S introduced me to Buffy the Vampire Slayer a little while ago. I’d seen the occasional episode on TV, but never watched them all in order. The other day, I watched the final episode, having previously watched the preceding 7 series, in order. From this you might be able to tell that I like the show.
<lj-cut text=”Some minor Buffy spoilers within”> For anyone who’s not had the pleasure, the series follows the eponymous Buffy, a teenage girl in the Californian town of Sunnydale. Sunnydale is build on a Hellmouth, a centre for supernatural evil. Buffy is the Slayer, a chosen woman with supernatural strength and agility, a teenager in High School as the show begins. The story follows an arc that takes Buffy and her friends through their school years to university, with a new enemy each season.
The show’s appeal lies in its affection for its characters, its humour, and its ability to switch from humour to horror without clashing gears. Like other long running shows with a story arc (Babylon 5 springs to mind) the show rewards the viewers’ perseverance by actually doing stuff with its characters, whether it’s the development of the main characters or reprising cameos.
You can object (and many have) to inconsistencies in what seems to be called the Buffyverse. Why don’t guns work there, except for that one time? Just how much daylight does it take to kill a vampire? Why do so few of the villians investigate the possibilities of explosives (and when they do, fail to apply them to the greatest threat, viz, the lady herself)? Since when were there mines near London? Just where is Spike’s accent from, anyway? But that’s not the point.
The point is that BtVS has a story about people to tell, and does so rather well. I hear Firefly is quite good, too.