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Buffy – Season 8: Wolves At The Gate (Pts. I & II)

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

250px-buffy_wolvesatthegate_tpbWell, usually we wait until an entire ‘story arc’ is completed before writing about it, but this time’s gonna be a little different. Tanya was awesomated enough to send me all the issues I had missed, including Parts I & II of this latest arc; so, I’m going to review these two, and then she’ll finish it off in June with the release of Part IV.

*****Spoilers Blah Blah*****

I laughed like a maniac when everybody kept rushing in on Buffy and Satsu in bed; even when it just got ridiculous with Dawn looking in the window and Andrew, of all people, stumbling in, I was howling. Because, not only is it just a great subversion of what you expect to happen — you know, they boringly hide it from everyone, predictably pussy-foot around each other etc. — it’s also so typical of what happens to Buffy all the time. Something goes wrong, everyone runs to her with no heed paid to what she’s doing or how she feels about something. But then they complain when she acts above them sometimes. Can never please everyone, can you?

This is also, of course, the advantage of using writers from the series — this time long-serving Buffy alum Drew Goddard — to pen these comics. There is no drop, at all, in quality from the show. Praise be to Joss Whedon and Dark Horse.

Anyway, back to the story. So, not only do we have Buffy entering some new personal territory with Satsu, which, under the circumstances, I think makes perfect sense (although apparently some internet-weenies have been complaining), we also have some new bads doing some new bad, but drawing on staple Buffyverse lore to do it. It only makes sense that if the scythe was used to activate all the potentials at once, it could also be used to de-Slayer a Slayer. Which, even though I get the impression this Japanese vampire cult has nothing to do with the Twilight storyline, makes them a pretty formidable opponent nonetheless.

And to bring in Dracula too? Well, that’s just pure genius.

Thought you’d seen the last of him after Antique huh? Hey, this is the Buffyverse, remember, where not even death can knock you out if the writers want to use you; there’s no way something as trivial as a beard and overgrown fingernails could keep someone like ‘ole Vladdy down for long. Andrew’s attempt at explaining Xander and Drac’s relationship is a little awkward (and I think unnecessary), but the Xander/Drac scenes are absolute hilarity. The best line: “You know, I really don’t remember you being this racist . . .”

So, while this is technically filler, ‘monster-of-the-week’ type stuff, so far it’s fantastic. Absolutely can’t wait for Parts III & IV.

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