Saturday, February 28, 2009

Exclusive Interview: Angel's Kelley Armstrong Answers Our Questions and Yours

**Spoilers for Angel: Aftermath**

Our first interview with Kelley Armstrong was actually the first we ever had on Buffyfest, so we definitely hold her near and dear to our hearts and want to give a big thanks for giving us her time once again. Kelley already has a fanbase all its own from her successful Otherworld series. Now, with the premier issue of Angel:Aftermath dropping this past Wednesday, she has a whole new fandom to get used to. What better way to do that than by giving readers a chance to ask Kelley their own questions too, which you'll find after the jump. Thanks to all of you who participated.

Buffyfest: Which character do you find the easiest to write for in Angel: Aftermath? Which is the hardest? Why?

Kelley Armstrong: Angel would be easiest in the sense that I feel fairly confident in writing him, though I worry about getting him just right. The toughest would be Gwen because I find her viewpoint hardest to understand, but I want to explore it.

B: On that note, do you ever look back at the TV show for references or clues into the character's nuances when writing the comic?

KA: I've rewatched the whole TV series since agreeing to do this. I'm not sure how much it helped. In some ways, I think it panicked me a bit--I'd be watching season 4 and see a reference to season 1 and draw a complete blank on it, then start worrying about what I'd forget when I wrote my story arc. It's like studying for an exam and realizing not matter how many times you go over it, you'll never remember everything covered.

B: There have been a lot of characters from Angel: After the Fall who have not made it into Aftermath. Which character would you like to have a chance to write if they could be brought back into your series?

KA: It would be a toss-up between Fred and Spike. There were a lot of characters I couldn't use for various reasons, and they were two.

B: Many fans have been talking about the line Angel says within the first few pages while fighting off a demon, "I've redeemed my past." Has he really learned to accept his past? How do you think Angel's personal view of himself has changed since the end of season 5 and his experience in hell? [credit to Buffyfantic who submitted a very similar question and also says "Very nice first issue."]

KA: I think he has redeemed himself, between the work he did in the TV series and After the Fall. The question is whether he believes it or he's just paying lip service to the notion. Either way, he's in a position of not quite knowing where to go next, so this story is about Angel (and most of the characters) in a state of flux, searching for their way.

B: Kate seems decidedly different since we last saw her in "First Night" both in personality and clothing choice! Will there be backstory revealed on what happened to her in Hell-A? [Credit to AndrewCrossett who submitted a very similar question.]

KA: I know what I think happened to her, but that backstory doesn't come out in this story. Aftermath starts with characters who are all a little lost...all except Kate, whose experiences in Hell-A showed her exactly what she wanted to do with her life. So we get a very happy Kate here, in contrast to the other characters. Whether she stays that way is another question. As for the clothing choice, that's the artist, but I think the new Kate would approve. :)

B: Angel and Kate start the new Angel Inc. in a church. Where did that idea come from? Why didn't Angel go back to the Hyperion?

KA: Aftermath really is about starting over. For some, like Lorne, they want to go back to exactly where they were. For others, like Angel, they want to go back, but not completely. There are a lot of memories at the Hyperion and Angel isn't ready to deal with that. In this, he wants a fresh start. Why a church? A thematic choice.

B: Connor is looking for a job, is he no longer attending Stanford?

KA: Again, Connor is someone who isn't the same and who's learned a lot about himself and what he does (or doesn't) want from life. There will be more on that in the next issue. I just couldn't imagine Connor, after everything that happened in Aftermath, thinking "You know what I really want? To go back to college." It's too different a mental place for him right now, if that makes sense.

B: Wolfram & Hart are still M.I.A. Any chance they'll be back during Aftermath or will Angel and co. be dealing with a whole new set of enemies?

KA: I left W&H out of this one. It was a compromise. Being new to writing for Angel, I was worried that if I brought in too much of the "big" stuff from the series, I'd screw up worse than I was already going to, getting even more wrong and pissing off even more fans, no matter how much research I did.

B: What do you find the most surprising aspect of writing comics? Is there anything that you weren't expecting out of this experience that has happened or vice versa?

KA: I don't know about most surprising. I've dabbled with the form before, so there was nothing new there. What was new was writing in someone else's universe, and it taught me a lot, namely that however big a fan I consider myself, it's such a complex world that I struggled at times, knowing I was going to make mistakes. I hate continuity errors in a series. I'm paranoid about them in my own work, with a series bible to remind myself and a half-dozen beta readers making sure I don't miss something.

Again, thank you very much to the always lovely Kelley Armstrong for doing this interview with us and check out Angel: Aftermath if you haven't already. Continue reading below to see the answers to all the fan-submitted questions like: The status of Angel's Shanshu prophecy, why Kelley loves Willow so much and whether Buffy will be showing up in Aftermath or not!
Continue Reading...

Fan Questions submitted to Buffyfest:

Ryan wrote: Without her electric powers, assuming the LISA device still works, does this mean Gwen's main role in Aftermath is less battle savvy, to explore the "aftermath" of her betrayal and feelings for Connor?

KA: Yes, she's definitely going to be less battle-savvy here. They particularly want her watching their backs....if they want her around at all.

Elena wrote: Do you plan to mention shanshu again or do you think that the window of opportunity has closed?

KA: Oh, it's still there. Part of what we'll see in Aftermath is Angel dealing with the whole concept of prophesies and the role they play in his life.

Anonymous wrote: Nice way to set up the change in theme, :) a theme that seems to be saying "back to the beginning". If we are heading back to the beginning, any chance we might see Angel mention Buffy? Is there ANY chance that she could cross-over? Or maybe another BTVS character? Like Giles?

KA: No, there isn't, as much as I would love to. It's a rights issue. One company holds rights to the Buffy comics and another to Angel, so that was one firm restriction I was working under--no cross-over with characters from that series.

Thorn Of Gachnar wrote: Cordelia Chase is on a cover for #21, so is there is a good chance that she may be appearing again? Are you a fan of her and is there any way you can confirm that she is back without spoiling your work? Thank-you.

