Anywhere but Here is the tenth issue of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Eight comic book series. It was written by Joss Whedon and illustrated by Cliff Richards. Joss Whedon is the executive producer.
Buffy and Willow meet a demon who reveals a dim future, forcing the two to reflect on their past. Meanwhile, back in Scotland, Dawn confides in Xander the deed that led to her mysterious growth spurt.
Threatened by Twilight’s surprise, Willow and Buffy fly to the lair of Sephrilian, one of the Tichajt, to question the demon about the matter. During their flight, they talk about their personal fantasies. Buffy questions Willow about Kennedy’s whereabouts, but Willow avoids the question just as they finally arrive at the lair that resembles an old cottage. There, they are greeted by Robin, a Minder who stabilizes the reality field inside the lair. She warns Willow not to use magic inside and informs Buffy to rescue the prince, much to their confusion. The two enters the lair and find themselves set on a never ending staircase. They decide to play a game.
At the castle, Xander surprises Dawn with a gift: her trunk full of clothes and articles enlarged. Amongst her possessions, Xander comes across a picture of regular-sized Dawn with her ex-boyfriend Kenny. Dawn finally reveals to Xander that she never slept with Kenny like she had told everyone. She had in fact slept with his college roommate, Nick. Xander comforts her saying that she is only guilty of being human. He asks if she feels better getting it off her chest. She doesn’t respond.
Back inside the reality field in the lair, Buffy and Willow finally meet Sephrilian. Since he can walk through all realities, Buffy demanded what the mysterious Twilight means, to which he replies: “The death of magic.” Sephrilian grows impatient with them and decides to send them through a series of past and future events. First, Buffy and Willow find themselves looking at Buffy and other Slayers robbing a Swiss Bank for funds, an event that occurred months ago. Willow explained to Buffy that this is what the United States government fears.
Robin joins them as they are situated in a new setting: Buffy on the floor, beaten and crying, a cracked red crystal sitting on a podium in the centre of the room. No evidence is been given yet as to how it gets broken or what it does. Robin explains that she will be betrayed by the closest and most unexpected. She then senses a disruption and leaves. Buffy asks Willow if is the betrayer. She claims that no, not any more than she already had. The two suddenly find themselves watching Willow and Kennedy after Willow had escaped from Warren and the U.S. Government. Willow and Kennedy argues about why Willow had kept her from Buffy for the past year. Willow breaks down in tears blaming herself for Tara’s death. She believes that because she resurrected Buffy, she doomed her lover in exchange and wishes to avoid the same fate for Kennedy. Buffy witnesses the revelation in disbelief.
Suddenly, Sephrilian returns and informs them that he welcomes the upcoming war. Willow then lends Buffy some of her powers to slay Sephrilian. Because she performed magic, however, the lair explodes. Nevertheless, Robin magically rebuilds it within seconds and asks what happened in there. Buffy explains “It was demons. Playing games.” She and Willow walk away.
- “Anywhere but here” is a game Willow and Buffy had previously played in "The Dark Age".
- Buffy eventually shares her interest in actor Daniel Craig with Andrew, in Predators and Prey.
- Dawn finally reveals, to Xander, the true reason she has been cursed.
- Like Buffy, Willow is shown still distrustful of Faith, having never really sympathized with her.
- Willow has a vision of herself with Aluwyn, whom she first met in Willow: Goddesses and Monsters.
- The final vision of Buffy lying injured is from the future events in Last Gleaming, Part Four.
- When Dawn tells Xander about whom she had slept with, he curiously asked "Was this guy, by any chance, in a band?" Xander has long-since had a negative opinion of band members, viewing them as troublemakers and dangerous ("Phases").
- The Slayer Organization’s source of funding is revealed, as Willow had tried to question Buffy in No Future for You, Part Three.
- Buffy argues that the bank she robbed had the items insured, a concern she initially had when robbing Meyer Sports and Tackle with Faith ("Bad Girls").
- Willow’s guilt over Tara’s death had also previously been featured in "The Killer in Me".
- Though Willow states that she feels guilty over resurrecting Buffy because she believes that, if she hadn’t, Tara would still be alive, she later admits she has never regretted doing so for a second (Family Reunion, Part One).
- Parker Abrams (Only mentioned)
- Aluwyn (Only in visions)
- Riley Finn (Only mentioned)
- Rupert Giles (Only mentioned)
- Xander Harris
- Kennedy (Only in flashbacks)
- Ken (Only in flashbacks)
- Leah (Only in visions)
- Tara Maclay (Only mentioned)
- Nick (Only in flashbacks)
- Willow Rosenberg
- Rowena (Only in visions)
- Satsu (Only in visions)
- Buffy Summers
- Dawn Summers
Organizations and titles
- Scooby Gang
- Slayer Organization
- Twilight Group (Only mentioned)
- Watcher (Only mentioned)
- End of magic (Only mentioned)
- Switerzland (Only in visions)
- Sunnydale, USA
- The Church (Order of Aurelius) (Only in visions)
Weapons and objects
- The Sephrilian, killed by Buffy and Willow.
