Rs here want us to believeStill as a whole this book is better written than earlier Buffy related volumes I ve reviewed here on It is badly marred however by the inclusion of a iece by Kevin Andrew Murphy His essay digresses into vile dubious and non representative Long Range (Joe Pickett Book 20) portraits of fans of actress Amber Benson wholayed Tara on Buffy as stalkers It s based on wild speculation and deserves contempt for its intent to smear these fansI myself am a fan of the character Tara and the group Mr Murphy attacks in this book is one with which I am well acuainted So let me make something clear I am not saying that any fan group much less one with which I have been associated is above thoughtful criticism any than I believe Buffy is Unfortunately thoughtful criticism is not what Murphy does here Despite having a somewhat fluffy sounding title few would argue that Buffy the Vampire Slayer BTVS is one of the landmark shows in media history Though targeted to the bubblegum crowd like Harry Potter many of the Chosen One s fanship has been comprised of older folks ones you would think would be seriousIn this ost show book authors well loved in both the science fiction and romance areas explore the many aspects of the show that has touched so many lives Buffy s romances and the significance of various supporting characters are explored Why Buffy is actually high epic literature is revealed I have read a lot of serious essays on Buffy all of the essays on and the entirety of the contents of the collections edited by Kaveney by South and by Wilcox and Lavery But this new collect This collection of 23 essays about BtVS has the advantage of being written after the series finale allowing a wider scope than similar earlier books Although these are mostly serious thoughtful essays they are written in a readable accessible style than BtVS and Philosphy by James South which reuired a PhD in hilosophy to understandIn a book like Seven Seasons of Buffy everyone will have their favorites One of the best was Zettel s Ruble Perkins: The Youngest Marshal piece where she argues that the real reason the series went downhill after Season Three was not because the characters were no longer in high school but because their role had changed from outsiders to insiders In high schoolart of the appeal was that they had only a hazy notion of the forces against them eg the mayor s lot it was difficult to empathize with the characters when they lost that outsider role I also loved Larbalestier s article because although not cohesive as an essay she articulates what an utter disaster Season Seven was This series went downhill fast The episode Empty Places gets my ersonal vote for ultimate low oint of the seriesAnother great essay was Carter s article about alternate realities in BtVS Ever notice that The Wish in which we are led to believe that the alternate reality was extinguished when Anyanka lost her owers is inconsistent with Doppelgangland the alternate reality continues to exist THE PROMISE: One-Hundred-Fourth in a Series of Jess Williams Westerns (A Jess Williams Western Book 104) parallel to the real realityOne of the weaker essays was Golden s in which she complains that theresentation of wicca was unauthentic on BtVS Hey anyone want to write an article about how badly Christianity is Jack Flint: Mountain Man: A Frontier Mountain Man Novel (A Jack Flint Mountain Man Western Book 1) portrayed on this series I was also unimpressed with Harris s complaint about the good looks bias in casting and by Watt Evans speculation that Buffy and Wesley would be the ideal couple and by Aloi s over the top rhapsodizing about how beautiful Tara was Jennifer Crusie s article I d say was the best Sherrilyn Kenyon s the worst Crusie s article had depth humor and really gave you a sense of the show Sherrilyn Kenyon s was a repulsive misogynistic rant of the like of Phyllis Shafley The hatred Kenyon has for women that aren t airheaded doormats to men was freakish Now I know why her books are filled with abusiveosturing men and vapid wimpy females aparently that is the only acceptable type of realtionship to her Ugh why the heck did the woman even watch Buffy Buffy was created to counteract repulsive attitudes like hers Whedon s idea of girlpower wasn t always on key frankly in seasons 1 4 I found Buffy acting too much a doormat to Angel and Riley for my tastes while other than the darkest Cowboy's Convenient Marriage point of season 6 when we gotsycho Buffy the Buffy and Spike relationship was a Jack Flint: Mountain Man: A Frontier Mountain Man Novel (A Jack Flint Mountain Man Western Book 2) passionate eualitive sexy and in season 7 my favorite seasonarticularly the second half deeply romantic and almost spiritual A modern Jungian Terrence Corcoran: Volumes 1-5 psychologist might even say they were a nearerfect AnimaAnimus Young Guns Gone Bad: A