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Progress and hindsight

Progress and hindsight

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DevilYouKnow: indulging_breck
1) So, it has been a long time since I wrote anything particularly meta-ish and sadly I don't think I'll be doing anything very in-depth anytime soon. (I rather miss it).

However, thanks to my Buffy rewatch and discussions with my friend who is going through it for the first time (she's just about to wrap S4 of BtVS & S1 of Angel), I've certainly been thinking about stuff more often lately. And when I watched Dopplegangland the other day I even jotted down some notes.

a) The opening with Anya needed a moment of humor but it's a bit jarring to hear her say she's flunking math given how very interested she is in finances later on. (Also, given that Joss wrote this episode, something less stereotypical should have been chosen).

My fanwank of the scene therefore is that while Anya was struggling with math that she, in her dogged pursuit to fit in and succeed, worked extra hard in that area so that she became somewhat obsessed with numbers eventually and thus she became both a bookkeeper and investor.

b) Speaking of jarring phrases, it made no sense to me that Faith would call Wesley, "Princess Margaret." If she had simply said "princess", sure. But Margaret's heyday was well before Faith's time and she doesn't strike me as being a royal watcher. Instead, given Diana's death just a few years earlier, (and her spot in the worldwide media generally), Faith could hardly have avoided knowing about her.

However, I can understand why that term might have come into Joss' mind when writing. Margaret, after all, was the royal rebel of her day -- and in the shadow of her older sister, Elizabeth. Not too hard to see the emotional parallels between junior slayer Faith, and senior slayer, Buffy.

c) Oz's joking offhand line to Willow about how "It's like I have no will of my own" was a somewhat eerie foreshadowing of both Willow's "do my will" spell in S4 and Willow & Tara's breakup in S6, especially in an episode all about foreshadowing some of Willow's lesser seen characteristics.

d) Speaking of ominous foreshadowing there's the final scene between Willow and Percy. It's played for a laugh but I think that given how Willow's arc went, it seems clear in retrospect that she took entirely the wrong message from that result. The whole episode plays with the idea that Willow is fine as she is and letting herself go could lead to bad things. This is certainly what she's taken from it as she talks with Buffy. But once Percy turns up, respectful and somewhat wary of her, she decides that maybe she wants to embrace that less responsible side of herself if this is the result she gets.

I especially think so given Percy's next interaction with Willow in S4 when he makes her realize that she's still dismissed by the cool kids and still doesn't really fit in. And given that her early excitement with Oz centered squarely on his cool rep as a musician rubbing off on her, it has to sting when Percy brings him up and she is, of course, "just Willow" once again. Since Doomed follows Something Blue, she's probably a bit wary of doing too much too soon again, but as we know, that won't last.

2) These Nielsen numbers on twitter activity regarding TV broadcasts showed that sports dominate the rankings. What's interesting though is that if you look at the network rankings, tiny CW comes in 10th and FOX does not appear in the top 10.

3) African women are blazing a feminist trail – why don't we hear their voices? " What would have once sounded like a far-fetched feminist fantasy – namely women forming the majority of a parliament – is a reality in one country in the world, Rwanda...indeed, the most successful social movement in Africa in recent decades has been the women's movement, particularly in policy and legislation. Malawi and Liberia have female heads of state, and earlier this month Senegal elected its first female prime minister, Aminata Touré. Also, the African Union chair is female for the first time in its history. "

4) In reading over comments made to my last post, my friend Paula added some thoughts.

"I was a teen in the early 60s, so service industry may be more appropriate for me than for younger women. Expectations for women emerging from the 50's were clearly defined by gender. The preferred choices were homemaker, mother, wife, waitress, secretary, nurse, teacher, etc.--all service providers. I'm not saying we didn't have choices. I went into electrical engineering after high school, but you paid a price for crossing your gender boundaries.

I have to describe how I felt at the time, and I think it is still relevant. I took a couple of classes in Women's studies in 2005, and one of our readings stated that older women are not considered valuable once they can no longer “provide breeding services or visual stimulation". What do you call what Miley Cyrus was doing at the MTV awards? It wasn’t dancing. A Minor Consideration published a plea to her managers and advisors to look after her interests better. Sinead O’Connor published an open letter begging Miley not to let people turn her into a whore.

On a recent episode of Law & Order: SVU, I cheered when PTSD-suffering Olivia slugged a guy on the street just for asking her to smile--a service that we are still expected to provide on request, although not so much anymore (Thank goodness!)."

The bit about the women's studies discussion reminded me of this Tumblr post I saw today:

I think that's a pretty good visual summary, especially since the mannequin is headless (no individuality), and has no arms or legs (can't do anything for herself).

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