Buffy the Vampire Slayer was an American supernatural drama series created by Joss Whedon that aired from 1997 to 2003. The show flipped the damsel-in-distress trope on its head and followed the adventures of Buffy Summers, the Vampire Slayer, and her friends the Scooby Gang, as they struggled to protect Sunnydale from the forces of darkness. In the past twenty years, Buffy the Vampire Slayer has become a cult classic and has left a big impact on popular culture. Here are 10 facts you might not know about the show ...
This article will contain spoilers.
1. Bianca Lawson (Kendra Young) is the step-sister of Beyoncé
Kendra was called as a Slayer after Buffy died while fighting the Master
Buffy: "Who am I? You're the one who attacked me, who the hell are you?"
Kendra: "I am Kendra, the Vampire Slayer."
Kendra introduces herself to Buffy, "What's My Line? Part One", Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Bianca Lawson is an American actress who is best known for her work in television. She has had roles in a number of different television series, such as Saved by the Bell: The New Class, Goode Behavior, Pretty Little Liars, Rogue, Sister, Sister, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, The Steve Harvey Show, Dawson's Creek, The Secret Life of the American Teenager, The Vampire Diaries, Teen Wolf, Witches of East End and Queen Sugar. In 1997, Lawson was cast in the role of Kendra Young, a Vampire Slayer, in season 2 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Kendra was a vampire slayer from Jamaica who was activated in 1997 after Buffy Summers died briefly while fighting the Master. Kendra was a very different fighter to Buffy, but the two of them were still able to become close friends and form a powerful fighting combo. Lawson was born in Los Angeles, California on 20 March 1979 to Denise Gordy, an actress and singer, and Richard Lawson, a film and television actor. Her parents were married in 1978 and divorced in 1989. Her father then went on to take a second wife, Tina Knowles, in 2015. Tina Knowles is the mother of singers Beyoncé and Solange Knowles, which makes Bianca Lawson their step-sister.
2. When Willow and Tara kiss and make up in "Entropy" Amber Bensen (Tara) got so swept up in the moment she accidentally slipped Alyson Hannigan (Willow) the tongue.
"There's so much to work through. Trust has to build again, on both sides... you have to learn if you're even the same people you were, if you can fit in each other's lives, it''s a long and important process and... can we just skip it? Can you just be kissing me now?"
Tara makes up with Willow, "Entropy", Buffy the Vampire Slayer
One of the most ground-breaking things that Buffy the Vampire Slayer did was introduce TV's first long-term lesbian relationship in the early 2000s. The relationship between Willow Rosenberg and Tara McClay was ground-breaking, but also suffered some problems. In season six, the couple suffers a break-up. In the episode "Entropy" we see them get back together again and it's an emotional moment. At ClexaCon 2019, Amber Benson, the actress who played Tara, spoke about the episode and how she felt about the emotional reunion. In this video, if you skip ahead to 39 minutes 29 seconds, a person in the audience asks Benson what was one of her favourite moments working with Alyson Hannigan. A giggling Benson confesses that when they had their big kiss in Entropy, she got a little bit too into the moment, and accidentally slipped Hannigan the tongue.
3. Robia LaMorte (Jenny Calendar) was a dancer before she became an actor and was chosen by Prince to be one of the lead dancers in his 1991 single "Cream"
Jenny Calendar was one of the earliest members of the Scooby Gang
"I was raised by the people Angel hurt the most. My duty to them was the first thing I was ever taught. I didn't come here to hurt anyone. I lied to you because I thought it was the right thing to do. I didn't know what would happen. I didn't know I was going to fall in love with you."
Jenny Calendar speaking to Giles, Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Robia LaMorte is an American actress and dancer who portrayed Jennifer "Janna" Calendar in seasons one to three of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Ms Calendar was a computer science teacher at Sunnydale Highschool, a "technopagan" who dabbled in witchcraft, and a romantic interest for Giles. One interesting fact that fans of Buffy the Vampire Slayer might not know is before Robia LaMorte was Ms Calendar, she was picked by Prince to be one of two lead dancers in the music video for "Cream". LaMorte played the character of "Pearl" alongside another dancer, Lori Elle, who appeared as "Diamond". To watch the video, click here.
