Sunday, June 27, 2010

Azrael #9 - DC

I kind of thought that this whole cult thing . . the cult of la Saligia, representing the seven deadly sins of man, was all just a little bit strange. I guess I can understand where Fabian Nicieza was going with this. But in the end, I think it all came off a bit . . odd. These . . characters, have been trying to recruit Michael for the last couple of issues. When he found out that the 8the deadly sin of man . . the one he's been chosen to represent, was Faith . . for him, everything seemed to fall into place. I don't think he necessarily agreed with all of it, but . . they chose the right person. He is a man who's been defined by Faith his whole life. As we see in the flashback's of him as a child. Some of the conversations and questions he had with his Father . . not his 'real' father, he was Catholic . . they were conversations and subjects an adult might rarely have with their clergy. But to him, they were like the questions that defined his life. So anyways, he falls into their group . . they give him a mask and a name . . Ermine . . 'the living embodiment of the black void of pure faith!' Then they start out on their mission. But almost immediately they're attacked by the White Ghost. You know, Ra's al Ghul's second in command. I'm not sure what Michael was planning here. At first I thought he was just going along with it to get on the inside . . to infiltrate and bring them down. However, the more the story sent along, the more it seemed that he was fully immersed into his new persona. It seems that the White Ghost is trying to protect him because of the Suit of Sorrows. Or maybe it's the swords. All I know is that he's probably the only one that could've brought Michael back from this abyss. Batman, Robin . . if anybody else had done this role, it would've came off quite different. So, after the White Ghost stops Michael from killing the pope for them, he then goes on to show Michael that the rest of the group are sinners themselves. They go through them one by one, catching and killing, trying to regain his mask. It turns out that what Michael really wants to know, his current questions of Faith, can only be answered by Ra's. 'To know the truth about why your armor burned in the tomb chamber of the 8th sinner? Why the sigils of the seven deadly sins glowed and caused a reaction in your suit? Why the spirits of the dead constantly whisper to you? Why your swords are able to impart the sins of life and path to salvation on to others?' That's when Michael decides, 'I won't be free of the sins inside me . . until I have justice against them.' And that's what set him out upon the others. The issue ends with the White Ghost telling him, again, that he won't have the answers to the suit or the swords until the moment 'When you are prepared to die.' Whatever that means. So now he has to struggle between believing what the White Ghost, and Ra's, has in store for him, and his Christian tenets. The White Ghost seems to think his conversion will be inevitable. While Michael says, 'It'll never happen!' So my question falls into why, with this group being around thousands of years, Michael can so ignominiously bring them down in only a couple of days. It all just seemed rather neatly packaged when it should've been much, much more messy. I get the story. It gives the reader an awful lot to think about. I just had a little trouble with the progression of events. However, having said that . . it did give me a lot to think about, and several questions. So . . in that regard . . it was successful. I don't know. I guess I'll reread the last few issues and see if maybe there's something I missed along the way. I'm glad we'll be moving on to a new story-arc next issue. And by the way, Ramon Bachs did a great job, once again, with the art. Also a beautiful cover by Francesco Mattina.

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