Buffy the Vampire Slayer

iZombie has given television the charismatic villain it deserves


People love a good villain. They have to be charismatic and brutal like Hannibal Lecter or Hans Landa. It’s the reason why Loki stole the show in the Avengers and Thor films.  There are those characters that are so unlike us in our real lives, that we live vicariously through their terrible ways. They’re their most enjoyable to watch when they’re at their absolute worst.

By now, if you’re a reader of the iZOMBIE comic you know there aren’t too many similarities between the books and the show. Ancient mummy John Amon of iZOMBIE has been changed to Blaine DeBeers, the drug dealer and zombie. Both play a similar roles in the story – a place in between. A character who may be helpful, but is more likely to be totally evil. But as the season is progressing, it looks like Blaine probably isn’t helpful type.

But if viewers were at all wondering if Blaine could be good somewhere inside his semi-zombie body – all thoughts were dashed after Tuesday night’s episode, “Live and Let Clive”. It turns out he has been purposefully turning people into zombies to do his dirty work for him. There are in fact a whole load of clients that his minions are selling brains to. You do have to admit, he certainly has great entrepreneurial spirit.

His business includes making brains taste good and turning his victims into his new clients by selling them brains. He claims to be obtaining brains by digging graves, but instead he is prowling the streets killing former partners and picking off poor innocent victims. All of these horrendous crimes are done with effortless charm and banter by actor David Anders.

It is almost difficult to blame him for what he is doing. After all, it is Liv herself who decides not to help him out anymore by giving him brains from the morgue. There’s still plenty of his story to be told, and yet he is already a favourite. Why? Just look at the same reasons people were obsessed with a certain vampire named Spike (James Marsters).


They are so easy to love. And hate. A lot.

Both are so charming, charismatic and wonderfully evil (pre-soul Spike especially). Besides sharing a semi-dead state they even look a bit similar. According to an interview in Entertainment Weekly, Anders got in touch with Marsters to get tips on peroxiding hair. May the torch of Billy Idol looks be carried on.

Each clearly has a way of manipulating women. After Spike was left by Dru for a Fungus Demon, he latched on to the petty Harmony. Even though his thoughts were elsewhere, he dragged the poor girl around. Blaine works in a similar way. If a zombie is ever intimate it would mean turning the partner as well. He knowingly turns the unsuspecting Jackie after a one-night-stand, turning her into one of his highest paying clients.

What ultimately makes these characters so good is that they refuse to be one dimensional baddies. It’s difficult to judge Blaine too much by just the first few episodes, but if iZombie continues to go down a similar Buffy-path then fingers crossed that things get as complicated for him as they did for poor Spike. You want them to suffer, but deep down we’re still rooting for them.

Wicked Wednesday: A Buffy’s Buffy


Buffy Summers is an icon for badassdom – not just for women, but any badass. There are few characters conceived in the last few decades that are symbolic of strength and perseverance. Joss Whedon’s creation will forever be remembered as the tormented girl on late 90’s television, but five years before Buffy was ever on the small screen there was Buffy the Vampire Slayer the movie. Cheesy, clunky and a little bit daft, the 1992 movie is almost nothing like the successful series that was to follow. And yet…it still remains one of my favourite movies.

Before Sarah Michelle Gellar sulked across the television screen in flare jeans and questionable hair clips, Kristy Swanson played the blonde cheerleader turned vampire slayer. She’s different than the girl many have watched grow up on screen. The 1992 Buffy is brighter and sillier, but still lovable. So are her love interests. “Outcast” Pike (played by Beverly Hills, 90210‘s Luke Perry) acts as Buffy’s only support system as she goes from uber-popular cheerleader to conflicted vampire killer. Donald Sutherland plays the surly watcher and Rutger Hauer plays a camp leader of the vampires. It’s all very silly indeed.

But was Buffy actually a good movie? Well, yes and no.

There are a lot of unanswered questions and kind of ‘assumed’ reasoning for plot development – What does it mean when the music stops? I’m still not sure. The continuity about the slayers origins are bit shaky, and the dialogue is a but forced at times. The movie tries to play horror comedy, but it doesn’t always seem quite sure what one it wants to be and when.

Kristy is quite a good Buffy in her own right. SMG will always be the defining actress for most fans, but how could she not be after seven seasons on television? It’s a bit unfair of a comparison. But Kristy is probably the best part about the entire movie. She’s got enough sass to carry the awkward movie as well as anyone probably could. Her one-liners are always spot on with delivery that makes it plenty of fun to quote along with.

To make Buffy watchable, don’t ever compare it to the television show. At that time, Whedon was not the screenwriting giant he is today. The horror story of what happened behind the scenes is now a familiar one to most fans: the original script was rewritten and chopped to bits by Donald Sutherland, who apparently also had quite the attitude. There are some lines that survived are still very Whedon-esque (“All I want to do is graduate from high school, go to Europe, marry Christian Slater, and die“) that makes the movie enjoyable.

For a rare few (me included), the movie came before the television show. Teenage me loved the movie so much I refused to watch ‘the other thing’. Now it seems absolutely crazy to me because the show means a lot to me, but I’m a fan that is still able to watch the movie with a great affection mostly because the two seem so separate.

If you’re interested, The Origin comic does a pretty nice job of adapting the original work to comic form. While Buffy lives on in her Dark Horse comic series, I still hope that elements of that original movie will make an appearance again in some form – I miss you and your motorbikes, Pike.