Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Complete Series
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Most serious fans of BUFFY THE VAMPIRE already own all of the individual sets that make up this DVD collection, so I thought I would address this review to those who own none of them and will make up the primary target for this set and focus on two questions. First, how does this set differ from the individual season collections? The answer is that they are identical. This set does not represent a new product in any way, but merely collects all of the seasons in a new, low price. If you don't own any of the individual seasons, this is an absolutely ideal way to discover the Buffyverse. Second (and for me this is the fun part), what's this Buffy chick all about?

What sets BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER apart from most other shows, apart from the individual brilliant scripts that graced most of the episodes, is that the show over the course of seven seasons tells a story. What the casual viewer of the show could easily miss is the semi-tragic themes underlying the series: young, happy cheerleader and inevitable prom queen is pulled away by destiny from the life she loves to unwillingly undertake the burden of being her generation's Chosen One: a super-empowered heroine to fight against the powers of darkness. This is a responsibility she has neither sought nor desired, and one of the persistent themes of the show is that destiny basically dealt Buffy a nasty set of cards. Sure, she has super strength and agility and recuperative powers, but she also knows how she became The Slayer: someone else died. For one becomes the Slayer only by the death of another Slayer, which calls attention to the fact that she, too, is destined to die to make way for another Slayer. As she puts it in one episode, "Every slayer comes with an expiration date." She goes from a carefree, happy young girl to someone who wonders if she will make it to the age of 25.

Ultimately, however, the show isn't about a girl with super powers, but about taking responsibility for one's life, for accepting the cards that life has dealt one and making the most of that. Over the course of seven seasons all of the major characters struggle with this precise issue. All of them continually have to face up to the demands of the moral, and what is unusual for a genre show, they all have to work hard to be better people. More than about fighting vampires, the show is ultimately about the fighting of one's inner demons, with the external monsters being mere metaphors for that which lies within. As a result, all of the major characters changed dramatically over the course of seven seasons.

A second great theme of the show is that of community. The show actually contains a bit of a lie in the famous opening words that introduced the show in the first season: it says that unto each generation a Slayer is born and that SHE ALONE possesses the strength to fight the vampires and demons. Only, that isn't at all the case on the show. In fact, Buffy becomes less, not more, effective when she becomes a loner. As Spike, an evil vampire who has killed two Slayers in the past, said at the beginning of Season Two: "A Slayer with family and friends. That sure as hell wasn't in the brochure." And it isn't! Says so right at the beginning of the show. The Intro should read "She and her extensive support network" will fight the demons. And showing that no one understands this better than Spike, in Season Four he attempts to help a demon destroy the Slayer by sowing discord among the Scoobies, as the demon fighting buddies referred to themselves (this was before Sarah Michelle Gellar's unfortunate forays into the SCOOBY DOO movies). He fails when the four key members respond by forging a stronger bond than ever.

Over the seven seasons, Buffy struggles constantly against her destiny, initially fighting and resisting it, gradually accepting it, frequently resenting it, and eventually embracing it before the magnificent resolution in the final episode. While there is always only one Slayer (though on Buffy, there are two, but that is a different though very interesting story), there are always many potential Slayers. In the final episode of the series, Buffy realizes how they can make all the potential Slayers into actual Slayers, and after they do so they are able to defeat the baddies and save the world from evil, again. In literally the last five seconds of the series, Faith, the other Slayer, asks Buffy what she's going to do now that she's no longer the only Slayer. In a beautiful resolution of the central tragedy in the series, a blissful, contented, expectant smile breaks out over Buffy's face. Her life has been given back to her. The expiration date has been repealed.

