Jun 17, 2012

In Which Buffy the Vampire Slayer Takes Over My Life

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season three Scooby Gang with Spike and Drussila

So, Suey’s Buffy watchalong has been going considerably better for me than I ever expected; so much so that I spent the past two weekends (and okay, most weekday evenings too. No, I don’t have much of a social life at the moment) doing little beyond binge-watching Buffy. I guess this is the point where I officially say: Dear Amy, Memory, Jenny, Jodie, Lightheaded, Claire, Steph, and everyone else who told me I had to watch Buffy over the past five years, you were right all along.

I wouldn’t describe Buffy as a flawless show1, but it has done something that very few things have done for me lately: it has engrossed me completely, to the point where I always want to watch just one more episode and even have dreams about the characters. I’ve spent the majority of this year in, as Amy put it recently, a story draught, so I particularly appreciate the show’s ability to grab me like this at a time when precious little fiction is doing much for me. And perhaps even more than that, I appreciate its ability to make me feel. I recently finished reading Diana Wynne Jones’ essay collection Reflections (review to come as soon as my writing slump allows it, assuming that ever happens), and she says that a good story should be an experience; that the emotional work we do while engaging with a story that truly grabs us by the guts is actually something that matters in our lives. Watching Buffy has been like that for me: certainly an intense emotional experience that I’m always going to remember.

I’m not someone who believes that fan love and critical engagement are mutually exclusive – you can be simultaneously fannish and aware that the media you love has problems2 and that these are worth discussing. Buffy has some serious issues with exoticization (the Inca mummy, Nigerian zombie mask and Native American avenging spirit episodes, for example), and is full of complicated and sometimes contradictory ideas about gender and sexuality I think I’d have a ton of fun teasing out. The moment when I attempt to put on my more formal critical hat will probably come (and if anyone wants to join me for that, I’d more than welcome it – joint reviews seem to work really well for me as far as TV is concerned). But for now, while I’m deep in the grips of this story and full of all these raw and intense feelings I’ve yet to untangle, I thought I’d take a moment to share my uncensored, gushy, inarticulate (and slightly spoilery up to season four, I should add) fannish notes with you3.
  • I have absolutely no idea why I’m so emotionally invested in Buffy and Angel, as this is really not the kind of romance that usually does it for me, but my goodness, I really, really am. I can’t remember the last time I found a love story that made my heart beat faster quite like this one does.

  • This investment, by the way, goes hand in hand with my rejoicing in the fact that the narrative gives them room to meet other people and care about them, that it allows what Buffy and Angel had to matter without it lasting forever, that it doesn’t perpetuate the myth that relationships that aren’t eternal are a waste of everyone’s time, and that if you grow to care about someone new then what you had with a previous partner wasn’t “real” after all. Hooray for that.

  • Still, still, at this point I’m desperate for any crumbs the story will throw at me re: Buffy and Angel. I just love seeing them together so much, and my heart is constantly breaking for them.

  • Speaking of crumbs and heartbreak, will my poor heart ever recover from the Angel season one episode “I Will Remember You”? Ouch. I rather suspect not. (But also yay and best episode ever.)

  • Also, it turns out I don’t always roll my eyes at brooding Byronic types in leather coats after all. (Then again, I should have known that. I did grow up on a steady diet of Anne Rice.)

  • Spike does make me roll my eyes quite a lot, though at this point it’s in a fond way more often than not.

  • [Particularly spoilery one] I’m so full of end of season three nostalgia it’s not even funny. It’s just so sad that the library was destroyed, that Giles doesn’t work there anymore, that Angel and Cordelia are off doing their own things and that we don’t get to see them around Buffy and the other characters anymore. I guess I should be happy that the fact that they have their own show means we get to see them at all, but I still really miss the old days when the Scooby gang was all together.

  • PS: I love the Scooby gang ♥. And also the name “Scooby gang”.

  • On the bright side, I’ve just met Tara!

  • Speaking of Tara, there are no words for how much I love Willow. It’s hard to pick a favourite character, but if I really had to go with just one I guess it would be her. She’s so smart and kind and geeky and oh, I just love her so much.

