What Does the Conclusion of 'The Dark Angel Saga' Mean for Angel?

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Posted by No_Name_ (17403 posts) - - Show Bio

Warren Worthington III first appeared in Marvel comics as Angel in September, 1963 as one of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's comic book creations. Worthington was given a set of wings, the ability to fly and a Mutant X gene by his creators -- and unlike an Angel, Worthington's early appearances depicted him as a self-absorbed, arrogant playboy. However, this identity would not stick. The handsome, billionaire and heir to Worthington Industries wouldn't be an Angel forever.

Uncanny X-Force #10

When the 1980's rolled around and Marvel released X-FACTOR in 1984, Worthington would make an appearance in the book as a far darker, more brooding character than his original incarnation. After enduring an injury to his wings by the Marauders, Angel's adversary Cameron Hodge agrees to amputate them, ultimately hurling Angel into suicidal depression.

In issue #24 of X-Factor first published in January of 1988, Worthington made his very first appearance as his possessed alter-ego Archangel after he is rescued by Apocalypse and given a deal -- he would be given his wings back on the condition that he submit to being one of Apocalypse's Horsemen. Thus marked the beginning of Worthington's battle with good and bad, darkness and light -- and if you read UNCANNY X-FORCE, you know this battle does not end well.

== TEASER ==
Uncanny X-Force #10

If you ask us, Uncanny X-Force was by far one of Marvel's most exciting and interesting series to be published by the "House of Ideas" in the last year. In fact, we have found that we can't say enough good things about it. The story not only managed to draw from the X-Men's rich history and one of their most riveting story-arcs, (Age of Apocalypse); it also contained an incredible amount of character development.

Of all the characters to get some TLC, Warren Worthington endured the most amount of development. Many of the scenes we saw in the first issue portrayed him working alongside Psylocke in an effort to contain his "dark side," something he has been struggling with since Worthington went under Apocalypse's control all those years ago. Throughout the entire series Worthington struggles with his dark side until it becomes to much for him, and unbeknownst even to himself, he falls prey to Apocalypse.

Even before the Dark Angel Saga story arc, Warren was gradually losing all control of his sanity and slowly succumbing to the darkness of Apocalypse. By the end, Warren had played the role of both leader and adversary to X-Force, and his split personality and inability to control his dark side made him a force to be reckoned with -- and he was. This story brought Warren to the forefront as a character, making him interesting and exciting -- something we hadn't seen in a long time.

In the final issue of X-Force, Archangel appears to have been killed with the Life Seed by his lover, Psylocke, who had at last found the strength in herself to terminate him. But what really happened? Is the Angel we knew really gone? Is he truly dead?

Uncanny X-Force #19

The end of Uncanny X-Force #18 and the throughout Uncanny X-Force #19 we see the re-birth of Angel, but it is not the Angel we knew previously. No longer does Angel have any recollection of who he is, where he came from. Over 35 years of character history lost to him. The love affair with Betsy, the destruction of his wings, the succumbing to Apocalypse, his role as one of the original X-Men -- all of this gone. In it's place is purity, like an Angel and his love of "all living things."

Yet, it is hard to believe that Angel, as we knew him, is truly gone when we have seen so much of this before. This would not be the first time that Angel has "left." Following Decimation, Angel took an extended leave of absence and instead of helping mutants fight the good fight, he withdrew and began doing charity work overseas. This isn't the first time we have seen Warren fluctuate from being Angel to Archangel either. Aside from when this first occurred during the 1980's, Warren has since struggled with the metal wings inside of him since his appearance in volume 3 of X-Force.

Uncanny X-Force #19

So is this really the end of the Archangel persona? After spending so much time developing his character, it's hard to believe that this is the last we have seen of Archangel's persona; and we wouldn't be surprised if he somehow found a way to return. What do you think is next for Warren? Do you think this is the last we have seen of Archangel, or do you feel he will return with a vengeance? What about the new Angel? Do you think he is as pure as he appears to be? Like Fantomex said, do you think Warren's chapter is really over? What would you like to see happen?