Those who have only occasionally dipped into the show will not be able to appreciate how brilliantly written the show is. It is as if every individual writer knew every other line ever written in the show, and the result is a self-consciousness in the series that is highly unusual for TV. At the very end of Season Six, for instance, Buffy's best friend Willow utters the words, "Bored now," which is not merely a reference to something she said in Season Three, but brilliantly explains where her character is at that point in the show. The scripts are, in my opinion, simply the best TV has ever seen. They are dramatic, they are believable (astonishing in a show about vampires), they are profoundly emotional, and they are funny. In fact, the show really did manage to be several things at once. I think this ability to stride several fences is one of the reasons why BUFFY, though easily the finest show on television for most of its run, never won or even received an Emmy nomination for Best Show. Should it have been nominated as Best Drama or Best Comedy? (The complete neglect by the extraordinarily conservative Emmys of BUFFY has inspired Salon to create a new TV award, the Buffy, for the most unjustly neglected show on TV, with THE WIRE as the first recipient.)

The writing really was the key. I don't want to imply that other things weren't done as well. Though not one of the great casts in TV history, all of the actors did a great job and there were some truly memorable characters, from Buffy to Willow, Xander, Spike, Giles, Cordy, Anya, and Angel (who went on to star in his own spin off). The sets were always first rate and it was one of the few shows on TV to have its own utterly unique look, merely from the lighting and camerawork. Speaking of camerawork, few TV shows have ever taken so much care with the way scenes were shot. There was even their own unique blend of camp. For instance, fighting vampires is tough work, but Buffy inevitably went on patrol wearing some incredibly stylish outfits. My favorite is when she goes to the graveyard in Season Six wearing an ankle length white cashmere duster. I'm sure anyone about to engage in physical combat would decide to wear such an expensive and delicate item. But as good as all of these elements were, it all came in the end back to the writing. The show was brilliantly written on multiple levels. Many of the episodes were astonishingly good, but within them the individual lines were simply astonishing. I have many shows that I love, but in the history of television there are only two that contains dozens of lines that I can recall with ease: MONTY PYTHON and BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER. But apart from the individual episodes and the huge panoply of memorable lines, the seasons were almost always well conceived and executed. And even when individual seasons contained flaws in their, such as Seasons 4 and 7, these were more than made up for by the way they all fit into a larger story.

In the end, no series that I know of had a better story to tell than BUFFY. As much as I loved THE X-FILES, the series was always better on the individual episode level than it was as a whole. Lone episodes of THE X-FILES are as good as any in the history of TV, but the deep back story by the end of the series ended up being more than a little muddled and incomplete. When BUFFY ended, there was a single brilliant and marvelously develop tale of a young girl who was forced to give up her life for the greater good, but who in the end managed to get her life back again. I honestly believe that BUFFY will be the gold standard for television shows in the future. It has raised the bar for what can be done and should be done on television, so in the end Buffy might not have saved the world from the powers of evil; she just might have saved television as well.
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on September 30, 2006
The original idea for BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER came to creator Joss Whedon when he was thinking about classic horror films. He noticed that films constantly included clueless blonde victims who wandered into an alley at night and were swiftly killed by whatever evil nasty was lurking there. If the blonde wasn't killed, she always needed a well-muscled male hero to save her. Whedon thought it would be far more interesting if the blonde went into the alley, but wasn't killed. Instead, she would soundly kick the evil nasty's [...]. Whedon wrote a film based around this concept. The clueless girl became a blonde, Southern Californian high schooler who also happened to be the one girl in all the world with the strength and skill to hunt and kill vampires. The idea was quirky enough to get picked up and a film was made. However, much meddling on the part of the director and the studio turned the film into a hoaky cheesefest that was nothing like Whedon's original vision. The film flopped at the box office and Whedon thought that was the end of the road for his quirky little idea.

However, there was something about the movie that caught the attention of the president of the tiny WB network. The network had so far only found success with the overly-sentimental family drama 7th HEAVEN and was more willing to take a chance on something unusual than the four major networks were. Gail Berman called Whedon and asked that he revitalize and rework the idea for television. After seeing the unaired pilot he had made to shop around the idea to networks, she agreed to a 12 episode order. And with that, one of the greatest television shows ever created was born.

