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May 04 2006

Joss Whedon talks comic books. He tells iFMagazine that he plans a "mind-blowing annual" for Astonishing X-Men and at what stage his new Buffy and Serenity comic books are at.

Iíve written the first issue of BUFFY and weíre waiting for the artist to get free, and then thatís going to be in four-issue arcs that are going to take us over several issues. Iím going to try and dragoon several very talented writers into doing their own arcs inside of that.


A wishlist for who could be writing some of these Buffy plot arcs.

1) Doug Petrie
2) Jane Espenson
3) David Fury
4) Drew Goddard

I'm finally able to see it now, and I am very excited about 'Serenity' and the Buffy comics. I've been enjoying the Astonishing X-men series a lot, but that can never be as important to me as Joss' own creations are.

[ edited by embers on 2006-05-04 20:47 ]
I'm taking it that Joss can not use Spike or Angel in these comics?????
Is this true, or can he perhaps licence the characters at all?
The page is working fine at my end embers (touch wood). In regards to Spike or Angel, IDW have the rights to use them for comic books. Dark Horse don't as far as I understand.
I'd like to make two observations about the phrase "talented writers." if I could:
1)It doesn't necessarily mean television writers. (While it could be a television writer it's just as likely it could be a novelist or other comic book writers.)
2)It doesn't necessarily mean writers he's previously worked with.

Using those criteria it could very well be Bendis, Kirkman, Gaimen, Vaughn, or Ellis; any of which would put me in a tizzy.
True but I went with television writers whose previous Buffy comic tales I really enjoyed, not just cause they were television writers.
Indeed. I'd actually like to see something done by somebody like Fury AND Ellis, as between them they have a mix of the characters and the comic experience.
I'd like to see Ellis on a Serenity mini-series. Mark Millar writing Buffy would have me in rapture.
I remember Jane Espenson being linked to the season 8 comics at some point. Hope that's still the case.
4! I vote for 4! um, Goddard wrote a really cool Dracula story in one of the Tales of the Slayer compilations, in which the Old Guy mesmerizes Xander and eventually Buffy and co. rescue him, and it's one of my favorite Buffyverse comic stories.

something done by somebody like Fury AND Ellis,

if this should happen though, my brain would explode in GLEE. hm, messy.
Just one comment: Whedon and Cassaday both leave AXM after issue #24?

[grumble]

(Or is that two comments?)
Has David Fury ever written any Buffyverse comics?I know Jane Espenson,Doug Petrie and Drew Goddard have.As well as Amber Benson.I think Ben Edlund would be a great choice for an arc.Jeph Loeb would be a nice choice as well since he worked with Joss on the Buffy Animated Series.He has an exclusive contract with Marvel for the next couple years though so I doubt he could be an option at this point.

In regards to Spike or Angel, IDW have the rights to use them for comic books. Dark Horse don't as far as I understand.



That's correct.IDW has exclusive rights to Angel,Spike and the rest of the Angel The Series characters.Dark Horse has exclusive rights to Buffy,Faith and the Buffy The Vampire Slayer characters.

[ edited by Buffyfantic on 2006-05-04 21:52 ]
David Fury wrote "Glittering World" in the Tales of the Slayers TPB, Buffyfantic.

I hope these comics reveal what happened in the alley in some way as well if they're supposed to be set after NFA.
I think I may be the only one who doesn't want one of the writers to be Espenson. Her episodes always took me out of the story, though some of them were good.
David Fury wrote "Glittering World" in the Tales of the Slayers TPB, Buffyfantic.

I hope these comics reveal what happened in the alley in some way as well if they're supposed to be set after NFA.
Jackal | May 04, 21:54 CET


I missed the Fury written story in the Tales of the Slayers comics.Thanks,Jackal

I think these comics will be running parallel to season 5 of Angel,at the start anyway.They'll be revealing what Buffy and the gang were up to during that year con-current with the fifth season of Angel.They might move past NFA after that and what stories are told then might be determined by the fate of the DVD movies.
Interesting that the Serenity story would be another prequel. Sounds like Joss is still holding out hope for future movies/TV if he's still retaining post-BDM storylines.
I don't understand why IDW has exclusive rights to Spike as a character. Surely there has to be more to these things than whatever show they last appeared on? What if SMG had been able to make an appearance in an episode of AtS season 5? Would Buffy herself then have been regarded as an AtS character? Spike was a far more integral part of BtVS than he was on AtS. I'm sure this has been discussed before. It just makes me mad. Two of the most important people in Buffy's life i.e. Angel and Spike, and they're not allowed to appear in stories involving her. Ridiculous.

