Tag Archives: Buffy the Vampire Slayer

TV Thursday – Letter B

Babylon 5 (1994-1998)

A space station in neutral territory is the focus of a unique five year saga. – IMDb

Source: Babylon 5 Wiki.

Source: Babylon 5 Wiki.

Battlestar Galactica (2004-2009)

When an old enemy, the Cylons, resurfaces and obliterate the 12 colonies, the crew of the aged Galactica protects a small civilian fleet – the last of humanity – as they journey toward the fabled 13th colony of Earth. – IMDb

Source: Battlestar Galactica Wiki.

Source: Battlestar Galactica Wiki.

Beauty and the Beast (2012-Present)

Detective Catherine Chandler (Kristin Kreuk), shaken to the core over the fact that everything she thought she knew about her life has been a lie, is determined to get answers to the secrets that have been revealed about her family. – IMDb

Source: Beauty and the Beast Wiki.

Source: Beauty and the Beast Wiki.

Bionic Woman (2007)

A reimagining of the popular 1970s TV series about a female athlete who is given bionic strength. – IMDb

Source: Wikipedia.

Source: Wikipedia.

Birds of Prey (2002-2003)

In the future, long after the Batman has driven himself into exile, his legacy lives on in the form of the Birds of Prey–Black Canary, Oracle, and the Huntress. – IMDb

Source: Wikipedia.

Source: Wikipedia.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997-2003)

A young girl, destined to slay vampires, demons and other infernal creatures, deals with her life fighting evil, with the help of her friends. – IMDb

Source: Wikipedia.

Source: Wikipedia.

Shows I want to check out starting with a B: Beauty and the Beast (1987-1990).

Book Review: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Tempted Champions by Yvonne Navarro

Tempted_Champions_(Buffy_Novel)The last novel included in my fourth Buffy the Vampire Slayer anthology was Tempted Champions by Yvonne Navarro. This was an enjoyable read, that even saw me found interest in Anya’s presence and side plotline in the novel. Anya is one of my least favorite characters in this fictional universe, so when an author manages to make me care about her, this is a big thing. I very much liked her discussion with Willow and Tara, which I didn’t see coming.

The same way, I found the interaction between Willow and Tara and Dawn, during the casting of some spells, a solid moment in the storyline. There were many small moments between the characters that made this novel work well in regards to how the show was developped on television.

As always, I was glad to get any scene involving Giles and Angel, but this is no news coming from me.

The antagonist in the story was a brilliant twist, with her being a Slayer turned Vampire. I liked how it challenged Buffy on so many levels. I knew that Buffy survived in the end, but at the same time, I was really wondering how or when she would be able to make it through.

Book Review: Buffy The Vampire Slayer: Wisdom Of War By Christopher Golden

Source: Wikipedia.

Source: Wikipedia.

The second novel included in my fourth Buffy The Vampire Slayer anthology was Wisdom of War by Christopher Golden. I wouldn’t say this is one of my favorite novels in this fictional universe, mostly because the story dragged on a bit for me; but it was still a decent read. I think that Golden’s talent in portraying the characters from the show helped a lot. He is one of the authors in the Buffy novels who does most justice to the existing characters.

The main storyline with the two different aquatic dangerous species was good but with all the players involved, it got a little messy. I felt that some things were a bit rushed while others were delayed. So it felt like unrealized potential. All characters were well defined and the ones from the show were great, especially Buffy, Faith, Giles, Willow and Tara. These five were the ones I enjoyed best in the novel. I was surprised of how I liked Spike as well in this one, as the character tends to easily annoy me. So it is another proof of Golden’s solid job at bringing these known characters to life again.

Overall, it was a decent read, and if you are mostly interested in the character dynamics, it is worth checking out.

Book Review: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Go Ask Malice, a Slayer’s Diary by Robert Joseph Levy

Source: Wikipedia.

Source: Wikipedia.

The first novel included in my fourth Buffy The Vampire Slayer anthology was Go Ask Malice, A Slayer’s Diary by Robert Joseph Levy. This is a Faith centric one written under the form of a personal diary. When I found out and began reading it, I wasn’t so sure that I would enjoy it. I think that Faith is a very compelling character who had solid development in this fictional universe, but the whole personal diary aspect left me very skeptical, as I am not so into such books.

