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BOOM! Hellmouth# 4 Is Out
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Oracle


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Buffyverse comics for November 2019.

http://majorspoilers.com/2019/08/22/boom-studios-for-november-2019/

BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER #9

Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Price: $3.99
Writer: Jordie Bellaire
Artist: David Lopez
Cover Artists:
Main Cover: Marc Aspinall
Spotlight Cover: Kevin Wada
Connecting Cover: Goñi Montes
Preorder Cover: Ryan Inzana
Incentive Cover: Cara McGee

Synopsis: A HELLMOUTH TIE-IN! It’s up to the All-New Scooby Gang of Cordelia, Willow and Xander to
save Sunnydale. There’s just one problem—the Hellmouth is spreading evil all over Sunnydale, putting everyone
under its thrall. As the inhabitants of Sunnydale turn on one another, will the Scooby Gang be enough?











BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER: HELLMOUTH #2

Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Price: $3.99
Writers: Jordie Bellaire & Jeremy Lambert
Artist: Eleonora Carlini
Cover Artists:
Main Cover: Jenny Frison
Variant Cover: Goñi Montes

Synopsis: THE EVENT OF THE YEAR CONTINUES!
Buffy and Angel must find a way to work together as the Hellmouth begins to open and evil spreads across
Sunnydale. But can Angel keep his true identity a secret from Buffy, or will the Hellmouth force him to reveal the monster within?





ANGEL #7

Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Price: $3.99
Writer: Bryan Edward Hill|
Artist: Gleb Melnikov
Cover Artists:
Main Cover: Dan Panosian
Variant Cover: Jakub Rebelka
Preorder Cover: Scott Buoncristiano
Incentive Cover: Jack T. Cole

Synopsis: A HELLMOUTH TIE-IN! Angel’s in Sunnydale, so it’s up to TEAM SPIKE to save Los Angeles from
a horde of demons! But can Fred and Gunn find a way to work with Spike to save their city…or does Spike have a
secret agenda?






[/list]
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2019 2:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Preview pages for this weeks BOOM! Angel # 4.

http://www.multiversitycomics.com/previews/angel-4/
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 28, 2019 1:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wenxina's review of tomorrow's Angel # 4.

http://fanbasepress.com/index.php/press/reviews/item/10252-angel-4-advance-comic-book-review

Wenxina's review of tomorrow's ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Chosen Ones #1’

http://fanbasepress.com/index.php/press/reviews/item/10251-buffy-the-vampire-slayer-chosen-ones-1-advance-comic-book-review
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2019 5:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Preview page for BOOM! Angel # 5.

http://www.buffyforums.net/forums/showthread.php?21809-BOOM!-Angel-5-Issue-Discussion-Thread(Full-Spoilers)

[img]https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EDBTwFaWsAAMzoK?format=jpg[/img]

Preview pages for BOOM!Buffy # 8.

https://www.cbr.com/buffy-the-vampire-slayer-8-preview-exclusive/

EXCLUSIVE: Buffy & Angel Meet for the First Time in Buffy the Vampire Slayer #8 Preview

In a CBR-exclusive preview for Buffy the Vampire Slayer #8, Buffy crosses paths with the vampire Angel, leading them both right into Hellmouth.

by Meagan Damore – on Aug 29, 2019

The Hellmouth event has begun. In a CBR-exclusive preview for Buffy the Vampire Slayer #8 by writer Jordie Bellaire and artist David López, the eponymous Slayer crosses paths with the vampire Angel, leading them both right into Hellmouth.

According to the issue description,

The road to Hellmouth begins in BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER #8, where the Slayer meets Angel for the very first time! Buffy’s on patrol at her school’s Halloween dance, but instead of demons and monsters, she finds a stranger in a mask who seems to be watching her every move. Meanwhile, across town, someone close to the Scooby Gang makes a fateful decision that has dire consequences for Sunnydale, and leads directly to the event that will change Buffy and Angel’s lives forever in…the HELLMOUTH.

“It’s the moment every fan has been waiting for since Angel first appeared in our all-new Buffyverse. While we may know them as meant-to-be, this Buffy and Angel are a pair of strangers who have been leading very different lives on separate paths,” BOOM! Studios Executive Editor Jeanine Schaefer said in a statement. “But now all roads lead to the Hellmouth, meaning these two heroes will finally meet face to face, altering the fates of everyone in the Buffyverse forever!”

Bellaire and López's Buffy the Vampire Slayer #8 goes on sale September 4. The issue will release with a main cover by Mondo's Marc Aspinall. Kevin Wada, Becca Carey, Daniele Di Nicuolo and more will provide variant covers. A Hellmouth Connecting Cover by artists Kelly & Nichole Matthews will also be released.