[ edited by Impossible on 2006-05-04 22:37 ]
IDW paid for the rights to the characters, much like Universal paid for the motion picture exclusivity rights for Serenity.

That said, I'm sure if Dark Horse wanted they could purchase the characters again.

And this is officially the most boring post I've written, like, today.
Boring maybe, but thanks for the info though.
I don't understand why IDW has exclusive rights to Spike as a character. Surely there has to be more to these things than whatever show they last appeared on? What if SMG had been able to make an appearance in an episode of AtS season 5? Would Buffy herself then have been regarded as an AtS character? Spike was a far more integral part of BtVS than he was on AtS. I'm sure this has been discussed before. It just makes me mad. Two of the most important people in Buffy's life i.e. Angel and Spike, and they're not allowed to appear in stories involving her. Ridiculous.

[ edited by Impossible on 2006-05-04 22:37 ]
Impossible | May 04, 22:35 CET


I agree,it's like The WB/UPN situation all over again.

I think it goes by who is a regular character.Since Spike was a regular on Angel,he is now considered an Angel character,not a Buffy one anymore.I don't think IDW would of picked up the rights unless they had exclusive ownership of certain characters like Angel and Spike.If SMG had appeared in a season 5 episode,it wouldn't really matter.IDW would still not be able to use Buffy.

With re-occurring characters,it looks like some other determination is done.I think both sides had to sit down and figure out who owns what.For example,Dark Horse owns Faith.I think IDW owns Drusilla.



IDW paid for the rights to the characters, much like Universal paid for the motion picture exclusivity rights for Serenity.

That said, I'm sure if Dark Horse wanted they could purchase the characters again.


I don't think they can until IDW's rights expire and only if IDW decides not to renew them.

[ edited by Buffyfantic on 2006-05-04 23:01 ]
I think these comics will be running parallel to season 5 of Angel,at the start anyway.They'll be revealing what Buffy and the gang were up to during that year con-current with the fifth season of Angel.They might move past NFA after that and what stories are told then might be determined by the fate of the DVD movies.


It's definitely post-NFA as well. From Joss's post back in November:

Speaking of Darkhorse Comics, they are starting a new Buffy comic, and as I understand it, it will take place after the end of Buffy and Angel and be canon in the Buffy world. And I understand it that way 'cause I'M WRITING IT.


...which is good, as I'd see anything set before NFA as flashbackish even if we haven't actually seen the characters.
It would seem to me, if Joss wanted to do a Buffy story that involved Angel and/or Spike, both Dark Horse and IDW would be wetting themselves to make ir happen, be it via alternating crossover, or combined imprint, since the commercial impact of such a thing would be what, giNORmous? If DC and Marvel could work that out back in the day, why not these two?
The impression I've got is that it will be both pre and post NFA.Starting in what would of been season 8 of Buffy and during season 5 of Angel and then moving past NFA.That's just speculation at this point though.


It would seem to me, if Joss wanted to do a Buffy story that involved Angel and/or Spike, both Dark Horse and IDW would be wetting themselves to make ir happen, be it via alternating crossover, or combined imprint, since the commercial impact of such a thing would be what, giNORmous? If DC and Marvel could work that out back in the day, why not these two?
VerseRoamer | May 04, 23:09 CET


You would think.But there are probably all kinds of factors that play into these sort of things.

[ edited by Buffyfantic on 2006-05-04 23:18 ]
The wishlist is good but I would LOVE to see, above any other (than JW), Brian K Vaughan work on some canonical Buffy stories, and I reckon Joss would do. I'd like to see some big name artists on it too... Dark Horse should be treating it as an A-list book, because those first few issues will be absolutely enormous...

And unlike the previous series (which definitely did not do this as Joss Whedon wasn't really considered comic book A-list back then), I am almost certain I'd pick up every issue.

[ edited by daylight on 2006-05-04 23:34 ]
Dark Horse should be treating it as an A-list book, because those first few issues will be absolutely enormous...


Totally agree. The three issues of the Serenity mini-series got into the respective top 50 monthly charts so Dark Horse will be well aware of Joss' pulling power and the dedication of the fanbase.

That and he's currently writing one of Marvel's top selling books so the average comic book reader (is there such a thing?) will take a close interest as well.

