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(Meta) The Twilight reveal

8th January 2010 (23:44)

So, about the reveal of who Twilight really is in Season 8...
And no, it's not Edward Cullen.


It's Angel.

Scott Allie has confirmed in a telephone interview that no, it's not a fake: it really is him. Although he refused to either confirm or deny whether it's Angel or Angelus, and whether he's still a vampire or if he's shanshued into human, and whether he's acting alone or part of something larger, or whether he and Buffy will fight or ally, or anything else about the storyline. (Yes, the interviewer asked all those questions and Scott stonewalled all of them.)

Scott also posted this on his Twitter account just now:
Someone else spoiled it yesterday and Joss thought we should address it since the fansites were all over it.

So what does this actually mean for the story?

Well, it explains how Twilight knows Buffy, and why he was reluctant to kill her on their first meeting. It explains how in person he's imposing and commanding, but sometimes a bit of a dork. It doesn't explain why he's raising an army of demons to kill all the Slayers, though...

If he's Angelus, that would explain it no problem, of course. But if he's still got his soul?

Well, have you seen Season 5 of 'Angel'? Of course Angel would be perfectly willing to work with evil monsters and demons, sacrifice innocents (such as Drogyn), deceive his closest friends, and generally be ruthless, if he thought he was doing it for a good purpose.

So what is his purpose? We don't know yet. But there's this line of his from 'A Beautiful Sunset' that bears repeating:

"One Slayer was all right, but all these girls? ...The world can't contain them, and they will suffer for that. I'll not kill you now. My first gift is my last. I know you meant well. But you have brought about disaster, and it falls to me to avert it."

Let's suppose, for the sake of argument, that Angel honestly believes that the presence of over 1800 Slayers in the world will upset its balance and, somehow, lead to an apocalypse. He thinks it's inevitable. What can he do?

One option would be to reverse the Slayer spell. And guess what? In 'Wolves At The Gate' his minions were trying to do just that. But they failed. So does he have any other option, except to kill all the new Slayers before it's too late? Sacrifice 1800 lives to save over six billion?

Angel is ruthless enough to do it. Is Buffy? Hard to say... but the Buffy whom Angel actually knew, the one in seasons 1 - 3, almost certainly wouldn't be ruthless enough. So, he doesn't tell her his plan.

He deliberately takes it upon himself to be the villain, to adopt a secret identity, and to become her enemy, all to keep Buffy's own hands clean. To let her hate him, and keep her pure while he does the dirty work that must be done. Isn't that just a classic Angel thing to do? (It's romantic and selfless and anti-heroic and patronising as all hell, and treating Buffy as a child who can't make decisions for herself.)

Assuming all this is true, I'm going to hope that in the final ten issues of Season 8, Buffy pulls out a dea ex machina that allows her to save the world without killing all the remaining Slayers... because as I've said before, if the spell in 'Chosen' was a metaphor for the empowerment and liberation of women, what does it say if in Season 8 all those empowered and liberated women have to be hunted down and killed in order to save the world? I kinda hope that's not the message Joss is going for here...

But until we see what happens, all of this is just speculation. I can't wait to find out for real.
 

 


Comments

Posted by: Beer Good (beer_good_foamy)
Posted at: 8th January 2010 23:56 (UTC)

Couldn't he have tried telling Buffy before he tried to reverse the spell, so she knew what the point of it was, though? I mean, on the one hand, one phone call, on the other, becoming an evil mastermind who controls much of the world's military and use it to kill perfectly innocent girls...? It seems a little over the top as a first solution.

Oh well. Hope for everyone's sake there's finally a good explanation.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 00:19 (UTC)

This is the Buffy who proved - in 'Damage' - that she didn't trust him one inch and was planning to backstab him from the moment they made contact?

This is the Angel who didn't bother explaining to his team about his plan to destroy the Black Thorn until, like, the day before the apocalypse?

Your plan might make logical sense, but wouldn't be very in character...

Posted by: Beer Good (beer_good_foamy)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 00:23 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 00:26 (UTC)

Posted by: Beer Good (beer_good_foamy)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 00:30 (UTC)

Posted by: 2maggie2 (2maggie2)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 00:02 (UTC)

Like I said in my reply to you down below, I've always thought Twilight thinks he's doing good. Exactly because of that line.

But if we just jump to your scenario, we have to assume that Angel didn't consider the possibility that the Tokyo attempt hardly ruled out all the other ways of taking care of this issue. One would think that to get to mass murder, even Angel would have to have tried a few more things before taking the plunge.

As for the slayer spell... it's a bit hard to see how it doesn't end up being undone given the future. Though we do have Buffy's line about altering time loops -- so maybe her cleverness will find a way of handling things without confirming the Fray future where the history books contain no mention of there ever having been a slayer army. If that were the future, though, then clearly we're going to be travelling to the past to undo that spell. And somewhere in that time travel craziness, I think the IDW Angel splits off from the DH Angel.