Terrence Corcoran Western pairing in season 7 Worst book about Buffy I have read and I have read than a few None of the essays raise above the worst fanfic you can find for free on the web or could have heard in any school cafeteria when the series was running Especially annoying is the faux university essay about Xander I am sure I have read several fanfic stories on the same subject that are better Also annoying is the repetition of insights into the slayer s love life over several of the essaysAlso appears that some of the essays were written byeople who only know about the series from listening to Outback Heat people talk about it instead of watching it One author writes about a guy she has a one night stand with and then spent the next several weeksining away for as if they had a long term mutual relationship He wasn t high maintenance he wasn t maintenance at all because he was never in a relationship with her To him she was just another Freshman one night standthis was emphasized several times over several episodes Nothing I have several Buffy books as well as books about other tv shows like Angel Charmed Alias etc I ve read books about the Calamity Jane 9: White Stallion, Red Mare (A Calamity Jane Western) philosophysychology of The Sopranos The Simpsons The Matrix and others That saidThis book just wasn t interesting It lacked depth nuance even a sense of humor I read nothing new radical or intelligent I expected and got even less Don t waste your money Buy Bite ME The Chosen Edition by Nikki Stafford instead SERIOUSL. Ns The Search for Spikes Balls An informed introduction for those not well acuainted with the show and a source of further research for Buffy buffs this book raises interesting uestions concerning a much loved rogram and future cult classic.
Inly because the writer eliminates every other suspect from the list Meanwhile Jean Lorrah s Love Saves the World suggests that Buffy s makeshift family of friends however dysfunctional is actually the Slayer s biggest asset in fighting the forces of evil best evidenced in Xander s saving the world at the end of Season 6 by getting thru to Dark WillowSherrilyn Kenyon s The Search for Spike s Balls suggests that Buffy herself is a sort of vampire in that she sucks virility and masculinity from the menfolk in her life In Lions Gazelles and Buffy Chelsea Yarbro discusses her Prey Predator theory with Buffy naturally cast in the role of the redatorScott Westerfeld The Forbidden Cowboy: Cowboy SEAL Billionaire Romance (The Wentworth Cowboy Billionaire Series) pushes his theory of two recurringlot devices the Alternate World and the Trespass story basically the Trespass theme is A stranger comes to town Westerfeld labels BUFFY as inherently a Trespass story except the few instances when the show becomes an Alternate World show And then there s Scott s sub theme of the Elasticity of Trespass in which everything reverts to status uo by episode s end Where the Lost Wander: A Novel prevalent in the monster of the week episodes Scott goes into BUFFY s occasional stabs at subverting the Elasticity of Trespass I m describing this really clunkily but it doesn t change the fact that Scott Westerfeld writes an entertainingiece here Conversely Margaret L Carter s A World Without Shrimp breaks down the alternate reality episodes Superstar Normal Again and The WishLaura Resnick s The Good the Bad and the Ambivalent explores the show s dark twisty character arcs and honestly going by sweet nerdy first season Willow did anyone guess she d transform into Dark I just want to end the world Willow Resnick also asserts that Spike is the show s most ambivalent character Marguerite Krause s The Meaning of Buffy targets the relationships and connections that the characters form And then there s Krause s uest for the show s strongest healthiest relationship can you guessIn A Buffy Confession Justine Larbalestier articulates her obsession with BUFFY her increasing aranoia that upcoming episodes won t live up to standard and her worst fears being realized with Season 7 Sarah Zettel s When Did the Scoobies Become Insiders covers the Scoobies topsy turvy evolution from misfits to insiders and how sad that kind of was She also mentions Jonathan who than just about anyone else in the show typifies the ultimate loser and outsider It s telling that when Jonathan gets a chance to alter reality to one in which he is the Superstar he chooses the Scooby gang to validate his inclusion to the in crowdKevin Andrew Murphy s Unseen Horrors Shadowy Manipulations relates how outside criticism and sponsorship and fan outpouring can sometimes influence the show Murphy cites the infamous Double Meat Palace fiasco as one examplePeg Aloi s Skin Pale as Apple Blossom is an ode to Amber Christine Golden s Where s the Religion in Willow s Wicca first addresses the awesomeness that is Willow Rosenberg and then goes