Buffy Turns 15
Fifteen years ago today, Buffy the Vampire Slayer premiered on The WB. It’s funny. I remember tweeting back and forth with fellow Zenescope writer Paul Ruditis a few months ago, and he called the WB “the voice of a generation.” I think he’s right, and no show from the WB embodies that more than Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It changed genre fiction. It changed television. It changed lives. It changed my life.
I’m coming late to the “post about Buffy” party, so I’ll keep it simple. Sometimes, I forget that not everyone is a diehard fan of this show. I had a conversation with an astonishingly pretentious girl a few years ago, and she told me that it was my love of Buffy that betrayed what I’m really looking for in film. Titillation, of course. She said that, simply because I loved BtVS, I was incapable of being moved by real art (“like Inception" she said, to which I scoffed and felt disgustingly superior). I didn’t even know there were people who still thought Buffy was a show about hot chicks being hot chicks. I’m still astonished when my father insists that Buffy is “too silly” for him. When I hear stuff like that, I want to run around with my Chosen collection and a pitcher of Kool-Aide, preaching the Whedony word to the unsaved. Because I’ve figured out - the only way to not be awed by the genre-bendin’, norm-breakin’, history-makin’ beast that is Buffy the Vampire Slayer is to not watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer is everything I look for in fiction, and it’s everything I feel serialized stories should aspire to: it’s layered, funny, scary, moving, tragic, eucatastrophic, relevant, timeless, weird, and beautiful. It has changed my writing. Hell, my first writing gig was an Angel comic, and still - when I turn on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, all of the internal voices shut off and I am, simply and purely, a fan. These characters are a part of me, and they will be for the rest of my life. It’s been a wonderful fifteen years since Joss Whedon and the Slayer hit the tube, and I’m continually amazed that I’ve been a fan of it the whole time.