Hello again, my faithful readers to the blog who have not abandoned me yet, though I have not been blogging as much as I should be lately. I’ve had so many projects and work commitments, along with real-life craziness, that have stopped my blogging spree (whatever constitutes as a writing spree for me). I also have lots of future adventures coming up, including venturing out east to New York, Massachusetts, and my main destination: Canada. Why the heck am I traveling to Canada? Besides having an unnatural obsession with the country, I’ve always wanted to visit it and it’s at the top of my bucket list of places to visit. Actually, it’s Ireland first, but I’m venturing to Canada first.
I’ll be heading up to Canada for my own “Eat, Pray, Love” tour. I’ve had quite a rough year with too many strange things happening, and I need time for myself to re-group and enjoy life without wanting to strangle it to death. My main purpose for traveling to Canada, and more specifically Toronto, is to check out Fan Expo Canada. Fan Expo Canada is North America’s third-largest comic convention, preceded by San Diego Comic Con and Dragon Con. Fan Expo Canada’s is Canada’s biggest comic convention, and they have quite a few major ones that occur in that fine country (Ottawa Comic Con just passed this weekend, and one of the special guests was Agent Dana Scully herself, Gillian Anderson). There’s lots of special guests going to Fan Expo that I’m dying to meet, and I’m hoping the Lost Girl cast will be doing another annual live panel and meet-and-greet with fans so I can mark that off my bucket list too and fangirl the hell out when I get home.
While up there I’ll also hopefully be able to do live reporting from Fan Expo for a new online radio show that I’m hosting with two of my good friends: Racer and Wycked Wendy. Racer and I (radio handle: Sylent Mari) will be hosting PanderNERDium, a new show based out of the Southwest (specifically Albuquerque, New Mexico), and it’s an excuse for three fangirls to nerd and geek out over a variety of topics that are wide and varied and will cover comics, books, film, television, video games, cosplay, and any other areas that we want to cover.
I’m very excited about this new project, and it will give me a chance to embarrass myself across the Internet as people here me fangirl over many of my favorite things. We will be online at bounceradio.net, and out show airs Wednesday evenings from 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. MST, though an extra half-hour may be added in the future. Please check us out, and if you have any topics or ideas for shows, please feel free to e-mail them to: email@example.com or tweet us at @pandenerdium. I’m working on getting our official Tumblr page up as well.
Our first few shows will be based on mine and Holly’s obsessive love over Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which has been a major topic featured on this personal blog of mine. But we will be covering both new and old fandoms and topics, so there will be tons to talk about, as I’ve said before.
So, give PandeNERDium a listen. I will be adding another blog here when we are up-and-running. For now, add our Facebook page for updates, goofiness, and anything fangirly, nerdy, and geeky we feel like sharing: facebook.com/pandenerdium.
Enemy. Arch-nemesis. Villain. Stranger Danger. Many words can be used to describe our adversaries – those individuals, both human and monster, that are trying to kill or destroy us on a daily basis. What? This doesn’t happen in your life? Well now, this is a bit awkward. Ahem…
Buffy the Vampire Slayer has seen its fair share of some pretty unique Bad Guys who have tried to make sure the Slayer dies permanently and stays six feet under. Not even dying several times could keep her down, and she even clawed her way out of her own grave. That’s pretty hardcore, but Buffy always bounces back from the afterlife. Throughout the show’s seven season run, there have been many formidable opponents that Buffy has had to face down on a weekly basis.
None have been more formidable than the appropriately dubbed “Big Bad.” Bonus points if you can figure out which season and which baddie that phrase first referred to. Give you another minute…a few more seconds… OK, now for the answer: Buffy first used the term to describe Angel after he had turned into his nasty alter-ego Angelus in Season Two. Angelus was the Big Bad thing that lurked in the dark after he turned, and Buffy had to use all of her Slayer-ness to fight him off without dying.
Buffy’s Big Bads’ have been some of the scariest and powerful enemies that she’s encountered on the show, and one she held a very personal and emotional connection with. The Big Bads have progressively gotten more powerful and scary as each season passed, starting with a vampire known as the Master, and ending with Buffy and the Scooby Gang and Potentials literally fighting the First Evil and its minions. She’s also fought a human-turned-demon, a cybernetic monster built with demon and human parts, a Hell God, three nerds with evil plans, and her best friend. Each of these foes beat her down physically, emotionally, and mentally, yet every single time Buffy was able to find the much-needed strength within herself and the love and support of her Scooby Gang to defeat each super-villain.
It would be easy to go in-depth about each of the Big Bads listed below, but why do that and ruin the surprise for those of you out there who have yet to see the show? Instead I’m gonna throw screenshots at you and tell you, Fellow Geeky Readers, what awful, super-evil deeds that they’ve done. For your homework tonight, People Who Haven’t Seen Buffy the Vampire Slayer, is to sit down and watch every single episode and decide who your favorite Big Bads are.
There will be a separate post following shortly showcasing the other monsters and villains that we’ve seen in each season of the show, but the Big Bads deserved their own post. They simply cannot be lumped together with the rest of the Team Evil pack – that wouldn’t be fair to them. Though the auxiliary baddies have been as much fun to watch as our Big Bads.
SPOILER WARNING: As always, I would like to remind all readers that there are spoilers below. Each Big Bads’ death is revealed, so it you want to keep your virgin eyes away, proceed to another post. So, tread carefully and enjoy.
The Big Bads (Through the Seasons)
The Master – with Darla (Season 1)
Episodes: “Welcome to the Hellmouth,” “The Harvest,” “Never Kill a Boy on the First Date,” “Angel,” “Nightmares,” “Prophecy Girl”; Season 2 – “When She was Bad”; Season 3 – “The Wish”
Pros: The Master was a powerful and old vampire (over 600-years-old) who couldn’t be killed by normal vampire-killing methods; the older the vampire, the harder they fall. He was able to use hypnosis on Buffy and was able to drown her, killing her (the first time). Darla was Angel’s maker and tried to seduce him into coming back into the Order of Aurelius, run by the Master.
Cons: Though the Master was strong and older than most vampires, he could still be killed. Buffy was able to fight off his hypnosis ability and kill him. His arrogance was also his downfall. Darla underestimated Angel and his former devotion to her. Angel was able to use his past history with Darla to get close enough to her to stake her.
Dastardly Deeds: TheMaster – had his minions kill innocents in order to help him gain the strength needed to escape the Hellmouth. He also managed to kill Buffy by drowning her, but she was saved thanks to Xander and CPR. Darla attacked Buffy’s mother and tried to pin it on Angel, but Joyce recalled seeing a blonde-haired woman at her house, indicating Darla had paid a visit.
Cause of Death: TheMaster – falling upon a huge piece of broken wood as he fell through the skylight that led into Sunnydale High’s library. Darla – staked by her former lover and child, Angel.
Spike, Drusilla, and Angelus (Season 2)
Episodes: “School Hard,” “Halloween,” “Lie to Me,” “What’s My Line, Parts 1 & 2,” “Surprise,” “Innocence,” “Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered,” “Passion,” “I Only Have Eyes for You,” “Becoming, Parts 1 & 2”; Season 3 (Spike) – “Lover’s Walk”; Season 4 (Spike) – “The Harsh Light of Day” and “Wild at Heart”
Pros: Spike – anarchic behavior allowed him to be more dangerous than other vampires. He also became one of the leaders of the Sunnydale vampires, along with Drusilla, organizing them into a strong force that put up quite the fight against the Slayer and her allies. Drusilla – her “psychic” abilities and general psychosis and sociopathic behavior made her a very dangerous enemy. Her unpredictability was legendary and proved to be a valuable asset to her and Spike during their initial reign of terror. Angelus – the most dangerous of this vampiric trio, his intimate knowledge of the Slayer and the Scooby Gang allowed him to invest his time in psychological and mental warfare, causing a terror campaign that tore the Slayer down, causing her to doubt herself and her friends wondering if she was strong enough to kill him if it got to that point.
