Buffy

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Ten #4

by Alan Rapp on June 24, 2014

in Comics

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Ten #4After double-crossing the Scoobies, Dracula (with his re-installed manservant Xander) begins writing in new laws of magic into the Vampyr tome. First, Dracula decides to make himself the lord and master of all vampires, which leads to some humorous consequences for Spike, but unsatisfied with the result Dracula decides to become the most powerful vampire of all leading to disastrous consequences not only for Xander’s master but all of Earth.

Worth picking up for the Dracula and Xander alone, the latest issue continues to develop the Willow and younger Giles relationship which might be my favorite of the new season so far. We also get several mentions of turning “Dark Willow,” as Willow’s evil turn has become a much-used verb about the dangers of power (much to the witch’s chagrin).

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Ten #4 is the first issue to deal with with Dawn and Xander’s relationship issues directly as Dawn explains her “reset” following almost being wiped out of existence in Season Nine. As to what this means for the couple long term, we’ll just have to wait and see. Worth a look.

[Dark Horse, $3.50]

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Ten #3

by Alan Rapp on May 28, 2014

in Comics

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 10 #3The return of Dracula is always a good sign, starting with Xander and Dawn traveling to the vampire’s castle to enlist Dracula’s help to deal with the new kind of vampires who possess several of his skills as well as being able to fight in sunlight.

Thanks don’t get any easier for Xander once transporting his former master back to America, although Dracula does give thought to enlisting Andrew as his new manservant. The villain’s inevitable turn after deciphering how valuable the Vampyr tome is to the new laws of magic set up serious ramifications for all involved – especially Xander. The tension between Xander and Dawn continues to grow producing both humorous and awkward moments such as Xander’s reaction go Giles trying to play Grand Theft Auto like a gentleman.

Co-written by Nicholas Brendon the dialogue feels as sharp as ever, and not just with Xander as Buffy and Willow share the kind of bestie moment we haven’t seen between them in quite some time. Must-Read.

[Dark Horse, $2.99]

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Ten #2

by Alan Rapp on April 29, 2014

in Comics

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Ten #2After helping Buffy and friends turn the tide against the enhanced vampires, neither Faith not Kennedy will stay long although Scoobies do welcome back a pint-sized Watcher, the adolescent Giles, back into the fold (even if it looks like it will take some time for everyone to adapt to his new circumstances and demeanor).

Laying the groundwork for the next several issues, Giles discovers that the Vampyr tome has begun to fill-in with new information. Understanding that the new seed was rushed into the world, what the Watcher finds troubling is not knowing who is responsible for writing the new laws of magic (and gifting the vampires with an improved power set).

Still haunted by visions of Anya (which appear to be her rather than simple hallucinations or The First toying with the one-eyed Scooby) and wrestling with the his strained relationship to Dawn, Xander heads off to talk with Dracula to see if he can shed any light on the situation (setting up what should be yet another amusing reunion). Best of the Week.

[Dark Horse, $3.50]

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Ten #1

by Alan Rapp on March 24, 2014

in Comics

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Ten #1Magic has been restored to the world and Buffy and her Scoobies are working with vampires to put an end to the last of the zompires, but that’s only the beginning of the first issue kicking off a brand-new season which will reunite Buffy with her long-lost mentor and showcase that the rules have very much changed (again).

The death of the army of zompires ends the truce between Buffy and Vicki’s vampires who it turns out aren’t so much afraid of sunlight any more and have the ability turn into mists and giant bats (although Spike is still limited to wise-cracking and looking cool in his black trench coat with a heroic backstory – as Andrew points out).

Thankfully Buffy and her team are saved with the timely arrival of Faith, Kennedy‘s soldiers, and the adolescent Giles who shows up casting magic in Latin to everyone’s surprise. Giles and Faith aren’t the only familiar faces to make an appearance as Xander appears to be haunted by the ghost of Anya. (Ghost? Hallucination? Or possibly The First?)

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Top 10 Comic Issues of 2013

by Alan Rapp on December 6, 2013

in Top Tens & Lists

top-10-comic-issues-of-2013

Here’s my look back at the ten best single comic issues from the past year. Including ongoing series, one-shots, and mini-series, the only limitations I put on this list was that the comic had to have been released in 2013 (no reprints) and I limited myself to only a single issue from any one title. Because I was focusing on standout issues rather than consistently strong comics every month several of my favorite series missed the cut, but, if time permits, I may work up my regular list of best comic series of the past year as well.

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #25

by Alan Rapp on September 16, 2013

in Comics

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #25Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine comes to a close with Buffy and the Scoobies fighting for their lives inside The Deeper Well against Simone and the demon Maloker. With the new seed ready to burst, and return magic back into the world, Buffy’s friends are able to make it to safety leaving the Slayer one-on-one with the turned Simone for control of the Scythe.

