#BuffyWatch the Final Season

If you’ve been following along, you’ll remember that Brian O’Conor and I were embroiled in a battle of two T.V. series. Brian had to watch the first seven seasons of Supernatural before I finished watching the seven seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Whoever finished first get’s to decide which world we’ll use first for a spin-off game with our RPG troupe: MageTech.

And I am thrilled to announce that I AM VICTORIOUS! I DANCE THE DANCE OF VICTORY!

OY YEAH, BURN WITH FIERY ENVY BRIAN!

Poor Brian.

Okay, but seriously. It did come kinda close there. Brian was trying to be a sneaky snearkerson and finished season 6 without telling anyone and was well into season 7 over the weekend. So much so that I realized, though I only  3 episodes left, he just might finish and I’d look like that jackass hare and he’d be the cool tortoise. Couldn’t let that happen.

Now, on to my review of the last season.

So many times there have been moments where, if someone had warned me, I would have forfeited the whole damn bet. But no moment could have killed me more than the death of Anya. I realized that she is my favorite character out of the whole cast. First it was Xander, then Willow, but Anya, Anya never let me down. How? How could they kill her? I know at the end of a story like this, there should be casualties, but damnit.

I think Anya was a big reason why the show worked for me. She was funny but full of emotion and a lovely break from your average character.

But I was so, so damn disappointed that they didn’t give Xander an appropriate moment over her death. It was just like, “Yep. She didn’t make it. Bummer.” I know they’d broken up and were finally able to move on, but I would think it would still be devastating for him.

In the beginning of watching BtVS I really was just watching to beat Brian, but the more the show went on, the more it worked for me. Though, not the season with Adam and Riley. I can imagine it being a show you let play in rerun while you’re doing other things, but you’d fast-forward through any Adam or Riley episodes. Except for Hush that is.

I can just hear Kristin and Emmie squeeing over hearing that I didn’t hate the show and even liked a lot of it.

The Big Bad of season 7. It was really interesting, though I found it strange they took so long into the season to introduce it. The beginning of this last season felt a little like a middle of the series season, back to Monster of the Week episodes with no main plot tying them together. But when Joyce first materializes for Dawn and Cassie for Willow, it was very diabolical. You think something wonderful is happening, you finally get to have one more moment with someone you love who’s passed on, only to learn it’s a manipulative ancient evil. That’s some good stuff.

Speaking of the Big Bad – Spike’s redemption was pretty good. I still didn’t like him like I did before THE incident, so really, I was glad he died. Not in they way I was glad that Warren died, but I thought it was the only thing that could/should happen to him after the turn they took with his character.

An unsung character: Andrew.

I’m really glad they found a way to turn him around and keep him around. Andrew and Jonathan always struck me as great characters who were unfortunate to fall in with Warren. (SCREW YOU WARREN. YOU DIE AND YOU STAY DEAD.)

 

I know, I know, Andrew kills Jonathan, but he was like the mislead, well-meaning, nerd who lost his way.

He was a lot like Anya for me.

And at the end, when they were fighting side-by-side… *takes a moment*

So yeah, that was one of the hardest things for me. I didn’t expect to find characters I liked as much as I did while watching the show and after Xander and Willow kept upsetting me, it was nice to have them and then Anya is just killed.

Moving on.

Something I hated, hated, hated, was the introduction of Kennedy. I liked that we got to meet all the potentials and they were wonderfully diverse in every way, but FFS I did NOT like Kennedy. I know we want redemption Willow to have some happiness, but Kennedy wasn’t it. She was pushy and catty and mean and in her own words: a brat. I don’t understand how, after wonderful relationships with Oz and Tara, Willow would let herself be seduced by a girl who makes fun of her powers and the core of her being. And she was just so damn big for her britches, just because she was making out with Willow she was suddenly more important than the other potentials, always pushing her way into the pow-wows with Buffy and the others. GAH! I DID NOT LIKE HER.

Anyway. I did not make any of these memes and I loved that I found them because I feel totally justified now.

Moving on!

Giles returned! I was so damn happy about this. He was my other favorite character and I loved that we got to see him again and he stuck around. And damn if he doesn’t prove again and again what a badass he is.

Dawn and Faith. I’m lumping them together because I’ve made it well known that I didn’t like either of these characters. At all. I think the writers did a good job with them at the end. This season showed us a calmer, more mature Dawn and Faith. Both had turned down their cliche personalities and felt much more human to me.

The finale. I’d heard that BtVS suffered from the “Seinfeld Curse” in that the finale was stupid or cheesy or a let down. I have to say, I didn’t get that. I did say in my last post that I was surprised this was the last season and I said earlier that the beginning didn’t feel like a final season, so I do wonder if they found out mid-filming that they weren’t getting renewed and maybe people felt it was wrapped up fast? I don’t know, but I didn’t think the end was bad. You know, other than killing characters I liked. Damn it.

So there you have it. I didn’t hate it. I liked a lot of it. There were some bumpy times and sometimes I felt like quitting and letting Brian win by default and there were choices I didn’t agree with, but over all, it was a good story.

Now for my decision. I still like Supernatural better, much better, and I would rather play a Supernatural RPG first, but I have decided to have us play Buffy first. My main reason is that our GM, Kristin, never gets to play a main character, but if we play Buffy then Drew will substitute as the GM and Kristin will get to play a character in the Buffy-verse. I think she deserves a turn at playing a character.

(P.S. I know I left a lot of stuff out, but this damn post is 1200 words already!)

#BuffyWatch Part Four

(I know you were expecting a Saint Patrick’s Day themed post, but I’m sorry, no lucky charms here!)