The TV version of BUFFY is very different from the film version. He kept some of the basic plot elements of the film around as canon for the show (chief among, the fact that Buffy burned down the gym of her high school in Los Angeles) but has always stated that, for the sake of the show, the film does not exist. Instead, we pick up in the two-part pilot episode with Buffy Summers, played by the fantastic Sarah Michelle Gellar, moving to Sunnydale, California with her mother. Her parents have divorced and Buffy has been kicked out of her high school because of the aforementioned fire. It is the middle of her sophomore year of high school and Buffy has already been called as the next Vampire Slayer in an ancient line of female warriors blessed and cursed with all the skills required for hunting and killing vampires, and other demons. However, Buffy is so upset about the negative effect slaying has had on her life, that she decides to give it up.

It is only when she is confronted with the truths about her new town that Buffy gets back into the game as a Slayer. Sunnydale rests on a "Hellmouth"- a literal gateway to other, nastier dimenstions, and for this reason it is a center of mystical energy which draws all sorts of evil beings to it. For this reason, there is a seemingly endless supply of demons and ghouls for Buffy to fight. However, she won't be doing it along, because she quickly makes friends with a couple of outsiders (brainy Willow and snarky Xander) and meets her new Watcher, Rupert Giles, who has the task of training and leading her in her duties as the Slayer. Also in the mix right at the beginning are the acid-tongued and popular Cordelia and the mysterious Angel.

That's just the basic opening premise for BUFFY. It is a show that, on the surface, is about a rag-tag group of outsiders who must band together to fight forces of evil we can't even imagine. However, the things that made BUFFY a true delight are its sense of humor and its heart. The show has its own sound, based around the way that Joss Whedon writes, and "Buffyspeak" became instantly recognizable as a blend of snarky sarcasm, witty pop culture references and unexpected turns of phrase. The show is smart and fast, which allows the campier elements to be fun and not hoky and the darker elements to feel unique. Along with comedy, this horror show also mixes in romance and drama leading to some truly poignant and heartbreaking moments between the richly drawn cast of characters. The series darkened as it progressed, with bigger evils to face and less and less hope for a "normal life" for our heroine Buffy, but it always remained a story about friendship and family.

All seven seasons of this show are phenomenal. Each episode crackles with energy, smart writing and cast chemistry and the mythology of the show deepens and matures as BUFFY ages. Villains are allowed to be multi-faceted and three-dimensional (witness the sunshiny exterior of the brilliant evil Mayor of season three and the twisted romance between season two vampires Spike and Drusilla). The main cast expands to include a wonderful array of characters that include a laconic werewolf guitarist (played perfectly by Seth Green) and a straight-forward and hilarious ex-Vengeance Demon. However, the core four Scooby Gang members of Buffy, WIllow, Xander and Giles always remain the focus as they move through the perils of Sunnydale and real life together. BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER is hilarious, eye-opening, genre-bending, heart-breaking, intelligent, romantic, amazing television and if you've never seen it before you are in for a glorious treat. Whatever you've heard about this show, in actuality it is worse and its better and it is truly one of the most amazing things to ever grace the television screen.
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HALL OF FAMEon November 20, 2005
My premise here is that by the time all seven seasons of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" were released on DVD the vast majority of fans who were inclined to do so had gone out and bought all seven sets. I am sure there are a few frugal fans who were waiting for something along the lines of "The Chosen Collection," but they would be relatively aware (something akin to being a vampire with a soul). Of course I had all of the episodes of "BtVS" (and "Angel") on video tape (even made up my own special boxes with cover art and episode synopses on the back) before I went out and bought all of the DVD sets, but I had occasion to buy "The Chosen Collection" as well.

That is because my oldest daughter is away at college and she was not allowed to take my "BtVS" DVD sets with her. I had purchased the first season for all three of my kids (two are away at college so it is not like they are all in one place) and was intending to eventually get them the other six but "The Chosen Collection" is too good of a deal to pass up and not just because of the price. This one big red and white box takes up a lot less space (a bit more than a third). That is because when you open it up inside you will find wallet-like cases for each of the seven seasons. So it seemed an appropriate gift for someone turning 21 who writes about Buffy whenever possible in her college classes.

