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July 20 2010

Watch the first episode of the Buffy Season 8 Motion Comic. Amazon.com has it and so does iTunes. Btw it's USA only.

"le sigh" :/
I've been waiting alllll week for this and of course they have to take longer to put it on iTunes, bummer.

But I'll still buy them all cuz Buffy is AMAZING
At least there's a small 30 sec video (down/left - courtesy of Amazon I think) that can be seen from outside US. Looks nice and the voices seems OK.
That's nice of them to give us a preview. The animation is actually really good and I loved the score they used as you can tell they're trying to stay true to the series. It's a pity the voices are so jarring as it really does not sound like SMG or NB but I'll still watch.
Which reinforce or subside some of the discussions we were having a few days ago in that Dollhouse thread.
I wonder how revenues work out with this. How much of this goes to Fox Home Entertainment, how much is Dark Horse, and how much go to creators. It's one of major obstacles that must be figured out if Digital distribution is to become a new standard sometime in the future.
As I tweeted earlier today, won't be surprised if it leaked through "alternative" ways very soon. There's a demand for the content, but the distribution method is still flawed. A lot of people can't pay for it, despite really willing to do it.
Hopefully there will be disk release soon, which people outside from the US or without iTunes Stores, can actually buy.
Watching the preview, the way it was animated, it does look better than what Marvel did with Astonishing X-Men.
It's very well done. Probably the best one of these things I've seen. But the voices aren't *the* voices (I didn't like Giselle Loren either, but at least she got the inflections right) and I think they screwed up the tone of the opening by having the theme play over it and turning it into an "Woo! Action!" scene.
I bought the HD Season pass based on the trailer. I want to PTB to make enough money on this that going further, with, say Firefly, is an option.
And once again the UK lose out.
I agree the the animation is amazing - but the voices ruin it. It is like a fan version of it. I dont think I will be bothering with it.
So any word on an itunes download yet or are we still in limbo? I mean if Amazon has it then itunes shouldn't be too far behind right? Also, have we got a rough estimate for how much per episode? I'm probably gonna need to add some to my US account!
The voice reminds me of Lady GaGa. They should have atleast tried to get voices that sounded like the cast.
What happened to the woman who voiced the video games and animated series? Why didn't they choose her?
They could've tried to ask the original cast aswell, i know it's a long shot but they might've done it. It would be more official if they had the original cast voicing it.
This is AWESOME!! ... Loved every minute of it and can't wait for the next episode. Yeah the voices aren't the original cast, we'll just have to get over that. But the animation was great. I think the voices were ok for what they were. Definitely recommend the download.
I actually have less of a problem with the voice differences than I do with the voice acting. So far, all I've seen is the preview, but the actors voicing Buffy and Xander sounded like they were just reading the lines cold.
Sigh. I thought I'll be able to see this now, but it's still US only.
My biggest concern going into this was the voice acting. I knew that it was never going to be as good as the original actors, but if it was especially wrong for the characters I wouldn't be able to keep watching. I think the voice actors here were ok though. Not great, but not horrible.

Also, have we got a rough estimate for how much per episode?

Amazon has it for 1.99 per episode and 1.89 per episode with a season pass (save 5% per episode).

Math time.

If they're starting out with 19 episodes, the whole first season should cost 35.91 with a season pass. If each episode clocks in at around 10 minutes like this one, there should be a total of a bit over 3 hours. I would think that a DVD with around 3 hours content wouldn't cost that much. I would think they wouldn't charge more than 20-25 for the DVD.

This is all just speculation and conjecture on my part, but if I'm right (I might not be) then it seems like waiting for the DVD might give you a significantly better deal.
awesome in my opinion. best motion comic I've ever seen.
I was able to watch 2 minutes for free for some reason. Interesting use of the Xander theme score music from "Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered" for the command center introduction. It seems out of place for what is meant to be a scene of Xander finally finding his place paired with music that is called "Twice the Fool" based on his season two shenanigans.


