I Ship It

Oh fandom, how I love thee.

By the time I realized that ‘shipper was short for relation-shipper I was already in too deep.  I probably got sucked into fandom around the age of twelve or thirteen.  In retrospect, I was much too young to be there, but there I was anyway.  It started with CSI, then House, NCIS, and all the procedurals.  I watched for the characters, and stayed through the changes.  Ships may come and go, but shipping itself is forever.

A note: some of these contradict each other.  I don’t care.  I ship it.  Shipping is not rational, it is completely based on my whims, and this is how I feel damn it.

Books
Harry/Ginny – Harry Potter
Luna/Neville – Harry Potter
Jessica/Marcus – Jessica Darling Series
Nancy/Ned – Nancy Drew
Nancy/Frank – Nancy Drew
Mary/Bert – Mary Poppins

Movies
Jack/Elizabeth – Pirates of the Caribbean
Jack/Rum – Pirates of the Caribbean
Jack/Jar of Dirt – Pirates of the Caribbean
Captain/Maria – The Sound of Music
Rapunzel/Flynn Rider – Tangled
Tarzan/Jane – Tarzan
Jessie/Buzz – Toy Story
Tony Stark/Pepper Potts – Iron Man

Television
Josh/Donna – The West Wing
CJ/Toby – The West Wing
CJ/Danny – The West Wing
Donna/Sam – The West Wing
Gabby – NCIS
Tiva – NCIS
Harm/Mac – JAG
Chuck/Sarah – Chuck
Nine/Rose – Doctor Who
Rose/TenToo – Doctor Who
Eleven/Idris – Doctor Who
Two/Jamie – Doctor Who
Liz/Bailey – The Good Guys
Casey/Dana – Sports Night
Jeremey/Natalie – Sports Night
Spuffy – Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Willow/Tara – Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Angel/Cordelia – Angel
Fred/Westley – Angel
Victor/Pria – Dollhouse
Topher/Adelle – Dollhouse
Sybill/Branson – Downton Abbey
Anna/Mr. Bates – Downton Abbey
Snow/Charming – Once Upon A Time
Cora/Rumple – Once Upon A Time
Emma/Hook – Once Upon A Time
Leslie/Ben – Parks and Rec
Parker/Elliot – Leverage
Sophie/Elliot – Leverage
Parker/Nate – Leverage

Mini-series
Glitch/DG – Tin Man
Alice/Hatter – Alice

Web
Penny/Billie – Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog
Cheeks/Brady – Husbands
Dizzie – The Lizzie Bennett Diaries
Cereal Guy/Faux Fur Girl – Hipsterhood
Jack/Mitchelle – The Outs

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Of Musical Stories

Music has been a passion of mine since I was an infant.  More specifically, singing.  I sing pretty much all the freaking time.  Ask anyone who’s ever been around me for more than ten minutes.  When I was in middle school I started taking voice lessons and continued through high school.  I stopped when I went to college because I didn’t know how to find a place, but may try to start again sometime because it’s a blast.

Because of this background I am most well versed in Broadway, leading to this: a list of musicals that I know backwards and forwards till the end of time.  I’ll warn you that this list may have gotten a little out of hand.  Or a lot.  What can I say?  I’m sorry I’m not sorry.

