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"This house will fall"
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February 16 2010

(SPOILER) Preview pages for Angel #30. It's out this week.

Erm. The "vampires regrowing limbs" thing is a bit out of left field.
Uh, oh. We're going to have a continuity issue (and I liked this arc).

We've seen vampires who have gotten limbs cut off (Claw and Amilyn). Without mystical W&H doctors, they don't come back like Claire Bennet's lizard regeneration. They don't grow back. My hope is that scene was just part of Spike's joke report.
Also, since when do severed limbs burst into flames? I don't remember this happening to Spike's hand in Damage, so soon after it was cut off.
Would a continuity issue really ruin the arc for you? This is the Buffyverse. Consistency in mythology was never really that high a priority, even (especially?) during the days of the televised series.

These pages were, so far, the best we've seen from both Willingham and Denham. They're fun, the captions actually work, and I just overall dig the hell out of it. Great job, team IDW!
Would a continuity issue really ruin the arc for you?


Well if it majorly contradicts existing canon then yes.
Too much text... there's literally an entire wall-o'-text in just about every panel. And since when did Spike become a verbose action hero wannabe? Even if it's in his head, Spike's never really been the kind to think about the fact that he's acting without thinking. He usually just does it.
I understand that conveying the situation via a usually somewhat taciturn character (hello, Oz!) is difficult, but it's not impossible. Narrating an encyclopedia of nonsense is just way too much "tell", and not enough "show".

I understand that it's just the report that Spike wrote, but still... it just takes away from the entire thing.

ETA: Spike's report would've been along the lines of "Found our man. I jumped on the bastard. Gunn wanted to figure out another angle. Probably smart, since I lost my bloody leg. Damn, that smarts!"
Not the freaking dictionary and thesaurus.

[ edited by wenxina on 2010-02-16 23:28 ]

[ edited by wenxina on 2010-02-16 23:32 ]
But people still read Buffy Season 8 so major contradictions of canon can't be that bad.
Joss makes cannon.
Okay, wow. Leg growing back? What? Talk about continuity!fail.

I'm really not enjoying the way Spike's character is being written in this arc. And the complex dynamic between Spike and Gunn (used to be friends "Charlie boy" until Gunn tried to kill everyone in Hell-A)--well, the complexity has been shaved down to present characters who don't resemble themselves and where their character progression should be post-Season 5 and post-AtF.

Armstrong and Willingham's forays into the 'verse are teaching me to be wary of big names writing Buffyverse comics. There's so much "not getting it" on parade here.

[ edited by Emmie on 2010-02-17 05:33 ]
Would a continuity issue really ruin the arc for you?


Given how I've felt about the comics since Willingham's Rant of Repugnancy, any glaring breaks from continuity are just cracking what's already very thin ice. =\
Sadly, continuity issues are the least of this previewís problems. Itís the fact that Spike and Gunn sound absolutely nothing like themselves that is the real deal breaker for me. Willingham doesnít have a grasp on these characters at all and thatís the biggest flaw.

The continuity issues in this are pretty dismal though. Anyone whoís writing for the Buffyverse should *at least* have a basic knowledge of the mythology. A Spike with regenerating limbs is a HUGE goof and unfortunately shows the writer's unfamiliarity with the verse heís writing for. This isn't a little issue that can be fixed in the TPB, this requires a total *re-write of the scene* which is a much bigger issue. It's pretty disconcerting that the writer doesn't even know the basic rules of vampires in the verse.

And Angel is still... bored? Sigh. Anyone else get the impression the one character they're least interested in just happens to be Angel? The guy who the book's actually named after?

Sorry but these preview pages are horrible. The characters sound nothing like they should, it totally contradicts years of mythology, and whilst the art is decent enough (and definitely the best thing about this) itís certainly not so spectacular that it can make me forget about how bleak the writing is.

