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On Memory Alteration / Mind Control Tropes

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Dark Avenger

Joined: 28 Aug 2014
Posts: 274

PostPosted: Sun Jun 07, 2015 4:04 am    Post subject: On Memory Alteration / Mind Control Tropes Reply with quote

Just sharing an observation:

If there's one prevalent trope I've noticed about slayerverse (plus Dollhouse), that would be the "constant messing up" on someone's memory.

For plot twists, I could understand that "memory alteration" is mostly used to mislead, entertain or surprise the audience. The overused "amnesia" arc is widely used in soap operas to make a character "forgets" who she/he was and a chance for the actors to play out a "different character" other than his/her main character.

In slayerverse, I think Buffy has had enough share of her memory being "messed up". Most notable ones where the things happened in IWRY and implanted memory of Dawn.... Heck, come to think of it, her brain must be damaged severely and hereby consequently affected her ability to think "properly" & "rightfully" like she used to before Laughing

Kidding aside, I think Joss is really fond about this "messing up w/ memories". I only confirmed his fascination about this when I watched Dollhouse. I don't know if he had used this trope in his other shows since I barely watch Firefly and SHIELD... Maybe he did but in the form of "mind control".

Since we had an interesting topic about things being "canon" and "true events", I just wonder, for the characters in the slayerverse...which are "canon and true" for them, if their minds are being messed up constantly????

As an audience, we could easily dissect w/c are the things that "actually happened" from the things that are just "product of someone's imagination/fantasy". But for the characters themselves, which "memory" are true for them? And if they were victims of "mind control/manipulation", who could be blamed for the mistakes committed while they are not of "themselves"?

Memories are very vital for us humans, because it shapes and molds our personalities and characters. It is a factor on how we "act presently" because memories are supposed to be a "guide" on the things we should avoid doing if we don't want to commit the "same mistakes" in the past. Same with our minds being in proper sanity. If our minds are being controlled by someone else, how could say we "choose to live" in our OWN WAY and bravely say "SCREW DESTINY! YOU ARE NOT INEVITABLE! ????

Now back to slayerverse's characters (including some issues in what others believe as canon continuation in comics):

For Buffy, she knows that she and Angel did NOT share a ONE FULL DAY of HAPPINESS with him being human. For her, she has only been to his office for just 5 minutes; hence, the reason why she easily moved on with Riley Finn......On the contrary with Dawn's existence, Buffy already knew her memories of Dawn are just implanted but it seems, she "accepted" Dawn in her life as a real sister, making her despise her father more and (based on Gage's S10 storyline) and considering him the "worst" one ever for abandoning all THREE of them. And if other fans were right about Buffy's mind being "under someone's influence" in current S10 BS storyline, then how could she "moved on" with her life by knowing what she "could have had" with blondie vamp???? (hate to quote IWRY into B/S, but it seems Gage is already having fun "copy/pasting" B/A stories to his stupid B/S storytelling) Rolling Eyes Evil or Very Mad Mad

For Connor, he said to Angel in Season5 that sometimes he got confused to which are "memories" from "dreams". But eventually, it's okay with him. In A&F's Family Reunion, the writers (also Gage) made it looked like for Connor to be "well-adjusted" guy who can moves on and balances his life being a "normal boy" with a very "dark past".

For Angel, having a "photographic memory" didn't hinder him to have "memory loss" when The Beastmaster (evil cordy) put a "whammy" on his brain and erasing his memory about Angelus meeting The Beast before. And he was also subjected to "mind control" as His mind (along with the rest of Angel Inc) was "momentarily" manipulated by Jasmine. And in Season8, Angel was once again "manipulated" by a stupid Power, w/c only paved way to more "ANGEL HATE" by this fandom.

okay..what I'm REALLY trying to say is, unless the writers wants Connor to be the epitome of "well-adjusted" character in the slayerverse, who could embrace his "fake memory" along with his "true memories" and someone who "preferred" to live in lies just to have a "BETTER LIFE" than what he used to have, I guess, Buffy and Angel are bound to REPEAT the same mistakes they had and never been able to get what they REALLY WANT in their lives...... I'm afraid they wouldn't get a chance to EVOLVE into someone else. How could they "transcend" if they continue to "fall" from grace? Was Season8' Twilight arc the manifestation of "transcending" love which is finally "creating" a NEW UNIVERSE?

If I didn't count comics as canon, my fanfic story consists of Buffy being finally be at peace with herself and be living a "normal" life since she IS NO LONGER the THE ONLY CHOSEN ONE who has the BIG RESPONSIBILITY in killing vamps and demons. She would have no reason to "whine" or "complain" how she must lead a "lonely and dark life", because technically, she IS DONE with it. While Angel would finally die in the alley fighting a dragon. (blondie vamp should die first, of course Laughing )...then, Angel would get his reward of Shanshu.......Then, who-knows-what would happen if Buffy and Angel would get together being "normal" and "human"? ....Well, as long as both of them are alive and still breathing, there's a higher chance of them "being together" than what they had before. And I think, there's a higher chance for their characters to "evolve" in being normal people doing extraordinary things THAN living as "extraordinary beings" doing "normal" stuffs.

Isn't how we define "heroes" in real life, "ORDINARY PEOPLE DOING EXTRAORDINARY THINGS"????

Just my observation Mr. Green
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