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Dawn

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Here's your place to talk about this character. If you have a fun name for it let me know in the comments and I can change it.

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On ‎01‎/‎04‎/‎2014 at 6:12 PM, Lisin said:

Here's your place to talk about this character. If you have a fun name for it let me know in the comments and I can change it.

I'll say it now and I'll say it proud, I love the Dawnster! The 3 Summers girls together and watching her grow and blossom over the last 3 seasons are some of the best things about the show. All hail the pushy Queen of Slut-town!

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Dawn: The key to irritating viewers since 2000.

I can't stand her. I even more hate the idea of her infringing on the events of seasons 1-4. I like Michelle Trachtenberg, but the character of Dawn is supremely annoying.

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5 hours ago, secnarf said:

Dawn: The key to irritating viewers since 2000.

I can't stand her. I even more hate the idea of her infringing on the events of seasons 1-4. I like Michelle Trachtenberg, but the character of Dawn is supremely annoying.

For shame, Dawn is is the greatest and I love trying to figure out where she fits in retroactively in the series. 

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23 hours ago, nosleepforme said:

Michelle Trachtenberg was around my age when the show aired (she's one year older), so I never thought of Dawn as annoying and will always defend her. Having an older sister myself and always having been the sometimes annoying younger sibling helps there too. I could always see me and my sister in Buffy and Dawn.

Couldn't agree more, as the younger sibling of a very successful brother and sister I really felt for Dawn who has a big sister who is not only a superhero with her own adoring fan club but gets voted the sexiest woman in the world. She has a lot to live up to.  

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I can't say I 'hate' this particular character (though I wanted to give her a little smack many times while watchin' S.05 - 07.). I just think there were some other ways to introduce Dawnie into the show other than literally raping the minds of the rest of the characters and therefore altering the plots of the previous four seasons.

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I will never, never understand why Dawn couldn't be some girl Buffy saves and she's LIKE "the younger sister I never had".  And she lives with her grandmother, so she hangs around the group a lot, and she's Buffy's talisman for her vanished youth and innocence, yada-yada.  (Fourteen was the last year that Buffy didn't know about the vampires, remember.)

And then Dawn starts having these gaps in her memory that she can't explain, and there are these scary guys who seem to be after her, and…

Yes, you'd need a slower build on the story, you'd probably need a more credible sub-villain to delay the entrance of Glory (I think Ben and Buffy should actually date and then we find out that he's killing the mentally ill and Dreg is always "when your sister gets here, she won't be happy" [so we think we're just waiting for Glory to come to town but we don't realize about the body-swapping] and we're always worried what Ben might do to Dawn if he realizes that something's wrong with her…) and you'd need to find another way to kill Joyce.  But then again, the show never explicitly said "the monks had to rewrite Joyce's brain so much (because she was the one who spent the most time with Dawn) that eventually it just went blooey", so Joyce's death doesn't have to be a direct result of Dawn's existence, anyhow.  And maybe we don't have to do "Buffy commits suicide", anyhow, so Joyce doesn't have to die in the first place.

Well, unless we're hell bent and determined to get to Spuffy and this is any route from here to there.  But honestly, it's not as if they ever did anything with Spuffy, anyhow.  63 fucking episodes (not specifically 63 episodes of fucking, thank Satan, but even so) and Joss couldn't even decide whether or not it was "love".  So let's just tell Dawn's story and let Spike justify his unlife some other way, I say.

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lembergwatcher: It's arguable that mind-wipe-resets are a Whedon specialty.

Spoiler

Angel does the same thing when he makes his deal with Wolfram and Hart to alter the world so Connor grew up in a nice, middle-class family.

The dolls in DOLLHOUSE are wiped every time they finish a job and exist in a twilight blank state in between. Plus the temporary wipes in TABULA RASA and SPIN THE BOTTLE. Not that this helps you like it any better.

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11 hours ago, wendyg said:
Spoiler

Angel does the same thing when he makes his deal with Wolfram and Hart to alter the world so Connor grew up in a nice, middle-class family.

 

Spoiler

And can't be bothered to get Cordelia healed in the deal.  Gods, I hate that piece of shit so much.  Spike's a gnat compared to the infestation of fleas that is my hatred for Angel S4-S5 Angel.

