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Willow is a poor advocate for herself

Scooby Corps

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Willow's motives for the resurrection:

1. Willow loves Buffy, wants her friend back, wants to give Buffy her live back, wants to save Buffy from hell, wants to be her Big Gun.

2. Buffy is Willow's role model for heroism and she doesn't know how to function without her.

3. Willow is uncomfortable in her leadership role. For one, because it's not really her thing, for second, no one respects her leadership when it gets to the meat anyway.

4. They needed the Slayer, although, IMO, that's rather pretextual

4. Willow wanted to prove that she can do it.

5. Willow wanted Giles to come back (after he left). If not for her, then for Buffy.

The first two are kind of unnegotiable and pretty self-evident if one just doesn't disregard S01-05 and looks at S06 alone in a vacuum. Although, even there:

"Her body, yeah. But her soul ... her essence ... I mean, that could be somewhere else. She could be trapped, in-in some sort of hell dimension like Angel was. (tearfully) Suffering eternal torment, just because she saved us, and I'm not gonna let ... I'm not gonna leave her there. It's Buffy. "

To Buffybot, projecting: "I am gonna make you good as new. I promise."

"We have to, Xander! I - she - she's waiting! She's counting on us, on, on me! I can't leave her there any more, I won't. We have to finish."

"No. It's no use. (tearful) The urn's defiled. It's gone. Nothing, it was all for nothing. Buffy's gone. She's really gone."
 
W

WillowFromBuffy

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@DoktorRock I am very close to forgiving you for all the stuff you said about Tara.
 
Scooby Corps
Scooby Corps
Let's just avoid the subject of Tara then <3 I admit I was a bit grouchy last night. Couldn't sleep but had to get up early.

BuffyBot22

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IMO that was fourth on the list. If not further down.

1) Willow wanted to see if she could pull it off, period.
2) Being elected as the new leader is not her cup of tea. Willow doesn't want the responsibility of leadership (even thought she complains plenty about being labeled side-kick).
3) Willow wants to live her normal life of going to college and dating her girlfriend. She saw how much of your life you have to sacrifice as leader and she didn't want that.
4) Here is maybe where I would put her thinking Buffy is in hell and wants to save her from that.

Generally I saw very little evidence that Willow wanted to resurrect Buffy for Buffy's sake. It was mostly all about Willow. And if the AtS crew can find out where Cordy went to, an all powerful witch should have no problem with that.
But that's looking at s6 alone and disregarding that s1-5 exist. Willow loves Buffy like family. She wants her friend back (selfish) and she doesn't want her friend to suffer (selfless).
Maybe she should have been able to find out where Buffy is, but she didn't. I get the feeling a lot of fans think Willow knew Buffy was in heaven yet brought her back anyways (and if this was the case, then I would be on the Willow sucks train), but IIRC no where in the story does it say that Willow knew exactly where Buffy was. She jumped through Glory's portal, so the gang assumed she was in Glory's hell dimension. Should they have tried to figure out exactly where she was? Well yeah. But they thought they knew, their bestfriend was dead, and their only parental other leader role left to England. They (and I say they because it was the whole gang, not just Willow) did what they thought was the right thing to do.
What Willow did came from a place of grief and I truly believe that most people would bring back their loved ones if they had the ability to do so. I will never fault Willow for wanting to bring her friend back. But, I will fault her for ignoring her in the aftermath. Whether it was hard or uncomfortable or whatever her reasoning was, her friend was back from what Willow assumed was hell and she should have tried to talk to her friend she wanted back so badly. She should have tried harder to figure out what was going on with Buffy, but she's only human and made the mistake of giving her space instead of trying to talk to her.
 

RomanticSoul

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But that's looking at s6 alone and disregarding that s1-5 exist.
No, it's not. Willow has been on this path pretty much since S1. For me it's just the natural conclusion. By the later Seasons Willow was using magic more and more as a solution to her problems without any regard for consequences. This was just another of Willow's problems. I didn't even deny that she partially did it for Buffy. But for me that wasn't the most important and defining reason why she did it.
 

