The Buffy Reboot: Make Her A Living Icon
It's interesting to me how Joss wants Buffy to be an icon and wants her to live on after his death, but he wants it to be after his death. And there's the rub when it comes to art and success and fame: you can't control when it strikes, you can't capture creative light in a jar and dole it out in small bits (especially when you've sold your rights to it). You see, Joss isn't a god after all. He's just an incredibly talented and creative man--and that's wonderful.
Joss created Buffy to be an icon. He wants her to be bigger than life. He wants her to live on. Why are we trying to limit her? Out of good taste? Out of nostalgia for our DVDs? Out of fear that the show will be harmed?
This movie isn't going to hurt the show. Not for me. The show is golden. Joss' work on the show is golden. Actually, let's run with that. The TV series is Buffy's Golden Age: a time of enlightenment and cultural innovation. But don't we want to see what the Romans do with Buffy? Maybe Buffy will become a greater ruling military force under this new era. The cultural influence of Buffy-Greek will become a world influence of Buffy-Roman. TV Series Buffy will be Alexander the Great to Reboot Buffy's Julius Caesar. (And if not this reboot, then maybe some other reboot down the line.)
This reboot is about Buffy becoming an icon that can stand the test of time. A living icon who will change and grow unto each generation.
Who wouldn't want that? Joss apparently does want it though he's uncomfortable with it happening outside his control (and understandably so). I hope for his sake he looks at it this way: when you love something, let it go.
Buffy the Living Icon. Unto each generation she will be Chosen. I'm on board for that.
But isn't it too soon? Aren't we still living in the current generation of the Buffy TV series?
Generations don't always go quietly into the good night with an adequate mourning period before the new generation grabs hold of the reins. And frankly, fandom has been dying a slow negative death. You know what I'm talking about. The vitriol leveled against Season 8 that's been killing the joy (or some might say it's Season 8 that's the cause of the vitriol that's killing the joy--chicken and the egg). I'm actually ironically amused to see the same fandom who's been tearing into Whedon for Season 8 being an insult to the TV series now returning loyally to his side--you see, this project has already done some good (reunited and it feels so good, right?).
The perfection of the TV series will always be captured in amber, just as the Coliseum will forever be its own magnificent work of art. But this work of art will inspire more great works. The art that comes after it will live on. Art doesn't exist merely to be admired. It exists to spark our imagination and inspire creation. We are not creatures meant to hoard delight in our secret hearts, but to love and embrace and create.
I watched the first movie when I was a kid, I watched the TV series when I was a young teenager, and I graduated high school the year BtVS ended. To me, that time feels like forever ago. When this movie eventually comes out, it will be almost a decade since the series ended. That doesn't seem like too soon to me, but it's different for everyone. But consider this: when you watch the first season of BtVS, you can't help but realize how dated it all is. Ooh look at the dangers of something we call the Internet! *GASP* See? We're already living in another generation from when BtVS first started.
I'm ready for this now. And I hope this spurs Joss on to make his own Buffy movie after The Avengers. Or maybe make a Fray movie. The same way the directors for the first movie mucking it up inspired him to do the TV series. I hope this movie inspires Joss to do it "right" in the future (where "right" = Joss' vision).
There is literally nothing this movie can do that will tarnish the captured-in-amber-perfection of the show. Not for me. I'm not afraid that this movie will somehow ruin the show. It quite simply can't because, damn, my love is still going strong after thirteen years and love like that? It endures. It thrives. Such is my love.
I know no fear. My show will always be my show. So bring it on, Hollywood. Show me what you got.