“Angel and Faith #17″stays true to Buffy canon with the story about Ethan Rayne and Rupert Giles, known in his youth as “Ripper.” We begin with a flashback to ’70s Soho, London, as a bunch of punks into the occult pursue the ultimate high, acting as host to the demon, Eyghon. We see Ethan tattooing Eyghon’s mark into a girl’s arm. We see as one member of the group, Randal, is consumed by Eyghon. The little demon game is not working out at all. This leads to the big bust up between Ethan and Rupert, one turning to chaos, the other turning to order with their fates forever intertwined.
Part Two of “Death and Consequences” reveals more and more of an exquisitely plotted tale. True to its title, we are seeing what happens to those to dare play around with death. Bringing the dead back to life has got to rank very high in the most horrific of quests. While the bereaved may be blind to it, the idea wreaks of something so unnatural. How could it ever work out? Even if a resurrection were possible, wouldn’t you always wonder if what you got was the same as the original? Well, without getting into matters of a religous nature, the whole concept, ironically, smacks of something, how should I put it…unholy! Fascinating stuff, when you start to think about it. Here is Angel determined to bring his friend and mentor, Rupert Giles, back to life. And what if he should succeed??
You know, we ended the last issue with such a tantalizing situation. Nadira, the ultimate surly Slayer, and her crew of Slayers, which she highjacked away from Faith, is even more bound and determined to bring her friend, Marianne, back to life. So, after one last plea for help from Angel, she and her gang march off, in great desperation, to a most foul source. When they arrive at this mansion in Guildford, they are welcomed by someone with a striking resemblance to Rupert Giles! We also know, from the last issue, that the body of Rupert Giles was stolen. So, we’ve got a reanimated corpse walking around and it claims it can help Nadira with her problem. Quite a problem.
Back at the ranch, or other mansion, I shoud say, Faith’s London home: Faith is pretty pissed off to see all this animosity coming from Nadira and her girls. She feels betrayed and just plain stomped upon. Come to think of it, she can blame Angel! Faith feels a need to go over all that she’s sacrificed for Angel’s quest to bring Giles back from the dead. Just like any person who feels used in a relationship, Faith says that she has seen her own purpose in life fade away in favor of helping Angel. It’s a solid moment in a very sturdy comic. After that dust up, hell’s bells, Angel is more fired up than ever to get it right. They will bring Rupert Giles back to life even if it kills them!
What a piece of work. All thank yous to the wrting talent of Christos Gage and the artistic talent of Rebekah Isaacs. This comic remains inspired, looking out for all the details, and even asking the big philosophical questions in the bargain!
“Angel and Faith #17” comes out December 19. Visit our friends at Dark Horse Comics.