?

Log in

No account? Create an account
StephenT [userpic]

'The Long Way Home' - what does it mean?

6th May 2007 (14:19)
Tags: ,

I've been wondering about the title 'The Long Way Home', and what it might refer to. I suppose we'll find out in a month's time, but in the meantime, here are three ideas.


1) It's literal. After travelling around the world, in the next issue Buffy and Xander will return to Sunnydale. Willow may already be there, depending on where Amy's taken her. I assume that's the military base where the Twilight Cult was holding her prisoner, but I don't know if that's near the ruins of Sunnydale, or elsewhere. Perhaps Nevada, based on Riley's line in 'A New Man' :

"They'll take Mr. Rayne to a secret detention facility in the Nevada desert. I'm sure he'll be rehabilitated in no time."

That, of course, assumes that Ethan's being held prisoner in the same base as Amy.


2) A character who was gone from the show (and the world) long ago will return. Well, obviously Warren already has, but I doubt that he's who the title is about. So perhaps someone else will return from the dead? Maybe Joyce, or Jenny, or Tara? All of whom have been the subject of speculation, because of the image of Buffy's dreamspace. (And because of wishful thinking too, probably. :) )

For some reason the idea of it being Tara keeps recurring to me: mostly, I think, because Joss has already brought back Warren, thus reminding us of the events at the end of season 6. Also, whatever power brought Warren back could perhaps bring Tara back too? Or maybe the fact of him being alive and walking around after what happened to him has disturbed the balance of the universe, and made the resurrection of Tara possible when it couldn't be done earlier. Other clues would be the fact that Kennedy is conveniently off-camera, and the persistent rumours that Joss wanted to bring back Tara in season 7 but was unable to for whatever reason.

Of course, this being the Whedonverse, if Tara did come back Willow would realise she's not in love with her anymore (maybe because she's in love with Buffy now!), or something equally angsty... :)

Other possibilities might be Spike or Angel, if they did die at the end of 'Not Fade Away'. Of course, that would assume that Joss was lying when he said that contractural obligations mean he can't use either of them as main characters in season 8. And Joss never lies to us!

But if this is the explanation for the story title, I'm going to predict that the last line of issue #4 is some variation on "You're back, sweetie! Welcome home!"


3) Something will turn full circle and bring us back to where we were at the very start of the show. In this context, I'm thinking of the Buffy/Xander romance, which was a big feature of season 1. Except perhaps this time it will be reciprocal.

Or perhaps it will be reversed. Buffy will realise that she's in love with Xander - her subconscious is already hinting at this - but this time it'll be Xander who falls in love with someone else. Probably Renee. Thus, we still get lots of relationship angst (a necessary component of any Buffy the Vampire Slayer story), but in the opposite direction to season 1.

I know I've been assuming - along with most other people - that the B/X elements we're being given are so obvious that they must be a misdirect... but perhaps we're actually over-thinking things and being too clever. After all, if Joss's aim was to set up a relationship between the two of them, I can't see what he would do differently to the story we're already being given... so maybe the simple explanation is the true one? There's a lot of references to both of them feeling lonely (and/or sexually deprived), and perhaps the punchline to the story will be someone like Willow (or Dawn?) getting them both to recognise what's right under their noses... 

Comments

Posted by: tessarin (tessarin)
Posted at: 6th May 2007 14:21 (UTC)

Yep could be all of those.

I've already postulated number 3 in my review of issue 2 but I think it is actually a total misdirect and that Joss will park Xander with Renee.JW doesn't have the guts to do B/X. If it does occur I agree it will be a reverse of the season 1 storyline just for the angst. as i said a Ross/Rachel S1-2 rerun.

On Spike & Angel here I think JW will just use them to mess with the fanbase. Or to reinforce his crap message that only people with superpowers can understand those with superpowers.

Definitely think Tara will play some part. Part of my problem with the comics so far is that he is not doing anything new just revisiting old themes and digging over their bones.I would have been happier if he had tried something completely new. Warren, Amy , Ethan (instead of Rack) means we are revisting S6 themes.

As for Willow being romantically attracted to Buffy god I hope not as she would know there is nil chance of the feelings being returned. Plus I prefer the Willow thumping her friends into seeing the obvious as that would really make me like Willow again. It would reinforce the core 4 rather than breaking it up again.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 6th May 2007 16:03 (UTC)

While I'm a lot more positive about the comics that you, I do agree that the Core Four dynamic needs to be strengthened - but I get the impression Joss is trying to do that with the comics after losing some of his focus in the later seasons of the TV show. And yes, Willow 'thumping sense into the others' would be a good way to do that.

Introducing new themes and characters is always going to be a problem for the comics - because it's a new medium for a lot of readers, I think he needs to be cautious about introducing lots of new elements all of a sudden, and instead give us familiar faces while introducing new people and organisations bit by bit.

Posted by: tessarin (tessarin)
Posted at: 6th May 2007 16:26 (UTC)

Sort of agree with you on the new theme stuff how it can be more difficult in comics. So here the medium might be working against him. But he also seems to be using it to do ideas he wouldn't have the budget to do which is sometimes good but generally seems to be bad with JW.

Saw your deprotaganization comment further down. Yep a triangle with Renee would do that one of the reasons I don't like it. I felt that the first three issues had too much deprotoganization of Buffy and too much focus on Willow already. Straight B/X with a slow build over the whole 50 issues I would like maybe ending with a skateboard scene.

I think he is trying to repair the core four. At the moment though that seems to be by resetting the characters to a early S4 base. Feels a little unearned.

As for Tara I personally really hope he doesn't as not a fan of the character plus it would cheapen death as you say. But a dreamscape or flashback or vision would work for me as she is very important to Willow.

But it is early and whilst I haven't really enjoyed them I prepared currently to give them the benefit of the doubt at least until say 12 issues in.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 6th May 2007 17:26 (UTC)

Straight B/X with a slow build over the whole 50 issues I would like maybe ending with a skateboard scene. Ending with a skateboard scene would be a classic way of returning to the beginning, I agree. :)

I'm getting a feeling that Joss is trying to re-do season 4 the way he'd originally envisaged it, hence why it's reminiscent of that time period. Plus maybe explore themes from S6/S7 that he couldn't concentrate on earlier because at the time he was writing Firefly...

Posted by: tessarin (tessarin)
Posted at: 6th May 2007 17:37 (UTC)

"I'm getting a feeling that Joss is trying to re-do season 4 the way he'd originally envisaged it, hence why it's reminiscent of that time period. Plus maybe explore themes from S6/S7 that he couldn't concentrate on earlier because at the time he was writing Firefly..."

Yes I have the same feel re S4 and revisting themes of s6 & S7.

37 Read Comments