The Kitten, the Witches and the Bad Wardrobe - Willow & Tara Forever

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 Post subject: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 1:31 pm 
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So how old is Willow, exactly?

Buffy, Xander and Willow are and they’re all in the same grade. Xander and Buffy are born in January 1981, but we never find out when Willow’s birthday is. This site puts her at 1982, which I like, but there’s no sourcing or reasoning as to where that date came from.

We know her and Xander dated when they were five, but she could have been born any time in 1981. Maybe she was born in late fall/winter 1981 and pushed up a grade (would make sense, given her intellect)? Poor, sad birthday-less Willow

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 4:16 pm 
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On the plus side, it gives us fanfic writers more freedom!

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 7:46 pm 
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Laragh wrote:
On the plus side, it gives us fanfic writers more freedom!

That's true! I like a little wiggle room :P

thespian_phryne found 1982 from an old (but official!) UPN site


(whatever you do, don't look at Tara's page. It's awful)

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 8:27 pm 
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Zooeys_Bridge wrote:
thespian_phryne found 1982 from an old (but official!) UPN site


(whatever you do, don't look at Tara's page. It's awful)


That's normally the very thing to make me go look, but I learned long ago to never, ever do this when it comes to something about Tara! I still get so upset and defensive over her :blush

It's interesting that that makes Willow at least a year younger than Buffy and Xander yet Willow and Xander were still in Kindergarten together. You have to be five to enter Kindergarten which makes me think it's more likely Xander started late at six [I think this also puts Willow's birthday pre-September 1st (as would be the school requirement) but it's 4am and I don't math well at the best of times]

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 5:56 am 
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Zooeys_Bridge wrote:
Laragh wrote:
On the plus side, it gives us fanfic writers more freedom!

That's true! I like a little wiggle room :P

thespian_phryne found 1982 from an old (but official!) UPN site


(whatever you do, don't look at Tara's page. It's awful)

Ugh, gods! That website was put together by someone who never bothered to pick up English as a first language, much less have a second one. But Tara's page does have this great line: "Fortunately, Willow explained to her former hairy boyfriend that she was in love with Tara." Which still has me rolling.

Although getting back to Willow's birthday, it would have to be somewhere between the last week of May and the 1st week of September--just as I imagine any other character's would be whose day is unknown--because it never comes up on the show. Even Tara's birthday got fudged a little. She was originally meant be born in November as normally the events of the show aligned to air-dates quite closely.

BTW, if you want to access The WB's Buffy site archive, it is here: http://web.archive.org/web/*/http://buffy.com/*

PS: if you didn't know already, the above format at the archive.org URL is the simplest way to view every page crawled and captured under a given website.

Laragh wrote:
That's normally the very thing to make me go look, but I learned long ago to never, ever do this when it comes to something about Tara! I still get so upset and defensive over her :blush

It's interesting that that makes Willow at least a year younger than Buffy and Xander yet Willow and Xander were still in Kindergarten together. You have to be five to enter Kindergarten which makes me think it's more likely Xander started late at six [I think this also puts Willow's birthday pre-September 1st (as would be the school requirement) but it's 4am and I don't math well at the best of times]


Although if you can follow instructions, feed yourself, already math and write at 1st grade level, and are toilet trained, they'll pretty much give you early admission to kindergarten. They make you sit a test to prove due diligence and cover their liability, but they'll admit you.


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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 6:33 am 
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thespian_phryne wrote:
Although getting back to Willow's birthday, it would have to be somewhere between the last week of May and the 1st week of September--just as I imagine any other character's would be whose day is unknown--because it never comes up on the show

Excellent point about summer birthdays! I'm sure any time of year could be justified since we only barely know about Xander's being in January off an off-hand comment about Buffy's age, (no birthday celebrations for poor Xander or Willow) but I really like the summer birthday logic you bring up.

thespian_phryne wrote:
Even Tara's birthday got fudged a little. She was originally meant be born in November as normally the events of the show aligned to air-dates quite closely.

I noticed that, too! Buffy's birthday is the most screwy. Apparently two different forms of school ID had her born in 1979 and 1980, until they finally settled on 1981. Geez guys.

thespian_phyrne wrote:
PS: if you didn't know already, the above format at the archive.org URL is the simplest way to view every page crawled and captured under a given website.

The people at the Wayback Machine and Internet Archive do good work. Friggen love them. Have you explored any of their online software? I squealed when they made old PC games available and spent a good work day playing Mixed-Up Fairy Tales.

Laragh wrote:
t's interesting that that makes Willow at least a year younger than Buffy and Xander yet Willow and Xander were still in Kindergarten together. You have to be five to enter Kindergarten which makes me think it's more likely Xander started late at six

I'm a late September baby and usually the youngest in my grade because my parents decided to shove me in the year above instead of under. Likely the same thing could have happened to Tara. Her being a little older corresponds nicely into the theory that maybe she was a Sophomore in college when the Scoobies were freshmen (how else was she able to get a single room like that??)

