01/07/2012. Contributed by Geoff Willmetts
pub: Mad Norwegian Press. 196 page enlarged paperback. Price: $14.95 (US). ISBN: 978-1-93523410-4.
check out website: www.madnorwegian.com
In many respects when I started on this book, I was expecting to see a lot of gushing over producer/director/writer Joss Whedon. As it turns out, there is more of an emphasis on the characters in his shows and principally that of 'Buffy The Vampire Slayer' than his other series. If anything, one would have to wonder why the book wasn't entirely centred there, especially as there are interviews with scriptwriter Jane Espenson and actress Juliet Landau. The other shows get a couple chapters each in comparison.
As with the other Mad Norwegian Press books, this is a mix of pro and fan reminisces amounting to twenty-nine chapters, much of them centring on how they got hooked to the series and how it affected their lives. Some of them do some interesting analysis of the characters. One thing I would observe myself though is how there is more of a kinship towards Buffy or Willow than thinking any of the male characters are hunks. Some of the writers here, like Jeanne C. Stein, being inspired by 'Buffy' now have their own book series or, as with Mariah Huehner, editing and writing the 'Angel' comicbook.
Some of them explain how finding an interest in these series got them out of their shells and find friends. As this book is solely contributed to by Americans, it does make you wonder why friendships can be so sparse across the pond. When they do flourish, they do take a life of their own with the people involved in them. We have fanaticism over here but a little more subdued in comparison.
I suspect those of you who pick this book up will find there are people who've gone into the same kind of interest as yourselves, assuming of course you haven't found that out on the Net already, and share the kinship. From a male perspective, there are similarities to when there were fewer fans on the ground and little in communication and then discovering there was a whole lot of people like you out there back in the 70s. If anything, women are discovering the same thing and not being shunned for their interest by the outside community. Interestingly, more of these women have turned pro-writers since their discovery and there is a bigger proportion of these reminisces from them than the more 'average' female fan. Nevertheless, this does give some insight that whatever the sex, fan tastes exist for all.
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