It's 20 years since we were first introduced to Sarah Michelle Gellar's vampire slayer, and 14 years since her show wrapped up with the complete destruction of Sunnydale and the Hellmouth.
But the story didn't end there. Joss Whedon launched a new comic series which he wrote (or at least oversaw as "executive producer"), and it's still continuing today. Buffy the Vampire Slayer is in its 11th season (a count of both TV and comic series), and has been joined by Angel and Angel & Faith ongoing projects.
The quality has varied from the great to the terrible. The comics format has given the writers a chance to do... well, whatever they want, which has taken Buffy's world down some utterly bizarre avenues. Here are the strangest…
1. Dawn turns into a giant (and a doll, and a centaur)
Dawn Summers went to university in Berkeley, where she started dating a demon called Kenny. She ended up cheating on him, and in return he put a curse on her that sent her through various transformations. Kids grow up so fast. *Wipes away tear*
Luckily, he agreed to break the spell before she turned into a "fire slug", whatever that is.
2. The other Twilight saga
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Eight centred around a mysterious figure called Twilight. It turned out to be Angel, operating on behalf of a flaming-headed winged lion thing who was the actual Twilight to destroy the Earth and create a new world or something (we're really still not clear on what the hell that was really about).
The story (ahem) climaxed with Buffy and Angel gaining Superman-like flight, strength and invulnerability and having mid-air sex, crashing through mountains and entering outer space.
3. Angel kills Giles
Angel was eventually possessed by Twilight and killed Giles. Noooooo!!! But don't worry, he ended up feeling really guilty about it.
4. Kid Giles
After a comic season's worth of typical Angel angst, he was eventually able to resurrect Giles. Unfortunately, things didn't go quite according to plan, and he came back as a 12-year-old boy.
5. Meet Giles's sexy witch aunts
The quest to resurrect Giles in Angel & Faith introduced us to two new characters: Lavinia and Sophronia Fairweather.
They were his great aunts, who used their magical knowledge to remain young and beautiful and were essentially sexier, boozier versions of Sabrina the Teenage Witch's aunts Hilda and Zelda.
6. Buffy destroys all magic
In the battle with Twilight, and still reeling from Giles's murder, Buffy smashed something called the Seed of Wonder, which was the source of all magic on Earth.
Unsurprisingly, this had some serious side effects (Dawn began to fade from existence, new vampires were born as mindless "zompires"). But don't worry – the magic all came back eventually.
7. Willow gets it on with a snake woman
On her travels of self-discovery through dimensions, Willow was offered a magical guide and chose the sexy snake demon Aluwyn, who is about as far from her late girlfriend Tara as you'd wish to get. Fortunately for Willow, one of the modules in Aluwyn's syllabus is "hot interspecies sex".
8. Buffy doesn't realise she's a robot
When Buffy is threatened by an assassin, her bumbling sidekick Andrew takes matters into his own hands and transfers her consciousness into a robot body and sends her real body into hiding.
The upshot of this was that – before Buffy realised what had happened – a malfunction made her think that she was pregnant, which resulted in a very thoughtful and sensitive issue in which she grappled with the decision of whether to have an abortion or not. The robot revelation was a bit disappointing after that.
9. Warren comes back... without his skin
Remember Warren – the guy who shot Buffy and killed Tara, whose skin Willow magically tore off in revenge? Well, he didn't die, but was actually saved by the witch Amy (remember her?). He worked for Twilight, but the destruction of magic had a grisly effect on his fleshless, artificially maintained body.
10. Spike makes friends with giant alien bugs
After defending some interdimensional bug aliens from the evil law firm Wolfram & Hart, Spike was made their new leader by their dying king. He flew around with "Spike's Crew" in their spaceship for a while before an Easter Island Moai statue come to life destroyed it.
11. Hackney is transformed into 'Magic Town'
When Earth's magic was destroyed, Angel's sometime friend and guide Whistler hatched a plan to reverse the process by releasing a magical plague.
His scheme was stopped, but his detonating 'plague ball' transformed the residents of the London Borough of Hackney into magical mutants. Which you might want to argue is a case of art imitating life.
12. Dawn and Xander get together
Wrong. Just wrong.
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