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December 13 2010

God and Buffy. A nifty discussion of how God manifests in Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

I feel that the writer of this article made several logic "edits" removing focus from the context of Buffy's chosen-ness. That being said, twisting Buffy to mirror a series of Biblical excerpts makes me uneasy, possibly because it is done with such frequency with American legal texts.

[ edited by marvelknight616 on 2010-12-13 23:41 ]
Buffy is imbued with the Judeo-Christian tradition, which is what attracted me to the concept and arc in the first place.
As an atheist, I have a hard time relating with the author. That said, I have no problem with faith and applaud people with faith who are open minded enough to not blast everything they see that isn't approved of by the watchdog associations. If this author can see Buffy for the wonderful and beautiful work it is and also gain some spiritual value from it, I say more power to her.
I think making a connection between "The Gift" and the Christian message is hardly a great stretch. However, I don't think the author expressed her views that well, and felt the need to quote from way too many sources to try and give legitimacy to a television show about vampires and demons.

I come from a Christian tradition, and understand fully what people have to go through to convince people 'secular' art of any kind is of any value. So while it's easy to criticise the leaps made in such an article, remember it's on a website for a church that is Creationist and fairly traditional in its outlook.
Buffy is in no way a Christian metaphor in the sense that Narnia is.

I recognize the author's viewpoint that you'll find god wherever you look for him, and I guess I can agree in a sense, but just because you found him, doesn't mean he's there.

I can't really argue with giving the show more exposure though. I found Whedonosophy to be very helpful in letting go of the beliefs I grew up with (Adventist, as it happens), and determining my own.
Interesting, sleeper, I had a very similar experience with pentecostal Christianity as I made my way through Firefly, Buffy, and Angel when I was 16. Buffy hands down had the strongest influence on me challenging and reshaping my beliefs though.
Buffy is most definitely a Christ figure in the closing moments of season 5. Death is her gift to the world, just as Christians believe Jesus sacrificed himself for us. She even leaps in a crucified pose, to the extent of having her feet slight crossed.

For me, this is then undercut in season 6, when Buffy discovers what it means about the world we live in if it is followed by an afterlife.

It is great to read that someone with beliefs that are completely different from my own can gain so much from the series, even if it takes her in a different direction to myself. That doesn't mean I think she is wrong at all; it just shows how fantastic the programme is, allowing many different interpretations and not offering any simple answers.

[ edited by Vandelay on 2010-12-14 00:47 ]
I thought it was a lovely article about someone finding their own sense of peace from an unexpected source. Festive :)

Merry Christmas, everyone!
Is nothing sacred? Just kidding. Kinda.
Vandelay- and of course we cannot forget the unconditional love of a carpenter willing to sacrifice himself saved the world. In Buffy, that is.

As to her interpretation, that's what makes Buffy so wonderful- how we can each view it through our own lenses and find meaning in it. I'm Jewish, but I appreciated this article a great deal.
I'm not a particularly religious person (though I am pagan), I find discussions of this nature utterly fascinating, whether I agree with the overall point or not. I found this to be an interesting read, even if I took a different interpretation from The Gift than the author.
I'm sure Joss will be thrilled at the idea of God taking credit for his work. ;-)
My father, a minister, loved Buffy back in the day, but the episode that stuck a chord with him the most was "Amends," particularly the ending.
I've long felt that much of BtVS was divinely inspired. Not that that's a slight on Joss in any way; inspiration may strike anyone but only genius can make such good use of it.

I didn't view the show as an analogue of the Christ story at all, however; I viewed it as another chapter in the story of family and compassion.
This just isn't my cuppa and IMO, with no disrespect meant to anyone, it displays a lot of what I find so, umm .... "offputting" about fundamentalist and other strict forms of Christianity.

Starting with "For years we Christians have been writing books, articles and blog posts about what popular novels, films and TV shows we find *acceptable* (my emphasis).
Way to encourage people to make their own decisions about what they do or don't believe, by making certain things "off limits".

Then this: "God shines through even the most debased pop culture products."
Whose god? ... not mine. And who has the right to use a word like "debased" as if "their" religious definition is the last word on the subject? Just "IMO", insulting and condescending, to anyone who doesn't share Christian beliefs.

