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November 24 2003

If they ran the media circus "heroes wouldn't be so damned heroic." Someone thinks Joss falls into the typical TV trap of too-perfect-to-be-real heroes. Just a passing mention (scroll down to the TV section), but enough to get my dander up.

I mean, I really have to disagree. Especially Buffy and Angel have been shown to have true, almost fatal flaws. Malcolm I could see an argument being made that he was too perfect - that even his very real flaws only served to make him more endearing, more the perfect hero - but I also feel that that's only because the show didn't last long enough to really deal with the issue.

Well it looks like this guy didn't pay attention to "Buffy" and "Angel" at ALL...their friends questioned their orders as much as they followed them...

"Every Giles has his Ethan"
Huh? I hardly got the impression that Ethan was a "sidekick."
...and Angel was such a perfect father, wasn't he?
This could start some interesting conversations about heroism, a lot of thoughts are going through my head as I contemplate the author's comments, especially thoughts is regards to the perception of heroism...but if I tried to write down all of them now it would get very rambly indeed. Anyway...
Fictional heroic characters are boring and unrealistic when they are cardboard cutouts who always do the right thing and save the day because the writer behind said fictional hero says so- they are boring and unrealistic when we have no sense of how the character makes the choices he or she makes, no sense of conflict, difficulty, sacrifice. When it's too easy for them to be heroic, making us feel bad because it is not that easy for us.
As opposed to doubting the existence of heroism period, or doubting that somebody could be as heroic as someone like Buffy...just because most people aren't. That seems more like making excuses, that sounds like...Faith. ;)
I think the point of the Giles/Ethan mention was to point out those times when a bad guy exists to prove how heroic the hero is in contrast. It's a justifiable complaint sometimes- it can seem like a cheap way of putting the Good Guy on a pedestle. Not sure how well it applies to Giles/Ethan though- I mean, yes Ethan is a somewhat simplified bad guy- he does seem to exist mostly just to be the bad guy (although a very enjoyable one)- but Giles by comparison does not usually seem like a simplified good guy- the first episode that was really about the Giles/Ethan relationship was, after all, about Giles royally screwing up- both in the past and present.
To really expose the depths of our geekery, we'll even remind you that every Blake has his Avon.

LOL!

Yes, that example is the epitome of his point. Much better than Giles/Ethan.
Who are Blake and Avon?
Blake's Seven is an old British Science Fiction show. I saw it as a kid and have forgotten much but Blake was the leader of a rebellious group in a galactic war. Avon was his second-in-command but also his rival for the crown of group leader, and was always second guessing him, sometimes actually plotting against him but ultimately they still fought together....

That's it very roughly. I'm sure there are people who can tell you this better. It's been a long time.

On the article, a few true points overll, but I dislike any article that is basically "if only WE could do it!!" because they are generally pretty arrogant and sound rather petty.

As for the HERO comments where they mention Joss' shows....hmm, not really the best example ever. Both Angel and Buffy have down some really screwed up things and almost everyone around them second guesses them all the time, and very few are really the 'snarky sidekicks' they described. Cordelia was one for a while. Spike was, only in S4 really. Maybe Anya.

And yes it really sounds like they see Ethan as a snarky sidekick when you read their sentence. I do wonder if they've actually watched all that much of the shows and are more trying to show off.
As for the Giles/Ethan thing, when Ethan arrived on the scene, we saw Giles' dark side. Giles was most heroic in my eyes, after Buffy slept with Angel, or during Helpless. Ethan brought out, sometimes disturbing violence from Giles. And while that may have upped his badass quotent, not his heroism.

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