IDW really needs to sit down and work out what theyíre going to do with the Ats franchise because itís been completely lost ever since AtF. More than anything they need to hire writers (and maybe test run them first) who can actually write for the characters, and then they need to take it further from there. The title is being totally wasted over there and whilst I have nothing personal against the company it just leaves me wishing more than ever that DH never sold them the rights.

[ edited by vampmogs on 2010-02-17 07:53 ]
I don't know why they didn't just give Brian Lynch a regular writer's job and all the perks that come with it.

[ edited by MattManic7325 on 2010-02-17 07:53 ]
Emmie said:
There's so much "not getting it" on parade here.


Thought the exact same thing when I read the preview pages.The drawings might be pretty but the dialogue lacks character integrity. What a disappointment:(

I don't know why they didn't just give Brian Lynch a regular writer's job and all the perks that come with it.


I don't know about perks but Brian Lynch is writing a ongoing Spike series for IDW, due for release later in the year :)
The characterization doesn't work at all and the dusting limb is just weird. And what does he mean by "bach when I could have them sewn back on"? Like William had experience with losing limbs? (Or 19th century medicine was good with reattaching them?)

Has he seen the series?

The plot sounds neat and the art is wonderful, but the characterization and canon fit just blows.
I don't know about perks but Brian Lynch is writing a ongoing Spike series for IDW, due for release later in the year :)


Oh I know and I'm sure it'll be fantastic - just after his amazing work on ATF I don't know why IDW didn't try to get him to remain on Angel, instead of a spinoff of a spinoff.
Presumably to boost their revenue stream. No shame in that.
The characters sound nothing like they should, it totally contradicts years of mythology, and whilst the art is decent enough (and definitely the best thing about this) itís certainly not so spectacular that it can make me forget about how bleak the writing is.


That's funny, that's exactly how I often feel when reading season 8. Joss or no Joss.

The limb growing back is incredibly silly though. Give ya that. *g*
And Angel is still... bored? Sigh. Anyone else get the impression the one character they're least interested in just happens to be Angel? The guy who the book's actually named after?


Word ... I've felt this way for a while which is why I refuse to buy these books. An Angel comic without Angel is ... not an Angel comic.
Sigh, i really hope that Idw would tone down their use of Spike in an Angel series. They keep bringing the character further down.

why IDW didn't try to get him to remain on Angel, instead of a spinoff of a spinoff.


Because...the character has his own stories to tell that should/have nothing to do with Angel.
I don't think the spin-off thing really works anymore, there's a Buffy series, an Angel series and now a Spike series. Spike:After the fall was a spin-off of Angel:After the fall, their stories were connected. Hopefully the Spike series will stand on it's own two legs.
Because...the character has his own stories to tell that should/have nothing to do with Angel.
I don't think the spin-off thing really works anymore, there's a Buffy series, an Angel series and now a Spike series. Spike:After the fall was a spin-off of Angel:After the fall, their stories were connected. Hopefully the Spike series will stand on it's own two legs.



It's still a spinoff - Angel span off Buffy and stood on its own very well. I just think IDW should be concentrating on stabilizing its central title (Angel) which has been floundering for over a year now; instead of starting up a new propoerty. Brian Lynch's Spike will be amazing no doubt but it'd be better if Angel was as strong as it was during ATF.
It's still a spinoff - Angel span off Buffy and stood on its own very well. I just think IDW should be concentrating on stabilizing its central title (Angel) which has been floundering for over a year now; instead of starting up a new propoerty. Brian Lynch's Spike will be amazing no doubt but it'd be better if Angel was as strong as it was during ATF.


Except Angel did not have a history prior to being spun off Buffy, Spike does. He's not an Angel character, just like Angel he's a Buffyverse character. And anyway a spinoff tv-show is entirely different from a spinoff comic.

