It’s been more than twenty years since Buffy the Vampire Slayer first appeared on our television screens, and we’re still completely obsessed with it. Honestly, how could you not be?
The ’90s cult classic has a passionate fan base, and for good reason. Buffy is inspiring, smart, complex, funny when it needs to be, emotional when it needs to be, and features a strong woman at the very center. As amazing as Buffy the Vampire Slayer is, however, it’s not without its flaws.
The show lasted for seven seasons and starred Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy Summers), Nicholas Brendon (Xander Harris), Alyson Hannigan (Willow Rosenberg), Anthony Head (Rupert Giles), Emma Caulfield (Anya), Michelle Trachtenberg (Dawn Summers), James Marsters (Spike), David Boreanaz (Angel), Amber Benson (Tara Maclay), Eliza Dushku (Faith), Charisma Carpenter (Cordelia Chase), and Seth Green (Oz) at various points.
In a series that long, there are bound to be a few things that simply don’t add up. And there are definitely some things that don’t add up in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. There are times when the series feels a bit silly, untrue to its characters, or just generally problematic.
Here are 15 Things About Buffy The Vampire Slayer That Make No Sense.
15. The Scoobies are never prepared
One of the first things that makes no sense when it comes to Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a simple lack of preparation. Especially as the series moves forward, doesn’t it seem that Willow, Xander, and the rest of the Scooby gang would generally be more prepared?
Once you realize you’re living on a Hellmouth, and you know you’re going to run into vampires on a pretty regular basis, it would make sense for each member of the group to carry around a stake at all times — at a minimum. That should really be the sort of thing none of them leave home without.
14. Vampire clothes turn to ash
We all know what happens once a vampire is staked through the heart on Buffy the Vampire Slayer — they immediately turn into a poof of dust, and that’s it, they’re gone. But you know what doesn’t make any sense? The vampire’s clothes also disappear.
Think about that for a second. No matter what the vamp is wearing, their clothes also turn to dust. Shouldn’t they instead be left in a pile on the ground? What is it about the clothes that would make them also turn to dust?
After all, a vampire can wear anything (and isn’t a shame for their clothes to turn to dust if they’re wearing a nice outfit?). Of course, then Buffy would have to worry about cleaning up piles of vampire clothes once she’s dusted a few vampires, and that seems tedious.
13. Willow taking over teaching Ms. Calendar’s computer class
There are so many problems with this one, it’s honestly hard to know where to begin. After Jenny Calendar is killed by Angelus in season 2 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Willow is the one who takes over her computer class until a substitute teacher is hired.
Yes, Willow — a high school student who was in the class is now able to just fill in as the teacher, and the other students still come to class and pay attention. Is she smart enough? Of course she is. She even turns out to be a great teacher, and honestly, it’s too bad that’s never explored further in later seasons.
12. Buffy’s vampire-slaying wardrobe
Something else that doesn’t make much sense on Buffy the Vampire Slayer? The clothes that Buffy wears when she’s doing the actual slaying.
It’s one thing for Buffy to be dressed well when she goes to school and heads out for a night at The Bronze, but even on the nights where she’s just going out to patrol, you’ll see her dressed in clothing that doesn’t exactly seem condusive to slaying vampires.
Sure, sometimes she does make more practical choices, but wouldn’t athletic clothes be best every time? Buffy is incredibly skilled as a slayer, but it’s even more impressive that she can pull of those moves in pleather pants, for example. Heck, it’s also impressive that she can do it without even messing up her hair or make-up.
11. Angel’s true moment of happiness
At first, this one seems to make total sense. Because of the gypsy curse, Angel loses his soul when he experiences one true moment of happiness. That moment is when he and Buffy finally consummate their relationship by having sex. Okay, great. It’s also not just sex with anyone — it’s Buffy, because he’s in love with her. Understandable.
But here’s the thing — is that moment really his only true moment of happiness? Could it not have been another moment with Buffy that would cause that same reaction? A kiss, or saying “I love you,” for instance? And at what moment, exactly, is the true moment of happiness? It seems he should have become a psychopathic vamp a little sooner.
10. Hanging Out With the School Librarian
Though it’s often explained away when anyone notices how much Giles is spending with Buffy and the other teenagers on Buffy the Vampire Slayer (he’s such a dedicated teacher and mentor!) it’s somewhat hard to believe more people wouldn’t be curious as to why he’s around a bunch of teenagers basically all the time.
Joyce comments on how involved the teachers are in the school, and takes it as a positive, but at a certain point, it seems this would raise an eyebrow or two. For that matter, it seems that other students at Sunnydale High School would have something more to say about it — and the fact that their classmates are hanging out in the library (which, incidentally, has a cage) pretty much all the time.
9. Two Slayers
When the series starts, we get the background: “In every generation there is a chosen one. She alone will stand against the vampires, the demons, and forces of darkness. She is the slayer.” However, when Buffy dies temporarily at the end of the first season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, another slayer is activated — Kendra. And when Kendra dies, Faith is activated.
This is all explained, and it’s mostly understandable, but there are still things about it that don’t make much sense.
For starters, Buffy was barely dead. Then when Kendra dies, Faith is activated, rather than simplifying matters to have one Slayer again. Oh, and Buffy died again later, but apparently she was taken out of the mix once she died the first time.