I would say the first issue would end up in the top 30 and will be somewhat of a media event as well. I can see those Buffy season 8 headlines being posted at Whedonesque already.

I love that the Serenity comic book is going to be a prequel and set during the Firefly days. More Badger please.
I'd like to see Ellis on a Serenity mini-series. Mark Millar writing Buffy would have me in rapture.

The only problem with this idea is that I wouldn't get to read it since i'd have *sqee*ed my way out of existance in a fanboy overload ;).

(Brian Vaughan could so do the mix of grittiness and humour needed for Serenity as well though, maybe we could fit him in after Ellis' arc but before Moore's ;)
Not only is Joss' name a big draw in comics, not only is Buffy very well known (in these types of circles), but at the time they appear I can imagine Wonder Woman being in full production - and so press - swing too. I predict the future is bright for Dark Horse.
Didn't Dark Horse do comics with Spike in them? Also, didn't Joss say that this comic might help move us into the "Spike movie?" (or did I dream that?) I guess they can speak of him.. (???)
If other writers means more canon Buffy then I am all for it but if it only means less Jossian goodness and more other people, then, no. I'll take my Whedon undiluted, thank you very much.
Mark Millar writing Buffy would have me in rapture.


Maybe, maybe not. I've always thought of Millar as a "deconstructionist" comics writer -- he tends to take long-established characters and tip them on their heads.

Sometimes fun, sometimes rather gut-wrenching, depending on how invested you are in the characters.

There are exceptions -- he did some great work on (of all things) Superman Adventures that was absolutely within the boundaries of the animated Superman series.
Didn't Dark Horse do comics with Spike in them?

Yes, but that was way back when they still had the rights to all Buffy and Angel stuff. And Spike was on Buffy (...ahem... er, anyhoo...) at the time anyway. Since then, DH let their license for AtS lapse and IDW snatched it up.

And I'd really like to know who the artist is going to be. It sounded like they had one - god, I hope he or she is really good. The art in the older DH Buffy books was fairly generic.

Weighing in on the non-Joss writers issue: Former show writers would be awesome (especially Jane Espensen or Ultimate Drew), but failing that, BKV would be a dream. Seriously. I'm a little bit in love with him his work.
Didn't Dark Horse do comics with Spike in them? Also, didn't Joss say that this comic might help move us into the "Spike movie?" (or did I dream that?) I guess they can speak of him.. (???)
spikeylover | May 05, 00:43 CET


Dark Horse did do comics that had Spike in them back when they had the rights to the character.They no longer have those rights which means they can't use or mention Spike or Angel in any real way other then maybe an obscure vague reference like IDW with Buffy and the characters Dark Horse owns.

As for a possible tie-in to the Spike movie/DVD movies.That can still be easily done without Spike being used/referenced in the Dark Horse comics.The tie-in could be by way of Fray which if I remember,Joss said might also play into the DVD movies and Dark Horse owns.It could be done by way of a situation being setup in the comics then playing out in a movie.

Here's the Fray thing.

http://www.chud.com/index.php?type=interviews&id=4434

Q: This might be more fanwank, but in Fray you have that bit where you touch on what happened to all the magic and demons and that didnít happen at the end of Buffy, which I sort of expected. Is that the kind of thing we should just forget about?

Whedon: No, thatís actually something I hope to deal with, either in the Spike format or in another series of Fray.

Can someone tell me which Buffy and Angel comics are worth reading? I have Serenity and Fray on order.
I am as respectful and appreciative of the comic art form as most more-than-semi-interested folk are. I did X-Men for a decade mid 80's to 90's, and Spider-Man in the 70's. I used to hang out out at 3rd Planet (kick-ass comic store in Houston) until I practically blended in with the wallpaper. So believe me when I say this humbly, and in no way meaning it in a snide fashion...

Does anyone else have a nagging feeling that Joss's talent is wasted in comics? I guess I just feel like his genius is so huge, that the relatively small comic format can't display it sufficiently. Plus, the shortness of individual issues is a nerve-grater.

I suppose since he always likes to leave us wanting more, then well... okay. And I am delighted that the stories are continuing and at least we have that - but I'm just so greedy. I want to feel the awe, heartbreak, gut-wrench, and giddy hilarity that his shows evoke in me. Comics just don't approach that level of entertainment for me. There really is just no substitute.
I wouldn't put it the same way, Willowy. ("Wasted," in particular, seems harsh.) Do I prefer him in other media? Yes, judging by his efforts on TV so far . . . But if your position is that comics are intrinsically of lesser value, I do disagree. (Or maybe it's a purely subjective position that they just don't do it for you).