#1 Edited by MICROMAN (10 posts) - - Show Bio

i think its just beginning for if this is the "Angel" then there has to be a "Demon"

#2 Posted by Mutant God (3020 posts) - - Show Bio

I think Archangel will probably be his kid's name

#3 Posted by frozenedge (1196 posts) - - Show Bio

Archangel might make a return but not for a while. If or when he returns, he's gotta make sure there's no hicks in his plans or it has as few as possible. Wonder what they're going to do with Warren now? Tell the rest of the X-Men or let them think he died or something

#4 Posted by Lt_Cmdr_Kicker (71 posts) - - Show Bio

I've never read anything on Uncanny X-Force, but if I were. What volumes do you guys recommend?

#5 Posted by ReVamp (22865 posts) - - Show Bio

Must-not-read... Must-resist-urge-to-read... Must-catch-up... first...

#6 Posted by papad1992 (6828 posts) - - Show Bio

All Im wondering is what the other core X-Men gonna say when they return!!

#7 Posted by Bestostero (5618 posts) - - Show Bio

SIGH...

#8 Edited by pixelized (62882 posts) - - Show Bio

Considering the world Angel lives in and the various of feats that have happened around him, it makes swallowing the legitimacy of this new change a tad bit hard. Like when Firestar had cancer and Dr. Strange was like, "my magic can't heal you" ... um, pardon?

I've always liked that Angel wasn't the most combat oriented mutant in terms of powers. I'm not at all sad to see Archangel go, I'm sad to see him move from being all about death to all about life, when all he really needed was his character defining "playboy" personality.

Moderator
#9 Posted by madrid_san (1805 posts) - - Show Bio

Thought I saw promotion art for AvX of Archangel fighting Daredevil?

#10 Posted by Carolina574 (176 posts) - - Show Bio

At this point I have figured out that Rick Remender knows what I want better than I do.

#11 Posted by bane122 (29 posts) - - Show Bio

@MICROMAN said:

i think its just beginning for if this is the "Angel" then there has to be a "Demon"

But wouldn't Archangel be the demon?

#12 Posted by feargalr (1156 posts) - - Show Bio

@madrid_san: I never saw that.. link??

I was kinda hoping that the end of the dark angel saga would end up with angel becoming the new AOA apocalypse.. I think someone mentioned it on a podcast, or else I imagined it.. either way... I would have liked to see Warren be kinda convinced around to Archangels way of thinking and them sorta becoming one persona.. but I just don't like it when characters come down with a case of EXPLOSIVE amnesia.. great story arc though

#13 Posted by frochez (194 posts) - - Show Bio

@MICROMAN: There could be some interesting interactions between this new Angel and the AoA version of Nightcrawler, who seems a lot more baddass and closer to the devil that his outward appearance indicates than the 616 version.

#14 Posted by SpidermanWins (3982 posts) - - Show Bio

@MICROMAN said:

i think its just beginning for if this is the "Angel" then there has to be a "Demon"

NIGHTCRAWLER NEEDS TO COME BACK... NOW

#15 Posted by MyraMyraMyra (296 posts) - - Show Bio

Marvel is famous for its unability to keep popular characters dead, so I wouldn't be surprised if Warren Worthington and Archangel came back eventually.

Personally, I'm hoping that he stays dead, and that the reborn Angel will become a character of his own right. The Dark Angel Saga was a brilliant, brilliant story arc, and it gave Warren a heart-wrenching, glorious death that I'm sure will be always remembered as one of the best tragic moments in the history of comics. Bringing him back would weaken the emotional impact of the entire story arc. As much as I like the character, I loved the story arc too much to hope that he'll return, because that would totally cheapen the value of his beautifully tragic death. The finality of his death is what made it so brilliantly sad.

I do think it makes sense that he was given some excellent character developement before he was killed off. That made his death really hurt, and it gave it so much depth. I could see Archangel's death coming from a mile away, and still got to me because he had become such an interesting character during Uncanny X-Force.

#16 Posted by spikespeigel (5 posts) - - Show Bio

Well, he's not "Warren" anymore since he died after being stabbed with the Life Seed. But I wouldn't be surprised to see Angel factor into the next arc with Pestilence since she's now carrying Archangel's child.

