Giles/Xander watcher

I'm probably not going to be a human being until my posting day is over

Dear self--

You will remember in my last letter to you, I noted that you were doing prompt tables wrong. You continue to get it all wrong. Your kink bingo responses (a chain of short fics comprising one longer story), contain the following:
- the sequelae of nervous breakdowns
- the physical damage done by years of vampire fighting
- a conversation about paternalism, Watchers, Slayers, and murder
- more conversation about souls and the nature of the combat against demons
- physical and emotional exhaustion
- memory and scars and tattooing
- maybe a little sex
- a smidgen of what one might expect from something labeled "kink"

Is this what your readership will expect?

sincerely yours,
realizes you won't change a thing

Fab! I'm kinda enjoying this one, aside from the deadline pressure which is turning me into a whinging thing that whinges. It's got some stuff in it I've wanted to write for a long time. I am really not feeling great about the paternalism conversation section being ready for tomorrow, though. It's all jumping around in my hands like a firehose. I might post a version tomorrow and revise heavily before archiving, which is something I haven't let myself do before. My general approach is "write it, learn from it, move on". Frequent iteration. But maybe I'll break the rule because this one matters.

Or I could, I don't know, only post 2 out of the 6 prompt responses and wait for the others to be ready. Heresy!

I had a really amazingly nasty dream about Joss Whedon last night. I dreamed I was in some swank hotel for a very exclusive high-priced fannish conference with him where he would talk about his world view. He had a decadent and unpleasant entourage with him. All the other fans at the conference had been there many times before and I was the odd one out. (This is probably me angsting about my Con*strict experience.) His worldview was utterly nasty. Everyone dies, pointless things happen, there is no point to anything, nobody ever wins, rocks fall everyone dies, that's the way it is kiddo. None of his characters would ever have good things happen. It was depressing beyond words, because it meant Giles would never be happy. Oh and Cordelia was there, the character not the actress, and she was completely wrinkling her nose at dream-Whedon.

ASH was there as well, also with entourage. He was nicer, but distant. Except for the X-rated interlude. Which, woah, never happens with me, and unfortunately this rare occurrence was tainted by the prior Whedon existentialist bleakness. I woke up freaked out.

I've dreamed about the actor once before. I visited him and his family in their upstate New York farm (yes, I know, wrong continent) and he was showing off his new grandson with great delight, looking all crinkly-eyed. Totally different in tone, eh?

My worldview is rather different from dream-Whedon's.
  • Current Music: Becalmed : Brian Eno : Another green world
You don't need to be so hard on your writing self : it seems to know what it's doing... the fic looks very promising.

Your dream is surprisingly structured. And utterly depressing. Maybe your dream-Whedon has escaped from the Wishverse and come here, because his worldview looks like the one formulated by Buffy ("we fight, we die"). He could have brought scruffy-Giles with him then.
MMmm, scruffy Wishverse!Giles. I think the Wishverse ethos is sort of what Whedon really thinks. That's what the world looks like with a tiny change made. Think about that story: Cordelia makes her wish, wanders around a little bit, and is killed. No chance to learn a moral lesson or watch how it all works out. Wish, you got it, hope you like it, dead! That's the way the world is, kiddo.

Giles, the moral compass of the series, is the one who retains hope.
Oddly, from various things Joss has said, I think that might well be his worldview, though possibly the decadent entourage is a bit of a stretch.

I've never dreamed about ASH. Have about JM and DB - more often about DB, weirdly, though he's not my type at all.
DB was far more interesting to me playing Angelus than Angel: Angelus was so obviously smarter than Mr Broody McForehead. JM is far prettier to me, and I've always dug the unnaturally-bleached look on guys.

Don't think I've ever dreamed about Xander or NB. Cordelia was definitely her biting, on-target Cordeliac self in this dream. She was not best pleased with Mr Whedon and his strange collection of oddly-dressed hangers-on.
I can imagine, and you are of course right about Angelus. He's far more interesting than Angel. Angel only really becomes interesting with the right people about him, which is why, for the most part, he bores me rigid in BtVS.

His best moments as Angel, rather than Angelus, are in season 3 with Faith, I think.
Someday I need to watch AtS instead of just reading the episode summaries. My coworkers (non-fans, though definitely geeks) keep telling me I need to if just to see Wesley's story. One of them even gave me the first season on DVD!

My block is that I was sort of relieved when two characters I didn't like very much in-story spun out to a TV show of their own. I was entirely sick of Angel by the time he dragged himself out of Buffy's life. But I also keep hearing what you just said, that they both come into their own over there in LA where they can be the focus instead of Buffy. So, okay, next TV project...

Edited at 2008-07-26 06:17 pm (UTC)
:is stunned:

You've never watched AtS?

You must! Angel is so much better when he's away from Buffy. He becomes a very likeable character in his own right, especially with a good ensemble cast around him. Cordy usually doesn't let him get too broody and annoying and Wesley is just wonderful.