  1. The Sound of Music is my all time favorite movie.  Still.  The story is timeless and true, the music is beautiful, and Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer are perfect.  I sometimes daydream about the dance in the movie being a part of my wedding.
  2. Les Miserables.  I was so excited when I heard they were going to turn this into a movie.  So excited.  I learned a few of these songs over the years in voice lessons, but truly learned the soundtrack after having seen it right before it went off Broadway in New York.
  3. Hairspray was my first Broadway show.  That might be a lie, but it was certainly one of the most memorable.  My aunt took me to see it for Christmas one year and I catch myself singing the songs every once and a while.  Sometimes you just gotta Run An’ Tell That.
  4. RENT.  Oh the controversy.  I was not allowed to watch this when the movie came out, but learned most of the soundtrack through friends.  We would sing it during our lunch period and memories pieces to perform for each other.
  5. Wicked is wicked good (I’m also a fan of bad puns).  I’ve been to see this three times and had fantastic seats every time.  Such a great show.
  6. The Wizard of Oz will forever be one of my favorite childhood stories.  At one point I had an audio tape of the movie and would play it on repeat.  I’m not actually sure that this counts as a proper musical, but there is plenty of singing in it, so I’ll go ahead and add it to the list.
  7. Mary Poppins.  I watch/listen to the 1964 Julie Andrews movie version and this was another favorite of my childhood.
  8. Across the Universe is another may not count one, but I know the Across the universe version of most of the songs better than I know the Beatles version, sorry to say.  So here it is on the list.
  9. Once Upon A Mattress was my high school’s musical when I was a junior.  It was a blast.  I missed the auditions, so I was a chorus member, but it was so much fun I didn’t even mind.
  10. Anything Goes was another high school production, but done the year after I left.  I somehow wound up with a burned CD of the music though and can sing along to most of it.  I also saw the more recent Broadway version when it was in San Francisco a few months ago, and that version made me want to take tap.  One day.
  11. Dr. Horrible’s Sing Along Blog is being counted because Joss Whedon.
  12. Once More With Feeling (Buffy musical episode) is also being counted.  See above reason.

Honorable Mention (I know a few songs, but would be overshooting to claim the entire show): Oliver!, Phantom of the Opera, The Music Man, anything Disney (because there’s too many to count properly), Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Bye Bye Birdie, White Christmas, Splendora, Chicago, West Side Story, Cabaret, Doctor Doolittle, You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown, Fiddler on the Roof, Grease, Annie, Little Shop of Horrors, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Enchanted, and Sweeney Todd.

What are your favorite musicals?  Do you randomly burst into song?

Angel the Series: The End

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As I did with Buffy last summer, I’m taking some time to analyse it’s sibling, Angel.  Angel is a completely separate beast to Buffy (in more ways than one).  It is oft-times darker and more sinister, but also arguably more diverse in a multitude of ways.  My adoration for the Buffy-verse starts here, with my Buffy series last summer and continues with Angel.  Other topics covered on Angel: Beginning; The Team, The Villains  and The In-Betweens; Death; Shanshu Redemption.

And so another good thing comes to an end.  Angel was a thrilling, heart wrenching ride to go on.  There were a few moments of absolute agony in which I actually called friends in tears (I don’t have a television problem. nope) because of something that happened.  Angel erred on the side of sinister and depressing at times, but at it’s core is a message of hope, attempting to continue in the face of adversity.

I’ll admit that I actually finished Angel right before the end of last semester.  It’s taken me longer to write about it than it took to write about Buffy.  There are a multitude of factors involved in this, but I’ll admit one of them being my own uncertainty over what to say.  There were times when it simply didn’t hold my attention as much as it’s predecessor had.  Yet I don’t regret watching for a second.

Angel brought up morals and ethics in a way that very few television shows can.  If you’re willing to look into it, you see the overarching questions and can choose your own answer.  In essence, Angel achieved what all good shows should strive for (IMHO).  It allowed audiences to ask themselves what they would do if they were put in that situation, knowing all the while that they would never actually have to answer.  In this way, it was able to ask big questions without needing to give real world answers.  Allowing viewers to ponder without the guilt that can come with more true to life examples.

Angel is a fantastic show with a huge heart.  The characters and their lives touched me in such a way that I will carry their lessons and strengths with me always.

Angel the Series: Death

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As I did with Buffy last summer, I’m taking some time to analyse it’s sibling, Angel.  Angel is a completely separate beast to Buffy (in more ways than one).  It is oft-times darker and more sinister, but also arguably more diverse in a multitude of ways.  My adoration for the Buffy-verse starts here, with my Buffy series last summer and continues with Angel.  Other topics covered on Angel: Beginning; The Team, The Villains  and The In-Betweens.

