The Scoobies are together again—and just in time! Buffy, Willow, and Xander begin a new mission as a team in order to protect something very dear to them all. But evildoers Simone and Severin have their own plans and are ready to undermine the happy reunion!
Writer: Andrew Chambliss
Artist: Georges Jeanty
Inker: Dexter Vines
Colorist: Michelle Madsen
For once, Buffy the Vampire Slayer is trying to leave the world saving to someone else – Illyria and Koh – while she concentrates on family . . . Dawn, finally affected by the loss of magic, is lying in a coma as magic leaves her body. Xander, in desperation and anger, has made a deal with Simone and the Siphon – seeing their plan to turn back the clock as the only way to save Dawn. Meanwhile, unkonwn to Xander, Willow has returned, ready to lend a hand.
Before actually start with the review, I’d like to add a couple of things.
This is not a professional site. I’m no pro here. I’m just a fan having fun. If you don’t like my reviews, good news, you can always chose to ignore and not read them. But let me tell you how stupid it looks to go and judge my “unprofessional reviews” and the minute I start reviewing Xander in a good way, suddenly my review becomes professional and you like it…..pathetic…
Second, I was asked by Christos Gage to spread the word that he’s no longer going to reply to emails or tweets asking him questions about the story. But he will gladly accept your questions and reply to them in Q&A that will be organized. Since I actually haven’t posted anything about it but just let twitter do the job for me, I’m saying it now, just in case there is somebody who missed it. What can I say but well done, to some lalalaland lunatics who in order to make their crazy theories work, they don’t hesitate to annoy people with emails, and then actually twist their words and post publicly in forums that that is what the creator told them in an email. Guess what, others can play this game as well, but others have the nerves to do that in public and not to twist the words. What did I say before, pathetic? Wrong, this second one is actually the definition of pathetic.
Anyway, I stop it and get back to the story. Since I’m no pro, there are going to be spoilers from now on, so beware if you want to read the issue yourself first.
So, in the previous issue Willow was back and Xander agreed to work with Simone and Severin. And this is how the issue begins, with Willow trying to help Dawn with her mojo. Problem is that her magic is limited, and there are not many things to do to heal her. In the meantime, as you see in the preview pages in the slideshow, Xander returns to Buffy, all beaten up. He tells her that Simone and Severin wanted him to steal the Vampyr book but he gets really angry when Buffy wonders how come he didn’t agree to help them. And the Oscar goes to, guess who?
Back at Willow and Dawn. Well her magic finally works and she’s able to give some more time to Dawn and wake her up. A very sick Dawn though, who starts to forget things and faces. So they’re all back in Buffy’s house to check on the Vampyr Book that Billy has been keeping. Somehow Buffy has an epiphany, wondering why Severin wanted the Book since he’s able to just teleport himself in the middle of the Earth. And she starts using her brain, – first time this season I think but more about it later – realizing that he probably wants to know the entrance of it, since a place powerful enough to keep imprisoned so many powerful Old Ones must be protected and there’s no easy way in and out of it.
So, Buffy with Willow and Xander decide to go to the Deeper Well, in England, actually not to fight Severin but in order to get more power to Willow. In the meantime, Spike returns to San Francisco but guess what, he has no intention to go and babysit the slayer. No, this time he’s there for the little bit. And all those guesses about how is going to be the Spuffy reunion? Keep those for the future guys, there’s none.
So, let’s get back to Xander, although most of this issue has Buffy/Willow interactions. I defended him strongly in the previous issue, let me take everything back now. He’s actually working double here, taking information from Buffy, passing them to Severin and Simone. It’s the third time that I’ll use the word pathetic in this review, this time for a fictional character but he deserves it. He’s the one that says that Buffy actually died to save Dawn, but no, he decides to double cross. He sees that Willow is back, but no, he decides to keep with his plan. He watches Willow having powers again, but no, Severin’s plan is better. He listens to Willow describing what’s inside the Deeper Well, but still pretends he’s on their side. He has Dawn begging him to stay with her, but no, he wants to be the hero telling her that when everything’s back to normal it will be because of what he did. Well guess again, Xander Harris, you’ve been in Buffy’s side right from the beginning. You’ve watched her dying twice in order to save the world and thousands of times risking her life. The Twilight mess that you’ve so accused her of in the previous issue, was part your fault as well. You were the second in command in her army of slayers. You watched her and the slayers rob a bank and you thought that was sexy. When Dawn was wondering and worrying about all those superpowers that Buffy suddenly had, you were thinking it was cool. And now you just decide to double cross, and believe the words of a villain slayer and a guy who’s been gathering powers, telling them exactly what Buffy’s plans are, where she’s heading and which is the other entrance to the Deeper Well so they can go there while Buffy and Willow is at the other side of the world. Well done, Xander Harris. I hope that last Old One who was banished there and created the very first vampire will also turn you into one. And have Severin drain you later.
As for Buffy, like I said I saw her using her brain finally. Problem is, although she realizes what the problem is in how to get to the Deeper Well, and actually Xander tella her what will happen if she goes to one of the entrances (not that he wanted to help there, probably he said that accidentally or writer’s mistake), she does exactly that. She goes to England, she knows that the Guards from the other side of the world will come and help the England side in order not to let her get in, so she leaves defenseless the New Zealand side. Probably thinking that Severin and Simone have no idea of how to get there. Not to mention that she doesn’t wonder at all, why Simone and Severin let Xander go, although they’ve told him their plan and he was going to warn her. And so does Willow, who was/is supposed to be the brain of the group.
The art….I’m sorry, but I just can’t wait to see this season over. The art is all over the place. Xander is a mess. Buffy’s back to her having-stupid-faces-unless-she’s-angry. Dawn is terrible. Willow is awful. Spike had only 4 panels, in just one he’s kind of decent, the rest three had me wondering who is that guy and what he did to that sexy blond vampire named Spike, or James Marsters in his late 30s if you prefer. Good news is that monsters look great. So do the rooms and decoration. I’m alrealy missing Paul Lee. Please have him as the regular artist next season, I don’t think I will keep on purchasing books with art looking like that.
Anyway. Overall, it was a nice issue. Would have been better if the drawing was actually…drawing. Although I have some questions and wonder of how the characters think and act in this season, at least things happen and the story moves forward, looks like it’s heading somewhere. Too bad we’ve waited for the final 1/5 of the season to have the story going and wasted all the rest 4/5. This season would have been so much better if this and last arc were actually told in issues 6-15, instead of having those issues wasted to pointless stories.