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Was Spike "the doctor"?

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  • Was Spike "the doctor"?

    I've heard a lot of theories about Spike being the doctor or not in As You Were. Spike was pretty busy hanging with Buffy in the weeks before the eggs were found in his crypt. It's unlikely he had time to be managing the eggs and why would he put them in a place that Buffy was very likely to find them? So what's your theory? Was Spike the doctor? Working for the doctor? And did Riley some how arrange this incident as pay back on Spike for coming between him and Buffy?


    “I like who I am when I’m with him. I like who we are together.”

  • #2
    There really isn't any direct, on point textual reason to think he wasn't, nor any word of the author to cite to that effect either. He was the Doctor, he picked up some side hustle with the end game, we're left to assume, of helping improve the Summers household finances as well as the default blood-and-smokes.

    This is one of a few subjects where the headcanon game is so strong, it almost becomes incumbent on those who take the episode at face value to disprove it.
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    • #3
      He was definitely deliberately and specifically involved. It's totally believable that he is trying to get himself some money and help out with Buffy's finances as the Doublemeat scene sets up that he's ready/willing to do. His line to Buffy about her always knowing what he is but coming to him anyway seems to be totally taking on his involvement as he's basically asking her why she is surprised. So I don't think there really is any room left to consider that he was set up.

      Whilst I can see him being actively a part of the egg scheme, I still find the idea that he was setting himself up as a dealer and calling himself 'the doctor' odd. I don't actually see it as against taking the episode at face value to consider that Spike might have been telling the truth that he was being paid for holding the eggs for someone, and that this was why he seemed so irritated by being called The Doctor. He's cut off by Buffy when they find the eggs from telling his tale, which was obviously going to be focused on excusing himself. It could be that this and his lack of further protest when she returns to break up with him but isn't going to give him grief about his stupid scheme indicates that it was just him and he's stopped bothering to try and lie about it. But I do think its feasible that he also gave in arguing the finer details because it made no difference to the fact that he was involved and had been caught/humiliated.

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      • #4
        For the longest time I thought Spike was the doctor but I've heard some pretty compelling arguments on why he wasn't. Now I'm not sure either way but I do have doubts.


        “I like who I am when I’m with him. I like who we are together.”

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        • #5
          Keep in mind, though, that the arguments on why Spike wasn't the Doctor nor was he involved in selling any demon eggs and the whole thing was all part of Riley's plan to get even with Spike for getting in-between him and Buffy were started 1) by people who were almost violently invested in both Spike and Spuffy, and therefore 2) were even more violently opposed to Riley in general, much less Riley making a return guest appearance that didn't paint a picture of him as The (Sexist & Racist) Devil Incarnate; and that 3) these arguments started being made almost as soon as the episode was over, perhaps even before it was over, by 4) people who were already frustrated that the Spuffy relationship, and the handling of Spike's character in terms of how he was being treated/accepted by the rest of the cast, was not conforming to the direction that many pro-Spike & -Spuffy fans wanted it to go in the first place.

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          • #6
            I find it difficult to believe that Spike created 'The Doctor' to deal in demon eggs. He didn't need a pseudonym for any of his other nefarious activities, so I don't know why he'd create this character for this particular act, it seems ridiculous and overly dramatic (not that Spike can't be those things, but not usually within his criminal activities when he's happy for the world to know it was Spike that did the dastardly deed, he can be such a terrible braggart )

            I doubt very much Riley set him up. That would take imagination and that's not one of Riley's characteristics. He's far more likely to go for the direct approach, like a plastic stake straight to he heart. This is far too devious and Riley is too straight forward.

            So I think it's much more believable, based on what we know of these characters, that Spike is a sub-contractor for the real Doctor and he's trying to make money for the Summers household.

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            • #7
              Spike the Doctor. Err, no. I mean someone who's meant to be an arms dealer and yet he doesn't even own a phone?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Skippcomet View Post
                Keep in mind, though, that the arguments on why Spike wasn't the Doctor nor was he involved in selling any demon eggs and the whole thing was all part of Riley's plan to get even with Spike for getting in-between him and Buffy were started 1) by people who were almost violently invested in both Spike and Spuffy, and therefore 2) were even more violently opposed to Riley in general, much less Riley making a return guest appearance that didn't paint a picture of him as The (Sexist & Racist) Devil Incarnate; and that 3) these arguments started being made almost as soon as the episode was over, perhaps even before it was over, by 4) people who were already frustrated that the Spuffy relationship, and the handling of Spike's character in terms of how he was being treated/accepted by the rest of the cast, was not conforming to the direction that many pro-Spike & -Spuffy fans wanted it to go in the first place.
                It doesn't make sense that Riley was setting him up. Even before you consider why the heck Riley would even bother to do such a thing, just going by Spike's reactions he very clearly is involved on some level. Once he is no longer trying to prevent them going downstairs and seeing the eggs he stops even trying to pretend he doesn't know that they are there. So there is definitely no set up involving planting the eggs.

                But he does start to say he was involved in a lesser way, storing the eggs rather than coordinating the deal. Yes, it could be he is just trying to lessen his involvement to seem 'better', but it just makes more character sense to me if he has gotten involved to make a quick buck regardless of the risks etc as the opportunity presented itself. I can see him being very easily persuaded to store the eggs for a price but thinking of dealing in the eggs and setting all of that up, including the ridiculous pseudonym, just seems a stretch.

