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Joss Whedon Ships Spuffy - What Does This Mean for Bangel?
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RomancexGirl
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 10:01 pm    Post subject: Joss Whedon Ships Spuffy - What Does This Mean for Bangel? Reply with quote

I was on tumblr the other day, and found a specific quote regarding Buffy's relationships, and which one Joss apparently ships the most. And no, it sadly was not Bangel. Before anyone denies him as saying this, he most likely actually did. There's a link of the interview somewhere Katie Lucas. You can look it up, you'll probably find it.

Joss Whedon: Y'know what? I liked Spike. With Angel, it's too "Romeo & Juliet". Which means as soon as it happens, you're bored. Riley, you know he was a well-adjusted guy who loved her in a much, much healthier way than the other two guys. Nobody wants to see that. With Buffy and Spike, they have a real Beatrice and Benedick kind of relationship, in "Much Ado About Nothing." I think with the wedding, she would've done something fast, but he would've done it elaborate and do everything wrong. It would've been extradinarily counter-intutive, and awesome.

Okay ... words cannot describe how confused I am. Joss ships Spuffy, apparently. That, in some ways, makes sense. It makes sense that he focused so heavily on their relationship during S7 (to the point it affected her friendships), made Spike so sympathetic and victimized, as well as sending Angel away in Chosen for the final Spuffy confession.

But it does not make sense that Joss likes Spuffy more, yet shows that the rival ship most likely dwarfs it in mutual reciprocation. If you're a shipper, you usually want your ship to be at the complete top in absolutely every way, especially returned love and "I love you the most" sentiments. Which, I'm positive, did not happen. Is Joss like some sort of masochist shipper? " he more I love the ship, the more I'm gonna put it through hell and never let it have a chance"? Is that how he feels when he 'ships' things? Confused

His words also imply that he enjoys playing on the angst part of Bangel, but finds it boring when they're actually together. So basically, if nothing else, it means Buffy and Angel will never be together long-term 'cause he doesn't like them like that. More dragged out suffering and 'I love you, but can't be together' in the end.

Anyway, back to Spuffy. Let's say I'm (and by extension most Bangelers) are completely wrong and that actually Buffy completely fell in love with Spike and does not love Angel the most, he's just an echo of 'first love'. Spike wins, Buffy loves Spike more. Is that what Joss's confession over Spuffy is telling us here? Hypothetically?

I wonder.
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bonnaleah
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 11:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Anyway, back to Spuffy. Let's say I'm (and by extension most Bangelers) are completely wrong and that actually Buffy completely fell in love with Spike and does not love Angel the most, he's just an echo of 'first love'. Spike wins, Buffy loves Spike more. Is that what Joss's confession over Spuffy is telling us here? Hypothetically?


The most important thing Joss ever said was "To trust the tale...not the teller". Joss and any of the other writers/tellers can say whatever they want but until it actually makes it into canon text it's pretty meaningless. If fandom was intended to think that Buffy is madly in love with Spike and that Angel was just a first love they would have put it in the text.....but they didn't. What made it to text is that Angel is the love of Buffy's life and the guy she would choose to live that life with
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Kairos
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2013 2:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Is Joss like some sort of masochist shipper? " he more I love the ship, the more I'm gonna put it through hell and never let it have a chance"?


Short answer: yes.

We discussed this quote of his...somewhere...when it was fresh, and most of us didn't seem much affected by it. There's a lot to look at here aside from his ranking of "ships" - quotation marks used because writers don't, as a rule, ship. Fans do, because we can straightforwardly desire to have our favorite couple together on the basis of how happy they'll be.

Storytelling is Joss's art and livelihood. When a couple is happy together, there's no conflict and he doesn't have a story to tell. This is what he means by "as soon as they get together, it's boring" (though I, and I think most of us here, disagree); he wants to talk about the drama and the journey, so a couple like Buffy and Spike, who will never arrive at a peaceful and happy relationship, fits his purposes better than Buffy and Angel.

He doesn't at all say that Buffy loves Spike the most. If anything, he seems to support her relationship with Riley the most, in real-life terms - but again, this isn't real life. He's aiming for maximum pain, he's made that clear in plenty of interviews, and here he's telling us that maximum pain is achieved by a) keeping Buffy and Angel apart, and b) putting Buffy and Spike together.

That doesn't lead to stories I particularly want to see, but it's such an affirmation of the B/A romance that I can't help getting some perverse glee out of it.
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RomancexGirl
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2013 4:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kairos wrote:

Short answer: yes.