Cons: Spike – his arrogance got him his ass handed to him several times, and he was unable to kill the Slayer, much to his chagrin. Falling in love with her later on probably didn’t help either, and some signs of that showed in the season finale. Drusilla – does being super-duper-crazy count? While she used her psychotic episodes to her advantage, they also proved to be a disadvantage when it came to killing the Slayer. Well, at least when it came to Buffy and not the vampire slayer called after her. Angelus – arrogance was also one of his negative traits, and fighting the feelings that he felt for Buffy.
Dastardly Deeds: Spike – killed a few Sunnydale citizens, including high school students, and took over control of the gang of vampires that were roaming about aimlessly after the Master was killed, and killed the Master’s chosen one, the Anointed One (he was annoying, after all). Drusilla threatened many a person, both human and non-human, but her most dastardly deed was the brutal killing of the slayer Kendra, who was called after Buffy’s short-term death. Drusilla hypnotized Kendra and slit her throat using her nails, causing the young woman to bleed to death; Buffy later discovered her lifeless body after Angelus tricked her into leaving the high school unguarded. Angelus himself was responsible for many horrible acts, though none were as sinister as Jenny Calendar’s murder and the way he left her body for Giles to discover when he returned to his townhouse. Angelus also captured Giles and tortured him, trying to get information from him about unleashing the demon Acathla upon the world.
Cause of Death: Spike and Drusilla survived this season, which left Angelus/Angel as the only casualty of the season. After using his own blood to summon Acathla to form a portal that would send Earth’s citizens into one of the many Hell dimensions, Buffy ran a sword through him – his blood was needed to close the portal as well. Unfortunately for the both of them, Angelus’ soul was restored to him and he turned back into Angel, but the portal had already been opened. Buffy, devastated by this turn of events, asked him to close his eyes before killing him. Yeah – as I’ve mentioned before, I still cry like a baby during this scene. But as we all know, Angel’s death was not a permanent one.
Mayor Richard Wilkins – with Mr. Trick and Faith (Season 3)
Episodes: “Faith, Hope and Trick,” “Band Candy,” “Lover’s Walk,” “Gingerbread,” “Bad Girls,” “Consequences,” “Doppelgangland,” “Enemies,” “Choices,” “Graduation Day Parts 1 & 2”; Season 4 – “This Year’s Girl”
Pros: Mayor Wilkins – he was the mayor of Sunnydale, after all. He was also invincible and immortal for a short time, while he was preparing himself to become a full-fledged serpentine demon. He also used his surprisingly charming personality to gain Faith’s trust and loyalty after she defected from the Scooby Gang. MayorWilkins didn’t fear anything, which worked in his favor. Mr. Trick – MayorWilkins’ loyal vampire lackey who was left supervisor-less after Faith killed his former boss, the ancient vampire Kakistos. He didn’t last long ’cause the Dark Slayer herself staked him, inadvertently saving Buffy’s life, though at that point they were already becoming enemies. Faith – like Angelus, had intimate knowledge of the Scooby Gang and Buffy and used that to her advantage during her epic confrontations with the Slayer. Having a good guy turn bad is never a good thing.
Cons: MayorWilkins – his love and affection for Faith later turned out to be his biggest weakness, which Buffy exploited at the end of the season when she battled him and his demonic team at Sunnydale High. Mr. Trick – he jumped bosses quickly and was more of a behind-the-scenes vampire versus being front-and-center in the fight. Faith – like Drusilla and more famously Callisto from Xena, Warrior Princess, being a bit bitchy and sociopathic and psychotic doesn’t really get you anywhere in the world, as she quickly learned. And even though she harbored lots of hate and rage towards Buffy, she did feel some love towards her too. Being knocked out and falling into a coma doesn’t help either.
Dastardly Deeds: MayorWilkins – lots to name, but he ate quite a few graduating high school students in the season finale. And he also became a real demon, which made him giant-sized and twice as scary. Mr. Trick – he killed a few innocent people before being offed. Faith – also too many to list, but she murdered a vulcanologist at the Mayor’s behest, killing an innocent life for his hidden agenda. Deputy Mayor Allan Finch’s death was an accident, but her actions afterward and coldness towards his death led to her descent into the darkside.
Cause of Death: MayorWilkins – snake jerky, thanks to thousands of pounds of explosives rigged in and around Sunnydale High. Mr. Trick – death by staking (common vampire death), courtesy of Faith. Faith – the only survivor of this season, but she later redeemed herself and helped Buffy at the end of the series.
Adam (Season 4)
Episodes: “Goodbye Iowa,” “Who Are You,” “Superstar,” “New Moon Rising,” “The Yoko Factor,” and “Primeval”
Pros: Unstoppable killing machine built by a secret military agency that created the perfect soldier – cybernetics, human, and demon body parts. Oh, and a radioactive core that powered him that made him invincible as well. Adam was a dangerous hybrid that out up quite the fight against Buffy and almost killed her on several occasions when the two met to battle against each other.
Cons: Being a stupid killing machine whose arrogance would be his undoing, Adam was also one of the more boring Big Bads of the series. He was cool to look at, but left much to be desired.
Dastardly Deeds: Killed many Initiative soldiers and scientists, fileted a young boy so that he could study human anatomy, and recruited Spike to temporarily help him gain an upper-hand against Buffy and the Scooby Gang by pitting them against each other.
Cause of Death: Using an awesome spell (Xander, Willow, and Giles formed the core that helped her out) that summoned an ancient Sumerian being to give her strength, Buffy went all demon goddess-like, beating the crap out of Adam and ripping his radioactive/organic heart out, killing him instantly. Goodbye Mr. Terminator-meets-Pumpkinhead-meets-Human Soldier Monster!
Glory (Season 5)
Episodes: “No Place Like Home,” “Family,” “Shadow,” “Checkpoint,” “Blood Ties,” “I Was Made to Love You,” “Forever,” “Intervention,” “Tough Love,” “Spiral,” “The Weight of the World,” “The Gift”
Pros: Glory was a Hell God, after all. I think that puts her towards the top of the list of Big Bads. Oh, and she was sassy and bitchy and snarky and gorgeous, with a great sense of style. And she had many demonic minions at her beck-and-call.
Cons: All her pros were also cons, and she also switched between her real self and turning into her human avatar, Ben, which Buffy exploited during their intense battle in the pivotal episode “The Gift.”
Dastardly Deeds: Glory did invade a human host, leaving poor Ben trapped within his own body. She also had a gross and scary ability to suck human minds by pushing her fingers into her victims’ skulls, turning them into lobotomized versions of themselves. Poor Tara was one of her victims, sacrificing herself to protect Dawn when Glory was looking for the “Key” (a mystical entity that could open portals between our world and other dimensions). Tara made her believe that she was the Key, and Glory drove her insane after feeding off of her. Tara recovered after Glory was taken out.
Cause of Death: Her human host, Ben, was suffocated to death by Giles. Glory herself was beaten into submission using the Dagon Sphere and Olaf’s Hammer, courtesy of Buffy and some major ass-kicking. She was forced back into her human host, and presumably is back in her Hell dimension. Buffy ended up dying because Dawn (being the Key) had her blood used to open the portal into Glory’s dimension, but Buffy’s blood could also be used to close it (Dawn was created using Buffy’s bloodline). Her sacrifice ended up saving the world, until the next Big Bad came along to threaten it.
Nerds of Doom [Warren Mears/Andrew Wells/Jonathan Levinson] and Dark Willow (Season 6)
Episodes: “Flooded,” “Life Serial,” “Smashed,” “Gone,” “Dead Things,” “Normal Again,” “Entropy,” “Seeing Red,” “Villains,” “Two to Go,” “Grave”
Pros: Nerds of Doom – they were undetectable for a while as Big Bads because they were human and seemed harmless to Buffy and the Scooby Gang, but their real intentions would soon be found out. Dark Willow – she absorbed an insane amount of magick and became the most powerful with on Earth at the time, and with her being such a huge part of the Scooby Gang, they couldn’t bring themselves to possibly killing her when she went on her rampage, which resulted in the death of one of the Nerds.
