Horror On TV: The Unaired Pilot of Buffy the Vampire Slayer

When I first decided that I wanted to devote some of October to horror-themed television, I knew i wanted to feature a few episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  After all, Buffy is one of the most acclaimed and influential shows of all time.  On a personal note, the show started when I was 12 and it ended right before my senior year of high school.  As a result, Buffy was a show that I watched during some of the most emotionally turbulent years of my life and, as a character, Buffy Summers was the type of role model that I needed.

However, what i quickly discovered was that there really aren’t any full length episodes of Buffy on YouTube.  There’s plenty of fanvids.  There’s a lot of music videos featuring clips of Angel and Buffy staring soulfully at each other.  But, because of copyright issues, there aren’t any full-length episodes available on YouTube.

However, there is the unaired pilot.

This was a 30-minute “sample” episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer that was written and directed by Joss Whedon in 1996.  The episode was never meant to be televised.  Instead, it was a tool that Whedon used to pitch the concept of Buffy to the networks.

So, since I couldn’t find Hush on YouTube, here’s the 1996 unaired pilot of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Artist Profile: Virgil Finlay (1914 — 1971)

Finlay1Virgil Finlay is considered to be one of the best artists to work in pulp magazines.  From the his first publication in 1935 until his death in 1971, Finlay created more than 2600 works of graphic art.  He was acclaimed for the amount of detail that he put into his illustrations.

A small sampling his work can be found below.  Click on each picture to enlarge.

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Horror On The Lens: I, Zombie: The Chronicles of Pain (dir by Andrew Parkinson)


Today’s movie is one of the darkest zombie films ever made.

First released in 1998, I, Zombie tells the story of Mark (Giles Aspen), a likable doctoral candidate who, while on a field trip, comes across a young woman trapped in a shack.  Mark rescues the woman but, as he carries her to safety, she suddenly bites him in the neck.  As you can probably guess from the title, this bite leads to Mark becoming a zombie.

However, as opposed to what we’ve seen in other zombie films, Mark transformation is a slow process.  It starts with Mark realizing that his wounds are not healing and that he has suddenly started to have cannibalistic urges.  Realizing that he’s doomed to become a zombie, Mark cuts off all contact with his girlfriend and instead tries to isolate himself from the world.  The rest of the film follows Mark as he clinically observes the decay of his both his body and his mind.

To say that I, Zombie is not an easy film to watch is perhaps the highest compliment that you can pay it.  Whether one interprets the film as a metaphor for addiction or just as the ultimate acknowledgement of the body horror that rests at the heart of the zombie genre (and I think both interpretations are valid), I, Zombie is one of the best zombie films ever made.