Review: Angela: Asgard’s Assassin #1

Written by Kieron Gillen and Marguerite Bennet (sub story)
Art by Phil Jimenez and Stephanie Hans (sub story)
Inks by Tom Palmer
Colors by Romulo Fajardo
Published by Marvel Worldwide Inc.

Angela’s 21 year journey has been a long and arduous one. She made her debut in Image’s Spawn #9 back in March 1993, serving as Heaven’s angelic bounty hunter. Seven years later, she was impaled by Malebolgia, the ruler of the Eighth Circle of Hell in Spawn #100 (Dec 2000). Angela, and her fans, then suffered another wound at the hands of her co-creators, Todd McFarlane and Neil Gaiman. Their dispute over her character rights was one of the longest legal battles between creators in history. Their quarrel was finally settled in 2012 with Gaiman gaining full custody of Angela. Gaiman then returned to Marvel and not too far behind him was Angela. Angela made her Marvel debut in Age of Ultron #10 (Mar 2013).

Since then, one of the top questions surrounding Angela was “who and what is she now?” Angela’s not She-Ra. She’s not Xena. She’s not Red Sonja. She’s not Wonder Woman. She’s not a Powerpuff Girl. She’s Angela, a swift and powerful assassin with techniques that are concurrently graceful and brutal by nature.

Angela was raised an angel, but she was banished from Heven after their queen learned that Angela was a descendant of royal blood. Angela’s not just any princess. She’s Aldrif, the daughter of the imperial Odin and his royal queen, Freyja (Frigga); Heven’s sworn enemies. Angela however, could care less! She wants nothing to with her biological family and noble lineage. All she knows now is that she’s caught in between an ancient war involving two realms and she’s reluctant to renounce her angelic discipline despite her exile from Heven.

Thus, “Angela is a warrior without a home”. Those are the first few words that were written in the new ongoing series of Angela: Asgard’s Assassin. The first two pages of the issue consist of redundant writing; however, it’s appropriate for this book. Those of you that read the Original Sin Tenth Realm storyline would understand. You won’t be disappointed with Angela’s battle sequences nor with her sub story, which offers us a glimpse into her “Marvel past”. Kieron Gillen ends this issue on a high note, setting up what promises to be a great second issue.

The art by Phil Jimenez for Angela is simply brilliant. Am I surprised? Not really! After all, haven’t we seen his handiwork in previous issues of another female warrior (Wonder Woman)? Angela’s form is quietly provocative while her facial features maintain that “if looks could kill” glance in almost every panel.

Also within this book, we are treated to an added bonus; the captivating artwork of Stephanie Hans. Hans’ remarkable talent comes to the forefront in this issue. Hans presents us with an absolutely stunning and elegant look for Angela. The background work on each of the panels is outstanding and very realistic.

After reading this book, you can’t help but feel that Angela is going to be more than a mainstay in the Marvel Universe. This issue is clearly a table setter for powerful future story arcs with Angela.

Angela, I’m very excited to see that you’re back – in your own solo series nonetheless. Marvel now (see what I did there?) has a golden opportunity to bring you into uncharted territory in the vast realm of comic book fandom. I hope to see this run last a very long time…but will history repeat itself?

What do you think Angela?

Until next time!

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