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Buffy The Vampire Slayer

"Buffy Season 8" Comic Book - Scott Allie Ifmagazine.com Interview 1

Tuesday 2 October 2007, by Webmaster

Exclusive: THE ’BUFFY SEASON 8’ COMIC GETS ITS FAITH IN THE LATEST ARC - PART 1 Editor in Chief Scott Allie reveals to iF what Joss Whedon’s comic continuation of his beloved series has in store

We’re already on Issue #6 of BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER – SEASON 8 from Dark Horse Comics, and the fix of finding out what’s going to happen next has been unbearable. What usually takes nine months to tell on television, will ultimately take up three and half years of a Buffy fans life in the comic realm.

That said, we wouldn’t have it any other way. With creator Joss Whedon back in the fold, overseeing the entire series as “executive producer” as well as writing and breaking stories with other writers, this endeavor has certainly been a dream come true.

Currently, the a new four-issue arc just began with famed, Eisner Award-winning comic book writer Brian K. Vaughan taking the writing reigns and fashioning a tale of Faith going on a rogue mission for Giles to take out a Slayer turned bad.

Editor of the series, Scott Allie, spoke with iF MAGAZINE recently about where the series is heading and Faith’s return.

iF MAGAZINE: How far ahead are you on the books?

SCOTT ALLIE: We’ve got scripts through 10. Georges Jeunty is drawing No. 8 and Cliff Richards is drawing No. 10 as a fill-in issue and Georges is coming back for No. 11.

iF: So what’s the line-up on writers.

ALLIE: We have the four issues by Brian K. Vaughn and two single fill-in issues by Joss Whedon. Those are #10 and #11 and are standalone series and with twelve we’re going into the next major arc with Drew Goddard writing. That will go for four issues.

iF: Have you decided how many issues Season 8 will go?

ALLIE: 40. It’s gone back and forth. At the very beginning we were thinking 22, because we were really thinking [a TV] season, but that’s a bogus comparison, because there is more story in 22 episodes of a TV show than 22 comic book pages. It doesn’t equate time-wise, in terms of words. It really is the size of the story. I sat down with Joss and Mike, his assistant, in L.A. a couple of month ago and figured 40 was enough. Every five issues is a major group of stories. So each five issues is an arc. So we figured out right there, we know what this one is, there’s one in the middle we don’t know what it is, but we know there has to be one there and the last three, we know what those are.

iF: So Joss knows where it’s heading?

ALLIE: He knows where it’s heading, and he’s known from the beginning where it ends, but now he has a pretty clear idea of most every step of the way.

iF: How has your involvement been in working with Whedon and trying to create the depth of a season of a TV series.

ALLIE: 40 issues I think is close, I think is the same. Joss’ stuff and Brian’s stuff is pretty dense. It’s comparable. The main thing is, we move the story ahead every time. Comparing it in terms of number of issues vs. a season of TV is real hard, because we’re doing four issue arcs. The four or five issue arcs is much more in-depth than one hour of TV. How do you compare? Joss built a TV show out of 22, 44-minute chapters. So he’s building this one out of 40, 22-page chapters. I think the overall scope of the series where it starts and where it goes to, it will feel like the size of a TV series pretty well. Characters are going to change a lot, characters are going to be put through a lot, and there’s inner turmoil and personal drama. In the first four issues of the series, you mostly saw the big drama, you didn’t get the real personal drama between the characters, but that will come up more and more as we go through.

iF: Brian K. Vaughn, how did that happen?

ALLIE: He’s been an amazing comic book writer for awhile, and he’s working on the LOST TV show and the arc he’s doing for BUFFY is all about Faith. It’s a story where Faith is operating for the Watcher’s Counsel separate from Buffy. It’s Faith acting on her own. At one point, Joss was talking about doing one-hour TV movies about various BUFFY characters and this was one that him and Brian were kicking around as a possibility back then. I didn’t find that out right away, but when I found that out, I realized, “this really is Season 8.” Here is a story he was going to do on TV. Not exactly, it’s changed a lot, but it’s with the very same writer.

iF: How much cutting back and forth to the other Scooby Gang will happen during the duration of the Faith arc?

ALLIE: There will be cutting back and forth, but the Buffy-Dawn-Xander group, will probably get five pages per issue, or something like that. It’s largely focused on Faith.