BBC Online has some nifty video clips created last weekend backstage at a U.K. fan convention called Nocturnal, which featured Joss Whedon, James Marsters, a behorned Amber Benson, surprise guest Nicholas Brendan (who demonstrated the Snoopy dance for delighted delegates), and others who have made their livings from the Buffyverse.
The best of the backstage clips, I thought, was Whedon discussing the “Giles” series. Here’s a transcript of sorts (in case your RealPlayer is tempermental):
“There is no series per se. I mean, I’m talking to the BBC, we haven’t made a deal, there is no financing, nothing’s in place, except that I know they’re interested, I really want to do it, Tony wants to do it, and I did sort of write an outline for a pilot because I just sort of worked it out and I know exactly what I want the show to be. So if we can put the thing together and I can find the time to get out here and get it started, it should fall into place pretty quickly, but right now it’s still just in the negotiation stage.
“The idea to me is that he’s a very lonely character, actually. And what’s interesting about him is his whole life was centered around this girl, how he comes back and he’s got to kind of find his life again. And I want to make a show that’s very quiet, very adult, dealing with ghost stories and family metaphors and monsters representing what’s wrong with us, in the same way as in ‘Buffy,’ but without the kickboxing demons. ‘Giles’ is a little more adult show. Somebody who’s very quiet. Really just mysteries with ghosts in them, with some genuine horror, some real creep to it. There’s so much good stuff to play off here in England. But something that’s just not so frenetic as ‘Buffy’ is.
“I didn’t watch a lot of American television when I was a kid. I thought it was pretty insipid. And so I wound up watching ‘Masterpiece Theatre’ and ‘Monty Python’ and wishing I was British. I got over it when I moved here.
“One of my writers was like, ‘He could just walk into a room, make a drink, sit down and think, and that can be the scene!’ And I was like, ‘Exactly! That’s just the kind of show I want to do!’ And the BBC was like, ‘Not too British. I mean, something’s going to happen, isn’t it?’ I said, ‘Yeah yeah yeah, there’ll be monsters, there’ll be stuff.’”