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Angel & Faith # 3(S10) Issue Discussion Thread (Spoilers)

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  • Angel & Faith # 3(S10) Issue Discussion Thread (Spoilers)

    The new issue is out tomorrow and here's the first advanced review.!T1aCb

    Angel & Faith Season 10 #3 Review

    By John McCubbin on Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014

    Is Faith in trouble for doing the right thing and is Angel any closer to solving his mystery? Read on to find out.

    The official description from Dark Horse:

    Angel has found everyone is going to the same person in London’s Magic Town for advice—and it’s decidedly not him. But she is someone Angel can take partial credit for . . . And the pixie menaces have stepped up their muscle with another lady from Angel’s past. Meanwhile, Faith is screwing up. Again.

    Following the explosive climax to last issue Angel & Faith kicks off in a exciting way with Faith continuing her fight with the demon. But is she doing the right thing here? I’ll avoid going into too many details but basically Faith gets in a spot of trouble due to her actions. This twist brought a brilliant question of morals and intrigue to the future of her development. Angel’s quest on the other hand is continuing to lose my interest as despite having some good points as well as giving a gripping climax to the issue it seems a bit lacklustre.

    Victor Gischler continues to tell a story of two halves with Faith continuing her work for Deepscan and Angel continuing to explore the mysteries of Magic Town. Though we aren’t far into this series I am already starting to see which of these is more intriguing and that has to be Faith’s developments. Gischler seems to put so much more energy into her sequences with the dialogue being much more intense. When it comes to Angel he seems to be playing a longer build-up game and though he gives suspense and intrigue during this the polarity in pace compared to Faith’s sequences does hurt the overall flow slightly.

    Will Conrad continues to kill it with the art for this series with his realistic yet dynamic style being simply marvellous. His highly detailed pencils along with the energetic layouts give a smooth and explosive flow to the issue. These layouts also do a stellar job of enhancing emotion as well as highlight the more intense action. Add to this Conrad’s wonderful inks and Michelle Madsen vivid colours and what’s not to love about these superbly amazing visuals.

    Angel & Faith Season 10 continues to twist a entertaining take but the difference between plot developments gives an unbalanced tone to the story. Nevertheless it continues to be very enjoyable so I highly recommend it.

    + Victor Gischler writes a script full of interest and suspense.
    + As ever stunning and realist artwork from Will Conrad.
    + Moral questions from Faith’s employers.
    - Angel’s development is starting to feel slightly lacklustre.

  • #2
    I will be interested to see if I agree as I found Faith's story less interesting for the last two issues compared to Angel's, but I seem to be in a minority.


    • #3
      I've read this and liked it. Both Angel and Faith aren't really in control of their own destinies. They are having to dance to other peoples tunes -in Angel's case, Nadira's 'coincidences' and in Faith's 'Deepscan.' the only thing is its all a bit familiar. Faith working for Deepscan, like Buffy and Deepscan representing less than salubrious clients, shades of Wolfram and Hart in AtS 5. Magictown and it's occupants feel a bit like the situation in After the Fall, with the helpless looking for places of safety and so on. This could all change, of course. I will be interested to see the developments in Inspector Brandt who is the character who has sparked my interest. I wasn't that bothered to see Pearl again and I'm still not too sure about the changes in Nadira. All in all, I like the atmosphere generated in the book and will continue to read, but continue to find the comics not quite meaty enough to sustain you till the next one comes out. I love the art. It's more my thing then Rebekah's art on the Buffy comic.


      • #4
        This issue felt a little bit like a filler to be honest. It was still an enjoyable read though, just not too much really happened. Faith's story isn't very original in its issues and does so far mirror what Buffy went through. That in itself makes me expect her to stick around and make more of a go of it in contrast, I'm interested to see which way she bends and how far. It seems a good route for her to figure out what she is wanting to do with herself and for herself and address internally that assumption that she is comfortable being a loner. I expect, somewhat like Spike, she is wanting to belong somewhere now, except she hasn't yet worked out where and with whom. As she has ties to both the other slayers and Angel this is a good starting block position to explore. Does she want to slot in here with these people and what they are doing? Nadira is potentially somewhat of a bridge between the two connections of course. It really isn't clear how/why/when the two titulars here will end up in the same space again which I actually find holds my interest rather than irritating me as I have seen some people reacting.

        I did like how Kennedy handled the issue with Faith. I was never a fan of Kennedy on the show but she fits the role she has carved for herself with Deepscan well I think. She was far less accusatory/critical then I expected her to be and actually, I felt, handled it pretty maturely. I was amused by the conversation Faith overheard with the others slayers because I think I was A-listing Faith somewhat too when Kennedy first went to speak to her. Outside of slaying Buffy/Faith rightly don't have a seniority to these women. But I still can't help myself but see them as 'more' regardless.