Cons: Nerds of Doom – not as dangerous as the other Big Bads, though Warren was clearly the ringleader who wasn’t afraid to commit acts of evil. Jonathan and Andrew followed him, but were leery to performing acts of evil (Jonathan the most cautious of the three). Andrew would later kill Jonathan after being tricked into doing so by the First, disguised as Warren. Dark Willow – thought her magickal power was unmatched, she was stopped by her best friend, Xander, who reminded her of the humanity that was still left inside, and he helped bring her away from the darkness and turmoil inside her soul that was threatening to not only destroy her, but the world itself.
Dastardly Deeds: The Nerds of Doom tried to cause chaos and destruction, and try unsuccessfully to kill Buffy on several occasions, but Warren was able to succeed in killing a crucial member of the Scooby Gang and seriously injuring another: Tara and Buffy, respectively. Tara’s death was the catalyst for Willow turning into a dark, black magick version of herself, and she sought revenge for Tara’s death by going after our nerdy trio, successfully killing Warren before Buffy and gang were able to stop her. She also tried to destroy the whole world – her pain was that deep. Losing someone that you love so suddenly can cause so much grief, and Willow wanted the world to feel hers.
Cause of Death: Andrew and Jonathan survived, but Warren died at the hands of Willow, being flayed alive and hung up to die (getting your skin ripped off can lead to massive bleeding – FYI). Willow never died, so only one major Big Bad casualty in this season.
The First [aka The First Evil] – with Caleb, the Turok-han and Bringers (Season 7)
Episodes: “Lessons,” “Beneath You,” “Conversations with Dead People,” “Sleeper,” “Never Leave Me,” “Bring on the Night,” “Showtime,” “Potential,” “First Date,” “Get It Done,” “Dirty Girls,” “Empty Places,” “Touched,” “End of Days,” “Chosen”
Pros: Caleb – tough preacher obsessed with serving his master, theFirst. Likes to kill young woman who could potentially be Slayers in the future. With the First giving him his strength, he was pretty unstoppable until a scythe got in the way. Turok-han – uber-vampires that were tougher to kill than your average Sunnydale vampires, they killed many Potentials and proved to be difficult adversaries for Buffy and the Scooby Gang. Bringers – worshippers of the First that have been seen in Sunnydale before but played a major role in Season 7. They were responsible for hunting down all potential Slayers and killing them before they could gain full strength. The First – literally the FirstEvil to have existed on Earth, its influence was felt in every season as Buffy faced off against one dangerous Big Bad after another.
Cons: Caleb – easily killed by sharp objects, crazy for a god that doesn’t exist (the First); Bringers – sharp objects; Turok-han – take what kills normal vampires and crank it up to 1,000; The First – can make evil suggestions, but can’t really kill anyone (being an evil spirit and all).
Dastardly Deeds: Killing lots of future Slayers, messing with the Scooby Gang, causing Spike to kill innocents after regaining his soul, not being as witty as one thinks (here’s looking at you, Caleb).
Cause of Death: Caleb – sliced in half by the Slayer Scythe; Turok-han – killed by Slayers (Buffy, Faith, and the former Potentials), huge beam of sunlight courtesy of Spike’s special amulet; The First – hidden deep below the imploded Hellmouth, waiting to return another time.
AUTHOR’S NOTE: It should be noted that five of the Big Bads (or allies to the Big Bads) were able to redeem themselves from their wicked ways, or were good guys who plunged toward darkness. In the case of Spike and Andrew, they started off as Big Bads but eventually joined the Scooby Gang (Spike in Season 5, Andrew in Season 7), and the other three were all Scooby Gang members at one point before their destinies took a dark turn: Angel (Season 2), Faith (Season 3), and Willow (Season 6). These five former villains would become pivotal members during the last episode of the show, “Chosen,” and their contributions helped Buffy defeat the main villains while starting a new life outside of Sunnydale.
One of these days I will write a fictional account of my real-life and turn it into a TV series or a graphic novel or something. Seriously – so many crazy things have happened to me recently that you would think my life was a weird horror / drama / comedy mix. It would be quite entertaining to watch, trust me.
I am also trying my damnedest to organize the million topics that I would eventually love to cover in this blog, if I ever get my mind to stay still long enough for me to finish a blog posting. For example: finishing my Buffy the Vampire Slayer retrospective before it hits its 20th anniversary. The show recently celebrated its 16th anniversary, so I should probably move a bit faster ’cause I only have a few posts left.
The next major retrospective to be added to this site will be based on my favorite television series, The X-Files. Fox Mulder and Dana Scully will be hitting their 20th anniversary of repeatedly saving each other’s asses, trying to avoid being alien-napped for the billionth time, solving one conspiracy after another, and hopefully making one last movie that will finish off the alien invasion storyline that the series continually alluded to throughout all nine seasons. I just want another movie ’cause I’m a proud, card-carrying X-Phile, and my love for the show has not wavered over the past two decades. Well, OK, a few shows challenged it but never de-throned it.
I have a blog post that I’m writing for another project, so in the meantime please enjoy this lovely promotional photo below for next week’s Lost Girl episode titled “Delinquents.” The super-special guest star of this season is…MOTHER F’IN LINDA HAMILTON, BITCHES! Sarah Connor herself (among many other projects that I’ve loved the actress in) plays a deadly and sexy assassin called Acacia, whose story connects with this season’s bad-ass new character, the Dark Fae Valkyrie Tamsin.
FANGIRL SQUEALING WARNING: Hello, this is a semi-important message from the writer of this blog. Please do not panic, do not reach for your weapons, this is a Fangirl Moment. This is not the zombie apocalypse or Terminators rampaging about, unfortunately. Please proceed with the utmost caution for your own safety and sanity as you dive into this post. Thank you.
It’s time for a small update to the blog in the form of a very important issue close to my heart: helping Bo Dennis (Anna Silk) and Lauren Lewis (Zoie Palmer) – aka Doccubus – from Lost Girl win the E! Online TV’s Top Couples Poll. There’s less than FIVE HOURS left for the polling action, so please participate and vote often, and leave lovely comments. Showrunner Emily Andras has visited the comments section, and the stars themselves have been tweeting their love, appreciation, and support for the fans. How cool are they!
(click on the lovely picture above to place your vote for Team Doccubus!)
The Canadian Show that Continues Winning Fans Over has been doing extremely well in this sometimes-heated and tight race against many strong fandoms and their couples from the beginning early rounds until now, the home-stretch and final round. They are in the final round of the poll up against the behemoth known as Glee’s cheerleadin’ star duo Brittana (Brittany and Santana) Apologies for the brain freeze and forgetting their last names. Doh! We’re talking about a couple on a show seen by millions of viewers worldwide (Glee) and a couple on a show that’s gaining fans around the world who are falling head-over-feet for Lost Girl.
I won’t go into super-hyper-fangirl mode and get into Doccubus or Lost Girl now ’cause I already have another post lined up that will be appearing later tonight. But what makes this couple so wonderful and significant is that it’s not just a same-sex couple treated with the utmost respect by the showrunner, the writers, and the actresses involved but it’s a healthy, mature adult relationship that mirrors real-life relationships. Well minus the fact that Bo is a Succubus and Lauren is human, but still – their relationship is beautiful, authentic, and so loving.
So, fellow Lost Girl fans who haven’t voted yet and for those who want to see this awesome couple gain more exposure in the mainstream media, vote for them. Vote for Canada, vote for love, vote for awesome TV shows, and most of all – vote for Doccubus.
And a few more pictures to help convince the undecided:
And in the wise and witty words of one Dr. Lauren Lewis: “Keep calm and carry out experiments.”
