buffy the vampire slayer

8

Passion… it lies in all of us. Sleeping, waiting, and though unwanted, unbidden, it will stir, open its jaws, and howl. It speaks to us, guides us… passion rules us all and we obey. What other choice do we have? Passion is the source of our finest moments; the joy of love, the clarity of hatred, and the ecstasy of grief. It hurts sometimes more than we can bear. If we could live without passion, maybe we’d truly know some kind of peace but we would be hollow. Empty rooms, shuttered and dank… without passion, we’d truly be dead.

I Only Have Eyes For You, 2.19

Sunnydale Wesley wasn’t that bad

Let’s be honest. Wesley wasn’t really that bad in his earliest episodes.


Yes, he was obnoxious and cocky and a little prideful, but speaking as someone who used to be all of those things, I really get why he was like that. When you’re longing to fit in with a group that doesn’t want you, when you’re desperate to be noticed, you try to make yourself look smart and important, because you want the people in that group to actually acknowledge you and admit that you contributed something. Unfortunately most of the time you just come across as obnoxious, which makes the people in the group even less willing to accept you. I’ve been there, so it’s really easy to recognize those same patterns in Wesley.


Think about his first day in Sunnydale from his perspective. Wesley, a very young and inexperienced Watcher, had just been given the care of two Slayers—which is in itself a completely unprecedented thing. Imagine how honored he must have felt, and how seriously he took that charge. This job was everything to him, and he was determined to get it right. He was so excited to meet Buffy and Faith, and it was clear he really wanted to get to know them, and within a span of five minutes, they both flat-out rejected him.


But look at the way he handled that. When Buffy and Faith walked out of the library, Wesley stared after them for a few seconds and then said, “They’ll get used to me.” There was no arrogance in his voice when he said that. No cocky self-assurance. He said it quietly, almost somberly. His first meeting with the Slayers was a huge letdown, and he still clung to the hope that he could turn things around.


Now, in Buffy’s defense, I don’t think it was Wesley personally that she had a problem with. It was the Watchers Council. She had plenty of reasons to be pissed off at them after they made Giles betray her trust, forced her to take part in the Cruciamentum, and then fired Giles for protecting her…y’know, doing exactly what a Watcher is supposed to do. So when Wesley came on the scene, Buffy saw him as the embodiment of the Council, and she took her frustration with them out on him. Was it right for her to do that? No. Was it understandable? Yeah, I think so.


But the thing is, Wesley wasn’t the embodiment of the Council. Sure, he may have seemed that way compared to Giles, but even from the beginning Wesley showed signs of being subversive, demonstrating a willingness to deviate from the rigid way of thinking the rest of the Council was so steeped in.


The Council viewed everything in black and white. Humans were good, demons were bad. No exceptions. Wesley always understood the gray areas. He knew exactly who Angel was, and he never had a problem with the idea of a vampire being part of the team. Or with the idea of a vampire dating a Slayer, for that matter. He was also more than willing to help find a cure after Faith poisoned Angel.


Another notable difference is the way he treated Buffy’s friends. Most Watchers were adamantly against Slayers involving civilians in the fight against evil, but Wesley never acted that way. He was a little surprised about the number of people who knew Buffy was a Slayer, but he never expressed disapproval over the issue. He actually seemed to really like working with a team. He valued everyone’s input—more than that, he asked for it most of the time—and he recognized and respected the knowledge, skills, and unique perspective each member brought to the team.


Then there’s Giles. Even though Wesley seemed opposed to his continued involvement right at first, he warmed to the idea pretty quickly. Not that there’s a force in the universe that could have stopped Giles from being a part of Buffy’s life, because there isn’t, but Wesley could have reported it to the Council. He decided to keep quiet about it—and even covered for him—because he recognized how important Giles was to Buffy.


The biggest problem for Wesley was his own lack of real-world experience, combined with the fact that Buffy and Faith had both had a recent string of rotten luck with Watchers (Kakistos killing Faith’s first Watcher, the betrayal of Gwendolyn Post, the whole Cruciamentum debacle). Wesley wasn’t a bad Watcher, he just came at a bad time.


Even the mistake he made with Faith was a result of him trying to do the right thing. The Scoobies didn’t tell him what they were planning, so from his perspective it seemed like they weren’t doing anything about it. He knew something needed to be done, and since he did lack real-world experience, he just fell back on what he knew—Council protocol. He obviously could’ve handled it better. He could’ve approached the Scooby Gang, told them he knew what was going on, and expressed his desire to help. But on the other hand, they shouldn’t have excluded him from their plans in the first place. If they hadn’t, he might not have felt the need to take such drastic measures on his own.


Interestingly, prior to the incident with the Council refusing to help Angel, Buffy actually seemed to be warming up to Wesley. The way she was talking to him during the fencing scene in Graduation Day, Part 1 sounded less like the dismissive remarks she made in earlier episodes and more like the same kind of playful teasing she used for the others in the group. Wesley was just so unaccustomed to good-natured banter that he didn’t know how to respond to it, so he sort of stumbled through a response, which made him look foolish when he really wasn’t. And I’ve been there too, so again, I know how that feels.


This turned out a lot longer than I meant for it to, but believe it or not, this is actually the short version. I could go on. I’m very defensive of Sunnydale Wesley—or as I like to call him, adorable baby Wesley—because I see a lot of my younger self in him. I know what it’s like to be an extrovert who spends a lot of time alone. I know what it’s like to have these delusions of yourself where you think you’re this really likable, well-respected leader, only to have sudden moments of self-awareness where you realize, “No, wait. No, I’m just obnoxious. Okay. Great. Now what can I do to fix that?” and then everything you do to try to fix it just ends up making you seem more obnoxious. It’s a tough cycle to get out of.


Lots of people defend dark, badass Wesley in the later seasons of Angel (myself among them). But more people need to defend adorable baby Wesley, too.

spn-idjits-guide-to-hunting asked:

Hi, I do not know if you are a fan of Buffy The Vampire Slayer but in one of the seasons there was a mention of a key that would open up all the realms in the universe. The key was energy that was turned into a human vessel. I think SPN season 11 is heading there. In Buffy they also mentioned total darkness that would come from the realms colliding. What do you think?

Hey dear!

I actually never watched Buffy. Only very sporadically some episodes here and there like over 10 years back. :) So I am unfortunately not very familialr with the details of Buffy and only know the basic stuff.

But what you describe certainly sounds as if there are similarities. And it does match with some of the spec I have been posting too (like here) in which I kind f assumed that Death himself was also lock and key to a “realm” such as the otherside/limbo. The place where angels and demons go when they die.

So this certainly to me would be comparable to Buffy’s collapsing and colliding of realms which would lead to darkness. :)

And since I think quite a few SPN writers have been expressing a lot of love for Buffy I wouldn’t be surprised if they were inspired and influenced by it in some way. :)