Wenxian Tan, Fanbase Press Contributor

Wenxian Tan, Fanbase Press Contributor

Previously on Angel + Spike: Angel is on the case… some creepy dude with no eyes and a thing for biting people. The irony is rather rich. LAPD Officer Kate Lockley is also investigating which inevitably brings them together.  

Quick recap: While the McGuires (and Rose) successfully staved off Arthur’s attempt at bringing xenophobia back in style, they did not come out of the experience unscathed. Having learned of his family’s history and accepting the nature of his calling, Duncan is a bit more jaded now, and his relationship with Bridgette is strained. Meanwhile, Elaine is out there, doing stuff after meeting Merlin.

A quick recap of “New Sheriff in the ‘Verse” so far: Mal and Moon are trying to solve a murder mystery. Zoe, Wash, Book, River, and Simon have been burying dead Browncoats, casualties of the Second Unification War. Meanwhile, Kaylee and Jayne have joined the Chang-Benitez Gang. On the hunt for the killer, Mal and Moon encounter someone who seems to have no qualms about committing mass murder in order to get to Mal.

In a nutshell, Starship Down #1 is a solid beginning to what seems to be a fascinating sci-fi thriller. Think The DaVinci Code meets Alien vs. Predator, and you’ll have a pretty good idea of the tone. At the center of it all is Dr. Jocelyn Young, a cultural anthropologist who’s roped in by US Naval Intelligence to study what looks to be a vessel of extraterrestrial origin. Also along for the ride are the Russians and the Vatican. Can all of these diverging interests align, or will they fray any mutual connections?

After the explosive finale of BOOM!’s Hellmouth Event, Buffy the Vampire Slayer #13 takes a rather surprising pivot, turning back the clock to before Kendra’s Calling. Yep, Buffy #13 is a slice-of-life issue, focusing on Kendra just before she turned up in Sunnydale.

Quick recap: The Sundog crew’s plan almost goes off without a hitch… but almost is enough to get you killed, under the wrong circumstances. In the Hail Mary-iest of Hail Marys, Grix jumps out of the airlock, trusting in her connection to Vess to keep her alive.

As the first issue in the new arc after the Hellmouth Event, Angel & Spike #9 delivers on several fronts. Establishing a new team dynamic. Check. Introduce a new mysterious threat. Check. Trot out a familiar face. Definitely.

As the new sheriff in town, Mal’s got a murder mystery to solve. Despite assistance from Boss Moon, it would appear that their mystery killer is one step ahead of them, with no qualms about committing mass murder. Meanwhile, the rest of the Serenity crew is still dealing with the fallout of the Second Unification War.

Previously on… Hellmouth #4: Having claimed Angel as her vessel, the Hellmother now only needs the blood of a Slayer to have the power to leave the Hellmouth. Good thing she has a Slayer all by her lonesome in the Hellmouth…

Bering Strait is perhaps the most human book I’ve read in a very long time. Ironically, its subject matter is not primarily human, per se. That is to say that the protagonists are not modern Homo sapiens, but rather our cousins, the Neanderthals. Set against the harsh tundra during the sunset days of the Neanderthals, it’s a searing look at what it means to be self-aware, to innovate, to fight for survival, to hope for a better future, to question what it means to be a people, and what makes us human.

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