(Broody Boy is fine here.  Not my choice for Buffy, but useful for the drama.  I'm just saying that he stops caring about the humans around him on his own series, and gets every single one of them killed.  Rat bastard.  I loathe him so.)

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Well, Tara would still have been the "newest" Scooby, because Dawn would "always" have been Buffy's cousin.  (Poor Buffy, first Celia then Dawn!  Power Girl has the worst luck with cousins!)

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Slightly OT, but still Dawn-related.
There's one moment of, uh, retrospection in The Replacement:

Quote

WILLOW: (turns back to him) Xander, you sound a little ... you have to help me figure this out, you know.
ScruffyXANDER: But I never help. I get in trouble and Buffy saves me.
WILLOW: That's not true! Sometimes we all helped save you. (realizes that was unhelpful) And sometimes you're not in trouble.

Feel free to ignore Xander's Scruffy self's remark. He's expected to be a screw-up for the sake of a plot device. Yet Willow could be, you know, more accurate, considering the history of the SG. For I don't remember too many eps where Xander had to be saved involving combined effort of the gang. Yes, Buffy did save him occassionally, but there were moments when White Knight returned the favor (Prophecy Girl, Go Fish). Furthermore I dare say the amount of episodes which include saving Willow  is slightly greater (I, Robot...You, Jane, When She Was Bad, Innocence, Gingerbread, Choices to name but a few). But what if that was the point? What else has changed inside the Scoobies' minds since the introduction of Dawnie? What if their memories of most of the events from 1997 'til 2000 were if not totally, but a little different from what actually happened - thanks to The Great Supernatural MindFuck? What if in the altered memories, for example, Xander had never brought Buffy back to life, saved his best friend from Angelus or helped bringing down the Evil Mayor? JMO though.

Dawn wasn't a bad idea per se, but I said it before and I'll say it again: she was hardly an excuse for ill-conceived plot twists that required (eventually) screwing up the whole pre-S.05 BtVS.

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1 hour ago, lembergwatcher said:

Dawn wasn't a bad idea per se, but I said it before and I'll say it again: she was hardly an excuse for ill-conceived plot twists that required (eventually) screwing up the whole pre-S.05 BtVS.

I agree.  Joss's desire to avoid "Cousin Oliver syndrome" (never mentioned before relative suddenly appears, no one comments) should not have led to the essential un-writing of S1-4, which is a far greater crime.  How are we supposed to judge the characters' actions when we have no idea if they remember the first 78 episodes the way that we do?  Maybe Buffy never got back together with Angel after Angel because she was too traumatized by finding 11-year-old Dawn sobbing in the corner when she thought Angel "bit" Joyce.  Maybe Buffy and Angel never had sex, Angel never turned evil, Jenny and Giles broke up and Jenny took a job out of state (even sexy fuddy-duddies get boring after a few squirms…) and Buffy never ran away.  Maybe Buffy was a virgin until Riley and that's why she's so upset he "cheated" with the vamp-hos.

And maybe Spike is Buffy's first vampiric beau and that's why she can't resist his sinister attraction.  Because she's never been there and done that with Angel.  Dawn, the (sort of) human reset button.  And there are plenty of other mistaken memory scenarios that could fit just as well.  (I'm pretty sure that the whole "I was in an asylum" retcon from Normal Again is nothing more than a Monks of Mindfuck-created memory alteration, for example.)

How do we know our characters if we don't know what they know? I don't know.

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Btw, is it true that initially Dawn was planned as 11 or 12-year-old? But then they got Michelle who turned 15 in 2000 and decided to raise Dawnie's age. And for some reason 14-year-old Dawn had to follow the behavioral pattern of a 12-year-old.

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Yes, the original idea was for an 11-year-old, but Sarah found Michelle on her old home at All My Children, and persuaded Joss that this was the "sister" for her.  (Their AMC characters were not quite sisters; they had a half-sister [Bianca] in common, but no direct relationship.)

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1 hour ago, Halting Hex said:

(Their AMC characters were not quite sisters; they had a half-sister [Bianca] in common, but no direct relationship.)

Long-time AMC fan...but I thought Michelle played Lily (adopted daughter of Jack. Jack being the brother of Bianca's father, who was different than Kendall's (Sarah) father. Which makes Bianca & Lily cousins, not sisters (half/step/other) and Kendall & Lily no relation.

