who are/used to be friends
| Slayer jurisdiction
| Choosing between two evils
| Choosing between right and wrong
| Secrets and Lies
| The things we do for love
| Who's responsible?
| Liberty and self-determination
| Television's responsibility to real-life violence
|Warning: this page contains info about episodes up through season 7 BtVS/season 5 AtS. If you're in danger of being spoiled, proceed with caution.|
Xander and Jesse in The
Killing creatures who are/used to be friends
||He has a soul and saves the lives and souls of others. But should Angel be allowed to live? Even Angel himself has doubts.|
If they could find a way to be 100% sure he was safe, then let him live. ...As long as there is a demon in him, and as long as there is a way it can be freed, he is a risk. Angel knows that Angelus can come out, and he knows one thing that will set him free. He does not know that that is the only thing that will set him free, nor do we. And yes, I do support capital punishment, if there is a mad dog, you put it down. Why should people be treated any differently? They are only more dangerous (Decay, Dec 13 16:02 1998).
Angel died 250 years ago, his soul was trapped in limbo for 150 years and then yanked back to earth to ... cohabit [his own] animated corpse with the demon soul.... Angel's soul suffered 1. guilt from the knowledge of the deeds committed by Angelus ...and 2. from having to live life as a vampire (animated undead corpse craving blood, etc.). ...Then he is sent to "hell" by Buffy to suffer even worse torment for who knows how long. Hasn't Angel suffered enough? Does Buffy really think she would be doing him a favour by reinstating the curse?... (Ananda, 30 Jan 2000 01:32)
Yes: if he were to turn evil again, then his friends should not take chances
Angel: If the day ever comes that I--
Cordelia: Oh, I'll kill you dead.
In Somnambulist, Cordelia lets Angel know she'd kill him if he went evil. She keeps a stake in her desk and a cross in her bag (Eternity). Angel assures Wesley (IGYUMS) that it's "good" that Wesley is willing to kill him, too.
[In her final speech in Somnambulist] Cordelia may be forgetting about the curse, and the fact that they can re-do it any time, but she has a point. Angel became a demon once before and now he knows that that can happen. He should be taking precautions against it. (And he is, btw.) If he forgets that he could lose his soul, and that's the only way I see him ever becoming all "grrr" again, then he should be staked. With a monster that evil, you can't afford to dawdle on sentiment. Plus, I think Angel wants to know that if he turns evil again, they will finish him off (Leather Jacket, Jan 19 11:38 2000).
Gunn: "...if the bad Angel walks through that door, I will kill him in two seconds flat."
When Gunn finds out about Angel's dark side and hears that he might have reverted, he's prepared to treat him just like any other vampire.
Is suicide a real option for Angel?
He's Catholic and it's totally against his religion (sweick, Dec 8 16:12 1998).
Angel is a demon with a human soul, but a demon nonetheless. Aine is fighting a battle; that he himself doesn't know he can fight for long. Instead of milling around waiting to kill again, slaying the demon is honorable and with all the mitigating circumstances- as far as one's culpability- that has been placed on death and murder i.e. self defense, manslaughter yadda, yadda, yadda, it would be well within confines to kill, ending the life of the demon and then have his soul pay for any crimes. This isn't just some unhappy kid killing himself, it's about self sacrifice and saving lives. I wouldn't say someone who dove in front of a bullet meant for someone else committed suicide- that's valiance. And to me, in the eyes of a god, which is better: saving lives, by killing a demon or waiting around with lives in danger in the hopes of one day atoning yourself? The latter is selfish and no amount of supposed piousness changes that. ...Angel would have served the church far better by killing himself than prolonging the death (Sam Hain, Dec 8 18:01 1998).