#17 Posted by carnivalofsins00 (938 posts) - - Show Bio

I have complete trust in Remender. I don't think that after such an amazing run, that Remender is going to leave Angel in the background. I still think that, although he won't be the front runner of the series, Remender will keep evolving the character. From what we know so far, Angel is pretty much a clean slate, so I'd love to see where he goes from here on out.

#18 Posted by MICROMAN (10 posts) - - Show Bio

@bane122: yes sir

#19 Posted by lorex (954 posts) - - Show Bio

 Warren and Archangel well that is a lot of history to go through, Archangel has been around for a long time now so what will become of Warren. Part of the reason Warren was changed was his mutant powers were too week to deal with the challenges the X-Men were facing and lets face it Mutant Massacre was an epic X-Men story wit the morlocks being all but whiped out and Warren bring crucified resulting in his winge having to be amputated to save his life. Of course he accepts the deal from the devil, Apocalypse to get artifical winge much more powerful than his original ones, and in the process becoming one of the 4 horseman, Death. 
 
Warren has been through a lot over the years and I figure Warren will be back at some along way either as Angel, Archangel or prehaps as something new. I suspect that he might fade into the background for a while but he will certainly have a presence in the future. What that holds who knows.
 
Uncanny X-Force was in my opinion Marvels best title this year. They were able to draw on the X-Men's rich history but still come up with something new and interesting. I still hate the title has uncanny in it. The title X-Force is strong enough to survive on its own without the gimic.

#20 Posted by GBrutality (192 posts) - - Show Bio

@Lt_Cmdr_Kicker: issue 1 is generally a good place to start. honestly, once you start reading you won't want to stop and you'll be caught up in no time.

#21 Posted by EugeneSaxe (227 posts) - - Show Bio

You're actually asking if a comic book character is gone forever?

#22 Posted by perry_411 (428 posts) - - Show Bio

Isnt the existence of a teenage apocalypse more interesting than anything else to come from this story?

#23 Posted by Trodorne (2583 posts) - - Show Bio

Is Archangel really dead?
Was Cable really dead?
Was Johnny Storm really dead?
Was Steve Rogers really dead?
 
are we seriously going to ask that question? I mean honestly. Though it would be legitimately nice that things could stay dead for a good number of decades and then come back like lets say Mockingbird. Like hell I just have to laugh at mistress death herself in the marvel universe because she can't seem to do her job at keeping people dead.

#24 Posted by Lt_Cmdr_Kicker (71 posts) - - Show Bio

@GBrutality: Do u happen to kno how many volumes are out in trade paper back or hardcover? It's so hard to keep up wen my comic shop is so far away.. :/

#25 Posted by Lt_Cmdr_Kicker (71 posts) - - Show Bio

@Trodorne said: Like hell I just have to laugh at mistress death herself in the marvel universe because she can't seem to do her job at keeping people dead.

It's because she's too busy messin' with poor old Thanos..

#26 Posted by The Impersonator (5234 posts) - - Show Bio

@SpidermanWins said:

@MICROMAN said:

i think its just beginning for if this is the "Angel" then there has to be a "Demon"

NIGHTCRAWLER NEEDS TO COME BACK... NOW

I really missed Kurt.

#27 Posted by psyrax2k11 (42 posts) - - Show Bio

Just on a side note with this article--X-Factor debuted in early 1986, not 1984.

#28 Posted by TheCrowbar (4286 posts) - - Show Bio

It would be interesting if the usage of the Life Seed is what's bring the Celestials to Earth. It'd be an interesting idea to have him now ascend into a more of cosmic protector of Earth. He's not obnoxiously powerful, and he's got great character development. It'd be an interesting divergence from the standard cosmic marvel characters.

#29 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6885 posts) - - Show Bio

Archangel will definitely be back sometime. As to when, who knows? Let the fans crave for him again and then his arrival is guaranteed.

#30 Posted by CombatSpoon86 (832 posts) - - Show Bio

@Carolina574:

Definitely agree with you there 100%

#31 Posted by LordRequiem (1310 posts) - - Show Bio

Angel lacks a certain dimension to his character in Archangel's absence. I think in some form, something resembling Archangel will always be around. It would be good if he still had a dark alter-ego of which he is unaware, even if it wasn't Archangel.

