Thursday, October 29, 2015

Graphic Novel Review: Priceless (Angela: Asgard's Assassin, Vol. 1)

Authors| Kieron Gillen and Marguerite Bennet  Artists| Phil Jimenez and Stephanie Hans
Rating| 4.5 Stars  Edition| Paperback

I was eager to see Angela's first headlining series before I even knew whether I'd like the character of the premise- it did not disappoint.

Angela is the lost sister of Thor and Loki (the real history of how her character was originally created, how she belonged to another series, and how she traveled to the Marvel Universe are all very interesting so I recommend Wikipedia) and was raised in Heven to believe she was an angel.  Angels live and survive off of the concept of favors- making them and fulfilling them.  Nothing is "priceless" because one action means someone is owed something for it.  At the birth of her younger sister, Angela steals the baby and goes on the run.  Thor and Loki work to chase her down.  So she must find help in the form of her friend Sera and old team, the Guardians of the Galaxy.

I often compare Thor comics to epic fantasy.  It doesn't even feel like it's in space most of the time, and the new ones don't always feel like superhero comics.  But, I really like that.  Angela takes it a step further- she's no hero, for one- and this is much like a dark fantasy novel.  Very grim and very dark but very good.

The only reason this didn't a full five stars is because I wanted it to center on Angela a bit more.  I wanted to get into her head.  For the most part, the story is narrated by Sera and we get to see things through her eyes or the eyes of an omniscient narrator.  For the title character, Angela doesn't really have a strong and unique personality until the final issue.  Don't let this stop you from reading, though, because while reading it's unnoticeable that she's a bit flat.  You're just taken in by the story and given a long, but good, ride.

The art was glorious- and perfect for this story.  It had some whimsical elements, especially during flashback scenes, and some eerie elements as well (Angela's eyes).  The faces all looked rather realistic during some points, helping the creepy factor.  It also maintained the dark aspect of the whole book.  Overall, the art was fantastic in that it helped the story become even better.  And it was beautiful on its own.

If you've found yourself enjoying Thor comics, particularly the new ones, you'll enjoy this.  It's a step into the darker side of the mythos but you'll really enjoy it.  Click here to add it to goodreads.

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