  • Favourite episodes so far: Passion (another ouch, my poor heart moment), The Wish, Doppelgängland (Vampire Willow was kind of awesome), and Enemies (it actually had me fooled and going “oh crap, no” until the end). What are yours?

  • Looking back to season one and seeing how far the characters have come already feels like a huge journey – I can only imagine what it will be like by the time I get to the final season.

  • The downside of watching a series this compulsively is that I don’t get to make it last. I’m going to be sad for weeks when it’s all over.

  • I do know about the comics, but I wanted to ask you if they’re as satisfying as the TV series. I ask this because so far the Avatar comics, good though they are, don’t feel like nearly enough and only make me miss the characters more. Not that this will stop me reading them anyway, but I kind of want to prepare myself.

  • Lastly, as you may have gathered by now I’m only up to season four, so no spoilery comments, please? I say this because I have somehow managed to avoid any major spoilers for this show despite its huge prominence in pop culture, and the universe often seems to have a way of throwing spoilers my way just as I’m starting to really get into a show.
So, who else is a Buffy fan? Would you be interested in a longer critical post from me when I get to the end of the final season, or has everything of interest that could ever possibly be said about Buffy already been said? The answer to that is probably yes.

PS: Thank you, Amy. A story like this is a real gift, and I so appreciate the effort you made to share it with me. I may be three years late on your dare, but I’m a Buffy convert at long last.

1 Then again, I’ve yet to find a show I’d describe as flawless.

2 Or positive aspects worth highlighting and analysing, as I also don’t believe that critical engagement only equals talking about problems.

3 While we’re on the topic of criticism and emotional responses to media, this is such a great post.


  1. Yay!

    Buffy is great. I think I actually prefer Angel as a show though. It seems to have more room for greys than Buffy. But both are still awesome.

  2. I'm so glad to hear that you're enjoying Buffy so much. I was considering joining the watchalong (a rewatch for me) but I haven't been able to manage it. (An addiction to the UK version Being Human has kept me involved with a different vampire.)

    I started watching Buffy when the 4th season was on the air, so most of my favorite episodes are from the later seasons. The earlier seasons all feel like background for me, although there are some episodes there that I love a lot, basically any episode with lots of Oz. (Oz is one of my favorite characters. Love, love, love him.)

    Have you gotten to Hush yet? It's a really good one. Other season 4 favorites are Wild at Heart and New Moon Rising and Something Blue.

  3. Fence: I'm only just starting to really get into Angel (at first I was in it for the crossover elements, I confess), but it's definitely growing on me. Doyle!!!

    Teresa: I watched Hush only last night! Really loved the dark fairy tale mood. And yes, Oz is great. He hasn't been around at the moment and I miss him a lot.

  4. Buffy was an awesome TV show! There were so many great episodes and in Becoming Part 2, I always cry at the end. I wasn't as big of fan on Angel, although it has been a good 10 years since I've watched it. I've never continued on with the comic series. I was satisfied with how buffy ended, so I had closure.

    If you haven't yet, Firefly is just as awesome, perhaps more so, as Buffy. Same creator.

  5. My spouse C.J. made fun of me for being a Buffy fan when we first moved in together. I praised the show's writing, which I think is some of the best out there. He didn't believe me so I made him watch a few minutes of the random episode that was showing that night.

    Slightly creepy guy tells Cordelia he's at The Bronze with his posse.

    Cordelia responds, "Okay, first of all, Posse? Passe."

    C.J. had to admit that that was some great writing.

    He never became a fan, but I have six out of seven series on DVD.

  6. what a coincidence! i have also began to watch buffy just now, after years of ignoring it. and i'm so freaking in love with the series! i've dreamt of vampires this night hahaha and my heart, in an incredbly silly way, melts when when i see buffy and angel. or just angel, he's enough hahah (even though i realize it's kind of tacky those scenes of him in the shadow, with that kind of latin lover outfit). but my god, i love them together! hahaha i think buffy has made my teen side reappear.
    despite those contraditions you mentioned and all, i find its gender portrayals very refreshing in many ways. but i'm still in the beggining, i've just finished the 1st season... but i can't wait to see the rest!

    and by the way, i always read your blog, but i've just commented here once, some while ago. anyway, just to say it again: i love your writings, and i'm always wanting to read the books which you've loved. too bad many of them weren't published back here where i live. but there's always bookdepository for extremes cases :)

    regards from brazil!

