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Talkin' about the Whed....Joss Whedon that is (oh and Dollhouse too)


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I’ve nothing against Whedon. Jeff Kleist from the HTF (now of Digital Bits fame I noticed) pretty much made me a fan of Buffy and I certainly liked more about that series than I disliked - and don’t doubt that much of the problem I have with the latter two seasons were down to a rush to finish it off before Whedon might have wanted, and even pre-Buffy I’d liked some of the touch up work he did on various screenplays.

 

The thing is I’ve not really followed his work post-Buffy, but was just curious if he’d progressed as a writer and wondered how much of Serenity’s love was down to the internet fanbase for Whedon and Firefly. Reviews from the likes of Ebert (and even from The Guardian’s resident misery guts Peter Bradshaw) do intrigue me however.

Edited by Doctor Hoo
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made me a fan of Buffy and I certainly liked more about that series than I disliked - and don’t doubt that much of the problem I have with the latter two seasons were down to a rush to finish it off before Whedon might have wanted, and even pre-Buffy I’d liked some of the touch up work he did on various screenplays.

Buffy should have ended at Season 5. I don't dislike 6 entirely but season 7 was atrocious. It's ok though, Buffy helped to get Angel up and running which, in its prime, was the better of the two shows. The final episode of Angel is still one of my favorite series finales I've seen on television.

 

 

I love Serenity, but I think I got a lot more out of it by watching Firefly first, so I'd recommend doing the same.

I tend to agree. It works well as a stand alone film but having the familiarity with the character after having watched the show really makes it that much better.

 

..and yes contrary to Kelley's hate of all things Whedon it is a good action film even for the non-Whedon devotees IMHO.

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I?ve nothing against Whedon. Jeff Kleist from the HTF (now of Digital Bits fame I noticed) pretty much made me a fan of Buffy and I certainly liked more about that series than I disliked - and don?t doubt that much of the problem I have with the latter two seasons were down to a rush to finish it off before Whedon might have wanted, and even pre-Buffy I?d liked some of the touch up work he did on various screenplays.

 

The thing is I?ve not really followed his work post-Buffy, but was just curious if he?d progressed as a writer and wondered how much of Serenity?s love was down to the internet fanbase for Whedon and Firefly. Reviews from the likes of Ebert (and even from The Guardian?s resident misery guts Peter Bradshaw) do intrigue me however.

That's funny... I used to work with Jeff Kleist a lot on some conventions I was a part of back in college.

 

I think he's still banned from HTF.

 

I will concur that Season 5 should've been the end of Buffy. A more realistic ending surely :)

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..and yes contrary to Kelley's hate of all things Whedon it is a good action film even for the non-Whedon devotees IMHO.

Believe me I like stuff with space ships and wanted to like Firefly/Serenity. I don't hate everything he's done, I like the Buffy movie.

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That's funny... I used to work with Jeff Kleist a lot on some conventions I was a part of back in college.

 

I think he's still banned from HTF.

 

I?ve not been in contact with him in years - not since I reconciled with him privately after my public outburst on this forum after he made some silly and inaccurate comments about a friend of mine on the HTF. Were anyone needed to turn someone onto Whedon?s stuff I guess Jeff is the fella to turn to however? Romier actually did a lot to get me watching Buffy as well.

 

What did he get banned on the HTF for?

 

I like the Buffy movie.

 

Well that settles it then. I can?t take any opinion of yours seriously.

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Believe me I like stuff with space ships and wanted to like Firefly/Serenity. I don't hate everything he's done, I like the Buffy movie.
Must not...take bait.

 

Dan, the movie is entertaining on it's own, but I'd recommend watching the Firefly series first. I suspect you won't be annoyed after those 14 episodes, but instead you'll want more.

Edited by Dan B.
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I like the wit in some of the characters, especially Nathan Fillion. Overall a nice ensemble. I watched Serenity before watching Firefly. While I really enjoyed Serenity when I first saw it, the film just doesn't hold up for me as much. I think I was starved for Sci-Fi and it still makes for a decent film. The story just isn't as strong for me.

The idea of the Reavers, psychopathic, yet with the ability to create coordinated attacks and operate sophisticated technology just took away anything menacing about them.

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I’ve nothing against Whedon. Jeff Kleist from the HTF (now of Digital Bits fame I noticed) pretty much made me a fan of Buffy and I certainly liked more about that series than I disliked - and don’t doubt that much of the problem I have with the latter two seasons were down to a rush to finish it off before Whedon might have wanted, and even pre-Buffy I’d liked some of the touch up work he did on various screenplays.

 

The thing is I’ve not really followed his work post-Buffy, but was just curious if he’d progressed as a writer and wondered how much of Serenity’s love was down to the internet fanbase for Whedon and Firefly. Reviews from the likes of Ebert (and even from The Guardian’s resident misery guts Peter Bradshaw) do intrigue me however.