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Ah, I had Lily confused with the daughter Travis (Bianca's dad) had with his ex-wife, wrecking his marriage to Erica.  But apparently that child died before Michelle even got cast.  (In my defense, that was thirty years ago and I wasn't actually watching the show.)

Checking through IMDb, I see that Lacey Chabert (Party of Five) played Bianca briefly as a child, and that Mischa Barton, for whatever reason, played Lily for one episode in 2006.  None of which has anything the slightest to do with Dawn, I'll allow, so it's time for me to bring out the: [/OT} sign.

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I will forever be baffled by anyone who likes Dawn as a story device. Which is different from the character herself. But for me it has an influence on whether I like Dawn or not. Her creation by the monks had so many 'violation of the free will of women' in it that it's honestly baffling to me how many people are fine with it. Depending on how you view the story, her existing also killed 2 good women (Joyce, Buffy). Her creation effectively torpedoed the past 4 Seasons out of existence. Her appearance turned Buffy into a reactionary hero. She served her plot in S5 and then hung uselessly around for another 2 Seasons. Her plot in S6 was just to be another stone around Buffy's neck. S7 Dawn doesn't even make sense based on the Dawn of S5-6.

And I love the mental image of a 11 year old Dawn coming on to Xander when him and Cordelia are hiding out in Buffy's house during B,B&B. Nothing wrong with that at all. /sarcasm

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I was talking about what age Dawn is in Empty Places and I realized we never get an idea of when her birthday is.  We get five separate Buffy-birthday episodes, but nothing about Dawn.  And given how important Dawn allegedly is to Buffy, I would have liked to have seen Buffy trying to make life better for her baby sister.  (Who, you know, had her mom die, and even lost Buffy to a "summer vacation" for a while there.)

Maybe they could have folded it into Bargaining, Part 1, have it be something else where the gang is trying to use Buffybot to fill the void, but "the only real Buffy is Buffy…and she's gone."

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Speaking of Dawn's age. Buffy claimed her little sis was 15 in All the Way, so probably she was 16 or 17 in the final season. One might say the girl had a body of a 16-years-old and a mind of a 13-years-old for most of the time (I don't remember 14-years-old me being babysitted at all, btw). She didn't even have a chance to lose her virginity, though appeared to be the same age her sister was in Surprise. Why couldn't they give Dawn her moment during the overall sexfest at the Summers' house in Touched (one of the worst eps ever) I still don't know. She could have her first time with, say, Andrew, but Vi or Amanda would fit just as much (she knew Amanda from SHS, and I came across one fine fanfic dealing with Dawnie/Vi having post-bender sex).

True they had either to pick some actress of an appropriate age or try not to portray 14/15-years-old Dawn as a petulant 10-years-old most of the time. In the older times 14 was quite a good age for a girl to get married and start a family. btw.

Edited by lembergwatcher

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Ah, I was misremembering.  Spike calls Dawn "a 14-year-old hormone bomb" in Blood Ties, not 15.  (This assumes that someone has told Spike Dawn's proper age, and that Spike has correctly recalled it, but Buffy doesn't correct him, so let's go with it.) And I forgot All the Way.

So Dawn's birthday is somewhere between Buffy's January 20th birthday (Blood Ties being a Buffy-birthday ep) and Halloween (All the Way).  So she was 16 for the majority of Season 7, but might have turned 17 before this final run of episodes, which probably take place no later than May, as school is still in session in Dirty Girls and there's no mention of finals coming soon.

Xander's 22 by this time (his birthday is before Buffy's), so if you're a Dawn/Xander 'shipper, sorry.  He has to wait a year; California's "Romeo & Juliet" exception, which knocks underage sex down to a violation under certain circumstances, doesn't stretch that far.  And personally I hope Dawn got her "birthday present" from Janice or Kit long before she became a virtual prisoner in SIT Central.

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On ‎09‎/‎09‎/‎2018 at 4:34 AM, Halting Hex said:

I was talking about what age Dawn is in Empty Places and I realized we never get an idea of when her birthday is.  We get five separate Buffy-birthday episodes, but nothing about Dawn.  And given how important Dawn allegedly is to Buffy, I would have liked to have seen Buffy trying to make life better for her baby sister.  (Who, you know, had her mom die, and even lost Buffy to a "summer vacation" for a while there.)

Maybe they could have folded it into Bargaining, Part 1, have it be something else where the gang is trying to use Buffybot to fill the void, but "the only real Buffy is Buffy…and she's gone."

