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Joyce Summers

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Joyce Summers
Joyce
First appearance Buffy the Vampire Slayer (film) (non-canon)
"Welcome to the Hellmouth"
Last appearance "I Was Made to Love You" (Living)
After These Messages ... We'll Be Right Back! (Dream)
Information
Name Joyce Summers
Status Deceased
Classification Human
Affiliation Scooby Gang (ally)
Mothers Opposed to the Occult (founder)
Summers family
Known Relatives Arlene (sister with unspecified family)
Lolly (sister)[1]
Buffy Summers (daughter)
Dawn Summers (daughter)
Hank Summers (ex-husband)
Celia (niece-deceased)
Portrayed by  Candy Clark (non-canon)
Kristine Sutherland
"You get the hell away from my daughter!"
―Joyce Summers, protecting Buffy from Spike[src]

Joyce Summers was the owner of an Art Gallery and mother to Buffy and Dawn Summers.

Biography

Early Life

Joyce had two sisters, Arlene (who lives in Illinois along with her unspecified family ) and Lolly (who made the curtains hanging in their Sunnydale house). Her niece, Celia, whom Buffy was very close to, died at a young age. In high school, Joyce had a Gidget haircut and was on the yearbook staff. Joyce met Hank Summers at the prom during her freshman year of college. Joyce did not have a date, but Hank did.
Joycesummers
Joyce confronting Buffy after her first slay.
OwnerManAdded by OwnerMan

In Los Angeles, Hank and Joyce's relationship eventually deteriorated and Hank had an affair with his secretary. Hank and Joyce's arguments included those about Buffy when she came home after her first slay. While Hank was more authoritarian about Buffy's behavior, Joyce was more lenient, albeit disappointed parent. Hank and Joyce placed Buffy in an asylum after she was expelled for burning down the Hemery High School gym and had returned home from Las Vegas. Neither Hank or Joyce believed that Buffy was a vampire Slayer.

Sunnydale

Images (32)
Joyce seeing Buffy off to school on her first day at Sunnydale High School
Amanda YoungAdded by Amanda Young
"When did you die? You never told me you died?"
―Joyce discovering that Buffy had died[src]

In Sunnydale, Joyce owned an art gallery and maintained a close relationship with Buffy, although she was disappointed by some of Buffy's behavior. Joyce was a protective and loving parent. She also became a maternal presence in the lives of Buffy's friends, Willow Rosenberg and Xander Harris. When vampires attacked Sunnydale High School on Parent-Teacher Night, Joyce protected her daughter by attacking Spike with an axe after others fled the school. She was concerned about Buffy's poor academic performance, but she was proud to discover that Buffy was a strong leader who took care of herself. Unlike the abusive, bitter parents of Xander and the distant, uninvolved parents of Willow, Joyce was a constant loving presence, always there with advice and a warm hug. She was warm and loving to all, even Spike, with whom she eventually formed a friendship.


Joyce was disturbed when Angel turned into a stalker after losing his soul and returning to Angelus. She was even more upset when she learned that Buffy had lost her virginity to him. Joyce became increasingly frustrated with the distance between herself and her daughter. When police officers visited the house and informed her that Buffy was a murder suspect, Joyce feared the worst. She met Buffy, who was accompanied by Spike, outside their house. Buffy initially tried to convince her mom that she and Spike were in a band, but when the three were attacked by a vampire, Buffy staked him in front of her mom before leaving to save the world. Joyce reacted badly to this revelation and demanded that Buffy take the time to explain herself, going so far as to warn her not to come back to the house if she left, a statement that she clearly regretted immediately. Taking her at her word, Buffy departed Sunnydale for Los Angeles.

Tumblr lefje1rU7e1qecbnjo1 500
Joyce and Dawn
Amanda YoungAdded by Amanda Young
Images (34)
"There is a world of strength in your heart you just need to find it again."
Amanda YoungAdded by Amanda Young

While Buffy was gone, Joyce worked with Rupert Giles and the Scooby Gang to locate her. She developed a close friendship with Pat, a woman from her book club who was later killed by zombies. Joyce was relieved when Buffy returned and wanted things to go back to normal. She tried to support Buffy's extracurricular activities while also encouraging her to think about her future. After accompanying Buffy on patrol, Joyce fell under a demon's spell, which drove her to lead Sunnydale on a witch hunt. She and others attempted to burn Buffy, Willow, and Amy Madison at the stake and was later horrified at her actions. Spike stopped by the Summers' home when he returned to Sunnydale where Joyce lent a sympathetic ear as he related the details of his recent break-up, which earned his perpetual gratitude.

