No Angel #1 – Review

AriSyahrazadEricAdriannePaleckiI’m always a little wary when someone from outside the usual world decides to put out a comic. Sometimes you get Greg Rucka’s Whiteout, and sometimes you get Brad Meltzer’s Identity Crisis. From the first time I heard about No Angel, written by Eric and Adrienne Palicki, the later you might recognize from Agents of SHIELD and the ill-fated Wonder Woman pilot, I was curious as to what this would look like. Black Mask is not the type of publisher to publish a comic just because of name recognition, but this could be a case of a great concept and poor execution. Also I have to go with the sense I get from her interviews that Adrienne Palicki genuinely has an interest in comic books as storytelling medium, just like her brother, whom you might remember from his work on a few creator-owned books Fake Empire, Red Angel Dragnet and Orphans, as well as a relatively recent story in Guardians of Infinity #6.

The story unfolds nicely, with layers peeling away like petals on a flower as it opens up to share its full beauty with the world. The lead character seems at times a little too much like a character that Adrienne might play, but most of that sense comes from artist Ari Syahrazad drawing her in appearance much like Adrienne. Outside of that, the artwork, even the muted color palette by Jean-Paul Csuka adds to the atmosphere of the story, as it grows more and more surreal going forward, right up until the end, where in the classic tradition of four-issue storytelling, the real story begins for our protagonist.

To say any more would spoil this issue and it’s the last thing that I want to do. It’s another damn fine comic from Black Mask, and you should pick it up, and I would even recommend sharing with your local comic shop how they should increase their orders on the next three issues and the inevitable reprints of this one. I’m not kidding, this might be the best structured comic from Black Mask since We Can Never Go Home, just because it looks that polished.

noangel-1NO ANGEL #1

Written by: Adrianne Palicki & Eric Palicki
Art by: Ari Syahrazad
Colored by: Jean-Paul Csuka
Lettered by: Jim Campbell
Cover by: Amancay Nahuelpan

In Stores: Nov 30, 2016

NO ANGEL is a dark-fantasy adventure about a young woman who finds herself hunted by monstrous creatures, only to uncover a secret history and conspiracy dating back to Biblical times that indicates she herself may actually be superhuman. With her whole family at risk, she must reunite with her estranged sister and fight the dark powers aligning against them.

It’s a powers book by way of The Da Vinci Code with a dash of Fables.

Written and co-created by a sister-and-brother team (he wrote for Guardians of Infinity and she played Mockingbird in Agents of SHIELD), this is a grounded & smart action-adventure about family.