Friday, December 28, 2001
We finally get to hear from the man behind the Buffy phenomenon. "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" creator Joss Whedon picks apart the two-hour pilot of "Buffy" as part of a DVD release of the series' first season, due out Jan. 15 from Fox Home Entertainment.
The three-disc set includes the first 12 episodes, the aforementioned commentary, interviews with Whedon and star David Boreanaz ("Angel"), the original pilot script and trailer.
Whedon doesn't, though, do commentary for "Prophecy Girl," the first-season finale, in which Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) dies for the first time (albeit way more briefly than the second time).
One thing that's evident from Whedon's commentary is how steep his learning curve was, coming to series television from a background writing for such films as "Toy Story" and "Speed" (and the movie version of "Buffy").
While "Angel," the "Buffy" spin-off, continues to be aired in widescreen on The WB, Whedon doesn't envision the same for "Buffy" on UPN.
"I like the idea that 'Buffy' stays square. It started that way, and most TVs are still square. Whereas 'Angel,' I think of as a dark, melodramatic film, I think of 'Buffy' as a comforting TV show, even though it's the darkest, bleakest world, and I want to keep it that way."
Things have come a long way since the first season. Now, mired in season six, Buffy is battling her feelings about her reluctant return from the blissful hereafter, and her love/hate relationship with vampire Spike (James Marsters); while pal Willow (Alyson Hannigan) suffers heartbreak and addiction to magic.
Buffy's life is going to get a lot more complicated. Returning in the new year is Marc Blucas, as Riley, Buffy's demon-hunting, soldier ex-boyfriend, last seen heading off on a jungle mission.