The reason why Angel:After the fall got so much attention and was the central title had nothing to do with having the name Angel on it, it was because of Joss's aproval of it being canon, that lasted until issue 17. There have been plenty of Angel,Spike comics before and after Atf.
And the writer and artist of the Spike series isn't responsible for the state of the Angel series. Regardless fans of all will still buy both series(if they like it), Angel fans will continue with their series and Spike fans finally have something of their own that isn't all about Angel.
To reachieve Atf's state now, the comic needs to have Joss's name on it, Angel or Spike's name as the lead makes no difference.
I asked if we could do a regular SPIKE series, that's why I'm on SPIKE. Finally got time to write it, and I must say, it's shaping up to be my favorite me-scribed Whedonverse comic.

And I think Willingham has a plan in mind for Spike's dusty leg.
And anyway a spinoff tv-show is entirely different from a spinoff comic.


Well, yes, one is made of paper and the other is made of unicorn tears and the dust of the stars, obviously!
I asked if we could do a regular SPIKE series, that's why I'm on SPIKE. Finally got time to write it, and I must say, it's shaping up to be my favorite me-scribed Whedonverse comic


Very much looking forward to your new Spike series, can't wait to read it.


And I think Willingham has a plan in mind for Spike's dusty leg.


Something that explains why his leg now behaves differently than his hands did in "Damage"?
I would think so, yes.
sue said:
"That's funny, that's exactly how I often feel when reading season 8. Joss or no Joss."

Aside from the early, major mess-up with Warren (which they admitted to and have attempted to fix in dialogue...in somewhat confusing fashion and that character just really never should've come back in the first place, but too late, and maybe he'll prove to have been worthwhile by the end of the season for some thematic reason), what other continuity issues have there been ? Buffy Season 8 hasn't contradicted any of the set-in-stone mythology "rules" the way this issue of Angel might've done, plus the characters at least sound like themselves.

As Brian says, Willingham might have a plan/explanation...though whether it'll have been planned or he writes something in to cover his butt after hearing from fans and the other IDW staff who know better, it'll be hard to know. I guess the end result is the same. As long as it makes sense.
Well, yes, one is made of paper and the other is made of unicorn tears and the dust of the stars, obviously!


Obviously duh.
I have my copy of Angel #30.I didn't want to comment on all the reactions and my take or feelings until I had read the whole issue and not just preview pages.

Later in the issue(two pages later actually),it's revealed that Spike is using magics to speed up his leg growing back.Kate comments that his leg is coming along fine and the spell must be working.Spike points out that his leg would be grown back already if he could drink human blood instead of pigs blood and didn't have to be up during the day.Connor called a meeting which is why the group is gathered.By the end of the issue it looks like Spike's leg is fully grown back.I think.It's hard to tell because we don't get a good shot of his lower half but he's standing.

I agree,I don't buy this fully to be in line with the show(s) although they do give an explanation that magic is involved in this case.So that seems to be playing a big part in Spike regrowing his leg.

As for characterization,I'm giving Willingham more time right now in finding the voices.Unlike Kelley Armstrong,Bill Willingham is supposed to be the long term writer so I'm giving him atleast to the end of the first arc on having a firm opinion either way.

As for the rest of the issue.Connor gathers everybody together except Illyria,who has already gone to rescue Angel, because of Connor discovering what Innovation Labs has done.

The group watches in shock a tape recording Connor made as a famous actress named Felicia Valentine goes on a late night talk show and reveals she had herself turned into a vampire via a safe procedure designed and supervised by Angel himself and that she's a good vampire and has her soul.She then eats the host on live T.V.(before the network cut the feed) showing she really doesn't have a soul.Naturally Connor,Spike,Gunn,Kate,James and Betta George want to know what the hell is going on.

The plan is to go out and dust vamps but if they come acrossed any famous people who have been vamped,to try to capture them alive so they can question them for information about Angel and his supposed involvment in turning celebs into vampires.Spike wants the rest of the group to leave Felicia Valentine to him.Gunn points out that Spike just wants to seduce her and get info that way.Kate points out that only Spike,"can turn a desperate situation like this into another chance to get laid."Spike confirms that is a yep."There's more than one way to pierce a woman's heart with dangerous wood,if you catch my meaning."

