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  • #21
    Originally posted by Nina View Post
    I don't think it's presented as a reward, more as a "you're chosen to do this super important job because you did well" situation. She doesn't want to go, is upset that she is put in this situation and is scared. But she also believes what Skip says. I don't think it's arrogance though. It looks like she just wants to believe that all her suffering and sacrifices were not for nothing, that she really matters and that she is capable and heroic. (Hence her bringing up the idea that this is the last test.) It's gullible and childlike, but Cordy is still young and complexity was never her thing. In the end it she is still the same woman as s2 Cordy, who was super into the whole queen-thing. Even being the messiah sounded good to her. Or the girl who wanted to be a superstar. Or the one who wanted the whole school to pay attention to her. She wants to matter, she always did.
    I think that's probably fair and I'm just not remembering the scene/moment with Skip well. I do think her need to matter as you say does lead her to accept it, but saying it is tied to that as a vulnerability she has always had rather than as a source of arrogance I can see. They are bed fellows perhaps, but I do think all the commitments that Cordelia has made over the previous seasons means that we are led to understand that this is fundamentally about her commitment to trying to help guiding her choices. You're right.

    I wasn't meaning to imply that I thought Cordelia wasn't a champion. Although the end of S3 and the lead up with the 'saintly' Cordelia phase does frustrate me, I do think of her as heroic because of all that she took on and gave up to try to help for the greater good. S2 and early S3 are my favourite parts for her, watching her come into all of that and make the choice to be so selfless. Doyle gave her the visions without discussing it with her but she kept them and with no small price. I really do appreciate all of that. I just don't like the 'we are above other people' attitude that I did feel she started to get come more to the fore in late S3 and in S5. But I do think she did incredible things.

    YW is a different situation, by then she knows she will be dead in a few hours. That there is nothing for her after that and that nobody can know. It makes her hard to read. Is she trying to cheer herself up? Is she trying to make Angel feel better? Is she just acting like herself in order to hide that something is off? Or it it growth? Does she realize that she doesn't need to be a higher being to matter?
    It'll probably be a while before I get to rewatching this but I'm definitely going to think about this when I do. I have issues with the end of S5 that also affect my feelings thinking back to YW, but I tend to separate those from Cordelia and see it as Angel's interpretation of what he should do. There was not getting back on track to me. But that's a whole separate season and conversation. I'd definitely want to have rewatched it before as my feelings around Cordelia's path in S4 have shifted some on this rewatch and I'm expecting to feel differently about YW.

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    • #22
      Originally posted by Nina View Post
      They also just lost their showrunners (and best writer) in s4. Whedon had two other shows to work on. CC being pregnant ruined the awful plans they already had and Connor was always going to be a downer. Unless you make him a really strange happy-go-lucky character, his upbringing in hell far way from normal human intercourse was going to catch up. S4 never had a fair chance.


      I'm suprised how much energy there still was (with the exception of a few episodes in the beginning). Especially if you compare it to s7, which really felt like people were only there because their contract forced them to do so. S4 is messy and all over the place, but it also feels a bit like a lab. Cool idea? Sure try it out. And some of it really worked and other things really did not.
      No I'm sorry you do not get to excuse A4 by slagging off season seven especially when you're opinion is subjective.

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      • #23
        Well according to Vincent Karthiser he said he did go to the writers with suggestions and they just weren't interested. That of course is his version of events

        Comment


        • #24
          Originally posted by Vampadvo View Post

          No I'm sorry you do not get to excuse A4 by slagging off season seven especially when you're opinion is subjective.
          Actually I think it’s a perfectly valid comparison to make. All opinions on here are subjective, which goes without saying, but as someone who thinks the 2002-2003 TV season was Mutant Enemy’s weakest showing by far I can see the linkages and comparisons Nina is making.

          In my opinion, they’re two very flawed seasons but with quite different weaknesses. S7 feels more focused but also feels creatively exhausted. I can feel the burn out and exhaustion the writers were talking about. On the other hand, S4 feels like it still has juice in the tank but it’s all over the place. There’s no shortage or ideas and individual episodes are great but as a whole package it’s a shambles. Whedon said by S7 he’d run out of stories to tell about BtVS. Whereas he said he thought ATS was cancelled when he still had lots left to say and he believed they were hitting their stride. They’re both weak seasons IMO but just for very different reasons.