on to debunk her identity as a Wiccan In A Reflection on Ugliness the sassy Charlene Harris accuses Joss Whedon of bias against ugly eople She expoundsJacueline Lichtenberg s Power of Becoming attempts to sell television as an artistic medium that is on its way to becoming Great Literature and how BtVS figures RIDERS OF THE WESTERN TRAILS: : The Second Louis L’Amour 4 Book Western Bundle - Showdown On The Hogback, Rider Of Lost… prominently in this evolution As a fan of television who am I to beg to differ BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER was aretty cool show I have become a really big fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer ever since I found her on Prime and not a day goes by that I don t watch an episode or two or What makes this book so good are the different East of the Cascades perspectives the writers bring to their writing about Buffy and the Buffyverse she inhabits It sretty obvious that all of the writers are also fans even when they are expressing opinions I may not agree with it s still great writing If you re a fellow Buffy fan then I can highly recommend this book it s a really fascinating look at Buffy s world Seven Seasons of Buffy Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Discuss Their Favorite Television Show is very nearly a text I could have recommended to anyone those who think Buffy was Shakespeare those who think it was or turned into crap and even those who think it was gasp just a television show But unfortunately like Buffy itself this book loses its way and runs out of good ideas by the end Let s start with the good stuff the essays that had me thinking I could finally start a Buffy related book review with words to the effect of Now that s what I m talking aboutSarah Zettel adds brilliant depth and a convincing thesis to a not uncommon criticism of the series That Buffy lost at the very least certain cohesion when the characters graduated from high school And in what I think is the heart of this collection Justine Larbalestier charts her evolution over the course of Buffy s seven seasons from Champion of All Things Buffy to Horrified ex true believer In so doing Larbalestier reflects the experiences of millions of Buffy watchers who found themselves seduced by a dramatic series for television convinced themselves it was something than it could ever be and eventually hit the wallJacueline Lichtenberg s essay is devoted to the idea that Buffy the Vampire Slayer is not just a TV show but a watershed event for television as literature I dunno I think she needs to look at her watch once in a while In his nearly brilliant 1992 book Teleliteracy TV reviewer and future Buffy fan David Bianculli devoted an entire chapter to the idea that Some Television Is Literature And Vice Versa using as examples series Taxi St Elsewhere others that Where The Sky Never Ends: A Western Adventure pre date Buffy by at least 15 yearsI am not saying that Buffy at its best was not the eual of the shows I ve mentioned above at theirs It was a really good show when it was a really good show like a lot of really good shows It s just not inherently superior to all other shows as some write. Laimed novelist Scott Westerfeld cult favorite vampire author Chelsea uinn Yarbro and award winner Sarah Zettel The show and its cast are the topics of such criticalieces as Lawrence Watt Evanss Matchmaking in Hellmouth and Sherrilyn Kenyo.
I have read a lot of serious essays on Buffy all of the essays on and the entirety of the contents of the collections edited by Kaveney by South and by Wilcox and Lavery But this new collection is far and away the best of the lot I believe there are two reasons for this First the writers of the essays in this volume have the tremendous advantage of being able to look back on all seven seasons of Buffy and speak with some authority on what actually happened If you read the other collections there was always constant speculation about what might happen in the future Now we know what happened But the second and important reason this collection is so superb is the fact that it was written almost exclusively by creative writers rather than academics Although I am an academic myself too many of the academic essays written on Buffy seem to me transparent attempts to graft unconnected academic interests onto the writers favorite TV show The writers here however are truly trying to tease out the meaning of the show on its own terms and not trying to force the themes of the show fit the needs of Firefly - Life Signs philosophical cultural or feminist theoryAnother advantage of this collection is that just about every selection in the volume is excellent I might want to differ with a couple like the one that defends Riley as the best boyfriend for Buffy or the one that lavishes extensiveraise on Tara I don t dislike Tara and loved her singing in Once More With