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July 22 2002

The Slayer Lineage. I just feel like explaining this again because people get this confused. For those who are confused, Dawn is not the new slayer and can't be, unless Joss Whedon suddenly gets a lobotomy.

"Buffy was called in 1996 at the age of 15 by the watcher Merrick (B1, BtVS movie).
Kendra was called in June of 1997, the time of Buffy's first "death".
Faith was called in June of 1998 after Kendra's throat was slit by Drusilla."

The line is Buffy, then Kendra, then Faith. Buffy died at the end of season 1 when The Master killed her. Xander gave her CPR & she's still alive, but she died briefly which was long enough to bring in Kendra. Then Kendra died a meaningless but certain death at the hands of Dru & Faith's slayer powers kicked in. Faith's since been beat up repeatedly, driven insane, fallen from great heights, gone into a coma for several months & even switched bodies with Buffy, but to the best of our knowledge her heart has never stopped beating. She's never actually died yet, which is why there's been no new Slayer since Faith. Faith is technically THE Slayer, and Buffy's just "A" Slayer.

This death passing of the powers to a new Slayer only works ONCE. Why Buffy's still got Slayer powers has not yet been explained. A Slayer's supposed to die once & then stay dead. Buffy died but came back so she's still A Slayer perhaps but she's technically not THE slayer. When Kendra died, the Slayer powers awakened in Faith, whose real bottom line problem was jealousy of Buffy. Cuz Buffy should be dead & Faith should have no one that others compare her to, but Faith's thunder has been stolen by Buffy, a slayer who has died twice & refuses to stay dead.

When Buffy died the second time, no second Slayer was summoned. Again, this only works once. Faith has to die for a new slayer to be realized.

Everyone clear on this? Questions?

I'm so relieved! Because I wake up screaming every time I hear "Dawn the Vampire Slayer."

Of course, Faith could die. She could come up for parole and convince everyone, even the Watchers' Council that she's thoroughly reformed; with their enormous influence, they'd see that she was released, then she'd die spectacularly, nobly, helping Angel Investigations fight some apocalyptic evil. And bingo--we're back to Dawn the Vampire Slayer.

Or not. Dawn could do any number of other fascinating things. Time for a completely new slayer--Valerie, or Tiffany, or Shamika, or Joan! or Teresa! Anyone but Dawn.
I think Dawn has slayer-ish powers, because she was made from Buffy---I don't see her as The Slayer, obviously that is still Faith, but she could certainly do some damage of her own, if the whining would only cease! :D

It would be a great way to end the series, if Faith were to die some fabulously glorious and noble death, and a new Slayer would be called, therefore freeing Buffy "to be like other girls". She could literally walk off into the sunset---or not.
If SMG leaves after next season, what is she going to do with her career? As much as I love her, I don't think she's wading in movie scripts.
How can Dawn be The Slayer anyway? Isn't she still a "key", you know, like another type of being, not human? I hope the story doesn't turn that direction, Dawn bugs! I think they should kill off Faith and bring in another Slayer altogether, but I can't imagine who it would be.
Faith could carry the show. The structure would have to be a bit different, but she could do it...
1. Even if Faith dies, it's statistically impossible for Dawn to get the Slayer powers. IF Joss killed off Faith, the Slayer would have to be someone we haven't met. Preferably someone not from America.

2. I don't see Dawn having slayerish powers. Dawn is "The Key": A glowing green orb of energy who only appears human because of a particularly powerful magic spell. Dark Willow indicated it would be very easy to undo it. You'd just need a powerful enough witch to do a 'dispell magic' spell that counters it, and Dawn stops being human. My guess is eventually Dawn will manifest some kind of energy powers or the ability to "klepto" objects or people from one dimension to another.

3. Faith will remain if Whedon can get Eliza Dushku to sign on for a contract. However, she's under the illusion that she has a future in movies, as does SMG. Why would anyone want to give up a steady paycheck in a TV series on the hopeful dream of making it in movies? If Eliza doesn't sign a contract, they'll probably kill her off some time this year, either in Angel or in Buffy.