I have covered each of the seven season of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" elsewhere, so here I want to talk about the "EXCLUSIVE, NEVER-BEFORE-SEEN EXTRAS" included on the 40th DVD in "The Chosen Collection" (Yes, the other 39 discs are the same produced for the individual series sets):

"Back to the Hellmouth: A Conversation with Creators and Cast" is a casual 54-minute conversation amidst candles and old books with Whedon, Marti Noxon, Doug Petrie, Nicholas Brendon, Emma Caulfield, Danny Strong, David Fury, Jane Espenson, Charisma Carpenter, Drew Z. Greenberg. Topics covered include first Buffy moments (for Joss it all goes back to a scene in Invisible Girl), favorite Buffy moment, and assorted behind the scenes stories, all with choice inserts from episodes (e.g., Nick in a Speedo) and piano music. Noxon does a good job of getting off topic to interesting things (e.g., Joss writing the musical during his down time), but the fact that writers talk more than actors is hardly surprising. This is the best extra, what with finding out how Fury got Giles fired ends up getting Allyson Hannigan married and all, plus how being a mid-season replacement allowed Whedon to make the first twelve episodes before their aired so that the WB was denied the opportunity to tinker with the show. There is enough new stuff here for those who do not pick up this set to make friends with someone who has to check this out at least once.

"Buffy Cast and Crew: Favorite Episodes" is short and to the point, although the choices are basically made by those listed above with a few other additions. However, if you are waiting for Sarah Michelle Gellar to weigh in on any of these featurettes you will be totally disappointed. Hannigan only popped up once, which is not enough for me and I suspect many others as well, but cast members Amber Benson and Danny Strong both speak well for the series and David Greenwalt shows up as a key talking head as well.

"Buffy: An Unlikely Role Model" begins with Joss Whedon's explicit intention of creating a role model and has the cast and crew talking about why it actually worked (personal actions are key) without getting into ivory tower explanations.

"Breaking Barriers: It's Not a Chick Fight Thing" focuses on Buffy stunt double Sophia Crawford and Stunt Coordinator Jeff Pruitt and details how she got the gig (she had good kinetics according to Joss) and what they tried to do in terms of developing Buffy's martial arts fighting style, with some of Crawford's best fights (e.g., "Anne") caught by behind the scenes cameras. So you really get to see familiar things in a new way with this one.

"Love Bites: Relationships in the Buffyverse" looks at most of the major romantic entanglements as things went from metaphorical sex to the real thing for Buffy and her friends. Vampires are always rich in veiled sexuality and the show combined that with the imperative that teenagers need to be punished for sex (see "Friday the 13th," et al.). There are a few insightful comments from a few actors and writers on this featurette.

"Evil Fiends" is a brief look at not so much the individual Big Bads but rather at the philosophy on the show of turning teenage problems into tangible monsters. Nothing really new here and it is so short it hardly seemed worth including and ends the bonus disc on a weak note.

But then I am hardly arguing that this one disc justifies picking up this set if you already have the complete "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," because it does not. I do think it is an ideal present to stop family and friends from always want to borrow your sets, although I can also see where you might decide to buy this one for yourself and let the kiddies (or whoever) take your old ones (I kept those but made sure I got to see the bonus disc, twice, before she takes it back to college). Of course, now the next generation of fans are going to want the "The Angel Collection."
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on April 25, 2006
First, let me start off by stating the obvious, this is a beautiful, must-have set, even for the casual Buffy fan. The price may be a little eye-opening (and wallet-busting), but this collection is well worth the price, with many special features and just for the ability to watch the show whenever you want.

As far as the show itself, there is not much to be said. BtVS is one of the best shows ever on the small screen. Like I mentioned, the set it is well worth the price.

