is a free, weekly webcomic
created by Eagle Award
-winning writer Warren Ellis
. It is written by Ellis, illustrated by Paul Duffield
and published by Avatar Press
. The comic book features well-drawn backgrounds and inanimate objects.
Warren Ellis announced the project at the 2007 Comic-Con
, stating: "I've written two hundred pages and I still have no idea what it's about…it's retro-punk, it's near-future steampunk
" It was launched on 2008-02-15
. New installments will be released in six full-colour page episodes every week, a format intended by Ellis to give the story the chance to grow naturally.
The story grew out of wondering what would have happened if the Midwich Cuckoos had survived and grown to disaffected and confused 21 year olds, and the comic builds on the legacy of John Wyndham's style of disaster fiction.
Freakangels is set in a time after London
has been flooded. A group, called the Freakangels, live in Whitechapel
and their life encounters a dramatic bump when a girl called Alice arrives one day, bearing a shotgun and a grievance against one of their number. Ellis' synopsis of the plot involves characters "living in a post-flood London that they might possibly have had something to do with."
The first FreakAngel introduced, having just awoken from a night of excessive drinking, she is horrified to find she has apparently "fucked a boy from the Lambeth Road
." KK pilots a steam-powered helicopter and she indicates that the FreakAngels have access to a "big steam gun." She dresses primarily in goth clothing and, like the other FreakAngels, has violet eyes. She is shown to be impulsive and temperamental, dropping a full water canteen on Alice's head without regards to the possibility she might have killed Alice. KK was featured in promotional material for the series. Her helicopter is referred to as a "bikicopter" by artist Paul Duffield. KK herself calls it "the bike." Her full name is Kolfinnia Kokokoho Titching.
Connor is first seen telepathically contacting KK, and he appears as a face in a window. Whether this is an aspect of his or the other FreakAngels' powers or simply an aesthetic choice by the artist remains to be seen. Later he is seen confronting Alice and angers her with his intrusion into her mind. Connor is shown to be compassionate towards Alice, despite her threats on his life. He is very soft spoken and in control, even when Alice has a knife to his throat. He is possibly the voice of reason within his clan.
Appears to live above Ten Bells Pub
. He has turned the roof into a garden and grows fresh produce for the people of Whitechapel. He has distanced himself from the other FreakAngels by wearing a tinfoil hat
which apparently muffles or silences telepathic communication. He seems to have a certain amount of guilt over the FreakAngels involvement in the end of the world. His gardening is by his own admission, "The least I can do for having helped end the world. Am I right?" While Karl does feel somewhat guilty for what they did, he has no regrets as it was "kill or be killed" and "if nothing else we made a much calmer world. A quieter world." Unknown to the other FreakAngels except for Kirk, it was Karl that apparently killed Mark and "heard his brain die
Luke is an apparently homeless FreakAngel, first shown sitting in a storefront covered by a cardboard box. He is having a "seminar on the nature of time inside the dreams of twelve randomly-chosen local people," or as KK puts it "invading the heads of twelve girls [he] wants to fuck." He wonders why Connor did not want him to help with the Alice situation, because as he puts it "I'm a fucking genius." It is indicated that he was kicked out by his girlfriend and she burned his clothes, leaving him with only an overcoat and boots. He is later seen pestering Kirk for some food and when he is denied he threatens Kirk by implying he would reveal the FreakAngels secret(their role in the end of the world). Kirk attacks him physically and yells at him, calling him a parasite and accusing Luke of "suck[ing] love out of these people's minds like a fucking flea!" He then gets up and goes to his ex-girlfriend's house and gains entry to her flat through mind control
Lives in a big house and has apparently used her psychic talents to amass a harem. Along with KK, she intervenes when Alice is about to kill Connor for the second time. It's implied that she had a relationship with Jack before, and still loves him, despite their parting due to her promiscuity. She apparently notices when Luke takes control of Janine's mind, suggesting a level of clairvoyance
on her part.
