Not content to only release one comic penned by Ron Marz a week, Top Cow’s Angelus #4 has also just hit comic shops. As Dani Baptiste struggles with her new identity as the leader of the Angelus, conflict all around her continues to rise. Summer is just heating up in the Top Cow Universe.
Writer: Ron Marz
Artist: Stjepan Sejic
Cover Artist: Stjepan Sejic
$2.99 limited series
At the end of Angelus #3, Dani had just been confronted by Jackie Estacado, the wielder of the Darkness and other major power in the Top Cow U. He apparently wanted to destroy her before she got the chance to come after him, since the Angelus and Darkness have been at war since the beginning of time. The fight resumes at the start of this issue, which is great for two reasons–first, the nighttime setting and actual darkness are a nice contrast to the usually colorful pages of Angelus, and convey the gravity of the situation. Also, that means we get a cameo by Jackie’s humorous Darklings, and they always manage to infuse some humor into the story.
In addition to squabbling with Jackie, Dani’s got a slew of other issues to worry about. Her direct subordinate, Sabine, clearly dislikes her while pretending to be loyal, and is actually planning her demise. Dani’s still not entirely comfortable with her new powers and how they work, and getting used to being the Angelus as she goes along. She’s in a new place, has questions about her sexuality, and at that confusing point at the start of a relationship where she doesn’t really know what she wants or what’s going on. It can get a little overwhelming for a girl, and you see some of this vulnerability on these pages. Even though she’s strong and sassy, Dani isn’t invulnerable or all-knowing; she has problems just like everyone else, and doesn’t always know how to handle them.
As Luke pointed out yesterday in his review of Velocity #1, one of Ron Marz’s greatest strengths is being able to convey things without having to completely spell them out for the reader. This is one of the reasons I’ve been enjoying Marz’s work on the Top Cow U so much; he’s doing a great job writing these characters, and Dani is no exception. Personally, I like Marz best when he’s accompanied by Stjepan Sejic, and this series really allows Sejic to creatively interpret the words of Marz into stunning images.
Even though the Top Cow U is full of strong, memorable female characters, Dani Baptiste still manages to stand out. I really dig where her story is headed right now, even if I’m not entirely sure how her actions as the Angelus will ultimately affect the other major powers in the Top Cow U, and I hope this creative team can keep that momentum going. Based on what I’ve seen so far, I don’t think it will be a problem.