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Fans and foes alike weighed in on the Slayer’s issue (#505, Oct. 1, 1999), driving a stake through our mailbag. While many readers were seeing red, others couldn’t wait to tear into the episode guide and read all about Sarah Michelle Gellar, David Boreanaz, and Joss Whedon. ”This is why I continue subscribing to EW instead of getting my driving permit,” admits Michael Morrison of Fredericton, New Brunswick. Elsewhere, Nehjaji Manjuh of Salem, Mass., took a stab at Steven Seagal for referring to himself as a musician in Flashes. ”We can’t take his movies seriously and now he expects us to believe he’s a musician?” writes Manjuh. ”Jet Li needs to take Seagal and Van Damme and kick their cinematic butts.” And people say we’re mean?

Blood, Sweat, and Tears

EW, you’ve done it again.

Thank you for the fabulous Buffy viewer’s guide. I’ve enjoyed your past episode guides on Seinfeld and The X-Files, but when I finished reading the Buffy issue, I was reminded once again of the show’s ability to continually surprise, amuse, and move me. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who shed a few tears when Buffy received her Class Protector award. Sheer magic.

Jennifer Revesz, Point Pleasant, N.J.

Okay, let’s just say the Buffy issue has insured my subscription to EW for all eternity. You’ve consistently recognized the brilliance of the show, its deserving of major awardage, phenomenal writers and crew, and its unsurpassable casting and appeal to a broad range of fans.

Jennifer Malzone, jenEfish@concentric.net, Las Vegas

What is with your constant adoration of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and its irritating overrated star, Sarah Michelle Gellar? It seems like every issue has at least several blurbs about this show, and now we get a whole issue devoted to it? I wanted someone to drive a stake through my heart when I saw this! Please stop. Check the ratings. Most of America doesn’t care.

David P. Cardin, Davidfur@aol.com, Albany, N.Y.

I’m tempted to ask ”who do you think you are?” But perhaps the more appropriate question is ”Who do you think we are?” What percentage of your readers do you think actually care to have — let alone read — a synopsis of 56 Buffy episodes? What next, a Providence primer? Snap out of it!

Rob Kustal, San Francisco

Brooks’ Shield

Mr. Browne, we mock what we don’t understand. Garth Brooks’ project In…The Life of Chris Gaines (”Gaines and Losses”) is a great concept, and even Garth admits it’s all in good fun. I, for one, think it’s the most fun I’ve had listening to a CD in a long time. I enjoy the concept of a soundtrack before the movie, loved the music, and look forward to more!

Mary Turner, turnerm@iserv.net, Grand Rapids, Mich.

Northern Exposure

I enjoyed your coverage of the Toronto International Film Festival (”Fest and Furious”) but have one question: Did you happen to catch any of the Canadian films featured? My brother and I saw 45 films, and the Canadian entries were by far the highlights of the festival, yet your reviewers fail to mention a single Canadian film. Perhaps you could stop feeding the myth that Canadian film isn’t worth seeing. Then you would truly be a world-class entertainment magazine, and not just the most exceptional reproducer of the American cultural machine.

Joe Restoule, restou3@uwindsor.ca, Windsor, Ontario

The ‘Best’ Response

After reading a write-up of Universal’s The Best Man (#499/500, Fall Movie Preview) I was altogether disappointed, offended, and appalled. What chagrined me so was the description of the film that read ”a Big Chill for the African-American audience.” I found this statement both inaccurate and ignorant, not to mention racist and stereotypical. I gather you were saying the movie is exclusively for African Americans, leaving out other races from its enjoyment, as well as setting up the idea that The Big Chill is solely for Caucasians. What right do you have to assume these things? On what grounds can such a bold and broad assumption be made? Merely because the cast of The Best Man is predominantly African-American? The subject matter — relationships, marriage, conflict — is universal. Do white people experience such things? My point is that if we predetermined audiences based on the color of artists’ skin, where would we be? These are the exact misconceptions that we, as an evolving society, are trying to combat. I challenge readers to have an open mind and be savvy enough to make their own decisions.

Taye Diggs, Actor, The Best Man, New York City