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January 28 2008

(SPOILER) BtVS #12 rumors from Lying in the Gutters. According to comics gossip columnnist Rich Johnston, something major is going to happen in issue #12 and retailers have been urged to order extra copies.

Scroll down to the Speculation Corner section for more information. Warning - there may be spoilers for other comic series in the article.

40 pages? Not 22?
Someone very major gets killed off or Buffy becomes a vampire. My money is on the latter.

Oh and the real solicitation info for the next issue will be for Buffy the Vampire #13. Unlucky for some.
Why do you think she's going to become a vampire, Simon?
The column says #12 is out this week. Not so, right? Isn't Joss' #11 out this week?

Aaand, I heard about the extra-order before, but it was in relation to Drew G having written Cloverfield, and nothing really story-related. Hmm, I bet Buffy doesn't die, though. Been there, etc, etc...
I know #12 isn't out this week, but I thought #11 was out NEXT week, not this one...

As far as the 40 pages, I think that includes ads. That's how Dark Horse lists it too, and since "The Chain" almost every other page has been an ad.

Simon- Do you really think they'd vamp Buffy? It would seem so... Gunn. I mean, they're doing it in "After the Fall" right now.
As far as deaths, Dawn isn't on any of the covers following #12...
Though it's not going to happen, I would love it if they vamped Buffy.
Maybe they'll find Oz again. And then they attack Twilight with hummus.
I'm hoping it's a Howard the Duck crossover.
I'm waiting for a vamped slayer. I think it would be ridiculously kick-ass.
Why do you think she's going to become a vampire, Simon?

Well here's my list of top three possibilities.

1) Buffy becomes a vampire.
2) One of the Scoobies bites the dust.
3) Angel or Spike return.

I'm going with number one as it would be a new and exciting avenue for Joss to explore. The second one could happen but I don't know if it would cause an explosion of new orders. And as for number three I reckon Angel or Spike will appear once After The Fall finishes(which is another 9 months at least).
Joss is known for killing off loved characters... but usually after some great happy moment. We haven't really had one of those, have we? Issue #10 talked about a great betrayal...
After the speculation that Buffy and Xander are dating, maybe that will be revealed, and them one of them dies/becomes a vampire.
I hope it really is something big! I like Drew's writing. Can't wait to read it!
I am SO a fan of Buffy becoming a vampire, but only as a side exploration, not in the main plotline.

I'd add betrayal to the list at #4, although I think that's going to come to a head later, not in #12. But it's still a strong possibility. And I think of #1 as more general-- somebody popular gets vamped. Like Xander (an idea I'm not such a fan of).

I'm thinking the Cloverfield link sounds like the most plausible reason for the "up your order" signal. But I'm a cynic. But yay for rumor-based speculation of a not-ornery variety.
Someone we think is Buffy does something tremendously out of character-for Buffy? There's got to be something going on with that other slayer disguised as Buffy sooner or later.
Just had a random mental image of Giant Vampire Dawn. Going to go cower under my desk now.
Vamped slayer? Been there, done that.

I suspect Rich has his wires crossed, reading into DH retailer nudging the same way Marvel has behaved over the last couple of years (they gave pretty firm hints directly to retailers that they should order lots of the Spider-Man Unmasked issue and the Death of Cap issue whilst withholding information about those particular contents).

But on the other hand, he might be right, and he tends to be dead on about 60% of the time (which is pretty good for a rumour column). Personally I have one expectation from a Buffy story set in the far east entitled "Wolves at the Gate" that includes Willow.
Also I think Dracula will be the vampire that sires Buffy. Tons of mainstream media interest there. The headlines could write themselves really.

"Slayer no more. Buffy is a vampire"

"Buffy the Bride of Dracula"

Or maybe Tara returns.
Buffy as a vampire isn't Buffy. That's been canon since "The Harvest". How could it be a new direction for Buffy when... it wouldn't be Buffy at all?

There's already a fanfic series, however, that deals with Buffy as a vampire, written by a guy named Mabus. Won't link it, but it's called "DeadWar". Should scratch that itch for you.

I'm going with --

1. Reveal of the traitor's identity, even if just to the audience
2. Buffy and Xander hook up (my personal favorite).
3. Some sort of returning character or cameo (Oz, Angel, Spike).
But guys.... Again, Gunn just got sired. "After the Fall" is doing that very plotline as we speak. Do we really think Joss would have the same plot going on at once?
Almost certainly not, Pat.
Oy...this kills me to think about so far in advance. I would be super upset if Buffy got vamped. Call me a softy, but I like the girl, you know? Let them explore that theme in ATF. I'd rather something like Tara or Anya's return in some form, or a steamy Buffy/Xander hook-up.
I think it could be cool to make one of the scoobies a vamp. Or maybe even 100 ft tall Dawny vampire. Sweet.

(BTW, where's all the Howard the Duck love?)
A "steamy Buffy/Xander hook-up" would certainly meet all the things we've heard about it. Georges Jeanty's "we'll be talking about it for years" (and possibly have Buffy/Angel and Buffy/Spike 'shippers burn down some stuff), and his "you can't do that" dialogue with Joss where he was told "yes I can do that, and you'll see how I can do that".
No, no Bride of Dracula. Oh please please please no. I'd rather she has some moment where she decides it's necessary (perhaps very wrongly), and she gets him to turn her... followed by weirdness and her killing him later. She's sorta-kinda part demon already, and exceptional as a slayer, so I'm thinkin' some things we think of as rules would be bent a bit. She'd be an exceptional vampire, possibly with some twisted humanity left like Spike had.

