Angelic #1-6 Review
Story by: Simon Spurrier
Art by: Caspar Wijngaard
Letters by: Jim Campbell
Design by: Emma Price
Published by: Image Comics
A review by Cory Webber
Note: Angelic #6 comes out tomorrow (February 14, 2018). This is a review of the series up to, and including, Issue #6 which is the entire first arc. I will try my best to avoid spoilers. Do not read if you want to come in 100% fresh. Just know that I highly recommend this book.
Still with me ? Good!
Poopface. Buttbrain. Sinfool. Stupidbutt.
These are words found in the pages of Angelic. Reading them here out of context makes them seem downright silly; however, these are the kinds of idiosyncrasies Spurrier employs to create unique worlds and characters. And they fit perfectly for a semi-intelligent winged monkey born decades after humans created her ancestors as a last ditch effort to win a war. A war that every human lost. A war that allowed for these hybrid species creations to evolve unchecked.
Spurrier has quickly become one of my favorite writers. Just see my recent reviews of Godshaper and Motherlands to see my gushing. And, with this book, he has crafted another unique world and premise. For the uninitiated, Angelic tells the story of Qora, a winged girlmonk monkey (trust me, it makes sense), the Complainer, a seal-like creature (?) in a flying pod, and their quest to uncover the truths about their respective religious beliefs.
It would be easy to view Angelic as a sleight against organized religion, and the blind faith employed by many of its tenants; however, I see it more as a view of the importance of asking questions, learning truth for yourself, and using your individuality to enhance the truths around you. Qora is particularly exceptional at questioning everything. Spurrier has created characters and clans that instantly draw you in. He has a way of making you feel confused and part of the story at the same time. There isn’t a single wasted panel in this story. The flow from panel to panel is smooth and easy to follow.
The art in Angelic by Caspar Wijngaard is gorgeous. The colors and designs are whimsical, yet well thought out. You can tell he had a blast creating winged monkeys, flying robot dolphins, phantasm-like spirit cats, flying giant squids, flying whale war machines, elephant tanks, etc… This kind of art and story were meant to be told in a comic book. The subdued pastels were the perfect choice. The inks give a distinct depth and feel to the characters that make them feel like they were cut out of a coloring book and pasted onto the backgrounds.
As usual, I’m not always sure where the design ends and the art begins, but Price’s designs are just top-notch. From the many character designs to the familiar yet foreign world designs. Price and Wijngaard seem to have something great going on. Not once did I think, “Hey, this could have been drawn, or designed, a better way!” Not that I’m an expert at such things, but nothing about the way this comic was presented to me made me feel that it wasn’t completely intended to be exactly as it was.
Campbell’s letters in Angelic are just as important as the rest of the art. Each species has its own font that adds character and identity to each group. And the onomatopoeias and sound effects are some of the best designed and placed I’ve ever seen.
A lot happens in this first arc: Friendships are formed, rules are broken, risks are taken, truths are discovered, layers of mystery are unpeeled, and betrayals from unlikely sources occur. A lot happens in these first six issues, but the way it ends makes you feel that the adventure is just beginning, like the feeling you get in a video game when you have unlocked a larger area to the map…and I can not wait to continue on this journey with Qora and her little crew of misfits.
Verdict: Buy it!
Spurrier, Wijngaard, Campbell and Price have created a fanciful epic with big ideas, incredible designs and a lot of heart. Mark this as another book by Spurrier that has jumped to the top of my must-read pile.