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Buffy Classics

Discussion in 'Comics' started by Foxy, Jan 22, 2017.

  1. Foxy

    Foxy I am cookie dough!

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    Sineya
    Hi all,

    I have been collecting and reading the Buffy omnibuses of the classics. Has anyone read them? What is the general consensus here on the board? I mean not all are perfect (some are pretty horrible, in fact), but some of the stories were amazing and read like a dream.

    And can I just say that Cliff Richards' art is fabulous and by far my favorite Buffy comic artist!

    Is there some love for these comics around here or not?

    BTW, the Tara and Willow story and the Stake to the Heart are among the bests ones IMO.
     
  2. Priceless

    Priceless I'll set something on fire

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    I don't read the classic comics, but I did love Cliff Richards art in the later comics, he's one of my favourite artists too.
     
  3. Foxy

    Foxy I am cookie dough!

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    Sineya
    There are some great Spike and Dru ones!

    I think he is the best at capturing the likeness while it still being comic-like!
     
  4. Priceless

    Priceless I'll set something on fire

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    He did some work on Buffy S9 and Angel & Faith S10 and for me he did the best work of all the artists.
     
    Foxy: He is the best
  5. Mylie

    Mylie Scooby

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    oh then something to look forward to!

    I just learned that Christos Gage didn't write A&F for season 10 and it lessened my enthusiasm.

    I'm almost finished with season 9, I'll be able to catch up soon and discuss the comics with everyone!!
     
  6. Foxy

    Foxy I am cookie dough!

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    Sineya
    I'm in the process of reading A&F season 10, but I don't like it that much. Mylie I'm looking forward to discussing the comics with you! Have you read any of the old stuff? Because some of it is considerably better and more like the show than the current comics.
     
  7. Guy

    Guy Scooby

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    Black Thorn
    He wrote BUFFY season 10, though.
     
  8. Foxy

    Foxy I am cookie dough!

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    Sineya
    I loved season 10. It was far from perfect, but it felt much more consistent! I think I prefer most of the stories of the classics though, because they actually feel like the show, though.

    I loved Cage the moment I saw the Willow Wonderland comics!
     
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  9. Mylie

    Mylie Scooby

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    I've never read the old stuff no. I was told it wasn't canon so I wanted to focus on what is. But I'll probably check it out after I'm caught up. But if it's more like the show, then I'll probably enjoy them more. That's been the problem for me with connecting to the BtVS comics.

    Yes, and hopefully that will make me enjoy it more but I'm still disappointed because I loved how he wrote the characters on A&F and I would have taken more of it instead of a another writer coming in.
     
    Foxy: You should read the old stuff it has some gems in there!
  10. The Ferg

    The Ferg Mine is an evil laugh!

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    Hey! I wish I would've checked back here when you made this post. I have been collecting the classic series for the past year or so myself, and I finally finished. I had just dedicated myself to an annual rewatch of the series, so I decided to read the old comics as a primer, and it was awesome. Well... mostly. I found the main series pretty inconsistent; ranging from garbage to great. Unlike you, I collected the series issue-by-issue, rather than in Omnibus format. In hindsight, collecting the Omnibi would've been significantly easier, but regardless I think the series is meant to be read from issues 1 to 63. My original plan was to read every single DH-published Buffy thing, but about a fifth of the way through I felt pretty overwhelmed, and just stayed to the main series plus a few extras. So basically I've read everything except the classic Angel series, the Spike & Dru and Willow & Tara stories, Oz, the Chaos Bleeds and Wizard 1/2 one-shots, and most of the shorts.

    To be honest, I was never a fan of Cliff Richards' work on the S8+ stuff, because I think his style kind of clashed with Jeanty's. With that being said, he really blew me away with series. He really fit the tone and atmosphere of the comic, and as someone else said, made the actor's likenesses appropriately comic-book-y (although every once in a while the characters looked absolutely nothing like the actor).

    So yea, I'd say I'm definitely a fan. The first 8 issues were... rough... to say the least, and there were definitely some low points, but overall, I think it was really entertaining, and I'm glad I invested the time and money.

