When Buffy the Vampire Slayer first punched, kicked and staked its way onto prime-time TV in 1997, I was a seventh grader who thought it was the coolest thing ever to completely ignore the new parental advisory guidelines and sit mesmerized through an hour of vampire carnage. Who didn't want to be a teen girl chosen to be the Slayer? Even if I couldn't slay algebra during the day, taking down monsters crawling out of the mouth of hell certainly seemed like the most kick-ass extracurricular activity ever.
Predictably, a swarm of merch followed the fandom, from Buffy logo-print pajamas (why did I never know those existed?) to night lights to an entire jewelry collection available at the teen girls' paradise of the era, Claire's. There was even an inflatable chair printed with Her Slayerness.
However, not everything shrieks with fangirl-dom. Some collectibles that clawed their way into stores, and later eBay, were almost as strange and often as sinister as the fanged fiends that terrorized Sunnydale.
Wield your stake once more, with feeling and peer into the Hellmouth to find these 17 Buffy collectibles that will stalk you in your dreams.
Because GigaPets had just become way too cliché by the late '90s, the geniuses at Tiger decided to up the ante for wannabe Slayers by shaping their popular virtual pet pod into a coffin with the 3-D disembodied head of a vampire sneering right at you. Instead of making sure it stays fed, you're supposed to attack it with digital stakes, crosses, holy water and other anti-vamp weapons. You'd better not abandon this thing either, because it won't wither and die. It even comes with a warning to "decrease the vampire's power or each day it will threaten to overcome your will." At least you have the power to take out the batteries.
Anya bunny costume figurine
Halloween usually means dressing up as something remotely scary, but Anya took this literally when she let her leporiphobia define what she was going to show up to the party in later that night. Even demons who are thousands of years old can obviously have an unexplained fear of rabbits. Anya's bunny qualifies as more than frightening when you realize it could pass for the love child of Frank from Donnie Darko and Ralphie's Pepto-pink coveralls from A Christmas Story. Xander must have been at least a little embarrassed until she later let the fur fly beating up Spike. Maybe because it is a nightmare inducer, only 200 of this pink monstrosity were ever made.
Buffy inflatable chair
Buffy meets an inflatable chair. Does it even get more '90s than this? In a world of inflatable furniture (more likely than not available at Claire's) that blinded with all the neons in the day-glo rainbow plastered with gaudy hippie-revival flowers, butterflies, peace signs and smiley faces, at least this one was black. Because could you really imagine Buffy Summers tricking out her room with anything remotely saccharine? Diehard Buffy fans would probably think it kind of of sacrilegious to be sitting with your back against one of the most powerful Slayers of all time, but it's definitely a blast from the past. Just make sure to keep pointy objects away.
Buffy Tongue Painter Chupa Chups
It goes without saying that even candy in the Buffyverse would be anything but typical, and these creepy suckers in black Buffy-themed wrappers can turn your tongue demon-green, vampire-red or corpse-purple depending on whether you have an unnatural craving for apple, black cherry or grape. There are also the Fantasy Ball ones that are kind of like the evil alt-verse version of a Blow Pop, but these are just that much cooler. Have one on Halloween (if you're okay with eating candy from 2003) and you won't even need a costume to scare trick-or-treaters out of their skin. Unfortunately, there is no Blood of Thine Enemies flavor.
Mr. Pointy plush stake
Presenting the biggest oxymoron in the collectible Buffyverse: a plush stake. It's technically a stake, so it's supposed to obliterate vampires, but it's plush, so it probably just tickles them and buys you an extra three seconds before you're someone's next meal. Maybe it's supposed to be a protective talisman you can actually clutch in your sleep without accidentally gouging an eye out? That at least makes it less expensive than stocking up on religious paraphernalia and spares you of having a room perfumed in garlic. Whether or not this thing really sends local Nosferatu running, the name 'Mr. Pointy' is scary enough.
What Would Buffy Do? The Vampire Slayer as Spiritual Guide by Jana Reiss
In case the plethora of self-help guides that command their own section in most bookstores aren't enough, Jana Reiss' contribution to the Sunnydale Library is 208 pages of Slayer-inspired advice on how to navigate your own proverbial demon-infested labyrinth. Reiss guides you through the darkness by using recurring themes from the show such as self-sacrifice and redemption (Angel anyone?) as mirrors for real-life scenarios that don't involve malevolent spirits and arcane magic. With chapters like "Be a Hero, Even When You'd Rather Go to the Mall" and "The Monster Inside," you almost want to believe that Buffy herself wrote this somewhere between studying the occult and staking vampires.
Prosthetic demon hands
If you're the type who has a cosplay closet featuring every species of latex prosthetic from Godzilla claws to Hobbit feet, you'll positively hiss in delight at the chance to morph into something especially grotesque at your next con—demon-class Polgara species. Freshly dismembered from the soulless Hostile Sub-Terrestrials endemic to the various dimensions of hell (all right, plucked from the Buffy costume archives, actually), these dinosaur-esque appendages will give you the most fearsome jazz hands ever to be spewed from the Hellmouth. Slip them on and you might just find that you're suddenly feeling the onset of both superhuman strength and reptilian skin in places you could have sworn weren't scaly ten seconds ago.
