Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Dust Waltz

Buffy Dust WaltzBy Dan Brereton (W), Hector Gomez and Sandu Florea (A)

Original graphic novel published by Dark Horse Comics. Cover price $9.95.

The Plot: Buffy and the rest of the Scooby Gang must prevent vampire queen Lilith from summoning an Old One while Giles’ niece stops by Sunnydale for a visit.

The Positives: N/A

The Negatives: The art is pretty freaking terrible. Hector Gomez has the skills of a mid-90s Marvel artist, back when everyone was trying to draw like they founded Image. Which is to say, he sucks. This comic comes from 1998, so that’s not completely unexpected, but art quality aside the art is still substandard. It might have been nice if, you know, the characters looked at all like what they did on the show. Willow and Cordelia, two polar opposites, are nearly indistinguishable (it doesn’t help that the colorist made Willow’s hair brown despite the fact that she’s a redhead). Angel is shown in a white dress shirt and jeans, even though he’s rarely worn anything besides a dark shirt and black leather pants. Gomez nailed Giles, but how hard is to accurately depict a character that’s already a caricature?

The writing’s not much better. The plot isn’t memorable at all. The supposedly all-powerful vampire queen Lilith and her evil scheme are thwarted just as easily as Amy’s mom or the Nerd Trio were. If you take the worst plot from the TV show and then make it worse, you’d have a story slightly better than the Dust Waltz. The dialogue isn’t very good, either. Dan Brereton tries to “Whedon up” the dialogue at times and fails miserably at it. That can get annoying when Joss himself does it, so you can imagine how bad it is when someone much less talented does it.

Need I go on?

The Grade: F. Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Dust Waltz is just plain bad. I’m a huge fan of Buffy, and I didn’t even like it. Not only would this be a waste of your money, it’d be a waste of your time.