Buffy question, regarding source of vamps (open spoilers)

I was wondering about where the never-ending stream of vampires come from. Do they always come out of the ground at a cemetery? A couple of methods:

A. Vampires sire new vampires. Was the exact mechanism for this ever explained? Is it the result of a partial feed, or does the sire do something special? Does the victim appear dead, get buried, only to be reborn as a vampire to claw itself out of the grave?

B. Vampires are spontaneously created out of regular corpses due to proximity to the Hellmouth. If so, shouldn’t the regular cast members who die (of natural and unnatural causes) reappear as vampires after some time? (i.e. J. C. and J. S.)

Could Buffy have saved herself a lot of trouble by getting a job as a mortitian or undertaker? Or simply find the professionals and have the following chat: “Listen, I don’t know if you’ve noticed the extra grave holes and missing corpses, but we have a vampire problem here in Sunnydale. Could you do me a solid and put a few toothpicks through the hearts of the newly deceased before planting 'em in the ground? Thx much!”

If she can’t trust them to do that, then why not have Giles get a job at the morgue or cemetery instead of in the school library? If Giles can’t do that because he is only supposed to watch, then what about Xander?

Maybe Buffy didn’t do this because it’s all a delusion and she is still at the mental institution?

This is explained in more detail in the earlier seasons and just kind of left unspoken later on, but:

To sire, a vampire must first feed off his victim, and then get the victim to drink at least a trace of the vampire’s own blood as well. The amount of blood the siring vampire feeds must apparently be a within a certain range of the amount of blood in the victim’s body… not enough, and the ‘victim’ doesn’t die or feel any effects other than the physical blood loss, (Buffy in the Dracula episode,) too much, and the victim will be stone dead and not rise again. (Mentioned as a possibility among the vampires in ‘Helpless’)

The victim appears to be completely dead for a certain period of time, (at least 24 hours?) and then will reawaken as a vampire wherever he or she is. Buffy was attacked by a new vamp at a funeral parlour at least. If they are buried underground, they will usually have at least enough strength to dig themselves out before dying for lack of blood.

According to legends, at least, the primordial vampire or vampires were humans who had been ‘sired’ directly from the blood of some other demon species.

PS: With regards to the Hellmouth specifically, apparently it somehow attracts vampires who have been sired in other places in the world. As long as a Slayer is effectively keeping the vampire population down on the Hellmouth, this is pretty much like moths flying too close to a flame - but nobody ever said that vampires were that bright. :wink:

A victim is bitten by the vampire, has their blood partially drained, is given some of the vampire’s blood, and then the victim must subsequently die as a result of the attack. The victim then rises from the dead as a vampire. Sometimes the victim will be abandoned to come back wherever the body might be (it appears the time it takes to rise as a vampire for the first time varies, as some get up only hours later, and others have time to be buried), but a special new vampire might be kept around so that the sire can keep an eye on him or her

As long as we’re quoting, I can’t resist this exchange from ‘Angel’:

Cordy: “Okay, here’s the list of local cemeteries, funeral homes and mausoleums.”
Gunn: “You telling me we got to go to every one of these places and start digging up fresh graves?”
Angel: “Drusilla will want to put the body in the ground.”
Wesley: “Angel, are you certain about this? A burial isn’t necessary for a newly made vampire to…”
Angel: “It would be for Drusilla. She’s a classicist.”

Buffy: “They have to suck your blood, and then you have to suck their blood. It’s a whole big sucking thing.”

Actually, this was fairly loosely applied throughout the series. Harmony, for example, was killed at the Graduation battle, under circumstances which made it very unlikely that she could have been sired by the means described in this thread.

Don’t get too hung up on the details. You sort of have to follow the MST3K mantra: “It’s just a show, you should really just relax”.

BrotherCadfael, in the case of Buffy I always thought it was best to wave my hands in the air and scream, “It’s magic!” when trying to follow its logic or plot holes.

