Worst Movie Morphed to Best TV Series - Buffy the Vampire Slayer - Resurrected From Box Office Blonde Hell
I was so excited to see the movie Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It featured a female hero and vampires, not to mention Rutger Hauer and Nicolas Cage.
Hey, I thought this would rock. Imagine my disappointment only to discover after wasting a few hours of my life that it was arguably the worst movie to ever come out of Hollywood.
That's right. I said it. Buffy the Vampire Slayer was horrid.
The movie that is. Some of the lamest acting ever combined with poor directing, low budget stunts and a lack of decent choreography to totally destroy the stellar story that was Joss Whedon's masterpiece creation.
What really got slayed wasn't the vamps, it was a great story. What writer wouldn't be ten kinds of hacked off to see his baby slaughtered at the box office?
It has happened to many a writer. Joss Whedon, however is no average writer. He managed to pull off the impossible by getting the worst movie ever remade into the the hit TV series that became an overnight sensation.
I wasn't about to watch it.
I was still so ticked off by the movie, when I heard about the series debuting on air, I was firmly resolved not to waste my time watching. Me, the lover of all things vampire wasn't about to even give the series a chance.
That changed when I heard who was going to play Buffy. Sarah Michelle Gellar was cast. Having already seen her as an actress on the day time soap All My Children, I was intrigued. She was a tiny little thing but mean as all get out on the soap, like some devil child with a sweet as sugar face and a stab you with her lollipop attitude.
I remember thinking there was no way this was going to work. It would be another dismal failure. Sarah was tiny. How could she pull off the combat scenes any better than Kristy Swanson had in the movie?
Who knew tiny little Sarah was a karate whiz in the real?
Evidently, those brilliant enough to cast her. Joss had pulled off the impossible by getting any backing for the project at all. Everyone was skeptical at best but what happened was instant success.
I can still remember watching the first episode the night it aired. Strangely, I knew when the opening intro music played this was going to be different. It rocked. The music gave off a hard core vibe not a teeny bopper, bubble gum sound making me think perhaps this would take the character where she should have gone the first time around.
The vampires were actually scary, the story line of how the characters met and came to be where they were was believable and better yet, so were the characters. One of the main problems, as I saw it, with the movie was that Luke Perry didn't even look like a kid. It was a no sale on the credibility from the start.
The kids in the Buffy verse came off as just that, kids.
Over seven seasons, fans came to love Buffy.
She wasn't alone. The entire cast was made of the most lovable characters, each quirky in their own way, full of human flaws yet totally likable. Over time, they came to call themselves the Scoobies.
Check out the gang as they were in the beginning, with no spoilers.
Meet the characters -
Buffy Summers - (Sarah Michelle Gellar) Our newly called slayer was a high school, super popular, cheerleader thrown some major life curves. One day she's riding the top of the A group wave, the next her friends are slaughtered and some old guy informs her it's her sacred duty to save the world from vampires.
This poor child goes from thinking about shoes to slaying overnight. Add in a recent divorce in the family, being expelled from school (not her fault) and having to move to a new town and you get the sad situation our gorgeous gal finds herself in at the start of the series.
As if all that isn't bad enough, that crazy vampire thing, oh yea, it's in Sunnydale too. Who would have thought? Darn, there's just no escape it seems. So much for spending time on school.
Willow Rosenburg - (Alyson Hannigan) Willow is a shy, insecure, budding genius. Secretly in love with her best friend, always kind to others, just warm and fuzzy all the way around, Willow takes pity on the academic struggles of our super slayer in episode one starting a friendship that spanned the entire series.
Alexander Harris (Zander) - (Nicholas Brendon) He's a normal, red blooded American teen always on the quest for girls and giggles. Being a normal boy, he has to get a gander at the new girl. You got it. He falls for Buffy at first glance. By the way, he's the best friend Willow is all in love with.
Cordellia Chase - (Charisma Carpenter) Spoiled, rich, self inflated queen of mean doesn't really do justice to Cordelia. At times it appears she exists only to be mean to those less fashion forward, less popular, less... her.
Rupert Gyles - (Anthony Stewart Head) Heralding from the old country, he's the adult of the group, high school librarian and secret member of the Watcher's Council assigned to our dear slayer. Think clandestine ancient organization existing to control and direct the slayers. Gyles is cool undercover of geek in the extreme and provides some of the best one liners around with a sardonic wit second to none.
On paper, it sounded like a decent coming of age sitcom.
When the vampires got added in, it became something really special. You see the Buffy verse never stuck too close to the horror aspects nor ranged too far from the coming of age situations all teens inevitably face. The two balanced together made for really entertaining story lines week after week.
I would be kicked out of the Buffy fan club if I failed to mention one other thing that just took it over the top, the romance. Amid the karate packed demon decapitation was mixed in one of the most moving romances in television history. I promised you no spoilers.
We even loved the villains.
Most shows come up with successful villains and Buffy was no exception. What was exceptional was that America fell in love with many of the villains. From the super sexy Spike the vampire supreme to the evil mayor, from the Goddess known as Glory to an appearance by Dracula himself, we fell in love with the bad guys over and over again.
We never loved them more than Buffy and cheered for her faithfully but hearts throbbed across America and many a tear was shed when some had to be dispatched. Such is the nature of being a slayer. (No spoilers. Gr. It's really hard not to spill the best beans, so to speak).
Let me put it this way, some of the characters were so successful the spin off featuring two of the original Buffy vampires, both Angel and Spike, ran for five seasons. It still gets decent ratings in syndication.
Action, adventure, romance and comedy.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer had it all. Cancelled and brought back twice, fans died a little at the end of each season waiting to see if Buffy would live on. She became an inspirational female role model, a hero if you will for girls everywhere, for those always cheering for the greater good and for audiences all over the world. For true fans of female action heroes, the vampire and occult genres, romance and coming of age television, it doesn't get any better than Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Check out a trailer for each season.
Watch a girl grow into a superhero worthy of the title in the seven seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I never get tired of this show. From the music to the action, the fashion to the banter, I just love it.
Most yummy bad guy in the Buffy verse?
Buffy rocked week after week, literally.
The show continually debuted killer music of the 90's. They even ran a musical. Most musical episodes of weekly sitcoms suck. This one was great. Don't get me wrong, the singing isn't going to knock your socks off (most, some of it really is good) but the advancing it does of the story will.
Background image credit; Vix.