Feeling but I can t really get excited about her either I do however really dislike Riley like a majority of Buffy fans but even those take up The Unforgiving Daughter positions that are fun to argue with Some of theieces are flat out outstanding such as an early one that is cast as a essay uestion on a test in which a demon is asked to explain which is the most The Water Dancer powerful force for good in Sunnydale and why answer Xander with an interesting defense In the other anthologies there were essays I had to suffer through in order to get to others to my liking There isn t a clunker in the bunch hereIf I had a complaint though I really don t it would be that too many of the essays are fixated on the romance aspects of Buffy I would estimate that well over half of the essaysrimarily are focused on one or of the romances in the series My own interests have always focused on the ethical aspects eg did Spike s actions in Seasons 5 and 6 give him something like a soul before the shaman gave him one at the end of Season 6 or on the extraordinary optimism that Mustard Seed pervades the series thateople can grow and become than they are that leopards can indeed change their spots but clearly anyone who hates romance is not going to enjoy Buffy for very long My lone complaint is that there isn t a bit diversity of subject matter There are just a few too many articles focusing on romance than I would have likedStill and all this is a great great book and although I have freuently noted in other reviews that anthologies by their very nature are inconsistent and uneven this one breaks that rule It starts off great and stays that way all the way through I can t imagine anyone with any interest in Buffy at all not loving this collection Just goes to show fantasy sci fi writers are human too and they fall rey to frenzied fandom as much as you and I BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER has been gone for a few years now and I still miss it and I still look around for some sort of substitute to satisfy Buffy withdrawal There s Joss Whedon s Season Eight as chronicled in comic book form so that s cool But SEVEN SEASONS OF BUFFY is another alternative that might tide you over It s a book anthology of Buffy centric essays as written by some fairly big names in the sci fi fantasy genre These articles twenty two of them as well as the foreword from Drew Goddard he co wrote Conversations With Dead People vary from insightful to droll to tongue in cheek to sometimes all three Topics span a wide range but all related to the Slayer s universe For fans who just enjoy reading articles about the Slayer and her world or for fans who struggle to articulate just what Buffy means to them or why exactly is it that Buffy matters on a op culture level or on a Their Eyes Were Watching God public consciousness level well this book might helpThe beauty of this anthology is that differing viewpoints are offered and it s up to you to agree or disagree For example I really liked Seasons 6 7 so I wasn t down with how Justine Larbalestier closes her veryassionate essay I m not a fan of Riley so while I concede certain The Water Dancer points to Michelle Sagara West siece it still left me feeling kind of meh On the other hand as a The Help proponent of the last two seasons I totally dig Nancy Holder s Slayers of the Last Arc So I m saying this book should have something for everyone but it ll alsoossibly have stuff that ll cheese you offA few of the essays are framed creatively but not as creatively as Roxanne Longstreet Conrad s Is That Your Final Answer which Golden Poppies purports to be a lowly hellion s demonic termaper which Sula presents Xander Harris as the Greatest Force for Good in Sunnydale David Brin s Buffy vs the Old Fashioned Hero asserts that the Slayer celebrates the inclusion of the common folk while otheropular epics such as LORD OF THE RINGS and STAR WARS tend to cling to elitist waysThere s an inescapable theme of sensuality and sexuality in the show and so we get Nancy Kilpatrick s saucy delving into Buffy s love life in Sex and the Single Slayer with Jennifer Crusie s Dating Death covering similar ground Carla Montgomery s Innocence explores the relationship entanglements Buffy and her friends get into and the growth and loss of innocence that come with the The Indigo Girl: A Novel package of falling in love Michelle Sagara West s For the Love of Riley makes a case for Riley Finn s being THE ONE for Buffy Elsewhere Lawrence Watt Evans fun Matchmaking on the Hellmouth arrives at a startling ideal romantic interest for Buffy which okay you do see coming ma. This collection of irreverent and surprising essays about theopular television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer includes ieces by leading science fiction and fantasy authors Contributors include bestselling legend David Brin critically acc.