Angel of Death

There’s been a little gender-swap in Preacher this week, and quite ironically is exactly the same one we saw in Lucifer. In The Tombs, the Saint of Killers obtains the meeting with Satan he’s been asking for, but he’s greeted with a harsh punishment for his latest escape, as the Devil orders the Angel of Death to whip him good… and she does, by ripping away the flesh from his back until the spine is visible. Yes, “she”, as the Angel of Death is portrayed by Erinn Ruth, while in the comics she’s a very muscular and manly “he”. Strangely enough, she’s portrayed as some sort of secretary to the Devil, while there’s no reason for it: even in the comics, the two are just old pals, sharing an eternity of boredom. Let’s see together.

We often hear phrases like “My life was perfect, until…” Well, in the case of the Angel of Death, this is to be taken literally, as he indeed knew perfection in his life, until everything transformed into a neverending routine that he deeply loathed. At the beginning, he was one of millions angels part of the Angelic Host, and his life was as close as it could be to the very source of perfection, God. Then, God got bored of being worshiped and adored by angels only, and created humankind, with the purpose of making someone born with free will to love Him. Humans, however, were mortals, so death entered the universe… and the universe now needed someone taking care of it. With humans, the angels were given tasks and roles, and one of many angels suddenly became the Angel of Death, the one tasked with collecting the souls of mortals and to bring them either to Heaven or to Hell, depending on their behavior on Earth. This was an exhausting task per se, but it became unbearable, as not only humans were very good in dying of natural causes, but they became increasingly more and more creative in inventing new methods of killing each other: with the proceeding of centuries, the Angel of Death ran from battlefield to battlefield, from execution chamber to execution chamber, from bar to bar, collecting the souls of the fallen ones, and every day was worse than the previous one. During centuries, he became friends with the only other creature in the universe who shared his frustrated view on the task he’d been assigned with, the Devil, and he often went down to Hell to have a chat or play cards with “Nick“, as he called him. When the Angel of Death saw God’s plans for the XX Century and realized the amount of extra work he was about to be forced to, he lost all hopes, and started questioning even the sanity of his master and creator. Then, he found hope in the least probable place of all.

While he was in Hell, beating the Devil at poker as usual, something appeared to be amiss. At first believing that his adversary was just trying to avoid paying him what he had to, the Angel of Death had to agree that something was clearly wrong as he realized it was unnaturally cold, especially considering he was in Hell. The source of the temperature drop was a mortal soul, one he had recently brought to Hell, and who was still feeling all the hatred he felt when he was alive. The Devil tried to purge the hatred from him with torture, but everything was useless, and even Satan got depressed, believing his reputation and his kingdom to be ruined forever (with the ice blocking the doors, the souls couldn’t enter Hell anymore). The Angel of Death, however, had the perfect solution for all parties: the Devil wanted to reignite the fires, he wanted to leave his job to someone else, and the mortal only wanted to kill. The Angel of Death offered his position to the mortal, telling him that he would have been allowed to exact his vengeance on the people who had wronged him in the town of Ratwater, Texas, and then would have become the new collector of souls, answering directly to God. The mortal accepted. The Devil proceeded to mend his flesh, and the Angel of Death had his mystic sword melted into a pair of guns, to be better usable by their new master. Finally, the newly appointed Saint of Killers left Hell, that returned to its original status, and the Angel of Death was finally free from his burden… but then Satan had the bad idea to offend the Saint, who used his new guns to kill him on the spot. Terrified for his life for the first time in his immortal existence, the (former) Angel of Death started weeping and begging for his life… and he was spared, unexpectedly. Left alone in Hell, the angel now faced an unprecedented chaos, with the Devil dead and his realm without a leader for the first time in eons. Maybe, his idea wasn’t so brilliant after all…

The Angel of Death, real name unknown, is a deeply wise, intelligent and thoughtful creature… but also a deeply depressed one, crushed by an unbearable burden that will never end until the end of times itself. As all angels he’s immortal, and his wings allow him to fly and to cross dimensions, but he’s much stronger and more durable than any other angel, and his divine sword can kill anything and anyone, even angels, demons and, potentially, God Himself. One of the most powerful beings in existence, the Angel of Death is also one of the saddest ones, doomed for all eternity to babysit a species that has nothing better to do than to conceive new methods to kill itself. Quite a waste of time and resources.

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Frederick Christopher Freeman (Captain Marvel Jr.)

