Wow, I just have to say from the get go I was really underwhelmed by this issue. Mainly because it was Andrew-centric, and I just have never really cared for the character.
That being said, the issue starts off with Andrew trying to find Buffy in their new hidden lair (since the whole Harmony incident, they’ve been in hiding). He finally finds her with Xander and Willow in the control room and informs them he’s found a lead on Simone and her rogue Slayers. Nisha, Simone’s lieutenant, has been captured by a Ragna demon, and they keep their prey alive for 36 hours before eating them, so they needed to get their in a hurry. Buffy is anxious to go as she is disturbed by reports Simone’s crew making “shadowy attacks on banks, military bases, the occasional Hot Topic…”
Buffy says she’ll go with Andrew, and Xander tried to remind her of how annoying he can be. She says she’s gotten used to it and can handle it.
The nex page is non stop talking from Andrew about every geek thing you can imagine. Buffy says nothing until he finally mentions Daniel Craig as James Bond, and then she perks up and they discuss him and how cool he is.
They arrive at where they think Nisha is being held and find a weird “web” built of steel and pipes. As Buffy and Andrew climb up to free her, Nisha is giving them a lot of lip, which Buffy makes clear she should be thanking them. Nisha brushes them off as they should get her down before that thing returns… to which we finally see the Ranga is a giant spider (what a surprise).
Buffy yells at Nisha some more about gratitude, but Nisha interrupts her and reminds her Rangas died out in the 11th century, and someone spent all their time in Italy performing experiments to bring them back. Wonder who that was, she asks.
Buffy stares at Andrew.
Andrew pulls out a device, clicks it, and Nisha drops from the trap. As she falls to the ground, Andrew is saying it is irrelevant where the demon came from so long as they trapped Nisha. Buffy isn’t happy with that answer, and they argue until a fist comes from nowhere and punches Buffy in the jaw.
Simone has shown up, and after slapping Andrew, she asks Nisha if she’s okay, and that she got there as soon as she could. She boasts to Buffy and Andrew about a low level Wiccan she has that was able to transport her there. Buffy says this is all fine and good, but she wants Simone to come back with her. Simone refuses saying how since they are now thought to be the bad guys, she’s going with it because she is bad.
As she talks, she pulls a gun off her back, leading Buffy to ask if she thinks that is the answer. Simone informs her it isn’t for her, and shoots the Ranga demon with some sort of beam, knocking it out. She says she needs her calm so she can take her with her, and with Nisha in her arms, they transport out.
Buffy and Andrew argue as they climb down the web. Andrew says he bred the Ranga to help them get Simone, and Buffy says she doesn’t care about that. She cares about the lying. Andrew says he did all this because he felt responsible for Simone going rogue, and he was afraid they would blame him as her Watcher for it, and he would lose the trust he had built with Buffy, Xander and Willow.
He goes ona bout how he was scared because he had never had anything like this before and he was afraid of losing it. Buffy says losing an insane Slayer isn’t how you lose trust with her, but lying is.
Getting back to business, Buffy wants to know if there is a way to track the Ranga. Andrew says there is because he put radioactive isotopes in its DNA when he made it so he could find it and get led to Simone. It currently is tracking to an island off the coast.
Buffy and Andrew travel in silence.
Once at the island, Buffy comments it is beautiful, and you can see numerous buildings behind her. A little girl approaches them and tells them, in English, that they aren’t supposed to be there. She tells them the mean lady came to town, and even though her grandma fed the mean lady, the mean lady kicked everyone off the island. The little girl and her grandma stayed as they had nowhere to go, but they live on the pier now and don’t go into tow. Buffy promises to get them their home back.
In town they find the buildings sprayed in graffiti with anarchy symbols and slogans like “Slayers Rule”. Andrew figures out the demon is in the opera house, but before they enter, he asks if Buffy is still mad at him. She ass him if he thinks this is the time for this. He replies:
We might not comes out of this alive, and I want to make sure I’ve said everything I need to say to you. And now I have.
Wait, no, also now that I’ve met Angel, I have to say, Spike was so much edgier, you definitely traded up, I’m totally Team Spike.
Also, I know I’m in the minority, but I liked it when you cut your hair.
There. Now I’ve said everything.
Buffy stares at him blankly until he says they should go in.
When they enter the auditorium, the rogue Slayers are waiting, all with guns, and Simone sits on the stage in a thrown. She tells them they knew she’d come, though some of the others were giving up, but not her.
Buffy says she wants the demon, but Simone says she doesn’t want to fight her.
