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Azrael #21 : Angel in Hiding Part One : Renunciation
Writer : Dennis O'Neil
Penciller : Barry Kitson
Inker : James Pascoe
Colourist : Demetrius Bassoukos
Seperations : Prismacolour
Letter : Ken Bruzenak
Assistant Editor : Chuck Kim
Editor : Archie Goodwin

Synopsis :

After making his way back to the mainland Jean-Paul reunites with his friends after renouncing Azrael. While Nomoz informs Rollo of his whereabouts, when Rollo orders the deaths of Azrael, Lilhy and Nomoz. The acolytes arrive at Jean-Paul's apartment and face him on the roof about to kill him.

Review :

Nomoz reappears this issue and his long absence makes sense, it seems Denny is trying to bring in to play all the players in Azrael's life, the question is how they fit together and whether they should all be on the same side. Interestingly, Azrael was not banished as a result of Orchid's treatment but because Jean-Paul discarded the Azrael armor solidifying the concept of Azrael being reawakened only by the costume. Denny seems to be looking at normalising Azrael's life, his base of operations has been Gotham since issue 13 but he keeps going off to other places. Now Denny is moving him into his apartment, enrolling him in university and moving his "stuff" in.

For once the cover did not show Azrael in full costume and that composition can be more dramatic than the standard superhero fair, the camera angels and full page splashes were nicely rendered as was Jean-Paul's attempt to ask Lilhy out on a date the diminishing panel is a common comic device but is still used to great effect in conveying Jean-Paul's lack of self confidence.

Rant :

Why are the acolytes using bladed weapons? well one of them is the others still use guns. The small fruit line is classic and the whole issue has good points, the shark, the youthful look to Jean-Paul, the conversation with Brian, my only worry is about the impermanence in Azrael.

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