Why Willow Rosenberg Is the Best Buffy the Vampire Slayer Character

Forgive us if we sound a little like Kanye for a second, but Willow Rosenberg is the greatest character in Joss Whedon’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer of all time. Of all time.

Sure, the show isn’t named after her, she doesn’t get pity points for being just human like Xander, Spike totally outdid her in the redemptive, self-sacrificing arena, and maybe she went a little crazy at one point. But, still, Buffy and the rest of the Scooby Gang would all be dead if it wasn’t for Willow.

Just ask Alyson Hannigan about it on Saturday, May 30, at Phoenix Comicon 2015. We’re about 97 percent sure she’d definitely agree with us.

When we first meet Willow, she was the stereotypical high school wallflower — quiet and shy, picked on by the popular girls, and hopelessly (and secretly) fell in love with her best friend.

After seven seasons, Willow is arguably the most powerful witch in the Buffy universe and possibly all Whedon-verse.

But even before she started developing her powers, Willow kicked ass with just her intelligence, helping the team with code-cracking and crucial IT skills.
With her girlfriend Tara, Willow became a part of one of the most progressive relationships shown on cable TV at the time — a relationship that propelled the story forward and developed the characters more rather than acting as a distraction or novelty. Oh, and that relationship also ultimately led to the realization of Dark Willow, which we will get into shortly.

Basically, there’s no competition for the winner of “Most Transformed” in the show. (And we mean both literally and figuratively.) Remember the whole Willow-transformed-to-Warren stint? Still gives us the chills. Gross.

We can hear you already, Internet trolls. You’re going to dispute our love for Willow with the craziness that Dark Willow and her addiction to magic brought on Sunnydale/the world/Warren’s skin. But ultimately, Dark Willow brought the Scooby Gang back together again, including Giles when he surprised, um, everybody and burst in with borrowed coven magic.

Willow had to get a little extreme to learn her limits and become a fully actualized witch. Plus, Willow doesn’t half-ass anything. So if she’s going to become a dark force, she’s going all the way and will just telekinetically flay someone alive to avenge the one she loves.
And lest we forget the times Willow actually led the group in Buffy’s absence? She kept it together on Halloween when everyone else was transformed into their costumes. When Buffy ran away to Los Angeles, Willow pushed to continue slaying, even though the team’s efforts were maybe more comical than effective.

Basically, Willow Rosenberg is the truest badass in Buffy. From bringing Buffy back to life, to activating the potential slayers, to becoming a motherly figure to Dawn, to offering a generally level-headed, intelligent, and supportive force throughout the entire series, Willow is the best and baddest. And we will never get over the fact that she skinned Warren alive with her mind. Ever.

Alyson Hannigan will do a joint Q&A session with her Buffy co-star and husband Alexis Denisof on Saturday, May 30, in addition to a few photo sessions and other appearances throughout the weekend. For more information, visit 

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Evie Carpenter is a visual journalist. Using photography, videography, design, and sometimes words, she tells stories she hopes make a bit of difference in the world, even if those stories are in list form and include GIFs.
Contact: Evie Carpenter