Wednesday, May 21, 2003
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BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER, 1997-2003:
BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER, 1997-2003: I'm in mourning today, as my favorite television series ever went off the air last night.
I could try to explain why I loved the show so much, but I suspect it would come off as flat. I can link like crazy, however.
CNN provides a wealth of back story for the uninitiated. Connie Ogle has an excellent essay of why Buffy was so good. Jonathan Last has a great overview of his top-ten favorite episodes. Joyce Millman has an exhaustive archive of odes to Buffy in Salon. The best ones are here and here. And don't miss Slayage: The Online Journal of Buffy Studies, including this exhaustive academic bibliography of scholarship devoted to the Buffyverse. [Isn't that all a bit pretentious?--ed. Go read this Stephanie Zacharek article on the phenomenon from a non-academic perspective. And then read this Rita Kempley piece on why Buffy is so appealing to theologians]
The Parents Television Council labeled Buffy the least family-friendly show of 2001-2 -- and I must admit, their description of the show is pretty dead-on in terms of its potentially objectionable material. However, it's telling that Christianity Today praised the show's use of such material:
When a television show earns cultural praise from Christianity Today,The American Prospect, National Review Online (though they hated the finale), FHM Magazine, Reason (according to Virginia Postrel) and the New York Times editorial page, you know you're talking about something that cannot be reduced to a whiff of transient pop culture -- you're talking about a pathbreaking work of art.
I'll close with two quotes. The first is from an Onion interview with the show's creator, Joss Whedon:
The second is from Zacharek again, capturing how I'm feeling today:
Mission accomplished, Joss.posted by Dan on 05.21.03 at 10:18 AM