Series Created by Joss Whedon
Starring Sarah Michelle Gellar, Nicholas Brendon, Alyson Hannigan, James Marsters, Michelle Trachtenberg
- Season Seven Overview: “Buffy: Full Circle”
- Four featurettes: “Buffy: It’s Always Been About the Fans,” “Buffy 101: Studying the Slayer,” “Generation S: The Potentials,” and “The Last Sundown: Joss’ Ten Favorite Episodes”
- Wrap Footage
- Running audio commentary on select episodes with members of the cast and crew
- DVD-ROM Content: “Willow Demon Guide”
Released by: Fox Home Entertainment
Anamorphic: N/A; episodes appear in their original 1.33:1 format.
My Advice: Rent it. Fans already have it and the rest of them.
This is a weird season. I had never watched the show with any religious fervor and I didn’t know too much about the series when I sat down to watch this set. The season’s weird because it’s obvious from about halfway in the first episode that you’re watching the last season of a series. All of the character storylines had a feeling of writers trying to wrap things up. All of the character drama is set against the background that something bigger than anyone has ever seen is growing underground and it’s going to come forth and eat the entire human race.
The DVD set is pretty good. One of the better ones that Fox has released, even. Most of the features, with the exception of the commentaries, resides on the final disc of the set. The first featurette is the one that looks at the closing of the series. Even considering that it’s wrapping up storylines from a seven year run, it still manages to go on a bit too long. Thankfully, the other featurettes don’t drag on quite as long as that one. In fact, their terseness is exactly what is needed for a set like this. The first one is a look at Buffy the character over the entire series. It’s chocked full of interviews with TV critics and the cast and crew of the show and it does all of that without too much ego stroking which is nice. Granted, some of the interviewees go off a little bit trying to tie sociological implications to the show–which is a little heady in my opinion–but if you look past those, its pretty good.
The second featurette looks at the next generation of Slayers in Sunnyvale. Basically, in the seventh season, the writers decided that it would be cool to show Buffy helping to train more slayers. Neat idea, but I don’t know whether it was worthy of a featurette on the disc. Then there is “The Last Sundown,” an interview with Whedon as he narrates us through clips from his ten favorite episodes through the entire series. It’s a fitting tribute not only to the show and the character, but to Whedon himself. All in all, a nice addition to this set.
Thank God there is a Gag Reel. It’s very well edited and the pacing is great. I just wish they would have made it longer. After all, these are outtakes from an entire season of the show right? It’s seems like there would have been more material to work with. Wrapping up the disc is a look at the wrap party for the series, with interviews with the cast and crew. It’s nice to see people celebrating something this momentous in their lives without becoming overly emotional. It’s a celebration after all, and not a wake. The other “mystery” featurette actually resides on disc three of the series. This one talks about the cult of Buffy in the 90s and how the internet really helped to spur the phenomenon that is/was Buffy.
There is also some DVD-ROM content to talk about. You know how they characters on the show are always using a laptop to access all this really cool information about the various demons and vampires they come across? Well, they’ve finally packaged it as part of this DVD set. Now you too can have the experience of being a slayer. Let’s say you come across a demon that is not your average, run-of-the-mill demon. All you have to do is ask him/her/it to hold on for a second while you break out your own laptop, put the first disc from this set into your DVD-ROM drive, access it, ask the demon what type he/she/it is, enter its name into the database and find out how to kill it. Look, it worked for Buffy and her friends for all of these years, didn’t it? Of course, this won’t work on your typical human scum that might be trying to violate you in some way. They must be otherworldly to really get the full effect of this database. I actually tried it out around town. It was a bit messy, but it seems to be quite handy. Wonderful addition to this DVD set.
Look, let’s not beat around the bush. If you are a fan of the show, you already have this sitting on your shelf and were just looking for someone to help you justify your purchase of this and the other six sets. Go ahead, feel confident that you made the right decision. Those who aren’t so gung ho will probably just want to rent this one, even though the Demon Database is quite handy. I’m serious.