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May 05 2008

Buffy #14 and Angel #7 ship this week. Double-dose of the 'verse!

I'm still waiting on #13 & #6! What's taking that post-person so long??? *grrrrh*

Can't wait to receive the newbies this month! :)
I get confused when folk use "the 'verse" to mean "the Whedonverse" instead of the Firefly setting. It hurts my little bwain.

But I'm sure anxious for both comics; thanks for the heads-up!
New Omnibus comes out this week as well.
Funny thing you mention that, Ghalev, because I've never associated the 'verse with Firefly. It seemed that "Browncoats" had claimed that domain. Besides, the universe of Joss is so large to not include his comics, webisodes (soon), and other TV hits... plus Serenity.
korkster, it probably has something to do with the actual word "'verse" used very liberally in the scripts of Firefly. I had never heard the term applied to Buffy or Angel before Firefly.
For me, Firefly is "the 'verse" and BtVS, Angel, Fray, and Spike are "the Buffyverse."
Totally looking forward to the new Buffy. Dracula as a (temporary?) Scoobie really excites me--in both a metanarrative way and a vampire geek way. (Geek obsessed with vampires, not vampiric geek.)

Not so excited about Angel. Too many unanswered questions, not enough pay off. And that "Yes we know how evil we are" comment at the end of #5 gave me goosebumps of embarrassment. (Though I am thoroughly enjoying Brian's Illyria dialog, so don't hate on me too much.)
Folks, "'verse" is short for Whedonverse.

Also, Brian Lynch has new art for ATF #11 on his blog here.
Oooh, new Angel AND Doctor Who. And the blonde chick. Good week.

"No power in the 'verse can stop me." That's Firefly.
Finally got caught up after over a month of being behind. Really love the dialog between Xander and Dracula; hate the Buffy-turning-into-Parker business (though the "My beautiful burning eye" line still gives me a case of the severe giggles). ;)

Also loving First Night, especially Connor's story. Drew and Brian are officially two of my favorite people right now. :)

Is anyone else desperately wishing this could all be on the air?
Unfortunately Wolves at the Gate has been my least favorite "run" so far. I thought 12 was funny, but 13 was completely off for me. I'm just not buying Xander with Drac. However, the preview for 14 looked really interesting so even though I haven't been loving Drew's run I'm still excited for this to come out (how could I not be? its new Buffy!)
deepgirl187, I don't actually wish this was on the air. I think both shows lived up to their full potential on the air. Angel, maybe, would have continued to work, especially since there was a whole nother season planned and all, but Buffy's end was perfect and complete. Any further stories would have to be so epic that, IMO, only comic books or movies (with hefty, hefty budgets) would work. Further, Buffyverse in comics just makes the whole pastiche of the series more intense and is a very natural evolution of the narrative.

And I totally buy the Drac/Xander sitch. Quasi-homosexual relations and/or fluid sexuality is the way of the 'verse (read that as you may) and, considering Dracula's rather morally ambiguous nature, he fits right in as a friend to the Scoobies and therefore I think it's completely understandable that Xander would want to try something different after Anya died. Dracula is certainly different. Also, superstar--who wouldn't want to spend a year with the vampire equivalent of Gayden Christensen?

...okay, maybe that's just me, but you get the point.
I never started using the word 'verse until Firefly - "No power in the 'verse can stop me". Before that I would say The Buffyverse.
Dracula's "morally ambiguous nature"? Where's the ambiguity in pure evil?
He's kinda like (pre-soul) Spike, in my eyes. He's got the badass persona (a mix of truth and exaggeration), and now we're getting a glimpse of something under that, a sense of vulnerability that makes him sympathetic at times. But then he's very different, too-- we saw real moral ambiguity with Spike (a mixture of selfish and arguably selfless actions, IMO), but so far Dracula just seems to be really... well, kind of a loser. (But so. much. fun.) But yeah as of yet I see no morality to speak of in Dracula. Spike was always on the fence to me, which is why he was so fun to watch, and then also so very disturbing at times. Spike oozed humanity and demon, positive and negative of both, whereas Dracula hasn't shown anything indicative of a moral compass.

The more I rewatch the DVDs, the more bizarre Spike is, and how the humanity just creeps in by degrees. He's bizarre in a fun way, but he's just so very strange for a vampire. Dracula seems to similarly be pushing our understanding of Buffyverse vampires. Why is he so depressed? What could do that to a soulless evil thing?

