5718 in-depth character profiles from comics, games, movies

Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Sarah Michelle Gellar)

Buffy Summers, vampire slayer

(Profile #1 - Season 1-3)


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game

Into every generation a slayer is born: one girl in all the world, a chosen one. She alone will wield the strength and skill to fight the vampires, demons, and the forces of darkness; to stop the spread of their evil and the swell of their number. She is the Slayer.


Context

Buffy the Vampire Slayer was a drama/action/horror TV show, which quickly reached cult status and had an unusual impact. Buffy is a Californian lass who receives special powers to fight vampires and demons, despite being typecast as the stereotypical sultry blonde victim.

This profile covers season 1-3, which aired from 1997 to 1999. It does not include any of the events from self-named Dark Horse Comics comic book series (despite them being canon for the character).

Buffy brought a lot to the table – crisp writing, movie-like craftsmanship, witty and stylish dialogue, Strong Female Protagonists before we were overrun by hackneyed not-getting-it versions of that, adult themes, robust universe-building, etc.


Background

  • Real Name: Buffy Anne Summers.
  • Other Aliases: The Slayer.
  • Marital Status: Single.
  • Known Relatives: Hank Summers (father), Joyce Summers (mother, deceased), Celia (cousin, deceased), Arlene (aunt), Lolly (aunt).
  • Group Affiliation: The “Scooby” Gang.
  • Base Of Operations: San Francisco; formerly Sunnydale California and Los Angeles.
  • Height: 5’4” Weight: 115 lbs.
  • Eyes: Brown Hair: Blonde (bleached), Brunette (natural).


Powers & Abilities

Strength Level

Buffy possesses supernatural strength. She can lift at least 800 pounds directly overhead.

Known Superhuman Powers

Upon becoming the “Slayer,” Buffy’s body was infused with the raw power of a pure demon. This process granted her supernatural strength, speed, agility, durability, stamina and the ability to recover from injury at a highly accelerated rate.

While the exact limits of these gifts are hard to define, it is clear that they exceed those possessed by the average vampire.

Outside of her physical prowess, Buffy periodically experiences prophetic visions of unerring accuracy. The visions can show her events that have occurred deep in the past or those that have yet to take place. In general, Buffy only experiences one of these visions when dreaming.

Abilities

Buffy is an unnaturally talented gymnast, acrobat and hand to hand combatant. Through intense training, she has honed these gifts to a world class level of skill. She has also displayed a mastery of melee weapons of all types, though she tends to favour bladed weapons or wooden stakes (for obvious reasons).

As a result of her years of experience as the Slayer, Buffy has also developed a passing familiarity with the occult and species of demons.

Limitations

Unlike the vampires she was created to destroy, Buffy is still very “human”. While she shrug off supernaturally strong blows and intense impacts, she is still vulnerable to most forms of conventional injury (bullets, knives, etc.), and most other forms of human ailments (sleep, hunger, etc).

Weapons

At any time, Buffy can be found with one or more stakes (a length of wood, with one end sharpened to a point) secreted about her person and a large crucifix hanging around her neck. In the right hands, both items are deadly to a vampire.

In addition to her standard equipment, Buffy has full access to Giles’ arsenal that is located in the Sunnydale library. The arsenal includes a full selection of medieval weaponry: axes, swords, crossbows, etc.


Video

Here’s a collection of the intro sequences for the show. Yes, Season 1 and Season 2 had roughly the same intro, but who could say now to a chance to listen to the geeky punk-rock theme by Nerf Herder ? And no, they’re not really scruffy-looking.


History

L.A. Girl

Buffy Summers was a popular valley girl until her 15th year when she started to have unusually violent dreams. The dreams were always about the same subject; young women waging losing battles against horrific foes.

As the dreams increased in frequency and intensity, Buffy’s behaviour grew more and more erratic and eventually alienated her from her group of friends.

When it seemed like she could bear no more she was approached by a stranger named Merrick. He revealed to her that she had been “chosen” to be the Slayer. Though she initially disbelieved him, Buffy soon grew to trust him and allowed him to teach her the skills that she would eventually need to survive.

The two trained together for a few short weeks before a particularly nasty brood of vampires abducted Merrick. The brood, led by an ancient fiend named Lothos, sought to discover the newest Slayer’s identity.