KA: Mmm. Yes, she will return, but it will be a fairly...restricted return.

Blade wrote: Just wondering if you'd heard anything about any crossover type moments with the events of the Buffy comic you'll be allowed to address? For example (and I know you can't give specifics), would there ever be a situation where Angel might comment on what's going on with his former employee Harmony?

KA: I'm sure I'd be allowed to comment on what's happening over there, as long as I didn't show it. One problem I've found so far, though, is that I have this mega-list of "stuff I'd love to do" that isn't fitting into the story-line, as hard as I try. I find the same thing with my novel series. I work with a huge revolving cast of characters there, so I always want to give little updates on the characters who aren't part of the current novel...and my editor keeps slashing them out with "Kelley, that isn't part of THIS story" So I've been well-trained. If the update doesn't arise organically from the current story, it stays out.

Enisy wrote: Which of your original characters are you most proud of? Are we going to see any payoff for Lindsey's murder on Lorne's or Angel's part, or has that ship sailed? You've said your favorite Angel character was Fred; who was your favorite Buffy character?

KA: For original characters, I'm going to guess you mean ones I created for this comic, and there's only two, so while I'm tempted to choose, that might give away spoilers! We aren't going to see more of Lorne here, so that issue won't be addressed. I'd considered it, but in my mind, Lorne would be the "character most in need of a rest," just wanting to get away from everything and everyone for a while. My favourite Buffy character? Hard to pick, but I was always partial to Willow, probably because I'm a former computer programmer.

Allycat wrote: I know the series won't carry the subtitle "Aftermath", but I thought that at least would be the name of the arc. I couldn't find it anywhere in the issue. Have they/you decided not to name the issues?

KA: I wasn't sure myself so I had to check! Apparently, they dropped the After the Fall title from the last few issues (which I saw in PDF so I didn't notice). While the title isn't going on the covers, my arc is still called Angel: Aftermath. Which is good, because that's what I've been calling it!

Craigoxbrow wrote: After the pretty straight-faced After the Fall, "Aftermath" already seems quite a bit lighter and more comedic. Is this going to run through the story?

KA: No, it won't continue. One problem I faced with starting Aftermath is that I was following an amazingly high-impact story, chock full of great action sequences and world-altering stakes. And my story won't be like that. It can't be--it wouldn't make sense to solve that and jump into something just as big. The characters need time to recover and find their footing again. So I decided to signal the change with a lighter issue, like sherbet between courses to cleanse the palate and prepare fans for a different tone. That first issue really lent itself to that tone. (Come on, how could I resist playing with "Angel as celebrity"?) While there will be a lighter tone overall, it's going to get more serious--just don't expect the heavy-duty action of After the Fall, please!

Dollhouse ep 3 "Stage Fright" ratings and Death Watch update

Ratings for 2/27: Fox tied NBC for third place with "Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles" (3.4 million, 1.2/4), dropping a couple tenths of a rating point to another all-time low, and "Dollhouse" (4.1 million, 1.6/5), slipping a tenth this week.

Dollhouse episode 3. I liked it, I disliked it, I realized I can no longer be of use when it comes to opinion. I'm completely tainted by ratings worries, fandom insider info and misinfo, ridiculous comparisons to the actor's other roles, etc. I can't do it. I'm out. Check out this fantastic, in-depth and positive recap of episode 3 "Stage Fright" if you're in the mood for that sort of thing. I, however, am in the mood for:

Things are looking great for Dollhouse from the fandom's point of view, it seems. There has definitely been more of a response from people who truly believe it's going all the way to season 2 (and possibly beyond). 62.5% of this mini poll, to be exact. That leaves a clean 25% for "The Realists" group (who think DH will make it to the end of the season and then cease to exist) and 12.5% for the ever dwindling skeptics (who don't think it'll make it much longer).

Again, if you're just finding this now and are totally confused, let me clarify. We here at Buffyfest have wagered a bit on this, "The Dollhouse Death Watch". And also again, we don't actually want Dollhouse's death of course, we're just having a friendly bet while speculating. If you'd like to join in on the fun, just leave a comment in this post. You can choose between the groups of:

Bitsy (the S&M hard-core skeptic) - who's sure Dollhouse will not even make it to the 7th episode.
Tara (the bitter realist) - thinks douche bag FOX will show all 13 episodes ordered, but will then cancel it and thus, Dollhouse will not make it to season 2.
Michelle (the starry eyed optimist) - who still believes that Dollhouse will show all episodes and even get renewed for a second season.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Buffy and Riley: One of the Best at Being the Worst

TV Guide Readers pick the worst TV Couples and Buffy and Riley have made the list.

On the opposite side of the relationship spectrum, Buffy and Angel come in at #2 in OK! Magazine's Hottest Vampire couples. My only question: Why the fanvid in place of a nice photograph?

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Happy 400th Post!!

Holy Moly! With all the hoopla and hollering over on our end, I almost missed it! Wowzers. 400 Whedon-filled, Buffy-missing, Angel-loving, Dollhouse-worrying, Dr. Horrible-praising, Comic Con-working, 'ship-mocking, Cast & Crew interviewing, fanatic posts later - and here we are. Happy Birthday my fellow bloggers and readers too! Much Love.

Exclusive Interview with Amber Benson Part 2

Here it is: part two of our amazing interview with Amber where we talk Buffy, Drones, and everything in between.

Don't forget that Amber's book is out now. If you're extra fancy you can even read it on one of those crazy Kindle gizmos. Thanks again to Amber for sitting down with us. We all had a great time.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Wanna ask Kelley Armstrong a question?

Angel: Aftermath is available in stores today and we want to give a big welcome to Kelley Armstrong. We're interviewing Kelley this week and thought it would be a great idea to include fan questions, as well. If you have a question for Kelley all you have to do is place your question in the comment section of this post. We'll try to use as many as we can.

**Update** Thanks for all of the fantastic questions! We're no longer taking any more for Ms. Armstrong, so it's officially closed. Again, we'll try to include them all. FYI, many of the questions mirrored some of the ones in our interview (as to be expected) but we promise we'll credit you if you submitted one of those similar, overlapping questions. Thanks again!

