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Old March 26 2009, 08:13 PM   #82
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Location: Montgomery County, State of Maryland
Re: Joss Whedon and the blurry line between homage and appropriation

Hermiod wrote: View Post
Sci wrote: View Post
Yes, that's right, Joss Whedon hates men, and all male characters on his show are either monsters or wusses. That's why the characters that came closest to destroying the world, Willow and Glory, were female, and why the character who betrayed Buffy and her friends to try to destroy the world was female -- and why the character who stopped her was male. That's also why Anya was portrayed as a character with a horrific past whose choice to try to go back to that past was an evil choice she'd have to recover from, and that's why sympathetic characters like Riley and Angel (not Angelus) were male.

Because Joss Whedon hates men.

Whedon's characters are complex moral actors with flaws and virtues, and not a one of 'em, male or female, hasn't shifted from monster to hero to wuss at some point or other.
You really want to hold up Riley and Angel as examples of Joss Whedon writing positive male characters?
They're about as positive as any Whedon character gets.

You seem to be arguing that women are portrayed more positively than men, but they're really not. As I said before, pretty much every Whedon character is a complex moral actor with both good and bad points to them.

Riley ? We are talking about the guy who was letting vampires feed off of him behind his girlfriends' back. As for Angel, he freely admitted that having a soul did not make him good or what he did okay.
Sure. And you could argue that Buffy is a selfish, arrogant girl who simultaneously thinks she's better than all her friends and thinks she's inferior to them. And Willow is a needy, co-dependent goody-two-shoes who went psycho the first time she faced real trauma in her life. And Anya's guilty of countless murders. And Dawn's just frickin' irritating. And Fred reacted to her capture in Pylea by manipulating all the men around her to be protective of her instead of being sensible and being protective of herself. And Cordelia, goodness knows, was arrogant and had a shallow streak in her until the day she died (white light automatically means "good?" and how arrogant are you for assuming they're telling you the truth in saying they want to elevate you to a higher plane?) And Harmony was always shallow and selfish, and later a multi-murderer. And...

You see what I'm saying? All of Whedon's characters, male and female, have good and bad traits, and it's inaccurate to imply that he only gives bad traits to male characters.

The principle difference between the male and female characters, especially in Buffy, is that there was always an excuse when the women did something wrong and very often it's because of something a man did.

Anya was betrayed by a man,
Part of the point of the episode "Selfless" is that that's no excuse at all.

Angelus drove Drusilla insane,
I'll concede that, but you could just as easily argue that Liam of Galway losing his soul constitutes the same thing.

Willow went insane because Warren murdered Tara,
A huge part of the point of that arc was that, 1. Willow was not insane; she was knowingly making immoral choices because of her grief, but she still knew what she was doing was wrong, and 2. that Tara's death was not a valid excuse.

Anya murdered a room full of men, that might have been undone afterwards but she still chose to do it. What were the consequences? She was forgiven almost immediately and accepted back in to the Scooby Gang.
You must have watched a different series than I did, because:

1. Her best friend died in payment for those victims' resurrection.

2. She was lost and in pain and guilt the rest of the series.

3. I don't think she was ever really forgiven. She was accepted into the group because of a need for allies, but there was a huge emotional gulf between her and the other Scoobies for the rest of the series.

Wesley, on the other hand, was nearly killed while trying to do the right thing because he honestly believed that Connor was in danger and what did he get for it ? Angel tried to kill him and then he was left out in the cold.
And then accepted back into the group. How exactly does this differ from Anya's arc (except that Wes didn't actually kill anyone)?

I'm not saying Joss hates men, I'm saying he could write his characters a little bit more equally.
His characters are plenty equal, and you're completely exaggerating the extent to which his female characters have "excuses" and his male characters do not.
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