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PostPosted: Sat Aug 31, 2019 8:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

More preview pages for BOOM! Buffy # 8.

http://www.buffyforums.net/forums/showthread.php?21810-BOOM!-Buffy-8







And two more Buffy # 8 covers.



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PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 1:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

BOOM! Angel # 5 preview pages.

http://wmqcomics.com/previews/preview-booms-angel-5-out-sept-25/















BOOM! Studios on Friday revealed a first look at ANGEL #5, the official prelude to Hellmouth, the historic Buffy & Angel comic book event.

The road to Hellmouth continues in September from writer Bryan Edward Hill (American Carnage, Fallen Angels) and artist Gleb Melnikov, as ANGEL #5 reveals that Angel now knows his true mission—to gather a team of highly specialized individuals to help him save the world when all Hell breaks loose.

Meet Charles Gunn, vampire hunter, social media celeb and the fresh new face of LA’s supernatural crimefighting underground. But it’s not all just likes and subscribes because Gunn is on a mission to dust every vampire he can find, right up until he comes face-to-face with the vampire cursed with a soul! Will they be able to bridge their differences and partner up long enough to save the world?

“Hellmouth is here, and the only one who can stop it is Angel . . . and the team he’s somehow managed to pick up along the way. But everyone who’s ever joined him in the fight against evil ends up paying a heavy cost,” said Jeanine Schaefer, Executive Editor, BOOM! Studios. “So it all comes down to one very important question—who can Angel trust with the fate of the world?”

Preview BOOM’s ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ #8, out Sept. 4
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2019 11:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wenxina's review of tomorrow's BOOM! Buffy # 8

https://fanbasepress.com/index.php/press/reviews/item/10270-buffy-the-vampire-slayer-8-advance-comic-book-review
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2019 7:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

https://www.bleedingcool.com/2019/09/05/buffy-angel-event-comic-hellmouth-sell-out/

Will the First-Ever Buffy & Angel Event Comic “Hellmouth” Sell Out Before It Hits Stores?

Posted on September 5, 2019 | by Rich Johnston

Boom Studios is making a big push on Hellmouth, the new limited series in October that they’re billing as the First Ever Buffy and Angel comic book event – including being featured on the cover to Diamond Previews.

Yes, Dark Horse had their versions of these series crossover, but Boom is making a direct comparison to comic book events like those from Marvel Comics, with a core limited series and ongoing series tying into that main story – think Absolute Carnage in structure and importance.

The closest thing Boom has done to this before was last year’s Power Rangers event, Shattered Grid, but even that only had a few tie-in specials and otherwise was limited to the two Power Rangers series crossing over – not an event like Hellmouth. No one had ever done a Power Rangers event before and Boom surprised even their biggest cheerleaders with numerous sell outs and total sales over 300,000 copies.

And when Boom has done a First Ever (or First Appearance) with their Joss Whedon books, it’s always been underordered by retailers – and fans are still discovering the series.

Boom took a gamble this year by rebooting Joss Whedon’s beloved Buffy franchise – for the first time ever in January, but that paid off quickly – with the first issue selling out before it hit stores () and with retailers scrambling to keep up with demand as issue #3 outsold issue #2 (). The series remains one of Boom Studios top-selling series each month, with sales of issue #8 at nearly 20,000 units.

And then in another first ever for the Whedonverse, Angel was rebooted in a surprise launch in April (as we warned you about first) that has been a bit of a sleeper hit. We told you that issue #1 was generating some heat with speculators, but the series has also been underestimated by retailers with the big First Appearances of Winifred “Fred” Burkle in Angel #2 and Gunn (both his cameo in Angel #3 and first appearance in Angel #4).

These First Appearances have pushed sales in a big way – with Fred’s first appearing driving Angel #2 orders to 15,445 units (and with a third printing on the way). While Angel #3 had a typical dip in orders, the first appearance of Gunn drove those Angel #4 orders to up over 12,600 units – an increase of 20% from issue to issue. And the Hellmouth prelude in Angel #5 brought sales up another 10% to 13,760 units, which – along with multiple printings of earlier issues – make it clear that retailers are still finding their ceiling on this series as more fans rush to stores (no doubt due to increased attention on the franchise as part of its 20th anniversary).

And Angel #6 is primed to continue that upwards sales trend, with the First Appearance of Team Spike– and I’m told it will be Spike, Gunn & Fred defending Los Angeles while Angel is in Sunnydale. While those characters have shared the screen in Angel Season Five, this is a much different take on the characters and a much different reason for them coming together.

We haven’t heard what happens to the core cast of Angel after Hellmouth, but it’s fair to believe that if these issues hit with fans, there very well could be some kind of Spike spinoff book. And this would be the First Appearance of that very same team, which could make Angel #6 the most sought after issue in the series thus far.