Yet, the novel won me over as entries went on. The author did a great job to write from Faith’s point of view and I could really “hear” Faith as I went through the pages. Learning more about what happened to her in the past and up to a few months before she appeared in the television show was very interesting and shed new light on the young woman.

There was a lot of heavy stuff (including abuse of several kinds), but given the focus of the book, I wasn’t surprised. I also liked seeing Faith with her first Watcher, Diana Dormer. Their relationship was one of my favorite elements in the novel. While we knew that Faith’s first watcher was a woman from the series, it was great to see more of a female watcher with how present she was in the second part of the novel.

In the end, Go Ask Malice, A Slayer’s Diary was a

good surprise, albeit difficult topics and my early concerns due to the diary format.

Book Review: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: These Our Actors by Ashley McConnell and Dori Koogler

Source: Wikipedia.

Source: Wikipedia.

The second novel in my third Buffy anthology was These Our Actors by Ashley McConnel and Dori Koogler. It was a decent read but I wasn’t captivated as with the previous one. The story was set in season five and with a lot of flashbacks going back to England around the time Spike was turned into a vampire by Drusilla and began to live with her, Darla and Angel. All this secondary storyline in the past didn’t interest me that much.

In the present, Willow finds herself confronted with some mystery as she helps for stage play preparation at the university, as one of the asssignments for her drama class. I didn’t really care about the story in this novel. What I found interesting and that kept me reading were the interactions between Willow and Tara, as well as Willow, Giles and Buffy. The unexpected team work between Willow and Spike was also an entertaining twist given much of their banter.

So, These Our Actors was a decent novel, but I don’t think I’ll go back to it for it wasn’t as compelling to me as other Buffy novels I’ve read.

Book Review: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Lost Slayer by Christopher Golden

Source: Wikipedia.

Source: Wikipedia.

In the past couple of years, a French publisher, Milady, has been publishing Buffy novel anthologies, including some never translated before. I knew that there were expanded novels – besides the follow up comic books – for Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but I had never read any of them, since I only finished to fully watch the show in early 2013. I enjoy tie-in novels for several fictional universes so I was curious about them. Each anthology has two to four novels, depending on length.

I started the third anthology and the first novel, The Lost Slayer by Christopher Golden, was an omnibus of four smaller stories. I couldn’t stop reading once I started it. I wish they had been made as actual episodes because it would have been pretty epic. It takes place in early season four and Buffy finds herself thrown five years ahead in a very gloom future, her 19 year old soul sharing the body of her 24 year old self who suffered losses and imprisonment for the past years.

Alternate realities aren’t something I tend to like a lot in story lines. It can be easily cheap and cliché, but this one got me. Giles as a vampire king made for a great villain and Buffy reuniting with her surviving friends so they can take the evil down was well done. Willow was very kick ass and I liked the development she had in the future, as well as Xander’s.

It was a very interesting story for Buffy to adjust to university and let her friends in, even in her Slayer’s life. There were many emotional moments between the different characters I was also happy to see Olivia featured in the opening, before the time travel, because she was a character I enjoyed seeing the few times she showed up on the show. Seeing Wesley in the future timeline was also interesting, and worked well with how he had changed by the time he joined the Angel TV series.

Overall, The Lost Slayer is my favorite Buffy novel of the ones I read so far. I think it would have made for outstanding episodes in the show and am glad that I could get my hands on it.

Vidding Paper Progress, A Thank You And Links: Writing, Social Media, Redefining Disability, Science Fiction, Feminism, Masculinity

Writing has been going well and I have reached half of my vidding paper already, which makes me very happy. Thanks to the guest lecture I gave at the University of Texas at Dallas in March, I have many more things to work with than when I originally submitted the paper proposal! It feels wonderful to be focusing on academic projects again.

Now, I’d like to give a big thank you to the Sourcerer blog and its awesome people for having featured me as their Follow Friday On The Blog! It is a blog with several great contributors and they write about many topics of interests. So thank you very much for mentioning me as you did!