**Update 2** Questions have been answered! Go here to read the full interview:

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Exclusive Interview with Amber Benson Part 1

We've been eagerly anticipating releasing the interview we did with Amber Benson at NYCC and now, at long last, here it is! Who is Calliope Reaper-Jones? Where did the idea for her new book - on sale today - Death's Daughter come from? Why don't more women go on the heroes journey? Watch the first part video of our exclusive interview to find out!

Amber will be touring all around California promoting the book, signing, and just being generally awesome. You can see a list of the events she'll be attending here and, oh look, a handy dandy map!

Stay tuned because this Thursday, 2/26, we'll be posting part 2 of our interview with Amber where we talk about Buffy, her movies "Strictly Sexual" and "Drones", working with her boyfriend Adam Busch and much, much more!

Click on the link below to purchase Death's Daughter:


Monday, February 23, 2009

Julie Landau directs Godhead video "Hero"

Juliet Landau co-directed and appears in a music video for the song "HERO" by the band Godhead and it is now up. You'll find both the video and the behind the scenes mini-documentary at the band's site:

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Fanvid Sunday

Hey, all. Bitsy here. It's been a spell since last we all enjoyed a good ol' fashioned fanvid, huh? What with NYCC and Dollhouse going on, whose had the time? Not I. But things are slowing down and so I present to you an older Dollhouse fanvid that makes effective use of preview footage along with what seems to be quite a bit of footage from the Alphabet Killer. Peep it out!

You should check out all the other Dollhouse stuff that the Youtube user DollhouseProject has too.

Happy Sunday, everybody!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

This Just in: Dollhouse ratings Down - Sarah Connor Chron the same

From TV By the numbers:

Last night’s Dollhouse drew 4.2 million and 1.7/7, down from last week when it drew 4.7 million and a 2.0 rating with adults 18-49, and notably this was against repeats on the CBS lineup. Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles did not drop too much from last week, averaging 3.8 million and a 1.3 rating with 18-49s, but last week it was already very low. Note Marc Berman reports 1.4/5 as the rating share for TSCC. Hibberd reported a 1.3/5 earlier — I’ve gone with Berman’s number in the table below, but since I won’t see the actual report until Monday, I’m not sure which is the right number, and either way the numbers are bad!
Despite the repeats, CBS won the night both overall and with 18-49s and ABC was in second. NBC was third among viewers and fourth among 18-49s, and it was the opposite for FOX which was fourth overall and third among 18-49 year olds.

Dollhouse Fail - Episode 2 "The Target"

Actually, not really. I just wanted to mention that cheesy ass, 1999-style bullet effect once again because it bothers me so. Hey Joss! The Matrix called and they want their SFX back so they can give them a funeral already! Sheesh! What in the world were they thinking? And the fact that they were showing it in every ad for weeks was kind of a spoiler for the whole episode, no? Made the whole "running through the forest" thing a bit long and tedious. "Get to the goddam Matrix bullet already!" I was thinking through the entire show.

Ahem, moving on. This episode was obviously "The Pilot 2.0" and a clear upgrade. I cannot think of one thing in that pilot that wasn't covered in this episode. New viewers: when you get the eps on Itunes, Hulu, some pirated way, or on your DVRs a little word of advice - skip the first episode. Trust me, you'll thank me later.

"The Target" had a few holes in it as well, but as a pilot the holes and questions work a bit better and set us up for the future in a much nicer way. I'm not going to get spoilery here and go into specifics, but I feel much better about why Echo addresses her Handler, Boyd, in the way she does now. I understand that the actives really are pretty blank and even less than child-like. I at least have some hope now. Let's see what the ratings do.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Buffy DS Game Sacrifice - Update

It seems to me that the Buffy DS game "Sacrifice" has been delayed again or is having shipping problems or something. The pre-order or release date was to be Last Friday the 13th (otherwise known as "Dollhouse Day"...sheesh that lost it's luster quickly, didn't it?)

As we know, the game is set after the climax of the seventh season and Buffy and friends need to shut off the reopened Hellmouth. Featuring both first and third-person gameplay sequences, the game includes tons of characters, including the Scoobs, Angel, The Master, and First Evil. Canon issues aplenty but I'm sure there is fun to be had.

Aaaanywho, the point is this. The game doesn't seem to be out. Also, why is the US and the rest of the world not getting the love? DS games are region-free so all this this UK only business does is create a shipping hassle. Silly.

According to this site, the new release date is March 6th.

If you're in the UK, free delivery! So pre-order away over there. The rest of us just wait. and wait. and wait...

*Further update. Per Simon of Whedonesque, it's been released in Italy. Is Italy in the house? Has anyone played?

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Joss Whedon talks to TV Guide about Buffy, Angel & Serenity

Joss Whedon sat down with TV Guide and answered some interesting questions about Buffy, Angel and Serenity. Some minor spoilers, so watch out.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Dollhouse Death Watch - ratings snafu update!

So as you may know, we here at Buffyfest have wagered a bit on something we like to call the "Dollhouse Death Watch". Just to clarify, we don't actually want Dollhouse's death - we're just having a friendly bet. So far, a few others have fallen in line with each of our predictions and if you'd like to join in, just leave a comment. You can choose between the groups of:

Bitsy (the S&M hard-core skeptic) - who believes Dollhouse will not make it to the 7th episode.
Tara (the bitter realist) - thinks FOX will show all 13 episodes ordered, but will then cancel it and thus, Dollhouse will not make it to season 2.
Michelle (the starry eyed optimist) - is sticking by her story that Dollhouse will show all episodes and even get renewed for a second season.

Now you may see that according to the above pie chart, there are quite a few optimists (delusionals?) getting behind Michelle's thinking. That won't help her in the end, however. In fact, her group has suffered a blow in our very scientific bar chart below - which signifies that the "starry eyed optimist" group is actually trailing due to last Friday's premier ratings snafu. The ratings for Dollhouse were unfortunately the second-lowest debut for any scripted series this season. According to Gawker, things are off to very a rocky start:

And yes, I'm realizing now that all of the graphs may be a bit much and quite over the line of geekery. To that all I can say is, oh well it's too late now.