                The Finns refer to having tracked the Suvolte and believe it to have come to the Hellmouth to spawn and wanting to find its eggs before they hatch. It is plausible that the demon happened to choose Spike's crypt and he found the eggs and looked into what they were, was taking the opportunity to make cash which had presented itself. But that doesn't fit with creating a whole persona for dealing either.

                Getting involved in the dodgy deal for cash is very definitely 'Spike', but it is the whole 'The Doctor' business that makes it seem somewhat off. The only argument I can see for it myself is Spike perhaps trying to use the name to make sure people didn't refer to him in Buffy's hearing. This would work with Riley having to hit the underworld (literally) to get to the bottom of who 'The Doctor' was. But it is still hard to picture Spike setting it all up. That whoever is coordinating it is already being referred to as a 'dealer', implies to me some degree of established precedent/reputation too, rather than it just being an opportunistic sale. If Spike has been earning money this way before now, it hasn't been apparent and I can't see him inventing the name for a one time money earner over just threatening those involved to keep quiet about his involvement. As everyone knows him in Sunnydale, trying to get everyone to use a specific name in relation to one current dodgy deal, well, it's a bit nonsensical. I just find it hard to see a way to get 'The Doctor' as something Spike is doing alone to make good sense.

                Riley saying Spike failed to keep them frozen is also a bit confusing because it sounds like they know the eggs are being moved around and have been frozen before rather than just laid here, so I don't really get that. But if someone didn't know what they were storing (rather than if they were controlling/arranging the deal), then I could see him not keeping them as he was supposed to.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Silver1 View Post
                  Spike the Doctor. Err, no. I mean someone who's meant to be an arms dealer and yet he doesn't even own a phone?
                  What was the master plan angle behind his confession?
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                  • #10
                    I agree with the arguments above that Spike was definitely an active part of the deal and that it's unlikely it was a Riley set-up. However, I also don't think he was the Doctor.

                    The eggs are a considerable stash, just in weight and volume and something like that doesn't just show up in your basement like someone leaving a carton of 6 chicken eggs behind. It needed haulage, carrying and storing (albeit at the wrong temperature...) So of course Spike was aware of that going on and the eggs were put there with his consent. I think it may have been something he would have agreed to in order to make a quick buck to help Buffy out and for all of the other reasons he's always been hustling on the show (card-sharking, selling information etc.) He probably also knew that they were dodgy and that they wouldn't hatch into harmless rainbow unicorns.

                    On the other hand, why would he suddenly out of the blue establish himself as an international player with some kind of dramatic moniker? Spike's never been into being "The Master" or "The Mayor" or any other kind of "The Whatever", he's usually happy to be Spike or someone who is defined by his deeds, like the Slayer of Slayers, not by some fake mantle of authority.

                    "Doctor" as a name would be a particularly odd choice for him, because the last time he encountered someone called "Doc" Dawn got cut, a portal to hell opened, Buffy died and we saw Spike broken and sobbing on the ground. Why in his right mind would he resurrect a name with connotations to that?!

                    Riley on the other hand could have made it easier for himself to set Spike up if that was his intent. He could have worked out a way to "prove" to Buffy that Spike had been able to get around the chip by using minions or something that required less elaborate logistics to pull off. The way he later pulls the Initiative out of his back pocket to take Spike's chip out, he could have probably got to Spike any time he'd wanted to. The only thing he may be to blame for here is that he was perhaps a little too eager to connect the dots and happy enough to point the finger at his old rival when it came to identifying the "master mind" behind the egg trafficking when Spike really was only a middle man.
                    Smile, listen, agree - and then do whatever the f**k you wanted to do anyway... (Robert Downey jr.)

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by KingofCretins View Post
                      What was the master plan angle behind his confession?
                      What confession was that?

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                      • #12
                        He may not have offered a notarized letter, but his defensive statement "you know what I am" in response to having been thusly accused and being indignant that Buffy would be surprised or act offended by it, would be admissible as an admission under the hearsay rule There is really nothing but a monumental willingness to fanwank to say he isn't the Doctor; in the other corner, there is simple the episode on its face. He was. Spike got up to a derpy caper that didn't work out, lemme see everyone's shock face.
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                        • #13
                          Imo that doesn't truly cover it,law or not. Spike does 'capers', but being a higher up in something like this? Nah.

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                          • #14
                            There is every bit as much evidence that Anya was responsible for summoning Sweet because she thought it would be an opportunity to cash in on that breakaway pop hit and that Xander was just being a gentleman by choosing to cover for her. I don't put pleas of Spike's innocence on the Acathla-binding-spell plateau but it's not not on that plateau either. For it to have been a set-up you'd think it would have ever been mentioned again even once, right? What's more, Riley doesn't need to discredit Spike, if Riley had the inclination he could have just killed him. If he'd have bothered with that set up, there's zero credible or rational explanation that he'd have ever allowed, let alone ordered, the possibility that he could have his chip removed either. He had no motive to ingratiate with Buffy, he was already happily married. There's just... nothing. It's a baseless fan theory, nothing more.
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                            • #15
                              I don't believe Riley framed Spike. I think Riley's morals wouldn't let him do such a thing..

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