“Respect My Craft” – Clare Kramer

In this consumer-based industry, it can be easy to forget the years of hard work that the people in the business put in. Behind every panel, it takes a skilled writer, artist, inker and colorist to make the product complete. Behind each scene goes hours of preparation. Hush Comics’ “Respect My Craft” articles will dive into the history of these comic book and pop culture greats that will hopefully give a new perspective on how the men and women behind the pen (or stylus) contribute to the collective awesome-ness of the nerd world, or at least give you a reason to invest in their work.

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Click on the link to take you to all of our Denver Comic Con “Respect My Craft” articles

Name: Clare Kramer

Profession: Actress, Director, Internet Personality

Notable Work: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Bring it On, Big Ass Spider!, and Co-Founder of the very popular entertainment site GeekNation.

“I think us Whedon actors tend to stuck together! I’ve become friends with many of the Angel and Firefly peeps. We do tend to travel together to a lot of the conventions – which I liken to summer camp! The great thing about getting Buffy was it was my first job in LA – so many of my lifelong friends were spawned from that job!” – Clare Kramer in her Reddit AMA in August of 2012.

Clare Kramer may be known to Whedon fans as Glory, or more appropriately, Glorificus, but she wasn’t always the hell Goddess. Kramer’s first job was the mascot for Wendy’s. You know, the little girl with pigtails. The perk? She did get free hamburgers during that stint.

Kramer went to NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts from 1997-2000, graduating from the prestigious program in just three years with a BFA. The young actress had some bit parts off-Broadway, but made her “big” break in 2000 when she moved to L.A. and auditioned for the little teen movie Bring it On. Kramer has admitted that she did not think anyone would see the movie. “This shows how poor my judgment used to be when filming. I thought that while we were having a great time, and it was so much fun filming and I had a blast, that nobody would actually ever see it. It would be one of those movies that kind of slips under the radar. But then I got a call from my manager and he had gone to Universal for a screening and he said ‘Okay. This is going to be successful.’ It was a pleasant surprise.”

Kramer’s role as Courtney, the bitchy cheerleader, started her career of playing the “bitch.” For people who know Kramer, this comes off as quite a surprise. In her personal life, Kramer is known to friends and fans as being a genuinely sweet woman. Her acting talent is proven with how well she portrays the snobby girl.

Clare Kramer in Bring it On

Later in the year, Kramer auditioned for a role in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, a move that would change the course of her career; becoming apart of the cast of anything by Joss Whedon automatically enrolls actors for a cast and crew family and a rather enthusiastic fanbase.

Clare Kramer as Glory in Buffy the Vampire Slayer

The beautiful blonde was cast as Glory, the Big Bad of season 5, and mega nemesis for Buffy. Glory was sexy, witty, strong, and the only Big Bad to successfully kill the heroine. What Kramer brought to the role was recognition that Glory wasn’t necessarily evil, but that she only had one thing on her mind: getting home. It should also be noted that Glory was Ben, which was just as much of a shock to Kramer as it was to the audience. She has publicly stated that she is happy that she didn’t know because it would have affected her performance.

Clare Krame as Glory in Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Fans connected with Glory very quickly. Season 4 of Buffy had a myriad of Big Bads. It felt like we didn’t know who the good guys or the bad guys were, but Glory’s entrance in season 5 made it very clear who Buffy was fighting against. The blondes fought each other many times,  and Glory’s personality was reminiscent of Cordelia when she was still in Sunnydale. But Glory also had a knack for summing up humans perfectly, making her really relatable.

Following her 13 episode stint on the critically acclaimed show, Kramer has gone on to several different roles, most involving horror or paranormal aspects. Some of those titles include Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Mummy an’ the Armadillo, Tru Calling, The Gravedancers,The Dead Ones, Road to Hell, and Big Ass Spiders!.

Since 2012, Kramer has been working hard on the entertainment website she co-founded, GeekNation. GeekNation specializes in geek culture, focusing their content on news, podcasts, shows, and Mosters. Clare Kramer co-founded the site with film producer Brian R. Keathley and ran the podcast “Five by Five” and the show “Take 5 with Clare Kramer,” where she interviewed celebrities associated with the nerd world. Most notably, Kramer interviewed Stan Lee in her second episode of “Take 5.”

Geek Nation Logo

Currently, Kramer spends a lot of time on the con circuit. Popular with fans, Kramer has worked her way up from just having a table to hosting main event panels at major cons such as Emerald City. You can see Clare Kramer at Denver Comic Con 2015 at her booth and hosting all the main event panels. Make sure you stop by and say hello to this self-proclaimed geek!

Sources: Pop Culture Addict, GeekNation, Comics Grinder, and IMdB.

Comicpalooza 2014- Buffy Panel

A small scale Buffy reunion was in full action at this year’s Comicpalooza. In attendance were James Leary, who played Clem in seasons 6 and 7; George Hertzberg, who played Adam in season 4; Clare Kramer, who played Glory in season 5; James Marsters, who played Spike in seasons 2-7; and Nicholas Brendon, who played Xander Harris for the entire run of the series. The panel was in question and answer format.