*Update: BuffyGroupie, Buta Rose, Whedon Fan, BennyTheKey, Malsad, Alexiness, Emmie, and matt-stormcrow to be added to the next update under Michelle's delusional group. CowboyGuy, RobinInSeoul, nbaisley and AdelaP. will be in my group. Spurtyknowledge is being moved to the Starry-Eyed Optimists since I misfiled.

Wolfram & Hart tops "The Worst Places to Work on TV"

With demons and evil lawyers walking around, let's hope the life insurance plan was top notch. Also, coming in at #5 is The Magic Box. Why on earth would Giles purchase that place?

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Dollhouse Theme Song

Forgot to ask about the Dollhouse theme song. Thoughts? I really liked it, but Michael was asking why no one but Eliza was being shown in the opening. That remains a good question. Here's the opening courtesy of Active Dollhouse:

And here's a spoilerish Joss-directed music video for the full song which is called, “What You Don’t Know,” by Jonatha Brooke and Eric Bazilian.

Jonatha Brooke said of the theme song:
"So when he was doing Dollhouse, [Joss] told the people at Fox, “Okay, my fantasy would be to have Jonatha Brooke singing a mixture of ‘Careful What You Wish For’ and ‘The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies.’

...So they hooked us up on a conference call, and we totally hit it off, so Eric and I wrote him a theme song."

Jonatha previously had a song in the season 1 finale of Buffy, "Prophecy Girl".

UPDATE** Itunes is giving away the music video of the Dolhhouse theme song for free here (link will open up itunes for the download.)

Finally, here are some outtakes from the stupid and embarrassing Summer Glau/Eliza Dushku hosted intros. This is what we'd call fun'ty.

Why was Angel cancelled again?

The CW is jumping on the "vampire bandwagon" with a show based on the book series entitled Vampire Diaries. Does anyone remember the show called Angel that would have fit the bill just fine and made the CW look like they actually knew what cool was before everyone else? Frustrating.,0,3613248.story

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Joss Whedon's most painful character deaths on Fandomania

We love lists around here and this one on Fandomania is exceptional. They've gone and nailed down "The 16 most painful character deaths" and it's spot on. I really didn't realize how many people have died in the verse. The 16 top ones are listed  here....but how many are there total?

I also loved that they pointed out a connection between Angelus's personality trait of taking great pleasure in artfully killing people and Joss himself having the same trait. Holy cow, brilliant! Joss is Angelus! Anyway, check it out:

Side note - By the way, I don't care if she sang it...Buffy's first death will never count to me. Matter of fact, the only reason anyone ever references it is because it called the next Slayer. Other than that, she was just out and needed CPR. She didn't actually die. This has been bothering me for a while. The Gift, on the other hand, needed a full-on resurrection complete with ritual sacrifice. Big difference.

A Dollhouse episode 1 conversation between Buffyfesters

Tara: I liked it.

Bitsy: There's a good show in there somewhere but it's buried in rewrites and network interference. It wants to be a complex genre piece that twists and turns as it slices into the psyche of the viewer's mind, confusing and disturbing us in a way that brings us in touch with the mindset of our forget-me-not protagonist, Echo. Instead the knife is dulled, the threat of something new and terrifying only hinted, never revealed so we have no fear that we will get cut. When did the suits (at Fox no less) decide being edgy was a bad thing? They told us we'd see a world unlike any other and we got, what? A procedural and a very boring one at that.

You know what this reminds me of? The first episode of Angel season five: Conviction. The whole time I was thinking "I know you can do better than this, Joss". The characters are there, the concept is stronger than I thought, the Logan's Run dystopian aesthetic is intriguing. If the show can only get a chance to breath, to live and follow it's own development it can work. Angel season five became something great as it entered it's second act and built and built to one of the best conclusions of any show I've seen, certainly better than Buffy's but it still wound up getting axed. That happened on the WB, a network who was far more likely to give a show a million chances. If that happened there then, I ask you, what chance can Dollhouse possibly have in the hand's of Fox, who is quite possibly more guilty of the 'show me the money' mentality than any other network?

Michelle: I thought it was better than I would have expected, but not so good as to say I was overwhelmed. Something's missing and if I had to guess what it is, I'd say it's Joss' freedom to explore. I could almost feel Fox's influence spread over the entire episode, not to mention those promos of Eliza Dushku and Summer Glau which made me want to hurl right onto my coffee table. Dushku's acting missed the mark in my opinion. I wanted to care when she was recalling childhood memories of "her" abductor, but I couldn't. It seemed forced and hollow. The character I did feel for was her handler, Boyd Langdon who had a great amount of depth and conflict.

The story as a whole was well-written. I love the idea that Echo brought a sense of closure and peace to the "real-life" person who had been through such a traumatic experience and in the end, couldn't handle the world. It's a nice connection to the idea that we can avenge the mistakes of the past and set things right. One aspect of Joss' writing that was missing though was the comic relief.

Tara: um....yeah. I just liked it.

It did feel s little like it was built on a flimsy premise haphazardly and forcefully thought up over gouda pizza at a paparazzi joint in LA. Oh, that's because it was. Besides that, it was as good as any Fringe type show on TV. Buffy or Angel it ain't.

Bitsy: Hilarity. I uh, liked it too. Those Summer/Eliza spots made me want to kill someone though. Every single one of them they were like "Hey, we kick a lot of ass but, because we have vaginas, let's talk outfits and, like, some junk. For sure! Tee hee..."


Tara: Actually, I thought it was more like:

Eliza "I need to try so hard to be sexy b/c for some reason I'm insecure in my own skin. Joss thinks I'm great and sexy. Did I mention I was sexy?"

Summer "Oh I'm sorry about that Eliza. Anyway, I'm just natural, cute and generally awesome!"

Bitsy: Ha! Well, either way you look at it the whole affair was a total crime against womanity and both them bitches should be ashamed. I think they felt pretty gross doing it. How did this total prostitution happen? Boo.