    Before reading these I had already considered a few stories to be canon: specifically Fray, Tales of the Slayers/Vampires, Ring of Fire, Haunted, and Long Night's Journey (due to the writers from the show's involvement). Personally, I also considered everything that took place pre-Season 1 to be canon, partly just because it's fun, and partly because they're all pretty good in their own right. My intention with reading the classic series was to add the really good stories to my annual rewatches of the show, and surprisingly, I actually ended up adding quite a few.

    My standouts are the The Heart of a Slayer, Past Lives, The Death of Buffy, Note from the Underground, and A Stake to the Heart. Also wow, sorry for rambling. I've just been super into these comics (and Buffy in general) for the past few months and it's amazing that someone else on this forum is as well!
     
  11. Bluebird

    Bluebird two by two, hands of blue

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    Black Thorn
    I have a couple of the Omnibus volumes too, but I've not went back to them again. Maybe one day when I get the rest. I definitely agree with the inconsistency in quality, but I also appreciated the simpler times of those comics since a lot of them were released when the show was airing. It put restrictions on what stories it could tell and that's something I missed when it came to season 8.

    It's the problem I have with the new comics overall, since the end of both Buffy and Angel worked way better as metaphors, than an actual reality that then had to be moulded into something more literal for it to logically work.
     
  12. Mylie

    Mylie Scooby

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    I might be interested in reading those comics even though they aren't considered canon.

    I usually care a lot about canon though so I wanted to know first if there was some stuff in them that went against the canon?
     
  13. The Ferg

    The Ferg Mine is an evil laugh!

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    I really enjoyed the simpler stories as well. Sometimes it's nice to just have a monster-of-the-week story every once in a while, which is why I'm in love with the new High School Years OGN's.

    I actually completely agree. Although I enjoyed S10 well enough, and S11 looks to be pretty solid so far (and I REALLY love the idea of a 12-issue season), it's just strayed so far away from what the show was that it almost feels lost.
    --- Double Post Merged, Feb 8, 2017 ---
    Ok first of all, although I just read all 63 issues, I'm probably not the best person to answer this question. I definitely had the mind-set of "don't worry about canon, just read the story for what it is" going in, so I very well might have missed some stuff.
    With that being said, I surprisingly don't remember too many problems, besides tiny things every once in a while that the comic creators couldn't have avoided such as pulling Faith out of jail between S6 and 7 for a few days to deal with the Scourge in Sunnydale. It technically could've happened, but the interactions between Faith and Angel's gang in AS4 sort of contradict these events.
    I also should probably mention the canonical mess that is issues 1-19. These issues all took place roughly in Season 3. This first "wave" essentially ignores even attempting to fit itself into the show's canon, and instead just takes the setting, rough timeline, and characters, and rolls with it. Not all of these are bad (issue 9-19 legitimately kick it up a notch), but they should probably be avoided if you care about canon a lot.
    Finally, everything that comes after issue 20 reads as "lost episodes." These may have tiny problems like the Faith conundrum I mentioned, but in my opinion, they might as well be considered canon. Seeing as I'm a huge geek and have really been wanting to talk to someone about these comics, here's a comprehensive list of every major story (which means I'm excluding a few one-shots, shorts, and other minor stories) that takes place after Season 3 that might as well be considered canon.

    Issue 20- Double Cross (takes place immediately after Graduation Day)
    Issues 21-25- The Blood of Carthage (Season 4)
    Issues 26-27- The Heart of a Slayer (Season 4, ghost slayer shenanigans. I loved it)
    Issues 29-30 & Angel issues 15-16- Past Lives (BS4/AS1, Awesome crossover that makes me pissed that the shows didn't cross over more often)
    Issues 31-34- Out of the Woodwork (S4, random monster-of-the-week story about demon bugs)
    Issues 35-38- False Memories (S5, deals with Dawn's memory manipulation probs)
    Issues 40-42- Ugly Little Monsters (S5, really fun story about "child" demons with very unique paneling)
    Issues 43-45- The Death of Buffy (tells the story of the summer between S5 and S6 and the Scoobies coming to terms with living without the Slayer and the subsequent resurrection)
    Issues 46-50- Note from the Underground (this was Dark Horse's attempt at a huge Buffy blockbuster event, and in my opinion, while definitely very surface-level-y, it's bombastic and awesome)