[ edited by Sunfire on 2008-05-06 19:09 ]
If Dracula is so lacking in morals and is absolutely pure evil, why didn't he destroy Buffy, Xander or any of the Scoobies when he had the chance? And if he's such a pure and evil threat to all that is sacred and good, why hasn't Buffy devised a way of killing him? For that matter, why did she let her best friend go stay with him for a year?

If Buffy thought that Dracula was a threat--as pure evil tends to be--Buffy would not have sent Xander there and she would have dealt with the Dracula problem by getting Willow to zap him into shrimp land or something.

I think you should double check you definition of "pure evil", barboo, because Dracula--at least in the Buffyverse--certainly doesn't fit into that category.
Actually I have a great deal of trouble with the idea that Xander developed a friendship with Dracula, or that Buffy endorsed or accepted it. As I see it, Dracula raped Xander's mind no less than Glory did Tara's, and I find it highly disturbing that anyone involved in the Buffyverse, either character or writer, countenances the idea that Xander would form a friendship with him.

As to why Dracula didn't destroy Buffy or the other Scoobies - I think you missed the part in "Buffy vs. Dracula" where he tried to bring her under his thrall and she defeated him.
I'm still kind of on the fence about what's going on here. I do think that the notion of Xander being friends with Dracula is out of the question, for the reasons barboo pointed out. Goddard's "Antique" story seemed to me to indicate pretty clearly that Xander was being held there against his will/under Dracula's thrall, though, and I think Andrew is mostly lying/romanticizing what happened in his description of Xander deliberately seeking out Dracula. And I do think the notion of Drac being a bit of a loser is interesting, but he still kills people. Spike, in season 4-6, didn't/couldn't.
Well, it's one thing to say that you don't like it, but you can't deny that Dracula straddles the fence between good and evil--not so fancy words for "morally ambiguous". Sure he tried to kill some people, but in the Buffyverse that doesn't mean you're "pure evil". For instance, Harmony, without a soul, like Dracula, helped Team Angel on many occasions. She always betrayed them in the end, but that doesn't mean she didn't do some good. Willow killed Warren (er--pre-retcon) and also tried to kill everyone in the world. She also put Tara and the entire Scoobie gang "under her thrall" several times throughout the series--sometimes by accident, sometimes on purpose. Does any of that mean she's pure evil? Andrew, Giles, Angel, Spike, Amy, Faith etc. etc.--so many people in the Buffyverse have killed people for different reasons, have gone back and forth between good and evil, and I think the point of that is to show that there's some evil in the best of us and some good in the worst and that you can--and should--always fight for a chance at redemption. Point being that Dracula--no matter what sins he has committed, and will likely commit again--is certainly not the evil to end all evils (I believe that's known as the First) and to say that he is "pure evil" is a complete misunderstanding of the Buffy text.
Speaking of the First, whatever happened to that? You can't actually destroy the First, as it lives in every single being, but I haven't heard much from it since season 7. It seems when you go up against the source of all evil (which is backed by Wolfram & Hart), you'll never meet another villan worthy.
On the contrary, I completely deny that Dracula straddles the fence between good and evil. I agree that many characters in the Buffyverse have gone back and forth across that line, or at the very least have done things that are morally questionable. That doesn't say anything about character of Dracula. What have you seen in him, as he's been portrayed so far, that suggests an element of goodness?
Dracula is a fairly enjoyable villain. I look forward to the new issue with anticipation of more enjoyment.

I find it disturbing when people compare things to rape which ought not to be in an attempt to make something seem more extreme than it is. Crimes come in degrees. Evilness comes in degrees.
'verse: Firefly
Buffyverse: Buffy, Angel, Fray, and related material
Whedonverse: All of the above, and anything else his purpleness has ever touched

That's how it is.

