10 Buffy The Vampire Slayer Characters Killed Off At The Perfect Time

They may have made you cry or scream, but these Buffy-verse deaths came at the perfect moment.

Kendra Buffy the vampire slayer
Warner Bros.

Even now, closing in on two decades after the final episode aired, Joss Whedon's Buffy the Vampire Slayer is still considered a much loved cult-classic, a series ahead of it's time, and is still being discovered by new generations of fans. As with many rediscovered classics, these new fans are getting their hearts broken again by Buffy's many tragic deaths.

While it was definitely not a bloodbath on the level of Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead, fans could never expect any character to be safe in Buffy. As the series went on, with the show's storylines growing increasingly dark and the Slayer's enemies growing ever more dangerous, the safety net that had been in place for the first few seasons shrunk considerably. By the final season, in which Buffy and friends take on the First Evil, you got the sense that anyone could die, and a few major players did.

However, the deaths in Buffy the Vampire Slayer never occurred simply for shock value. Every death had a purpose, a reason behind it. Every death had to push the story forward in some way. While a few of them may have broken fans' hearts, the following ten Buffy deaths happened at exactly the right time.

10. Tara Maclay

Kendra Buffy the vampire slayer
Warner Bros

Buffy the Vampire Slayer's polarising sixth Season sees Buffy's best friend Willow on a dark path. Her dependence on magic becomes a metaphor for drug use, and her beloved girlfriend, Tara, breaks up with her. Thankfully, Willow eventually gets over her addiction, and she and Tara reconcile... just in time for Tara to be killed by a stray bullet fired by Warren Mears.

The tragedy sends Willow on a rampage, absorbing huge amounts of dark magic in her quest for revenge against those who took Tara from her.

Nowadays, many dismiss or frown upon Tara's death as just another unfortunate example of the Bury Your Gays trope. However, looking at things from a story perspective, the death makes sense, as sad as it is. Had Tara not died, then Willow probably would have stayed off of the magicks.

Without the power she absorbed during her Dark Willow rampage, Willow would not have had the ability to empower all the potential Slayers in the Buffy The Vampire Slayer finale. Tara's death, though tragic, pushed Willow to where the world needed her to be.


Kristy Anderson hasn't written a bio just yet, but if they had... it would appear here.