    The Pre-Season 1 Years (I consider this stuff official canon. It's all one big meta-arc or Buffy, Giles, and Angel's journey to Sunnydale)
    The Origin (retelling of the movie script. Not great, but an interesting read nonetheless)
    Issues 51-54- Viva Las Buffy (tells the story of Buffy and Pike going to Las Vegas after the events of The Origin)
    Issues 56-59- Slayer, Interrupted (that one time when Buffy was admitted to a mental hospital)
    Issues 60-63- A Stake to The Heart (a beautiful story about the "demons" that come to light when your parents divorce and your world is shaken apart)

    Official Canon
    I'm not sure if you're aware yet, but these titles are 100% certified canon, and also pretty awesome.
    Fray (mini-series written by Whedon)
    Tales of the Slayers (original graphic novel, anthology)
    Tales of the Vampires (mini-series, anthology)
    Ring of Fire (original graphic novel, written by Doug Petrie, BS2)
    Haunted (mini-series written by Jane Espenson, after BS3)
    Long Night Journey (mini-series written by Whedon, AS2)
    Reunion (one-shot, written by Espenson, detailing what the Scoobies think happened when Buffy and Angel met after she was resurrected in S6)
    Jonathan: Codename: Comrades (one-shot, Espenson, an adventure in the Jonathan-verse before the events of Superstar)
     
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  14. Mylie

    Mylie Scooby

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    Thank you so much for this very detailed post.

    It's too bad about the Faith going back to Sunnydale before season 7 because she's one of my favorite characters and I would have loved to read it but it not working with her arc would probably annoy me too much since it's my favorite arc in all buffyverse.

    So what I get from this is I should probably avoid issues 1 to 19... even though season 3 is my favorite season.

    I didn't know about some of those being canon. I knew about Fray, Tales of the Slayers and Vampires but the other ones I had no idea.
     
  15. The Ferg

    The Ferg Mine is an evil laugh!

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    I don't blame you for avoiding, but honestly, Faith's inclusion in Note from the Underground is hardly noteworthy. She barely does anything and goes right back to jail before AS4 starts up lol.

    Seeing as you're a stickler for canon, I would say... yea just don't worry about. However, I need to stress that the Bad Blood mega-arc (issues, 9-11, 13-15, 17-19) is legitimately entertaining, and the inbetween issues (12 and 16) are really good reads too. Bad Blood is a series of monsters-of-the-week stories, with little bits about the overarching villains, Selke, coming to power. It was their attempt at a comic version of a "season." Again, it might just not even be worth it, but I needed to let you know that there are good stories in there. If you're at all interested, I would recommend the TPB, Food Chain (it's less than $5 everywhere). It contains issues 12, 16, 20, and a bunch of solid short stories (including one written by Doug Petrie!). It's just a nice taste of what you'd be jumping into if you're curious at all.
    [EDIT: I tried to post an Amazon link to the book here, but it didn't work.]

    Yea.. I mean I consider them canon for sure. The Buffy wikia seems to agree, and I don't see any reason for them to not be canon. They are written by the show writers after all, and literally contradict nothing. Ring of Fire's probably the best of the bunch that I listed, and it was also very well received when it came out.
     
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  16. Bluebird

    Bluebird two by two, hands of blue

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    Black Thorn
    Totally. I'll eventually get the rest of the comics, including the High School Years, once I finish reading the growing pile I have. :D

    I have to consciously disconnect the comics from the show. I like the comics for what they are, but I can't see the characters from the show when I read them, or get on board with it as official continuation of the series, because to me, in some sense, they discredit the poetic endings. If the comic series wasn't called Buffy season 8 or whatnot, I think I'd even love it. But it relies so much on nostalgia and references for the storyline to work.
     