This all makes Hellmouth a perfect storm of opportunity for retailers – another First Ever for the Whedonverse, the first meeting between Buffy and Angel, and what I’m told will be some big First Appearances from new teams to all-new characters.

As fans continue to discover the new Buffy and Angel series, with even more attention on both franchises due to the Angel 20th anniversary celebrations in October, this is the perfect starting point for all the fans who’ve been hearing about these reboots but haven’t taken the plunge yet – both because it’s a #1 and the biggest Whedon story from Boom yet. But will retailers have enough copies to meet demand or will this be another book with fast-tracked printings before the book goes on-sale?
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2019 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Comics May Have Already Killed a Major Character

BOOM! Studios' Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel crossover may have just kicked off with a death that totally changes established Buffy canon


https://www.cbr.com/buffy-the-vampire-slayer-comics-spike-death/

Hmm,since we already know Spike isn't dead and will be in Angel's book during the crossover due to the solicitations for future issues,I'm not sure presenting the article with this slant has much point.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2019 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Preview pages for BOOM! Buffy & Angel Crossover even:Hellmouth # 1.

http://www.boom-studios.com/2019/09/10/the-first-ever-buffy-angel-event-begins-in-hellmouth-1/

The First-Ever Buffy & Angel Event Begins in HELLMOUTH #1

September 10, 2019

Discover the Premiere Issue of the Historic New Buffyverse Event Series in October 2019

BOOM! Studios today unveiled a first look at HELLMOUTH #1, in partnership with 20th Century Fox. The five-issue series from writers Jordie Bellaire (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and Jeremy Lambert (Doom Patrol) and artist Eleonora Carlini (Saban’s Go Go Power Rangers) brings Buffy and Angel face to face in the world-ending event hundreds of years in the making—the opening of the Hellmouth!

From beneath you, it devours…Buffy and the Scoobies will have to learn to trust each other again as they race to close the Hellmouth before whatever evil living there can be unleashed on, first, Sunnydale, and then, the world. Meanwhile, Angel, the vampire cursed with a soul, arrives in town to seek his redemption by doing whatever it takes to destroy the path to Hell…and no human, demon, or Slayer will stand in his way.

HELLMOUTH #1 features a main cover by fan favorite artist Jenny Frison (Wonder Woman), along with variant cover by acclaimed illustrator and movie poster artist Kyle Lambert (Stranger Things), as well as a variant cover by artists Kelly & Nichole Matthews (R.L. Stine’s Just Beyond) that connects to ANGEL #5 and BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER #8!

HELLMOUTH is the newest release from BOOM! Studios’ eponymous imprint, home to critically acclaimed original series, including Once & Future by Kieron Gillen and Dan Mora; Something is Killing the Children by James Tynion IV and Werther Dell’Edera; Faithless by Brian Azzarello and Maria Llovet; Abbott by Saladin Ahmed and Sami Kivelä; Bury the Lede by Gaby Dunn and Claire Roe; Klaus by Grant Morrison and Dan Mora; and Folklords by Matt Kindt and Matt Smith. The imprint also publishes popular licensed properties including Joss Whedon’s Firefly from Greg Pak and Dan McDaid; Buffy the Vampire Slayer from Jordie Bellaire and David López; Angel from Bryan Edward Hill and Gleb Melnikov; and Mighty Morphin Power Rangers from Ryan Parrott and Daniele Di Nicuolo.

Print copies of HELLMOUTH #1 will be available for sale on October 9, 2019 exclusively at local comic book shops (use comicshoplocator.com to find the nearest one) or at the BOOM! Studios webstore. Digital copies can be purchased from content providers, including comiXology, iBooks, Google Play, and the BOOM! Studios app.














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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2019 7:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Full preview for next week's BOOM! Angel # 5

http://www.buffyforums.net/forums/showthread.php?21809-BOOM!-Angel-5-Issue-Discussion-Thread(Full-Spoilers)











More covers





BOOM! Buffy # 10 covers and solicitation

http://www.buffyforums.net/forums/showthread.php?21162-New-Buffy-series-from-BOOM!-officially-announced!&p=753472#post753472









A HELLMOUTH TIE-IN! THE FIRST APPEARANCE OF A NEW SLAYER! With Buffy in Hell, someone new has answered the call to save what's left of Sunnydale. Who is this mysterious new Slayer? And how will the new blood cope with a team made up of a newly empowered witch and a half-human, half-vampire sidekick?

http://www.boom-studios.com/2019/09/19/hellmouth-1-is-soul-ed-out-before-it-hits-stores/

HELLMOUTH #1 Is SOUL-ED OUT Before It Hits Stores!

