The cast of Buffy the Vampire Slayer is rallying around Charisma Carpenter — and against Joss Whedon.
As we previously reported, Charisma, who starred as Cordelia Chase on Buffy and its spinoff Angel, came forward detailing allegations of mistreatment by the showrunner that she’d been alluding to for many years now. (The actress had come forward with her own story in support of Ray Fisher, who had alleged similar abuse from the director on the set of Justice League.)
Since then, members of the Buffy universe have voiced their support for the star, including Buffy herself, Sarah Michelle Gellar. SMG’s onscreen little sis, Michelle Trachtenberg, even reposted the leading lady’s statement on Instagram with the caption:
“Thank you @sarahmgellar for saying this. I am brave enough now as a 35 year old woman….To repost this. Because. This must. Be known. As a teenager. With his not appropriate behavior….very. Not. Appropriate. So now. People know. What Joss. Did.”
But the Gossip Girl alum later edited her post to add this upsetting comment:
“The last. Comment I will make on this. Was. There was a rule. Saying. He’s not allowed in a room alone with Michelle again.”
Uh, yikes. We completely respect Michelle’s choice not to speak further on this subject, but what she’s alluding to may be the most disturbing allegation yet. (She was only 15 when she joined the cast of Buffy, for the record.)
Emma Caulfield, who played the demon Anya, also reposted the Cruel Intentions star’s message. Amber Benson, AKA Willow’s (Alyson Hannigan) girlfriend Tara, agreed that Buffy was “a toxic environment” and that “many of us are still processing” the damage from it.
Eliza Dushku, who played Buffy’s rival slayer Faith (and led Whedon’s show Dollhouse), posted on her own IG, too. Read her statement (below):
The 40-year-old also had her own public reckoning when she came forward in 2018 with allegations of harassment against Bull costar Michael Weatherly.
Like Eliza and SMG, Anthony Head (who played Buffy’s mentor Giles) claimed to have been unaware of any abuse or mistreatment on the set — a fact about which he is not proud. During an appearance on ITV‘s This Morning (below), he shared:
“I’ve been up most of the night just running through my memories thinking, ‘What did I miss?’ And this is not a man saying, ‘I didn’t see it, so it didn’t happen.’ It’s just, I am gutted, I’m seriously gutted, because one of my memories, my fondest memories of Buffy, was the fact that it was so empowering, not just in the words of the script, but the family feel of the show.”
“I’m really sad if people went through these experiences that they didn’t… I was a sort of like a father figure and I would hope that someone would come to me and say, ‘I’m struggling’ or ‘I just had a horrible conversation.’ Admittedly the first post by Charisma was when she was working on Angel and I was long gone, but there are other posts subsequently that are making me think how on earth did I not know this was going on?”
Wow. We’re really glad that none of the folks who didn’t experience abuse from Joss are trying to deny or discredit the words of those who did. (Looking at you, Alan Tudyk, who shared this dismissive tweet about the Ray Fisher investigation.) There have been rumors swirling around Whedon for many years now, but we really hope they’re taken seriously this time — especially when they’re surrounding his most famous creation.