The Vampire With A Soul’s least favorite fangy compatriot joins the gang as new threats become apparent.

Angel & Spike 9
Written by Bryan Edward Hill
Pencils and Inks by Gleb Melnikov
Colors by Gabriel Cassata

Now that the first Angel-Buffy crossover, HELLMOUTH, is over, it’s time for Angel to get back to Los Angeles and get his house in order. It’s a little bit difficult, since Spike has moved in and convinced Angel’s allies Winifred Burkle and Charles Gunn that he would be a valuable asset to their mission. That, of course, drives Angel a little bit crazy, considering all the bad blood between the two. But he agrees to let Spike tag along once Gunn and Fred vouch for him – and Spike vouches for them.

Writer Bryan Edward Hill has such a great grasp of the characters, and I can hear the actors from the Whedonverse TV shows speaking each of their lines. With the emergence of interdimensional evil law firm Wolfram & Hart, the new comic book series is starting to feel more familiar, while giving new stories updated for the time.

One character who I wasn’t expecting to get much play in the Whedonverse revamp was LAPD Detective Kate Lockley. The character was a major foil for Angel during the FIRST SEASON of the TV show, acting as the everyman character being introduced to the world of vampires and demons. Lockley plays a pretty big part this issue, getting involved with a demon whose eyes are sewn shut who bites the shoulder of a kid, hospitalizing him with an unknown illness.

Lockley’s curiosity brings here face-to-face with Angel, and we end on a cliffhanger, as the demon who injured the kid earlier shows up as well.

As much as I loved the early issues of this new series, it was missing something without more of the major players from the original series. As we are slowly introduced to more of the Fang Gang, the series keeps getting better.