When Dark Horse announced that they were launching a "

Buffy The Vampire Slayer

" comic book series to be written by series creator

Joss Whedon

and start where the TV show left off, I thought it would be reasonably successful.

After all, the character has long had a strong, loyal fanbase.

I did think expectations should be tempered somewhat, though. The original "Buffy" series from Dark Horse was true to the spirit of the TV show and told some fun stories, yet struggled to crack the Top 100 on the sales charts while the show was still on the air.

Once the show ended, the comic series did as well.

So now, four years after her last small screen adventure, with hope of reunion projects looking slimmer every day, I wondered how much of a fan base Buffy had left. These doubts were amplified when the "Buffy" and "Angel" fan mags recently combined into one publication. This was yet another indication that, without new material, fan interest - and the number of "Buffy" fans in general - was dwindling.

So the debut issue of "Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season Eight" hit comic shelves on March 14 and sold out in most shops within 48 hours. According to series editor Scott Allie, the issue has already sold over 100,000 copies, will be followed up with a second, and possibly third, printing and is possibly the biggest selling comic in the history of Dark Horse Comics.

All of which should be yet another example that you should never underestimate the power of the Slayer.

The sucess of the issue can be attributed to many things - "Buffy" fanatics hungry to see the season that never made it to their TV screens; the fact that Whedon is writing the opening arc and that many comic fans who may have never given "Buffy" a shot before have become fans of his comic book writing, specifically the monstrously popular "Astonishing X-Men."

Of course, it doesn't hurt that the story is pretty darn good, either.

The issue deals with the new reality of their being an army of Slayers and there is the usual action, one-liners and inside jokes that will be a treat for longtime fans while not alienating new ones. Whedon also takes advantage of the limitless special effects a comic provides and shows how characters like Xander and Dawn have grown (literally, in Dawn's case).

There is also a classic clifhanger featuring a familiar face.

Allie told newsarama.com that although Whedon had originally stated he wanted to do 22 issues to make the comic like a TV season, he has now come up with so many ideas, Allie can see the book going on for over 50 issues.

Jolie is a Fox - no, really!

According to Variety, Angelina Jolie will play the tole of the Fox in the film "Wanted," Universal's adaptation of the popular comic created by Mark Millar and JG Jones. Shooting is scheduled to begin in May.

According to , will play the tole of the in the film "Wanted," Universal's adaptation of the popular comic created by and . Shooting is scheduled to begin in May.

Jolie joins a cast that includes James McAvoy and Morgan Freeman.

According to Variety, McAvoy will follow in his murdered father's footsteps to become an assassin and Jolie will be his mentor.

There is already some controversy about the move, since the comic Fox bore a strong resemblance to Halle Berry. This has led to complaints about a strong black character being played by a white actress.

However, Hollywood seems to be increasingly colorblind when it comes to these roles and it is worth noting that white characters with a much longer and richer history - the Kingpin, Alicia Masters and Invisible Woman to name three - have been played onscreen by non-whites.

What matters most is the Fox has to be sassy and sexy, and Jolie has those qualities - in addition to an action-movie pedigree, name recognition and bankability. Those were the reasons she was "Wanted." *

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