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November 22, 2010

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Whedon-less Buffy Re-boot Earns Nearly as Much Nerd Hate as Star Wars Prequels

Posted by on Nov 22, 2010

I thought the nerd anger elicited by Episodes 1-3 was something unique in history.  I thought the outcry over Lucas’ return to the beloved world of Star Wars was destined to be unrivaled by the disgust expressed over any other fanboy/girl event that might come after.  I was wrong.  As I write this, the terms #Joss and #Whedon are trending topics on Twitter, and it ain’t because Whedonite prayers have been answered and Firefly is being brought back to the small screen.  It’s because Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which originally started as a movie written by Whedon, is getting the re-make treatment – and Whedon is in no way involved.

Get a taste of the public protest and more info on the Buffy project after the jump.

So here are the details, thanks to the MTV Movies Blog and E! Online: Warner Bros. has green-lit a re-boot of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  However, what they are re-booting is not the TV series, but rather the 1992 film, written by Whedon and directed by Fran Kuzui, that starred Kristy Swanson as the sexy, strong, and smart main character – who kills vampires.  Whit Anderson wrote the new script, and pitched it to Charles Roven, the producer who then helped green-light the film.

And now the question you’re all probably asking: “Can’t Joss stop this?”  The answer comes straight from the fanatically loved horse’s mouth, thanks again to E! Online: “There is no legal grounds for doing anything other than sighing audibly,” Whedon explained in an email reaction to the news of the re-boot.  His whole response is classy, hilarious, and intelligent – pretty much exactly what you would expect of the guy at this point.  He makes it pretty clear that he is saddened, shocked, and just a wee bit ticked off about someone stealing his baby.  Although, since he did work on this property and turn it into a huge success both critically and financially over a period of 15 YEARS, it would really be more accurate to say someone is stealing his adolescent teenager.  He does offer fans some comfort in his response, reminding them of his scripting of the much-anticipated Avengers movie.

The response on Twitter, as indicated by the trending, has been pretty immediate and overwhelming.  Every last one has been a variant of “Buffy – Joss = FAIL.”  Dark Horse Comics decided to go the glass-half-full route on their Twitter feed, what with them being the publishers putting out all the Buffy and Firefly comics, by saying, “We’re just happy Joss Whedon is a trending-topic.”  Also, nearly every blog I’ve read so far has been pretty clear on their own opinion of the development, and I’ll give you one guess what that opinion is.  If you guessed that they’re optimistic, I’ll give you another guess.

I think it is clear that the injustice of this whole thing, while it can’t be helped, is egregious.  Now the only real question is, will it be good?  And by that I mean what do you all think?  Can Buffy succeed without Joss?