Is the Scooby Gang (are they still called that? And if they are, is it ironically?) now down a member? And what ever happened to Xander Harris?

Buffy the Vampire Slayer 5
Written by Jordie Bellaire
Pencils and Inks by David Lopez
Colors by Raul Angulo

Well, if you wanted the new series to go in a completely different direction from the original BUFFY TV series, turning Xander into a vampire is certainly one way to go. The set up for Drusilla offering him a chance to turn last issue was built up really well in the first couple of issues and I think we’re still waiting on the final payoff.

Xander was always something of a sad sack character – an outcast even within his own group of outcasts. He was the only one in the group without powers and was frequently used, abused or ignored. Twenty years after the source material debuted, I think exploring the potential for Xander to be clinically depressed is an interesting angle. At least it was, until it took a turn and had him give himself over to Drusilla.

There’s material to be mined there, but probably not all that much. Either they find a way to turn him back into a human – the possibility of which is brought up in this issue, by sending Buffy to barter with Anya – or he remains a vampire and becomes a foil for Buffy. But Buffy has only known Xander for a matter of weeks at this point in their continuity. While it may pain Willow to have to dust him, I can’t imagine Buffy would have much of an issue with it.

Of course, there’s the option of having Xander replace Spike as Drusilla’s companion.

The Xan-pire shows a little bit more ferocity when he finally confronts Buffy and Willow than Spike has in the new continuity. Who’s to say that the fickle Dru doesn’t see something she admires and brings him in, setting up a logical Xander-Spike feud? I actually really like the thought of that…

I continue to be sucked in to this new Buffy re-Vamp, as the storytelling has been much better than the first season of the TV series. There’s so much potential, and with the new ANGEL series finally launching, I’m expecting a good year for the Buffyverse.