tampabay.com

Is it so wrong to want to see a young girl kill vampires?

By RICK GERSHMAN
Published July 28, 2006


Yes, I'm a fan of the late, lamented Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV show.

And, no, not just a casual fan, either.

I'm the dyed-in-the-wool, seen-every-episode, actually read books about it, hard-core Buffy fan.

Which, of course, makes complete sense to anyone who actually has enjoyed the show.

And which, of course, makes me seem like the world's biggest loser to everyone else on the planet.

But that's not fair. I'm not just like every other weirdo who obsesses about some sci-fi TV show.

Really, I'm not.

Well ... okay, I am.

But I'm nothing like all the fans who will gather at the Doubletree Hotel this weekend for Tampa SlayerCon 2006, a convention for all things Buffy-related.

Really, I'm not.

Well ... okay, I am.

And even if I wasn't, there's a perfectly good reason to attend the convention: The actor who played "Fred" plans to be there. And Fred's really hot.

I mean, like, way sexy. Petite, but sexy petite.

Um ... did I mention Fred's a woman? It's short for Winifred.

Seems like I should have worked that in there higher ...

Granted, Fred, played by Amy Acker, wasn't on Buffy. She was on the spinoff, Angel. Which was an awesome show itself, even better than Buffy at times.

Actually, looking at the guest list, this year's SlayerCon is a bit Angel-heavy, led by two of the show's principals, Acker and Vincent Kartheiser, who played Angel's son, Connor.

Buffy herself, Sarah Michelle Gellar, won't be gracing us with her presence, nor will beloved show creator Joss Whedon.

However, several other Buffyverse alums are scheduled to attend: Jonathan M. Woodward, who played Knox on Angel; Mark Metcalf, the villainous "Master" from Buffy's first season; Bianca Lawson, the slayer Kendra on Buffy; and Camden Toy, the "Ubervamp" on Buffy.

Before you tear into me for digging the Buffyverse because it happens to be filled with a lot of really hot, butt-kicking chicks - which, granted, is true - please consider that it was one of the best-written, funniest, scariest, smartest shows on television. Ever.

In its seven seasons, it regularly led critics' polls as one of the best shows on TV.

And when the editors of TV Guide named the 50 best shows of all time in a 2002 poll, Buffy staked its claim there too, arriving at a respectable No. 41.

Dude, that's five places above Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Take that, sci-fi geeks.

Rick Gershman can be reached at rgershman@sptimes.com or 226-3431. His Times blog, the Ill Literate, is at www.sptimes.com/blogs/tampaarts.

IF YOU GO

Tampa SlayerCon 2006 runs tonight at 6 through Sunday at Doubletree Hotel, 4500 W Cypress St. Tickets are $25-$75 per day; discount multiday tickets available. Go to http://vulkon.com/tampaslayer2006/ for more information.