My first impression reading this issue was that the artwork is improving. It was pretty stellar to begin with, and it just keeps getting better.
I appreciate how Buffy dealt with the Satsu situation; didn't invalidate her feelings, actually thanked her for them, and then went on to discuss her “newfound” angst – loving the Buffinator is a dangerous business. And the big exclamation point to the point she was making is Twilight, our Big Bad, showing up to dish out some hurting. That sentence had a lot of points in it, and none of them were a stake. But there were stakes in the issue. The whole conversation amidst vampire fighting was very awesomely done. There was also a big pointy church steeple... I'm digressing.
I have a... maybe not a concern, but an observation: Twilight made a comment in an earlier issue [can't remember which one just now, I intend to reread these all tonight, I'll perhaps edit this then. Although I sincerely doubt there's anyone reading this that will care that much about the specificity] that he wants to rid the world of this pesky magic stuff. Yet he flies. This reminds me of the Initiative from Serenity – fighting to create a world he truly and wholeheartedly believes is better, despite that world not leaving a place for him in it. If this is the case, well, it certainly says something interesting about Twilight's psychological profile.
The near-reveal of Twilight is what cinched this season for me. Up until now, I've been enjoying the series, the dialogue in particular [the dialogue was the thing I loved most about the show], but if asked, I wouldn't have been able to say I was terribly invested in the series. And then suddenly, there was Twilight, about to take of his mask, only he didn't. And it was funny, but it was frustrating. I hadn't realised until that very moment that I was even anticipating a big reveal.
I'm okay with not knowing yet. I can let the anticipation stew for a while longer.
I've read on some forums speculation as to Twilight's identity. He's masked, which lends to the hypothesis he is someone that people will recognise from the series, or he is someone that is already acting in another capacity within the comics. Some have speculated that Twilight is Spike or Angel; others have disproven that idea by pointing out that in Angel: After the Fall, they [along with everyone else in L.A.] is in Hell. Or Hell locked everyone in L.A. Whichever.
As far as I'm concerned that's not the reason that Spike and Angel [and even Riley, really] can't be Twilight. It's been pointed out several times throughout both Buffy and Angel that time moves differently in other dimensions. Nearly an entire human lifespan in a Hell dimension in the episode Anne was merely a day on Earth. It's entirely feasible that the Angel crew is back on earth by the time the events of the Buffy series take place. It's also entirely feasible that Angel and Co. are in a dimension that time moves faster in, and when they get out of Hell, they could be a couple hundred years in the future. That line of speculation makes me really want to read Fray....
Anyway. The reason I don't dig the whole Twilight is one of Buffy's exes idea is that I can't believe that she wouldn't recognise them. Mask aside, and even voice modification [if that's what the fancy font Twilight's words are written in means] can't account for the fact that Buffy would pick up on speech patterns. Or at the very least, the way he throws a punch. She has fought or sparred with all of them. At the very least, she would pick up a familiar vibe. It may have been a long time since she saw any of them [and as far as she knows, Spike is dead], but I would have a ridiculously hard time believing that she wouldn't recognise their countenance.
I do have some ideas as to who Twilight is, but I'm keeping them to myself until there is more information to go on.
I was going to write about Angel: After the Fall #3 here. But I think the Buffy talk was long enough. I'll write about Angel later this week.
My geekdom knows no bounds.
The image was taken from some site or another that you can order the comic from.