A new female character is introduced towards the end of the issue.A red headed hottie named Laura Kay Weathermill.She arrives to solve Innovation Labs's little problem that there clients don't have souls when sired by Angel's blood.Weathermill was one of the top research sorcerers for the Watcher's Council.Now that there is no more Watcher's Council.she's gone freelance.When she worked for the council,she worked for the betterment of mankind.Now she works for the betterment of her bank balance.For the right price, she can place souls into all their clients that can be tested and measured.

I saved the Illyria part for last since that's the big shocker that ends the issue.Illyria breaks into Innovation Labs and offers to rescue Angel under two conditions that he has to agree to.She knows ther others still hope she'll become Fred one day and she doesn't like that.They idealize Fred and her memories.She feels caged by Fred and will not have it.But she promised to be good and good and evil are alien concepts for her.She doesn't know how to differentiate between them.But Angel has been both good and evil.So....

1)She wants Angel to be her new guide and moral compass much as she wanted Wesley to be.

Angel is resistant to being Illyria's guide.There exchange is pretty good and Illyria makes some good arguments that seem to change Angel's mind.Everybody should read it,it's the last page of the story before the Eddie Hope backup.It actually brings up something the later seasons of Buffy and especially all of Angel The Series began doing.The idea of Angel(and Buffy too)letting some demons live as long as they conduct themselves to human standards.

Now the second thing Illyria wants is the shocker that ends the issue.Illyria reveals that she's reached an optimal breeding stage which only comes once every millennium or so.She wants to mate and the person she wants to mate with is not Angel(she thinks that would be grotesque).No,what she wants is.......

2)She wants permission from Angel to mate with Connor and have Connor father her offspring.She wants Angel to give her permission to have sex with his son!!!!This is what Connor has been chosen for.

That ends the issue. :lol:

I like the ideas Willingham is presenting in this arc but will wait on forming an opinion on characterization still until Part VI of the story.I also like this new character,Laura Kay Weathermill.

The Eddie Hope back up was good but it's still not enough there yet for me to form an opinion really.
Some writers are talented at capturing voices. Some not. I think Willingham falls into the "not" category which means he's not well-suited to write for a licensed comic of a TV show.

The characterization for Spike in the past few issues has also been very disappointing. To borrow words from kaleidoscope on SA:

"What's emerging isn't a nuanced, balanced character, but a bit of a caricature. Spike is a womanizer, Spike doesn't like anyone (even Connor or Gunn it appears) Spike is rash to the point of idiocy... I can't say that Spike doesn't behave rashly from time to time, or that he doesn't like women etc, but the characterization here in #30 is played heavily for comic relief as it was in #28 to the degree that it does the character a disservice."

When I read a preview like this which is overly full of text weighing down the art and the story (the purpose of which is what? To demonstrate a pissing contest between Spike and Gunn?), and line after line of dialogue makes me think "wow, out of character... out of character... out of character" and then to top it off with the off-voices and the superficial characterization, we're tossed a mystery curveball mythos breaker that may or may not be explained (Spike's limbs dust upon amputation and somehow magically grow back in a day or so???)... It's all too much jumbled together and served half-baked. No, thanks.

The "not getting it" characterization of Spike and Gunn is no doubt why we think the leg dusting/re-growing is another example of "not getting it" as opposed to an actual plot point.


Buffyfantic, was the fact that his leg dusted addressed as it directly contrasts his hands not dusting in Damage? We've never seen a magical regeneration of limbs for vampires or even for human characters in the show. Even Lindsey had to get a hand donated and mystically attached. Sorry, but the actual in-story explanation in this issue doesn't fly. It's out of continuity with what was shown on AtS.

[ edited by Emmie on 2010-02-17 22:26 ]
Emmie,no,the leg dusting was not addressed directly which is why I don't think it's fully in line with the Buffyverse.Unless more is explained next issue,the spell took care of the growing a new leg but doesn't explain the dusting of the old one.

