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StephenT [userpic]

(Meta) Question on 'Him'

29th June 2009 (22:56)
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Given all the talk about consent recently, I suddenly realised something - and you know, I don't think I've ever seen this discussed anywhere. (Although there may have been a huge debate that I just missed, of course...)

Remember this scene from 'Him' in Season 7 - Buffy and RJ in the empty classroom, just before Xander discovers them there:
 


Him screencap

1. Are they having sex here, rather than just making out? (He's still got his jeans on, but then so did Spike in 'Smashed')
2. Does RJ know that his Letterman jacket has the effect on women that it does, rather than being oblivious to it? (And just assumes he's really, really popular and lucky.)
3. Is this rape?

Because if the answers to 1) and 2) are yes, then so is the answer to 3), and yet 'Him' never gets mentioned in the same breath as 'The Pack' or 'Seeing Red' or even 'Dead Things' and 'All The Way'.

Mind you, there's an argument to be made that in a world where magic is real, we can't always use direct 1:1 analogies to consent issues in our own world. The jacket doesn't seem to affect Buffy's ability to consent so much as her desire to... the metaphor in this episode seems to be that the jacket represents the aura of glamour, fame, sophistication and attractiveness that surrounds the popular kids in school, or sports stars and actors in the real world, and makes ordinary people forget their inhibitions and lust after them - as opposed to, say, the jacket is a date-rape drug. So based on that, I'm wondering - if you were a government legislator in the Buffyverse when magic, demons and the supernatural suddenly became common knowledge, and you were charged with drafting a new sexual offences law, what would you rule in relation to magical Letterman Jackets of Lust?
 

Comments

Posted by: woman_of_ (woman_of_)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 22:29 (UTC)

Well, to be honest, in that picture it looks like Buffy is raping him. He is completely docile, while she is the one taking the initive. It is also true that she is stronger than him as well. I would say that he didn't know, and neither did his brother, it was the father that had the enchanted jacket done, and handed it down.

There is also Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered, where Xander knew he was having a spell cast, but it backfired. In the face of all those lust fuled women, he didn't stand a chance if any of them caught him.

In Him, if JR could prove that he had no knowledge of what the jacket could do, then he is innocent, while with Xander the intend of purpose was there, but not the outcome he expected.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 22:52 (UTC)

in that picture it looks like Buffy is raping him.

Which, I suspect, is why the episode generally causes such little reaction (but see the post just below yours.) The appearance of it trumps our knowledge of what's really happening.


Remember in BBB, Xander's aim was to turn Cordelia down, so it's not exactly the same thing...

Posted by: joe_sweden (joe_sweden)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:32 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 09:21 (UTC)

Posted by: Lily (lavastar)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 15:46 (UTC)

Posted by: The One Who Isn't Chosen (gabrielleabelle)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 22:41 (UTC)

I hate that scene. For exactly that reason. I'm prone to skipping past it when rewatching the episode.

I'd say that love spells in the Buffyverse are practically similar in function to date rape drugs in that they take away the ability to rationally consent. Buffy was under the effect of the love spell = she had no ability to consent. The key is whether RJ knew about this and...I really don't see any indication that he does.

Taking it based on the metaphor, "jacket denotes an aura of awesomeness that women just can't resist", I find it squicky and kinda offensive.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 23:11 (UTC)

For exactly that reason. I'm prone to skipping past it when rewatching the episode.

I might have known you'd have already realised what it took me seven years to see. :-)

I do get the impression that not all love spells are the same in the Buffyverse - just as in the real world there's a difference between "someone so drunk they can't stand up or form coherent words" and "someone drunk enough to have lowered inhibitions and think that standing on a table in the middle of the pub singing old Spice Girls hits is a good idea"...

The deliberate way RJ puts his jacket on while talking to Buffy in the scene before the one I showed makes me think he suspected something, at least - but he might have just thought the jacket made him look cool.


I find it squicky and kinda offensive

'It' being this particular scene, or the episode as a whole?

Posted by: The One Who Isn't Chosen (gabrielleabelle)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 23:24 (UTC)

Posted by: joe_sweden (joe_sweden)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:39 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 09:17 (UTC)

Posted by: leseparatist (novin_ha)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 22:55 (UTC)
[angel] angel emo

I skip this episode entirely when rewatching because I don't think the issues is handled appropriately and I prefer to avoid the pain of watching this.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 23:12 (UTC)

Fair enough.

