I’m back from the comic shop this week and I got two new comics plus two hard cover collections:

  • Dark Horse Presents – 1
  • Sigil – 2
  • “Astro City – Shining Stars”
  • “Mister Wonderful”
  • And now for a review of something I’ve read recently.

    “Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Tales” by Various

    First off I’ll say that I bought this large oversized hardcover for the art and because I got it at a good price. It’s drawn by a whole variety of artists and all of them do a good job. There wasn’t a stinker in the bunch and at nearly 300 pages that’s pretty darn good. Art-wise three stories really stand out to me. One is drawn by P. Craig Russell and the other two are by Gene Colan. Those three stories are just amazingly drawn. Completely masterful jobs. I can’t praise them highly enough.

    This volume reprints two Buffy mini series from back in the early 2000’s or so: “Tales of the Vampires” and “Tales of the Slayers” plus some material from various one shot stories over the years. I think I only read one story from this volume before so it was almost all new to me. That story came out during the “Buffy: Season 8” years. I think it was a one shot.

    The book starts out with the “Tales of the Slayers” stories and though the writing was good throughout the book I found these stories to be weaker than the vampire ones. I think that’s because every Slayer’s story is basically the same. First the Slayer is a normal girl and then she becomes “The Chosen One”, gets super powers, and fights vampires. The stories all take place in different times and in different places but often that variety wasn’t enough to distinguish them. A few of them did stand out above that basic story but not all of them. They were well done anyway but there was more variety in “The Tales of the Vampire” stories.

    The Slayer stories also pointed out something I always found odd and hard to believe (y’know – relatively) in the “Buffy” mythos. At any given time there is only one Slayer. I mean what’s the point? There are vampires all around the world so why only one Slayer? Especially in the past when travel was hard and not done very often. What was the point of keeping one town in France in 1478 free of vampire while thousands of them roamed freely about the Earth? It made more sense when Buffy lived at the Hellmouth and evil things came there that she could kill them but what is there for a slayer in the year 679 in Australia or Spain to do? How could they even find any vampire to slay?

    Not that I though the Slayer tales were bad but the writing picked up with the vampire stories. And as I’ve said before I’m not the “Villains are always more interesting than heroes” type so that’s not it. It’s that the writers weren’t bound to a basic premise and each vampire in each time and place was doing something different than the other. Well, besides feeding on humans that is.

    So if you’re interested is a nice oversized hardcover of Buffy stories without Buffy in them that has some good writing and art then check out this volume.