4. Pedro Pascal was a guest star in the episode "The Freshman"
Buffy: "God I was worried that something had happened to you..."
Eddie turns around. He is a vampire.
Buffy: "... and of course it has, ' cause you're a vampire. I'm sorry."
Eddie: "I'm not."
Buffy and Eddie, "The Freshman", Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Pedro Pascal is a Chilean-American actor best known for his work in television. He played Javier Peña in Narcos, Oberyn Martell in Game of Thrones, Agent Marcus Pike in The Mentalist, and Nathan Landry in The Good Wife. In 2019, he rose to prominence starring as the title character on The Mandalorian, a science fiction space western Star Wars show, developed for the Disney streaming service. What some people might not know is that before Pascal donned his Mandalorian armour, he appeared as a guest star on Buffy the Vampire Slayer when he was 24 years old and just starting out in the world of acting. Pascal appeared as the character Eddie in the season four episode "The Freshman". Buffy meets Eddie, a Freshman at the University of California, Sunnydale, in 1999 when she was first starting life as a student at college. Not long after meeting Buffy, Eddie was sired into a vampire and disappeared from campus. His absence worried Buffy, who had hoped the two of them could become friends. When the two of them meet again, Eddie has risen as a vampire. Buffy tells him she is sorry for what happened to him and then dusts him.
5. The original storyline for the character Sunday was for her to be a Slayer who was turned into a vampire
Sunday: "Oh, I'm- I'm Sunday. I' ll be killing you here in a minute or so."
Buffy Summers: "You know, that threat gets more frightening every time I hear it."
Sunday threatens Buffy, "The Freshman", Buffy the Vampire Slayer
In the episode "The Freshman" Buffy encounters a nest of vampires stalking and killing students on the grounds of UC Sunnydale. The head of the gang is Sunday, a vampire who used to be a UC Sunnydale student, who now hunts and kills freshmen students, and then cleans out their dorm rooms of all their possessions. The original plotline for Sunday was to have her be a slayer turned vampire, or slaypire, but the idea was scrapped. A slaypire is a vampire that possesses strength, speed, durability and physical abilities superior to slayers and conventional vampires. Buffy was temporarily turned into a slaypire in the season one episode "Nightmares" when the influence of the Hellmouth caused the nightmares of everyone in Sunnydale to manifest into reality. Joss Whedon reportedly expressed regret for killing off Sunday and not exploring her character more.
6. K Todd Freeman (Mr Trick) auditioned for the role of Spike.
"Sunnydale. Town' s got quaint. And the people? He called me sir. Don't you just miss that? I mean, admittedly, it's not a haven for the brothers. You know, strictly the Caucasian persuasion here in the ' Dale. But, you know, you just gotta stand up and salute that death rate. I ran a statistical analysis and hello, darkness. It makes DC look like Mayberry, and ain't nobody saying boo about it. We could fit right in here, have us some fun."
Mr Trick, "Faith, Hope and Trick", Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Mister Trick was a young, modern vampire who appeared as a minor antagonist in season three. I've always been fond of Mister Trick. He was such a fun character. He was different from other vampires. He liked to dress well, had a distinct way of talking, enjoyed modern luxuries, wasn't afraid of technology, and disliked traditional hunting. I would have loved if he had been kept around for longer, instead of being staked after appearing in just five episodes of season three. Mister Trick was played by American actor K. Todd Freeman. Freeman did such a fantastic job bringing the charismatic Mister Trick to life. Before he scored the role, Freeman originally auditioned for the role of Spike. As much as I love James Marsters' portrayal of Captain Peroxide, I can't help but wonder how different the character would have been if K.Todd Freeman had played him.
7. Juliet Landau (Drusilla) is Martin Landau's daughter
"Miss Edith speaks out of turn. She is a bad example and will have no cakes today."