Posted by: alexeia_drae (alexeia_drae)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 23:08 (UTC)
what the fuck

You know, when I first saw this episode and I got to this scene, I nearly turned it off because I was so disgusted by it. As it is now, I can only watch the last 15 minutes because I am still disturbed by the first part but the scene with Spike and Xander stealing the jacket is just too funny to miss.

At any rate, as Buffy is an adult and RJ a teenager, it's definitely statutory rape. And she came on strongly to him. Don't know if intercourse happened, but it was definitely sexual assault. And I really didn't appreciate the show trying to make it so light hearted.

Did she have control of her faculties at the time? I've no idea where to begin on that one. And considering that no one in RJ's family seemed to make a connection between the jacket and their popularity (otherwise they wouldn't have passed it on to other family members) then I doubt RJ realizes it.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 23:18 (UTC)

For me, it was more the comedy of embarrassment that made me cringe - Dawn's cheerleading scene in particular; I hate scenes which seem deliberately designed to do nothing but humilate a character.

Since RJ would be over the age of consent under British law I have less of a problem with that aspect, though it's problematic if Buffy's status as a school counsellor makes her an adult-in-position-of-responsibility towards him.

Like I just said to your sister, I think RJ might suspect that wearing the jacket makes him look super-cool and irresistible, but he thinks it's his own looks and fashion style rather than magic that's doing it.

Posted by: mikeda (mikeda)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 12:24 (UTC)

Posted by: The Mezzanine (deird1)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 23:08 (UTC)

I don't have the slightest problem with that scene, really...

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 23:18 (UTC)

Heh. You appear to be in something of a minority so far...

Posted by: Randall Randall (randallsquared)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 02:03 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:27 (UTC)

Posted by: Randall Randall (randallsquared)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 11:09 (UTC)

Posted by: harsens_rob (harsens_rob)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 23:19 (UTC)
Just an opinion, and you KNOW what they say about those

1) I think Buffy is just straddling the jock, but not the jock's jock. If you know what I'm sayin' and I think you do. The jeans are the clue here - maybe Spike likes pain (being a vampire), but unless AJ is also a masochist, I don't see him being turned on very long with the metal teeth of the zipper starting to scrape his uh jock's jock.

2) The episode, I think (it's been awhile since I've delved into S7), strongly implies that he had no clue.

3) Rather than the date-rape drug analogy you mention, I think this would be more akin to the "aura of celebrity" around him, but combined with the "too much to drink or too high to resist his charms" analogy. Date-rape drugs usually cause unconsciousness and memory loss. The intent is to render the victim unable to fight back or be aware after the fact that she/he had been assaulted - not to having sex, as such - it's more of an act of violence and RJ doesn't appear to want to inflict himself on anyone. And, when Dawn is in danger, Buffy immediately snaps out of her obsession with him - like a best friend grabbing that drunk/high pal and making them realize that they don't even know anything about the person they're about to hook up with. The jacket may strip those around it of their inhibitions and encourage them to act without thought (like alcohol), but it clearly isn't stripping the will of the victim (like the date rape drug).

4) I'd reject that the picture looks like Buffy is doing the raping, either. Clearly RJ is passive, but that isn't the same thing as being assaulted. If anything, he appears to be a bit of a dullard and is more of shrugging the whole thing off with an "again?"

5) The legal ramifications of a Letterman Jacket of Lust are very grey, I think. Even if RJ knew what the effects of the jacket were, is that the same as breaking the law... if you ply a girl/boy with drinks at a party and then don't say no when the crawl in your lap (remember Buffy is being the agressor here), are you really breaking a law? Or are you just a creep like a producer promising a big break to get an actress/actor on the casting couch?

Or, am I completely missing the analogy all together?

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:19 (UTC)
Re: Just an opinion, and you KNOW what they say about those

1. Maybe he has a button fly on his jeans. :-)

3. I think you're right in that "date-rape drug" is a term that's often thrown around in this sort of discussion without really appreciating what they do... render you unconscious and maybe affect your memory of the incident afterwards rather than putting you into a suggestible lowered-inhibition state or anyting like that.

