Advance Review: It’s Raining Angels In `Blood Tree’ #1

by Tom Smithyman

Comics veteran Peter J. Tomasi knows how to grab an audience. Just a few pages into his newest series, Blood Tree, a New York City detective finds himself saving several local politicians from a fallen angel. Literally.

Close enough, anyway. This “angel” – actually a man with wings sewn onto his back – fell from the sky in the middle of the St. Patrick’s Day parade. His spread eagle body sprawled across Fifth Avenue makes for an arresting introduction to the series.

Enter police detective Dario Azzaro and his partner, who quickly conclude that the incident was nothing more than an elaborate suicide. Azzaro is promoted and treated to a lavish dinner at the mayor’s house. Then a second fallen angel appears – this time during a Yankees game. Now the cops are dealing with a serial killer.

Tomasi’s script is a compelling read. While there are plenty of familiar elements – the mastermind baddie, the good cop with a troubled family life – Tomasi is able to make is all feel fresh. That’s a real gift that could be fumbled in a lesser writer’s hands. Adding to the intrigue is Azzaro’s son, who has a penchant for killing their pet fish as well as the mysterious tree that the Angel Killer is drawing.

Artist Maxim Simic’s interiors are considerably less refined than the writing, and they take some getting used to as you’re flipping through the book. The pages are particularly striking given the tightness of the cover from Christian Alamy and Brad Anderson as well as the variant from Gary Frank and Anderson. After gazing at the great covers, you can’t help but feel a bit of a bait and switch when opening to the first few inside pages.

It’s a strong start to a series in which the body count (angel count?) is sure to rise, putting more pressure on the detectives and their families. The creative team has grabbed our attention – now we’ll see what they do with it.

Blood Tree #1 will be available for purchase on Wednesday.


Police searching for a serial killer may not sound like the most original idea for a series, but in the hands of veteran writer Peter J. Tomasi, this story comes to life. The interior visuals are not as refined as the writing or covers, though, which is a bit of a disappointment.

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