  7. what a coincidence! i have also began to watch buffy just now, after years of ignoring it. and i'm so freaking in love with the series! i've dreamt of vampires this night hahaha and my heart, in an incredbly silly way, melts when when i see buffy and angel. or just angel, he's enough hahah (even though i realize it's kind of tacky those scenes of him in the shadow, with that kind of latin lover outfit). but my god, i love them together! hahaha i think buffy has made my teen side reappear.
    despite those contraditions you mentioned and all, i find its gender portrayals very refreshing in many ways. but i'm still in the beggining, i've just finished the 1st season... but i can't wait to see the rest!

    and by the way, i always read your blog, but i've just commented here once, some while ago. anyway, just to say it again: i love your writings, and i'm always wanting to read the books which you've loved. too bad many of them weren't published back here where i live. but there's always bookdepository for extremes cases :)

    regards from brazil!

  8. First of all - Diana Wynne Jones wrote a collection of essays? I can't wait for your review!

    Second - I wish I could have a writing drought as productive as yours seems to be, you are writing so many interesting reviews I can't keep up! But it's horrible to have one and I hope yours improves soon. I also hope your fiction love returns soon.

    As for Buffy, I've never felt much of an urge to watch it but now you are raving about it too.... Anyway, I'd love to read more about what you have to say, especially in terms of exotification and gender.

  9. Oh, yay, Buffy! I'm a huge fan of the show & a proud owner of all 7 seasons on dvd. :) It's been a while since I last watched any of the episodes, but your post has given me an urge to start a marathon of my own here!

    I too love the Buffy & Angel storyline & Willow. Doppelgängland with Vampire Willow is one of my favorite episodes. There will also be some great episodes in sesons 5-7, but I'll not say anything about those yet. ;)

    Hmm, the night is still young & I'm on my summer holidays, I think I'll go & start from season 1 now... :D

    Oh, and I would absolutely be interested in reading a longer critical post by you after you've watched the whole show.

  10. yaaaaay! This post makes me all kinds of happy and I'm so so glad you're loving it as much as you are.

    re: the comics...ugh I kind of hate them. I started out feeling like you did about the Avatar ones...it just made me miss the show, but then I feel like they went off the rails. I guess it's pretty divided with Buffy fans how they feel about them, tbh.

    Aw, Buffy/Angel! I have to admit I'm the kind of Buffy stan who pretty much shipped her with everyone and I think her S4 relationship is kind of interesting.

    I would also enjoy reading your full on analysis...I'm the kind of person who doesn't usually enjoy reading that kind of stuff when I'm in the thick of the love (also tbh it depends on who is doing the writing and their tone), but I feel like with Buffy I have enough time with it to enjoy and even want to read that kind of stuff. In fact it's part of why I wanted you to watch it--I wanted to know what you thought!

    Oh and also "I will Remember You" I KNOW. Wow I cried a lot over that episode!! Omg I'm going to end up pulling out my DVDs now, lol. (you'll get to meet some fun new characters in Angel, though)

    And of course you are welcome, I'm so so glad you are loving the series!

  11. PS. I both love/hate when a TV show takes over my life this way. I love it because...well all that gorgeous stuff you wrote, but I hate it because the rest of my life gets ignored!

  12. I have never seen one...NOT ONE...episode of Buffy. Primarily because it scares me to know that most likely I would get sucked into a vacuum and everything would suffer. I am obsessive/compulsive that way. It is bad enough with the reading and blogging and exercising, but if I introduce this into my life in which I might have an extra 15 minutes a day, I would IMPLODE. So I stay away. But I'm chuckling because I think it is endearing to hear you talk this way.

  13. Oh CRAP. I just wrote you a huge long comment, and Blogger ate it. It was all, "Do you want to start a blog?" and I was all, "No, I want you to post the huge frickin' comment I just wrote."

