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January 02 2011

(SPOILER) Preview pages for Buffy #40. This will be released on January 19th.

OK, so the woman who trips Buffy - Faith?

If it is I do wish they would stop treating her like she's Buffy's protagonist. Faith proved herself bringing Angel back from Angelus and was a valiant and skilled fighter with the slayer army. She's proved her loyalty to Buffy by killing the rogue slayer, so why continue to treat her as Buffy's enemy?

[ edited by Riverine on 2011-01-02 21:42 ]
I don't think that's faith...

Her clothes don't look like anything Faith would wear.

Not sure who it is, though...
Random peeved-off Slayer? Or... random peeved-off ex-slayer?
And are Willow and Kennedy about to break up?
No way is that Faith. She would never wear that, and I think it's someone younger- IE, ex-slayer, plus their hair is light colored.

Speaking of what she's wearing OF COURSE San Francisco is portrayed as being full of dread-locked hippies with yoga mats! It's only funny when we make fun of ourselves Joss (or Georges maybe)! I am very excited to see my home in the comic but I hope it's not just a bunch of cheap SF stereotypes. Pout. Too be fair, it isn't inaccurate. And I'm going to choose to appreciate the "all the guys in SF are gay" trope cause the art is sweet and, you know, I guess it is different here than other places.

On the plus side I like what Buffy's wearing, words I never spoke a single time in the entire 7 seasons of the TV show (just my little personal thing, I know).
The girl looks nothing like faith. If it's anyone we know, my guess was Amy but I doubt it. Probably an ex-witch actually.

LOVE the "Cute guys who are into other cute guys" moment.

And I'm fairly certain it's Buffy that Kennedy is yelling at.

Anyone else really bothered by how Buffy looks on that first panel?
Meanwhile, love the callback to "The thing about changing the world"
If Faith wanted to do that and get away with it - i.e. sit in that cafe - it's possible she was undercover.
Yeah, I got that. Totally callbacky. I like.
So, is she not a slayer anymore now that the Orb is broken? I get that the magic is gone, but what about Slayers?
Didn't Buffy's hat have a cow on it, not a chicken?
trunkTS- yeah, that first panel of Buffy is weird. Doesn't look like her. But then it's ok after that.
I think the only slayers would be Buffy and Faith. That's what I'm getting anyway.
Why are people acting like any slayers would have been deactivated. It was explicitly said that slayers and vampires would remain if they were already active.

Course the better question is if vampires can still sire new vamps or not.

Edit: that wasn't meant to sound as targeting as it wound up being through proximity. Just a general thing I've seen in a few threads as time's gone on.

[ edited by trunkstheslayer on 2011-01-02 22:35 ]
Looks like Kennedy to me.
Wasn't there an interview where it was explained that slayers would retain their powers because it was a part of them (unlike witches who pulled their power from the earth) but that new slayers couldn't be made from then on.

Also I doubt that was Faith. Not only did the clothes not match, but I can't see Faith doing something so petty. She's more of the type to just beat the crap out of you if she has a problem with you. No idea who it could be, though.
@ Riverine: Do you maybe mean antagonist?

@Menomegirl: I think it was a cow with a chicken tail, because it was the "doublemeat" palace.

I don't know. I guess if S8 wasn't as abysmally bad and OOC as it was I would regard this as an upturn, because the power overkill is gone now. But as it is I'm not ready to give S9 the benefit of the doubt. Without the name tag I would not have even recognized Buffy in that first picture.

#40 is it for me. No one can say I didn't give it a chance, but ultimately the comics are a stain on an otherwise amazing franchise.
Surprising start to the issue.I certainly didn't predict that as where Buffy would be a few months after #39.

[ edited by Buffyfantic on 2011-01-02 23:11 ]
As much as I've enjoyed Season 8, and I enjoyed it a lot, this is the first time that the comic has really felt like the show to me. It'll be good to see a more regular, less Captain Universe style Buffy again! Good stuff. Looking forward to Season 9!

Oh, and at a guess, I'd say that the pissed off young girls are more likely to be ex-witches than ex-slayers. The girl that tripped Buffy certainly appeared to be dressed kinda wiccany, for want of a better term.
Yep, pretty sure that's a pissed off witch there. I like the "Anne" callback a lot.
Love, love, love the Jo Chen cover!!!
Hey, those pages almost seem like the show I loved to bits. S8 disappointed me - big time and especially at the end of the season, as the arc started revving up - but I'm still going to stick with the comics for S9 (can't quite imagine not picking up canonical Buffy). Here's hoping it'll be less huge and more human-sized with more breathing space for the characters and a lot less messy, unconvincing, story-arc-ness going on.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm all for story arcs, but S8's was a complete mess. Here's hoping this'll mark a definitive up-tick in quality so that this comic will once more start feeling like a continuation of Buffy, instead of a bizarre and twisted version of everything that used to be great about the show. In all, this seems like a good enough start.

