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Brian Hague
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Joined: 14 November 2006
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Posted: 29 July 2018 at 10:16am | IP Logged | 1 post reply

Starting over and recasting Buffy would definitely have been a risk, especially if they planned to change the character's race. The outcry from fandom would have been potentially (!) deafening, allowing nothing else about the show to have been heard. 

I also disagree that starting anew would be, by definition, lazy. Buffy was, as you pointed out, iconic, not just as a character, but as a series and as an approach to heroine fiction. Whether you're attempting to replicate the feel and energy of the original or going in an entirely different direction, you are still taking a chance. Of the two options, choosing not to upset the fans by sticking with what is already known is by far the safest path. 

Also, with so much of the set-up and premise now established, it is going to be less reliant upon the need for "new ideas." It will be great if it has them, but the show could theoretically coast on what is already known about Slayers, Slayer lore, the Initiative, the Watchers Council, et al. New ideas and risks are good, but neither approach ruled those things out.

That being said, I was completely into the Buffyverse, and hearing now that there are going to be more stories told within that setting tickles me right down to my toenails. I'm definitely hoping for the best here.

Has anyone seen the show "Midnight, Texas?" Do we have a sense of what Monica Owusu-Breen might bring to a new Buffy series?

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Greg Kirkman
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Posted: 29 July 2018 at 1:54pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

I also disagree that starting anew would be, by definition, lazy. Buffy was, as you pointed out, iconic, not just as a character, but as a series and as an approach to heroine fiction. Whether you're attempting to replicate the feel and energy of the original or going in an entirely different direction, you are still taking a chance. Of the two options, choosing not to upset the fans by sticking with what is already known is by far the safest path. 
+++++++

I get what you’re saying, Brian. Just voicing my personal preferences.

By “lazy”, I mean that the temptation would probably too great for them to do new and “improved” versions of characters and storylines from the original show. Along with the safety-blanket of familiarity, that would bring with it a host of expectations (and potential—pun!—backlash from fans). Just look at how well Abrams’ inverted, soulless rehash of the end of TWOK for INTO DARKNESS was received. Do we really want to see a version of “Becoming” or “The Body” which takes a hard left turn, and not in a good or clever way? I’d rather see new characters and stories which retain the spirit of the original show, rather than rehashing what we already know. The core premise lends itself to an ongoing format which can be reinvented for each new generation, not unlike TREK. New Slayers, new stories. 

Into every generation, a Slayer is born...


I’ve become extremely wary of modern writers trying to be clever by regurgitating existing stories and characters—“but with a twist!”. To borrow from the recently-departed Steve Ditko, “A is A”. BUFFY is BUFFY. There should really be only one (aside from the movie being a sort of false start, of course). A new Buffy is the same sort of brand dilution that we’ve seen with any number of other franchises. There’s the “legacy” version still being marketed, and then a bunch of other versions out there. I couldn’t tell ya how many versions of Spider-Man are running around, at this point. Movies, cartoons, comics for adults, comics for small children, alternate universes, etc. He’s no longer one reasonably-consistent character seen across multiple media. Everyone gets to come along and do their own version, and I think it weakens the integrity of the brand.

As I’ve often noted, there’s much more flexibility with print characters like Superman and James Bond, in terms of reinterpretations and recasting. But, when it comes to properties like STAR TREK and BUFFY...those actors are those characters, and recasting them will likely come off as a damp squib, at best, or an insulting, cash-grab attempt at replacement, at worst. Remember, Abrams wanted CBS/Paramount to stop merchandising the likenesses and lore of TOS, so that his reboot would be the only version on the market. Yikes.

Still, I look forward to seeing what comes of this. Love the original show, and hope that this new iteration works out for the best. I remain cautiously optimistic!


Edited by Greg Kirkman on 29 July 2018 at 1:58pm
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Joe Zhang
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Posted: 31 July 2018 at 7:53pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply

Buffy influenced an entire generation of fantasy and youth oriented shows. And it proved (to Hollywood) that superheroism can be cool. The new Buffy show has Godzilla-sized footsteps to follow. A continuation of the old series would have probably made that task easier, as it did for the recent X-Files revival. 

Edited by Joe Zhang on 31 July 2018 at 7:56pm
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