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Buffy #2

October 12th, 2011 (10:35 pm)


Recap:
The demon demands Buffy to pay her student loan. Buffy gives the demon "every penny" she has, but it's not enough. (Turns out, Buffy gave back everything she's got during her bank robberiy when Riley negotiated the amnesty between slayers and Interpol.) Eventually demon leaves, lamenting poor job conditions. El Draco visits Buffy's apartment in her absence and finds out that she is the slayer. Detectives Dowling and Cheung come to conclusion that dead bodies could be vampires: these persons went missing many years ago, back to 1941. Buffy meets Severin; she doesn't know about his slaying activities yet. To protect him, she dusts a vampire and gets arrested on suspicion of killing all the mysteriously dead people. She escapes from police custody and becomes a fugitive. Xander and Dawn refuse to hide her. She complains to Spike about this strange new world. Then she goes slaying and gets saved by Severin: he "burns" the demon essence out of a vampire body leaving just a corpse. "You trying to put me out of job?" Buffy says. "'Cause I might be okay with that". To be continued.

Thoughts:
According to Allie's Q&As for #40, Joss has abandoned his initial Season 9 plan around issue #28 or so. Pretty close to "Harmonic Divergence" in which the world found out about vampires. So far, it looks like the season will be about the consequences of vampires going public as much as about the the destruction of the Seed. Because it looks like Joss decided to up the ante and to turn the killing of a vampire into... well, a real killing. With a fresh corpse. Very interesting.

It's not clear so far if Severin has an inner, physiological ability to "burn" the demon out of a vampire's body or he uses some technology. If it's a technology, it becomes especially murky, because in that case everybody would be able to kill vampires and demons quite easily. Just imagine a situation in which everybody can (and have the right) to kill Lorne. But most likely it's Severin's innate ability. Still -- creepy and reminds of inquisition and burning witches on a stake.

Buffy's new moral quandary is really Joss-worthy. People live next to another species who look more or less like them; who apparently work for human employers; who appear on television; who can't get away from Earth even if they want to. Is it okay to kill them?

So far, it's unclear where the story will go; but it's a new, intriguing premise. For a long time, vampires and demons were metaphors of human fears and frustrations. It's hard to face our fears; should we destroy them or should we learn to live with them without letting them to destroy us?

Plot-wise, it's interesting that in this issue Severin has switched from killing girls to killing male vampires. A coincidence? Or he did it to make a good impression on Buffy? I don't trust the guy; so far he looks like an Angel-lite: a handsome impeccably dressed stranger.

Spuffy tidbits:
Buffy and Spike have two scenes together. One is a continuaton of the scene in a previous issue; it features Buffy, Willow, Spike and the demon who came about Buffy's student loan; it ends with a page from the preview -- "You used to be on my side". The other is below:

Photobucket

I like that the writers develop their relationship slowly. So far, I can see three scenarios:

1) Spike and Buffy's relationship stays purely platonic, he replaces Giles as her watcher. In that case, he stays on BtVS for the next season and beyond; maybe becomes a new Scoobie.

2) Joss replays Twangel scenario, the Spuffy way. Spike does something horrible and appaling, and Buffy "can't even look at him" anymore. So he either moves to A&F or to his own series, or disappears (highly unlikely, because he is popular)

3) Joss plans an epic and epically heartbreaking arc for them. Some impossible choice. Spike has to choose between Buffy and the world; Buffy has to choose between her baby and Spike. I don't know. Joss always finds the most painfyl choices. Something that changes their dynamics completely, but leaves a glimpse of hope that maybe, some day... etc.

I think I'll be okay with the first and the third option. I only hope that Joss won't choose the second scenario.

Comments

Posted by: embers_log (embers_log)
Posted at: October 12th, 2011 08:08 pm (UTC)
c Faith BtVS S8 by angelamaria

ARG! Did everyone on the planet get this except me? I think I need a new comic book guy (mine said they weren't delivered because Monday was Columbus Day). It is too frustrating.