        The intrigue aspect of Angel's story, which has been the most interesting S10 storyline so far for me, was a bit lacklustre in this issue as it (despite what Angel felt!) treaded water for me somewhat. I think that feeling was just because I didn't really see anything that wasn't likely and it just confirmed where I was assuming it was going. Also, I disliked The Glass Blower spelling everything out like a Bond villain and explaining himself to Angel so thoroughly for no great reason. I can argue that he simply doesn't care about Corky's intentions so providing details matters zilch to him and this was just an opportunity to brag, but it felt forced. The bottles are special then to contain the goop, as expected.

        The thing I like about the repeated references to flow is that even if you are following someone else's instructions and ideas it doesn't mean you aren't in control to some degree. You can still have ownership of your path and it still is/can fundamentally be your choice and personal direction by actively considering and deciding when you turn against the flow or work with it. It isn't possible to be in control of all of the strings that surround and pull on your life. Knowing that and working alongside it is the way you stay in the most realistic control you can have, through your own choices and reactions. Angel's difficulty at the moment I think is that he does try to command everything around him and currently he is stuck even trying to figure out the structure of this 'brackish' mix. Even without control issues, when everything is new it is hard to be able to see what needs turning with and what needs fighting against.

        I'm expecting a bit more plot-y stuff next issue but continue to like this title.

        EDIT: Pearl's appearance wasn't a surprise, even without the cover we knew she would be coming back at some point. I'm a bit 'huh' that they gave away the end of the last Buffy issue in the solicitation for the following issue and now they gave the end of this one up on the cover. Even if it was because it was a great cover I don't like the last pages getting deflated. I never really 'got' Pearl/Nash's powers last season. It seemed like a zapping laser-esque ability that really made no sense to not just wield and win with more easily than they seemed able. Villain aiming issues were particularly bad for them! I'm not too interested in her return tbh but we'll see where VG takes it.


        • #5
          My least favourite issue of either book so far. I found it all a bit dull, and I don't like the change in Nadira. I don't mean her new abilities, just the fact that she no longer sounds like herself. I preferred her when she was going out and getting smashed and picking fights with football fans.


          • #6
            Originally posted by Morphia View Post
            My least favourite issue of either book so far. I found it all a bit dull, and I don't like the change in Nadira. I don't mean her new abilities, just the fact that she no longer sounds like herself. I preferred her when she was going out and getting smashed and picking fights with football fans.
            I think it is probably fair to say this is the weakest issue so far because so very little 'new' and unpredictable stuff happened (if any, was there any?). I am not opposed to the change in Nadira because I didn't like how she was written overall last season. She was justifiably angry with Angel but I felt like it was pinned as her outrage/anger by the end and didn't really get addressed. As I remember it, she got past it in that final fight with Whistler, enough to let it go anyway, which did just make it seem even more like her problem. If she is genuinely trying to direct Angel in a way to help pull balance into magic town now, actual balance and not some twisted semi-demon aims, then they are seemingly setting her up like a Doyle/Cordelia role and that doesn't really interest me much. It does feel like she just suddenly became a different character and they augmented it by physically changing her. I'm still not totally sure she is, intentionally or not, as straightforwardly looking for the best and 'good' way forward as it currently seems.
            Last edited by Stoney; 04-06-14, 02:34 PM.


            • #7
              That's the problem for me. She just doesn't seem like the same character at all, and since Nadira was my favourite character in season 9 and it feels like she's just...gone, I don't feel like I have much incentive to go on reading.

              Faith's story interests me more than Angel's so far. I'm not enjoying the London setting this season - mainly because it doesn't feel like London any more by any stretch of the imagination, whereas in season 9, there may have been wonky moments, but the sense of place was more authentic - and...well, I just don't think Angel works very well on his own. He never has. He can seem quite boring and generic without a strong ensemble to back him up and inject some humour into the story. So far, his part of the book lacks both.

              Faith's part is better. I like seeing Kennedy and the other slayers and their reaction to Faith is interesting. It's still not doing a lot for me, though.

              Oh well, early days.
              Last edited by Morphia; 04-06-14, 05:45 PM.


              • #8
                I have my copy of Angel & Faith # 3,"Where The River Meets The Sea Part III."

                Not a bad issue.A little slower then the first two but that can happen sometimes in the middle issue of a arc.I thought the Faith side of the story was a little stronger with her screwing up and the conversation with Kennedy afterwards.What does Faith want does seem to be the big question.Also interesting how other slayers view the A list like Faith and Buffy.The Angel side of the issue continues the slow burn aspect of what's going on in Magic Town.I still don't have a good bead on what's Nadira's deal is but I don't think Angel does either.The Pearl reveal at the end of course wasn't a surprise.

