Activity: Academic Talks or Presentations › Oral presentation › Research
Buffy at 20 - a round table discussion with some senior Scoobies Stacey Abbott, Bronwen Calvert and Lorna Jowett (aka The Trio) In the days leading up to the 10th March 2017, mainstream media, the blogosphere, social networks and fan spaces were abuzz with discussion of the 20th anniversary of Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997-2003) and its impact, personal and televisual, over the past 20 years. In this roundtable discussion we propose to use this recent ‘birthday’ to consider how fandom and the perception of fandom have changed in the last twenty years. We will examine and debate selected key aspects of Buffy fandom and the Joss Whedon brand, which have matured alongside the growing legitimation of television studies and fan studies, as well as increasing interest in studying the production, consumption and reception of popular culture 'texts' that function as transmedia brands and user-friendly spreadable media. Our discussion will examine shifts in defining cult and mainstream television, and interrogate the influence of the auteur on both ‘text’ (canon or otherwise) and fan community. We will consider and debate Buffy’s lines of influence and legacy, as fans of the original series have followed actors/creators to other shows and created new fandoms, and as the 20th anniversary of Buffy is marked in both the mainstream press and fan spaces. Finally, we will reflect on the changing nature of the Buffy aca-fan community, drawing on our own experience of being part of it to examine its evolution over the past two decades, and what scholar-fans and fan-scholars might contribute to the future of Buffy Studies.