Merrick committed suicide in the attempt to protect Buffy but his sacrifice ultimately proved futile. Lothos eventually discovered her identity and his brood attacked during her high-school’s final dance.

Battle

Despite her lack of experience, Buffy’s ingenuity and sheer stubbornness allowed her to slay Lothos and his brood during the dance. Unfortunately she:

  • Burnt the school gym to ashes in the process.
  • Was subsequently expelled.
  • Lost all of her remaining friends.

When she tried to explain what happened to her parents, they had her committed to an asylum fearing that she had gone insane.

While confined to the asylum, Buffy realized that continuing to tell the truth about the events of the dance and vampires would only have people label her as insane. After admitting that she had had a problem, she was released from her therapy within a few weeks.

Shortly thereafter Buffy’s parents got divorced. She and her mother (Joyce) moved to the town of Sunnydale California, where Joyce found a job at an art gallery and Buffy was enrolled in the local high-school.

Season One: Welcome to the Hellmouth

Shortly after her arrival, Buffy found herself befriended by a pair of social outcasts named Xander Harris and Willow Rosenberg. She also discovered that Rupert Giles, her new Watcher (like Merrick before him), had been awaiting her arrival in Sunnydale for some time.

Buffy resisted Giles’ efforts to persuade her to resume “Slaying,”. But eventually she found herself forced to retake the mantle due to the machinations of an ancient vampire known as the Master. The Master had been mystically imprisoned in a labyrinth deep below the streets of Sunnydale and desperately sought a means of escape.

Over the next months, Buffy found herself time and again in conflict with the Master’s minions. She managed to thwart their schemes through a combination of:

  • Her physical power.
  • The ingenuity of her allies (Giles, Willow and Xander who had discovered her identity as the Slayer).
  • The aid of a mysterious young man named Angel who only seemed to appear when she needed him the most.

Buffy kicks an opponent away

It was clear that the two shared a mutual attraction. As their adventures continued, Buffy’s feelings grew from innocent flirtation to a full-bloom crush. Buffy eventually found herself alone in a moment of passion with Angel in the confines of her bedroom.

As the two kissed, the crucifix that she wore around her neck brushed against Angel’s exposed flesh. In a moment of shock and pain he revealed his true nature; he was a vampire.

A vampire with a soul

Initially Buffy felt compelled to slay him, but when she discovered the truth of his condition she stayed her hand. Angel was a vampire that had his human soul magically returned to him; he was both a demon and not a demon at the same time.

While the revelation of his vampiric nature cooled her passion somewhat, Buffy still harboured feelings for him and the two remained allies.

Soon thereafter, Buffy learned about a prophecy. It was her own death at the Master’s hands that would free him from his prison. Her own dreams confirmed that the Master would kill her on Prom night. In fear she tried to abandon her duty.

Instead, when she discovered that the Master’s minions had begun to slaughter her classmates in preparation for his release she accepted her own fate. She descended into the sewers to slay the Master.

She ultimately failed. The Master defeated her during their confrontation, fed upon her and was freed from his imprisonment. The Master left her unconscious in a pool of water where she drowned. Fortunately for her, she was only dead for a few minutes before Xander and Angel found her. The two reacted quickly and performed mouth to mouth resuscitation on her still form.

Miraculously Buffy began to breath on her own once more and quickly regained consciousness. Strangely enough with the prophecy completed, she felt stronger than ever. She left the sewers and hunted the Master down once more. Their second confrontation ended much differently than their first; like every other vampire that had ever faced her one-on-one, the Master was slain.

Season Two: Angelus

After the events of the school year, Buffy decided to spend the summer with her father in Los Angeles. She completely abandoned her duties as the slayer and returned to the life of a valley girl which essentially consisted of shopping and partying.

In truth she was suffering from PTSD . But she eventually came to grips with it when she returned to Sunnydale in the fall and destroyed the Master’s remains.

Shortly after her return, Buffy first encountered Spike. Spike was a renowned Vampire that gained his infamy by murdered two of the previous slayers. He wanted to make Buffy his third. While Spike menaced Buffy, both personally and through various minions, Angel and Buffy began to have a romantic relationship.