Buffy always tried to make Dawn's life better (and vice versa) but remember Buffy's is the only birthday we ever see celebrated on the show. 

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20 hours ago, lembergwatcher said:

Speaking of Dawn's age. Buffy claimed her little sis was 15 in All the Way, so probably she was 16 or 17 in the final season. One might say the girl had a body of a 16-years-old and a mind of a 13-years-old for most of the time (I don't remember 14-years-old me being babysitted at all, btw). She didn't even have a chance to lose her virginity, though appeared to be the same age her sister was in Surprise. Why couldn't they give Dawn her moment during the overall sexfest at the Summers' house in Touched (one of the worst eps ever) I still don't know. She could have her first time with, say, Andrew, but Vi or Amanda would fit just as much (she knew Amanda from SHS, and I came across one fine fanfic dealing with Dawnie/Vi having post-bender sex).

True they had either to pick some actress of an appropriate age or try not to portray 14/15-years-old Dawn as a petulant 10-years-old most of the time. In the older times 14 was quite a good age for a girl to get married and start a family. btw.

 

I think the network would have a fit, not so much because of her age because she is the little sister and that's how we always think about her.  And yes, I always shipped Dawn and Amanda, there's a great fanfic called The Circle where Dawn receives the letter Amanda left for her telling her she loved her and will wait for her in heaven, REAL tearjerker. Besides, do we ever know what she got up to with RJ before her lapdance?

And 14 still is the aoc in Italy, Austria, Germany etc, 13 in Japan, 12 in Mexico, 9 in Iran (isn't it amazing what you learn from SVU? Apart from the fact that the culprit is always some rich white guy?)

Edited by Joe Hellandback

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On 8/19/2018 at 9:04 AM, lembergwatcher said:

I can't say I 'hate' this particular character (though I wanted to give her a little smack many times while watchin' S.05 - 07.). I just think there were some other ways to introduce Dawnie into the show other than literally raping the minds of the rest of the characters and therefore altering the plots of the previous four seasons.

 

On 8/19/2018 at 11:20 AM, Halting Hex said:

I will never, never understand why Dawn couldn't be some girl Buffy saves and she's LIKE "the younger sister I never had".  And she lives with her grandmother, so she hangs around the group a lot, and she's Buffy's talisman for her vanished youth and innocence, yada-yada.  (Fourteen was the last year that Buffy didn't know about the vampires, remember.)

And then Dawn starts having these gaps in her memory that she can't explain, and there are these scary guys who seem to be after her, and…

Yes, you'd need a slower build on the story, you'd probably need a more credible sub-villain to delay the entrance of Glory (I think Ben and Buffy should actually date and then we find out that he's killing the mentally ill and Dreg is always "when your sister gets here, she won't be happy" [so we think we're just waiting for Glory to come to town but we don't realize about the body-swapping] and we're always worried what Ben might do to Dawn if he realizes that something's wrong with her…) and you'd need to find another way to kill Joyce.  But then again, the show never explicitly said "the monks had to rewrite Joyce's brain so much (because she was the one who spent the most time with Dawn) that eventually it just went blooey", so Joyce's death doesn't have to be a direct result of Dawn's existence, anyhow.  And maybe we don't have to do "Buffy commits suicide", anyhow, so Joyce doesn't have to die in the first place.

Well, unless we're hell bent and determined to get to Spuffy and this is any route from here to there.  But honestly, it's not as if they ever did anything with Spuffy, anyhow.  63 fucking episodes (not specifically 63 episodes of fucking, thank Satan, but even so) and Joss couldn't even decide whether or not it was "love".  So let's just tell Dawn's story and let Spike justify his unlife some other way, I say.

I thought I'd put in my two cents on this topic that's been gathering dust for a year and a half. I like Michelle Trachtenberg, I think she was a good child actor in the show and elsewhere (like in Harriet the Spy) and I wouldn't mind seeing her again somewhere, even though she's nearing her mid-thirties by now. But the way they introduced her into the Buffyverse was the main flaw of Season 5, IMO. The whole season revolves around the sisterly tie between Buffy and Dawn (think S5 Blood Ties), and to have Dawn be a device of some vaguely defined "monks" undermines that connection. Surely the creators could have introduced Dawn in another way to make everyone really viscerally FEEL the bond between Buffy and Dawn? Through Season 5 I couldn't stop feeling that Dawn was somehow a fake. And as for the mythology, do these monks really have the ability to enfold the Key inside a human form complete with a SOUL? Seems like a GOD-like power. I didn't like the idea that all of the characters of the show would thereafter have a different "memory" of all of their own lives from Seasons 1-4 than we would as viewers. New characters are typically introduced into a long running series to help revive them and to create new channels for stories, but Dawn's introduction felt clumsy and contrived to me.

