Joss Whedon has weighed in on classic Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode 'The Body', which saw Sarah Michelle Gellar's heroine discover her mother Joyce's corpse.
Kicking back with Metro, the show creator admitted it "did a lot of stuff I didn't mean for it to do. In the sense of, I just wanted to tell a story about grief, in particular its dull eccentricities."
He added: "I didn't want any lessons, I didn't want any catharsis. And then, so many people were able to deal with their own grief because they watched it and I was so shocked by that."
Whedon – also known for his directorial work in the Marvel Cinematic Universe – labelled death as "the thing" that Buffy Summers "cannot fight".
"It also renders her meaningless. She's not on a lot of committees, she doesn't have a lot of hobbies, it takes away her identity."
Later in the interview, Whedon revealed that a personal tragedy proved to be the episode's biggest inspiration.
"My mother died when I was 27 in a car crash. But I didn't really think about mining [the experience] until around season three," he explained.
"This is the moment [Buffy] says: 'I don't know,' she hasn't [dealt with this] before. There is a good kind of pain created from her situation that was particularly personal."
According to the writer/director, 'The Body' is "probably the best thing I've done and the best thing I will ever do.
"I'm OK with that. You know, there are worse epitaphs."
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