Images (35)
The Body
Amanda YoungAdded by Amanda Young

Joyce's only biological child was Buffy. However, a new daughter, Dawn, mystically appeared in her home. Her existence was interwoven into the everyone's memories. Joyce's health deteriorated and she was diagnosed with a brain tumor (clinically called oligodendroglioma). Pressure from the tumor interfered with her mind and she temporarily lost mental clarity. At that time, Joyce recognized Dawn's anomalous nature and confirmed with Buffy that Dawn was not her daughter by birth. She loved and accepted Dawn as a member of the family and urged Buffy to do everything in her power to protect Dawn.

First evil joyce
The First Evil takes on Joyce's form to appear before Dawn
TrebioAdded by Trebio

Later Years and Death

Joyce's health improved after a successful surgery, although her life was soon in danger again. Glory, a hell-god, sought a mystical key that could open inter-dimensional portals. Although Glory did not realize that the key was, in fact, Dawn, she knew that Buffy protected it. She threatened Buffy's family, which forced Joyce and Dawn to temporarily stay with Spike for protection. She continued her friendly relationship with Spike and they watched a soap opera, Passions, together. Soon afterward, Joyce suddenly died from a brain aneurysm which left all of the Scoobies, including Spike, devastated and completely heartbroken.[2]

Legacy

Dawn, devastated by Joyce's death to the point of irrationality and feeling abandoned by Buffy, resorted to necromancy despite Willow and Tara Maclay's warnings and, with help from Spike and Doc, reanimated Joyce. However, Dawn realized the inherent dangers of what she has done and that her mother may return as a zombie, breaking the spell before Joyce could enter the house.[3]

After her own resurrection, Buffy was poisoned by a demon which caused her to have visions where she was incarcerated in a Los Angeles mental institution and being the Slayer was merely her delusion.[4] Joyce appeared, still happily married to Hank and attempted to convince her daughter to get over her apparent insanity but her attempts ultimately lead to Buffy returning to Sunnydale full force to slay the demon that poisoned her. The episode ends with the image of asylum Buffy becoming catatonic, much to the dismay of Joyce and Hank. It is left deliberately ambiguous as to whether this was simply a hallucination or whether Buffy being the Slayer is in fact a seven year long delusion from when she 'meets' Merrick to when Asylum Buffy regains her sanity again at the end of Chosen. 

Post-mortem, Joyce appeared in Buffy's dreams on several occasions. The First Evil also took her form to contact Dawn and tried to drive a wedge between the Summers sisters.

Personality

Joyce was a stereotypical "Californian" mother, distant and reliant on "pop-psychology" techniques in raising her daughter, but well-meaning. She became more of a central figure, however, as she became more competent and sympathetic, as exemplified when she attacked Spike with an axe in order to protect her daughter. She was a warm, loving mother with a deep reserve of inner strength and a highly cynical and sarcastic streak, clearly inherited by her daughters. In stark contrast to Willow's religious, absent-minded parents and Xander's angry, bitter parents, Joyce was a constant and maternal presence, acting as a mother and friend to all the gang.

Joyce often bantered with Buffy and even held her own with Faith when the rogue Slayer held her hostage, sneering "Are you planning on slitting my throat anytime soon?" in the middle of Faith's monologue. She was a fan of the soap opera Passions, which she watched with Spike, the movie Thelma and Louise, art (particularly African), and was a competent seamstress. Her favourite tipples were Schnapps and Kahula and she was a fan of actor Burt Reynolds, the singer Juice Newton and the band 'Seals and Croft'. She likes waffles and may ski judging by the poles Oz finds in her closet in 'Dead Man's Party'. She is a member of a book club and learns to cook Mexican food in season 3.

Joyce hated potlucks, which she gave as a reason for not wanting a wake, and Jell-O, which, she confessed while in the hospital, "creeps her out". She often cared more about others than herself, being more concerned about Riley Finn than her medical condition. She had a friendly and motherly relationship with Spike, who claimed she was the only one he could stand. Spike paid his respects by anonymously leaving flowers.

When Joyce was reversed in her teenager years under band candy's effect, she demonstrate a attraction for the mysterious and bad boys like Ripper. A fact almost similar to her daughters, Buffy with Angel and Spike and Dawn with Justin.