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7 hours ago, watcher1006 said:

The whole season revolves around the sisterly tie between Buffy and Dawn

The (fake) sisterly tie which unfortunately completely overshadowed Buffy's friendship with her two original Slayerettes, most notably Willow. It's depressing how something as wonderful as the Scoobies' friendship was thrown away for the sake of some clumsy plot device.
And yes, I do like Michelle Trachtenberg too.
 

Michelle Trachtenberg-Primetimer14.jpg

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On 3/27/2020 at 12:24 AM, lembergwatcher said:

The (fake) sisterly tie which unfortunately completely overshadowed Buffy's friendship with her two original Slayerettes, most notably Willow. It's depressing how something as wonderful as the Scoobies' friendship was thrown away for the sake of some clumsy plot device.
And yes, I do like Michelle Trachtenberg too.
 

Michelle Trachtenberg-Primetimer14.jpg

Awww, what a honey! 

It's not fake, remember in The Gift Buffy says she is more than a sister to her, that their relationship is physical and a few eps do hint at that. 

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On 3/26/2020 at 4:24 PM, watcher1006 said:

 

I thought I'd put in my two cents on this topic that's been gathering dust for a year and a half. I like Michelle Trachtenberg, I think she was a good child actor in the show and elsewhere (like in Harriet the Spy) and I wouldn't mind seeing her again somewhere, even though she's nearing her mid-thirties by now. But the way they introduced her into the Buffyverse was the main flaw of Season 5, IMO. The whole season revolves around the sisterly tie between Buffy and Dawn (think S5 Blood Ties), and to have Dawn be a device of some vaguely defined "monks" undermines that connection. Surely the creators could have introduced Dawn in another way to make everyone really viscerally FEEL the bond between Buffy and Dawn? Through Season 5 I couldn't stop feeling that Dawn was somehow a fake. And as for the mythology, do these monks really have the ability to enfold the Key inside a human form complete with a SOUL? Seems like a GOD-like power. I didn't like the idea that all of the characters of the show would thereafter have a different "memory" of all of their own lives from Seasons 1-4 than we would as viewers. New characters are typically introduced into a long running series to help revive them and to create new channels for stories, but Dawn's introduction felt clumsy and contrived to me.

I actually liked that and it sure is fun trying to figure out where Dawn fits in with past eps (what was her relationship with Faith? What did she think of Ted?) and gaslighting all the Buffy reactors on YouTube when she shows up ("What do you mean who's Dawn? Don't you remember how Joyce flipped when Cordy gave her a slutty makeover? Or how happy Faith was when Dawn gave her a Christmas present of Cheers DVDs to remind her of Boston? Or when she walks into the kitchen in BBB and Xander just locks her in the cupboard before she can even speak?").

  Apparently the initial idea was for Joyce to adopt a young girl but when they cast MT they decided on The Key storyline. Hence why Dawn is written a little younger than she actually is onscreen, even in her first appearance lolling around on her bed you can see her developing cleavage. 

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2 hours ago, Joe Hellandback said:

It's not fake, remember in The Gift Buffy says she is more than a sister to her,

But Buffy says different things on different occasions. Does this mean she always has a point? Remember what Buffy says about Xander/Anya in two consecutive episodes (Into the Woods/Triangle). Whatever Buffy says doesn't make Dawn any more real and her introduction into the lives of the main characters any more natural.

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4 hours ago, Joe Hellandback said:

Awww, what a honey! 

Dang, that's got to be an early promo shot (Dawn writing in her diary and all), but MT's looking nicely rack-a-licious there, isn't she?

Yes, even at 14, girls can sport what James Masters would describe as "dangerous" curves, but it's ironic seeing them displayed when the show went to great lengths to camouflage them in the  actual costuming, presumably as Michelle was playing a part originally written for an 11-year-old.  I guess you can't take the pornographer out of the photographer, or something.

