|Kendra, the Vampire Slayer|
I love Bianca Lawson, as some of you already know, and I'm ticked her career hasn't gone where it should have. Before Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I had seen her in other things, but I didn't fall in love with her until I saw her play a Vampire Slayer.
Fans know she was originally casted to play Cordelia Chase, a character who was casted black, recasted as white, and then went on to have a 7-year career. Bianca apparently had signed on to play a different character on a different show (which only lasted one season), and her contract would not release her (bastards).
But then she returned as Kendra Young, a Slayer from Jamaica raised by her Watcher from early childhood to be a living weapon. During her first fight with Buffy, audiences got to watch her wipe the floor with Buffy - literally.
And here's one of the things I like about characters like these. They act like a "taste test" for the times. When Kendra was killed off, fans did not approve. You watch any YouTube vid with this woman and 98% of the comments bluntly state her death was not kosher, and fans have since refused to accept any excuses or explanations from the writers.* We all know why the writers killed her off; she got to be too popular. Buffy was annoying audiences with her constant whining, while Kendra was designed to be the perfect Slayer. And unfortunately for the writers, they outdid themselves in that regard. Kendra was in four episodes back in 1997, and almost 14 years later, fans are still worshipping this character...as well they should.
*By the way, the fans' reaction to Kendra's death made Joss Whedon change his mind about killing off the Slayer Faith Lehane in Season 3. The original plan was to introduce a new additional Slayer each season.