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"And working up a load of sexual tension and prancing away like a magnificent poof is truly thanks enough."
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March 04 2013

The Friend Zone and "Buffy the Vampire Slayer". A video breakdown of the term 'friend zone' using our favorite Scoobies.

Interesting video, I'll have to take a look at some of his others. One thing I will say is that Xander, in his early years, does not react well to Buffy's rejection. I mean he's 16, so it makes sense, but he handles it very poorly. "Kick his ass" being the pinacle of his bad behavior.
I agree. He did not react well to being rejected. So I would have to say, that while there's no entitlement, he did not love the friend zone and on occasion acted like a complete jerk.
Absolutely true that he's an occasional jerk, though I think most of Xander's anger was aimed at Angel -- and though he was being jealous, yes, you also have to admit he did have some worthwhile reservations about Angel (vampire, etc.). He also moves on to Cordelia before too terribly long... and if that vampire hadn't interfered in "When She Was Bad," he might have moved on to Willow even faster.

Also consider Xander's behavior in "Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered." He gets more snarky than he needs to, and he definitely sabotages things with Angel in "Becoming," but he also acts like a real gentleman when the chips are down.
Then S-6 comes along . . . .
"Kick his ass" was irrelevant to Buffy dating or not dating Xander.
One thing I will say is that Xander, in his early years, does not react well to Buffy's rejection.


You'd be hard pressed to find people who react well to rejection. I think the point the video is trying to make is that he is able to ultimately maintain the friendship because Buffy and Xander are friends. We can judge Xander for being a jerk at times, but that charge can be levied at every human being on the planet who will have a moment of pettiness or jealousy at some point.

"Friend Zone" is such a loaded term because it was originally a mocking term used by men to refer to unrequited affection. And the author points out, it then became the darling of creep shamers to demonstrate entitlement. But the term itself is simply just a synonym for unrequited affection which is one of the oldest dramatic devices out there. I actually enjoy a video like this that depoliticizes it. People shouldn't feel shamed for not having their affection returned any more than someone should feel obliged to have affection for someone they don't.
We could call (and this is legit b/c of the ages of the characters!) Xander the Barney Stinson of the Buffyverse - as guilty as he is, people like him and he's generally there for them.
I think Buffy the Vampire Slayer accurately depicted the turmoil of how teenage boys feel when their "girl" falls for the so-called wrong guy. At that age, they really can't handle the girl they fancy just waiting to be friends with them. Also from looking at the WB promo pics for Season 1, the network really did push Buffy/Xander.
Men complaining about being 'friend-zoned' is definitely a problem, in my book (but why bother explaining why myself when perfect break-downs of the issue have already been written by people far more articulate than I. For instance - http://angels-and-angles.tumblr.com/post/16450786609/why-the-friendzone-is-bullshit-and-self-proclaimed.)

But to me, the important distinction with Xander, is that while he certainly didn't enjoy being rejected (who does?), he didn't think of friendship with Buffy as something not worth having. He didn't think of it as simply a means to an end. He didn't tell Buffy that she had led him on by being friends with him, as if friendship was nothing more than a stepping stone on the way to something else. Xander was a true friend to Buffy, and he genuinely valued their friendship.
Simon, I'm pretty sure that there was a shoot for Season 2, although might have been 1, with Nick, Sarah, and David that shot her sort of favoring one or the other with the off-man sort of scowling at the camera. I never can find them when I look for them, though.

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