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Not a Hero

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Review of chapter "Chapter One" from WhippingDawn
Xander is a hero. So is Dawn by the way. Both know they have no powers whatsoever and they'll get disemboweled alive or worse if they have to confront the kind of monster Buffy fights every night. Yet they still go for it as soon as they realize it's the right thing to do, the only thing to do.

But Buffy doesn't want them to be heroes. She knows Xander is one, but she'd rather have him as her male confident, her best friend forever. As for Dawn, honestly I was so disappointed that she didn't become a Potential. That would have opened such an extraordinary storyline... But to Buffy, she was the little sister she had to love and protect, so she couldn't be a hero.

Damn now I've got yet another idea for a story...
Review By [WhippingDawn] • Date [30 Apr 13] • Rating [8 out of 10]
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from Fayari
Actually, Buffy's right. Xander isn't a 'hero' anymore according to that definition, because after learning that the only reason the First Evil could manifest itself in the world was because Buffy was alive again, a 'hero' would have just killed Buffy and be done with it.

But before that, Xander was definitely a hero. Lying about the soul curse, advocating a harsher stance than Buffy's own naive decisions, all the little things he did to assist the heavy hitters despite being treated unfairly, and even sometimes with undeserved hostility.

For most of the series, Xander was a hero, but in the end, he didn't kill Buffy, so he risked the world for his friend. He's not a hero anymore.
Review By [Fayari] • Date [12 Jun 12] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from TheologyDiscography
I've been reading over some of the other reviews, and I think everyone is missing the point. The point isn't whether Buffy's a hero, or even if Xander is. The point is if BUFFY would ever call either of them that. And consistently through the series, Buffy goes on kicks where she's the only one who can do anything Slaying related because she's the Slayer, and doing her best to completely shut Xander and Willow out. These incidents decrease as you get on with the series simply because every time she does she gets smacked in the face with her mistakes. So I think that given the opportunity, she would say that Xander isn't a hero. Because if the others are heroes too, then the suffering she's gone through as the Slayer is without justification.

On the other hand, I think that Xander would never admit to being a hero either. Because to him, Buffy's the hero, and he's just the guy who makes sure she stays in one piece so she can do her job.

And as for the 'sacrificing the world to save someone he loved' thing, what do you call the thing with Aclatha? He did something that he knew would cause someone he loved a lot of pain, telling Buffy to kick Angelus' ass, because he knew that if he got the upper hand, Angelus would destroy the world.
Review By [TheologyDiscography] • Date [3 Jun 12] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from Oakheart
I don't think Xander would call himself a hero, and would gently chide any attempts to label him as such. If I read him correctly, he believes a hero wouldn't _have_ to make a choice on who to save; a hero can (by definition) 'pull off a miracle'. He knows he will always have to make choices, and be damned by them.

That being said, i recall the words spoken by Major Richard Winters (1/21/1918 - 1/02/2011) when asked by his children if he'd been a hero in World War II:

"No... but I served in a company of them."

Review By [Oakheart] • Date [3 Aug 11] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from Dragonwolftiger
I'll give you that one, but not because Xander's no hero, but because Buffy even late in life will alway's see her friend first.
Review By [Dragonwolftiger] • Date [24 Oct 09] • Rating [10 out of 10]
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from spring
I love it. Also I have to agree with Buffy's statement Xander would save one person that he loved/cared about over the world, he is that type of person that cares to much about individuals so he can't be considered a world hero, a personal one yeah maybe on a case by case biases. Again I think that this fic is wonderful.
Review By [spring] • Date [18 Sep 08] • Rating [10 out of 10]
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from ayli
a hero is someone who will sacrifice himself for others with no regard to what it will cost him.

I think that's Xander...He has faults, all of them do. But he would walk into the hellmouth a normal human man with no special powers, and less then average chance of getting out. Why? because it's the Right thing to do. Stand against the evil until your last breath.
Review By [ayli] • Date [6 Oct 06] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from (Past Donor)renatria
Actually I think it was a very mature Buffy you had speaking. One who had realized her duty was to everyone, and was vaguely jealous that Xander could take care of those he loved first. Whenever she would try to do that, things got really messed up. Thanks for the thoughts.
Review By [(Past Donor)renatria] • Date [2 May 06] • Rating [10 out of 10]
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from ObsidianBlack
Then, by this very definition, Buffy is no hero either. For example, season 7. Spike had the trigger in his head that was making him go off killing people. Buffy, in her selfishness, refused to allow the trigger to be removed, and in doing so endangered the Potentials and the others. Giles and Robin were in the right to try to kill Spike. From a purely objective viewpoint, he was a threat that had to have been eliminated.

