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August 08 2012

(SPOILER) Discuss Buffy Season 9 #12. It's the second part of the "Guarded" arc.

This is how the world ends... not with a scream but with a social network site.

Haha. I liked the twist at the end ... hopefully, if my spider sense is tingling in the right direction... Illyria will be the demon who imprisoned Koh. But that's just speculation. :)

[ edited by Mr.Savath_Bunny on 2012-08-08 16:32 ]

[ edited by Mr.Savath_Bunny on 2012-08-08 16:33 ]
I've been a big fan of this season as a whole, but this entire storyline isn't doing a whole lot for me. I thought the "demon facebook" idea was a silly and contrived way to provide a connection to alternate universes. I also felt like we have had enough of Buffy justifying her decision to destroy the seed that the scenes at the server fell flat. The twist with Koh was interesting, but the character hasn't been around enough for me to care that deeply.

I love the idea of Wolfram and Hart being involved conceptually though, hopefully this storyline will pick up.

I hope we get back to some of the classic characters soon, having Buffy this isolated from the rest of the original cast is hurting some of the dynamic.

[ edited by rabid on 2012-08-08 17:34 ]
Drawing-wise, some nice pencils by Georges. Standouts: some very Iyari expressions on the Kennedy panels, the HAL-esque server room, and, of course, the little Joss cameo on the first page. Story-wise, better narrative momentum than in some of the other issues. I'm curious about the demon that Koh is after.
I won't be able to read this until tomorrow :( I'm really looking forward to this issue though. I love the Buffyverse so much.
I thought this issue was pretty decent. I like the notion of overlap between technology and magic. I also am starting to like the whole plot with the social networking company and W&H. I hope they draw it out and develop it, rather than just dropping it and moving on. One of the (many) things that irked me about the whole pregnancy/robot plot is that it seemed like a pointless digression, without any narrative consequences. I think they need to pick a plot, stick with it, and build on it throughout the season.

Also, I may be in the minority, but I'm starting to think that focusing on a small number of characters (here, just Buffy) at any given time is the right call. Sure, I miss Spike, Willow, and the gang, but at least we're starting to get some good character moments. If Season 8 taught us anything, it's that we need to focus more on individual characters, and what makes them tick.
I really liked this issue, and I think the season is starting to progress nicely. While I never disliked the season, I felt like the whole pregnancy/robot situation had very little payoff.

Kennedy has grown a lot, and I think she's pretty likable. She's trying to make a living, and also taking care of slayers by giving them a path in a post seed world. She also clearly still cares about Willow.

I'm not shocked by Koh's betrayal, but disappointed because I was hoping he would be a long term ally. Of course, he still could be, as plenty of Buffy's allies have been in similar situations.
I have my copy of Buffy S9 # 12.Grounded Part II of III.

Luck worked out for me.The last several weeks I haven't been able to get to my comic shop until Thursday.But things worked out today and I have my comics on new comic day.

This issue was slow.I liked the art.I liked little moments.I continue to like Kennedy(and how she still cares for Willow).It's interesting how Wolfram & Hart are back in the verse through another no magic loophole.Also I thought it was cool how Buffy was aware of Angel's & Spike's last encounters with them(the end of season 5,After The Fall and the IDW Spike miniseries)

I'm also glad to see Buffy defending destroying the seed.

As for the Koh cliffhanger.I do wonder if there is a fakeout coming or not but I'm more convinced than ever that Illyria is the demon that imprisoned him and that's how she'll be entering the story and I also wonder if that is what is at least in part what will bring Spike back into Buffy later in the season.

Overall though,it was a dullish issue.IMO
I guess my favorite thing about the Buffy book right now is a Willowless Kennedy. I'd rather see Kennedy's story at the moment than Willow's. We so rarely get to follow someone after they break up with one of the Scooby's. Like their life ends if they're not dating Willow, Buffy, or Xander.
Does anyone else think Buffy is running out of steam? The series has been good but not great. This season definitely has had it's moments like the pregnancy issue or last issue with Wolfram Hart but has always been followed by a flat issue. Compared to Angel & Faith or After the Fall, the Buffy comics to me haven't been consistently good. As a reader I feel lost as to what direction they are taking the characters, they don't have anything more to say about them. I definitely still get excited for my monthly Buffy fix, but at this point I don't think I'd be all that heart broken if they concluded the series.
I know what you mean A_Leaf. Part of me wishes they had done a dramatic, go-out-with-a-bang S8 ending where Buffy chases all the demons/magicks out of the world and goes through the portal after them. And then, no more Buffy--instead, lots more Fray.

However, there are things about the series I like--I'm very interested in Willow's journey, and I've liked Buffy's character development aside from the robot thing. I hated the robot thing.

However, I am tired of magic loopholes--it's starting to feel like they're not really committed to the "no magic" thing.

I mean, there's no magic ... BUT we can still use magical objects to collect Giles' soul because X.

There's no magic .... BUT we can still go to Quortoth because Y.

There's no magic ... BUT we can still connect to Wolfram & Hart's demon dimension because Z.

There's no magic ... BUT there are still fairies (and Willow) in Buffy's dreamspace. While Buffy is a robot. Because Andrew knew Warren, and Q.

