Friday, June 1, 2012

American Vampire #27

Written by Scott Snyder
Art by Riccardo Burchielli

This is a strange issue of American Vampire.  Don't get me wrong - it's still very well-written, but I just found that the parts didn't add up the way they usually do.

To begin with, the cover does not, on any level, have anything to do with what happens in the comic.  This issue finishes off the two-part story featuring Calvin Hobbes, in conflict with a small group of werewolves in Alabama.  Pearl, the comic's usual main character only appears at the very end of the issue, and she's neither in the rain nor standing near someone with a gun.

Another thing that threw me is Riccardo Burchielli's artwork.  I've enjoyed his work on DMZ and Northlanders, but with this issue, his style has changed quite a bit, and I don't really like it.  It felt like he was trying to fit his approach with the usual look that Rafael Albuquerque has established for this series, and then mix it with the way that Roger Cruz drew the last issue.  It didn't really work.

The other thing that threw me is a rather random and unexplained flashback where Calvin discovers his wife (I assume) naked in his backyard hanging laundry and covered in vampire bites.  I vaguely remember that vamps had killed his family (I think his backstory was explained in the WWII arc where he debuted), but this scene is not given enough context for it to be very effective.

What I did like about this comic was the way in which Snyder examines other manifestations of 'vampires', which include the aforementioned werewolves and zombies.  Much like Chris Roberson has in his iZombie, Snyder attempts to work a more unified theory for monsters into his writing, and while it's still 'comic book science', I appreciate the consistency.

I am very much looking forward to the next issue, which promises the return of Pearl, Henry, and most importantly, Rafael Albuquerque.

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