I think Gaiman and Moore (or Los Bros Hernandez, for example) show that comics can be as moving, as deep, and as beautiful as other media. I think epic stories can be, and have been, told in comic form. To me it's not a question of form - but it may be one of fit. I would agree that, so far, Joss's comics haven't hit the heights of those just mentioned, and some others. IMO.
A prequel trilogy set in a sci-fi universe with most of my favorite characters! How could it go wrong?
Absolutely, and I agree with you on the depth, and the beauty. Again, Huge Comic Fan for a long time - so don't kick this puppy.

Still, it seems... I'm having a hard time explaining it...it feels...diluted. Weaker.

Also, you will please note the respect I payed to the art form. I do get it. I suppose it just doesn't 'get' me, at least where Joss is concerned....
I think it comes down to the fact Joss is a comic fanboy at heart.He grew up reading comics and probably gets a thrill writing the X-Men,characters he loved in his youth, or having his creations appear in a medium he loves.
I am so happy that we will be seeing more from Buffy and the Scoobs post Chosen I could kiss someone, the fact that it will be written by Joss is icing on the cake. Great things are coming and who knows...maybe these comics will lead to a Big screen movie with SMG as Buffy. I am in serious need of some Scooby/Buffy bonding.
A prequel trilogy set in a sci-fi universe with most of my favorite characters! How could it go wrong?


Well...

*cough* George Lucas *cough*

I'm not too worried about how Joss will handle things, though I was disappointed in Serenity: Those Left Behind. His work on Astonishing has been exactly that, and I can't wait to see what he does with his characters in his world again.

Same goes for Buffy.
I think Willowy has a point. For example, I think we can agree that novels are a wonderful medium capable of great storytelling. But if Spielberg started writing novels, wouldn't you wonder if that was the best use of his talent, even he was a great writer?

I'm reminded of Spock telling Kirk it was a mistake to accept promotion to Admiral: "Commanding a starship is your first, best destiny... anything else is a waste of material."

"Waste" is a strong word, but while I very much enjoy AXM, I do think Joss has a "first, best destiny", not in comics.
Hey jam2, nice analogy with the Spock quote. I remember it quite clearly. It does seem appropriate in this instance, as well.

Trek and Joss.

*
*
*
*
*

Sorry, just wiping the fangirl squee (hate that word) from my screen now.
I'm glad you said that, jam2. I've been thinking the same thing. It's all well and good that Joss is doing comics, but his talent is so much more immense than can be conveyed in them - plus those of us with jobs and lives don't have the time (and often the money) to chase after comics that fly off the shelves before we can get to them. I'm not really big on buying a lot of stuff that can accumulate in my house in the first place. I don't like how the comic book industry is using Joss to move product... It's making me feel used.
I'm happy to get a Whedon-written story any way I can. However, I agree the bi-monthly wait and the small amount of time it takes to read a comic make the experience somewhat frustrating. For those not into comics but are into Joss, perhaps waiting for the compilations is the better way to go.

But I can't wait to read new canonical Buffy stories. Would I rather they be made-for-TV movie or DVD's? You betchum, Red Ryder! But comics works just fine for me (Although, I think the stories will be noticeably less effective should I not like the artwork. It may not "feel" like canon if the characters don't look like the actors who portrayed them.).

Besides, it's not as though Joss' career is now only comics. We've got Wonder Woman and hopefully Goners to look forward to.

Question: Let's assume Joss' first, best destiny is televison because it allows him to do 22 episode seasonal arcs. Does this mean any movie he makes is "wasted material"? Or take the reverse. If movies are his first, best destiny; would a return to televison be "wasted material"?
See, I agree partly with Willowy about, as jam2/Spock put it, the "first, best" use of his talent. Which is why I wrote "it's not a question of form - but it may be one of fit."

But I utterly disagree with the suggestion that comics can't convey the size of Joss's genius, or that his talent is too immense for the comic form. Neil Gaiman and Alan Moore's genius is, IMHO, as great as Joss's - it's simply that the nature of their genius seems, thus far, better-suited to the comic form.
SNT, okay then. I respect your opinion, however I think we will need to agree to disagree on this one thing. As per my original post, I do not think that comics are a large enough medium to express the depth and breadth of Joss's vision (as it pertains to our Buffy/Angel/Firefly 'verse). He can tell his wonderful stories in comic form forever, if he so chooses. I'm sure they'll be appropriately tailored to the format. As are Gaiman's and Moore's talents.

