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YouTube Buffy Recap/Reviews by ME!

caitaintdead

caiters gonna cait
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I am officially exhausted, but here is another Valentine's Day themed vid before I crash out for a decent night's sleep!!!

 

WillowFromBuffy

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I don't think Xander saves Willow with his heterosexual love. The love Xander speaks about is a love that has existed between two people who have spent almost every day together since early childhood. At one point, they were attracted to each other, but Xander makes no reference to that. Also, heterosexuality has been shown as nothing but destructive in the last few episodes. Xander has been slut shaming left and right, and then there are Spike and Warren, would-be rapists and murderers of women. The love that Xander expresses to Willow in "Grave" and Buffy at the end of "Seeing Red" is decidedly un-erotic. Xander stops thinking like a man and starts thinking like a friend.

I also wonder about the point on how Willow stops using magic when Tara leaves. Willow stops because Tara wants her to. Seeing that Tara was created to be Willow's gay love interest, while Willow was originally conceived as a straight person, it makes more sense to me to see Tara (and Kennedy) as a representation of gay people in general. Willow already had well established flaws and complexities before it was decided that she is gay. Tara is always a voice for reason, thoughtfulness, compassion and moderation.

I do agree that vampire Willow (and Faith) is reminiscent of a trope of dangerous, disruptive and sexually ambiguous characters, which usually end up dead, either because they are "bad" or because society cannot abide them. Vampire Willow is a little complex, because Willow does not want to kill her. In fact, while playing vampire Willow, she talks about having to kill her repressed good girl persona.

BtVS uses the supernatural to tell almost all of its stories, so concepts of magic needs to be versatile. Magic is early on established as a dangerous and often volatile force. In the "Dark Age," we get the first explicit connection between magic and drugs (and sex). Drugs and sex, like everything else, is dangerous and unhealthy if done with abandon. Balance is a common thread in the morality of the show.
 

caitaintdead

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I don't think Xander saves Willow with his heterosexual love. The love Xander speaks about is a love that has existed between two people who have spent almost every day together since early childhood. At one point, they were attracted to each other, but Xander makes no reference to that. Also, heterosexuality has been shown as nothing but destructive in the last few episodes. Xander has been slut shaming left and right, and then there are Spike and Warren, would-be rapists and murderers of women. The love that Xander expresses to Willow in "Grave" and Buffy at the end of "Seeing Red" is decidedly un-erotic. Xander stops thinking like a man and starts thinking like a friend.

I also wonder about the point on how Willow stops using magic when Tara leaves. Willow stops because Tara wants her to. Seeing that Tara was created to be Willow's gay love interest, while Willow was originally conceived as a straight person, it makes more sense to me to see Tara (and Kennedy) as a representation of gay people in general. Willow already had well established flaws and complexities before it was decided that she is gay. Tara is always a voice for reason, thoughtfulness, compassion and moderation.

I do agree that vampire Willow (and Faith) is reminiscent of a trope of dangerous, disruptive and sexually ambiguous characters, which usually end up dead, either because they are "bad" or because society cannot abide them. Vampire Willow is a little complex, because Willow does not want to kill her. In fact, while playing vampire Willow, she talks about having to kill her repressed good girl persona.

BtVS uses the supernatural to tell almost all of its stories, so concepts of magic needs to be versatile. Magic is early on established as a dangerous and often volatile force. In the "Dark Age," we get the first explicit connection between magic and drugs (and sex). Drugs and sex, like everything else, is dangerous and unhealthy if done with abandon. Balance is a common thread in the morality of the show.
I don't have the time to go too in depth so will try to address this as quickly as possible. In analysing this trope from a purely academic theory point of view, you need to bare in mind that things need to be boiled down to what they represent in part/whole relations, particularly when addressing the role of binary oppositions and the power dynamic of masculine discourse (see Michel Foucault essays outlining this). So within the context of this discussion his representation as a hetero male acts as a strong contrast to Tara and Willow in numerous ways. Gay/Straight, Female/Male, Magic/Normal, Insane/Sane, Evil/Good etc etc. The binary oppositions that could be drawn are extensive.

Anyway, thanks for watching! If you're interested in reading more about it I would definitely recommend the essay collections I put links to in the description box. There are heaps online, but not sure what costs are involved if you don't have access to university or college libraries.
 

WillowFromBuffy

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I don't have the time to go too in depth so will try to address this as quickly as possible. In analysing this trope from a purely academic theory point of view, you need to bare in mind that things need to be boiled down to what they represent in part/whole relations, particularly when addressing the role of binary oppositions and the power dynamic of masculine discourse (see Michel Foucault essays outlining this). So within the context of this discussion his representation as a hetero male acts as a strong contrast to Tara and Willow in numerous ways. Gay/Straight, Female/Male, Magic/Normal, Insane/Sane, Evil/Good etc etc. The binary oppositions that could be drawn are extensive.

