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Archive for the tag “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”

Buffy the Vampire Slayer (2012) update

Trade paperback cover of Buffy: Season Eight V...

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Back in 2009 I wrote about the possible reboot of BtVS.  The latest news is that Whit Anderson is off the project.  Whedon is sassy about it.

I had assumed that she was just the pretty face to serve as a decoy for the seasoned writer who didn’t want his (probably) name on it.  If that scriptwriter backed out, they could have still used her as their face.

Parenthetically, poor thing’s going to go through life as ‘that chick who wanted to replace Joss.’

ETA:  I feel that I was being waspish and unfair here.  I do believe that poor Ms Anderson was used unkindly by those backing this project. I have contempt for them and for their attempt to misappropriate a culture icon, not the young woman.

From L A Times:

As for the future of “Buffy”? A new writer is being sought but the entire endeavor may have lost some steam. There also might be some healthy fear among the producers who witnessed a spasm of fan criticism when the project was first publicized.

And how do I really feel about it?  BWA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA.  *wipes tear*

But enough of these mirthful distractions…let’s all wait for The Avengers.  And go watch Tintin.

Netflix and I: Widening Horizons, pt. 2

Tokyo Godfathers

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After I got accustomed to how Netflix worked, I stopped getting the latest releases and went for the older or lesser known movies.  I realized that I had gaps in my viewing, and that there was a broader selection of kinds of movies to watch.

Here’s where I began watching documentaries:  American Nightmare; Mad Hot Ballroom; Paper ClipsOur Daily Bread; This Film is Not Yet Rated.

I was disappointed in a couple of television shows and stopped watching TV shows on disc for awhile.

I began watching fewer touted anime series. Then I discovered Satoshi Kon’s wonderful films, which are like Studio Ghibli for grownups.  High quality, immersive and provocative.

K and I came to the end of Buffy.  It was emotional and we had a final episode party. (This was before season 8.)

At this point, I began the first of my genre movie projects.  I picked horror because I refused to watch horror movies till I went to college.  Too much of a cowardy-custard.

I’m glad I wasn’t blogging when I started watching horror movies because I think I would have triggered a vigilante group.  One time I mentioned a a certain horror movie was awful and, judging by their reaction, I ruined my friends’ childhood.

I did find a few gems, and it was worth it.  Horror seems to be one of the easiest genres to do and one of the hardest to do well.   The only classic horror movie now I haven’t seen is Rosemary’s Baby.  I keep meaning to.

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The Netflix and I: The Journey Begins, pt 1

Family watching television, c. 1958

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Disclaimer:  No gifts were made to me by Netflix.com.  I don’t even get those bonus discs my friends get from time to time.   *grrr*

I was inspired by Film Fanatic’s post to reflect a bit on my film watching habits.  Ever since I discovered her site, I’ve wanted a book like Peary’s.  But it’s OK.

Let me take you back to the olden days.  The first VCR that my family bought was about $500.  There were little VHS stores everywhere in those days.

Time passed, and chain stores with bigger stock opened up.  My family were avid movie watchers.  No section was safe from our foraging.  I remember after we had been renting for 2 years, I went to ask the clerk to recommend a movie for us.  She threw up her hands and said, “You watch everything.  I can’t think of anything.”

Later, when I was on my own, I continued to rent movies.  I was constantly getting caught by late fees and coming home with movies that I had little hope for.  Then my brother’s girlfriend (now wife, hey there W!) told me about Netflix.  I didn’t own a computer or a DVD player but I borrowed her computer and signed myself up.

That was in 2002.

I took my movies to my friends’ houses or my parents’ house to watch them.  It was a little difficult.  But eventually, I bought my own DVD.

There were so many classic films that I had read about but couldn’t find. Now I could get them.  So many of them were disappointing but enough of them were stellar, and kept me going.  I have loved movies for a long but now I could watch all the Godzilla/Gojira movies chronologically.  I see Rashomon instead of simply read an analysis of it.

And the extras and commentary.  It really opened my eyes to the process of film-making  and I gained new respect for how hard my favorites worked and how incredibly smart they are.

I discovered Joss Whedon in this period and joined the Whedon cult.  My sister K agreed to watch Buffy with me.  Those are some fabulous memories. (love you K, and thank you for ‘buffyizing.’)

I had read about Bollywood for years but never saw any of it.  My first was Rangeela AKA Colorful. I still love it even though I’ve seen better since.

Quick note:  Hidden Fortress has little to do with Star Wars, you’re better off watching Buster Crabbe’s Buck Rogers serials.

These lists are sampling of  the movies I rented during that time.

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TV Meme

List your five favourite TV shows and answer the questions below.