At last, after long waiting, we have our first official pic from the upcoming Shazam!, and it features the titular hero having a soda with his best buddy Freddy Freeman. Freddy, portrayed by Jack Dylan Grazer, will be a comicbook geek who becomes Billy Batson‘s best friend in his new foster home, as well as the only one to know that he’s secretly Captain Marvel. In the comics, Freddy is much more than Billy’s friend, as he eventually becomes his partner in crime as Captain Marvel Jr., one of the founding members of the Marvel Family. He’s been present in every incarnation of the hero, but as usual, the one that follows is his bio from New Earth.

Freddy Freeman was born in a small fishing village in New England, the son of David and Rebecca Freeman. He grew up with his foster brother, Timothy Karnes, but unbeknownst to him he had yet another brother, Christopher, who for some unspecified reason grew up far away from home. When he was still a kid, both David and Rebecca drowned during a storm, and Freddy was entrusted to his paternal grandfather, Jacob, who took him in in his house in Fawcett City (Timothy, on the other side, was reinserted in the fostering program and sent away). As grumpy as he may have been, Jacob Freeman became a father figure for Freddy, and the boy was dearly attached to his grandpa. Then, Freddy grew up, and as a teenager he attended the Binder School. Here, the boy blossomed, and became a school superstar: not only he had top grades, he was also a star athlete and one of the most popular students in the entire school. He was friends with Billy Batson, a boy reporter for WHIZ Radio, and he had a crush on Billy’s sister, Mary Bromfield. His life was simply great… until he and his grandfather decided to take a moment for themselves and go fishing in the Fawcett Bay, just like they did back in the old days in the village. This didn’t turned out to be a great idea: that day, the local superheroes Captain Marvel and Mary Marvel were facing one of their most powerful enemies, Captain Nazi, and the battle moved to the Bay. Marvel knocked Nazi in the lake with a punch, but the two fishermen, seeing a caped figure falling in the waters, mistook him for the hero, and attempted to rescue him. Not grateful at all, Captain Nazi attacked them both, killing Jacob and severely wounding Freddy. Captain Marvel, fearing for his friend, rushed him to a hospital, letting Captain Nazi escape. The doctors didn’t give the hero many hopes: Freddy’s leg was shattered, and his spine was gravely damaged. He would have never walked again.

Freddy Freeman’s life as a star athlete was just vanishing, but Captain and Mary Marvel had one last solution to try out: they flew their friend to the Rock of Eternity, asking for the wizard Shazam‘s help. The wizard couldn’t do anything to restore the boy’s health, but he suggested Captain Marvel to share his power with him; Billy did just that, and as soon as Freddy spelled the words “Captain Marvel” he turned into a younger and less powerful version of the hero, who became known as Captain Marvel Jr. (not that he liked the “junior” thing much). As Freddy Freeman, he would have never been able to walk again, but as Captain Marvel Jr. he was perfectly able to move… even to fly. The excitement for the new powers faded immediately, as he realized that his beloved grandpa was dead. In a fit of rage, the newborn Captain Marvel Jr. left the Rock of Eternity, and started a manhunt to find Captain Nazi. Caught by surprise, the villain was defeated by Freddy, and only Mary Marvel’s intervention prevented the boy from killing him. Captain Marvel Jr. (who, soon after, started to be called CM3 in order not to trigger his transformation during battles, being left helpless) became an integral part of the Marvel Family, and accompanied Captain Marvel (CM1) and Mary Marvel (CM2) in many of their adventures… but then his crush on Mary resurfaced, and he insistently tried to make a move on her. This attitude eventually created conflict with Captain Marvel, and the trio broke up. Freddy left Fawcett City altogether, and he moved to New York City, trying to start anew. Here, he didn’t stop being a hero, quite the opposite, and he ended up saving Supergirl and Fringe from the mysterious alien race known as the Veil. By doing this, he teamed up with the new Teen Titans, who offered him membership. His relationship with the team was good, and he even started a half-romance with teammate Argent, but his roots were elsewhere, and he knew it well. Maybe it was finally time to come back to Fawcett and make amends with his best friend…

Freddy Freeman is pretty much the stereotypical jock, a young man who feels like the whole world is his to play with, and who tries to find the funny thing about everything (usually annoying anyone around him). As Captain Marvel Jr., speaking the words “Captain Marvel” he obtains a fraction of the hero’s powers: the wisdom of Solomon, that grants him extensive knowledge of languages, science and history; the strength of Hercules; the endurance of Atlas, that makes him virtually invulnerable; the power of Zeus, that grants him mastership over lightning and immunity from magic; the courage of Achilles, that also bestows upon him the hero’s fighting skills; and the speed of Mercury, that allows him to move faster than light and to fly. An immensely powerful hero who hides behind his cape a terribly fragile boy, Captain Marvel Jr. has all the arrogance and impetuousness of youth, but he knows weakness and exclusion first-handedly, thus he quells his strength with a compassion second to no one.