September 19, 2019

BOOM! Studios fast-tracks second printing variant for first issue of historic Buffy & Angel event in October 2019

BOOM! Studios announced today that HELLMOUTH #1, the highly anticipated premiere issue kicking off an all-new Buffy and Angel event series from writers Jordie Bellaire (Buffy The Vampire Slayer) & Jeremy Lambert (Doom Patrol) and artist Eleonora Carlini (Saban’s Go Go Power Rangers), has sold out at the distributor level before its on-sale date of October 9, 2019.

In order to meet the overwhelming demand from retailers and fans, BOOM! Studios is fast-tracking the release of HELLMOUTH #1 SECOND PRINTING VARIANT, so it can arrive in comic shops on October 16, 2019. Due to this printing being fast-tracked and high demand, quantities are limited and orders may be allocated. This second printing will feature an all-new cover by superstar artist Dan Mora (Once & Future, Klaus).

From beneath you, it devours…Buffy and the Scooby Gang will have to overcome recent fractures and learn to trust each other again as they race to close the Hellmouth before Evil can be unleashed on, first, Sunnydale, and then, the world. Meanwhile, Angel, the vampire cursed with a soul, arrives in town to seek his redemption by doing whatever it takes to destroy the path to Hell…and no human, demon, or Slayer will stand in his way.

“HELLMOUTH is exactly what you want from the first Buffyverse event, and we can’t wait for all the Buffy and Angel fans to experience it,” said Filip Sablik, President, Sales and Marketing, BOOM! Studios. “From the first official meeting between Buffy and Angel to the Scooby Gang trying to pull Sunnydale back from the brink of destruction, and Spike’s newfound team battling for the soul of Los Angeles, nothing will go the way you expect! We’re beyond thrilled to have such enthusiastic support for the book, necessitating a second printing to meet the overwhelming demand.”

HELLMOUTH is the newest release from BOOM! Studios’ eponymous imprint, home to critically acclaimed original series, including Once & Future by Kieron Gillen and Dan Mora; Something is Killing the Children by James Tynion IV and Werther Dell’Edera; Faithless by Brian Azzarello and Maria Llovet; Abbott by Saladin Ahmed and Sami Kivelä; Bury the Lede by Gaby Dunn and Claire Roe; Klaus by Grant Morrison and Dan Mora; and the upcoming Folklords by Matt Kindt and Matt Smith. The imprint also publishes popular licensed properties including Joss Whedon’s Firefly from Greg Pak and Dan McDaid; Buffy the Vampire Slayer from Jordie Bellaire and David López; Angel from Bryan Edward Hill and Gleb Melnikov; and Mighty Morphin Power Rangers from Ryan Parrott and Daniele Di Nicuolo.

Print copies of HELLMOUTH #1 First Printing, featuring cover art by Jenny Frison (Wonder Woman), a variant cover by acclaimed illustrator and movie poster artist Kyle Lambert (Stranger Things), and a variant connecting cover by artists Kelly & Nichole Matthews (R.L. Stine’s Just Beyond) that connects to HELLMOUTH prelude issue, ANGEL #5 and BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER #8, will officially be available for sale on October 9, 2019 at local comic book shops (use comicshoplocator.com to find the nearest one) or at the BOOM! Studios webstore. A first printing of the variant cover by Kyle Lambert with a full foil treatment will be available for sale on October 30, 2019 at local comic book shops or at the BOOM! Studios webstore. Digital copies can be purchased from content providers, including comiXology, iBooks, Google Play, and Madefire.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 21, 2019 11:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another BOOM! Angel # 5 cover.

http://www.buffyforums.net/forums/showthread.php?21809-BOOM!-Angel-5-Issue-Discussion-Thread(Full-Spoilers)



Another BOOM! Buffy # 10 c0ver.

http://www.buffyforums.net/forums/showthread.php?21162-New-Buffy-series-from-BOOM!-officially-announced!/page54



Angel#7/Buffy#10/Hellmouth #3

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2019 8:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wenxina's advanced review for this week's BOOM! Angel # 5.

http://fanbasepress.com/index.php/press/reviews/item/10313-angel-5-advance-comic-book-review
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 27, 2019 1:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Preview Pages for BOOM! Angel # 6

http://www.buffyforums.net/forums/showthread.php?21836-BOOM!-Angel-6&p=753696#post753696





















With Angel trapped in the HELLMOUTH with the Slayer, the rest of his newly formed team has their hands full dealing with the fallout in Los Angeles. Will this gang of supernatural crime-solvers be able to protect Los Angeles from the shockwaves of the Hellmouth’s opening… and from newly arrived vampire, Spike?
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 27, 2019 8:52 pm    Post subject: Interviews With BOOM! Angel Writer Reply with quote

