Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Buffy and Philosophy: Fear and Trembling in Sunnydale

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Rating: 3 Stars

Review:

Firstly, I think this would have been better had it been written after the show ended. Leaving out season 7 was kind of huge. Joss made it pretty clear that 7 was the magic number, so we knew that was likely when the show would end.

As I said in a recent review of another Buffy-related book, I'm way stupid in love with this show, though it's been off the air some 10 years. It's even kind of awkward typing that sentence, but whatever. But that is why I take issue with the very last essay in this book. According to the authors of, "Feeling for Buffy", it's just another entertaining show that's pretty much just about sex.

Really?

I'm pretty sure, not.

Yes, sex and sexuality play their own roles and are themes, just like many other aspects of our daily lives. But to say that's ALL Buffy is about, and to end the book with this essay, when the couple dozen previous essays show otherwise, it's truly disrespectful to the reader and fan.

I'm not saying this opinion is invalid or wrong. It's an opinion. There are people who don't like the show after watching just one episode, or having watched none. There are people who THINK they know what it's about, "like, vampires and stuff?" who insist I will really like shows like 'Supernatural', because they know I like Buffy (I simply nod and smile at those statements). But to put together this (mostly) interesting collection of essays about one of the greatest television shows ever, and then end with that? Seriously? Ridiculous.

There are other minor issues I took note of through various essays along the way - some getting facts or quotes wrong. I just feel like if you're enough way stupid in love with this show to write essays about it, like those who would read said essays, you ought to know what you're talking about.

If I recommend this book, I might say read that essay first, the one that trashes the show and reduces it to the likes of whatever teen garbage is on TV now (I don't know, because I'm not a teenager anymore and I also only use Netflix). That way you get it done and over with. Otherwise it's just a crappy surprise at the end of an otherwise (mostly) interesting read about a show worthy of study.

Additionally:

In regards to the comment above that mentioned 'Supernatural': I didn't mean this is a terribly offensive way. I am sure it i a perfectly fine show it its own right. And Jensen Ackles is yum. But assuming one who loves Buffy would just love any random shmandom show about things that go bump in the night is kind of ridiculous. I know the people who say this are well-meaning, but they have never watched Buffy. It's far more than just demons and ghoulies. I promise. Give it a watch - and more than one episode!

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