Deaths on Buffy were always real.  Surprising.  Painful and needing to be dealt with.  Deaths on Angel are gritty.  Sudden and necessary.  I was always surprised.  I shouldn’t have been, because honestly.  We managed to put together a whole series of Eulogies for Whedon-verse characters.  I knew going into this that many would die.  Yet here we are.

Starting out I had a general idea of who was going to die and around when it was going to happen, but my heart sank every time anyway.  I was disappointed with Doyle’s death (“Hero”).  Saddened that we couldn’t have seen his character through.

Darla’s death (“Lullaby”) was bittersweet.  Undead, dead, alive and well, to return to undead and remain dead again.  Darla could show up at any moment, but her final moments of the series reminded me of all the good that she had done.  Conversely, Lilah’s death (“Calvary”) seemed unnecessary, but turned to sting in a new way after the smoke cleared.

I have mixed feelings on Cordelia’s death (technically “You’re Welcome”).  I feel like her character died before the season five episode when she returned for a final farewell.  In all the ways I dislike her actions before the coma, I adore her in “You’re Welcome”, her final showing in the series.

Cordy started her slow decline since coming back from the higher plane in “The House Always Wins”.  When she gets her memory back in “Spin the Bottle” she also gets a piece of her demise.  While I understand that her actions from then on (especially in episodes “Apocalypse, Nowish”, “Calvary”, “Salvage”, and “Orpheus”) are not her own, it’s still painful to watch.  The horror of these episodes made me long for the kick ass woman that Cordy was in “Birthday”, when she consciously chooses to continue having the visions and become part demon; something the Buffy-era Cordelia would never have done.

Fred dies and doesn’t (“A Hole in the World”).  When she turns to Illyria (“Shells”), the shift is first stunning.  When we settle in to this new character we begin to see her part in the series.  I only wish that we could have seen Illyria accepted by the team to be a one of them as she was sure to be.  The pain of missing Fred will never really go away, but it dulls when it’s realized that she is still a part of the character.

A part of me cannot now speak of Lindsey’s death (“Not Fade Away”) without remembering Christian Kane’s performance in the final episode of Leverage (“The Long Good-Bye Job”).  Without yet having read the comics, it’s hard for me to tell if the death was warranted, but the scene plays out as the end of Lorne’s character as well, showing how this final plan is breaking the team one by one, letting the final scene of the show be one of almost certain doom.

If Fred’s death is upsetting, Wesley’s is flat out depressing (“Not Fade Away”).  His death is sudden and sharp, a reminder of all the things that can go wrong in complicated plans.  While painful, it drives the others to carry on to a questionable end.

*

It’s odd to me even now to realize that the final scenes of Angel are so hopeless, because the show as a whole was so focused on finding redemption and hope… but more on that next week.

Which of the Angel deaths hit you the hardest?  Did you know it was going to happen ahead of time?

My Year in Television

I considered a summary of just the season so far (starting in August/September/October), but realized that since I’ve been going on about the new format that television has taken of not having a strict season, I figured it would be more with the times to do an overview of the whole year.  This one may be a bit long, so I apologize in advance.

I started the year in a downtown apartment with glorious cable access including BBC America, and all the cable channels a girl could ever dream of.  My roommate and I would record everything on out DVR and then watch shows together.  Comedies like Modern Family, and The Middle; New Girl and Psych.

Watching things together made sure that I was caught up with everything that was going on in the world of sitcoms and dramadies.  We also watched all the BBC shows we could manage to record.  Doctor Who and The Hour being two of my favorites.  I would also watch anything with Chef Gordon Ramsey (and still will) which for the winter slump mostly includes Ramsey’s Kitchen Nightmares.