4. I don't think Faith could carry the show unless they did the switch again. The name of the show is Buffy. They need to keep Buffy, but SMG doesn't have to be the actress playing her.
ZachsMind, who would be the one to fill SMG's inexpensive yet stylish shoes, as 'Buffy', IYHO??? The only reason I can get the hubster to watch BtVS is so that he can oogle SMG. ;)
1. Eliza Dushku. This would depend a lot on Dushku's willingness to do television, and sounds like she's not interested in a regular tv gig. Shame. I thought she did a very believable job acting like Buffy in the two episodes where Buffy & Faith did that whole "Freaky Friday" thing & switched in each other's bodies. Dushku was partly impersonating SMG & also just came from the heart with her portrayal of Buffy trapped in Faith's body, especially in the scene between her & Giles when she was trying to prove to him who she was. I think Dushku could take the role over, if it was properly explained how Buffy's mind & soul got stuck in Faith's body permanently, and there's ways to do that.

2. Alyson Hannigan. Again they'd have to explain how Buffy's brain switched into Willow's body, but this is Whedon's world so anything's possible. I for one would enjoy seeing Hannigan portray Buffy. The actress has put in her time. She deserves top billing. *smirk* Elsewhere I've suggested how it could be done, while not believably, certainly entertainingly. could happen!

I don't think it's that cut & dried. I don't think that Dawn is a Slayer in the usual sense (i.e. death of one slayer = transfer of power.)

Dawn was made *from* Buffy. I think that was enough to transfer the power.

I could see where it could be argued that Dawn just got all of Buffy's skills, but not her powers...

Here's the thing though. Next season is supposed to be Buffy: Year One.

If that's the case, then who is going to take the role of Watcher - the one who teaches the slayer? If you put Dawn as a slayer, then Buffy is the logical choice for the role of Watcher. If that's the game that we're playing. Joss is smart, and calling it Year One makes specific reference to the retelling of the Batman story. Unless he rewinds the cast back (not likely), then I think the logical progression will be Dawn.

Faith has her own story arc, and part of that arc is doing penance for her crimes. It doesn't seem like it would fit to just wipe all that away and let her be the slayer again.

Just my 2%. :)
May I just say: Thank you for reminding folks that the line runs through Faith now, not Buffy, and that Faith is the Slayer, not Dawn.

I do not think of Dawn as a Slayer, the Slayer or even a potential Slayer. I am simply hoping that she will be a team player in Season 7. That she will be a "Scooby" or a "member of the Scooby Gang." That she will be a useful part to the group. Not a Slayer. A Scooby.

When the show debuted and Willow, Xander and Giles fought at Buffy's side, absolutely no one said, "OH! Willow must be a Slayer now too!" "Oh my god, Xander's a male Slayer!" Not in the least. They aren't Slayers. They are forces of good, or defenders of the innocent, or whatever you want to deem them. Using the slang that they use on the show, they are Scoobies -- members of the Scooby Gang.

Giles was named Buffy's Watcher and acted as such, but he grew to know and love Buffy as well. He became a friend and father figure. He protected her, trained her, watched out for her and fought for her. Giles is not a Slayer. He is a member of the Scooby Gang.

Willow and Xander, already best friends with one another, became Buffy's best friends as well. They formed a neat little trio of teenagers - Willow, Xander, Buffy - but they also established one on one relationships, with Xander having an immediate crush on Buffy but also being the boy-buddy, and with Willow being the girl-buddy, giggling over life and love. Xander is not a Slayer. He is a member of the Scooby Gang. Willow is not a Slayer. She is a member of the Scooby Gang.

So with all of this talk of Dawn being a Slayer, Co-Slayer, Next Slayer, etc - Dawn is not the current Slayer. The line runs through Faith. Faith is still alive. Faith is still the Slayer. Dawn is not a Slayer.

If Dawn is permissed to now accompany her sister and her sister's friends on patrol, if she is allowed to go out after dark, if she wants to help fight the good fight and slay the demons, _then_ she too will be a member of the Scooby Gang.