Photo Credit: Jennifer Langley.

Photo Credit: Jennifer Langley.

Links: Writing, Social Media, Redefining Disability, Science Fiction, Feminism, Masculinity

Why I Don’t See Emma And Regina As A Couple In Once Upon A Time (But Hope That Mulan And Aurora End Together)

Source: Once Upon A Time Wiki.

Source: Once Upon A Time Wiki.

While I tend not to be deeply involved in fandom these days, I still am interested in reading analysis and fan reactions. I started watching Once Upon a Time end of last year, and could binge on the first two seasons and early third one in a row. I loved this show and I can’t wait for the fourth season now that I watched the most recent finale.

There is one big thing in the show that I don’t see: Emma and Regina as a couple.

And it feels from some things I’ve read that if you think this, it is likely because you don’t want to see a same-sex couple relationship brought to the forefront of such a mainstream story. I don’t like generalizations.

I was (still am) hoping that we would see more of Mulan and Aurora and I’m crossing fingers that since Believe was sadly cancelled that Mulan will be able to return to this show, along with seeing Ruby/Red Riding Hood more again (with Intelligence having also been cancelled). It was all the more a surprise for me to root for them so much, because I am a huge Sleeping Beauty fan and always loved Aurora and Philip, but in the show, Aurora/Mulan was obvious to me and I hope to see things evolve in the upcoming seasons. I even think that if Mulan had been around Aurora when the people from the Enchanted Forrest returned, she wouldn’t have sold them to Zelena.

I would love to see more same-sex couples featured in main cast in TV shows and movies, and see them raising families together. But to me Emma and Regina ending together would look extremely forced, because I never saw any sexual or romantic chemistry between them. Many people see it, but I don’t, so I can’t imagine them together. This isn’t specific to Emma/Regina, as I have issues with some mainstream ships in media productions, such as Sheppard/Weir or Teyla/Ronon in Stargate Atlantis, Buffy/Spike in Buffy: The Vampire Slayer and Jaina/Jag in Star Wars, to name a few.

To me, Emma and Regina being together as a couple would only be due to Henry. And to me this isn’t a valid enough reason to put two characters together, just as putting two characters together because they are the two gay/bi/pansexual ones in a given setting (office, school, university) isn’t easily enough.

I liked how Emma started as well, but as the seasons have gone on, I have liked her less and less. Many characters in the show went through very difficult times, but I still like many of them. Emma? Not so much. Regina, just like Neal or Hook, isn’t perfect either. Being able to develop flaws to make characters credible is very important. Yet, save for a few moments, I’ve not really cared for Emma, so maybe this is why in the end, I don’t ship her with anyone.

I found her history with Neal interesting and that it brought a lot to the show, but first of all the love triangle with Neal/Emma/Hook annoyed me, but once again, this is nothing special to this case, as I have never been a fan of love triangles.

I’ve felt sorry for Hook more than once, especially given how patient he has been, how dedicated to help he has become. I am not saying that Emma should have just fallen into Hook’s arms after Neal’s death, but she didn’t always have to treat him the way she did. In the finale of the third season, some things begin to hit home in Emma’s mind, but as great as it was, I can’t help but wonder whether this new revelations will last.

Regina started as a villain, and became more and more layered as time went by, to the point she became an actual hero in the third season. I love how she has evolved and I love her character even more than before. She has also cared more for Henry than Emma in my view in the third season. While Emma’s want to return to New York makes sense because she wants to protect Henry, she doesn’t seem to think one moment about how she is taking Henry away from his other mother and his whole family now that the boy shows how well he has grown fond of Storybrooke again now that he has his memories back.  (On a side note, I also love how when Hook interacted with Henry to look after him, he also mentioned Neal on a few occasions, showing that he being for Henry wasn’t just a ploy to conquer Emma).