The main thing for me is, it takes, what? Six-seven minutes for me to read a comic ( and no, I'm not forgetting the arc - but that takes months to years. Sometimes decades. )? Not enough Joss. Joss lite. Fat-free Joss. Anemic. A dribble to those of us needing a full glass. If he started here ( in comics), it would be different. But he started with the best. We're spoiled. I know it ain't just me.
Yeah, batmarlowe, I left it at "not in comics" and stopped short of picking movies or TV because that is a tough call. It is a fine line anyway, such that a lot of actors/writers/directors (and other trades) work in both.

I know a lot of people out there actually do feel TV is his first, best destiny and don't like him going to movies. Me, I want to see more of his movie work before I can say if I have a preference. But, as contradictory as it may seem, I think it's possible for both TV and movies to be his "first, best".
But I utterly disagree with the suggestion that comics can't convey the size of Joss's genius, or that his talent is too immense for the comic form.

The comics are too simple a medium. I like Joss's work in them, but to be honest, it pales in comparison to his work for the screen (big or small).

I also really don't want to get back into reading comics again. I stopped reading them on a regular basis as a young teenager, and I really don't want to be manipulated into buying them in my late 40's. I've purchased the stories when they reach graphic novel compilations, but it's just not the same as seeing his work in live-action on a screen. It's only Joss Whedon's work that can get me to do this, but I don't like the carrot dangling on the stick stuff.

Plus, you can watch a TV show whether you have money or are broke. It's not the same with comic books and graphic novels. You have to put money aside for those - and they aren't 12 cents an issue anymore, I have 5 kids and a mortgage. Guess what my priorities are going to be.

A TV show or a movie can also be watched together as a family - and then discussed during and afterward. It's a group experience. A comic book is an individual pursuit. If you have four or five people who want to share in it, you have to wait your turn, and we almost never get around to talking about them as a family once the book goes around. The experience is not as dynamic as a TV show or movie.

ETA: Also, what Willowy said!

[ edited by Nebula1400 on 2006-05-05 06:56 ]
A wishlist of who could be writing some of those Buffy plot arcs:

1. Me
2. Me
3. Me
4. Me

Let's make the deal.
cool. I wonder who they got as artist for Buffy.
Also, it's hard to fall in love with characters who are paper. If you carry a torch for one of them, you may end up setting him or her on fire and then the house burns down and your life is ruined.
Well I can certainly agree that I'd PREFER to see Joss do another series or Movie centering around Buffy and the Scoobs...considering I haven't had ANY Joss fix for quite some time, where Buffy specifically is concerned, I'm happy to be getting the Comic as a form of that continuation. Maybe down the road he'll do something less ... papery.
Quite frankly, I'm up for all of it. Anything related to Buffy and I'll be there, cash in hand.
Yeah, Buffy was a good show. Probably the best ever. It's why we're all here though isn't it? I'm going to go back to my History homework.
I agree that seeing and hearing the Jossverse is more appealing to me. But just seeing would be okay if we were able to see all of the characters. But this thing about no Spike or Angel is just lame. And where did I get the impression that Spike was the only character that would be allowed to cross back & forth between IDW and Dark Horse? Is this just wishful thinking on my part?
But I utterly disagree with the suggestion that comics can't convey the size of Joss's genius, or that his talent is too immense for the comic form. Neil Gaiman and Alan Moore's genius is, IMHO, as great as Joss's - it's simply that the nature of their genius seems, thus far, better-suited to the comic form.


I agree that comics CAN convey the size of the almighty's genious. (hmmm maybe that was overdoing it?) I think the problem is that the majority of them don't, at least to me. To me, at least in the case of Joss writing, it really benefits from long development but given the short issue length and limited number of issues it's difficult to accomplish that. I think the other problem is the expected standards of comics are so much lower, or so it seems. I have to confess none of the big names mentioned above really peaked my interest because by and large I thought the comics they worked on were pretty uninteresting and one dimentional (I'm not looking to start and argument and there are exceptions). The best writers I find are in the small independents ... the people that really struggle to get their idea published (gee that sounds familiar). What's my point? As a comic reader being so drowned in mediocre comics when a good one is found you've already judged it to be bad.

