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Did anybody else not like Angel episode 3x06 "Billy"?

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  • Did anybody else not like Angel episode 3x06 "Billy"?

    Ever since the episode "Billy" from Angel Season 3 aired on The WB, I was never too fond of the episode and it was very disturbing. Probably cause of the fact that my mother was in abusive relationship and I was in the middle of it so this episode was always the one I always skipped. Is that bad that I skip this episode cause of personal reasons

  • #2
    It's not bad to skip any episode for any reason that crosses your mind. If, though, "Billy" strikes too strong a personal note because of your life experience, it's probably a testament to how good an episode it is -- one is definitely supposed to feel visceral reactions at the behavior displayed in that episode.

    There are plenty of people who have similar reactions to, for instance, "Seeing Red".
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    • #3
      I like Billy . I never skip a single episode , but I don`t like Smile Time and right now I`m stuck on it.
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      • #4
        The episode contains one of my very favourite scenes of the series: the one at the end of the second act, in which Wesley first begins to show symptoms. It's wonderfully understated and ambiguous; quite unlike the earlier scene involving Gavin and the later one involving Gunn.

        Wesley's behaviour turns from diffident to merely forceful, rather than openly aggressive (that comes later). And since this is in reaction to Fred's being evasive about Cordelia's whereabouts, which are a genuine reason for concern at this point, one would just put it down to worry under different circumstances. After all, we've seen Wesley's behaviour change in a similar manner many times before when the occasion called for it; he doesn't really fall out of character until the very last line, which makes it all the more chilling:

        "Lie to me again -- and we're going to have a problem."

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        • #5
          Originally posted by kassyopeia View Post
          The episode contains one of my very favourite scenes of the series: the one at the end of the second act, in which Wesley first begins to show symptoms. It's wonderfully understated and ambiguous; quite unlike the earlier scene involving Gavin and the later one involving Gunn.

          Wesley's behaviour turns from diffident to merely forceful, rather than openly aggressive (that comes later). And since this is in reaction to Fred's being evasive about Cordelia's whereabouts, which are a genuine reason for concern at this point, one would just put it down to worry under different circumstances. After all, we've seen Wesley's behaviour change in a similar manner many times before when the occasion called for it; he doesn't really fall out of character until the very last line, which makes it all the more chilling:

          "Lie to me again -- and we're going to have a problem."
          Yeah I love that line too but I still have mixed and personal feelings towards this episode my mom and I have suffered years of domestic violence so it was hard for me to watch it ya know? But it was only THAT EPISODE

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          • #6
            That episode is scary, I agree.
            I think in any kind of fantasy/sci fi show it's the sections that are reality based that have the most chance to be scary.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Veverka View Post
              That episode is scary, I agree.
              I think in any kind of fantasy/sci fi show it's the sections that are reality based that have the most chance to be scary.
              have you ever not liked a Buffy/Angel episode due to personal reasons like mine?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Jo$hua View Post
                have you ever not liked a Buffy/Angel episode due to personal reasons like mine?
                Yeah, look I would say yes. Not necessarily as specific as yours, but there are eps that hit closer to home than others and make me uncomfortable. There are eps of Dollhouse, too, that I find hard to take (eg 2.04).

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                • #9
                  I'm conflicted about Billy but for different reasons. The episode is a good one; acting & writing are really good. Plus the whole atmosphere of the episode is amazing.

                  My problem is the idea behind it; that all men secretly hate women. It's a rather strong episode of the 'men are evil' series. I guess Billy is the only time this happened in Ats, but in combination with BtVS where we had several evil misogynists it feels a bit forced. Especially because the man-hating Anya is a main character and comic relief in BtVS. Maybe if I didn't connect Billy to the BtVS episodes I would like Billy more, simply because it's an interesting idea for an episode. (Although I woud've prefered it if Billy simply made men hate women instead of bringing out their own hate. Even if it's less powerful, it doesn't go near the 'all men hate women' assumption.)