Buffy snow globe
Why have visions of sugarplums when you can haunt your dreams with visions of a vampire and a vampire slayer surrounded by softly falling snow and being watched over by a primordial demon? Unlike the usual snow globe suspects like Santa's sleigh — or sunburned Santa lounging on the beach, depending on who you ask — Buffy and Angel also look horrified out of their minds that something evil is looming over and about to seize them in its sinuous fingers. Not that you would look any less startled if your romantic winter walk through the snowy shadows was interrupted by a demonic entity (and you didn't even have a stake on hand). If there was a Sunnydale souvenir shop, this sinister snow globe would be its bestseller.
Conversations With Dead People Board
Why just summon spirits that could possibly possess you when you could do it with an officially licensed Ouija board? Conjured by Dark Horse in 2008, it has no intrinsic magical powers to speak of but does come with exclusive comic panels. What is more conducive to speaking to the spirits than a game board based on the world of Buffy the Vampire Slayer? the description beckons. Let voices from the other side move the planchette along the board, choosing letters and numbers to answer your queries. Ironically, no Ouija boards appeared in the episode "Conversations With Dead People," because no hocus-pocus is needed for actual conversations with dead people or undead people when you live right by a Hellmouth.
Scooby Gang spoons
Imagine eating your breakfast cereal with Spike staring right back at you with that roguish smile or stirring a cup of tea with Giles (even though tea is soothing and you wish to be tense). While these are technically the sort of collector's spoons you keep in a curio cabinet rather than tossing them in a dishwasher, you can't help but think of what food goes with what character when looking at these. Chocolate Hurricane for Xander? Angel cake for Buffy? Tomato sauce that could pass for a bloodstain? Not to mention the insanely cool engravings that guests who aren't acquainted with the Buffyverse might freak out over thinking they're some occult message.
The Gentleman ornament
Yes, this nightmarish thing is supposed to hang on a Christmas tree, which must mean it should also scare the living daylights of your holiday guests. You can't exactly separate one from the other when the thing maliciously grinning at Grandma or terrifying the daylights out of anyone who deserves to be on the naughty list is one of a gang of metal-fanged humanoids who emerged from some sort of warped fairy tale. These sadistic sirs in impeccably tailored black suits stalked the streets for unsuspecting victims, oh-so-politely passing the scalpel to extract the human hearts they needed to devour to stay alive. This is the one thing about the holidays that is actually creepier than Krampus and even the Elf on a Shelf.
Buffy Palz 2004 Wizard World Exclusive
While an entire dark army of Buffy Palz exists, this has to be the strangest. Maybe it's an abstract interpretation of the Slayer? The plastic incarnation of someone's brilliant idea that she looked even more imposing without a face? Whatever warped thinking led to this featureless wonder, she comes with a duo of stakes for doing battle against Palz beasts like The Master and the entire band of Gentlemen. Her hair is even sculpted into the iconic '90s ponytail with bangs on either side, a style that was supposed to look effortless but (as I can testify) took much more pained perfecting to look as if it involved no effort at all.
Sunnydale Library Playset
When creepy dollhouses just won't do it, congregate your plastic Scooby Gang in this (sort of) pocket version of the library that experienced more occult goings-on than the haunted stacks in Ghostbusters. It should just be expected when your high school library is located right above a direct portal to hell. While it's unlikely this plastic iteration of the library where all humanity was almost destroyed several times houses dusty leather-bound tomes like Vampyr, Blood Rites and Sacrifices and Exploring Demonic Dimensions, it unfortunately doesn't include the infamous book cage, which would be perfect for confining your Willow and Oz action figures when they misbehave.
Orb of Thesulah replica
Is it just a New Age paperweight, or could it be a catalyst to a curse? Even Giles used this thing to keep his scholarly documents from flying around until the Ritual of Restoration was once again reactivated. While this particular crystal orb doesn't glow eerily when you hold it or make any claims of restoring vampire souls, its presence might give annoying coworkers second thoughts about how to deal with you. You have to admit that the milky quartz nestled in its ominously carved box with purple velvet lining looks pretty creepy just sitting there even sans supernatural powers. Be careful if you do decide to summon a vampire's soul from the ether, though — it isn't reusable.
Urn of Osiris
If you've always wanted a piece of pottery that had the power to bring back someone from the dead, then this is for you. The Urn of Osiris is an example of what happens when you venture into the weirder corners of eBay, as Anya found out when she unearthed the last one in existence listed by a Cairo desert gnome. How a desert gnome would have Internet access still eludes all common sense; then again, Buffy was never exactly a show where anything rational was the norm. Just tell anyone clueless about the Buffyverse that this thing is a genuine ancient Egyptian artifact tainted with a mummy's curse (so they won't break it). You could also use it for a plant — but why?
Battle-Damaged Puppet Angel
Angel may have only appeared in puppet form in his own spin-off series, but it's just too bizarre not to include here. There's just something both endearing and unnerving about the vampire Angelus morphing into a character that could have just crept out of the dark alleys of Sesame Street. After the original sold out to the point of sucking up several times his original price on eBay, the deluxe beat-up version appeared a year later. His Muppet-like charm manifests in those permanently furrowed brows and flat mouth, made more roguish by a removable nose (which he brags about in the episode "Smile Time") and werewolf-induced battle scars.
Factory X stake
Because what's a Buffy collection without a stake? This isn't just a stake, though, this is the stake — the official licensed prop replica and your best bet against bloodsuckers. Buffy's sharp stick looks like the real deal, from every well-placed crack in the wood to the middle section that looks like it was worn away just enough from a hand plunging it into one too many evil chests. It even comes in a sinister black box with the opening narration of the show on the inside lid. While there is no instruction manual on Slaying 101, the only way to turn vampires and other hellspawn into demon dust is to stake them through the heart. But you knew that.