Five favourite TV shows in no particular order:

1. Pushing Daisies
2. Coupling
3. Veronica Mars
4. Firefly
5. Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Who is your favourite character in #1?
Emerson Cod – Chi McBride

Who is your least favourite character in #2?
Sarah Harper – Kate Isitt

What is your favourite episode of #4?
Out of Gas

What is you favourite season of #5?
Season 3

How long have you watched #1?
completed both seasons

How did you become interested in #3?
Became a fan of Kristen Bell in Reefer Madness the Musical

Who is your favourite actor in #4?
Adam Baldwin as Jayne

Which show do you prefer out of 1, 2, or 5?
Buffy the Vampire Slayer

How would you kill off your favourite character in #2?
Somehow Jeff would be suffocated by a pair of guest breasts.

Which show have you seen more episodes of? #1 or #3?
Pushing Daisies

If you could be anyone from #4, who would you be?
YoSafBridge

Give a random quote from #1:
Please don’t attack the window treatments

Would a #3 and #4 crossover work?
No, but I would have loved to have seen an attempt

Pair two characters in #1 that would make an unlikely, but strangely okay couple.
Olive Snook and Emerson Cod

Overall, which show has a better cast, #3 or #5?
Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Which has better theme music? #2 or #4?
Firefly

B is for Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Buffy Summers

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B is for Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  I am a fan of the Whedonverse.  Oddly enough, my story starts not with Buffy but with Firefly.

Note: You can skip this part and go directly to the comments and tell your own “browncoat story.”

But here’s how it was…

At the time, I was friends with a crowd that talked during movies, and in fact mocked them. It’s not because that we even disliked what we were seeing, we just liked making gibes.  Yes, special hell for all of us.

One evening, a friend came over and brought a new show on disk.  I don’t even remember how he described it.  We settled in; saw the pilot and the second pilot and were kind of insufferable about it.  I think it was Bushwacked when we all went quiet and just started watching.  The evening broke up late and we didn’t say much other than goodnight.

A few days later, the man came back.  He had just gotten in the doorway when our very loud conversations stopped dead.  We all focused on him. He said, “What?”  One of us said, “Did you bring it?  Firefly?”  He shrugged, “I thought you guys didn’t like it.  I didn’t bring it with me.”  There various dissents.  We stared at him some more.  Our spokesperson said, “Well.  Go go it.”   Poor guy didn’t even get to sit down.

(N.B.  We were generally nicer than that to our friends.)

Firefly primed me for BtVS.  I had already planned on watching the series the year it ended.  Years before I had watched the pilot episode and liked it but then my job kept me from watching much tv.  Also, there was this  weird teen next door who would go into his yard after the show was over and swing a stick and pretend to stake vampires and yell, “I’m right behind you Buffy!”

But the show was on Netflix and it seemed like a good idea – especially after Firefly.  I persuaded Kat to join me.  Once a week, we’d ‘buffize’ and watch all 4 episodes one after the other.  It took us several years.

Some of my friends (a mix of fans and not) came over for a party to watch the final episode.  It felt quite emotional to finish it, not only the show but the great time with Kat.

For years, I’d been trying to persuade my brother to watch it with me.   He was doing a job near where I live and stayed for some of the weeknights.  I pounced on the opportunity.  I own season 1 and season 2 and we whizzed through those.  He was much more analytical than I was when I first watched it and his favorite character was Cordelia.  He pointed out that, unlike Buffy, she lost her cheerleader friends but wasn’t accepted by the Scoobies for a long time.  I bought season 3 to keep pace with our watching.

Then I stayed the weekend with him and his wife.  We watched all of season 4 in 2 days.  The biggest compliment I can give it is that marathon watching all the shows didn’t feel repetitive or tedious.  Instead, I felt emotionally wrung out.  Some tough stuff happened in season 4, though nothing to compared to 5 and 6.

I have also been astonished that episodes that I disliked or thought were lacking, didn’t seem so bad this time around.  I don’t feel introspective enough to figure out why.  But it’s nice that season one and season four do not disappoint as much as I remembered.

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and so I venture into fandom

Cover of "Bimbos of the Death Sun"

Cover of Bimbos of the Death Sun

I grew interested in media fans and read a book that had a short  history of fan fiction writers.  Then I read another more difficult book about fan communities.  I poked about online and read some slash fiction and was disturbed by the concept of male morning sickness. Then, I stopped looking.

In the past week or so, I’ve had free time on my hands this past week.  I decided to try again.  I’m glad I had time because there’s so much to take in.

I went to Fanfiction.net, which turns out to be a sort of internet warehouse for fan fiction.  The site is easy to find and mostly easy to navigate.  There are massive numbers of stories on it.  I was kind of hoping to find some fabulous stories but didn’t find anything that I liked.

After I finished watched the series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I searched for and found a lot of fan sites for the show.  I had noticed that many of them had sections for fan fiction but I hadn’t investigated.  I went back to these sites and found a few good stories, which encouraged me to keep trying.  Then I stumbled upon an obsolete site that recommended stories with links.  Many the links were dead but the stories I did find were very good.

Eventually, I learned that I could find a lot of fan fiction on  Live Journal.com.  Bloggers there had all kinds of helpful guides too.  This was the kind of thing I was looking for.  Through their links, I discovered fan fiction archives (such as Yuletide) which pleased me a lot.

