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Very no-surprising, bland ending. Big battle, Archaeus easily defeated, Drusilla escapes (that was really shameful), and Parker dies (I should have guessed that the young couple were introduced just to be killed in the end (at least one of them). And Angel and Faith did so little... I wish the focus had been on them, and not on the Magic Town citizens.
And I just didn't understand much Nadira - she kept saying that the Magic was just a fearful child, and that she had no control over it, and suddenly, she is the one who "harbored and nourished it", and kept it at bay. I need to re-read it.
The only thing fundamental and life changing that happened was that Faith now has a place in the world, she has a family now. And I really like the new team: Angel, Faith, Koh, Sophronia, Lavinia, Nadira and Fred (who needs just a little improvement from the dull character she has become, and her constant Hulk-like transformation). Very cool the final panel with all of them together on the roof, commemorating with a barbecue. I wished I was there with those people.
Unfortunately, bringing Drusilla was a waste of time and character. And no following to the Reese/Illyria plot. And Inspector Brandt – another good character wasted, he will be missed.
But re-reading Angel & Faith S10, I really liked this season - up to the final arc, where things got a little... uneventful, till the disappointing ending; it seems like Gischler lost interest in it.
Where the River Meets the Sea, Old Habits, Lost and Found, United, Fight or Flight, Those Who Can't Teach, Teach Gym are really great.
Let's talk about drawing, 'coz it's all what this issue is. Plots? Characters? No such animal.
1. The face of Archaeus became fatter after he crossed over to A&F.
2. Angel's body build is like AtS S5. I like Rebekah's BtVS S1 Angel looks. Vamps don't grow old you know.
3. Whose side are corky's gangs on? They are flying with holy water. But don't they, you know, hate Angel?
4. Panel four. Thank god all characters' eye colors are correct. This had been too much to ask before A&F S10. Really.
5. His drawings of Fred in this issue generally suck though. Unrecognizable in the last few panels.
I have not much to say about this season. Overall it's much worse than A&F S9 and only barely better than Buffy S9. The artwork is great of course.
So far my comics rankings are:
Buffy S8 > Fray > A&F S9 > Tales > After the Fall > Willow mini > Spike mini > Origin > Buffy S10 > A&F S10 > Buffy S9.
The pixies! I had forgotten that I saw one of them with a bottle of holy water. I like the pixies, I hope to see them again in the future. They are criminals, but they once have been humans, so they fight on the side of the Magic Town's mutants. And Corky is still trapped in the bottle.
Archeaus mentioned 'tedious predictability' in this issue, which about sums up the end of this arc- the weakest of Angel & Faith S10. I mean, the ending part with the whole gang on the roof, that was fairly okay, but the climax...
Archeaus rants, Drusilla runs away and the Magic *gasp* picks the side of right. Nobody of note dies (about from one of the young loving couple, who didn't see that coming?), there weren't really any stakes to this. Compared to the Big building up of S9 where there was a real sense of danger this was a poor showing.
Plus some of the dialogue was so on the nose it was reaching CG level of unsubtle- all that 'family' stuff. WE GET IT. Angel and Faith have a gang/family whilst the Big Bad has slaves that he controls. *yawn*
Anyway- Good: Koh sticking around (I did like his bar-BQ-ing), Faith finding her place in the world, The residents of Magic Town being grateful and giving them some beer to celebrate.
Bad: Lack of proper resolution. No Corky? No Pearl returning? Archeaus trapped not killed, Drusilla escaping not staked (Spike should do this then!) and no resolution to the Fred/Illyria stuff. Plus the biotech firm moving into Magic Town (hoping that Faith can keep her security job there- that has real potential)
I mean, there's plenty of material for next season (If they get one) but this was all so disappointing after Gage's strong S9 run.
Still, I've read worse Buffy comics.
Season 10 had great possibility but wasn't executed as well as it could've been. After a shaky start it had a strong middle period that was both well-characterized and unpredictable before a limp finale with only moments of quality. Although it was never out-character and still better then VG Spike effort the characters remained flat, and the ideas- when they were good- were never really expertly executed. There was some cod London dialogue that was cringe-worthy, Drusilla wasn't well-used and the Big Bad (who was introduced in Buffy) wasn't given enough build-up to be the real threat it should've been.
Again I'll use the word potential. VG has left a lot of balls in there air that another writers could really do something fresh and great with. He fleshed out Magic Town enough, Koh was introduced well and the 'family' vibe (whilst a bit forced) means we can have a bit of character interplay and group dynamic in the future.
But we still got less than the initial set-up promised. We need a better writer to use all the potential that's been left.
The only thing I really liked about this issue was Faith finally finding a family. It's been a long time coming, and she's definitely come a long way. Congrats!
The dialogue was still a little cliche, as were the same villainous monologues being repeated over and over again. Archaeus was pretty lame following a strong debut, while Drusilla made a hasty exit stage left during the finale (although unfortunately not pursued by a bear).
Funny thing about the dialogue is that I thought it was one of the best parts of Season 9 along with Angel and Faith's characterizations. Suddenly everything in this season felt like a rehash. I also liked the artwork in Season 9 better (Angel looked like he aged a good 10 years).
Very disappointed with 'Angel & Faith' this season, after loving it in season 9. The basic ideas for this season were good, but Victor Gischler's writing just didn't do it for me at all. The whole season seemed like filler, with nothing really happening: Angel didn't change at all in season, he had no arc, and Faith only had a very cliched "family is important" arc.
I also had a problem with Will Conrad's art - his dark and gritty style was great, and his backgrounds always looked great, but the characters always looked very stiff, like he copied them from a picture. For example, he copied this photo of Eliza Dushku at least once in every single issue:
I still want the title to be renwed in season 11, I just wish a different writer would take it. What are the chances of getting Brian k. Vaughan? (Hey I can dream, right?)
I hated that Fred was brought back. I love the character, and I'm okay with the "magical reasoning" behind it, but she's played her part and now it's Illyria's turn. It doesn't help that Gischler used her almost exclusively for comedic relief, which is just so frustrating when he could have been doing something interesting with Illyria.