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Sci-Fi TV Death Zone : Buffy the Vampire Slayer Cartoon
Reviewed by Joe Crowe, © 2008

Format: TV
By:   Joss Whedon
Genre:   Action cartoon
Review Date:   August 03, 2008
RevSF Rating:   8/10 (What Is This?)

The Sci-Fi TV Death Zone takes fond, and also not, looks at quickly canceled sci-fi TV shows. True, every sci-fi show ends eventually, even Stargate SG-1. But that's not what we're talking about here. So stop it. The Sci-Fi TV Death Zone is for shows that never aired at all, or were kicked to the curb at Firefly speed.

The Buffy Cartoon

"I'll put on my dancing shoes, and my standing in the corner not talking to anybody t-shirt." -- Xander.

For several years we heard there would be a Buffy cartoon, and we were teased with drawings and such. Then Joss Whedon said it was dead, not to exist. A non-cartoon.

SlayAlive has four minutes of it. Let us not question how. These are the only four minutes ever made of the thing, a promo reel rejected by cold, inhuman things in the TV business. Watch it now or pay 20 bucks for it at the convention bootleg tables.

The bad news is this is all there ever was and there are no plans to ever do anything like it again. The good news is, it's fun.

Buffy writers worked on it, and the voices of Xander, Willow, and Giles are the actors who played Xander, Willow, and Giles. Buffy is an actress who played Buffy in a Buffy video game. But that's not important now. (For more on the cartoon, here's an interview with Jane Espenson.)

It's like a non-cartoon episode of Buffy, compressed into four minutes. It includes subplots from the first season: Vampire attacks occur rarely. Xander's crush on Buffy, Willow's crush on Xander. Whatever happened with that?

The promise with the cartoon always bandied about, was the effects budget could go a lot higher since they were only drawing the stuff. The clip has some of that.

And it has Giles saying this:

"Oh, but gosh! What if you and Cordelia are wearing the same color? It'll be like, a thing!"

Now we have the Buffy Buffy comic book, which is pretty good. The cartoon was to be like the live show, but without the angst. The comic has double angst, except for a cover of the comic that has the cast watching the cartoon.

The downside is, it will make Buffazoids irritated all over again, seven years gone, that the thing never came to be.

Perhaps one day Joss Whedon and his people will be forced to do more Buffy when all they probably want is to do something, anything else, like a musical, that might be bigger than a reprise of a long-canceled UPN show.

But that's so negative. The cartoon is four undistilled minutes of pure Buffy that we never thought we'd see. Enjoy. Angst later, while you're saving Dollhouse.

RevolutionSF's Joe Crowe is prone to getting all scowly.

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