Hurray for new comics!
Resolute, that's how I see it as well, and it leaves me wondering: will Dollhouse have the "Dollhouseiverse" or simply the "Dollverse?" I need to prepare!
I'm not saying he's good, per se; I'm saying he's not pure evil. If he's working with the Scoobies and not trying to kill them, doesn't that mean that he's less evil than, say, the Master? Or Glory? These villians never worked with the Scoobs and took every possible chance (maybe one exception with Glory) to destroy Buffy and her friends at some point or other. Dracula has had many opportunities to kill Buffy and Xander and he hasn't. In fact, he housed Xander during his time of grief and it seemed to be of Xander's own free will--why else would Buffy allow it? If the Scoobies didn't think that there was some shred of goodness in Dracula, why would they trust him enough to go to him for help? They would never go to Angelus, Drusilla, Glory, etc. for help because they were much more evil than Dracula.

As GrrrlRomeo points out, evil comes in degrees--in the universe and the Buffyverse--and to say that Dracula is "pure evil" is purely false.
How much is it Dracula's nature and how much is it the situation beign they *need* each others' help. I admit, abit of both, but where's the balance? If there were a situation where say Glory and the Gang had a common goal and interest, I could even see that team-up. (Oaky, I'll admit to a fic hiding in my ntoebooks about that.) Dracula, with his medieval honor code and so forth,not to mention his greater personal interest in mind-games over sheer weasel-like bloodlust, is an off-beat vampire amongst the Buffyverse population.
But even Glory isn't "pure evil". Dracula is certainly a villain, but the Scoobies have teamed up with villains before and have even been villains themselves at times. Calling Dracula "pure evil" is as problematic as saying that Buffy is pure goodness. It's just inaccurate and it doesn't reflect the overall theme of the series.

Joyce, in a dream Buffy has in Season 7, says something like "evil is in us all" and that wraps up one of the major thematic arcs of the series. It's really easy to see things in terms of pure good and evil, but reality just doesn't work like that. There are variables to be considered, shades of gray (yes, I'm Canadian). I will not accept that any single character in the Buffyverse is pure evil, except the First which is stated in the text to be the pure embodiment of evil.

But not Dracula. He's flawed, certainly, but he isn't pure evil.
I'll take killing little children for pleasure as a definition of pure evil.

I don't see that a temporary alliance with the Scoobies when it is to the benefit of both, says anything one way or another about his moral goodness. It's an alliances of necessity.

You see him as sheltering Xander in a time of grief, per Andrew. I see him re-enslaving Xander per the original story. I have yet to see anything morally good in the character.
You see him as sheltering Xander in a time of grief, per Andrew. I see him re-enslaving Xander per the original story.

I suspect we are going to learn that the truth is somewhere in-between these two interpretations.

I have yet to see anything morally good in the character.

Yeah, as of yet we've only seen Dracula looking out for Dracula. I agree that allying with the Scoobies to serve your own purposes is not a moral act, but rather self-interest. But I expect Dracula's motivations and character have developed a wrinkle of some kind. Something is amiss. He may do something truly ambiguous or even good in the near future.

Ok, good is probably pushing it. Decent?
Again, I've clearly demonstrated that the fact that he kills doesn't mean he's pure evil. People can still come back from that, as the show and the comics have shown. Faith killed for pleasure, and she's good now.

I'm not basing my interpretation of the Dracula/Xander situation on Andrew's comments, but mainly on the fact that Buffy allowed it to happen. I strongly believe that Buffy would not let her best friend be kidnapped against his will for a full year and not do anything about it.

You can't argue that Dracula is "pure evil" because he is not. When he tries to take over the world and destroy every living thing in it, get back to me.
You can't argue that Dracula is "pure evil" because he is not. When he tries to take over the world and destroy every living thing in it, get back to me.

So, is Willow season 6 pure evil?

I'm not basing my interpretation of the Dracula/Xander situation on Andrew's comments, but mainly on the fact that Buffy allowed it to happen.

my emphasis

Buffy, at one point or another, has tried killing all of those near and dear to her. You can't tell me she's always self-sacrificing.

[ edited by korkster on 2008-05-07 18:47 ]

Dracula is not "pure evil". Sure, he's a villain. Sure, he does crappy things. Pure evil? Hardly. He's not half as evil as most of the villians in the Buffyverse. I already said that Willow was not "pure evil" when she tried to destroy the world, so the fact that Dracula has never tried to do this (that we know of) goes to show that he is nowhere near "pure evil".

I never said that Buffy is always self-sacrificing, but she would definitely not leave Xander at the mercy of "pure evil" for an entire year.

[ edited by Buffy the Slayer Layer on 2008-05-07 19:28 ]

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