Law & Order: Special Angels Unit
Blood Tree #1 (w: Peter J. Tomasi, a: Maxim Simic)
Publisher: Image Comics
I want to start by saying that the 'A' cover to this book portrays a very different story than what you actually get...
That said, the story we do get might be void of giant, night-vision goggle adorned angel murderers, but it is compelling all the same. Grizzled NYC Detective Dario Azzaro is running routine security for big wigs in the St. Patrick's Day parade when something falls from the sky and impacts onto the pavement, narrowly missing the Governor and Mayor, thanks to Dario's snap to action. Once the commotion dies down, Dario and his partner Maria Diaz discover the falling object to be a naked man with wings surgically grafted to his body. They set off to try and discover why this young man would throw himself 50 stories to the pavement below, leaving behind a note that only says "Blood Begets Blood," and they find themselves at a loss for any sort of solution. Then, the second body shows up.
This book is a very straight-forward procedural drama, great for fans of Law and Order or True Detective and the like. Where it excels is honestly creating a compelling mystery. The "Wingman," as he gets casually named by Diaz, is a fascinating character with, so far, unclear motivations. I think this tale will be a compelling mystery to watch unfold. As for the characters, they are pretty much what you'd expect from a procedural set in NYC. That said, we have yet to see any instances of debauchery or infidelity or substance abuse in Dario's character, which are things all too common in super-tropey entries in the genre, so I'm hoping it stays that way. Dario seems to have a very stable home life, and that is a nice breath of fresh air in a world full of muck.
Where Monsters Lie #1 (w: Kyle Starks, a: Piotr Kowalski)
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Wilmhurst is a peaceful community. They take care of each other here, as long as everyone adheres to easy-to-follow rules. Simple requests like "don't leave your trash cans out" or "maintain a healthy yard" or "no killing your victims within the walls of the community."
Oh, right... Wilmhurst is a sanctuary for Serial Killers.
This book sees various slasher pastiches, everything from Jason to Jigsaw to John Wayne Gacy, living within the walls of a quaint rural community headed up by a woman named Zel. Here, the killers work together to help plan excursions, recover injured or incapacitated killers, build death traps and weaponry, and much much more. The only requirement is that each member of the community must sew discord and fear in the world while keeping Wilmhurst out of the attention of law enforcement. It's all going according to plan until one killer gets a bit over-zealous.
This book is brash and hilarious. It's a wild concept that sees typically cold, ruthless killers reduced to petty neighbor squabbles. It's a fun ride for slasher fans and, honestly, just a funny book for anyone in the mood for a different type of horror comic. Starks and Kowalski have laid the ground work for a really good time and I am here for it.
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