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But first I will mention that weirdly enough I've been thinking about a Buffy remake myself recently. Though, first and foremost I was thinking of it in the context of a new television series (but yes, with new actors/actresses), and secondly I was thinking about this so much so that I was (and still am) considering giving Dollhouse another chance when it comes back in December. Yes, about a week ago my Whedon loyalty started trying to kick in. Though it should be understood that I never thought Whedon was ever as great as other Buffy/Angel fans did. I also think Whedon should stop trying to start new shows on the so-called big networks - Whedon is clearly a niche kind of guy, and niche won't pay the bills on a big network.
(Honestly, I love(ish) Buffy as much as the next person, but I am honest enough to admit that even Buffy would not have enjoyed such a long run on one of the big networks. When it's numbers started their steady slide after season three, it would have probably got axed after season four - think about it. And least you think I'm bashing Whedon, he himself has said he'd rather write TV that people need to see rather than writing TV that people like to see. Well, networks, the big ones especially, would rather have stuff that lots of people like to see, because that tends to bring in bigger numbers.)

I tried to watch Dollhouse twice in its season one and just felt that it (to put it kindly) wasn't to my taste. I watched one full episode, but couldn't get through a second one. Sadly, (also today) I came across an article that shared some details about the "original" idea(s) behind Dollhouse... That (Afterlife) is the series that should have been made. Seriously, I think I'd love that one almost as much as Buffy, instead for whatever dumbass reason that series was retooled/turned into the less than impressive Dollhouse. Perhaps someone somewhere thought sexy ItchBays would appeal more than Sci-geeks. Still I am considering giving Dollhouse another chance - probably won't like it any better, but for whatever reason I plan (right now) to give it one more shot.

And now I will be cutting away so my rambling does not annoy the f-list.

Buffy Movie in the Works, BUT there's a HUGH catch!
(For the record, the comment from Whedon is "I hope its cool." So, my guess is that he just doesn't care either way, or he really does hope it's cool.)

They appear to be remaking the Buffy movie that kinda flopped, rather than trying to "remake" a movie from the more successful television series.

Now I'm of two minds on this. I don't really want to be all "Hell No!" before the thing gets off the ground (I've done that before only to end up liking the final product - the most recent example is The Vampire Diaries - more on that later), and despite popular opinion I don't think Gellar is the only one ever who could play a good Buffy. Remember I actually liked the original Buffy movie - didn't love it, but didn't hate it either.

Would I like to see a Buffy movie with the TV series cast together again?
To borrow the words of a famous/infamous political figure - "you betcha!"
But I'm not automatically against the idea of recasting the rolls, and essentially starting over either. But that's not what this movie is proposing doing, which has me thinking "bad idea."
(And for the record, I'm not bothered by the lack of Whedon either, though again it would be cool to have him involved with the original cast. Even in a small consult role.)

This remake seems poised to remake the original flop movie instead of working with the more successful TV series, and that really does have bad idea written all over it in big bold glowing letters.

I actually think it might work better to remove one word from the movie title - Instead of Buffy the Vampire Slayer call it simply The Vampire Slayer. I mean, seriously, if your not going to bother with the other characters (especially those of Giles, Willow, and Xander) I think you might be better served to drop Buffy herself as well. Why not Holly The Vampire Slayer? It might actually stand a better chance of not pissing off the Buffy hardcore.

Now to the more on The Vampire Diaries... Yes, I keep linking to the Television Without Pity recaps, but I don't always agree with the recapper. For example, the recapper really loves Matt, and seems to really like the Stefan/Elena/Damon love triangle, neither of those appeal to me. So far TV Matt is less appealing to me than book Matt, which is rather impressive really, just not in a good way. And while I do think I like TV Elena slightly better than book Elena, I do NOT love her, and I'm actually starting to think (just like in the books) she screws up the Stefan/Damon dynamic, which the TV show is (at least so far) doing ever better with than the books. In fact I like the show better when Damon is very much focused on Stefan, but it's really Bonnie or the lack thereof that makes an episode really shine for me, and the recapper doesn't seem to care about Bonnie one way or another.

*laughs* Which is weird, because I did not think I was going to like the TV Bonnie - she looks NOTHING like the book Bonnie. Bonnie was a redhead in the books, but not a typical/cliche one, which is why I liked her. However, the TV Bonnie is really working for me, so YAY! Seriously, so far the episodes I like best are the ones with Bonnie.

If you've read this journal for awhile, you probably saw my original post on the subject.