But this is just fun speculation. I don't think it's going to happen. And if it did I don't think it would be Dracula. She's not the same person she was last time she met Dracula. I don't think the whole thrall thing is going to work anymore. She's gotten darker.

Just had a random mental image of Giant Vampire Dawn.

I had that too, and although it was pretty kickass, I dismissed it. Due to biological reasoning that people here may not want to hear in too much detail.

Um, moving on. New idea: they meet Oz, and he bites somebody.
Addendum: not Kennedy.
It seems like so long since "Anywhere But Here." Crap.
Hi, I'm Cleveland and I'm new in town. Can I join in your play? :-)

@toast: That sounds more pleasant to my ears than the dreadful ideas of having one of the scoobies killed or vamped.

My favourite plot moments for season 8 (though not necessarily sensational ones) would be:

- Kennedy clumsily falls into the crater of an active volcano. Willow can't bring her back, because it's a natural death.

- Some evil magician manages to trick Osiris and brings back someone from the death. As a side effect Tara awakes in a subterranean place and has to battle her way back to the surface. She takes years to regain her memory. Finally Tara and Willow meet, but they realise in a deep and sad moment that each of them has moved on in their lives. (This idea must be years old.)

- There will be some locke to which only that certain key made of brigth green swirling enegry is fitting.

- Willow would have to take a closer and more convincing look to the fact that she's a murderer. (Meanwhile there's a real club of murderers of humans in the buffyverse. I adored how it was a big deal for Faith to face the fact and tread the rocky path of redemption. Meanwhile: Willow killed a human, Fred intended to kill a human, but Charles did it for her, Angel sacrified a victim instead of saving it, Lorne killed a human ... and everytime it's getting a smaller thing, even while Warren, the Prof, Lindsey were villains.)

- Is their a chance to make some of the weirdest season four plot twists appear a little less unconvincing ...?

Anyway, so far I'm enjoying the season 8 comic very much.
I'm going to guess the covers previewed to date are part of the deception. To wit: It's Xander or Willow who dies. Probably Willow, because she's become deus ex machina again, and because it'll hurt worse.
It wouldn't surprise me if it is, indeed, Willow who gets killed. I, too, think that, as long as she sticks around at her current power level, she's a crutch for the gang to fall on, whenever they can't think of anything. It would be devastating to Buffy, especially considering where #10 left off, and would make Sayer Central far more vulnerable. Besides, if Twilight wants to wipe out the age of magic, methinks Willow is going to be a big issue for him.

I'm also wondering if this big thing will happen at the end of issue #11, especially since it's written by Joss, and consequently drive the sales of #12 up.
Simon- it's too early for Tara to return. The context has not yet been set up for that, and we have only 2 issues for that to happen. I do not see this happening, yet.

But let's talk Willow for a moment. We don't know how she got away from Warren and Amy, but she did- she was just about lobotomized. So, are we sure it's really her?

I cannot see them killing off Willow. They'd lose half their audience. I cannot see Buffy being vamped, because I do not see where you can go with that, really. Buffy has to be in the center of the action for a Buffy comic to work. I can see Xander or Dawn biting it, Xander more than Dawn. Buffy died to save Dawn, so why kill her off now? But I can also see Satsu getting killed, because she has true love for Buffy, and I can see it being some sort of sacrifice. I can see Kennedy biting it as well, for too many reasons to list (see above, RE: context).

But I can see Glory returning, too. And Oz, for reasons as noted (Wolves at the gate?"). None of these are sufficient. It has been 12 issues, so it is time for a death that matters, since that is the main tactic Joss uses. My bet: A main character that is not a main Scooby. Unless he offs Giles... but my bet would be either Satsu or Kennedy. Though I am not sure this would justify an larger order. So, a more important person will die. It has to be either Xander, Dawn or Giles. Of those, pick em: Xander or Giles. Faith is safe, though.

[ edited by Dana5140 on 2008-01-29 01:31 ]
Willow is on the cover of #13 and the variant for #15.
Killing Willow? Nae.

Buffy The Vampire has been floating around for years. I doubt it.
I don't think Buffy will be a vampire. They can't give her a soul because that has been done. A lot. So they have to kill her. No more Buffy. No more comic series. That would suck, there is very little they can realistically do with it, without messing up the lore of the series. I would not buy a Buffy: vampire with a soul and I would not buy it if she became human again.

The only scenario I could do is Buffy becomes a vampire, and to save her the scoobies have to let Twilight end all magic, thereby drawing all the mysticism from the series, and drawing the vampire and slayer out of Buffy. But still, much later. Also that wouldn't be so great anyway.

I reckon it is just the 'Drew Goddard wrote Cloverfield' issue. I don't really have any other theories, but I just don't think Buffy would become a vampire.
Joss never kills off people that any signigicant number of people actually WANT to die, Dana5140, which makes me think both Dawn and Kennedy are safe. Giles, though....

And even though I think you're substantially right about how important Willow is to Joss' fans... I really don't think that will stop him. He'll either do it, or not, but I think saying "Joss would never..." is kind of tempting fate.

[ edited by jclemens on 2008-01-29 01:39 ]
Willow is not going to die. Joss sez so, in the commentary on "Innocence."

