Darla was a mixed bag for me, one episode I absolutely hated the vampire bitch, then the next I loved her. She may not have been hilarious compared to the others, but you’ve got to admit her timing and execution was excellent. But in all honesty, it wasn’t until she went to Angel’s spin-off show that I really liked her character.
Through a handful of flashbacks we learn that Darla was born in the late 16th century in the British Isles. Her birth name has never been revealed in either Buffy or Angel, and she herself admits to forgetting it. She was a young prostitute that went to the British Virginia Colony in North America and became independently wealthy, but as luck would have it, she then contracted a fatal case of syphilis. By 1609, she lay dying in her luxurious house. Darla, who loathed the clergy and religion, scoffed at a “priest” who came to her deathbed, until he revealed his true identity: the Master. He was the leader of the elite cult of vampires known as the Order of Aurelius. The Master then turned her into a vampire and named her “Darla,” meaning “dear one” in early modern English (“darling”).
As a vampire, the evil Darla enjoyed luring male victims by appearing as a seductive and mysterious yet innocent woman. Darla was a predator who preferred using her beauty instead of hunting to obtain victims.
By 1753, Darla came to a village in Galway, Ireland. There she found a handsome young man named Liam, who was drinking and whoring his way through a wasteful life. First admiring him from afar, Darla then lured Liam into an alley where she sired him, and Liam became Angelus. Waiting for him on his grave, she gave him his first lessons in being a vampire. Angelus slaughtered his entire village and killed his family while Darla told him that his acts were a way to react to his father’s disapproval.
Eventually Darla brought Angelus back to the Master in London, but Angelus had no interest in the Master, the Order of Aurelius, or anything other than living a decadent life of pleasure and pain with Darla by his side. Darla chose Angelus over her sire. Over time, Darla and Angelus would make their way throughout Europe and North Africa, constantly tormenting the vampire hunter Daniel Holtz.
After the family with their own way, Darla and Angelus came to Borşa, Romania in 1898. Darla brought Angelus a gift: a Roma girl with whom Angelus could have his way with as long as Darla got to watch. Soon after, the family of the girl, the Kalderash Tribe, cursed Angelus with the restoration of his soul. Darla sensed the restored soul and banished her beloved Angelus from her sight. With Spike and Drusilla, she tracked down the Kalderash Tribe and massacred the village. She then met with the girl’s father and offered to spare his other daughters in exchange for the removal of Angelus’ soul. Unfortunately, Spike had already killed the daughters. So Darla just snapped the man’s neck.
By 1900, Darla took Dru and Spike to China, never telling them about what had happened with Angelus. The trio ended up in the center of the Boxer Rebellion, and there Angelus found her. Angelus tried to convince Darla that she could still be with him despite his soul, but she realized that it could never work, since he could not bring himself to hurt innocents.
We don’t learn much more about what Darla did between the Boxer Rebellion and 1997, but at some point she rejoins the Master in Sunnydale, California. Darla is actually the first vampire seen on the show; we meet her when she breaks into the high school with an ex-student (who she later kills).
When Buffy comes to Sunnydale, Darla plans a scheme to get Angel to kill her. Darla pretends to be a school friend of Buffy’s and gets Joyce, Buffy’s mom, to invite her into their house. Darla bites Joyce but makes it appear that Angel did it; thus, Buffy will either kill Angel or vice versa. Buffy and Angel fight in the Bronze, during the fight Buffy learns that Angel was not responsible. Darla shows up and attacks both Buffy and Angel with a pair of handguns, but Angel stakes her through the back with a loose crossbow bolt while she was distracted fighting Buffy.
You would think that this is where Darla’s story ends, but in Angel’s show she is brought back to life and her story gets much MUCH better. But, since this bio only covers Buffy, I end it here.
Favorite Darla Quotes!
(Some of which are from Angel)
Darla: [Buffy points the cross bow at Darla] “Scary.”
[Darla pulls out two pistols and points them at Buffy]
Darla: “You took him from me. You stole him away. You gave him a soul.”
Gypsy: “He must suffer as all of his victims have suffered.”
Darla: “That is no justice. Whatever pain he caused to your daughter was momentary, over in an instant or an hour. But what you’ve done to him will force him to suffer for the rest of eternity!”
“What we once were informs all that we have become. The same love will infect our hearts, even if they no longer beat. Simple death won’t change that.”
[Angelus and Spike are about to fight]
Darla: [sing-song] “I think our boys are going to fight.”
Drusilla: “The King of Cups expects a picnic. But this is not his birthday.”
Darla: [looks at Drusilla like she’s crazy] “Good point.”
Drusilla: “You miss him. Like a heartbeat.”
Darla: “I don’t miss my heartbeat, Dru”
“I promise I won’t throw anyone out of the car. Not while it’s moving.”