Big word, though, on Angel almost certainly having a good motive for this. I'd love it to pieces if his ruthlessness in the cause of good was a plot point cause a lot of fans are too quick to think NFA was just plan heroic.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 00:24 (UTC)

This may be another example of how much we need to be told rather than being able to assume, though...

If my scenario is correct, I'm positive that Angel will have gone through all sorts of plans and schemes and desperate attempts to find another solution, before settling on this one. But they could hardly show them to us in issues 1 - 32, could they? Not without ruining the surprise of what he's trying to do.

As for Fray's future: I'm reserving judgement on whether it will turn out to be THE future, or a parallel reality that diverged into a separate time loop when Buffy killed Willow. Either could work. (Though personally, I'm inclined to the second idea.)

Posted by: 2maggie2 (2maggie2)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 01:28 (UTC)

Posted by: mr_waterproof (mr_waterproof)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 00:51 (UTC)

I'm just glad Twilight isn't Future!Xander/Giles/Andrew come back in time, or even Future!Disguised as a man!Buffy/Dawn/Willow, or a supposedly dead villain come back to life (Caleb or Adam) or a minor character from the TV series (Buffy's dad, Parker, Graham, Scott Hope) or a crossover from another series (Edward Cullen, an active, Captain Hammer). It had to be either Angel or Spike and you gave a good account of why Angel makes more sense.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 02:54 (UTC)

Ah, but we don't yet know who is the secret mastermind behind Twilight!
;-)

Posted by: mr_waterproof (mr_waterproof)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 07:42 (UTC)

Posted by: dancing till the world ends (lynnenne)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 17:37 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 18:40 (UTC)

Posted by: Lily (lavastar)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 20:45 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 21:04 (UTC)

Posted by: Lily (lavastar)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 21:12 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 21:59 (UTC)

Posted by: Lily (lavastar)
Posted at: 10th January 2010 01:39 (UTC)

Posted by: erimthar (erimthar)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 01:36 (UTC)

The only thing that could make me hate this reveal any more than I already do, would be to try to peddle the notion that Twangel's heinous actions were based on some sort of notion of "the greater good," or that there's some sort of redemption available to him at this point.

If Joss wants to go down this road, he needs to have the stones to follow it where it goes. Murdering good-hearted young girls in their sleep is evil. Sending demonic toys to possess and drain and kill the world's children is evil. Tricking the people of the world into presenting themselves as food for demons is evil. Twilight is evil, and Angel is evil.

This season needs to end with Angel turned to Angel Dust, and Xander holding the stake that does the deed.

I'll never be able to watch an episode of "Angel" again, knowing what he makes of himself.

Posted by: M (evilfirepixie8)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 02:14 (UTC)
just a little evil

This. I thought Angel was about redemption. This is the complete opposite of redemption. Maybe for the world, but not for himself. If he really is Twilight, everything he's worked for through the 3 seasons of Buffy and 5 of Angel, to redeem himself- it's all for moot. The character as we know it did a complete 180 in his journey.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 02:53 (UTC)

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: 9th January 2010 06:05 (UTC)

Posted by: Nicki (peroxidepirate)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 04:41 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:17 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 02:51 (UTC)

Posted by: erimthar (erimthar)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 03:38 (UTC)

Posted by: Speaker-to-Customers (speakr2customrs)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 10:19 (UTC)

Posted by: arkeus (arkeus)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 12:21 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:54 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:26 (UTC)

Posted by: erimthar (erimthar)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 15:30 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 16:12 (UTC)

Posted by: erimthar (erimthar)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 16:46 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 18:38 (UTC)

Posted by: Nicki (peroxidepirate)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 04:31 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:29 (UTC)

Posted by: fangfaceandrea (fangfaceandrea)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 07:52 (UTC)

Posted by: the infamous Midwestern subterrainean Explodebear. (hkath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 03:50 (UTC)
how's the hair [AtS]

I had been preparing myself for evil!future!Xander/Giles/Andrew (or alternate universe versions, or something), because that would have devastated me and I wanted to be ready. Angel is kind of a let down! I'm not all that upset, but I'm also not all that excited. Your theory for his motivations seems plausible, but I kind of hope there's more to it than that. I'm gonna need some serious twists and turns, and the reveal of Twangel just ain't cutting it! I'm reserving judgement on his motives.

Also, wtf flying? Is he still a vampire? Human? Floaty warlock guy? How in heck has he been disguising his voice & body shape well enough that she hasn't recognized him? I mean, sure, it's fiction, they can just invent some little gadget that makes him sound like Christian Bale or Mary Tyler Moore... but at the same time: it's Angel. You'd think she would have noticed. IDK!