4. That might be because SMG is a better actor than the one playing RJ. :-)

5. Hmm. I think there is a moral difference between "forcing someone to do something" (by controlling their actions through magic) and "putting them into a state of mind where they will see what you want them to do as a good idea, but can still choose voluntarily whether or not to actually do it." Not that either is necessarily right, but the first is more wrong.

(Deleted comment)
Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:29 (UTC)

Really? I suppose the fact that it's presented as funny does obscure the issues involved, whereas 'Seeing Red' is shown as an obviously bad thing.

Posted by: Emmie (angearia)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 23:35 (UTC)

I don't know why, maybe because I'm occasionally callous and strange, but this episode doesn't bother me. I just find it funny.

I don't think they're having sex here although it's damned close. I don't think RJ knows. As far as if it's rape, my mind blinks at trying to label this. Blinks and blanks.

I think it's because this episode is so over the top ridiculous. My brain doesn't take it seriously.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:30 (UTC)

My brain mostly shuts out the first quarter of the episode and only kicks back into gear again once Buffy, and especially once Willow and Anya have also been affected.


I'm occasionally callous and strange

It's why we love you.

Posted by: Lily (lavastar)
Posted at: 29th June 2009 23:55 (UTC)

I'm glad that deird1 and angearia agree with me - I was a bit shocked and guiltified to see that everyone in the comments has always been squicked by this, whereas I have never even realized the consent implications at all. Possibly because I've always found the episode to be highly hilarious and enjoyable.

But, let's see...definitely not sex; the jeans aren't pulled down. But sex was going to happen once the jeans were out of the way, if Xander hadn't come along.

I don't think RJ knows the effects of the jacket - like others have said, he doesn't get very upset when it's taken away, his father and brother are willing to pass it along, etc.

So I don't think it's rape, because RJ is just looking to score. And he does say something like, "Oh, but you're like a teacher. Wouldn't that be weird?"

Which, combined with his age and her position of authority, would make it seem like it's Buffy's rape - but she does ask, I think immediately after he says that bit about being a teacher, "Do you mind?" And he says "Not so much."

Which is a rather sketchy consent, and seeing as he's probably not the age of consent in America, it's probably statutory rape. Basically, neither of them are in any real position to consent fully - Buffy's under the affects of a love spell, and RJ's too young, and also just thinking about scoring. Plus, in an RL sitch, there might be some implied pressure from her age and position of authority, even if she didn't say anything pressuring.

But I don't think the love spell is comparable to date-rape drug or alcohol, really - I think it's less metaphorical. It's more like, when you're really really in lust with someone, and you'll do anything they say - even if you don't really want to. Obviously, RJ isn't doing the convincing here - but she's doing things she might not otherwise do, like having sex with a student.

So...basically I have no idea if it's rape, at the end of all that. :D

Interesting topic, though - a bit worrisome, though.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:38 (UTC)

It has been weird seeing the complete contrast between the people saying "What? There's a problem with this episode?" and the ones saying "God, I can't watch this, it squicks me so much..."


combined with his age and her position of authority, would make it seem like it's Buffy's rape

I thnk there's definitely a generational thing here, because back when I was RJ's age I think most people would have congratulated him for how lucky he was, not seen him as a victim. And he doesn't appear to be particularly traumatised by what Buffy's doing. (In fact, in the shooting script his reaction is given as "Yee-hah!" when Buffy comes on to him.)

Posted by: Lily (lavastar)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 15:43 (UTC)

Posted by: Barb (rahirah)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 00:19 (UTC)

I don't think RJ knows what the jacket does exactly. And I don't think it completely overrides the will of those it affects, but it seems clear that it impairs their judgment severely. I'm somewhat uncomfortable with the jokey way the episode treats a fairly serious subject, and I... really don't like jokes that depend on humiliation. It's got some funny bits, and I don't hate it with a firey passion, but I don't much like it either.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:39 (UTC)

I have to say it's the humiliation jokes that I really hate about this episode - basically the first 15 minutes or so while Dawn is the only one affected.

Posted by: eowyn_315 (eowyn_315)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 00:21 (UTC)

Consent issues never bothered me on this one because I was too busy being squicked by the age difference/authority issue. Although I have to say, it's intriguing that you've gotten responses saying BOTH parties are raping the other. I'm not sure that's possible. Can you really be guilty of statutory rape if you're not even able to rationally consent to sex?