If fighting alongside Buffy makes Dawn a Slayer in someone's mind - if that is how you choose to define it, rather than going by what has been said and proven on the series about the way a Slayer is chosen and called - if whoever fights alongside Buffy is defined as a Slayer to you, then Willow, Xander, Giles, Anya, Riley, Oz, Ms. Calendar, Angel, Cordelia, Spike, Jonathan, Larry, Wesley, and countless others are Slayers too.
LittleWillow, I think you misunderstand what I was saying.

The slayer "line" has already forked. It forked when We had both Buffy and Kendra.

So what's so inconvceivable about it forking again?

I'm not saying that any of the Scoobies should be slayers - that doesn't even figure into the equation. I do not consider Dawn to be a slayer just because she's fighting alongside Buffy. What I am suggesting is this - just as an aberration of the "natural cycle" of the slayer lineage happened when Buffy was brought back from the dead, an aberration could also happen with the creation of Dawn.

Dawn *is* a mystical being of energy who was summoned into human form through magical means. I think there's a possibility there for Dawn to also be a slayer. I'm not saying that it *is* - I'm saying it could be.

And, if the aberration of Buffy coming back happened once, then it could conceivably happen again. We could be looking at the next step in the evolution of the slayer.

Just a few thoughts. I'm all about possibility right now - Joss has thrown a curve way too many times in the past, so everything right now is just a wild guess. :)
Dawn can't be slayer, but she must be the Big Bad of coming season. Boring us all to death and being particularly malicious with her adolescent whining... ;)
Only Buffy's first death counted for Slayer activation, leading to the calling of Kendra and the eventual arrival of Faith. The 'fork' is only temporary, not permanent... the Slayer lineage continues through Faith, not Buffy. If Dawn (or anyone else) was to have the capability to be activated, it would have happened when Buffy permanently died the second time.

I can go along with Dawn picking up some natural demonfighting ability due to her being 'made from (an activated) Buffy', but not in the Slayer-sense. As far as we know, she's still a magical Key susceptible to being magically discorporated... far too dangerous a disability for a Slayer. Bring back Faith.
In the words of the great bard, Sir George Michael: "You gotta have Faith."
In the same vein, I am not saying that the Slayer line / evolution couldn't be changed or merged or split or rearranged again in the future. All I was saying is that, right now, as of the end of Season 6, I do not view Dawn as the Slayer or as a Slayer. I only hope for her to be more involved with the group, so that she will be more useful member of their society. ;-)

On the Faith front:
To put it simply, Faith rocks.
In the words of the Piano Man, Sir William Joel: "That's why I'm keeping the faith." *wink*

dgallo: "The slayer 'line' has already forked. It forked when We had both Buffy and Kendra."

This is the confusion I'm trying to settle with this very thread. Little Willow has the right idea. Dawn is a Scooby, NOT a Slayer. The line did NOT fork. It went from Buffy to Kendra to Faith. When Buffy died a second time, we did NOT get yet another Slayer. Buffy could die and come back a thousand times and it would not matter. After Buffy there was Kendra, then after Kendra there was Faith. Faith has to die for there to be another Slayer. Buffy coming back from the dead was a FLUKE. Not a fork. =)

"Dawn was made *from* Buffy. I think that was enough to transfer the power."

I respectfully disagree. This is not a matter of heredity. The Slayer Powers transfer seemingly randomly among the populous of humanity. Buffy was in California. Kendra was in Jamaica. During the Boxer rebellion over a century before the Slayer was from the Far East. In the 70s the Slayer was a woman from Brooklyn. There's no heredity between these women. In fact, except for their age & gender they have absolutely nothing in common.

Dawn being *made* from Buffy's blood doesn't guarantee Dawn Slayer powers. The powers of the Slayer reside in Buffy despite her heredity. Otherwise, Joyce would have been a slayer and her mother before her, and that's simply not the case. We honestly don't know what causes one woman to be Slayer & the woman standing next to her not to be. The Council claims to know, but if they did they wouldn't have "Slayers In Waiting" training in secret, and they would have known sooner that Buffy would get the powers. They didn't. At best they have educated guesses, but even the Council doesn't really know. It's possible that the spirit of The First Slayer seeks out similar souls that are unconsciously experiencing similar angst & uncertainties. She seeks like-minded souls to fulfill her destiny throughout the ages. Buffy & Kendra & Faith may have similar looking souls from the perspective of The First Slayer. Again though, at best this is an educated guess. Whedon's kept it vague & open to interpretation.