Tara: see: "Fox=show me the money".

I care less about that then the lame-ass Bullet effect. I'm sad they didn't use the "bullet-of-fail" just because I need to get that crap over with. Oh well, there's always next week!

Friday, February 13, 2009

It's Dollhouse Day!

It seems like just 1 million interviews ago that we first heard of the little old project called Dollhouse. Tonight's the night, so get out the popcorn and set your DVR's to record. Oh and don't forget to join the "Dollhouse Death Watch"!

Dollhouse Death Watch

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Amber Benson at NYCC Writer's Panel

On Sunday I had the pleasure of sitting in on a panel called Writers on Writing where a number of excellent genre authors talked about their craft, where their ideas come from, and the different ways one can try to break into the business. For the purposes of this post, I've focused on all of Amber's responses to the questions but the whole panel was really fantastic. Enjoy!

Exclusive Interview with Buffy comic book artist Georges Jeanty

Whilst dashing about on Saturday, we had the fantastic opportunity to catch up with none other than Georges Jeanty, the man responsible for the art of Buffy Season 8. We did the whole thing right on the convention room floor and the feeling was electric and fun. We opened up the Q&A to our affiliates at Slay Alive, who conjured up a few additional questions to give you insight into the artist's mind. What makes the man tick? Watch the video to find out!

And visit here for all Georges Jeanty all the time at his site:

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Exclusive Interview with Brian Lynch Part 2: Angel: ATF Finale *Major Spoilers*

The final issue of Angel comes out today, but Brian was kind enough to give us an advanced copy on Friday. Here's the 2nd part of our interview from NYCC and as you'll see from this discussion, Brian has a great understanding and love for these characters. Please be aware that there are major spoilers in this interview, not only for Angel #17 but for the Spike comic and all that comes next. You have been warned.

Joss and Eliza quotes from the Dollhouse Event

Ok, I got in a lot of trouble for taking this but they are right in front of me and I couldn't resist! They are showing the same clip from Comic Con. Oh my god, Eliza's back by me right now and she's dancing along to the Lady Gaga club scene. So surreal right now.

All of us Buffyfesters are still crazy exhausted from NYCC and we really didn't plan on coming to this Apple Store event. At the last minute, I decided to come for a quick photo and leave. 3 hours and a Joss meeting later with my face all over Fox 5 news, I'm done. I have no idea what  just happened.

Here are some tidbits from the panel:

Joss went home after the now infamous Pizza date and said to his wife "Honey, I accidentally came up with a Fox show!"

Eliza - "Buffy was my first television experience.....No one has ever looked after me like this dude [Joss]."

Joss - "This could be the one they crucify me for and that gives me a [sarcastic] warm feeling. I have a box of Tums"

Roush - "How is Echo different by the end? Joss - "She's an elderly Hispanic gentleman"

Eliza - "I don't want to sound narcissistic and cocky but it's really cool!"

Talking about Eliza being sexy and it making Joss uncomfortable - Eliza says: "Joss would say ' do Did I fall asleep without sexy bedroom eyes' and I said 'I am, I am' and he would say 'do it again'." So she thought of her little niece while doing that scene.

Re: Morally ambiguous characters

Joss - "Even though Olivia is British, she's not totally bad"

Eliza - "When I came on as Faith I was this crazy girl and killing people and Joss comes in and makes you think...not everything is black and still felt compassion for her and rooting for her."

Joss - "If I've done my job right the audience will walk away feeling compromised themselves."

Eliza - "What he says"... "He talks good."

Re: the Friday Night Death Slot -

Guess Joss really likes T:SCC "Terminator struggled in the ratings but they stayed with it...mostly because I hounded them puts fake phone to his ear "How's terminator? Don't cancel it!"

Eliza - "I always wondered why there aren't good shows on Friday night? I go out on Saturday night."

Q. Some kid wants an autograph instead of asking a question and Joss said "if the question good enough" so he asks "how are you so awesome?" and Joss said that's not a question, that's a statement. Hee!

Q. What's your favorite character (I couldn't really hear exactly how it was worded) Joss - "echo is the most challenging" Eliza - "the blind cultist...I had on this Amish cult not that Amish is a cult. Oh boy" Joss responds "Stupid English." Ha!

Eliza then goes on about how kissing Tamot is challenging. Joss (flustered) "Kissing Tahmot is challenging?" Eliza - "He's a whole lotta man.....I had that problem with David Boreanaz once. "Take out the vampire teeth, they're puncturing my tongue!" (laughs) people said "Why are you using your tongue?" Scandalous!

Q. Someone wants Nathan Fillion on the show "Again with Nathan Fillion on the show thing!" Then they just confirmed not only Alan Tudyk being on but9 announcement FELICIA DAY!

In response to why he reuses cast: Joss - "I'm lazy, casting takes a long time. Have to pretend to listen to people when they're talking. (Laughs) Who'd I just turn into?".... "I'm always worried that people will think it's too incestuous. Then I was reminded (says sadly and slowly) Noooobody saw Firefly...they won't care."

Then this amazing thuggish dude gets all "I need a Buffy and Angel movie, son." Haha! I love him.

Q. Does [the balancing the controversial topic subject get in the way of your story telling...I'm paraphrasing here. Joss - "besides the me being awesome question... This is the most important question of the entire week" He talks about Equality Now, and how he pitched the show to them. They deal with human trafficking in the real world. A lot of them understand but he got the feeling of "Do it wrong and I'll kill you." He said it was daunting and terrifying.

Finally Joss said "Watch out for episode 6, that's all I'm saying. I need to tell a story that's dark and challenging. We just get to mess with everybody. This is some of the best work we've done...but creatively - the most frightening and arduous struggle of my career."

Whew! That was hard to transcribe in real time! I hope I did it justice...

I met Whedonite John who brought his silver metallic sharpie so joss's autograph showed up properly on his season 4 dvd (it's a rather dark cover). He had a question in response to Joss's incestuous-actor-reuse statement, "If he uses everyone else from all of the shows...What about  Sarah Michelle Gellar?" Great question, John....great question.

