I should begin this post by telling you that I’ve only seen two episodes of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV series. I’ve never read a single volume of the Twilight or Sookie Stackhouse books, I’ve never seen an episode of True Blood, and I generally don’t give a shit about the current vampire obsession all the girls seem to have thrown themselves into. That said, I love the original 1992 Buffy the Vampire Slayer movie, and this is as close as I’m going to get to joining the vampire love-in.
So, let’s take a step back to 1992, when Beverly Hills 90210 was one of the most popular shows on the teevee and Luke Perry was one of the biggest teen-dream heartthrobs. At the time Perry only had two films under his belt, neither of which his 90210 fans, mostly teenage girls, probably would have seen. When posters for Buffy the Vampire Slayer started showing up in movie theaters, all the teenyboppers — myself included — were aflutter. Not long after it opened, I read a review in some magazine that basically said the movie sucked, but do you think that stopped me from seeing it? As Whitney would say, “Hell to the no!”
The movie stars Kristy Swanson as Buffy, a Valley Girl high school cheerleader who learns she’s the latest in a long line of young women chosen to be vampire slayers. It takes quite a bit of convincing by Merrick (Donald Sutherland), whose duty it is to train the slayers, for her to accept her destiny, but eventually Buffy caves, and thus begins her training in the kicking of vampire ass. Her world is immediately thrown into chaos, and she starts keeping company with people she never dreamed she’d have in her life, like Pike (Perry), a mechanic who helps her defeat the vampires.
The rest of the cast is fabulous, with Hilary Swank, Rutger Hauer, Paul Reubens (in one of his first roles post-Pee-wee’s Playhouse and post-arrest), and David Arquette playing some of the vampires — and friends — Buffy has to overcome. While not a work of cinematic genius (it has a 5.3-star average rating on IMDB), Buffy is a lot of fun and has definitely become something of a cult hit, if for no other reason than it was the first film Joss Whedon wrote. And of course it spawned the successful 1997-2003 TV series of the same name, with Sarah Michelle Gellar in the title role.
Buffy‘s soundtrack is just as much fun as the film, with a great mix of pop, hard-rock, and dance tracks. I still own my original cassette copy of the album, which appears to be out of print. I have to say that I enjoy this soundtrack immensely, especially the songs by the Divinyls, Matthew Sweet, and Susanna Hoffs (incidentally, I’m very excited about the impending release of Sweet and Hoffs’s Under the Covers, Vol. 2). I’ve compiled the complete soundtrack, which includes two songs that weren’t on the official release: “In the Wind” by War Babies and “Inner Mind” by Eon.
C&C Music Factory – Keep It Comin’ (Dance ‘Til You Can’t Dance No More)
War Babies – In the Wind
The Dream Warriors – Man Smart, Woman Smarter
Mary’s Danish – I Fought the Law
Divinyls – I Ain’t Gonna Eat Out My Heart Anymore
The Cult – Zap City
Matthew Sweet – Silent City
Eon – Inner Mind
Toad the Wet Sprocket – Little Heaven
Ozzy Osbourne – Party With the Animals
Rob Halford – Light Comes Out of Black
Susanna Hoffs – We Close Our Eyes