Buffy the Vampire Slayer
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Time of Your Life (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Season 8, Vol. 4)
Willow and Buffy head to New York City to unlock the secrets of Buffy's mysterious scythe, when something goes terribly awry. Buffy is propelled into a dystopian future where there's only one Slayer - Fray, the title character of Joss Whedon's 2001 series, the first comic he ever wrote. Their uneasy alliance falls apart, leading to the death of a major character from the TV series, while back in the twenty-first century, the Scotland base falls prey to a mystical bomb courtesy of the Biggest Bad - Twilight!
||May 19, 2009|
|Average Customer Rating:
|| based on 35 reviews|
Average Customer Review:
( 35 customer reviews )
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7 of 7 found the following review helpful:
Good not great...Oct 13, 2009
By Ross Rankin
I'm a huge BtVS fan and own the whole TV series on DVD. I've really like most of the Season 8 comics to date. Volume 4, if you are collecting the graphic novel format versus the individual issues, is the weakest of collection so far. While I did enjoy seeing the Fray characters again, it felt like more of a stunt that a real plot point. The Willow portion also felt unsatisfying as well, sorry its hard to explain while trying to be vague to avoid major spoilers.
The side plot of Dawn, was, in reality, kind of stupid. I appreciate that they wanted to add some more fantastical elements that cover ground they could do in a TV show with a moderate budget, but this was beyond the spirit of the series. The "there are consequences to relationships" is very Joss, but the results here feel like fodder for a few quips and jokes rather than a solid allegory.
So while I'll tune into for another volume, my passion for this version of BtVS is waning and will be gone without a solid set of issues and some new meaty hooks to build my desire and suspense for a volume 6.
8 of 9 found the following review helpful:
Um....what just happened?Aug 29, 2009
By S. Penrose
I was loving this series and the last trade (Vol. 3) was my favorite. So, my expectations for this were high. Sadly, they were dashed quickly. This tale of time travel and forest creatures fell so short is was depressing. The future slayer story line was hard to follow (so much so that I wondered if I was missing pages), the dialogue was confusing, and the art was atrocious. The reveal of who Buffy met in NYC was lost on me because the art wasn't clear as to who it was. So disappointing. This entire story seems pointless and Dawn being a Centaur is beyond annoying. Big step down. :(
2 of 2 found the following review helpful:
It's Okay...Aug 12, 2009
I'll be honest, the only decent thing about this item is that the Buffy/Fray conflict has an okay storyline that help furthers Fray's story arc more-so than Buffy's. The stories have really started going downhill for the Season 8 comic, and lacks any sort of foundation. It is as though the writers are trying to stretch the story arc to its limits, and gradually diluting any sort of characterization along the way.
I suggest only getting this set simply for the Fray story arc and the issue that gives a little shout-out to the animated series. Otherwise, skip it and just buy them individually.
4 of 5 found the following review helpful:
The downward spiral slows, but doesn't stopJul 13, 2009
By Magic Pink
The fourth volume of Buffy Season 8 is a notable improvement over volume three but, really, that's not saying a lot.
While volume three was pure, pathetic, offensive, poorly written fan service, volume four is pure, pathetic, offensive, mildly well written spin-off advertising with fan service.
The current problems with the series are still in abundance: all the girls wear skin tight clothes and most panels center on breasts, lesbians run rampant throughout the storyline but male homosexuals are nowhere to be found, male characters get 2 or 3 panels a chapter at best, are ridiculously stereotypically idiotic and get primarily head and shoulder shots (unless they're mutant critters; amusingly all the female mutant critters still have perfect breasts); in short, the artists are apparently told the only people buying their comic are fat, straight men who will never come close to a women for the rest of their lives.
The storyline takes a bizzare break to future New York where Buffy meets the current Slayer there, Fray. While this would be interesting, all it really is a quick crash course in the other comic series being published, transparently as a desperate ploy to snag more readers. Also, invented slang? It's dumb, folks. REALLY dumb. Then there's a completely unneccesary spin back to Buffy high school time in what is, I assume, an ad for the animated series or yet another comic series. Either way, it's about as interesting as reading an ad.
The art takes a severe dip this time around as well. I'm not sure who the Amazing Reveal Guy was three-quarters through the story; I'm sure he was an old Buffy character but good luck finding out who he was. I won't spoil it but the mish mashed face could have easily been about four different people. And I'm not sure when Willow became part horse but she's certainly sporting the nose now.
This volume and the last have proven that the series isn't worth buying anymore. The writing in volumes one and two were great; it was wonderful to find out what happened to your favorite characters but the overwhelming one-sided fan service has destroyed this comic.
8 of 11 found the following review helpful:
Effortlessly excellentJun 04, 2009
Having read the first five reviews, I have to say my piece. Season 8 has been better than any of the TV seasons because Whedon's stories are no longer limited by filming budget. After Buffy's trip to Japan in "Wolves at the Gate", the next trip that would have been impossible on TV was to take Buffy to the future. The story has been criticized for being nothing more than a needless excuse for Buffy to meet (and fight) Fray. Is it really? The first 3½ pages disorient in a good way by throwing readers straight into the action before Whedon moves to a flashback sequence where we see how Buffy got onto that rooftop. Plus, he gives us a mystery of Dawn's transformation and the sudden switch of places in time between Buffy and the monster from the future, before ending the first episode in one of those wonderful Whedon cliffhangers. Then, the second episode starts, logically, by showing us how Fray got onto that rooftop. Whedon throws us a red herring when Buffy and Fray's antagonist in the future is described as "the dark-haired one" who has "lived for centuries, speaks in riddles and strange voices." This brings to mind a certain Vampire lady... Taking advantage of the fact that comics don't (usually) have sound, Whedon can even allow the "dark-haired one" to speak without the readers not being able to identify her by recognizing her voice. Clever. Whedon juggles the future storyline with the present day storyline, in which the assault on the Slayers' castle base drives Buffy's forces on the run, once again in a situation where the bad guys seem to be winning. This recalls the most dire situations our heroes have found themselves in the previous seasons while also being completely different. Then he ends the second episode with yet one Whedon-class revelation of the antagonists identity. And then the plot starts to unfold... By the time the fantastically cinematic double-climax (of present and future storylines) comes, Whedon still manages to find the time for yet another revelation and ends the story by having Buffy make a heart-breaking decision without really knowing why she has to do it. In the end, the readers also don't know why, which leaves us wanting more. Whedon has done this before and the mysteries have always been eventually solved satisfactorily. Just because Whedon does not yet tell us why all this happened does not mean it's not good storytelling. We are not seeing the big picture yet. That said, Whedon's dialogue is of the usual excellent quality and Moline's art *really* has evolved since Fray first came out. This is as worthy a mini-arc as any previous ones in Season Eight.
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