So John truly goes up to Joss and says "So you slyly eluded that Buffy Angel movie question...I'm assuming it's not gonna happen." To which according to John Joss replied "Nope! You kind of need both of stars to make the movie and they don't want to do it."

And I'm done.
-sent from my sidekick

Joss event at the Apple Store in Soho, NY

Looks like there going to be showing a clip...whether it's the same one
as Comic Con, we don't know yet.

FYI, They are recording this for a ipod podcast which you can download
later tonight. A random Apple employee guy said it'll probably be $1.99,
but I'm going to just go ahead and ignore him because that would be
incredibly dumb.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Dr. Horrible and Dollhouse at Paleyfest '09!

Along with Fringe and True Blood, Paleyfest will be having events for both Dollhouse and Dr. Horrible. Whedonesque previewed an excerpt from the as yet unavailable press release. Also, according to Whedonesque, the guests thus far include Joss Whedon, Nathan Fillion, Zack Whedon, Felicia Day, and Jed Whedon with more to be announced. Exciting!!!!

Full Video of NYCC Dollhouse Panel and Day 3 recap

We started our day at the enormous line for Dollhouse. We suddenly weren't able to use our press passes to set up the cameras early like every other panel. Apparently what changed is Fox told all press that no one would get to set up early or even be able to enter the room except Fox executives. Luckily, Michelle and I, along with our camera guy Ivan, got there 2 hours early just in case something like this happened and took our place as probably 600 and 601 in line. Joss's panel was clearly the big ticket event of NYCC. This was all while Bitsy went to Amber Benson's "Writers on Writing" panel along with our unofficial 4th blogger Ryan to film it. The schedule forced us to split up, which was sad.

The crowd was obviously full of hard-core fans: Dr. Horrible
 costumes, Jayne Hats, full Browncoat regalia, a serious Vamp Willow, the whole nine yards. We met some really cool people. Oh speaking of, we met SlayAliver darthrosenberg9 once we went in the panel! The doors finally opened about an hour before the scheduled time and we sat right in front of "Darth". I guess he got a glimpse of our Buffyfest shirts and we ended up chilling during the panel. What a nice guy. In the end, our camera ended up in the best spot in the house and we have great footage of the entire panel (sans screener, of course.)

[While saying that, please take note that even though we cleared the aisle so that people could walk around the camera, the unprecedented event occurred of a blind woman with a large seeing eye dog needing to walk down that particular aisle to exit the theater about half way through the panel. So please ignore what happens in part 2 below at around the 12 minute mark. We needed to accommodate her the best we could and move the camera around for a minute.]

So the panel itself opened up with Matt Roush, Joss, and Tahmoh Penikett and, as you probably know by now, a teaser screener of Dollhouse. Buffyfest has been spoiler central this weekend, so I think it's best to keep it spoiler-free. I mean, there was a Dark Angel type motorcycle chase, Lady Gaga, and a Geisha girl...but if you want to know exactly what happened there is a lot out there right now detailing the screener scene-for-scene. Overall, I personally really liked it. Michelle wasn't so convinced about Eliza's acting AT ALL but was very intrigued by the character of Boyd. I kind of agree with Michelle regarding Eliza. She totally "Faithed" it in the first scene and the rest of it I kind of tuned her out, which didn't hurt the episode for me...but it can't be good either. The set of the Dollhouse looks beautiful, though, and reminded us both of Wolfram & Hart if it was a spa. Overall, I got a feeling of the first scene of Serenity (when River is in the school) mixed with a little Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. It was a vibe I didn't expect and was refreshing.

Anyway, during the panel look out for Joss's awesome answer to an aspiring writer, how big his smile gets during the extended Dr. Horrible applause, and his comments about a Dr. Horrible sequel. One very telling moment was when Joss was asked, "When are we going to see Angel in season 8 of Buffy?" Joss replied "Probably when it's the most painful" but then he said something to the effect of when Georges figures out how to draw him, he's been having some trouble. Michelle is surmising that Angel is obviously making an appearance then since what the hell else is Georges trying to perfect him for?? Hmmm. Anyway, on to the videos:

oh yeah, and that's me yelling "Buffy Movie!!" to Joss at the end. What can I say? I was under Michelle's influence.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

NYCC Dollhouse panel quote

When are we going to see Angel in season 8 of Buffy? Joss Whedon
"Probably when it's the most painful" - Joss Whedon

Exclusive Interview with Dark Horse Editor Scott Allie

We interviewed Dark Horse (Buffy Season 8) editor Scott Allie on the Comic Con floor yesterday. He's such a nice guy and he gave us a lot of insight into the industry of the Buffy comics. Oh and he has great hair.

Sorry about the poor audio quality, the convention was packed at this point and Michelle's questions are a little low. The first 2 questions were about bringing new readers to comics through Buffy and if he seeing more women in the comic world both as readers and professionals.

From the desk of Scott Allie:
Apologies to Jo Duffy, Ann Nocenti, Marie Severin, Tatjana Wood, and the other women whose comics I grew up on! In trying to make my point on the fly, I grabbed the first name to come to mind—not to mention that Louise Simonson was at NYCC. But of course she was by no means the only woman in comics 20 years ago. —Scott Allie

Line to the Dollhouse Panel at NYCC's not for another hour and I'd say there's 1500 people
in line. (Note the plethora of Jayne hats!)

Saturday, February 7, 2009

NYCC Day 2 Recap and video Interview with Brian Lynch *Spoilers*

Day 2 at Comic Con was amazing! There were a lot more people which made it harder to navigate, but we have some great news to report.

The day started out with a fantastic interview with Brian Lynch. Brian sat with us for quite some time and gave us the scoop on Spike, Gunn, Drusilla and Angel. Also, some great insight into his feelings for the characters he spent time with for so long. Oh, and chock-full-o spoilers! To make matter even better, yesterday Brian passed us a copy of the final issue of Angel:After the Fall #17 (it practically glowed when he gave it to us).We read it, it's fantastic, and part 2 of our interview with Brian where we discuss the issue will be up on Wednesday, it's release day.

