The Hellmouth's Vampires
selected from Cult Times Special #09


There's a sucker born every minute. So it's just as well Buffy's on hand to stake them out. We head off in search of Sunnydale's most grisly inhabitants

History: Spike (also known as William the Bloody) is one of a new breed of vampires. He's English, from London, and is not quite 200. Spike got his name from his habit of torturing people with railroad spikes, and has apparently killed two Slayers in his time, one during the Boxer rebellion. For a long while, he and a vampire named Drusilla have been lovers.

Reason for Arrival in Sunnydale: As with many others, the lure of the Hellmouth draws Spike in, alongside the fact that he wants to have some fun. One of his first actions on arrival is to confront the remaining Sunnydale vampires who are about to choose a replacement leader for the Master. With 'The Annoying One' (as Spike refers to him) not impressed by the vampire's first abortive attempt to kill Buffy, Spike decides to elect himself leader by throwing the boy into a cage and hoisting it into direct sunlight with the words, "From now on, we're gonna have a little less ritual and a little more fun around here."

Fiendish Plans: Spike is one of the more careful vampires, and from his arrival, he observes Buffy's response to attack in order to plan an effective method to stop her. Too often Spike is a victim of circumstance. His raid on Sunnydale High is thwarted by Joyce Summers braining him with an axe, and his joy at finding a simply-not-herself Buffy abroad on Halloween is spoilt when a curse placed on the Slayer is removed at the least opportune moment. Later, when offered the Slayer by her friend in return for the gift of vampirism, Spike is beaten by Buffy threatening a still-weak Drusilla.

After this setback, Spike makes plans to help his love, sending a group of assassins named the Order of Taraka to at least distract Buffy while he kidnaps Angel to use his blood in a ritual to empower Dru once again. Sadly for Spike, Buffy's desire to save her boyfriend results in heavy masonry crashing down on the vampire and his beloved. Spike is later seen in a wheelchair, until he recuperates.

When Angel loses his soul and returns to the vampire fold, his plan to open a gate to Hell is an anathema even to Spike, who prefers his humans walking around 'like Happy Meals on legs', and sets out to stop his nemesis. Returning to Sunnydale after a short absence, Spike kidnaps Willow and Xander in the hope of receiving a love spell to make the uncaring Dru fall for him again.

Success Rate: Although his early efforts leave a little to be desired, Spike does succeed in helping Drusilla back to health. His plan to save his and Drusilla's skin works like a charm, and he leaves Buffy at Angel's mercy. Six out of 10 on the success scale.

Reason for Leaving Sunnydale: As part of a pact with Buffy to help stop Angel opening a doorway to Hell, Spike agrees to leave Sunnydale for good with Drusilla in tow (although not of her own free will). After a brief return to Sunnydale, Spike leaves to make Drusilla fall for him once again the old vampire way: torturing her until she agrees to date him again.

Paul Spragg
Spike gives Buffy the half-nelson

Also profiled in this issue: Drusilla, Angel, The Master and Mr Trick
"A good quip and a chance to kick butt and I'm happy". James Marsters, who plays Spike, is interviewed in this issue about Buffy, Millennium and maybe being just too cool for The X-Files.

Read more about Buffy and TV vampires of all kinds in this Cult Times Special
Available now, £3.50 ($6.99). Can't find it locally? You can order it here

Buffy the Vampire Slayer BBC2, Weds, 18.45

Photo © Fox

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