                  And of course it's not bad to skip episodes; especially not episodes which are not part of a big arc.

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                  • #10
                    This episode makes me ask a question and I just copy /paste my post from the thread on the previous page :

                    Don`t you think that ATS is the same opposite than BTVS about sex ? In Angel`s team only Cordelia was a women. In S 3 , Fred, too and in S 5 - none of them. I try to figure the idea of episode Billy - Why the men have to hate the women so much ? They said, that when Billy touches the man , it helps all the old hatred rooted in the men to come true . I never have heard this theory in other show before. Why the man have to hate and kill the women ? Wasn`t it enough that , for example Cordy was raped twice by deomons - in Expecting and Epiphany ? Fred was tortured to death in the Pilea episodes, too. Unlike to ATS , in BTVS the women are powerfull and IMO they dominates under the man. / Excluding Seeing Read and Get it Done /. I just wanna figure why the women in ATS has to be tortured all the time. What are your opinions ?
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Nina View Post
                      My problem is the idea behind it; that all men secretly hate women.
                      For some reason, I never even considered that until I watched the episode this time around.

                      Having considered it, though, I decided that it didn't really explain what happens in the episode anyway. If Billy's effect is really little more than the removal of inhibitions and the motivation to act comes from within the affected men themselves, I'd expect to see a different kind of violence. If Wesley had gone after Fred with a whip and tried to rape her, the explanation would work. But he goes after her with a big ole' axe.

                      There are some animal species in which females kill males, the most famous case probably being the Praying Mantises. But there aren't any instances of males systematically killing females, for rather obvious evolutionary reasons. So, my current interpretation of "Billy" is that Lilah oversimplified matters, that there is external compulsion involved.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by _Buffy_ View Post
                        Don`t you think that ATS is the same opposite than BTVS about sex ? In Angel`s team only Cordelia was a women. In S 3 , Fred, too and in S 5 - none of them. I try to figure the idea of episode Billy - Why the men have to hate the women so much ? They said, that when Billy touches the man , it helps all the old hatred rooted in the men to come true . I never have heard this theory in other show before. Why the man have to hate and kill the women ? Wasn`t it enough that , for example Cordy was raped twice by deomons - in Expecting and Epiphany ? Fred was tortured to death in the Pilea episodes, too. Unlike to ATS , in BTVS the women are powerfull and IMO they dominates under the man. / Excluding Seeing Read and Get it Done /. I just wanna figure why the women in ATS has to be tortured all the time. What are your opinions ?
                        Angel is also raped several times, but it's considered funny when it happens to him and he even gets blamed for it. Also Angel having sex in trade for a magical favor is used as a joke.

                        Ats always had some balance in a way; both the men and the women were the victim of tasteless jokes, rape overkill/downplay and fanservice in contrast to BtVS which was much more in favor of one gender (women). Sure Ats had less women in the team; but they had several strong/important female minor-characters (Darla, Lilah, Kate, Harmony, Eve). Until indeed season 5 happened and the both major female characters were killed after being raped and the minor female characters (Eve & Harmony) were hardly an example for women. Which is mindboggling IMO, I don't even understand how this could happen.

                        Originally posted by kassyopeia View Post
                        For some reason, I never even considered that until I watched the episode this time around.

                        Having considered it, though, I decided that it didn't really explain what happens in the episode anyway. If Billy's effect is really little more than the removal of inhibitions and the motivation to act comes from within the affected men themselves, I'd expect to see a different kind of violence. If Wesley had gone after Fred with a whip and tried to rape her, the explanation would work. But he goes after her with a big ole' axe.
                        I don't know, Angel was not affected because 'he got over that anger years ago'. Sure it was Angel's own explanation, so you can ignore that comment, but I've the feeling the idea behind the episode was certainly that all men do hate women.

