A Millennial Reviews: ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ Is Goth as Hell and I Love It

Everyone on 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' looks like Donald Trump’s kids, and I mean that both as an insult and a compliment.

Previously on “A Millennial Reviews“…


Greetings, city witches, country warlocks, suburban seers, bridge and tunnel acolytes, the upstate undead, Greater Newark Area Harbingers of Death, and general freaks from wherever. If you’re like me and you felt compelled to dye your hair blue for some reason earlier this year, it’s probably turning purplish gray right about now, but that’s alright because it’s October, which means you can throw some sort of spooky Stevie Nicks get up on, start wearing a bunch of crystals and shit, post some Morticia Addams memes all over the place, and before you can say “Yes, this definitely isn’t just a trend that I glommed onto recently after getting mimosa drunk and visiting a Party City,” boom – you’re one of those spooky Halloween people that get horny when they see a pile of orange leaves this time of year.

Yes, this is not a desperate grasp at an interesting new identity at all, I am always like this, except in like, summer, and also winter and spring, and September and November. Anyways, yesterday I was burning half of my spice rack in my apartment because THEY APPARENTLY DON’T HAVE SAGE AT MY WHOLE FOODS, but that is another story; I was lighting a pile of nutmeg on fire next to the santeria candle I burn to keep Jill Stein from becoming more powerful when it occurred to me that I am going through Game of Thrones withdrawal. Let me explain: the candles and voodoo and shit reminded me of going to my abuela’s house growing up, and Hillary Clinton isn’t lying when she tells you she’s basically my grandmother. Hanging out with an elderly Mexican woman is EXACTLY like being around Hillary. She’s always casting all these Lord of Light blood magic incense spells on her enemies, she’s dying of pneumonia or something, and she has NO idea how to run her damn email account. It’s like a Strong Bad cartoon in there. Anyways after she would finish rubbing hard boiled eggs on people to keep demons away we would sit down and watch novelas, which are Univision shows about people throwing drinks in each others faces. This ritual instilled in me an appetite for soap operatic drama that has up until recently only been satisfied by pro wrestling, news stories about Gary Johnson, and Game of Thrones (Days of Our Lives with Dragons).

Since Game of Thrones is off the air right now, I’m not getting my stories and I need to live vicariously through fictional people or I WILL DIE. This has been killing me so recently I did what I always do when I have a problem: I went on Snapchat and screamed about it while using the Donald Trump filter (this is where you put your head inside of a jack ‘o lantern and look through the eyeholes). Well someone suggested I watch Buffy The Vampire Slayer, and 7 seasons later I am here to tell you that it is solid gold television. I don’t know if there is a work of fiction that more accurately sums up the spirit of my generation. It’s a story told badly on purpose in which grown adult actors pretend to be younger than they are while fighting against an inarguably evil faction of demons using a bunch of King Tuff lyrics as a weapon. Goth as hell. Millennial as hell.

Everyone on this show looks like Donald Trump’s kids, and I mean that both as an insult and a compliment. All of the Trump women are hot, like Buffy, and all of the Trump men look like they’ve been up for 3 days watching porn and bleaching their hair, like Spike. Anyways they’re all in high school and they have to fight vampires and demons because Buffy is a slayer, which is kind of like being a Buzzfeed writer in that it’s a calling and a responsibility that a person can not shirk once they realize how important they are. Buffy’s best friend is a witch named Willow who gives off a real Ellen vibe later in the show if you know what I mean. What do I mean? I mean I enjoy watching her on television. Also she is a lesbian, which is funny because she dates this Seth Green character (who also gives off an Ellen vibe, haircut wise) named Oz for a while and he turns out to be cursed with lycanthropy, so basically he’s a cuck-werewolf for a few seasons. Maybe it was one season. I don’t know, I’m gonna get a lot of this wrong. I didn’t have time to properly download this entire fictional universe in my head because I was too busy listening to The Smiths and flailing around in black robes this month. There’s also a muggle named Xander who I think is sort of a metaphor for people who use Android phones. Despite not having magical powers he is still able to help the group out with simple tasks like lifting large objects and using Google Maps.

