Tuesday, October 25, 2016
I, Vampire (2011)
I, Vampire #1 (November, 2011)
Writer - Joshua Hale Fialkov
Artist - Andrea Sorrentino
Colorist - Marcelo Maiolo
Letterer - Pat Brosseau
Associate Editor - Wil Moss
Editor - Matt Idelson
Cover Price: $2.99
Many people took the late-2011 launch of The New-52 as an opportunity to try out a whole bunch of new DC books. Others, like me, saw it as the opportunity to drop out. I went from buying more or less the entire DC line to... having only 3-4 on my pull-list.
More experimental titles like I, Vampire were ones I'd missed out on the first time around. I wound up finding the first few issues in the cheap-o bins over the past couple of years, figure Boo, Haunted Blog is as good a time as any to give it a peek.
We open in Boston... a man named Andrew is scaling a pile of bodies. When he reaches the top, he plunges an oaken stake into the vampire above. He expresses regret with having to do so, Andrew being a vampire himself. He'd much rather have locked the poor guy away, but alas... it's plungy plungy chop chop time.
From here, we (I'm guessing) jump back in time. Andrew is with a woman named Mary who expresses an interest in starting a revolution against... I dunno, non-vampires? She compares herself to a few revolutionary types from the past, and attempts to justify her murderous ways. Andrew attempts to reason with her... he believes there is a way in which everyone can live harmoniously. Mary ain't hearing it... in fact, she doesn't wanna hear anything from him. She lunges in for a kiss, and playfully flies off while teasing him to follow.
Back in the present, Andrew continues expecting the pile while recounting his conversation with Mary in his head. He comes across a young lady. He advises her that there was an attack... and she was unlucky. She is now a vampire. She doesn't believe him... the Sun is rising... and everyone knows Sunlight kills vampires. Andrew corrects her, and explains that Sunlight only cancels out their powers... it doesn't outright kill them. He promises her that her death will be quick.
Well, she ain't too keen on all that noise... and as such transforms into a wolf... which I didn't know vampires could do... and lunges for Andrew's throat. To which, Andy himself changes into a bestial form... and now holds the young lady by her throat.
Back in the past, Mary and Andrew sit in a cemetery... not too cliche, eh? She is still trying to convince him that revolution is the only way. We learn, through Andrew's rebuttal, that this series takes place in the DC Universe proper. He suggests that her "army" won't have much of a hope against a group of Green Lanterns and Wonder Woman.
Back in the present, the girl in the goozle begins to laugh. She says that "Mommy" told her that he (Andrew) was stupid. Suddenly hundreds of full-blood vampires swarm the scene. Andrew has no choice but to flee, and he does so by heading down a flight of stairs into the subway.
In the past, Andrew and Mary are now standing atop a building. She continues her coercion and turns to seduction to try and sway our man. She winds up shifting her face into one that was very familiar to Andrew... which he does not appreciate. From here, Mary goes full-Queen of Blood... and tells Andrew that she is only able to do so because he set her free.
Back in the subway, Andrew watches as the army of vampires slaughter dozens of innocents on a train-car. He pleads with them, but it is to no avail.
Andrew returns home, and goes to sleep. When he wakes up, he finds a rose and a note addressed to him next to him. It is Mary's declaration of war on the humans. She almost dares him to try and stop her... even saying that if he does, she'll only love him more.
Definitely not my usual cuppa'tea... but perfectly fine for what it is. I'm not sure if it's just me, but I felt absolutely no connection to these characters. I know, I know... this is just the first issue, and we're in the age of decompressed storytelling... but still, going by this chapter, I am not overly excited to see how it all turns out.
My experience with writer, Joshua Hale Fialkov is pretty limited. I know he wrote one of those stories for Marvel a few years back, when every few months they were teasing us with the end of the Ultimate line. I remember not digging that... I will say that I enjoyed this outing far more. I will say, the skips back and forth in time were a bit tough to follow on my initial read. Not sure if that's due to clunkiness in the storytelling... or in my head.
Andrea Sorrentino, current artist on one of my favorite Marvel ongoings, Old Man Logan is probably the perfect choice for a book like this. Love it on Logan... love it here! I've said it before when reading/reviewing Old Man Logan for Weird Science's Marvel Mondays, I don't know how Sorrentino can turn in such amazing work and still maintain a regular monthly (sometimes bi-weekly) schedule. Truly wonderful work... Marcelo Maiolo, who also works on Logan, provides the colors... and they are fantastic.
Although this didn't really engage me, I must admit that there is likely a solid, if not great story here for folks more into the vampire scene or mythology. I cannot outright un-recommend it... I will suggest, however, if you are interested in this series... maybe look for the trade paperback rather than the single issues. This read in a flash... I'd have to assume getting the whole thing in one gulp would be far more satisfying.