    Blogger declined.

    The long, vanished comment essentially boiled down to:

    ZOMG YES to Buffy as an antidote to story drought. BtVS and ANGEL basically became my book throughout April and May. I watched them the same way I'd have read an engrossing chunkster that proved impossible to put down.

    ZOMG YES to being deeply invested in Buffy/Angel. It's not the sort of romance that usually hooks me, either, but I totally cried TEARS OF BLOOD over the end of S3. And "I Will Remember You?" Talk about a sob-fest!

    Whenever I came across criticism that was all, "Do Buffy and Angel belong together, or would she be better off with someone else?" I'd be all, "Dude, were you even paying attention? THEY ARE DESTINED TO BE TOGETHER AND YEAH OKAY SOMETIMES THEY HAVE NICE RELATIONSHIPS WITH OTHER PEOPLE BUT IN THE END THEY WILL COME BACK TO EACH OTHER BECAUSE BUFFY IS THE ONLY ONE FOR ANGEL AND ANGEL IS THE ONLY ONE FOR BUFFY. Why do people even debate this? THERE IS NOTHING TO DEBATE."

    Then, one day, I realized I didn't feel that way anymore. My reasons involve big spoilers for both shows, though, so I shall say no more. Well, except to note that they're nice spoilers. Nothing along the lines of anyone turning into a wanker, so you needn't brace yourself for that. :)

    Regarding the comics: I love S8. It gets seriously dodgy in the middle, as Amy pointed out, but I like where it ends up. I've heard that S9 is amazing, too, though I'm still waiting on the first tpb in the core series. I did get an advance copy of first volume in one of the side series, and it was totally squee-worthy, so I've got high hopes.

    ANGEL: AFTER THE FALL is mostly really good. I got pretty attached to Bryan Lynch's run as primary writer, though I have some serious issues with Bill Willingham's first stab at the material. These may resolve themselves once I've read a little more of his stuff.

    And I will now shut up, lest I write yet another extremely long comment.

  14. Oh Ana, I am so delighted!!! I LOVE Buffy - I'm not in the rewatch right now, though I've been busy over at Memory's blog commenting on all her wonderful thoughts and posts about Buffy.

    I watched Buffy all hrough the years it was originally on tv, and I was devoted to it. She is one of the few tv characters I have ever dreamed about. I was rewatching the show this winter while riding my bike (I'm halfway through S1) when my knee arthritis flared up and I haven't been able to go back on the bike since, so I haven't picked up where I left off yet. I found myself enjoying meeting them all again, and the dialogue is second to none, I find. It's just so on, and clever, and smart, and shows that gap teens live with - they know so much, are aware so much, but they still have to live it and get the experience of it.

    Spike will grow on you! He's such a bad boy, I have such a weakness for him. I love the Angel and Buffy storyline too, the romance they have. I really liked your comment about how this show shows that previous loves can still have happened and were important. You are so right.

    I love Willow, she is possibly my favourite character in the show. And I might be in a minority, but I loathe Tara absolutely. I think their storyline is fabulous, I never liked how she was portrayed (and I guess the actress.) She makes me shout at the tv sometimes now! lol And I really liked Willow and Oz, Giles was great, Miss Callender....oh, so many good talented people and such good writing!!!

    Hush is one of my all time favourite episodes, too. Yaay! I'm so thrilled, Ana! *high five from Canada*

    And now to go find that Diana Wynne jones book, it wasn't listed on Amazon.ca last time I looked.

  15. I've never watched this show, but I am such a huge fan of Joss Whedon's Firefly, that I'm sure it's just a matter of time before I give it a try. ;-)

  16. I love Buffy! I had a Buffyothon about 6 months ago and it is compulsive watching in that I can (and possibly have) sat down and watched it all day.

    I love the character development and how well written the whole storyline arc is, with things that happen in season 3 becoming relevant in season 5 for example.

    I love Willow's character, she's so complex and the way she grows and matures is so believable. When you watch things in the later seasons and then re-watch earlier series you can see those elements already growing in her personality.

    I also love Tara. She's one of my absolute favourites - I just want her.

