Tuesday, February 26, 2013

30 Days of Buffy and Feminism Day 13

Favorite Potential Slayer

I don't even know why this is a prompt.  I have literally never met a Buffy fan that thought the plot line with the Potentials was any good or really liked any of them.  In exploring Tumblr most of the answers I saw were just "I hate them all but I'll pick Vi because she's played by Felicia Day!"  So I guess I'll make the unpopular choice...I really hate all the potentials but the least boring/annoying of them is clearly


I didn't say she WASN'T annoying, just the LEAST annoying.  I think Kennedy gets a lot of unjustifiable hate.  A lot of this has to do with the fact that the writers had her replacing a character that could never be replaced--Tara--and doing it far too soon at that.  By the time Kennedy comes along Willow is not yet at a point where "Come on, you need to move on already" is a sentiment she should be getting--her girlfriend was murdered and she went into Dark Magic Overload as a result, which she was still recovering from.  So I will give the fans a little credit for that, pairing Willow and Kennedy with each other was not exactly brilliant writing.  But neither was the entire Potentials arc, so...

The difference between Kennedy and every other one of the potentials is that she has a personality.  The rest of them basically sit around panicking and waiting to die and fighting the rest of the time as a single unit.  I actually almost picked Eve for this prompt despite the fact that we never actually meet Eve--we only see her as The First--because at least Evil Eve was interesting.  Molly, Rona, Chloe, Vi, Amanda...they're all just kind of there. 

Kennedy is the leader of the group.  She's the oldest and takes the leadership role willingly.  She's headstrong, stubborn, assertive, and often insightful.  No doubt all of those things can rub other people the wrong way, but I feel like Kennedy is what a potential Slayer should be--she has the attitude already, and she's cynical enough to get it without being too downtrodden.

She's also sexually aggressive with Willow, which isn't necessarily a great thing because of the state that Willow's in, but Kennedy does make it known how she feels and that's not a terrible thing.  She's also very supportive of Willow, which is a step in the right direction for someone who has been without much support for awhile.  

All in all, I think Kennedy is all right for a Potential.  I hate the Potentials in general because I hated the whole plotline of being the Slayer being a huge burden just to be treated like it was some great power that was being bestowed on the world in "Chosen".  I thought that the apparent fear that all of these young girls--and for the most part they are girls--were feeling at the very thought of being a Slayer set up that finale in a bad way.  Plus they were basically archetypes: the funky British Potential, the high-class British Potential, the black Potential, etc.--and never got any full characterization despite having a fairly long arc through the season.  With the exception, of course, of Kennedy.  Which I really don't mind considering she was clearly the most Slayer-y of the Potentials.

Ugh, that was hard to write.  Worst prompt ever.

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