I once wrote a term paper near the end of my college career arguing that Buffy the Vampire Slayer was the superwoman in a universe ruled by Confucianism. I recently found the book on Confucianism I used to write that paper. The pages are still marked. I will now reconstruct my argument. It’s safe to say I got through college without taking much of it seriously. I’m not saying I’m smart. I’m saying I’m not.
“The moral law is a law from whose operation we cannot for one instant in our existence escape. A law from which we may escape is not the moral law.”
Buffy cannot escape that she is a vampire slayer. Therefore it is the moral law that Buffy be a vampire slayer. When Buffy acts as the vampire slayer she acts in accordance with the moral law. If she acts other than as a vampire slayer she is acting against the moral law. It is very hard to be a vampire slayer, but it is worse to exist in discord with the moral law. This accounts for most of the character’s intrapersonal drama. I probably gave several examples from plots of the show, as I was basically mainlining the show on DVD. And then I through this down just to show off:
“The life of the moral man is an exemplification of the universal moral order.”
It is very difficult Buffy is subject to several limitations set by “the moral law”. Exemplfication is a tough trick. Her romantic relationships are totally limited to people who are part of the same supernatural world. She belongs to a supernatural caste which she can only successfully navigate with someone who is completely in that world. And they don’t make the best boyfriends.
Poor Buffy. She never had a chance to be mundane so it was all she ever wanted.