What that post doesn't really cover is my unhappiness with the "look" changes. For example, the TV Elena looks like a perfect Meredith (who's not in the show so far), or that Bonnie isn't even remotely close to book Bonnie. At first I didn't think that would bother me, but the more I thought about it the more it bugged me. However, now that I've started watching the show it doesn't bother me.

And, I read an interview recently where Kevin Williamson talks about the series, and trying to avoid outright comparisons to other things vampire. And while Buffy isn't mentioned the Television Without Pity recapper is all ready comparing Bonnie to Willow (it's fun, but...) - can you imagine how much more so those would be if Bonnie looked on the screen as she looked in the books?

See, in the books Bonnie has red curly hair, and was more like Buffy in height, but those are pretty much the only differences between Bonnie and Willow aside from personality, so it is probably just as well that they went with someone who looked nothing like book Bonnie. Of course, that only brought in some comparisons to Tara from True Blood, but I think those have dropped off since the series has started since Bonnie's character (at least to date) is NOTHING like Tara.

The only thing I really don't like is that The Vampire Diaries doesn't have a title sequence only a little ol' title card. That was something I also really disliked about Moonlight, as well. But hopefully since they've gotten a full season they will come up with a title sequence at some point.

Anyway, here's my thoughts after seeing the first several episodes, and so far they haven't changed.

Welllll, I'm forced to eat a little bit of crow, so to speak. I just knew I wasn't going to like this series, I was actually prepared to dislike it... Well, so much for expectations, because so far I'm liking the show more than a little bit, and a million times more than I expected.

The show really won me over with how they're handling the Stefan/Damon stuff... I like that they are making Damon even more about Stefan than the books did, which does fit so much with my feelings about why Damon went after Elena in the first place - Damon is all about Stefan!
(And despite my original fears, the actors aren't as non-fitting for Stefan and Damon as I was originally expecting.
UPDATE: Ian seems to be having a REALLY great time with Damon, which is awesome!)

And, yes, I am an unrepentant Damon/Bonnie shipper, but I'm not hating the Damon/Caroline stuff. That's really weird, because I generally do not (in book canon or fanfic) like seeing Damon or Bonnie paired with anyone other than Bonnie and Damon. But the Damon/Caroline stuff isn't turning me off, of course that could be because Damon is so obviously using Caroline that it becomes clear that she isn't in the way. *wink*-*wink*
(To be honest, it's tempting me to become a Bonnie/Damon/Caroline threesome shipper.)

Note to any show people that might be looking in: Do NOT, DO NOT even start hinting at Bonnie/Matt! Just don't! Please. Matt and Bonnie don't work, mostly because Matt is to wrapped up in Elena to be believably be paired with anyone else. So don't go there, and don't even hint that you might go there. K. Thanks.
Seriously, you don't have to do Damon/Bonnie, but I will stop watching if you so much as hint Bonnie/Matt.

Of course, it's not all good. They've got some really bad film quality, the pilot episode was so bad that for a moment I thought my TV might be going bad. It was bright, it was dark in the same scene) then it was grainy... *sigh* The second episode was a bit better as far as keeping the scenes roughly at the same lighting, but many of the scenes are still more grainy than they should be.

To the show people: Look, I get it, you're trying to sit the mood. Just stop it, and light the thing properly. K. Thanks.
(UPDATE: For the record, this is still an issue!)

More bad - Jeremy sucks! I'm not remotely interested in him, which isn't a complete surprise, but he's pretty much every druggie that's ever been in a show that it makes the whole thing boringly cliche. Honestly, if you are going to add a character, you need to make that character interesting, and unless something changes Jeremy needs to go.
(No offense to the actor intended, because he's doing the best he can with the role.)

Now on to more general stuff:

When info about the casting first started coming out people started saying that this show seemed to want to be True Blood for Teens. At that time I hadn't watched True Blood, but after I did watch season one I started thinking that was spot on, and seeing the first two episodes of The Vampire Diaries have not changed my opinion.
(UPDATE: And despite the interview linked above, I do still smell a little True Blood for Teens.)

Yes, the TV series does seem to be trying (perhaps a little too hard) to draw in some of the Twilight crowd with how they're doing Elena, but going by what I've seen in the first two episodes I believe what it really wants it to be a True Blood clone rather than a Twilight clone.

I suppose the main reason I'm suspecting this wants to be True Blood more than Twilight is because the drinking thing that they've introduced for Bonnie's family, which for me trumps their attempts to appeal to Bella fans with a non-book Elena.

