Thursday, September 20, 2012

Favorite Characters in the Whedonverse: Anya

For Whedonverse Thursdays, I've decided to do some character studies on my favorite characters from the Whedonverse. Plot makes a story work, but it's the characters that keep you coming back to the show/book/series. Whedon (and the amazing writers he finds) know characters - they know how to make us love a character and then question that love and then love him/her again. In like 2 minutes. It's kinda awesome. 

My first character is from Buffy: The Vampire Slayer - Anya. 

From the moment we first met Anya in "The Wish" in Season 3, I knew we had a character I would like. She changed a little from this first episode; most notably, she wasn't a demon for much longer, but she was always very amusing. I think her history and her fresh perspective on the world as a human were always interesting. 

Anya: I can just hear you in private. "I dislike that Anya. She's newly human, and strangely literal". 
Willow: What? I don't say that. No one says that. No one talks that way.

Anya and Xander - so cute!
Her relationship with Xander is important - Xander had gone for girls that were not equal to him: Buffy would never be able to care about him the way he would need it, Cordelia would always want to seem above him, but Anya - she needed Xander. Sometimes, his role was simply to tell her how to act, but he was able to see past her oddness and love her for herself. I, for one, hated the fact that they didn't end up happy together. It was the right decision for the show, but a little part of me really wanted them together forever. 

Anya was the queen of quirks - from loving money to fearing bunnies, she always had some weird idea or feeling. She always said exactly what was on her mind, which made her the kind of person you could admire. Of course, she was also the kind of person that would make you look at her sideways. (So, I guess I can relate to her pretty well then.) 

But Whedon's characters have depth; Anya, while hilarious and abrupt, was affected emotionally by the things that happened to her and those around her. Since these emotions were so new to her and often confused her, she was, at times, the most relateable. When Buffy's mother died, her reaction and questioning is something a lot of people go through, but would never want to talk about. Her ability to say what she is thinking and feeling, allows an outlet for her emotions and allows the viewer to relate to her more than some of the other characters. 

Anya: Are they gonna cut the body open? 
Willow: Oh my God! Would you just... stop talking? Just... shut your mouth. Please. 
Anya: What am I doing? 
Willow: How can you act like that? 
Anya: Am I supposed to be changing my clothes a lot? I mean, is that the helpful thing to do? 
Xander: Guys... 
Willow: The way you behave... 
Anya: Nobody will tell me. 
Willow: Because it's not okay for you to be asking these things. 
Anya: But I don't understand. 
[begins to cry

During her confusion in "The Body." 

Anya: I don't understand how this all happens. How we go through this. I mean, I knew her, and then she's- There's just a body, and I don't understand why she just can't get back in it and not be dead anymore. It's stupid. It's mortal and stupid. And-and Xander's crying and not talking, and-and I was having fruit punch, and I thought, well, Joyce will never have any more fruit punch ever, and she'll never have eggs, or yawn or brush her hair, not ever, and no one will explain to me why. 

She's an awesome character and always amused me greatly in my watching of Buffy. She may not have been the most important member of the Scooby gang, but I always enjoy a good Anya line.



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