‘Angel #2:’ Comic Book Review

Previously on Angel: Angel and Cordelia are actors acting as a private detective and a straight-laced cop, respectively, on a hit TV show, while actually running Angel Investigations. Along for the ride are Spike, Gunn, Fred the Slayer, Wesley the Watcher, Lorne, and Andrew. Tragedy struck when Wesley was stabbed by a cursed dagger, prompting a desperate Hail Mary move by Fred that had unexpected consequences. Meanwhile, a refugee from another dimension arrived with awful news.

With Angel stuck inside the spirit house and facing down a particularly malevolent spirit of sorts, the gang is in full crisis mode. After all, Wesley’s also now a zombie, and with Angel indisposed, the TV show shooting schedule is all messed up, too! Secrets are uncovered and mysteries deepen, to the chagrin of the gang.

Christopher Cantwell’s script here doesn’t let up from the previous issue, and it zips along for an enjoyable ride. Many of the interactions here have shades of the original iteration, whether it’s the brotherly frenemy status between Angel and Spike, or Cordelia’s occasional self-absorbedness. Some of the other relationships and characterizations also bear a faint stamp of familiarity, which perhaps does suggest that despite existing in a multiverse, our heroes do end up on similar trajectories. Cantwell infuses the story with plenty of chuckles, but it’s perhaps Lorne’s pathos that feels the most compelling here because of its yet undisclosed nature.

Daniel Bayliss’ artwork is pretty delightful. I wouldn’t say that likenesses are a strong point, but I’m kinda not fussed by that at all. I mean, there’s so much more to appreciate than just character likenesses. Bayliss’ work walks that line of being intimate enough to be affecting in the quiet moments while being appropriately bombastic in the action sequences. The colorwork between Patricio Delpeche with assistance from María Agustina Vallejo effectively captures the mood of the book; dark but not slipping into moroseness. Becca Carey’s lettering makes the soundscape of the book feel really natural and easy.

Overall, with heightening stakes and more supernatural issues than they know what to do with, this team feels like it’s in for a fun ride.  

Creative Team: Christopher Cantwell (writer), Daniel Bayliss (artist), Patricio Delpeche and María Agustina Vallejo (colorists), Becca Carey (letterer)
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
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