Author’s Note (2/6/13): This should be called an Infrequent Bi-Weekly Post since I’ve apparently abandoned my ambitious goal to update every Monday (or even once a week). My goal is to get caught-up with recaps of Once Upon A Time, The Walking Dead, and Lost Girl before all three have new episodes airing this Sunday and Monday, respectively. It would make more sense to update on my days off, on Thursdays and Fridays, but those are the days I choose to get out of the house or end up staying home and playing Stars Wars: The Old Republic or World of Warcraft. Yeah – WTB a new life.
Meanwhile, enjoy this second of three parts featuring the various characters that make up the Buffy-verse. Our favorite villains from the series will be Part Three, and a final wrap-up post featuring all of the minor characters: good, bad, and neutral.
In the first part of this look-back at the diverse and large group of characters that make up the Buffy-verse, I wrote an ode to my favorite character: Faith Lehane. She’s one of the few characters on the show that was able to encompass both the good and bad parts of her psyche, but in the end she conquered her demons and stood besides her fellow sister Slayer, Buffy Summers. Faith’s road to redemption is a long journey, but one that she is facing with a sense of calmness and understanding of her previous actions. She has had help on this journey courtesy of Angel, who has also been seeking redemption on his own for years as well.
In this second of a three-part series on the characters of one of my favorite TV shows, I’m taking a look at the awesome characters from the Buffy-verse with an emphasis on the members of Team Slayer: Buffy and her friends, family, and allies. Not all of the good guys are featured, but mainly I’ve covered the major ones that have played significant roles in the series, including minor characters who have shown up in more than three episodes. Let’s take out our pom-poms and cheer for Team Slayer! Be prepared to see some future edits because I have a feeling a few slipped through my memory, and I apologize ahead of time for that.
The Scooby Gang first drew me into their supernatural world full of horrifying demons, scary vampires, and menacing “Big Bads” (the main villain/s of each season) with their sarcasm, their humor, their strength, and especially their strong bonds with each other. A hero(ine) gains their strength from their army, and Buffy definitely has a great team always standing beside her. Team Slayer has accomplished a lot, and they deserve their place in television history for saving the world more times than we can count. They aren’t just friends to Buffy – they are as much family to her as her own blood relatives, and this strong connection that she shares with them has helped her through many a difficult situation that she has encountered in all seven seasons of the show.
What made Buffy the Vampire Slayer connect with so many fans when the show first aired was the fact that they were high schoolers, and many of us growing up at that time were the same age as them, the Scooby Gang. High school can be a torturous time for many teenagers who have to navigate through bullies, mean teachers, and trying to survive long enough to make it into college. Watching Buffy, Willow, and Xander – along with their many friends – navigate through high school while avoiding certain death from many horrible, nasty meanies and dealing with teenage issues spoke to a lot of us who were teens at the time.
Though Buffy had a lot of people who had her back and helped her out tremendously, there were times when she felt like the only person in the world with her powers. She didn’t have any other fellow Slayers that could help her understand her role as the Chosen One, and when she did find Slayers, bad things would happen to them (Kendra died in Season Two, Faith turned to the darkside halfway through Season Three, and the Potentials in Season Seven). When she was at one of her lowest points (Season Two’s “Becoming Parts 1 & 2,” Season Three’s “Anne”), Buffy had no one. Her friends and family didn’t understand the pain she was going through, the loneliness, and having this huge responsibility solely lying upon her shoulders. She was the Slayer, she was meant to conquer evil, yet she was an army of one without a fellow soldier to understand her inner turmoil and frustrations. Also, killing the love of your life doesn’t help when you’re in the middle of a nervous breakdown.
As we all know, Buffy finally became the leader and Chosen One she was destined to be by the end of the series, commanding an army of young women who had gone from Potentials to full-blown Slayers. She led an army against the First Evil’s Turok-Han (uber-vampires) in the battle in the Hellmouth, and she and her friends and allies barely escaped with their lives. A lot of lives were lost in the battle of Good vs. Evil, and Buffy would never forget the fallen.
Each of the following characters all have a special place in my heart, as I am sure they have a special place in your hearts too. We hold these characters in high regard and love them for their faults and for their strengths, and I thank Joss Whedon and his fabulous team of writers for fully developing these characters and keeping them from becoming bland, cookie-cutter placeholders as they navigated through the complex storylines. Let me introduce you to Buffy and her Slayin’ family as we appreciate all of the awesome things Team Slayer has done for the world:
ADDITIONAL NOTE: I have the characters below canon through their storylines in the series. They do not follow their storylines in the ongoing graphic novel series – haven’t read all of them yet. Their “living or dead” statuses are also listed by each character name. There were a of casualties on Team Slayer’s side, but the core group lived to the end of the series.
The “Original” Scooby Gang
Buffy Summers (Sarah Michelle Gellar) –> Alive
The heroine of our show and the Chosen One, she has saved the world (with the help of her friends) ten thousand times over. Through perseverance, Buffy conquered not only her personal demons, but the literal demons that threatened to eat humans and destroy our world. We owe Buffy a debt of gratitude for saving our asses from the many apocalypses that could have wiped us out. In the end, she stood tall with her Scooby Gang, her sister Dawn, and fellow sister Slayer Faith as they all stared at the crater that once held their town of Sunnydale, California. You rock, Buffy!
Willow Rosenberg (Alyson Hannigan [Denisof]) -> Alive
Willow was one of Buffy’s best friends, and one hell of a witch too. Another lesson learned: never underestimate the cute, redheaded geeky gal because she could be a powerful witch who can kick your ass faster than you can open a book. Willow would later become one of the “Big Bads” of Season Six; the death of a loved one (her girlfriend, Tara Maclay) triggered the darkness within her, turning her into Dark Willow (think Dark Phoenix). Willow was able to redeem herself and cast a super-powerful spell using a powerful Scythe that had been passed down through the Slayer generations, using Buffy and Faith’s Slayer strength and sharing it will all of the potential Slayers in the world.
Xander Harris (Nicholas Brendon) -> Alive
Xander is an integral part of the Scooby Gang, and a force to be reckoned with. He may not have the Slayer strength of Buffy or the magickal abilities of Willow and Giles, but his humanity grounded the Gang. A very trustworthy and strong friend who has felt “unwanted” or the “odd-man out” in the past (Season Three’s “The Zeppo,” Season Four’s “Fear, Itself”), Xander sacrificed a lot in the end and helped Buffy lead the Potentials into Slayerhood. Unfortunately, he lost an eye in a battle against “Big Bad” Caleb and had his on-off girlfriend/ex-fiancee Anya die in the battle at the Hellmouth. He survived the Hellmouth battle and stood with his best friends as they quietly celebrated their victory.
Rupert Giles (Anthony [Stewart] Head) -> Alive
Giles was not only a Watcher to Buffy, but a father figure as well (her parents were divorced). Though he was mostly seen as a mousy librarian-type at the beginning of the series, Giles had a hidden past that included the vicious-sounding nickname “Ripper.” He was also not afraid to let that personality come out when it came to protecting his slayer (Season Five’s “The Body”). Giles and Buffy had their differences of opinion in several matters, but he would always stand and fight by her side, while protecting her as well. Come to think of it, he was a father-figure to those he stood watch over (the Scooby Gang, Dawn, etc.).
Joyce Summers (Kristine Sutherland – Seasons 1-5) –> Deceased: Season 5
Buffy’s mother was a major part of the series when it first aired. Her sudden death was a shocking moment that floored many fans. She helped keep the Scooby Gang together and was a den mother to them, and also a romantic interest to Rupert Giles. Well, for one episode (“Band Candy”), but they did make a great couple. The most haunting episode of the series, “The Body,” showed how great of an impact her death had on her daughters and the Scooby Gang. We all know Buffy made her mom proud in the end, and I’m sure her mother was watching from wherever she was, looking down upon her with love. /cries
Dawn Summers (Michelle Trachtenberg – Seasons 5-7) -> Alive
Dawn is Buffy’s sister but not her biological sister – more of a mystical sister. Huh? Before Season Four (and for most of her life), Buffy was an only child. Some monks created a human teenager from a source of magic called the Key. Putting the Key in human form was their insurance policy in keeping it away from a hell goddess named Glory. Buffy found out that her memories of Dawn were fabricated, but she grew to love her. Dawn grew into her own and became a valuable player in the Hellmouth battle.