That said, I do have a couple people I wouldn't mind seeing work on some jossverse comics but I've got no clue of their names ... just the work.
I think the thing I miss most about Joss in comics is his interaction with actors. No matter how good the comic artist is, there's no way he or she can convey the density of texture and meaning you get with Joss and his writers writing for actors of his own choosing. That's the missing dimension to me.

Jona, I haven't read anywhere near all the available comic titles, but I recommend Tales of the Vampires, Tales of the Slayers, and Origin. The first two are anthologies with stories by Joss, other show writers, and others, with various artists. Origin is an adaptation of the original script for the Buffy movie, leading into the series. I especially recommend Tales of the Vampires. It's just wonderful.
Jam2 when I read your Spock quote it made me smile so hard! It was so perfect I actually got a little lump in my throat. Then I felt really silly.

Batmarlowe makes a good point too on the movies versus television thing.

I am slowly coming around to the comic thing again. When I was little I would take every 12 cents I could scrape together down to the corner drugstore for the latest. But as soon as I got into books I lost that interest.

The few issues of the Curse and the Series of Old Friends didn't really bring it back at all. 3.99 for 5 minutes of story? (Plus my teenaged children really laughed at me when the comic guy knew me on sight and knew what I came for.)

Spike vs Dracula really got me interested again. I have heard a lot of people say that Peter David is a really good writer and it turned out to be true. I don't remember the artist but it was great as well. So I'm figuring Joss will probably be even better, after all it is his baby, so I am hopeful.

Saying all that...No Spike? Waaaaaaah!
I agree that seeing and hearing the Jossverse is more appealing to me. But just seeing would be okay if we were able to see all of the characters. But this thing about no Spike or Angel is just lame. And where did I get the impression that Spike was the only character that would be allowed to cross back & forth between IDW and Dark Horse? Is this just wishful thinking on my part?
anindoorkitty | May 05, 07:29 CET



Unfortunately it appears that it is.None of the major characters are allowed to cross back and forth between the companies.I know over at the IDW forums a few months ago,people were asking and the Editor and Chief of IDW confirmed that IDW owns the exclusive rights to use Angel,Spike and the rest of the Angel cast and only their company can use those characters in comics.I think the most you'll be able to get is what IDW did with Buffy in the two Angel miniseries.There was one very vague,blink and you'll miss it hint to her in both miniseries each.One in Angel:The Curse and one in Angel:Old Friends.But they were so vague and obscure,most probably missed them and officially IDW can't even really confirm it was a Buffy reference,I think.The situation is so strict that even a characters name can't appear in the other companies comics.

I would love to know who the artist is as well.

[ edited by Buffyfantic on 2006-05-05 08:25 ]
Sad. Buffy's relationships with her vampires were the most compelling part of her journey. Hopefully, there'll be at least "very vague, blink and you'll miss it hint" to Spike and her feeling towards him.
I am so happy that we will be seeing more from Buffy and the Scoobs post Chosen I could kiss someone, the fact that it will be written by Joss is icing on the cake.


And if he could use the occasion to delete "The girl in question", that would be good...
On the genius of Joss being wasted in comics: All I can say is "Fray". I hate comics. I think they are stupid. I couldn't put Fray down. So glad I had the TPB! Also getting the Astonishing rollup, as I feel it may be similar.

If you haven't read Fray yet, get it. Even if you hate comics as much as me.
Yep, agree 110% on the Fray love, Mort.

As for AXmen, in fact, I find this work quite weaker than Fray...
I can't believe what I'm reading. When did you all turn into such snobs?
Well everyone's entitled to their opinion in this case since preference is obviously purely subjective. I really enjoy Joss' comics (and I mean the ones he's written since the others, notably the 'Serenity' series, have been very patchy IMO) but they do feel more slight than his TV work to me.

Looking at AXM we have 14 issues spread over a couple of years so maybe about 1Ĺ -2 hrs of entertainment ? In two TV years we'd have about 33 hrs of his vision. And there's no doubt that actors add a lot to how we perceive drama. A tiny facial expression (e.g. Buffy's bitter-sweet smile in Chosen), a hand gesture or squint or even the set of a shoulder can communicate volumes. Even the best comics artist would have trouble conveying these little bits of magic that a good actor does instinctively. Ideally he'd be producing TV constantly (possibly with his army of Joss clones) and it's all we'd have to watch but TV hasn't been terribly kind to the chap so he's trying something else (movies etc.).

