Every 'Buffy' Fan Needs To See These Shows

by Maura O'Malley

I will be honest here: I was a tad late to the whole Buffy The Vampire Slayer phenomenon. In my defense, I was only seven years old when the series first premiered, so it was a little out of my age range — but luckily, the binge-watching culture of today has righted that time-paradox injustice and I am now a fully committed Whedonian. It only took a quick 145 episodes but I am now a changed person. The only thing is after finishing the final season, I feel like there is a huge blonde cheerleader shaped hole in my soul. I am assuming that I am not alone here — other fans must feel like this too, right? — so here are a few ashows to check out if you like Buffy the Vampire Slayer .

It is true that finding a show to replace Buffy the Vampire Slayer is some tough business. BtVS was one of the greatest shows in the history of television. And if you disagree, that's fine. Just be well aware that I will physically fight someone over this fact and I will win because I am right.

Sure, on the surface BtVS seemed like just a run of the mill fantasy show about a female warrior taking down thousand-old demons — but every Buffy fan knows the truth. Buffy the Vampire Slayer was all about friendship, family, responsibility, and destiny. From the same writers and producer, to similar friend as family dynamics, and strong female empowerment, there are a lot of the shows out there that have that same sparkle of that Buffy the Vampire Slayer magic.

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (The CW)

Remember "Once More, With Feeling," that one episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer where everyone broke out into song? Well, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is like that, but better. The show follows Rebecca Bunch (played by actor and creator Rachel Bloom) as she moves across the country to follow her childhood love, Josh Chang. While this may sound like a totally crazy premise for a show, trust me — with its witty writing, sharp and insightful musical numbers, and a style all its own, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is one show Buffy fans simply should not miss.

Teen Wolf (MTV)

Everyone loved Seth Green on BtVS, and I mean everyone. If you are anything like me and Willow's ex was your favorite Buffy-boyfriend, then check out Teen Wolf. This MTV show follows social outcast Scott McCall struggling to balance the everyday drama of high school with his newfound lycanthropy. Put werewolves, high school drama, strong female characters, and dreamy dudes together, and you pretty much have the perfect successor to Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC)

Before Joss Whedon was king of Marvel superhero films, he was creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and headmaster of the Whedon Universe. In addition to the Avenger films, Whedon expanded his superhero storytelling by creating Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., a series that follows the government agency tasked with protecting the public with the help of superheroes and sometimes from those with superpowers. Also if you think of Agent Phil Coulson as the new Giles, it's like the whole world makes sense again.

The Vampire Diaries (The CW)

A human woman with a destiny hundreds of years in the making is forced to choose between two vampires — sound familiar? Well, a supernatural love triangle is at the center of both Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the Vampire Diaries and I am equally obsessed with both of them. Not to mention the fact both shows feature good guys with uber-bad guy alter-egos. I can't say enough good things about these shows.

Supergirl (CBS)

Buffy the Vampire Slayer was all about proving a girl can be more than just a pretty face. Supergirl attempts to do the same with Melissa Benoist starring as Kara Danvers, Superman's cousin and equally potent crime-fighting superhero.

The 100 (The CW)

If shows like Buffy have taught me anything, it's that adults are woe-fully unprepared to save the world. So, meet Clarke, a 16-year-old girl and one of the 100 juvenile delinquents sent to Earth in an attempt to jumpstart society. Clarke proves teenagers are totally capable of making very adult sacrifices, something all too familiar to Buffy fans. The 100 is a kick-ass science fiction show that people of all ages should be enjoying.

Supernatural (The CW)

In its 11th season, Supernatural has become one of the fundamental shows and best examples of sci-fi television. With a season long arcs combined with episodic mysteries, Supernatural is similar to Buffy the Vampire Slayer both in structure and awesomeness. Buffy fans will eat up the story of the Winchester brother protecting the world from the things that go bump in the night.

The X-Files (FOX)

Before there was Buffy and Angel, there was Scully and Mulder. The ultimate sci-fi super couple, Special Agent Fox Mulder and F.B.I. Agent Dana Scully solved the spookiest of mysteries for nine seasons. Then there were two movies and most recently a revival mini-series on FOX. X-Files along with Buffy are part of the ultimate TV Nerd starter pack.

Jessica Jones (Netflix)

A bad ass heroine with superpowers who must fight against untold evil, whoa, that sounds unfamiliar — just kidding. BtVS fans will see the same fiery spirit and spunk that made them fall in love with Buffy in hardened private detective Jessica Jones. Bogged down with a murky past and conflicted with her superpowers, Jessica Jones is a great reflection of the disillusioned Buffy of later seasons.

iZombie (The CW)

Girl is living a perfectly uneventful life until bang! — fate has other plans, and now that girl must use her new found powers for the greater good. Sound familiar? While Buffy had super strength, iZombie's Liv has the ability to relive memories and personality traits of the recently deceased by eating their brains. Liv then uses what she learns to solve crime — a whole new take on "taking a bite out of crime."

UnREAL (Lifetime)

Buffy showrunner Marti Nixon has gone on to do some great things since Buffy ended, including work on Glee, Mad Men, and Prison Break — but her greatest accomplishment post-BtVS would have to be UnREAL. The fictional behind-the-scenes look at a Bachelor-type reality dating show, this show is easily the greatest guilt pleasure on television. If you enjoy complex female friendships and murky morals, then UnREAL is the show for you. And it's a show that I feel Buffy would totally approve of.

Daredevil (Netflix)

Brother series to Jessica Jones and based off the Marvel comic books, Daredevil follows the adventures of blind crusader Matt Murdoch. It's connection runs deeper that just involving superpowers, though: It was created and written by Buffy alum Drew Goddard.

Grimm (NBC)

Like Buffy, Nick Burkhardt was destined for supernatural powers that would give him the ability to fight the forces of evil and save the world. Doing all that on top of a 9-5 job and responsibilities of friends and family, is something Buffy could very much relate too. Add in a stellar supporting cast and Grimm is a perfect Buffy replacement.

So if you need me I'll be marathoning these shows looking for my next great obsession.

Images: 20th Century Fox Television; The CW (5); MTV; ABC; CBS; FOX; Netflix (3); Lifetime; NBC