Unless she is, of course. But I doubt it. The Four (Buffy, Xander, Willow and Giles) are probably safe. And vampire Buffy doesn't sound amazing. To me, anyway.

I'm with the "Oz Returns" crowd. He's due for a shot in the comic, according to some interview, somewhere.
I guess Buffy won't die, because in "Fray" there's a hint that it will actually be Buffy who presumably after or ere this way defeating them disappears along with or at the same time as all of the demons from earth's face, thus also establishing the slayers' gap.

Who knows? Maybe there's some truth in that twilighty general's prediction that Buffy's gonna fight whole mankind.

Dana said, "I cannot see Buffy being vamped, because I do not see where you can go with that, really." Have you watched any of his shows??!!!

How about a storyline where we turn our main character into a muppet? Crazy! Or a season long arc that ends with the killing of the main protagonist? Unheard of! Or maybe we have the main character kill her long time lover. Ridiculous!

Never underestimate the Purple Man. (Not to be confused with the sadistic Jessica Jones enslaving Marvel character from Alias) With Joss I think the rule is, expect the unexpected.
Maybe Willow dies AND Tara comes back to life. "Sorry, you juuuuust missed her." I'm a bit of a terrible person today.

I'm still stuck on Giant Vampire Dawn. I'd like to see the daring kamikaze mission of the elite squad of vampires sent to infiltrate her cereal bowl.

As for Twilight, are we sure Ethan Rayne is dead?
Guys... Having a story about Vampire!Buffy at the same time as Vampire!Gunn would be the same exact thing as if Buffy had a mystical child in the same season that Angel had Connor. It's not going to happen.
Maybe Willow dies AND Tara comes back to life. "Sorry, you juuuuust missed her." I'm a bit of a terrible person today.

Ooh, we have a new leader in the "most evil suggestion so far" category.
I actually really like that Willow/Tara idea. A lot. And I would very much like to see Tara back & explored more. I loved her in Season 6 sans Willow.
Vamp slayers, yes. Vamp Buffy, no.
I'm not sure I care what happens (though there are many possibilities that could break my heart or make me giddy with joy). I am just grateful that Joss has given us all worlds and characters that we feel so intensely for. That 40 pages of colored ink and words can inspire such passion and speculation. I was surprised to hear "if such and such happens, I'm out of here". I think Joss has made a career of challenging our expectations and I believe that's exactly why we care.

Boy, does that sound all soap-boxy and corny or what?
Now, if the comics would only arrive in Australia a bit more quickly.
Since the whole "death of magic" thing has come up, what about this: Willow loses her power, permanently.

It wouldn't be a death in the traditional sense, and it would have a significant impact on the Scoobies (and would certainly weaken them). Besides, no one ever said all magic in the world would end; they could have just been referring to a powerful magic-wielder. My two cents, anyway.
Alex- my comment about where do you go with a vamped Buffy is not what you think it meant. My point there is that once Buffy is vamped, she's vamped. There is really no way back from that that we have not seen before, and with the constraints of the medium, I just don't see this as potentially or ever happening. No shansu here, no fight with an African demon, been there done that and why do it again? That's what I meant with "where do we go from heeeereee."

I am always such a contrarian but I really am waiting for Joss to challenge my expectations- by not killing off important people. ;-)
Xander is sired by Dracula...fulfilling his deal with him from "Buffy vs. Dracula".
Gah, Dana. Joss Whedon approaches this as a storyteller, not a coward. If he wants to kill Willow, if he thinks it'll be a good story, he'll do it. He won't castrate his own story just because he's afraid of "losing half his audience", which wouldn't even happen anyways. Anyone who would drop a title they love just because a single character dies is too fickle an audience to indulge, especially for an artist who's invested 15+ years of his life to telling this story.

Willow would be the easiest character to kill. I don't think she will die (at least not in issue 12), but it would be the easiest to deal with, story-wise. If Xander or Dawn die, Buffy would be finished. They're not coming back, and she would take it too hard. She relies on them too much. Willow, however, has been off doing her own thing, living her own life, and I think Buffy would be more equipped to dealing with losing her.

Also, Willow would be the easiest character to resurrect and have pop up at a key moment, or at least keep around in some form, working behind the scenes in the ethereal realm. She's probably so deep into magic, she's like Obi-Wan Kenobi, strike her down and she'll become more powerful than yadda yadda yadda.

[ edited by dingoes8 on 2008-01-29 04:23 ]
My best guess...Dawn falls over and flattens Buffy...
Dawn falls on Twilight and everything is not so dire for awhile. The next arc is The Adventures of Xander in Scotland. The Wolves at the Gate is the name of a really cool band everyone gets to see while they're in Japan. It's all cool. Drac's just hanging out, you know?
Obviously Mephisto comes to Buffy and tells her he'll save Tara's life but only if he can rewrite history and Buffy and Angel AND Buffy and Spike can never have been together.
Bravo, Brian, Bravo!
Does that mean that Ford (i'm trying to think of Buffy's equivilant of Harry Osborn) is going to come back and then he and Buffy will be best buds again? Awww.
Ok, but who's the champion in "Chosen"?
Oh cruel, Mr Lynch. Cruel. (pronounced cru-el, of course)
Besides, as much as she might have liked Tara, I really don't think it compared to either Spike or Angel. And easy enough to look at who saved the world more often. Not Tara.