During this time, a strange young woman appeared in Sunnydale slaying vampires as well. Her name was Kendra Young and had become a Slayer the instant Buffy was drowned. Kendra was everything Buffy wasn’t. She was disciplined, focused, solitary and completely devoted to being “The Slayer.”

Her encounters with Buffy and the “Scooby Gang” (the name that Buffy affectionately referred to her allies as) slowly changed Kendra over time, and she even helped Buffy save Angel from Spike and his badly weakened vampire love Drusilla.

Reversion to type

Spike continued to throw all that he had at Buffy throughout the school year. She did her best to defeat both him and any minion that he sent after her. After a particularly nasty encounter with a trio of vampires, Buffy and Angel consummated their relationship. In a tender moment, Buffy lost her virginity to Angel an accidentally triggered a loophole in his curse.

Buffy about to stake a vampire

Angel’s human soul was returned to him as a punishment for the horrors he had inflicted upon his many victims. He was expected to suffer with the guilt for all time.

However, the act of making love to Buffy momentarily relieved Angel of his guilt and granted him a moment of pure happiness, freeing him of his burden and shattering the curse. In that moment, he lost his human soul and Angelus awoke within him once more.

Angelus, reputedly the most diabolically evil and cruel vampire in history, spent the rest of the school year tormenting Buffy, her family and friends in the attempts to break her spirit before killing her. His machinations were horrific.

In short order he:

  • Took over Spike’s brood.
  • Wooed Drusilla.
  • Had her murder Kendra.
  • Got Buffy expelled from school.
  • Forced Buffy to reveal her dual life to her mother resulting in her getting thrown out of her own home.

Traumatic slaying

Buffy did her best to weather Angelus’ attempts to break her, but despite her efforts it took a toll on her. When Angelus murdered Giles’ girlfriend, Jenny Calendar, and embarked upon a plan to literally open a gateway to hell (which would destroy the world) Buffy came to the reluctant decision to slay him.

As a back up plan, Willow prepared a spell that they had discovered. It would re-curse Angelus and revert him back into Angel. Buffy and Spike (who wanted Drusilla back bad enough to work with the Slayer) confronted Angelus while he was engaged in the ceremony to open the portal.

Though Spike abandoned Buffy during the battle, she still managed to defeat Angelus but not before the portal had opened. But like every spell, there was a loophole. The blood of the demon that opened the portal could seal it shut once more.

Even as Buffy prepared to drive a sword through Angelus’ chest, Willow’s spell took effect and Angelus’ soul was returned to him. Buffy found herself facing Angel once more. The two shared a tender kiss, and before the confused Angel could react Buffy drove the sword through his chest and watched as he as sucked into the rapidly closing portal to hell.

Traumatized by the events, Buffy ran away from Sunnydale and returned to the streets of Los Angeles

Season Three: Senior Year, The Mayor and Faith

Buffy spent the summer waiting tables and living in a tiny apartment. She had reinvented herself as Anne, and tried to avoid any trouble that may lead her back to Slaying.

However, as the summer closed she found herself saving a group of street people from a hell dimension and the group of demons that preyed upon them. Despite her best efforts, she realized that she couldn’t turn her back on her destiny.

Buffy returned home. After some awkward and emotionally charged events, she eventually reconciled with her friends and mother. She was even allowed to return to school where she was worked overtime to make up for the poor grades she achieved during the previous year.

Less than two weeks after her return, while on a routine patrol, Buffy ran into a completely feral Angel who was running about the outskirts of Sunnydale. He had somehow escaped hell but was barely “human.” Buffy, knowing that her friends would not understand, secretly nursed him back to health in his old mansion.

Faith

In the meantime, a new Slayer named Faith arrived in Sunnydale. Her larger than life attitude instantly won the affections of not only Buffy’s friends but her mother as well. The ease in which Faith inserted herself into her life and Faith’s gregarious nature annoyed Buffy instantly.

When Faith told the group that she had come to town on a visit while her watcher was away, Buffy didn’t trust her. When she eventually discovered the truth wasn’t all that surprised.

