Buffy the Vampire Slayer star Nicholas Brendon (Xander) has taken to Facebook Live to comment on his co-star Charisma Carpenter (Cordelia) going public with accusations against Joss Whedon that involve years of unprofessional and abusive behavior. Filming from a hospital room where he's preparing for back surgery, Brendon spoke about his relationship with Whedon throughout his run on the series. "I mean, unless you know Joss, it's just kinda, like… I just hope that growth comes, and healing, and him being a better person and better people," Brendon explains at one point. "'Cause I think that's what every day is about. You know what I mean? Not beating somebody up." Staying with his personal experiences with Whedon, Brendon continued, "I mean, were there transgressions? Yeah, there were. To me as well, you know what I mean? It's like, I had my relationship with Joss as well. And I love him. You know you take… I mean for me, I took the good, I took the bad….but that's not everybody."
The actor goes on to address Carpenter's claims, saying, "I love and support [Carpenter] very much and I know that story, and it's not a kind story." But then Brendon returned to the duality of his relationship with Whedon, "I know my relationship with Joss and it… there's a lot of kindness. But also not, you know? So it's kinda hard to give a statement when things are like that. It's like 'hey, make a statement.' My thoughts and prayers are with the victim's families. I don't do that shit." Brendon joins a growing list of names from Buffy, Angel, and other Whedon series who've offered some level of support to Carpenter. Previously, Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy Summers), Michelle Trachtenberg (Dawn Summers), Amber Benson (Tara Maclay), Emma Caulfield (Anya), Anthony Head (Rupert Giles), Eliza Dushku (Faith), James Marsters (Spike), J. August Richards (Charles Gunn), David Boreanaz (Angel), and Amy Acker (Fred), as well as writers Marti Noxon (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel) and Jose Molina (Firefly), took to social media on Carpenter's behalf. Here's a look at Brendan's video from earlier today:
After living with the experience for "nearly two decades" before speaking up last week, Carpenter claimed in her social media posts, "Joss Whedon abused his power on numerous occasions while working on the sets of 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' and 'Angel.' While he found his conduct amusing, it only served to intensify my performance anxiety, disempower me, and alienate me from my peers. The disturbing incidents triggered a chronic physical condition from which I still suffer. It is with a beating, heavy heart that I say I coped in isolation and, at times, destructively." You can read Carpenter's entire statement below, where the actress goes on to offer examples of her allegations as well as revealing that she took part in WarnerMedia's investigation into Justice League star Ray Fisher's claims against Whedon.
Here's a look at the Buffy and Angel star's original tweets from last Wednesday:
On July 1, 2020, Fisher aka Cyborg took to Twitter to accuse Whedon of being abusive on the 2017 set not long after Whedon took over from Zack Snyder (who left the production due to a family tragedy), and that two other executives helped enable Whedon's alleged actions. WarnerMedia opened an investigation into Fisher's allegations, but in early September the company claimed that Fished wasn't cooperating with third-party investigators Fisher denied those claims, while friends co-stars such as Jason Mamoa began publically supporting Fisher and demanding WarnerMedia take action.
Then on November 24, word came down from Whedon that he was stepping away from his upcoming HBO series The Nevers. Whedon cited "the level of commitment required moving forward, combined with the physical challenges of making such a huge show during a global pandemic" as being a major factor in his decision. "This year of unprecedented challenges has impacted my life and perspective in ways I could never have imagined, and while developing and producing the Nevers has been a joyful experience, I realize that the level of commitment required moving forward, combined with the physical challenges of making such a huge show during a global pandemic, is more than I can handle without the work beginning to suffer. I am genuinely exhausted and am stepping back to martial my energy towards my own life, which is also at the brink of exciting change," Whedon wrote in his own statement. HBO confirmed in a brief statement that it had parted ways with the show's creator, writer, director, executive producer, and showrunner. "We have parted ways with Joss Whedon. We remain excited about the future of The Nevers and look forward to its premiere," wrote the cable network in a statement.