Writer Notes on Buffy: The High School Years 3 part 1

Page 1 – 3Like the last book, I had to start the book with the “Every generation” monolog over an actiony introduction. One of the notes I got back for this book is that since Angel wasn’t in the last two High School Years books, he should have a role in this one. So I opened with the two of them fighting together. I think if there is one flaw with this book it’s that I feel like Buffy and Angel’s scenes are maybe better suited to Buffy and Angel in season 2. I tired to place this story firmly before Buffy knew Angel was a vampire so the attraction is more obvious on her part. In season 1 Buffy and Angel’s relationship is kinda Buffy saying something and then rambling a bit to “prove” the comment she made wasn’t complimenting Angel. So you really only know she likes Angel because of how much she tries to make it look like she doesn’t like Angel. Anyway, that just leads to some blushy times. I asked if this book was sticking to natural acting or being more cartoony acting. I gave directions for both and Yishan split the difference.

Page 4 – 5

I wanted to show Joyce’s side of things here. Her POV is kinda important to this book. She probably got a lot of calls like this over the coarse of the show. Also, we never get to see the gallery in the show so I wanted to set a scene there.

page 6 – 8

For this scene I wanted Buffy to seem small while she was getting yelled at. I told Yishan to position Joyce so she is higher and larger than Buffy in the first page. Then once Joyce is done yelling they are on more equal positioning in the page.

page 9 – 12

Buffy is based on the whole girl that usually gets killed in a horror movie ends up being tougher than the monsters. So I wanted to tap into that with this monster of the week being disguised as a little girl. I wanted to have a humor beat with the vampire being annoyed at her lack of fear before the mind control power reveal. I always liked how Buffy blended horror and humor.

page 13 – 17

The scooby time in the library was both a way to let Buffy vent but also so Xander could get some quips in. He was the focus on my last book so he pretty sparse in this one. Willow and Giles are too but they get more during the next scooby scene.

page 18 – 22

When Buffy’s mom shows up, I wanted her mom to be more proactive. I also wanted her to not seem like she’s punishing Buffy. Also, I had Giles leave while Willow, Buffy, and Xander lie to Joyce to keep things in line with Buffy episodes before they all know Angel is a vampire.

page 23 – 25

Buffy and Joyce’s dinner is again trying to show Joyce putting time in that’s not about punishing Buffy. But at the same time I wanted everything Joyce said to make Buffy feel bad even if that’s not what Joyce intends.

page 26 – 29

This is one of the scenes between Angel and Buffy that in hind sight that is more season 2 or 3 Angel and Buffy rather than season 1. They don’t really confide in each other at this point. It was kinda a way to make Angel more present in the story to have Buffy confide in him. I did want Buffy to show that she appreciates her mom time. That sorta back and forth between wanting space and also wanting quality time is something that feels very teenager to me. Especially for a teenager that has a lot of responsibility.

page 30 – 33

This fight was mostly to get the information to Buffy so she can report it all back to Giles in the next scene.

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