If we can talk for a moment about how incredibly important this show is.
This character showed that a fighting female character can garner the numbers necessary to stay on the air and launch a number of successful careers for those involved. This show changed the face of the horror genre, both for television and film. And to see a girl on network television kicking ass? (I’ll casually point to Xena: Warrior Princesshere, too.) Buffy literally kicks ass, and she looks damn good doing it. She is a conflicted, imperfect teenage girl, but there’s a sense that, even without slayer abilities, she’d lay down her life to protect the people she loves. She struggles to be good, to be what the “real world” expects, to be happy so her family and friends won’t worry. She was never given the chance at a “normal” life, and the segment of her life that we’re shown is horrifying and heartbreaking.
Buffy helped to pave the way for believable, strong female characters in television. (Do you really think there’d be a Veronica Mars without her? An Olivia Pope? Or Abbie Mills?) She influenced a whole generation of kids that looked to her and thought, If she can get through high school, so can I. Buffy was strong and beautiful. She proved that a woman can be sexual without being “a slut.” Can be emotional without being weak. She showed us it’s okay to be damaged and unsure. Because in her immortal words, “The hardest thing in this world is to live in it.”
She proved you can wear the dress and the leather jacket. You can do your makeup and carry a stake, a crossbow, a knife. You can be yourself, no matter how flawed or strange, and you can still have friends.
I learned from a whole host of real life women how to be strong, but I learned how to kick ass from Buffy Summers.