Author: Christos Gage, Joss Whedon
Genre: Comics, TV & Film, Urban Fantasy, Spin-Off, Paranormal
Publication Date: June 20, 2012
Summary: Angel has made bad choices in his life. Most recently? While possessed, he killed Giles. However, he believes he’s found a way to make amends, by bringing the Watcher back from the grave! Cue Faith—rebel Slayer, and Angel’s only ally—who only supports this harebrained scheme in order to keep her friend from catatonia. New threats emerge as this unlikely duo struggles against real and personal demons alike, while hitting the dark streets of London! Collects Angel & Faith issues #1–#5, the Live through This arc, and issue #6, the In Perfect Harmony one-shot.
☆: 4/5 – a fantastic new spin-off that will hopefully have a nice, long life in the Whedon/Buffy canon!
Review: Oh, the art for this one! I absolutely adore all of the art for “Angel & Faith” so far. But those who are new to the series should definitely read ALL of “Buffy: Season 8” as it pretty much picks up from the end of the last issue/TPB and goes from there. Nevertheless, this is a GREAT spinoff, and I’m really happy it happened. I’ve always had a soft spot for both Angel and Faith, so it’s great to see them teamed up. If you’re a Buffy fan or just a Joss Whedon fan, you definitely have to pick up the first volume of “Angel and Faith”. There ARE spoilers in this review, so read with caution.
What I love most about Whedon projects, no matter what form of media they be in, is that they always pull the rug right out from underneath you at the first opportunity they get. In this case, it’s about Giles – if you’ve read “Buffy: Season 8”, you know that Angel-as-Twilight killed Giles within the last few issues. Now, ridden with guilt over what he’s done as Twilight, Angel wants redemption, and Faith decides to help him. What’s more – he’s not going to settle for just replacing Giles in terms of picking up where he left off with the Watcher Files – he wants to bring Giles back from the DEAD.
So whoa. I rarely do spoilery reviews like this, but to see the Whedon/Buffy/Angel team taking such a bold step so early in the game was just an utterly delightful treat. Whedon is known for killing our favorite characters (See the “Avengers”? My point is proven yet again), but now he’s taking steps to resurrect one of them – Giles. Which at first earned a golf clap from me, considering he’s killed of a lot of my favorite characters over the years (Wash from “Firefly/Serenity” is still very dead), but now it looks like Angel’s serious about his bid for resurrection.
What I also love is that in this spin-off, the effects of Buffy and Angel closing off Earth forever to the Magical Realms is still sticking. The ones still left behind – the slayers, the demons, the vampires, the witches – they’re all having serious issues adjusting. We get stories of it all over this volume – from the perspectives of both the slayers that’d been under Buffy’s command and the demons left behind. It reminds me of another thing that I love so much about Whedon’s tales – no one is beyond redemption, if that’s what they ultimately want. It has to be up to the Big Bad to want redemption, and to go through with it (even if they have help). The demons have no interest in reform, but Angel does. And Faith always seems in search of finding some kind of redemption, so they make a great team.
I guess you could say that the whole theme of this spinoff is “redemption”/”forgiveness of sins” just by itself. And that isn’t a bad thing – Whedon and his team always write the best redemption tales, and they’re not done yet. This volume will make you want to root for Angel, Faith, and the rest of the Scoobies more than ever so you definitely have to check it out if you’re a fan.
Another thing that was awesome about this volume? Three words: demon fight club. AWESOME.
So for those who are unsure of this spinoff, I say rest assured. This will make a fantastic side-dish to “Buffy: Season 9” and beyond. “Angel and Faith: Live Through This – Volume 1” will be out June 20, 2012 in North America through Dark Horse Comics, so be sure to check it out then! It’s definitely worth the read.