          ~ Banner by Nina ~

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          • BtVS fan
            BtVS fan commented
            Editing a comment
            He said that and yet he still did season 8 !

          • Nina
            Nina commented
            Editing a comment
            A break helps sometimes. (Although the stuff in s8 is hardly a sign of him having a lot of inspiration again. I honestly don't understand why he did it.)

        • #25
          I really enjoy both S4 of AtS and S7 of BtVS. But then I have subjective biases I see as real strengths of the seasons (Connor's and Spike's paths especially and looking to the use of the general themes throughout) that for me really outweigh the weaknesses I do see. It's totally fair of course that some don't find things balance to the good for them. I've never felt the writers on S7 felt drained but I've heard it was said in interviews and I can see that the disruptions in the writers in AtS would potentially have some impact on the structure and organisation through the season. But even if, objectively, both seasons didn't do as well, I'll take a weaker Buffyverse season over many other shows.

          I get the impression Nina that a lot of people put weight to the element that Joss talked about in the appeal of losing restrictions with going to the comic format. It's a shame that those elements, how extremely they were played with is, I think for me, arguably one of the biggest weaknesses of the first comic season and something that cropped up at odd times through the subsequent seasons too. In that way I think it was a continuous issue because the comics lost that sense of 'place' that Sunnydale and LA gave the shows.

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          • #26
            Originally posted by vampmogs View Post

            Actually I think it’s a perfectly valid comparison to make. All opinions on here are subjective, which goes without saying, but as someone who thinks the 2002-2003 TV season was Mutant Enemy’s weakest showing by far I can see the linkages and comparisons Nina is making.

            In my opinion, they’re two very flawed seasons but with quite different weaknesses. S7 feels more focused but also feels creatively exhausted. I can feel the burn out and exhaustion the writers were talking about. On the other hand, S4 feels like it still has juice in the tank but it’s all over the place. There’s no shortage or ideas and individual episodes are great but as a whole package it’s a shambles. Whedon said by S7 he’d run out of stories to tell about BtVS. Whereas he said he thought ATS was cancelled when he still had lots left to say and he believed they were hitting their stride. They’re both weak seasons IMO but just for very different reasons.
            I don't think season seven is creatively exhausted and Whedon saying he'd run out of stories to tell is him saying his last ideas are in season seven. If it feels like they are retreads then they are riffs on previous episode to have a sense of coming full circle and to be honest only Him feels like a lesser product and I think it was meant to be a bit of fun before the storm.
            I agree with you about season four and I think a big part of is the character assassination of Cordy - Willow going off the rails in season six is set up but this isn't even Cordelia and I really hate the everything was set up by Jasmine narrative. I appreciate there are some interesting ideas in season four and some good bits and the season as a whole has it's fans but I am NOT one of them whereas I love season seven and will fight to defend it.

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            • #27
              Doesn't Gunn make a great point at one stage that they were encouraged but the choices they made were still their own? I can't remember how he phrases it but I always loved that it was his observation and just goes to show that his worries about his intelligence are always greatly overblown. I do appreciate feeling frustrated with the idea that Jasmine set everything up, but the characters themselves weren't empty puppets. Part of the success of what she did was in choosing the right people, those most likely to take the bait so to speak. But again that is about the characters themselves so it doesn't bother me as much when I look at it from the angle of the inherent 'them' of it.

              Comment


              • Nina
                Nina commented
                Editing a comment
                And we don't really have to believe Jasmine when she says she said that she orchestrated everything. Nearly everything (but the Cordy stuff in Tomorrow) can also be explained in another way.

              • Stoney
                Stoney commented
                Editing a comment
                Definitely true. The bad guys are hardly shy with lying or exaggerating.

            • #28
              All said regarding writers, producers, actors, directors, viewers, readers, etc. are what I remember, my opinions, etc.