When my shows started up again I watched Once Upon A Time, Fringe, and Chuck, which I had caught up with again for it’s final season.  A bit into the semester I watched Downton Abbey as it premiered as PBS’s masterpiece series, loving every minute of it.

In fact, I loved it so much that I incorporated it into a ten page paper about how historical fiction is more a reflection of our times than the times it portrays  using Downton Abbey as a case study.  In another class I worked on a Once Upon A Time spec script that will likely never see more than my parent’s living room.  I got an A, and my mom displays it proudly, but the material was outdated as soon as I was finished with the outline.

Through school I was introduced to Husbands the Series, season one of which I gobbled up in a few hours.  As Chuck ended I turned to web series such as Husbands and The Lizzie Bennet Diaries to keep me afloat before finals season struck.

When it did I was awash in emotion.  Saddness over Sherlock, questions for Fringe and Once, shock over NCIS which i had only watched a handful of episodes of all season.

Once the shock wore off I dove into summer television with a vengeance.  The full arsenal of Ramsey shows were family entertainment.  MasterChef, Hell’s Kitchen, Ramsey’s Kitchen Nightmares, and the new Hotel Hell.  I also powered through the final season of Buffy the Vamipre Slayer, finishing what wound up being a nearly ten year watching in progress.  I had a lot to say about it.  Yeah.

Meanwhile, a friend gave me a call asking me if I was free to be somebody’s coffee bitch in LA.  Let me check m–YES.  The experience not only gave me a chance to talk with some awesome people, it also gave me a whole list of things to watch as the summer continued.

But there was no time for that as I began a period of travel induced, television watching stasis.  While I watched no TV for nearly seven weeks I did manage to catch the Opening Ceremony of the Olympics in Berlin, and then the closing two weeks later in Rome.  The trip also included breaking into Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog and Once More, With Feeling songs often, which was quite amusing to Germans who only understood half the words I sang.

Upon my return I set myself up with very basic cable (without recording!) and settled in for premiere season.  In the process I accidentally watched the summer finale for Leverage while waiting for the premieres of Fringe and Once Upon A Time.  I tried a handful of new shows including 666 Park Avenue, Revolution, Last Resort, and Elementary, but Elementary was the only one that stuck.  I haven’t missed an episode.

I trooped over to a friends building to watch Doctor Who and try out Copper (didn’t stick, but I plan to try again).  I waited patiently for Community to return (still waiting).  I worked through Angel quickly with minimal emotional breakdown and sat down loyally to watch my three loyal shows (Once, Elementary, and Fringe) live due to lack of recording.  Awesome.

As the year ends I am beginning a regemene of British shows and random mini series.  I watched Neverland in a weekend, and have Luther, Copper, The Hour, Downton, and a few others on my list (any suggestions?).  Granted I seem to be ignoring the list for a borrowed copy of Band of Brothers and Lost Girl on Netflix.  Hmm.  This year has been filled with wonderful television and I couldn’t be more excited to see what 2013 has to bring.

My New Favorite ‘Ship

It’s the one between comics and television of course!  This falls under a category called Transmedia, because it goes from one to the other and on to another.  That’s a strange and vague description that is better explained with an example (or how about three).

  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer (and Angel as well) was first a TV show; when the show ended they started writing comics.  There are also action figures, but I’m not sure where those fall on the standard of media.
  • Another: Beauty and the Beast was a Disney movie, a TV show (in 1987), a Broadway musical, and a TV show again (premiered this season).
  • My favorite: Doctor Who was TV show in the 60’s, then branched into comics, audio books, and video games, and was then relaunched as a TV show in 2005.  This is the fandom that will never die!

There are countless examples of this, but a common thread is that each of these examples (and countless others) was first one thing and was quite popular in that medium.  Then it was expanded to include other mediums.  This occurs for both economic and fan-ish reasons.

