“I didn’t rise from prisoner to prisoner with benefits to protector back to prisoner with benefits to Lord, just to have you come and muck it up.” – Spike to Angel
In issue #2 of “Angel: After the Fall”, Angel has to deal with the consequences of having just killed the son of Demon Lord Burge at the tail end of the first issue. Namely, he has to find his son, and warn him that the demon’s father might come gunning for him. What he finds is that Connor is more than capable of taking care of himself, as they both deal with the violent power vacuum created by Vampire Gunn’s killing of a demon lord (also in the first issue) — demons falling all over each other to vie for the top spot, putting humans at risk in the process.
As for Gunn, he seems to have a revenge bone to pick with his former employer. He’s holding it against Angel for leaving him on his own at the Big Showdown, which resulted in him being dragged off by vampires and turned into one. Yet he seems to think that even as a vampire without a soul, he is more of a Good Guy than Angel who has one, and has some plan we don’t know about yet to take all the demons down. In the meantime, he takes out his frustrations on Betta George — a giant floating telepathic fish (a character introduced in Lynch’s “Spike: Asylum” series). Continue reading
In issue #1 of “Angel: After the Fall”, we learn what happened after the big showdown at the end of Season 5 … sort of. We’ve jumped ahead a few months, which means that Joss plans to feed us details of the showdown and its immediate aftermath bit by bit. But we do know a few things. For one, Angel still lives (you know what I mean), thanks to the help of a dragon who was also working for Wolfram & Hart and decided to go rogue. Los Angeles is now in Hell, being ruled by assorted demon warlords. Angel’s son Connor and two of Angel’s ex-love interests — Electric Gwen and Werewolf Nina — are running a kind of sanctuary for humans and good demons. Wesley is now a kind of ghost, contractually bound to work for The Senior Partners but helping Angel when he can. And in a hugely ironic move, Gunn the diehard vampire hater is now a vampire himself. No sign yet of Fred/Illyria, Spike, or Lorne, but I’m sure they can’t be far behind.
All in all, I’m really loving this new title. Joss’s plot direction is clear, the storyline is satisfyingly twisty, and the clever dialogue always makes me smile. If Whedon couldn’t do it himself, Brian Lynch was a great choice for the writer here. If you haven’t already, buy the “Spike: Asylum” trade paperback, on the basis of which Joss hand-picked Lynch for this job. I’m eagerly waiting for “Spike: Shadow Puppets” to come out, so I can read that one too.