Former Scooby Gang Members
Angel (David Boreanaz – Seasons 1-3) -> Alive
Oh Angel – you sexy brooding vampire. When we first meet him in Season One, he helps Buffy out whenever she found herself in a bind, but she barely knew anything about this mysterious hunk. There’s a reason for that – dude is a vampire! And a formerly brutal one at that! Buffy freaked out when she discovered Angel’s true nature, but fell in love with him regardless. As we all know, Angel turned back into Angelus in Season Two and thus became the “Big Bad,” along with Drusilla (Spike had a last-minute save in his favor). Angel came back into Buffy’s world, but their romance would still be ill-fated – Angel left at the end of Season Three and headed to Los Angeles to continue the good fight in the City of Angels.
Cordelia Chase (Charisma Carpenter – Season 1-3) –> Deceased: Died in Season 4 of Angel
Bitchy popular girl/cheerleader Cordelia was the least likely candidate for kick-ass individual. When it came to helping fight the forces of darkness, Cordy rose to the occasion. She dated Xander and became a pariah amongst her popular crowd (well, and hanging out with Buffy cemented that fate). Cordelia was a fun character to watch because she had some really funny lines in the series, though most of them were well-placed snark or sass at anyone who dared cross her path. One of my favorite Cordy-centric episodes is “Out of Sight, Out of Mind.” Cordelia would later join Angel and become an important person in his life, and a future love interest.
Daniel “Oz” Osbourne (Seth Green – Seasons 2-3; made two appearances in Season 4) -> Alive
Cool, calm, mellow – these are just some of the many words used to describe resident werewolf Oz. I think we all have a friend who’s like Oz, and they’re the type of person that everyone is drawn to because they are good-hearted and relaxed by nature. Even though Oz was a werewolf, he was a conscientious one. When it came to his “time of the month,” he would lock himself up in the book cage in the Library, waiting for the night hours to pass so that he wouldn’t inadvertently harm anyone. Willow was his girlfriend and they were the cutest couple on the show (well, until Tara came along). Oz left temporarily to control his werewolf urges but came back to be with Willow. Willow had already moved on with a young woman named Tara, and Oz’s werewolf came out again. Oz had to leave yet again to try and control his inner werewolf so that he wouldn’t harm his friends or loved ones.
Jenny Calendar (Robia LaMorte – Seasons 1-2) –> Deceased: Season 2
Jenny Calendar was a computer instructor at Sunnydale High who also moonlighted as a technopagan. She also had her own secrets that would later have devastating consequences. Jenny was a member of the Romanian Kalderash clan who shared a past with Angelus. He killed a member of their clan and a clan elder cast a spell on him, forcing his soul to re-enter his body. The curse did have one fault: it could be broken if Angel had one night of passion with his “true love.” Buffy and Angel made love on her 17th birthday, breaking the curse. Feeling betrayed by Jenny’s secret, Giles and the rest of the Scooby Gang shunned her. Jenny was able to create a program to translate the original curse, and she had just completed the translation on the night that Angelus paid her a visit in the episode “Passion.” Jenny didn’t have a chance to tell anyone about her triumph before Angelus killed her. Willow would later discover the disk and perform the curse (twice).
Anya/Anyanka (Emma Caulfield – Seasons 3-7) –> Deceased: Season 7
Anya, Anya, Anya. Every show has to have that sassy and brutally honest person that doesn’t spare words when it comes to revealing the truth about anything and everything. Anya is one of my favorite characters and I’m still a little mad that she didn’t make it to the end. Anya makes her first appearance as Anyanka, a vengeance demon who answers Cordelia’s wish about Buffy never making it to Sunnydale. After her identity is discovered, Anyanka’s amulet is destroyed and she reverts back to a teenaged woman – talk about punishment. With her years of knowledge, Anya was able to shed some light on Mayor Wilkins’ ascension at the end of Season Three. She later began a relationship with Xander and helped out the Scooby Gang, becoming a full-fledged member. Sadly, she didn’t make it to the end of the series, but she certainly left a last impression.
Riley Finn (Marc Blucas – Seasons 4-6; left halfway through Season 6) -> Alive
There are few characters in our fandom that have divided fans quite like this former member of the Initiative and ex-boyfriend to our Slayer. Fans love him or hate him, but I don’t mind the guy at all. Riley was an important part of the Scooby Gang for a few seasons before he turned a bit dark and disappeared from the series. He went AWOL from the Initiative after finding out what their true purpose was (the research and development of new bio-mechanical monstrosities combining demon/human/machine), and aligned himself with Buffy and the rest of the Scooby Gang as they fought Season Four’s Big Bad,” Adam. While their relationship remained strong for a while, in the end he and Buffy grew apart and eventually ended their relationship.
Tara Maclay (Amber Benson – Seasons 4-6) –> Deceased: Season Six
Tara is another character that fans were divided on, but a lot of us loved her. She had many strong traits: powerful, kind-hearted, caring, and full of love for her girlfriend and her friends. Her first appearance on the show was in the groundbreaking episode “Hush.” She was a fellow Wiccan in a group that also included Willow. Their first magickal connection came when they needed to barricade a door against the Gentlemen and their minions, and after they linked hands they felt an instant connection. That connection would later turn into feelings for one another, becoming one of the few gay couples on TV at the time. They were also my favorite couple (my Buffy OTP canon couple; my fanon is Fuffy). Willow’s growing addiction to magick would eventually lead to their break-up. Willow and Tara were able to rekindle their relationship for a few blissful hours before Tara’s death at the hands of Warren, part of the Nerds of Doom in Season Six. Her death devastated Willow, turning her into Dark Willow.
Spike (James Marsters – Seasons 4-7) –> Alive; was deceased but return to life on Angel
Spike – how I love thee. Spike was originally one of the “Big Bads” of Season Two, arriving in Sunnydale with then-girlfriend Drusilla (my Spike OTP), ready to cause chaos and destruction and kill Buffy along the way. He was thwarted from his efforts countless times by Buffy, but his feelings for her would later start to grow at the end of Season Four as we headed into Season Five. He and Buffy eventually got into a chaotic, crazed, loving, passionate relationship. He became an invaluable member to the Scooby Gang after the Initiative (the secret military group from Season Four). When it came to the final battle at the Sunnydale Hellmouth, he sacrificed himself and saved many Slayer lives (he wore an amulet the Powers That Be had destined for one of their Champions). Though he died on Buffy, he was resurrected on Angel.
Andrew Wells (Tom Lenk – Season 7) -> Alive
Formerly one of the original “Big Bads” of Season Six (the Nerds of Doom), before Dark Willow took over that title, Andrew was a reluctant addition into the Scooby Gang. More like a former evil villain kidnapped and made to play nice with the heroes. Though he could be annoying at times, he did provide some much-needed comic relief amongst the darkness that touched the storyline of Buffy’s last season. He stood up and became a hero in the final episode “Chosen,” fighting alongside Anya as they took down Bringers. Anya saved him before she was killed, and he would always be forever grateful for her act of selflessness, though the knowledge that she died for him would always weigh heavily on him. He continued on with the Scooby Gang in the comic series.