Not to mention that that mask must seriously flatten his hair!

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:35 (UTC)

Well, I'm assuming the Twilight costume includes anti-gravity boots and a voice masking device. :-)

But - notice how Twilight's voice is shown with the same font that vampire voices are shown? In hindsight, that could well have been a Clue.

(Random thought that came to me last night... maybe the Twilight organisation was pre-existing, and Angel beat up the original Twilight and stole his costime?)

Posted by: the infamous Midwestern subterrainean Explodebear. (hkath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 15:57 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 16:24 (UTC)

Posted by: mr_waterproof (mr_waterproof)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 22:06 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 22:22 (UTC)

Posted by: none of the above (frogfarm)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 04:14 (UTC)

Just chiming in to say how mildly frustrating it is that I won't be reading this discussion until after I read the issue in question. So a few months down the road :)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:35 (UTC)

Does that mean you carefully skipped over what I posted and the comments, too? :-)

Posted by: none of the above (frogfarm)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:46 (UTC)

Posted by: Emmie (angearia)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 07:31 (UTC)

This is me agreeing with you. And my question now is how Angel came to be Twilight, what circumstances brought on his mission to stop the Slayers.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:38 (UTC)
angel

Yay! \o/

One thing that did strike me... in 'The Long Way Home', the Twilight scar on General Voll's chest is old and faded. Unless it's an artist's error, that means the organisation has been around for a lot longer than the nine months or so between 'After The Fall' and Season 8.

So, was Angel working on this in his Wolfram and Hart days? Or, more likely, was it an existing organisation that he somehow joined, or took over? Did he beat up the original Twilight and steal his costume, and has been working undercover for the last year?

Posted by: Caroline (jamalov29)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 09:54 (UTC)
Back porch

As a non-follower of the comics I was still interested in your interpretation of the reveal that Angel is Twilight and it's pretty convincing. :)

if the spell in 'Chosen' was a metaphor for the empowerment and liberation of women, what does it say if in Season 8 all those empowered and liberated women have to be hunted down and killed in order to save the world? I kinda hope that's not the message Joss is going for here... He would certainly lose credibility in the eyes of many people.

Posted by: counteragent (counteragent)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 11:54 (UTC)

I fell behind on the comics long ago but had to click here! I REALLY hope the empowered women thing does not turn out to be a liability in the future that they need to reverse. That would be sad.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:48 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:45 (UTC)

Posted by: arkeus (arkeus)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 12:24 (UTC)

Very interesting argument.

Hadn't heard about the Angel thing before.

And, yeah, two obvious options for the betrayal would be Buffy betraying the Slayers by choosing to help 'Angel'(or Angelus, or the one behind him), or else Angel himself- because, to Buffy, she might still believe Angel is *her* (her parallel).

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:51 (UTC)

I suspect that the line about betrayal will turn out to be about Angel. It's the simplest solution, and not every comics reader is willing to spend days combing over every last panel looking for the symbolism and nuance. :-)

Mind you, it could also be a line that's meant to work on several levels, so it's about Angel betraying her by becoming Twilight, but it's ALSO about Buffy betraying herself, her friends, her principles, and maybe a bunch of other deeper meanings too.

Posted by: Lily (lavastar)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 20:55 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 21:03 (UTC)

Posted by: Lily (lavastar)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 21:09 (UTC)

Posted by: mikeda (mikeda)
Posted at: 13th January 2010 13:08 (UTC)

Posted by: Cal (caliente_uk)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:46 (UTC)
animated rain

I gave up on following the comics a few months ago, but find your take on Angel being Twilight very interesting. I just hope that wherever Joss goes with the story, he doesn't take it so far that it loses what little (imo) credibility it has left.

But I do hope that it all makes perfect sense in the end. I just have very little faith that it will.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 14:53 (UTC)

I find with a lot of works of fiction - including, ironically, IDW's 'Angel' comics, not to mention the original 'Buffy' TV show - that if you like them, you can easily accept the storyline and fill in any blanks yourself; but if you're not interested, all the flaws and plot holes suddenly seem much more obvious and insurmountable.

Posted by: Cal (caliente_uk)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 15:25 (UTC)

Posted by: Maia (green_maia)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 16:41 (UTC)

Let's suppose, for the sake of argument, that Angel honestly believes that the presence of over 1800 Slayers in the world will upset its balance and, somehow, lead to an apocalypse. He thinks it's inevitable. What can he do?

One option would be to reverse the Slayer spell. And guess what? In 'Wolves At The Gate' his minions were trying to do just that. But they failed. So does he have any other option, except to kill all the new Slayers before it's too late? Sacrifice 1800 lives to save over six billion?

Angel is ruthless enough to do it. Is Buffy? Hard to say... but the Buffy whom Angel actually knew, the one in seasons 1 - 3, almost certainly wouldn't be ruthless enough. So, he doesn't tell her his plan.

