For a TV show that premiered almost twenty years ago, Buffy the Vampire Slayer is still extremely relevant. The Buffy universe spawned seven seasons of the original show, five seasons of a spinoff show (Angel), and three more seasons told through comic book form. Best of all, every season of Buffy and Angel are available on Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Amazon Prime.
Here are 7 reasons why everyone should watch this iconc TV show:
1. The Lead.
While Buffy has lots of amazing characters, Buffy Summers is legendary. Originally created as a contradiction to the stereotype of “the ditzy blonde who gets brutally murdered in the horror movie,” Buffy is a badass. She’s an amazing fighter and slays demons like nobody’s business. But she also likes to dress well, hates having tangles in her hair and owns sushi pyjamas and a stuffed pig called “Mr. Snuffles.” For a girl destined to stop apocalypses, she’s extremely relatable. And in a world where women are told they have to be either strong or feminine, Buffy Summers proves that’s just plain wrong. As she says, “I want to date, and shop, and hang out, and save the world from unspeakable evil. You know, girly stuff.”
2. The Friendships.
At the core of Buffy, there is the Scooby gang. While multiple characters are part of the gang at various points, the core consists of Buffy herself, her two best friends Willow and Xander, and Buffy’s watcher (and high school librarian) Rupert Giles. From researching monsters to heartbreak, from high school dances to apocalypses- these four stick together throughout the series. They may have disagreements but they always come back to each other and prove no one can be a hero alone.
3. The Humor.
In between all the drama and the fighting, Buffy is funny and witty. There are laugh out loud moments, biting sarcasm, and more punny one liners than you thought possible. The show is very tongue and cheek and very aware of how ridiculous it can be. While sometimes the tone gets dark, you will laugh at least as much as you cry.
4. The Villains.
Buffy has monsters. Some of them are funny, but a lot of them are very, very scary. Even the basic vampires can be pretty terrifying. The creative team does a wonderful job bringing these twisted creatures to life in original ways. And having proper villains makes it that much more satisfying when Buffy and her team vanquish them.
5. The Love Stories.
Looking for the original “teenager in love with a brooding vampire story?” Well it’s Buffy Summers and her boyfriend Angel. And it’s pretty epic. She’s destined to kill demons, he’s a vampire with a soul and their tale is far better than that of a certain book with the vampires that sparkle. They may be the first Buffy couple we see, but there are numerous other fantastic pairings in the show and the creators do a wonderful job of portraying the ups and downs of relationships.
6. The “Real-Life” Moments.
The show follows Buffy and her friends from high school through college. They are faced with real life issues, even if they are shown through a supernatural lense. They care about getting into college, homecoming court, and what their weekend plans are. They have family drama, love life issues, and sometimes they face really big, normal problems. Some of the best moments of Buffy are the simplest, showing that even teenagers and young adults battling monsters still deal with everyday issues and heartache.
7. The Groundbreaking Moments.
Buffy is the first show to have an episode with no dialogue in Season 4’s terrifying, Emmy-winning episode “Hush.” It is also the first to have a musical episode, Season 6’s episode “Once More with Feeling,” in a show where the characters didn’t typically sing. It’s also the first network show to feature a lesbian relationship (pictured above in a clip from the musical episode). And Buffy proved that a female lead could be complicated, flawed, and save herself every time.
So go forth and watch this incredible show. You will not regret it.
An author whose cat is truly named Buffy.