Before our next interview with Scott Allie, we headed over to the packed Robot Chicken Panel where Seth Green struck a sexy pose and made everyone laugh a bunch of times.

Scott Allie talked Buffy: Season 8 and more with us. It was a great interview amongst the chaos of the con around us. Scott is such a seasoned professional and he was very nice to take the time out of his packed Comic Con schedule. We'll be posting the full video of that tomorrow.

Lastly, the one who makes Buffy look and feel like Buffy, Georges Jeanty. Our interview with Georges was so fun and really showed us what passion he has for the characters of Buffy. We took some questions from Slayalivers wenxina, iloveromy, and Trey for Georges as well. Expect the video of that soon.

Here's the first part of the interview with Brian Lynch. Please be warned there are spoilers galore in here. Again, look out for the second part of the interview on Wednesday, which is all about Angel:ATF issue #17.

Holy NY Comic Con day 2 chaos, Batman.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Q&A with Georges Jeanty

One of our interviews tomorrow at NYCC is with Buffy Season 8 Comic Artist & Illustrator Georges Jeanty. If you'd like to submit any questions for him, put it in the comments section of this post and we'll pass some along.

Dark Horse, Dark Horse, Dark Horse, They're Dark!

Ok, here's the scoop from the NYCC Dark Horse panel:

There will be no Buffy comic in June, The Tales of the Vampire one shot will be replacing it instead. The covers done by Jo Chen and will be about a boy in high school.

We asked Scott Allie the following in respose to that:

Buffyfest: "We already know that the "tales of the vampire" you story just announced won't feature characters from Buffy (CBR announced that earlier), but since it will be in the present timeline of the buffyverse, will our usual characters play a part somehow? Does Joss Whedon approve a side project like this story-wise?"

Scott Allie: "Yes, because we wanted to make this part of season 8 and because Tales of the Vampire was something he came up with first, he's not co-writing it to the extent that he does with season 8 but everything is going through him, the craetive team got approved by him, and he gives feedback. It will have his finger prints on it more than the old [pre-season 8] comics did [and has final approval]."

We then asked about the idenity of season 8's Twilight and when we'll be finding out who he is. Scott's funny dramatic pause was punctuated by a vague "Eventually."

Oh, and Twilight's identity? We later found out he's George Washington. You heard it hear first, folks.

In response to a Serenity comic question someone asked - Scott explained that "Joss is so busy with the stupid Dollhouse thing" (in jest, of course) "it's kind of taking up a lot of his time". Allie went on to say, "Buffy is so demanding for Joss. He edits every script, every page of atwork goes through him, every cover concept...cover concepts often come from him. He has a Shepard Book outline in his head but he has to wait until there is time to work with Joss properly. He just agreed to write something that he probably should've said no to, but that's the kind of stuff that pushes Serenity back."

They also revealed a few other details: Expect another Myspace presents Dark Horse Buffy mini comic that we're going to love (but nothing they're ready to discuss). They (meaning Joss and Scott) have talked more potential Sugar Shock, potential Cabin in the woods, potential Dollhouse, potential Serenity, and potential Fray. It's all very potential because but they want to be able to do it right.

That's pretty much it. These guys are cool, seasoned professionals and it was great being at the panel.

Check out all the Buffy related video from this panel below:

IDW Follow up

Wow, you look away for 2 seconds, more news for the IDW panel, currently underway here at NY Comic Con.

The character of Illyria will be crossing over to another title called "Fallen Angel: Reborn". Apparently, this is the first time anything has been done this way and they had to get special permission from Joss Whedon to make this happen. The story will take place during season 5 after Illyria had lost her powers. She goes on a journey to get those powers back.

**Update - Video of this panel below and clarification from earlier - it seems as though Gunn will be getting his own one-shot written by Brian Lynch.

Sorry, apparently I'm not as good a camera handler as Michelle was at the DH panel. Good thing we'll have great people with us the next 2 days who know how to handle their professional equipment properly!

These guys seem like they have a really great time working together. They are putting out so many Whedonverse stories next year, it's like spin-off city over there! Angel, Spike, Dru, Illyria and even Gunn! I only wish Kelley Armstrong was there with the boys as well to bask in her new fandom.

IDW Panel Bombshell - Major Spoilers

MAJOR COMIC SPOILERS - Don't read below if you don't want to know

the IDW panel opened up with Brian Lynch and Chris Ryall announcing the following:

Brian Lynch and Juliet Landau spoke over Facebook about how she was intrigued by what's going on in the story and Spike's story. From that conversation they are now going to be co-writing a 2-shot for IDW about Drusilla.

They also spoke about some sort of Gunn story (apparently Gunn's alive in Kelley Armstrong's Angel: Aftermath....or something).

Finally, the announced that they are doing a Spike Comic written by Lynch and it has an indefinite issue amount as of now. I think Lynch's words were "we'll keep doing it until people get sick of it".

Check back for full video later (along with video of the Dark Horse panel.)

NYCC Dark Horse Panel

If you haven't heard the news by now, Dark Horse announced earlier today that they are doing a one-shot of another "Tales of the Vampire" story. We're sitting at the panel, if you have a question, twitter us now.

It's dark, it's dark, it's really really

Dark Horse has prime real estate right when you walk in, but for some
reason no Buffy #22. Huh?

Smells like geek spirit

We're here!

NY Comic Con starts today along with our live coverage!

And we're off! Buffyfest's live blogging weekend coverage of the NY Comic Con begins now. Check back for updates and breaking news throughout the weekend. We have a bunch of cool gifty giveaways too so if you see us, come say hi. 

We will be arriving in minutes. Today's plan is to attend the Dark Horse panel with Buffy Season 8 editor Scott Allie and then hit up the IDW crew complete with Angel: After the fall writer Brian Lynch. Will Nathan Fillion show up for the Wonder Woman screening tonight? We don't know, but we sure will soon. Stay tuned!

Add us to your RSS readers by clicking here.
Follow our Comic Con coverage on twitter here.

and then Buffy staked Edward. The End.

Buy this shirt from Jinx here:

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Dollhouse Mania!

