SDCC 2011: Joss Whedon Is Your Master, Dishes on 'Buffy' Season 9

The man behind the woman jamming the stakes into vamps' hearts lays out plans for the Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 9 at San Diego Comic Con 2011.

For the Buffy creator, the new "season" of Dark Horse comics about the famous vampire slayer is all about getting back to the roots of what the TV show was about. This is part of Dark Horse and Whedon's stated purpose of paring back some of the more epic, larger-than-life elements that marked Season 8, including Buffy's massive Slayer Army, globetrotting adventures, a flying title character, and cross-dimensional near-annihilation. Whedon's hope is to have her stories be explicitly and implicitly be about a character wandering aimlessly through her mid-20's.

With Whedon again supervising production on the book, writer Andrew Chambliss (who impressed Whedon and the Dark Horse higher-ups with his work on the Dollhouse comic) will be handling the bulk of writing chores, with Georges Jeanty returning on art. Meanwhile, with Angel coming back from IDW, under the new title, Angel and Faith, that series will have Christos Gage and Rebekah Isaacs as the new creative team.

Whedon spoke briefly about the challenges of managing what's now a "mini empire" at Dark Horse, which entails the selection of talent and marshaling of continuity for the new series which should be topping out at 25 issues each, if Dark Horse is holding to their statements from earlier this year at WonderCon. Whedon lauded Dark Horse editor Scott Allie for herding the cats necessary to keep the universe running as Whedon the writer-director works on a certain big, summer, tentpole movie coming out next year. Whedon talked a little about the Marvel-style summit he held with the creative teams in order to unify the vision for the books.

Along with Mike Mignola's Hellboy universe, this makes two unified horror lines at Dark Horse and really, the sooner we see a Hellboy/Angel crossover the better. Not Hellboy/Buffy--that wouldn't make any visual sense given the two characters.

Whedon moved on from the nuts and bolts of Buffy-verse storytelling to lament the dip is in his masterhood among his fans with fewer "Joss Whedon is My Master Now" t-shirts out in the wild.

You would think having a gig shepherding the Avengers movie, a couple of successful comic franchises, a lauded run on TV and legions of fans would be enough. Sheesh.

Angel and Faith will launch in August, while Buffy Season 9 will begin in September.

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