 

I would not worry about Serenity and Firefly having the problem of Buffy for going on too long. If anything the shortness of the series makes one ache for more stories about these characters.

 

At least the movie brings some closure. And Nathan Filion is still almost criminally under recognized. BTW I enjoyed Serenity far more than another high profile SF movie that was released in the same year.

 

Definitely recommend watching the series first then the movie.

 

FYI Amazon Canada has the series for $30 on BluRay.

Edited by OldDarth
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I would not worry about Serenity and Firefly having the problem of Buffy for going on too long. If anything the shortness of the series makes one ache for more stories about these characters.

 

At least the movie brings some closure. And Nathan Filion is still almost criminally under recognized. BTW I enjoyed Serenity far more than another high profile SF movie that was released in the same year.

 

Definitely recommend watching the series first then the movie.

 

Would you believe that after all this discussion Serenity is actually on TV here later tonight? I watch so little TV I rarely bother to check the listings so it was purely by coincidence that I should find it is being shown. Obviously I shall watch it and see what I think.

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Buffy should have ended at Season 5. I don't dislike 6 entirely but season 7 was atrocious. It's ok though, Buffy helped to get Angel up and running which, in its prime, was the better of the two shows. The final episode of Angel is still one of my favorite series finales I've seen on television.

 

 

I'm with Romier on this. Angel > Buffy. Especially late-show buffy. Buffy went downhill in the later seasons... then again, by then, hadn't Whedon had mostly run off by that time to work on other stuff? (maybe a Whedon geek can elaborate)?

 

The Angel finale was very good. Angel being my 2nd favorite show (right behind Babylon 5, naturally it's my 2nd favorite finale :D

 

I liked Firefly much more than Buffy. I felt sad there weren't any more episodes after watching it on DVD, even sadder than watching the aborted B5 spinoff, Crusade (both shows suffered annoying studio tinkering)

Edited by GreenMonkey
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How serendipitous! Look forward to your thoughts.

 

Well I can?t say that I loved it. I thought it was OK ? a harmless enough way to pass a couple of hours. It didn?t really have anything I?d not seen before in some fashion but I quite liked the characters, as cliched as they are here, and despite the fact Whedon still doesn?t seem to be able to have reigned in his love of having them mutter so many sarcastic quips along the way (something that really began to annoy me about the characters in Buffy as the series dragged on).

 

Still, the Serenity crew certainly have more charisma in their little fingers than all the characters in something like Revenge of the Sith ? which I still enjoy ? so I can see how in 2005 it was a pleasant and perhaps more rewarding diversion from Star Wars. You can sense the movie?s roots being in television however as nothing struck me as being particularly cinematic about it which was a pity.

 

I get the impression I?d like Firefly more given the fact it is more character driven, but Serenity has left me wanting to walk, not run, in bringing myself to see it. I?ll check it out eventually though.

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then again, by then, hadn't Whedon had mostly run off by that time to work on other stuff? (maybe a Whedon geek can elaborate)?
Joss had three series on the air at once: season 7 of Buffy, season 4 of Angel, and Firefly.

 

Joss was focused purely on Firefly. The reins to Buffy had been handed over to Marti Noxon. Angel was a pretty smooth sailin' ship.

 

Noxon ravaged everything worthwhile about Buffy, turning the character into an unlikeable shrew, working out her own issues with men into seemingly every single story, and sticking to heavy-handed ideas like "magic is like drugs!" while trying to find an excuse to get Spike to shirtless again. I actually thought it rebounded pretty well at the start of season 7, but the "potential" concept was wasted, and the season was saddled with a toothless villain. Even though this season had a bigger budget than any other season, the overwhelming majority of each episode seemed to be set in Buffy's house, especially the living room.

 

The fourth season of Angel just seems like one enormous episode to me. Tightly plotted, wonderfully serialized...I really, really dug it. I would've pointed to it as my favorite season of the show at that point and my favorite of any Whedonverse season minus the unbeatable third season of Buffy.

 

I think Joss was so devastated by Firefly's failure that he didn't put much into any of his other two series except casting as many of that show's displaced actors as he could.

 

So, one year, Joss has three shows on the air. The next, he has one. I hated a lot of the fifth season of Angel, but I do agree that it ended on a very, very strong note.

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The fourth season of Angel just seems like one enormous episode to me. Tightly plotted, wonderfully serialized...I really, really dug it. I would've pointed to it as my favorite season of the show at that point and my favorite of any Whedonverse season minus the unbeatable third season of Buffy.

