Angels of Death Warhammer TV Review (Episode 1 “Blood and Duty”)

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Warhammer TV is part of the Warhammer+ subscription service from Games Workshop. With Warhammer+, subscribers enjoy benefits like premium app access, Warhammer hobby shows, like miniature painting masterclasses and thrilling battle report, as well as original Warhammer animations. There is also a vault packed full of lore from classic Warhammer publications. 

In this article, Jared Emanuel, reviews the first episode of a Warhammer TV exclusive “Angels of Death”. He shares in thoughts, insights, and general excitement for the new stories and lore that make Warhammer such an amazing game world to play in and experience.

RELATED: WARHAMMER+ SUBSCRIPTION SERVICE REVIEW (QUICK IMPRESSIONS)


What is Warhammer TV? My Thoughts About the Streaming Service of Warhammer+

Warhammer TV is exactly like a streaming service like Netflix. The exception of course is that all the shows are “originals” from Games Workshop. It targets you, the Warhammer enthusiast, the guy who loves the Black Library lore and scours the internet for fanfiction and YouTube videos for more fiction in this grimdark universe.

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Would I subscribe to Warhammer+ if it only provided Warhammer TV? Probably not. But, standalone, Warhammer TV adds tremendous value to the service that I’m totally invested in the idea of watching when I’m waiting somewhere, e.g., airport, on train or bus ride, or simply sitting outside with a cup of coffee and want a hit of some cool wargaming shows.

At the moment, there are only a few episodes of certain areas of the game. But given how large the Warhammer history, lore, and communities input has been over the years, I expect great things from Warhammer TV.

Continue reading to read my thoughts and feel my excitement of my first watching of Warhammer TV.


One of My Dreams Has Come True! Now What?

Twenty years ago I got into Warhammer 40k. I was initiated into this hobby under the rules of 3rd edition. My first army was Blood Angel Space Marines. For a decade I hoped and prayed (to the mighty Sanguinius and Emperor on Terra) that some television network would see the potential for awesome stories that we as fans of the hobby saw.

The next decade was spent despairing that it won’t happen. The ten year old inside is bursting with excitement to watch this series. I can almost feel my jaw muscles ache from all the smiling.

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After watching the first episode on Warhammer + or was it MyWahammer…..or maybe it was Warhammer TV? My eyes finally got to see an officially produced 40k television show, about my favorite Space Marine Chapter no less!

The quality of the setting and character design meets the standard of what we fans have come to expect from the 30 year old franchise: It is grim, dark, cold, intense, moody, gothic, visceral.

The human drama that I have seen so far makes sense for a setting as draconian, bureaucratic, oppressive, and militarized as the Imperium of Man is.

Though the Space Marines, Astra Militarum, Planetary Defense Forces, Adeptus Mechanicus, and Navis Imperialis all serve the same masters, the audience can easily sense that each organization has their own agenda and suspicions against their peers.

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Even among the ranks of Blood Angels there is a festering tension among them as they struggle to fulfill their competing obligations and master their own personal struggles with the Black Rage.

Summary and Spoiler: Angels of Death Episode 1: “Blood and Duty”

>Spoiler alert

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A lone Blood Angel in Terminator Armor, Captain Orpheus, stands against hordes of Tyranids. He is badly injured, missing an arm, but he shoots the encroaching horde until his Storm Bolter overheats.

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He discards his weapon and draws his bright and energetic Power Sword. He collides with a rush of chitinous bodies….or perhaps they consume him… Fade to opening credits! WOW!

I have long desired this moment! Long imagined it while playing dozens of battles of Warhammer 40k and Space Hulk! It’s finally here! Finally in front of me eyeballs!

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Cut to Brother Kazarion in the chapel within the Strike Cruiser Sword of Baal. He prays before the statue of his Primarch and founder of the Blood Angels: Sanguinus. His armor still bears the honor he earned in the Inquisitorial Alien Hunting Chapter: The Death Watch. It is an honor few Space Marines achieve.

As he prays he clearly is showing signs of the Black Rage, a mysterious ailment that the Blood Angels suffer from. His meditations are interrupted by Chaplain Rafael.

The tension between them is thick. It is the duty of the Chaplain to uncover any trace of the Black Rage within his charges. One evasive conversation later and we are left to wonder if Chaplain Rafael suspects that Kazarion is sick, or if he still thinks that his Battle Brother is reacclimating back into the Blood Angels after his tour with the Death Watch.

Transition to the exterior of the Sword of Baal as it docks with the Space Station high above a storm wracked planet. Techno organ music blasts, as we pan to Ship-Mistress Livia Sulkan who anxiously waits for news of Captain Orpheus.

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Yes, these guys….

An intense exchange with local Planetary Defense Forces gets her nowhere. Demands are made, excuses offered, threats uttered. She can’t wait to leave this system, because something is wrong. We can all sense it. But she must wait until the dimensional Warp Storms also break.

Sgt. Ancaeus strides into the geneseed vaults of his Chapter. A former initiate into the Chapter’s Apothecary Priesthood he feels an intense obligation towards protecting the geneseed, it is the past and future of the Chapter.

His musings are interrupted by TechMarine Hadreal. They have a conversation about their respective obligations and each flatter each other. Conversation turns to Brother Kazarion. Sgt Ancaeus seems to be struggling with Kazarion’s return from the Elite Death Watch, seemingly questioning his loyalties. More exposition happens. A sleeping dreadnaught appears!!

Navigator Tabor requests urgent communication with Ship Mistress Sulkan, he has sensed a way through the Warp Storms. A conference is called. The 11 Blood Angels on board are summoned to debate their next course of action.

There time is limited, they can not afford to wait for Captain Orpheo any longer. Sgt. Arcaeus wants to return with the geneseed to Baal, Kazarion protests, arguing their first duty is to Captiain Orpheo. Debate is settled when the storm on the planet below breaks as suddenly as Storm in the Warp.

Orpheo’s distress beacon blares out over the bridge. They have definite lead to search. The Blood Angels are ordered to their drop pods! END OF EPISODE!

>End of Spoilers


Conclusions

In conclusion, I feel 10 years old again! Warhammer TV is bringing back the nostalgia. Though, admittedly I would have probably wished for more explosions and hacking and slashing than what this first episode provided.

But, the adult, the mature self appreciates the layers of tension and exposition provided for what is going to be an intense and grim dark science fiction epic! BY THE BLOOD OF SANGUINIUS!

If you haven’t dug into the offerings of Warhammer+, I’m 100% confident as a tabletop gamer of the year 40,000 kind, that you will love what is happening with Warhammer TV. My expectations have been exceeded, and I am excited to see the other content and many other new episodes!

About the Author

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Jared Emanuel

Jared Emanuel is a hobby enthusiast that loves high fantasy, science fiction, and everything in between.

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