Satan (The Devil)

If this week’s episode of the Preacher brought God to us, the next one will take us to the deepest pits of Hell to meet the Devil instead. We last saw the Saint of Killers coming back to Hell and asking for a word with Satan, and in the promo for The Tombs it looks like he got it, as he’s introduced into a fiery office, with a mahogany desk in the midst of a burning throne, with a smiling Devil, with horns and everything, waiting for him. We still don’t know who will portray the character (it’s hard to tell under all that make-up), but I’ll update the tags as soon as we do. It’s worth pointing out that the Devil from the Preacher continuity is not the same Devil of the regular DC continuity, as the series takes place in its own Vertigo universe. Now, let’s take a look at this version of the Prince of Darkness (again, this one is a fantasy character only referring to a comicbook, there’s no intention of offending anyone’s beliefs).

The origins of Satan, the Devil of the Abrahamic tradition, is quite unclear: it’s possible he was one of the angels who dared to rebel to God when he created humans, questioning His decision of giving birth to a race doomed to violence and death, but it’s more than likely that he was created purposefully for being the ruler of Hell, the new dimension God had created to keep in there every creature who didn’t love Him. Being it a way or the other, the Devil did rule Hell, and made sure that everyone in it suffered the just retribution for their sins; he was more of a bureaucrat than anything, managing the shifts and timetables of the demons who delivered the actual torture. Being the one responsible of anything happening there, he was quite upset when, somewhere in the XIX Century, Hell literally froze over. In theory, nothing ever happened in Hell without Satan’s say-so, so it’s not a surprise that nobody was prepared for an eventuality like the extinguishment of the eternal fires. Angrily looking for the cause (but also being quite afraid of what he might have found), the Devil stormed Hell, until he found a man, the newest arrival, a gunslinger from Texas. Unlike the other deceased souls, who lost everything human upon arriving in Hell, this man was still consumed by a terrifying hatred, and his heart was cold enough to extinguish Hell’s fire, freezing everything around him. Facing nothing but a damned soul like billions others, Satan pinned him to a stone arch using an ice stalactite, wanting to erase the man’s hatred with pain. He whipped him, tore his flesh away from his bones, lacerated his skin and muscles, but the man felt always and only hatred. Luckily, there was one guest in Hell at the time who had just the solution.

The Angel of Death was visiting Hell, and he had quite the advice for Satan, desperate with his new, impossible guest. The man only wanted to kill, while the Angel of Death was quite wary of doing it: if the latter retired, leaving his job to the first, the Devil would have gotten rid of his problem. Satan accepted the offer, and as soon as the man accepted it as well, he proceeded to arrange the succession. First, he sewed the man’s flesh back to his bones; since he was more used to destroy things rather than to mend them, his touch wasn’t exactly delicate, and the man found impressed on his body, for all eternity, the Devil’s mark (not that he cared about it the least). Then, he proceeded to melt the Angel of Death’s sword into the deepest and hottest fire in Hell, reforging it in a couple of Walker Colt revolvers, weapons the gunslinger had more familiarity with. Due to the divine nature of the metal and the hellish properties of the forge, those guns would have never missed a shot, would have never run out of ammo, and would have killed anything and anyone they hit, no matter if mortal or immortal in nature. The man was renamed the Saint of Killers, and was assigned by the (former) Angel of Death to collect the souls of the ones who died in a violent way, and to kill whoever God wanted to whenever God wanted to. The Devil, on his part, was overjoyed in seeing his torment leave Hell: the moment the Saint of Killers walked out the gates, the fire immediately reignited, making everything come back to its usual state. Without thinking about it, Satan shouted to the Saint: “Good riddance, you cold-hearted son of a bitch!”, an offense that the newly appointed death-bringer wasn’t happy to receive. As he turned around and shot the Devil in the head, it turned out that Satan had done a magnificent work, as the guns did kill everybody, him included.

