Speaking of serial or cinematographic works, we often use the words cult, generational or milestone a little inappropriately, perhaps taken by the enthusiasm for some product that certainly has an important value, but not the extent to justify the use of epithets such. Here, all these words are not only spot on, but are even necessary to define Buffy the Vampire Slayer, a series capable of literally reinventing television seriality, such was its revolutionary scope.
Born in 1997 from the genius of Joss Whedon, Buffy draws its roots from a film of the same name released in 1992, which was a resounding failure. At the time, therefore, re-adapting such a failed film certainly entailed a great risk, but not for Whedon, who strongly believed in the series, and he was absolutely right. The production starring Sarah Michelle Gellar went on for seven years and as many seasons, telling the story of the huntress Buffy Summers, the chosen one to fight the forces of evil. This simple premise led to the development of an epic story, capable of giving life to a truly unprecedented serial genre, of enhancing a new model of heroine and establishing itself as a generational cult, which would remain forever in the history of TV series .
Buffy and the total rewrite of the genre
Without spoilers of any kind, as promised, let’s weigh the reasons why, in defining Buffy, we used those heavy words mentioned at the beginning of the article. The first, most evident and perhaps greatest, quality of the series created by Joss Whedon is to have completely innovated serial landscape. Buffy it has become a cult precisely because it knew rewrite the television language, going to overturn the canons of a genre that, from the huntress onwards, has never been the same, and bringing a great breath of fresh air to the whole panorama.
Buffy mixes the whole sector well horror-actionwhich is characterized as the predominant genre within the narrative, with that from teen dramawhich was beginning to dominate television and which, also thanks to Buffy, it was deeply consolidated at the turn of the century. We therefore have a protagonist who hunts demons and every dark creature that afflicts Sunnydale, but who at the same time also has to deal with the classic problems of adolescence, from love relationships to friendships, up to everything concerning the school context. It is an operation never seen before, not with the achievement of these results, and as such it has had an incredible echo.
Buffy represents, therefore, a very successful attempt to combine these two extremely popular strands and by pursuing this operation the series has totally rewritten its genre, inaugurating moreover a trend extremely thriving, which in the 2000s would then depopulate. From Buffy the various derive directly The Vampire Diaries, Teen Wolf and all those works capable of mixing the teen drama with the supernatural: Whedon’s work is the true great cornerstone of this trend and as such it is a historic work in the panorama of TV series, considering that the production that derived from it as well as abundant it was also lucky.
A new model of heroin
To the complex and delicate rewriting operation, Buffy it also supports the creation of a new one heroine prototype, which is the spokesperson for a real historical and generational feeling and which would become, over time, a model and a source of inspiration not only in the serial or cinematographic field, but also in real life. Among the great advantages of Buffy the Vampire Slayer there is that of being able to rely on iconic characters and among these the protagonist clearly stands out, played by an iconic and splendid Sarah Michelle Gellar.
Buffy Summers is an extremely complex and innovative character, behind which the echoes of a struggle for thefemale emancipation which, in the media, also draws lymph from the presence of such a character. Buffy it breaks down all the principles of masculinity widely present in productions of this type, highlighting female characters with extraordinary, charismatic and independent powers. From Buffy to the faithful companion Willowalso passing through less recurring, but still fundamental figures, such as Cordelia, Anya and Faith. Buffy it’s a female storytelling in a traditionally male genre, because strength and power are in the hands of girls, especially in their positive meaning, while men end up being characters without powers or with dubious morals.
Thanks to the amazing character writing work and also the performance of Sarah Michelle Gellar, Buffy gave a fundamental push towards the promulgation of a new heroine prototype, which would soon explode in serial fiction, and which above all would act as a model to many young people all over the world who could identify with the tormented huntress. At the roots of the success of the series there is also this: the ability to reach the heart of the public through an iconic character and, once again we do not use this term inappropriately, generational.
Buffy is an ageless cult
Milestone, cult, generational work: Buffy the Vampire Slayer it is all this, for the reasons we have listed and for many others. The two issues addressed are those that show more clearly why the series written by Joss Whedon occupies a prominent place in the history of TV series, but clearly there are many other merits, to be traced back to the development of the plotto the writing of personagesto the presentation of certain themes which remain more closely linked to the actual development of the narrative. Lots of merits, but clearly there are also gods limits, mainly due to the time elapsed. Looking today Buffy, emerge clearly technical and visual limitations and the adoption of a narrative style linked to old schemes, but these are issues that concern, in fact, a look back, which in any case do not weigh even when reviewing the series more than twenty years later
Buffy it is a masterpiece because, placed in its context, it is a revolutionary work, but it is a cult because, seen in retrospect, the scope which it has had throughout the serial development of the last twenty years. It is no coincidence that today the Joss Whedon series is even studied in universities. It is no coincidence that still today a large number of spectators, even among the youngest, approach the vision of a series that obviously cannot even remotely compete with the visual sector of today’s productions. There is simply a prima it’s a After Buffy the Vampire Slayer in television series and this awareness is the greatest recognition that can be given to the series.
Watch Buffy in 1997 it had a very important value for many spectators, who witnessed the birth and growth of an icon of their time. Keep watching Buffy over the years, and still doing it today, it maintains its enormous value, because it is the visual testimony of a great man historical changeof the birth of a certain type of serial narration and of a heroine prototype that we are used to seeing on stage today, but which without this masterpiece series probably would never have existed. Buffy changed TV series forever: this is enough to decree its immense value.