BuffyBot22

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No, it's not. Willow has been on this path pretty much since S1. For me it's just the natural conclusion. By the later Seasons Willow was using magic more and more as a solution to her problems without any regard for consequences. This was just another of Willow's problems. I didn't even deny that she partially did it for Buffy. But for me that wasn't the most important and defining reason why she did it.
I guess we will have to agree to disagree then.
Her magic was definitely getting stronger by the seasons, but I still believe she brought Buffy back because she missed her and thought she was suffering, not to prove how awesome she is. Just like in Becoming she restored Angel's soul for Buffy because her friend was hurting, not to prove anything.
 

thetopher

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Willow always fails to stand up for herself in a proper way. Sure, she lashes out in anger at Tara and Giles several times, but never in a proper way. When someone attacks her, she either takes it silently or strikes back with bile.
I agree.
I think its a result of Willow being powerless for so long and having some low self-esteem, but as she gains more power she overcompensates and becomes somewhat arrogant; what's worse is that she links her self-worth intrinsically to her ability to cast magic. So if her magicks are strong ergo she is awesome. If something can be done with magicks then there's nothing wrong in doing it and she can and should do it if she can't do it any other way. This is usually linked to her emotions and her inablity to control them; not just her anger but also her sadness and grief. These are things that should be fixed if they can be.

It's only by S7 that Willow manages to learn some semblance of balance without losing control one way or the other.

I think Willow could have used a good lawyer, because she does a few rather questionable things.
I think its more than a few; about twice a season from Season 3 onward she does some very questionable things.
I don't think she needs a lawyer though, because nobody really prosecutes her.

One thing that has always irked me is that when Tara believed she would turn into an ugly and possibly dangerous demon, she used magic on the scoobies to hide it. It took Willow all of two seconds to forgive her. Willow never brings this up after her own very similar screw up.
Because the intent didn't match to intended outcome; Tara's intent was borne out of being the victim of abuse for much of her life. She only tried to 'hide it' and then spell had another, more terrible outcome. She didn't try to wipe minds or control emotions, only hjde herself.

Also bear in mind that Tara isn't the only one responsible for the danger in 'Family'; its Glory that sends the demons out. But in 'Somethin Blue' for example the chaos comes from Willow and only Willow.
And, as is the theme, she is forgiven almost instantly by those she harmed.

What Willow did to Tara was way over the line, but I have always felt Willow gets to suffer more for her crimes than she deserves.
...
How does she suffer? I mean, sure, she feels bad but then she eventually gets over it and ends up casting another spell resulting in a different flavor of bad; 'oops I helped bring forth Dark Willow or turned Xander into a demon magnet or released a rampaging troll or wiped everyone's memories...better luck next time I guess! I'll be more careful...'

Meanwhile others suffer more. DWillow kills others, the troll breaks Xander's arm after battering him a lot, etc.

In every case instantly forgiven because she 'feel bad'. I suppose that's why S6 is seen as different, her 'crimes' have been happening for a while now but finally, finally, Willow is actually held to account by others, its been a long time coming.

And then the Dark Willow rampage happens where she tries to kill everyone at one point or another.
So it only becomes a narrative problem in S7 when, yet again, Willow feels bad and is (again) almost instantly forgiven by her friends. Yes she is worried that everyone has abandoned her and...casts a spell. The only difference is that this one time she is the only person who suffers negatively because of the spell. Some might call that progress I guess.

In summation Willow does not need an advocate for herself because most people barely hold her to account for anything.
Giles- her harshest critic besides Tara- says some harsh things to her but in the end risks everything (include himself) to save Willow and then takes her away to a magic-summer camp.
Tara leaves Willow because Willow played with her mind and took away her ability to consent. Rightly terrified Tara runs for the hills.
But she still comes back without giving Willow anything approaching a hard time or making Willow apologize for her previous violations.

