Tag Archives: buffy the vampire slayer

Unboxing: Loot Crate DX November 2017 “Unity 2.0”

Loot Crate DX is the next level of Loot Crate. Similar to the basic Loot Crate each box follows a theme each month but instead has over $100 value in every crate.

This month’s theme was “Unity 2.0” with items from Justice League, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and CatDog.

We open up to show off the box with some interesting items inside.

You can order the next Loot Crate DX now!

 

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site.

Buffy The Vampire Slayer Pop this January

The 20th anniversary of Buffy the Vampire Slayer is here and to celebrate some characters are coming to Pop! vinyl.

This series features Buffy complete with bow, Xander, Buffy’s father figure Giles, and Faith. Rounding out the series is Willow’s alter-ego Dark Willow!

Look for the Xander chase piece! Shown with eye patch, a rarity of 1-in-6!

Coming this Winter! Pop! TV: Buffy The Vampire Slayer are out this January from Funko.


Buffy the Vampire Slayer: 20 Years of Slaying at SDCC

Iconic cult classic Buffy the Vampire Slayer continues its 20th anniversary celebration during San Diego Comic-Con with a special fan event hosted by Legion M in conjunction with 20th Century Fox Consumer Products.

Coinciding with San Diego Comic-Con, the “Buffy the Vampire Slayer: 20 Years of Slaying” fan event will be held Saturday, July 22 from 6-9 pm at Side Bar in the Gaslamp Quarter (exact address is 536 Market Street).  Fans interested in attending the “Buffy the Vampire Slayer: 20 Years of Slaying” event can register on the official Buffy Facebook page here. A portion of this event will also be livestreamed to this Facebook page.

Scoobies, Slayerettes and Whedonites can take part in a night of slayage that will include the following:

  • Buffy Fandom Feud Trivia Contest – Fans will get the opportunity to win Slayer Swag as they team up to show off their Buffy knowledge!
  • Buffy Cosplay Contest – Damian Beurer co-host of Super Power Beat Down, and executive at Legion M, will host this Buffy Cosplay showdown. Calling all Buffy Cosplay fans to bring their best Scooby Gang cosplay for the opportunity to win Slayer Swag!
  • Once More, With Feeling! – At the party, fans can show-off their improv skills when they get to reenact their favorite Buffy show moments.
  • Fans will be treated to select appetizers and a Buffy 20thanniversary cake as they sip on signature Slayer drinks, available during the event.
  • Photo opportunity with a life-size image of The Gentlemen from the popular episode “Hush.” Fans who share on social media will receive an exclusive spell in a small glass vial, a perfect keepsake for Buffy fans, from the forthcoming book Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Official Grimoire(Insight Editions, October 2017).
  • Various stations including an in-person Buffy table-top board game competition from Jasco Games, and an interactive wall-sized Buffy coloring book pages from Dark Horse. Fans will be able to color and create their own Buffy art for a special digital mosaic in celebration of #BuffySlays20!
  • Plus, additional giveaways and surprises!

Also at San Diego Comic-Con, fans will have the opportunity to pre-order the Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Complete Series 20th Anniversary Edition DVD boxed set at the Fox Booth #4229 for $99.98. Available everywhere on September 19, 2017, the DVD collection includes an official “Buffy” Dark Horse Comic Book featuring an exclusive cover available to fans for a limited time.

 

About the Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Complete Series 20th Anniversary Edition DVD Boxed Set

The teen years can be brutal. Especially when you’re Buffy Summers (Sarah Michelle Gellar) –  a Sunnydale High School student destined to slay supernatural, blood-sucking baddies instead of hanging out at the mall. Over the seven seasons of this thrilling, witty show, Buffy struggles to maintain allies in the fight against evil, while also engaging in on-off romances with a moody vampire (David Boreanaz) or two (James Marsters). Now you can own this 39-disc set containing all 144 episodes of one of the smartest, funniest, most action-packed series ever to slay on the small screen – also starring Alyson Hannigan, Anthony Head and Nicholas Brendon.