Full disclosure: I'm not an atheist. My spiritual values are drawn from a combination of basic Buddhist philosophy and Wiccan/Neo-Paganism. Both for the recognition of all living creatures as worthy of compassion, and a reverence for the planet that sustains all life, and the latter for recognition of the female gender on an equal spiritual level with the male.
What Shey said. I am a bit offended after reading it.
The article is ironical given that Joss is an atheist/humanist.
Glad to see the haters are so offended. If Joss is truly an atheist/humanist, then he is, at least in concept, a thief. But I think not.
The fact that various examples of Western art and culture might have themes of one-ness and sacrifice to save the world doesn't mean those works are riddled through with actual Jesus.

I'm not sure that's what the author was actually arguing, actually. But bits of it (or reaction to it) sort of sound that way, so...

[ edited by The One True b!X on 2010-12-14 06:56 ]
One other notion. I have no issue with any given religious person finding commonality of values with pieces of pop culture that themselves might not actually be religious, per se. I think where it starts to rankle the non-religious is when they go further to suggest that these pieces of pop culture were actually divinely inspired whether their authors wanted them to be or not.
Not glad to see you lobbing atheists into the category 'haters' there, Peanut Noir. Also not sure why you'd doubt Joss' own word on him being an atheist. And finally not sure what would make him a thief if he is one (which he is).

Anyway: I can see how one could discover Christian themes in Buffy. After all, the story of Christianity is very universal. Like many religions it has elements of sacrifice, love, a 'chosen one', etcetera. This does not mean that another story which has those elements is inspired by Christianity, as those elements are out there in numerous other stories, religious or otherwise.

Having said that though, I do think no one in western society, which has a largely Christian history and in which Christianity and concepts from Christianity served as a basis for our culture - even if that isn't always still visible - can deny being influenced on some level or in some form by Christianity in general, even if just indirectly by being around other things which are, directly or indirectly, influenced by this culture we're a part of. This even goes here in Europe, which is steeped in Christian history, but is not so religious these days as America is.

At the end of the day, though, I think this is mostly a case of the author seeing their own convictions reflected in a piece of popular culture. Just like we had that Star Wars-fan a while back, who saw elements of/homages to George Lucas' saga in most popular culture. And that's fine by me. It's not what I see in it, but if it makes Buffy more engaging and makes sure it speaks more to that viewers heart, I have no problem with an alternative interpretation of the themes of this story.
I have always found it ironic that Joss claims to be an athiest when Buffy has such a heavy "Christian" current running in the background. Whatever he is, whatever he uses to find his unique and brilliant inspiration. I LIKE IT. (and yeah, he is so wickedly talented, it seems reasonable to entertain the notion that his talent is absolutely, a gift from God)
He uses his brain.
Umm... wouldn't that be the universal experience though GVH? Who among us sees Buffy through Whedon's eyes? We all see his world through our experience. Just a casual swim through Buffy S8 tells you just how many splits occur in interpretation.

So that's probably the healthiest approach and one I agree with.

You don't have to agree with something, but there's no point in having a problem with it. Although I'm sure there are fringy interpretations (you know, violent or hateful) that probably it's ok to have a problem with. Just not sure affirmations of a person's faith are a good place to draw the line.

But I am glad that we're taking the time to argue gift from god vs. using his brain. Because, you know... that's going to be productive.

[ edited by azzers on 2010-12-14 07:41 ]
Glad to see the haters are so offended.

Well that's just charming language for me to wake up to. Don't insult your fellow posters again, consider yourself warned. And I also don't want to people taking potshots at Christianity and having this thread turn into "wah religion bad wah" discussion.

As for the use of God, I think it was there when the writers suited them. The mythology was very flexible and convenient often contradicted itself.
Wasn't it Joss that said somewhere "bring your own subtext"? Where's Quotergal where you need her to provide the context.

Anyways, it certainly wasn't his intention to have a "Christian" meaning at the end The Gift, but if people can read that into it, why not. Like two people from wholly different political perspectives can say the identify with Mal's plight in Firefly, and say Joss is telling "this" story.
Saying that Buffy has anything to do with Christianity comes from speculation and wishful thinking. Ironically, that is pretty much what faith is; the placebo effect. They want it to be real, and in spite of the evidence to the contrary, the lack of evidence means nothing. Buffy comes from Joss, an atheist. DEAL WITH IT.
Christianity as a story, and Christianity as a faith, are completely different things. Faith has nothing to do with Buffy, whereas some of the stories from the Bible have I'm sure - whether directly or indirectly - influenced Buffy to an extent, the same as they've influenced thousands of other things within pop culture. The thing is that in cases like this there's no difference between the Bible and stories from ancient Greece or Egypt or Africa or whatever. From a secular point of view (and I'm distinguishing between secular and atheist here), it's all just story and mythology.

