Tuesday, December 7, 2010

WB Reboots Buffy...Without Joss Whedon

Joss Whedon with the (amazingly good-looking) cast of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer"

Joss Whedon recently responded to the news that WB is rebooting his "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" franchise without him by writing a letter that deserves to be reposted here. According to Whedon himself, this was his reaction:
This is a sad, sad reflection on our times, when people must feed off the carcasses of beloved stories from their youths - just because they can't think of an original idea of their own, like I did with my Avengers idea that I made up myself. 

Obviously I have strong, mixed emotions about something like this. My first reaction upon hearing who was writing it was, "Whit Stillman AND Wes Anderson? This is gonna be the most sardonically adorable movie EVER." Apparently I was misinformed. Then I thought, "I'll make a mint! This is worth more than all my Toy Story residuals combined!" Apparently I am seldom informed of anything. And possibly a little slow. But seriously, are vampires even popular any more? 

I always hoped that Buffy would live on even after my death. But, you know, AFTER. I don't love the idea of my creation in other hands, but I'm also well aware that many more hands than mine went into making that show what it was. And there is no legal grounds for doing anything other than sighing audibly. I can't wish people who are passionate about my little myth ill. I can, however, take this time to announce that I'm making a Batman movie. Because there's a franchise that truly needs updating. So look for The Dark Knight Rises Way Earlier Than That Other One And Also More Cheaply And In Toronto, rebooting into a theater near you. 

Leave me to my pain! 


Joss Whedon

Here's what I got out of this letter: "I'm SO ENRAGED! but trying to be funny about it. Love (sarcastically), Joss Whedon". 
Too many fans are " running through their hometowns filled with rage armed with pitchforks and molotov cocktails looking to make someone pay" as one blogger put it, because Poor Joss Whedon was just cast aside like an old toy to be replaced by no-name, no experience, 29-year-old Whitney Anderson. But in reality, Whedon was asked to head up the project last year and turned it down. JOSS WHEDON TURNED IT DOWN?! WHAAAAT?! Yes, I thought that might be your reaction, but look. Joss Whedon originally penned Buffy the Vampire Slayer the movie, which was released in 1992. Or actually, he penned the original script, and apparently the producers took it, butchered it, and released this:
The tagline is "Pert. Wholesome. Totally Lethal."
The concept was there, but Whedon's ideas had pretty much been thrown out the window, stomped on my a monkey in a feather boa, eaten by rats and the picked back up when they came out the other end. In other words, it was bad, and not what Whedon had written. Joss was asked to make a spin-off TV show, so he did. He did it his way, and this is what we have now:

That's Buffy with a gory battle axe that she just destroyed some evil dude with.
Let's keep in mind that Whedon created this show before vampires were absurdly popular, like they are today. "Buffy" wasn't about being cliched, it was about breaking stereotypes. Buffy is a smart-aleck, blond, tiny cheerleader, who normally would be the damsel in distress. Instead, she's the one saving everybody. As far as revolutionary strong female characters go, Buffy tops the list. 

Joss Whedon worked with the cast of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" for 7 seasons, as well as the spin-off show "Angel". This guy and "Buffy" are legendary. Did you know he was nominated for an Emmy for a "Buffy" episode that didn't even have any dialogue in it. He's that good. So Joss Whedon wrote snappy, witty dialogue for Sarah Michelle Gellar for seven years, right? And this dialogue, the stories, the lore, are all Joss Whedon, and Gellar was his Buffy. 

Now here's how I see it. Gellar is too old to play a high school cheerleader anymore. But she was, and always will be, Buffy to Joss Whedon. How could he make a reboot without her? And how could a reboot be made without him? That's what Whedon thought anyway. He passed on the job last year figuring his turn-down would bury the project. And then it didn't, and some actress wrote a script for a new Buffy. Not cool. 

I just hope the producers and this "Whitney Anderson" have considered the consequences of pissing off the armies of fans who love Joss just as much as they love Buffy. After all, the point of making a reboot is to mostly attract the old fanbase to go see it. Except now the fanbase has been betrayed and enraged. Let me lay this out:

Disciples of Buffy = Disciples of Joss Whedon = possible violence against new "Buffy" reboot.

Pictured: actual "Buffy" fan in costume. Not pictured: murderous rage.
Aaaagh! The fluffy pink sweater with dead butterflies pinned to it makes it so much worse! Now imagine that  outside your window at night ready to go all Buffy on your ass. Yeah. That's what I thought too. It's TERRIFYING.

Go ahead with your little reboot, WB, but just keep in mind what happened last time you tried to make a Buffy movie without Joss Whedon. And picture that pink-sweatered vampire girl outside your window. Hopefully it will frighten you out of making the movie, and you'll come to your senses and realize it's just a stupid idea.


Ifancydemons said...

If i were Joss i would be really upset. Like crying since im a bitchy girl. hah. Following your blog. buffy rules.

Anonymous said...

I love Joss, he is so funny! And F*CK fox for dropping Firefly!! Also, toy story?? that was his??


Katy said...

@Lacey: Yep, Toy Story was written by Joss Whedon. Also several other people, but you've seen "Firefly" so you know what Whedon does with dialogue. It explains so much about Toy Story being funny.


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