Sep. 17th, 2011

the_croupier: (buffy-angel)
Something I happened to think of this morning, that I know wish Joss had thought to do back in the day:

So if we assume season six was all about life, and the trials and tribulations people go through as they enter adulthood and get older, how about this:

Instead of ending with Dark Willow, suppose we keep all the parts about Buffy and the Scoobies taking responsibility for their lives, but then introduce a different, supernatural plot to run parallel with that.

This plot would involve the rise of a virus that afflicts the undead and subjects them to effects very similar to rapid aging. This wouldn't be *actual* aging, of course, but the results would be much the same. This could very likely be a carryover from the Initiative, perhaps some research someone found (ok, it could have even been 'the Trio') and didn't understand nearly as well as they thought they did (ok, definitely 'the Trio'). The project had been intended as a new way to understand how vampirism happens, but the Trio let the virus get loose by accident, and it begins to rip through the undead population.

Inevitably, both Spike and Angel contract it, forcing both of them to realize that aging--something they both thought they had left behind forever--is now a worse problem for them than for Buffy and her friends. If the Scoobies are learning to be adults (and Team Angel continues to cope with being them already), the two vampires are having to confront 'life changes' in a much more immediate way.

So the rest of B6 and A3 are spent with everyone desperately trying to find a cure for the virus. The Scoobies take one approach, and Team Angel an entirely different one (since crossovers were always a problem back then). And in all that time, some in both groups--most notably Giles, Xander, Wesley, Gunn--can't get rid of the idea that maybe curing the virus is just what they should *not* do. That the loss of Angel (sorry, none of them would mourn Spike much) might be worth a world finally rid of the undead. This, needless to say, doesn't go over well with Buffy, Cordy, Fred, or Willow.

In the end, of course, a cure is found, and Spike and Angel recover. Mostly. Because the ravages of the virus never quite go away, and as a result (again staying with the season six theme of life, aging, and responsibility), Boreanaz and Marsters--oh, I mean Angel and Spike, of course--will always appear older than they used to, and will probably continue to show subtle but noticeable signs of 'aging' left behind by the virus. Like, say, a decade or so later.


Oh. See what I just did there? ;)

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