Unless you are suggesting that Buffy AND Angel AND Spike would be ok?
I'd go for that!
I think this may be one of those moments when an "oh snap!" is warranted. Can someone provide one?
And just as Dracula and Ford sign a record deal with Mephisto, Dawn trips over a misplaced bowl of Vampire Flakes® and her sneaker goes *SPLAT* in the general vicinity of Tara and Willow's tearful embrace. And no one knows what splatted until the next issue!

[ edited by Lady Brick on 2008-01-29 06:02 ]
Frankly, I don't care what happens, because I'm not buying the comics.

But I'll have fun speculating.

Willow gets vamped and Buffy has to stake her, but because she's this all-powerful Wicca it's only her vamp-self that dies, not herself - she was able to...side-step her Willow self temporarily into whoever was closest at the time (Xander!) and then they have to find her a new Willow body before things get really complicated.

In an act of complete unselfishness (Has she ever had one?) Kennedy sacrifices herself in a huge battle so Willow can move in, thus allowing Xander to go on being Xander without his best friend sharing his body. ('cause...that's gotta be cramped.)

Then The Powers offer Willow her old body back (Hey, if they can resurrect Darla...) but she has to give up her powers and be "a regular girl" again. She agrees, but they don't realize she's stashed some of her essence in a necklace...that Dawn is carrying just in case anything ever happens and Willow's not around to have Willow power.

So Will gets her Willow body back, but Dawn keeps the necklace hidden for a while, until they really, really need Willow.

But while Willow's in the ether in between transferring out of Kennedy's body into her new, improved one, she has a brief glimpse of Tara's soul, and knows where she is & how to get her back...but she doesn't have her powers when she gets her new body. And Dawn won't go back on her promise of not breaking the necklace until "it's an absolute, postive necessary emergency."
Brian...that was awesome.

(And right now I'd just like to take a second to say that Joe Quesada makes me very, very angry, and I feel almost personally insulted. See, I knew I was able to get that out sans gratuitous profanity, much as it was tempting.)

Something that will drive up sales? My money is simply on it being because Drew Goddard wrote it (even though Cloverfield took one hell of a harsh 68% drop-off and I've heard that most audiences hated it, including the one I was with; I loved it). But there's always fun in speculation:

Theory I: They all die and become vampires, and for the following 28 issues we follow the exploits of the murderous shells we once knew as our Scoobies.

Theory II: The souped-up Japanese vampires we've been hearing about are FOX execs (hey, we all knew they were soulless bastards anyway, right?). The gang kills them all and Firefly comes back.

Theory III: The gang gets age-reversed and it goes all Muppet Babies. Brian, you wanna write that one?

Theory IV: Or, just to piss everyone off, Joss reveals that the mentally damaged Buffy presented in "Normal Again" really is the true Ms. Summers, and she systematically kills all the Scoobies in her head.

And I fucking love that "Hey, Tara! It's so good to see...oh shit, Willow just died!" idea. It's horrible and evil and would make me cry. Plus it's exactly the kind of thing I would write.
Sigh. Joss's brain isn't "mushy." It's "squishy." If they can't get little details like that right, I don't know how much I trust this source.
It's the return of the Cheese Man. I'm sure of it.
Well it has to be something fans would be really interested in.. which suggests a call back to something? Maybe Buffy finds out that Angel and Spike have sucked LA into hell.. Well I don't think so really, that's just my wish. I'd say it has something to do with the betrayal, mentioned in 10.
Okay, here goes my speculation.
What if Riley returns as a Vampire (I'd include Pike in the mix, if he wasn't so obscure tv show mythos wise), you know Sam got killed in some mission, and now Buffy's ex (another one) is a vampire, and he'll not really consider the soul thing at all.
Cloverfield crossover. It turns out the monster is just Giant!Dawn on a bad hair day.

Either that, or they think they've been much sneakier about Dracula than they have, and he counts (heh) as "something major." To which some fans will respond "Uh... yeah. We kinda already knew he'd be in it" but most will praise Joss for the most unexpected plot twist EVAR. ;-)
Sorry for being serious, but the Willow losing her magic thing actually makes sense with how powerful Joss has made her at this point. Would that be considered big enough to create a sales jump, though?

If this really is something other than an expectation based on "Cloverfield" recognition, it will be interesting to see what it is. Would a death really make people buy more copies? I find that doubtful. I don't know comics, however, so I could be working on false assumptions. I figure that BtVS fans are the ones doing the buying. BtVS fans know that people die in BtVS. Either they will be buying anyway or not. Someone dying would be another plot point. A few extra people might want to know how characters deal with the death, but mostly it seems like it would not make new people rush to the comic. I think it has to be something different.

I truly hope it is not a Xander/Buffy romance or Buffy as a vampire. As said, Buffy as a vampire has been explored and it would be hard to bring her back from that. (Joss has had parallel story lines on BtVS and Angel, though. Spike/Buffy and Wes/Lilah comes to mind,) I also hate the Xander/Buffy because a male and a female working closely together or who are friends, always end up with a relationship in fiction. In real life, if the chemistry is not there when they meet, it rarely develops 10 years later. At least that is my experience.
Maybe Buffy and the gang become puppets for a

Honestly,I have no idea what this big thing is but Georges Jeanty has certainly hinted recently that whatever happens in issue 12,it's really BIG!
Something big?
Maybe the Scoobies will get a giant Mecha... LOL.
Couple of points here.