Quote

It's not fake, remember in The Gift Buffy says she is more than a sister to her, that their relationship is physical and a few eps do hint at that. 

Wait, are you saying that it's not just fanfic, your reading of the canon implies quasi-incestuous underage lesbian action going on? 😮

I grant you that

Spoiler

Season 8 will show that Buffy does have f/f urges

and that one could almost give the "sister" angle a pass, since the "history" of seashell trips to San Diego actually wasn't and Dawn is really just some green energy floating around and mixed in with bits of Buffy's DNA.  (I mean, let's face it…Buffy's had worse.  And I'm not even counting Spike, yet.)

But the age issue is still troubling:

I mean, she's fiffourteen, so this porn thing's illegal!

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On 4/10/2020 at 1:48 PM, lembergwatcher said:

But Buffy says different things on different occasions. Does this mean she always has a point? Remember what Buffy says about Xander/Anya in two consecutive episodes (Into the Woods/Triangle). Whatever Buffy says doesn't make Dawn any more real and her introduction into the lives of the main characters any more natural.

Forgive me, what does Buffy say exactly?

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On 4/10/2020 at 3:20 PM, Halting Hex said:

Dang, that's got to be an early promo shot (Dawn writing in her diary and all), but MT's looking nicely rack-a-licious there, isn't she?

Yes, even at 14, girls can sport what James Masters would describe as "dangerous" curves, but it's ironic seeing them displayed when the show went to great lengths to camouflage them in the  actual costuming, presumably as Michelle was playing a part originally written for an 11-year-old.  I guess you can't take the pornographer out of the photographer, or something.

Wait, are you saying that it's not just fanfic, your reading of the canon implies quasi-incestuous underage lesbian action going on? 😮

I grant you that

  Hide contents

Season 8 will show that Buffy does have f/f urges

and that one could almost give the "sister" angle a pass, since the "history" of seashell trips to San Diego actually wasn't and Dawn is really just some green energy floating around and mixed in with bits of Buffy's DNA.  (I mean, let's face it…Buffy's had worse.  And I'm not even counting Spike, yet.)

But the age issue is still troubling:

I mean, she's fiffourteen, so this porn thing's illegal!

NO! Save it for the fetish fanfic! (what always cracks me up is the perverts always say "Oh it's okay because Dawn's of age in this story and they're not REALLY sisters" but then throw MILFY Joyce into the mix too?). I meant that Buffy and Dawn seem to have a deeper connection, the blood in The Gift, Buffy just seeming to sense Dawn is in trouble and where to find her in The Body/All the Way and Dawn doing the same for her in Bargaining.  

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4 hours ago, Joe Hellandback said:

Forgive me, what does Buffy say exactly?

Oh come on...

Buffy says these things about Xanya in Into the Woods:

Quote

BUFFY: Look who's talking. Look who has Anya following him around like a lovesick puppy.

XANDER: Oh boy, is this *not* about me.

BUFFY: Is she more than a convenience? 'Cause that would kinda be a surprise.

XANDER: (angrily) If you don't wanna hear what I have to say, I'll shut up right now.

BUFFY: Good, 'cause I don't.

Then in [the following ep] Triangle the same Buffy says Xander and Anya (one of the worst couples in the Buffyverse) "have a miraculous love". This so-called love is either a convenience or a "miracle". It can't be both at the same time.

This is one of the reasons I don't take much of what Buffy says too seriously. I hope you remember how she declares she has no problems killing Angel after seeing Enyos' dead body in Innocence and then just walks away at the Sunnydale mall despite having the best opportunity to stop Angel once and for all, i.e. prevent many innocent people from dying. 

Buffy is ready to sacrifice all her friends and the whole world just to give her beloved sister five more minutes at the end of season 5 only to ignore and not give a damn about the said sister most of the time throughout the next season. So...  

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2 hours ago, lembergwatcher said:

Oh come on...

Buffy says these things about Xanya in Into the Woods:

Then in [the following ep] Triangle the same Buffy says Xander and Anya (one of the worst couples in the Buffyverse) "have a miraculous love". This so-called love is either a convenience or a "miracle". It can't be both at the same time.

This is one of the reasons I don't take much of what Buffy says too seriously. I hope you remember how she declares she has no problems killing Angel after seeing Enyos' dead body in Innocence and then just walks away at the Sunnydale mall despite having the best opportunity to stop Angel once and for all, i.e. prevent many innocent people from dying. 

Buffy is ready to sacrifice all her friends and the whole world just to give her beloved sister five more minutes at the end of season 5 only to ignore and not give a damn about the said sister most of the time throughout the next season. So...  

Buffy is fickle but that just means she's human. She may also have bee swayed by Xander's words. She declares she's willing to kill Angell after he killed Jenny surely? 

 The portal will close when Buffy and Dawn are dead saving everyone. Buffy's love for Dawn gives her the will to live in s6 but you can hardly blame her for being distracted?

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Well, there's still not exactly a lot of Angel-killing going on, even after Passion, as Xander himself notes.  ("What is this? 'Come home, all is forgiven'?  I can't believe you people!")  Just saying.

Does Buffy ever cite Dawn as a reason she's going on living, at any time in Season Sux?  I can't recall it.  I remember Spike singing that she should live to make up for how he can't ("You have to go on living.  So one of us is living."), but nothing from Buffy about how she's abstaining from recreating her swan dive because she knows Dawn needs her or anything like that.  Apologies if the Brain Bleach™ is doing too good of job here.

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In Season Sux Buffy "loves" Dawn only because, as Kitty Forman once said, "she has to". Something tells me deep down inside she resented Dawn almost as much as Willow & Xander. At some point Tara was better mother figure for Dawn than Buffy. Yes, Buffy had to provide, but I doubt Spike paid her for all the time she spent at his crypt... 

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On 4/13/2020 at 12:02 AM, lembergwatcher said:

In Season Sux Buffy "loves" Dawn only because, as Kitty Forman once said, "she has to". Something tells me deep down inside she resented Dawn almost as much as Willow & Xander. 

What might have worked as a storyline would have been for a resurrected Buffy to have been resurrected with her own memories rather than her monk altered memories. So she would have remembered S1-4 as we do and she'd have memories of all of the things that happened with Dawn in S5. But her memories of S5 would have a completely different emotional resonance because she has no fake memories of Dawn. Through S6 she would not have any love for Dawn and would in fact be completely weirded out that she went catatonic at Dawn's capture and then lovingly sacrificed herself. She would be angry that the monks messed with them so. Buffy was willing to sacrifice herself for the world on Prophecy Girl. She would have done whatever it took to stop Glory from getting the Key. She didn't need her reality to be messed with to do her job. And now she's left motherless, possibly because of what the monks did to Joyce's brain, while being expected to mother a young girl she has no feeling for.

It would have created a distance between Buffy and the Scoobies both because they want her to love Dawn as they remember her doing. And because they have different memories of the events of their friendship. We could have explored what those different memories would be and knowing that there are differences between their memories and actual events could be part of what drives the wedges in the T/W and X/A relationships as they question where they are vs where they maybe should be. Part of the Dark Willow story could have had Willow wipe the fake memories of Dawn from everyone because if she can't bring Tara back, she can at least have her real memories of her time with her back. And it could be here that Buffy comes to realise that she has developed a genuine love for Dawn throughout the season. And Dawn coming to terms with the loss of the fake memories could have been a driving part of her character development in S7. First in school and later when the house is full of potentials.

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16 hours ago, AllyB said:

What might have worked as a storyline would have been for a resurrected Buffy to have been resurrected with her own memories rather than her monk altered memories. So she would have remembered S1-4 as we do and she'd have memories of all of the things that happened with Dawn in S5. But her memories of S5 would have a completely different emotional resonance because she has no fake memories of Dawn. Through S6 she would not have any love for Dawn and would in fact be completely weirded out that she went catatonic at Dawn's capture and then lovingly sacrificed herself. She would be angry that the monks messed with them so. Buffy was willing to sacrifice herself for the world on Prophecy Girl. She would have done whatever it took to stop Glory from getting the Key. She didn't need her reality to be messed with to do her job. And now she's left motherless, possibly because of what the monks did to Joyce's brain, while being expected to mother a young girl she has no feeling for.

