Dawn from BTVS: Irrational Character Hate

This post on 20 things I learned at Dragon*Con reminded me of something Katie and I noticed at Comic-Con. During the screening of the musical Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode, “Once More With Feeling,” it seemed like half the audience would boo Dawn, and would shout out things like, “Shut up, Dawn” when she spoke, or “No!” when she sings, “Does anybody even care?”

Okay, I get that you don’t like the Scrappy… but shouting “Shut up!” when she’s spilling the beans about Willow & Tara’s fight? That sorta implies that you don’t want Tara to find out that Willow has been altering her memories. That’s psychological abuse by any standard. Is it better for Tara to stay in an abusive relationship than for Dawn to be the one to open her eyes?

Or how about when she mentions to Sweet that her sister is the Slayer? That sets the rest of the story in motion — in fact, it sets the rest of the season in motion. Not only does it make it possible for them to “beat the bad guy,” but it sets up that Buffy/Spike relationship, and I’d bet 90% of the people booing Dawn just lurve “Spuffy” to death. (Excuse me while I gag.)

It’s hate for the sake of hating the character, even when she does things you like — or things that are necessary.

Personally? I couldn’t stand her through most of 5th season. I’m not sure what turned me around, but it was during the last episode, “The Gift,” that I decided, y’know, she’s okay. Katie, who has a younger sister, found Dawn to be the best characterization of a younger sister on television…and couldn’t hate her for that reason.

Perhaps it was the realism of that sister relationship, seen through Buffy’s eyes, that made so many viewers dislike her. Well, that and the Scrappy effect.

(20-Things post found via Blog@Newsarama)

See Also: Convention Photos & Write-Ups

3 thoughts on “Dawn from BTVS: Irrational Character Hate

  1. nikkirae

    I haven’t watched nearly as much Buffy as I’d have liked. But I have seen the extreme to which some will go when they feel they need to bash a character or actor or even a movie or tv show. It’s a side of humanity, this taking of those things so personal and serious when it’s entertainment, when in reality… it has nothing to do with us.

    It’s about the story.

    Reply
  2. 99percentdead

    I’m sorry to say that when a certain character showed up on Buffy, it was all Dawnhill from there. They could have had her die at the end of the 5th season and very little would have needed to change for the events of the 6th, plus it would have redeemed Dawn’s character to some degree.

    Reply
  3. kathryn

    honestly i hate Dawn but she gets a little better in 6 and 7 season and she does have some good lines/scenes and i understand that its annoying to say shut up dawn when shes telling tara and sweet those things but I have to admit im gui;ty of yelling out no when shes singing “does anybody even notice” and clapping when she gets captured

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.