Thought I forgot about this, didn’t you? Well, I didn’t. I just had to really get through Angel & Faith: Live Through This and I am so glad I did. Live Through This is the first TPB of the spin-off of Buffy Season 9 collecting the first five issues of Angel & Faith put out by Dark Horse as well as a Harmony one-shot. After reading through Live Through This, I am happy to announce that Faith Lehane is my 4th and 5th Crush of the Week.
This was kind of a no-brainer. Faith has always been my favorite Slayer in the Buffy-verse so it’s no surprise that a series dedicated to her awesomeness would be right up my alley. I don’t collect the comics as they come out, since I love having these books, so it was torture going to my LCS each month to see beautiful covers of my girl Faith. But I collected Buffy Season 8 as trades, am collecting Season 9 in the trades, so it made more sense to wait for Angel & Faith to come out as a trade. Now that I have it, I’m happy to have waited. I can’t imagine waiting month after month to see this story unfold.
Faith has come along way since the TV show. Once a wild card with a murderous streak, she has come around to the light side, trying to atone for her past sins. Frankly, it’s her mistakes that have always made her so compelling. She never asked to be a Slayer. She had a screwed up childhood that skewed her worldview and then had to constantly live with the fact that she would never be Buffy Summers. She was the second Slayer. The extra. Her unconventional draw to the more violent aspects of Slaying made it hard for her to make friends and, so desperate for acceptance, she was drawn to the charismatic but diabolical mayor of Sunnydale just because he showed her kindness. Even love. She never got that from anyone before and, as such, was willing to do anything to keep that. Even kill.
There are those that hate Faith for her hatred of Buffy and everything the Scooby Gang stood for but I always saw her as the girl that was forced to stand on the side lines and watch the people she cared about most go about their lives without so much as a second thought for her. She should have been a Scooby but she was misunderstood and, therefore, an outcast (never mind the fact that Anya and Spike eventually became part of the gang).
But that’s not why she’s my Crush of two weeks. We know that she eventually starts to redeem herself on Angel’s series and then helps train the new Slayers at the end of Buffy Season 7 and then throughout Season 8. But it’s her role as Angel’s caretaker and partner in Slaying and as a go-to girl for other lost Slayers. If you’ll recall, Buffy destroyed the source of magic in the world last season, so the world is a very dangerous place. Vampires and current Slayers have their abilities but other demons and magical entities have been rendered powerless. Despite this, Angel is determined to bring the deceased Rupert Giles back from the dead, to atone for killing him last season.
Faith, of course, has misgivings. She and Giles had developed a very strong (platonic) relationship in Season 8 but he had informed her before that bringing someone back from the dead is nearly impossible. But she stays with Angel anyway, feeling the need to take care of him and even help guide his atonement. He had been there for her when no one else was and she understands his desire to pay for past crimes. I think she’s reaching the end of her journey to the light but Angel has a dark path that he’ll need to walk in order to be able to join her. Faith has taken it upon herself to be his guide.
It’s that determination that makes Faith so powerful and so beautiful as a character. She could very easily be bitter. Angel killed Giles, who she had been so close to, and most of the Slayers hate him for being Twilight and his part in destroying magic. I’m sure it would be easy to go on her own and let Angel self-destruct. But she has such strong conviction in redemption and believes against all odds that everyone deserves a second
and third and fourth and fifth… chance. She is the ultimate example of someone who has come full circle and her dedication to getting Angel to live up to his name makes her my Crush of the Week for two weeks in a row!