Anyway, thanks for watching! If you're interested in reading more about it I would definitely recommend the essay collections I put links to in the description box. There are heaps online, but not sure what costs are involved if you don't have access to university or college libraries.
I just find it reductive to reduce everything to binary oppositions. Xander is always going to be straight man and Willow is always going to be a straight woman. I don't think that means that the dynamic between them will always be defined by that. Xander has had to make some pretty damning admissions lately, and so he abandons the highly gendered discourse he has been using since "Entropy."

I also wonder at the insane/sane dichotomy. Is Xander's profession of unconditional love rational or sane? He has used decidedly rational arguments to condemn Anya and Buffy, though these arguments have mostly been a mask to hide his angry at their perceived betrayal.

I think the scene at the bluff is a redemptive moment for Xander as well as Willow, which shows that there is a love between them that existed before and after the erotic/gendered fling they had in high school.
 

caitaintdead

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I just find it reductive to reduce everything to binary oppositions. Xander is always going to be straight man and Willow is always going to be a straight woman. I don't think that means that the dynamic between them will always be defined by that. Xander has had to make some pretty damning admissions lately, and so he abandons the highly gendered discourse he has been using since "Entropy."

I also wonder at the insane/sane dichotomy. Is Xander's profession of unconditional love rational or sane? He has used decidedly rational arguments to condemn Anya and Buffy, though these arguments have mostly been a mask to hide his angry at their perceived betrayal.

I think the scene at the bluff is a redemptive moment for Xander as well as Willow, which shows that there is a love between them that existed before and after the erotic/gendered fling they had in high school.
As mentioned, you can read up on my citations in further detail to understand the material I put forward a little better which all defend my ascertations:

Wilts, Alissa 2009, 'Evil, Skanky, and Kinda gay' Buffy Goes Dark, pp. 41-56
Bartlem, Edwina 2003, 'Coming out on a mouth of hell' Refractory: A Journal of Entertainment Media,
Booth, Stephen 2005, 'The Death of Tara, the fall of Willow, and the Dead/Evil Lesbian Cliche FAQ'
Faderman, Lillian, ed. 1994, 'Chloe Plus Olivia: An anthology of lesbian literature from the seventeenth Century to the present'
Foucault, Michel 1989, 'What is an author?'
Inness, Sherrie A. 1997, 'The Lesbian Menace: Ideology, Identity, and the representation of lesbian life'
Bercovitch, Sacvan 1986 'The Problem of Ideology in American Literary History'

Let me know if you have any issues getting hold of them and I can always pdf and shoot them through in an email to you. I'd love to discuss it more, but as you can imagine trying to summarise all of the information within the texts that reach the same conclusion as me would be way too exhausting!
 
WillowFromBuffy
WillowFromBuffy
I don't think I will be able to fit this in between my regular homework. I've read the Foucault paper, though.

DeadlyDuo

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I don't think Xander saves Willow with his heterosexual love.
I think the point @caitaintdead was trying to make wasn't that Xander had romantic love for Willow, but that it was the love a man had for a woman that saved the day whilst the love a woman had for another woman was what started the potential apocalypse. I think that's what she meant by "heterosexual love".

I also wonder about the point on how Willow stops using magic when Tara leaves.
I think it's a coincidental thing. We know Willow stops using magic after Tara leaves because she wants to get better and hopefully win Tara back; however, given that magic was used as a metaphor for Tillow's relationship in Season 4, it's coincidental that when Willow's same-sex relationship ends, she also stops using magic.

The magic= drugs metaphor really screws up the Tillow relationship because essentially Tara encouraged Willow to try harder (drugs) magic and then when (the pusher) Tara leaves is when Willow starts to get her act together after initially free falling because of another "pusher" (Amy). However, the point still stands that Willow never would've gotten "clean" if Tara had stayed.



@caitaintdead The videos are definitely better without the music which is very noticeable since you used a clip with music to remind the audience what you said in the previous video. I don't think Kennedy is a good character to use to represent LGBT because she's an absolute bitch, Tara was the far superior character. I know you said you'd discuss the Killow relationship in another video so I won't get into a Kennedy rant, but I think she was using Willow as a power play.

I also think it's worth mentioning that lesbian relationships are often oversexualised as an example of the "girl on girl action is hot" trope. However, Tillow was never portrayed like that outside of that one scene in Restless which was Xander's POV of the relationship. Killow kind of fell into that trope during their sex scene with all the close up shots, whilst Darla and Dru was more implied by Angelus' "you never let us do that" in regards to a threesome. Basically, whereas Seasons 1-5 subverted tropes, Seasons 6&7 kind of fell into them.

