Comic Review – “Joss Whedon’s Fray”

Does the creator of Buffy have what it takes to
write a comic? Read on to find out!

General Information

Title: Fray

Author: Joss Whedon

Illustrator(s): Karl Moline and Andy Owens

Original Publication Date: The individual issues spanned a
couple of
years, but this graphic novel collection was published on
November 26,
2003.

ISBN: 1569717516

Cover Price: $19.95 US

Buy from: Amazon.com
or Amazon.ca

Premise

At some point in the future, an ambitious slayer banishes
all demons
to another dimension, eliminating the need to call other
slayers. At
some point even further in the future, the demons start to
come back,
and Melaka Fray is called upon to stop them.

High Point

The last visit to Gunther.

Low Point

The blur lines around action images.

The Scores

It’s another Slayer. Buffy fans won’t see much that’s new
and
original here, but they’ll see a lot of what they
like.
Still, this category only receives 3 out of 6.

The artwork suffers mainly in those blur lines.
Even Slayers
aren’t fast enough to get that effects, and the colour
chosen to blur
is not the colour of the blur we’d see. I just doesn’t work in
that
one little way. I give it 5 out of 6.

The story takes two or three issues to get
warmed up, but by
the end of the eigth issue, I was ready for more. I give it 5
out of 6.



The characterization is well done across the
board. There’s
a lot to like about the heroes, and there’s a lot you don’t
want to
like about everybody. I give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response was weak for the first
two issues, but then
it just kept building. The aftermath was about as exciting
as the
final confrontation. I give it 5 out of 6.

The flow was marred only by that distracting
blur thing in the action
sequences, but the blur thing jarred me out during the
scenes when
flow is really important. I give it 4 out of 6.

Overall, it’s a very good comic, particularly as
its Joss
Whedon’s first foray into the medium. I don’t think the
surprises
would have been as surprising if I’d read this in the
perpetually late
issues, but I’ll be picking up Whedon’s other work when I
see it in a
graphic novel. I give it 5 out of 6.

In total, Fray receives 32 out of 42.

Additional Notes and Comments

As always, requests for any reviews of this
stuff

can be made in comments or e-mail.

4 replies on “Comic Review – “Joss Whedon’s Fray””

  1. UncleJam says:

    my thoughts (such as they are)

    I deliberately waited to get this until it came out in a collected edition and now I wish I hadn’t. If I had been picking it up on an issue-by-issue basis, I could have dropped it after the first couple of issues and saved myself some cash. Kind of like I did with JLA/Avengers, but that’s a whole different rant.

    Fray, oh I’m sorry, I mean Joss Whedon’s Fray, is a competent-enough story I suppose but it didn’t have the wit and bite that Joss’ TV work has. I just didn’t get the feeling of “Hey, this is Joss Whedon!” when I was reading it. It could have been any reasonably competent comic writer. The character of Melaka Fray was not very developed, I thought. Just your standard tough chick with an attitude. Bo-ring. It’s a good thing they put Joss’ name in the title, because I think that would probably be its main selling point. Certainly not the story, which was dull and predictable.

    And the ending was terrible! In fact, it wasn’t even an ending so much as it was the end of the series, if you know what I mean. If I had had to wait as long as the single-issue readers did for the final issue and then that was what I got, I’d be very upset.

    I think the art is actually the best thing about this series. I had never seen Moline’s work before but I like it.

  2. babasyzygy says:

    Continuity question
    Do they deal at all with the way that Buffy “smeared out” the slayer
    powers among all potential slayers in the series finale?

    • fiziko says:

      Re: Continuity question

      Do they deal at all with the way that Buffy “smeared out” the
      slayer
      powers among all potential slayers in the series finale?

      It’s both unmentioned and irrelevant in this story. Joss went out
      of his way to make sure this would stay consistent with the TV
      shows.

      • KernelM says:

        Re: Continuity question

        Do they deal at all with the way that Buffy “smeared out” the
        slayer
        powers among all potential slayers in the series finale?

        It’s both unmentioned and irrelevant in this story. Joss went out
        of his way to make sure this would stay consistent with the TV
        shows.

        Well, according to Joss, there are a couple of problems. I’m not sure exactly what he’s talking about, but probably having to do with the description of the previous “final battle”.

        From this Filmforce article:

        Buffy’s final episodes both used and diverged from continuity elements that Whedon had previously established in his Fray comics. Whedon noted that “There are now things in Fray, mythologically, that don’t match up, which I’m going to have to explore when I do the next series of Fray comics. Oops, did I say that?”

        Of course, for me, the really exciting thing there is the possibility of another Fray series.

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