    I am not a Buffy and Angel fan. He's so angsty! But I did like him kinda in his own series. He's still all broody in that but it's an interesting series I never actually finished watching. Must.

    I think my favourite characters in this series are Tara, Xander, Giles, Willow and Spike.

    I hope you continue to write about your Buffy thoughts because there's so much in this series to talk about.

  17. Gulp...I've never watched Buffy either. Like Sandy, I'm a series addict though, and if I get started, I'm a zombie watcher until it's over...to the point of staying up all night, neglecting everything else. Have you seen True Blood? That's my guilty pleasure right now; I even subscribed to HBO just so I won't have to illegally download episodes anymore :/
    It's fun though, isn't it?

  18. PLEASE write a longer critical post about Buffy. I have been waiting my whole life for you to write a longer critical post about Buffy the Vampire Slayer. And then if you really want to make my day, someday write a post about the troubling racial dynamics on Angel. Because my word the racial dynamics are so troubling and awkward. Oh, and oh gosh, I hope you will sometime write a post about that weird, slightly voyeuristic rapey thing Joss Whedon's shows get into sometimes. The villain in Season Seven of Buffy is a good example of this.

    I'm so excited for you that you have Season Five yet to come! Season Five is wonderful and glorious and has lots of good Tara moments. Yay, Tara!

  19. I was so obsessed over the whole Angel/Buffy thing when the show was on, it was all I would talk about. I would just mutter about it at dinner, like, "How can Angel possibly leave the show? How is this possible? Why?" until my mom would go, "CAN WE PLEASE TALK ABOUT SOMETHING ELSE!"

  20. For me, the mark of a good show or book is when I start dreaming about the characters. :) I love that you are doing this with Buffy.

  21. Just started my rewatchalong of S1this morning, spurred on by this post. There is just no way to explain how excited I am that you are into Buffy now! But Spike, lady come on he is obviously perfect (until y'know later when he is not). Oh was I obsessed with Spike when I first watched this show and this attitude doesn't look like ever changing.

  22. Ha!! love this post Ana! I wasn't a fan of Buffy (no particular reason why, just wasn't) but I did have several college courses were we watched parts (or whole) episodes and related it to whatever we were discussing. So...that's kind of cool. ;)

  23. Buffy is so awesome. I watched it when it was first on, then enjoyed watching it when the reruns were on tv and now it's on Netflix.

    I really like the comics/graphic novels. They can do things with the art that you can't do on television. It's also nice to revisit old favourite characters. I also like the new characters they've introduced. Don't start reading them until after you've finished watching the series though.

  24. so so so so so so glad you are enjoying Buffy!! The next four seasons have their ups and downs but some really amazing stellar episodes sprinkled in there. I have watched the entire arc at least twice and will probably watch it again in the next year or two. Spike goes through some interesting changes, and of course as does Buffy. All the characters do. So many aspects to the show to consider.... I can't wait to read more of your thoughts! Buffy is worth an entire series of posts. Speaking of, have you seen this? Sadly, does not go through the entire run of the show (or maybe they're working on completing it?), but worth reading... http://www.buffyguide.com/episodes.shtml

  25. So happy for you tat you're discovering this show! I'm a huge fan, a rewatch it regularly (I have all seasons on DVDs, same for "Angel"), and I'm jealous at people watching it for the first time because the experience is so intense.
    I only watched the show in DVDs, and I remember eagerly expecting season 7. I bought the DVD set on a Friday, and had a Buffy-binge weekend, I just couldn't stop watching.
    The first season I ever saw was season 4, so I have a soft spot for that one. Seasons 1 and 2 are mostly about establishing the characters etc., and as I never was a fan of the Buffy/Angel relationship (sorry, too sugary for me), I don't have too big an attachement to them - although, Becoming Parts 1 and 2 are among the best episodes ever. Season 3 was very very good with a perfect ending. Love Faith.
    But to me the best seasons are the three last ones, and particularly season 6. You love Willow? Me too, and just you wait for season 6 for her! Also, "Once more with feelings". And the overall ending of the show was good and made sense.
    As for the comics, they make me miss the show, but somehow I can't not read them. I just miss the show.
    Enjoy the following seasons, can't wait to read your feelings about them.