The box is about the size of a child's shoe box, with a little bit more width. From the customer-shared pictures, you can see the DVD cases, which are slightly fragile. The bonus DVD comes in those flimsy cardboard CD holders (as seen in the pictures).

One other thing I would like to mention. I don't know if anyone else had a problem with this, but while watching some of the episodes, it seems like a couple of frames were missing; making it look like some parts of the episodes skipped ever so slighty for a second. I tried it on three different DVD players and my PC, and it did this on each one. It's nothing really major, but it was a little bothersome. I have not seen it mentioned anywhere with anyone having a similar problem, so I thought I would mention it. One other thing, some of the DVDs are very hard to get out of their plastic holders. One I had to pry out with a small knife. It almost felt like the DVD was going to crack when trying to pull them out.

Lastly, I would advise any interested buyer to choose where you buy it from wisely. My set arrived in perfect condition, but just from looking at the box and its contents, you can see how it can be easily damaged. Several other reviewers have mentioned how their sets have arrived in damaged condition, and it is easy to see how it can be damaged if the set is not packaged right. I would recommend to anyone who buys this, to contact the seller BEFORE you purchase and inquire how they plan to package this item. This item MUST be packaged tightly, with bubble cushioning and/or packing paper filling any empty space in the box COMPLETELY. If it is not, chances are it will arrived damaged.
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on November 16, 2004
A friend got me hooked on Buffy earlier this year by loaning me her season-by-season sets (seasons 1-6, still waiting for 7). I was skeptical, and season 1 didn't do much to move me--clever dialogue, yeah, but the monster-of-the-week format didn't seem like anything special. But by the third episode of Season 2, I was hooked. I was watching two and three episodes of Buffy a night, watching the characters grow and change in fast-forward.

There are websites that dissect the occasional flaws and inconsistencies of fact, but what I was amazed at was how consistent it was at heart. The characters change and grow, they have good weeks and bad, but they all grow in ways consistent with their characters as we first meet them.

And we come to care about them, deeply--to feel for their pains and losses, to grow frustrated with their weaknesses and blind spots. Yes, the series is full of humor and adventure and scary demons, but ultimately, it is full of these rich and complex characters, their trials, their fears, the dilemmas--big and small--that they must wrestle, and the internal demons they must face.

The first person to review this box says that "this set does not represent a new product in any way, but merely collects all of the seasons in a new, low price." I'm hoping that that's not precisely the case. Yes, the discs will hold precisely the content of the seven individual season collections. however, while there is no picture for this collection as I write this, on Amazon's site in the UK, there are pictures of a nice single vertical box with an embossed seal on the outside and each season in its own CD-sized package. The spines of the season packages stack up to assemble an image of Buffy. While the UK package is a limited edition (10,000 copies), I'm hoping that the US packaging for this complete collection will be equally unique and attractive (and compact). [UPDATE: Unfortunately, this was not the case. I bought this set, and I'm not at all disappointed by the quality of the discs or the series, but I really would have preferred a more compact and unified package for the entire series, and I think Fox Video is being quite stupid by offering that delicious looking package to just 10,000 Brits and not to American fans.]
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on September 27, 2005
I keep running into people who want the UK version cause it's widescreen. Guys, it's very simple - not always widesceen is better. At Buffy - Joss wanted us to see it in Full screen - not widescreen - it's very simple. The widescreen contains more elements that was not intended to be seen !

Here is a note from JOSS about it:

No doubt you are looking over this scrumptious BUFFY package and exclaiming "No @#$%ing letterboxing ? Whutzat ? GYPPED !" Possibly you are breaking things. Please calm down. The fabulous episodes of BUFFY (and that one crappy one, sorry about that, seemed really cool when we wrote it...) were not shot in a widescreen format. They were shot in the TV 4 by 3 ratio. Now I'm a letterbox fanatic, but not just because I crave th' wide. I want to see the whole screen, as framed by the director. The BUFFY's I (and others) shot were framed for traditional TVs. Adding space to the sides simply for the sake of trying to look more cinematic would betray the very exact mise-en-scene I was trying to create. I am a purist, and this is the purest way to watch BUFFY. I have resisted the effort to letterbox BUFFY from the start and always will, because that is not the show we shot. This is. So enjoy ! Stop breaking things. You're getting the best presentation of -- let's face it -- the best Television Drama since MATCHGAME '79. Bye for now !

