Saturday, February 25, 2017

"No Angel" #1 Review

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"No Angel" #1 from Black Mask Studios -

     Hannah Gregory is a hero. She served with honor in Iraq, and then she came home and signed up to fight crime as an FBI Agent in Chicago. But Hannah has a history she's tried to put behind her, a tense upbringing in Tucker's Mill, Wisconsin. Unfortunately, the estrangement isn't going to end happily...Hannah is forced to return home because of the brutal murders of her brother and her father. Hannah is not going to leave this to the small-town justice system; she's going to find out who killed her kin and make them pay dearly - if she can avoid being entangled in her family's nonsense, and if she can stay alive long enough to bring the killer(s) to justice. When Hannah is attacked by a monstrous man with spiders pouring from his eyes, she seeks out her father's mistress, a woman who handed her a cryptic biblical message at her father's and brother's funeral. What she finds with this woman shakes her to the very core, to her very soul. The powers of darkness are real, and they are coming for her...And for her newfound illegitimate sister, a sister with the wings of an angel!!

   The sibling team of Adrianne and Eric Palicki come together to give us this supernatural horror mystery mashup, "No Angel" #1. Eric is a pretty well-known comics creator, and Adrianne, as we know, co-starred in "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." in which she portrayed  Barbara "Bobbi" Morse, AKA Mockingbird. The protagonist of this story, Hannah, bears a striking resemblance to Adrianne, which I am sure is no accident. Hannah is the strong, matter-of-fact, silent type - she's jaded but she still gives a damn about seeing justice done in the world. To me, that makes her a very attractive protagonist. It's interesting that she seems much more daring in combat that she does at home in her small town; she would rather run in front of flying bullets than spend one minute in her hometown with her family. The comic moves forward at a nice clip, giving us clues to the murder-mystery and filling us in on Hannah and her strained relationships in the town along the way. It feels natural, as if it's going to be a pretty straightforward mystery/crime thriller until the creepy killer with spiders falling out of his head attacks Hannah, and we find out that Hannah's dad was in over his head in the supernatural...Oh, and that the lovechild that Hannah's dad produced with his holy scripture-spouting mistress has honest to goodness wings! The story spins in a totally different direction, and just as if is REALLY getting interesting, it's all over with a nice gut-punch flourish at the end. Ari Syahrazad's pencils and inks are competent - he uses space nicely in his panels making them feel wider than they actually are. Jean-Paul Csuka's colors are moody and a bit flat, adding atmosphere to the more creepy parts of the story but making the other parts quite a bit of a bore to look at. All in all, "No Angel" #1 is a pretty good first outing. I think I'll stick around for a few issues and see where it goes. This might make for a cool TV mini-series, or film. Adrianne Palicki deserves to have a show that doesn't get canceled - so far she's starred in two unaired TV pilots: Wonder Woman, and Marvel's Most Wanted

RATING: 8 out of 10. 

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