#32 Posted by Iron Fist Angel (229 posts) - - Show Bio

Seeing as I'm the world's biggest Angel fanboy, I'd really like to know the answer to this. I'm one of the few people out there who prefers Angel over Archangel, so I wouldn't shed any tears if his "Arch" persona was dropped. However....that's not likely going to happen seeing as how popular Archangel is, (plus he has a new statue and action figure coming out this year).

I'm very curious as to which book they are going to put him in. I just hope he doesn't go into limbo like he did a few years ago and went four years without being in any X-comic.

#33 Posted by mikeclark1982 (424 posts) - - Show Bio

they "Joseph'ed" him! WHYYYYYYYYYYYY

#34 Posted by Namor1987 (1884 posts) - - Show Bio

It's basically Marvel's way of saying were going to reboot this character deal with it. I think he might be going Omega because he can see spiritual energy & heal with a touch like well a angel. I'm not sure if he was be comforting or really acquired those new powers but he does have the Archangel wings just a Guardian/Avenging Angel costume so who knows where it could go. Plus Nightcrawler is embracing the fact that theyre calling him Devil. Could be planting seeds for a huge arc.

#35 Edited by jcbart (341 posts) - - Show Bio

We're forgetting the most important thing at hand here. The Angel that was brought back by The Life Seed ISN'T Warren. Warren died. This is The Life Seed's interpretation of what he should be: all loving, all kind, all good. It's not Warren resurrected, it's not Warren with amnesia, it's not Warren.

I love that Rick did this. He knows how comic book deaths are taken. He knows that his story will mean nothing in a few years when Angel is brought back to life. So, he decided to mess with us, and in the process twist the knife in Psylocke's stomach.

#36 Posted by SpidermanWins (3982 posts) - - Show Bio

@The Impersonator said:

@SpidermanWins said:

@MICROMAN said:

i think its just beginning for if this is the "Angel" then there has to be a "Demon"

NIGHTCRAWLER NEEDS TO COME BACK... NOW

I really missed Kurt.

same here, he's my favorite X-Man

#37 Posted by pspin (891 posts) - - Show Bio

So now he is the hulk with the whole split personalities separating... oh boy....

#38 Posted by cadmiel_nostromo (5 posts) - - Show Bio

remender?... archangel?... secret avengers!!!

#39 Posted by Inverno (13164 posts) - - Show Bio

@MyraMyraMyra said:

Marvel is famous for its unability to keep popular characters dead, so I wouldn't be surprised if Warren Worthington and Archangel came back eventually.

Personally, I'm hoping that he stays dead, and that the reborn Angel will become a character of his own right. The Dark Angel Saga was a brilliant, brilliant story arc, and it gave Warren a heart-wrenching, glorious death that I'm sure will be always remembered as one of the best tragic moments in the history of comics. Bringing him back would weaken the emotional impact of the entire story arc. As much as I like the character, I loved the story arc too much to hope that he'll return, because that would totally cheapen the value of his beautifully tragic death. The finality of his death is what made it so brilliantly sad.

I do think it makes sense that he was given some excellent character developement before he was killed off. That made his death really hurt, and it gave it so much depth. I could see Archangel's death coming from a mile away, and still got to me because he had become such an interesting character during Uncanny X-Force.

Does it hold any tension at all? That you know they will comeback. The only popular X-Men I remember stood dead till now was Jean Grey (also from the original team like Warren) and only because Joe Quesada says so.

#40 Posted by danhimself (22454 posts) - - Show Bio

This is what Remender said in an interview:

Moving to the more specific points, let's get right to the ending of Uncanny X-Force #18. While I think a lot of folks were expecting a more conventional "death" at the end of the story, there's still definitely a loss — can you clarify the status of Warren at this point? Mindwiped?

