Those who don’t know me may be surprised by my choice of Dark Horse’s BTVS #5 (“The Chain”) as the best single issue of the year but I am not alone in my choice. Wizard magazine named Buffy the best series transition from TV to comics and I wholeheartedly concur.
Though other media have spawned comic book material in the past (i.e. Robocop, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Star Wars and many others) and vice versa, there is no other single comic transitioned from a defunct tv show that I can think so that has made such a seamless connection. Perhaps the fact that series creator Joss Whedon has continued the story in comic book format has a lot to do with it, but I also believe that it is the quality of the art team which should also be given credit as penciller Georges Jeanty has done an amazing job with the artistic chores on the book.
That makes it ironic because the best single issue was pencilled not by Jeanty but by guest penciller Paul Lee from a script by Whedon, although that has been a staple of the book, its ability to bring in industry superstars like Brian K. Vaughn and not skip a beat.
I won’t rehash the plot specifics here, though I provide this link to my original review in case anyone wants to read it. Suffice it to say this tale of Buffy set in the post-Sunnydale universe worked as a one shot due to the fact it came closest to the original premise of the show, featuring the chain of Slayers which has existed throughout history and spotlighting a single Slayer other than Buffy.
This along makes it the single best issue of the year in my opinion.