Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Retreat (Season 8, #6) by Jane Espenson - Ashley's Review

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Title: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Retreat (Season 8, #6)
Authors: Jane Espenson (Scriptwriter), Georges Jeanty (Penciller), Andy Owens (Inker), Michelle Madsen (Colorist), Richard Starkings (Letterer), Jimmy Betancourt (Letterer)
Publication Date: March 3, 2010

Synopsis: Buffy Season Eight Volume 6 showcases the first retreat of the Slayer legion. Vampires have solid footing at the top of the totem and Slayers have been crushed to the bottom -- in short, no one likes Buffy anymore . . . least of all this season's mysterious Big Bad, Twilight, who is hot on her magical trail!

Now that it's the world against Slayers, Buffy must find a way to return the status quo to . . . status quo -- and keep her girls alive long enough to do it! Enter Oz, the only person/werewolf Buffy knows who is down with the suppression of magic, and can take the Slayer army off of Twilight's magic-specific radar.

With Oz's assistance, the Slayers and Wiccans try to become "normal" through meditation and hard labor -- although, not everyone sees the advantage of being magicless, namely, Willow, Giles, and Andrew. And they could be right. After all, is a peaceful life for a Slayer even possible?

* Oz appears in Buffy Season Eight!

* Collects issues #26-#30 of the ongoing series.

My The Long Way Home (#1) Review                    My Time of Your Life (#4) Review
My No Future For You (#2) Review                      My Predators and Prey (#5) Review
My Wolves at the Gate (#3) Review


Review: I totally did not read the synopsis for this volume before I read it (who needs to do that, it's just more Buffy and the continuation of season 8!), so I had absolutely no idea that Oz was supposed to make an appearance. I was pleasantly surprised and I think it made me enjoy this volume even more! I also really enjoyed that the title, Retreat, is totally a pun. 

Retreat deals with the affects of Twilight making Slayers shunned in society. Vampires are (obviously) the better of the two, and Slayers everywhere are regarded as terrible, vicious, super-strong people who are killing off the innocent vampires. Everything is upside down, and Buffy does what she has to to keep her girls safe. She's also still trying to deal with what she learned about Willow in Time of Your Life, so this retreat is as much to save Willow as it is to save the Slayers.

I really enjoyed that Oz is the one to help the girls learn how to let go of their magic and channel it into the earth and manual labor. It's interesting to see what happens when the girls become human again. Especially Willow. She's been powerful for so long that it's hard for her to adjust to being normal again. I really liked the scenes with Willow and Oz too. Even though Willow isn't interested in Oz romantically anymore, she's still hurt by how he ran off and disappeared and started a new life without her. 

The Slayers end up taking on Twilight's army head on in this volume and calling on some ancient magicks to help them defeat said army. Things never go according to plan though, and the battle becomes a lot deadlier than intended. I think this is probably the most intense volume of this season, since most of it is the battle with Twilight and the ramifications of wakening three wrathful goddesses. We also get to see another character who hasn't been around for a while, so that was nice! 

I really enjoyed this volume, and I can definitely tell that the Twilight story-line is wrapping up. It's almost like this volume serves as a reason for Buffy to finally pursue Twilight, since he kind of steals some things that are pretty important to her. I would still recommend these comics to fans of Buffy the Vampire Slayer! They're not exactly the same as the show, but the heart of the series is there and that's what counts. At least for me. 4/5!


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