Satan is nowhere as bad as they portray him, albeit he does indulge in cruelty and brutality… but, after all, it’s his job. As the Devil, he’s one of the most powerful beings in existence, the immortal king of demons who rules over Hell with an iron fist and molds with his simple will the appearance and essence of his kingdom. Vulgar and impulsive, the Devil is more a tired and grumpy bureaucrat than the ever-scheming source of all evil that religions portray, and all he wants from his eternal life is to do his job the best he can, possibly without any hindrance in an already exhausting workplace.

God

This week finally God showed His face on Preacher… His actual face, as He got rid, even for a few moments, of His dog costume and mask. Since we learnt that God was actually hiding under the suit of a Dalmatian dog previous season we knew that this wouldn’t have been the most politically correct portrayal of the Almighty ever, and we just have confirmation of this, as He talks to Tulip complimenting with her for her failure, which was part of His design apparently. All we know so far of the Alpha and Omega, portrayed by Mark Harelik just like the actor hired to replace Him during his absence, is that He inexplicably abandoned Heaven and escaped on Earth, and He’s the center of Jesse Custer‘s mission, as the Preacher wants to find Him. Albeit there’s no sign of any dog mask, the comics interpretation is not less disturbing, and I strongly advice not to read any further if you’re easily offended (I’m a Catholic, I should know). So, let’s see who the main antagonist (yup…) of Preacher is originally.

At the beginning, there was God… and nothing else, as the Almighty was the only being in existence in the absolute void. Feeling lonely, He created Heaven and populated it with angels, creatures that would have loved Him and adored Him, gratifying his narcissistic personality. An eternity of forced worship, however, soon bored even God, so He announced that He would have created humans, a new race that would have been given free will, so that they would have chosen whether to love Him or to ignore Him; to be sure of this, He would have not been physically present in their realm, Earth, so that He would have not influenced their choice. Many angels, actually half of them, rebelled to this senseless decision, as they felt that a world without God’s constant presence would have been torn by war, death and despair, and that the new creatures would have soon lost purpose and turned on each other. Rebelling to God, however, they fell from His grace, and they were cast to Hell, a new realm created purposefully for the ones who dared to defy the Almighty’s will. The experiment went just magnificently, with people growing and evolving, and even killing each other to prove to God which one of them loved Him most. This was simply magnificent… but it wasn’t enough. God wasn’t satisfied with regular humans’ love, so he orchestrated things on Earth so that a man totally devoted to hatred was born, nurtured in anger and brutality, and then tried to win his love. That man later became the Saint of Killers. Even this, however, wasn’t enough of a challenge, as the only proof God could have that He was a loving (and lovable) God was if someone equal to Him loved Him freely. So, He arranged things to have an angel and a demon meet and fall in love: the forbidden couple conceived a child, Genesis, who was just as powerful as God was… so powerful, actually, that for the first time in his eternal existence God feared for His own life. Waiting to find a way to win Genesis’ love, or to get rid of it, God escaped Heaven, and went on hiding without an explanation, leaving the entire cosmos into chaos.

God had locked Genesis in a heavenly prison, but the entity managed to escape to Earth, where it bonded with Jesse Custer, a preacher. Upon realizing God had abandoned His throne, Jesse accused Him of being a coward who had forfeited His responsibilities and, accompanied by his girlfriend Tulip and his friend Cassidy, he embarked on a quest to find God. The Almighty witnessed the entire adventure with dread, and tried His best to thwart the Preacher’s plans, even granting his evil grandma Madame L’Angelle and her goons immunity from his godly powers in an attempt to have him (and Genesis) slain. L’Angelle killed Tulip, and God resurrected her to give a message to her boyfriend: to leave Him be, in exchange of the heads of his enemies. Albeit he withdrew His protection from the L’Angelles, Jesse didn’t keep his part of the burden, and went on with his quest, eventually clashing with the Grail, a powerful secret organization that was (allegedly) doing God’s will on Earth. During a battle with the Grail in Masada, Cassidy was beaten almost to death, and God appeared to him as well, ordering him to tell Jesse to leave Him be, otherwise he would have unmade him. Once again, Jesse disobeyed Him. During a nuclear explosion, Jesse finally met his Maker: in this occasion, God offered him His forgiveness, telling him He still loved him and just wanted to be left alone. Disgusted by His cowardice, Jesse tried to use the Voice of Power on Him, but he wasn’t ready for the power of the Almighty, and he lost an eye without even realizing what was happening. Just before God finally annihilated Custer, the Saint of Killers appeared, armed with the holy guns that could have killed even God himself. Facing the one creature He feared in the entire universe, God fled, leaving Custer alive. The situation was apparently desperate, until God received an offer from Cassidy: the vampire would have challenged Custer to a fight, and beaten him half to death, leaving him weak enough for God to appear and strip him of Genesis. Then, he would have come back to His throne, and the two of them would have walked away as if nothing had happened. This seemed to be the perfect plan, but the Almighty didn’t know that Jesse had plans on his own…