Lives in a makeshift tower perched on top of Christ Church, Spitalfields
, overlooking Whitechapel. He acts as a watchman for the people of Whitechapel, protecting them from an unseen threat.
The residents of Whitechapel are very grateful for this and reward him with free food. It is indicated by Luke that they are not aware of the FreakAngels possible involvement in the flooding of London (and presumably the end of the world), and it is suggested that they would treat the FreakAngels differently if they knew. Kirk's role as watchman is seemingly a self-imposed penance for his involvement in the end of the world, a "way to salve a little guilt."
An as of yet unseen character
, Mark's presence is first felt when he sends Alice to kill his fellow FreakAngels. Alice uses a full name in reference to him, Mark Fox, when she is patrolling the street looking for the FreakAngels. Whether this is his real name or an assumed name has yet to be confirmed. He was involved in gunrunning with Alice's brothers, as well as running food and fuel coming in from Ireland. He was cut out of their dealings when it was discovered he was skimming some of the profits. Mark killed Alice's brothers in front of her and told her that he was a FreakAngel and the rest were in Whitechapel. He programmed Alice to kill the FreakAngels no matter what, and it takes KK and Sirkka to deprogram her. Mark was apparently expelled from the FreakAngels for practicing mass mind control, in an attempt to build an army for himself. He broke FreakAngels law when he did this,"you leave their minds alone unless there's a gun to your head."
Arkady is first seen in Old Spitalfields Market, dressed very eccentrically with her most distinguishing feature being her bald scalp. Her mind seems to have been affected due to an overdose when "[they] were fifteen." She's had issues with memory that appear to have been aggravated by attempts on her part to "see the future." These attempts seem to have worked somewhat, as a week previous to the events of the comic she "told three people when they were going to die. To the minute. With details." She also seems to have foretold KK would "shag someone from Lambeth" rousing anger within KK.
Caroline "Caz" is the first Black FreakAngel we are introduced to. She maintains the water purification plant, and designs much of Whitechapel's technology. Arkady is the only member of the FreakAngels who does not call her Caz.
FreakAngel who spends most of his time on his boat. He looks for supplies or other items that could be useful. He has feelings for Sirkka, and it is implied he once had a relationship with her, but got tired of her promiscuity.
Miki is the eleventh FreakAngel introduced, and the first Asian FreakAngel. She runs a medical clinic for the people of Whitechapel and appears to disagree with the methods of the other FreakAngels. After a violent encounter between the FreakAngels and outsiders (of which she doesn't play a part), she complains they're "just like [Mark]."
Alice is from Manchester and her brothers were gunrunners that were killed by Mark. First seen hunting for Mark and any of the other FreakAngels. After she confronts Connor and KK knocks her out, she awakens to Connor telling her that they were "going to fix things." She has been programmed by Mark to kill the FreakAngels and so she pulls a knife on Connor, threatening to cut his throat. KK and Sirkka intervene and they proceed to "flush out her brain," hopefully removing Mark's influence. It is decided that she will act as relief for Kirk in his lookout post. Alice tends to use the word "fook," "summat," and other stereotypically 'northern' words.
Luke's ex-girlfriend, she kicked him out of her flat and burned his clothes when he allegedly cheated on her. She refuses to grant him entry to the flat until he forcibly controls her mind.
The series is being collected into trade paperbacks
- Volume 1 (144 pages, November 2008, hardcover, ISBN 1592910572, softcover, ISBN 1592910564)
- FreakAngels, I: Talking to Warren Ellis, Newsarama, February 14, 2008
- FreakAngels, II: Talking to Paul Duffield, Newsarama, February 15, 2008
- The Business of Angels: William Christensen on FreakAngels, Newsarama, February 21, 2008
- Warren Ellis on FreakAngels, Webcomics and Doctor Who, Comic Mix, July 3, 2008
- On to Book 2: Warren Ellis on 'Freakangels', Newsarama, September 29, 2008