However, I take serious issue with the idea that this is because the medium is incapable of producing genuine, emotive drama. I'd say that anyone who's never been moved by a comic hasn't been reading the right stuff. For instance, I am a large semi-muscular man (well, semi-large. And come to think of it can you be quasi-semi-muscular ? ;) but i've had several 'things in my eye' while reading various comics over the years even super-hero stuff e.g. there's a frame in 'Dark Knight Returns' where everything's going to shit and Jim Gordan's trying to fight a fire and, unexpectedly, people start to help, forming a bucket brigade. The caption reads something like "A line forms" and in context it always brings a lump to my throat because in one small picture and three small words it basically sums up our potential as a species, what we're capable of at our best.

So, yeah, i'd rather have hours of his stuff every week portrayed by gifted actors but failing that i'll take the comics and be impressed and moved by them too. Even if it's only for six or seven minutes at a time ;).

[ edited by Saje on 2006-05-05 13:50 ]
Word Saje.
I don't understand how this way of thinking makes anyone a snob.
I'm just "happy" we're getting a continuation FROM Joss in the Buffyverse.
I would have a hard time thinking it as canon, regardless if JOSS is writing it, if there are characters names and situations that can't be mentioned due to another comic owning them. Even when we had the WB and UPN thing going, Buffy could still mention Angel, and Angel could mention Buffy, Willow, Giles, etc. I find it odd if they can't say their names, particularly if it takes place directly after CHOSEN.

I am not kissing butt to say that Joss is one of the most talented writers out there. Still, I understand what Willowy says when she thinks comics don't allow him to shine as brightly. Joss is also a very talented director/producer, who knows how to wring emotion and bring out the best in his actors. You simply don't get that from a comic...
Joss is also a very talented director/producer, who knows how to wring emotion and bring out the best in his actors. You simply don't get that from a comic...


Well I think that does happen. I consider Astonishing X-Men #14 to be one of Joss' best pieces of work to date. It affected me emotionally and made me gasp at how dark it was. It was that powerful.

Comics are just like any other artistic medium, a lot of dross and a few nuggets.

Anyhow, let's avoid calling each other snobs just because people don't like a particular medium.
One of the best aspects of comics is absence of *any* limitation to writer's imagination. No budget constraints, no problems with actors availability, etc.

But when this aspect is taken away, the result may be negative.

The legal issues that make impossible to develop and even mention the storylines that deserve to be at least mentioned could harm the characters we love. If we'll meet Buffy who has totally forgotten the man who loved her and saved the world - this turn of events could damage Buffy beyond repair.
JMHO
The Buffy comics are set in rome, and Buffy is with The Immortal. I think. I've heard that, anyway. And I don't beleive it's giving too much away as I'm sure it's from an interview.

I'm game for it. Who is The Immortal? Why is Buffy with them?

Answers on a postcard/comic.

[ edited by gossi on 2006-05-05 16:34 ]
"I don't understand how this way of thinking makes anyone a snob."

Actually, I wouldn't have put it like that, but it's pretty much my sentiment reading this thread. I very much got the impression that people love comics as long as it was Joss, but otherwise comics are beneath them.

Not even like people were saying that comics just weren't for them--they were saying that comics just can't deliver what some other media can, in terms of entertainment, immersion, whatever. Well, they certainly can--for me, at least.

(Which is why I've stayed out of the conversation so far--I tend to overreact a bit in arguing the merits of comics as an art/entertainment form.)
I think Joss will be able to do more than just imply Spike exists in the Buffy comics. On the IDW forums a few months ago, Ryall said that if Joss was to use Spike in a flashback then IDW wouldn't mind. Hopefully that includes flashbacks to scenes that we haven't seen before in the show.
I think there's a difference between the idea that comics can't convey all of Joss' talents, and the idea that comics are a lesser medium. Again with the novels analogy, it would be silly to say literature is a lesser medium than TV, but if Joss was writing novels, even well, you could certainly argue he wasn't making the most of his talents, that the medium, as powerful as it is, is restricted with respect to his talent.

To further illustrate, you could turn that around with Stephen King as an example. Much of his work has been adapted into successful TV and movies. But you can argue that the film medium limits his vision as fully expressed on the page. Speaking only for myself, I'm talking about which medium best channels Joss' vision, not which medium is better.

