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Buffy Season Eight: A Beautiful Sunset

Xander: "So the bad guys have a super-powered spokesmodel. Huzzah."

Synopsis:

As they watch all of the Slayers (and Giant Dawn, who is drinking entire kegs of beer) party below them, Buffy and Xander talk about Buffy's decision to share her power with the Potentials, to change the world. The discovery that a band of Slayers led by a Slayer named Simone Doffler are committing crimes has made Buffy question her decision. And Buffy and Xander both need a man. Xander for male bonding, Buffy for... other reasons.

Segue into Buffy bonding with Satsu, her best fighter, as they clean up a vamp nest. (Ah, for the good old days. Which was the basic Buffy/Xander theme, too.) Buffy tells Satsu that she knows Satsu is in love with her; it was Satsu's kiss of true love that woke Buffy back in "The Long Way Home."

The big bad arrives and says misogynistic crap as he knocks Satsu out of the park, and he and Buffy face off -- she with the scythe, and he with superstrength and flying. He carries her off, and they fight in midair. He drops her on a roof, battered and bloody, and attacks her with a church steeple. And then they talk a little. He is Twilight. He says that Buffy has made a huge mistake by sharing her power with all those Slayers, that she didn't mean it, but he must avert the disaster she has created.

Later, as battered Buffy talks with battered Satsu, who has been hospitalized, Twilight tells his crew (consisting of two military people and a group of monsters) that Buffy believes she is on the side of right and that is what he must take from her. The combination of the rogue Slayers and Twilight has indeed gotten Buffy seriously questioning what she did. Xander believes that Buffy did the right thing, but Buffy wonders why she doesn't feel connected to the other Slayers. She still feels very much alone.

Review:

Okay, better. This was a Joss issue, but I actually got everything the first time through.

We were back exploring a familiar topic, but one that never got old for me: Buffy's essential alienation from the world, as well as her vulnerability. The Slayer party, so to speak, is going on without her -- literally and figuratively. Buffy feels responsible for the rogue Slayers, which she is. But she shared her power to save the world. Nothing is ever simple.

I'll admit I was half-hoping (half! half!) it was Xander that had given Buffy the Kiss of True Love. If we can't have Spike or Angel, I might be ready for Xander. But I also got the distinct impression that Twilight cares about Buffy in a twisted kind of way, and she's fallen in love with her adversaries before. This feels like a romantic set-up, as well as an adversarial one.

Who is Twilight? The hilarious panels where he started to take off his mask and then said, "Sorry. Itchy neck" told us two things: that at least his chin looks human, and that we might know who he was if he took the mask off. The typeface when he speaks is the same as vamps and demons, which is a Clue. Is the mask protection from sunlight? Is he a vamp who has managed to acquire military-related superpowers? (A supervamp who is into Buffy. Where have I heard that song before?) The misogynistic comments and superstrength made me think of Caleb, but he was sliced, diced, and julienne preachered.

And then I started thinking pseudo-military super guy, and I got Riley vibes. Maybe it was the square jaw. But I'm probably wrong. Riley was never misogynistic. And I almost don't want to successfully guess who it is, because now I'm intrigued. Good work, Joss Whedon. You got me going again.

Bits and pieces:

-- The opening panels showed us scenes from the last few episodes of season seven. In particular, the Potentials receiving their power, and Buffy's fight with Caleb.

-- Buffy treated Satsu with great care and tenderness. I liked that.

-- Andrew isn't doing well corraling his Slayers in Italy, if two of his charges have gone rogue. With guns even.

-- Was the title, "A Beautiful Sunset," supposed to relate to Twilight himself? Is Twilight beautiful? Or was it just about it being the beginning of the end?

Quotes:

Xander: "It's always complicated with girls. That's why I need a man."
Buffy: (wistfully) "That would be nice..."
Xander: "I mean a guy, not a man, a guy, for guy bonding."
Buffy: "Well, Andrew..."
Xander: "Do you really intend to finish that sentence?"
Buffy: "No, it's a nice length now."

Xander: "Come on. Let's show them how it was done back in the day."
Buffy: "Which day was that?"
Xander: "I think it was Thursday. You wore blue."
Casablanca reference.

Buffy: "And what have we learned?"
Satsu: "Scotland is slippery?"

Buffy: "You're hot, you have great taste, you're a hell of a slayer, and you smell good."
Satsu: "But you're not gay."
Buffy: "Not so you'd notice."

Buffy: "People who love me tend to... oh, die... maybe go to a hell dimension, or burn up, or they start letting vamps suck on 'em, and they leave, they all leave, even my friends, sooner or later everybody realizes there's something wrong... something wrong with me, or around me, or... wow, did not mean to end up there."

Twilight: "The Chosen One. Always in pain... and always complaining. Just like a girl."

Twilight: "Understand this, girl. You cannot fight me."
Buffy: "Understand this, ass-clown: I probably will, anyway."

Buffy: "Go ahead. Church me. Plenty more where I came from."

Satsu: (battered, and in a hospital bed) "You were explaining how people who love you get hurt. Should I look out for that, then?"

Xander: "I live with a bunch of Slayers. Dozens of girls who are... so filled up with purpose, with confidence they didn't have before... the walls are vibrating with it. I can't sleep, the place is so charged."
Buffy: "You really need to ask Renee out already."
Xander: "Stop changing the subject to true things."

I really liked this one. I'm probably going with three stakes,

Billie
---
Billie Doux reviewed all of Buffy and Angel, so she knows the plural of apocalypse.

1 comment:

  1. "Sorry. Itchy neck" is the finniest and buffiest moment in the comics so far.

    I also think Twilight is someone we know, otherwise, why the mystery?

    ReplyDelete

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