Curiouser and Curiouser: Where are you on your Buffy the Vampire Slayer journey, and what’s been your favorite season/storyline so far?
Usman Malik: I’m almost done. Last few episodes of season 7 left.
Season 5 with Gloria the Bipolar goddess was my favorite. It was (mostly) smart, intelligent, and layered. I think the big finale with Buffy jumping into the interdimensional portal was really where the series came to an end. After that, it was just extra stuffing, although I did like Buffy and Spike’s romantic tension in season 6 and 7.
C&C: How did the twists and turns of life take you from Pakistan to FLORIDA? I’m not making fun of Florida, it’s just that most “I didn’t think it was a bad idea” news stories from the last five years has come out of there...
UM: Day job mostly, and the weather. I was in Minnesota for 3 yrs before I moved here. Florida is pretty cool actually. There’s weird stuff here, but also a wild beauty that I appreciate especially when I (sometimes) go hiking and trail running.
C&C: What was your favorite childhood toy, and why?
UM: Storybooks in a bag that I slung over my shoulders and carried everywhere.
C&C: Do you remember your first crush?
UM: The Last Unicorn when she becomes a woman in the cartoon. I remember my face turning hot, and feeling surreal and out of breath. I crawled under my bed, so no one could see me in that state.
C&C: What’s your biggest fear? And I don’t mean failure or something intangible, I mean like the dark, or spiders.
UM: Illness, I think. Also, the dark. I can’t sleep without a nightlight if I’m alone in the house.
C&C: What kind of nightlight do you have?
UM: I just use a regular lamp placed at the far corner of the room. Only to be used in case of total aloneness.
C&C: Do you collect anything?
UM: Definitely books. At one point, I found myself collecting bookends, but I’m mostly over that now.
C&C: What do you have in your pockets?
UM: Cellphone. Peanuts.
C&C: If you have an hour of free time, time to kill, what are you most likely to do with it?
UM: Read a book. Take a long walk. Browse Facebook (an unfortunate hobby )
C&C: Who was your least favorite character on Buffy, and why? I’m not going to ask who your favorite is – though you’re more than welcome to tell me – because the correct answer to that is Spike or Anya.
UM: I think I didn’t like Angel at all. No idea why. He was too goody-two-shoes for me. Spike was obviously my favorite.