For many fanatic viewers, Buffy the Vampire Slayer has never been replaced and the space it left in our viewing schedule and their hearts have never completely been filled.
I was such a fan. I had it all. Back in those days, it was the good old VCR that kept things up and running so I never missed an episode. Buffy and the Scooby gang battled the forces of darkness every week with an action packed hour of adventure and humor. There was that one trying year with the transition from the WB network to UPN. Those were dark and challenging days. My cable provider did not have a UPN affiliate and I was frantically looking for a connection to get my Buffy fix. Finally through a complex series of VCR tape handoffs, I was able to get it taped by my fiancé at her house then she would transport it to my house and pick up the tape for the next week. (Believe it or not, she married me anyway). I have collected all kinds of memorabilia from t-shirts to a sweet set of shot glasses.
So for these long years since it ended its run in 2003, I have kept the spark alive with Neflix, marathon weekends, the comic book series, and appearances by Zander, Cordelia, and Spike at various conventions. But it has never been the same, Sigh.
However, there is a bright spot on my horizon in the shape of Fox’s Sleepy Hollow. It started out strong for me last year, but then had a bit of a dip in holding my interest but seems to have come back with a vengeance this season. The two main characters have a relationship that resonates with the same camaraderie that smacks of Buffy and her Watchers with a bit of Angel thrown in as well. Ichabod is learning his way around the 21st century in much the same way that Buffy was coming to terms with her powers and the dark forces that surrounded her. Lt. Abbie Mills serves as his guide to the modern world as well as his protector in some aspects. The development of the relationship between the two of them has brought some of the best humor to the series. However, where Buffy often relied on her watchers or Willow to provide her with most of the lore, Abbie and Ichabod both bring their own experience and expertise to the story.
image by Fox Media
The Scooby Gang is starting to come together as well. Katrina Crane, Ichabod’s wife, was revealed to be a witch in the first season and provided a source for some of their arcane lore. Her role grew during the first season and obviously will be more timely now that she has crossed over to the current timeline. Katrina has not shown herself to be the battlewitch that Willow turned out to be, but she does have ties to the modern coven. Jenny Mills, Abbie’s estranged sister, has been institutionalized for most of the first season but has been upgraded to a full time cast member this season. Although she could be a loyal sidekick, it seems she is going to fill the shoes of Faith. Same supernatural beginnings as Abbie, but Jenny has taken the darker path, all artillery and kickass. Sadly, there is still no character to fill Zander’s very big shoes. Orlando Jones as Captain Jones certainly has provided some firepower but he doesn’t have the comedic chops in this role that Nicholas Brendon displayed as Zander. John Cho had some potential as the double agent Officer Andy Brooks, you could almost see a parallel when Zander fell under the control of Dracula. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem that the character has the staying power. And of course, Ichabod’s son, Jeremy has returned to punish him for previous sins, which harkens back to Connor returning in Angel.
As the cast development continues, I remain hopeful that the characters will continue to deliver, action, adventure, and some sly humor that was demonstrated so well in first season. The opening episode of the season 2 certainly showed promise. It is not everything that Buffy the Vampire Slayer delivered but Sleepy Hollow does scratch the same itch that has been bothering me since 2003. Who knows, I may start shopping for a Sleepy Hollow coffee mug. What shows have you found that fill the void left behind by Buffy and her gang?