Here's how I'll preface this: I'm going to skewer this loser based on the retinal cancer I have developed from her stint on 'Buffy The Vampire Slayer'. I love that darn show. It's like an old love I sit down to catch up with every couple of years and re-discover what made me fall head over heels in the first place. The storytelling is engaging and brilliant and the cast is superb.
When peeps ask me how I rate the Buffy Universe, I always say Season Two is the best followed by Season Five. Don't get me wrong, Season One, Three and Four are all fantastic journeys, but Two and Five just have so much at stake that the arc becomes irresistible. Now, at the conclusion of the Season opener for Five, we catch a glimpse of a little brown-haired tween in Buffy's bedroom who surprisingly turns out to be her sister, Dawn... a sister we never knew existed. I found this turn of events to be brilliant on the part of Whedon and company. What a wonderfully clever way to inject some new life into the series (though I never felt the life was faltering--but ratings showed otherwise). I never felt cheated, I never felt frustrated that it took a number of episodes to actually address why Dawn even existed on the show. ***Sidenote*** Dawn turns out to be a mystical energy that could destroy the fabrics of reality... and to hide the energy, some crusty monks made it into Michelle Trachtenberg. Here's where I have a problem. I love the idea, but I *Hate* the actress. I will never understand some folks' obsession with Michelle. After reading a few entries and checking out some Google searches I've found that a lot of dudes just want to do her (which I also don't get), and every woman who talks her up is under the age of 15. There is no excuse for her inability to act. Nothing will convince me that she's worthy of being a Hollywood actress. The only other onscreen stuff I've seen her in was a coathanger abortion called 'Black Christmas'. I hated her in that too, but was elated when she met a gruesome death. BTW: See the original film. It doesn't have Trachtenberg, and won't make you want to blow up your DVD player.
But back to the Dawn-ster. Look, supporters of this character will say MT embodies the awkward, innocent, annoyingness of a teen. I get angst. I was a teenager, I grew up with two little brothers who became teenagers before my very eyes, but never did I want to sell their internal organs on the black market for gas money. Yes, Michelle poorly acts her way through semi-capturing a brat in their early teens... but what she also does in the process is act-out a character that you grow to absolutely loathe every time she's onscreen. It is possible to draw-out a chracter that has a lot of angst, pain, and confusion, but also keep them interesting and likeable. See: River Tam in 'Firefly' (and countless other films and shows).
It all comes down to M.T. not being able to pull off any scene she's in *ever*. She's horrible. She's predictable. Her cry-baby demeanor is repulsive enough to make you crawl out of your skin and flush yourself down a toilet for sanctuary. I will say that she did coin one of the most unintentionally hilarious catchphrases in television history: "Get out! Get Out! Get Out!" Believe me when I say these words come out of her mouth at least four times in three seasons of television. Horrifying and excruciatingly hilarious at the same time.
Recently I convinced my girlfriend to sit down and absorb seven seasons of 'Buffy' and five of 'Angel'. Granted, she loved it and is a Whedon-lifer now, but she almost lost it when Michelle Trachtenberg entered the fray. She really brings down the whole cast and show as a whole, and it's a shame. I find Season Seven to be 60% unwatchable already, but Trachtenberg almost managed to sink the entire ship all on her lack of acting chops. Stop denying it, folks. This actress is worthless.