Sincerely,

Joss Whedon

p.s.

To the people who got hurt by the Double Dip - get over it ! almost any Tv Show or movie that come out on DVD gets double dipped today ! that's life - the studios want to make more money. I really don't know what you want from Joss. would you prefer that the 7 seasons would not be available until now?
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on October 19, 2005
I highly recommend this show. The first three seasons are some of the funniest TV I've ever seen, the Spike growth/change story arc over seasons 4-7 is one of the most interesting and compelling personal stories told on television. The show goes through some impressive character development lines, etc. Amazon's pricing practices, however, add some insane drama of their own.

This thing was being sold for about $130 for a couple of months. Today I finally decided to buy (pre-order) it. I log on.... it's $170. Huh? **Raise** the price as the Holidays approach? The previous seasons 1-7 collection (the 39-disc version) roller-coastered in price on this site as well, varying more than $100 between its highs and lows (and that was before this 40-disc set was introduced). I am personally offended as an Amazon customer that they do this, and although I highly recommend the show, make sure you're not getting ripped off by Amazon on one of their "we feel like raising the price for a month or two" random decisions.
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HALL OF FAMEon December 10, 2005
I have to say that my assumption here here is that by the time all seven seasons of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" were released on DVD the vast majority of fans who were inclined to do so had gone out and bought all seven sets. So while I am sure there were a few frugal fans who were waiting for something along the lines of "The Chosen Collection," but they would be relatively few in number (something akin to being a vampire with a soul). Of course I had all of the episodes of "BtVS" (and "Angel") on video tape (even made up my own special boxes with cover art and episode synopses on the back) before I went out and bought all of the DVD sets, but I had occasion to buy "The Chosen Collection" as well.

That is because my oldest daughter is away at college and she was not allowed to take my "BtVS" DVD sets with her. I had purchased the first season for all three of my kids (two are away at college so it is not like they are all in one place) and was intending to eventually get them the other six but "The Chosen Collection" is too good of a deal to pass up and not just because of the price. This one big red and white box takes up a lot less space (a bit more than a third). That is because when you open it up inside you will find wallet-like cases for each of the seven seasons. So it seemed an appropriate gift for someone turning 21 who writes about Buffy whenever possible in her college classes.

I have covered each of the seven season of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" elsewhere, so here I want to talk about the "EXCLUSIVE, NEVER-BEFORE-SEEN EXTRAS" included on the 40th DVD in "The Chosen Collection" (Yes, the other 39 discs are the same produced for the individual series sets):

"Back to the Hellmouth: A Conversation with Creators and Cast" is a casual 54-minute conversation amidst candles and old books with Whedon, Marti Noxon, Doug Petrie, Nicholas Brendon, Emma Caulfield, Danny Strong, David Fury, Jane Espenson, Charisma Carpenter, Drew Z. Greenberg. Topics covered include first Buffy moments (for Joss it all goes back to a scene in Invisible Girl), favorite Buffy moment, and assorted behind the scenes stories, all with choice inserts from episodes (e.g., Nick in a Speedo) and piano music. Noxon does a good job of getting off topic to interesting things (e.g., Joss writing the musical during his down time), but the fact that writers talk more than actors is hardly surprising. This is the best extra, what with finding out how Fury got Giles fired ends up getting Allyson Hannigan married and all, plus how being a mid-season replacement allowed Whedon to make the first twelve episodes before their aired so that the WB was denied the opportunity to tinker with the show. There is enough new stuff here for those who do not pick up this set to make friends with someone who has to check this out at least once.