1. I see little point in speculating if, every time I do it, someone throws the "Joss does what he wants when he wants to" argument back in my face. I get it; that I consider the market aspect of the story is my gig and YMMV. We have had that debate before- those who argue Joss does not respond to the audience to tell his tale coughspikecough...

2. More important to me as I sit here thinking. It's the idea of the comic industry putting this information out there to begin with. I am not sure I like the idea of such press releases or announcements: "Order more because something BIG is happening." Why do we need to know this? I think it actually takes away from the tale in many ways; it focuses our attention on the issue in question outside of the context of the story, and it raises expectations that may ultimately not be met and thus disappointing readers. I wonder, how many among us would prefer to get each issue clean, without any advance information, and how many would prefer to glean as much information as possible before the issue is released? I sort of find this whole thing untoward.

3. I have to say, shodowquest does posit an interesting story. :-)

4. And I am so comic ignorant that I do not know who Mephisto is so as to enjoy Brian Lynch's post. But I think Buffy would take the deal. :-)

5. Back on spec, I know believe that if it s a core Scooby to bite it, it'll be Giles. Time for Buffy to grow up for good. And it'll be due to his betrayal.
But while Willow's in the ether in between transferring out of Kennedy's body into her new, improved one, she has a brief glimpse of Tara's soul, and knows where she is & how to get her back...but she doesn't have her powers when she gets her new body. And Dawn won't go back on her promise of not breaking the necklace until "it's an absolute, postive necessary emergency."
Hm... I kinda like this idea.

I certainly don't mind a way to get rid of Kennedy, but it seems like it'd be poignant if Willow went straight from Xander into her new body (sacrificing powers) and then had to freak about a way to retrieve Tara /while Kennedy was still around/.

And I think Dawn would probably want Tara back more than just about anyone. Maybe there's some enchanted inability to give over the necklace until it's needed.
4. And I am so comic ignorant that I do not know who Mephisto is so as to enjoy Brian Lynch's post. But I think Buffy would take the deal. :-)
I don't know who Mephisto is either, but it was an allusion to the latest plot in Spiderman, wherein he saved Aunt May by sacrificing his marriage. Now he is free to be a wild and crazy guy and pursue the foxes.

2. More important to me as I sit here thinking. It's the idea of the comic industry putting this information out there to begin with. I am not sure I like the idea of such press releases or announcements: "Order more because something BIG is happening." Why do we need to know this?

While I agree with you as a reader, the problem is the differing needs of retailers and readers, unfortunately. If the comic companies don't say anything about the issues (beyond the basic plot solicitations they always put out) and something huge happens, then word of it spreads when the issue comes out, more people go to buy the issue then normal, it sells out at the stores, and then the stores are caught with their pants down when more customers come in and all the issues are gone.

That's what happened last year when Captain America died. Marvel did say "something big happens" about the issue, but they didn't say what (unlike DC in 1993 when Superman died; they came right out and said "Superman dies in this issue" beforehand, resulting in huge orders). Word of Cap's death didn't spread till the day the issue came out in stores, and while retailers had ordered more than normal, they hadn't ordered enough for demand and had to scramble for re-orders. Some retailers criticized Marvel for not spoiling enough.

When DC had the Flash (Bart Allen) die last year and rebooted the series back to the one of the previous Flash (Wally West) they kept it secret from readers till the weekend before the issue came out by soliciting false info (basically soliciting issues of one comic that they then replaced with another). While it preserved the surprise for the readers, a lot of retailers and comic industry types grumbled online about DC lying to retailers.

So the retailers want as much info as they can get, so they know how much to order, while readers may (I know some want spoilers, but many don't) want to know as little as possible. So the companies have to balance the two. And if they try to just alert the retailers it invariable leaks to the public.
If he wants to kill Willow, if he thinks it'll be a good story, he'll do it. He won't castrate his own story just because he's afraid of "losing half his audience", which wouldn't even happen anyways.

He would lose 10% of his audience. And not 10% of people who want Willow to live, but 10% of people who need Willow to live. I would stop reading...not out of anger or resentment, but out of apathy. Yep, Willow's death would invoke a big "figures" from me. I've grown so cynical in my not-so-old age.

I really don't think the death of a scoobie would increase sales anyway. People who aren't Btvs fans aren't going to care that much that a major character has died. People who are fans, but haven't read the comics, aren't going to start because something unpleasant happened. I mean, I just can't see that many people going "oooh, something horrible has happened! I must get my hat, coat and shoes and get my butt to the comic book store!...that I need to look up in google maps because I've never been there..."
Buffy and Xander. LOL. That is incest man!

Remember this from Restless?

BUFFY: I'm way ahead of you, big brother.
XANDER: Brother?

I think that indicates what their relationship is and always will be.
It's the return of the Cheese Man. I'm sure of it.

The Cheese Man is Twilight. He wants to end all magic so that he can enjoy his cheese in peace and quiet.
The incest thing is false. It's no more incest than Xander/Willow was, or any of the other many permutations of "Scoobycest" were.

Anyway, that scene in "Restless" doesn't tell us anything about Buffy, because Xander is the one on both sides of that conversation -- it's his dream.
If Giles dies, I'm closing Whedonesque.

Just kidding.

As for Mephisto, wou know, Klaus Maria Brandauer would make a great Watcher.
The incest thing is false. It's no more incest than Xander/Willow was, or any of the other many permutations of "Scoobycest" were.