Also add me to the list of people who are offended by the claim that Joss's talent is divine inspiration; particuarly as one of the most common themes derived from said talent is the power that comes from self-autonomy.
I don't agree with the writer's ideas, but I think it's great that Buffy works on so many levels and is so open to interpretations.

Self-sacrifice is the highest form of heroism, across cultures and beliefs, and is as ancient as the humankind itself. To create a truly inspiring character a writer will have to, at some point, bring him or her to the point of making the ultimate sacrifice. One doesn't have to be religious to see poignancy in it. To me, Buffy is not something that comes from the religious tradition but rather something that comes from the same source as the religious tradition.

When it comes to resurrecting fictional characters (Buffy, Dr Who, Dean Winchester), I see an interesting contradiction: on one hand, we admire self-sacrificing heroes, on the other hand, we the audience are not prepared to make a sacrifice and let go of them.

[ edited by Effulgent on 2010-12-14 11:14 ]
I heard my name - and I see that crazygolfa sent up the QG signal. ; > (That's actually the only reason I'm posting in this thread. ; >)

The classic Joss "bring your own subtext" remark comes from something Joss posted on (I think) the Bronze board in reference to a piece someone had written about lesbian subtext in the Buffy & Faith relationship, but it certainly can be (and has been) applied in other contexts.

"I just read the piece about Buffy and Faith... and by God I think she's right! I can't believe I never saw it! Actually, despite my facetious tone, it's a pretty damn convincing argument. But then, I think that's part of the attraction of the Buffyverse. It lends itself to polymorphously perverse subtext. It encourages it. I personally find romance in every relationship (with exceptions). I love all the characters, so I say Bring Your Own Subtext!"

He had more to say about subtext in a 2003 IGN interview w/ Ken Plume:

PLUME: Planting subtext for subtext’s sake…

WHEDON: Yeah, planting subtext based on everybody brings their own experience to a film - that’s why films are popular, and that’s fine. As long as they’re working from the film outwards, towards themselves. What people with an agenda do - whether it be, like, Cartesian physics or some thing I can’t begin to understand, or feminism, or anything - they try and shove it in. “Look at this this way.” Okay, let’s look at the film as it exists, what it is, what it’s trying to do.

So there's that - I actually find that a bit more apropos in this instance.

Joss has never denied that despite his atheism:

(The Onion: Is there a God?
Joss Whedon: No.
O: That's it, end of story, no?
JW: Absolutely not. That's a very important and necessary thing to learn.)

... Judeo-Christian iconography/symbolism/mythology - of necessity - permeate Buffy. (It's a bit long, but do read it, because it specifically applies to several of the notions this thread has been discussing.)

"You've created a world where religion isn't to be trusted but some conventional religious items do have power in it. Crucifixes and holy water are still harmful to vampires.

[Joss:] Ultimately, I'm dealing with a vampire myth. It's not any huge secret that I'm an atheist. For me, the most radical thing I ever did was have Riley go to church. I thought that was really cool. It makes him really different from the people in my universe, and somebody who is new to me. I've never met a well-adjusted person. It's weird.

So I am an atheist, but I'm telling a vampire story and everyone knows that vampire stories involve crosses. You haven't seen many of them and we haven't done much with holy water, though we've used it on occasion. We pretty much stick to stakes. That iconography is not something I want to explore. However, I do use Christian mythology. Buffy, resurrected much? She pretty much died for all of us by spreading her arms wide and ... well, I won't go into it. That's what I was raised with. As much as I learned Greek myths and as much as I read Marvel Comics and watched "The Prisoner," I grew up around Christianity and Judaism and those are the prevalent myths and mythic structures of my brain."

So, I don't think "claims to be an atheist" can be quite accurate, cheryl - surely the one stating their religious beliefs - or lack thereof - knows better than anyone else where they are on the faith spectrum, or whether they are on it at all.

Given his atheism, it's not ironic, particularly - he (and his writers) are of necessity dealing with the terrain of the vampire myth(s) - and the western world in which the story is set - as well as the literary tradition that his storytelling calls upon.