There's a serious flaw in the logic of executing someone because of what they might do in the future. ...You have to look at the possible negative consequences of letting Angel die, not just the positive ones.(aardwolfe, Dec 20 22:33 1998)
What happened while the curse was lifted was not his fault. He didn't and couldn't have known what would happen. And you can't kill someone for what they might do. Under that theory most people would have to be killed for some lack in their character. Even if you say that Angel being a vampire is an exception, the same reasoning applies to Oz. In fact, we know that Oz will become dangerous for three days out of every month. Angel can and does control the demon. And he has proven that he is willing to kill himself if he cannot control the demon, to prevent anyone being hurt. Even the First could not force him to become evil. That shows that he was worth the risk, and strong enough to do good. (Kay, 4 Jan 1999)
To hunt down and kill a human being in cold blood would be wrong. I always thought that was the strongest argument against killing Angel (while with soul)...because of his soul, he is, for all intents and purposes, a human being, and deserves the same respect as other souled beings (Mircalla, Jan 17 21:10 1999).
He was human. Absolutely normal and with the one he loved. But, he had enough self-discipline to know that if he truly loved Buffy he had to help save her. Anyone with that much discipline can prevent himself from doing the bump and grind with somebody and losing his precious soul. He has learned from his past mistakes and will not commit the same crimes. He is a warrior for the side of the good and without him there could be dire consequences. Angel should not die. (Gabriella,, 01 Dec 1999 20:19)
She caused mayhem for, and sometimes the horrible, icky death of hundreds of men who, while admittedly not completely innocent, probably didn't deserve a capital fate for betraying their wives and lovers. Now she is in a human persona. She struggles along sweetly, but she is known to offer up, "if I still had my powers, I'd..." and we know she wanted to restore the evil time-line of The Wish. Xander, who was an outspoken proponent of souled Angel's death, has fallen for her. Should we?
This question depends on a number of factors
However: we've seen demons who aren't evil (Whistler, Doyle), so she doesn't have to be evil Leather Jacket (Oct 30 12:11 1999).
Granted she is operating on limited human experience vs. a thousand years of demon experience, but Anya does talk like she still believes in her mission as Anyanka (Pangs, WTWTA, Family).
Anyanka returns: Anya and vengeance
I truly don't think Anya is, or ever was truly "evil." I think she truly thought that what she was doing as a demon was right. She hated what a man had done to her and her vengeance and hate just consumed her and overtook her. That's why she probably agreed when D'Hoffryn ...asked her if she wanted to be a vengeance demon. In fact she didn't use the Dark Forces, the Dark Forces used her for their gain, playing off of her hatred. ...she felt she WAS good, helping scorned women take a little revenge on unfaithful lovers. Now as a human though, she is finally getting that what she did as a demon was somewhat wrong and that men weren't as evil as she presumed they were. But unfortunately, old habits die hard for someone like Anya, I shudder to think what she'd do if Xander ever cheated or somehow hurt her (CorrGirl1027, 1/5/00 6:56 pm)
...it seems as though she were human once and that in turning into a demon nothing was really taken away from her. In other words, she was augmented but not really changed. I've certainly known (or know of) women who display the same kind of rutheless hatred and contempt of men (or people in general) that Anyanka seems to have had. Anya, however, strikes me as someone who has been detached and on the outiside looking in for over a thousand years. I don't think it is that she lacks a soul, I just think she needs time to reconnect and learn a new way of relating to men (and women). Having a soul doesn't automatically grant empathy or even a strong conscience. Anya is certainly a more loving person than the Wolfram & Hart folks - and we know that Lindsey and Lilah have souls! (Ryuei, 02-Feb-01 12:53)
Did/does the demon Anyanka have a human soul?
How humans can be turned into demons isn't clear, since demons aren't supposed to have human souls. In the case of vampires, the human soul leaves the body and a demon spirit takes it over. In Anya's case, the most likely possibility is that Anya had a human soul while she had her demon powers and demon physiology. When Giles smashed the power center that made her a demon, she reverted back to a human physical form. And since the demon D'Hoffryn recruits vengeance demons from among human women, it is possible they retain their souls during their reign as demons. This makes Anya's evilness an open question, since she used demon powers while she had a human soul. With a restored human body and a new human life, she appears to be regaining human moral sensibilities (neither necessary nor sufficient for having a human soul in the Buffyverse, but one of the primary indicators of it). Her continuing lack of etiquette seems a hold-over from her previous human life.