Okay, he does still brood a lot, but it's not so annoying in his own show.
I often feel that Whedon has an essentially Heathen worldview, right out of Beowulf and the Volsunga Saga: Ragnarok is coming, and there's nothing you can do about it. The bad guys are going to win, and your only moral choice is which side you're going to fight on--the winning side, or the good side? The last shot in Angel might as well be Odin and company, except that in Northern tradition the goddesses and a few younger gods actually survive. Joss is possibly grimmer.
That was definitely the feeling in last night's dream. And more of the vibe that I get from his writing for the comics. (Caveat: I've stopped reading them, so I have no idea what's going on in the current arc.) Except, well, what is "Prophecy Girl" but subversion of that? Buffy dies, prophecy fulfilled... then good old human loyal Xander appears and gives her mouth-to-mouth and zoom! Let the quipping resume.
Ooh, I don't see Whedon as a pessimist at all. The magic of BtVS is in the ability of the characters to find light and hope in the face of all that misery and destruction. They are the most compassionate and forgiving creatures, possibly because they do understand that pointless things happen and everyone dies and that's just the way it is. What gives life meaning and joy is in the way we choose to treat one another as human beings. At least that's my take on Joss's pov. But your subconscious might not care if that's Whedon's real perspective--it's gonna work through whatever shit it wants to while you're sleeping, with or without your consent.

Sorry about the ASH part. I almost never dream about sex, which is weird because I spend an embarrassingly disproportionate amount of my waking life thinking about it. When I do occasionally have an x-rated dream, it's often tangled up with anxiety and guilt and not at all the fun and games it should be, dammit.
Ever watched Firefly or Angel? Am curious. (I came to BtVS from Firefly, but have never watched AtS. I am fully spoiled for it, though.)
I've watched only eps of each, though I own both series. Hate hate Angel, both the character and the show, partly because I despise Boreanaz (he can't act and he ain't pretty, imo) and partly because I just, well, hate the show.

Firefly's good. I loved Serenity, though those monster-creatures scared the crap outta me. I haven't given the series the time it deserves. Two and a half years later, and we're still just watching Buffy every night right before bed.

I think Joss is amazingly talented, but I don't see him as the god some folks make him out to be. Honestly, I find the people on Whedonesque frightening. I once read that someone had gone through his garbage and stolen a grocery list he'd written. They just loved that he wrote "moo juice" instead of milk. "Isn't he so clever?" I'd think my husband was a pretentious ass if he'd written that, but, then again, I'm not married to a wordy genius, I guess.

Heh. My friend's husband is an ER doctor, and she wrote him a grocery list: 1. milk, 2.oj, 3. cream cheese. The guy came home with 1 gallon of milk, 2 cartons of oj, and 3 packages of cream cheese. Lord knows what he would have done if his wife had written "moo juice".

I've read a bunch of interviews with Joss, and that's where I formed those possibly erroneous thoughts about him. I honestly have no idea what Joss thinks of the world. I'm just projecting my values onto him, cause all the best folks think like me, interestingly enough.

I have a million theories about SMG, too, if you want to hear them sometime. They're also based heavily on interviews, conjecture, intuition, and real-life experiences with New Yorkers, actresses, and self-protective folks.

Um, what was the question again?



Edited at 2008-07-26 05:36 pm (UTC)
Er, um, does it make you like me or hate me to know that "moo juice" has appeared on our grocery lists, along with a billion other invented-on-the-fly names for things? Plus a few pet misspellings and anagrams that we always use. I had no idea Whedon did that sort of thing, but it doesn't surprise me. Words are a plaything. Toys. Our personal toys, to be poked and and turned upside down and danced with. The question is which is to be master, as Humpty-Dumpty said. (Quoting another writer who made words his personal playthings.)
Heh. Truth is that when I read "moo juice" my first thought was "That is clever." Then when I read everyone's comments about it, I thought, "What a bunch of assholes" and decided that moo juice no longer impressed me at all. It's like watching Marti and David Fury, et al, going on and on about Joss in those dvd commentaries. Yes, he's wonderful. We know.

But none of this changes the fact that most word play is a bit pretentious. I think of Peter Pan: "Oh, the cleverness of me!"

Whatever floats yer boat, though, eh? You and Mr. P probably tickle yourselves pink, and that's always a good thing.
I loathed his writing in the comics so much I stopped reading them. And I think he's unconsciously far less of a feminist than he wants to be, though I sure give him lots of points for working at it consciously.
Absolutely agree with you 100%. On both counts. I still buy the comic, though. The trip to Amok Time has become a monthly family outing, even though I never ever read them.
Hi! I'm refriending you because I totally missed your posts and meta, etc. Anyway, I'm feeling totally sheepish, but wanted to say "hi!"

~e!