Storytelling is Joss's art and livelihood. When a couple is happy together, there's no conflict and he doesn't have a story to tell. This is what he means by "as soon as they get together, it's boring" (though I, and I think most of us here, disagree); he wants to talk about the drama and the journey, so a couple like Buffy and Spike, who will never arrive at a peaceful and happy relationship, fits his purposes better than Buffy and Angel.

He doesn't at all say that Buffy loves Spike the most. If anything, he seems to support her relationship with Riley the most, in real-life terms - but again, this isn't real life. He's aiming for maximum pain, he's made that clear in plenty of interviews, and here he's telling us that maximum pain is achieved by a) keeping Buffy and Angel apart, and b) putting Buffy and Spike together.

That doesn't lead to stories I particularly want to see, but it's such an affirmation of the B/A romance that I can't help getting some perverse glee out of it.


This perhaps one of the best explanations I've seen over Joss's words about Spuffy. Spuffy has been full of darkness and unimaginable pain/disconnection since it's very beginning. It's more complicated and depressing than (amazingly) even Bangel. Bangel is straightforward more or less. "They love each other, They suffer, They fight, They angst." This is basically a rinse and repeat example. And yes, it's no question Joss loves to execute these aspects of Bangel over the entire series but it's as I said ... uncomplicated.

Spuffy was the most depressing and pain-filled ironically, just in very different ways. I don't even have to explain S6. S7 had very touching moments, it was also heavy with repression, inner pain, confusion, and disconnection. Cue Angel's brief return in the Season finale and you have Buffy all smiley and unrepressed. In comparision to Spuffy's unbelievable complications, Bangel is easy to get.

And Joss loves pain, death, and depression in his writings. He loves to make the ships and characters suffer, it makes things interesting. It's part of why the entire Buffy fandom is so jaded about relationships and happy endings. I also do think this explains his preference for Spuffy, one of the most dark and depressing relationships in the whole series. But Joss knows where Spuffy is best suited for, and it's not a happy relationship. It's achieving pain to the characters (particularly Spike) so he can add flavor to it. Given Bangel's roots and development, the best way that fulfills that is being apart.
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dorotea
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2013 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My five cents of most recent Whedon - quotes to this parade would be the one when he equates Spike with Loki, and wonders why everybody loves them. Strangely enough though, he excluded Loki and Hiddleston from Avengers -2. Maybe he is not as much in love with this type as he used to be? Or maybe Joss 'love' of Spuffy is one of the fandom urban legends ? I have to say that none of his Loki-type characters ever got happy endings - and that's something to respect him for, regardless of his love of pain and endless drama. On other hand two couples he ever let to end the series alive and together were Sierra and Victor , and Kaylee and Simon. Both separated for the most of their series.
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sybil
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 24, 2013 4:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmmm. Buffy loves Spike more. Show me. That is all.

As for “Uncomplicated.” I can’t say that Buffy having to look at Angel and the other guy, Angelus sharing that body is uncomplicated. How about Angel loving the one creature sent from God in his “world view” to destroy evil in the specific form of demons, darkness, vampires, ya know the deal. Every thing he is.

How about the humanity that wars between them in their duty to the other and their desire to just have each other, a normal life, the promise of “Death is your gift?”

Spuffy is only complicated by the fact that Buffy “just doesn’t know what she wants” and just is too stupid to learn that Spike has been there all along as the great comfort and joy in her dark life, “all along,” and therefore Buffy our feminist heroine hasn’t the brains to figure out Spike is the great true love she has been looking for all her life. Eyeroll.

And Joss’s favor with the nature of his latest venture in Shakespeare as some Hepburn and Tracey, doesn’t talk about the real complications that ruled the lives of the real Hepburn and Tracey. That is the stuff of B/A. Including madness and a religious curse.

And Riley? Posterboard for zero complication or conflict. Anybody that has “all the answers” doesn’t have a journey to make nor can you ever tell them anything to clue them in that they don’t have “all the answers” or that flour and water with no salt isn’t even paste, and that a human being may discover “I’m a walking mobius strip and that’ ain’t human or enlightenment.” .

Joss says whatever sells his current project. It’s his job. What he * shows * in his work is very different and this tale ain’t Spuffy. If Joss wanted to do a comedy after he bumps off Buffy and Angel to do a “normal life type of Harry meets Sally marriage”—have at, but that isn’t this story.