Buffy fights a female vampire

In truth, Faith had come to Sunnydale in the hope of escaping an ancient vampire named Kakistos. He had killed her watcher while attempting to murder Faith. When the murderous vampire eventually turned up in Sunnydale, Buffy was compelled to help Faith and by working together the two Slayers managed to kill Kakistos.

The two bonded over the experience and began a complicated (yet sisterly) relationship.

As the hectic nature of Buffy’s life finally began to stabilize, Faith’s new Watcher Gwendolyn Post arrived in Sunnydale. She had come for Faith and an ancient demonic artifact that she claimed was eminently dangerous.

Angel exposed

Buffy managed to recover the artifact and took it to Angel for safe keeping. Unbeknownst to Buffy, Xander had followed her to Angel’s mansion and was watching when the two succumbed to a moment of weakness and kissed.

Enraged at Buffy’s actions Xander immediately told the rest of the Scoobies what he had seen. When the group confronted Buffy about her deception, Buffy felt suitably betrayed and guilty at the same time. Despite this, she tried to convince the group that Angel could be trusted but ultimately failed.

As the tension of the situation sent the group their own separate ways, Gwendolyn revealed her true nature, attacked Giles and went to the mansion to retrieve the artifact.

When the Scoobies discovered Giles unconscious, Xander immediately blamed Angel. He told Faith that Angel had reverted to Angelus once more. When Buffy discovered what had occurred she desperately raced to the mansion in the attempt to talk Faith down.

When she arrived, she was unable to do so and the two Slayers fought. While they did, Gwendolyn used the artifact to attempt to murder them all. Buffy and Faith eventually killed Gwendolyn, but not before Angel risked his own life to save Willow from Gwendolyn. He thus regained the Scoobies trust if not their immediate forgiveness.

The Council meddles

When Buffy was on the crux of her 18th birthday, she was forced to participate in a ceremony called the Cruciamentum. The ceremony was organized by the Watcher’s council to test the Slayer’s capabilities when de-powered.

Buffy barely passed with help from Giles. He interfered with the test due to his fatherly feelings towards Buffy. As a result, the council removed Giles as Buffy’s Watcher and replaced him with a young man named Wesley Pryce.

When Wesley arrived, he attempted to curtail both Buffy and Faith’s rebellious natures but the two ran wild. They began to take greater and greater chances, and breaking laws as they gave into the wild and aggressive sides of the Slayer within them.

Eventually, they went to far. Their carelessness resulted in Faith murdering the Deputy Mayor of Sunnydale. When the murder was discovered Faith lied to the Scoobies and blamed Buffy for his death, but Giles immediately knew that she was lying. Faith’s actions immediately drove a wedge between the two and alienated her from the rest of the Scoobies.

As time went on, Angel decided that he and Buffy needed to break up. He realized that he would never be able to give her the life that she deserved and that the risk of succumbing to their mutual attraction was simply to great. Despite Buffy’s protestations, he ended their relationship and planned to leave Sunnydale.

The Mayor has a plan

In the meantime, Faith sought out a friend wherever she could find one due to her loneliness. She found one in the Mayor of Sunnydale who told her exactly what she needed to hear at the time. Overtime, he persuaded her to aid him in his quest to become a pure-blooded demon.

When Buffy eventually discovered Faith’s extra-curricular activities she devised a plan with Angel to uncover the truth. Angel pretended to have reverted back into Angelus and that he was interested in Faith and persuaded her to reveal the Mayor’s plans to him.

When the gambit was eventually revealed, Faith feelings of betrayal ran so deeply that she completely abandoned Buffy and gave her complete loyalty to the Mayor. In order to distract Buffy from his plans, she shot Angel with a poisoned arrow and committed murder on his behalf.

Desperate to save Angel’s life, Buffy begged the Watcher’s Council for help. Howbeit they refused to help her on the grounds that despite his unique condition, Angel was still a vampire. As a result, Buffy severed all connections with the council.

Slaying the Mayor

Through intense research, the Scoobies discovered that the only cure for the poison was the blood of a Slayer. With that knowledge in hand, Buffy set out to find Faith and force her to give Angel her blood. The two had an explosive and violent confrontation which ended up with Faith being thrown from a building top, gutted with her own blade and in a deep coma.