  17. Mylie

    Mylie Scooby

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    ok so since last night, I've spent hours looking at the buffyverse comic books page and researching some of them on amazon. I want to buy so many of them!!!! I blame you all for this. I will end up broke after all of this is done. :)

    I'm also confused about the Angel Omnibus volumes. It seems there's an Angel Omnibus, and Angel Omnibus volume 1 and an Angel Omnibus volume 2. What's up with that?
     
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  18. The Ferg

    The Ferg Mine is an evil laugh!

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    The Buffy wikia is an amazing source for Buffy comics info. I find myself checking random stuff there every week or so. They have an awesome chronology page too, and an even better (and super comprehensive) list of Buffy and Angel comics.

    The Angel Omnibus (no "volume") consists of every Angel comic that Dark Horse published, back when they were doing Buffy comics while the show was still on. It does not include the first Angel mini-series (titled: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Angel- The Hollower). I have collected these but not yet read them, so I can't comment on the quality.
    Angel: Classic- Issues 1-14 & 17 (It's missing 15 & 16, the Past Lives crossover, that was included in the Buffy Omnibus')
    Long Night's Journey (written by Whedon)
    And a few shorts: Hunting Ground, Point of Order, and the Nepalese Switcheroo.

    After Dark Horse gave up the Angel license, IDW snatched it up around the time that the show wrapped. The Angel Omnibus Vol. 1 collects the first four mini-series they published. These all were supposed to take place after Season 5 (besides Spotlight, which takes place all through the course of the show), but then Whedon jumped in and made After The Fall which sort of negates the canonicity of these. Regardless, they're fun reads. I recommend them if you really like After The Fall.
    The Curse
    Old Friends
    Spotlight (One-shots about various side-characters: Doyle, Wesley, Illyria, Connor, and Gunn)
    Auld Lang Syne

    Angel Omnibus Vol. 2 is slightly more complicated and random... Here's the list:
    Smile Time
    A Hole in the World
    Not Fade Away
    Barbary Coast (set right after the gypsies cursed him)
    Only Human (starring Illyria and Gunn, and takes place after After The Fall)
    ^I do not recommend this one. The adaptations are boring and the art sucks. Barbary Coast is entertaining, especially because of the late Franco Urru's beautiful artwork. I actually like Only Human quite a bit but it just doesn't make sense to be collected in this Omnibus. It's a continuation of After The Fall, and it doesn't even have anything to do with Angel in the first place.

    There are actually quite a few more more IDW Angel and Spike comics. The properties did extremely well for the publisher so they pumped out as many books as possible, with about the same results as Dark Horse's first foray into Buffy: inconsistency. I'd love to go into detail if you're interested. It's not all great but the definite standouts are Brian Lynch's Spike mini's. They're some of the best Buffyverse comics ever published in my opinion.
     
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  19. Mylie

    Mylie Scooby

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    @The Ferg

    Thank you for this explanation!! It wasn't really clear when I looked on amazon. I remember reading about the Dark Horse/IDW thing, but it sounded complicated to me lol

    I read Lynch's After the Fall (but only issues 1 to 12) and loved it. That's what made me want to read season 8. So I'll definitely check out the Angel Omnibus volume 1.

    As for the Spike miniseries, I'm always interested in recommendations but since I don't really feel invested in Spike's character I'd rather start with other comics first and then when I've read a few I might check it out.

    And wow I feel like the comics are a complete complex universe. Issues being meshed together in volumes regarding of continuity or them being AtS stories vs. BtVS stories, some being canon, some not, some being in the omnibus volumes and some not, some having been published as paperback trademarks and some not, etc.

    I guess I should just start reading the few I found online and then decide later what I want to buy.

    Thank you. You've been a great help and I'll let you know my thoughts on on the readings soon.
     
  20. Ethan Reigns

    Ethan Reigns Scooby

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    Sineya
    Or of course you could read the comics at www.readcomics.tv to see what you would like to acquire permanently. Most of them are there.
     
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