Remender: He's dead. Warren is dead. I know where he's ending up, I know what we're doing with him for the next year. Our intention right now is that Warren died. His soul died, his mind died, he died. But that Life Seed stuck in his gut regenerated something. It took the husk that was there, of Archangel, and it regenerated something else. It took that dead body and made this new body. What is the body, and who's the person inside? It's not Warren Worthington. It's not as simple as amnesia. That's a different person.

There's going to be cynics. For us, it was important not to just do, "And he died." We wanted to do something that was more of a knife in the gut, where he dies, and Betsy gets to live with him in this telepathic trance, where they get their lives together how it should have been. You think you've got some kind of closure, then you get the up moment of Warren returns — everybody is happy and excited — and he pushes Betsy aside and says, "Who are you?" Warren did die, but here's this person who looks just like him. It's even worse than him dying, in my opinion.

#41 Edited by TheOlympian (111 posts) - - Show Bio

Babs, I love this article. I freaking love this site. I wish one of you guys could do the same for the implications of the entire arc thus far. Teenaged Apocalypse? Devil Kurt? Angel's inevitable baby-mama drama? Remender has unleashed a goldmine of fresh and reinvented ideas.

Could this new Life Seed avatar Warren and literal devil Nightcrawler bring back and reinvent Chuck Austen's Cheyarafem/Neyaphem storyline? I need more Azazel after XMFC this summer. Will Warren keep his "Angel" codename? Will Hope get to meet Evan/Genesis since they're on different coasts? How will Evan/Genesis effect fellow Clan Akkaban Chamber? Will Dark Beast become the surrogate father to Pestilence's unborn child? What will Cyclops and the Utopians have to say about all of this???

I can honestly say that I've never been so excited about a comic arc and its effect on future books.

#42 Posted by inferi22 (30 posts) - - Show Bio

unfortunately this article reminded me that at one point Billy Tan did the art for uncanny x-force

#43 Posted by DMC (1551 posts) - - Show Bio

Man I really REALLY hope "Heir of Apocalypse" Archangel isn't gone for good. I would love to see more great stories about this character that make him a real X-Men foe.

However, with this new "pure" Angel, maybe this is an opportunity for stories about the Cheyarafim that would lead to another battle against the Neyaphem?

#44 Posted by nonfiction91 (1704 posts) - - Show Bio

@CaioTrubat: @CaioTrubat said:

@MyraMyraMyra said:

Marvel is famous for its unability to keep popular characters dead, so I wouldn't be surprised if Warren Worthington and Archangel came back eventually.

Personally, I'm hoping that he stays dead, and that the reborn Angel will become a character of his own right. The Dark Angel Saga was a brilliant, brilliant story arc, and it gave Warren a heart-wrenching, glorious death that I'm sure will be always remembered as one of the best tragic moments in the history of comics. Bringing him back would weaken the emotional impact of the entire story arc. As much as I like the character, I loved the story arc too much to hope that he'll return, because that would totally cheapen the value of his beautifully tragic death. The finality of his death is what made it so brilliantly sad.

I do think it makes sense that he was given some excellent character developement before he was killed off. That made his death really hurt, and it gave it so much depth. I could see Archangel's death coming from a mile away, and still got to me because he had become such an interesting character during Uncanny X-Force.

Does it hold any tension at all? That you know they will comeback. The only popular X-Men I remember stood dead till now was Jean Grey (also from the original team like Warren) and only because Joe Quesada says so.

to hell with Quesada, the less he has his chubby digits in the better. As for Jean Grey...you really wanna bet on that?

totally not jean!....-_-

#45 Posted by davelecave (1113 posts) - - Show Bio

@Carolina574 said:

At this point I have figured out that Rick Remender knows what I want better than I do.
#46 Posted by riri4life (7189 posts) - - Show Bio

Glad they are giving Arcangel a rest, but of course he will be back. It's like Warren's own "phoenix force" *eye roll*

#47 Posted by Inverno (13164 posts) - - Show Bio

@nonfiction91 said:

@CaioTrubat: @CaioTrubat said:

@MyraMyraMyra said:

Marvel is famous for its unability to keep popular characters dead, so I wouldn't be surprised if Warren Worthington and Archangel came back eventually.

