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Friday, November 26, 2010

My Week in Comics: Vampirella #1

Ever since I saw Vampirella, I really wanted to get to know her. A sexy vampire alien in a skimpy red thong? What's not to love? Fortunately Dynamite Entertainment gave Vampirella here a new lease on life with Vampirella #1, introducing her to a new generation of fang fans hopped up to the eyeballs on Twilight. But make no mistake...this is no sparkly vampire we're talking about here. She'll rip your throat off and feed it to you. That's how she rolls.

In this issue, Vampirella stalks the night, contemplating on the wickedness of humans while wearing sunglasses in the evening. She's in search of somebody important, and not even a late-night mugging is going to stop her from fulfilling her mission!

You know, there's a good comic in here somewhere, buried underneath the stilted dialogue. Writer Eric Trautmann doesn't seem to know how people normally talk, or maybe he lives in a part of town where two-bit muggers say, "Best be on your way, yeah?". He shines with Vampi's internal monologue, though, showing us her disgust with the evils that humans are capable of while cares enough to save us despite of it.

There are a few gems here and there, and Vampi shines in all of them. This is one badass vampiress, not afraid to break her nails while she breaks jaws and stakes hearts. Wagner Reis' art keeps up with the action well enough, all gritty and bloody just the way Vampirella likes it. I do have an issue with the numerous people flying through the air backwards for no apparent reason. They seem to have been punched or clobbered, but no evidence is shown of it happening.

I'd be remiss not to mention Vampirella's new costume. The covers show her wearing her iconic white-collared red thong suit and black boots. But inside she's gone the way of Wonder Woman, opting for slacks, a red shirt and a trench coat. A textbook bait-and-switch? Who knows. So far I'm okay with her street clothes, but I hope she goes back to her traditional costume down the line.

I really wanted this comic to succeed and give Red Sonja a run for her money, but so-so writing and art let this issue down. This could have been Vampirella's big break, and she should have burst into the comic scene fangs bared. As it is, it's pretty forgettable. This is a 2.5 out of 5.

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