Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Buffy the Vampire Slayer

The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. There will be a quiz later. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

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Advanced Dungeons and Dragons Community

Dungeons & Dragons has defied the odds and turned forty this year. A niche game that might take a decade to complete, its mixture of imagination, dice, paper and pencils seemed no match for the rise of the Digital Age and quick satisfaction. But tabletop gaming (and RPGs) bit their thumbs at the odds and became kinda cool. Celebs like Wil Wheaton, Sam Witwer, and Chris Hardwick have met up for a round of Dragon Age on TableTop, and the popular web series is now cooking up a spin-off RPG show after their super-successful crowdfunding campaign. But the RPG has not only infiltrated the back-room geek realms of the Internet. Though it never made much progress on film, save for the rare appearance in films like ET, D&D has become a television pre-requisite. Forget about musical episodes; if geeks are present in any noticeable way, there will be an episode or scene devoted to a D&D quest where the nerds lure newbies to the dice. It’s a game that’s set up deadly enemies, revealed inner weaknesses and unveiled fans in the least likely of places. Now I must admit – I have never played Dungeons & Dragons and have little desire to (unless it’s the ridiculously addictive board game offshoot, Lords of Waterdeep). My patience has no time for long quests. Nevertheless, some of my favorite television moments revolve around D&D (and television’s facsimiles of it). I love what it inspires in its fans, and the creativity that often stems from it. The RPG […]

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Do you ever feel… not yourself? In this modern world, there are all sorts of powerful forces looking to corrupt us. It’s easy to get caught up in the daily bustle of work pressures, Twitter feeds, and refined sugar. Not to mention, of course, all the demons, curses, and secret evil government agencies looking to take over your body and mind. A kale smoothie and a bit of yoga isn’t always enough to keep your body the pristine temple you deserve. Here, to help keep out all the big bads, is Buffy Summers’ 9 Steps to Staying YOU.

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer

It may be hard to believe, but there are still people out there — people with Netflix accounts, even — who’ve never seen an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. A lot of these people are younger and missed its first run because they were in bed by 8pm when the series initially aired on the WB; others were put off by the vampires but later drawn to Joss Whedon via Firefly, The Avengers, Much Ado About Nothing (yes, really), or simply Whedon’s reputation as one of TV’s most beloved auteurs. Premiering two years before The Sopranos, Buffy pioneered many of the features of today’s prestige dramas: intense serialization; ambitious multi-year storylines (hi, Dawn!); self-contained, season-long mysteries; the now-common practice of having the season climax occur in the penultimate episode (see Buffy Season 4); and its own highly idiosyncratic vernacular. Despite its influence — and Buffy‘s status as one of my favorite shows ever — I find it increasingly difficult to recommend the show to friends. Whedon’s mediocre Agents of SHIELD doesn’t help, but the main reason is that each season contains so much filler, and each episode is structured so formulaically. Buffy‘s greatest strengths are the steady accrual of tension over a 22-episode arc and the wonderfully leisurely development of the teen characters (i.e., watching Buffy, Willow, Xander, even Anya and Faith grow up from children to adults). But the bigger pictures that make the show so wonderful are hardly visible in most episodes.

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Pixar Character Logo

It doesn’t seem like much of a stretch to say that there is probably a lot of overlap between fans of Joss Whedon’s television work and fans of Pixar’s animated films. People who like memorable characters, clever writing, and genre-themed storylines tend to take them wherever they can get them. So it shouldn’t come as any real surprise that a veteran writer/producer on Whedon’s first big show, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, has been picked up to become the latest member of the Pixar brain trust. According to The Playlist, Marti Noxon, who wrote Buffy episodes like “Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered,” “The Prom,” and “Wrecked,’ has joined Pixar to do work on an as-yet-unspecified project. More recently in her career, Noxon has been continuing her writer/producer schtick on television shows like the ridiculously critically acclaimed Mad Men, and the incomprehensibly popular Glee, and she’s also credited as being the writer on the recent remake of Fright Night – so the uses that Pixar could be putting her to are myriad.

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Channel Guide - Large

The precocious child; the old grump with a heart of gold; the plucky young woman, looking to make it in the big city all on her own, who spins around in the middle of a busy street with a big, stupid grin on her face while wearing a hat. For better or worse, these sorts of characters have been and, most likely, will always be a part of the TV landscape. They’re templates that take all of the pesky guesswork out of creating a show. Over the years, familiar archetypes are re-imagined and deconstructed to reflect the changing values. This is why we have the wholesome Brady Bunch in the ’70s and the dysfunctional Bundys of Married with Children in the ’90s. And then, sometimes, new constructs are born. But you know all of this. We may be in the midst of a TV renaissance but that doesn’t mean that shows aren’t leaning hard on archetypes—these five in particular are getting a lot of play.

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While the year isn’t even half over yet, it’s going to be a hard climb for anyone to topple the summer Joss Whedon is having. If The Avengers box office wasn’t enough to give him the best summer ever (it is), his co-writing and producing on The Cabin in the Woods might be the nudge to put him over the top with most fans. Whedon has a few projects in the pipeline (he wrote the upcoming In Your Eyes and is directing his take on Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing), but what if you need more Whedon right now!? Turn your eyes to the page, dear friend. Titan Books currently has three Joss-related offerings ready for your perusal. We took a look at them to give you the straight dope on whether they’re just for super-fans or if everyone can enjoy. After all, not everyone is a huge fan of Whedon. Indeed, personally, I’m at best 50/50 on the guy, finding serious flaws within some his work, absolutely loving some of it, and having not ever watched a good chunk of it. The following contains spoilers for The Cabin in the Woods and Joss Whedon’s career.