Quite honestly, I didn't read more than half the article at the link. Christian interpretation of Joss' work isn't a subject I find particularly compelling.
What Matt7325 said. I can see where the author is coming from, but it seems like an overly simplistic interpretation to view any story that plays off the classic hero narrative as really being about Jesus. And... "debased"? Really? But hey, whatever works...
Also add me to the list of people who are offended by the claim that Joss's talent is divine inspiration; particuarly as one of the most common themes derived from said talent is the power that comes from self-autonomy.
Matt7325 | December 14, 10:52 CET

Yes! ... I really meant to include something in my comment about Joss's stories being about "the power that comes from autonomy". Or to put it another way, claiming your own power, as opposed to the Christian idea of "turning yourself over to a higher power".

Thanks for the links and stuff QuoterGal. There was some really interesting stuff in the article where a number of people were asked "Is there a God?". Notably, that article was from 2002 and Bill Maher was not an atheist at that time, which was a real surprise to me.

My very favorite answer was from Clive Barker: "There is an organizing force to the universe, but I don't believe it has a gender."
Not to flog my own dead horse, but this thread is about as reader response as you can get. Because, see, if we go with authorial intent here, then really the religion question is moot. Joss is an atheist. But because we can "bring our own subtext," there are many ways to read Buffy, and some of them are through religious lens. Cool. I remember past slayage articles on "Marion images in Buffy" for example. No one got upset discussing that. :-)

So, where is there disagreement with the author of this article? They have offered their opinion. They are neither right nor wrong. This is how they view Buffy. It might not be how I view Buffy, but so what? I love to read articles about Tara Maclay, and others don't. QG has little interest in reading articles about Christian interpretations of Buffy, but so what? That's her gig. Whatever floats your boat is what Buffy is all about.
Why are some people offended by the idea of a God working through Joss? If God is, as Einstein put it, Spinoza's God, an omnipresent spirit filling all of humanity, then surely he's working through everyone, right? Does that make Joss any less remarkable? No. He's one of the finest minds working in the television industry today, regardless of his beliefs, our beliefs, or anything else influencing him.

One of the things I've always found interesing in Joss' works as an atheist is the persistent arisal of the concept of the soul, the aspect of the being beyond mind and body which is more vital than either of them. To paraphrase a great man (well, a cylon), the most basic article of faith is that this is not all that we are. I'm not saying being an atheist means you can't be spiritual in that way, it just intrigues me. (he says, hoping to start a discussion rather than an argument)
I consider myself an athiest, and wasn't offended by the idea of Christian themes in Buffy. The Gift is really the only time I can see the similarity- and I think the idea that it's Willow and the others who resurrect her, not God but mortals, puts an interesting spin on that.

I agree with crazygolfa's reference to the "bring your own subtext" idea- there are so many universal themes in Buffy that it can really be seen through whatever lens you feel like using at the time.
From a Christian point of view, an atheist can indeed be divinely inspired - he just wouldn't know it.
And Kairos, from an atheist point of view, a Christian can just be an artistic genius who credits god instead of the marvelous, marvelous synapses firing away in her wildly genius brainpan.

It's amazing! You can interpret art however you like.

You can employ classic Christian themes in your art without believing in them; you can employ them while you believe in them without attempting to proselytize.

You don't have to be a Christian to appreciate that the roof of the Sistine Chapel is beautiful.

You really don't have to make it an "us" and "them" thing, either. This happens way, way too frequently because we all jump to insane conclusions that are rooted solely in fear, whether it's politics or religion or interpretations of one man's talent. Whether we believe in god or not, the vast majority of us are all still fundamentally similar animals.

For me, Xander's pirate costume and eventual eyepatch is clearly a reference to the Flying Spaghetti Monster, whose noodly appendage touches us all. Xander's brief flirtation with pirate garb is clearly Joss trying to subvert global warming.

(Behold my interpretation.)

[ edited by Raggedy Edge on 2010-12-14 17:24 ]
And a fine one it is, Raggedy Edge.

This is how it works for me. As a person of some faith who tries to keep an open mind (i.e., I could be totally wrong about the whole divinity thing), the best statement of faith, how we ought to act, and how the world works that I have ever heard was written by Joss Whedon. It's Angel's conversation with Kate--you know the one. Joss comes at it more from Angel's side and I more or less side with Kate but it's that conversation.