8. Why does the Slayer stay in one place?
Giles tells Buffy when he meets her on the very first episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, “there’s a reason why you’re here and a reason why it’s now.” Giles is, of course, referring to Sunnydale, and the reason is that the small town is built on top of a Hellmouth, which is about to open. So yeah, that’s an important place for a slayer to be. But what’s going on in the rest of the world?
Why doesn’t Buffy ever spend time traveling and killing vampires and demons in other places? Even though Sunnydale is on top of the Hellmouth, it doesn’t mean there aren’t vamps in plenty of other places, so it seems we would have seen her deal with that at least a few times. That could have made from some interesting storylines!
7. Dawn acts much younger than 14 years old
When Dawn Summers (Michelle Trachtenberg) first appears as Buffy’s little sister on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, we know that she is 14 years old, but she often acts significantly younger than that. Aside from her appearance in general, which comes with its own problems, it’s more difficult to believe she’s fourteen because of how young she acts around her mother and sister. Dawn comes off as incredibly immature for her age, not just when we meet her to begin with, but for the remainder of the series as well.
Viewers generally dislike Dawn and find her to be one of the most annoying characters on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. In fact, she was only surpassed by Buffy’s college roommate Kathy on our ranking of most annoying BtVs characters.
6. Why do parents let their kids go to Sunnydale High?
One of the things that makes the least amount of sense on Buffy the Vampire Slayer is why the high school stays open as long as it does. There are so many students who die from “mysterious causes” in this school, that it seems it would be shut down. At the very least, you’d think parents would just start pulling their kids out altogether. After all, it homeschooling might seem like a safer option. Actually, leaving Sunnydale altogether wouldn’t be such a bad idea.
But still, parents and other residents have a habit of turning a blind eye to what’s really going on in their small town of Sunnydale — and when the parents do get involved, well, that doesn’t exactly make things any better. The show explains this away by lampshading that the townspeople are willingly ignorant, but seriously? No parents in this town care to protect their kids?
5. Can Vampires Breathe or Not?
When Buffy dies that first time in season one of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel tells Xander he can’t give her mouth to mouth because he has no breath. So, Xander gives her mouth to mouth instead and is able to save her. Okay, that makes sense — except for one thing. Angel is panting heavily even as he says that line, which would suggest that he does, in fact, have breath.
We see Spike smoke throughout the series – he inhales and exhales the smoke, which would imply that he can have breath when he wants.
When Angel is Angelus, he even feeds on a woman who is smoking, and once he’s finished, he blows out a puff a smoke. Sure, it looks cool and menacing, but how the heck did he inhale smoke from her lungs while drinking her blood?
4. Why isn’t the Watcher’s Council near the Hellmouth?
Another thing that doesn’t make much sense on Buffy the Vampire Slayer is the location of The Watcher’s Council. The Watcher’s Council is in Britain, yet the slayer(s) are fighting their battles in Sunnydale, California. When assigned a new watcher, the watcher leaves Britain and heads to California where the slayer is located. Doesn’t this seem a bit illogical? Maybe The Watcher’s Council started there, but at a certain point, it would make a lot more sense for the council to move, wouldn’t it? Such a group would certainly be more useful if it had its headquarters closer to the Hellmouth. Granted, it’s a good thing for Buffy and her gang that they aren’t closer, since the members of The Watcher’s Council are generally pretty terrible and unconcerned with the well-being of the slayers.
3. Buffy is kicked out of her own house
It made for an interesting story arc for the potential Slayers and everyone else to decide they didn’t want Buffy to be the leader anymore, but quite frankly, the entire thing felt forced. After all the years of Buffy kicking ass and taking names, saving her friends, and saving the world… suddenly her best friends, Giles, and her sister all decide it would be better for Faith to be in charge. Um, seriously?
They have their reasons, but it feels completely out of place. What’s even worse: in the process, they effectively kick Buffy out of her own house. Dawn says she lives there too, and so Buffy has to leave, but that’s not a good enough reason for Buffy to turn around and walk out that door. Clearly, she doesn’t want to be somewhere she isn’t wanted, but it’s her house. Everyone else should have left instead. They realized their mistake, but not soon enough.
2. Buffy’s father
This one has some explanation, but that explanation is pretty darn thin. Buffy’s father is largely absent from her life following his divorce with her mother (and Dawn’s life, once she shows up), but that doesn’t entirely explain why he doesn’t show up to help after Joyce dies in season 5 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. He also doesn’t offer any financial support, which is much-needed, by the way.
Yes, at first, Buffy and Dawn’s father doesn’t even know what’s happened because the girls can’t get a hold of him because he’s traveling. Still, it’s hard to swallow that he doesn’t show up eventually once he does finally get the news. Months later? A year later, even? Nope. It’s unacceptable, confusing, and it definitely doesn’t make any sense.
1. The Bronze’s killer lineup
There are a few things about The Bronze that really don’t make sense, including the fact that the only nightclub is in the worst part of town and is generally filled with teenagers. More than that, for such small club in a small town, this place brings in some incredible musical talent.
It’s one thing for Dingoes Ate My Baby to perform on a regular basis, but it’s pretty hard to believe The Bronze would be able to bring in Michelle Branch, Aimee Mann, or The Breeders. Why would such artists want to perform at a bar/club/restaurant/whatever when people are constantly getting killed there?
And since they are able to bring in that kind of talent, you’d expect the crowds to be much larger than they are. Maybe that’s one of the few perks to living in Sunnydale, California?
What else about Buffy the Vampire Slayer makes no sense? Share your thoughts in the comments!
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