With shows like The Walking Dead, Game Of Thrones, and Stranger Things dominating daily pop culture talk, folks are having real discussions as to whether or not television has surpassed film as the dominant medium. We like to think this change was super-recent, but while there has definitely been an increase in quality and budgeting for television in the last decade, TV’s been kicking narrative ass for awhile. Sure, film has had the upper hand and the more immediate financial outcome, but more than a few times over the years, TV series have gone on to outshine the films based on the same concept.
Some of these examples are current, while some are older. One goes way back and I believe it will without a doubt will show you that while television is only getting recognized for its superiority today, TV creators been crushing it for a long while. Let’s start off with one of the most popular examples.
I’m sure not too many people will fight me on this, but there’s so much about the Buffy The Vampire Slayer that makes the series better than the film. For starters, I mean no disrespect to actress Kristy Swanson, but Sarah Michelle Gellar is THE Buffy. While she may not have the unique ability to sense vampires via menstrual cramps, she did star at the center of a franchise that took an arguably forgettable film and made an iconic coming-of-age series that is still celebrated today. And in terms of the discussion as to whether the film is better than the series or vice versa, there are basically no arguments.
In all fairness, Buffy The Vampire Slayer‘s TV show offered stories and concepts that 90 minutes of film just can’t wrap that quickly. The show opened us up to a deeper and more meaningful mythos involving vampire covens and demons, and actually gave these characters substantial enough backstory that fans still want more! Very few people were clamoring for a sequel to the Buffy film, and while an effort to reboot the film has popped up in Hollywood within the past decade, no one is biting.