Review by Win Wiacek
With Bad Blood Andi Watson’s Buffy stories move from TV Season Two to TV Season Three, and unlike the previous Uninvited Guests, this begins an extended storyline. It finds the eclectic teen team battling an honest-to-god arch enemy in the sorry shape of narcissistic vampire Selke, with Joe Bennett back on the art.
Following a handy “previously page” and both photo and drawn covers for the following tale, the action resumes with ‘Hey, Good Looking Part I’ as a rare romantic moment with recently restored undead lover Angel in the local cemetery is interrupted by a new type of threat. However this particular monster is too quick to be seen and apparently consumes corpses rather than living flesh. Meanwhile in a dingy alley the formerly beautiful vampire Selke seethes. Even though her kind cast no reflections, she knows her previous clashes with the Slayer have destroyed not only her strength but also her sublime allure.
The tale continues in ‘Hey, Good Looking Part II’ as Buffy prepares to battle what Giles calls “Ghouls” and faces a far worse, emotional, battering on her first day at work. Selke, meanwhile, has tried to recruit vampire allies from the town’s new undead overlord Rouleau and been humiliated.
‘A Boy Named Sue’ continues the themes of looks and sexual politics as sleazy musician Todd Dahl hits town with his band and starts looking for hotties to bed. After the Slayer forcefully turns him down, Todd brags that he has bagged Buffy and goes on to insult and rebuff the more-than-willing teen witch Amy. Soon however the repulsive love rat is treated to a scary look at the other side of the bed when he suddenly transforms.
This slim chronicle also contains an added story bonus. ‘Hello Moon’, written by Dan Brereton and Christopher Golden, with Bennett’s art is a wistful vignette wherein the Slayer attacks a monster on the beach, but soon discovers that she has much in common with the troubled fish-man who also bears the weight of unwelcome responsibility for his endangered race.
Engaging, witty, fun and cleverly concealing a strong message of tolerance and gracious acceptance, this pictorially powerful, fast-fists-flying action extravaganza rockets along at a breakneck pace, perfectly mimicking the smart, intoxicating spirit of the TV show. The ‘Bad Blood’ saga continues with Crash Test Demons, which is available along with this content in the fourth Buffy the Vampire Slayer Omnibus.