Buffy, Dark Romance and female horror fans

Lorna Jowett, Jennifer K Stuller (Editor)

Research output: Contribution to Book/ReportChapter

Abstract

While Buffy the Vampire Slayer displays many genre influences, given creator Joss Whedon’s insistence that its premise was an exercise in gender role reversal, it is now easy to see Buffy as a key influence on the contemporary Dark Romance publishing and media boom. Just as Buffy itself draws on previous female action heroes from comic books, movies, fiction, and TV, Dark Romances from Twilight to True Blood offer variations on Buffy’s complex representation of romance, sexuality and gender. Now that VILF (Vampire I’d Like to Fuck) has entered the lexicon we can say that the Dark Romance (in which a female protagonist falls in love with a dark hero, usually a vampire or werewolf) has truly arrived. The popularity of the Twilight books and films, as well as the appearance of vampire and werewolf romance in a wide range of diverse popular fictions proves its success with audiences. This paper briefly examines how subsequent Dark Romances pick up, adapt and develop the ways forerunners like Buffy or the Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter novels negotiate conventions of gender and romance for the twenty-first century. While Buffy may have surprised in its ability to attract a wider audience than the usual network TV target for an action/ horror/ fantasy show (teenage boys), much Dark Romance is specifically aimed at a female audience, and thus its representation of femininity, masculinity, and sexuality is carefully constructed to appeal to women. Therefore this chapter also explores how Buffy and its legacy of Dark Romance offers serialised stories that are consistently “about how hard it is to be a woman” for a largely female audience
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFan Phenomena: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Place of PublicationBristol
PublisherIntellect
Pages91-100
Number of pages164
ISBN (Print)9781783200191
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2013

Publication series

NameFan Phenomena

Fingerprint

Romance
Vampires
Hero
Werewolf
Sexuality
Hunters
Boom
Boys
Femininity
Exercise
Creator
Fantasy
Fiction
Forerunner
Protagonist
Gender Roles
Lexicon
Popular Fiction
Comic Books
Masculinity

Keywords

  • Fans
  • television
  • popular culture
  • vampires
  • dark romance
  • gender
  • Joss Whedon
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer
  • True Blood
  • Sookie Stackhouse
  • Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter
  • Twilight
  • The Vampire Diaries

Cite this

Jowett, L., & Stuller, J. K. (Ed.) (2013). Buffy, Dark Romance and female horror fans. In Fan Phenomena: Buffy the Vampire Slayer (pp. 91-100). (Fan Phenomena). Bristol: Intellect.
Jowett, Lorna ; Stuller, Jennifer K (Editor). / Buffy, Dark Romance and female horror fans. Fan Phenomena: Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Bristol : Intellect, 2013. pp. 91-100 (Fan Phenomena).
@inbook{b544dc652a5f4d3988295ce6d5ea5df9,
title = "Buffy, Dark Romance and female horror fans",
abstract = "While Buffy the Vampire Slayer displays many genre influences, given creator Joss Whedon’s insistence that its premise was an exercise in gender role reversal, it is now easy to see Buffy as a key influence on the contemporary Dark Romance publishing and media boom. Just as Buffy itself draws on previous female action heroes from comic books, movies, fiction, and TV, Dark Romances from Twilight to True Blood offer variations on Buffy’s complex representation of romance, sexuality and gender. Now that VILF (Vampire I’d Like to Fuck) has entered the lexicon we can say that the Dark Romance (in which a female protagonist falls in love with a dark hero, usually a vampire or werewolf) has truly arrived. The popularity of the Twilight books and films, as well as the appearance of vampire and werewolf romance in a wide range of diverse popular fictions proves its success with audiences. This paper briefly examines how subsequent Dark Romances pick up, adapt and develop the ways forerunners like Buffy or the Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter novels negotiate conventions of gender and romance for the twenty-first century. While Buffy may have surprised in its ability to attract a wider audience than the usual network TV target for an action/ horror/ fantasy show (teenage boys), much Dark Romance is specifically aimed at a female audience, and thus its representation of femininity, masculinity, and sexuality is carefully constructed to appeal to women. Therefore this chapter also explores how Buffy and its legacy of Dark Romance offers serialised stories that are consistently “about how hard it is to be a woman” for a largely female audience",
keywords = "Fans, television, popular culture, vampires, dark romance, gender, Joss Whedon, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, True Blood, Sookie Stackhouse, Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter, Twilight, The Vampire Diaries",
author = "Lorna Jowett and Stuller, {Jennifer K}",
year = "2013",
month = "7",
day = "1",
language = "English",
isbn = "9781783200191",
series = "Fan Phenomena",
publisher = "Intellect",
pages = "91--100",
booktitle = "Fan Phenomena: Buffy the Vampire Slayer",

}

Jowett, L & Stuller, JK (ed.) 2013, Buffy, Dark Romance and female horror fans. in Fan Phenomena: Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Fan Phenomena, Intellect, Bristol, pp. 91-100.