  26. Jules: Even though I'll probably pick up the comics, it makes me happy to hear the show does provide some closure. And yes, I'll definitely watch Firefly at some point!

    C.B. James: The dialogue is excellent, yes. And I love the humour too :)

    Barbara: Hahaha, I know just what you mean about Angel. He's most definitely NOT the kind of guy I usually find attractive, AND YET. I'm just so drawn to his character, and his scenes with Buffy are so wonderful. Season two is where the series gets REALLY good, so you have a lot of great episodes ahead of you. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did :D (PS: And hi! I remember your previous comment. And I'm so with you on Book Dep. It's been a lifesaver for me countless times.)

    Helen: Yes! It was published posthumously and it's just wonderful. It made me feel like I was getting to know her a little bit, and she was exactly like the person I'd imagined from her books. And aw, thank you! I'm not completely unhappy when the posts I did manage to write, but it feels like pulling teeth, you know? It used to come to me more easily than this. Nothing to do but wait for it to pass, I guess.

    Tiina: Looking forward to getting to those episodes! And it makes me happy to have inspired a rewatch - enjoy :D

    Amy: I thought this post might make you happy :D Sorry to hear about your experience with the comics - it seems that they really divide fan's opinions. This is going to sound kind of weird, but does it bother you that they're silent? I never really felt that way with anything before, but with the Avatar comics, I just miss the characters' voices so much. Hearing them inside my head as I'm reading is just not the same. And yeah, I'm with you on the love/hate thing :P There's other stuff I should be doing, but at the same time, this obsession has been so much fun.

    Sandy: Yep, that's me as well, and what has suffered this month as a consequence is my reading. But I'm having fun and that's what counts :P

    Memory: Argh! BAD blogger >:( I'm so sorry. And hahaha, that's totally me re: Buffy and Angel right now. So much so that my immediate emotional response to knowing that something happens later on that made you reconcile yourself to the idea of them being apart was to resent the hell out of whatever is going to happen, even if it's good, because I don't WANT to accept it, dammit :P I can't really explain why I feel this way, especially because I actually love it when stories challenge the notion that there's only one right person out there for you. So yay, but also booooo :P Thank you for telling me a bit more about the comics! It's good to know I have them to look forward to when I get to the end of the series.

    Susan: I'm saving all of Memory's posts for when I'm done watching to make sure I don't run into any spoilers, but I'm so looking forward to them. Don't worry, Spike is growing on me already - right now he makes me laugh most of the time, and that's a sure way to win my heart :P Miss Calendar! I'm still recovering from that, ugh. That was such an amazing episode, though. And good luck finding the DWJ book! It came out in May in the UK and I was lucky enough to win it from a fellow blogger in a giveaway. It could be that it's not out there yet, as that kind of thing seems to happen a lot.

  27. Stephanie: And it's a matter of time for me with Firefly!

    Fiona: There aren't that many shows I could watch all day without getting bored of feeling like doing something else after a while, but that's what happened with Buffy these past two weekends! And yes, the character development is great so far, and I can't wait to see how the overall story arc continues to progress! You're right about Angel: he's the kind of angsty, broody male lead I usually can't stand, but somehow, somehow, in this case the romance completely won my heart. It's one of those things I just can't explain.

    Peppermint Ph.D.: I've never seen True Blood, no - I'm usually ages behind the rest of the universe when it comes to series, as this post exemplifies :P But yes, I'm with you and Sandy on the pluses and minuses of this state of obsession.

    Jenny: Well, since you asked so nicely I will definitely write something :D Right now I keep thinking about how the story gives its female characters sexual agency, and yet tends to punish them horribly for it in a way that doesn't always challenge the notion that "bad girls" have it coming. It's frustrating, because at the same time there's so much it does RIGHT gender-wise. But yeah, exploring all those cracks and contradictions is going to be tons of fun. And I can't wait to discover the wonderful world of Buffy studies and bounce my ideas off everything there is out there.

