Since discovering the Hellmouth Podcast and re-watching Buffy from the beginning, I’ve decided to start taking notes on what has always stood out for me and the questions that I’d always had. So I thought I would share them here. Let’s start, as they say, at the beginning.
Buffy Notes and Quotes from Welcome to the Hellmouth
1) In the opening scene where Darla and her “date” (or late night snack if you prefer) break into the school is a great way to start the series. They just hit the ground running with the horror, action and humor and as a viewer I was pulled in right away. No matter how many times I see Darla vamp out, it’s still great.
2) After the opening credits, Buffy has a prophecy dream that should have warned her about Cordelia. What I find most interesting about the early interactions between Buffy and Cordy is that most times, Buffy seems to be suffering more at the hands of Cordelia than she is by any particular monster she is facing. Buffy can take most physical trauma that is thrown at her, her weakness (if you want to call it that) is her feelings. This continues well into the show. Angelus knew that, his attacks were mostly emotional.
3) As Buffy walks up to the steps of the school, Xander sees her for the first time, and he and his skateboard make quite the impression on a railing. Nice stunt work, Nick Brendon.
4) In the library when Giles and Buffy were discussing her Slayer destiny for the first time, Sarah Michelle Gellar does a tremendous job jumping from the cheerful “I’m a vampire slayer, retired” to the hurt and anger of the “go ahead and prepare me” speech.
5) I always thought that the Master’s church lair/prison was one of the best sets in the series. It’s a shame more time wasn’t spent there to see it in more detail. Having said that, at the beginning of the series I know their budget was roughly six dollars, so a lot of the vamps in the lair were not in makeup and I thought it took away from the creepiness of some of the scenes. There’s an older gentleman sitting on a rock who looks like he’s waiting for a bus.
6) Okay, Buffy is the slayer, but her mother does not know this. Why would she let her daughter walk alone at night in a new town? A bad parenting point goes to Joyce.
7) On her way to the Bronze, Buffy meets Angel for the first time. I have to say, his character never really did much for me. Too much with the moping. For me, the only time his character is interesting is when he becomes Angelus.
“When I’m with a boy I like, it’s hard for me to say something cool, or witty, or at all. I can usually make a few vowel sounds, and then I have to go away.” Willow at the Bronze, with my favorite line of the episode.
9) Darla’s and Buffy’s fight in the crypt didn’t impress me very much, but the fight with Luke was much better. Much more painful looking and convincing.
Okay, this was the opening episode of my favorite series of all time. On a ratings scale of 1 – 10, it’s a 10 all the way.
Until next time Scoobies – Cheers, Oaktree