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Buffy, Ballads, and Bad Guys Who Sing: Music in the Worlds of Joss Whedon

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When writer and director Joss Whedon created the character Buffy the Vampire Slayer, he could hardly have expected the resulting academic interest in his work. Yet almost six years after the end of Buffy on television, Buffy studies--and academic work on Whedon's expanding oeuvre--continue to grow. Now with three hugely popular television shows, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, A When writer and director Joss Whedon created the character Buffy the Vampire Slayer, he could hardly have expected the resulting academic interest in his work. Yet almost six years after the end of Buffy on television, Buffy studies--and academic work on Whedon's expanding oeuvre--continue to grow. Now with three hugely popular television shows, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, and Firefly, and the film Serenity all available on DVD, scholars are evaluating countless aspects of the Whedon universe (or Whedonverse). Buffy, Ballads, and Bad Guys Who Sing: Music in the Worlds of Joss Whedon studies the significant role that music plays in these works, from Buffy the Vampire Slayer to the internet musical Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. Kendra Preston Leonard has collected a varying selection of essays that explore music and sound in Joss Whedon's works. The essays investigate both diegetic and non-diegetic music, considering music from various sources, including the shows' original scores, music performed by the characters themselves, and music contributed by such artists as Michelle Branch, The Sex Pistols, and Sarah McLachlan, as well as classical composers like Camille Saint-Sa�ns and Johannes Brahms. The approaches incorporate historical and theoretical musicology, feminist and queer musicology, media studies, cultural history, and interdisciplinary readings. The book also explores the compositions written by Whedon himself: the theme music for Firefly, and two fully integrated musicals, the Buffy episode Once More, With Feeling and Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. With several musical examples, a table with a full breakdown of the Danse Macabre scene from the acclaimed Buffy episode Hush, and an index, this volume will be fascinating to students and scholars of science-fiction, television, film, and popular culture.


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When writer and director Joss Whedon created the character Buffy the Vampire Slayer, he could hardly have expected the resulting academic interest in his work. Yet almost six years after the end of Buffy on television, Buffy studies--and academic work on Whedon's expanding oeuvre--continue to grow. Now with three hugely popular television shows, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, A When writer and director Joss Whedon created the character Buffy the Vampire Slayer, he could hardly have expected the resulting academic interest in his work. Yet almost six years after the end of Buffy on television, Buffy studies--and academic work on Whedon's expanding oeuvre--continue to grow. Now with three hugely popular television shows, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, and Firefly, and the film Serenity all available on DVD, scholars are evaluating countless aspects of the Whedon universe (or Whedonverse). Buffy, Ballads, and Bad Guys Who Sing: Music in the Worlds of Joss Whedon studies the significant role that music plays in these works, from Buffy the Vampire Slayer to the internet musical Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. Kendra Preston Leonard has collected a varying selection of essays that explore music and sound in Joss Whedon's works. The essays investigate both diegetic and non-diegetic music, considering music from various sources, including the shows' original scores, music performed by the characters themselves, and music contributed by such artists as Michelle Branch, The Sex Pistols, and Sarah McLachlan, as well as classical composers like Camille Saint-Sa�ns and Johannes Brahms. The approaches incorporate historical and theoretical musicology, feminist and queer musicology, media studies, cultural history, and interdisciplinary readings. The book also explores the compositions written by Whedon himself: the theme music for Firefly, and two fully integrated musicals, the Buffy episode Once More, With Feeling and Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. With several musical examples, a table with a full breakdown of the Danse Macabre scene from the acclaimed Buffy episode Hush, and an index, this volume will be fascinating to students and scholars of science-fiction, television, film, and popular culture.

53 review for Buffy, Ballads, and Bad Guys Who Sing: Music in the Worlds of Joss Whedon

  1. 5 out of 5

    Mickie84 Tencza

    Started reading this because one of the articles is by an American University professor I like and admire - and I used to discuss all things Whedon with him. I'm am only a third of the way through, but I am enjoying it very much. Started reading this because one of the articles is by an American University professor I like and admire - and I used to discuss all things Whedon with him. I'm am only a third of the way through, but I am enjoying it very much.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Maria

    DNF at 15%. I was reading this for a book challenge, but it’s so dense and academic that I just couldn’t bring myself to keep slogging through.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    I feel like such a geek that this is what I am reading in my free time after taking classes and teaching, but I found it so fascinating. I love that "pop culture" is being taken seriously and studied academically. I have a very small background in music, but did find I had to look a few terms up to get the gist of a few things. However, each essay provided a really interesting look into the world of music in the Whedonverse. I found the essays on Buffy to be the most compelling and I would have I feel like such a geek that this is what I am reading in my free time after taking classes and teaching, but I found it so fascinating. I love that "pop culture" is being taken seriously and studied academically. I have a very small background in music, but did find I had to look a few terms up to get the gist of a few things. However, each essay provided a really interesting look into the world of music in the Whedonverse. I found the essays on Buffy to be the most compelling and I would have liked to see at least one more essay on Dr. Horrible, but I guess that just means I'll have to go write it. A fascinating academic look at the music for any Whedon fan who wants to dig a little deeper.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Greg

    I really enjoyed this. I actually learned a bit about music analysis and it was fun to read about it with the background of content I really like. I'm continuously surprised at how fascinating I find these scholarly approaches to popular media to be. I really enjoyed this. I actually learned a bit about music analysis and it was fun to read about it with the background of content I really like. I'm continuously surprised at how fascinating I find these scholarly approaches to popular media to be.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Serena

    Some of the essays get quite obscure (pretentious?) but interesting. I had to get over an automatic defensive reaction whenever an author was critical of Joss.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Dan Still

    This sounds extremely interesting... MUST FIND!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Chris

  8. 5 out of 5

    Kelle Mcclumpha

  9. 4 out of 5

    Amy Pascale

  10. 4 out of 5

    Alysa H.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Beth

  12. 4 out of 5

    Cynthia Frazer

  13. 4 out of 5

    Mickey Asteriou

  14. 4 out of 5

    Rose Tyler

  15. 4 out of 5

    Emily

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kendra

  17. 5 out of 5

    Rita

  18. 5 out of 5

    Valerie

  19. 4 out of 5

    Oneil Ferrer

  20. 5 out of 5

    Shiraz

  21. 5 out of 5

    Sage

  22. 5 out of 5

    Hannah

  23. 5 out of 5

    Robin Anony

  24. 4 out of 5

    Lily

  25. 4 out of 5

    Emily

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jacqueline

  27. 5 out of 5

    Emily May

  28. 5 out of 5

    Tami

  29. 4 out of 5

    Alison

  30. 5 out of 5

    Pedro

  31. 4 out of 5

    Jaimee

  32. 4 out of 5

    Shannon

  33. 5 out of 5

    Monica Colling

  34. 4 out of 5

    Slayermel

  35. 5 out of 5

    Luann

  36. 5 out of 5

    Darbus

  37. 5 out of 5

    Pamster

  38. 4 out of 5

    C.G.

  39. 4 out of 5

    Renee

  40. 5 out of 5

    orangerful

  41. 4 out of 5

    Ellyn

  42. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Cash

  43. 5 out of 5

    Darla

  44. 5 out of 5

    Bunny

  45. 4 out of 5

    Leanna Hammond

  46. 4 out of 5

    Dom

  47. 5 out of 5

    Celeste

  48. 5 out of 5

    Wendy

  49. 4 out of 5

    Erin

  50. 4 out of 5

    Cathy

  51. 4 out of 5

    Stacia

  52. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

  53. 4 out of 5

    Genniwho

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