Then there’s Giles, the sort of spooky Mr. Belvedere of the show. I heard that one time they had to stop filming because Giles sat on his balls and fainted but I have no way of confirming this because the cowards at Snopes.com refuse to address the subject. Anyways there’s nothing weird about Giles at all, he’s just your run-of-the-mill middle aged single man who hangs out with high school kids encouraging them to skip class and hang out in dungeons. He also looks and talks suspiciously like Niles from Frasier. Wait a minute, I think I may be on to something here. Sunnydale High School sits on top of a Hellmouth, which is a portal in the earth that demons and vampires climb through in order to feed on humans. It would make sense that  demons are coming from the goth-est place on Earth, Seattle, Washington. Regardless, the only way to test this theory is to burn tossed salad, scrambled eggs, and the hair of a Stumptown barista during a blood moon, and I don’t when the hell we’re getting another one of those.

Buffy, Xander, Willow, Oz, and Giles. Everyone on this show has the name of a phone psychic’s pet tarantula. So these people team up to fight a bunch of creepy-crawly’s in an attempt to close the Hellmouth and Make Sunnydale Great Again. The more I watched this show the more something stuck out to me. Buffy is this very unlikable blonde woman who doesn’t live up to a lot of our expectations of what a protagonist should be. She’s a bimbo cheerleader type, she’s a little too friendly with the enemy (the guy from Bones is on this show a lot?), and she says horrible things sometimes like “The hardest thing in this world is to live in it.” Yet, in spite of all of this, she is the only chance that Sunnydale has to be saved from an onslaught of goblins and the despotic rule of some facially deformed lurker from the depths of hell. I can’t put my finger on who this reminds me of.

That’s a simple enough premise for a show but it begs the question, why did a show on the CW (the Mr. Pibb of TV networks) last for seven seasons? While writing this week’s review I found this question difficult to answer. It gave me one of those college headaches that has ideas and stuff attached to it. I took a break and something VERY SPOOKY happened. I was pacing around my living room, burning echinacea on top of a large pentagram I made out of Infinite Jest pages and I was practicing a chant I read about in a very dusty old black magick Kindle.

“Lindelof, Harmon, Sedaris, Abrams!” I chanted. “Schumer, Thought Catalog, Kombucha, Gamergate!”

Just then, lightning crashed and screeched through my loft window and I blacked out and had a terrifying vision where I was me but I wasn’t me. I was a human named Jake Flores who looked like myself, but I was thinking these strange sincere thoughts that didn’t have any references to Jezebel or Phantogram in them. It’s almost as if I was speaking backwards like Danny DeVito’s character in Twin Peaks. When I came to I had written a strange passage in a moleskin. I have no idea what it means. It is as follows:

Why do we love Buffy The Vampire Slayer? The answer is because it sucks and is bad. Millennials love two things: laughing at things that don’t intend to be funny, and not laughing at things that do and are. South Park? No Way. Deep Blue Sea? Front row seats, I know the whole “my hat is like a shark’s fin” rap for some reason. We love it when people work their whole lives to entertain us, only to end up producing a bunch of cornball dialogue and bad kung fu action. This is why Joss Whedon is a necromancer of campy crap. Joss figured out that since we love consuming garbage while laughing at the characters on the screen like we’re somehow better than them, he could expedite the whole “trying to make a good show” part of the process and just make bad television on purpose. He writes bad dialogue and then we gather around and laugh at it, assuring ourselves that we could have made something better even though we never will. If you really think about this it is a completely asinine and self congratulating way to consume media. This is the reason honest hardworking people hate Brooklyn, Pabst Blue Ribbon, and black framed glasses. It all smacks of a point of view where a person thinks they’re somehow special for being able to realize that something sucks, as if that’s a useful skill. It’s not Joss’ fault he’s so successful, it’s ours. We love consuming trash because it makes us feel better about our hollow inner lives. Art is dead.

So yeah, I don’t know what the hell ancient Egyptian language that shit is written in but if anyone out there can decode this feel free to tweet at me @feraljokes. Happy October, #ImWithBuffy and irony forever. My wiiiiiiiiiife.

A Millennial Reviews: ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ Is Goth as Hell and I Love It