*sigh*

Posted by: Elena (moscow_watcher)
Posted at: October 12th, 2011 08:14 pm (UTC)

Join buffycomics. Right now you just "watch" the community. You have to join it *winks*

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: October 12th, 2011 08:18 pm (UTC)

I don't think it'll be the second, because it's Angel who's the romantic soulmate/tall dark stranger/dashing hero who therefore has to be knocked off his pedestal and undermined or subverted at every opportunity. Spike wouldn't get on a pedestal if you paid him, so there's no need to knock him off it.

I suspect your #3 will be closer to it.


As for Severin (assuming it is him), I don't think the gender of his victims is meant to be particularly significant. It's only an assumption that the previous bodies found were all female; when the detective says, "That's the third one this month" she might mean "Third body with no visible cause of death" rather than "Third female body with no visible cause of death."

I do wonder, though, if Severin is only slowly developing his powers: he's moving from being able to kill only one vampire at a time to whole groups of them.

Posted by: Elena (moscow_watcher)
Posted at: October 12th, 2011 10:13 pm (UTC)
Buffy

I don't think it'll be the second, because it's Angel who's the romantic soulmate/tall dark stranger/dashing hero who therefore has to be knocked off his pedestal and undermined or subverted at every opportunity. Spike wouldn't get on a pedestal if you paid him, so there's no need to knock him off it.

I hope you're right. Because, in season 8, when Spike arrived to the rescue, Joss did everything to avoid turning him into a Marty-Stu, but it was close.

I suspect your #3 will be closer to it.

Yes, I think that Joss wouldn't keep Spike in the picture just as a window dressing. If Spike hasn't left in his pretty bug ship, then Joss has plans for him. He loves Spike - and the more he loves the character, the more he tortures him.

As for Severin (assuming it is him), I don't think the gender of his victims is meant to be particularly significant. It's only an assumption that the previous bodies found were all female; when the detective says, "That's the third one this month" she might mean "Third body with no visible cause of death" rather than "Third female body with no visible cause of death."

"She's the third one this month".

Then again, maybe Cheung meant "she's the third locked room mystery" rather than "the third girl". (As usual, Joss leaves a lot to speculate about :))

I do wonder, though, if Severin is only slowly developing his powers: he's moving from being able to kill only one vampire at a time to whole groups of them.

Or maybe he becomes bolder. Or wanted to impress Buffy.

Posted by: Lisa (shipperx)
Posted at: October 12th, 2011 09:57 pm (UTC)

I just hope that it isn't her getting to 'miss' Spike after Severin does something to him.

Posted by: Elena (moscow_watcher)
Posted at: October 12th, 2011 10:23 pm (UTC)

I pondered upon the possibility of Severin *burning* the demon out of Spike and turning him into William - sweet, sensitive poet, disgusted by violence, by himself, by Buffy's activities. ("I prefer not to think of such dark, ugly business at all. That's what police are for." )

I don't know if it could work out as a long-term transformation, but it could be an interesting twist for a couple of issues.

Posted by: sidhlairiel (sidhlairiel)
Posted at: October 12th, 2011 11:03 pm (UTC)
dancing

Can I just say how much I love this potential development? It would be like a less-deus-ex-machina version of IWRY, but with Spuffy instead. Even just the idea of Buffy defending Spike from having the demon burnt out of him would tie really well into the whole having-of-a-soul-issue and her acceptance of both his good and bad parts.

Posted by: Elena (moscow_watcher)
Posted at: October 12th, 2011 11:58 pm (UTC)

Agree with you - I'd love to see the story go in that direction.

Which most likely means that Joss won't go there. He gives us what we need, not what we want... :)

Posted by: TimeTravellingBunny (boot_the_grime)
Posted at: October 13th, 2011 12:13 am (UTC)
Buffy Spike heart Spuffy

I can't understand why people think that Spike's soul would make any difference. Soul doesn't animate the body of a vampire, the demon does. In human terms, vampires are dead. Vampire - demon = dead human.

And I don't believe Spike or Angel will become human any time soon. Or, most likely, ever.