 

Buffy the Vampire Slayer 20th Anniversary Consumer Products:

A wide-range of key licensees and retail partners are celebrating the 20th Anniversary of Buffy the Vampire Slayer including Hot Topic, BoxLunch, Dark Horse, Simon & Schuster, Insight Editions, Funko, Harper Design, AC/DC Apparel, Jasco, Upper Deck, Ripple Junction, among others. They are sharing with fans a unique collection of Buffy apparel, accessories, board games, new books, comics and more. Among the recent highlights:

  • Coming this August, Buffy the Vampire Slayer is joining the Funko Rock Candy line! Unable to escape her destiny, this series includes the Vampire Slayer herself, Buffy Summers, and her academically-excelling counterpart Willow Rosenberg…Together they’ll save the world! Add them both to your collection this Summer.
  • The eagerly awaited Buffy the Vampire Slayer fashion collection is now available online at hottopic.com.  Hot Topic, the retail destination for music and pop-culture inspired apparel, accessories, collectibles and more, is celebrating 20 years of slaying with a fashion collection inspired by the style of beloved Buffy characters. The line features six pieces including Willow’s iconic 90s sweater, a long trench coat inspired by Buffy, a black motorcycle jacket inspired by Faith, a white high-low dress inspired by the dress worn by Buffy in Prophecy Girl, as well as tops featuring iconic lines from the series.

If/Then: Resident Evil: The Final Chapter

resident-evil-the-final-chapterWhen it comes to suggesting comics for individuals to check out, it’s often good to start with what they like in other media like television, movies, books, or video games. Enter If/Then, where we’ll throw out suggestions for you to check out!

Returning to theaters this weekend is the kick-ass Resident Evil: The Final Chapter.

The human race’s last hope against apocalyptic obliteration is super soldier Alice (Milla Jovovich), but she’s been stripped of her psychic powers. She must form alliances and rally survivors in Raccoon City for the climactic battle against the Umbrella Corporation and its ravenous hordes of the undead. This sixth installment of the video game-inspired franchise is directed by Paul W.S. Anderson.

So, we’ve got a zombie flick headed up by a kick-ass female lead. I think we’ve got some comics that can fill that niche. If you want to know what you should check out, find out below.


resident-evilResident Evil (Manga by Viz Media) – Did you know there’s Resident Evil comics? The highly virulent C-virus became a global disaster, but where did the outbreak start? In this prequel to the hit Resident Evil 6 game, the terrifying origins are revealed.

Published by Viz Media, this manga series will keep you entertained and immersed in the world of Resident Evil. If you love the video games and the movie then you should absolutely check these manga out to find out what you’ve been missing. Each volume perfectly captures and extends the world on the printed page.

The Walking Dead (Skybound Entertainment/Image Comics) – Yes, there’s a television series, but before that, there was a comic series. For well over 100 issues the story of Rick, Carl, Michonne, and more has been chronicled in shocking and gory detail.

This one is for fans of the zombie aspect of the movie and video game series it differs enough from the television series that you’ll be kept on your toes and is more gory and unrestrained.

Monstress01_CoverDC Comics Bombshells (DC Comics) – If you like the idea of kick-ass women, this comic series might be for you if you’re also into superheroes. Set in an alternative world this series takes inspiration from bombshell/pin-up art putting the women front and center as the world’s superheroes. What has me including this comic series on the list is its strong feminist leads and it’s women saving the day, much like Alice. Entertaining and action-packed, it’s a solid alternative for those looking for a world where women are the ones doing the punching, taking the lead, and the ones saving it.

Buffy, the Vampire Slayer (Dark Horse) – Numerous volumes have been released bringing the popular character from television to comics. Released as seasons, the comics act as a continuation of the world made popular on the small screen. Replace zombies with demons and vampires and you’ve got a more teen-friendly take on a similar story.

Monstress (Image Comics) – Steampunk meets Kaiju in this original fantasy epic for mature readers, as young Maika risks everything to control her psychic link with a monster of tremendous power, placing her in the center of a devastating war between human and otherworldly forces. A horror fantasy series full of monsters and magic is as jaw dropping beautiful to look at as it is engaging to read.


What would you suggest that I didn’t include? Sound off in the comments below!

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

4-kids-walk-3-6Wednesdays are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

We’re bringing back something we haven’t done for a while, what the team thinks. Our contributors are choosing up to five books each week and why they’re choosing the books.

