**Still working on "More or Less" and my other fics BTW
It's funny how I get a lot of different ideas during times like these in my life. I saw "Billy" yesterday and "Fredless" the other day and those are two Angel eps that really touch me. I always get all these ideas for fic:
1) Wes gets "reifected" with the Billy virus and somehow has to face off with Faith and/or Illyria who don't want to hurt him of course. Wackiness ensues
2) Wes and Lilah are in suburban Hell where Wes's dark side reigns under the surface where everything seems okay outside. The perfect Suburban Family (Lilah would be in Hevean being Wes's wife and Wes would finally have the simple life...or wait wouldn't they really be in HELL?"
3) Jeff and Tim said in The Billy comentary that Billy was born out of a human Senator raping a female demon. I always wanted to write something from Billy's Mom's POV.
Feel free to take any of these as challeges to do yourself, my lovley writers of fic.
I hardly write any Fred, Cordy or Lilah, and I totally love them. I think I don't do it because as much as I love them these women are very different from me, and I'm afraid I'm not getting their voice right. They all come from a place of privilege I don't have, like Cordy is/was so confident, and Fred thinks in that logical geek way even when she is reeling from emotion she's thinking about pi and meters and physics, I don't think I can fake that, and Lilah...well, she's Lilah. Strong in every way I'm not and weak in every way I'm not. If there's a bunch of things I'd never do there are selling my soul to a lifeless job just so I could try to be the best or get into that situation with Wes. Maybe that's why I should write her. Anyway, most of the draw of "Billy" is Wes, and how his misogyny came out. I think if you look at it as Billy brought misogyny out in every guy and Wes just fell in it that would be doing the character a disservice. I think Wes had his own person brand of misogyny brought out. We saw him have a very intellectualized hatred of women and their motives. They weren't just stupid or annoying or inferior, they wanted to humiliate him with their sexuality, bring him down. I think that we can see how Faith did just that in her evil days, so him feeling that way at the core of him is justified. But, maybe Faith wouldn't have reacted that way if he hadn't been so pretentious and distant. I think Wes feels all of this and he knows all of this, and he feels awful about it.
I think that Fred saying: "That wasn't you. It was something that was done to you" was correct too. His misogyny was molded and taught, by society, the class system, and of course my fave the Council. His father, and prolly the rest of his male relatives were a part of for years. So, Fred is right. Yet, he is right when he says: "How do you really know that?"
It is part of him too because it has been taught to him, molded in him and done to him as all sexism, racism, classism is done to white men and to all of us. The writers Tim and Jeff did a commentary on "Billy" on the DVD and it so worth listening to. You hear these two men -- artists talk about their ideas for the EP, and sort of struggle with and dance around their own misogyny. Tim LOVES when Lilah gets the shit beat out of her, and don't you too? Then, he sort of feels bad about it. Then, they talk about Wes's character totally having his sexism and hatred rage, and then how he feels rejected and taunted by women he wants so badly. Then, they talk about how Billy's misogyny didn't affect Angel because he soared about it in a weird way by becoming a demon. It was about pleasure and pain. He didn't have to care about rejection any more because he had more power than humans. Okay AWESOME.
I can't even begin to say how awesome this is. They are exploring the many facets of misogyny. Wes feeling rejected by women and hating himself for his own misogyny and knowing he can't fully rise about it. Angel who has more power so he has risen about it and it became about something else, but it was still about who held the power, but it wasn't based on hate or just women anymore. Cordelia, Lilah, and Fred dealing with this as women in all their different ways. Tim said that in the end is was important that each woman save themselves. I didn't even realize it but each woman did save themselves in the situation. I think even though I never saw that if they hadn't and Angel or Gunn had been successful saving them I would have been disappointed. This is why this is so great because these guys were willing to write this when still exploring their own misogyny but realize that the female characters had to react to it in their own independent ways...without them almost.
I think so far Tim is NOT doing that in the new series "the Inside" as just the men are reacting to the main female character's vulnerability and strength in that vulnerability. I am NOT SAYING that he isn't setting something up where the main character will be more active in the future. But, you can also hear in many of Tim's commentaries about women and gender issues that Joss helped him create more active female characters when Tim was willing to explore his feelings about women with in the show. Originally, Tim had ideas that Darla was going to be staked by Angel after the one night stand where Angel goes to his dark side with her as a catalyst. Also, Tim had ideas that Darla was going to be staked by the male midwife in order to give birth to her son. Joss was the one that said that Darla shouldn't go out this way. Darla should go out by scarifying herself for her child. I think this changed everything. It brought Darla to a whole new level. I made her an active character and not just something shadowing Angel. I probably changed the way I thought about the show, bitchy women who change for children or who bitchy and powerful women who are in and of themselves people who make choices, my own life in some way, who knows? I definitely changed who I am as a writer and how I look at characters. "What's the point of all this, Strange Bint?" You ask?
I'm not sure. It's just stuff I think about not just with the show but life and society and where we are with sexism and power struggles and our culture. It's interesting that "Wonder Falls" as a show where a girl was not a victim, (well, maybe a victim of fate?) but an active person in a world where she can be powerless sometimes got canceled, where the new show "The Inside" (which has great potential) where the girl who is literally a powerful agent but where her vicitmness is getting totally played up by FOX in the promos is getting pushed by them. But, there is something in all of this that Tim does (and Joss and Jeff and Mere and Marti did too) that ALWAYS keeps me, the freak, coming back, and I think what's-his-name the boss on "The Inside" summed it up: "This girl has a gift forged in pain, and this is something we can use to stop them." Or whatever he said. I dunno. It's the idea that women (and guys too) have a gift or a strength due to some painful thing that happened to them that once made them weak. Their pain has made them strong, it has actually given them power and that is something they can use to good in the world. I think anyone who has gone through something they think has set them a part wants to believe that, and see it played out in a story in a thoughtful way, where they struggle with it. Maybe that is what gives life some meaning. Wow, no more extra coffee for me! Oh, shut-up it's just TV, right?