Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Long Way Home, Part 1 (season premiere)
If you haven't gone out and picked up this first issue of what's been blessed bu Joss Whedon as Buffy the Vampire Slayer season eight, you might not want to read on, as there will be spoilers. Or if you're just cheap or too lazy to pick it up, you can come too.
I'll try not to repeat too much of what I already went into in my early look post. Diving into this book was quite a different experience than watching a season premiere on television. Who are these new people? Where's Willow? Giles? And oh yeah, Xander's missing an eye! What I said about the special effects having no limit? You get that right off the bat, and it just continues throughout.
The pace of a small comic book is certainly going to be very different than a TV episode. In fact, from cover to cover, this issue's pace to me felt very much like the cold open of a TV episode; I could almost hear the familiar wolf howl after the last page.
Random thought: Did anyone else think those demons Buffy battles in the start resembled the watcher in the Fray series of comics? (Fray is supposed to be sort-of a continuation/sequel to the Buffy series)
I'm not sure what to think of the high-techiness of Buffy's entourage; the laser guns, the Xander-led HW. You know in a big way that the Buffyverse as we knew it from season seven has vastly changed.
And speaking of those changes, we have giant Dawn! One of the best parts of this so far is how the writers are aware of Dawn's whininess and play into that right away. I'd love to know why the slayers don't find a giant her size more of an asset in their fight, but there's time for all of that. Definitely a great way to explain her "big" problem, too. Has anyone heard of a thricewise before?
Something I found odd was in the flyover of the crater that was once Sunnydale, it's as though the town sat alone in a desert. Where are the other towns?
It looks like once again the government is playing into being the "big bad", at least partly. Do these military guys really know that Amy was once a rat, or was that mention of it being obvious she'd want cheese just an oversight? And are there any guesses to who or what her boyfriend is?
I'm enjoying seeing the gang again (or at least part of it), and the artwork is certainly well done in parts. The dialog could be better, though -- the funny was sadly lacking. In fact, the only good set of lines I'll show you below. Still, we'll give it time.
Quote of the issue:
Xander: I think it's a frown turned upside down. And then turned upside down again.
Buffy: So you think it's a frown.
Xander: Guy with a monocle frowning.
Buffy: You're a terrible watcher.
Xander: I'm not a watcher.
Buffy: Well clearly.