Also, I think Willow should've ended the series single. Whedon chose to kill off one of the two lesbian characters on the show, he should've stood by that decision, not try and replace Tara with a worse character.
 
caitaintdead
caitaintdead
That first paragraph is bang on what I meant! :)

WillowFromBuffy

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I think the point @caitaintdead was trying to make wasn't that Xander had romantic love for Willow, but that it was the love a man had for a woman that saved the day whilst the love a woman had for another woman was what started the potential apocalypse. I think that's what she meant by "heterosexual love".
That would be a very odd use of the word. In that case, the love between a gay man and a gay woman would be heterosexual, because they are of different sexes.

I am personally don't seeing anything gendered about Xander's appeal to Willow. In the end of S6, Xander is one of three heterosexual men acting horribly towards women. There's Spike's sexual assault, Warren's murder of Tara and Xander's angry misoginism. But Xander undergoes a crisis that allows him to make an appeal to Willow as a friend to a friend, not a man to a woman. I am not able to frame that as a victory for rational, heterosexual masculinity over irrational, homosexual femininity.
The magic= drugs metaphor really screws up the Tillow relationship because essentially Tara encouraged Willow to try harder (drugs) magic and then when (the pusher) Tara leaves is when Willow starts to get her act together after initially free falling because of another "pusher" (Amy). However, the point still stands that Willow never would've gotten "clean" if Tara had stayed.
Tara is at worst an enabler. The only spell she ever asks Willow to cast is the spell that saves Buffy in "Who Are You?" and Willow is hardly reluctant. Tara is the first person to tell Willow to get off the magic. Buffy does not speak up until after "Wrecked."
absolute bitch
Kennedy is amazing.
 
caitaintdead
caitaintdead
I think we'll have to agree to disagree! Maybe one day we could do a collab looking at it from different perspectives?

DeadlyDuo

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That would be a very odd use of the word. In that case, the love between a gay man and a gay woman would be heterosexual, because they are of different sexes.
I think it is a very basic trope. It made sense for Xander to be the one to talk Willow down given their lifelong friendship, but it is still essentially a man saving the world from being destroyed by a (lesbian) woman via the power of his (platonic) love.

Kennedy is amazing.
 

DeadlyDuo

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@caitaintdead Just seen your Giles astrology video. I like how you spell out your name with the scrabble letters as an introduction.

Please do Spike's sign next (and eventually the rest of the Whirlwind). When you said about Geminis being easily bored, that's definitely a trait of Spike's but then I think there were also traits on Xander's video that sounded like Spike as well.

Since you've now got the core 4 out of the way; if characters share the same sign, is it worth doing an analysis featuring both characters rather than separate videos so that you're not repeating the same information in two separate vids ? It might be a longer vid but it would save you time in the long run maybe and you could also contrast how differently characters express the traits that classify them as a certain sign because they won't express those traits in identical ways?
 

caitaintdead

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@caitaintdead Just seen your Giles astrology video. I like how you spell out your name with the scrabble letters as an introduction.

Please do Spike's sign next (and eventually the rest of the Whirlwind). When you said about Geminis being easily bored, that's definitely a trait of Spike's but then I think there were also traits on Xander's video that sounded like Spike as well.

Since you've now got the core 4 out of the way; if characters share the same sign, is it worth doing an analysis featuring both characters rather than separate videos so that you're not repeating the same information in two separate vids ? It might be a longer vid but it would save you time in the long run maybe and you could also contrast how differently characters express the traits that classify them as a certain sign because they won't express those traits in identical ways?
Oooooh, that's a really interesting idea and does make sense, especially when addressing more minor characters.

My plan is to address each character (roughly) as they appear within the series and as their character grows (but still looking at their character throughout BtVS and AtS), so the next ones will be Angel/Angelus and Cordelia. After that I will probably look at Spike and Drusilla.

For those of you that don't visit YouTube as much as you visit the Buffy Boards here is the video:

 
DeadlyDuo
DeadlyDuo
Definitely looking forward to the Spike and Dru videos

caitaintdead

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@caitaintdead When are you going to upload some more videos?
To be totally honest I think I was putting off the review for I Robot, You Jane! I am sitting down today to write something up, film and hopefully have it uploaded by Sunday. Then I'll be rolling straight into The Puppet Show for hopefully a Tuesday or Wednesday upload.

I'm still uploading weekly! Just sometimes like to explore other stuff too.



I have also been helping out my friend quite a bit with some of her work! She makes exceptional travel content and it has been so great working with her to learn some of the ins and outs of media.

 
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