I'm going with 'promising'.
Count me in as another person who thinks that Buffy looks a bit off in the first panel. I do love what she is wearing, though! I can't wait to read this issue.
I'm kind of super stoked that Buffy ends up in San Francisco (since that's where I ended up). And yes, there are dread-locked hippies here in certain parts. Also, guys who look like wizards on Haight Street, yuppies in Pacific Heights, hipsters in the Mission. Stereotypes exist for a reason, unfortunately. But that said, there are all types here. I can't wait to see where Buffy lives.

I recently re-read the whole series and caught up. I must say that while I have issues with certain storylines and individual issues, I like Season 8, even as devastating as the last issue was.

I am definitely going to be on board for season 9 - though I might wait till each one is released as a trade paper back this time. I find it is much more enjoyable an experience for me to read a whole arc at once.
I LOVE it!!

Firstly, we finally have textual confirmation that Buffy was "clinically depressed" in S6 and I've wanted the story to say that for years. I am so happy Buffy understands it now (whereas before she just felt she was "wrong") and I’m so, so happy that the story actually uses the words. As soon as I read that line I squeed and did a little dance in my chair!

I love the opening page and how it brings us full circle from Issue #1 and the contrast between the two issues is evident already. In 8.01 Buffy was flying high (a foreshadowing to becoming a God) but not at all happy – “everybody calls me ma’am these days.” Whereas, now she is much more down to earth and just waitressing but just check out the smile on her face. This is where Buffy has always felt more comfortable.

I love her banter with the dreadlock guy and the “cute guys who are into other cute guys” line was sweet, as was her comment that she’s happy not to be surrounded by just girls 24/7.

I felt sorry for Buffy when the slayer (maybe witch?) tripped her up, and her “lots of clumsy people in San Francisco. All of them girls” suggests it’s been happening a lot. I guess a lot of people aren’t too happy with Buffy right now (and I can understand why) but I admire that she’s trying to move ahead and make the best of her new situation.

The pages have a very different tone to the previous 39 issues (and even the art looks a bit different?) and, judging by what the writers have said, this will be what S9 feels like. I’m quite excited for this and love the preview pages to pieces :)
It makes more sense for the trip-er to be an ex-witch- I guess it was the fact that she (Buffy) said "all of them are girls" that made it seem like it was slayers, ex or otherwise. If it were people pissed about losing their magic wouldn't it be all genders and ages? But if we were told the slayers wouldn't lose their powers it is confusing (I forgot)...but did Scott or someone say it, or a character? If it was snake lady couldn't it just not be true? Not likely, I know, it just seems so much to be like that's what's going on in these pages...Though, on the other hand again, just from the clothes, witch-y.

I also think Kennedy is yelling at Buffy.

ETA- I like it a lot too! Much prefer the normal life/down to earth/character interaction and introspection. It's like the writers kind of went through the same thing as Buffy- dealing with the giddiness of having all these new powers (comics, no budget restraints) and using them just because they could before coming around to realizing that more isn't necessarily better and maybe it was time to go back to what they were really good at. I hope :)

[ edited by aphasia on 2011-01-03 00:36 ]
there is no way that's Faith, but Buffy sorta looks at the girl out the window, so maybe this isn't the last time we see her. there are no ex-slayers, they all still have their power remember. I don't think any vampires can be sired anymore though.
I kinda hope they set up shop in San Francisco, though i loved season eight, if they want season nine to be more personal then staying in one place is the way to go.
Anyone think maybe Buffy's is undercover as a waitress. doubtful, maybe. I loved the catching of the drinks on her shoe thing.
They only thing I'm truly annoyed about is that it's so short. the other previews were so much longer, maybe they're trying to keep some info a secret.
I loved the title/credits page. in this we're coming from another direction, and the moon is out, not the sun.
I think it's Kennedy too!

[ edited by Nathan on 2011-01-03 00:38 ]
Yeah it's definitely Kennedy in that last panel. The girl who tripped Buffy up is just some random character we’ve never seen before.
@Nathan: The preview was cut short at page 4 for a reason. Trust me... /cryptic comment.
I also think Kennedy is yelling at Buffy.

I had the same reaction. But it could be one of those segues where the line's meant to click into one meaning in the reader's brain before the jump and a whole other thing after.