It's just starting to seem like "no magic" means "no magic except when we really want there to be magic, and then there is. But not for Willow, because she needs to stay angsty."
I liked the conversation between Buffy and Theo and the implied explanation that she had to break the seed to clear her own mistakes. She still has to deal with the fact that so many people, including Giles, died due to her choices.
Yes, I know it can't be the case, and I partly just think the Angel/Faith book is so much better cause of better craft ... but I also remember how exhausted Joss said he was after Buffy and ready to move on, whereas he said he was only just getting started on Angel. The Angel/Faith book reads like it's in the prime of its life. The Buffy book has the same energy my romantic relationship had last week before I got dumped.
I have really dug a lot about this season, so I can't quite agree that the book has overall been lacking energy, but I do feel like this is a bit of a mid-season slump, not entirely unlike the one I felt in Season 6 and 7 of the show.

I just am not sure if completely isolating Buffy has been that useful for the book's overall dynamics. A lot of the reasons why the series worked were the great relationships between all these characters, even during the years where they all kind of splintered apart.

With Xander and Dawn still going through their own mysterious drama, Willow off on her own journey, and Spike in his own mini-series, there aren't that many characters for Buffy to actually interact with. As much as I enjoy where they are taking Kennedy, I really feel like there needs to be someone there for Buffy to bounce off of with a little more energy.

[ edited by rabid on 2012-08-09 05:45 ]
@rabid - I agree that this reminds me alot of season 6 & 7. Unfortunately at the end of season 6 I felt they needed to start wrapping up the show.

I do think that other characters, like Willow, still have alot more life in them. To me Buffy doesn't have enough emotion/ stories left to justify 25 issue runs. Maybe they should try Angel/Faith and Willow ongoing series and have Buffy ride off into her imperfect sunset with an occasional miniseries.
I feel like most of the problems I'm having with this season is the dialogue. I was reading the Time of Your Life arc yesterday and I forgot how close to the show the dialogue had been. Of course Joss has the best handle of these characters and he's all busy and not super invested right now. I think Chambliss is okay, but I seriously detest Allie's writing. So bland, so generic.

ETA: For example, I was seriously enamored with the first issue of the Freefall arc, more so than Angel & Faith. I just love the way Joss writes Buffy and gets into her head.

[ edited by cazador on 2012-08-09 22:56 ]
I miss Joss' significant touch as well, but Chambliss is doing better than okay IMO, he clearly has an understanding of Buffy-speak. And yeah Allie's writing during the Apart of Me-arc often felt like a mixure of trying too hard (and failing) and being bland. But Chambliss' understaning aside, S8 is thus far still the better written of the comic book seasons (dialogue-wise)though A & F is pretty well-written as well. Especially Faith. I always hear Eliza Dushku's voice in my head. Regarding this issue; I kinda liked it. Jeanty's artwork was especially good but I'm not sure I buy the whole Koh's evil-cliffhanger-thing. I was starting to wonder if he perhaps was to be the new love interest(him or Severin).
Just gonna chime in and add that I think season 9 is the most focused Buffy's arc has been since season 6 and that I'm enjoying it how grounded it's been this year. And while I like the ingredients in A&F more, I still feel like I'm waiting for that season to kick into gear. The first two arcs and the Harmony one shot basically all told the same story -- one of our heroes is offered easy redemption and then don't take it. Buffy's felt more consistently fresh.

Also really hoping Wolfram and Hart stick around this season. Missed their looming presence since the comics began.
Somewhat of a review for issue 12
I really think the main problem with the Buffy series is the lack of all the other characters. It's just Buffy! It's never just been about Buffy, for me anyway. I love Buffy, but I loved many of the characters and loved their interactions. I didn't really care about anything that happened in this issue. I read it, but didn't care. Buffy might have been anyone.

And I know a lot of people like the Angel and Faith, but I never really cared about Faith, still don't, and I despise Angel since the Twilight thing. Bummer.

Still looking forward to the Spike mini, and the Willow but since they are most likely going to be alone in their books as well I am starting to feel like I should lower my expectations.


The Buffyverse was about love and found family to me. That's gone. Don't know if that's the point? But it's not really working for me. I know "isolationist crap" was often part of the story, but WE still got to feel close to the other characters even if Buffy didn't.
I don't really see the Koh's actions as a betrayal. I don't see this to be a particularly evil act. When dealing with people who work for W&H there is always a grey area.

Plus I would be very interested as seeing Koh as a new love interest for Buffy. Next to Spike almost all the charters are a winning match for her as far as I am concerned. Maybe not Dawn.
In the end, where this is going is here: a pass of the baton for being the The Slayer from Buffy to Faith. This is why the two comics are being brought together. Faith is more and more doing the kinds of things Buffy used to do, while Buffy is now off "finding herself." Willow will go find magic for the world again, and Buffy will go and really truly get pregnant, with some normal human (like the cop fellow) and have a normal later life. :-)
Still not feeling Season 9 of Buffy (love A&F though), but just wanted to chime in and say Jeanty's art was probably the best I've ever seen from him in this issue. If he could do it this level of quality every time, I'd be a less-grumpy camper in general.

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