Of course the company that created the original media wants to get the biggest profit from it, so they capitalize on it.  They create all sorts of new ways for fans to interact with the story (by buying their products).

It also happens for reasons of awesome.  Fans want more.  As much as the corporations are going for the capitalist side of the media, if there isn’t a market for it, they know better than to try.  That means that fans (that’s US!) demanding things to exist can help them start to exist.  If we want something to exist (even something like The Hawkeye Initia… that may not be the best example) we can make it happen.

In the same way good-but-unknown things feed the imagination and creativity of creators leaving us with things like Sherlock, The Dark Knight, The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, our favorite fictional characters on Twitter, and The Avengers.

This Has Been: September Edition

September has been a month of settling.  I didn’t quite realize how insane it was going to be when I started out.  I figured I’d take a week or so to get settled into my new apartment and then I’d be calm and rationally ready for classes to start.  I imagined having all the textbooks before classes started.  Well… no.

The end of September marks week four of school.  Week four of working on this new show that they’ve given me and I still barely have it figured out.  I’m going to be spending the entire weekend writing scripts.  I haven’t figured out what day is Grocery day, laundry day, ect. and I’m afraid that as soon as I figure it out it’s going to have to change.  This month has been madness.

In the middle of it though I spent a day in retreat with my school’s InterVarsity chapter and began the process of taking Sunday’s as a Sabbath.  Through the month I’ve began to do more of my work on Friday and Saturday in order to leave time on Sunday afternoons for long lunches out and evenings fangirling the Emmys.  I’m glad to say that that portion of the month has worked quite well.  As has setting a pattern of daily devotionals.

In fact, just this week I read an essay by a woman in ministry talking about how her path of seminary was influenced by both Buffy and Angel which just blew me away.  I have been wanting to talk about how Joss’ works relate to faith and my perspective on them as a Christian, but have been nervous since I haven’t finished Angel or Dollhouse yet.  I’m still holding out to write that post, but I’ve never been more excited to talk to people about these shows because now I can see it so much more clearly through the lens of my faith.

This of course is making me all the more motivated to finish Angel especially.  I managed to get through quite a bit of it this month.  I think I managed nearly a full season this month while also watching a handful of new and old shows premiering and falling completely in love with Leverage.  You’ll be hearing a lot about what I’ve been watching in the next month I’m sure, but I’ll save that look ahead for next week.

As far as blogging goes I was just able to hang on by a thread.  I’ve been writing some posts up the day they were published which is nerve-wracking to me.  I also didn’t get to doing any re-design elements that I was hoping to this month in actuality.  I have a lot of what I’m planning all set in my head, but not yet done in the real world.  I’ve noticed that that’s a thing that I do and it may not be very helpful in my future.  I should probably work on that.

Whedon Wednesday: Eulogy for William the Bloody

Whedon Wednesday is a tribute to the many Joss Whedon characters who have died over the years.  A combined effort with Laura, Megg, and Elspeth, Whedon Wednesday is a series of Eulogies morning the loss of these characters who died in fiction, but will never die in our hearts.  Archive.  Introduction.

It sometimes feels that Spike has been around for an eternity.  In some ways he has been.  William the Bloody, the vampire we now know as Spike, was born in 1860, but he entered our lives comparability recently.  Despite his vampire demenor and his brash manner he was embraced immediately.  Metephrically speaking that is.  Anyone who would have tried to come near him at the time likely would have been bitten.  At first glance, an interesting villain, but no more than the next big bad.  Over time, Spike turned into so much more than a nemesis; becoming an ally, a friend, and a lover.

From this love and respect that was shared, Spike grew more than some would have ever thought possible.  From this simple villain emerged, slowly but surely, what could arguably be called a man, and a kind one at that.  What always amazes me about Spike is how he gradually became a rock that all the Scoobies relied on, weather they were willing to admit it or not.

William the Bloody has been known for many things; poetry, violence and bloodlust the most.  Around here, Spike has come to be known for his courage and caring.