“Wait, why was Angel in daylight in the episode ‘The Harvest’ when he’s later revealed to be a vampire”
“It’s magic!”

“Why is Willow watching a video of wild dogs if she’s supposed to be researching hyenas?”
“It’s magic!”

…okay, so it doesn’t work every time, but usually it helps.

I’m not sure I’d say ‘very unlikely’ - somewhat unlikely, yeah. Willing to overlook that because Vamp Harmony was so funny, I admit. :slight_smile:

And - two people quoted the ‘whole big sucking thing’ line without the followup, sigh…

“To make you a vampire they have to suck your blood. And then you have to suck their blood. It’s like a whole big sucking thing. Mostly they’re just gonna kill you. Why am I still talking to you?”

In addition to what others have posted, I think that vampires and other evil demons* are attracted to Sunnydale because of the eldritch energies of the Hellmouth. Thus Sunnydale has a higher predator/prey ratio than one would expect because the rate of vampire migration is higher than the rate of human migration (I mean in terms of percentages of population, not absolute numbers). Why the town wasn’t absolutely overrun before Buffy’s arrival I don’t know, but I’ve always assumed the mayor had some subtle hand in it.

*Not all Buffyverse demons are evil. Lorne from Angel, f’instance, is at worse neutral, and more likely benevolent but timid.

Joss was planning on Harmony coming back as a vamp. Otherwise the Mayor wouldn’t have made his pronouncement to his army about not stopping to feed or anything like that. I’d have to go back and check, but if the vamp that nailed Harmony was a former lover/date/spurned admirer, then they just might have taken advantage of the situation.

Or we can just say that it was the eldritch powers surrounding an Ascension that did it.

Hmm, yes, the Acension…

I wonder, come to think of it, what the result would be if a girl, dying or badly wounded of a vampire bite, got King Snake Demon blood (or other stuff) mixed into the wound? Say, from when the King Snake Demon blowed up real good??

That could be an amusing fanfic, where Harmony discovers that she’s not just a regular vampire girl, but somehow she’s a Supervamp with different powers. :smiley:

Lorne’s specific alignment is “Fabulous.”

Wait… wouldn’t that make him Fabulous Creature, and therefore me, and there plotting against all youse guys?

Harmony has minions?!?!?

*"… and Ruffles have ridges. But, Buffy, there’s actually a serious side to all this…"

“I sure hope so, because I’m having trouble breathing!”

I loved Harmony because she showed that not all vamps are just evil killing machines. Personality before dying plays a part. I would have loved to see a geeky, science type who’s obsessed with research get vamped. Imagine great intelligence combined with immortality.

The vamp who was helping Spike, Dru and Angel reassemble The Judge was that sort. He got burned up because he wasn’t evil enough.

I don’t think it does any good to stake them before they rise. You can burn them so they can’t rise, though.

Sure it does, you just leave it in there. You stick a stake in there, and then as soon as they rise, they immediately turn to dust because how in the Hell did they remove the piece of wood while lying motionless?

Who knows how it’ll affect the rising process, since we can’t do empirical tests in the Buffyverse. Possibly, just to grab a not-too-unlikely-sounding possibility, the stake in the heart delays the vampire rising? But if somebody ever pulls the stake back out again - bam, vampire gets them!

I thought of that because in some other vampire worlds, stake through the heart will only render a vampire comatose even if it was active beforehand. Gives the smart vampire an opportunity to decapitate or burn the sucker, though.

And I’ve always suspected, at least, that the ‘vampires exploding into dust’ bit was purely a plot device to keep Buffy from falling under any more suspicion of foul play than necessary. Usually I think if the stake kills a vampire, you have a dead body with a stake through it, either freshly dead or quickly decomposing to match the amount of time it was a vampire.

Yep. Joss has stated in old interviews that the dust bit was 1) neat (although expensive), and 2) kept Sunnydale clean of excessive corpses. Which is also neat, now that I think about it. :smiley: