We open up to the latest ( if by latest you mean a week ago) issue of Azrael, at a strange point. Last issue Michael Lane and Father Day were going to confront a man before the Crusader could get his hands on him. So in this issue we fast forward a little farther to when Michael and Father Day actually meet with the man. Day tells Michael to go put on his Azrael armor almost immediately after they arrive, assuming to have a chance to talk to him. Day explains that the inner circle is being eliminated ( as we saw before in the last issue), and the man asks him how much the crusader knows about the shroud. As Azrael comes out in his armor, the man notices the burns in it, but again Michael denies saying that the so called " Holy Water" poured on him ( as seen in the beginning of the last issue) was actually a trick again by the Crusader. He continues to tell the man about how he is conflicted because of the information he found last issue that: Jesus didn't die on the cross. The man the asks for Michael's swords, and explains what they mean and how they work as one. He then tells Michael that there is a second god Lucifer. He counties to explain that the suit of sorrow ( the Azrael armor) was foraged to stop persecution against the order of purity, ( and if that's not enough) we get more stuff about how the Crusader was born with telekinetic abilities, which are pretty common in the normal DCU, but here he is brought to the church and forced to serve them, burning a cross into his face. Just as he finishes the 5 back-and front pages of exposition ( Thank God), the Crusader breaks in, but Azrael stops him from hurting anyone, asking him if he truly wishes to destroy the shroud, which holds evidence that Jesus didn't die on the cross. The Crusader says it's a fake and it must be destroyed. Azrael agrees that it could be a fake but still fights him. As this goes on, Father Day and the man go and find an original copy of Revelations. The man says that everything in there is coming to pass just as we see the Crusader beat Azrael in combat. Father Day rushes to help and escort Azrael away, as the man gives himself to the Crusader. The man gives the Crusader some of what he wants to know, but in the end he is stripped down, and tied to a table and is about to be skinned, by the Crusader.
Now onto the actual review. In short, I enjoyed this issue, the ending was quite fun, and had a lot of action, but even though all the explanation and exposition was interesting, I think there is such a thing as explaining too much. In addition, a lot of the plot threads in here I'm not all that interested in like the two gods thing. The art again by Guillem March is good, but sketchy at times. Overall a fun read but not as good for me at least as last issue.
Reviewed by Wes