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Now that The Avengers is a Hulk-sized hit on North American shores as well as overseas, the big question is what will Joss Whedon do next. As seen in this interview with Collider, the man appears to be pretty damn tired from this monster film that officially wrapped only a couple weeks ago. But Hollywood moves fast, and Marvel Studios moves even faster. Acolytes of Whedon are sounding the charge as if a revolution has occurred that makes the later seasons of his shows pale in comparison. The question is will Whedon be courted by the inevitable Avengers 2? Will he resurrect his TV series onto the big screen? Will Neil Patrick Harris be involved in any way? Here are the main options Whedon has before him.

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What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a nightly collection of links and thinks from around the world of movie and television news and reviews. It spends its weekends racking its brain trying to cull together the strength to go forth with its usual Monday entry, knowing full well that it can’t spend all of its page space on Mad Men and Game of Thrones. This is a movie website, after all. We begin this evening with a shot from Rush, the racing movie about Formula 1 driver James Hunt starring Chris Hemsworth and Olivia Wilde. Director Ron Howard and his leading lady have been tweeting them like crazy. Including pics of Hemsworth and Wilde getting married as Hunt and his wife, model Suzy Miller. I chose the one above to highlight because it’s badass. 

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Do you remember how there is somebody out there trying to put together a big screen re-boot of Buffy the Vampire Slayer that doesn’t involve the property’s creator Joss Whedon, or is that a memory that you’ve repressed? Well, it’s happening, at least on some level. Warner Bros. wants the property to live on, and to that goal they hired a screenwriter named Whit Anderson to write a script some time ago. Unfortunately for those hoping for more Buffy, that script was submitted to the studio over the summer and Hero Complex has sources saying that the studio didn’t like it at all. Because of the disappointing words on page, the project has been sent back to square one and executives are looking for a new writer to take a crack at it. Someone Hero Complex describes as a “key player” in the production said of their progress so far, “If you’re going to bring it back, you have to do it right. Anderson came in with some great ideas and she had reinvented some of the lore and it was pretty cool but in the end there just wasn’t enough on the page.” So I guess now that the proposed film has hit a stumbling block the question has to be raised, is this the beginning of the end for a new Buffy the Vampire Slayer, or is the next writer who gets hired going to be able to do something with the property that the studio finds acceptable?

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Having just watched The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, I’m in the mood for something slightly more uplifting than watching small children being murdered at the hands of their own fathers in an ironic twist of fate that I may have just spoiled for anyone who hasn’t yet seen it. Ah well, it’s not exactly the most cheery of films anyway, so maybe choose something else from the Pyjama canon of works – perhaps Bananas in Pyjamas or something like that. Anyway, rambling isn’t getting me anywhere, so I’m channeling the spirit of movie merch nostalgia once again to try and cheer the whole ruddy miserable world up. And with that in mind, this week’s cornucopia of merchandising magic comes courtesy of a phenomenal Joker action figure from Sideshow, a set of incredible Art Nouveau posters from a bona fide legend-in-the-making artist and a winning blast from the past from Tiger Electronics…

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Whether you’re trying to avoid the releases this week or augment them with even more movies, Your Alternate Box Office offers some options for movies that would play perfectly alongside of (or instead of) the stuff studios are shoving into the megaplex this weekend. This week features a young girl who could kick your ass, an old boy who could buy and sell your whole family, a pair of pothead fantasy role players, and a young girl who couldn’t kick a shark’s ass.

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While fans of the original Buffy the Vampire Slayer movie starring Kristy Swanson may be ready to rejoice, fans of the Sarah Michelle Gellar television series are slamming fists and shedding tears at the news that Buffy is on her way back to the big screen with one caveat – Joss Whedon will not be involved. Personally I think there are two kinds of Buffy fans: those of us who saw the movie in theaters back in 1992, liked it and then never watched the TV series and those whose fandom is almost entirely related to their enjoyment of the television show. I count myself among the former, having never seen an episode of the television show – a trait I plan on having the rest of my life. Is it a good idea to bring Buffy back sans the man responsible for her popularity? Yes and no.

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summer-glau-header

Joss Whedon certainly does like working with familiar faces. In fact, he likes it so much that he has made room for one of his favorites in his latest offering.

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buffy-1

The director of the original film is trying to bring Buffy back to life to fight again, but she may be doing it without Joss Whedon.

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Who is the Baddest Monster Hunter of All-Time?

AMC’s Horror Hacker started it and we intend to finish it — the debate to see who is the baddest monster hunter in cinematic history.

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Joss Whedon

The latest story of a Fox show shutting down for a good old fashioned script polish slash complete-do-over doesn’t have quite that depressing a feel to it. In fact according to Zap2it, because of the way Joss Whedon explains it, it actually might feel like a good thing.

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When asked about the idea of doing a “Buffy” movie, Sarah Michelle Gellar was less than enthused.

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published: 12.23.2014
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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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