If you love shows from the 90s and you’ve recently mourned the end of Friends like the rest of us, Buffy the Vampire Slayer should be your next Netflix binge. Last summer, I started what would soon be my favorite show of all time. Yes, of all time. Its timelessness has kept a growing fan base even twelve years after its end. So Collegiettes, whether you’re spending your summer sitting by the pool or staying in your PJs all day, consider watching Buffy…because it will hold onto your heart like Twilight never could.
1. Buffy Stakes Gender Stereotypes
Let’s face it. This girl is tough. She’s reason enough to watch the show. The creation of Buffy Summers was a reaction to the numerous horror movies that have a blonde wandering off and getting eaten by a monster. Joss Whedon, the creator, thought, what if the blonde went into the dark alley and kicked the monster’s ass instead? He wanted to take part in a shift in pop culture, where people could accept the idea of a female hero. Buffy is strong, independent, feisty, and always comes out fighting. Her character does not exist solely to create romantic interest for the male lead. She leads, she conquers, and the bad guys run.
2. The 90s Fashion
Like most in our generation, I have a thing for everything 90s. It’s mostly about nostalgia, but at the top of that list is the fashion. I can’t get enough of Monica’s overalls, Rachel’s miniskirts, or Kelly Kapowski’s scrunchies and crop tops. Overalls, ugly sweaters, chokers, hair clips, crop tops, ugly hats, and HAIR like you would not believe. Buffy has it ALL. I’ll just leave this here:
3. The Messy Part of Romance
Every relationship in the show grows to its full potential. The relationships keep moving and growing with the characters, which lets the writers focus on the messy parts of romance. There’s the suspense of “will they, won’t they,” and of course, heartbreak. This show knows pain and how to deliver it. There are romantic moments that leave you sighing and moments of heartbreak that leave you sobbing as you search for another box of tissues. This kind of romance is moving and real, sometimes shockingly real. Despite everything these characters go through in their relationships, it’s always stressed that you don’t need someone else to be happy. Not to mention Willow and Tara were the first lead lesbian couple on Network television.
4. Writing That Will Have You Feeling All The Feels
Here’s the thing: the monsters are a metaphor for the obstacles keeping Buffy from becoming an adult. The show is ultimately about growing up and all of the challenges we each face on our path to adulthood. Blending genres of horror, action, mystery, romance, comedy, and drama, there’s something in it for everybody and that’s what makes it so special.
The snappy comebacks, puns, and pop culture references will have you laughing.
The inspirational speeches will weigh on you even after you’ve closed Netflix for the night to go to sleep. The show explores the death of a loved one, religion, rape, drug addiction, abuse, depression, and other obstacles. You’re going to cry, have I mentioned that?
The show also took innovation to new levels. Because of its success, the creative team was able to take risks other shows couldn’t afford. They were the first to make a musical episode and it’s considered one of the best episodes of television ever created. Yep, Buffy made it cool before Scrubs and Grey’s Anatomy.
5. Characters That Stick With You
For seven seasons you watch as these characters tackle high school, college, and adult life. This stage could be considered the most telling of a person’s life. Each character has their own transformative journey. Characters who have lost their way are redeemed in the end. Characters find the good within themselves. Characters finally feel their own worth. The complexity of the characters in Buffy is deep and raw. These characters are flawed and they make mistakes, and that’s what makes them very real. You will find yourself relating to them in ways you didn’t expect and they will stick with you long after you leave Sunnydale.
If you’re still not convinced, take a look at this tall glass of British bad boy. There’s a lot of him.
Go forth! Happy summer, Collegiettes! Watch out for…bunnies.