[ edited by CaptainB on 2010-07-20 14:31 ]
It looks really good to me.When it comes out on DVD,I'll be picking it up.
I'm impressed! I have all the comics and the graphic novels, but the motion and voices adds a whole new element to it. For those who kvetch about the voices, I would say your chances of getting the original players to voice this is zero, and once I adjusted to the different voice players, it was like watching Buffy live all over again. I hope they do the entire series!
All I watched is the free preview and I can't decide if I like it or hate it (though either way I'm still probably going to buy them because the animation is cool). I really, really hate Buffy's voice. It's not even that it's someone different (I didn't mind the voice from the animated pilot), It's that the actress does not seem to understand how to convey the Joss-style writing so it just sounds off. :(
Is there any chance of this every being uploaded to Youtube or released in the UK or should I just stop paying attention to the whole thing and write it off?
Not legally is probably the answer.
digupherbones, wait for the DVD.
My sources say that it may be on iTunes internationally around the same time as the DVD release which will be later this winter. May be. Not sure. Don't bother telling me how that doesn't make much sense. You'd only be preaching to the choir. Maybe requesting it from UK iTunes might help speed things up? I don't know.
The trailer is gone from iTunes Canada. Is it still down for iTunes US? I hope both the trailer and episode are available this afternoon.

My plan is to download the first episode, but I'll probably wait for the dvd for the rest of the season.

Regarding format, does each episode cover one issue of the comic book, or does an entire arc (i.e., Wolves at the Gate) form one episode?
Each are one issue, Riker. I don't have an answer about iTunes. Seems like some people have already managed to get the first episode off iTunes, but I have no idea how.
They really could have spent more time on the voice acting, as it's,well,not so great. Hope they come to realize how important voice acting is if they ever try this format with the Serenity comic series.
Ok, well thanks for the response at least. I won't be buying the DVD, I have no desire to actually own this in hard copy when I have all the comics already.

I know it's been said before but it beggars belief that distribution of this kind of thing in Europe (and anywhere that isn't North America) is so delayed when there is a considerable financial incentive to sort it the hell out.
This actually makes me a little sad....

The quality is far better than I expected and I kind of want to buy it now. The problem arises in that even though I really enjoyed the beginning of S8 and more or less tolerated the middle, heading into the last story arc I've come to truly dislike the story. Hate may be a better word.

I could of course just buy the first volume, but I know the collector in me will force me to buy all of the remaining ones even though I doubt I would ever watch them....
C'mon... who isn't chortling a little now that we've seen the animation style at the impending disaster that will be 8.34? Will there be... rocking?

In all seriousness, this is pretty good. I do wish they'd bothered to try to make this top shelf, though, and get the cast together just like they would have for a video game. Giselle Loren as Buffy and as many of the original cast as would be happy to throw an afternoon of their effort into it.
I kinda got goosebumps hearing the theme over new material, but I really dislike the voice actor for Buffy. Xander sounds okay, though.

The problem arises in that even though I really enjoyed the beginning of S8 and more or less tolerated the middle, heading into the last story arc I've come to truly dislike the story. Hate may be a better word.

I'm in a similar position. The best arc for me was "No Future For You." Since then it's been guest-character central.

[ edited by swanjun on 2010-07-20 16:29 ]
It's now on iTunes. I added the link to the entry.
Oh Man! This was SO cool. I purchased the full ep for .99 cts on Amazon and opted to watch it on the Unbox Video Player. It took me a few minutes to adjust to the voices, and honestly they're not that bad. Loved hearing the opening theme song again. The motion comic really helps me capture some nuances that I had missed in the comic. The scene when Buffy and Dawn argue was SO true to series and well done that I have high hopes for the rest of the series. Can't wait to see more...Buffy lives!

[ edited by Jonnathan on 2010-07-20 19:22 ]
Purchased the first episode from Amazon in HD - wasn't bad (add me to the looks good/want better voices camp).