The worst thing is how everyone - including the other culprits - gave Willow the blame for Buffy's resurrection.
Willow is clearly shown 'in 'Bargaining' to be representative as the driving force and instigator of the whole gambit to resurrect Buffy. She hides key details of the spell and its ingredients from the others; so her fully knowledge makes her more culpable.

Aftrewards she is- tellingly- the only one who shows a desire to be thanked.
Willow never says 'Buffy didn't thank any of us', she says 'Buffy didn't thank me'
Willow wants credit where credit is due, so she should also accept the lion's share of the blame.


As to Willow's motives I think its complex. In order her reasons for resurrecting Buffy are:
- She misses Buffy and cannot cope with the pain of her passing: Giles, Dawn and Spike are specifically showing to grieve for Buffy's passing in their own way and are- more or less- functioning. In contrast the Scoobies are all visibly fine because they never even got to the grieving stage, they just refused to accept that Buffy was gone for ever and are set in getting her back.
- Buffy is in hell: This is mentioned by Willow but its not backed up by any form of reasoning, only assumption. Rationalizing, basically.
- I Can Do This: Willow knows that, with the right ingredients, she can do the spell. She wants to do the spell. To be fair this motivation is only really apparent after Buffy comes back but its telling that Willow thinks she deserves instant thanks and praise from Buffy and congratulations from Giles.
- They all need a Slayer for the Hellmouth: Bottom of the list because they are shown to be a functioning team coping without a slayer.

Giles abandoned the Hellmouth and he abandoned Dawn.
The other were handling things and the 'over-the-hill-shopkeeper' wasn't needed to help research or train the Buffy-bot. These are all established within the first episode of S6.

Giles left because he had no purpose anymore, but he does specifically tell Dawn that he is only a phone call away. And he does come back when needed, when Buffy returns alive and when Willow goes on a rampage.


Good for him that he is careful about magic, but let he who casts the first stone...
Wisdom is surviving your mistakes and advising others not to repeat them. Giles both tries to limit her access to magical texts as well as admonishes Willow several times to be careful with her magical experimentation ('Faith, Hope & Tricks, 'Choices' 'Something Blue') but its clear by S6 that he has completely misjudged/overestimates her moral and ethic boundaries when it coes to abusing the magics and- rightly- calls her out for it; not only because of WHAT she did but also her completely reckless attitude towards what she did;
'I thought you;d be 'impressed or something'.

I think its the fundamental reason for why so many harsh on her character. She isn't held to account by others nearly enough.
 
FaithLehane16
FaithLehane16
Angel was also grieving Buffy's death by spending months at Sri Lanka. He was grieving as much as Dawn, Giles, and Spike were.

FaithLehane16

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I'm sorry, but I find Willow's behavior in Season 6 inexcusable, although I find her turning dark compelling. She resurrected Buffy against her will, manipulated the easiest people to manipulate into taking part of it, lashed out against Giles when he was right, violated her girlfriend, and then tried to screw with her girlfriend and best friend's mind to her means which screwed with everyone's minds.
 

Spanky

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manipulated the easiest people to manipulate into taking part of it
I am no Willow supporter by any means, but I find no fault in this. Why would she try to manipulate the hardest people to manipulate? That would be counter to her purpose.
 

vampmogs

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I'm sorry, but I find Willow's behavior in Season 6 inexcusable, although I find her turning dark compelling. She resurrected Buffy against her will...
I don't think this is far. In Season 1-5 Buffy was very adamant that she did not want to die an unfair and early death. As late as "Fool For Love" she told Giles that she's aware every Slayer's life comes with an expiration date but that "[she] wanted hers to be a long time from now. Like a Cheeto." Willow had absolutely no reason to believe that Buffy wanted to die at 20 years old or that Buffy wouldn't want to be brought back.

