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March 17 2010

(SPOILER) For the discussion of Angel #31. Released today.

Issue description: While Connor tries to get his devoted army of demon soldiers under control, a new player steps up, and Illyria decides not to take Angel's continued absence lying down. Meanwhile, Eddie Hope finds out that being a force for justice has some major consequences.

I have my copy of Angel #31.

1)The female demons who have sworn loyalty to Connor are called The Sisterhood of Jaro Hull.They are a warrior cult of benevolent demons.

2)The reason they have sworn to serve Connor is because of his unique nature of a child born from two vampires.Something that isn't supposed to be possible but happened.

3)Connor is evolving.Illyria reveals to the bound Angel that Connor is in the process of developing powers and abilities far beyond mere vampires.Angel was unaware of this and Illyria can't believe Angel didn't know and could not see it.Connor is already as strong and fast as Angel.He's going to get stronger and faster.

Two things went to my mind.First,I wonder if this why The Sisterhood of Jaro Hull is so interested in Connor?Because of the powerful being Connor is in the process of evolving into as the impossible child of two vampires.

Second,and spoilers for Buffy Season 8
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end season 8 spoilers.

4)We don't see the rest of Team Angel in this issue other then Spike(and Connor and Illyria ofcourse).Connor reveals that he sent each team member off to kill vampires with some of the sisterhood members as backup.The only one who refused sisterhood back up is Spike for reasons that become very clear once we get to his mission.We do learn from Illyria though that Kate thinks Connor is,"yummy" and "Cougar bait."

5)Spike's mission is to capture Felicia Valentine so they can get info on where Angel is.The reason Spike refused backup is because he planned to seduce Valentine into bed.Which he does.After they have sex,and we even get to see Spike's boxers(I never pictured Spike wearing underwear covered in little red hearts but he does),he trusses her up like a Thanksgiving turkey to haul her back to the hotel to torture info from her on Angel.And boy is she pissed.She thought her and Spike had something but he tells her that she was just an hour's distraction and he just wanted to nail a celebrity.Although,he would be happy to go again if she invited one of her other famous actress friend's over and they could make it a threesome.

6)Laura Kay Weathermill is up to something shady.She's been hired by Innovation Labs to re-ensoul the vampires turned by Angel's blood but it looks like she's just staking them.

7)Angel's FREE!!!And boy is he pissed.The last page reveals Illyria has freed Angel from his bonds and Angel and Illyria are waiting for the head of Innovation Labs in his office.Angel wants to know a few things.

a)Where is the blood they took from him?

b)How many vampires did they make with his blood?

c)How many minutes does he think he has left to live before Angel rips his throat out?

d)Where are his(Angel's) pants?lol

And I want to know,since Illyria freed Angel,did Angel agree to all her conditions *cough* Connor *cough*?

This issue was faster moving than the last few issues IMO.

The Eddie Hope story is moving along nicely and next issue we get his meeting with Gwen.
Err, I suspect Spike has always gone commando. *g*

[ edited by sueworld2003 on 2010-03-17 23:51 ]
I haven't read it yet, but the connor storyline sounds ridiculous to me. He's developing powers...he's stronger than Angel?

I can't see Joss ever adding those elements to the character.

Also, the whole Illyria mating thing doesn't sound right either. "I can only mate every 170,000 years" just sounds dumb.

I've been defending the Angel book for a while against the haters, but it's starting to get out of control. When you take over a franchise/story from the creator (which is essentially what Willingham did with Angel), you shoudl try to keep the original vision of the creator. It creates more coherency.

A prime example of this is Rick Berman. Discounting the monstrosity that is Enterprise, the post-Roddenberry Star Trek series' (and latter half of TNG) feel very Roddenberryish. Picard is still Picard after Roddenberry died. He continued the storylines and visions that Roddenberry had.

That's not what Willingham is doing. There's been a long-established method of creating vampires that doesn't include some new technological way. I can't see Joss ever sanctioning that. I can't see Joss ever sanctioning Connor's "evolution" into this godlike creature.... biologically it doesn't make senese - he's the product of two vampires. Granted,t his is fantasy and it doesn't "need" to make sense, but respect should be given to the creator's vision. I don't know that there are any Angel fans who would think this is something Joss would actually do or approve.

Keep in mind, though, that I haven't read the issue and I'll save final judgement until after this arc is completed. That, by the way, is when I'll decide whether or not to continue on with the series.
We don't really know how much stronger Connor is getting or going to get.I don't know if we're talking godlike powers but I took her saying that he's in the process of developing powers and abilities far beyond mere vampires to be a lot more powerful.According to Illyira,Connor is already a physical match for Angel.He's still young,she says.
I hope to God that Joss doesn't make this disaster of a series canon. Connor as strong as Angel(and thus also Spike)? What? I think Bill let his love for Connor get the better of him. The character isn't half as interesting as he's making him out to be.
And Spike without a doubt is the most OCC character out of the bunch, Bill just cannot write him in anyway. I hope that when Brian starts his Spike series he's going to tell his own story and not try to make his series fit with the (doomed)Angel series.
Wow, from Buffyfanatic's description Spike sounds ridiculously OOC. Willingham writes Spike like a total womanizing jerk with the intelligence of a snail. He's like a caricature of himself. The poor characterization of Spike grates me a lot since he's always been one of my favorites. Ugh, this is what stopped me from buying it anymore as of last month. Not just Spike, but pretty much everyone's characterization.. I find the Illyria plotline completely ridiculous and agree that Willingham is clearly letting his love and Connor get kind of insane. Glad to know I'm not missing anything and am saving my money.
This is a hard decision but after this arc I'm out. Angel has always been my favourite of the two series; and I love Season Eight but always found myself more excited about After the Fall. Brian's two-parter aside, there hasn't been a decent Angel comic in a year-and-a-half; and the fact that these are being written so poorly and are ultimately not even canon has just drained all of my interest in them. IDW has run this series into the ground.

