Script - Christos Gage & Nicholas Brendon
Art - Megan Levens
Executive Producer - Joss Whedon
Last month's issue of Buffy Season 10 left us on a monumental shippers' cliffhanger, when our favorite blonde heroine made a move and kissed Spike, with the hopes of pursuing something more. *Squeeeeee*
Buffy acknowledges their past unhealthy relationship and sees them both in completely different places than before, but Spike is slightly more reluctant, with an argument that begins reasonably and ends up a little harsh. Consider it another hiccup in the Spuffy relationship.
Back at Xander and Spike's place, Xander chimes in, pointing out Buffy's newfound mature way of dealing with relationships, and her attempt to break a pattern of her issues with men (a nice way to address Buffy's mentality over the course of the series and comics, courtesy of Christos Gage).
Nicholas Brendon also returns to cowrite the issue, which is always apparent with the Xander dialogue that Brendon knows so well! The temporarily strong Andrew rallies the scoobies for a battle against the soul glutton and Andrew, now openly gay, makes a romantic gesture to Clyde in the aftermath (a member of a coven), that captures everyone's attention and leads to Xander overcompensating on his approval causing Andrew's discomfort after reverting to normal form.
Buffy and Spike reconvene the earlier discussion about their relationship, and Buffy shows her growth by agreeing that friendship is best, to echo Spike's views. Spike's earlier conversation with Xander has opened his eyes, however, and he professes his love to Buffy, which leads to a passionate steamy scene back at Spike's place. While Christos portrayed a perfect romantic dynamic between Buffy and Spike, the comedic balance is also quickly filled with Xander, Dawn, and a young sexually frustrated Giles.
The final panels are some of my favorites of the issue in terms of script and art, with Buffy and Spike experiencing true bliss in each other's company. Unfortunately...nothing is that simple in the Buffyverse, and Spike's nightmare at the end only spells trouble for the pair and possibly the safety of others.
Aedan's final thoughts
-Spuffy goodness. I've been patiently awaiting this moment for quite sometime (quiet you Bangel fans, it's only fair!)
-Christos Gage was exceptional in this issue, addressing nearly all of our concerns about Spike and Buffy post season 6
-Megan Levens captured the emotional art especially well this issue, which was the focal point of the story
-Nicholas Brendon's writing is simply amazing, and should be included as often as possible for the use of Buffy-verse dialogue.