We try and prevent death and save people from death all the time. Was Xander wrong to resuscitate Buffy in "Prophecy Girl" because she didn't consent to this? Willow did what most people would do in their position if such a thing was possible. "Against her will" implies that Willow had any reason to believe Buffy would prefer to stay dead, which she didn't.
 

DeadlyDuo

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"Against her will" implies that Willow had any reason to believe Buffy would prefer to stay dead, which she didn't.
Buffy would've rather stayed dead rather than be brought back because she was in heaven, unfortunately the scoobies didn't know that. Buffy knows her friends did it with the best of intentions but she's upset and angry at what they did to her, then she feels guilty because she knows the did it with the best of intentions etc. Buffy's caught in a vicious cycle.

I think Willow struggles to cope with the loss of those close to her. She has to feel like she's doing something: With Jenny, it was carrying on with Jenny's lessons, with Buffy it was finding a way to bring her back, with Tara it was trying to get revenge for her murder. Also Willow couldn't do anything about Jenny's death but she could about Buffy and Tara's. Xander's speech enabled Willow to express her grief at Tara's death which she'd been suppressing with vengeance.
 

vampmogs

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Willow was being selfish. Xander wasn't.
How so? Xander didn't want his friend to die. Willow didn't want her friend to die. Xander brought his friend back to life. Willow brought her friend back to life. Why is one selfish and the other isn't?

Buffy would've rather stayed dead rather than be brought back because she was in heaven, unfortunately the scoobies didn't know that.
I also think it's a really good thing that they didn't because if they had, they may have made the mistake of leaving her there. I have a huge amount of sympathy for Buffy and her depression in Season 6 but I 100% do not entertain the idea that the Scoobies should have left Buffy dead because Buffy was clinically depressed and suicidal. By "Gone" Buffy has already come to the realisation that she no longer wanted to die so what an awful tragedy and terrible waste it would've been for Buffy to remain dead at the young age of 20.

Obviously the fact that Buffy was in a heavenly dimension did make her return to life really hard again. However, I also think it has more to do than just being in heaven and also a lot to do with the fact that Buffy was struggling to cope with her current life situation regardless of whether she'd been in heaven or not. She went, literally, catatonic from the stress of her life in "Weight of the World" so we know that prior to her self-sacrifice that she was really, really struggling. If Buffy's life had been a more pleasant one to return to I'm not convinced Buffy would want to die based just on the fact she missed heaven.

The answer to Buffy's pain certainly isn't to fulfil Buffy's death wish and leave her to rot because she doesn't feel she can cope with the hardships of life. Buffy's life could - and did - get better and all she needed was time. As Alt!Joyce said in "Normal Again" - "You have the world of strength in your heart I know you do. You just have to find it again. Believe in yourself." I'm heartened that so many fans respond to Buffy's pain in Season 6 but I think people greatly misinterpret her pain as some kind of proof that what Willow did was "wrong" and that Buffy should have stayed dead because she was clinically depressed. I don't think people really realise what they're arguing for sometimes! Eeek. Since when do we support suicide instead of trying to help suicidally depressed people cope and get healthy again? It's certainly not what Season 6 is saying. It's not meant to be a tragedy that Buffy embraces like again in "Grave", after all. It's meant to be a positive moment where Buffy sees the beauty in the world.

I think the Scoobies could've done much more to help Buffy after her resurrection. They were really naive about how easily they thought she'd be able to cope after returning (regardless of whether they knew she was in heaven or not). And I'm sympathetic to those who feel Willow was wrong to resurrect Buffy on the basis that she may have put the world at risk (as Giles accused her of in "Flooded"). But I'll never believe they were wrong to resurrect Buffy just because Buffy momentarily believed she was better off dead. There's no way Buffy was better off dead at 20. By midway through Season 6 Buffy herself doesn't even feel that way anymore. She had/has a lot of life left to live.
 