His courage is what brings us here today, in the wake of the Battle of Sunnydale, to this space; to these words.  Spike had the courage of a champion and he died as one.  A death that gave those of us alive today the chance to be here.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The End

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It took me six years to finish Buffy the Vampire Slayer, nearly a decade after it has been on the air, and now that I’m finally through it all I can’t shut up about it.  Friends, acquaintances, and strangers have all fallen victim to my renditions of “Once More With Feeling” (among other related topics).  Slowly, I am publishing my thoughts on the series.  Other topics covered so far include: The Beginning, Fun vs. Serious, ‘Ships, Character Growth, and Foreshadowing.

And so, as I return home, our exploration of Buffy comes to an end.  If anyone is reading this who hasn’t watched the show yet, I hope I’ve convinced you to at least give it a shot (watch it in order, or I can give you an alternate order to watch it in that will mess with your brain. Email me).  Buffy the Vampire Slayer has by far been some of my favorite television to watch.  The series easily ranks in my top 5 favorite shows.

Every part of the creative team for this show was at the top of their game.  Year after year, season after season, the show kept outdoing itself.  And I can’t wait to see what these people do next.

Of course, the big question is: What Next?  What do I watch now that there is no more Buffy?  What will I talk about in this space now that I’ve run out of Buffy to talk about?  To answer the last question first, I will never run out of things to talk about with this show.

There are so many things I still have to say about Buffy.  Some of them I want to talk about within regards to other Joss Whedon series.  Similarities between the Buffy‘verse, Dollhouse, and Firefly anyone?  And let’s throw Dr. Horrible in there for good measure.  Granted, I have to finish Dollhouse and Angel first.  So I guess that’s my starting point.  Angel, Dollhouse, then the Buffy comics.

I’m going to end this fangirl style with a list of my favorites.  Episodes, parings, characters, what have you.

Love: High School speak, “The Puppet Show”, High School Willow, Giles and Jenny, the fact that Kendra exists, Spike, “I Only Have Eyes for You”  Faith, “Band Candy”, “The Wish”, Spike’s friendship with Joyce, “Doppelgangland”, how well the show grows up with the characters, Spike being a regular, Anya’s bluntness, “Something Blue”, “Hush”, Willow and Tara, Dawn, Spuffy, “The Body”, the Magic Box, “Once More With Feeling”, the three have a freeze-ray, the return to high school, Andrew is their hostage, Faith’s return, “Lies My Parent’s Told Me”, the Potentials, “Touched”, and the School Bus (of all things).

What are your favorite parts of Buffy?  If you haven’t seen it, what’s been keeping you from trying?  Is there anything glaringly obvious that I missed?  Help me correct my mistake.

This week in Whedon Wednesday: Eulogy for Anya Jenkins.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Foreshadowing

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It took me six years to finish Buffy the Vampire Slayer, nearly a decade after it has been on the air, and now that I’m finally through it all I can’t shut up about it.  Friends, acquaintances, and strangers have all fallen victim to my renditions of “Once More With Feeling” (among other related topics).  Slowly, I am publishing my thoughts on the series.  Other topics covered so far include: The Beginning, Fun vs. Serious, ‘Ships, and Character Growth.

As previously mentioned, Buffy is a show that can easily fit in among the list of high school/teen dramas.  A girl who kicks ass, a handsome love interest, best friends.  All aspects of your typical teen television.  And it is teen television.  It’s just not your typical teen show.  Far from it.

Buffy is a show that is surprisingly aware of itself.  Story arcs span entire seasons, and sometimes beyond.  Characters appear, are gone and then show up again after you forget they exist, just to make you fall in love with them again (and usually to be killed).  Characters reference things that happen on the show.  Sometimes backward reminding you of past stories, sometimes forward, foreshadowing a future occurrence.

These references are sometimes small.  Riley helps to hang a banner for the Lesbian Alliance group on campus a few episodes before Willow begins her relationship with Tara (“New Moon Rising”).  Anya sings about Xander having and STD in “Once More, With Feeling”, mentioning an incident in “Pangs”.  Buffy sits in an outline of a dead body (“Crush”) at the beginning of the season and later dies in the season’s cumulative episode (“The Gift”).  Xander spends one Halloween dressed as a pirate (“All the Way”), and seasons later he looses his eye while battling Caleb (“Dirty Girls”).

The greatest span of foreshadowing is in Spike and Buffy’s relationship.  After his introduction (“School Hard”), Spike is Buffy’s rival through the majority of season two.  But by the end of the season Spike approaches Buffy to form an alliance in “Becoming Part 2”, and her letting he and Drucilla skip town is the first instance of (albeit uneasy) agreement between the pair.

This transition from hatred to alliance is mirrored again and again with their relationship throughout the show.  When Spike returns in season four (“The Harsh Light of Day”), they are rivals, then partners when Spike gets a chip installed in his head that stops him from hurting humans (“The Initiative”).  In season five there is again disgust (“Crush”) but alliance as Spike fights by her side against Glory (“The Gift”).

In season six and seven the pattern repeats again, but differently.  Spike and Buffy begin a physical relationship which ends in resentment on both sides.  An ensouled and recently crazy Spike takes residence in the high school’s basement.  When it is clear that the First is behind this, Buffy helps him to recover.  Following Spike’s attempted rape (“Seeing Red”), he has to rebuild any trust he may have gained in the years before.  While they do not reconvene their physical relationship, by “Touched” it is clear that they are very much dependent on each other.

The most obvious and my personal favorite bit of foreshadowing for Buffy and Spike happens in the season four episode “Something Blue”.  While under a spell, Buffy and Spike become engaged.  Their happiness and openness about their relationship is opposite to the way they treat each other when they eventually do enter a relationship (“Smashed”).  Their relationship in season six is shameful and hidden from the group.

Another striking similarity is within two versions of the same character.  In an alternate reality created in season three (“The Wish”), In this reality, Willow and Xander are vampires.  The Master’s most loyal minions.  Instead of shy, brainy Willow, vampire!Willow is cunning and cruel.  She enjoys torturing Angel, who the Master has locked up as a pet.  Vampire Willow appears again when she is transported to our reality accidentally by Anya and Willow while performing a spell.

Three years later, Willow seeks revenge for Tara’s death, becoming inconsolable and turning into a darker version of herself, full of anger and magic.  Dark Willow shares many characteristics with vampire!Willow, most obviously the phrase “Bored now,” that they both use before acting out, torturing the “puppy” (Angel) and skinning Warren, respectively.

There are some instances of foreshadowing where I wonder if they are actually planned.  In season three, after Angel has come back from the dead he is taunted by a vision of Jenny Calendar who he killed.  Jenny tells her to kill Buffy and then to kill himself.  In trying to help him, Buffy discovers that Jenny is acting on behalf of the first evil.  In the final season, The First becomes the big bad, using powers of persuasion to get people to do whatever it wants them to.

Villains and plots evolve just as characters do.  In “Amends” Jenny strokes Angel’s hair to get him to sleep.  Later, in season seven the First cannot touch anything.  Like a hologram, anything solid will go through it.  The first evolved, just as Spike did, just as Dawn grew.  The gang uses this to it’s advantage, being able to test that people are actually who they say they are, and not the First masquerading as someone they used to trust.

The use of foreshadowing and self references is something that can be used in any show, but often isn’t.  Not only are references fun for viewers, they are also realistic.  Friends remember old times in real life, why not in TV?  Buffy is a shinning example of why remembering and foreshadowing should be used in television.

What is your favorite Buffy self-reference?

This week in Whedon Wednesday: Eulogy for Tara Maclay.

Next in my Buffy rants: The End.