It also isn't close to being in the books (The Vampire Diaries or for that matter The Sookie Stackhouse books). But I do believe that might end up being different enough to keep from looking copied. And The Vampire Diaries (show) may actually have a bit of logic to the Bonnie family drinking. If they can't even touch someone without seeing something - which seems to be what they're sitting up with Bonnie in those first few episodes - perhaps the drinking dulls that, which means there could be a logic to the drinking that would be somewhat fresh. Though I do (oddly enough) miss Bonnie being a druid rather than a witch, because witch has sorta become cliche while Druid is still relatively fresh.

Now it's no secret that I find book Stefan/Elena pretty much the most boring vampire/human pairing ever... That's right, I actually like Edward/Bella more than Stefan/Elena, though that isn't really saying much. And so far I'm not really seeing anything in TV Stefan/Elena that's gonna make me like it any better than I did/do in the books, but I haven't set my mind to totally hating TV Stefan/Elena yet either.
(UPDATE: They really need to have Stefan go all Angelus... Okay, Angelus-lite maybe, but he's starting to get a little boring outside of scene's with Damon.)

I've also never been a big Matt fan, mostly because he's just too far up Elena's... Well, you get the idea, right? And while they have pointed TV Matt in that same direction, there's still something that tells me I may end up liking TV Matt a little bit more than book Matt, though I do still hate that they made Matt and Vicky (Vicki) related. But speaking of Vicky (Vicki) aside from the drugs I must admit that they've gotten her personality somewhat close to what I've always imagined... Though I hate that they made Damon the one to attack her, because that totally screws up the awesome book story later. Alas, this is not the books, so I'm forced to take the good with the bad, because I do like that Damon used her to connect (or attempt to connect) with Stefan.
(UPDATE: Nope, Matt just doesn't appeal, but love the Vicky/Vicki story... I won't spoil, but it's good!)

Strangely enough I'm not sure I'm liking Tyler, when casting was first revealed I thought he was closer than anyone, but now seeing him in action he just ain't quite Tyler to me.

Still on the whole it's weird, I think they've casted fairly good males all around, but totally blew it with the female characters. They've got a perfect Meredith, but they've named her Elena, and the person they're calling Caroline would be a better Elena... *sigh* You watch, when they finally get around to bringing in Meredith they'll cast a perfect Bonnie in the role. LOL
(Speaking of Bonnie and Caroline, I think the way they're writing the characters, TV Caroline is being written more like book Bonnie, while TV Bonnie is being written more like book Caroline. See, I always felt Bonnie was the more flighty one, while Caroline was slightly more serious, but from what I've seen they've turned Caroline into the flighty one while making Bonnie a touch more serious, which I can live with, but thought it deserved a mention.)

So, despite the fact that all things are not perfect, there is enough here (the Stefan and Damon stuff, mostly) that have drawn me in. If they can just keep themselves from totally screwing up I'll be a viewer til the end. And I'm even finding that I'm probably going to be able to live with the fact that the gals aren't exactly matching up to what I'd pictured from the books.
I think Wedon is good, but he isn't perfect. I personally have enjoyed Dollhouse, mostly since the second half of the first season, but it certainly isn't his best.

Also, remaking the Buffy movie is a bad idea. The original movie is fun to watch in a campy, bad movie kind of way. It does not need to be remade, though.
Well, I admit before seeing the original idea behind Dollhouse I found myself thinking that it was simply a flawed concept. Now after seeing that, it isn't the concept in and of itself that is flawed but the execution.

I know people (in other places) get bashed for saying this, but to a casual viewer it tends to look like people are being raped every week. Now since I know Whedon, I'm sure there's some bit of story or subtext that I'm (and others) are missing, the problem is that to those (us) casual viewers we are turned off enough that we aren't going to wait around for an explanation.

To be perfectly honest there were many times over the course of Buffy's original run that I found myself thinking Whedon wasn't writing women for women, but he was writing women for men. But then I'd tell myself that I was crazy/imagining things/whatever, but after trying to watch Dollhouse... Well, I think Whedon just might be sexist, just not in the traditional way. Either way, he isn't appealing (with Dollhouse) to his bread and butter audience which tends to be females, left over I suppose from his Buffy/Angel days.

