Firefly #24 is set in a nebulous point in time, where the crew is still together (and alive), yet the Alliance seems to be out of the way, or at least not as strong as they have previously been. Unfortunately, that left a void that Blue Sun Corporation stepped into. There’s a new big bad here, and they’re just as bad if not worse.
The plot also raises some reasonable questions about ethics, Mal’s character (and method of getting things done), and the concept of following the letter of the law (as opposed to the intent). These are all good debates to bring up, and could arguably result in some interesting conversations among fans.
Firefly: Watch How I Soar is a little bit of everything. It’s heartwarming, it,s heartbreaking. It is the past, and the future. Any fan of Wash will likely enjoy this collection, for the past it portrays, and the future that could have been
The game does an excellent job of slotting straight into the series, though with its 10 to 12 hour length it would likely be more of a three episode arc than a standalone episode. Joss Whedon provided support for the game’s writing process and it shows, the witty dialogue from the show is present which makes it really feel like a proper part of the Buffyverse.
This issue finds Willow realizing the reality of her situation in Abhainn. Rather than use this as an opprtunity to showcase a battle of witches, Tamaki opts to let more of Willow’s base instincts take over. When magic and might would serve the comic from an artistic standpoint, having Willow act like the nerd she is at times works. This consistency to the character proves Tamaki understood who Willow is and makes sure to impress this upon the audience. Teenage Willow would much rather talk it out than battle, at least for now.
Written by Jordie Bellaire and Jeremy Lambert with art by Ramon Bachs and Raúl Angulo (and based on the iconic series created by Joss Whedon), this issue raises serious questions about the nature of Xander and Willow’s friendship, but it also raises an even bigger questions of who the story’s “big bad” really is.
To call this a step down from what Dark Horse was doing with their long-running, engaging, and yes, flawed but always daring Buffy comics in an understatement. Increasingly, it’s not only the timeline that has been changed but the core of the characters, the values of the series, the universality of the themes, and, most of all, the quality of the storytelling. It’s not that this doesn’t work as a Buffy comic. It’s just not a good comic.
It is this dynamic, established with a familiar snarky wit, that has allowed the characters to grow increasingly complex. Here is a group who are stuck with each other, but would also die with each other, as they hide out in underground bunkers or their perpetually clocked spy plane. Even in a world where there is always a “solve”, actions have real and lasting consequences, and guilt is a recurrent motivation – exactly the dynamic that Buffy mined so well.
So much is lost in reimagining Buffy, and its not entirely clear what is gained, because while the series delivers occasional one-off, character-focused stories like last issue’s Wesley one-shot and the excellent Willow spinoff, it’s when the characters come together that the series feels further from the heart and soul of Buffy.
One might think issue four is the perfect time to jump into some climactic action immediately. But again, mirroring Willow’s experience, we’re lulled into a false sense of security. The creative team does this by providing more interiority through narration, using more dialogue, and emphasizing moments.