Besides, I don't believe that human!Spike would be like William, any more than human!Angel was like Liam. Or any more than non-Slayer Buffy would be Hemery High Buffy. Experience, memories and psychological development means a helluva lot more than a lot of BtVS fans seem to believe. I think Spike would be pretty much the same, just with less aggression and without his superpowers. And he'd be in danger of getting killed soon because of the latter, because he'd still be jumping in dangerous situations, if not because of love of violence then to protect those he loves.

Posted by: Elena (moscow_watcher)
Posted at: October 13th, 2011 12:47 am (UTC)
Duster_by_awmp

Soul doesn't animate the body of a vampire, the demon does.

The problem is, tomorrow Joss says it does animate - and it will be animating until he says differently. Consistency and Joss ==> unmixy.

And I don't believe Spike or Angel will become human any time soon. Or, most likely, ever.

I think Joss could make them human for a couple of issues, just for fun. :)

But I don't think that burning a demon from Spike's body will turn him into a human. It will transform him into a vampire without demon inside him. Into a William with vampire strength and sun allergy.

I don't insist that it will necessarily happen - but Joss could explore that twist simply because it's a chance to do something new with Spike.

I may be wrong - but I have the impression that demon, for Joss isn't just the epithome of evil. Practically all the demons in the regular cast were artistic persons: Angel - an artist, Spike - a poet, Oz - a musician, Lorne - a singer. I don't know if it was deliberate. But, consciously or subconsciously, Joss correlates creativity and demons. They are our "dark side". The place where artistic impulses live.

So, Spike losing his inner demon may have interesting consequences.

Posted by: Rebcake (rebcake)
Posted at: October 13th, 2011 08:01 pm (UTC)
btvs_oz_whoa

Joss correlates creativity and demons.

That is a really interesting idea that I hadn't thought of in such clear terms. I've always been interested in our favorite demons' intersection with the arts, but it's interesting that virtually none of the "plain" humans have the artistic impulse. (Except for Willow's Doogie Howser fanfic phase.)

Will ponder...

Posted by: Elena (moscow_watcher)
Posted at: October 13th, 2011 08:36 pm (UTC)
Spangel

I thought about it a lot. Interestingly, in Serenity Joss tackles a similar issue -- the experiment on Miranda, the attempts to "kill" people's inner demons end up in disaster.

it's interesting that virtually none of the "plain" humans have the artistic impulse.

Except Andrew. (In season 8 he shot a recruiting slayer video with Vi as his star. It was around the same time when Joss was shooting "Dr.Horrible" with Felicia Day.) Photobucket

Posted by: tennyo_elf (tennyo_elf)
Posted at: October 12th, 2011 11:18 pm (UTC)

Thanks for the review! I like the thinky thoughts.

I think it's very interesting that they are now making the vampires out to be people, because they are in a sense or they used to be people. Many were innocent victims who were killed and infected by a demon. Now Severin kills them by making them human again. Lots of questions are raised by this and I find it fascinating as well.

I don't think the burning is technology, I'm pretty sure it's an ability. But to me it looks like one that has a purpose that is currently unseen, not simply "make man capable to kill vampires". To me there is too many "why"s and "what for"s. And the fact that Severin self proclaim's himself as a slayer feels like a mislead. He gets his power and immediately thinks himself a slayer and goes out and kills vampires without questioning it? Seems off.

To me I've always seen vampires as evil and demons too, but now there are demons who aren't evil, just from another world trying to make a life (I'm thinking of Lorne). It reminds me of peaceful aliens. So I think it's OK to slay them if they are evil or trying to do evil, but those who just want a normal life and aren't hurting anyone, not OK to kill. I think the question would be "how do we tell?"

And the spuffy thing, I think because of the dynamic between Spike and Buffy scenario number 2 would be more like (to me) Buffy doing something that makes Spike not able to look at her. But I don't think that it will happen. I strongly believe it'll be probably something like number 3.

I don't think the gender of the dead bodies was significant now, just coincidence.

Posted by: Elena (moscow_watcher)
Posted at: October 13th, 2011 12:32 am (UTC)

I don't think the burning is technology, I'm pretty sure it's an ability.

Agree - it's more likely.