    Tasha: Hahaha, I can relate :D

    Trisha: Yes, exactly. I love it when that happens :D

    Jodie: So glad to have inspired you to start the rewatchalong! And don't worry, Spike is growing on me already :)

    Trish: That's so cool that you discussed it in class! Like I was telling Jenny, I can't wait to discover the world of Buffy studies.

    Loni: I definitely won't! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on them.

    Daphne: The character growth is often so far, and I can only imagine how much of it there is to come still! And thanks for the link, very handy!

    Larissa: I can definitely see why someone would find Angel and Buffy too sugary, but somehow their romance just completely took hold of my heart. I'm really enjoying season 4 so far! And that's very interesting to hear about season 6, especially as I've seen some fans say they hate it! I can't wait to see what could possibly divide opinions so much :P

  28. Uh-huh. Don't you wish you had taken the plunge and watched it three years ago?! It's lovely to see you experience it for the first time, I'm almost envious.

    I have been emotionally invested in Buffy since 1998 and "Passion" and "I Will Remember You" among many others still make me emotional. The dialogue, the wit, the story arcs and, above all, the characters are what make it -and keep it- one of my favourite shows; it has been a big part of my life and influenced a lot, not least my lexicon on occasion.

    Willow is one of my favourite characters too and she really comes into her own in the last couple of seasons.

    Of course I would love to read further emotional and critical responses on your blog.

  29. I have not gotten to the point where I am in love with Buffy, but I think it will happen soon. Your love for it is encouraging and makes me want to rush through Season 1. I, of course, would LOVE more posts about Buffy. I love seeing you so enthusiastic about something. Your passion is contagious :)

  30. You should definitely give Firefly a try -- it's my favorite television show EVER! :-)

  31. I'll be really interested in seeing how you react to one of the spoilers I'm avoiding mentioning. It's kind of killing me that I can't even say why, because I'm worried that'll spoil you. You need to watch faster. Then we need to talk about the things I shan't mention because they're spoilery. :)

    Also, I forgot to say that yes, of course I'd love to see some more critical posts from you. Media criticism is fun! Especially when it's Buffy criticism from people who genuinely love the show.

  32. I love Buffy! In fact, after reading your post, I am inspired to watch from the first season all over again!! And I am in the market for a TV show to watch....

  33. I religiously watched Buffy and the spin off show Angel when it first came out. As a teenager it was just the ultimate. Would be interesting to sit down and properly watch it again now.

  34. I really got into Buffy when I was supposely writing up my thesis. It was perfect day-time re-run tv and I would discuss it endlessly with my friends. It's heartbreaking, clever and beautiful and I'm so glad you are enjoying it. And you must watch Firefly afterwards!

  35. I smiled when I saw your post. So, you've been converted. I have been a fan of Buffy for longer than I can remember. It is an amazing show for the story telling but also for Whedon's humour and wit. The way he treats topics, some pretty heavy (The Body), but always honestly. Favourite episodes - gosh, loads, but of course the ones centering on Buffy and Angel, the ones on Willow, 'The Gentlemen', 'Once more with feeling', etc.
    The Angel series was good too but not as Good. No, the first two series were great but then it kind of fizzled, with the odd really good episode.
    As some other people have mentioned, 'Firefly' is amazing, maybe because it is a little gem of only 14 episodes plus the movie 'Serenity'. I can re watch these all the time!
    So, do let us know what your think of Buffy once you've watched the whole thing. Happy viewing :0)

  36. Annother Buffy fan here. I watched it originally when it was on TV and re-watched it a couple years ago. Like you say, not perfect, but it's lots of fun :)

  37. Yay for a new convert! I never watched the show while it was on. Then I watched the whole series in one massive month-long binge about 2 years ago. I was completely surprised to find that I loved it. Yes, it's incredibly silly at times, but it's so much fun. Willow is by far my favorite, but I also love Ana and Xander. My favorite part of the show was always the characters themselves, not the silly villains. Keep enjoying it!

  38. I am so glad to see you are enjoying Buffy! I was late to the series; I had watched a few episodes here and there before, but it was only after the series had actually ended that I finally decided to watch it from start to finish.
    I would absolutely love it if you decided to write critical posts of it. I think we can love tv series/books/movies and yet still be critical of their strengths and weaknesses.