Personally, I'm hoping that he stays dead, and that the reborn Angel will become a character of his own right. The Dark Angel Saga was a brilliant, brilliant story arc, and it gave Warren a heart-wrenching, glorious death that I'm sure will be always remembered as one of the best tragic moments in the history of comics. Bringing him back would weaken the emotional impact of the entire story arc. As much as I like the character, I loved the story arc too much to hope that he'll return, because that would totally cheapen the value of his beautifully tragic death. The finality of his death is what made it so brilliantly sad.

I do think it makes sense that he was given some excellent character developement before he was killed off. That made his death really hurt, and it gave it so much depth. I could see Archangel's death coming from a mile away, and still got to me because he had become such an interesting character during Uncanny X-Force.

Does it hold any tension at all? That you know they will comeback. The only popular X-Men I remember stood dead till now was Jean Grey (also from the original team like Warren) and only because Joe Quesada says so.

to hell with Quesada, the less he has his chubby digits in the better. As for Jean Grey...you really wanna bet on that?

totally not jean!....-_-

Oh you are right. There is nothing preventing them from creating a Angel knock-off while the original remained dead.

#48 Posted by nonfiction91 (1704 posts) - - Show Bio

well yeah, they already have with this guy who looks like warren but isn't him, there of course will be a change in that at some point, where he comes back in soul. as far as Hope goes, I'm pretty sure shes a reincarnate Jean Grey. after all, thats the whole shtick of the pheonix. death and rebirth. Plus in some x-men ish not too far back, maybe july tops, emma says something pointing to it, or maybe not her I vaguely remember but the guys at marvel definitely hinted at it, surprised was I that nobody had made a topic about it that week.

#49 Posted by blur1528 (1055 posts) - - Show Bio

I love that he still has the metal wings though. It's like a slap in the face and a reminder of what came before.

#50 Posted by Queso6p4 (1436 posts) - - Show Bio

@mikeclark1982 said:

they "Joseph'ed" him! WHYYYYYYYYYYYY

Hilarious! Maybe you should (or shouldn't) check out Magneto: Not a Hero if you haven't already.

@Namor1987 said:

It's basically Marvel's way of saying were going to reboot this character deal with it. I think he might be going Omega because he can see spiritual energy & heal with a touch like well a angel. I'm not sure if he was be comforting or really acquired those new powers but he does have the Archangel wings just a Guardian/Avenging Angel costume so who knows where it could go. Plus Nightcrawler is embracing the fact that theyre calling him Devil. Could be planting seeds for a huge arc.

That Omega crap really pissed me off but it is an interesting idea as to where they could be taking the character.@pspin said:

So now he is the hulk with the whole split personalities separating... oh boy....

I may be off-base as I've only read an issue of it but this seems to be where Moonknight may be headed now as well.@danhimself said:

This is what Remender said in an interview:

Moving to the more specific points, let's get right to the ending of Uncanny X-Force #18. While I think a lot of folks were expecting a more conventional "death" at the end of the story, there's still definitely a loss — can you clarify the status of Warren at this point? Mindwiped?

Remender: He's dead. Warren is dead. I know where he's ending up, I know what we're doing with him for the next year. Our intention right now is that Warren died. His soul died, his mind died, he died. But that Life Seed stuck in his gut regenerated something. It took the husk that was there, of Archangel, and it regenerated something else. It took that dead body and made this new body. What is the body, and who's the person inside? It's not Warren Worthington. It's not as simple as amnesia. That's a different person.

There's going to be cynics. For us, it was important not to just do, "And he died." We wanted to do something that was more of a knife in the gut, where he dies, and Betsy gets to live with him in this telepathic trance, where they get their lives together how it should have been. You think you've got some kind of closure, then you get the up moment of Warren returns — everybody is happy and excited — and he pushes Betsy aside and says, "Who are you?" Warren did die, but here's this person who looks just like him. It's even worse than him dying, in my opinion.

Thanks for this as it helps to further cement the gravity of that whole arc. Uncanny X-Force is, by far, my favourite Marvel series of last year, hand down. I'm curious as to see what happens with this new iteration of Angel and I'll gladly go along for the ride. Nice succinct rundown of 80s changes and those from UCXF, Babs.

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