This beloved ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ character is now officially queer

Buffy and Faith, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, bisexual, Dark Willow, TV show, comic book
Buffy and Faith in "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" Photo: CW TV

A comic book spin-off of Buffy the Vampire Slayer may have confirmed that a major character from the influential TV series is queer.

In the 11th issue of The Vampire Slayer, Sarah Gailey and Hannah Templer’s comic series based on characters from the Joss Whedon show, vampire hunter Faith Lehane describes Willow, a magic-using bisexual character, as “wicked hot.”

In the latest issue, Faith confronts an out-of-control Willow, but Faith has trouble focusing due to her own attraction to the new “dark, scary version” of Willow. Throughout the TV and comic book series, Willow has had trouble controlling her addiction to magic, occasionally becoming an evil version of herself whenever beset by emotional hardship.

Despite Faith’s seemingly small comment in the recent comic, it seems to confirm what fans of the series have long suspected of Faith, who was played on TV by Eliza Dushku. Her character was first introduced during Buffy’s third season, and throughout the show’s run, she only had sexual and romantic relationships with cis men.

However, as PinkNews notes, Faith’s fluid sexuality was hinted at on the show, which initially aired on The WB and later UPN from 1997 to 2003. While Faith never explicitly expressed interest in women on the show, ScreenRant notes that fans picked up on sexual tension between the character and Sarah Michelle Geller’s Buffy. That undercurrent gave rise to fan theories from viewers eager to see broader queer representation on TV.

The original Buffy TV series was, of course, groundbreaking for including an out queer character, Willow played by Alyson Hannigan. But the TV show seems to have shied away from more complicated and diverse depictions of sexuality. Series creator Whedon admitted in 2020 that he’d intended Willow to be bisexual, but was discouraged by network execs.

“It was like, ‘OK, you can’t make Willow bi, you can’t say this is a phase because that’s what people do to deny [LGBTQ+ people] their existence,’” Whedon told MetroUK. “So if I did it now, I’d be like, ‘Yes, she can be bi.’”

Despite the executives’ disapproval, early into the TV series, Willow dated a werewolf named Daniel “Oz” Osbourne. Oz, played by comedian Seth Green, appeared in the series until its 4th season. After dating Oz, Willow dated Tara, a fellow witch who introduces Willow to magic. When Willow and Tara suddenly part in the show’s 6th season, Willow turns to “Dark Willow” and threatens to destroy the world over her intense emotional pain.

The Vampire Slayer, which launched its first issue in April 2022, has already re-envisioned the character Xander (played on the TV show by Nicholas Brendon) as queer.

Don't forget to share:

Support vital LGBTQ+ journalism

Reader contributions help keep LGBTQ Nation free, so that queer people get the news they need, with stories that mainstream media often leaves out. Can you contribute today?

Cancel anytime · Proudly LGBTQ+ owned and operated

Two-thirds of New York voters want Santos out of Congress, poll finds

Previous article

LGBTQ+ gun group takes aim at the far-right’s violent threats

Next article