Click on the link to take you to all of our Comicpalooza articles
Click on the link to take you to all of our Comicpalooza 2014 articles

One of the first questions on deck was whether the actors were a fan of the genre before they were cast on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Brendon said he was not and still doesn’t do too much revolving around the genre, but says “I started with the best, why settle for the rest?” James Leary began his acting career after the show had been on the air. When he went to L.A., Buffy was one of the 5 shows he wanted to be on. Hertzberg said he just likes good writing regardless of genre. But James Marsters had the best answer. He said that in 1973 there was a Star Trek convention in Oakland. He went wearing a blue tunic, pointed years, a phaser he made himself and a big, blonde Afro. What a vision!

There was a fan hell-bent on touching celebrities faces. At every panel I went to where this person was in attendance, they asked to touch the stars face after asking what the strangest question the star have ever been asked. Marsters said his idea of strange is way sicker than we may think. For some odd reason, both Brendon and Marsters misheard “face” for something a little more personal, proving they are both a little sick. At one point in the panel Brendon expressed a crass desire for a Xander pregnancy kit. Marsters said he wanted Spike condoms. After some sexually overt banter, Brendon took it too far and Marsters asked if there might be kids in the audience. As a note, it may too adult for little ones to go to a panel with Brendon.

The Buffy cast at Comicpalooza 2014
The Buffy cast at Comicpalooza 2014

James Marsters talked about his favorite episode “Once More with Feeling,” or The Musical. He said no one had much faith in creator Joss Whedon because when they were given the tape where Whedon had recorded the songs, they realized Whedon couldn’t sing or play piano. Marsters believed Whedon was going to “flush the show down the drain along with all of our careers,too.” Today, the Musical is a cult favorite episode.

Each actor shared their favorite line from their respective characters. Kramer’s is “did anyone else know the Slayer is a robot?” Hertzberg, in good humor considering his lack of dialogue, said his is “Mother.” Leary’s is “Spike, she is sweet girl. Issues!” Brendon had a hard time deciding because he had so many great lines. Two of them are “Master-bater” from Buffy vs. Dracula and “I’m 17 years old, everything makes me horny.” Marsters, in his British accent said to the crowd, “Out for a walk…Bitch.” And if you are familiar with that line you know we all cheered when he said it.

As far as memorable fan moments, Clare Kramer talked about a recent proposal from one fan to another at Emerald City Comic Con. Leary likes when fans talk about what Buffy means to them. Marsters met someone who helped design the Mars rover. But Hertzberg had the most interesting story. He said he was in London and a father and daughter came up to his table. The little girl said, “Show him Daddy, show him!” Then the man lifted his shirt and there was George as Adam tattooed on the man’s back.

When talking about the iconic language of Buffy, Kramer said it was easy to memorize because it was so rhythmic and poetic. Marsters said Buffy was not like other shows where you could improvise. He joked that Joss would yell, “James, you missed a comma!” If they could play different characters, Marsters said he would play Clem, only because the actresses would sit on his lap and play with his ears. Leary said that Marsters has a different memory of his time on the set than he does. Pranks were rare because the set was so hard working. However, at a Christmas party, Alyson Hannigan received a bloody prop of Clem’s ear which she shockingly exclaimed “This is so cool!” when she saw it.

James Marsters spoke on one of his favorite Joss moments on set. When it became apparent Spike was more of a romantic vampire rather than a scary one Joss was upset. His intention with vampires and other demons were to make them ugly and scary like the things people overcome in adolescence. Joss approached Marsters, backed him up against a wall and screamed “You are dead. You are dead! YOU ARE DEAD!” It is important to know Joss is famous for killing off loved characters. Marsters also said his role in Macbeth helped him prepare for the role of Spike because they both enjoy killing people.

James Marsters and Adrian at Comicpalooza 2014
James Marsters and Adrian at Comicpalooza 2014

Nicholas Brendon told the audience that be originally came up with the shwarma joke from The Avengers while filming Buffy. He said he has seen Robert Downey Jr. take credit for it. Brendon quipped “fucking liar.”

Fan fiction has long been apart of Buffy because fans write so much of it. But do the actors read it? James Leary has looked at Clem and Spike relationship stories while Brendon has looked at Xander and Giles stuff. Marsters says he really appreciates when people release their creativity but as far as reading it, “No way in heck!”

The hardest thing to film in the series for Marsters was the episode where Spike attempts to rape Buffy. Marsters says any scene with that theme he refuses to watch and it actually sent him to therapy. He qualified it by saying it was a good thing; however, it was still eye-opening to hear that. Marsters wrapped up the panel by saying he preferred being the villain because the villain can watch everyone else run around and feel guilt they can’t save anyone. The villain can also mess with people. He would mess with Sarah Michelle Gellar and then when they had to fall in love, he had to be nice. Although he had to be nice, he was able to continue his “mean” streak later. He ended by saying, “So I went on Angel and messed with him.”

written by Adrian Puryear