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February 08 2007

(SPOILER) Joss' Geek Monthly interview (Part three). Joss explains a bit more about the comics. Gets into what his duties are, who all is on board, and just how long this thing is gonna end up being.

Wow! This just keeps getting better. I wish they could come out once a week instead of once a month...
Iím actually so far ahead on scripts that people canít even keep up, because another one just comes out of me. I canít stop

Absurdly happy now!
So instead of getting only Joss 4-part arc. We'll get the 4-part arc, and then another Stand alone story, before Brian getting into the second longer arc.

It seems that the list of writers have grown since last time we checked, Josssir mentions as writers for Season 8:
Joss Whedon (himself of course, duh)
Brian K. Vaughan
Jane Espenson
Steven S. DeKnight (don't remember him being mentioned before)
Doug Petrie
Drew Goddard
Drew Greenberg (don't remember him being mentioned either)]
Brad Meltzer (was Brad, mentione before? if not, that's just so cool)
Jeph Loeb
And Joss says that the list of writers, might even grow beyond that (me? Hoping that David Fury and Amber Benson, get to join that increasing list at some point).

If Joss keeps writing at the pace, he says he's writing (maybe that's what he meant by "working" last time posted here, maybe we'll get more than the bookends of the season, and hopefully he'll pitch in to some major arc in between, like he used to do in the tv show.

Oh, the joy.
Am I gonna embarrass myself too much, if I literally start doing the Dance of Joy?

[ edited by Numfar PTB on 2007-02-08 18:39 ]
I certianly won't hold it against you, Numfar. Dance away!
. . . another [script] just comes out of me. I canít stop.

How refreshing to hear Joss speak of his signature creation like this, as compared with the tired, burned-out Joss at the end of the TV run. With TV production being such a grind, it's no wonder that the venue of comic books has Joss so inspired. He can just dream up one fantastic, epic idea after another, never worrying about budgets, sets, lighting, actors, etc. Giant Dawn, for example, would have been impossible on the TV show.
I wish they could come out once a week instead of once a month...


Same here, though it'd burn a small hole in my pocket.

Come to think of it, is there anything stopping them from making this a weekly? I don't follow 52 (the comic), but that's been keeping a weekly schedule, hasn't it?
That line up is just awe inspiring! I am glad to see Drew Greenberg on board! I wish Joss would add Marti and Rebecca Rand-K. (girl power!)
I'm very intrigued by issue 5.

Come to think of it, is there anything stopping them from making this a weekly?


It requires a heck of a lot of effort and co-ordination to bring out a weekly comic. And I would hazard a guess that not all the writers and artists would be able to work to a weekly schedule.
And 52 is able to keep a weekly schedule because they have a plethora of writers and artists for each issue.
Xander looks cool.
Yeah,a weekly comic dose not seem realistic for this.I'm amazed that DC Comics have gotten,"52" out on schedule.
Sounds like we will still be reading Buffy comics in 2010.
Can't wait.
This just keeps getting better and better. More Buffy comics. More Joss written comics. More Joss written comics this year.
Numfar, may I join you?
this comment's probably more germane to the Pt. 2 post, but the thing I overlooked yesterday while grinning stupidly at the sheer Jossitude of Giant-Size Dawn was that Georges Jeanty friggin' NAILED Dawnie. um, so to speak. :)

and check out Buffy's "acting" on the way up the stairs. beautiful. Jeanty's doing wonderfully. (whew!)

(edited for a little additional praise 12:17 PST)

[ edited by annagranfors on 2007-02-08 22:19 ]
am i the only one who feels bliss each time i read the words that are joss?
A comic that is being created like a television show. Could only happen in Joss World. :)

I'm really pleased that the comic is seemingly without limit to the number of issues it could run. I'd hate for there to be a definite final issue when we all know that this has the potential to run and run. Especially given the number of people that want to be involved. It seems that Joss has a "season arc" in mind, as you would expect, so once the end of that is reached I wonder if the comic will start again with another first issue to represent the start of season 9?

I'm getting greedy now though. I want canon Angel season 6, dammit! C'mon, IDW. Give Angel back to Dark Horse already. Y'know you want to!
Wow. I have a funny feeling I should start a comic book fund to pay for this, it could get expensive.