Any idea how often these will be coming out? Hopefully not too frequently (once a month would be nice). Makes it easier when I argue with myself that it's only $2 a month. :)
Neat, I'm not really a fan of the comic book medium (I prefer full blown animation or pure written word) so I'll check this out when the DVD is released rather than get the comics.

[ edited by guardian_owl on 2010-07-20 19:59 ]
Suspect it's one every week (guessing).
I would suspect that we'll get motion comics right up to the end of Time of Your Life and then get a break. Judging by how iTunes lists the trailer.
Much better animation than I expected; I'll get this when it is all out. Though the voice acting does sound a bit unprepared, just think of it as an audiobook rather than a performance and it works.
As someone who gave up on the comic books after about 15 issues- I really did not like them from the beginning but I held out hope- I think the cartoon form might actually bring me back. Perhaps they will emphasize the stories in a way different than my reading that will help me "understand" them better.

As for the voices, of course it is going to take a bit of getting used to. I don't need them to sound like the original cast, I just need them to sound good.
The animation is awesome, a lot better than I expected. If there was an option to turn off the voices and replace them with plain word bubbles, I'd buy this in a heartbeat.

The acting is just bad. The actress delivers the lines so much differently than how I imagined Sarah Michelle Gellar saying them.
You know what, I liked it! The animation was much better than most motion comics. The voice acting is alright--nothing special, but certainly not atrocious. The Xander voice sounds the most like Nicholas Brendon. I'm happy. It's cool. The sound effects, animation, and music are fun. I'll purchase the DVD rather than download more eps simply because I prefer having a hard copy to go along with my other Buffy dvds.
I think the plan is for 19 issues with a new one released every week. DVD some time after that.
Anyone know, were the voice sessions for the entire series recorded all in one day, or was it over many days/weeks? I ask because if it wasn't all the same day, the voice acting may have improved as the voice actors learned their roles while on the job.
If it's weekly, the 19th episode will be released on the 22nd or 23d of November, meaning we should expect the DVD around the 23rd or 30th of November.
At the very earliest, Riker. I doubt it will be that straightforward. Things seldom are.
EW says the DVD is out this fall. I doubt it would be released in December--new DVDs and CDs are rarely released that month. The 23rd or 30th allows them to cash in on Black Friday sales.
It's a nice supplement to the comics, I think. The voice acting does hurt it though.

I went with the HD download at Amazon as I'm doubting there'll be a Blu-Ray release.

EDIT and the Blu-Ray was just announced! Luckily, the Amazon subscription allows you to cancel at any time.

[ edited by Manic D on 2010-07-22 07:19 ]
From the two minute Amazon preview and the 7 seconds I got the iTunes trailer to work, Xander does vaguely sound rather like Brendan.

I actually do miss Giselle Loren though, since even though I thought her voice was a little weird in the games (and that may have even mostly been the American Pie style Willow replacement) she did get the cadences (Whedon or SMG ones?) more or less pat. Plus I obviously wouldn't mind any of the original cast members quite literally phoning in their lines if they were still available/willing.

Incidentally I had no idea Loren was also an attorney.
I think they did an alright job. I never bought the comics and wanted to catch up before Sept and I like this. I don't see a problem with the voices, short of having the actual actors, I don't think they sound that bad. I hope they do them all this way.
I'll probably buy this on DVD to have something to watch peripherally while I work.
Is there a schedule of release dates for the episodes?

Just downloaded and watched the first issue(iTunes). It was interesting. I would've preferred for the voices to be more similar to the tv actors' voices; as someone above said, it was "jarring." I also agree the voice acting could be improved. It gave the whole issue a Saturday morning feel to it which is not what I expected or hear when I read the comics.

It did my heart good to hear that beloved theme song kick in. And I quite liked the swinging pendulum of the panels during the Buffy-Dawn scene. I also liked the animation of the title sequence. Nice for it to open showing "the universe." :)

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