He deliberately takes it upon himself to be the villain, to adopt a secret identity, and to become her enemy, all to keep Buffy's own hands clean. To let her hate him, and keep her pure while he does the dirty work that must be done. Isn't that just a classic Angel thing to do? (It's romantic and selfless and anti-heroic and patronising as all hell, and treating Buffy as a child who can't make decisions for herself.)


WORD.

My interest in the comics was flagging. This has revived it in one fell swoop. I can't wait to see how this plays out.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 18:34 (UTC)

I'm 99.9% sure the leak was accidental, but it's certainly got more publicity for the comics than anything else they've done in two years... ;-)

And yes, all this does put Angel in an interesting light now...

Posted by: Maia (green_maia)
Posted at: 10th January 2010 18:08 (UTC)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 10th January 2010 18:17 (UTC)

Posted by: rapunzel215 (rapunzel215)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 18:42 (UTC)

I wonder if anyone's taken note of what's occurring in Angel Issue #28. At the end, it's apparent that Angel is wrapped in some sort of cocoon with a tube of animal blood to feed him and his "vampire-infected blood" going out another tube. He's being held at some place called "Innovation Labs: Building a better future today". The next issue promises to show us how Angel got in this predicament. Perhaps he was "recruited" and tinkered with by these lab people to help with some cause. A cause like getting rid of all the demons and magic in the world. And the Slayers. That may explain his ability to fly. Just a thought.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 19:11 (UTC)

It's a very interesting idea. :-) I'm not sure how closely IDW's comics are tied into the Season 8 ones, though it could be that the current 'Angel' storyline was meant to end, in a couple of months' time, with Angel going off to be Twilight - and IDW are annoyed because this leak spoiled their timetable.

Or maybe Twilight is actually an Angel clone, not Angel himself - and what we see in Angel #28 is the process where the clone was manufactured?

Posted by: mikeda (mikeda)
Posted at: 10th January 2010 14:20 (UTC)

Posted by: Lisa (shipperx)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 19:20 (UTC)
Spangel - Soul Men

I like the concept. But, I just don't know that Joss has the stones for it. (And I hope like hell Spike isn't an Angel minion.)

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 21:02 (UTC)

I can't see Spike agreeing to that. :-)

Posted by: Lily (lavastar)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 20:39 (UTC)

But according to Fray, there is some big anti-magic spell that either kills or de-Slayers all the Slayers. We already know the ending: Twilight somehow wins. Unless Joss is gonna go all Dollhouse on us and claim it's "one version of an ending", which would then render the Fray crossover totally illegitimate.

Basically, right now it seems retcon-y as hell, and really really dumb. But if Joss can actually pull it off, maybe I'll feel different.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 21:01 (UTC)

Alternate futures. That was a big theme all through 'Time Of Your Life', how knowing the future could alter the past or create a new present. And there's precedent for this sort of thing on the show, too: "I wish Buffy Summers had never come to Sunnydale".

Until the very last issue of Season 8, I'm going to reserve judgement on whether Fray's future is THE future, or a possible alternative future.

Giles smashing Anyanka's amulet at the end of 'The Wish' doesn't make that episode illegitimate, does it?

Posted by: Lily (lavastar)
Posted at: 9th January 2010 21:08 (UTC)

Posted by: Two legs good, four legs okay (nothorse)
Posted at: 10th January 2010 19:45 (UTC)

Just here to gloat until I see the issue in question. Angel would be perfectly capable to see himself as the good guy in this, but I think the taunts and methodology might be different.

Anyway. For the gloat: May I say: "I told you so"</> half a year ago?

Posted by: Going through the motions (rowanda380)
Posted at: 14th January 2010 22:29 (UTC)
random commenter

You make some really interesting points about the possibilities, ones that, if true, do indeed make the idea more real to me...so I thank you for that. I can't wait to see what happens!

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: 15th January 2010 06:41 (UTC)

Over the past few months I've drifted from the camp that says Twilight is a future Buffy to the camp that Twilight is Angel, and even believing it I got really mad when I heard it was true.



But then I got to thinking about the Shanshu Prophecy, and how, "that the vampire with a soul will play a major role in the Apocalypse for good or for evil and receive a reward "shanshu" for his efforts." We all knew that it was coming, that Angel's moment was planned out in Joss's head way back in season 1 of Angel (or ever further back). So now I think back to issue 12 of After the Fall, and the massive pile of bodies around Angel. Then comes Cordelia telling him it won't turn out that way.


So I have to wonder if the final arc of season 8 will see Angel become a simple mortal man, and even more I wonder if Cordelia knows exactly how it's going to play out.

Posted by: helios_knight (helios_knight)
Posted at: 15th January 2010 06:45 (UTC)

Forgot to sign in, that was added by me.

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