mean? It probably had sentimental value. Maybe he kept it as a souvenir from someone he killed. Like his jacket he stole from Nikki.

Maybe the lighter is some kind of metaphor for what Buffy was actually trying to get from Spike. I've heard that the final scene in "Chosen," when Buffy and Spike's hands burst into flame was actually him giving her back the fire that she first sang about in "Once More With Feeling."
This is a fantastic observation I have never thought of! And a great example of the ungoing fire theme that characterizes their relationship.
 

katmobile

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Yep she loved it so much she cut her own hair because Spike said he liked it while he sexaully assaulted her despite Buffy saying no and called her goldilocks....it was just one of the crap things in season sex that made no sense
Cutting your hair isn't an assault metaphor or not just. People who slept with the enemy in wartime were often forced to cut their hair and in real life a lot of women cut their hair after the end a realationship it's a statement of making a new start. In Buffy's case it can function as both a shame and a severence with a past that makes her feel ashamed. I know your reading is abuse but to me it's more a drug or especially accurate a self harm metaphor. Buffy uses Spike (and although he's certainly not blameless she does despite knowing how he feels) for pretty much the same reasons people suffering from depression (like she is) self harm just so she can feel something. We all read things differently but yours isn't other people's or the author's intent no matter what you think and feel and how obvious it is to you.
 

Puppet

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Black Thorn
Why wouldn't he you mean? It probably had sentimental value. Maybe he kept it as a souvenir from someone he killed. Like his jacket he stole from Nikki.
I have this weird fanfic fanon where I've decided that Spike took that Zippo from the 1940's Slayer that the comics say he killed - that way he has 'trophies' from each Slayer kill; scar, lighter, coat. I guess I'm just strange that way :p
 
Joan the Vampire Slayer
Joan the Vampire Slayer
That's a great theroy and totally possible!

white avenger

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Yep she loved it so much she cut her own hair because Spike said he liked it while he sexaully assaulted her despite Buffy saying no and called her goldilocks....it was just one of the crap things in season sex that made no sense
So, a woman cutting her hair means that she no longer loves the man in her life? Maybe I'm in trouble then, because my wife told me that she cut her hair short so it wouldn't be so much trouble in her water aerobics class.

Maybe Buffy just wanted a change (which she apparently didn't like all that much, since she grew it out again) and Spike's comment was just a coincidence. She kept it blond, though that was not her natural hair color (you could sometimes see the darker natural roots) and he could still run his fingers through it if she ever let him.

Nah... she cut it just to piss him off, and failed completely, because he never even commented on the change.
 

Buffy Summers

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Sineya
We all read things differently but yours isn't other people's or the author's intent no matter what you think and feel and how obvious it is to you.
This sentence wasn't necessary - no need to belittle other people even if you disagree. You made your point just fine without making it personal with this.
 

Taake

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Black Thorn
So, a woman cutting her hair means that she no longer loves the man in her life? Maybe I'm in trouble then, because my wife told me that she cut her hair short so it wouldn't be so much trouble in her water aerobics class.

Maybe Buffy just wanted a change (which she apparently didn't like all that much, since she grew it out again) and Spike's comment was just a coincidence. She kept it blond, though that was not her natural hair color (you could sometimes see the darker natural roots) and he could still run his fingers through it if she ever let him.

Nah... she cut it just to piss him off, and failed completely, because he never even commented on the change.
Did she cut her hair on her own in a angry/sad fit after you said you liked it?

I’m not saying you have to agree, I quite like the scene (but hate the haircut) myself, but this just belittles Buffy’s state of despair and depression.

I would say it is clearly in the show to demonstrate Buffy’s mental state, and it wasn’t ”just wanting a change”, as if she was bored of something.
 
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