There may be many vampire slayers in history, but there can only be one Buffy. Or can there?
Some observers have called the new Doctor Who spin-off Class a British version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, where a small group of high school friends deal with whatever otherworldly creatures make their way through an opening between realities.
For Buffy, it was the Hellmouth. For Class, it’s because the Tardis has made way too many trips through time, and has messed up some of the fabric of space-time.
Sophie Hopkins, who plays April in the series that debuts this weekend in the United Kingdom, told The Huffington Post, however, that there are a lot of differences between Class and Buffy. Especially when it comes to overall workload among the main characters, and the fact that there is no Anthony Head to lead them around.
“I’m a massive Buffy fan, so that’s big praise. It is comparable in that it shares the same dark tone, and shares a sensitivity. It also has a wit, and teenage drama.
“But I should say, it’s not trying to be Buffy. Class has four heroes – April, Ram, Charlie and Tanya – all with their own skills and powers. And they share the burden, unlike Buffy on her own.”
Those other characters are played by Fady Elsayed, Greg Austin and Vivian Oparah. They play teenaged students attending Coal Hill Academy, a school that has been a large part of Doctor Who history over the years.
Hopkins’ April is the leader, one who is tasked by Peter Capaldi’s The Doctor to put some of her studies aside and make a difference.
“She’s strong-willed, fairly wise, she makes heartfelt decisions. She’s the sole carer for her mother, who was left paraplegic by an accident involving them both when April was younger.
“So she’s had to grow up quickly, and she’s a natural mother hen figure. She has the world on her shoulders, and that’s before she’s commissioned by The Doctor to save it.”
The series was created by author Patrick Ness, and is the first Doctor Who spin-off to air a new episode since 2011 when both Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures ended their run.
Class will air on BBC Three in an eight-episode run, and then migrate to other countries in early 2017.
“I know there’ll be skeptics, those Who fans who won’t accept anything except the original. But I’m ready. I want to hear what they have to say, and finger crossed, bring them something they like.”
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