And that's how it works... for me.
Wanted to make this point clearer: I am interested in looking at both 1) spirituality in the Buffy'verse - what does a soul mean, how is the notion of an afterlife presented, are there consistent spiritual themes in Buffy's World, etc.; and 2) Judeo-Christian (as well as Moslem, Sikh, Buddhist, Hindu, Pagan, Confucian, Jainist, Shinto, Druidic, Taoist, Zoroastrian, Discordian, Bobist, Bahá'í, Flying Spaghetti Monster) themes and symbols throughout the Land O' Buffy... especially as compared and contrasted with religious themes in Jane Eyre, the Heimskringla, and Nancy Drew and the Lost Weekends of Jesus.

I'm just not particularly interested in a strictly Christian viewpoint of Buffy, especially viewed in term of what Christians find "acceptable" about the show.

But I'm not offended by those who do or are - chacun à son goût, as me dear old mum used to say.

I'm with Joss on this one:

Q: "What do you have against being a Christian?"

A: "Nothing, unless you've got something against me."

(For just a couple of whedonesque discussions on religion, Joss and religion, Joss and atheism, Joss on atheists and religion, Joss on the religion in atheism and the atheism in religion ; > check out this and this. I'm sure there are many more like these.)
Because, see, if we go with authorial intent here, then really the religion question is moot. Joss is an atheist

That doesn't really moot any question of religion, derivation, character motivation/thoughts/feelings the way I see it. It's probably appropriate that I post a dead horse I beat in response :). Characters are not their authors. Characters believing or not believing something is not their authors believing/disbelieving. Other than that, though, yeah, people view their experiences through the various lenses of who they are and where they come from, a discussion that I would venture to say we've undertaken a few times 'round these parts :).

As QG says - chacun à son goût, some folks juggle geese!
Well, natch, ZG. I guess I was not clear. If we were to go solely with what Joss meant/intended, we could just ask him and end of story. It is because we have all these lens (religious, areligious, queer, straight, etc.) that there is such a rich text. But that is, I suppose, stating the obvious. Or the oblivious. Or something. ;-)
From the column:

"Promptly, demons and vampires flashed across the screen. Slaying soon ensued. With a reproachful gasp, I cried, "Wwwhhhaaattt are you watching?" My friend eventually lost interest in the show, but I kept peeking through cracked fingers and listening with wide-open ears."

Okay wait, this woman says she had this reaction in grad school ?!? Liiitle immature. Give her a pass with the odd bit of extreme creep in The Gentlemen, the thing that ate Willow's skin in "Same Time, Same Place", and a few other notable instances, and fine if she's sensitive to the odd bit of blood or even gore that was shown, but she comes off as kinda childish there. Like she's on the verge of an, "Ah has the vapors!" sort of reaction.

Ah well, at least

"Something about the fidelity, the emotional realism of Buffy's life experiences, the smart and witty dialogue, and the profoundly philosophical questions addressed by the series attracted and secured my attention."

Yay discovery stories, they never get old (was almost gonna type, "yay conversion stories", but I'll try to avoid that sorta terminology in a thread like this).

"Strangely enough, Buffy's life resonated with mine."

Aw, why does it have to be "strangely" ? Too many why-I-liked-Buffy articles written by academics (not a majority, but enough) feel like they're imbued with genre-apologist admissions of guilt. I dunno if it's an aversion to fantasy, horror, action/violence, stuff-not-sanctioned-by-nutty-watchdog-groups, or genre in general in this girl's case, but it's definitely there. C'mon, you're already a nerd, you don't have to be get all holier-than-thou about normally being above this sorta show, or wherever you're coming from.

I suppose her emphasis at the beginning on her initial "gasp!" reaction was intended to contrast with the revelation of loving the show and title character. To convince her readers, especially fellow Christians, to give Buffy a shot. Just realized that now, she probably played up the hesitation for effect, d'oh, oh well.

Because Simon requested, I'll avoid the religion thing this time (in too antagonistic [antagonizing?] a mood tonight to be civil about it--hey, I admit I can be immature like the columnist, it's a weakness--plus others have already covered some of the big talking points). Although I wanna point out that it's cool that we have had the odd thread of this kind that doesn't devolve into pure "religion-bad!" kind of bashing, it is possible. Can ya really be surprised when the threads naturally head in that direction though, for the majority of members ? It's the logical conclusion. ;)

[ edited by Kris on 2010-12-15 04:44 ]
I have a few friends who grew up in more conservative Catholic and Lutheran households who probably would have had the same reaction as young adults. None of them are immature, but their media consumption had been pretty narrow and their thresholds for depictions of violence in particular were (probably still are) pretty different from mine. And I can't even watch the hack and slash kind of horror movies. But beyond violence, they just hadn't seen a lot of things before that I pretty much expect to see on tv. I'm willing to give the author benefit of the doubt here. Buffy taps into some pretty powerful mythical stuff, and it's not one of the Very Special Dramas where the narrative is holding your hand.
I broadly agree Sunfire though to me it's a sliding scale in that there's a certain level of being sheltered which goes beyond simple unworldliness and becomes ignorance about and/or unwillingness to accept reality and that's part of immaturity (barely needs saying that's not unique to religious people of course).