Robin Wood (D.B. Woodside – Season 7) → Alive
The son of Slayer Nikki Wood, Robin Wood was also the principal of the newly-rebuilt Sunnydale High. He helped Buffy regain some confidence as he asked her to become a school counselor, and he and Buffy shared a good rapport with one another. Robin, like many of the characters on the show, had many secrets of his own. One of the biggest? He was there the night Spike killed his mother, making her his second Slayer kill. Robin would never forget that moment because he was just a young child when it happened, and he swore vengeance against Spike. He and Spike eventually had a confrontation, but Buffy interfered and warned him to not pull any more crap again. Robin became a valuable member of the Scooby Gang, and he even had a love interest at the end of the series: Faith. He suffered a serious wound in the battle at the Hellmouth, but later survived his injury. In the comic series he and Faith part ways, but it was for the better.
Kendra Young (Bianca Lawson – Season 2) –> Deceased: Season 2
Kendra was a no-nonsense Jamaican Slayer that was called by The Powers That Be (TPTB) after Buffy technically died at the hands of The Master, Season One’s “Big Bad.” Kendra was a strictly-disciplined Slayer in comparison to Buffy’s training wheels-style, and though both women would butt heads occasionally, they also complimented each other. Sadly for Kendra, she didn’t last long on the series after she met the business end of Drusilla’s nails in “Becoming, Part 1.” Poor Bianca Lawson can’t catch a break between Buffy and Pretty Little Liars when it comes to good characters being killed off. Kendra’s death also marked Drusilla’s first Slayer kill – a fact that Spike was quite proud of until Buffy threatened to kill her.
Faith Lehane (Eliza Dushku – Seasons 3-4, Season 7) -> Alive
Jump back a post and read all about my Favorite Character (yes, that title has been bestowed upon her). Friend, former friend, frenemy, enemy, arch-nemesis, acquaintance, somewhat friend, but above all a sister Slayer to Buffy. A very fun character to watch as well (along with Anya and Spike). She came so close to gaining her own series, but those plans slowly disappeared after Eliza accepted a role on Tru Calling. A Faith series would have been so awesome, and probably on a cable network just for the profanity and sexual content. Heh heh…
The Potentials (Felicia Day, Iyari Limon, Sarah Hagan, Indigo, etc. – Season 7) –> Multiple Deaths
Young women who were forced to face their destiny before they became of age. These Slayers-in-training were no match for the First’s Turok-han vampires at first when they encountered the uber-vampires while patrolling with Buffy or fighting for their lives against the Bringers. A very beneficial and powerful spell courtesy of Willow, as well as an awesome pep talk from Buffy, helped turned these Potentials into full-blown Slayers. They shared Buffy and Faith’s strength, stamina, and powers, and were able to help our sister Slayers defeat many a Turok-han in the final battle in Sunnydale’s Hellmouth. Special note: Potential Kennedy later became Willow’s girlfriend, helping her finally move on from Tara (though Tara would always have a special place in her heart).
Erm… Well, I was off by a few hours on my new Monday weekly update. I’ll let it slip for now by one day and give to you, my Faithful Readers, a brand-new Buffy Retrospective post on my favorite character. Consider it a consolation prize.
That’s OK – all my posts have been delayed by a day thanks to this strange sleeping schedule I’m on thanks to a new work schedule that requires longer hours, but I get more days off. Still – totally not used to staying at work for 10+ hours and sacrificing what little sleep I get (as I write this, insomnia is kicking my ass HARD). I also blame Once Upon A Time for stressing me out on Sunday nights, making me rant and rave in my head about what next week’s episode will hold. Thankfully, tonight’s Lost Girl has helped calm my nerves. As stressful as “The Outsider” episode of OUAT was (as well as last week’s “The Cricket Game”), seeing one of my pairings become canon made my evening. Three cheers for DOCCUBUS!!! Ahem…
Enjoy the lovely post dedicated to Eliza Dushku and her Buffy/Angel alter-ego, Faith Lehane, and until we meet again in a few hours. Happy Trickster Tuesday, Folks! [insert Lost Girl reference here]
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Retrospective (10): The Characters, Part 1 – Favorite Character (Always “Five by Five”)
Well, Fellow Geeky Readers – I’m coming towards the end of my Buffy the Vampire Slayer Retrospective. I only have two or three more posts, along with a round-up post, to end this extended look back at one of my favorite television series. It’s been a long journey and a wonderful flashback at a series that captivated my imagination, and influenced me in many ways while I faced off against those dreaded teenage years. The world is a better place thanks to Buffy and her friends and allies.
What really makes the show so wonderful – besides the great set pieces, the storylines, and the dialogue – are the characters themselves. We all have favorite characters from the show, and we also have characters that we hate to love/love to hate. From Good to Evil, all of the characters that have appeared on the show have left their mark, and they will always be memorable for various reasons.
I am a huge fan of anti-heroes and villains myself. I love the good guys and always cheer them on, but I also secretly root for the other team. One of the most dynamic, talked-about, and fun characters to be introduced into the series is the focus of this first post about my favorite Buffy the Vampire Slayer characters. Neither hero(ine) or villain, this character has certainly given Buffy and the Scooby Gang more than a few headaches, but in the end she was able to redeem herself on her own terms.
Let’s all gather together and take a peek at my favorite Buffy the Vampire Slayer character:
Who is she?
Out of all of the characters that have appeared on the show, there is one character in particular that has captured my heart – fully and completely. A Slayer who is Buffy’s dark half, Faith Lehane is one of the best characters on the show, and her popularity has only continued to grow since her first appearance. Portrayed by the beautiful and equally kickass Eliza Dushku, Faith’s approach to slaying and life in general was in counter to Buffy’s, and they butted heads on more than one occasion. A fatal mistake caused Faith to join the forces of darkness towards the end of Season Three, but she was able to gain some respect back at the end of the series in Season Seven.
Eliza was able to take a character that could have easily shown up for a handful of episodes and turned her into a lasting presence with a large fanbase. She has certainly left her mark in the series, and her adventures continue on in comic series Angel & Faith. I highly recommend checking it out if you’re a fan of Angel and/or Faith, their friendship from Angel, or a Fangel (Faith/Angel) ‘shipper. It’s a very well-written and plotted series that teams up characters that I love as they continue their struggle with redemption and paying for the horrors of their past, while helping other lost souls in search of salvation.
Why is she my favorite? What’s her story?
I love my villains as much as I love my heroes, but there’s just something about a character that walks that fine line between the light and dark aspects of their psyche. Faith moves between both, but her journey for redemption has found her in the plus column for Team Good. Faith is a complex character with a past that continues to haunt her, yet she has shown a significant amount of growth throughout the years. She is definitely a different person now than the rebellious Slayer that we were first introduced to as she slayed a vampire in front of Buffy and the Scooby Gang in Season Three’s “Faith, Hope and Trick” episode.
Faith’s ‘bad girl’ persona has always been a favorite of mine. She is snarky, sassy, and a wild child, but she can also be very dangerous. Her true colors really shone through in a pivotal episode in her storyline: “Bad Girls.” In this major Faith-centric episode, Buffy takes a break from being Lil’ Miss Good Slayer and decides to ditch school and hang out with her new “bestie,” much to Willow and Xander’s chagrin. Buffy discovers what it’s like to live a day in Faith’s shoes and it’s not half-bad. Unfortunately, things start to fall apart towards the end of the episode when our sister Slayers break into a sporting goods store and try to steal some weapons, escape from a police car, and the fateful moment when Faith mistakes a human civilian as a vampire. As soon as Faith drove the stake into Deputy Mayor Allan Finch’s heart, we fans looked on in horror as we realized what had just happened, and Buffy’s shocked expression perfectly mirrored ours’. At that moment things became real for our Slayers, and while Buffy tried to cope with the aftermath of Allan’s death, Faith started to slowly spiral downward.
Watching Eliza act Faith’s indifference to Allan’s death and the consequences of her actions is a testament to her talents as an actress. Her scenes as Faith at the end of Season Three showed great maturity as well as character development, and man – did we feel her pain. Gone was the care-free wild child – in her place was a hardened individual who looked towards the Big Bad of the season, Mayor Richard Wilkins, as her new surrogate father. Faith also became a new, very human enemy for Buffy and the Scooby Gang to battle.