Is God a loving, benevolent and caring being, watching with pride and mercy over His entire creation? Well, that is apparently all propaganda, as God is actually a narcissistic entity with a pathological need to be loved, an attention seeker who created everything and everyone just to have someone worshiping Him. As the creator of the universe, he’s simply omnipotent, being able to manipulate reality the way He prefers and to do anything He wants with his creation… with certain limits, mostly represented by Genesis and the Saint of Killers. Short-tempered and childish, a coward and a tyrant, a whimsical monarch who believes He can’t be held accountable for anything He does, God is not exactly the loving father most religious texts describe… but again, that’s just publicity to get people love Him.

Eivol Ekdal

Sorry Maz, but as Dorian Gallant made me notice, I missed a character from your request, another minor villain from the Batman tv series. With “minor” I truly mean “minor”, as he only appeared in a couple of episodes in the series, and in a single issue in the comics, maintaining more or less the same role in the different incarnations. We’re speaking of Eivol Ekdal (or Ekdol, according to some credits spelling), portrayed by Jack Kruschen. In the show, he works with the magician Zelda the Great, and manipulates her into committing some crimes, including the attempted murder of the Dynamic Duo. In the comics he does more or less the same, but with another magician: let’s see together.

Nothing is known about Eivol Ekdal’s early life. Judging from his name, he wasn’t American, but he had been living in Gotham City for quite a while in the 1960s, when he became known to the authorities. Ekdal was quite a genius, expert in engineering, physics, architecture and possibly something else. He specialized in building very special equipment for a variety of clients, always making them pay 100,000$ for his services, no more, no less (and that was quite a lot, in 1965). Among his clients, the most famous one was Carnado, a professional illusionist and master escapologist who commissioned to him special traps he would use for his shows. Carnado was particularly demanding, but always paid in time, even arriving to use his skills to rob banks in order to have the necessary money. Trap after trap, Ekdal found it more and more difficult to build new and effective traps for the magician, until he came up with his masterpiece, an inescapable death trap not even he knew how to get out from. It was a small room of clear, unbreakable Plexiglas, completely sealed from the outside. During the test run, he explained to Carnado that lethal gas would have come out of the one grill on the floor, at the center of the trap; the magician believed he had found an escape, holding his breath and lifting the grill… but that was electrified, and impossible to handle. Amused, Carnado gladly paid his 100,000 for the trap, and asked for the solution… a solution that Ekdal didn’t have, but that he was willing to help him find, for another 100,000$, of course.

Eivol Ekdal’s plan was quite simple: if there was one man in the world capable of escaping his trap, that was surely Batman, the World’s Greatest Detective. Following his instructions, Carnado used a false face to lure Batman to the death trap, in order to see how (and if…) he managed to escape, so that Carnado could have used the same trick on stage. Actually, Ekdal had other plans he didn’t reveal to his client, as he had a deal with some mobsters for Batman’s head (for… yes, you got it, 100,000$), so for him it was a win-win situation, either if the vigilante came out of his trap alive or not. Batman did indeed survive, as he threw his Utility Belt onto the electrified grill, so that the belt short-circuited the system, resulting in an explosion that destroyed the entire trap. The smoke from the explosion was enough to hide Batman from Ekdal’s sight, and Carnado wanted to get out of the room, so the hero was safe… for the moment. Ekdal convinced Carnado that Batman would have found them nevertheless thanks to his detective skills, so he called in for his two secret partners, who paid him 50,000$, with the other 50,000 to be given to him when they did in fact kill Batman. Ekdal staged the perfect trap, hiding the two criminals in a Medieval armor and in an Egyptian sarcophagus, one in each side of the main room in his hideout, and simply awaited for Batman in the middle of them: the moment the Caped Crusader would have arrived, the other two would have killed him on the spot. The scientist, however, had underestimated Batman’s detective skills, as he read his facial expressions and figured the trap out. In the following fight, as the goons were been beaten, Eivol tried to intervene in first person, but Robin locked him in the Egyptian sarcophagus, keeping him there until the police arrived. Sum of all irony, the following day the judge set the bail for Ekdal and his partners to 100,000$ each… a price he wouldn’t have been able to pay for a long, long time.

