Ethan Rayne

Ethan Rayne

Ethan Rayne
is a villainous warlock from Buffy the Vampire Slayer who was a childhood friend of Rupert Giles and never really grew out of meddling with occult forces - in his first appearance he was revealed to be a worshipper of chaos, as such one of his first acts was to open a costume shop in time for Halloween but cursing all the costumes so that his victims would literally transform into whatever their costumes were, however when Giles finds out the truth he is outraged and beats Ethan until he reveals how to reverse it.

Later, Ethan returns, looking for Giles in order to use Buffy as a shield of sorts against the demon Eyghon - an evil spirit he and Giles invoked along with some other occult friends during Gile's troubled past, going as far as tattooing it's mark into their skin and thus allowing it to seek them out later in life - Ethan is ruthless enough to even knock Buffy out and tattoo the mark of the demon onto her neck before burning his own mark off with acid - once again however Ethan finds himself foiled by Giles. Ethan would return in "Band Candy" - lending his services to Mr. Trick - a henchman of Mayor Richard Wilkins- and curses a number of candy bars to make the adults of Sunnydale become as reckless as teenagers so that the Mayor can pay tribute to a demon known as Lurconis via the sacrifice of several infants, once again Buffy manages to catch onto the plot and put a stop to it - Ethan claims ignorance of the true nature of the plot before he flees alongside Mr Trick. Ethan would return a final time in "A New Man" where Giles finds him lurking in a crypt and manages to convince Giles not to beat him up again and even manages to get him to go for a drink with him, however Ethan once again shows himself to be a villain for the next morning Giles awakens to find himself magically transformed into a powerful demon. After the spell is reversed Ethan is arrested by the Initiative and is ultimately sent to Nevada to be rehabilited.

In the canonical comic book continuation Season 8, Buffy meets Ethan again and he is killed by a follower of Twilight, Season 8's Big Bad.

Personality and Traits

One of Ethan's most distinctive traits was his taste for theatrics shown in most of his schemes and manner of speech. A sadist at heart, he derived great pleasure from causing mayhem, chaos and suffering, as well as from turning people away from social norm and releasing their inner darkness. It was his hubris, however, and his egotistical nature that led him to constantly "stay-'n-gloat" to admire the result of his actions, which he acknowledged.

Powers and Abilities

Ethan's years of experience in the world of the supernatural made him a skilled sorcerer and chaos magician, adept at performing curses and transmogrification. He also had great knowledge of demonology and black magic as well as possessing fluency in Latin. The Mark of Eyghon granted him a psychic link of sorts to the demon, and gave him visions when the demon was in close proximity. He also claims to have "missed [his] calling as an artist" after tattooing Buffy with the Mark of Eyghon.

However, his fighting skills were mediocre, as Giles repeatedly beat him up with little-to-no effort; whenever Giles did so, Ethan didn't even try to fight back.


  • He was portrayed by the late Robin Sachs. Sachs died of a heart attack in Febuary 2013.
  • Writer Jane Espenson believes that Giles and Ethan had some sexual history in their younger days, stating “Come on, they both went to public school!".