  39. This post made me really happy. I've been taking in Buffy in small doses for about a year now. For some reason, I'd never really gotten into it either. I watched enough when it was on TV to know the general premise, but never bothered with the rest. Surprising considering how I tore through everything else Whedon's made, and Buffy was the reason he was able to make things like Firefly!

    Needless to say, I'm not done yet either, though I'm nearing the end of season 6. I'm afraid to end it! Curious about the comics as well...so let me know what you find out/if you read them before me.

    I love your point about Angel and Buffy's relationship showing that something can be deep and true and meaningful without having to last forever. There needs to be more of this these days (said someone very burnt out on reading 'we'll be together forever from age 17' YA).

    I think Spike's my favorite character, but he is a bit of a prat. :P One of my few bad boy fandoms.

    Post more when you've seen more!

  40. I loved Buffy too! I haven't watched it since it originally aired (except for a few random late-night syndicated episodes here and there.) If you want to be EVEN MORE IMPRESSED, you should watch the original movie. When you see what they started out with and what they were able to make of it, you will have even more love for Joss Whedon & Co...if you are able to make it through the movie that is (it's pretty awful!) When I heard they were going to make it into a TV show, I thought it was the worst idea ever! I'm so glad they were able to turn it into something so great.

  41. I loved Buffy ,I watched it when it was first shown ,great the early series were the best did get quite same near the end ,all the best stu

  42. Claire: Part of me does, but at the same time, I think this was the right time for me. Now I could immerse myself in the series in a way I wouldn't have been able to back then, and it's been a wonderful experience. There will definitely be more Buffy posts in the future! I started season five and I already have sooo much more to say.

    Lu: Glad to hear it! Definitely stick with it until at least the middle of season two.

    Stephanie: I will for sure! And then I'll probably join you all in being sad that there are so few episodes :P

    Memory: I'm getting more and more curious! And you'll definitely hear from me when I get to that part :P

    I'm so not a blogger: Thanks! And you enjoy your rewatch :D

    Jessica: I was a little worried that I'd missed my window to watch it; that it was going to be one of those things you really love if you come to it at the right time but not so much later one. I'm very glad to report that's not the case at all!

    Sakura: I will! My end-of-the-day relaxation show when I was writing my dissertation last summer was Six Feet Under, but Buffy would have been perfect too.

    PherenV: I only have a few episodes to go before I get to The Body and I already have my suspicions of what it's going to be about. Really looking forward to it, although I'm anticipating lots of tears as well! And thank you! As I was telling Claire, I'll definitely post about Buffy again. I already have so much more to add to what I said last week.

    Stefanie: Yes it is, and the more I watch the more I appreciate it.

    Melissa: Hahaha, at this rate it won't take me much more than a month to get through the whole thing either. It's good not to be alone :P

    Kay: Yes, exactly!

    Heidi: Yes, we definitely need more love stories like this! As much as I love seeing them together, I'm so glad the writers made the decisions they did. As for Spike, he's definitely growing on me. Yesterday I watched the episode where we see what he was like as a human and I had a bit of a d'awww moment :P

    Dreamybee: I'm definitely curious about the original movie! One of these days I'll have to give it a try just for fun :P

    Stu: So far my favourites are seasons 2 and 3. 4 was so so for me (great character moments but I didn't much care about the main story arc), but 5 is turning out to be great. It took me a few episodes to get used to Dawn but I'm really impressed with it so far.

  43. Well, I'm late to reply, but welcome to the Buffy fandom. I still find it hard to say there's any TV show that moved me as much as Buffy. Battlestar Galactica came close, but ...

    Buffy is all about its characters. Following the series over time, you realise that they grow, they change, and they are human that rises to the occasion. They make sacrifices, they lose the people they care about, they get their heart broken - but they still show up to save the day.

    Buffy broke my heart so many times. I love that show.

  44. Dark Orpheus: Yes, I couldn't agree more. I'm approaching the end of season 5 now and the love keeps growing. I should have listened to you all those years ago :P


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