I'm not in doubt it's Kennedy though.
@Nathan: The preview was cut short at page 4 for a reason. Trust me... /cryptic comment.

@Wenxina, who did you hear that from? have you heard soemthing? have you read something? I'm so excited. I don't wanna know what happens, but...
Still no Dawn on the cover though. I guess we'll see when i comes out. which would have been in couple of days. Though it's great that they wanted to do it on Buffy birthday, it's annoying to wait 2 extra weeks.

[ edited by Nathan on 2011-01-03 01:18 ]
Dawn is once again missing from Georges cover. Didn't we see a cover a while back with Dawn in front of Giles? Also,maybe it's just me but Buffy looks a lot younger in these panels, and kinda chipper considering it's only been 4 months since Giles death.
@Vampmogs: In regards to the "not clinically depressed" comment...I kind of figured that was in regards to her time between seasons 2 and 3, more-so than season 6. Of course, now that I'm thinking about it, I guess it could be referring to both since she references both instances.

As to Buffy's chipperness: A huge burden's been lifted. I'm sure she has her sadder moments, but she's in her element in these scenes. Four months is a long time really. She's still coping probably, but it's not going to weigh her down on a constant basis.

[ edited by trunkstheslayer on 2011-01-03 01:26 ]
@Vampmogs: In regards to the "not clinically depressed" comment...I kind of figured that was in regards to her time between seasons 2 and 3, more-so than season 6. Of course, now that I'm thinking about it, I guess it could be referring to both since she references both instances.

I took it as a reference to S6 because she mentions being clinically depressed and the Double meat Palace job in the same breath. It sounds to me like she's just referring to that specific time in her life (other than the "waitressing again" comment which is a reference to Anne) but you could be right. I think it’s open to interpretation, I’m just so happy that those words have finally been said in the text. It probably doesn’t seem that big of a deal but when you’ve been wishing they said it for years it really is. I’m ecstatic :)
What I got from that was that Buffy's narration was her telling Kennedy what happened to her at work that day, and the final panel brings us up to present-time and Kennedy's response.

Also, that blue thing Kennedy's holding? Anybody want to take the bet that she's in the middle of changing the sheets on a paraplegic Willow's bed, and that's why she's still so mad at Buffy herself?
To be completely, technically fair, we don't have textual evidence that Buffy was clinically depressed. We have textual evidence that Buffy now sees it that way. Just saying.
Examining the girl who trips Buffy, it looks like Willow. She has a laptop and a frumpy look. Still, I find it hard to believe Willow would do something so mean to Buffy, unless something about Willow has changed.
I REALLY was thrown off guard when I read those pages! I wasn't expecting that. But I LOVED it. This is the Buffy we loved. And it's obvious she's dealt with a lot in these months. Doesn't she look thinner? I know depression causes that a lot. If S9 is like this, it'll be great. Going through S8 to get to this point may have been worth it.
To be completely, technically fair, we don't have textual evidence that Buffy was clinically depressed. We have textual evidence that Buffy now sees it that way. Just saying.

Well, we don't have a diagnosis from a professional but when the girl self harms, says she wants to die, tries to commit suicide on at least 2 occasions and can barely get out of bed in the morning, I’d say that it’s pretty obvious that she’s clinically depressed!

I don’t expect the text to ever give us a doctor diagnosing Buffy but I’m just overjoyed that it finally said the words “depressed” (and threw in “clinical” for good measure) instead of “wrong.” Over the years I’ve seen a lot of fans downplay Buffy’s issues in S6 and I think this really needed to be said. Also, as a Buffy-fanboy, I’m also overjoyed that she understands that now which I was never fully sure of because they never addressed it in S7. I hated the thought that after all this time she still may have not realized that she was suffering from a disease and shouldn't beat herself up about it.

I see what you’re saying but I’m just happy those words have finally been said in canon. It means so much and I still can’t believe Joss did it (and he probably has no idea how happy he has just made some fans).

I'll shut up about this now... :D

I love the preview pages and I think they promise a lot of good things for S9. I've been a big S8 fan but I'm happy they're going to make this next season more "humble" and can't wait to read the rest of this issue.

[ edited by vampmogs on 2011-01-03 02:37 ]
I agree with Fred_Sonja.

I've had problems with Season 8, but I've tried not to vocalize the complaints too much (I hate negativity, what can I say?).

But this preview has allowed me to feel very optimistic about where the story will go from here.

I think the problems stem from the series ended perfectly - a bit rushed perhaps. However when the story was picked back up in Season 8 we had the problem of having 2,000+ slayers so the story had to change from what we had previously seen on television - there really wasn't a way around it.