Eivol Ekdal is a self-proclaimed, but proved and tested genius, a scientist with interests and expertise in a variety of fields, making him a skilled inventor. He’s also a greedy and unscrupulous man, who uses his undoubted talents only to earn all the money he could possibly desire, not caring at all for the end his inventions are used for. Morally indifferent and with a perfect balance between price and offer, Eivol Ekdal is not only a great inventor, but also the perfect businessman… at least for his kind of affairs.

Jake O’Hare

There’s still one parental figure popping out in Preacher‘s third season premiere, but this time he’s related to another one of the protagonists. In Angelville, we witness Tulip‘s stay in Purgatory, portrayed like some sort of waiting room before being sent to one eternal destination or the other. Tulip watches her early life being represented as in a bad sitcom, and so we (sort of) meet her father, Jake O’Hare, portrayed by Keith Burke. The show’s version of Jake is a good-for-nothing crook who tries with all his soul to turn on a new leaf, but fails miserably and ends up dying in a shooting with the police right in front of his daughter. The comics’ version, albeit a dysfunctional father as well, is a very different man (and not just for the race swapping). Let’s see together.

Not much is known about Jake O’Hare, apart from the fact that he was a convinced Republican, and that he loved hunting, guns, and everything manly. He got married with an unnamed woman, and for the entire time of pregnancy he was more than sure that he would have had a baby boy. He had the name ready: John William Grady O’Hare. His friends mocked him, trying to picture his face if he would have ended up with a baby girl, but Jake remarked that he would have rather turned Democrat than fathered a daughter. History proved him wrong: his wife gave birth to a beautiful blonde girl, who was named Tulip because of the woman’s love for flower names. Jake was utterly terrified, he didn’t even know how to hold his daughter, but the nurse convinced him to try… and he instantly fell in love with baby Tulip. He decided that it didn’t need to be a bad thing that his “son” was born a female instead, and that he could have always raised her the way he had always wanted. The fact that his wife died soon after, leaving him a single parent, if in itself was a tragedy, on the other side left him with total freedom over the way he would have raised his daughter. This, translated in Jake’s perspective, meant that he would have raised Tulip the way he would have the son he actually wanted, teaching her everything he would have taught John William Grady. Surprisingly, this turned out pretty good.

As soon as Tulip was able to walk, Jake told her everything he knew about guns, taught her how to shoot and how to hunt and how to fight. The first tries were pretty bad actually, with the kid unable to stand the recoil of the gun and ending up buried in the snow when trying to shoot, but she eventually became infallible with any fire arm. Jake also taught her his own values, like patriotism, the importance and nobility of service, the love for America and its Constitution, the need of standing up for something you believe in. When Tulip was school age, it was Jake the one who suffered the greatest and most unexpected change, as he became a feminist, reconsidering gender roles and fighting with his girl the battles he had taught her to fight, such as the one to enter the school’s baseball team despite it was a man-only club (a battle easily won the moment the O’Hares proved beyond the shadow of a doubt that Tulip was more skilled than any male player). The relationship between Jake and Tulip was something far beyond anything the man could have ever imagined with any woman, as the two were accomplices, friends, partners, and they saw the world the same way, something Jake had failed to obtain even with his male pals. One day, when Tulip was still very young, Jake went out hunting with his friends; one of them, believing to have seen a deer, shot him in the head, killing him on the spot. Jake O’Hare was leaving behind one of the toughest women ever born and, in her, the memory of a hero-father no man in the world could have possibly been comparable with.