"Buffy Cast and Crew: Favorite Episodes" is short and to the point, although the choices are basically made by those listed above with a few other additions. However, if you are waiting for Sarah Michelle Gellar to weigh in on any of these featurettes you will be totally disappointed. Hannigan only popped up once, which is not enough for me and I suspect many others as well, but cast members Amber Benson and Danny Strong both speak well for the series and David Greenwalt shows up as a key talking head as well.

"Buffy: An Unlikely Role Model" begins with Joss Whedon's explicit intention of creating a role model and has the cast and crew talking about why it actually worked (personal actions are key) without getting into ivory tower explanations.

"Breaking Barriers: It's Not a Chick Fight Thing" focuses on Buffy stunt double Sophia Crawford and Stunt Coordinator Jeff Pruitt and details how she got the gig (she had good kinetics according to Joss) and what they tried to do in terms of developing Buffy's martial arts fighting style, with some of Crawford's best fights (e.g., "Anne") caught by behind the scenes cameras. So you really get to see familiar things in a new way with this one.

"Love Bites: Relationships in the Buffyverse" looks at most of the major romantic entanglements as things went from metaphorical sex to the real thing for Buffy and her friends. Vampires are always rich in veiled sexuality and the show combined that with the imperative that teenagers need to be punished for sex (see "Friday the 13th," et al.). There are a few insightful comments from a few actors and writers on this featurette.

"Evil Fiends" is a brief look at not so much the individual Big Bads but rather at the philosophy on the show of turning teenage problems into tangible monsters. Nothing really new here and it is so short it hardly seemed worth including and ends the bonus disc on a weak note.

But then I am hardly arguing that this one disc justifies picking up this set if you already have the complete "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," because it does not. I do think it is an ideal present to stop family and friends from always want to borrow your sets, although I can also see where you might decide to buy this one for yourself and let the kiddies (or whoever) take your old ones (I kept those but made sure I got to see the bonus disc, twice, before she takes it back to college). Of course, now the next generation of fans are going to want the "The Angel Collection."
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on June 1, 2006
A girl named Buffy who slays vampires.

Seemingly, the premise of a campy, forgettable, girls-fights-monsters horror series.

Look closer, however, and what you'll find is something that is so much more: a complex, compelling, and intriguing tail of love, loss, life, redemption, and growing up.

Buffy Summers begins as a 16-year-old high school cheerleader: a perky, blonde, `popular girl'. But there is much more to Buffy's story than her new classmates first learn. After her parents divorce, Buffy was booted from her old L.A high school, and is now forced to move to the small town of Sunnydale with her mother, Joyce.

What else don't they know? Buffy is the chosen one - the only girl in the entire world who has the strength and skill to fight against the vampires, and the forces of darkness.

This is where the first season picks up, as Buffy struggles to start a new life, while keeping her calling as the slayer a secret from those around her. As her new life begins, Buffy believes she can put her slaying days behind her and move on to be a normal teenager.

But Buffy cannot escape her destiny, and is soon pulled back into the world of `slayage'. After being ditched by the Sunnydale High in-crowd, Buffy falls in with the loners. Eventually, her new friends Willow and Xander - along with her Watcher, Giles - become sidekicks in Buffy's battle against evil.

Over the years, Buffy became a widely praised critical favorite, gaining both Emmy and Golden Globe nominations. The cast was always stellar (especially Sarah Michelle Gellar, as Buffy), and the writers were beyond phenomenal. Creator Joss Whedon had launched a show that would come to redefine what series television should be.

With each progressing season the momentum built, and each year the show reinvented itself. As Buffy graduated from High School, to University, to working-class, to adulthood, fans got something they could never have imaged - a world where characters and stories were meaningful, complex, real, and relatable.

Buffy was a smash.

Season 1: Buffy must readjusts to life as the slayer, while also trying to cope with an extremely unsatisfying home life, and the many trials of High School. As the Master - an especially nefarious vampire - begins his plan of ascendance from hell, Buffy and the gang must questions their own relationships, standings, and for Buffy... her own mortality.