Interviews with BOOM! Angel writer Bryan Hill

https://monkeysfightingrobots.co/angel-bryan-edward-hill-evil-twitter/

[EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW] ANGEL’s Bryan Edward Hill Talks Real Ghosts, Twitter, and the Nature of Evil



Shortly after the new Buffy the Vampire series landed at Boom! Studios, fans were thrilled to learn that audience-favorite and series spinoff Angel was getting his own storyline from the new home of Sunnydale’s finest. Fans were even more excited to hear that Detective Comics and Witchblade veteran Bryan Edward Hill would be weaving the tale of the monster-turned-do-gooder, telling horror comics stories as he never has before. Monkeys Fighting Robots sat down with Hill to discuss the first collected volume of Angel (out October 1st), and what we heard certainly had us turning on some lights and pulling up some sheets. Just not for the reason you might expect. Read on for all the spookiness Hill had to impart…

Grant DeArmitt for Monkeys Fighting Robots: This is a really deep, thematic comic, and there’s so much to talk about on things like social media and redemption. But first, let’s talk about the mechanics of this book. Can you tell us about bringing Angel to Boom? What was your collaboration like with Buffy writer Jordie Bellaire? How did you build this new mythos?

Bryan Edward Hill: This all happened because my editor, Jeanine Schaefer, reached out and asked if I would be interested in writing Angel. I was glad to receive the email, because no one understands how much I like horror. Most of my work is sci-fi, or action, or thrillers. Plus, I talk about Tom Ford on Twitter all the time. So Nobody knows I’m a huge horror fan too. That’s a shade to my rainbow that I haven’t been able to explore. So Jeanine reached out and we talked through what this book could be, how it could be relevant. She is one of the most warm and genuine people in the business, and I can’t say enough good things about her. Working with her with a book was certainly something I was interested in doing in general. I’m a huge fan of the show too, of Joss [Whedon]’s work. So it was a natural fit.

Now, as to what Jordie’s doing; because these books are a little siloed, at least prior to [upcoming storyline] Hellmouth, I would be aware of what was going on. There was mutual awareness. But it wasn’t like one person gave the other person rules. It was more like, “Oh what’s happening over there? This might give me an opportunity to do this or do that.” So the collaboration has been very smooth and pleasant and I’m really excited about what happens with the books going forward after Hellmouth. That’ll be really exciting for people. It’s been a beautiful process so far.

MFR: That’s awesome to hear that you’re such a huge horror fan. Can you talk about that a little bit? What kind of horror do you like? What are your influences?

BEH: Well, when I was a kid, I saw a ghost in my grandmother’s basement.

MFR: Wait, what?

BEH: Yep. I saw an actual ghost. I walked into this basement, and there is no wind there, but there was a coat that was on a clothesline. It just started swinging. Back and forth back and forth. Like the blade of a fan, or a pendulum. At one point, it swung to the right, and I saw an older white man in formal wear, but formal wear of the day. It was from the 40s, I imagined? It wasn’t aggressive, but he pointed at me and muttered something. Well, I ran out of that basement. I bounded up those stairs. I too maybe two steps of the whole flight to get up there, which was impressive, because I was a pretty chubby kid. I didn’t go back in that basement for years, but it wasn’t the last supernatural experience I had. So that got me interested in exploring those things. From there it was esoteric thought, and studying the different schools around that stuff.

As far as cinema goes, I think The Exorcist was a formative experience for me. I rented it on VHS from a video store that would rent R-rated movies to kids. And at the time I took it home and I watched it, I didn’t know what a subliminal thing was, what a flash frame was. Then there’s that moment in the movie when Damien Karras is having the dream, and that face comes on screen. I thought that was only on my tape. And I’m like, “Oh no there’s a demon in my television; I’m going to die. I rented an R-rated movie and now I am being punished by the universe.”

So when I got the chance to work on Angel, I saw this really great opportunity to bring in Byzantine, almost classical, horror elements. I looked at the work at Mike Mignola on Hellboy, or even his adaptation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula. (Which I think is an under-seen masterpiece, it’s incredible.) Being able to do that stuff in comic form, that’s incredibly exciting, especially when I can filter it through a contemporary narrative.

MFR: You talk a lot in this book about evil and its nature. Do your supernatural experiences or interest in the esoteric factor into that? When I was reading this, I got the sense that you were talking about a very modern evil. Namely, bullying on social media. But does that classic, Byzantine idea of evil affect this story?

BEH: One of the things I think about a lot is subjective and objective evil, snd how ethics can shift and change based on how civilization evolves. If we were to go back to ancient Rome, we would find most of what they did to be evil, to be abhorrent. But that was just the way they lived. So there is a subjective definition of evil. But then you wonder: underneath that, are there sentient forces that exist only to destroy? I think that’s been one of the questions that mankind has had ever since the first time the sun went down.

I’ve always felt that what lives in the darkness is what lives inside of ourselves. One of the ways to understand oneself is to understand your own darkness, to confront those aspects of your own nature. Carl Jung talked about it in Psychology and the Occult. When I was growing up, comics were always the place I went to to get discussions about those kinds of broad, almost primal ethics. So when I write books, I tend to write engaging those things. Angel is the story about a character who has been evil. Now he’s trying to be good, but still carrying the memories, and likely some of those desires still.

The question Joss asked when he created Angel, to me, was, “Can a monster be a hero?” I think that’s still relevant question for the day. Is redemption possible? Do you deserve redemption in the face of the things you’ve done before? That’s an ongoing discussion in popular culture right now.

As far as social media goes, I’m very concerned. I’m concerned about what it does to people’s self-esteem. I’m concerned about how it exposes us to so many opinions. We might not be biologically engineered to engage with that many people at a time. I’m concerned with how it forces us to demonstrate our lives to others. It’s performative living. It can be very difficult on a soul.

So I wanted to explore that and ask the question: is there something truly Insidious at play there? If it’s not the cause of it, is it taking advantage of its existence? You can look at social media as its own hive mind, as its own kind of global consciousness. And if it is a global consciousness, what lives in that global subconscious? That seems like a good way to approach a narrative.

MFR: This theme of redemption comes up a lot in your book. Do you think the character of Angel believes that he can be redeemed?

BEH: You know, I think he believes he should try to redeem himself. What makes him heroic is that separation from what I deserve and what I must do. I don’t think Angel is a person that sits and thinks very much about what he deserves. That to me is the essence of heroism. It’s not doing something so that it will change someone’s perception of you. It’s doing something because you know it must be done. I’ve always been attracted to those characters. It’s what drives me to Batman. It’s the idea of becoming a thing, and saying “I might be judged because of the thing I become, but I must.. Because that’s more important than my desire at the moment.” That’s what I’ve kind of always been drawn to with Angel as a character.

I personally believe in redemption. I think when you have a society that will not allow redemption and rehabilitation, then you have a society based on punishment. And if you remove hope from the punished, then you have to make sure that the punished can no longer affect you, which is very difficult to do. Or, you’re going to get people who just never want to be better. If you tell people you can never be better, you can never be redeemed, then why are they going to try to be better? I think it’s incredibly dangerous to remove the concept of rehabilitation and redemption from the world. I’m not saying it should be easy. There should always be a price. But hopefully we can evolve into a society that seeks to do more than punish.

MFR: Returning to the story, you created an awesome new character, a new addition to the Boom Angel universe, and that’s Lilltih. Can you tell us a little bit about who she is and what went into creating her?

BEH: Well, I didn’t create her. Lilith has existed in mythology and religion and esoteric thought far, far before I ever existed. And if I were to say I created her, she might be very angry. (Laughs) but I did decide to incorporate her into the story, at least, a version of her as I understood her. Mainly because I wanted to bring in an ancient archetype into this world. It was really about making [Angel] feel a bit more epic, like a story that has spanned time and space. Having a character that can represent that helps facilitate that feeling in the book.

I’m also interested in her divine archetype: feminine power without regret. Certain cultures and viewpoints demonize her because she simply wanted to be equal to Adam. Other cultures have seen her as the catalyst for not only the empowerment of women, but for the empowerment of anyone who wants to live at the beat of their own drum. Angel is a character that is somewhat of an outcast, by his own choices and the world in which he lives. Lilith has always been symbolic of an esoteric idea about the value of being an outcast. Having this rebellious ancient spirit that is leading this group of vampires and people and other things towards a better end, I thought, would be really cool. And any time I can put a really cool female character into something, I’m certainly going to do that. I grew up with a single mom and, in a lot of ways, my work is always kind of a testament to her and her strength and what was required of her to raise me. That’s how the Night Mother wound up in the story.

MFR: Along with introducing Lillith into the story, you reinvent two very popular Angel characters: Charles Gunn and Fred Burkle. How much of that was your twist on these characters and how much of it was Boom?

BEH: It was all really organic, through those long conversations with Jeanine Schaefer about what I wanted to do a thematically and emotionally. We sort of landed on some things together. I did pick that cast because I thought they would be the most interesting to this first story, but not at the exclusion of other characters. They’re dealt out at their own pace. I’m trying not to change anything I believe is essential to these characters. I like to have a light touch in that way. There are a lot of creators, brilliant creators, who like to come in and turn the apple cart upside down. I’m not that way, I like to find my own way in, but still work with what I think are the basic qualities of these characters.

But I have to give full credit to Boom for giving me as much space as possible to work. Licensed work can be difficult. It can come with a lot of rules, I’ll just be frank. I have turned down opportunities to work on certain projects because I didn’t want to deal with the rules. I never want to write a story where I can’t actually do anything, where the ball just spins but nothing really changes. This isn’t that. I’m able to tell a good story and work with these characters and advance them in ways that a lot of license fiction won’t allow. That’s not me putting an edict down, that’s Boom being willing to create an arena in which myself and Jordie can work with these characters in a way that we feel is best for the stories we are trying to create.

MFR: We’ve talked about social media and how it plays into Angel Volume One. So going back to our hero, what would social media look like to a centuries-old vampire? What does Angel think of this modern thing going into the story?

BEH: I think he wonders why people are so fascinated with themselves. I can’t imagine Angel would understand why anyone would want to see an image of someone else’s lunch. This is a strange thing to him. But the other side of him is that he understands the need to connect, especially the need to connect through an avatar. To find a safe way of building community and self-esteem around yourself, and also be able to live as an imagined version of yourself. I think he, more than most people, would understand the need for that.

But ultimately, Angel likes to fight his battles in the real world. I think he is wary of the lowest hanging fruit of self-esteem that can be out there. And the way that fantasy can enrapture us and also keep us from manifesting what we want in the actual world, with our feet on the ground. So while he can understand the need that people have and the reasons why it is what it is, I think he ultimately will see it as something that might prevent people from manifesting actual change in their lives that can make them happy.

MFR: Volume One is wrapped up now. I know you can’t give us too many details, but what is on Angel’s mind moving into moving into the next segment of the story?

BEH: Many things. The events of Hellmouth are going to shift his perspective for sure. If he has been fighting this battle on his own terms mostly, I think he’ll come to realize that he can’t do that anymore. He’ll come to realize what is truly at stake and how far advanced the march of evil has made it, in a way that he hasn’t been able to see. That’s going to renew his dedication to things.

He’s also forming these bonds with new people. He’s making a pledge to protect them from things that he does understand and some things he doesn’t. That’s the heaviness on him. Sometimes you realize you can be lonelier with people than you are by yourself. I expect him to have thoughts and experiences on leadership and purpose. He’s going to be asking: “How do you bring people into a world of madness without making them go mad?”

Angel Vol. 1: Being Human is written by Bryan Edward Hill, drawn by Gleb Melknikov, colored by Gleb Melknikov and Gabriel Cassata, and lettered by Ed Dukeshire. You can pick up a copy at your local comic store on Tuesday, October 1st. Until then, tell us what you think of Angel over on our Twitter page. And for more comic book interviews like this one, plus reviews and discussion, stay tuned to Monkeys Fighting Robots.

https://blacknerdproblems.com/becoming-a-vampire-and-other-thoughts-on-angel-2019-an-exclusive-interview-with-bryan-hill/

Becoming a Vampire and Other Thoughts on Angel (2019): An Exclusive Interview with Bryan Hill

Bryan Hill is a prolific writer, with credits spanning across all sorts of media. We here at Black Nerd Problems have had the pleasure of review his series like Batman and the Outsiders, American Carnage, and Titans. Visceral and attentive, Hill’s work is (appropriately) enthralling and we were fortunate enough to get to sit down with him and discuss his work on the 2019 Angel reboot from Boom! Studios.

A Lesson in Occult

BNP: From following you on Twitter for quite some time now, I know that you extensively research before you start working on a series. What’s the methodology and preparation for working on a series like Angel?

Hill: Well, you know I had to become a vampire.

[Laughter]

Hill: It’s hard, y’know, with the sunlight. Being a vampire in Los Angeles is surprisingly difficult. But you do the things you have to do and after I was a vampire for a while I had to get rid of the curse, learn a lot of magic, but I can walk in the sun again so I’m happy about that.

BNP: Must be nice to do in California.

Hill: It’s great. And in addition to that, I watched the show, and I went to message boards. I saw what mattered to people about it and took note about what was emotionally resonating and all of that. I lived in Los Angeles, and I’m fascinated with the esoteric history of the city and the hidden culture and exploring that stuff on my own. So, I have been able to put some of that stuff in the book.

Modernizing a Pop Culture Icon

BNP: Outside of the inclusion of social media and the new character, Lilith, what are the other big changes to Angel’s story in this reboot.

Hill: Interesting… I think this series has a lot of smaller adjustments rather than big changes. I guess the biggest change is we’re seeing Angel gather his group around him before the “classical” Buffy/Angel arc. Now, we have an opportunity to have these characters in this world have their own opinion of Buffy. Because Angel is their friend, right? And if you’ve ever had a friend whose been involved with someone who may not be good for them, you know… his friends may not like her as much.

BNP: *Laughter* Yeah.

Hill: *Laughter* Getting a different perspective on the dynamic is probably the largest change that has the most emotional fall out. But I think other things. It’s a bigger experience than the show. I’m using the fact that it’s a comic book to journey into history and build a solid arc for Angel, and the contemporary Los Angeles of the book is filtered through an old prism. It’s very much a Michael Mann Los Angeles in a lot of ways and it’s a look into the city where I live and that comes up a lot. I think those things are certainly variations on the original.

Mastering Media

BNP: So, you have both a number of comic and screenwriting which is interesting considering you’re working on a comic series based on an older TV series. You’ve alluded to this before, but what else can you get away doing in comics that you couldn’t do in a TV script?

Hill: Well, in filmed media, it just plays on a screen right? It plays at a predetermined pace. In comics, the reader can read as fast or as slow as they want to so in order the same kind of rhythm you have to use the medium of comics, like visual juxtaposition is an important. Visual poetry. When I talk to Gleb (the artist), whose work I love, I talk about we want this page to call back to this page and and have some of the lyricism there. And in movies and television, you also can’t pick the exact image because you’re just running the camera. You can pick a composition, the actors can stand on your X’s, and you can put it in slow motion, but you still can’t get the exact moment. What is the reader going to see is a question you can ask with comics. I play a lot with that. I think a lot about what frame I want to see in the story, in this moment.

I think comics are a radical medium. I fell in love with them growing up because they were telling radical stories. I’m a child of Electro-Assassin and Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Arkham Asylum. These were the things that mattered to me growing up. I read most of that stuff more than books. I mean, I read books but as I started to get into my teenage years, I was much more into the bespoke experience that Grant was writing, Alan was writing, Neil was writing. I’ve always looked at comics as a punk rock medium where you can shift and turn things upside and shuffle them up in such a way that you still can’t really do when you’re in film media.

BNP: So, speaking of Batman, you’ve worked with a large number of series featuring an ensemble cast unified by a charismatic leader. What are the challenges working with a story with a lot of characters at the forefront?

Hill: Well, the primary challenge is making sure each of the characters has enough time so you can explore them narratively. With Angel, we have characters that are highly complex and highly layered. They deserve to have their time in the spotlight to grow in front of the reader. What I tend to do structurally is do a rotating spotlight. Instead of having everyone in there for 5-10% per story arc, I focus a little more on individual characters and make them principle in the narrative, so they have their time. It allows me as a writer to be comfortable, being able to sit with them for a while. It’s hard to write a story, at least for me it is, if everyone has to have contact with the ball in the book because then you end up chasing those moments. You don’t really have that much space to have them grow as characters. It’s always a struggle to figure out who’s going to be principle here and how it bounces off them as a character and who are you bringing into this. It’s always a difficult choice, but it’s necessary for me and my process to ensure the best story.

An Appreciation for The Story

BNP: So how often do you interact with your counterpart on the Buffy series, Jordie Bellaire.

Hill: Well, I’m familiar with all of their work for sure. We’ve traded some emails and that sort of thing. But pre-Hellmouth, the stories are pretty siloed, so it wasn’t like I had to react to page 4 of this and they had to respond to page 12 of that. I imagine post-Hellmouth because of the really cool and massive things going on in that. There will be a little more communication just to make sure things like the narrative are consistent going forward. But it’s been a great experience working alongside that book and Jordie’s work has been fantastic. I was always more of an Angel person than a Buffy person, but there is a relationship between those two books, two stories, almost day and night. You need one with the other. I’ve been very happy.

BNP: What was your favorite season of the original Angel?

Hill: Oh… y’know, it’s hard to name an individual season, because they all kind of blur when you watch them.

BNP: Fair enough.

Hill: But anything involving Lindsey was always something else. Because Chris Kane is just a phenomenal actor and I just love watching him on screen. The “Wolfram & Hart” certainly got to me. Any of the arcs that Faith was involved in, that was always a lot of fun. I like the intense stuff. I have been called an intense person. It’d be self-aggrandizing to call myself that, so I won’t say that I am, but I have been called that. There is a certain intensity to me and my work, I guess. It displays in the kind of stories I tell. So, stories that push Angel to his limit, those are the ones that to me that stuck with me.

BNP: Well, that wraps up the list of questions I had. Anything you’d like to share to your audience at Black Nerd Problems?

Hill: I just want to personally thank your whole site for being so supportive of me and my work. You guys review things and given me a platform and space and I really appreciate it, whether the reviews are good or bad. It’s important to get people talking about your work, so any market that takes it time to look at this stuff and talk about this stuff and put it online, I really appreciate it. I know there’s a lot of love that goes into it. Give my gratitude to the whole team.
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