One of the most insane fight scenes between both Slayers arrived at the end of the first part of the season finale – “Graduation Day, Part 1.” Earlier in the episode, Faith had shot Angel with an arrow, poisoned with a substance that was deadly to vampires. The only cure for this poison was the blood of a Slayer, and Buffy was determined to not only make Faith pay for her actions after she joined Team Evil, but even willing to let her die to cure Angel. Unfortunately, Buffy was unsuccessful but was able to take Faith out of the game for a while (a coma will do that to you), as she and the Scooby Gang – along with their high school classmates – battled and defeated the Mayor and his minions.
Faith wakes up from her coma eight months after the Mayor’s defeat at the hands of Buffy. Looking for blood and revenge, Faith uses a device to switch bodies with Buffy. Faith sees how starkly different Buffy’s life is from her own, and she starts to slowly unravel (again). She hates who she has become, and Buffy is startled by the revelation as she sees Faith (in her own body again) disappear, location unknown. Faith makes it to Angel’s new home, Los Angeles, and causes hell and havoc as soon as she enters the city. She tries to kill Angel and hurts his fellow partners in Angel investigations: Cordelia Chase (punches her in the face) and Wesley Wyndham-Pryce (tortures him). But something inside of her finally breaks. Faith has finally hit rock-bottom and Angel is there to help her pick up the pieces, reminded of his own failings as a human and the devastation that he caused when he was his soulless alter-ego Angelus.
After a heated confrontation with Buffy (having arrived in the City of Angels after hearing her archnemesis tried to kill Angel), Faith turns herself in to the police. She has a moment of serenity and calm as we see the camera focus on her face as she sits in a prison cell, finally finding some peace in her life. Of course, this won’t last long. Our dark Slayer is called upon to help Angel Investigations capture the newly-desouled Angelus. Angel visited Faith in prison several times, and she felt that she owed it to him to help him before his son, Connor, and the demonically possessed Cordelia killed him. Faith is able to capture Angelus after injecting herself with a mystical drug called Orpheus, which causes vampires to trip out as they drink from their human hosts. Angel’s soul is restored before Connor stakes him, and Faith makes her way back to Sunnydale to assist Buffy in her upcoming battle with Evil Itself, the First (Evil).
Faith is not exactly welcomed home with open arms (can we blame them?), but with reluctant acceptance of the help that she can offer Buffy and the Scooby Gang. The Scooby Gang has significantly grown with the newest additions to Team Good: the potential Slayers that have been arriving in Sunnydale, escaping from the Bringers sent by the First to kill off the Slayer line. Faith is finally (almost) fully redeemed in Buffy’s eyes during their fight in the Hellmouth against the First’s army, as Buffy hands over a powerful Slayer weapon to Faith – a sort of passing of the baton, of the deadly variety. In that moment, Faith is finally trusted by Buffy, and she does not let her down. My favorite Scooby Gang scene is the final shot in Season Seven’s “Chosen,” where our heroes gaze over at the crater that was Sunnydale before it imploded. In that last shot Faith stands with the remaining Scooby Gang members, having fought the good fight and surviving to live another day. Kudos to Joss Whedon for including Faith as an integral character to the final five episodes of the series.
Favorite/Memorable Faith Quotes
- “Ain’t it crazy how slaying just always makes you hungry and horny?” – “Faith, Hope and Trick” (Buffy)
- “She got me really wound up. A fight like that and, no kill. I’m about ready to pop!” – “The Zeppo” (Buffy)
- “I missed the mark last night and I’m sorry about the guy, I really am! But it happens! Anyways, how many people do you think we’ve saved by now? Thousands? And didn’t you stop the world from ending? Because in my book, that puts you and me in the plus column.” – “Consequences” (Buffy)
- “What are you gonna do, B? Kill me? You become me. You’re not ready for that yet.” – “Enemies” (Buffy)
- “Been standin’ still for eight months, B. How hard you look?” – “This Year’s Girl” (Buffy)
- “’Cause I’m a stuck-up tight-ass with no sense of fun?” – “Who Are You” (Faith-as-Buffy) (Buffy)
- “Face it, Wesley, you really were a jerk. Always walking around like you had a great big stick shoved up your English Channel.” – “Five by Five” (Angel)
- “I gotta be the first Slayer in history to be sponsored by a vampire.” – “Sanctuary” (Angel)
Faith-Centric Episodes to Check Out (Episodes That Feature Lots of Faith)
Buffy the Vampire Slayer – Season Three
- “Faith, Hope & Trick”
- “Bad Girls”
- “Graduation Day, Parts 1 & 2”
Buffy the Vampire Slayer – Season Four
- “This Year’s Girl”
- “Who Are You”
Buffy the Vampire Slayer – Season Seven
- “Dirty Girls”
- “Empty Places”
- “End of Days”
Angel – Season One
- “Five by Five”
Angel – Season Four
Welcome to a new feature that I’m planning to launch every Monday – actually updating my blog once a week. Starting tomorrow you will see new posts popping up. Various fandoms will be covered, as well as episode recaps of the many, many shows that I love - and there are many.
I will finally, finally, FINALLY finish my retrospective series on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and introduce Lost Girl to the blog. Season Three of my new favorite show airs tomorrow night in the good ol’ USA (on Syfy at 9/10 PM EST, folks), and this season will be awesome. Our Canadian friends were the the first to see the season premiere, as it is a Canadian production and they had to wait nine months for the return of the show.
I’ve got future recaps for the following shows as well: Once Upon A Time, Pretty Little Liars, Spartacus: War of the Damned, and The Walking Dead. I also have more horror-related posts as horror is my favorite genre of film, books, and television. We all need to have a little bit of fear in our lives…
I shall return shortly with the next installment of the BTVS retrospective.
Another year has passed, and as we look towards all the geeky goodness that 2013 will bring to us, let us all take a moment to reflect upon everything cool that came out this past year.
I fell behind on my blogging, but I place the sole blame on that due to my crazy, hectic personal life. Normally life is pretty dull and stagnant for the most part, but these past two months there were so many damn curveballs thrown my way. Trying to concentrate and finish all of the posts that I wanted to write before the end of the year became a bit too stressful for me. The Buffy retrospective will be finished by Wednesday, so be on the lookout for the last remaining posts. All that’s left to cover are more of my Favorite Quotes, Favorite Characters, and Favorite “Anything Else I’ve Forgotten.”
Not to fret, though. My Best Of 2012 post will arrive tomorrow, the start of 2013. Now that life has quieted down a bit, you will see daily posts from me, and may see even more in the coming weeks. My Favorite Show of 2012, Lost Girl, returns this Sunday, January 6th with its third season on Canadian screens. We Americans get to see it premiere on Monday, January 14th. I will be reviewing each episode of the new season and posting it here. On a technicality, Lost Girl actually premiered over two years ago in Canada, but the U.S. just started airing the show in January 2012. Seasons 1 and 2 were shown back-to-back so that there was no interruption for us. And our Canadian neighbors deserve to have the show premiere in their home country before anywhere else because Season 2 ended for them on May 2012, while Syfy showed the last episode of Season 2 (“Flesh and Blood”) in September. We haven’t had to wait as long as our friends Up North, but they’ll get to gloat while we anxiously wait for it.
Along with Lost Girl, my second favorite show returns next Sunday as well. Once Upon A Time premiered back on October 2011, but a lot of fans discovered and fell in love with it in 2012 (myself included). Featuring my Favorite Villain of 2012, Lana Parrilla as Regina Mills/The Evil Queen, OUAT kicked off its second season on September 2012. There were many new characters that were introduced, and we also got to see a lot of Regina’s backstory in the episodes “We Are Both” and “The Doctor.” Whether you’re a fan of the character or not, you feel a bit bad for her after all the manipulation she suffered at the hands of her own mother, Rumpelstiltskin/Mr. Gold, the Mad Hatter/Jefferson, and Dr. Whale/Dr. Frankenstein.
