Writer: Faith Erin Hicks
Artist: Yishan Li
Colorist: Rod Espinosa
Cover Artist: Scott Fischer
Genre: Action/Adventure, Horror, Science-Fiction
June 01, 2016
Format: FC, 80 pages; TPB, 6'' x 9''
Age range: 10
For a Slayer, high school is hell!
Buffy the Vampire Slayer is back in classic action in a tale set during her first year at Sunnydale High School! Burdened with the stress of a new school, making new friends, and sleepless nights spent slaying the undead, Buffy becomes the target of a group of nerdy vampires hoping to climb the vampire social ladder.
* Eisner Award–winning author Faith Erin Hicks (The Adventures of Superhero Girl)!
* Set during Season 1 of the television series.
“They’re bringing the angst, the action, and the cool to Buffy the Vampire Slayer!”—Bleeding Cool
Going back to the high school years, Buffy, Willow and Xander are having a typical day at school, being ignored by the popular crowd and struggling through their classes (Well, not Willow). At night they’re in the graveyard hunting vampires and Buffy reminisces of a time when she was as popular as Cordelia Chase. In the meantime, it seems like the vampire world has its own version of “Mean Girls” when a group of unpopular students-turned vampires are declined entrance into a hot night club. The bouncer points out that they were losers in their human lives and that carried on into their vampire life. He tells the very unpopular group that perhaps if they killed the Slayer they’d be considered something worth admiring. Of course there’s always the one unpopular kid who wants revenge and this sets off a quest to kill the Slayer. They almost succeed too because they attack Buffy’s weak spot: Her friendship with Willow and Xander, two very unpopular students.
Buffy, The High School Years: Freaks and Geeks was a fun read for me. This first issue was a bit on the lighter side than what regular readers may be used to but it worked! The story, by Faith Erin Hicks, had such quick dialogue between characters that time passed so quickly and before I knew it I had finished the short adventure. Hicks captured Buffy, Willow, Xander and Giles’ individual personalities perfectly and it was no effort at all to hear their individual voices in my head. What I found really interesting was that the villains were a parallel to Buffy and her friends. They were unpopular themselves but rather than appreciate that they had each other, one of them had to push for her spot in the popular crowd, whereas Buffy, having once been popular, has settled into the unpopular crowd because she now has real friends to stand by her and love her for who she is. Pretty neat message in such a short story.
The artwork, by Yishan Li had a “Saturday Morning Cartoon” feel to it which took me back to those days but at the same time each illustration drew the eye to specific details in each scene. The characters are recognizable but still managed to have a slightly different look than the tv series versions and again the light heartedness of this issue carried over into the illustrations giving it a totally “teenage” feel that I appreciated.
Buffy, The High School Years: Freaks and Geeks had what I remember from the early days of Buffy plus much more. I was not only taken back to those early days for the characters but to my own teenage years which in some cases made me cringe. I look forward to reading more of this incarnation of my favorite group.
Sheep Rating: 4 Nostalgic Sheep