OK, I don't get the appeal of Buffy

I liked that the Pee Wee Herman vampire took FOREVER to die.

Also, Kristy Swanson. Sarah Michelle Gellar Is the woman in the TV show with Robin Williams about the ad agency.

You noticed the humor–present in both shows. Lots of folks don’t get that…

I’m also kinda bewildered the OP would watch 12 seasons of unenjoyable television. If by the end of the second season of Buffy you haven’t found anything in the show you like, pretty much anyone would say you shouldn’t bother watching any more. Was it some kind of spite watching?

Personally, I love the shows for their dialogue, humor, and character development. The humor just clicks well with me and most episodes have at least one stand out bit. The storytelling does a great job of weaving together self contained plots and serialized plots. The main characters are savvy enough that I don’t have to yell at the TV on account of their stupidity. The world building is very solid, doing a good job of having the characters take their surrounding seriously while still acknowledging the absurdity of so much of the monsters and magic they encounter. Cliches are regularly subverted in interesting ways. I can definitely see someone thinking the acting in Buffy is weak, but the characters are generally interesting and likable enough to compensate. I’d say the acting in Angel is actually pretty decent. Alexis Denisof and Amy Acker give pretty strong performances, and Boreanaz’s brooding is much more tolerable when his friends regularly make fun of him for it. The shows get harder to watch when everyone hates each other, but when they are getting along it it functions as a pleasant hang out experience.

I can see someone not enjoying it, everyone’s different, but I have a hard time thinking someone could watch the entire run of both shows and not see some of the merit in them.

She identified with being a distinct individual who didn’t fit in with the usual high school crowd, but had a few staunch friends. Yeah, the metaphorical challenges as they related to her life didn’t usually parallel, but she did become sexually active at the same age Buffy and Willow did, she’s Wiccan, and I suspect that Willow’s change of sexual preference is a major influence on her being LGBT friendly, though not of that community herself. And she really had a crush on Spike.

But, yes, it was the talks about the show and the issues addressed I treasure.

I’m another 46-year-old male who loved the show. Another target demographic was Generation X. A lot of the jokes in the show were cultural background material. Joss Whedon apparently watched a lot of the same TV shows, and read a lot of the same comic books, as I did. There would be offhand references to X-Men, or Hanna-Barberra cartoons, or TV shows that I watched when I was a kid, that people a few years older or a few years younger would probably miss. And I am sure that there were a lot of jokes that I missed.

I only started watching Buffy and Angel 5 or 6 years ago (and still haven’t finished), so I’m very much not in the target demographic, but I’ve enjoyed the show for its clever writing, willingness to take risks (“Hush” is at the top of that list, followed closely by “Once More with Feeling,” but there are others), and its self-aware vibe.

My only regret is that “Normal Again” came so late in the show’s run and appears to have no repercussions. It would have been a phenomenal thing if they’d done it in season 2 and had Buffy occasionally have flashbacks.

I can understand the appeal, but for myself I have to agree with Ethilrist’s friend. Season one was promising enough to watch season two, season two had (for me) the highest ratio of excellent shows to mediocre, season three was still pretty interesting, but after that I was only watching for the one or two shows that grabbed me, and gave up during season six. Joss Whedon is often clever, but I find his writing wildly uneven, and has a tendency to break character in the service of a bit of snappy dialogue. It is entertaining but jars me out of the story.

This is a really timely thread - my husband’s TV-based nerdy education was sadly stunted by endless hours of D&D, so I’ve been remedying that over the years.

We’re about done with star trek next gen, and We had pretty much decided on Buffy next. I remember mostly the snark and the geeky references - I really felt like those characters were my people - that if they were real, they would get me, and my interests.

I’m curious to see whether it appeals to a grown man many years out of date, and this thread makes me simultaneously more hopeful and more worried that he might not like it.

For reference, he’s seen and loved Firefly, Serenity, and mostly Dollhouse (thought it was too depressing to be truly enjoyable).

We’ll have to see!

I watched it during the original run and, compared to its contemporaries, it was really fresh and unique. Also, DVRs were more-or-less nowhere and prior seasons weren’t cheaply available (i.e. no Netflix). Having a meta-season plot and character development was really a hard act to pull off in those days.