Anyway, that scene in "Restless" doesn't tell us anything about Buffy, because Xander is the one on both sides of that conversation -- it's his dream.

Thank you. I've never understood the "incest!" cry, based on that dream. You're right - it is all Xander's perspective, and I always believed it was his fear that she'd never see him the way he wanted her to.
I like the idea of a vamped Buffy but I doubt that'll happen.

Riley returning as a evil vampire without a soul? Kinda did that in S2. Don't see them going there again.

Killing Willow is a very real possibility, what with that 'death of magic' thing.

But my money's on Tara coming back.

Side note: I may be only recalling rumors from around the time Btvs ended but isn't Willow supposed to be some sort of goddess now?
Vamped Buffy just doesn't make sense in my head. Unless it was some sort of temporary deal, like in "Nightmares," I think that the series wouldn't really make sense anymore. I mean, an evil vampire Buffy being the main character? Or just making her the villain and having the rest of the Scoobies take over as the main cast? It doesn't fit together. Who would be the main character?

I only have one theory, and it's pretty doubtful. So far, I think whatever surprise there is going to be (if indeed there even is one) is either going to be completely out of left field, with no possible way of knowing what it is going to be other than a wild lucky guess. Or, something with Satsu, because she's been getting more focus than most of the other new characters.
I won't specualte b/c all bases are covered here, methinks :-).

Maybe Slayers can't become weres....

Dana5140, swanjun;Mephisto is a devil-like figure in the AMrvel Universe. Not a fallen angel, sort of an incarnation of all evil thouights humans have.

GrrrrlRomeo; Willow 's dying would almost amke me a Joss fan again, since I coudl picture her having a wonderful reunion with Tara in Annwyn. But I see your point; each viewer/reader's needs are different, and should be.
How about Oz turned villain, and killed by Willow or Buffy? It would be a sort of scooby death, but wouldn't be one of the core four and could have major psychological fall out, depending on what complications are thrown in.

[ edited by shambleau on 2008-01-29 19:23 ]
Which actually brings up an issue for me. The mask. That Twilight wears. What is that about? Since when did Buffy villains need masks? That's a comic book convention, and all it does it make me think of Marvel comics, and I'm a DC fan.

As to Tara, boy I want her back. But I just cannot see that happening yet; there is no context for it to happen. Kennedy has been an afterthought so far, barely there at all. I would be interested in seeing how Willow would handle having both women in her life- though I can go over to Jetwolf for that since she has done just that.

While I think it could be Giles, it could be Satsu. Or Kennedy. And I say enough things, I will likely be right! :-)
Since when did Buffy villains need masks

Which Buffy villain was a geek and into superheroes?
Twilight is pretty clearly a guy, I don't think they'd fudge by having a female character wear an outfit that makes her look decisively male.

I think the mask is just about... being awesome. Because that whole look is profoundly cool. I wonder how much Joss designed his look himself, or if he had Georges pitch him different concepts. He has this sort of Ra's al Ghul/Bane/Rorschach thing happening, between the mask, the coat, and the armor.

Being awesome... maybe that's the key. Twilight is Captain Awesome!

If Twilight is a known character, I think it'll be Riley or, if Joss wanted to really get flexy and Pulp Fictiony with the timelines of these two series, it'll be Angel, and "After the Fall" turns into it's own sort of Star Wars prequel trilogy.

I lean more toward Twilight being a new character and the traitor being Giles -- I'm having trouble figuring how anyone in the Big Honkin' Castle (BHC) would have known that Giles and Faith had "left the board" in order to report it to Lt. Molter. There's no reason to suspect Faith, so that left me thinking Giles. Granted, that's partly because I'd rather Giles than one of the Scoobies at the BHC.

[ edited by KingofCretins on 2008-01-29 19:52 ]
Which Buffy villain was a geek and into superheroes?

Warren, we've seen. Andrew is too incompetent to run that sort of a double-cross. Jonathan, we saw die... but then, we saw Warren die, too.

Riley? I can't see him hating magic things that much. Last time we saw him, he trusted Buffy implicitly. We'd have to see some backstory to justify his change.

Oz? Same deal. Plus the fact that he IS magic. Unless the death of magic would remove his curse? Still, he seems too laid back to want to destroy all magic to end his particular burden.

Pretty sure the Faith arc demonstrates that Giles isn't it, unless he's cloned and in two places at once.

Robin Wood? Don't see it.

Could be Adam... but yawn. What a lame villain to resurrect.

Hank Summers, maybe?

Going to leave aside the Angel folks; I presume we won't have any major crossovers, and none of them seem too compelling.

Hmm, it could be an Evil Resurrected Tara somehow. No reason the person behind the mask *needs* to be male.

Drusilla, Glory? Too magic, and too idiosyncratic play nice with others.
Which Buffy villain was a geek and into superheroes?

I thought Warren at first but I don't think he could talk that linearly, no matter how evil he is. And I think Jonathan's changed.

Of course, if it is Warren, and Jonathan hasn't changed much, it would solve two riddles at once, wouldn't it?
Andrew is too incompetent to run that sort of a double-cross.

