Full disclosure: I have never (intentionally) watched a single minute of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV show. So for me, my only Buffy is and forever will be the campy movie version that Joss et al. pretend never really happened. WELL IT HAPPENED, BITCHES. And it’s glorious.
First off, it accidentally on purpose leaned into the whole "Luke Perry is the '90s version of James Dean" (yeah, there were like at least five other actors that tried to claim this title, but LP was the winner). Second, the cast was stacked with future A-listers and Oscar winners in the beginning of their careers, some in super minor roles (see Ben Affleck), and those are just the parts that WEREN'T cut for time and budget. Mick Jagger and David Bowie were set to make cameos as vampires. VAMPIRE DAVID BOWIE. COME. ON! And listen, I LOVE Clueless, but Buffy was the original vapid and virginally challenged '90s teenage heroine a full three years before Cher Horowitz. Plus, who amongst us didn't have "marry Christian Slater" as our life goal? Which, by the way, have you seen him lately? He can still get it.
But the real gift the Buffy movie gave the world was, hands down, one of the GREATEST death scenes in cinematic history. You know the one. And if you don't, then close your browser window, shut down your computer and toss it out the window, because you should be banned from the internet forever. I know you're still here and reading. You should be ashamed of yourself for not knowing the scene I'm heaping praise upon, aka Amilyn's death.
Let's be honest: Paul Reubens' entire performance in this movie deserves to be in the Scene Stealer Hall of Fame. This role was also one of the first ones he took after his very public arrest, which at the time seemed like a career killer. Instead, parts like this led to his eventual comeback and Pee-wee revival, and even those with the coldest of hearts and blackest of souls (aka me) know the world is 100% a better place for it.
I can write an entire love letter to the Buffy movie. It's almost John Waters-level camp, and that is a damn honor that Joss should embrace. It was also the first time Joss ever pulled off a post-credits scene, and we all know that skill set came in handy AF later in his career.
Here's a clip of Amilyn's legendary death and post credits scene from Buffy. This is high art. Meryl could never.