It is really great to hear Joss sound so jazzed about something. I can see how this would be such a relief from some of the other stuff that has been going on. I always had a feeling that he was doing comics because the long time frame for movies was just not satifying parts of his creative spirit. Of course that could just be me being melodramatic. ;-)

"this comment's probably more germane to the Pt. 2 post, but the thing I overlooked yesterday while grinning stupidly at the sheer Jossitude of Giant-Size Dawn was that Georges Jeanty friggin' NAILED Dawnie. um, so to speak. :)"

I guess Dawnie really isn't a little girl any more because it seems like it is open season for the nudge, nudge, wink, wink jokes about her. Too bad most of the best ones are already taken...for the moment. ;-)
Neo-Prodigy, please capitalise your posts where appropriate.
GEEKMONTHLY.COM: Are you committed to a certain number of issues?

JOSS: Itís supposed to be about 25, but now Iím thinking itís going to be a lot more than that.

Dance of Joy, nothing. It's time for a Rave of Joy.

So, with the way things are going these days, how long will it be before a major studio is interested in doing a movie based on the Buffy comic book series?
barboo - "Dance of Joy, nothing. It's time for a Rave of Joy."

I'd rather do the Mosh of Joy, if it's all the same to you? ;)
Weekly might be a bit too much, but how about bi-weekly? that's been done succesfully more often. I suggested earlier that Cliff Richards could pinch-hit for Georges--how about if they do alternating arcs? Then the comic could be churned out pretty quickly. (Cliff is a really freaky fast artist, actually, but if he does too much, it starts to show.)

I'm actually not sure how I feel about stetching Season 8 out forever. More comics is good, that's simple. But after those 25ish issues, maybe we could have a season finale and go straight on to Season 9. Just worried that the Season arc will get stretched too thin.
Maybe Joss initially envisioned a season 8 but now is moving towards the idea of an ongoing series. Stranger things have happened.
That would be so awesome Simon. Imagine 20-30 years from now we would all still be reading Buffy.
Another Faith mention....wiiiiii.
Eek! Can't get over how exciting this is! This would be wonderful as an ongoing series, after seeing the previews of season eight, I'm all for a season nine! :D
Yeah man, they should move the property to comics permanently. If they can keep up that level of talent and the original creators remain involved/interested, it could turn into another staple of the US comic book zeitgeist after a while.

It'd be a really interesting evolution of a franchise. And it's not like most of the original cast would necessarily even be able to return to their roles ten years from now.
It's great to see that Whedon's returned to Buffy. Don't get me wrong. However, have we not all written our own "season eight" in our heads?

My season eight in my head which I never wrote down included Willow doing a magic spell that gives Xander a new eyeball. Xander freaks out because the idea of having magic INSIDE his cranium very much not to his liking. Then comes the unpredictable side effects. Hilarity ensues.

Of course Joss' season eight will excel our expectations. I attempted to write Buffy episodes once during the summer after season six, and my season seven which sadly I did partly write down, sucked raw eggs through a straw. Joss did a much better job. I lost interest and haven't done a lot of fanfic since then. I can't hold a candle to his greatness.

I used to think I could write.

I was looking forward to WW. I'm still looking forward to Goners. I'm looking forward to Joss looking forward. If that means looking back too, so be it. I just... I don't buy comic books anymore. I thought his writing X-Men would interest me enough to get back into comics, but it hasn't. They're too expensive. I don't have a lot of luxury income.

Guess I just wish I could jump on this bandwagon. It's a shame to see the Buffy franchise leaving me behind. Oh well. You kids have fun.
Oh man, I'm getting more and more excited about this!

And this is coming from someone who's never been into comics before. :)
ZachsMind:

No need to freak out dude, a trade paperback collection of a 5-6 issue arc is only like $10 these days. I used to buy comics every week, but they really are just too expensive at three to four bucks a pop.

TPBs on the other hand, are relatively cheap. 100+ pages of new material from one of your favorite writers for about as much as a crappy paperback you'd pick up in an airport.

Also, you didn't hear it from me, but comics are extremely easy to download and read on your computer. Point is the franchise only has to leave you behind if you want it to.
how long will it be before a major studio is interested in doing a movie based on the Buffy comic book series

A movie based on a comic based on a TV show based on a movie. That would probably be a first.
However, have we not all written our own "season eight" in our heads?

No, but I did write the opening to a Buffy/Angel movie that picked up at the end of "Not Fade Away"... well, after a very cool prologue that detailed the history of The Slayer.

Joss Whedon should pay me to write something :-)
I'm starting to think that this might (very limited might) be a breakthrough, where comics could claim a near-enough to television audience to make television executives really think about it. Especially after most of this television season's ideas, like every other, have died badly, and the most successful one has been driven by comics. But the origin of the possible success might still be too odious to the suits. They say it's all about money, but I don't think it really is.
When was the last time any comic sold say 3 million copies, which would be the viewing figures for a marginal CW drama currently?
"I can't stop."