I will recap both seasons of Lost Girl and Once Upon A Time before they return to our television screens in five days. Screenshots galore!
Those shows, as well as many others, will be featured in the following weeks. I’ll also post more movies, music, games, and any other geeky pop culture items that strike my fancy.
I leave you all with two teasers for the third season of Lost Girl. It really is a fun show full of comedy, drama, action, and fantastical/mythological creatures and an open and refreshing attitude on sexuality – if you’re into that kind of thing.
Let’s get musical (once again) with this latest post from that massive archive of randomness/geekiness that is my brain. I don’t write nearly enough about music in general in this blog, but all of that will change here in the coming year. Well… If we live long enough and survive this so-called “Apocalypse” that people keep babbling about. I just want to live long enough to see what happens on the next few seasons of my favorite shows. Is that too much to ask for, zombies/Mayans/alpacas?
A few months ago, I wrote about the release of the first single off of Alanis Morissette’s newest album, Havoc and Bright Lights. “Guardian” represented a new chapter in Alanis’ personal life that included a marriage to rapper Souleye (aka Mario Treadway) and a child, her son Ever Imre. The lyrics to “Guardian” showcased Alanis’ newfound motherhood by being a ‘guardian’ for her child, or in the case of the song, love and protectiveness over those who need it. The video for the single was a tribute to the beautiful Wim Wenders film Wings of Desire. That name may sound familiar – the film was later remade into the American film City of Angels, which also featured an original track from Alanis (the hauntingly beautiful “Uninvited”).
Alanis Morissette is an artist that has pursued many artistic projects throughout her long career. From starting off in television to appearing in films, and releasing one of the biggest albums of the past 20 years (that would be Jagged Little Pill), she is still rockin’ and confessin’ and sharing herself to the world. In recent years (OK, the last 15 years), she has appeared on TV shows like Up All Night, Weeds, and Nip/Tuck, films like Dogma and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (playing the most well-known of deities, God). She has also recently appeared as a mentor and performer on popular dance and singing shows like American Idol, The Voice, and Dancing with the Stars. And on top of that, she has spent the past few years working on her magnus opus – a book covering her thoughts on life, spirituality, artistry, and whatever random topics flow through her subconscious.
Even with her extracurricular activities, Alanis never strayed far from her first passion – music. August 28th of this year saw the release of Alanis’ sixth studio effort (since she crossed the Canadian border and made it to the good ol’ U.S. of A.), Havoc and Bright Lights. A companion piece to her 2008 release, Flavors of Entanglement, Alanis has shown a musical evolution in her most recent work while still writing her trademark confessional and observational lyrics about her own life and the world around her. Flavors of Entanglement was her excellent (and underrated) reflection on the beginning and end of a long-term relationship, namely her high-profile engagement to actor Ryan Reynolds, along with other topics that looked at humanity.
Though FOE was well-received by critics and fans alike, it never ignited the album charts – as what’s been happening to her albums since the release of Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie in 1998. Fans still flocked to her concerts, bought and downloaded her music through online music sources, and caught her on her various TV show performances. And while she may not be selling truckloads of albums anymore, it doesn’t mean that Alanis still isn’t making music that speaks to her listeners in intimate strokes of emotions that speak to us.
I think Flavors of Entanglement never got the attention that it truly deserves. It is one of Alanis’ best albums in years, and is my favorite album along with Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie. SFIJ showed lots of maturity on a musical and spiritual level in comparison to Jagged Little Pill, her huge break-out hit. It has some amazing music and lyrics, courtesy of producer Guy Sigsworth, who brought some beautiful, dreamy, and ambient electronic flourishes to her music. The combination of electronic music with Alanis’ signature alt-pop-rock style is showcased beautifully in tracks like “Citizen of the Planet,” “Straitjacket,” “Tapes,” and my favorite from the album: “Moratorium.”
Havoc and Bright Lights continues her musical relationship with Guy, and it is also another fine album following in the footsteps of FOE. There are some slight hiccups that derail the album, but overall it is definitely an album worth checking out if you’re a life-long Alanis fan like me or are new to her music. For newbies who have heard her older material but have not bought an Alanis album, this is a fine bridge between her 1990’s albums with her 2000’s albums. There are a lot of positive moments on this album; though a lot of Alanis’ music is quite positive, yet people dwell on the angry alt-rock chick alterego that was so huge to her image when JLP first came out. That’s a disservice to Alanis because albums like SFIJ, FOE, and HABL have lots of bright moments that shine in-between her pain and self-doubt, which are both common themes in her self-confessional music.
There are some really awesome songs and some good songs, but there’s not really a bad song in the bunch. I can think of two that are not necessarily my favorites, but I don’t cringe when I listen to them. “Havoc” and “’Til You” are the two weakest tracks – both are slower ballads that break up the album a little bit after following strong tracks like “Numb” (before “Havoc”) and “Woman Down” (before “’Til You.” There are also two tracks that seem out-of-place but work for the eclectic-ness of this album: “Woman Down” (a quite-catchy female-empowering song, which seems a bit odd in regards to the lyrics) and “Celebrity” (about enjoying the excesses and emptiness that fame offers).
The strongest tracks on the album are: “Guardian,” “Lens,” “Spiral,” “Numb,” “Receive,” and my favorite, “Edge of Evolution.” “Edge of Evolution” is a huge departure for Alanis, both musically and lyrically. An anthem about evolving towards self-consciousness, the track starts off with an interesting electronic intro reminiscent of classic Nintendo-era music, before kicking into its powerful chorus filled with great guitar work, drum tracks, and bass lines courtesy of her talented band. For those who love Alanis’ rock-ier material, “Numb” certainly does not disappoint.
I leave you with the choruses for all twelve tracks. My song recommendations to check out and download are “Guardian,” “Numb,” and “Edge of Evolution.” “Edge of Evolution” can also be heard in movie theaters around the country – apparently they’ve been playing it during the trivia portions of the pre-movie ritual known as incessant and obnoxious advertising. People are hearing the song in the theater and seeking it out on the Internet, which makes me very happy as it it an awesome track.
- “Guardian” – “I’ll be your keepers for life as your guardian/I’ll be your warrior of care your first warden/I’ll be your angel on call, I’ll be on demand/The greatest honor of all, as your guardian”
- “Woman Down” – “Calling all woman haters/We’ve lowered the bar on the/Behavior that we will take –come on now/Calling all lady haters/Why must you vilify us/Are you willing to clean the slate? –woman down”
- “’Til You” – “Spinning my wheels ‘round, I’m here dodging bullets ‘til you/Ear to the ground while I’m dodging bullets ‘til you”
- “Celebrity” – “Give me celebrity/My kingdom to be famous/Tell me who I have to be/Starving to be famous”
- “Empathy” – “That you for seeing me/I feel so less lonely/Thank you for getting me/I’m healed by your empathy/Oh this intimacy”
- “Lens” – “So now it’s your religion against my religion/My humble opinion ‘gainst yours-this does not feel like love/And it’s your conviction against my conviction/And I’d like to know what we’d see through the lens of love”
- “Spiral” – “Don’t leave me here will all these critical voices/Cuz they do their best to bring me down bring me down/When I’m alone with all these negative voices/I will need your help to turn them down turn them ‘round”
- “Numb” – “here comes the feeling/I run from the feeling/And reach for the drug/Can’t sit with this feeling/I’d rather be flying/And comfortably numb”
- “Havoc” – “I’m slipping again/I’m up to old trick off my wagon/I have no defense/I’m wreaking havoc/Wreaking havoc and consequence”
- “Win and Win” – “Cuz we’re eye to eye/We are win and win/We are equal to each other/We are flames of twin/We are offspring of truth/We are partner sister brother”
- “Receive” – “Today’s all about me/All about cup filling/Today’s all about me/Learning how, how to receive, how to receive”
- “Edge of Evolution” – “So here we are on the edge of evolution/Numbers growing out here on the edge of evolution”