Regarding Regina’s relationship with Robin, I think it was really well handled, despite introducing him in the third season, especially the second half. Between the omen that Tinker Bell gave earlier on, and working with the missing year in flashbacks, I like how Regina and Robin’s relationship evolved, and I also loved how they could relate to each other as parents. They both walked towards each other, in a more significant manner than Emma did with anyone (at least in present time, as I’m not talking about her past history with Neal). One thing that angered me in the finale of the third season was bringing Robin’s wife back from the past. This was gratuitous drama that was totally unnecessary in my view. It was the one big thing that peeved me in the season finale. And Regina’s horrified and hateful reaction to Emma is quite understandable, although Emma is certain she did the right thing (which technically was as saving innocent lives is the right thing).

I also like the idea that two beings who can wield supernatural powers aren’t necessarily drawn together. For example, I love how Han and Leia are to me the greatest couple in Star Wars, and she is Force sensitive and eventually trained while he never had this gift. Even as they raised three Force sensitive children together, Han wasn’t made any lesser because he didn’t have it. In a more recent example, I loved the idea of Astrid and John in The Tomorrow People even before John lost his powers, because Astrid wasn’t a lesser being either because she was a regular human.  While the series narrative crumbled, I also used to love Max and Logan in Dark Angel, though she was a genetic prodigy and he was a human who ended in a wheelchair.

Source: Once Upon A Time Wiki.

Source: Once Upon A Time Wiki.

I am giving a lot of examples here but as I mentioned above, the main problem I have is that I’ve liked Emma less and less as time went on, and in my view the show could benefit from having her die in an epic fashion (as she is the Savior). It would throw her family and close ones through turmoil and give possibilities of character development to them, but I would really like to see that. And I am aware of how unlikely this is to happen.

To me both Emma and Regina could perfectly be bi or pansexual, and if Regina was presented with a female love interest with whom I saw chemistry when watching the show, I would be happy, but as much as I recognize that her relationship with Emma is special, I don’t see the sexual and romantic chemistry at all. I tried to see it, looking back, or seeing whether I was missing something on my screen that many other people saw, but I can’t see it, no matter how I try. I don’t necessarily see strong relationships with a romantic lens either. For example, I mentioned how I never considered Sheppard and Weir as a couple in Stargate Atlantis. I loved them both as friends/enemies/mentor and student; and liked their bond a lot, but I never saw romantic chemistry either.

So, I’ll keep watching Once Upon A Time, rooting for Regina and Robin (though I have no idea how they will get out of this new mess) and cross fingers for Mulan and Aurora. And while I don’t dislike Emma/Hook, I honestly wish Hook to find someone else, but I know that unless Emma died, this is unlikely to happen. I would like to like Emma again, but I’m not certain that this will be the case, though the show is welcome to surprise me in a good way.

Book Review: Star Wars: Dawn of the Jedi – Into the Void, Links: Feminism, Star Wars, Asian-American, Television

Because of my Angel marathon, my regular TV watching has fell to the side for the time being. I am hoping to do some catch up this weekend though. I do have quite a few shows that are going to end soon, though I hope that most, if not all of them, will be renewed! I have also spent some time reading over the past few days and have picked Star Wars: Dawn of the Jedi – Into The Void by Tim Lebbon again. I had started it in February but had paused, because of doing too many other things.

Source: Wookieepedia.

Source: Wookieepedia.

I devoured the rest of the book once I picked it up again. I enjoy reading about the older times of galactic history. I know that there was a comic series made after this book and I liked checking a preview in the novel, but I’m not planning to read it. I admit that I am not such a comic book fan. Besides my beloved Yoko Tsuno series, I mostly stick to a few older Star Wars comic books, though I still want to read the ones about Firefly, Buffy, Angel and The X-Files.

I liked the way Dawn of the Jedi – Into the Void was written and structured. I normally don’t like having changes of tense, but it worked well for the memories and the present. It was different and I found it engaging. I also liked the different quotes opening each chapter.

I liked the main character. Lanoree was a very interesting one and seeing her journey(s) and how she has evolved and the trials she faces made the book a great read. I also loved seeing early days of the Jedi, even before they were actually called that in precise spelling. The fact that they didn’t wield lightsabers yet, and that they threaded on a much thinner line between light and dark and all the philosophical implications, made the book quite fascinating to me. It reminded me of Vaapad and how only few Jedi Masters used it later on. This philosophical aspect was very engaging.

Links: Feminism, Star Wars, Asian-American, Television