There’s plenty of action in this final issue as Buffy is finally able to stake the bitch and make it out of The Deeper Well and rejoin her friends. With magic returned, Willow and the Scoobies are able to bring Dawn back and set everything right with the world. Well… almost everything.

The issue’s final panels show us the rules have changed as the laws of magic, vampires, and possibly much more are all different under the new seed than the old. Although Buffy and her companions survive (sadly without Illyria who doesn’t make it out of the Well), the world they return to may be far different than the one they left. Worth a look.

[Dark Horse, $2.99]

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #24

by Alan Rapp on August 20, 2013

in Comics

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #24There’s action aplenty in the latest issue of Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine as various factions battle miles below the surface of the Earth inside The Deeper Well for Dawn‘s life, the future of magic, and the lives of everyone on Earth.

Leaving Willow to find the magic needed to save Dawn (which she discovers in the form of a new seed slowly growing near the center of the Well), Buffy heads after the now turned Simone (now twice as strong and dangerous), which leaves the rest of the group of defenders to deal with the awakened Maloker, and the most unlikely person of all to talk Severin down from his mad quest to reset all of reality by sharing her own pain and loss.

The season is certainly going out with a bang as this issue is packed with characters, actions, and even a couple of nice surprises. Aside from Willow looking decidedly Joker-like (seriously, what’s up with that?) this not much for me to complain about other than how sad I am to only have one issue left to wrap-up the season. Must-read.

[Dark Horse, $2.99]

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #23

by Alan Rapp on July 18, 2013

in Comics

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #23Season Nine‘s final arc continues to heat up as Buffy and the demon council head into the depths of The Deeper Well to stop Severin from stealing enough power from the sarcophagi of the Old Ones to tear a hole in reality in order to bring his girlfriend back to life. Buffy also searches desperately for the magic which will stop Dawn from disappearing and must stop Simone‘s whose dark plans which involve an army of Slayer Zompires and the demon who created the first vampireMaloker.

There’s quite a bit of action here balanced by some tough choices for the Slayer as she must abandon her mission to save her sister in order to once again save the world and a tender moment between Dawn and Xander who tries desperately to get the woman he loves to fight against disappearing into nothingness.

Despite some ups and downs, Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine is looking as if it will end on a high note as well as the possibility that some form of magic will be returned to world helping to set up a new storyline when the characters move on to Season Ten. Worth a look.

[Dark Horse, $2.99]

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #22

by Alan Rapp on June 14, 2013

in Comics

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #22The battle for control of The Deeper Well and the life of Dawn has begun as Buffy and her rag tag band take on the demon defenders determined not to let the Slayer anywhere near the last refuge of magical energy remaining on the planet. In the midst of the battle Buffy will learn of Xander‘s betrayal as one of Buffy’s oldest friends helps Severin and Simone sneak in the well in hopes that the Siphon can gather enough magical energy to reset the past.

As Buffy and her friends fight for Dawn, and after Xander’s betrayal the fate of the world, Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #22 also offers a back-up story involving Spike trying to slow Dawn’s dissapearance by reminding Buffy’s little sister of her life (something which becomes hard to do once Spike realizes he’s starting to forget Dawn, too). It comes a little out of the blue, but their conversation reminds fans of the pair’s odd friendship that begin even before Spike got his soul back.

Although the battle for The Deeper Well is only begun, the issue ends with all the cards on the table and the fate of Dawn growing more desperate by the minute. Worth a look.

[Dark Horse, $2.99]

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #21

by Alan Rapp on May 14, 2013

in Comics


Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #21With Willow‘s return and Xander preparing to betray his friends to save Dawn, Season Nine moves closer to the finale as “The Core” begins with Buffy, Willow, and Xander heading to the only place on Earth that might have enough magical energy to save Dawn’s life – The Deeper Well.

Angel fans should recognize the name of Ilyria‘s resting place where her sarcophagus was housed, along with those of countless other Old Ones, from “A Hole in the World” (you remember, the heart-wrenching episode where Fred dies – damn you Joss Whedon!). I like the comic bringing back the setting to kick start what looks to be the season’s final arc, and provide another instance of the characters making a bold short-term decision without really thinking out the lasting implications if something goes wrong (you know, Buffy logic).

Buffy and her friends will discover the Deeper Well has not been left unguarded as the powerful entities remaining in our dimension want to protect the power of the Old Ones from falling into the wrong hands (not that something like that will stop the Scoobies from their dangerous plan). Worth a look.

[Dark Horse, $2.99]

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