Tuesday, April 11, 2006


My first post, my first whinge.

Had an email from a friend I'm trying to turn onto Buffy. Because it's a great show, and because it will improve her life to have seen it. She's a lover of Firefly/Serenity, so this should be a breeze, right?

Not so much.

Part of the problem seems to be preconception. She thinks she knows the show, cos she's caught a few eps now and again. How do you convey that so much of what she's worried about doesn't matter? "Don't people notice all the killing?" Well, kinda, but..." Why don't they leave the town? "Well, it's built on a Hellmouth..."

Then there's the vague knowledge. Willow's crush on Xander? "But Willow's a lesbian, isn't she?" Buffy and her mother... "Hang on, though, I thought Buffy had a sister."

So I kicked her off with series two. It's got the best arc (though more weak single-eps than series three), is less outwardly silly-seeming than series one, and it doesn't take too much to follow. (Come series five, damn, there's some explaining to do! Otherwise I'd have kicked off with Hush, The Body and Once More With Felling and to hell with it.)

I get the email. 'Saw episode one. Seemed to be lacking the Whedon magic. And the humour was kinda of lame."

You may cough and splutter now.

Okay, the emotional oomph of Buffy's return and anguish over being killed...not gonna work when you missed that season. But the sharpness of the cruelty, making Angel jealous, using Xander to do it, Willow with foam on her nose! And Snyder can smell trouble, "It's like a sixth sense." Giles: "Actually, that would be one of the five."



I breathe deep and wait for more eps to go by. Then I realise that in amongst gems like Halloween and School Hard are things like - ulp - Reptile Boy and Some Assembly Required. Plenty of funny and cool in there...but not a little nonsense, too.

So, much like Red in The Shawshank Redemption, I hope.

I hope.


Additional - April 17th.

So it turns out she watched the fifth episode first by mistake - a DVD selection error that meant her first exposure to this amazing piece of television was...Reptile Boy. One of the worst episodes of Buffy ever! No wonder it went down like a ton of demons.

Things are picking up now, apparently. I'll have them sobbing at The Body in no time.


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