How wonderful to hear that after the drudge, drudge, drudge of Wonderella. Hopefully this presages a new period of literary prolifici-- prolificn-- prolifical-- ... erm, abundance for Joss. ;-)
TamaraC, I think, and my degree is in finance, that sometimes when corporations claim that their motivation is entirely in money, they're counting on the ignorance of the public about how the numbers actually work. They have other motivations. They have class-wide fears, or what could even be called terrors. They're doing wrong things that cannot really be explained or excused by any numbers or ideologies. If someone like me were to be able to really audit them, they would be screwed. That's what I mean.
Well, there is a difference. TV comes beamed into the comfort of your home once you buy a TV set, and is free (though there are pay cable channels, the big original networks still consistently get the biggest ratings). New eps come out weekly. Comics cost money -- and yes, I too don't know about buying the individual issues because if I collect all 25 issues individually, that'll end up being $78 + tax! -- and come monthly, and you have to buy them from specialty shops (if you're lucky enough to live in a town big enough to support one) or order them online (with added shipping fees). I think there are a lot of realistic reasons the audience for comics will never be giant.

Great interview; I love that Joss is fired with passion for BtVS again, and I'm still undecided about how to go about this. I admit that I read most of my comics in TPB form, and mostly from the library. The only current comic I'm following in real time is Millar's "The Ultimates", and that's only because a friend buys them and lends them to me. The more I hear about season 8, the more I want to get 'em, but I'm probably gonna wait for the trades for simple economics and I like reading trades better than individual issues.
Oh man, I'm getting more and more excited about this!

And this is coming from someone who's never been into comics before. :)


Me too. I've never been into comics. I've had Fray and Astonishing X-Men for ages and never gotten around to reading them. With Buffy Season 8 coming up I thought I had better try and get into them, so I read Fray and I loved it. Then I got caught up on X-Men - liking that too, but not so much as Fray.

Now I can't believe I am actually getting excited about a comic, but I am. I can't wait for this to come out.

I've even ordered back issues of Runaways too, and subscribed to the new Jossy issues.
When was the last time any comic sold say 3 million copies, which would be the viewing figures for a marginal CW drama currently?

Well, the bestselling (American) comic ever was X-Men vol.2 #1 in 1991, and according to Wikipedia that was seven million copies. But that was spread over five different covers and a lot of people who only bought it because they figured it would become worth a lot of money. (Because you know, it was soooo rare.)

But today, Marvel is singing from the rooftops because Civil War is selling over 300,000.

To be honest, comics are just never going to convince TV to bring the Buffyverse back. It's a nice dream, but set yourself up for disappointment at your own risk.

We like to think of Buffy as a huge hit, but rating-wise, it was cult rather than mainstream. Comics are small enough that cult elsewhere can be a hit there. That's the part I'm gonna focus on.
Telltale, I get your point, because I tend to try and look at things from a realistic point of view too, sometimes probably to the point where I'm a little too pessimistic about stuff.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer absolutely will not come back to television. This we all know. At least not unless Sarah's movie career takes such a nosedive that she is willing to return. Even then it's not a certainty that it would be brought back (although I'm sure any potential network would be more interested with SMG involved). The rest of your reasoning though, I'm not so sure is quite so sound.

A successful comic book absolutely can convince a network to try out a television series. It doesn't guarantee that the show will make it past episode six but these shows get greenlit (greenlighted?) all the time. Blade and Painkiller Jane being recent examples. Not to mention the obvious influence that comic books now have on the movies.

Buffy truthfully wasn't as big as we like to think but it wasn't exactly a ratings disaster either. Seven seasons and UPN spending a small fortune to buy the show when the WB let it go proves that. Add to that a spinoff show, countless novels and comics, unending bits of merchandise and massive DVD sales. As cult shows go this one was a biggie. Certainly on the same level as Star Trek was back in the 60s and 70s, when it's fanbase was really kicking off.

There is definitely no reason to assume that the new Buffy comic will be enough to convince a network or cable channel to want to give a new Buffyverse show a chance but there is no reason to count out the possibility entirely either. Comics with a lot fewer fans and a lot less media attention get television shows all the time. If this comic is as big as we all hope and gets the word of mouth out that the Buffyverse fans are still hungry for more, who knows what will come around?

Faith the Vampire Slayer, coming soon to the Sci FI Channel. Hey, I can dream! ;)
Maybe the the comics will bring Joss to think about animated Buffy again. If the comics will be a big hit he will have an easier time selling the idea.
Anyone dreaming of a big screen Buffyverse movie is not alone. I've been thinking about that since Angel was cancelled. It could be big and epic, featuring major players from both shows, and involve the event that was mentioned in Fray where the demons were sent out of this dimension and the slayer line stopped.