              What’s said in this post/comment is what I remember, my opinions, etc.


              AtS = Angel .





              * The only problems with AtS S4 are (1) the Fang Gang's somehow not noticing Cordelia Chase's sudden 'massive' weight gain and (2) Cordelia's suddenly acting as if she's the second in command and the others somehow not considering that odd or off-putting.



              * I consider AtS S1 the best AtS Season, but it's arguable that AtS S4 is the best Season. AtS S5 has the much bigger problems of why Spike is suddenly super annoying, why Spike is staying in Los Angeles instead of being with Buffy, why Angel considered offing Spike, the anti-Spike sentiment among the early AtS S5 episodes even though the audience knows Spike is the primary reason there is an AtS S5, etc. etc.


              * AtS S4 reminds the audience of Fred's bravery and hero chops.


              * AtS S4 gives the Jasmine explanation for why so much of AtS S1-S3 doesn't make sense. I generally ignore the idea that stuff in AtS S1-S3 wasn't because of Jasmine.

              But if you want to consider it wasn't because of Jasmine:

              - Angel loved Darla more than he loved Buffy. That's directly opposed to canon; consequently, Angel/Darla in AtS present-day stuff is because of Jasmine.

              - Cordelia Chase is a bigger 'hero' than Buffy Anne Summers, Willow Rosenberg, etc. She's not; so, her arc in AtS is because of Jasmine.

              - Human Cordelia was somehow handling visions when visions hurt half-demon Allan Francis Doyle and hurt Drusilla Keeble until after "Passion" (B 2.17).

              - Etc.


              * AtS S4 is the most entertaining AtS Season and it's a big deal that Evil Cordelia kills Lilah Morgan and that BtVS S7 Willow Rosenberg is more powerful than Evil Cordelia.

              Lilah Morgan is one of the best characters in the Buffyverse and is arguably a better character than: Cordelia Chase, Lindsey Macdonald, Riley Finn, etc.

              Comment


              • #29
                Originally posted by MikeB View Post
                All said regarding writers, producers, actors, directors, viewers, readers, etc. are what I remember, my opinions, etc.

                What’s said in this post/comment is what I remember, my opinions, etc.


                AtS = Angel .





                * The only problems with AtS S4 are (1) the Fang Gang's somehow not noticing Cordelia Chase's sudden 'massive' weight gain and (2) Cordelia's suddenly acting as if she's the second in command and the others somehow not considering that odd or off-putting.



                * I consider AtS S1 the best AtS Season, but it's arguable that AtS S4 is the best Season. AtS S5 has the much bigger problems of why Spike is suddenly super annoying, why Spike is staying in Los Angeles instead of being with Buffy, why Angel considered offing Spike, the anti-Spike sentiment among the early AtS S5 episodes even though the audience knows Spike is the primary reason there is an AtS S5, etc. etc.


                * AtS S4 reminds the audience of Fred's bravery and hero chops.


                * AtS S4 gives the Jasmine explanation for why so much of AtS S1-S3 doesn't make sense. I generally ignore the idea that stuff in AtS S1-S3 wasn't because of Jasmine.

                But if you want to consider it wasn't because of Jasmine:

                - Angel loved Darla more than he loved Buffy. That's directly opposed to canon; consequently, Angel/Darla in AtS present-day stuff is because of Jasmine.

                - Cordelia Chase is a bigger 'hero' than Buffy Anne Summers, Willow Rosenberg, etc. She's not; so, her arc in AtS is because of Jasmine.

                - Human Cordelia was somehow handling visions when visions hurt half-demon Allan Francis Doyle and hurt Drusilla Keeble until after "Passion" (B 2.17).

                - Etc.


                * AtS S4 is the most entertaining AtS Season and it's a big deal that Evil Cordelia kills Lilah Morgan and that BtVS S7 Willow Rosenberg is more powerful than Evil Cordelia.