It also, in my crowd of the time, turned into a bit of a social event (“Who’s hosting Buffy night this week?”).

I have fondness for the show, but now that much of TV series production has adopted the Whedonization tropes pioneered by Buffy, I think newbie viewers watching marathons of the show would feel it to be dated and erratic. It’s still better than 90% of anything else ever made, though, and I would recommend it over any other Whedon TV series with the sole exception of Firefly.

Buffy is a dated TV show, of interest to people who loved watching it originally or to lovers of that genre.

When it came out it was unlike anything on at the time. The only thing potentially close that I can recall was X-Files but even that had a completely different tone. It was like someone took Beverly Hills 90210, but replaced the vapid plotlines with vampires and werewolves and better dialogue.

Whedon has a problem in that, like Kevin Smith, all his characters speak with the author’s characteristic smart-Alec voice, so they just sound like props rather than individual people.

I don’t understand what the OP’s complaints have to do with liking the show. Other than stuff about the show dragging in places, they all sound like nitpicks, not something you would stop watching a show over. And if the show drags for part of it, that doesn’t make the rest unwatchable.

You stop watching a show if none of the actors are good, or if you can’t stand the plots or if they get annoying or stuff like that.

And since you didn’t stop watching the show, I don’t understand what you mean by saying you don’t get the appeal. Unless you’re trying to figure out why you kept on watching it or something. And my answer is the same–you couldn’t find anything really wrong with it.

I don’t agree with that. What I would agree with is that frequently Whedon feels he has some clever line so he just assigns it to a character at random. All the characters are very much their own character, it’s just that when there’s sufficient opportunity they stop being those characters and become Joss’ Prop for a second.

A lot of the lines themselves are good, but I agree that it’s very odd and distracting, and I’m not fond of his tendency to do that.

I loved Buffy. One of the best shows ever made. But I do think it is fair to say that Joss Whedon is a one trick pony; it just happens to be a very good trick. Every group of characters in the shows he creates have the same snarky pitter pat dialogue that is mostly fun but can be tiresome.

Buffy, Angel, Firefly, Dollhouse, SHIELD, you could mix and match characters from all of these shows and the way they interact and sound when they talk to each other would be exactly the same.

I can understand the criticism that when it comes to humor the characters feel like mouthpieces. Pretty much all of the characters have snarky, sarcastic senses of humor that aren’t particularly distinct from each other. The thing is, I think it largely works for Buffy and Angel. The characters are constantly going through extremely traumatic experiences, and that kind of humor works as something of a defense mechanism to keep them all sane. To some extent it makes sense for them all to have a similar attitude.

I wish there were more like Buffy. I’m longing for something that’s serious and funny, something where you root for the good guys. The West Wing and Buffy, and then what? There is stuff that’s good, but it’s all so bleak! The Wire, House of Cards, Breaking Bad, The Walking Dead… it’s all heavy and dreary and bleak. I want something to cheer on, to laugh with, to root for, while still addressing the serious stuff.

There was Orange is the new black, I suppose, but now?

That’s what I liked about Buffy, anyway. That, and everything else about it. :smiley:

Person of Interest

It’s certainly true that there was a lot of snark on Buffy, and that a lot of the repartee from Buffy, Willow, Anya, Xander, etc. could sound similar, though I disagree that the characters didn’t have individual voices when delivering snark.

However, I don’t agree that it was just snark and nothing but snark. Whedon and the other writers (there were a lot of writers besides Whedon) had a number of styles. For one thing, he had some of the best “St Crispin’s Day” speeches I have heard in movies or TV. (i.e. Speeches given by Buffy beofre her weary team had to battle a superior more numerous evil.) And it also had one of the most badass lines given by a man about to kill another man, especially since the former first appeared as a mild mannered stuffy English librarian:

“She could have killed me.”

“No she couldn’t. Never. And sooner or later Glory will re-emerge, and… make Buffy pay for that mercy. And the world with her. Buffy even knows that … and still she couldn’t take a human life. She’s a hero, you see. She’s not like us.”

ETA: Also, I agree that with all the drama it never forgot to be fun. I miss that in sci-fi TV. Stargate SG-1 was another show that remembered to do this.

Love Buffy.

Hate OP’s who don’t return to their threads.