It would have created a distance between Buffy and the Scoobies both because they want her to love Dawn as they remember her doing. And because they have different memories of the events of their friendship. We could have explored what those different memories would be and knowing that there are differences between their memories and actual events could be part of what drives the wedges in the T/W and X/A relationships as they question where they are vs where they maybe should be. Part of the Dark Willow story could have had Willow wipe the fake memories of Dawn from everyone because if she can't bring Tara back, she can at least have her real memories of her time with her back. And it could be here that Buffy comes to realise that she has developed a genuine love for Dawn throughout the season. And Dawn coming to terms with the loss of the fake memories could have been a driving part of her character development in S7. First in school and later when the house is full of potentials.

It's interesting but it would have nullified Buffy's sacrifice at the end of 5? I think the whole Buffy takes time to readjust storyline was controversial enough without the sisters falling out?

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1 hour ago, Joe Hellandback said:

It's interesting but it would have nullified Buffy's sacrifice at the end of 5?

It wouldn't though. Buffy would have made that sacrifice regardless of Dawn being her sister. She wouldn't have ended the life of an innocent if she could have sacrificed herself instead. But Dawn needed to be her sister, with the same blood, for her sacrifice to work. In my imaginary Buffy remembers the real timeline story, I wouldn't have had her quite so depressed t being back and would have the different memories to everyone else storyline be the driver. It would also have meant that if Spike and Buffy were to have any sort of relationship it would have to have been more imaginative than destructive hate sex. As Spike's protectiveness of Dawn was his original "in" with Buffy. 

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I probably said it before but I think that the flawed way they brought in a younger sister for Buffy made it impossible to feel a deep bond between them, which is what you had to feel to make the main story of Season 5 work. At least that's how it was for me. I think the author makes some good points in the Romarin Demetri link but as for the reason Dawn was brought in to the series I think it was mostly the same reason many long running shows bring in new characters - to open up new avenues for storylines. In this case I thought it was done clumsily. It was not as bad as uprooting the established world of the entire series before the introduction by some massive rewriting but it had much of the same feel.

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On 9/9/2020 at 4:37 PM, watcher1006 said:

I probably said it before but I think that the flawed way they brought in a younger sister for Buffy made it impossible to feel a deep bond between them, which is what you had to feel to make the main story of Season 5 work. At least that's how it was for me. I think the author makes some good points in the Romarin Demetri link but as for the reason Dawn was brought in to the series I think it was mostly the same reason many long running shows bring in new characters - to open up new avenues for storylines. In this case I thought it was done clumsily. It was not as bad as uprooting the established world of the entire series before the introduction by some massive rewriting but it had much of the same feel.

Actually I thought it supremely well done, rather than just have a cousin Oliver (Dawn is introduced as Hank Summers long lost daughter for instance) they screwed with us most entertainingly. 

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But perhaps that's the opposite of "short-term pain for long-term gain"?

Yes, instead of "Buffy, your Aunt's sent Dawn to live here while they're rebuilding her home after that tornado", we get a few episodes of "mystery".  (Some of it bullshit, such as Dawn's portentous-but-actually-meaningless diary entry at the end of Real Me, or MT trying make serving tea look ominous in No Place Like Contrivance.)

But OTOH we get things that seriously damaged the series as a whole; the rewriting of the cast's memories so we don't know what they know, if they're making decisions based on the history that we saw or because of imaginary beach trips to San Diego.  (San Diego?  MonkFucked!Joyce is seriously boring.)  The replacement of Willow (who earned the spot) as Buffy's emotional touchstone by Dawn (who's only in the job because "she's family"…even though she isn't) which not only focuses Buffy only within her blood family and lets W/X/G all go rot, stuck in their segregated little "romance" plots (poor Giles, his "girlfriend" is a store, ffs), and means that Buffy is only tied to a subordinate character, who can never call her on her bad behavior the way that Willow, as a peer, could.

"Hilarious" that a season which claims to be making such a pro-gay statement about "choosing your own 'family'" in an episode called Family, where they try and make biological relatives seem backward and limited with that "blood kin" line, ends up telling us that Dawn is the most precious thing to Buffy precisely because "she's family" and Buffy can save the world because of "Summers blood" (which even under the rules of S5, has bugger-all to do with Buffy somehow being a spare Key), never mind that it's all a fake, of course.

Joss writes and directs two actual episodes all season long (I exclude The Body, of course, because wtf is the point of all that nothing?) and they manage to make literally the exact opposite point from each other.  What happened to having the season all charted out on your office wall, as in S2, genius?

"Great plan.  That's right up there with 'Duck and Cover'."  —Xander to Col. McNamara, Primeval

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