I think the long way home route Season 8 took to get us back to a "simpler" Buffy will have been worth the wait and the frustration.

I'm excited.


Also, I'm surprised about the debate as to who the girl is. It's obvious it's a character we've never seen before, and most likely will never see again, and I got the impression that the tripping wasn't done on purpose based on the dialogue that follows.

i think it was, Buffy was basically implying that a lot of people, specifically women have been acidentally knocking her. So that girl was probably an ex-witch, did you see the look on her face as she did it. she looked pretty pleased with herself.
Anyone else think the foot save was excellent!
Anyone else think the foot save was excellent!

*raises hand*

It was adorable and I could imagine SMG nailing that scene. I love the proud “ha!” when she catches it!
You know, almost total supporter of the season 8 comics (I really enjoyed it) and I've found some of the comic threads depressing as it's always felt like a vocal minority repeatedly saying they don't like (and in many confusing cases, haven't read) the comics. But I will say this - I think, personally, season 8 lost some people because it started big, and got progressively bigger until everything became story, and characters got trampled on. In my mind, if they start small with season 9, and then build it big, people will respond better. You build the castle. You don't start in it.

[ edited by gossi on 2011-01-03 03:08 ]
Yea, the kick was pretty clearly intentional. Girl was pissed off with Buffy, but hey, our girl's taking it all in stride and even getting to show off from it, so it works out.
Doesn't she look thinner? I know depression causes that a lot.

It's that first panel of Buffy. Georges has drawn her face so angular, plus those lines below her cheekbones make her look older and a little... haggard? It's a bit of a shock when you first look at it, but I kinda like it.

I loved the preview. The foot save was great; my favourite panel was the "All of them girls" one. I'm actually tired of the whole 'Buffy in pain' schtick, cause it's never-ending, but it still gets to me when I see it.

I wish we'd had more inner monologue in S8. It was all over the first arc, even characters-not-named-Buffy had them, but then the technique was used pretty scatter-shot throughout the season. It's one of the great strengths of comics, but the only one that has really done it consistently is Joss. Which is to be expected I guess.

But I will say this - I think, personally, season 8 lost some people because it started big, and got progressively bigger until everything became story, and characters got trampled on. In my mind, if they start small with season 9, and then build it big, people will respond better. You build the castle. You don't start in it.

Agreed, to a certain extent. Joss needs to re-learn the art of context, which S8 had almost none of.

[ edited by Kaan on 2011-01-03 03:21 ]
I think that was the context: people getting steamrolled by history, the history they helped to create in the first place.
It wasn't just the big plot points that lacked context. Even the small things did as well. There was too much emphasis put on the mantra of 'expect that things are happening off-panel as well'. So you have things happen and then one issue later they seemed to have moved on. For example: Xander's complete non-feelings over Renee's death. This has been a season of 'do', or 'show them and then explain later'. Yet we are still waiting for a lot of explanation. How many times have we heard, "that'll get dealt with in S9". It has been frustrating at times. And this is coming from someone who has enjoyed the season.
@vampmogs: I have been occasionally called a "tease"... it pleases me. :)

@Nathan: No spoilers! :) Which brings us back to "tease," I guess. Gah! Jan 19th, so far away.
So do you know SOMETHING, we don't?!!!! GOD, this is going to kill me!

[ edited by Nathan on 2011-01-03 06:52 ]
Are we sure we're just not confused by the first splash because we're so unused to Buffy smiling?

Anyway, I sort of love what we're seeing here.

I always wondered why Buffy didn't become a legit waitress again during season six.
what do you mean by Splash, i thought it meant full page panel. eh, i guess it's not that important.
i can't wait another 16 days for the comic book! i want it NOW! Oh, crap it's 17 days not 16, that's what's annoying about living outside the states

[ edited by Nathan on 2011-01-03 06:03 ]
@Nathan: don't be in too much of a hurry. After this issue you'll have to wait around 6 months for any S9 news. ;)
i know! how much does that suck! i guess i have dollhouse and the rest of the Spike mini series to sorta help me fill that void. the wait is going to suck beyond any previous levels of suckatude though. but it's okay, I'll be cool, i'll be calm. I'll try not to go crazy... No promises.
Nice! And I think the trampler's a witch. Former witch. She dresses like Willow, clearly a clue ;)

I wonder, though, hadn't Buffy become the head of a terrorist organization in the eyes of the US gov *and* the vampire-loving public? Did breaking the seed erase all that? Because otherwise, wouldn't people recognize her or want to arrest her?