Unless the spell was in place before he lost his leg in response to losing his hands in 'Damage.'Sort of a failsafe incase he ever lost body parts again.That could explain his line about,"almost prefering it back when my severed limbs didn't dust and I could get them sewn back on."Gunn responds about getting MORE of the healing gunk.

But that is pure speculation and guessing on my part and unless something comes up next issue or a future issue,that is all that is.
What's baffling to me is turning Illyria the God-King into a babymaker. Is that really the most interesting plotline for Illyria's character?

And my mind is still spinning in circles over Illyria copulating with a male in the same way the God-King did millennia ago when Illyria was a male. Factor in that Fred's female organs were liquefied and I'm thinking that we've not got a potential pregnancy to rival Darla's in terms of sense-no-make. Does this mean another Power The Be is going to wave magic to make this conception possible? To put a cherry on the outrageous sundae, Illyria is now asking Angel's permission instead of scorning his weakness in being captured and just taking what 'she' wanted.

Sorry, still stuck on male god-king Illyria being resurrected in female Fred's body, liquefying the female reproductive organs and now supposedly Illyria will be reproducing in a female fashion how exactly...? The female body is a shell. That's the point, isn't it. A hollowed out shell. At least with Darla, the proper organs were present even if she was undead. With Illyria, there's no natural way for this to occur unless the god-king reproducing occurs in a manner similar to Aliens.


ETA: Wait, I figured it out. The magic that grows back Spike's leg also allowed Illyria to grow a womb...?

[ edited by Emmie on 2010-02-17 22:59 ]
In regards to Illyria asking Angel permission.

Here' s the exact quotes.

You?No,of course not.Don't be grotesque.But I think your son might provide adequate fathering material.I'd like to secure your permission to court him.That is the proper term for seduction,correct?


It's really sounds like blackmail to me.She indicates that she might not free him unless he agrees to her two conditions.Be her guide and permission to have sex with his son to father her offspring.He agreed to #1 it seems.Next issue we'll get his reaction to #2.
Was Illyria's true sex ever disclosed? Or was he/she/it omnisexual? Yeah, there was that whole god-king deal... but perhaps it was just to denote some supreme theocratic rule, rather than sex specifically. Perhaps the Old Ones had no notion of sex the way we do...
Or perhaps Willingham is just going by Fred's rather fetching feminine features...
Limb regeneration would be more in line with traditonal vampire fiction; is that good or bad?

And the Turok-han's limb didn't combust, or even dust.
Limb regeneration would be more in line with traditonal vampire fiction; is that good or bad?

In this case bad ;) The only mythology the writers should be worried about is the Buffyverse mythology and limb regeneration is certainly not part of this vampire lore.

Yeesh, and to think I used to get pissy about that vampire who crawled up the wall in Deep Down. That's nothing in comparison to this.
Illyria asserting that Fred ain't coming back and that she feels caged by the leftover memories of Fred's, plus the gang's expectations of her, sounds pretty interesting. Even asking Angel to be her guide is a development that makes total sense. More mystical pregnancies though...eh. We already had Darla and Jasmine-possessed Cordelia. Illyria would make it a demon pregnancy for every two seasons of the so-far 6-season series. Eh...

Far as believability/what I can buy...Mystical pregnancies, even without a womb...hey, if Jasmine could manipulate all sorts of events throughout Angel (folks speculate that she saved Angel in "Amends" with the heavy cloud cover/goddamn magic snow as well in order to use him later to father her father, but I dunno if that's ever been commented on by the ME writers), from the passing on of the visions from Doyle to Cordy right on to making Darla's womb able to support supernatural life ('cause Connor ain't exactly human) and making Angel's swimmers swim again, if only for that one night of vampire sex, then just about anything's possible in the Buffyverse (resurrections always seemed a lot more nutty than god-like beings manipulating physical matter to me though, so I'll believe almost anything in fiction as long as it's written well).

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