I moved on to wikis Fan History.com and Fan Lore.org, which gave me more recent history of “fandom.”  There I read about all the disputes in the past year or so.

Sharyn McCrumb‘s Bimbos of the Death Sun gave me the notion that fans were cozy and embraced each others follies.  Maybe that was true once upon a time.  But I learned from many, many posts and other accounts in the “community” that I was wrong.

It is not news to me that people are confronting the flaws of our society and that they are trying to survive the tragedies that result from its toxicity.  By my perception, as an outsider, is that there is no room for  “ground for good-faith discussion” in fandom.  It’s disheartening.

Back to the stories…of course, the most recent and most popular works have the most stories.   There are few unusual works in the mix as well.  I joked about looking for fan fiction based on the Epic of Gilgamesh.  And then I found three fan fictions that had written by request. Talk about your long tail.

†Lehman, D. (2005).  Foreword. In P. Muldoon. The Best American Poetry (4). New York: Scribner Poetry.


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4 fun podcasts

I received a gift of an MP3 player and have been listening to podcasts while I exercise.

The first and best is Buffy Cast about Buffy the Vampire Slayer. There are only 13 episodes and two speakers.  The presentations are thoughtful and cover topics such as Xander’s character arc the episode, “The Body.”  There are several I want to listen to again.  (defunct 2011)

Stars Hollow – husband and wife podcast on Gilmore Girls. I haven’t seen the episodes they discuss but they are lively and sweet and I enjoy it anyway.

Movies You Should See – a group of reviewers from the U.K. who analyze various movies new and old.  I enjoy the group’s easy banter.  Although they are kinder to some movies than they should be, they seldom suffer dullards and fakes.  (still active 2011)

Another one on Buffy the Vampire SlayerBuff Cast.  Each Season is covered by one or two podcasts.  Some of them are long, about three hours.  Sometimes they devolve into recaps but they include interesting trivia.  (defunct 2011)

There are others but I haven’t listened to enough to know whether I recommend them or not.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer (2012)

There has been a lot of talk of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer movie in development.  You’d think fans of the franchise would be delighted…but there’s a catch.  Joss Whedon will not be involved.  Nor will any of the cast from the television series.

I’ve been reading comments and blog posts about this.  It’s interesting.  Some ridicule the idea; some are cautiously hopeful.  Some plan to boycott the movie; some enjoyed the first movie and think this one will be fine.  A few dislike Whedon and are eager to embrace a Whedon-less Buffy.  It’s all a little premature though, since the projected release date is not till 2012.

But I understand.  It’s hard not to speculate.

  • The first film by Fran Kuzui did OK at the box office but it wasn’t a critical success.
  • Whedon’s TV version was both influential and lauded.
  • Kuzui hasn’t directed a film since the Buffy movie (17 years ago).
  • Whedon’s feature film Serenity based on his series Firefly bombed.
  • The movie premiered in 1992: a lot of the target audience weren’t born then.
  • The TV series ended in 2003, and again, many movie goers won’t have seen it.
  • Fans of the movie will probably make a point to see it.
  • Fans of the TV series will probably be curious.

All in all, a remake is probably the right move.

If you think of it in terms of the Star Wars franchise, a remake without the people who made the TV show seems reasonable.  See, The Phantom Menace was more successful than The Empire Strikes Back in terms of box office.  Whedon and company would just add intelligence and heart to the project, and who needs that?  Certainly not USA cinema.

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Psyched for “Dollhouse”

I’m so going to watch Joss Whedon’s new show Dollhouse.Eliza Dushku as Echo

There will be maybe 5 episodes shown.  Out of order.

The critics don’t like it.  It airs Friday the 13th.  It’s on Fox.

No wonder there’s a campaign to save the show before it has even begun.

Better watch it while I can.

It airs tomorrow at 9/8c.  Eliza Dushku stars as Echo a “doll” whose memory is flashy-thinged and then imprinted with the personality that her clients require.

Salon interview

Zap2it on Dollhouse

Whedonesque – himself on Dollhouse

MTV – interview

Tim Goodman – review

Alan Sepinwall – review

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Gatekeeper books 1&2

Except for some Star Trek books, I not read many media tie-in books.  Though this partly due to snobbery, it’s also because I just didn’t think it could be the same experience.  So, I picked up the first two books in the Gatekeeper trilogy written by Christopher Golden and Nancy Holder.  The first volume is called Out of the Madhouse and the second volume is

It is engrossing, though it’s more about adventure than it is about the interpersonal stuff.  The storyline is set at the end of season three, I think.

The first and second book deal with Buffy and gang hunting for a way to protect the gatekeeper who is the only one who can seal the portal to the afterlife.  I liked that the story moved back and forth in time (such as to the Renaissance) and also that they travel to Boston and even overseas.  This opens the story and makes it richer.  I preferred the original characters such as Michaela Tamasi to the canonical characters.  I also enjoyed the concept of the Gatehouse – holding monsters from all dimensions within a single house.

I will probably read the third volume if I encounter it but I’m not going to hunt for it.

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