You can pickup your copy of Buffy the Vampire Slayer #2 now where all good comics are sold!
The reimagining of Joss Whedon’s groundbreaking series continues as Drusilla, the self-proclaimed Mistress and her pet, Spike, make their debut with their sights set on Buffy! Meanwhile, Giles is determined to teach Buffy about her destiny, responsibility, blah blah…can someone tell him to chill? How bad can it get?
Now this is an interesting turn of events. For those who read my review of issue one of this series (here) you’ll know I had not a bad word to say. What Jordie Bellaire did with issue one perfectly contemporised Buffy the Vampire Slayer for a 2019 audience.
Now in issue two Bellaire is continuing to do that. But here it feels like introduction 1.5. Like the changes just keep on coming. Page-after-page of new information which updates the characters, only now it’s a distraction.
Let me give some context. In an issue #1 there’s plenty of expectation that the issue will be laying the ground work. Buffy did that perfectly by reintroducing the character and her surroundings. But what it also did was give us a flavour of the story in that we got a brief introduction to Drusilla as the villain and we also met Anya in the culty magic shop.
Now in issue #2 we’re doing Groundhog Day. In the opening pages we’re introduced to Cordelia, then we are introduced to Willow’s girlfriend Rose and then the much younger Robin Wood. Then comes the introduction of Spike.
Only in the last few pages does anything really happen.
This new series would have been better served by having a bumper first issue to cover this whole introductory session. That way there would have been the excitement of getting a double-sized introduction to the world of 2019 Buffy Summers.
Instead the groundwork laid by issue #1 is just extended through this plodding second issue. That’s not to say there isn’t anything to enjoy. Dan Mora’s visualisation of Buffy’s nightmare at the beginning of the issue is excellent. It far exceeds the horror imagery of previous comic iterations of the franchise.
Likewise the whole issue is beautifully rendered from start to finish. I won’t retread what I said in my last review but this continues to still feel like Buffy’s world. It’s just brilliantly updated for a contemporary audience.
I’m intrigued to see where Bellaire is going to take the character of Xander in future issues. After introducing to the enormous vampire-man-bat creature the final page of Buffy #2 deals with a much more hard hitting subject… the isolation and loneliness of feeling abandoned by those around you.
If this series is truly going to honour the memory of the TV show then it has to deal with real life issues. I want to see it continue to tackle stories like this head on.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a disappointing retread of issue #1. This extended period of introduction definitely halts the story from moving on too far which is a shame. There’s plenty of promise here but it needs to be built upon in issue #3 if it wants to be taken seriously.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer #2, is written by Jordie Bellaire with art by Dan Mora and a cover by Matt Taylor. The series is executive produced by original series creator Joss Whedon.