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.

Joe

Top Pick: 4 Kids Walk Into A Bank #3 (Black Mask Studios) – You know you’re onto something when you wrote two issues and people are begging you for the next issue. Rosenberg has taken 2016 by storm and it shows. After the success of this awesome comic, and Civil War II: Kingpin, he will now be writing ongoing titles at Marvel for Rocket Raccoon, Secret Warriors, and Kingpin. Find this comic, with the first two issues if you can. It is one of the top books of the year, from one of the best writers of the year.

Ether #2 (Dark Horse) – After a fantastic first issue, I cannot wait to continue the adventures of Boone and the crazy world of Ether. Fans of Doctor Strange and even Sherlock Holmes will love this quirky original book.

Batman #13 (DC Comics) – The last issue was controversial, and I loved it. Now that Tom King has let us know what “I Am Suicide” is about, I want to see where he takes us to end this arc. I love what he has been doing with the character. Will he break Bane’s back this time around?Black Hammer #6 (Dark Horse) – It feels like it has been forever since I’ve read this book, but maybe it’s because I want it to come out every week. This comic has such an original and refreshing way to tell super hero stories and turn the tropes on their head.

Black Hammer #6 (Dark Horse) – It feels like it has been forever since I’ve read this book, but maybe it’s because I want it to come out every week. This comic has such an original and refreshing way to tell super hero stories and turn the tropes on their head.

Dept. H #9 (Dark Horse) – Will we get some answers on who’s sabotaging the base? I love this slow burn of a book that builds its slow tension with each issue. So far so good from the Kindt duo. One of the best books of the year!

 

Alex

Top Pick: Divinity III: Stalinverse #1 (Valiant) – When this year started I hadn’t read Divinity. Then I went on vacation and had time to read the first trade, and after scraping my jaw from the floor I realized that Divinity II was just about to drop in stores, which meant I had to scrape my jaw up again. Needless to say, I have my jaw scraper ready as we head into the Stalinverse.

Black Hammer #6 (Dark Horse) – Narrowly missing out on my top spot this week is this underrated gem from Jeff Lemire. There has been a lot of scene setting over the last five issues as Lemire takes his time to really delve into the story of the missing heroes turned civilians. It’s such a fantastic journey that I’m not at all concerned we haven’t really done too much more than set the stage right now. Miss this at your peril.

Bloodshot USA #3 (Valiant) –  While there may be some debate over whether or not this should have been a separate miniseries or a continuation of Bloodshot Reborn, the end result is pretty fantastic. I’m stoked for this issue (or I would be had I not already read it – review spoiler: it’s good).

Harbinger Renegade #2 (Valiant) – After I read the first issue of Harbinger Renegade I went back and read the first Harbinger series. I still haven’t read Imperium yet, but I will. I have the issues and some time off over the holidays, so I’ll be making a dent in the next chapter of the Toyo Harada and Peter Stanchek story. As for this issue? I’ll add it to the pile to reread once I finish Imperium.

Klaus And The Witch Of Winter (BOOM! Studios) – I loved the Klaus miniseries released last year, and somehow I missed the announcement that this was coming out. Needless to say, I’m excited about it.

 

Elana

4 Kids Walk Into a Bank #3 (Black Mask Studios)4 Kids Walk Into A Bank is back! 4 Kids Walk Into A Bank is back! It’s like a Coen Bros movie meets The Goonies but with a female protagonist and more diversity. Which means it’s actually better than The Goonies. Yes I SAID IT. It’s charming and funny and insightful caper comic and I’m going to make everyone read it goddamnit.

 

Shay

Top Pick: Harley Quinn #10 (DC Comics) – It’s Harley! It’s holiday short stories! It’s going to be awesome, dark and deranged! If you’re looking for a gateway comic for your non-comic book friend this holiday season, this might be the one!

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 11 #2 (Dark Horse) – Buffy and her teams are trying to put San Fricisco back in one piece and that might be harder to do with the start of a magical powered “human” registration act. This season should be interesting because we all know how well registration of people with powers works in the other comic book universes.

