I’m reminiscing about watching season 5 for the first time and I’ll admit to being skeptical about the extent of Spike’s developing feelings for Buffy because of the whole “no soul, but I’ve got a chip thing.”
But then this when he kept Dawn’s secret:
And this gut-wrenching scene after Buffy’s death:
I’m not sure we can say he was *truly* in love with Buffy (see prior Buffybot, s6 assault, etc.). I mean, we know he’s evil. Spike knows it:
BUT the world isn’t black and white. Neither are people, er, undead beings. We all struggle to understand that our lens isn’t the only lens. We’re not perfect and often times, pretty shitty.
But then some experience/person moves you, compels you to keep trying to do better, be better than you were.
I think Buffy was that for Spike. She truly touched him and drove him to this:
He wanted to *really* live and *really* love. Life is messy and painful. Caring is hard. Admitting your faults (sometimes truly terrible things) is torture.
But there’s a kind of redemption in it, right? Maybe? I hope so.