It's been too long since I've had a chance to read any comics. Bad blogger--bad! But I have to say, after keeping busy with Pinocchio: Vampire Slayer and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, it's good to take on something that approaches vampires from the other perspective, in this case Angel #26. Besides, I've missed my favourite fanged brooder. Well, I miss the whole Buffyverse in general, but you know what I mean.
I have to start by commenting on the cover art (by Stephen Mooney): Love it! I've seen some good covers in my day but this has to be the first simulated action-figure package . And really--how can you not love the Swivel Arm Battle-Grip Angel? Or that he comes with a blood packet, and that the dragon is sold separately (if you've been reading IDW's "After the Fall" Angel comics, that last part will make sense)? The cover of Issue #26 speaks directly to the geek in me, which is exactly the point, as I found out as soon as I turned the page.
I don't even know where to start with the win in this issue. The long anticipated (by me) return of Spike (and prominent role of Groo). The Hollywood take on LA going to Hell (with Spike as a chick). The sci-fi convention and requisite fanboys and girls. The group of demonic assassins in teddy bear costumes. The return of Janus-worshippers (although sadly not Ethan Rayne, RIP) and cursed costumes (as originally seen in Buffy Season 2, "Halloween"). Yeah, this issue left me giddy.
The basic story is that Angel heads to a sci-fi con to look for the flaming sword that formerly killed him and is now up for auction. Between the fans and assassins, there's a lot of interest in said sword, and Angel wants to know who ends up with it. Lucky him--he's got help in the form of Groo, Spike, and Jeremy (from Spike: After the Fall). Disguising themselves in the free costumes being handed out at the door, wackiness ensues when Janus is invoked and everyone turns into whatever they're wearing. Suddenly the place is awash in super heroes, ninjas, cuddly bears, and Angel himself. Want to guess which costume Spike was wearing when the spell hit? I always thought Spike was at his funniest when mocking Angel. It's not any less funny when it becomes self-mockery.
To say I can't wait to read the next issue is an understatement. Maybe the Buffyverse isn't so far away, after all.
Angel: Now he's going to move in and--
Giant Teddy Bear: Hugs are the key ingredient in a love casserole!
Angel: Um, he's going to move in and cuddle me within an inch of my life. This day just took the weirdest 180.
Angel Issue #26 "Boys and their Toys: Part 1"; art by Stephen Mooney and written by Brian Lynch. From IDW Publishing.