01/01/2011. Contributed by Geoff Willmetts
region 2 DVD: pub: 20th Century Fox B000X42YPM. 42 DVDs 7 seasons 166 episodes with extras. ISBN . Price: about GBP 52.00 (UK) if you know where to look. stars: Sarah Michelle Geller, Alyson Hannigan, Nicholas Brendon, Michelle Trachtenberg, James Marsters, Emma Caulfield & Anthony Stewart Head and a cast of thousands.
check out www.foxtvdvd.com
Do I have to go beyond the details above to tell you that it’s one of the series that you should own? Actually, I bought this boxset last year this time at half-price, not to mention figuring out that it is cheaper than buying as individual seasons and even cheaper than buying a few episodes at a time as some of you must have done when various shows are initially released on DVD.
With the season to be jolly and those to be sales conscious, if you are going to buy shows you like, here’s the argument to wait until the show ends and there’s a half-price sale and then spend the rest of the year watching the show. I will confess to alternating seasons with ‘The X-Files’ just to avoid getting a little punch drunk. Before you ask, I agree, it would have made sense to have bought the complete boxset of that as well but I didn’t start buying it that way, hence the point of this piece being sneaked in this way. If you’re on a budget, check the prices of the individual seasons against that of the complete boxset. As it is, I ended up watching the last two seasons of ‘Buffy’ back to back and found it a little more of slog. It does pay to rotate it with something of a similar number of seasons or you’ll be pondering as to what to fill the gap with. If you’re a weekend viewer rather than one an evening, this might not be a problem but it will last longer doing the former.
I shouldn’t have to tell you that Buffy Summers (actress Sarah Michelle Geller) is the Chosen One, a female slayer of vampires, who teamed up with her Watcher, Rupert Giles (actor Anthony Stewart Head) and her friends, Willow Rosenberg (actress Alyson Hannigan) and Zander Harris (Nicholas Brendon) and various friends over the seven seasons finds assorted creatures attacking them and anyone else. Sunnydale, where they live, is over the Hellmouth, an access point into Hell which attracts all kinds of evil beings and some who’d rather be good like Angel (actor David Boreanez), Spike (actor James Marsters) and Anya (actress Emma Caulfield) no matter the reasons. The attraction of the series came largely from creator Joss Whedon who wanted them to evolve rather than stay in a static situation all the time. It’s a sorta teenage angst against a horror background with a dose of verbal comedy that appeals to all ages.
Seeing them all again after a few years makes me realise that some of the language was tamed a bit when it was originally shown on the BBC over here and this is the complete version. Each season has its own level of appeal and surprises. Combined with this are buckets of extras that give insight into how the show was made and a variety of interviews and audio commentaries to give all kinds of information. Whedon’s team often point out where their boss sorted out some of their scenes and occasionally, I did wonder about their own ability but that might come more from some of them not knowing quite what to talk about over the length of an episode.
‘Buffy The Vampire Slayer’ should be required viewing for anyone wanting to study how to dimensionalise characters and develop a story. It made having a female heroine not in need of some male rescuing them respectable and there’s been several shows since taking note of that. The series will fill your time and several months and prepare you to fight vampires, especially if you’re female. If you’re male, you’ll just have to hope you’re fast enough with a stake and get them before they get you. Don’t get too dusty.
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