I never thought they were actually having sex, though, and RJ does seem pretty oblivious to the magical nature of the jacket.

Posted by: Nicki (peroxidepirate)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 00:43 (UTC)

it's intriguing that you've gotten responses saying BOTH parties are raping the other. I'm not sure that's possible. Can you really be guilty of statutory rape if you're not even able to rationally consent to sex?

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing. The age/authority thing makes it a little yucky, whether or not it's actual sex. But morally, it kind of equates to 2 people who hook up when they've both had too much to drink... which is probably why it gives me a momentary squick, but never bothered me for more than a minute.

Posted by: Randall Randall (randallsquared)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 02:08 (UTC)

Posted by: eowyn_315 (eowyn_315)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 02:15 (UTC)

Posted by: Randall Randall (randallsquared)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 02:20 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:47 (UTC)

Posted by: eowyn_315 (eowyn_315)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 13:17 (UTC)

Posted by: ms_scarletibis (ms_scarletibis)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 00:57 (UTC)

I'd call it "no fault," since RJ, who got it from his brother, didn't know what it could do. They just thought of it as a regular world "good luck charm." I suppose one could blame the father, since he seemed to know...

And I don't think they're having sex, but if Xander had come in a few minutes later, I think that would have been a "yes."

Honestly, I wouldn't mention "The Pack" and "Seeing Red" in the same breath either. Um...why is "All the Way" mentioned? Cause of the Willow/Amy magic "fun" at the end? And DT? What scene are you talking about?

Posted by: The One Who Isn't Chosen (gabrielleabelle)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 02:04 (UTC)

I'd be willing to bet All the Way is referring to the Willow/Tara "mind wipe then sexytimes" and the issue of Tara's consent. And DT would likely be in reference to the balcony sex scene, which some people interpret as Spike raping Buffy.

Posted by: ms_scarletibis (ms_scarletibis)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 02:13 (UTC)

Posted by: The One Who Isn't Chosen (gabrielleabelle)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 02:25 (UTC)

Posted by: ms_scarletibis (ms_scarletibis)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 02:29 (UTC)

Posted by: The Mezzanine (deird1)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 03:33 (UTC)

Posted by: The One Who Isn't Chosen (gabrielleabelle)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 03:37 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:07 (UTC)

Posted by: Peasant (peasant_)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 02:06 (UTC)

How interesting, I don't think I've ever seen the subject raised before either. Whereas in Torchwood fandom a very similar situation (Owen sprays himself with an alien spray that makes him hugely sexually attractive) is discussed all the time and both widely defended and widely condemned as rape. I wonder what makes the difference so that people don't discuss Him in the same way? perhaps because the boy is so much younger and better looking? Or maybe it is because we never see him deliberately aware of and using the jacket? Or maybe it's just that in Buffy we have so many stronger episodes that touch on the consent question.

Anyway, for my vote, this doesn't strike me as rape. I reckon they both could have said no if they really wanted to - Willow still knew her own mind enough to want to change him into a girl rather than just sleep with him as he was.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:53 (UTC)

I was thinking of Owen's spray as well. :-) I suppose that part of it is that on 'Buffy', this sort of magical effect altering peoples' actions or perceptions is such a common theme that one more example gets lost. 'Him' is unusual in that people are affected by lust rather than memory loss or the desire to burst into song, but it's otherwise par for the course for Sunnydale.

Good point on Willow retaining at least some of her ability to choose. And as someone else has mentioned, there's also the fact that Buffy's concern for Dawn overrode her lust for RJ once Dawn was in real danger.

Posted by: Emmie (angearia)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 02:29 (UTC)

I've had an additional thought.

How is RJ's magical jacket different than say lying to a woman about who you are, essentially tricking that woman into thinking you're perfect for her? And thinking this, she falls in love with you (or at least believes she's in love with you) and wants to sleep with you. Is that rape? Are the situations too dissimilar to compare?

I'm just trying to think of a real life situation that equates somewhat to the magical one.

The difference to me seems to be that in the above example, the guy is actually aware he's tricking this woman into caring for him and sleeping with him. In RJ's case, magic is to blame.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:59 (UTC)

That's the sort of idea I've been puzzling over with this - see also my thoughts above about Willow's 'forget' spell on Tara.

