So, I just watched Becoming Human, the spin-off from the BBC’s excellent Being Human. Which takes a minor character (vampire) and adds a werewolf and ghost. New characters, but the same basic concept as Being Human. I thought I’d watch it because I love Being Human and I didn’t think it would be up to much – I thought it would be a bit samey and quite hard for them to differentiate it.
They set it in a school. The vampire has the body of a 16 year old and feels he needs some more education. So he goes back to class and meets a werewolf who’s being stalked by the ghost of a murdered classmate. And that was enough to make it work. I really enjoyed it.
Day 25. Favourite Buffyverse saying. See, I think this is about catchphrases and Buffy didn’t really have catchphrases. There was great dialogue and some amazing lines, and a slanguage all it’s own, but no catchphrases. This is a one of its strengths. There are few things more annoying than having catchphrases endlessly repeated at you. I definitely went through a phase of adding ‘-age’ to nouns though.
Day 26. Favourite Scooby moment. The bit in Primeval where Buffy, Giles, Willow and Xander gather to discuss the things that were said in The Yoko Factor. They are not ok as friends but they decide to do what needs to be done anyway.
Day 27. Cutest moment. Anya dressed as a scary bunny in Fear, Itself.
Day 28. Character you love to hate. This really has to be Buffy. She is often whiny, miserable and self-righteous. She struggles to find the fun and hides behind her responsibilities. But then, she does get put through the wringer and you can’t help but empathise with her.
Day 29. Episode you hate that everybody else loves. Don’t know what everyone else loved. I wasn’t overly keen on Him in Season 7.
Day 30. What you think made Buffy so great. So many things. The wit, the music, the feminism, it had vampires. It had great characters: the heroes were a little bad and the villains were a little good. There was some awesome dialogue and great chemistry. It didn’t take itself too seriously. Buffy had It, the X-factor, that indefinable thing that makes something greater than the sum of its parts.
Day 19. Character you like that everyone else hates. Again, not sure I know who everyone else hates. People seem not to like Kennedy and Glory; I thought they were ok. Glory had some great lines and a really good plot device in the form of Ben.
Day 20. Best Spike-centric episode. They’re all great, obviously. But I think I like Lovers’ Walk largely because of this piece of dialogue from Spike: “You’re not friends. You’ll never be friends. You’ll be in love ’til it kills you both. You’ll fight, and you’ll shag, and you’ll hate each other ’til it makes you quiver, but you’ll never be friends. Love isn’t brains, children, it’s blood. Blood screaming inside you to work its will. I may be love’s bitch, but at least I’m man enough to admit it.”
Day 21. Best Willow-centric episode.Doppelgangland. I love vampire Willow and this is close on one of my favourite episodes of the whole show. It’s a little slice of a different imagining of Buffy, how it might have been if Whedon was a grittier, darker writer.
Day 22. Best Xander-centric episode. Xander doesn’t have that many episodes to be centric in, does he? I think The Zeppo from Season 3 because Xander gets to take care of himself and learns that he can. The Triangle is fun too, but I’m not sure it’s really Xander-centric.
Day 23. Two characters you wanted to get together that never did. Spike and Faith. That would have been hot. And also Joyce and Giles, even though they kind of did a bit in Bandcandy.
Day 24. Favourite example of 90’s special effects. There’s a training montage moment in When She Was Bad in Season 2, where it is clearly SMG’s stunt double.
Day 13. Favourite potential slayer. The potentials didn’t really become individuals for me until Season 8, but I’m not really counting that. I’m going to go with Kennedy, mainly because she’s the only one I can remember.
Day 14. Favourite female villain. Faith. She rocks. If I was a female villain, I’d be Faith.
Day 15. Favourite male villain. Spike. Close runners up are Caleb and the Mayor.
Day 16. Episode you like that everyone else hates. Well, I’m not sure that I know what episodes everyone else hates. A few people seem not to like Dead Man’s Party, which I quite enjoyed.
Day 17. Character you relate to the most. Faith, definitely. For a lot of the time she was deeply unhappy and, particularly at the time it was on tv, I was pretty unhappy too. She takes independence to a paranoid extreme and I get why. Possibly not to quite the same extent.
Day 18. Character who didn’t get enough screen time. Faith! Or possibly Caleb. Or Cordelia, she was hilarious, and I was gutted when Season 4 opened and she wasn’t in it. As I remember I had to wait a week to find out she was in Angel.
Day 7. Least favourite male character. Oz. Just didn’t get him. He didn’t seem to add much to the mix except as Willow’s love interest, and both Kennedy and Tara were more interesting.
Day 8. Favourite friendship. Not sure about this, because it’s not something I paid too much attention to. I think I’m going to go with Buffy and Willow because it’s played out over the most time and explores the way friendship has to adapt when life circumstances change.
Day 9. Favourite romance. Buffy and Spike. Okay, it was dysfunctional and not very romantic, but Buffy was more interesting when she was with Spike. I wished the writers would let her get off her moral high horse and enjoy him.
Day 10. Least favourite season. Season 1. It just doesn’t have the depth the rest of the cycle does. From Season 2 onwards you can see the whole story arc that results in the Season 7 finale, or at least you can if you’ve watched all the Seasons in an epic Buffy marathon, as I have, (several times). I remember not liking Seasons 5 and 6 all that much when they first aired, but when watched as part of a whole I gained a whole new appreciation of them. Season 7 couldn’t have happened without the storylines of Seasons 5 and 6. Season 1 sits outside of that grand arc. Also, it has some really annoying episodes (and one or two good ones).
Day 11. Least favourite romance. Willow and Oz. Didn’t get the chemistry, thought Willow could have done better.
I love Buffy. So I’m going to do this much more quickly than thirty days. Five posts, six days each.
Day 1. Favourite season. Season 2. It’s the season when everything really kicks into gear. Season 1 was essentially a pilot and it’s not until Season 2 that Buffy settles down. Plus, we meet Spike and Drusilla, and Angelus (so much better when he’s bad). It has some of my favourite episodes and is probably the most fun of all the Seasons.
Day 2. Favourite episode. Oh, this is more difficult. I love School Hard and Halloween in Season 2; Bandcandy and Doppelgangland in Season 3; Fear, Itself, Beer Bad and A New Man in Season 4; Same Time, Same Place, Selfless and Showtime from Season 7. How to choose? I think, by a very narrow margin, I choose Showtime.
Day 3. Favourite song used in an episode. Another tricky one! The soundtrack is one of the reasons I love the show. For me, music can make an average film/show great (Pirates of the Caribbean) or be a reason I can’t connect with it (Battlestar Galactica). On balance, my favourite Buffy song is Lucky by Bif Naked from The Harsh Light of Day in Season 4.
Day 4. Favourite female character. Faith. Hands down. Eliza Dushku is very watchable and Faith is a great character. I love her when she’s bad, when she’s hurting and when’s she trying to be better.
Day 5. Least favourite female character. Professor Maggie Walsh. Although Season 4 had some great episodes in it, I didn’t like Adam and the Initiative as the Big Bad and I didn’t like Maggie Walsh.
Day 6. Favourite male character. Spike. Who doesn’t love Spike? Mmm, Spike. Even neutered, he was still fun which is more than can be said for Angel.