                Lilah Morgan is one of the best characters in the Buffyverse and is arguably a better character than: Cordelia Chase, Lindsey Macdonald, Riley Finn, etc.
                Well thinking S1 the best is certainly subjective. Besides the excellent Faith episodes and the Tim Minear episodes it struggles trying to work out what kind of show it is. For me the best run is S2 up until Reunion which is probably the best run of either Buffy or Angel though it kind of falls off a cliff in the second half. Fred was unesscary as an add on character and Pylea was just meh.


                I don't think it was anti Spike anymore than usual with the writers like Fury. Just look at LMPTM for that. They always resented the character being popular but also recognised they needed him.
                More the simple fact they didn't have much story content for him as a regular. I believe Joss originally only wanted him as reoccurring but it was JM who said no its a regular or nothing. So for quite a few episodes he was literally just doing his can I borrow coffee and insult you routine. That and the fact they didn't want him out shining Angel on his own show. On the Destiny commentary David Fury laughs at Angel saying "what if I'm not the one" and the idea of Angel not being the one on a show called Angel.

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                • #30
                  Originally posted by Silver1 View Post

                  Well Charisma was pregnant in real life unexpectidly (as you know) and the other character was killed off. Being a women doesn't make her immune to that. I preferred Lila to Eve, but the damn execs had got it into their heads she was too old. Hell from what I remember they thought the entire cast were too old and thats one of the reasons they didn't renew it.
                  "Being a woman doesn't make her immune to that"
                  That's a very weird way to put it. Being a woman doesn't make her immune to a storyline where she stops being an actual character, because her body is instead overtaken by some other entity through a convoluted storyline where she is possessed and has not control over her body, raped and impregnated and doesn't exist as a character throughout season 4, then falls into a coma and dies? (After getting just one episode to be herself, and even there her main role is to motivate the main male character..)

                  Yeah, we know being a woman doesn't make her immune to that. Being a man does. Only women get those kinds of disrespectful, garbage storylines where they are possessed, used as a vessel, discarded and killed off without any agency. And AtS did it twice. OTOH, all the men who died got heroic deaths, or even if they were villains, they died as themselves and had agency in what led to that.

                  It's always funny when people resort to condescension and act like people criticizing terrible storytelling (be it on GoT, TWD, The 100 or in this case AtS or any other show) are just "too soft" and not "edgy" or "mature" enough for badly written, convoluted and messy TV storylines involving senseless violence and dehumanization of female, POC and/or LGBT characters (because it just happens to typically involve these characters), to deflect criticism.
                  I find it particularly funny as I'm not the "young generation" and tend to enjoy extremely dark shows and tragic storylines- when they are done well.

                  I've also seen the "well the actor was [pregnant, filming another show, had to take a break for health reasons etc.)" used as an excuse for terrible storytelling choices, when there are so many examples of shows dealing with actresses' pregnancies in various ways without derailing their characters' arcs, or finding a way to write off characters in a logical way that gives a character their due. Characters getting rubbish endings that feel like the producers were spiteful against the character usually happen when the producers are being spiteful against an actor to the point where they aren't able to be professional. I can think of a few other examples from other shows, too.
                  Last edited by TimeTravellingBunny; Today, 01:08 AM.
                  You keep waiting for the dust to settle and then you realize it; the dust is your life going on. If happy comes along - that weird unbearable delight that's actual happy - I think you have to grab it while you can. You take what you can get, 'cause it's here, and then...gone.

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                  • #31
                    Originally posted by Nina View Post
                    I honestly don't mind Cordy's end that much anymore. Yes it's a tragedy, but it's not a bad story. Nearly all Ats characters struggle with one question: Am I a good person? Cordy has always been harsh for others, but she was even more ruthless for herself. She thought her absurd torture in To Shanshu (or was it the demon pregnancy? I don't remember) was a punishment for her past as a bully. In season 1, 2 and 3 she suffers a lot in order 'to help'. She gives up her humanity so she can continue to help. But in the phase we usually call her 'Saint Cordelia', she is shown to be disconnected from humanity/her own moral code. Which was most clear in the scene where she advices Angel to kill Holtz. Instead of grounding Angel and connecting him to humanity, she did the opposite.

