Faithless II #5
Writer: Brian Azzarello
Artist: Maria Llovet
In my review of the last issue, I’d mentioned how Faith finally seemed to be seeing Louis for what he is. A source of evil who’s seducing her by encouraging her artistic endeavors. Azzarello continues this idea throughout his latest issue and it’s a hell of a ride. I’m confident this second volume of Faithless won’t be the last. The story has been a slow burn since the start. This issue has me legitimately excited to see what could happen in the next volume though. Let’s get into the review.
The issue starts off fairly simply. Louis is having a group of women create a pool of menstrual blood. Faith has gotten famous for incorporating her own into her artwork. It’s Louis trying to help with her work yet you notice a few things from these pages. Lily for example acts jealous of the attention being paid to Faith by Louis. Poppy meanwhile convinces her girlfriend to take a drug then leaves her to have sex with Solomon. That reinforces the idea that Poppy doesn’t really care about Faith since she’s just left her in this high state. Meanwhile, Louis, standing naked in this pool of blood invites Faith down to him. Naturally, he’s hinting that he wants something in return for his help. All little bits of foreshadowing that give insight into these characters and leave you curious regarding future issues.
Faith, for her part, continues investigating these people. After joining Poppy and Solomon for a drugged up threesome she finally seeks out the old woman from previous issues. This time Faith listens to what the old lady has to say. Their discussion is enlightening, not only to Faith’s situation but to the girl herself. Faith shows a lot of her personality as she discusses her experiences with magic and her treatment of her friends. We also see that she’s somewhat arrogant and disrespectful to the woman due to their age difference. Nevertheless, the discussion makes clear why Louis is interested in Faith while being entertaining in its own right. Finally, the issue leaves us on a cliffhanger regarding Solomon. He hasn’t had a lot of development but this is the first time I’ve felt curious about him. I was left wondering just what side he’s on in this situation.
The art is terrific. The characters are extremely expressive as usual. A highlight of this is the discussion between Faith and the old woman. The faces throughout the discussion are brilliant. They tell as much story as the dialogue. The horror element is there too. The drugged threesome in the woods is an utterly brilliant example of body horror that I’d missed in this volume. The imagery is gut-churning. One other nice touch is that during the discussion pages, towards the end the background colours change. As the old woman and Faith discuss Louis, Poppy, and what they mean the background changes. We go from a simple street corner to a crimson background signifying the danger that Faith is realising she’s in. It’s a great bit of colour symbolism that really helps back up Azzarello’s storytelling.
The lettering is up to the usual standards of this book. The onomatopoeia and the punctuation above characters heads do a lot to inform the reader about what’s going on. They also back up certain key emotional moments. The use of lettering like this has become a big part of what makes this series feel special. It’s nice to see that continue here. There’s also a standout moment where the conversation with the old lady ends. Demons rise around Faith to speak to her. I won’t spoil what’s said but it’s written in a different font and larger than most text in the series. That definitely helps emphasize the demonic beings infiltrating Faith’s life. To sum it up, the lettering was brilliant.
Speaking of summaries, let’s get onto it. This is one of the best issues in this series. The art, the story itself, the lettering, it all combines into this utter showcase of Azzarello and Llovet’s skills. If you’re looking to get into Faithless then it is best to start at the beginning of volume one. If you’re an existing fan then you have got to get this issue. It is stunning and seeing the things that happen hereafter the slow build makes it all the more satisfying. This issue was a pleasure to read and I highly recommend it to fans of the horror genre or Faithless itself.
Faithless II #5
This is a great little entry in Azzarello's series about a young girl being seduced by demonic beings. Faith is becoming more and more active as she realises things are wrong about her situation. Characters such as Poppy, Lily, the old woman and our protagonist are all developed and the art is to die for. Not to mention the fact that there's some really good and expressive use of lettering throughout the issue. Definitely worth a read.