As for my idea of a Buffy remake I was thinking about the concept of a traveling Slayer, like part of me always thought Buffy should have been. Of course, that might make it more expensive to make, and you would certainly lose the awesome high school back-drop. On the other hand, doing it this way could (maybe) avoid most direct comparisons between Old!Buffy and New!Buffy.

For example, when Buffy leaves L.A., her mother doesn't come with her, but Buffy herself still ends up in Sunnydale. At some point after/during the Lothos encounter, Giles finds her. Or after that Buffy runs away, and Giles finds her while she's on the run.

The series would begin like Whedon's, with Buffy and Giles all ready in Sunnydale. The difference would be in dealing with the Master storyline. Rather than having that play out over the course of a season play it out over the course of a two/three part series opener. Then after the Master is dealt with, Buffy and Giles head away from Sunnydale. Either end that episode with Xander and Willow following them because they've seen the evil and want to help, though Willow would of course regret leaving high school behind, or start the episode after it with Xander and Willow deciding to follow.

*grins* And, of course, I've not forgot about Angel. He would also follow Buffy and Giles because he thinks helping her is his destiny.

The one downside is that it would be hard to work high school Queen C (Cordelia) into the series this way. Not impossible, but she would probably have to be worked in a bit later than she was in the original Buffy, or sadly left out entirely.

Edited at 2009-11-02 07:55 pm (UTC)
I actually agree with you. The concept behind Dollhouse is definitely rape and consent issues. I just, at the moment, have faith that Whedon realizes this and actually intends to talk about consent as well as about memory and identity. We'll see. A few episodes, and especially the most recent, have at least hinted at it.

You idea is awesome, by the way. I admit I wouldn't be too sad to have no Cordelia as I always felt she was the weakest character and the one least necessary to the series.
*shrug* I think it was my idea for a Buffy remake that pinged my Joss loyalty. Like I felt disloyal for thinking Buffy could work without him, because without him there wouldn't be a Buffy. Still I do think a remake Buffy could maybe work without Whedon, though it might need his support, or at least no opposition from him. It would certainly be different, but different doesn't always mean bad.
(And, yes, I also feel some Gellar loyalty, but I think she'd only be slightly more willing than David (Angel) to reprise her Buffy role.
David doesn't even seem to want to remember he played Angel, where at least Sarah doesn't seem to shun Buffy.
And, in my opinion, Swanson was not horrible in the role, which indicates that despite popular opinion Buffy could work without Gellar.

Either way, in December I'll be doing my part to support Joss, at least for one episode. I'd like to think I'll watch the rest, but if the episode isn't any better than the two I've tried before once again I probably won't hang around for more.
(Even then my watching or not watching won't make much difference, Dollhouse would need at least a million or more new viewers to keep it going.)

*smiles* Glad you like my little idea - wish someone with the power would come along see and like. *grins*

Anyway, as for Cordelia, I loved her on Buffy, but feel that Angel ruined her character, and that's my problem with having Cordelia in my version of a Buffy remake. Without high school, Cordy would have to be more like Angel!Cordy rather than the better Buffy!Cordy, because to work her in she'd have to be more willing to join the "losers" from the moment she appeared on screen than she was originally.

Weird, because Oz and even later Anya, Tara, and (yes, though it pains me) Dawn would be so much easier to work in. Oz was in a band after all, which means it would be easy enough to work Oz into more than a few episodes. Though Oz might be a tricky character to pull off with someone other than Seth playing him. In my opinion, Seth is kind of one of a kind, but I feel sure someone else could do a passable Oz.

And with Tara you could tweak her story to simply make her with a need to stay on the move to keep her family from finding her. And, of course, Anya is/was a demon which is even easier than both of the above.

Then Dawn - I probably wouldn't do the whole mind-rape everyone thing, but she could still be worked into the overall story. Either as another stray the team picks up along the way, or if forced to be more Jossain with her insertion - the monks could still create her and send her Team Buffy for protection just without the added mind-rape.

Edited at 2009-11-02 11:10 pm (UTC)
...in a separate reply.

With Dawn, what I'd probably do is have Team Buffy in a small town somewhere saving the town, but as with most things they don't save everyone, and Dawn is the only survivor of her family.

So, rather than letting this little girl go off on a revenge kick all by herself the gang would bring her in. That way Dawn could feel like she was doing something so more people didn't end up like her, but she wouldn't be going it alone.

The only thing you'd really lose this way is Buffy and Dawn being sisters (and possibly the Buffy death/coming back thing), and that isn't impossible to overcome, because you could still have them end up being as close as sisters.