Whoa. It’s been awhile since I last posted about the great #BuffyWatch! My bad!

If you’d like to read the last installment, you can check it here. If you’re new to the #buffywatch saga, basically Brian O’Conor and I have a bet to see who can finish BtVS or Supernatural first (I’m watching BtVS, Brian is watching SPN). Whoever wins gets to decide which series we use as a one-off game for our #MageTech troupe RPG first.

So I finished Season 5 last night and that was a fantastic ending. If you’ve read my YA series, then you know I’m a big fan of killing MCs and bringing them back – if you can do it believably. I know, I know, Buffy died once already, but she died in a very mortal way and was brought back with CPR, which is something a lot of people can do. I’m talkin’ catastrophic martyrdom.

I’m glad they waited to do this until the end of Season 5 because, if they do it right, when she comes back in Season 6, I’ll buy it. Buffy has grown enough as a character and “superhero” to accomplish this and my suspension of disbelief is strong enough, that I’ll go along with it. Since my last posting, I’ve watched two seasons, that’s a bit much for one post, so I’ll just do a recap of the larger plot elements. When I last wrote, Riley was a new character and I thought a good romantic match for Buffy.

We know Riley. What I didn’t get was the sudden gusting hate for that character from my friends. People who had been relatively quiet about mine and Brian’s bet suddenly burst on to Twitter with mega Riley-hate.

So I was waiting for it. Now the whole Initiative thing was just bleh for me. I really think that’s why I didn’t write a post when I finished Season 4. I think that season matches up with the Leviathan season Brian is in store for. Basically a few good episodes in the season but a major story arc you wish would just die.

Welp, needless to say I found out why the Riley-hate was so strong. GODDAMN WHAT A JERKFACE! Listen, at the end of S4 I still was not a Buffy fan (character, not show), but that whole Riley blaming her for his deceptions and, yes, I’ll say it, CHEATING, I was fucking livid for Buffy. I was yelling at the screen for her, screaming at Riley hating his face.

GAH. And I was so angry when Xander stuck up for him, saying Buffy was treating him like a rebound because, I’m sorry, but no, that’s not true. I really think Buffy was actually being normal for this guy and really into him. He was a douche. I was so angry when she went running to catch him at the end. If she had caught him in time, I would’ve forfeit the bet. I’m glad she didn’t make it in time. Fuck Riley.

And of course we have to talk about “Hush.” Arguably one of the best episodes of the whole show. Those monsters were so creepy! And their methodology… FREAKY. Funny enough, I watched this episode not long before the Thinman: GHOSTFACERS! episode of Supernatural.

   

Yeah, this charicature is really creepy and I totally get why there is a strong argument that, as a whole, we’ve created this tulpa.

Season 5. I kinda knew Joyce was going to die. My hubs is watching with me and he really thought the tumor was going to get her, but I said, “No, I don’t think so.” And I was right but then I got the sinking suspicion that it was just a red herring and she was going to die anyway. That they were making Buffy feel a false sense of relief and then were going to shatter her. I was right. Now, I’m not saying that because it was obvious or that it wasn’t well done. I think it was. I am still not a SMG fan, but after finding Joyce on the couch and the episodes after, I really liked what she did with the character. It was some of the most believable acting I’ve seen from her. 

Dawn. Meh. I do not like this plot device. I get it, fine. But I hated how we were just supposed to buy her showing up in that first episode. It was so jarring that I Googled it to make sure Netflix hadn’t screwed up and skipped something. To know that Wedon specifically put her in to give Buffy a “strong emotional relationship that wasn’t romantic” is crap to me. She has strong emotional relationships with her mother, Willow, Xander, and Giles. So I don’t buy that. I think she was a replacement for Joyce or Faith or both. I’m so glad this wasn’t my first introduction to Michelle Trachtenberg because I would’ve hated her otherwise. I do not like Dawn or the way she’s written. And I’m glad I’m not alone in that.

Glory. I really dug her as a villain.

And I’m glad we found out why no one noticed why Ben was always showing up in her clothes. Very Doctor Who the Silence!

I was sad that they killed the character of Sunday right off in S4, but I think Glory is very close to what she would have been had she lived.

Spike. Oh, poor Spike. I’ve always been a Spike fan and to know his backstory makes me like him even more. The Buffy-bot was a little more than creepy, but I think we can get past it. Sorta. I like that he’s a good-bad-guy now. I wonder if they ever deactivate the chip, will he stay the same? I hope so.

This got me in the feels:

Willow. I don’t know how I feel about the Willow-Tara storyline. I think I’m still trying to like Tara. The stuttering and the doe-eyes and the insecurities get on my nerves because I think it’s too much at times. And I don’t like how often Willow gets all snotty and snippy. And I really wasn’t a fan of the line, “Hello! Gay now!” That made me cringe. I like the more assertive Willow, and her new amazeballs powers, but I don’t think she needs to act bitchy as often as they make her.

I’ve been promised “evil Willow” soon and that I should dig it. I did like “Vampire Willow”…

…so I imagine I’ll like the next. I really am a fan of Alyson Hannigan – watching this and the last season of HIMYM really highlights what an awesome actress she really is.

Alright, there you have it folks. I am liking the show a lot more! I think I like the show best when Buffy isn’t in a romantic relationship. I’m actually looking forward to S6 – so long as there are no more Rileys and Crusaders (c’mon, that was stupid. Fine, an ancient order on a hunt for a relic, okay, but they can’t still be in chain mail and on horseback in the 2000’s. Nope.com). I understand this season has “Once More With Feeling” and everyone is very excited for me to see it. Though I am not a huge musical fan, so I’ll just keep my fingers crossed on that one.