Because, see, if we go with authorial intent here, then really the religion question is moot. Joss is an atheist.

As zeitgeist kind of says, Joss being an atheist doesn't in any way prevent him alluding to Christian themes, iconography, stories etc. in his work. I.e. he can NOT believe in God (and he doesn't, as quoted by the nigh miraculous QuoterGal ;) and still be saying "Look, Buffy is exhibiting Christlike self-sacrifice and grace here". He can even do that while not believing in Christ as a historical figure (let alone as the son of God) because "being Christlike" depends only on the widely held conception of Jesus, not the reality of the situation.

Self-sacrifice was A Good Thing long before Christ but since him and the spread of his story throughout western culture, presenting people in a cruciform while committing such an act has become a useful thematic shortcut. So we see it in 'The Matrix: The Not Quite as Rubbish Second Sequel', in 'Spider-man 2', in 'Superman Returns', arguably in (Buffy ep.) 'The Gift' and on and on ("arguably" BTW because her final act in 'The Gift' was certainly self-sacrificing but the cruciform could've been an accident on Buffy's part or a result of trying to stay stable while falling - as with skydivers - or on a wire - as with Hollywood actors - or added by SMG herself or... etc.).

As to the article itself, I don't find it offensive in the least (particularly since AFAICT there were no adverts and so I didn't contribute anything to a group who *may* hold views I strongly disagree with or even find abhorrent). Christians see God/Jesus everywhere, that's not exactly news.

(or everywhere good anyway, presumably God can take credit for inspiring Joss but someone else gets the "credit" for e.g. Jeffrey Dahmer. Or maybe he had the get-out-of-the-problem-of-evil-free-card of free-will whereas Joss not so much ? ;)
Yes, I understand that Joss can use religipous themes in his work, saje. That's not what I am saying. I am only saying that if he says he did not, as far as that goes, that's that. If he did, that's also that. But of course, we can read all sorts of themes in his work, whether he intended them or not.
Oh sure, he says as much himself in the quotes above (both that people bring their own subtext and that he explicitly did make religious references e.g. where he says "However, I do use Christian mythology."), that's partly why I misread you as meaning something else since your "question" seems to have been answered (if you're an authorial intent guy then it contains religious references, if you're a reader response guy then it contains whatever you see, including religious references).

(on rereading BTW, those quotes also mention Buffy's cruciform in 'The Gift' which probably indicates it was deliberate rather than the possible accident/etc. that I suggested. It's not 100% cos it could've been something Joss only saw himself afterwards but it's certainly indicative)
Joss works with the Western cultural tradition he grew up with, which includes some very fine art created by people of great faith, some faith or none. So it goes.

I am irritated by: "God shines through even the most debased pop cultural products", because I do not see this show as "debased" in any sense. I see it as a wonderful exploration of the potential of the human soul, in the broadest possible sense. I see it as great art using metaphor with depth and subtlety. I see it as the creation of a set of characters and stories which resonate far beyond their context. Buffy isn't the only character who dies for others, let alone who risks deat regularly for others.

If the writer finds enough parallels to allow herself to accept the show is "acceptable", great. Lucky her. It may help keep her mind open and help her to open the minds of others. (I am NOT suggesting Christians are closed-minded - far from it) I don't particularly need to give myself permission to watch - or to love - the show, though, because I look at things (or, at least, try very hard to) on their merits, not their applicability to faith or politics or academic field or whatever.

IOW, ManEnoughToAdmitIt, I agree. ;-)
I am irritated by: "God shines through even the most debased pop cultural products", because I do not see this show as "debased" in any sense.

We don't know if the article's author does either. People offended by that comment are making the assumption that because it appears (as a quote) in an article about Buffy then the author must think it of Buffy but that doesn't follow in any way.

So there you go, one less thing to be irritated by. Happy Saturday ;).

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