Relationships

Romantic

  • Hank Summers — Joyce and Hank's relationship ended around the time Buffy began slaying because of disagreements about raising her and his affair with his secretary. After the divorce, Hank was allowed to spend weekends with his daughters where he and Joyce still retained a mutual respect for each other when unpacking her suit cases. [5] In Buffy's hallucinations, Joyce and Hank were still married, presumably for Buffy's sake.
  • Ted Buchanan — Joyce began dating the seemingly perfect software salesmen Ted after he revamped her computer system at the gallery. Although catching the trust of her mother and her friends, Buffy became suspicious of Ted who threatened her over cheating at mini golf. Joyce, drugged by Ted's cookies, dismissed Buffy's claim and was rendered passively unmapped about what to do after Buffy seemingly killed him. After an encounter with the reawakened Ted and what the police discovered in Ted's house along with what he did to his other wives, Joyce became apprehensive, still believing he would still jump out at her while not knowing his true nature as a robot. [6]
  • Xander Harris — Along with the entire female population, Joyce fell under Xander's love spell and attempted to seduce him at the Summers' home, even employing a kitchen knife to break the door that kept her away from him.[7] Xander also once dreamed of Joyce wearing a red silk night gown. [8]
  • Rupert Giles — Joyce shared a temporary fling with Giles when reverted to their teenage selves,[9] regretting it when returning adult but apparently likened his sexual performance to a stevedore when Buffy read her mind. [10]
  • Dracula-- At the beginning of season 5 Joyce meets Dracula, going out on a date for coffee together and then inviting him back to her house, presumably whilst under his thrall. It is unknown whether anything else happened between them.   
  • Brian — Before her death, she met a publisher named Brian who took her out for dinner and a movie. They had one date that went well leading Joyce to tease Buffy by jokingly claiming to leaving her bra at his car, then further tormenting her by saying it was actually left at the restaurant and then a dessert cart. [11]

Parental

  • Buffy Summers — Joyce's relationship with her eldest daughter was fairly distant before learning that she was the Slayer. Buffy was met with constant disappointment from Joyce who disapproved of some of her choices and activities such as joining the cheer leading squad, dating Angel and especially leaving her for LA. Sometime after Buffy's return to Sunnydale, Joyce became more supportive and more involved in her life, including her Slayer duties and her future beyond school.
  • Dawn Summers — Being her youngest, Joyce tended to baby Dawn, nicknaming Dawn as her "little pumpkin belly"[12] and being over-protective to her, often putting responsibility to Buffy, to her distress. [13]
  • The Scooby Gang — Joyce provided a surrogate mother figure to Buffy's friends, happily making them Christmas dinner and showing equal concern to their problems. One example includes when Willow received the call about Jenny Calender's death, Joyce holding her as she cried over Buffy who was less affected.[14] Her death strongly affected the gang including Spike because he was treated affably by her and Anya Jenkins who Joyce could stand without being offended by her strange honesty. [15]
  • Faith Lehane — Faith thought highly of Joyce because of her motherly kindness in contrast to her mother's alcoholism. Joyce in turn liked her positive stance on slaying as she potentially could of take over for Buffy when she went to college.[16] Faith spent Christmas Eve at the Summers' home at Joyce's request and even brought her a present.[17] When Faith held her hostage at her house, Joyce put on a strong face and stood up to the psychotic slayer. However, after Buffy came to the rescue, Joyce still felt sorry for Faith's situation, knowing she was unhappy and wondering if she will be given help after her apparent arrest.[18]

Behind the Scenes

  • Joyce and Cassie Newton were the only two characters to die of natural causes.
  • Joyce, similar to Darla on Angel, is the only non-regular character to appear in every season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
  • Kristine Sutherland knew she was going to die on the show since Season 3.
  • In the commentary for "Grave" writer/producer Drew Goddard observes that when Buffy was dead she was 'in heaven with her mother'.

Appearances

Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 1
"Welcome
to the
Hellmouth
"
Appears
"The
Harvest
"

Appears
"Witch"


Appears
"Teacher's
Pet
"

Absent
"Never Kill a
Boy on the
First Date
"
Absent
"The
Pack
"

Absent
"Angel"


Appears
"I Robot,
You Jane
"

Absent
"The
Puppet
Show
"
Appears
"Nightmares"


Appears
"Out of
Mind, Out
of Sight
"
Absent
"Prophecy
Girl
"

Appears
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 2
"When She
Was Bad
"

Appears
"Some
Assembly
Required
"
Absent
"School
Hard
"

Appears
"Inca
Mummy
Girl
"
Appears
"Reptile
Boy
"

Mentioned
"Halloween"


Mentioned
"Lie
to Me
"

Absent
"The Dark
Age
"

Absent
"What's
My Line,
Part One
"
Absent
"What's
My Line,
Part Two
"
Absent
"Ted"


Appears
"Bad Eggs"


Appears
"Surprise"


Appears
"Innocence"


Appears
"Phases"


Absent
"Bewitched,
Bothered
and Bewildered
"
Appears
"Passion"


Appears
"Killed
by Death
"