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 10:31 am 
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We have never been told Xander's birthday was in January; I always figured him for an October birthday, a week or more before Tara's.
There is no real conflict in Buffy's birthday; the things in S-1 are just filler. Her birthday episodes were were always in January so I go with t hat. (Even though we only saw one Cordelia birthday, I go for it in February when the ep. aired, not May like she said in dialogue once.) I like the idea of Tara's being a grade older than the rest of the gang for several reasons (mostly her more established college presence, also because it gives her more time to have had relationships before Willow, which I see her as having) but unless she skipped a grade -which is very plausible- it doesn't work with her birthdate.
Willow specifically says she and Xander were 5 at the same time, so the difference has to be less than a year, no telling how much. I figured her for first couple days in June, mainly because I wanted her birthstone to be a pearl, since I thought that matched well with Tara's opal for their commitment bracelets in my fics:-).
As a backstory nut, I've gone further, figuring Harmony for early spring and Jonathan for sometime in May, and of course my self-insertion character Jared is a year and some 2 or 3 days after Willow since that fits how I pictured him.

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:02 am 
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I like the summer birthday theory!

It's funny, with all of the fanon things in this fandom that a general idea of Willow's birthday hasn't been agreed upon after all these years. It is hard to give up the nugget of creative freedom we get by putting it wherever we want as fits the story.

I've moved Tara's birthday around in fics and would never do it again, I prefer to try keep things as close as possible to keep it believable so being able to insert Willow's where it works best has been beneficial. I'm thinking it's one of those things that's going to have a lot of conflicting clues around it because the writers never actually imagined a date in their head.

The ambiguity around Tara being a freshman/sophomore in UCSD also plays right into our hands!

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:25 am 
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DaddyCatALSO wrote:
We have never been told Xander's birthday was in January;

I didn’t think so either, until I started looking into it. Turns out, in ‘Innocence’, Xander says he’s 17. Since the episode takes place a day after Buffy’s 17th birthday, he must’ve been born sometime before she was (x)

DaddyCatALSO wrote:
There is no real conflict in Buffy's birthday; the things in S-1 are just filler. Her birthday episodes were were always in January so I go with that.

I mean sure, the early episodes were…early and a little rough, canon or not, hence the year switching until they settled on 1981. But at least January has already been consistent!


DaddyCatALSO wrote:
Willow specifically says she and Xander were 5 at the same time, so the difference has to be less than a year, no telling how much. 


Ahh, the first time they dated. Young love XP
If Xander’s born in January, you could push her birthday as far as December of 1981, so they’re both still 5 but at opposite ends of it. Them both being five also blows a hole in the “Willow skipped a grade” theory.

There’s never going to be a way to come up with a canon answer, because without knowing a year, there’s nothing we can do! 1982 from that website contradicts the ‘we dated at 5’ thing, but along with the other Scooby birthdays, could’ve changed repeatedly as well XP

Suffice to say they’re within a year or two of each other is the best we’re gonna get

Laragh wrote:
I've moved Tara's birthday around in fics and would never do it again, I prefer to try keep things as close as possible to keep it believable so being able to insert Willow's where it works best has been beneficial. I'm thinking it's one of those things that's going to have a lot of conflicting clues around it because the writers never actually imagined a date in their head.

I also stick to canon as closely as possible. Aaaaand yep on the second point. Come on, writers/props department! XD

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:44 pm 
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thespian_phryne wrote:
Even Tara's birthday got fudged a little. She was originally meant be born in November as normally the events of the show aligned to air-dates quite closely.


This kinda stuff confuses/frustrates me. Is it just negligence to confirm what had come before? What possible reason was there to single out a birthdate and not quickly check back to see if it aligned with the entire episode dedicated to said birthday??

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:56 pm 
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Laragh wrote:
thespian_phryne wrote:
Even Tara's birthday got fudged a little. She was originally meant be born in November as normally the events of the show aligned to air-dates quite closely.


This kinda stuff confuses/frustrates me. Is it just negligence to confirm what had come before? What possible reason was there to single out a birthdate and not quickly check back to see if it aligned with the entire episode dedicated to said birthday??
Right?

I'm guessing that the show needed Willow at the place at that particular point in the timeline so they just said effit and horned it in 3 weeks early. Especially because of the way they were already getting skewered by the fans.


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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 1:03 pm 
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thespian_phryne wrote:
I'm guessing that the show needed Willow at the place at that particular point in the timeline so they just said effit and horned it in 3 weeks early. Especially because of the way they were already getting skewered by the fans.


ooooh, you mean in 'Help' when Willow visits and we see her actual birthdate vs when 'Family' aired?

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 1:08 pm 
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Zooeys_Bridge wrote:
thespian_phryne wrote:
I'm guessing that the show needed Willow at the place at that particular point in the timeline so they just said effit and horned it in 3 weeks early. Especially because of the way they were already getting skewered by the fans.


ooooh, you mean in 'Help' when Willow visits and we see her actual birthdate vs when 'Family' aired?
Ayup.


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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 1:42 pm 
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thespian_phryne wrote:
Zooeys_Bridge wrote:
thespian_phryne wrote:
I'm guessing that the show needed Willow at the place at that particular point in the timeline so they just said effit and horned it in 3 weeks early. Especially because of the way they were already getting skewered by the fans.


ooooh, you mean in 'Help' when Willow visits and we see her actual birthdate vs when 'Family' aired?
Ayup.


I legit never noticed that before, huh

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2018 9:21 am 
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As for Xander's b'day, well standard practice anymore is that if everyone has to *be* 5 before entering kindergarten, then the student has their seventeenth birthday either very shortly before, during or a little longer bit after junior year, so Xander could have turned 17 at any point before "Innocence."

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 Post subject: Re: How old is Willow?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 1:22 pm 
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I always thought that Tara was a year older than Willow so you could guess a rough idea of Willow's age from that. Of course I could be wrong, it wouldn't be the first time.


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