Ready, Steady... is the third issue of the Fray comic book series. It was written by Joss Whedon and illustrated by Karl Moline.

Synopsis[edit | edit source]

As a professional thief, Melaka Fray has seen her share of danger and excitement. But is she ready for the challenges facing a Slayer? This issue, Melaka learns some of the history of the Slayers and comes to understand a little about what it means to her. Ready or not, here she comes! She's taking on the forces of darkness like no one else can.[1]

Summary[edit | edit source]

Mel and the boy named Harth run from a vendor whom they had stolen from. They climb a roof, but Harth loses his footing and falls, screaming Mel’s name. She saves him and, as they climb to the top, they are delighted at their theft, which would feed them and their sister Erin. Suddenly, Icarus appears and claims that they were the food.

Mel wakes up from the nightmare and Urkonn tells her that it’s time to train. But Mel isn’t concerned; she takes her grab from the museum and intends to take it to Gunther. Urkonn accompanies her and is unimpressed. He tries to get her to see sense, and as they land on a moving transport, Mel asks him to explain her lack of dreams and the Slayer’s legacy.

Urkonn begins by telling her of magic, and the Old Ones. He tells her of the dawn of men and the expulsion of the demons from this reality. He claims that some demons remained on Earth, and some bred in the human community, infecting and transforming them. In order to conquer this threat, elders from various communities harnessed the power of the demons and implanted it in a girl: the First Slayer.

Before he could finish his tale, Mel realizes that they almost missed their stop, and leaps from the transport. They arrive at Gunther’s place, who is unimpressed to find a demon with Mel. Outside the building, the police has identified Mel, and Erin is upset to learn that her sister was dealing with the bad guys.

After dealing with Gunther, who takes the totem and elects to send it to his latest mysterious client, Mel takes Urkonn to an abandoned area and asks to train. She doesn’t do remarkably well, so Urkonn decides to continue his history lesson. He tells her about the Slayers and the Watchers — also claiming that he isn’t her Watcher). He describes the final Slayer in the 21st century, who fought a battle with mystical allies and banished all demons and magic from Earth; with no more demons, she was the last Slayer to be called.

Elsewhere, Icarus arrives at his leader’s hideaway with the totem. Concerned with Urkonn being with Melaka, he asks his master what to do.

At her apartment, Fray finds Loo upset. She says that Kettie Rawls called her a freak, and Mel decides to kick his ass. She explains to Urkonn that Loo’s parents run the tavern, and herself has a sister named Erin. She also claims she had a brother. At the Tavern, Rawls approaches Mel and makes a crude joke at her expense. She swing at him and starts a fight, which ended with her being ejected from the Tavern. As she sits outside on the pavement, Mel chooses to return inside. She looks up in horror, finding Icarus standing over her.

Continuity[edit | edit source]

  • Urkonn describes the Primordium Age, the expulsion of the Old Ones from Earth, and the creation of vampires and demons, a tale first mentioned in "Welcome to the Hellmouth" but more explored in The Core, Part One.
  • This issue introduces the origin of the Slayer as well as the existence of the Shadow Men, to be explored in the television show in "Get It Done".
  • Urkonn, in the dark at Gunther’s place, comments already disliking it and feeling something was wrong with it; this is a likely reference to his inability to swim, as revealed in All Hell.
  • Urkonn reveals that the man who set himself on fire in Big City Girl was in fact Melaka Fray's Watcher.
  • It’s revealed that Mel’s amulet and totem grabs (Big City Girl, The Calling) are being collected for Icarus’ master.
  • Urkonn tells Melaka how to kill a lurk, as she didn’t know while confronting one at the museum (The Calling). She’ll dust her first lurks in Alarums.

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Individuals[edit | edit source]

Organizations and titles[edit | edit source]

Species[edit | edit source]

Events[edit | edit source]

Locations[edit | edit source]

Objects and weapons[edit | edit source]

  • Ray gun
  • Stake (Only in flashbacks)
  • Sword (Only in flashbacks)

Death count[edit | edit source]

  • An unidentified vampire, beheaded by a Slayer (in flashback).

Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]

Distribution[edit | edit source]

  • Ready, Steady... was the 95º best selling comic issue in its publishing month, with 19,647 sales in August 2001 at comic specialty stores.[2] It was also among the 300 best selling of October 2001.[3]

Collections[edit | edit source]

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Cover artwork[edit | edit source]

Quotes[edit | edit source]

Urkonn: “The elders of several villages met, calling for action. They invoked the strongest and most dangerous magicks they could summon, to create a power. A power that could fight the vampires. A power that lived… in the body of a girl.”

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "Joss Whedon's Fray #3 (of 8)". Dark Horse Comics. Retrieved March 06, 2018.
  2. "Top 300 Comics--August 2001". ICv2, July 31, 2001. Retrieved March 06, 2018.
  3. "Top 300 Comics--October 2001". ICv2, October 03, 2001. Retrieved March 19, 2018.
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