Boom! Studios 2019
Written by Bryan Edward Hill
Illustrated by Gleb Melnikov
Coloured by Gabriel Cassata & Gleb Melnikov
Lettered by Ed Dukeshire
Angel, one of the only vampires in the world with a soul, has been walking the streets of Los Angeles for years, neither human nor vampire. After losing his human protege to a Demon, Angel has decided to find a way to finally return himself to a human, so he can escape the guilt of his past, dark actions.
There is something about this book that I find extremely interesting. Bryan has emerged as one of today’s most underrated and underestimated writer on stands today. The fact that Angel is in desperate need to redeem himself any way he can and somehow working with Lilith is part of the road he is taking. This opens up a whole new world for him to be in and with this issue which is a continuation of the last one. If you need a reminder an old friend of Angels daughter burned their house down with his friend in it.
If each issue is going to show us a moment from Angel’s past I am all for it. That is something that we really never saw much of before and it helps us paint that picture of his past and those events he is most regretful for. It is a great way to open the book too and I love that we get to see him then and now, he’s always said he was among the most bloodthirsty and nasty of beings and I am finally beginning to see that happening.
Oh I do so like Lilith and even when she’s angry and we see more of her true form. Here I thought Lilith was the mother of all monsters, guess I was wrong about that. Or it could be that she needs those wayward children gone and can’t do it herself and that’s why she’s using Angel. Interesting to think this way but then Bryan has this habit of making the reader think of what else is happening that we don’t see on the page. To engage readers’ like this is something amazing to be able to do. The way that this is structured and how we see the story & plot development, the pacing and the character development is extraordinarily good.
Gleb does some absolutely marvellous work on the interiors here. I really am impressed with what I am seeing from him. There is some really nice linework happening here and I like that is shows this really strong and steady hand. The faces and facial expressions are sensational in how they show emotions and feelings that enhance the characterisation. The way backgrounds are being utilised here are phenomenal and the buildings, trees and even the clothing all make this so naturally easy to see and identify. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels shows a stellar eye for storytelling. The composition in these panels really looks so stellar. The colour work too is pretty fabulous. The brightness of Sunnydale, the night moments and even seeing the big bad here they all have their own tone, mood and feel to them that makes them all stand out in various ways.
I feel as if there is almost a moral lesson inside the story as well. I might be one of the last of a dying breed who isn’t attached to my phone. I mean I use it to call and text and that’s pretty much it, I don’t have an internet plan on it. Seeing how it is utilised here to demonstrate what mankind is currently like is something that is very real and very easy to see those dark forces take advantage of things like this. What Bryan is doing is utterly fantastic and then Gleb and Gabriel doing what they do Boom! May have finally found a way to go beyond the show and create something more accessible to the general public.