As "Hellmouth" continues, Buffy and Angel fight their way through into Hell, combating legions of demons and vampires as they go!
Buffy is eventually confronted by fake versions of her mom, Xander, and Willow...
Eventually, Buffy and Angel are reunited, but the realities of trying to persevere against evil from within the Hellmouth are becoming more and more obvious...
“Hellmouth” marches on, but at this point, the momentum has been so egregiously forestalled that it might as well be standing in place. For a story that kicked off two months ago (in Buffy), almost no forward progress has been made in getting to its point. Unfortunately, the second installment of the official event miniseries doesn’t do much to move the goalposts. Buffy and Angel are in Hell, and fight a bunch of demons. Buffy gets momentarily sidetracked by an illusion of Sunnydale and fights an evil version of her mom, then she and Angel get back together and fight some more demons. It’s an utter waste of space that could have been told in half the pages and left more room to actually give readers some character development. This first meeting between Buffy and Angel post-reboot should feel like a momentous occasion; instead readers are given an extended meet-cute in Hell.
There really isn’t even any meat on the bone of this story. Fight, fight, fight. Quip, quip, quip. Jordie Bellaire definitely has the voices of these hallowed characters down, but she isn’t giving them much to say. It’s almost distressing how thin of a read this comic is. The lone attempt at emotional gravitas, when Buffy is confronted by the ersatz demon version of her mom, falls flat as this sort of scene has been done ad infinitum across the pop culture landscape. The finale intends to up the stakes – providing a bit of clarity as to who exactly is narrating this issue – but sadly, it might be too little, too late. The saving grace is the art from Eleonora Carlini, whose linework pops off the page with a crackling kineticism.
Boom’s Buffy reboot has had the best of intentions from the start, but in diving into the deep end of the comic book event pool so soon in the running, it might have jumped the narrative gun. Recovering from such an unforced error is going to take time, something hardcore fans of the property might not be willing to give.
"Hellmouth" continues to tread water in an issue that's almost all action, no plot. It's hard to say where this story is going at this point, because the writers have given readers so little to work with.
Hellmouth #2 (of 5): Darkness on the Edge of Town
Writing - 5/105/10
Storyline - 4.5/104.5/10
Art - 7/107/10
Color - 6.5/106.5/10
Cover Art - 7.5/107.5/10
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