It is logical that Buffy will act as Watcher for Dawn, with a little help from her friends. I don't think Dawn's even got the skills of a Slayer. She's simply a resourceful young woman. Whedon's reference to "Buffy: Year One" is in reference loosely to going back & telling Batman's story. However, in this case it's Buffy's story. There will be a similar feel in season seven to season one. Particularly with the (rumored) reintroduction of Sunnydale High School built over The Hellmouth, we will see some vaguely familiar references. However, instead of the origin of Buffy, we'll see the origin of Dawn, and her blossoming into something NOT Slayer, but hopefully just as fascinating. I'm guessing it will have to do with how deep down she's a glowing green orb of magical energy which can open doors to places which boggle the imagination.

As for penance, both Faith & Willow have much to answer for, but with Whedon's rumored interest in returning to a more lighthearted Buffy, don't expect a lot of angst over it. They may deal with it a bit too briefly just so they can move on with the fun.
ZachsMind: Well said.

"You have all my faith." - Mayor Wilkins to Allan Finch

Some great points were made in your post. But here's one that I want to address:

"Dawn was made *from* Buffy. I think that was enough to transfer the power."

"I respectfully disagree. This is not a matter of heredity..."

I'm not saying it's a matter of heredity at all. I'm saying that Dawn was made from Buffy. In very much an Adam-and-his-rib sense. Heredity has nothing to do with it, despite the familial bond that Buffy feels to Dawn.

The same gaping hole in logic that allowed Buffy to close the portal at the end of Season Five also allows for Dawn to have the powers, skills and abilities of a slayer - without being The Slayer.

I agree that for the standard practice of slayer lineage to progress, then Faith must die. What I am proposing is that we have seen a corruption of the process. Possibly within that, a method that the Council could take advantage of to create an army of slayers...

I'm all about Faith, though. I am strongly in the bring-her-back category. I'm just saying that Dawn (as annoying as she has been written) shouldn't be ruled out all together.
If we're looking at it from an "Adam's rib" sense, I'd argue that women are remarkably different than men in many ways. The biblical (and dare I say mythical or metaphorical) concept that woman was made from a part of man didn't give women the same identical powers as man. In fact they have remarkably different abilities & have only some similarities. Women's intuition comes to mind. Where'd that come from? Certainly not man's rib.

Dawn & Buffy share the same blood, and may be near identical even on a cellular or genetic level, but that still doesn't indicate that Dawn's going to show signs of Slayer Power. The Power of a Slayer is not dictated by the physical makeup of the slayer, but their metaphysical makeup, and whether or not The First Slayer (or whatever Powers That Be which control the Slayer Powers) feels an affinity for that particular soul.

Joss Whedon can most certainly go down this path. Nothing's stopping him. However, he's given no indication thus far that he's opting to make Dawn the next official Slayer. Also this would be very short-sighted on his part and Whedon has never shown himself to be short-sighted when it comes to writing. He doesn't need to make Dawn a slayer when her potential is to be so much more. It would be like giving Xander some kind of special powers, when he's proven himself to be so much more interesting BECAUSE he's normal.

Dawn's very special, but she's no slayer. She's more special than even a Vampire Slayer. Slayers are only "one at a time of a kind." Dawn's most certainly one of a kind: period.

I'm so very much for the idea of bringing back Faith, not because I like Faith. I hate her. I hate what the writers did to her. However, Eliza Dushku is a phenomenally rare talent. The only reason she's not still a regular is because the actress is not interested in the tv grind. She could probably get written back in tomorrow if she wanted. She only needs to give Whedon a phone call. This differs from Seth Green, who would probably have to get on his knees & beg at this point to get Whedon to even consider it. Damn shame.

Imagine a season eight with a reformed Faith, Hairy Oz, Loyal Xander, Witchy Willow, an occasional Giles, Dawn glowing green, Mourning Spike & a Ghostly Tara.

Buffy who?
I thought this said "Slayer Lingerie" when I clicked it -- oops!

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