Joss is telling that tale that isn’t Biley, either. He started out that Buffy end up with Xander, but he became the brother helper when Angel, the herald “popped” absolutely to show what a real human journey and real jeopardy looks like, not only the portrait of true love; and he showed he has opted for his “Buffy” end up with Xander via Dawn.

So, why is it even relevant to bring B/A two together at all? Why would any one care if the point is that Buffy and Angel don’t show their perfect fit in opposition, as the very definition of self actualized, “being truly seen” and at once fulfilled and joyful for the other’s fulfillment and joy that true love is not “just hormones” and sharing a washing machine. Spike and Buffy are half things of the same thing!

If this story universe doesn’t hold true love, then why not just bump off Angel for that comedic role in “stupid Buffy” finally figuring out it was “Spike all along.” Oh, yeah…that feminism thing? That belief in the “same guy” Shakespeare who wrote in sonnet after sonnet about true love, including the one “about a marriage” number 116:

SONNET 116
Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come:
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
That is B/A; not Romeo and Juliet. Implied promise, people. Trust the tale, indeed!

HUGS!
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LovelyJ
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2013 7:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Riley

Quote:
a well-adjusted guy


Tall guy with blonde hair, very insecure with a massive inferiority complex that led him to getting suck jobs in a vampire brothel? That Riley?

Joss needs to rewatch the show, that's all I'm saying.
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lmblack21
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 02, 2013 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kairos wrote:
Quote:
Is Joss like some sort of masochist shipper? " he more I love the ship, the more I'm gonna put it through hell and never let it have a chance"?


Short answer: yes.

We discussed this quote of his...somewhere...when it was fresh, and most of us didn't seem much affected by it. There's a lot to look at here aside from his ranking of "ships" - quotation marks used because writers don't, as a rule, ship. Fans do, because we can straightforwardly desire to have our favorite couple together on the basis of how happy they'll be.

Storytelling is Joss's art and livelihood. When a couple is happy together, there's no conflict and he doesn't have a story to tell. This is what he means by "as soon as they get together, it's boring" (though I, and I think most of us here, disagree); he wants to talk about the drama and the journey, so a couple like Buffy and Spike, who will never arrive at a peaceful and happy relationship, fits his purposes better than Buffy and Angel.

He doesn't at all say that Buffy loves Spike the most. If anything, he seems to support her relationship with Riley the most, in real-life terms - but again, this isn't real life. He's aiming for maximum pain, he's made that clear in plenty of interviews, and here he's telling us that maximum pain is achieved by a) keeping Buffy and Angel apart, and b) putting Buffy and Spike together.

That doesn't lead to stories I particularly want to see, but it's such an affirmation of the B/A romance that I can't help getting some perverse glee out of it.


Love this.

Plus, I have to say, to quote both the show and Bonnaleah....Joss might like the darkness of Spuffy more but, "it still won't help your boy".

Spuffy was NEVER about Buffy and Spike *together*. Spuffy was used to show how depressed and suicidal and how far from herself Buffy was - that was in season 6. In season 7 it was about Spike's journey with a soul. It was NEVER about the relationship.

Buffy/Angel was about both Buffy's journey, Angel's journey AND the relationship. It was everything.

This is why Buffy and Spike were NEVER on the same page at the same time, never wanted the same things, etc. UNLIKE B/A.

The relationship between Buffy/Angel is far more complicated than B/S. Plus, I don't mind (or care, really) if Joss prefers Spike or B/S to Angel and B/A as long as the writing shows that Angel has the *story* and B/A has the reciprocation, the longing, the love and yes, even the horrible angst, separation and renewal.

The comics may have done a great deal of damage to the B/A relationship but even then, it was done because that's where the story is. Spuffy was ignored as less than a footnote. What's worse, really? Love, anger, pain, hate, fighting, loving, longing, separation (aka: B/A).....or antipathy, tepidness, total disregard (B/S)?

As much as I hate the comics for what they've done to Angel, to B/A, to Buffy, to Giles....to so much that I loved.....the story still completely and fully revolved around Buffy, Angel and B/A. And that was Joss' choice when it comes to what's best for the STORY and the CHARACTERS, not his own personal opinion.

-Luc
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closeyoureyes
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 12, 2013 11:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Joss doesn't ship Spuffy. He just finds them easier to write for because there is more obvious pain and drama to wring out of them. That doesn't mean he's going to have Spike and Buffy together forever. I mean look at them, two messed up people doing messed up stuff because of serious issues they haven't healed from yet.

