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Wednesday, September 23, 2015

REVIEW: Buffy the Vampire Slayer (graphic novels)

Anyone who knows me also knows I'm a rabid Buffy the Vampire Slayer fan. I was from the beginning and my love for the show and the ever growing Buffyverse won't fade any time soon.  I love what the show stood for: the metaphors, the actors, its trendsetting dialogue and humor as well as Joss Whedon's overall vision.

Lately, I've been working to catch up with the graphic novels. I'll start at the beginning and work my way through:
The Omnibi



Volume 1 - 4 out of 5 stars
This was a good start.  I liked the origin stories, notably Whedon's vision for the 1992 film.  While I adore that bit of nostalgia, I understand his frustration and remain glad that he had the opportunity to develop the character for television and graphic novels the way he originally intended.  I particularly liked the Vegas arc including Pike. I'd long wondered what could have been done with the character and it always bothered me that the plot hole existed. 

Volume 2 - 3 out of 5 stars
This collection was pretty lackluster for me.  I always enjoy the Spike and Dru bits. The rest just didn't resonate with me or hold a lasting impression. 

Volume 3 - 2 out of 5 stars
I adore seasons 2 and 3 but this tie in volume fell far short.  The stories just didn't add much to the main theme of the seasons. 

Volume 4 - 3 out of 5 stars
Definitely better entries to wrap up Season 3. Still just okay.

Volume 5 - 3 out of 5 stars
I really enjoyed the Faith vs. Buffy nightmare arc.  While not a huge fan of the Initiative, this volume was better.

Volume 6 - 2 out of 5 stars
Seriously. This volume was just filler. I didn't care for any of the stories.  Moreover, I hated Riley on the television show and it was even worse in graphic novel form. 

Volume 7 - 4 out of 5 stars
A stronger finish.  I always liked seasons 5 and 6 so this volume was of more interest to me.  There were some good tie in stories with the death of Joyce, Buffy's mother and hit on more of the emotional side of these seasons. Also, we saw the return of Pike!  One downfall was that his appearance remains unresolved since this is the last volume.  



Season 8
What do you do when there is more than one slayer and you've demolished a whole town and defeated the First Evil? I liked where the Dark Horse graphic novel representation of season 8 dared to go.  These stories would have easily worked for television but the sheer complexity was great in graphic novel illustration and dialogue. Some old favorites were back (i.e. Warren and Dracula) and there were plenty of twists concerning the Big Bad, a shocking death and some pretty severe magical consequences.

Season 9 
So, you've eliminated magic from the world. What now? Life is never that simple for Buffy and the Scooby Gang.  Buffy has some serious life interruptions to deal with to a surprising conclusion. Spike is the leader of an alien bug race. Willow is on a very significant quest and my favorite part was the appearance of Illyria!  This was definitely a strong story arc to battle zompires, introduce new 'slayers' and plant of new seed of magic.

Season 10
Vol.1: New Rules - With magic back in the world, the rules have changed.  Get ready for some unlikely alliances, the return of some well loved characters and plenty of twists.  I loved the new world building and can't wait for more issues! This volume marks the return of Dracula which is always fun. I can't wait for more! 4 out of 5 stars

Vol. 2: I Wish - loved this...since the rules of magic have changed, everyone is tempted. Andrew is up to his old tricks again which has the potential to be troublesome and heartbreaking. 4 out of 5 stars

Vol. 3: Love Dares You - I promise no spoilers but a heads up for Spuffy fans. Lots of good character development and good story arc plus visits from Buffyverse favs. 5 out of 5 stars


#review #graphicnovel #buffy #BtVS #whedonesque #spuffy

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