Behind the scenes
- Dark Horse Comics held a contest for one reader to be given a cameo shot in Buffy. The winner was Jerrod Balzer, an author who wrote an entry on behalf of his wife, Robin. He wrote about watching Buffy and sharing it with her at the beginning of the onset of Robin’s schizophrenia:
- Robin and I didn’t have cable or satellite for years, so we had only seen the original movie of Buffy until the first season came to DVD. At that time, schizophrenia was gradually taking over my wife’s mind. Our growing love for the show as each season came out gave something for my wife to focus on and look forward to during those first dark and confusing years. The character Drusilla gave her a fantasy icon to relate to, and kept her spirits up as though she were a part of the story, and of course Buffy’s character gave her the strength to battle her ‘demons’.
- Now, she’s completely disabled from her illness, in and out of coherence, but I keep Buffy and Angel posters on the wall which give her focus even when we’re not watching them. We’ve also become attached to Firefly. Again, she can relate to River in her own way. We really owe a lot to the imagination of Joss Whedon.
- For this reason, I know it would mean the world to my wife, Robin, if she could see herself with Buffy in a comic. For the struggle she consistently goes through, I feel she deserves to be with a character that’s helped her so much over the years.
- Upon reading the winner’s entry, Whedon decided to expand that character’s role and feature her as a critical part of the story, as opposed to a simple cameo. She appeared in this issue as well as on the variant cover with Buffy and Willow.
- Five days prior to its release, editor Scott Allie sent contest winner Jerrod Baltzer a copy of the issue to ease his anxiety. Jerrod claimed:
- I can’t get over how breathtaking this issue is. I loved Robin’s role and Joss wrote her perfectly. It seemed like she stepped right into the comic!
- It’s been very helpful, too, just this week. She’s had a lot of episodes lately where she thinks people are coming after her to wrap her in barbwire and put her on the train to Hell, so she needs to find her tickets. I’ll just remind her of the (incredibly accurate) metaphors that Joss used in the issue and she was able to come out of it easier. The visuals helped bring things into perspective that Buffy and Willow really are there for her.
- He furthered on detailing another episode Robin underwent:
- If I may share a moment that just happened, Robin was just yelling about monsters trying to come in the house to kill her. I reminded her that Buffy and Willow are every bit as real as those monsters, and then I held the comic in front of her. It took a moment to process, but then she said, “I’m a minder. Buffy and Willow’s got my back!”
- “I said, “That’s right. If anything tries to mess with your mind, they’ll kick butt and cut tails off.”
- “Yeah!” Her face brightened and her face went “normal” again. “Can I have some decaf coffee?”
- “Sure, sweetheart.”
- “With marshmallows?”
- Her episodes can last a lot longer than that. I could have been working with her all night, the poor thing terrified that she wasn’t safe. But not with that comic, and I’m not fooling her, either. Buffy and Willow really ARE as real as her hallucinations. They’re a part of all of us.
- I also keep reminding her that fellow Buffy fans all over the world are rooting for her and it means so much to both of us. Thanks again for everyone’s support.
- Anywhere but Here was the fourteenth best selling comic issue in its publishing month, with 88,474 sales in January 2008 at comic specialty stores.
Pop culture references
- In Buffy’s fantasy, she lays besides a book written “Lestat” with a vampire mouth in the cover, a likely reference to the novel The Vampire Lestat (1985).
- Buffy fantasizes about actor Daniel Craig approaching her at the beach.
- Willow fantasizes about being in a cabin with comedian Tina Fey during a snowstorm.
- Buffy also reveals a fantasy involving two versions of actor Christian Bale, particularly his roles in Little Women and Reign of Fire.
- French: Partout sauf Ici (Anywhere but Here)
- German: Überall und Nirgends (Everywhere and Nowhere)
- Italian: Ovunque, ma non qui (Anywhere, but not Here)
- Portuguese (Brazil): Qualquer lugar, menos aqui (Anywhere but Here)
- Russian: Не где-нибудь, но только здесь (Not Anywhere, but Only Here)
- Spanish: En Cualquier Lugar Menos Aquí (Anywhere but Here)
- Turkish: Dünyalar Arasında (Between Worlds)
- This issue was adapted into a Season Eight Motion Comic episode.
|Sephrilian: “All my faces are there to see. Buy you humans… you have too many.”|
- “Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 8: #10 Anywhere but Here”. Dark Horse Comics. Retrieved January 22, 2018.
- “Winners of Buffy/MySpace Contest Announced 4/4/07”. Dark Horse Comics. Retrieved May 5, 2019.
- “For the discussion of Buffy #10”. Whedonesque.com, January 3, 2008. Retrieved February 6, 2008.
- “For the discussion of Buffy #10”. Whedonesque.com, January 3, 2008. Retrieved February 6, 2008.
- “Top 300 Comics Actual--January 2008”. ICv2, March 3, 2008. Retrieved January 22, 2018.