"Blood Brothers #2" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by Dark Horse Comics
Written by Mike Gagerman and Andrew Waller
Illustrated by Evan Shaner
$3.99, 24 Pages
Comic Released on August 21st, 2013
The phrase “Bros before Hoes” could easily be applied to Blood Brothers from Dark Horse Comics, however, that lame saying would not do the comic justice. Nick and Tree are vampire BFFs that have been hanging out for thousands of years. They've seen everyone from Genghis Khan to ‘70s death metal. Now they're working as bail bondsmen in Las Vegas, but Nick wants to hang it all up and turn human again because he's head over heels in love with Jill. Unfortunately for him, a group of bad dudes have kidnapped his lady, so now the pair of them are out for revenge.
Writers Mike Gagerman and Andrew Waller bring an instant familiarity to the characters. In a way, it's like I've been following the adventures of Nick and Tree for ages. Both of them resemble people that you've probably met throughout your life, for better or worse. Nick is the standup guy while Tree is the laid-back cool one. At the end of the day though, you'd want both of them by your side if you were in trouble.
Blood Brothers has a decent story to begin with, but what amplifies the comic is the humor. You know how Family Guy does those throwaway gags when they make a reference to a bizarre movie that 12 people have seen and then they cut to a quick scene showing you the “joke”? Blood Brothers does that, but in a successful way. It works far better in a comic because it's a quick cutaway panel and then you're back to the action. For example, early on Tree is giving Nick shit about what he plans to do with Jill in the future. He says “What happens when Jill's dad finds out about you? No way he gives you his blessing.” The next panel shows a wedding with Jill's father leaping across the church with a stake in his hand while Tree stands as the best man saying “Toldja Pops wouldn't be cool about it.” It's a perfect little joke that complements the dialogue without distracting from the pacing.
This issue (and the previous one) has several of these scenes. It's great to see what kind of crazy stuff that these two vampires have gotten into over the years. Gagerman and Waller don't hold anything back. I wouldn't be surprised if Nick and Tree show up in Nazi Germany at this point. It would probably be hilarious too.
There's an undercurrent of truly evil deeds going on right under our heroes' noses. The plan from the “Big Bad” is starting to be revealed with this issue and it could have some dire consequences for not only Nick and Tree but the rest of the world as well. Fortunately, these guys know a thing or two about kicking ass. Unfortunately, that also includes getting their asses kicked.
Evan Shaner's art reminds me a bit of Karl Moline which is certainly not a bad thing. He balances the comedy with drama throughout the issue. This could have easily been a slapstick comic with cartoonish pencils, but it's much more than that. Shaner also provides some great art direction, creating exciting action scenes and bringing things in close when a more serious note is needed.
Blood Brothers is a fun comic about vampires. Gagerman and Waller could have parodied countless bloodsucking stories out there. Instead they've created an original, humorous tale about two buddies that have been partying non-stop for years. They just happen to need blood to survive. It should come as no surprise that this comic has already been optioned for a big screen release. This is the kind of stuff I hope to see more of.