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Riley: Commitment Through Distance, Virtue Through Sin

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Buffy Comic Books
Riley: Commitment Through Distance, Virtue Through Sin
Riley1a
Publication date August 18, 2010
Published by Dark Horse Comics
Creative Team
Written by Jane Espenson
Comic Book Collections
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Last Gleaming

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Riley is a spin off/one-shot issue of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Eight comic books.

Acclaimed Buffy television writer Jane Espenson (The Thrill, Battlestar Galactica) is back with answers to one of the surprising twists she and Executive Producer Joss Whedon introduced in the hit story arc “Retreat!"

In the midst of the battle, Buffy’s former flame, the demon-fighting soldier Riley Finn, seemingly in league with Twilight, was revealed as a double agent working for the Slayer army. Now Espenson and artist Karl Moline (Fray, Willow) uncover the secrets of Riley’s recruitment by Buffy, his infiltration of Twilight’s inner circle, and what’s become of he and his superspy wife Sam. This essential one-shot delivers thrilling spy adventure and is filled with major revelations for the story of Buffy Season 8!

Synopsis

Riley and Sam are planning to settle down in Iowa, taking over half of Riley's parents' farm. However, Riley has been approached by Twilight to join the anti-Slayer forces and by Buffy to spy on Twilight for her as a double agent. Sam encourages Riley to accept Buffy's offer, but Riley is hesitant to go back into the world-saving life and worries that if he does this then Sam will take it as permission to accept more missions from the government during their "retirement". Sam tells him that she does not need permission; if the government wanted her help, then it would be important, like helping Buffy is important. Riley is also concerned about what he may have to do to gain Twilight's trust.

Meanwhile, Angel (Twilight) and Whistler are discussing their overall plan, which Angel hates. Whistler insists that uniting Buffy's enemies against her and pushing her to evolve is the only way to achieve the greater good, and that he has seen possible futures where Angel comes clean with Buffy right now and fights beside her, only for both of them to die in battle.

Sam and Riley are on one of their last missions before taking over the farm, trying to figure out what went wrong with a missile silo that launched missiles into the sea near an island. It turns out to be a lure set up by Twilight forces on the island. Twilight and his minions confront the couple and ask if Riley has decided to accept his offer. Riley does, and the Twilight symbol is carved on his chest.

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See also: canon

This series has been described as 'canon' by both Whedon and various commentators. As the creator of Buffy, Joss Whedon's association with Buffyverse story is often linked to how canonical the various stories are. Since Whedon is writing this story, it will be seen as a continuation of the official continuity established by Buffy and Angel.

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