What's on my mind.

07 January 2009

Buffyverse - friend or foe?

A month or two ago Honu-Girl suggested I try watching/listening to Buffy the Vampire Slayer on Hulu, as it was fluffy enough to make it a good distraction while doing boring work. (I was more productive while watching than not, until the IT guy caught me chewing up huge amounts of bandwidth.) I'd watched the first two seasons at work and then Honu-Girl got me the 3rd season for Christmas (delivered in a very pretty box she got from Sarah, so it was like a present from Sarah, too!), so I'm up to episode 8 or 9 now ("Helpless"). I have a question for Buffy fans: What's up with Synder?

He shows up as a principal with a grudge against Buffy. At first he just seems to be a hard ass. Then we learn that he knows about the vampires, etc. in Sunnydale* and I started to wonder which side he's on - does he think Buffy's on the vamp side or does he suspect she's the Slayer (or at least on the human's side) and why doesn't he like her/what does his dislike potentially say about where he stands. He clearly has connections in local politics and the police chief and the mayor are in on the Home of the Hellmouth bit. The mayor clearly has no particular problem with the local demon population (as long as he keeps his job - "Band Candy") but we don't know about the police chief (very minor character, "School Hard" I think). Now, after "Band Candy"**, he knows for sure she's the Slayer but I hadn't seen him since.

So, is he pro- or anti- demon? Is he pro- or anti-Slayer?
(I'm ok with minor spoilers)

* Was the name a ploy by the founders to hide the demonic presence?
**Seeing your Mom and Watcher make out - ewww, as bad as realizing your parents have sex.


Sarah said...

I don't know to what extent I can talk about this without going from minor to major spoilers. But I'll give it a whirl.

As fond as the Buffyverse is of subverting and ironicifying stereotypes and tropes, Snyder plays the role of the skeptic and of the last big believer in the meritocracy. Snyder believes that by doing what he's told, and following the rules, he'll get what's coming to him. He also has a signficant case of Napoleon Syndrome, though they never come right out and say it. You might go so far as to call him the scientist character. Even when things are going to hell around him, literally, he's insisting that the rules and plans be followed because that is just how it's done. He has no faith or belief structure. As far as he's concerned, the demonic forces in Sunnydale are just another faction of the PTA to be schmoozed and coddled.

Does that help?

Switching topics completely: Seeing the Watcher make out with anybody = OMGHOTTT. I adore Ripper. They keep floating a rumor that there's a Ripper one-off mini in the works and it's frustratingly tantalizing. Joyce, meh. But oh, Giles!

Yay for gift from me, kinda, third hand! Is that the shiny turquoise one?

Marciepooh said...

Ahhh, I see and agree. Thank you. I've seen plenty of the follow the rules side of Snyder. (No running in the halls, even if there is hell-spawn chasing you!) I'm not sure I'd call him the scientist character since blind following of the rules isn't very scientific, even if that's often how Hollywood displays us sciencey people. I see the Napoleon complex, too. The way he latches on to Buffy &co. in "Band Candy" gave a good glimpse into Synder's makeup.

Oh, Giles IS hot. Of course part of that is he's the only male character whose not morally repugnant and/or a teenager. But a lot of that is Ripper is a good looking man and Giles thinks. Angel may be 150 but emotionally is still way young. He did aged some in his 300 or so years in the demon realm, however. (Angel is good looking but I melt for Booth.)

Yep, the shiny turquoise one!

Sarah said...

Scientist-archetype, not scientist-scientist.

"Band Candy" is one of the favorite episodes at our house, just because it's so cheerfully berserk. Christopher likes to shout, "Summers, you drive like a spaz!" at any instance of spazzy driving on anybody's part. And when he tries to chat up Joyce, he's obviously just so earnestly beta-male that it ACHES but in a hilarious way.

Yay shiny turquoise! I received that from Miranda (who sometimes comments on my blog) and it was full of a chinese take-out container holding three stuffed goslings. So, now when you go to pass it on, make sure it's filled with something fannish!