Portrayals of god inBuffy the Vampire Slayer Or, Die, god, Die!
Die God Die! • If you meet a god in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, chances are you’ll have to kill it… • Evil gods - gods are real on Buffy, but they are ALWAYS evil • the “big bad” in Buffy is often divine (or a divine wannabe) • Other “divine beings” also evil - Olaf the Troll God (Triangle, 2001)
The Mayor • Nice, polite, psychotic, divine wannabe • His “ascension” is focus of season 3 • Never trust a politician, they think they are gods? • Gods/religions devour our youth? • Evil dwells beneath calm, bible-belt exterior? • High School is Hell? • Episode foreshadows Buffy’s solution at end of Season Seven
Glory • Psychotic, self-centered, relentless, multiple-personality (and body!) • Big Bad of Season Five • Exiled God (parallel to Satan?) • God/religion looks attractive, but is deadly? • Religion/god is two-faced? (Shares her body with Ben) • Even well-intentioned devotees (Ben) are corrupted by religion? • Religion is insane?
The First • The first evil, predating human beings • Takes the form of dead humans • Origin story of world - began in evil, only after last demon slain, was room made for humans • Evil worshipped as divine - root of religion is evil? • Fear, doubt, lies - root of religion?
Caleb • (Ex)Catholic priest, abuser of women • Servant of the First • “a woman-hating jerk” • Considers women “dirty,” stained with “Eve’s sin” • Religion = anti-woman? • Religion destroys women? • Worshipper of evil • Attempting to become a god - religious quest = evil? • Religion = demonic? • Power of church, clergy = evil?
Die God Die • Theological implications of gods in Buffy - evil gods are active in the world - no other kind of god is shown in the Buffyverse • Even Buffy’s powers are shown to be evil at root • Evil and male/patriarchal dominance go hand in hand • Buffy’s solution to divine evil is a feminist answer to religion? We will discuss this more next week!