The show uses magic as a concentrated, exaggerated and extreme metaphor for real-world things, but I do think the metaphor is often "lying to someone" or "pretending to be more glamorous than you really are" rather than "drugging someone into insensibility and raping them".

I kinda think 'Him' is meant to be a parody of the "Nice Guy" myth, almost: that all women fall in love with shallow jock types. All RJ has to do is put on his sporty jacket and every female in sight - even the lesbian one - is swooning over him.

Posted by: Emmie (angearia)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 15:47 (UTC)

Posted by: The Mezzanine (deird1)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 19:44 (UTC)

Posted by: The One Who Isn't Chosen (gabrielleabelle)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 16:38 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 1st July 2009 01:17 (UTC)

Posted by: The One Who Isn't Chosen (gabrielleabelle)
Posted at: 1st July 2009 01:41 (UTC)

Posted by: I write tragedies, not sins (mabus101)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 07:01 (UTC)

Under the circumstances...with RJ apparently unaware of the effect the jacket has...I don't think it can be called rape. Especially because I get the impression that Buffy is not taking no for an answer here (though it's been some time since I've seen it). Were she in her right mind and still behaving the same way for some reason, there's physically no way he could stop her. To use a gambling term, this appears to be a "push"--there's no way to blame one character more than the other, so I can't really call anyone guilty.

That said, I have never really understood the "position of authority" problem very well, even to the point of being a little perturbed by statutory rape laws. (I know that such regulations serve a purpose and I'm not saying they shouldn't exist--they just feel "off" to me somehow.) It's clear that someone can use a position of authority to coerce someone into sex, just as one can use any other form of leverage, but it seems odd to me to just assume that it's being done, as if someone were to argue that any Riley/Buffy relationship must be rape because she's physically stronger and can force him. Does that make any sense at all?

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 09:13 (UTC)

As I recall, Buffy wasn't using any sort of physical coercion, just coming on really, really strongly. And RJ didn't mind that in the least.

Most people seem to be agreeing that he had no clue what the jacket did; I did wonder about the way he deliberately put it on while Buffy was scolding him, and she immediately started flirting as soon as it was on. It seemed a fairly calculated move on his part, implying he knew what would happen. But maybe it was just coincidence.


It's clear that someone can use a position of authority to coerce someone into sex, just as one can use any other form of leverage, but it seems odd to me to just assume that it's being done

It does seem that whenever the concepts of "young people" and "sex" are combined a moral panic sets in (although I have to say most examples of this I'm aware of come from the US...). An adult in authority could use that to coerce a teenager into sex, and it would be difficult to prove because the teenager would be too intimidated to complain. (For that matter, they might not want to complain about the experience because they enjoyed it.) So to a certain type of absolute morality zealot, it's easier to simply forbid and strictly punish all such relationships, rather than make judgements on each one.

Posted by: Mrs Darcy (elisi)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 08:54 (UTC)
Buffy Anne Summers by thesuthernangel

Re. just how far did they get, then Buffy says "I can't believe I almost—" at the end of the ep. which indicates that nothing happened. Nothing serious at least.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 09:16 (UTC)

Was she talking about almost having sex with him, or almost blowing up the Principal with a rocket launcher, though? I took it to be more the second.

Posted by: Mrs Darcy (elisi)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 09:18 (UTC)

Posted by: azdak (azdak)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 09:31 (UTC)

The fact that it's comedy is crucial, surely? It's a whole different way of handling things. People worry a great deal about Willow killing Warren, who was a rapist and a murderer. No one worries in the slightest about Buffy trying to kill Principal Wood, who is an innocent human being, and definitely not somone The Slayer should be trying to off. Objectively speaking, it's much much worse that Buffy is tempted to commit murder for Love than that she's tempted to have sex for Love. But we don't take the attempted murder seriously, and I don't see any good reason to take the attempted seduction seriously either. It's not a metaphor for a real-world rape, any more than the attempted murder is a metaphor for anything.

I have to say that I'm with you in not finding the Dawn scenes funny, though. It's not that I don't sometimes enjoy a good cringe-laugh - I think Ricky Gervais is hysterical - but the Dawn scenes seem to assume that humiliation per se is funny, so there's no need to provide any actual comedy.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 1st July 2009 01:18 (UTC)

The fact that it's comedy is crucial, surely?