Buffy, Dark Romance and female horror fans. / Jowett, Lorna; Stuller, Jennifer K (Editor).

Fan Phenomena: Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Bristol : Intellect, 2013. p. 91-100 (Fan Phenomena).

Research output: Contribution to Book/ReportChapter

TY - CHAP

T1 - Buffy, Dark Romance and female horror fans

AU - Jowett, Lorna

A2 - Stuller, Jennifer K

PY - 2013/7/1

Y1 - 2013/7/1

N2 - While Buffy the Vampire Slayer displays many genre influences, given creator Joss Whedon’s insistence that its premise was an exercise in gender role reversal, it is now easy to see Buffy as a key influence on the contemporary Dark Romance publishing and media boom. Just as Buffy itself draws on previous female action heroes from comic books, movies, fiction, and TV, Dark Romances from Twilight to True Blood offer variations on Buffy’s complex representation of romance, sexuality and gender. Now that VILF (Vampire I’d Like to Fuck) has entered the lexicon we can say that the Dark Romance (in which a female protagonist falls in love with a dark hero, usually a vampire or werewolf) has truly arrived. The popularity of the Twilight books and films, as well as the appearance of vampire and werewolf romance in a wide range of diverse popular fictions proves its success with audiences. This paper briefly examines how subsequent Dark Romances pick up, adapt and develop the ways forerunners like Buffy or the Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter novels negotiate conventions of gender and romance for the twenty-first century. While Buffy may have surprised in its ability to attract a wider audience than the usual network TV target for an action/ horror/ fantasy show (teenage boys), much Dark Romance is specifically aimed at a female audience, and thus its representation of femininity, masculinity, and sexuality is carefully constructed to appeal to women. Therefore this chapter also explores how Buffy and its legacy of Dark Romance offers serialised stories that are consistently “about how hard it is to be a woman” for a largely female audience

AB - While Buffy the Vampire Slayer displays many genre influences, given creator Joss Whedon’s insistence that its premise was an exercise in gender role reversal, it is now easy to see Buffy as a key influence on the contemporary Dark Romance publishing and media boom. Just as Buffy itself draws on previous female action heroes from comic books, movies, fiction, and TV, Dark Romances from Twilight to True Blood offer variations on Buffy’s complex representation of romance, sexuality and gender. Now that VILF (Vampire I’d Like to Fuck) has entered the lexicon we can say that the Dark Romance (in which a female protagonist falls in love with a dark hero, usually a vampire or werewolf) has truly arrived. The popularity of the Twilight books and films, as well as the appearance of vampire and werewolf romance in a wide range of diverse popular fictions proves its success with audiences. This paper briefly examines how subsequent Dark Romances pick up, adapt and develop the ways forerunners like Buffy or the Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter novels negotiate conventions of gender and romance for the twenty-first century. While Buffy may have surprised in its ability to attract a wider audience than the usual network TV target for an action/ horror/ fantasy show (teenage boys), much Dark Romance is specifically aimed at a female audience, and thus its representation of femininity, masculinity, and sexuality is carefully constructed to appeal to women. Therefore this chapter also explores how Buffy and its legacy of Dark Romance offers serialised stories that are consistently “about how hard it is to be a woman” for a largely female audience

KW - Fans

KW - television

KW - popular culture

KW - vampires

KW - dark romance

KW - gender

KW - Joss Whedon

KW - Buffy the Vampire Slayer

KW - True Blood

KW - Sookie Stackhouse

KW - Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter

KW - Twilight

KW - The Vampire Diaries

M3 - Chapter

SN - 9781783200191

T3 - Fan Phenomena

SP - 91

EP - 100

BT - Fan Phenomena: Buffy the Vampire Slayer

PB - Intellect

CY - Bristol

ER -

Jowett L, Stuller JK, (ed.). Buffy, Dark Romance and female horror fans. In Fan Phenomena: Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Bristol: Intellect. 2013. p. 91-100. (Fan Phenomena).