And Kate a cougar? Seriously? WTF, Willingham.
Whilst I feel that Willingham has the smarts of a great idea writter, I don't think he's great on the character writting. He does have the voice of Connor down and he's hit or miss on Angel, but everyone else is, as KaileeA42 pointed out, a caricature of themselves. Also, has everyone forgotten that Illyria is a dude demon god? At least I remember it that way, seemed she was refered to as a king rather than a queen. So the need to mate seems arbitrary. I know Connor's birth makes him unique and I did have questions to his presence and the importance of him as well as to what he is and how it affects the future. But I'm wondering if what Willingham is getting at is what Whedon had in mind. At least with After the Fall, Lynch and Whedon talked about what Season 6 was going to be like, the major plot points, the big bad and what the Spike movie was going to be. Now, I loved Lynch's handling of the series, Whedon even went to say that Lynch seemed the kind of guy who he'd want to have on his staff, but Willingham kind of came out of the gate with an attitude saying he thought Angel ended right but since they let someone else tell what happened next he might as well fix it. And his response to Twilight-gate kind of put him off for me. IDK, I'm willing to see this out, the Eddie Hope story almost makes up for it.
Dear god, the characterization here is driving me insane. I wish I could just look away...

Oh, and I'm chuckling (see: eye rolling) at the thought of Spike wearing boxers in those tightass jeans, yep. And also that it's somehow good characterization for Spike to seduce a celebrity, bang her, then continue plotting to torture her. Did Willingham forget that Spike has a soul?
Mr Willingham, thank you for your unique perspective on characters. They're obviously fit for the comic book medium and audience where a celebrity falls for an one night bang.

Not that I count very much , but yeah you lost me due to Spike's poor characterization.
The story should have never made it to print. I think the majority of DH/IDW non-canon comics have always been crap and well below the standard of the TV shows, but this is well and truly in a league of its own. I donít think Iíve ever seen such horrendous characterisation before in a Buffyverse comic and I donít know how it got approved by IDW in the first place.

It doesnít help that the story has been an absolute snoozefest, that Angel is severely underused and that we have serious goofups like dusting legs. I could maybe ignore these things if the characterisation was good (except for Angel being underused in his own title, which is unforgiveable) but itís so goddamn awful that it makes the whole thing 10x worse.

Honestly, I have nothing personal against IDW but I hope they lose the Ats franchise. Theyíve just made it into a complete mess and it needs some better direction and some much better writers. Itís a train wreck and I just thank god itís not canon.

[ edited by vampmogs on 2010-03-18 09:08 ]
Did Willingham forget that Spike has a soul?


Having a soul doesn't automatically make you on the side of the angels.
Having a soul doesn't automatically make you on the side of the angels."

Simon | March 18, 10:20 CET

Yet Spike with a soul always was until Willingham got hold of him. Funny, that.

[ edited by deborahmm on 2010-03-18 14:22 ]

[ edited by deborahmm on 2010-03-18 14:25 ]
Happily IDW has just about entirely lost the bump in sales it got due to Whedon's loan to them of his name. I hope they tank even further. (Sorry, if you want to make a big deal about having a right to characters you should make some effort to know who those characters are).
I agree that IDW has taken this off-track, I just hope they bring Brian Lynch back....soon.
has anyone else not been able to buy 30 or 31 because of distribution problems?
My shop didn't have 31, sadly....or not so sadly, if everyone's comments are anything to go by! Not that I expected much better after the last couple of issues.

It's a real shame....I love the Buffyverse. I love comics. However, until Season 8 started and Brian Lynch came aboard at IDW, I'd never read a Buffyverse comic that successfully captured the style of the television series. Season 8 and After the Fall changed all that, and I found myself eagerly awaiting each issue (AtF in particular).

While Season 8 has had its ups and downs, I actually feel that it is the Angel series that has really suffered in the last year or so.
I'm coming back to SPIKE very soon. Been writing a bunch.
*throws streamers*

Huzzah!!
Yay! For Brian-ness!

I'll see your huzzahs and streamers and raise you a party blower.
:(

I was really looking forward to this, to me it was like two things I really love coming together, the writing of Fables and the Buffyverse and now it turns out to be a "beer is good, pudding is good, how good must beer and pudding be together?" - deal.

I have no problem with the plot at all, actually I think Connor needs some evolving and focusing on him is a good idea.

But the characters sound nothing like themselves. Angel and Connor work aside from small lapses, but all the other sound like complete strangers. Especially Spike, who acts like a total jerk for no reason.

This way its just no fun. I'm gone from the main book. I'll be back for the Spike series.
Thank you, Brian. I'll be back for your SPIKE series.


Simon, Spike wasn't exactly on the side of the angels when he tortured that doctor in Season 5, but at least it was written with such a grim severity that it was clear he wasn't doing it to get his rocks off. Between that and this issue, I'm seeing the difference between Spike written darkly and a pseudo!Spike displaying characteristics unfamiliar and out of character. Not well done.

[ edited by Emmie on 2010-03-19 02:04 ]
I say Brian Lynch calls Joss, they have lunch, come up with some ideas about how Angel season 7 would go, and we're in business again. IDW makes money, Buffy/Angel/verse fans cheer. Happy faces everywhere.
Thanks, Mr.Lynch. Very soon is not soon enough.

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