Angela Della Morte (Prequel one-shot) – Salvador Sanz

4 out of 5

The initial appearances of body-swapping Angela Della Morte, reprinted and colorized from a Spanish anthology magazine in an over-sized, squarebound prestige format.

The mysterious and fascinating ADM series finds some of its mysteries presented very much up front in this prequel – we know Angela works for a company that enables her to swap her soul into others; we know that she has the ability to “die” multiple times as a result; we’re told about some physical ‘death’ force that’s being combatted – which actually makes the reading order we’ve been granted in these English reprints perhaps ideal, allowing us to sink fully into the character and concept and then given some further background with this one-shot. The tales within sketch out Angela being tasked as an occasional assassin, and then setting up a rival / ex-boyfriend bodyhopper, given fantastic visualization and mood by Sanz, and richly colored by Exequiel Fernandez Roel.

While the works here end rather abruptly (I’m not sure if there were further anthology entries besides this, or perhaps Sanz stopped short once having secured a mini-series), and there’s one throwaway, surface-level line about peeing sitting down and periods when a man soul-swaps into a woman’s body, the success of Salvador’s approach – linking volume 1 to this work – is in how much life and story exists between the panels, enhanced by how emotive their art is. In the mini, that inbetween was very ominous, and, as mentioned, mysterious; here, it’s got a more action-y, dangerous edge to it, but it’s the same vibe – you can sink into the work, abrupt or not, because it feels so richly defined.

Definitely a must-read for anyone who enjoyed the preceding issues.