Appears
"I Only
Have Eyes
for You
"
Absent
"Go Fish"


Absent
"Becoming,
Part One
"

Appears
"Becoming,
Part Two
"

Appears
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 3
"Anne"


Appears
"Dead Man's
Party
"

Appears
"Faith, Hope
& Trick
"

Appears
"Beauty
and the
Beasts
"
Absent
"Homecoming"


Absent
"Band
Candy
"

Appears
"Revelations"


Absent
"Lovers
Walk
"

Appears
"The
Wish
"

Absent
"Amends"


Appears
"Gingerbread"


Appears
"Helpless"


Appears
"The
Zeppo
"

Absent
"Bad
Girls
"

Appears
"Consequences"


Appears
"Doppelgangland"


Absent
"Enemies"


Appears
"Earshot"


Appears
"Choices"


Appears
"The Prom"


Appears
"Graduation
Day,
Part One
"
Appears
"Graduation
Day,
Part Two
"
Absent
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 4
"The
Freshman
"

Appears
"Living
Conditions
"

Absent
"The Harsh
Light
of Day
"
Absent
"Fear,
Itself
"

Appears
"Beer
Bad
"

Absent
"Wild
at
Heart
"
Absent
"The
Initiative
"

Absent
"Pangs"


Mentioned
"Something
Blue
"

Mentioned
"Hush"


Absent
"Doomed"


Absent
"A New
Man
"

Absent
"The I
in Team
"

Absent
"Goodbye
Iowa
"

Absent
"This
Year's
Girl
"
Appears
"Who
Are
You
"
Appears
"Superstar"


Absent
"Where
the Wild
Things Are
"
Absent
"New
Moon
Rising
"
Absent
"The
Yoko
Factor
"
Absent
"Primeval"


Absent
"Restless"


Appears
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 5
"Buffy
vs.
Dracula
"
Appears
"Real
Me
"

Appears
"The
Replacement
"

Appears
"Out of
My Mind
"

Appears
"No Place
Like Home
"

Appears
"Family"


Absent
"Fool
for
Love
"
Appears
"Shadow"


Appears
"Listening
to Fear
"

Appears
"Into
the
Woods
"
Appears
"Triangle"


Appears
"Checkpoint"


Appears
"Blood
Ties
"

Appears
"Crush"


Appears
"I Was
Made to
Love You
"
Appears
"The
Body
"

Appears
"Forever"


Appears
"Intervention"


Mentioned
"Tough
Love
"

Mentioned
"Spiral"


Mentioned
"The Weight
of the
World
"
Appears
"The
Gift
"

Mentioned
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 6
"Bargaining,
Part One
"

Mentioned
"Bargaining,
Part Two
"

Absent
"After
Life
"

Appears
"Flooded"


Mentioned
"Life
Serial
"

Mentioned
"All
the
Way
"
Absent
"Once
More, with
Feeling
"
Absent
"Tabula
Rasa
"

Mentioned
"Smashed"


Mentioned
"Wrecked"


Absent
"Gone"


Mentioned
"Doublemeat
Palace
"

Absent
"Dead
Things
"

Absent
"Older
and Far
Away
"
Absent
"As
You
Were
"
Absent
"Hell's
Bells
"

Absent
"Normal
Again
"

Appears
"Entropy"


Absent
"Seeing
Red
"

Absent
"Villains"


Absent
"Two
to
Go
"
Absent
"Grave"


Absent
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 7
"Lessons"


Absent
"Beneath
You
"

Absent
"Same Time,
Same Place
"

Absent
"Help"


Absent
"Selfless"


Absent
"Him"


Appears
"Conversations
with Dead
People
"
Appears
"Sleeper"


Absent
"Never
Leave
Me
"
Absent
"Bring
on the
Night
"
Appears
"Showtime"


Absent
"Potential"


Absent
"The
Killer
in Me
"
Absent
"First
Date
"

Absent
"Get It
Done
"

Absent
"Storyteller"


Absent
"Lies My
Parents
Told Me
"
Absent
"Dirty
Girls
"

Absent
"Empty
Places
"

Absent
"Touched"


Absent
"End of
Days
"

Absent
"Chosen"


Absent


Buffy Season 8

References

  1. "Angel" shooting script
  2. "I Was Made to Love You"
  3. "Forever"
  4. "Normal Again"
  5. When She Was Bad
  6. Ted
  7. Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered
  8. Restless
  9. Band Candy
  10. Earshot
  11. 'I Was Made to Love You'
  12. No Place Like Home
  13. Real Me
  14. Passion
  15. Blood Ties
  16. Faith, Hope & Trick
  17. Amends
  18. Who Are You

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