                        There are some animal species in which females kill males, the most famous case probably being the Praying Mantises. But there aren't any instances of males systematically killing females, for rather obvious evolutionary reasons. So, my current interpretation of "Billy" is that Lilah oversimplified matters, that there is external compulsion involved.
                        In nature there are several examples of male sexual cannabalism; it's even more rare that female sexual cannabalism, but it exists.

                        oh 'fun-fact'; The theory is that a female Praying Mantises only kills the male Praying Mantises when they are being observed/in a laboratory and it's not their usual behavior.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Nina View Post
                          I don't know, Angel was not affected because 'he got over that anger years ago'. Sure it was Angel's own explanation, so you can ignore that comment, but I've the feeling the idea behind the episode was certainly that all men do hate women.
                          Good point - since he was actually affected, his testimony is worth more than Lilah's. This is what he says: "The thing Billy brought out in the others... the hate and anger. That's something I lost a long time ago."

                          Still, there is a middle ground. Billy's effect might be to remove inhibitions and to channel the emerging violence in a specific direction. So there wouldn't have to be any misogyny to bring out, just non-specific hate and anger. Which Angel claims not to have.

                          I don't disagree with you as to the metaphorical layer that the episode was supposed to have. But if it that layer doesn't really work, the effect it has on me is almost as if it weren't there at all, so it doesn't bother me much.
                          In nature there are several examples of male sexual cannabalism; it's even more rare that female sexual cannabalism, but it exists.
                          But it can't be happening systematically, right? There are also many examples of cannibalistic infanticide, but it's always something that happens only to some of the offspring or only under certain conditions. If it were otherwise, the species would go extinct within a generation (or, properly speaking, would never have developed in the first place).

                          The theory is that a female Praying Mantises only kills the male Praying Mantises when they are being observed/in a laboratory and it's not their usual behavior.
                          Yes, I read that too.

                          The suggested explanation, IIRC, was that the behaviour emerges if the female is especially hungry or especially nervous, because the substantial meal the male provides allows her to hunt less and thus take fewer risks until she lays the eggs.

                          Okay, now my brain is trying to work out if a human male would provide enough meat for a human female for nine months. Bad brain. Stop it right now.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by kassyopeia View Post
                            Still, there is a middle ground. Billy's effect might be to remove inhibitions and to channel the emerging violence in a specific direction. So there wouldn't have to be any misogyny to bring out, just non-specific hate and anger. Which Angel claims not to have.

                            I don't disagree with you as to the metaphorical layer that the episode was supposed to have. But if it that layer doesn't really work, the effect it has on me is almost as if it weren't there at all, so it doesn't bother me much.
                            Could be, although we all know that Angel still has anger left in him. So it's a specific kind of anger/hate. But indeed it could be another kind of anger than misogyny.

                            Originally posted by kassyopeia View Post
                            But it can't be happening systematically, right? There are also many examples of cannibalistic infanticide, but it's always something that happens only to some of the offspring or only under certain conditions. If it were otherwise, the species would go extinct within a generation (or, properly speaking, would never have developed in the first place).
                            Depends on the species, it's not possible in the case of mammals. But in the case of spiders and snakes (the species where there is male sexual cannibalism) all they need are the eggs. If the males can take care of these eggs, the female is no longer needed.
                            Last edited by Nina; 04-10-11, 06:09 PM.

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                            • #15
                              I actually created a thread on the subject a while ago here and I wrote this on another forum:

                              I was confused as well as to how it works. My main argument is that I don't like the idea that men have innate hatred of women. I think that is something Billy transfers and that the victim isn't responsible. However it would affect them in different ways based upon their inherent feelings. I think it's somewhat like vamprism. Not all vampires had homicidal tendencies and few humans are depicted as bloodthirsty in the same way vampires. However how vampires express their 'evil' is based upon the base personality of the human predecessor. What Billy does is transfer misogyny onto his victims and removes their inhibitions and they intepret these feelings in their own way explaining why some go crazy in a matter of moments and some go crazy straight away.

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