Jake O’Hare is a traditionalist and chauvinist man, who sees his entire world upside down thanks to the immeasurable love he feels for his baby daughter, Tulip. Quite unexpectedly, due to his unique relationship with his daughter, Jake is now open even to progressive positions, especially regarding the problem of gender-imposed roles. Conservative but consistent, good-hearted and strong-willed, Jake still represents the ideal man for his daughter, who only found one other man in her life who reminded her of her beloved father…

Christina L’Angelle

Of course, in the meanwhile also the most politically incorrect show from DC/Vertigo has come back with a third season, and this new episode of Preacher promises to match the previous seasons in terms of gore and provocations. In Angelville we also meet a couple of new characters from the comics, starting with Christina L’Angelle, the mother of Jesse Custer. Portrayed by Liz McGeever, we see her as she’s come back to Angelville after giving birth to Jesse, but as her mother Marie finds out she’s hiding a picture, she finds quite a gruesome but effective way to discover what that picture is. Her fate is left uncertain, but she couldn’t have lasted long in those conditions. The comics version actually survived her long stay in Angelville, albeit it costed her dearly: let’s see together.

Christina L’Angelle was born in Angelville, the family plantation of her ancient clan. She was born in a very traditional (and mean) family, with her mother, Marie L’Angelle, always trying to teach her the old ways of the L’Angelles, with boys meant to be preachers or soldiers, and girls to be raised as broodmares, but Christina never accepted this fate for herself, and always stood her ground against her mother… usually ending up in the Coffin, a casket weighted to the bottom of the nearby swamp, for days, as punishment. Finally, as a teenager, she simply couldn’t stand it anymore, and she escaped from Angelville, traveling west, to Texas. Here she met a group of peace activists protesting against the Vietnam War, and she joined them, embracing the cause. When a soldier who just got back home asked her for information on the bus he was supposed to take, she spat him in the face and called him a “baby killer”. Albeit her new friends were clapping their hands for her, she just felt terrible in seeing the big young soldier walking away without a word, and she eventually followed him in a bar. She presented her silent apology to him, and he answered with a silent forgiveness. They started talking about everything, and in a matter of hours they were in love. The soldier was named John Custer. With John, Christina felt safe for the first time in her life, and she decided she would have lived her entire life with him. There was nothing about herself she wouldn’t tell him… apart from everything concerning her family: that, she simply couldn’t think of. The two were together for one year and a half, and had a baby boy together, Jesse. The three of them couldn’t be any happier… until they were found by Jody and T. C., her mother’s top goons. John tried to fight back, but it was useless. As he found out about Jesse, however, Jody decided to bring the three of them, alive, back to Angelville, without killing John. That was a small relief.

Marie had some conditions for the family’s survival: first, Christina and John needed to get married; second, Jesse would have been raised as a preacher. If these conditions weren’t met, or if they tried to run away, they would have died. Christina did marry John, and she even pretended to follow her mother’s wishes on her son’s education, but one year later she prompted John to try and escape with the boy… but he was caught by Jody and executed in front of Jesse. After that, a heartbroken Christina simply complied, and taught Jesse everything he needed to be a man of culture and a man of God, never raising her head again… until Marie decided to put Jesse in the Coffin after hearing him cussing. Christina fought her mother, and told her that Jesse would have gone in the Coffin over her dead body… and Marie took her literally, as she had already given a heir to the L’Angelles, and she was no longer needed. She had Jody shoot her in the head, back in the swamp, but at the last minute Christina tried to fight back, making Jody miss the shot. The bullet grazed her head nevertheless, and she fell into the swamp, where she was attacked by a huge alligator: for Jody and everyone else in Angelville, she was dead. She actually survived, and even if in desperate conditions and missing her left arm due to the alligator, she was found alive by a group of hunters, and brought to a hospital. The woman suffered from amnesia due to her head wound, and didn’t even remember her name; the only thing that she had said before the hunters rescued her, as she was struggling with the alligator, was a name she was shouting, “Jody”. Because of this, at the hospital she was given the name Jodie, and after years spent in rehab, she was released. Alone and without a clue of who she was, Jodie was found by Lorie Bobbs, a young girl who took pity in her and decided to help her. She helped her in the transition from the hospital to the “real world”, and together they moved to Salvation, Texas, where they opened a bar and grill together. Jodie was happy, but sometimes she had some unnerving flashes of a past life: of a coffin, of a huge man shooting her, and of a son…

Christina Custer, née Christina L’Angelle, is a strong-willed and determined woman, a fighter who was raised in a living Hell and found in herself the strength to escape from it, and even more to live within it. Only apparently helpless and meek, she’s actually a force of nature capable of standing even in the way of a fearsome person like her mother Marie, and there’s nothing she wouldn’t do for the sake of her husband and son. A rare flower born in a desert of evil and meanness, Christina L’Angelle is one of the kindest, but yet strongest people ever lived in Angelville, a trait that she brings along even in her new life as Jodie.