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July 09 2009

(SPOILER) Buffy Season 8 #27 preview. 2-page preview courtesy of Dark Horse.

I must admit, took me a while to realize that was Oz.
Yeah Oz here looks a lot like Andrew.

Nevertheless, I'm super excited to see good ol' Oz again!
Glad to see Oz back.
I expect we'll see an extended version in a few days from CBR or Newsarama, and another one in TFAW.
Is it just me or does that cover art remind anyone else of Mal and Inara at the end of the episode Safe?
Was that a nude bear?
I wonder how Oz will get along with Willow's new girlfriend. If he eats Kennedy, I'm surprisingly OK with that... :)
Now, wait a minute, that's Willow's job -- er, I mean, um... Willow wouldn't be okay with that. Yeah, that's what I meant...
I like the Tibet setting, since I find Buddhism endlessly fascinating, but I think this takes the cake as Jeanty's worst character design ever. He looks like a really weird version of Andrew.
Only recognized him after reading the first comment here.

He looks like a really weird version of Andrew.

Which doesn't even look like Andrew to begin with...

But oh well... nice to see Oz back!
Yeah, I thought that was Andrew "a few years back".

Thanks for the clarification.

Love the reference to the Romanian Warlock, he was mentioned by Oz in New Moon Rising. Also love that weíre getting to see some of his back-story. Iím betting the girl who offers him the tea turns out to be his girlfriend or wife. Iím also guessing sheís the character who was modelled after Sierra from Dollhouse.

I agree the likeness isnít great here. However, Jeanty did a marvellous job at capturing Oz at the end of Issue #26 so I have faith he can pull through.
I agree the likeness isnít great here. However, Jeanty did a marvellous job at capturing Oz at the end of Issue #26 so I have faith he can pull through.

Only read issue 26 now, and you're right, last panel of issue 26 captured Oz well.
I knew it was Oz, because from a story standpoint, who else was it going to be? But I did think that he resembled Jeanty's version of Andrew. Anyway, an interesting two-page glimpse at the next issue.

And that lovely cover makes me hope for some more Willow/Xander interaction, which has been sorely lacking of late.
Is it just me or does that cover art remind anyone else of Mal and Inara at the end of the episode Safe?

Wasn't it 'Shindig' where Mal & Inara sat drinking tea over the cows in the cargo bay? But yes I see what you mean menomegirl :)

Excellent Jo cover and I think Oz would be quite difficult to capture.
And that lovely cover makes me hope for some more Willow/Xander interaction, which has been sorely lacking of late

So... will Willow be giving Xander relationship advice, because she saw him and Dawn sitting on the submarine drinking tea together?
I think the Willow and Dawn thing has been the first bona fide issue with Jo Chen, but even then it's not a negative -- because, by chance, it's a fairly good likeness for either of them. But Allie said its Dawn. And that actually fits the storyline more right now. Xander might want to talk to Willow, but I don't think any conversation they could have (which would probably be about flaying) would involve a pleasant cup of tea.

I don't want to be rude, but there's no way to mistake Oz for Andrew in this issue -- unless you're not actually reading the season and/or are deliberately ignoring context. 8.26 ends with Oz in Tibet, and 8.27 begins with a flashback to a similar looking guy in Tibet. Hmmm.
I too had no idea that was Oz. "Why is Andrew turning into a....oh."
It's true that Oz is the only person who makes sense in the context. But he does bear an uncanny resemblance to Andrew here. The angles in the first few panels are interesting (but therefore trickier for face recognition) and his hair looks more brunette than red. It's an understandable muddy point for a reader.

I'm a big fan of Georges' art but he does take some settling in with likenesses, I think. Some of his Buffy panels in #26 were his best yet. Willow and Giles seemed to give him some trouble at first. Giles and Andrew still look a little similar at times. But I kind of like that, since Andrew is sort of Watcher Jr. now.
Oz used to change his hair color all the time though... but I guess red was the most iconic of his character. Was it ever established that red was his natural color?
If I were the artist working on Buffy and I had sufficient time, I think I'd create a 3D model of each of the main characters, just so I could visualize them from different angles. Heck, if money were no object, I would scan the actors and render them as the basis for further artwork. Guessing who the characters are would be a thing of the past.
If I remember correctly, one of the episodes had Willow looking at Oz and realizing, "Your hair is brown!" To which Oz replied something like, "Yeah, on occasion." I sorta figured that, like Willow herself, the red was just another "Phase"...
quantumac; I don't think the artists want to do that. They see themselves *as* artists *interpreting* the characters.

quantumac Rowan Hawthorn Dana5140; notsayingawordnotsayingawordnotsayingaword

Darn I 've always been hoping Oz would move back to the States and marry a black woman who's also a musician, and who's a werepanther. (In my futurefics his walkie-talkie code anem is red Rover and ehrs is ebony.)

Seriously, whatever my misgivings about what Buffy is planning here, I'm seriously looking forward to how this will play out.
Seriously, whatever my misgivings about what Buffy is planning here, I'm seriously looking forward to how this will play out.
DaddyCatALSO | July 10, 17:57 CET

I thought Buffy was just planning to hide in the mountains. Is that what's giving you misgivings? It's certainly not the Slayer way, but I like it better than the "being more than human" stance she had in.... #23 I think it was. I'm not getting upity, just trying to insight some discussion.
Is that Andrew??? And these two pages were hardly enough. I need to see more!!!
I haven't read the comics and have no business being in this thread in the first place (I'm planning to buy them when the whole "season" comes out in a nice big book - will that happen?) but how cool to get the Oz backstory!
catherine: There are plans to release the entire season in larger bound volumes. Details as to how are still undecided the last time Scott Allie (the editor) was asked; I think he said that it would most likely be either 2 20-issues/volume books, or 4 10-issues/volume books.
Yippee! Thanks wenxina. That's probably years away yet, right?
Whoops, that is Dawn on the cover, isn't it? At first glance I could've sworn it was Willow.
luv4whedon ; the whole de-magicking thing; I don't like what it might lead to. (I loved the "Exit Buffy...smiling" in S-7.) I truly disliked the whole Fray-GreyWillow arc.
I love the area, but the likenesses do need a little work.