Another example is in season 3, where the Mayor had captured Willow, and was holding her in exchange for the return of the Gavrok's Box. They had the chance to destroy the box, and they didn't. From an objective point of view, Wesley was right, if a little cold. One life (Willow), in exchange for sparing thousands. Yet Buffy chose to risk those thousands of lives for one person.

Then, as mentioned, there was Angel. Not just her refusing to kill Angelus, but Faith and the Mayor poisoning Angel on 'Graduation Day'. Rather than focus on the battle, she chose to allow herself to be distracted with saving him, thus risking lives.

Don't get me wrong. I liked Willow, and Spike, and Angel, and were I in Buffy's shoes I would have made the same decision she did (except the Spike situation. Not allowing the trigger to be removed was stupid and short-sighted.) But, from a purely strategic point-of-view, they were the wrong decisions.

This Buffy is out of character, as I see her criticizing Xander for something she does: Thinking with her heart. Something that Giles himself called her greatest strength on season five's 'Spiral'. I don't believe Buffy would EVER point out a flaw in a friend when she recognizes that same thing in herself.

I think people tend to look at the character of Buffy through rose-colored glasses, forgetting her tendency to be self-absorbed, egotistical and hypocritical. (consider her actions in season 4. Her 'tired' of all Willow's grieving over Oz's departure. This after she broke down crying on Willow's shoulder due to Angel's leaving and then spending months moping around and pining after him and then after Parker. Or her getting all wrapped up in Riley while ignoring her friends.) Buffy has a lot of strengths, and I agree with Giles that her ability to put her heart first is a strength in Buffy, as it is in Xander and is in Willow. But, people shouldn't let their love of Buffy blind them to the character's flaws.
Review By [ObsidianBlack] • Date [10 Feb 06] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from Cristina
No Buffy never said it. she called him Xander-shaped friend, but never a hero.
Review By [Cristina] • Date [9 Jan 06] • Rating [8 out of 10]
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from cwolf
a point I never considered. Though in the early days of Buffy, it was the opposite I believe.

"Xander was a person that would have let hundreds maybe even thousands of people die to protect a person he loves or calls a friend. You think a hero would do that?”
Review By [cwolf] • Date [9 Jan 06] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from Cole
Xander isn't a hero because he holds Buffy to a different code of conduct than everyone else. When Anya starts killing people in the vengeance gig, he tries to say that what she was doing was in some way justified, and that for Buffy to go after her would be hypocritical. He felt responsible for Anya's actions and was trying to excuse them. He was comparing Anya to Angel and Angel us. But in many ways her actions were more wrong because she still had a soul. When Angel became Angel us, Angel was gone and his demon was in control of his action. The fact that Buffy had a hard time killing him could be put down to three things.
1. She was a seventeen year old girl who slept with the man she loved only to wake up the next morning and not only was she alone, he was also completely different. There was no transition there was no reason that she knew at the time to explain what was happening.
2. From the things that are said about Angel us on the show you are able to assume that he has killed many slayers in the past so not only is she fighting against someone who she has trained with and who had taught her many of the fighting moves she uses, she is also fighting against someone who has the face of the man she loves and he has had hundreds of years in-order to perfect his fighting styles while she has had only 3 years.
3. Angel us the only thing she had to worry about. There were other things happening in town at the time and she had to worry about that, protecting a town that not only didn't know what was happening but if they found out wouldn't believe. Worry about her friends who could have been more supportive. And keeping her mother from finding out about her secret identity.
Xander isn't fighting to help people he's fighting because he feels better about himself, like he is important. He knows something that only 6 people in the whole town know and because of the he is special.
They brought Buffy back from the dead believing she had been in a hell dimension, yet when she returns they expect her to function like nothing had happened. We Know that she wasn't in a hell dimension but if she had of been, didn't they think that she might need some help to get back to normal.
When Angel got back from hell he was gone 3 months 4 at the most and he was animistic, Buffy was gone nearly 5 months and they didn't think it strange that she was fine.
Xander isn't a hero he is much to selfish for the title.
Comments from author:
I think you're a little harsh on Xander. Although you gave some value points. I wasn't trying to put Xander down, by 'denying' him the title of hero. He has other could qualities. And I think a good man or a person that does good, doesn't has to be titled a 'hero'.
Review By [Cole] • Date [8 Jan 06] • Rating [6 out of 10]
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from Dragonhulk
I liked it, and from one point of view you're right, a hero would give up his or her friends to save the greater amount of people.
Review By [Dragonhulk] • Date [8 Jan 06] • Rating [9 out of 10]
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from MBB
To me, all Scoobies are Hero's dispite their small flaws; they risk their lives helping people in need without any personal gain.
And I don't even consider risking others lives to save your friends a flaw; they all save the world so by keeping a friend alive that friend could soon have saved more people then would have died to save him.
And with your definition, it also exclude Buffy (the very definiion of a hero) herself as she has been willing to sacrifise her friends lives and others repeatedly for Angelus, Angel, Spike, Dawn and Spike.

