On my last post, I asked for character recommendations to write three facts of personal canon about. (Still taking requests!) pickamix requested my homegirl Willow Rosenberg. I got too long-winded for a comment. Here are my results!
1. Ira Rosenberg was a renowned brain surgeon and a big participant in the Jewish community/pro-Israel lobby. Ira traveled frequently. If Shelia was out of town at a psychology conference every month. Ira was away every second week. Between his visiting professorship at UCLA medical school, his involvement with the America Jewish Committee, he was never home.
Meanwhile, Willow pretty much always felt fairly distant from her mother. Willow also felt a kind of contempt for her mother's psuedo-science of psychobabble that never clearly helped people. Willow, genius at the hard sciences and numbers, felt her mom's brand of psychology was social studies dressed up as science. Shelia published her much discussed and bragged about article on the patriarchal biases of the Mr. Rogers Show right when Willow secretly hacked into the Sunnydale electric company's controlling computers. Willow felt guilty for feeling mildly contemptuous toward her own mother, and it was double guilt coupons since Willow knew that she was feeling intellectually superior about the illegal stuff that she was doing. Willow scolded herself a lot for those thoughts- but yet, Willow couldn't quite purge herself of them.
However, Willow deeply admired her father from afar as the real genius in the house. Ira was a once-in-a-generation mind and he was appreciated around the country for it. The medical volumes that she played Doctor with were directly lifted from her dad's study. Her concessions to following Judaism strictly were for him. The proudest moment of her pre-Buffy life was when she proudly recited the entire periodic table- elements and atomic numbers and mass numbers (to the hundredth decimal point!) in first grade- and her dad spun her around with pride. In fact, subconsciously, a lot of her life from that involved chasing that high. When Willow hacked into Buffy's brain in Weight of the World and cured Buffy's comatose state, Willow ruefully thought that she outpaced her dad as a brain surgeon and her mom as a psychologist and it was the beginning of Willow cutting herself off fronm both them because their "assholic parents in the name of science" was transformed into a fraud by comparison.
2. After Jenny died, Willow went through Jenny's files to teach her class and became interested in her magic stuff. However more than that, Willow attempted a number of the simpler spells that Jenny had written down. And Willow pretty much immediately mastered most every single one. Willow really questioned whether that was normal.
I mean, Willow knew that she had a good head on her shoulders but other than that, she never really felt like a winner and hardly like a special snowflake magical fairy pixie dust gal.
Willow went to the pagan/witchcraft chat-rooms that Jenny bookmarked and had in her history. Willow even read Jenny's posts after Willow hacked what handle Jenny posted under. There, Willow discovered that pretty much no one was able to master these spells in a few short days/weeks- even *Jenny* never mastered some of those spells after years of witch-worship.
Willow was digesting that information right up until Becoming all by herself which was how Willow suddenly burst out that she may be the best person to curse Angel with his soul. Willow was rather surprised at herself that she just came out and said that right to Giles, magical practioner and Watcher no less. However, Giles and Co. handed Willow the assignment so she stuck to it!
3. Willow loved pretty much every kind of genre of book and movie since she could read and watch a story. Xander's silly cartoons, fine classics, scientific volumes, history tomes, mysteries, cheesy romances, you name it. It wasn't until she moved in with Tara and read Tara's New Agey self-help books about being at one with nature and fortune cookie wisdom that Willow found herself bored by a books on like a *whole bookshelf* scale. However, Tara basically said that in order to be a good witch and good person that you need to figure out how to center yourself and meditate and like, identify with the feelings of a spruce tree. (Mind you, I'm basing this recollection based on how I see Willow's memories. They are a little imprecise since Willow basically stared at Tara's breasts and zoned out in an erotic haze the whole time that Tara was lecturing on the value of her books.) So, Willow tried to figure out to fake interest in that stuff to measure up to Tara.
There was a time....or several where Willow lied that she was reading one of Tara's recommended books about like...healthful witchcraft through eating kale or crocheting to try to get Tara's respect and maintain harmony in their room but Willow was actually reading a sci-fi novel or a computer programming manual tucked underneath Tara's recommendation.
I wrote three other points of personal canon for Willow here..
- Three Facts of Willow-Personal Canon