Okay, so I kind of failed the whole thirty day challenge thing. It’s been about seven months since my last Buffy challenge post, but I’m a trooper so I’m gonna keep going.
I did some research on this question, and I came up with Kennedy.
I don’t really get why people didn’t like Kennedy. Granted, she wasn’t my favourite Potential, and she wasn’t one of my favourite characters, but she was definitely the most mentioned character when asked who people hated.
Kennedy, Kennedy. Well, she’s assertive. She knows exactly who she is and she isn’t ashamed of it in any way, including her sexuality. She pursues Willow with a type of aggression and confidence that is, of course, what the series is known for: strong women. There are many different types of strong women, that is not to say that Willow’s first girlfriend, Tara, was not a strong woman. She was, but in a much more behind-the-scenes kind of way. She was meek and shy, whereas Kennedy is loud and kind of obnoxious sometimes.
She’s a complete character foil to Tara in a way that lets Willow feel as though she’s not replacing Tara with someone else. Moving on from Tara is, of course, a rather traumatic task for Willow, but with the help of Kennedy and the rest of the Scoobies, she finds herself back in a healthy relationship and far away from the abusive and addictive relationship with magic that she had turned to after Tara’s death.
This is part of what makes Kennedy so awesome. Not only is she another butt-kicking female, but she contributes significantly to the personal growth of those around her. Similarly, Kennedy’s sense of logic and desire to fight and win causes her to question Buffy’s authority in episode 19 of season 7 (“Empty Places”), which might make some people angry on Buffy’s behalf (after all, doesn’t she deserve to be listened to? We all know she’s on the right track and she knows what she’s talking about. Buffy has experience that the others simply don’t have!) but questioning authority in this case forces Buffy to take a step back, slow down, and analyse the situation better. She must realise that she’s not alone and she needs to think about the group as well as herself.
It is a necessary heartbreak that Buffy needs. I know the others all help to oust Buffy from her own house and all that, but Kennedy’s assertiveness, I feel, is the frontliner for the whole thing.
Plus, Kennedy is ridiculously like Buffy in a lot of ways. The show could have easily been called Kennedy the Vampire Slayer.