I'd agree with praise of Season 4's plotting and serialized nature. I don't agree on it being my favorite season though due to my dislike of the Jasmine storyline and how it played out. I think Season 3 is the strongest season of the show. Holtz was just a fantastic villain and I thought the writers did a great juggling act in moving the storyline despite having to deal with the likes of Darla, Holtz and keeping Wolfram and Hart relevant.

 

Also, the latter half of Season 5 ranks pretty high up with me specifically because they got back to that serialized plotting you mentioned. The first half? Decent but unbearable thanks to the writers trying to make the show more accessible with monster of the week type crap. I was suprised they were able to tie everything up so nicely for the final half considering what a mess the first half was.

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My favorite season of Buffy was Season 3. Just love the character of The Mayor... he constantly was hilarious.

 

Season 5 comes in a close second... I was a real fan of that finale. Especially the final shot, lol.

 

I'm still waiting for the Ripper TV series, damnit!

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I'd agree with praise of Season 4's plotting and serialized nature. I don't agree on it being my favorite season though
Oh, I'm right there with you. That's why I wrote "at that point" -- I didn't think quite as much of that season the second time through. I'd also give season 3 the nod as Angel's best.
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I'd agree with praise of Season 4's plotting and serialized nature. I don't agree on it being my favorite season though due to my dislike of the Jasmine storyline and how it played out. I think Season 3 is the strongest season of the show. Holtz was just a fantastic villain and I thought the writers did a great juggling act in moving the storyline despite having to deal with the likes of Darla, Holtz and keeping Wolfram and Hart relevant.

 

Also, the latter half of Season 5 ranks pretty high up with me specifically because they got back to that serialized plotting you mentioned. The first half? Decent but unbearable thanks to the writers trying to make the show more accessible with monster of the week type crap. I was suprised they were able to tie everything up so nicely for the final half considering what a mess the first half was.

 

Yup, I liked 2,3 and 4 better. But 5 had that hilariously silly puppet episode! :lol

 

Anyway we've turned this into a Whedon discussion thread now :o

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I generally hate episodic television. Most are painfully designed to appeal to such a wide audience that they come across as disgustingly generic. I have never seen an episode of Buffy and had never heard of Whedon until I caught a couple episodes of Firefly on HDNet. The man just writes really entertaining dialog. He does an impressive job of finding a theme, a voice for a character and remaining true to that to the bitter end. Serenity is outstanding and hopefully not the end for this concept.

 

As much as I dislike episodic TV I hate musicals even more. But Dr. Horrible is smart and carries the same Whedon-dialog style into the musical genre. The man got me to watch (and enjoy) a musical so he deserves credit for that.

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. I have never seen an episode of Buffy

It's worth checking out Camp if you enjoy Whedon's work (along with Angel as mentioned) but I'll warn you beforehand that it's one of the most uneven shows out there. I love Buffy which says a lot about the highs of the show. It's just that when it is good, it's SOOOO DAMNED good but when it's bad? Oh boy it's pretty rotten.

 

As much as I dislike episodic TV I hate musicals even more. But Dr. Horrible is smart and carries the same Whedon-dialog style into the musical genre. The man got me to watch (and enjoy) a musical so he deserves credit for that.

I just ordered the Dr. Horrible DVD from Amazon yesterday. Great, great work Dr. Horrible. Considering how much you enjoyed Horrible (and if you do look into Buffy), you'll absolutely dig "Once More With Feeling" when you get to Season 6. I listen to the soundtrack to that episode often.:)

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I've never watched Buffy or Angel even though I kept hearing good things about them, and know people that LOVED them... but nothing from what I saw really appealed to me. A guy I worked with convinced me to watch Firefly despite my misgivings, and I was hooked from the first episode. I was really sad when I got to the end.

 

I liked Serenity quite a bit, but really don't see how someone who didn't watch the show would really get it. There isn't much introduction to the characters and you don't really understand what they're up against for the most part and I think that's one of the most important things in the show.

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I liked Serenity quite a bit, but really don't see how someone who didn't watch the show would really get it.

 

I've never seen an episode of Firefly (like iCamp I typically hate episodic TV for the reasons he posted) but I did see Serenity and enjoyed it quite a bit for what its worth. I didn't feel like I was missing out on anything not knowing more about the characters. One of these days (especially if Netflix offers it for instant streaming) I'll bump Firefly up in my netflix queue and give it a go.

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I've never seen an episode of Firefly (like iCamp I typically hate episodic TV for the reasons he posted) but I did see Serenity and enjoyed it quite a bit for what its worth. I didn't feel like I was missing out on anything not knowing more about the characters.

 

It was much the same for me. I accepted knowing the TV series would give me a better feel for the characters, but nevertheless it was the set up of Serenity’s story that I found rather mundane and I’m not convinced having a knowledge of Firefly will change my opinion of that. Always a pleasure to see Chiwetel Ejiofor on screen though…

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