Dead Inside #1 ( Dark Horse) – A new comic with a female lead, murder, and corrupt county jails. It’s like all of those murder shows and docs you love in comic book form.

Justice League vs Suicide Squad #1 (DC Comics) – The Justice League has found out about our fave group of bad guys and are out to shut them down. This is going to be the best damn six-episode series ever and I can’t wait to see how it all shakes out. Time to root for the bad guys!!!

The Punisher Vol. 1: On Road TP (Marvel) – Frank hits the road after a bad raid and Condor and Face are waiting to scoop in and take him out . Time to cheer on one of your favorite bad good guys! Let the battle royal begin!

Honorable Mention: Throwaways TP Vol. 1 (Image Comics) – It’s the fist collection of this new comic book. It’s had some bumpy clunky issues but, overall it’s been an interesting reads I think that being able to have all of the early ones in one package might bring it all together.

 

Brett

Top Pick: Divinity III: Stalinverse #1 (Valiant) – The second volume ended with an interesting hint as to what was to come (but we already got the announcement of this series) but who knows how it’d all shake out. The first two volumes of this series have been amazing and this third which has a Russian take on the Valiant universe has me beyond excited.

4 Kids Walk Into a Bank #3 (Black Mask Studios) – The first two issues we damn near perfection and I’ve been waiting for this third one. Hopefully, the wait pays off, but this series is one of the best things to come out this year in comics.

Justice League vs. Suicide Squad #1 (DC Comics) – The exact silly fun I’d expect it to be.

Warhammer 40,000: Will of Iron #3 (Titan Comics) – It’s been a while since I was regularly paying 40K, but this series has got me wanting to dive back in. Fans of the Games Workshop game should absolutely check this out.

Hook Jaw #1 (Titan Comics) – It’s a story about a giant shark… and some scientists… and the CIA… As a fan of Jaws, sign me up.

Review: Buffy Season 11 #1

buffyseason11coverWith only twelve issues to work with, writer Christos Gage, artist Rebekah Isaacs, and colorist Dan Jackson start out Buffy Season 11 #1 in blockbuster fashion with a battle against a blue Chinese storm dragon. But Gage doesn’t neglect the character arcs that have been the backbone of both Buffy the TV show and comic checking in with all the major players, including Buffy, Xander, Spike, Willow, and Dawn to see how they’re holding up during this supposed time of peace and quiet. The main inner conflict for Buffy in Season 11 looks to be her feeling of being “left behind” as her friends and family move on to bigger and better things like becoming a Wicca guru or a high scoring college student while she is still just a monster fighter. But, hey, at least, she’s getting paid for it as a supernatural consultant for the San Francisco PD.

In Buffy Season 11, Rebekah Isaacs continues to remain “on model” with her characters while still remaining highly emotive in her art style. She also uses a bunch of different panel compositions to keep both the action and talking heads scenes fresh like framing Buffy and Spike together in shadow as they know that San Francisco is in ruins, but their relationship is in a good place unlike most of Season 10. Also, when the dragon pops up, the panel size increases adjusting to the scale of the monster with Buffy and her friends as tiny, ineffectual dots, who can merely piss it off. Dan Jackson makes the Chinese storm dragon a gorgeous shade of blue, and its lightning attack is Godzilla’s nuclear breath epic, but uses a bleak, grey palette for the backgrounds and scenes before and after the attack. The design for the dragon is super cool too and reminded me of the majesty of the classic Pokemon, Gyarados with the abilities of Yu Gi Oh’s Blue Eyes White Dragon.This battle is going to have a big effect on not just the Scoobies and San Francisco, but the world too.

spuffyapocalypse

Along with Isaacs’ stellar art, Christos Gage’s skill at writing Whedonesque dialogue continues in Buffy Season 11 #1. The banter is especially snappy during the Scoobies’ rooftop cookout where Xander jokes around about Spike and Buffy being cops while Spike good-naturedly quips about technically being an undocumented immigrant. However, this joke could connect to Buffy Season 11’s upcoming conflict as the president is pretty furious about the dragon attack on San Francisco and isn’t big into working with members of the supernatural community to help fix it. On a lighter note, the remarkable chemistry that Sarah Michelle Gellar  and James Marsters shared as Buffy and Spike in the Buffy TV show has transferred to the comic with their rapid fire pecking and poking at each other while they fight monsters that turns slightly sexy until their “backup” shows up. It will be interesting to see how their relationship holds up in the face of disaster movie level threats with a side of government interference.

