New Rules, Part Three is the third issue of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Ten comic series. Written by Christos Gage and Nicholas Brendon, and illustrated by Rebekah Isaacs, it was published on May 21, 2014 by Dark Horse Comics. Joss Whedon is the executive producer.
Actor Nicholas Brendon joins the creative team as his character Xander acquires help from his old friend — um, master — Dracula. The new vampires are still a mystery, and unquestionably similar to Drac… Meanwhile, Buffy and Willow track down one of those new vampires as a study specimen!
Xander and Dawn arrive at Dracula's castle in Transylvania, where Dracula and his manservant Butterfield are making up all kinds of stories about having a wonderful time in Xander's absence. Xander warns Dawn about the thrall that he is prone to, which she acknowledges. The three discuss the shapeshifting power the vampires sired since the formation of the new Seed of Wonder have, and Xander asks if Dracula has been gambling away his powers again, which is not the case. Learning that the new vampires' powers might outshine his own, Dracula agrees to come to San Francisco to investigate.
In San Francisco, a group of new vampires are about to sire two young men when Dracula intervenes, appalled that they are granting his powers to mere mortals. The group attacks Dracula until Buffy and Spike arrive, and they quickly dispose of the vampires. The group arrives at Xander and Dawn's apartment, where Willow and Giles invoke a spell to get Dracula to talk. Dracula suggests Buffy and Willow to capture one of the new vampires so they can investigate their powers.
Buffy and Willow head out to capture a vampire, while discussing Xander and Dawn's relationship problems and the fact that their family is together again. While they are away, Dracula awakens from his sleep to steal the Slayer Handbook, attacking Giles, Dawn, and Spike, and putting Xander back under his control before fleeing the apartment.
- Dawn mentions that she remembers Xander under Dracula's thrall, even though she wasn't physically there, as she indeed only appeared at the end of the episode ("Buffy vs. Dracula").
- Dawn recalls Dracula's time with the Slayer Organization in Japan (Wolves at the Gate, Part Three and Four).
- Xander and Dracula discuss about him gambling his powers again, in reference to Toru's vampire pack (Wolves at the Gate, Part Two).
- Willow quotes "I won't tell if you won't," the same phrase she said about her magic powers in The Core, Part Two.
- Andrew wears his Dracula costume from Wolves at the Gate, Part Two.
- Dracula recognizes Giles though his accent and blood's scent, noticing he had "shrunk," as they've met in "Buffy vs. Dracula."
- Dawn saying "I love you." and Xander answering "No. You don't." mirrors Buffy and Spike's dialog in "Chosen."
- Aluwyn (Only mentioned)
- Robert Dowling (Only mentioned)
- Rupert Giles
- Alexander Harris
- Billy Lane (Only mentioned)
- Maloker (Only mentioned)
- Willow Rosenberg
- Buffy Summers
- Dawn Summers
- Andrew Wells
- Buffy's San Francisco neighbor (Only mentioned)
- Mohawk vampire
Organization and titles
- San Francisco, USA
- Sutro Baths's ruins
- Xander and Dawn's apartment
- Transylvania, Romania
Weapons and objects
Behind the scenes
- Rebekah Isaacs's variant cover homages the movie Dracula (1931), mimicking its famous poster.
- Nicholas Brendon, who portrayed Xander in the series, debuts as a co-writer on this issue.
- Steve Morris's cover was later turned into a poster and bookmark for the American Library Association "Read" campaign, with the phrase "Slay ignorance."
- New Rules, Part Three was the 118th best selling comic issue in its publishing month, with 20,556 sales in May 2014 at comic specialty stores.
Pop culture references
- Xander mentions the use of Skype.
- Xander compares Dracula's inability to control lightning to the character and mythological god Thor.
- Xander compares new vampires to the photo sharing app Instagram, and Dracula to instant film and camera brand Polaroid.
- Dracula mentions Bram Stoker writing the novel "Dracula" (1897), and Giles shows the book.
- Andrew mentions that Dracula's positive thinking is very Deepak Chopra.
- Dawn notes that she should be Black Widow because of her positive thinking.
- Buffy mentions her neighbor practicing an Olivia Newton-John drag show.
- Andrew makes a reference to Peter Pan, and also mentions Batman.
- Buffy mentions fictional pirate Jack Sparrow when she learns about Dawn and Xander's role playing.
- Spike refers to Dracula as Adam Ant.
- Giles quotes Aristotle's syllogism mentioning the classical philosopher Socrates.
|Dracula - “Forgive the mess. I’ve just held the traditional Tuesday evening orgy and it was fantastic fun. Fantastic fun! You remember the Tuesday night orgies.”|
|Xander - “Wait, what? Wait…no, I think I’d remember a ‘fantastic orgy’.”|
|Dracula - “Oh yes… we started after you left. How sad you had to miss the orgies.”|
|Dracula - “Have your child bride pack my trunk. This bears investigation.”|
|Xander - “Hey, she’s street legal, pal. And she only packs my trunk. Wait. That came out wrong.”|
|Dawn - “I’ll be in the jet.”|
|Dracula - “Take special care with my undergarments. If some went missing I doubt I’d even notice.”|
|Xander - “I’ll be in the jet.”|
|Buffy - “You expect us to believe you got your powers through positive thinking?”|
|Andrew - “Holy Deepak Chopra, Batman!”|
|Dawn - “If that worked, I’d be Black Widow.”|
|Xander - “Hey, we can make that happen.”|
|Buffy - “We’re hopeless, aren’t we? It’s just not fair to expect anyone to put up with our crazy-pants lives.”|
|Willow - “Probably, yeah. That’s what friends are for. The people who aren’t in your live ‘cause they’re related or hot for you. They just love you. And for the first time in ages, we’re all together again.”|
|Xander - “See, Giles? I always said video games were more interesting than magic books.”|
|Giles - “I’m simply taking a break. I find myself easily distracted. This… relaxes me.”|
|Xander - “Wait, rob that hooker. You need money.”|
|Giles - “I will do no such thing. I am a gentleman.”|
|Xander - “You’re a pimp and a mobster! It’s a game! Shoot those cops!”|