[ edited by nyrk on 2011-01-03 08:46 ]
Based on Buffy's new profession in SF, I'd say that Faith is now the leader of what's left of the Slayer army, especially after Giles told her to continue their work together before he died. Perhaps Kennedy is actually talking to her in that last panel.
Jettamesis, I think you might be right.

I myself have some guesses as to what might be going on with Faith in this issue, but I'll try to keep them to myself as they are a little off the wall.
From Buffy's thought-bubble, I think the girl who trips Buffy has to be a slayer. Magic users can be male or female - you could only say "all of them girls" about slayers.

And I took the clinically depressed comment to be about "Anne". She's referencing both her previous jobs and saying that at least this is a better situation. Just as well she was wearing a name badge in that panel.

I was looking at the first page, thinking that the position of the Moon and the Earth and the sunlight on them looked odd, but I think what Jeanty was doing was re-creating the Twilight symbol using the lit part of the Moon and one of the stars. Anyone else think so?

Catching the tray of drinks was great. Wonder if Buffy is slaying vampires by night in San Francisco or she's there to get away from all that.
Jettamesis, awesome. Makes sense. Buffy spent the season trying to empower women, but instead she ended up doing the opposite. Now those women are mad at her. Also gives Faith something to be doing in season 9.

[ edited by gossi on 2011-01-03 21:04 ]
This down to earth setting makes me unreasonably happy. I'm not really sure why, but I think it has something to do with the ordinary people who inhabit it, and seem interesting in themselves. Everyone is not either a hero or a villain, a slayer or a demon...
The comic book world thus far has been lacking in that everydayness to set off the supernatural goings on-some Sunnydale, or LA, or.... SF.
I look forward to season 9.
Okay, I for one am obscenely delighted about this change in events...Buffy waitressing again and being awesome at it, Kennedy back(I really liked that character from the to say it aloud!!) and all manner of peppy buffy from back in the day...excitement overload!!
Really? I got to the end, saw Kennedy, and then gagged. Exactly in that order.
Aww I loved her! She's so faithful to Willow and so up for the battle, she's what I imagine Faith would have been if her summer home in the Hamptons had a wing or two!!

It's like the predicament faced by the women (and man) in Bryan K Vaughn's Y:The Last Man: If you know you are the last of your kind and you are all but destined to become extinct, how do you deal? How does a woman in a world with no men (and thus no children ever) maintain hope? How does a slayer who feels (felt?) the ancient pull of The Chain go on, knowing she has no legacy?

The ramifications for Buffy's actions in 39 are WAY bigger than the death of Giles, or the burden on Willow and the witches. Buffy stole the future from the slayers she helped create. A dying breed...slayers are like an old man waiting for death in a nursing home. It gives me chills.

At the same time, it puts the importance of slayers simultaneously at an all-time high for their need to eradicate the remaining vamps during their lifetime.

Who here thinks that either Angel or Spike survive long enough to make it to the Fray Future when some magic returns and they begin to sire new lurks? Perhaps they are not killed because they have souls. Perhaps their goodness is what indirectly brings back the darkness 200 years from now...

I am so filled with possibility for the future of the Buffyverse that I simply love S8.
Oh and also, the girl who tripped Buffy looks eerily like Willow.
Like I speculated before, I think that Faith is now the leader of the remnants of the Slayer army and that she may have sent one of her Slayers to trip up up Buffy in that coffee shop/bookstore, trying to make her give up her new life (and get fired from her job) and return to the fold. That may explain Kennedy's doubtful reaction if she is talking to Faith in that last panel.
...Do we really think Faith is that petty or underhanded? Or, for want of a better word, that weird? She's always seemed rather direct, hands-on to me. I think it's more likely that Faith would respect Buffy's decision in the end.
I's tripping Buffy. I don't really know how that would bring her back into the fold in even a small way.

Of course we're assuming Buffy's left the fold entirely, which we don't really know. This could be her life now, or it could just be a day job sort of deal.
My guess is that the Slayer organization has been formally disbanded, Buffy's cleared the accounts (maybe even left Lucy Diamond bags of money about?), and the standing order is to go on with life as you see fit, do your duty if you (as Baron Munchhausen might say) have the talent for it, and good luck to you.

If Faith is running anything -- again, all my complete speculation -- it's that she's running a Prof X School for Wayward Slayers, by way of "Facts of Life", and that they don't have an evil fighting mission so much as a support group.

[ edited by KingofCretins on 2011-01-04 15:39 ]
Seconded, King.
So we've come full circle, back to Rhonda the Immortal Waitress?
I wonder if Dawn and Xander actually are the ones holding down the Slayer fort so to speak? It would be the type of light irony that Buffy trades in. D & X really wanting out and then realizing that they are the only ones left to lead?

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