Women in Horror #1: Buffy

(Cross-posted on the WriteClub blog)

February is Women in Horror month, where we officially pay homage to the importance that women play in the horror genre.

This year I am going to be doing a series of posts acknowledging those kick-ass heroines who redefine the role of women in horror.

Buffy

buffyOK, so let’s start at the top. I am a HUGE Buffy fan.There are so many reasons why she is such a great role model. Joss Whedon said that the inspiration for Buffy came from the fact that in the horror films he grew up with, the blonde girl was always the one to creep alone down the corridor and get eaten by the monster. He decided the blonde girl should fight back. So he created his teenage California girl who had superpowers. Who was chosen to kick vampire butt.

There are a thousand reasons why I love Buffy. It’s the only show I will make a point of watching reruns of when they are on. The only show where I can start watching a random episode and know within five minutes not only which series it is, but which episode it it. It has irony. It has real, flawed characters who are affected by the world around them and change from series to series. One of the great things I loved from the beginning was the way it handled adolescence with sensitivity and wry humour. Anyone who’s been a teenager knows the hell that is High School. Every kid has to fight demons in high school. For most of us, those demons are metaphorical. Buffy’s demons just happen to be literal. As well as having to deal with the usual adolescent angst of not being popular, whether she’ll have a date for the dance, getting into trouble with her folks for staying out late, bullies, jocks vs geeks and so on, she also has to save the world from demons, vampires and the occasional apocalypse. And she still manages to graduate from high school (well, after she saves everyone from the ancient snake demon posing as the Mayor).

People who don’t understand my obsession with Buffy have said: “if you like Buffy, you must like Twilight. They’re both about girls in love with a vampire”. If you can’t get the difference, I can’t begin to explain it to you. Just watch this terrific video. Yes, I know I’ve posted it before, but it so proves a point.

Yes, Buffy loves Angel. But at the end of season 2, when she has to kill Angel to save the world, she does it. Even though she loves him. Because a true heroine has that kind of strength of character. And that’s another reason I love Buffy.

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4 comments so far

  1. Sonya Clark on

    Awesome post! I can’t wait to introduce my daughter to Buffy!

  2. Laurel on

    “People who don’t understand my obsession with Buffy have said: “if you like Buffy, you must like Twilight. They’re both about girls in love with a vampire”.”

    Oh, for cry–

    *holds up megaphone*

    ALL VAMPIRES ARE NOT CREATED EQUAL!!!

    Why is that so confusing? Seriously, every time I see a vampire whatsit of ANY kind these days, even if it doesn’t involve romance, some twit crawls out of the Internet to compare it to Twilight.

    No. Just, no.

    Great post, dude. I will never get tired of that Buffy vs. Edward mashup.

  3. Sealey on

    Yes! I just had this convo at Thanksgiving with family.

    I own all seasons of Buffy, many never opened. My fav show of all time, I think. I didn’t start watching it until season 4 or so. It started when I was in college and didn’t have time to watch it. But I caught up in reruns, sometimes as many as 4 episodes a day (because they were on every day back to back). I think I survived on Buffy during my entire first pregnancy. 😉 Got to where I could recite the lines.

    To this day, one of my favorite books (as cheesy as it sounds) is What Would Buffy Do: The Vampire Slayer as Spiritual Guide. And I’m not joking. LOL Hmmm, maybe I should do a review of that book. 😛

  4. […] the intention to showcase fictional kick-ass heroines of horror this month, kicking off with Buffy, the character that has seemingly served as inspiration for a whole new generation of female […]


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