                Not a bad issue.
                Last edited by BAF; 04-06-14, 06:33 PM.


                • #9
                  Nadira seems to be channeling Dru. If she actually somehow is channeling Dru, well done. Otherwise it just seems odd. The back and forth aspect is sometimes annoying. I especially don't like when they put a line from Faith's section at the tail of Angel's page and vice versa. The art is exceptional. Everything looks beautiful.


                  • #10
                    Nadira has a completely different voice this season, she really does sound like Drusilla. Her whole cryptic/mysterious thing she's got going on is getting old, fast. She doesn't seem to hate Angel any more. I was looking forward to seeing what would become of her after the end of last season. She's become boring.

                    The glass blower dude was badass. Clearly the magic plague screwed him up. I like it when bad guys have completely messed up priorities. This dude is so messed up that he's become obsessed with creating perfect glass bottles just because that's his craft. He tossed Angel out the window without giving a single shit. I hope we see this guy again. I liked his design, he was like an octopus with a furnace in his mouth. I liked the way his dialogue filled up a huge chunk of the page. I imagined his voice to be booming and uncomfortably loud.

                    Maybe I need to reread last issue again, because I don't find this cop to be an interesting guy at all. I don't even remember his name, maybe he'll grow on me. I wish they'd thought of an excuse to move Kate over to England or hell, even Dowling. This new cop just seems so bland and only seems to be there to give Angel a supporting character. Why haven't we seen Alistair? He was an interesting guy. I'd like to see how he's adapting to magic town.

                    The Pearl reveal at the end was completely expected. Nice to see her again though, she was a creepy villain. I'm guessing she's this season's big bad? Was she missing an eye? Anyone remember how that happened?

                    The artwork is fantastic, but I'm really not keen on VG's writing. It just seems so bland. I felt the same way about his Spike miniseries last season. The BtVS title has plenty of storylines I'm invested in: the whole thing with Xander and Dracula, Xander and Dawn's relationship, Buffy and Spike's relationship, mini-Giles and how he's adjusting, the new rules with the new vampires, etc. A&F has very little to make me excitied about the title. Corky feels like a standard MOTW, Magic Town doesn't really seem like anything special aside from a lot of monsters, and I really don't give a crap about Faith's storyline with Deepscan. She's obviously not going to stay with that organization, so it feels like the storyline there is going nowhere.

                    I didn't like how the junior Slayers knew about Faith's partnership with Angel -or that they'd even know who Angel is. Seems like the writers are giving the characters information that the audience knows, which is kinda lazy.

                    I do like the AtS season 1 atmosphere the title has going on. I liked how Faith seems to care a great deal about the teenage girl being seduced by the older guy. I liked that the demon was a giant chicken.

                    I want to like this title, but I need more than two characters I give a crap about. Bring back Alistair. Bring back Gunn. The Faith storyline is clearly going nowhere, the real "meat" of the title is Angel's thing in England with Corky and the bottles, and that's not exactly putting me on the edge of my seat. Corky is a fine MoTW, but he's got nothing on Dracula or Vicky the Vampire.

                    The thing I look forward to most in this title is Eldre Koh showing up and (I'm guessing) the journey to the Deeper Well to resurrect Illyria. The thing I'm most excited about in this title is stuff that the author has spoken about in Q&A sessions, not the actual book.


                    • #11
                      Angel & Faith 10.03 bullet points and analysis

                      FAITH’s STORY:

                      * The demon client is obviously evil and yet Kennedy seems to have no problem with his being a client of DeepScan. I wonder if Kennedy’s DeepScan would protect someone like that vampire from “City Of” (A 1.01).

                      * Kennedy knew the client was a demon but she didn’t seem to know that that demon had sex with underage girls. She knew it fed off the adoration of young women, but she didn’t seem to know – or maybe she simply didn’t want to know or think about it – that it actually had sex with underage girls.

                      - Faith should know that Angel had sex with Buffy when Buffy was underage and Faith knows about Angel’s ‘Angelus’ personality. Faith knows what Angel did in BtVS S8. Yet she’s against this demon because it has sex with underage girls and it’s a demon.

                      * I’m not sure it ever made sense that Slayers would be bad with guns. Bows and crossbows are much harder to aim correctly than a handgun or rifle is. Faith can shoot a dart-gun accurately, so why would she be bad with a handgun. And with Slayer strength, Buffy and Faith would experience very minimal – if any – recoil and therefore should be better shots and more effective with guns than the average gun shooter.

                      * Kennedy says the club was supposed to ‘card’ the people going into the club. But Kennedy can’t be naive enough to not know about fake IDs and the like.

