What Is It?: Fallen Angel: Reborn #3. (Written by Peter David; art by J. K. Woodward)
Timing: Directly following Fallen Angel: Reborn #2. The miniseries takes place in Angel: Season Five, between "Time Bomb" and "The Girl in Question."
Warning: The bigger spoilers will be written in black text. Simply highlight to read. As this is a review, there will be some minor "spoilers" sprinkled throughout the text that don't warrant being hidden. If you have not read the issue and don't want to know anything about the plot, don't read this. Spoilers for previous issues will obviously not be hidden.
REVIEW: If you caught the first two issues and liked them, you'll like this too. It's nothing really surprising, nothing super insightful, but it's a fun action-adventure starring two awesome female characters. Illyria and Liandra, the Fallen Angel, really play very well off of each other. Illyria's first person narration gives insight into Liandra due to Illyria's cold, almost scientific observations, and the snark that Liandra throws Illyria's way makes this pairing both funnier and more tense.
I usually like to give really long reviews that really get into why the issue was good, but the fact of the matter here is that there isn't much plot or character development to talk about. And that's not a bad thing in this case. The plot is simply that Illyria is trying to get her icons in order to become her full self once again. It's your essential epic quest. And we already know what happens to Illyria after this, so, as a rule, this book can't really do anything character-changing. And yet... it succeeds. Partially because it revels in the endless fun that is making Illyria fight creatures. Illyria fighting creatures never fails. What it also does, though, is tell the story through visuals. In a way, it excels at what ANGEL #25 failed at. It takes the story from point A to point B, but still manages to tell an almost entirely visual story. It has sight gags, cool kills, and a stunning setting.
This seems to happen once in every Fallen Angel: Reborn issue, but there is one line where Illyria speaks out of character. Peter David loves sarcasm--hence Liandra--but Illyria doesn't. Illyria just wouldn't say "Oh, wonderful-" when she's being attacked by a polar bear. But the rest of the issue, which is narrated by Illyria's inner monologue, is consistently in character, so give it up for Peter David!
Art: Very nice. As I mentioned before, the issue is very visual, so Peter David really leaves a lot of the storytelling to J. K. Woodward, who does a phenomenal job. Get this dude to do some more ANGEL books! I've got an interview with Mr. Woodward coming soon, so keep a look out.
Covers: The three covers all feature Illyria and Liandra in this snowy dimension. J. K. Woodward's main cover is consistent with his interior work, and my favorite cover of his we've seen so far in this miniseries. It features Illyria and Liandra staring at a lanky, looming monster covered in a sheet of ice. Woodward's other cover pays homage to MADAGASCAR, and it's a riot. Runge's cover is also exceptional, featuring our two heroines in more iconic comic book poses as snow falls on them. Me gusta.
Characters We Know: Illyria.