FaithLehane16
FaithLehane16
The answer is obvious.

FaithLehane16

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How so? Xander didn't want his friend to die. Willow didn't want her friend to die. Xander brought his friend back to life. Willow brought her friend back to life. Why is one selfish and the other isn't?
Because he was under the impression that she has passed out, and composed CPR on her, whereas Willow was only thinking about herself. She was in the wrong. Xander was in the right. Xander was under the impression that she wasn't officially dead. Buffy was already dead when she jumped off that tower. After Buffy died in Season 5, Willow and Tara DIDN'T even bother to get a damn job. Willow didn't even make sure that Buffy was in a hell dimension. I don't even buy that she just wanted her best friend back. There were other factors to it. When Xander did CPR, he wasn't in it for himself, and didn't have ulterior motives. There was more positive factors on Xander's doing whereas there was more negative factors on Willow's doing. I don't like or understand what Willow was thinking. I do like and understand what Xander was thinking. And I do not like the fact that you are comparing the two situations. I think of that as wrong.
 

thetopher

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We try and prevent death and save people from death all the time. Was Xander wrong to resuscitate Buffy in "Prophecy Girl" because she didn't consent to this?
There's a difference between CPR and necromancy. People do CPR every day.

Hell Tara- miss balance of nature- states that what they're attempting in unnatural and only possible because of the nature of Buffy's death, they're exploiting a loophole to bring Buffy back.

I mean, is what Dawn and Spike try to do in 'Forever' wonderful? Are we meant to cheer them on? If so they why does Dawn reverse the spell? Why is that 'bad' and what Willow did in Bargaining 'wonderful'.

Death and grieving is a part of life and living and moving on. Willow and the others seem incapable or unwilling to do these things and so in their arrogance they fix the world to their liking.
That's very human but also short-sighted and dangerous and shouldn't be applauded.

Willow did what most people would do in their position if such a thing was possible. "Against her will" implies that Willow had any reason to believe Buffy would prefer to stay dead, which she didn't.
It's not just what she did that many have a problem with, its about how she did it; she was reckless, secretive and fundamentally incompetent. Buffy was pulled out of a heavenly dimension and left to claw herself out of her own grave; trauma upon trauma when both were utterly avoidable.
We've been shown that there are ways of finding out where a person's spirit has moved on to, we know that psychics and mediums exist. They couldn't consult one? They couldn't find some artifact to locate Buffy's spirit?
Even from a practical standpoint wouldn't this make their resurrection spell easier to perform?



As for Buffy realizing that she wants to die by 'Gone', the fact is she is still lamenting to Giles in 'Graves' that 'it was her time', that she was done, and that she doesn't know why she is back or even it's was a good thing.

On the show its never been as simple as 'this was the right thing to do because the outcome was good'. And the events of S7 put that into doubt.
 

FaithLehane16

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Willow and the others seem incapable or unwilling to do these things and so in their arrogance they fix the world to their liking.
That's very human but also short-sighted and dangerous and shouldn't be applauded.
Willow was the main person behind it. She went after the three people who she can manipulate the most even though Tara went against her word from Season 5. Dawn and Spikehave learned their lesson.


mean, is what Dawn and Spike try to do in 'Forever' wonderful? Are we meant to cheer them on? If so they why does Dawn reverse the spell? Why is that 'bad' and what Willow did in Bargaining 'wonderful'.
It's a case of bad writing. The writing team weren't thinking all the way through.
As for Buffy realizing that she wants to die by 'Gone', the fact is she is still lamenting to Giles in 'Graves' that 'it was her time', that she was done, and that she doesn't know why she is back or even it's was a good thing.