Its interesting. I get why he likes writing for it. Its depressing as heck though and I don't find it enjoyable.
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 10, 2014 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My big question of "if ever" is this:

Suppostion. If Joss said Buffy betrayed herself because she "cared for her (personal) inner life over that of the "outer life" aka the world?

This is season 8 when she "fell up" to the "hell/false? paradise of Twilgiht, then she left (but curiously hand in hand with Angel), am I to understand that the real deep hidden and significant meaning is that Buffy is NEVER to choose the inner world over the outer world (big picture maybe? also in "angel magic" the message of choosing the Outer world/"higher" path re God or spiritual self --aka oblivion of inner world and the personal aka black magic?

BTW, it wasn't always "evil." HOwever, its source is attributed ot the first fallen Shamsiel at Mt. Hermon (not Shaitan aka Satan) who accepted losing his first estate body and its curse; and is shown veiled. (interesting the inner journey is usually shown this way by the veil of a woman's hair or in dress aka nuns) and was actually a goat god, and most often attributed with Venus and Vulture culture.

So, "if ever" means "fuhgedaboudit" and action hero is I?"

All is lost is the despair of facing disappointment. And the name of disappointment is remembering the life you can never have.

Hugs!
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dcai0830
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 8:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kairos wrote:
Quote:
Is Joss like some sort of masochist shipper? " he more I love the ship, the more I'm gonna put it through hell and never let it have a chance"?


Short answer: yes.

We discussed this quote of his...somewhere...when it was fresh, and most of us didn't seem much affected by it. There's a lot to look at here aside from his ranking of "ships" - quotation marks used because writers don't, as a rule, ship. Fans do, because we can straightforwardly desire to have our favorite couple together on the basis of how happy they'll be.

Storytelling is Joss's art and livelihood. When a couple is happy together, there's no conflict and he doesn't have a story to tell. This is what he means by "as soon as they get together, it's boring" (though I, and I think most of us here, disagree); he wants to talk about the drama and the journey, so a couple like Buffy and Spike, who will never arrive at a peaceful and happy relationship, fits his purposes better than Buffy and Angel.

He doesn't at all say that Buffy loves Spike the most. If anything, he seems to support her relationship with Riley the most, in real-life terms - but again, this isn't real life. He's aiming for maximum pain, he's made that clear in plenty of interviews, and here he's telling us that maximum pain is achieved by a) keeping Buffy and Angel apart, and b) putting Buffy and Spike together.

That doesn't lead to stories I particularly want to see, but it's such an affirmation of the B/A romance that I can't help getting some perverse glee out of it.


I know I'm late to this conversation (and to everything in general) but I wanted to say that, this is so well put.

Now since this thread/convo Joss was quoted as follows:

Quote:
I’m a Buffy/Spike shipper. I always felt like he was a more evolved person, but that’s like saying Juliet’s going to be so happy with Benvolio and everyone will love it. Buffy/Angel is for the ages; Buffy/Spike is maybe for me. Actually, I’m a Spike/Angel shipper. Completely re-write the equation.

source: http://www.complex.com/pop-culture/2016/10/joss-whedon-interview

And in the 2017 20th Anniversary reunion, Joss said that he was "split right down the middle" (I'm paraphrasing) that Spike is kinda your long-term guy he went and got a soul because of her but there is no argument that Buffy/Angel was the grandest love story he would ever tell.

All of these quotes to me give me some insight as to Joss' mindset. He thinks that Spike is probably the better option between the two. I disagree so much my head my spin-off of my body and pop off but he is very attached to the Spike character and he feels that he is the better and "more evolved" option.

Bottom line is - so what? I know there is some hesitance amoungst bangel fans to use the romeo and juliet analogy. Believe me, I get it. I think Buffy/Angel have subverted that trope a number of times both of them sacrificing their love for their callings. And any time I can I tell people how Spike is romeo - Spike is James in Hearthrob. Not Angel. But if Joss really believes that Buffy and Angel have this grand love story, a story "for the ages" if he really equates Spike with Benvolio then that serves to prove many of our points which is - Buffy/Angel transcend it all, everything other relationship is and always will pale in comparison. It doesn't necessarily mean that they will be together but it certainly puts a damper on the arguments that Buffy will ever be "over" Angel.