                    Maybe it would've been more comforting if she went to another plane and stayed there, fulfilling a new purpose. The gruesome death is a bit extreme (and part of a disgraceful series of Ats female characters dying in onheroic ways). But besides that, I'm cool with seeing one of the original characters crack under the pressure and lose.
                    But it is a bad story. I don't see how anyone could possibly see it as a good story.

                    Even Cordelia turning evil would have been better.

                    If Cordelia had an arc where her hubris led her to make a big mistake in trusting Skip, and then we saw her descend into darkness and villainy before coming back to her old self and then having to deal with what she's done; if Cordelia had an arc where everything goes wrong for her, but then she has time to reflect on everything, see what her mistake was, grow from that; any of that could have been good.

                    But Cordelia's arc ending with her being possessed for almost an entire season and not being Cordelia anymore, then being in a coma and dying off-screen? That's a rubbish arc and just feels like narrative sadism with no meaning.

                    And her coming back for one episode in season 5 does help in the sense that she at least gets to be a character again, not just a body/vessel. But on the other hand, instead of it being all about her, even that was about her motivating Angel, rather than about her arc and what she had been through.

                    I'm not even a big Cordy fan, never have been. But I was still incredibly p1ssed off because I've rarely ever seen such a disrespectful arc and ending for a major character. I hated Fred's too (and I also wasn't a big fan of her).
                    You keep waiting for the dust to settle and then you realize it; the dust is your life going on. If happy comes along - that weird unbearable delight that's actual happy - I think you have to grab it while you can. You take what you can get, 'cause it's here, and then...gone.

                    Comment


                    • #32
                      "Being a man does" Not really. Men have been taken over and mentally possessed/raped in the show.

                      You wanna honest answer here? I'm sure there was an element of how they decided to write Cody due to Charisma not telling the production early enough she a) was attempting to get pregnant, and then B) actually getting pregnant. If you're under contract thats seen as being very unprofessional in some quarters back then. That may sound harsh but thats how the world works.

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                      • #33
                        Originally posted by Vampadvo View Post

                        I don't think season seven is creatively exhausted and Whedon saying he'd run out of stories to tell is him saying his last ideas are in season seven. If it feels like they are retreads then they are riffs on previous episode to have a sense of coming full circle and to be honest only Him feels like a lesser product and I think it was meant to be a bit of fun before the storm.
                        I agree with you about season four and I think a big part of is the character assassination of Cordy - Willow going off the rails in season six is set up but this isn't even Cordelia and I really hate the everything was set up by Jasmine narrative. I appreciate there are some interesting ideas in season four and some good bits and the season as a whole has it's fans but I am NOT one of them whereas I love season seven and will fight to defend it.
                        It's not a lesser product. It's a different perspective on love spells, that of the people under the spells instead of pains of the person who placed it, which IMO is a step up. And it's much, much funnier. S7 might reuse some motifs, but it does it in a completely different way. Yeah, it has some shots that are throwbacks to previous seasons, but I don't see that as a bad thing for the final run. S7 suffers from fan anger and is thusly hyper criticized, but they're pretty shallow when you look at the show as a whole which is permeated with the same weaknesses. People will write a book on Spike being tortured but turn a blind eye to crap like Dru being choked out. I just rewatched Homecoming and Buffy is knocked out by being pushed into a wall, FFS.

                        "Cordy's" arc in S4 sucks, but it's not character assassination. It's not even Cordy. With that said, I definitely think it was in error to keep that fact from the audience for so long while it aired. It's certainly possible this was on purpose. The writers were well aware of the damage that can be done of having someone in plain face committing bad actions. This is the reason Joss had Angelus be in vamp face while killing Jenny. At the same time, there might not have been a way around it and maintain tension. I don't know anyone who likes the Skip Retcon and of course there's the whole Angel doesn't have memories Angelus does business, which is dumb. I defend some aspects of S4, but it's definitely not a great season. It's more along the lines of it not being as bad as some claim. It's like Dawn as a character. You have people that absolutely loathe her and you feel the need to point out her positives, then you have people who will try to say she's the best, most relatable character and you're, like, let's not get crazy now...

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