That's perhaps the best way of looking at it. :-)

Posted by: lusciousxander (lusciousxander)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 09:45 (UTC)

1. Are they having sex here, rather than just making out? (He's still got his jeans on, but then so did Spike in 'Smashed')

I don't think so, but this could lead to sex if Xander didn't walk in.

2. Does RJ know that his Letterman jacket has the effect on women that it does, rather than being oblivious to it? (And just assumes he's really, really popular and lucky.)

He probably doesn't. I don't remember, but did his older brother know it was magical? Because if his brother knew, then RJ will obviously know as well.

3. Is this rape?

I've always thought that rape is forcing someone into bed, and RJ doesn't look forced. Buffy was under a spell and RJ -probably- didn't know about the abilities of the jacket, so I don't think it is rape.

and yet 'Him' never gets mentioned in the same breath as 'The Pack' or 'Seeing Red' or even 'Dead Things' and 'All The Way'.

Perhaps because the episode is comedy.

You also forgot Faith's attempted rape in Consequences -back when BuffyWorld had a forum it had been such a hot topic.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 1st July 2009 01:22 (UTC)

I've always thought that rape is forcing someone into bed

Or coercing them into bed with threats, intimidation or blackmail, without any physical violence. Or drugging them so they don't know what they're doing and can't resist. The question is whether "putting a spell on them so they're overcome with lust for you" falls into this category as well.


You're right that I missed Consequences. And Faith arguably raped Riley in 'Who Are You?' - he consented to sex with Buffy, not with her.

Posted by: fluffybkitty (fluffybkitty)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 10:11 (UTC)
dawn - eyesore

Personally I love the episode and find that scene in particular really funny. But...

1) I think they're just making out. The positioning looks wrong to me to be anything else.

2) I don't think there was any sign that RJ knew. His brother gave the impression that he was sweet, innocent and clueless around girls pre-jacket, so maybe he just thought he'd blossomed when he hit high school and that being Quarterback was responsible for his new coolness. Also surely if his bro had known the jacket was responsible for his success with women would he really have handed it down to his kid brother quite so readily.

3) Is it rape? No. Even if he did know the jacket's magick powers, Buffy clearly seduces him. From what I can remember, she suggests it, she kisses him, she pushes him down onto the desk and climbs on top - his only crime (it seems to me) is taking advantage of getting really, really lucky.

Besides they both look like they're enjoying themselves :) I'm pretty sure if they had gone all the way, the worse Buffy would feel was some mild mortification at sleeping with a sixteen year old that her sister fancied.

That being said, if was drafting new sexual offences law, I'd put a restriction on lust-inducing jackets: You can only wear them over the age of 18 and only a sleeve at a time or something. Or maybe with a warning on the collar: This Jacket may cause unexpected horniness!

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 1st July 2009 01:27 (UTC)

His brother gave the impression that he was sweet, innocent and clueless around girls pre-jacket

Good point...

Even if he did know the jacket's magick powers, Buffy clearly seduces him

But she only does that because she's under a spell, not because of her free choice. Mind you, I do think her attitude afterwards makes a big difference - if Buffy herself doesn't see it as a big deal, that's her right.


I'd put a restriction on lust-inducing jackets: You can only wear them over the age of 18

Even more important: you must take them off if approaching within 5 metres of someone under 18! :-)




Posted by: fluffybkitty (fluffybkitty)
Posted at: 2nd July 2009 10:34 (UTC)

Posted by: ladypeyton (ladypeyton)
Posted at: 30th June 2009 20:33 (UTC)

I do *not* think the answer to question #1 is yes. I think they are still in the foreplay part of the program.

I'm not sure what the answer is to #2. It seems he doesn't know but really, how stupid is he? (pretty stupid, IMO)

As for #3, yes it would be rape. Of course, it would also be statutory rape is RJ is under 18 so it's squicky on *all* levels.

Which is pretty much why I've decided that the answer to question 1 *must* be no.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 1st July 2009 01:28 (UTC)

Which is pretty much why I've decided that the answer to question 1 *must* be no.

For the sake of your sanity? :-)

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