My first idea was that the characters could go into outer space or time-travel or something, but that might be too weird. I'm still hoping that someday maybe we can get Buffy on the big screen. It's probably just wishful thinking though.

For now, any Buffy is good Buffy. I'm along for Joss' roller coaster ride of swoony, epic love and devastating tragedy, in whatever form he brings it.

[ edited by ElectricSpaceGirl on 2007-02-09 13:36 ]
Oh wow, I didn't think it was humanly possible for me to get more excited about this. But I have! (I may not be human.)

Wow, stretching from the confines of S8 to...possibly a long-ass time. That's brilliant. I love how Joss, when he has a story to tell, pretty much says, "Fuck you!" to anyone not willing to comply with his vision and finds a different venue. You don't see that a lot; Joss has never, in all his years in the biz, sold out. And he's been in the biz so long at this point that I can rest assured that he never will. This doesn't happen often. (A depressing recent example is Rob Thomas; the lengths that he's going to please the CW is devastating. There's a difference between compromise for the sake of art and submission for the sake of one's own ass. But that's a story for another day.)

My one reservation about the comic: S7 ended on such an incredible high note (I love S7, sue me) and the series was wrapped up in a very very powerful and definitive way thematically. By re-opening the door, it's very possible to smudge the great way the themes were all tied together. But then again it's Joss, and the man has never disappointed me before. Not even the Those Left Behind comics. Again, sue me.

Well, don't really. Please. I'd like to have money left over to buy S8. Both individual issues and TPBs. I need help.
It is so nice to see Joss jazzed by Buffy again. This comic is going to be awesome. Next month. I can't believe it is finally NEXT MONTH.
UnpluggedCrazy, if it helps, think of Chosen as being the end of the television era of Buffy's life (the Sunnydale years, if you like) and the comic era as an entirely fresh start in new surroundings. That way, you can still appreciate the closure of Chosen but you also get to have new Buffyness as well. Both the having and the eating of cake, as it were.

[ edited by Roxtar on 2007-02-09 14:43 ]
UnpluggedCrazy, if it helps, think of Chosen as being the end of the television era of Buffy's life (the Sunnydale years, if you like) and the comic era as an entirely fresh start in new surroundings. That way, you can still appreciate the closure of Chosen but you also get to have new Buffyness as well. Both the having and the eating of cake, as it were.
Roxtar | February 09, 14:42 CET

I've been calling the first 7 seasons as Volume 1, since the end of Buffy. Chosen is the final chapter for this Volume, and anything that comes after, is Volume 2 and so on.
After all, she's not done baking...
Roxtar, yeah, plenty of TV shows and movies are based on comics, but I think the fundamental difference is that Buffy was a TV show first. If the Hollywood suits start pondering the numbers, they won't--like they would with an original comic--guess whether success among comics could lead to equal success among TV shows. They'll just look at the numbers the TV show had before (and maybe DVD sales, which would work in our benefit) and base their guesses on that.
Dreamlogic, thanks. I get it now. Where I work (in corporate finance of a ginormous entertainment conglomerate) we call it "politics" and "ego". Money is definitely secondary to that most of the time.
Telltale, I'd have to agree with what you just said. I tend to think that in the case of BtVS it would be the previous show ratings that would be the deciding factor of any new series, rather than comic sales.

However, my previous reply to you was more about that you seemed to be suggesting that a successful comic book in itself wouldn't be enough to merit a network considering a tv show adaption which, as I said before, I don't believe to be true as it happens all the time, with varying degrees of success.

All that said, I would think that a combination of the good (if not amazing) ratings that BtVS used to get when added to a top selling (we hope) comic series would be enough to have some network or cable suit somewhere pondering whether the Buffyverse is due a revival. I'd definitely say that this wasn't out of the realms of real possibility.
Excluding the possibility of Boreanez or SMG returning to their roles (because frankly we know that's just not going to happen in the next few years.), I've always thought the Buffyverse would be perfect for a plethora of spinoffs.

And I'm not just talking a Faith series. With their talent, the Mutant Enemy crew could do some interesting things with the setting. As long as it features the production qualities we all love, the reappearance of old faces isn't top priority to me as a fan.

'Cause you know, I'm still crossing my fingers for an Arrested Development style dark sitcom featuring Clem's new adventures in suburban Idaho.
NekoDono...I would KILL to see that.

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