I know I promised to have this up over the weekend, but work is getting into its insanely busy period. (You may have guessed that simply because I’m shifting to reviewing comics that can be read much faster than movies can be watched.) I’ll try to keep up as best I can.

General Information

Title: Buffy the Vampire Slayer – Season Eight – #4

Author: Joss Whedon

Illustrator(s): Georges Jeanty (pencils), Andy Owens (inks), Dave Stewart (colours)

Original Publication Date: Cover dated June 2007.

Cover Price: $2.99

Past comic reviews can be found here.

Premise

This is the rescue and general butt kicking that concludes the first story arc.

High Point

Once again, there are several moments that are in contention, mainly because any one of them could turn into a much larger story in the long term. It’s not just the eyes, the twilight, or the acceptance of what is to come, it’s the fun I fully expect to have while it all develops.

Low Point

The “you’re not as proportionately strong…” bit. If not, she’d crush herself! That’s kind of a mandatory element of her condition.

The Scores

We’ve got an original (and, more importantly, plausible) reason for the presence of the character we saw at the end of the previous issue, as well as a new villainous group revealed. I give it 4 out of 6.

The artwork, once again, has a mix of dead-on likenesses and off-kilter likenesses.
I’m getting used to that, though, and I’m increasingly sure that it is a likeness rights issue, since the characters that don’t look quite right look very consistent throughout the series. I give it 4 out of 6.

The story is classic Whedon, with hints at things to come and indications of long-term planning embedded within a fun action story. I give it 5 out of 6.

The characterization is exactly where it needs to be. Whedon knows the voices of these characters, and he uses them well. I give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response, as one might expect, is great. They’re talking about a story arc that lasts over 50 issues, and based on these four, I plan to be here until the end. I give it 5 out of 6.

The flow is as good as it has been all series. Joss is getting the hang of the medium, and has gotten better at translating television’s quick, unnarrated cuts onto the printed page. I give it 5 out of 6.

Overall, basically, Buffy’s back, and I expect her to stay for quite some time. I give it 5 out of 6.

In total, Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season Eight #4 receives 33 out of 42.

Additional Notes and Comments

Issue #5 is a one-shot by Joss Whedon, so it’ll also get its own review. After that, we’re into arcs supervised by Whedon but written by other writers. The first will be written by Brian K. Vaughan, and will be reviewed as a complete package rather than as a set of individual issues.