Angel: The Official Collection: Heroes & Guardian Angels: Volume One (book review).

As time passes and TV’s ‘Angel’ is remembered fondly and occasionally pops up on cable there is a certain mistiness about memory. This book, ‘Angel: Heroes & Guardian Angels: Volume One’, is written in the now or rather as it was it makes the time that has passed quite bittersweet. The actors, some who have since died, the hopes and ambitions of others, time has made fools of us all except maybe the eternally young.


‘Angel: Heroes & Guardian Angels: Volume One’ is composed from the very popular magazines (remember those?) of the day when it was originally transmitted on the TV in instalments (remember those?). Now we can binge on Netflix or boxed sets. Then we had to wait. And wait!

As a fan, you may still have a stack of those magazines and be ready at the drop of a hat to flick through them. For those who have long since recycled, accidentally set fire to them or simply ruined them by weeping too much after the end of the series, then this is the book for you.

It’s fun to leaf through the pages and it might make you want to go and get your old DVDs out of repurchase in a fit of nostalgia. They are amazingly cheap these days. There are plenty of photos of the cast and interviews with them and it is timed presumably to attract some young viewers and readers who will be buying to binge. Enjoy the transient beauty of ‘Angel’ and try to forget that the vampire is now on in endless ‘Bones’ reruns and you can watch him age.

This book makes me remember the plotlines, the great actors and the interviews describe the collaborative process of a successful show. The telling episodes were towards the end when Fred was brutally killed off and replaced by her nemesis, Illyria. This was such excellent storytelling and is very hard to match the devastation to both viewers and within the drama.

It was also a very funny show and there are reminders of how the use of humour cut across the darkness with quotes of memorable dialogue. In particular, a Wesley and Cordelia dialogue where they are imitating Angel and Buffy: ‘I love you so much I almost forgot to brood’.

I get the feeling that these days we would have got the end to ‘Angel’ a few seasons on and, although Boreanaz might have needed some digital anti-aging, I would have been happy with that.

Sue Davies

(pub: Titan Books. 173 page large softcover. Price: £14.99 (UK), $19.99 (US), $25.99 (CAN). ISBN: 978-1-78276-368-0)

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