Drusilla speaks in riddles, "School Hard", Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Juliet Landau is an American actress, director, producer and ballerina who played the iconic role of Drusilla on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the spin-off show Angel for twenty-four episodes between 1997 and 2004. Drusilla was a cunning, unpredictable and dangerous vampire who possessed psychic powers, suffered from childish bouts of insanity, and liked to speak in riddles. Landau brought her to life with a haunting, child-like energy, that she described as a part Victorian, part Kate Moss heroin fashion chic look. One interesting fact about Juliet Landau is that she is the daughter of Academy award-winning American actor Martin Landau. Martin Landau started his career in the 1950s with an appearance in Alfred Hitchcock's film North by Northwest (1959) alongside Cary Grant. He played major roles on television throughout the 1960s and 1970s, appearing on the series Mission: Impossible (1966 to 1969) and Space: 1999 (1975 to 1977). He continued to act until 2017 and has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
8. The TV trope "funny aneurysm" was a phrase coined in the episode "The Freshman"
"Thanks. Can' t wait till mom gets the bill for these books, I hope it' s a funny aneurysm."
Buffy frets about the costs of textbooks, "The Freshman", Buffy the Vampire Slayer
In the episode "The Freshman" Buffy and Willow are exploring the UC Sunnydale campus and decide to visit the college library and purchase some textbooks from the book store. Buffy tells Willow she is concerned about how her mother is going to react when she gets the bill for the books and hopes it is a "funny aneurysm". This line has become known as the "funny aneurysm" TV trope which is a joke that was originally meant to be funny or light-hearted but later becomes traumatic, sad or unfortunate, due to an unexpected twist in events. Buffy's comment in the show about her mother suffering from an aneurysm would later come back to haunt her when her mother would later develop a brain tumour and then die from an aneurysm.
9.Sunnydale High School is a real-life high school
"'Something weird is going on.' Isn't that our school motto?"
Xander Harris, Buffy the Vampire Slayer
In season 1 to 3 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Buffy attended Sunnydale Highschool with her friends Willow and Xander. Sunnydale Highschool was a public high school located in Sunnydale, California. The school was located over a Hellmouth, a magical portal between Earth and Hell, that attracted vampires, demons and monsters to the town of Sunnydale. The influence of the Hellmouth was so strong, Sunnydale High School was the site of several prominent supernatural events and mysterious deaths over the course of several decades. Buffy played a huge role in helping to protect the students in the school from 1997 until she famously blew up in the school in 1999 at her graduation. The exterior shots of Sunnydale High School were shot at a real-life high school located in Torrence, California. Torrence Highschool has been a popular filming location for television shows and motion picture films for years. In addition to being featured on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the school was used as West Beverly High School in Beverly Hills, 90210 and the spin-off series 90210. It also appeared as Ulysses S. Grant High School in The Secret Life of the American Teenager from 2008 to 2013 and was used as a filming location in the Fox Network series Skin and the NBC drama Medium. The school has since become a popular tourist spot for nostalgic fans of Buffy the Vampire Slayer to come and visit to pay homage to the show.
10. Tom Lenk was one of Harmony's vampire minions before appearing in season six as Andrew Wells.
Tom Lenk as Cyrus, an evil vampire, and a member of Harmony's gang
Tom Lenk is an American actor who is best known for playing Andrew Wells (you know, Tucker's brother) on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel. Lenk could arguably be described as one of the funniest actors ever to appear on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel. Lenk is openly gay and was chosen for the role of Andrew because Joss Whedon considered him to be very funny and was open to the idea of letting his sexuality shape the character of Andrew. Lenk went on to portray Andrew as being hopelessly unaware of his own sexuality, which led to him being a very charming, and hilarious character. What some people might not know is that Andrew Wells was not the first character that Tom Lenk played on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Before he joined the Trio, Lenk appeared in the season five episode "Real Me" as the vampire Cyrus. Cyrus was a member of Harmony' s gang and was part of a plot to kidnap Dawn Summers to lure Buffy Summers into a trap. He was dusted by Buffy with a crossbow when she showed up to save her sister.