ok, so we’ve all heard of Buffy - vampires, slaying, turning her hometown into a crater in the last episode whilst sealing the connection between the demon world and ours, yes?

As part of the Buffy tv series, we heard about the lineage of slayers from the beginning of time - a strong girl is chosen to be trained with superhuman strength and agility to poke vamps and keep the balance of demon:mortal balanced.

What the graphic novel miniseries ‘Fray’ documents is the trials and tribumalations of Melaka Fray, a future slayer who doesn’t realise her power because evidence of the patronage of slayers was lost after the sealing of the hellmouth.  Fray is a rather sexy thief, lifting ancient artefacts for a decidedly fishy character; her sister is a cop trying to bring Fray in, her twin brother got a little bit too close to a lurk (vampire), but watch this space…..; the scary (but buff) baddy is a lurk called Icarus; and Melaka’s watcher (who is insistent that he’s not her watcher) is a big red demon with goat-style horns and bare skull where his nose should be. strangely reminiscent of the demon that Giles turns into in the episode which i’m sure Mr Blackett or Miss Blakeborough will be able to elaborate on (cue comments from Blackett and Blakeborough please :) )

As with the Buffy media, Fray is written by Joss Whedon - he of the tremendous ability to write wit (see Serenity, and Firefly).  Whedon brings his humour back to the table with Fray’s cynicism and Urkonn (goat guy) bumbling along behind her saying things like ‘I don’t think that was the best idea’ after Fray jumps straight into a crowd of bloodsuckers.

Various story arcs include Fray coming to the realisation that she is actually a slayer, ducking and diving out of her sister’s clutches, looking after her streetmouse friend, Loo, and Urkonn having intriguing conversations with his elder demons, which appear to link it all, but not in the right way, hummm. Oh, and we see the scary magic axe/stake weapon that Willow conjured so wonderfully for us on tv, wooples.

With absolutely astounding illustration and colouring from Karl Moline and Andy Owens this miniseries really pushes the boundaries of quality for this style of graphic novel, i would like to give it 8 lurk-bashings out of 10. go her.