See I don't trust Andrew as I think he has his own agenda. Plus he could be in cahoots with Warren.
I pitched Hank Summers a few weeks back on another site, but mostly because I was desperate for ideas. I was looking for theories under which Twilight's identity would be the "closest, most unexpected" type of personal betrayal to Buffy. And Dawn would be the man on the inside, perhaps? The idea didn't impress anyone. I also think my main reasoning was that it would make Hank the apotheosis of bad fathers.
Oh, I agree, Simon, I don't trust him either, but that doesn't mean I think he's capable of that level of villainy. I've always thought he's been too much of a Neelix, only he doesn't even cook, does he? I thought him talking down to Wesley in AtS5 was a bit preposterous--I would have rather seen Giles show up to take Dana, and would rather have seen Dawn in Rome.
RE: GrrlRomeo and Dana...

It just sounds like you're inventing statistics and sales figures in a very intellectul way to try to scare Joss into not hurting your favorite character.

Remember the whole Save Wash campaign that popped up after the first preview screening of Serenity? Where all those people online were like "Either Joss reedits the movie so that Wash doesn't die, or we will stop being fans and make it our personal mission to make sure no one else goes to see this movie." They also cited the fact that a big chunk of the audience relates to Wash and getting rid of him will alienate every geeky person in the audience and they won't be able to connect to the story anymore.

Of course it didn't work. Are those people still grumbling about it to this day and refusing to consider themselves fans? If so, does anyone care? Or did they realize they were being silly and come crawling back to the fandom with their tails between their legs?

I am sure there are some hardcore Willow fans out there that would stop buying the comic if she died. But the vast majority of fans wouldn't stop. Most people are in it for the overall story, not for any one single character. This small facet of the audience is not big enough to cater to. And while creators and artists appreciate support from all their fans, I imagine the ones who try to blackmail them with their support and threaten to leave if so-and-so doesn't happen are the most expendible, and the least likely to be indulged.

Anyways, I think none of us are probably on the right track as far as what's going to happen. I hope it's so crazy none of us can see it coming.
"I would have rather seen Giles show up to take Dana, and would rather have seen Dawn in Rome."

I would have rather had Xander in "Damage" -- him being the one to burst Angel's bubble about his status with the Scoobies due to being at W&H would have been very intense given their history.

It would have been better with Dawn in "The Girl in Question". I think, though, that, the way Joss described the scene in his post, that having Michelle walk out all super-fabulous for her night out would have had both vampires gawking in a way that would have undercut their obsessions with Buffy.

[ edited by KingofCretins on 2008-01-29 20:16 ]

[ edited by KingofCretins on 2008-01-29 20:17 ]
Hey, if Giles want to take me (in the literal sense, that is!), that's fine with me. ;-)

dingoes, boy, are you wrong. I am not inventing anything, and you are doing just what I said I really don't appreciate, telling me that Joss has to do what Joss has to do. Joss can do what he pleases, fine by me. He does not need you defending him, as if what you say actually is any closer to the truth than my thoughts, since you don't know him or what he will do or why he will do it. You have no more insight into his creative ethos than I do. But he risks his audience with certain decisions he makes, and there should be little controversy in my saying that. He could kill Buffy off if he wanted to, but I think he'd have a hard time selling a Buffy comic book as a result.
he risks his audience with certain decisions he makes

You say that like it's a bad thing. Or an unusual thing.

I hadn't even thought of Hank Summers, but it does seem a bit much for him to be Twilight. I wouldn't be surprised if the government had their hands on him, though.

Have we ruled out Clem?

I still wouldn't be surprised to see that Xander is Twilight and/or the traitor, simply because it would be so surprising.
There is not going to be a big sales jump because of what is in the comic, but because of the huge hype about what is supposed to be in it.
Xander actually *being* Twilight is essentially impossible without some serious cheating -- he was in the BHC in 8.01 while Twilight was hovering over the castle where Buffy and her team were fighting the demons. Also, it's hard for me to imagine he went from being in the BHC at the end of "No Future For You" and then took a sidetrip to Wyoming to get an intelligence report from Lt. Molter on things he would already know because he was there.

Xander as the traitor? Disastrously plausible. It would really bum me out big time -- I think of him as being as big of a role model as Buffy herself in certain contexts. But, as Buffy/Xander fan, people reassure me that if he did do a stint as a villain, it would probably only improve his chances of getting with her.
Ok-- Twilight is really Joyce Summers. And when you take off her mask she has a big MOO tatoo'ed across her forehead.

But seriously, there's a reason the Big Bad is wearing a mask. I think its safe to say there is going to be an awesome last panel/page reveal whenever we do get a glimpse of the baddie. I am warming to the idea that its Riley back with a vengence. Heartbroken, maybe blaming the magics and looking for irrational payback.
Xander as traitor has some interesting possibilities, not the least of which being that Buffy is somewhat (or more) on the outs with Giles and Willow at the moment.
General;Hank; Odd thought.
jclemens:And Andrew does cook, or at least bake.

Dana5140: Inviting Giles to take you...are you sure you aren't speaking on behalf of Mrs. Dana here :-)?

Evil Resurrected Tara; or more likely than that her identical fifth cousin once removed Carolucy, who I don't think has given up her nefariosity by any means.
Ah, thanks KingofCretins. I hadn't really been looking for clues to Twilight's identity while reading, so hadn't been paying attention to that sort of thing. My current oddball theory remains Ethan Rayne.
KingofCretins-Xander's known what "type" Buffy preferred since season one. It's highly unlikely that he'd turn villian now, if that's what he wanted out of doing it. In fact, I believe one of the reasons he loved Riley so much was because Riley was relatively normal in a world where nothing surrounding Buffy was.