As far as Willow is concerned, Gage and Isaacs seem interested in exploring her Wiccan faith as she opens a better version of the “wanna blessed be” Wiccan group that she joined in college back in Buffy Season 4. The meeting scene explores the spiritual, not just physical connection that she has to magic and also introduces a nonbinary character to the Buffyverse as Willow says that Wicca transcends the gender binary. Jackson gives the meeting a peaceful glow with his colors, and hopefully there will be more of these quiet, soul searching moments in the midst of frantic action.

In Buffy Season 11 #1, Christos Gage, Rebekah Isaacs, and Dan Jackson establish a more blockbuster action movie look and plotting while not giving the arcs of these beloved characters short shrift. The external and internal conflicts are deftly set up for the upcoming season with quips, brooding, and dragons a-plenty.

Story: Christos Gage Art: Rebekah Isaacs Colors: Dan Jackson
Story: 8 Art: 8 Overall: 8 Recommendation: Buy

Dark Horse provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Fashion Spotlight: Natural Born Jokers, Fruitbat Man, Our Lady of Slay

Ript Apparel has three new designs! Natural Born Jokers, Fruitbat Man, and Our Lady of Slay, by JayHai, Obvian, and Hard Decora are on sale today only! Get them before they’re gone!

Natural Born Jokers

natural-born-jokers

Fruitbat Man

fruitbat-man

Our Lady of Slay

our-lady-of-slay

 

 

 

 

 

 

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site.

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

GENZERO_001_COVER-A_MOONEYWednesdays are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

We’re bringing back something we haven’t done for a while, what the team thinks. Our contributors are choosing up to five books each week and why they’re choosing the books.

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.

Alex

Top Pick: Faith #2 (Valiant) – I really can’t say enough about how much I’m enjoying this series. If you’re not reading it you’re missing out on one of the best comics from any publisher being released right now. Faith is a series that’s fun, that has a more positive outlook on things and takes some very light jabs at industry tropes. And it’s visually stunning.

Action Comics #962 (DC Comics) – It’s not often that I read a comic where Superman feels like he’s actually in a fight for his life, so watching the Man Of Steel in a rematch against Doomsday has been incredibly fun – even if the chances of him losing are nil.

Blue Beetle Rebirth #1 (DC Comics) – I recently dug out the pre-New 52 run featuring Jaime Reyes, and wondered why I never read the series through the New 52 iteration. With how easy many of the Rebirth comics have been for new readers, I’m looking forward to this.

Generation Zero #1 (Valiant) – A new series from Valiant? Don’t mind if I do.

Northguard #1 (Chapterhouse Comics) – An incredibly underrated publisher, Chapterhouse have some fantastic series on the racks, one of which, Captain Canuck is a genuine pleasure to read. I’m excited for this spin off series that I know very little about (which is deliberate on my part), because based on Chapterhouse’s track record, this promises to be a blast.

 

Anthony

Top Pick: Pretty Deadly TP Vol. 2 (Image Comics) – The first volume of Pretty Deadly was a dark, poetic, bloody journey that featured one of the best creative teams in comics…period. The second arc here is collected for those that missed out on the single issues (or just loved it so much that the trade is worthy of purchasing) and features more striking images from Emma Rios and Jordie Bellaire’s colours with a hypnotic script by Kelly Sue DeConnick that will put you in the good kind of trance that makes Pretty Deadly a difficult title to put down.

Island #10 (Image Comics) – Anthologies tend to be hit and miss but not Island. Emma Rios and Brandon Graham have opened the creative floodgates by curating a slew of material from both artists more well known and those perhaps yet to be discovered by a wider audience. It’s also refreshing in that each and every issue of Island defines variety in covering a wide array of genres and material.