Hurt and vengeance: Anyanka returns
Further evidence that vengeance demons have souls
Was Anyanka like Dark Willow? (souled and all?)
Slayers are the "Chosen Ones"--chosen to fight the forces of darkness. Most of the time, that means demons and monsters. But sometimes it means humans. And sometimes demons aren't all that bad. How far does a slayer's "right to kill" go?
Buffy's human body count:
"Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster." --Frederich Nietzsche
Fan views on Buffy vs. human villains:
Someone who takes lives on practically a daily basis (even though they're un-lives) treads a fine line. If Buffy comes to the conclusion that she is chosen, not only to fight demons, but to fight all baddies out there, then she is in danger of becoming no better than the demons that she fights. Anyone with a soul, no matter how "evil", is still capable of redemption, and it's not Buffy's place to decide whether they should live or die. We have systems in place to deal with human baddies. True, they're often inadequate, but they exist. ...She certainly has the right to defend her own life, as we all do... But to hunt down and kill a human being in cold blood would be wrong (Mircalla, Jan 17 21:10 1999).
Unfortunately her job title is to stand up against the vampires and the forces of evil. Nowhere in the book does it say that mankind isn't in those forces. ...With ...human[s]...it's a choice. That fact alone makes them all the more evil in the atrocities they commit (zaner, Jan 17 23:29 1999).
Choosing between two evils
Characters on BtVS are often put between a rock and a hard place--they are forced to accept an undesirable situation in order to defeat evil, or just to get what they want.
Buffy and Angel stay together (even if it might hurt them both in the long
The Mayor argues against their relationship:
The fact that the Mayor is evil does not mean he can't have good arguments drawn from both his own experience and the reality of who Angel and Buffy are. To assume he doesn't have a point simply because he is evil is to commit a reasoning fallacy known as ad hominem abusive, to assume he doesn't have a good point because he doesn't have their best interests at heart is the fallacy ad hominem circumstantial.
In the Prom, Mrs. Summers arrives at the Garden Mansion to convince Angel to stop seeing Buffy. Buffy, she argues, is still a girl, living in the now, and can't contemplate the future realistically. Joyce does not reveal what she thinks their future would be like, but she says that if Angel really cares about Buffy, he will break up with her.
When Angel talks to Buffy, he makes his vision of their future clear. He tells her that it would be unfair to stay with her, since he will not be able to provide Buffy with the things she will want and need: love-making, children, a life in the daylight. Buffy protests that she doesn't want these things, or cannot yet imagine them, but Angel tells her that she will want them, and sooner than she thinks. He argues that she deserves them all the more because her life as a slayer is so abnormal from the outset (for eeriness, compare Angel's speech to Buffy in The Prom with Grace's speech through Angelus to James/Buffy in IOHEFY). Buffy responds that Angel is patronizing her--making the decision for her--because she is still young. Angel responds that breaking up is the rational thing to do, and later, with Willow, Buffy admits that in the long run, Angel is right.
Was Joyce right to tell Angel to leave Buffy?
Buffy can never have a normal life,and that's the point of allowing somebody like Angel to continue to be in Buffy's life. If she won't live very long...why the hell not allow her whatever kind of happiness she can find, no matter how fleeting or dysfunctional that it is? I think it was a desperate attempt on Joyce's part to miraculously save Buffy's life from the sentence of a short lifespan by getting her to believe she can go to school in a distant place and regain her normal life that way (Blueronin, May 17 01:22 1999).
If she is going to die relatively young, she should have the chance to have as many normal life experiences as she can, which she cannot do if they are together. The reason that she says she doesn't want those things or cannot think about them is because she wants Angel and he cannot give her those things. All she has every wanted since she became the slayer is to have a normal life; but being around Angel ...prevents her from doing that. As badly as it hurts for them to be apart, he knows that she will eventually move on, as she did when he was in hell (Katia,, 01 Dec 1999 07:58)
Buffy and Angel's higher obligations: In IWRY, Angel discovers that he and Buffy "...don't belong to ourselves. We belong in the world, fighting." But there is hope in their destinies.
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