Totally thought that was Andrew, even though I knew it couldn't be.

Wait... that's not Willow?

*looks again*

Holy crap you're right! Yeah... that was fail. It's really pretty, but that doesn't look like Dawn unless I tilt my head and squint.
DaddyCatALSO; yeah, I am not digging the grey-Willow arc either. I feel like she is going to be the big bad again and that already been done. Plus, I don't by Willow using sex with Kennedy to talk to snake-lady and then torturing a demon. Even when she was Dark-Willow is Season 6 it was because of a great loss, she was out-of-her mind with grief. This arc for her just, it doesn't make sense. Maybe it will later, but right now I don't like it.
Oddly enough, demon torturing is a poor way to illustrate Willow crossing a line. Buffy tortured fork dude alllll the way back in "Teacher's Pet", no? And the Cordy look-alike in "When She Was Bad"?
For some reason I hold Willow to a different standard than Buffy. Yes, Willow tried to end the world and is therefore "darker" than Buffy; but, Buffy embraces the darkness of what a slayer has to do. Willow, I just think she would not be as ok with it. That is, as long as she is not grieving for a dead lover. I can't seem to put what I am trying to say about Willow into an intelligent thought.
Yeah, but Willow really seemed to be getting her rocks off when she did it. Look at that grin on her face when she poofed back!
I think "crossing lines" is one of the big themes this season--not just for Willow, but for everyone. Because of Buffy and Willow's world-changing decision, they're involved in a high-stakes, crazy dangerous war which is without precedent in their experience. As a result, lots of people--but especially Buffy and Willow--are justifying things they wouldn't have considered before. Stealing, torturing, and (the most shocking one in some ways) killing humans. That, after all, was Buffy's absolute, the thing that, in her mind, made a Slayer different from a killer.

All of which is to say: I think Buffy and Willow share a feeling of responsibility for the new Slayers, and a willingness to go to whatever lengths necessary to protect them. Which, to me at least, makes sense and is fascinating, for both characters.

With Willow, it seems like she's able to tap into "the dark" briefly, and then go back to normal (we see her with scary dark eyes as early as the first arc). Obviously there's a question of how often she can do this without consequences; but I seriously doubt we're going to get season 6 Dark Willow again (if only because all the characters seem to expect it--and come on, this is the Buffyverse! If the Scoobies expect it, it's not gonna happen.)

The Kennedy thing worked for me, too--because Willow was trying to save Buffy. Which should also be a warning sign: Willow blames herself for Tara's death, because she put saving Buffy above hers & Tara's happiness. And now (though she's clearly not happy about it) she's willing to use Kennedy if that's what it takes to--once again--save Buffy. So yeah, Willow's definitely in trouble....but Buffy is crossing just as many lines as Willow, and because she's the leader, because she's "brave and kind of righteous," because she's the Slayer, nobody seems to notice. While everyone's worrying about Willow, I think Buffy may be the one in most danger of "going dark."
So years and years ago, I remember reading a Dark Horse comic wherein Oz goes to Tibet and meets a girl and learns to control his wolfiness. There was also some big bad he had to help the monks fight, and at the end, we see him heading back to find Willow. Some info can be found at

This was back when the Buffy comics were not considered canon. But I wonder if they are going to use this comic as the basis for Oz's backstory. They may not, if it doesn't fit the story needs. But it would be neat to see them include something from the "old" comics in this new run.
erendis, when did they justify killing humans? The only one I can think of is Gigi, and, well...she was human, but she was also a supernatural, superpowered being who wanted to end them.
Buffy and Satsu killed soldiers in the first arc. And the backstory about Xander's visit to Dracula came from "Antique," but Dark Horse made kind of a thing about that at the time and made the old comic digitally available. I was expecting some mention of the Oz comic by them if they're building on that in this arc.
Buffy and Satsu killed soldiers in the first arc.
Not quite. They wounded them and pointed out that if Willow weren't released there would be no one who could heal them and some might die. When they had got Willow away from Warren Buffy told her to heal the soldiers while they dealt with what turned out to be Voll in room XXX. In NFFY Willow said she wouldn't always be able to heal the soldiers if the castle were attacked and Buffy got as far as saying she didn't know what she would do if that happened before they were interrupted.
They did, however, justify killing humans in the first arc: Buffy told Satsu, "Humans, you go for the wound, unless they get stupid." But, frankly, as far as I'm concerned, it's not so much "justification" as "being realistic".

Voll's crew sent Amy to initiate a mystical attack on Buffy, kidnapped and tortured her best friend to lure her into a trap, tried to assassinate her and her entire squad, and then opened fire on Buffy and Satsu when they came to get Willow. I'm not sure how many chances anyone in their right mind can rationally expect to be given, but if they don't want to die, then they should probably think about that before getting to the "terminally stupid" phase.
Same thing happened in S5, when the knights decided to try to kill Dawn, and in the process endanger the entire Scooby gang. So her realistic standpoint is not unprecedented.
Exactly so. And that was another situation where the humans in question were dead set (ahem!) on being terminally stupid...

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