ETA: I don't mind Joss writing comics. I buy all of them and enjoy them. But I probably wouldn't have become a fan of his through comics, the way I did through his TV work. It doesn't... astonish me as much.

[ edited by jam2 on 2006-05-05 17:04 ]
...plus those of us with jobs and lives don't have the time (and often the money) to chase after comics that fly off the shelves before we can get to them.


I never have the time to track down any comics these days which is why I'm pretty much a tradepaperback person. Similarly, it's too much trouble for me to align up my schedule with a tv show and almost all the tv shows I watch are on tv. Plus you don't have to deal with the comics being just a small 5 minute read which some people have complained about.

One of the best aspects of comics is absence of *any* limitation to writer's imagination. No budget constraints, no problems with actors availability, etc.


Exactly and we would have never likely have gotten Fray, as it would have been too expensive as a tv show or movie, unless it was animated, and even animated it would have been quite expensive.

However, I can understand people thinking that some of the magic is missing when actors get portrayed in comics, instead of original comic book creations like Fray. It's really hard for the artwork to capture the look and feel of the actors and can often fall flat if the artwork is not done properly.

Still, given the choice of more Buffy and Serenity from Joss via comics compared to none at all, I think it's pretty much a no brainer.

Also if anyone wants to check out what the comic book medium can do, this Saturday, May 6 is national Free Comic Book Day. Nothing Whedon related that I know of is being released, but plenty of other cool comics being given away for free. Check out the Free Comic Book Day for more details about what's being released and there's also a comic book store locator on the front page if you don't know where your local comic book store is. I recommend people check out Scott Pilgram from Oni Press, which I can see fans of Joss Whedon's writing enjoying. There's absolutely incredible moments in the two released Scott Pilgram volumes which I think is on par or better than anything seen in movies and tv shows.

That said I would love to see Scott Pilgram writer/artist Bryan Lee O'Malley do a Buffy story with Dark Horse, but I think he's too busy with Scott Pilgram for the next few years to fine the time for Buffy.
Without Spike and Angel or the surviving ATS characters in these comics, I doubt I'm going to be very interested.

Still I think what someone else said is true...if Joss wanted to include Spike and Angel in his comics, I'm sure something could be worked out with IDW...I would think they'd jump at the chance to expand this market!
I feel sad... I think I'm the only one who don't want a new Buffy series of comics. Yeah, It's Joss writing them, but why now? The Buffy and Scooby Gang stories were told, they decided that. So, I can't understand why re-opening it.

But I'm pretty excited about the new Serenity comic.
And waiting for a new Fray one.
I'm not going to add anything to what I said above about comics, other than to agree with Telltale's comments above.

But I absolutely concur with kathylovesspike that something could be worked out with respect to the use of Spike, Angel, etc. "Rights" are just bargaining chips - deals can always be struck if the will (and cash) is there, whether by licensing or some other approach.
deals can always be struck if the will (and cash) is there, whether by licensing or some other approach.


Or Joss could cunningly work around this rights issue somehow. I'm sure I speak for all of us when I welcome the new characters Spake and Angle to the Buffyverse.
On a related note, it looks like Scott Tipton (Spike comic) is signing tomorrow (May 6) at Earth2 Comics in Sherman Oaks (L.A. Valley area):

http://www.earth2comics.com/
Well as I really want some Buffy/Angel interaction or shout-outs, I'm hoping crossovers can be done as well. But I'm not all that into comics, so I just can't see them as canon, regardless of the author or content.

Plus, if it really is Buffy/The Immortal - well count me as EXTREMELY uninterested.

I don't happen to think that Buffy's relationships with any man - or vamp - is the most compelling part of Buffy or the show.

So if no crossovers are allowed (or mentions) I'm cool with that, but would still not want to read about The Immortal. I'm interested in Buffy and the SG. So here's hoping...
Agreed Luc. Where I support Buffy and Angel's "star crossed lovers" title til death, it was never ALL ABOUT Angel for me. It's always been all about Buffy. At this point, I am more interested in hearing how Buffy and the Scoobies are doing and what's up with the Immortal.
Agreeing with whoever believes he is evil.

Did the gang find all the potentials? What happened at the Cleveland Hellmouth? Is Faith still there? What's up with the ladies man Andrew? Was he sucked into some Alternate Dimension during TGIQ....So many questions.

I'd prefer to wait til Buffy is finished baking AND SEE the reunion with her vampire. Like in a Big Screen movie, one that combines the two Universes again once and for all.

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