I don’t want to fight you, Buffster. Don’t have anything against you. Truth is, I admire you, you’re just outdated is all. That vampire stunt on TV proved it.
She goes on about how there are two kinds of people in the world now: those that fear the Slayers and hope someone kills them, and those stupid enough to try it.
Buffy asks if the answer is taking over an island. Simone says she is powerful, and powerful leaders annex things. It’s their base now to launch attacks, and they can be the agents of fear and change they were meant to be. Buffy says it isn’t who she is, but Simone continues that Buffy knows she’s right.
The demon is locked in a cage on the stage, and Buffy goes on wanting to know if Simoen would kill innocent people with it. She says there is no such thing as innocent people in a war. Buffy says she’ll stop her, but Simone goes on saying that the spider demon is plan B, and Buffy can have it… if she gives Andrew to Simone.
It seems Simone harbors anger at Andrew over when he was her Watcher. How it wasn’t right someone like him had power over her, and now she wants payback… and he’s incredibely annoying. Buffy says you get used to it, and she can’t have him.
Buffy lunges for a fencing sword (Simone had one the entire time, and there are more against the stage). Simone and Buffy get in a duel, leaping all over the place as Simone tells everyone to stay back, Buffy is hers. The fight continues, Buffy finally launching up the chandilier. Simone says it looks precarious, and now she’s trapped. Buffy swings the chandilier, leaps away, and it crashes to the floor.
Now Buffy has her sword at Simone’s neck, boasting how she has experience over her. Simone says she is younger… and has a gun pointed at Buffy’s stomach. Buffy throws her sword away saying she isn’t a fan of guns. Simone says she can still have the demon if she just gives them Andrew, but she refuses. Andrew interrupts and offers to stay, even as Nisha has him in a choke hold.
Andrew: That demon is what matters. I’ll stay, and everyone will be safe. I need to do this.
Buffy: She’s got you all twisted around thinking you’re to blame for what she did. I told you: it wasn’t your fault.
Andrew: I’m not twisted around. It’s simple logic. She’ll hurt countless people with the demon. I’m just one. The needs of the many outweigh the needs —
Buffy: Andrew. I’ve been hanging out with Xander for either years. I’ve geek-bonded with him too, and I’m familiar with the book of nerd quotes. I’m not moved.
Buffy says she doesn’t care if Simone keeps the demon because she’ll stop her, but she won’t walk away without one of her people. Simone says that’s a shame as it’s her sixteen Slayers to Buffy’s one.
An off-screen voice tells Simone she miscalculated.
The Italy squad of Slayers have arrived, and they are there for their Watcher, Mr. Wells. Where he goes, they go, and he is coming with them. Buffy says meekly, “Um, I’m actually here, too.” “…and Buffy also comes with us.”
Buffy wants to fight for control of the island, a nameless Slayer is worried about the guns still in play. Buffy says she promised the villagers (you mean the ONE girl on the pier?) that she’d get their home back, but another nameless Slayer says to move the villagers and fight Simone another day.
Buffy takes Simone’s gun and points it at Nisha’s head. “Now give me back my nerd.”
The Slayers retreat as Buffy holds Simone at gun point.
Simone: I thought you didn’t like guns.
Buffy: It’s not for you. It’s for her.
She shoots the lock off the cage, leaving as Simone and her Slayers have to face the demon.
Buffy gets the little girl and grandma off the island.
Next we see Buffy telling Andrew he can take a night off. He says he wants to get all the info on the Ragna together in case Buffy ever has to fight it, but Buffy tells him she is sure Simone and her crew took it down.
Buffy: Look, Andrew. You were willing to sacrifice yourself to save innocent people. For a greater good. That’s huge for you. You should be proud.
Andrew: But you were right. I lied to you.
Buffy: Yeah, you’re part of the family. Get used to screwing up for good reasons. It’s what we do. Swing by when you’ve got the specs written up. We’ll take a look.
After Buffy leaves, Andrew stares at the door. “I’m part of the family?”… and smiles.
Okay, fine, it expanded Andrew’s character some, but seeing as we are almost two years into this series, can we please just get back to the main story? Issue 20 was a stand alone story. Issue 22 was a stand alone story. Issue 23 is a stand alone story. ENOUGH! Get back to Twilight!
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|Buffy Season 8, Vol. 1||Buffy Season 8, Vol. 2||Buffy Season 8, Vol. 3|
|Includes Issues #1 – #5||Includes Issues #6 – #10||Includes Issues #11 – #15|
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|Buffy Season 8, Vol. 4||Buffy Season 8, Vol. 5||Fray Mini-Series|
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