But to me it looks like one that has a purpose that is currently unseen, not simply "make man capable to kill vampires". To me there is too many "why"s and "what for"s. And the fact that Severin self proclaim's himself as a slayer feels like a mislead. He gets his power and immediately thinks himself a slayer and goes out and kills vampires without questioning it? Seems off.

So far, the guy is a typical Captain Hammer from "Dr. Horrible". :)

http://youtu.be/NN3eBvZvUXk

Joss doesn't like Captains Hammers :)

And the spuffy thing, I think because of the dynamic between Spike and Buffy scenario number 2 would be more like (to me) Buffy doing something that makes Spike not able to look at her. But I don't think that it will happen. I strongly believe it'll be probably something like number 3.

Buffy did a lot of bad things in season 8 - so, theoretically, season 9 will be (should be) about her rehabilitation. But - who knows? Maybe Joss thinks differently. :(

I don't think the gender of the dead bodies was significant now, just coincidence.

Maybe. stormwreath almost convinced me that "she's the third one this month" means "the third mystery", not "the third girl".

Posted by: tennyo_elf (tennyo_elf)
Posted at: October 13th, 2011 12:45 am (UTC)

Yeah, I think we'll be finding out more and more about Severin soon. And it may not all be good. We'll see. :)

Buffy did a lot of bad things in season 8 - so, theoretically, season 9 will be (should be) about her rehabilitation. But - who knows? Maybe Joss thinks differently. :(

I don't mean to sound so hard on Buffy. She did do a lot of bad things and maybe that's why I think she'll continue to do bad things. The TV Buffy and comic Buffy seem really different at times it's hard for me to forget which one I'm talking about. The fact that Buffy is loved is probably why she is going to be dragged through the mud again, but hopefully it'll lead somewhere positive. And I didn't mean she'll do something bad per say, but maybe do something that might be unforgivable/unforgettable to Spike.

There are so many possibilities right now and so much crazy that I'm getting a bit tired and frustrated. And I also know I have a lot of unpopular speculations running around in my head that even I don't like.

I read stormwreaths review and I agree about the gender thing, it sounds more like that than the other. But there definitely something more going on!

Posted by: Elena (moscow_watcher)
Posted at: October 13th, 2011 12:52 am (UTC)
Spangel

And I also know I have a lot of unpopular speculations running around in my head that even I don't like.

I think we all have. It's the nature of our ship. "I love you." - "No you don't".

I hope we'll always have fanfiction to make up for the canonical tortures :))

*hugs*

I go to bed - it's 5 a.m. in my time zone.

Posted by: Emmie (angearia)
Posted at: October 13th, 2011 05:36 am (UTC)

I go to bed - it's 5 a.m. in my time zone.

This is what the comics do to us!

Posted by: tennyo_elf (tennyo_elf)
Posted at: October 20th, 2011 10:27 pm (UTC)

*hugs back*

I hope you slept well! I think we'll all have restless nights soon to come with what will be happening in season 9!

I'll be posting a major speculation up on my LJ soon, if you are bored and want a read something silly.

Posted by: lusciousxander (lusciousxander)
Posted at: October 13th, 2011 09:49 am (UTC)

I'm also enjoying S9 for the freshness and newness of the storyline. I'm not sure how a world that considers vampires and demons as people work yet, but it's interesting to explore. I hope they pull it off well.

I'm really looking forwards for Spike to become a Scooby. So far we've only seen him interact with Willow (and Buffy), and she's treating him like a friend, so that's cool. I can't wait to see him interact with Xander and Dawn, as he had more history with them than Willow.

Posted by: Elena (moscow_watcher)
Posted at: October 13th, 2011 06:01 pm (UTC)

Oh, I'd LOVE to see Spike interacting with Xander and Dawn. If they really plan to make a Spike spin-off, it would be awesome if they send all the three of them - Spike, Xan and Dawn in an interdimensional ship - towards brave new worlds.

I didn't participate in Allie's Q&As, because, frankly, I don't have much questions except "give me me spoilers!" I want top know what happens next!

Posted by: thistlecupat (thistlecupat)
Posted at: November 1st, 2011 12:33 pm (UTC)

My cousin recommended this blog and she was totally right keep up the fantastic work!

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