Thursday, May 10, 2018

Review: Buffy Season 8 Omnibus, Vol. 1

Buffy Season 8 Omnibus, Vol. 1
(Buffy Season 8 Omnibus 1)
Publication Date: September 26, 2017
Paperback, 592 pages, Dark Horse
Genres: Comic, Paranormal

Series creator Joss Whedon brought Buffy the Vampire Slayer back to life with this comics-only follow-up to Season 7 of the television show. Aptly named Season 8, these comics are the official sequel to Buffy and continue where the live-action series left off with the Slayer, her friends, and their ongoing challenge to fight the forces of darkness. After the destruction of the Hellmouth, the Slayers--newly legion--have gotten organized, but it's not long before new and old enemies begin popping up. Buffy, Xander, Willow, and a very different Dawn are introduced to the season's big bad, Twilight, and begin to understand the incredible reach of this mysterious threat. Meanwhile, rebel Slayer Faith teams up with Giles to handle a menace on the other side of the Atlantic. It's a dirty job, and Faith is just the girl to do it! Then, as Twilight's ominous influence continues to expand Buffy and her Slayers travel to Tokyo to face a new kind of vampire with powers they've only witnessed in Dracula . . . And, when trouble with Buffy's scythe comes to light, Willow and Buffy head to New York to investigate the secrets behind the ancient weapon; ever full of the unexpected, Buffy is transported to a dystopian future where her first chance meeting is with Fray, future Slayer!

This oversized omnibus edition is one of two volumes that will contain the entirety of Season 8. It includes the first four arcs of the series along with one-shots and short stories written by Joss Whedon, Brian K. Vaughan, Drew Goddard, and Jeph Loeb, with art by the acclaimed Georges Jeanty, as well as Karl Moline, Paul Lee, Cliff Richards, and more.

My Review

I’m not very good with reviewing comics, so I thought I’d do this a little differently than my normal reviews. Basically, I’m just going to discuss the pros and cons of this volume as I saw them in no particular order.

Okay, so first off, I’m glad that I was able to have a piece of the Buffy world back. I definitely miss it (as my Hulu history can attest to). I was even glad to see two members of the Trio return. Even though they weren’t my favorite villains, I still enjoyed seeing that part of the show on the pages. And Willow got a big thumbs up, except for the weird flying thing. That was a little too far…

Xander was fine. He didn’t make a strong positive or negative impact either way. Faith is still cool. And Buffy is pretty much Buffy. Now Dawn on the other hand, wth!?! I actually liked show Dawn for the most part, but her storyline in this comic was just way too much. I hope it gets resolved soon ‘cause it’s just weird. Oh, and there were some very minute glimpses of Angel and Spike. Very nice. Very nice.

Okay, so here’s the more negative comments. One, minor characters like the extra slayers and villains were drawn super similar, so it was hard to tell some characters apart. Two, just because the writers didn’t have a budget in the show, doesn’t mean they should have gone crazy in the comics—it lost a little of its Buffy specialness with all the big action-y spy feels. Three, sometimes the jumps between characters/storylines was too confusing. Four, Dracula. Boo. Five, Buffy’s experimentation, while it could have been fine, just felt weird. I had no idea who the character was, and I want to know who Buffy’s potential love interests are. They should be worthy of her!

Oh, last but not least, is a mix of good and bad. The future setting. I hated the language mess, but I somewhat enjoyed the plot development. It’s an interesting concept.

All in all, the comic series isn’t for every Buffy the Vampire Slayer television show fan. But, if you really miss the Scooby gang, then you’ll look past the comic’s flaws just to get more time with the characters.

*Note: I purchased a copy of this book for myself. This in no way affected my opinion/review.

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