Thursday, May 14, 2015

Graphic Novel Review: Angel & Faith: Daddy Issues Vol. 2

Angel & Faith Volume 2: Daddy Issues by Christos Gage and Rebekah Issacs, Joss Whedon (executive producer)

My Rating: 4 of 5 stars :star :star :star :star

Source: Paperback via my collection

Publisher: Dark Horse

Date of Publication: November 2012

The dark streets of London are increasingly dangerous as murderers, mystically devoid of emotion, begin to impact the lives of Angel and Faith. In unraveling this new mystery, the pair follow clues in the Watcher’s Files to a demon from Giles’s past and a “child” from Angel’s. Then, Drusilla returns to her homeland and becomes the hot new vampire in the underground scene! While Angel faces Dru, Faith must deal with issues that reawaken her inner turmoil—a visit from her deadbeat dad, who’s looking for a favor, and a troubled Slayer hell bent on revenge. Collects Angel & Faith #6–#10.

My Review

I had this on my wishlist forever. I was receiving the issues as they were coming out in 2012  and this is when I stopped doing that actually. Not because of this, but because of Buffy. Also, I much prefer collecting the volumes of graphic novels over a thousand issues which don't store well, and are a pain in the ass to read and maintain in order. I am glad I made that decision, I just regret taking so long to get back to this series as it really is better than Buffy and the only series I am determined to finish reading (that is currently being released).

I had read the first few issues so when I got this it was a bit of a reread. I didn't mind though, as I had forgotten a lot of what happened in the story. I knew Faith's dad came back, and knew it was for shady purposes. Drusilla is back, and I just love her. Her and her creepy demon friend are really interesting though.

The concept is this: The new demon in town is one with a twist. He feeds off the trauma of others. Usually, kills them in the process BUT Drusilla has "domesticated" one, in a sense. She keeps him as her pet, but only lets him feed on those who are willing — and doesn't let him kill the human either. What results is a person who is free of the trauma that haunted them. They still remember it, still recognize its tragedy, they are just no longer in any way inhibited by it. They no longer feel the sadness, grief, loss, anger, or betrayal by remembering it every day.

I loved this aspect of the story.

It poses an excellent philosophical question: would you ever volunteer to be a subject of the demon's feeding? You get a life free of the worst trauma or experience you have ever felt. You still have your memories, but you no longer feel the negative feelings associated with them.

One of the characters chooses this path, another doesn't. I could see both points of view, and it made me wonder what I would do. I think I would honestly have a hard time not trying it. If I still have my memories what am I giving up? Only the pain.

But, is pain the reason why traumatic events change us for the better? Are we stronger because of the pain or the experience of trauma?

I apologize for making this a mini philosophical review, but I just have to put those questions out there. As for the novel itself, the graphics are done beautifully. We meet a lot of new characters and see a few old ones (like Drusilla, as sane as ever). I really felt bad for Drusilla in this graphic novel as her sanity gave an even clearer picture of what Angel did to her and her family and that he really is the reason why she is as messed up as she is.

I recommend this graphic novel to lovers of fantasy, lovers of great stories and those who don't mind having a few questions swimming in their brain as they read a graphic novel. For those who are familiar with Angel or Buffy (even just a little— knowing the characters by name would be beneficial to this volume).

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(aka Dee) has loved reading for as long as she can remember. She loves many things: fantasy novels, young adult fiction, her cat, painting, and horror films from the 70s. Diamond is a grad student at UCLA. She's pursuing a Master's in Library and Information Science.

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