I’m aware that this nudges me even higher up the Richter scale of ‘scarily geekified’, but for the past few weeks I’ve been reading the Buffy season eight comics. I’m also aware that I’m a little slow hitching myself onto that cart – a quick Wiki trawl tells me they’ve been around since 2007. But whatever. I’m here. And I’m in Buffybliss…
Pros (aka Neato! Points For Me!):
- It’s penned by Joss Whedon and his brood of witty wordsmiths, which means punchy dialogue, recognisable characters, and complex storytelling.
- The big selling point with the comics is that they’re free from the budgetary restraints of TV, and boy do Team Whedon take full advantage of that. Globe-trotting escapades include a new base in Edinburgh and a trip to Japan, while the fights are bigger, the demons more outrageous. There’s also a lot of flying – something Joss was clearly desperate to do on TV, but the bean counters wouldn’t let him. Plus: giant Dawn.
- It’s a direct continuation of the show dealing with the ‘what say we awaken all the Potentials?’ fall-out from season seven. That fall-out is huge, of course.
- The art is fantastic.
- Faith! Working with Giles! Fangasm.
- Xander finally has a purpose! And not a “I’m the heart of this operation” cop-out, but an actual purpose. He’s also shed a few pounds (funny how that’s easier when it’s just a drawing), which means he’s hunky again…
Cons (aka Gaaah, Hater!):
- So Buffy’s enrolled in the KD Lang school of lesbianism. Uh, what?! I’m all for taking characters in new directions, but this development felt about as organic as a BK burger.
- Constantly thinking, “Oooh, that would look so good as a movie.” Cos, let’s face it, never gonna happen.
- Willow suddenly has issues with Buffy that she must’ve kept under wraps for the whole of season seven. Yes, those issues make sense, but they smack of ‘let’s create some drama to keep the relationships spicey after eight years’.
- So over Amy. They already completely assassinated her character in season six, now they’re just dancing around in her entrails. Wrong.
- They can’t do a sequel to ‘Once More With Feeling’ in a comic (hint: comics can’t hold a tune). Which is sad for all kinds of reasons.
- It’s just as addictive as the show.
Volume 4 and 5 are already calling to me from my antique night stand, and I’m unable to resist their siren song.