Finally, Buffy Season 11 has started rolling out some of the details for the endgame of this season. At the very least, we begin to find out some crucial details about what people are planning on the outside, what the prison colony is really for, and what the overall stakes are. And the stakes, of course, are the most important thing now that we are already halfway through the season.
The issue is divided up pretty well between our three current leads. It’s been interesting to have a more narrow character focus. Season eight was obviously overstuffed with characters, but seasons nine and ten didn’t actually do all that much to lighten the load. Now, with Buffy, Willow and Spike being trapped inside the prison colony. Focusing on these three characters has allowed us to go deeper with them—which is always what Buffy has excelled at.
This issue does that very well. Spike is not as much in the forefront, but Buffy obviously is. She’s now on a mission to get to the bottom of whatever’s going on because she is hell bent on getting her people out of there. She’s furthering the plot, for the most part, but in a way that feels organic. She’s at the end of her rope and she knows that the other guards will figure out her allegiances. She’s running out of time and the issue does a great job at conveying her sense of desperation.
Willow, meanwhile, is dealing with an arguably more complicated dilemma. She’s been a leader to the Wiccan community that’s become trapped inside the Safe Zone. But it’s become so unsafe that the other Wiccans are asking Willow to siphon away their power so that they can get out. This is such a great plot point because it puts Willow into such an uncomfortable position. This is against everything she believes in, but she’s doing it to keep her people safe.
Spike sticks to the background a bit, but he plays a very supportive role. He understands what Buffy’s doing, understands the stakes of it, he’s willing to die to keep her safe which is a very Spike thing to do. He’s always been the realest in these situations though, so it is definitely in keeping with his character for him to be the one to suggest that they might not make it out of this and that things ultimately might not work out. But that’s still a long road of character development from the old days where he would constantly be telling everyone that they were definitely going to die.
It’s nice to have Rebekah Isaacs back on art duties after a hiatus featuring Georges Jeanty. He defined this series when it began with season eight, but Rebekah has come to define it in its current incarnation.
This is definitely a strong issue character-wise and I’m happy to see that the plot is picking up and becoming more clearly defined.
WICKED RATING: 7.5/10