Faith #2 (Valiant) – It’s a very warming feeling to remember that Faith has her own ongoing series. Jody Houser provides such a great voice for Faith, blending her pop culture quips with dramatic moments. Maintaing the back and forth art style of Pere Perez during the present time and Marguerite Sauvage doing Faith’s fantasies from the mini series is an extra nice touch and has been played with wonderfully so far.

Generation Zero #1 (Valiant) – Straight from the pages of Harbinger comes a new team of super powered teens. Minus the Imperium title, there hasn’t been much explored in the Harbinger side of the Valiant universe recently besides a few appearances here and there in other titles so it will be very interesting to see what Fred Van Lente and Francis Portela have prepared. This has a very New Mutants type appearance featuring a younger group of misfits so the parallels between characters will be very intriguing to see in how it will be presented.

Sombra #2 (BOOM! Studios) – The first issue of Sombra was a fairly solid introduction to this story of a DEA agent about to throw herself into the middle of a tense situation with the Mexican Cartel. With the introductory exposition out of the way, hopefully being thrown further into the fire is something on Justin Jordan’s mind. Raul Trevino’s photo realistic backgrounds with the shadowy but bright colours of Juan Useche really paint an uncomfortable tone, especially with how the violence felt so sudden in the first issue.

 

Shay

Top Pick: Alena (Dark Horse) – This is a great time to get on board with this horror comic treasure. This TP gives you the whole story so that you’e all caught up before it becomes a live action Swedish horror film. There’s mean girls, a best friend who had been dead for a year and lots of murder an blood.

Batgirl #2 (DC Comics) – This issue should be packed with enough kick ass girl power to wipe the taste of the Killing Joke out of your mouth and combined with last weeks Birds of Prey get you back on team Babs.

Buffy The Vampire Slayer , Season 10, #30 (Dark Horse) – All good things must come to an end and Season 10 off BTVS is no exception. Issue #330 ends this killer story arc and will remind us all why we keep reading and still enjoy watching the reruns.

 

Brett

Top Pick: Generation Zero #1 (Valiant) – I’ve been waiting for this series since it was announced and wondering when we’d next see Generation Zero since last we saw them (during Harbinger Wars?). I’m hoping for a new take on the New Mutants formula, and honestly that’s what I expect. It’s also an area Marvel has dropped the ball on, so glad to see Valiant picking it up and running with it.

Atomic Robo and the Temple of Od #1 (IDW Publishing) – It’s new Atomic Robo, really nuff said when it comes to why you should be checking this series out. I’ve yet to be disappointed by any volume of the series released. It’s always packed with action and humor, and constantly entertains.

The Hellblazer #1 (DC Comics) – I’m intrigued as to what version of John Constantine we’ll be getting. The Rebirth issue gave me some hope, but the real test is with this first issue.

Northguard #1 (Chapterhouse Comics) – Putting out fun, positive, superhero comics with lots of action and humor. I can’t wait to check out this new series which we got a tease of in their Summer Special.

The Revisionist #3 (Aftershock Comics) – Time traveling fun action. It’s entertainment for a genre that lends itself to all sorts of madness and interesting twists.

 

Around the Tubes

The Ultimates #5 variantIt’s new comic book day tomorrow! What are folks looking forward to? Any comics that have you really excited? Sound off in the comments.

While you decide on that, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup.

Around the Tubes

iO9 – The Most Jaw-Dropping Cosplay From Wondercon 2016 – Some awesome cosplay.

The Beat – The Battle of 2017 Could Be Disney v Comic-Con – Let the con wars begin!

Alex De Campi – Do Not Let This World Cause Your Steps to Falter – Well worth a read.

 

Around the Tubes Reviews

CBR – Angela: Queen of Hel #6

CBR – Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 10 #25

CBR – Dept. H #1

BlogCritics – Persia Blues Vol. 1 and 2

CBR – The Ultimates #5

Retro Review: Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 8 #1 The Long Way Home Pt 1

BTVS Season 8 #1So we wanted to try something new…or rather something vintage at Graphic Policy.  Comics as a medium have become a growing force in popular culture, enjoyed by people of many ages. Collectors can attest to their admiration for how the medium has changed visually, narrative-wise and so on over the years. In the spirit of this admiration we are very proud to introduce the Retro Review. An occasional curating of some classic or forgotten gems over the years, dusted off favourites, served up on tap and presented for analysis.

