What They Say:
Giles’s personal Watcher files lead Angel and Faith to what Angel believes will be his true redemption–at least for a portion of his unforgivable sins.
In the underbelly of London, where demons are coping with the lack of magic and the resulting changes to the natural hierarchy, Angel and Faith follow the first major lead in Angel’s quest . . . forcing him to reflect on his earliest days in Los Angeles. (from DarkHorse.com)
In the third installment of “Live Through This”, we see the rift begin to widen between the main characters. As they seek the source of Mohra demon blood in Angel’s quest to bring Giles back from the dead, Angel and Faith must seek out one of Giles’ old colleagues – Alasdair Coames – to gain more information. When her belief that resurrecting Giles is a fool’s mission is confirmed by Alasdair, she knows that Angel will never feel truly redeemed. She’s just not sure how to fix the situation. Angel’s continued insistence that he is only worth staking is getting to Faith. How can their partnership survive?
In spite of the major plot points heading toward rescuing Giles, this issue really focuses on Faith. She gets to utter all the entertaining quips we have come to expect from the Buffyverse as she accuses Angel of “stake blocking” her and quizzes Alasdair about knowing “nerd-fu”. But the plot also illustrates her burgeoning awareness of the fact that she is seen as a leader. She’s the support system for her slayer sisters and the pillar of support for Angel. It is appealing to see her mature and recognize that she has grown beyond putting herself above all else.
The art continues to appeal to me, with a nice mixture of dark blues and greys mixed with vibrant colored sections of the panels. The glow of the little magic that remains in the world is beautifully illustrated with eerie green. The best feature of the artwork, though, is the detail in the faces. The close-ups of Faith contribute to our understanding of her growing awareness of herself, and her confusion over how to handle Angel.
This issue wasn’t as emotionally intense or action packed as I had hoped. I also really missed hearing from my favorite watcher, Giles, even in flashback form. I think it was those flashbacks that really spoke to me in the last two issues. In spite of those problems, this issue does move the key plot points of seeking the Mohra blood and dealing with Pearl and Nash forward. I truly hope they spend more time on Pearl and Nash next issue, so that we can get some serious battle scenes!
It also showcases significant character development in Faith, moving her more and more toward an adult leadership role. My favorite quote of the issue, which illustrates the things she is beginning to learn, is this: “As long as you have power, you’re gonna feel the need to use it.” She is left with some important choices to make about her own use of power – choices that will have a major impact on her relationships and roles moving forward.
If you aren’t already invested in this series, this issue may not have enough to get you to come back. If you are already hooked, as I am, this is a solid issue that continues the plot movement and makes you eager to find out what happens next.
Readers Rating: [ratings]