But it also made me think of another thing which is: Joss talked about how he liked Buffy/Spike because he thought they reminded him of Beatrice and Benedick (Much Ado About Nothing). (Again insert all of the reasons I disagree with this but I'm not going to get into them because I love Much Ado and this ruins this for me!) Regardless, the thing that pulls the audience in the Beatrice and Benedick relationship is the bickering, the fighting, the repressed feelings, the final admission of their feelings for one another. I can see how in some twisted way this would be spuffy in s6/7 (twisted... I tell you). But it certainly isn't them in s10/11 right? So where does he go from here? Is he really interested in writing the story of Beatrice and Benedick after they have finally admitted their love for each other, after they have stopped fighting/bickering, going around and around trying to supress their feelings for each other? Because that is what Christos has had to write for 2 seasons. And I can't see Joss being too excited from a storyteller's perspective on that writing that story.
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Kairos
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2018 4:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad to see your take on it...since writing the quoted post I've lost a lot of faith in Joss and didn't have the heart to look into anything current he said about Buffy's love life. If you think he still has the right ideas, I'm ready to embrace that.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2018 5:19 pm    Post subject: Re: Joss Whedon Ships Spuffy - What Does This Mean for Bange Reply with quote

RomancexGirl wrote:

Joss Whedon: Y'know what? I liked Spike. With Angel, it's too "Romeo & Juliet". Which means as soon as it happens, you're bored. Riley, you know he was a well-adjusted guy who loved her in a much, much healthier way than the other two guys. Nobody wants to see that. With Buffy and Spike, they have a real Beatrice and Benedick kind of relationship, in "Much Ado About Nothing." I think with the wedding, she would've done something fast, but he would've done it elaborate and do everything wrong. It would've been extradinarily counter-intutive, and awesome.


I haven't read this whole thread but just skimmed the original post and Joss' quote.

My take on the actual quote itself is that he loves the humor-angle with Spike and the juxtaposition that provides with Buffy. He latched onto that. Okay, well if that's what he loves, that's fine for him.

We actually got to see that play out on-screen. Spike, as a stand-alone character, was funny to me. That provided for some funny moments between him and Buffy.
Angel, only became a funny character on AtS, well into the show and as we all know, Joss was much less involved in AtS. There wasn't ever a direct humor-play between Buffy and Angel. I can only recall one time Angel made a joke directly to Buffy ("I'm a funny guy."). So maybe he's never imagined non-angsty moments for bangel, and maybe he thinks we never do either.

One other point is there are also quotes floating around out there in the universe of Joss stating his love for bangel. I personally believe Joss likes to say what he thinks people want to hear and also likes to play up whatever he feels will create buzz and excitement around his characters and still, even after all these years, people are pitting bangel and spuffy against each other so it works. But you know what, if Joss ships spuffy now, that's okay and it doesn't change what we love.

People do change their opinions over time. I think now that society is much more aware of feminism and the #metoo movement, I think rewatching the series will make a lot of people think differently. In the end, Buffy should be choosing herself over both of the men, honestly. I think people who purely saw Spike as romantic before, may be rethinking some of his actions and likewise for bangel. As we grow and change as a society so does what we expect in our art. It's a reflection on who we are at a time in history. (I grew up loving movies from the golden age of Hollywood but now have such a hard time watching and ignoring the sexism of them, for example)
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2018 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Considering Buffy and Angel are for the masses and the grandest love story he will ever tell...I'm good. He knows what the majority of his audience want.

I am up for picking up the torches and pitchforks and chasing him down the street whenever everybody else is ready. I think maybe we've been silent too long. Our desire to be respectful and not crap on anybody else's parade may be viewed as disinterest.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2018 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the problem is that the masses aren't reading the comics. If I look at tumblr, fics, websites, forums, it looks like the B/A fandom took a steep dive sometime around 2015. And that coincides with season 10.

I think the questions for the continuing story in the comics becomes, who are they writing for. Christos says that he isn't worried about pleasing shippers. I am inclined to believe him but there is also a component in your writing that has to be "know your audience." If BA fans aren't reading the comics will they write the story for that audience? Because you can make a compelling argument for Buffy with Spike or Buffy with Angel or Buffy with Faith or Buffy alone. I get the impression from looking at old Q/As that Scott Allie understood the BA story and wanted to tell it. I get the impression that Joss couldn't care less. And Christos - I don't have a good read on whether he thinks anything outside of S/B is a good story.

So I'm not sure what good it would do the few of us to start making some noise (although ... I think we should at least interact generally in polls etc just to remind them that BA fans are around). I do hope that our section of the fandom will survive a few more years though Smile That is my biggest hope.


ETA:

I should clarify that I am all for the picking up torches and pitchforks or at least peacefully sharing our opinions/views of BA being end game. I'm always up for that! Wink
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