One of the landmark pop cultural icons of the 90s was Buffy the Vampire Slayer, originally a kitschy movie which debuted 1992 about a vally-girl heroine turned warrior against the forces of darkness. Buffy the Vampire introduced the  archetype of the subverted damsel in distressed turned chosen one. Though not presented exactly to her creator Joss Whedon’s initial expectations, the concept found its fullest expression and enjoyed its greatest success during its seven season television adaption which ran from to 1997-2003. The series end was book-ended with a seismic shift in the series mythos when Buffy makes the choice to share her power with other women around the world.

Flash forward five years to 2008 and the story has found its continuation albeit in comic form courtesy of Dark Horse comics.  Penned as Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 8. We see the titular heroine in her brave new status quo. Both Buffy and her peers now find themselves holding the reigns of what once the Watcher’s Council. Adopting the operations and agenda of the now defunct organization, the Scoobies (as they are affectionately called by the fandom) have moved forward with their own vision. A vision where power is more distributed and things are less well…patriarchal.  Instead of one chosen slayer (or two thanks to the hiccups of seasons 2-7) there are now an estimated 1800 Slayers working with mentors in squads worldwide fighting the good fight.

A few fan favourites return as we get a look into their new operation and status quo. The Nick Fury-esque Xander Harris coordinates with Buffy remotely as she takes a squad of freshly called slayers to investigate a new seemingly demonic mystery. The team has a mixed roster of Watchers (but don’t call them that) mystics and slayers.  The story is subtitled “the Long Way Home” and is narrated by Buffy who shares her longing for her home Sunnydale, simpler times and perhaps hesitation at her station in this new landscape.

Buffy

Speaking of Sunnydale, the US military makes takes an active interest into matters as they happen upon the Sunnydale crater (Sunnydale was destroyed in the series finale). General Voll laments at the sheer destructive power that Buffy has wrought on the world, and tacitly rebrands intelligence of Buffy’s slayer squads as terroristic “cells”.  Sunnydale has always interested me, the theatre for most of the supernatural drama Buffy and her friends have endured, the longstanding nonchalance or perhaps ignorance of its citizens (with regard to its danger and weirdness) has been a striking and mostly unaddressed facet of the TV series (until season 7) since its beginning. Seeing the immensity of the crater, you realize it is truly emblematic of the consequence of its supernatural ignorance.

SD Crater

 

It is nice to see a military / government response to this new world order Buffy has spearheaded. It is an intriguing and organic thematic flourish from Season 4’s introduction of the Initiative. The raised profile of Buffy’s organization is poised to redefine human/ superhuman relations in the Buffyverse and raise the stakes for the time being. I always felt there was not enough of this element on the show and I was happy to see it explored in this series extension.

A long time Scooby villain re-emerges from the crater as with whom General makes a strategic partnership with. This villain is revealed to be the witch Amy Madison the military’s apparent answer to Buffy and company’s seeming threat and beachhead into the world of the supernatural. Those who know this carry may smell a grudge match on the horizon which stirs anticipation for issue 2.

Amy

I have written elsewhere of the risk of cross media integration, and this series is a strong successful example of that.  The tone and humour of the TV series carries over seamlessly into the comic and as strange as it sounds you really feel as though you are reading an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Lastly there is a lot to be said for the art. Georges Jeanty has an incredible knack for capturing the likeness of the characters we know and love. His covers are also vivid, and worthy of being a poster on any superfan’s wall.   The promises of the new medium also built up anticipation for the series at the time. BTVS has been known it’s schnazzy special effects. The venture into the comic platform seemed poised to lift the lid of that. Buffy the Vampire Slayer season 8 was an exciting time indeed.

Final Thoughts

5 years seems to be the magic number for this franchise. We saw a cross media jump from film to TV in the interim of 1992-97. And another from TV to comics from 2003-2008. Perhaps when (or if) this comic series wraps up we’ll see another such leap. Perhaps a Netflix reboot?…please? Joss willing of course.

 

Writer: Joss Whedon, Artist: Georges Jeanty

Story 9: Art: 10 Overall 9.5  Recommendation: Buy (And Cherish)

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