Also, man, that would make Xander the hypocrite of all time, after all the times he said Spike was evil, like it was the worst thing he could imagine.

Ethan Rayne sounds like a good theory for Twilight to me.

Hey, maybe it's Glory pretending to be Ben while she's secretly coveting Dawn's bright, shiny Keyness.

[ edited by menomegirl on 2008-01-30 01:02 ]
By the way, Carolucy isn't a character out of my fanfics, just somebody I thought would make a good villain if there'd been a televised Angel S-6, played by AMber in red hair. With a weapon which bansihes the souls from living people to create flesh robots. And falls victim to her own device. LEading to, well, whatever it might lead to. (summoning up Tara's soul to inhabit the body) But that's off the menu based on "After the Fall."

As to the "Xander and Buffy as incest" thing, I agree but I also can see, given the nature of how their relationships have developed over the years, that any sexual relationship involving any combo amongst BWX&G could be seen as infantilizing and therefore roughly similar to incest in a mental-health sense. Maybe.
DaddyCatALSO (and whoever mentioned the "incest" thing)-I must respectfully disagree with that. A lot of times, the couples that grow into a solid relationship capable of withstanding anything that comes along are very often people who were friends before anything else. I can see Buffy/Xander as a couple very easily.

[ edited by menomegirl on 2008-01-30 01:10 ]
menomegirl, don't get me wrong -- Xander being a traitor would be pretty high on the list of Worst Possible Ideas for this story arc. But I can't ignore that they are leaving it open as an available option. It's just not a good option, really.

I think having Willow or Xander betraying Buffy would be an emotional deal-breaker for too many fans for anyone to think it's a good idea. Personally, any story arc can be what it has to be, but the core of the story should always come back to what's embodied in Jo Chen's cover for the "The Long Way Home" trade paperback that's currently my wallpaper and has been since it was released.

I started the season hoping for Buffy/Xander, and I still am, but after 10 issues and a 5 page preview, I mostly just hope none of the Scoobies turns evil or gets killed.
Maybe Twilight is Kenny, the tricewise. If it IS someone we know, Xander and Oz only make sense in the "death of magic" angle. If there's a government connection, I could buy Riley.
OK so...I think Bander or Xuffy or whatever is totally probable, and here's my thought. From the very first season, Xander was in love with Buffy. He left Anya at the alter because he still knew somewhere deep down that Buffy was more important. And in the season 1 finally, Xander brings Buffy back to life with "True Love's Kiss." Angel is unable to do so (because he has no breath, but also because he and Buffy are noy true love).

I think this has to be a revelation, that it's always been Xander. Steamy kisses. =)
That's only if the death of magic is Twilight's real goal, CaptainB.
Not right on topic, but you think the Wolves at the Gate are were-vamps?
What's this vampire Buffy talk? Possibly the most horrible idea I've heard going around :/ Essentially killing off the main character. Anyway think it's about as likely as Angel and Spike actually making a full on appearance ;)
I'm also up for some Bander.. although now a little torn because of what is going on in A:ATF. Friendships often turn into something more, well in my case.
alexa-A little torn how, because Angel's human?

Agreed, KingofCretins. They are leaving it open. Which makes for all kinds of speculation. *g*
Xander wears cinnamon lipgloss?
Hee! Um, no. Xander's not the one who kissed Buffy.
Twilight is the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man?

If Oz met Kennedy...would he go wolf, or would he just raise his eyebrow in a long perplexed silence?
I'm pretty sure Giles is safe for the time being. I don't even expect him to appear again for a good 10 issues or more. The way the Faith arc ended, it seems like they're gonna be off doing their own thing for a while and not really interacting with the others. When they do eventually turn up, it'll probably be at a pivotal moment, and they'll have some vital info or a bunch of wayward slayers they've recruited. Twilight even says they're "removed from the chessboard" for the time being.

Also, if Oz is Twilight, I will eat a dirty sock fajita and upload a video of me doing it to youtube. I still think it's Ethan, or someone totally new. Imagine his lines from issue 9 read out loud... can you hear Seth Green or Marc Blucas or Nick Brendon saying that? Robin Sachs is totally the only one I can hear reading those lines wand making it sound right.
Can't see 1 of the scoobies dieing, maybe cause I won't accept that happening...

Riley seems the most likely of people's idea's above, plus there was the whole Riley returning episode where it was hinted he was a baddy.

Not Oz as he's too nice.
I hope it's about Dawn shrinking. I miss normal-sized Dawn.
If Xander bites the dust or betrayes Buffy...that would be the number one deal breaker for me.
I could buy Riley as the bad guy- if Sam was killed in some weirdly supernatural way and he's out for revenge. This could easily be seen as a 'personal betrayal' of Buffy.

Given Joss's take on romance, if Xander and Buffy DO get together, I will be fully expecting him to bite the big one not very far down the line.

Or perhaps Buffy and Satsu get together, and then Satsu goes and tells all the slayers that Buffy stuffs her bra and they all laugh about it.
That would be a HUGE betrayal and very much spell the end of the magic in that romance... ;-)
I can never believe that Buffy will end up with Satsu, that wouldn't be right. However, I like the idea of a young slayer having a thing for Buffy, that would be one cute storyline.

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