Echo braves Macworld

I love paper crafts and Whedon and these Dollhouse paper dolls feed both of my addictions nicely. I've been wishing for an Amy Acker a.k.a Dr. Claire Saunders one to no avail. They're really keeping her on lock, huh?

I love this - from Villians to how proper nouns are names in the Whedonverse, Zap2it explains: How 'Buffy' and 'Firefly' Forecast 'Dollhouse'

The LA times have been doing an entire "Countdown to Dollhouse" series. Here are the links to all of them so far:
part 1 - 13 days to go
part 2 - Eliza puts her faith in Joss Whedon (don't we all?)
part 3 - Fran Kranz spills Attic secrets
part 4 - The madam, Olivia Williams, speaks

Total Sci Fi interviews Eliza:

Newsflash: Buffy's slayerettes hunting vamps on MySpace!

"That's one! One felony charge for threatening a sixteen year old ah, ah... ah!" - Count Count

Here's a Buffy and Angel romance gone horribly awry that could only happen on the interwebs. Apparently a 44 year old "vampyre" (Andrew would be proud) was threatening his 16 year old internet girlfriend (vomitorium time!) so much so that she finally told him that she was a part of an elite group of vampire hunters and that she couldn't continue seeing him because he might be in danger.

I'm going to use this excuse from now on only substitute the word 'vampire' for 'douche bag'. [source]

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Eliza Dusku would rather go naked than wear unemployment

Peta hates her so it's certainly not the other thing. I guess this is what it's come down to. Perhaps Michelle is winning the Dollhouse Death Watch pool after all.

See the rest of the nudity here:

What's the sitch? - Buffy News

- The new issue of Buffy Season Eight, Swell, comes out today! It's even written by Steven DeKnight a man who, while writing for Smallville, wrote the following line of dialogue for James Marsters: "Clark, there's no such thing as vampires". Oh, DeKnight, make sweet, sweet meta love to me. Anywhoo, you should go grab yourself a copy from the local comic book shoppe. You could order it online but then you might have to, oh I dunno, wait nearly a month to get your copy. What's that? Why, yes, I am speaking from extremely bitter and recent personal experience! How could you tell?

- While we're talking about comics, did you know that Buffy and Serenity were big ol' winners? It's true! The 2008 Diamond Gem Awards declared the twelfth issue of Buffy season eight to be the licensed comic book of the year and the TPB of Serenity: Better days took, you guessed, it TPB of the year. My question: where's the Angel: ATF love, huh? It's clearly the number one super coolest of the licensed comics and yet it's hanging out in the corner with the other unsungs. There, there, Angel Comic, Farscape will keep you company (by the way, buy the Farscape comic if, you know, you like Farscape and other things that are awesome).

- Do you love Buffy? Do you love her and her show so much that your gigantic, throbbing, veiny heart just aches? Is that a honking piece of wood in there? Oh... ouch. You, uh, you better get that checked out. No, wait, you're dust. Nevermind then. But all the rest of you non-slayed types should head on over to ThinkGeek and get their new Buffy t-shirt, veiny heart included. You love Buffy, you love shirts, make those two great tastes, taste great together!

- I'm a firm believer that, in between saving the world, Buffy tries her best to catch up on her must see TV. She wouldn't be watching True Blood or Moonlight or reading Twilight though. Nope. She gets enough of that business in her day to day. You know what she would watch though? Gossip Girl. And why not? Her sister's on that show sometimes when she's not busy being a giant or a centaur. Speaking of which, Michelle Trachtenberg confirmed that she'll be returning to the Goss sometime in the near future. Quoth the Key: "I'm evil". We know, sweetie. We know.

- And, finally, Summer Glau and producer, Josh Friedman, got down conference call style with the crew at io9 for some spoilerific talk about the remainder of season two of Sarah Con Chron and what they'd like to see if they get picked up for year three. Dollhouse gets a big shout out since the two of them are going to be bosom buddies come Friday nights in the near future. You're a kind of good, kind of evil robot from the future, Summer, tell us: how did that work out for ya? You guys still on the air? What do you mean it turns out Joss Whedon is the one responsible for SkyNet? This is just like what happened with Alien: Resurrection! Damn you, director and producers who don't share Joss's creative vision which I assume does not involve the mass genocide of the human race!!!

Dark Horse Presents: Vampy Cat Play Friend

Might be spoilerish to some, so proceed with caution.

Check out this web comic lead-in for the upcoming Buffy #22. It's creepy and quite disturbing. It also raises a lot of questions about the revelation of vampires and demons to the Buffyverse general public.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Dollhouse Death Watch!

So we have a little bet going on over here at Buffyfest. As much as we love Whedon with all our hearts, some of us are skeptical, sarcastic, or just plain scared when it comes to the fate of Dollhouse. With less than 2 weeks until the premiere, we've wagered a little something on a "Dollhouse Death Watch" and you can follow us through the end of the season to see who wins. The science behind the stats will be reading of magazine and internet speculation, which is of course the most full-proof method possible. Feel free to tack yourself on one of our standings and we'll add your names to the chart, you know...for the fun.

We have...
Bitsy (the S&M hard-core skeptic) = Will not make it to the 7th episode
Tara (the bitter realist) = Will show all 13 episodes ordered, but will then get cancelled and not make it to season 2.
Michelle (the starry eyed optimist) = Will get renewed for a second season.

Current Standings:

**Update: will be adding hjkuzcotopia, whoisfriend, wyndam, hitnrun017, Trey, Iceeh and faithlehane under Michelle's prediction, Ryan under Bitsy's and Joe and Danner under mine on the chart at the next post.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Dr. Horrible is lovely just the way it is

"I loved it. It's the best job I've ever had. It was fantastic." - Nathan Fillion on Firefly and Serenity.

Awesome quote but seriously, I'm firmly taking a stand against a Dr. Horrible sequel. No! Dr. Horrible is perfection and it's time to just let something be, instead of churning it through the Whedon money making machine ::cough:: Buffy season 8 ::cough:: That's right I said it!!! I'm on a roll today.

Read what this rant is about here: