Publisher: Top Cow, Dec 2009
Writer: Ron Marz
Artist: Stjepan Sejic
After the War of the Witchblades, Sara Pezzini is the sole bearer once more. However, while the Angelus force had been without a host, in an interesting turn of events, Danielle Baptiste was chosen. Going from being a Witchblade bearer, and directly to being the Angelus, Dani is left somewhat confused and lacking direction.
She decides to head back to her roots, in New Orleans, where she is originally from. Unlike prior Hosts of the Angelus, who have been mostly taken over and controlled by the Angelus force, Dani exhibits the ability to retain her free will and stays in control when transforming to the Angelus.
This seriously disturbs Sabine (one of the top Angelus Warriors), who is still bitter that the Angelus did not choose her as the new Host. She believes Dani's ability to retain her free will, while taking on the Angelus form, to be counter productive to their cause.
Sabine immediately starts plotting, and sowing her seeds of discontent throughout the forces of the Angelus Warriors, in a manner that reminds one of the relationship between Loki and Thor. She sends a group of Angelus Warriors to Hell to retrieve a certain item not yet revealed to us. Could it possibly be one of the thirteen artifacts?
In the mean time, Dani and Finch are getting settled into their new apartment, trying to figure out exactly what their relationship is, if anything at all. Going on an evening stroll down the streets of New Orleans, they are suddenly set upon by some type of giant mythical beast! Dani quickly transforms into the Angelus and a battle ensues. Whatever the beast is, it's angry and seems set upon destroying them both. Suddenly Sabine and a group of Angelus Warriors show up to help, conveniently late.
Overall, a nice set up for the next 5 issues of this series, as well as a good continuation of Dani's story after Witchblade. This series is bound to have tie-ins to the upcoming Broken Trinity: Pandora's Box, as well as Top Cow's next summer event, Artifacts. However, Ron Marz has stated a number of times that these individual titles will stand on their own, so it's not necessary to read them all. But for those who do, there will be continuing themes and additional pieces of info to pick up on. Plus they will be in continuity.
4 out 5 stars. The story was solid, and entertaining, and the artwork was awesome, as usual for Stjepan Sejic. The use of storytelling through panel progression and balance between calm subtle moments, and double page action spreads, really give this book a nice feel. Marz and Sejic seem to be arriving at a place where most writer/artist teams want to be. Definitely recommended.