Standout episodes: "Angel" & "Prophecy Girl

Season 2: As the forbidden love story of Buffy and Angel (Slayer and vampire) begins to unfold, the series begins to hit its stride. Characters are finding love, getting into relationships, and breaking old bonds. But as Buffy and Angel consummate their love, the consequences effect all of Buffy loved ones... especially her watcher...

Standout episodes: "Passion" & "Beginning - Pt. 1&2"

Season 3: After running away at the end of last season, Buffy returns to Sunnydale for one of the shows strongest years. Willow and Xander can no longer hide their affection for one another, especially from Cordelia and Oz, and Buffy is determined to make things right with a newly returned Angel. But the season's best aspect is that of the new slayer, Faith (long story). Eliza Dushku takes the character through a rollcoster of ups and downs, ultimately leading to an alliance with the corrupt Mayor of Sunnydale, who has a deadly plan for Buffy's graduation...

Standout episodes: "Bad Girls" & "Earshot"

Season 4: As Buffy, Willow, and Oz begin University life, Xander chooses to join the work force in a barrage short-lived minimum-wage jobs, forcing him to question what exactly he is going to do with his life. But Xander isn't the only one questioning himself in this season of major change; Buffy struggles in her relationship with Riley, and as Oz departs, Willow realizes she has found what she's always been looking for - in a classmate, named Tara. As the group grows apart, and Giles becomes a less-seen presence in their lives, Spike unites with a dangerous military group that has deadly plans for Buffy and Riley...

Standout episodes: "Hush" & "Restless"

Season 5: When doctors discover a tumor in Joyce's brain, and Buffy discovers the existence of a never-before-seen sister, the stage is set for one of the most dramatic and exciting seasons yet. Willow and Tara become closer, as do Xander and Anya, and Buffy drifts away from the group when responsibilities with her mother and sister leave Riley out in the cold. The season's highlight is a somber, and devastating episode entitled "The Body" in which Buffy discovers the lifeless body of her mother.

Standout episodes: "The Body" & "The Gift"

Season 6: After being pulled out of heaven by her friends, Buffy feels as though she's been brought into hell. As Xander and Anya near their wedding date, both neglect to mention their fears and doubts. Tara leaves Willow just as her addiction worsens, and Giles heads back to England. It's a gloomy, depressing, and very emotional season, tackling subjects such as addiction, murder, rape, neglect, and theft. Buffy herself is nearly raped, after ending a violent and explicit affair with Spike. But by the end of the season, after all is said and done, and nearly every character has been demolished, it's the death of a close friend that sends Willow over the deep end, and - in the words of Xander - "Apocalyptically crazy"...

Standout episodes: "Once more, with feeling" & "Seeing Red"

Season 7: Buffy begins work as a counselor to students at the newly rebuilt Sunnydale High - just as Dawn begins her stay there. Willow undergoes rehab in England, and eventually returns to Buffy's house, just as Anya and Xander try to mend their broken relationship. But the end is near, and the first evil makes its way to Sunnydale, with roots just beneath the school. Potential slayers around the world are being killed off, and Giles soon gathers the rest to Sunnydale to be trained by Buffy. Characters both new and old gather with the core group and band together to take one last stand, and go back to where it all began - The Hellmouth...

Standout episodes: "Conversations With Dead People" & "Lies My Parents Told Me"

"Buffy The Vampire Slayer" will without a doubt go down in the books as one of - if not THE - most inventive, hilarious, heart wrenching and kick ass shows in television history.

Long live the slayers.
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on August 4, 2005
Great series.

BUT DON'T BUY THIS RELEASE! The entire series is being released November 15 for only 199! You'll get the previously released 7 seasons of Buffy (39 discs), plus a special bonus disc containing a brand new documentary featuring Joss Whedon. Each box will be individually numbered, and will contain a signed letter from Joss Whedon, and a comprehensive book filled with episode listings and memorable Buffy quotes.

Do yourself a favor. Don't buy this. Just wait. You'll be glad you did.
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