Unable to retrieve Faith’s body and left with no other options, Buffy forced Angel to feed upon her which saved him from the poison. Buffy was hospitalized immediately after the feeding. While there, she and Faith shared a vision of sorts where Faith revealed a method to defeat the mayor.

Buffy quickly recovered, and led the graduating class into battle against the Mayor (who had transformed into a giant eel-like demon) during her high school graduation ceremony. They were ultimately successful when the Scoobies set off a violent explosion which consumed the school (and the mayor) at the battle’s climax.

With the Mayor’s threat finally resolved, Angel left Sunnydale after sharing a silent good-bye with Buffy.


Description

Buffy is a young Caucasian woman with a small compact frame. She is quite attractive; she has a cute button nose, striking green eyes and a full pouty mouth. Unlike many comic book heroines, she doesn’t have an overly buxom or curvaceous body, rather over the years her body has lost whatever “baby” fat she possessed and become very trim and athletic.

Buffy generally wears her bleached-blonde hair loose about her shoulders though its style and length have altered over the years. Her clothing has similarly undergone many changes of style as she matured. Gone are the days where you would find her fighting vampires in a trendy mini-skirt or brightly coloured dresses.

She now generally wears practical clothing (darker blacks, greys and/or browns) made up of a simple blouse and a pair of pants/slacks. One thing that has remained relatively constant over the years though is her predilection for leather jackets.

Outside of her raw physical beauty and unmistakeable aura of power (despite her relative diminutive size), Buffy’s largest distinguishing feature is the relative large bite-mark scar on the right side of her neck that she received from the Master.


Personality

Despite her raw power, Buffy is very much a typical teenaged girl. She worries about social acceptance, her appearance, boys and every once in awhile… school.

Like most teens, she is highly emotional. She can be short-tempered, bossy, competitive and stubborn beyond the limits of rationality. She often makes quick decisions with her gut, and deals with the consequences as they come.

Buffy recognizes this facet of her personality and embraces it. She understands that her mercurial nature is a strength which helps make her unpredictable in battle. Despite all of her intense training, she still fights at her best when she improvises on the fly and follows her gut.

Unlike most teens, Buffy doesn’t have a false sense of immortality. Her run in with the Master and several lifetimes of memories from the Slayers that came before her have forced her to accept her own mortality.

Lonely lass

When combined with the natural feeling of loneliness that comes with the predatory nature of being the “Slayer,” Buffy often slips into periods of depression or melancholy. During these periods, she often strikes out on her own and pushes those close to her away.

It is during these periods where she most strongly yearns for a normal life with family, friends and a future. However, she has come to understand that no matter how much she desires it, that life can never be hers. She is “The Slayer,” and the responsibilities that go with the power of that title are hers and hers alone.

She can’t relieve herself of them, and deep down inside doesn’t want to.

Miss sarcastic

For some unexplained reason, Buffy deeply resents being told what to do (who would have guessed this was an issue with a teenager). In situations where someone in a position of authority (that she doesn’t respect) tries to exercise control over her, she will be willful, insolent or outright defiant.

She normally displays through the use of her natural gift for sarcasm. This isn’t to say that Buffy reserves her sometimes acerbic tongue for those in authority. Instead, she often batters her friends and foes with her ironic sense of humour in all situations where she feels uncomfortable.

She often puns and jokes her way through mortal combat with her enemies or in any situation where she feels vulnerable. Some may even say that at times she suffers from verbal diarrhea.

Murder maiden

Buffy’s nature as “The Slayer” has given her a predatory instinct or drive to hunt and kill supernatural beings. This drive comes to her as naturally as breathing does to the rest of us. Despite this, Buffy is fully capable of recognizing when individual demons are a threat. She is even capable of tolerating and working alongside them when necessary.

However, once she has made up her mind that a demon is a threat she will take the stance of the ultimate authority and judge in their fate.

She doesn’t generally hold the same belief about killing mortals though. In fact, Buffy will go out of her way to preserve human life under most circumstances no matter how depraved the human may be. That being said, if she had to kill a mortal for the greater good, she would (and has).

Unlike every other Slayer that came before her, Buffy has surrounded herself with a group of allies that help her in her fight against evil. Their deep love for her and unique strengths have kept Buffy alive in situations where she would have perished otherwise.