On the show its never been as simple as 'this was the right thing to do because the outcome was good'. And the events of S7 put that into doubt.
I think Season 7 shown us the downsides to resurrecting someone against their will.
 

thetopher

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Willow was the main person behind it. She went after the three people who she can manipulate the most even though Tara went against her word from Season 5. Dawn and Spike have learned their lesson.
Yeah, I agree that Willow is the main instigator, the driving force and the one who expects credit, thanks and praise from those around her. That's why Tara and the others get more of a pass.
Also when they all find out the truth about where Buffy was its Willow who doubles down on her mistake and again says that magic is the answer.

The more I think about it the more I think it was a bit out-of-character for Willow to stop after Tabula Rasa. She clearly feels that she didn't do anything wrong, and its not like everyone else reacts negatively (they're all busily in denial)
Wouldn't she just have another go now that Tara's not getting in the way?

It's a case of bad writing. The writing team weren't thinking all the way through.
I actually think this is good writing in 'Forever'. Dawn is very in-character in this episode and its natural for a teenager to question why magic shouldn't be used to resurrect a loved one. Spike helping her also fits when we find out about his own Mum and his attempts to save her by turning her.

The lesson is ignored in S6 and the effects are felt in S7 but its never really addressed. How does Buffy feel when she finds out that her resurrection means that The First is able to act and end the slayer line? How does Willow react? We never get to find out and that's not good writing.
 

DeadlyDuo

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We've been shown that there are ways of finding out where a person's spirit has moved on to, we know that psychics and mediums exist. They couldn't consult one? They couldn't find some artifact to locate Buffy's spirit?
Even from a practical standpoint wouldn't this make their resurrection spell easier to perform?
A lot of psychics and mediums are frauds. They tell people what they want to hear because it gets them money, especially if someone comes back repeatedly to "talk" to their loved one.

It's possible that the psychic/medium might tell Willow that Buffy is in hell because that is subconsciously what Willow wants to hear since it gives her justification to resurrect Buffy.

Saying that, if Willow had gone to a medium and they lied and said Buffy was in hell, then that kind of legitimises her fear of where Buffy is then Buffy's resurrection becomes the medium's fault since they told Willow Buffy was in hell. Willow wouldn't have done it if she knew Buffy was in heaven, therefore it kind of absolves Willow of blame.

I actually think this is good writing in 'Forever'. Dawn is very in-character in this episode and its natural for a teenager to question why magic shouldn't be used to resurrect a loved one. Spike helping her also fits when we find out about his own Mum and his attempts to save her by turning her.

The lesson is ignored in S6 and the effects are felt in S7 but its never really addressed.
Were the scoobies even aware of Dawn trying to resurrect Joyce? The three main players in that caper had nothing to do with Buffy's resurrection and only found out after the fact. The lack of ivolvement of Spike and Dawn meant that they couldn't say to the others "maybe this isn't a good idea". I don't think Buffy told the others about Dawn and Joyce, did she?
 

thetopher

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A lot of psychics and mediums are frauds.
I figure a couple of mega-witches like Willow and Tara would be able to suss out a fake really easily. Tara could see auras right? She could tell that Faith had hi-jacked Buffy's body two years previous.
There would be a way to figure out a mystic fraud.
And if not a person there would be spells and dimensional magics or magical artifacts that could locate Buffy's spirit. A couple are even referenced over on Angel and something like that would make the resurrection spell easier, no?

Were the scoobies even aware of Dawn trying to resurrect Joyce? The three main players in that caper had nothing to do with Buffy's resurrection and only found out after the fact. The lack of ivolvement of Spike and Dawn meant that they couldn't say to the others "maybe this isn't a good idea".
Well really I meant what the writers were trying to say, not the lessons any character learned. In S5 they are saying 'this is bad thing to mess around with' and yet S6 shows that it maybe its ultimately a good thing if you're powerful enough. Certainly Tara changes her tune between 'Forever' and 'Bargaining'.

I don't know if Buffy found out about Spike's involvement (I doubt it) or if she mentioned Dawn's attempt to anyone else. I wouldn't think so given Willow's actions the next season.
 
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