                      * Was Kennedy trying to make Faith feel insecure by mentioning that Buffy actually “produced big time” when it came to Buffy’s first actual job with DeepScan?

                      * Does the lavatory that Faith and other Slayer DeepScan employees use not have individual shower stalls? The lockers have chipped paint and they are not that great. And the towels are relatively tiny.

                      * An Asian Slayer DeepScan employee seems to think Faith’s working side by side with Angel is a positive thing regarding Faith.

                      - Is she referring to A&F s1 or is she referring to stuff in A&F S9.

                      * “Those A-list Slayers”. How many are included in this? That Asian Slayer DeepScan employee didn’t say “Buffy and Faith”.

                      ANGEL’s STORY:

                      * Angel seems indignant about the idea that Nadira may be having Angel followed. Angel seems to have extremely relatively little guilt over what he did in BtVS S8 and what his actions caused in A&F s1.

                      * Pearl should be more powerful than she was in A&F s1. Unless she wants to torture Angel, she could have simply decapitated Angel or something similar that would dust Angel.

                      GENERAL THOUGHTS:

                      The story still seems to not make much sense.

                      * Why would Nadira need to be providing food and shelter to the displaced and whatnot. The government and/or Red Cross and/or the United Nations could and should be doing that.

                      * Why does there seem to be no witches or warlocks in Magic Town trying to revert the Magic People to their human forms?

                      * It seems the United Kingdom could hire DeepScan to deal with troublesome Magic People.
                      Last edited by MikeB; 20-06-14, 07:59 AM. Reason: fixing small 'grammar' mistakes


                      • #12
                        All caught up

                        This is my response to posts about the actual Issue from posters on this Board, meaning from post #3 and after.

                        Here’s my bullet points and analysis so I don’t repeat stuff. It’s post #11 on page 1.

                        * First off, we still don’t know how much of London, England is now Magic Town. Are hundreds, thousands, or millions in Magic Town? And Magic Town doesn’t seem to have much of an economy. What is Magic Town doing to the GDP and GNP of the United Kingdom? What’s it doing to the city government? What’s it doing to people’s livelihoods?


                        * I hadn’t thought about the idea of “seniority”. Faith doesn’t seem to have a higher position in DeepScan than the other Slayers who aren’t Kennedy. The Asian DeepScan Slayer’s remark of ‘A-list Slayers not playing well with others’ does seem to imply that Faith – within the company – is simply another Slayer employee. Kennedy was clearly offering Buffy to be the Number 2 Slayer in the company directly below Kennedy. And Buffy seemed to be allowed a little bit of autonomy.

                        - This is interesting. In BtVS S8, Buffy didn’t seem to give Faith any special position within Buffy and Co. Robin Wood seemed to be the squad leader of the Cleveland squad. And Kennedy here in Season 10 doesn’t seem to give Faith any special position within the organization. Faith doesn’t even seem to formally be the ‘leader’ of the group of Slayers sent to protect the small-time rock star.

                        * Angel’s story isn’t at all interesting or compelling. Others could be doing what Angel is doing. He should be dust. At least in A&F S9 there was the Giles thing.


                        * Perhaps Dark Horse (or whoever) thinks Drusilla’s popularity is because she acts the way she does. Therefore, they have Nadira acting somewhat like Drusilla.

                        - Speaking of, why wouldn’t Drusilla be in Magic Town? She’d find it delightful. I wonder if she went back to Mosaic.

                        Vampire in Rug

                        * Dowling is the leader of the San Francisco Vampire – and now probably more – Task Force. Why would he go to Magic Town? Kate Lockley’s going to Magic Town could be interesting. But I reason she should be leading a similar task force in Los Angeles. What is someone like Groosalugg doing? He could be in Magic Town.

                        * I don’t consider Victor Gischler’s writing to be “bland”. He simply doesn’t have much to work with. Faith isn’t being allowed to do something interesting such as creating a private demon fighting company. Or something. Angel is simply in Magic Town doing stuff because he’s not been dusted. Victor was very good at the thought bubble stuff in the Dark Horse Spike miniseries. He made the bugs delightful. Readers actually care about Sebastian’s death and are sad that he died. Gischler’s creation of Morgan and that whole back-story is a fantastic addition to the Buffyverse. In A&F S10, after the whole bringing Giles back to Buffy stuff, so far he simply has Angel and Faith doing stuff.

                        - What did you not like about the Spike miniseries?

                        * Kennedy would know that Faith in A&F S9 had been working with Angel to help resurrect Giles. But I don’t know if that’s what the Asian DeepScan Slayer employee was referring or if she was referring to stuff in the TV AtS.