This has engendered a deep feeling of loyalty within Buffy for her allies and she would sacrifice anything for them. She has feelings of sibling-like love for both Willow and Xander, and shares a father-daughter like bond with Giles.

Tender damsel

Finally, Buffy loves Angel unconditionally. She would sacrifice anything, including her own life, for him if he needed it.

This love is a double edged sword for Buffy as the rational side of her mind recognizes that their relationship can never truly grow or mature as she would eventually need. They would be unable to get married, or have children, walk in the sunlight or even be intimate.

Despite these facts, Buffy still loves him unconditionally and would have continued to be at his side until the two faltered and unwittingly released Angelus once more. It was only Angel’s choice to leave Sunnydale that forced Buffy to move on.


Quotes

“This is not going to be pretty. We’re talkin’ violence, strong language, adult content…”

The Master: “You’re dead.”
Buffy: “I may be dead, but I’m still pretty. Which is more than I can say for you.”
The Master: “You were destined to die ! It was written !”
Buffy: “What can I say ? I flunked the written.”

Angel: “We need to distract the vampires.”
Buffy: “Right.”
Angel: “What are you gonna do ?”
Buffy: “I’m gonna kill them all. That oughta distract ’em.”

“So I told him that I loved him… and I kissed him… and I killed him.”

“Unfortunately, that’s all I could get out of my informant before his aggressive tendencies forced me to introduce him to Mr. Pointy.”

“No, it doesn’t stop. It never stops. Do… do you think I chose to be like this ? Do you have any idea how lonely it is ? How dangerous ? I would love to be upstairs watching TV or gossiping about boys or, god, even studying ! But I have to save the world… again.”

Angelus: “No weapons, no friends, no hope. Take all that away, and what’s left ?”
Buffy: “Me.”

Wesley: “Buffy, you will go to the Gleaves family crypt tonight and fetch the amulet.”
Buffy: “I will ?”
Wesley: “Are you not used to being given orders ?”
Buffy: “Whenever Giles sends me on a mission, he always says ’please‘. And afterwards I get a cookie.”

“I’m the thing that monsters have nightmares about.”


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Buffy Summers

Dex: 06 Str: 05 Bod: 06 Motivation: Anti-Heroic Responsibility of Power
Int: 06 Wil: 06 Min: 08 Occupation: Adventurer, Vampire Slayer
Inf: 06 Aur: 06 Spi: 07 Resources {or Wealth}: 004
Init: 025 HP: 075

Powers:
Enhanced Initiative: 03, Jumping: 01, Postcognition (ML): 25, Precognition (ML): 06, Regeneration: 04, Running: 05

Bonuses and Limitations:

  • Jumping: Catfall advantage.
  • Postcognition: limited to events that affected one in the “Slayer Line” (-2FC), can only be used while sleeping (-10BC, -1FC).
  • Precognition: can only be used while sleeping (-10BC, -1FC).

Skills:
Acrobatics (Athletics, Climbing, Dodging): 08, Charisma: 06, Evasion (Ranged only): 08, Martial Artist (incl. Techniques): 08, Military Science (Danger Recognition, Field Command): 05, Occultist (Occult Knowledge): 03, Thief (Stealth): 06, Weaponry (Melee, Thrown): 08

Bonuses and Limitations:
Acrobatics: Powered Skill (+1FC).

Advantages
Area Knowledge (Sunnyvale), Conditional Soaking (Blunt Force Trauma, Falling Damage), Iron Nerves, Lightning Reflexes, Schtick (Blind-fighting, Goonbane), Sharp Eye.

Connections:
Alexander “Xander” Harris (High), Angel (High), Cordelia Chase (Low), Daniel “Oz” Ozbourne (Low), Rupert Giles (High), Willow Rosenberg (High).

Drawbacks:
Age (Young), Secret Identity.

Genre:
Action.

Equipment:

  • Crucifix [BODY 02].
  • Stakes (x4) [BODY 02, EV 02].

By Bryan Gittens.

Source of Character: Television Series: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, created by Joss Whedon, character portrayed by Sarah Michelle Gellar.

Helper(s): Many.

Writeup completed on the 1st of June, 2014.

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