Long after the hit television series has left the airwaves, Buffy The Vampire Slayer stills has a boatload of rabid fans looking for more of the characters. Luckily, Dark Horse Comics was willing to help appease those fans’ appetites by bringing the series to life in comic book form. Since its debut in 2010, Buffy has been one of Dark Horse’s most popular titles. And with the way things are heating up in this current “season”, it’s likely to remain at the top for some time. So it comes as no surprise that Dark Horse has announced two new spin-off series from the book starring two of the more popular characters, Spike and Willow.
Each character will get their own five-issue series, with their own creative team, but both of them will touch on very similar topics. Readers of Season 8 of the series are aware of the impact Buffy has had on the universe; her destruction of a mystical seed growing under Sunnydale has sapped all of the magic out of the world. Willow, being the resident witch of the group, has been left powerless. Her series will see Willow doing what she can to bring back the magic, even if that means manipulating an old friend, and Buffy’s old boyfriend, Angel in the process. The series will be written by Jeff Parker of Marvel’s Thunderbolts and X-Men: First Class, and illustrated by Brian Ching, best known for his work on Dark Horse’s Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and will begin November 21. It was also feature covers from Kabuki creator David Mack and fan-favorite Buffy artist Megan Lara.
But before Willow goes on her quest for magic, Spike will be having a crisis of conscience of his own. Once a ruthless killer, he has since been tamed, coming to terms with his love for Buffy, a match that doesn’t quite work. In an attempt to lead a normal life, Buffy walks away from a relationship with Spike, which sends him into something of a tizzy. Series writer Victor Gischler, who recently finished a run on Marvel’s X-Men, states that this separation is what drives Spike into his own misadventures, running across a few demons searching for the shards of the destroyed seed in hopes of extracting some of the leftover magic. Spike’s series will hit stores August 22 and will be illustrated by Buffy and Angel penciller Paul Lee with covers by Jenny Frison and Steve Morris.
It’s fantastic to see Dark Horse Comics give Buffy and her crew a proper home, treating the characters with respect. The ending of the television show left a lot of fans in the lurch, but thankfully there are creators out there who felt the same sense of loss that fans did. It will be interesting to see where these two series go and what sort of development they bring to the characters.