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Whedonesque - a community weblog about Joss Whedon
"Yes, I've read a poem. Try not to faint."
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June 21 2013

Love and marriage in Buffy: Willow and Tara. Nice overview of the relationship between Willow and Tara and some of the textual and subtextual meaning therein.

I've argued for a while now that Willow and Tara were the first gay parents on TV, what with looking after Dawn and moving into Joyce's old room. And the way Tara takes Dawn out on various afternoons is just like visitation rights after a divorce. Tara's also the one Buffy turns to with Joyce dead and Giles gone, making her the surrogate mother for both Summers girls...
Not the first gay parents on TV, Carol and Susan from friends immediately spring to mind but check out this infographic from

In my opinion though, I think Willow and Tara still represent some of the most emotionally resonant and realistic LGBTQ characters in popular culture. So much TV has devolved into negative stereotypes - I hadn't thought about them as parents before, that's a really interesting perspective.
This is what I get for never watching Friends. But maybe Willow & Tara were the first main-character parents...?
It's interesting though that the author leaves out one of the key moments for me in the evolution of Tara's emotional investment in the show, when her father tries to take her away, and every member of the Scooby gang stands up for her simply as "family."
Well, at least in this universe+, I'd imagine. And, I've said this before, I think canon Willow has been okay for quite a while, but she'll never really, really, really be alright again. Good essay, especially an introduction for people who don't know the show.

+Of course in my "Children of the 'Dale," and presumably "World Beyond the Wall," and "Planning the Wedding" ficverses, there was sitcom, running for 5 seasons starting in 1999, called Bonnymeadow Road in which Aly and Amber played retro-style classic sitcom parents, living next door to Emma and Nicky. It was on in my "Ice Age Buffy" 'verse too, but the last two seasons were cancelled due to the collapse of civilization. Dawn was the only Scoob who watched it, but Amber's make-up artist on the hsow is married to Xander's cousin Lee.
Willow and Tara remain my favorite couple from fiction. Had the Whedonverse PTB allowed, I think Will and Tare would have married. Of course, nothing in the Whedonverse ever stays perfect forever. Eventually drama demands sacrifice, and therefore we got "Hulk smash" all over the W&T relationship. It broke me heart at the time. I still get a little sad whenever I think about it.

Most times I love me the canon, but there are times when... um, well... not so much. For example, I can't understand how the Willow I saw in the series could turn down Tara as a spirit guide in Season 8 comics, and instead go with lying snake-lady. It doesn't make sense to my heart.

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