But while I disagree, I can understand your reasoning for declining Xander hero-status.
And the idea of the characters discussing the morals of a Hero was a good idea for a fic

The story is also too short, not complete and complicated enough;
- Why is Buffy telling *them* that? (you, 2 kids of a friend, doesn't sound as the people Buffy would tell bad to about her best friend)

- *Why* is Buffy telling them that?
When did Buffy ponder on the definition of a hero, how did she come to the conclusion Xander is not a hero (one reason without proove/example is not sufficient for such a strong label). If not her friends, who are hero's in Buffy opinion?

- Why is *Buffy* telling them that?
Of all chacters in Jossverse, why Buffy? Why is she telling those people of *Xanders* adventures if she has so many of her own? (unless because she admires him as hero, but in the story she does not.)
Why do those children want to be like Xander, when the big hero-of-the-show Buffy is in the room?
What adventures of Xander was she telling in the first place that made those children want to be like Xander in the first place (Buffy really appreciates him as person, friend and comfortador, but she usually misses out on his heroic moments, including the ones that support the friends-over-others.

As she has done the same thing so many times herself, is it secretly a way of her condamning herself for risking her friends lives for her boyfriends herself?

Anyway, whille I agree that Xander would be willing to risk the world for his friends, I'm really curious how you had *Buffy* come to that conclusion; as Xander staked his best friend Jesse, wanted to kill Angelus (Angel used to be a friend he disliked ;-) ), did not oppose staking Vamp-Willow, and considered killing Ben.
He was not strong enough to stop Willow, (and Buffy wasn't at the bluff to hear his speach), and Anya is a case of her own (she's not a friend but a girlfriend, he felt responsible for her turning demon, she still had a soul, she was sound of mind so would listen to reason, and he had been greatly influenced by Buffy forgiving her lovers the most immoral sins so the little bit of Anya seemed small in comparison.)

Anyway, 9 for the idea, 4 for the execution.
Comments from author:
I only posted this short fic, because I needed some feedback for the larger story this is actually part of, which I might never post, ever. I just needed justification Buffy not calling Xander a Hero and the reasoning I gave in the short fic, was the only reason I could think up. Because if you want to explain Xander's not-hero status, you have to probably write couple of more pages, I would say 10 to 100 pages.

I'm sorry for not commenting to your whole review, but it's too long. *grin* Thanks for reviewing. It made me think, I'm not agreeing with you 100%. Thanks again for reviewing.
Review By [MBB] • Date [8 Jan 06] • Not Rated
Review of chapter "Chapter One" from rpgwarrior
To be fair, how many people has she called a hero? If she hasn't called anyone else a hero, or only called one other person a hero, then it wouldn't be all that surprising that it wasn't Xander. I think Buffy's definition of hero is a bit different than yours in this case. Buffy really prefers not killing people, an example of which would be her not killing Ben. The fact that she thinks Xander would let thousands die to save the people he cares about would almost certainly cross him off her hero list. This probably crosses Willow, Spike, Angel, and probably Giles off her hero list as well though.
Comments from author:
I didn't mean that a hero has to kill a friend to save a lot of people, but that a hero will choose to save a lot of people over one friend. But I don't mean that a hero would do that always. We can't simplify things. I don't think Buffy could come up with another explanation, why Xander isn't a hero, because he had done a lot of heroic things.

Try to explain that into two sentence?

For one, I don't think Willow is a hero either, more a sidekick. And Spike? Well Spike is Spike? And Angel? Angel is a Champion. Giles? He's a watcher.

It is very hard to describe a hero, even harder to point one out.
Review By [rpgwarrior] • Date [8 Jan 06] • Rating [7 out of 10]
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