"Vampirella #100" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by Dynamite Entertainment
Written by Tim Seeley, Eric Trautmann, Brandon Jerwa, Mark Rahner, and Nancy Collins
Illustrated by Jim Terry, Dave Acosta, Gabriel Mayorga, Javier Garcia-Miranda, and Francesco Manna
2014, 50 Pages, $7.99
Comic released on January 14th, 2015
Vampirella looks pretty good for a 45-year-old vampire superhero from Drakulon. Dynamite Entertainment recently relaunched her comic, but didn't forget how many books have been published since it picked up the license in 2010. To celebrate the 100th issue of Vampirella, Dynamite put together this oversized anthology book with a number of past, present, and future Vampi creators to share their own take on the character.
Vampirella #100 gives a good primer on her long and often complicated history. You get a little bit of everything in this book. Writer Tim Seeley and artist Jim Terry kick it off with "Vampirella of Drakulon" depicting the character fighting off scavenging vampires as coffins filled with humans crash land on the alien planet's surface. She's trying to protect these people, but that's tough to do when they're filled with sweet, sweet blood. This is presented in black and white and harkens back to the original origins of Vampirella. It has a classic tone with a bit of a modern touch to it. This is also rather text heavy, with an omniscient narrator over-explaining everything that's going on, like it's a prose story instead of a comic.
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Terry's design for Drakulon is great and really drives home this dystopian feeling on this alien world. It's nothing like Earth. This is a desolate landscape with glimpses of a sprawling metropolis in the distance. Vampirella herself finally has a pair of pants, which is a big improvement to the strings of ribbon that she usually sports. Her outfit is still skimpy, but it's more Barbarella or sexy space adventurer than outright swimsuit.
There are five stories altogether and there's not a bad one in the bunch. Each is pretty solid and gives you a good idea of how Vampirella can be a total badass. Although she's drop dead gorgeous, she doesn't use her looks to get by. Instead, she often outsmarts her foes like in "The Vodnik" by writer Eric Trautmann and artist Dave Acosta or uses good old fashioned detective work like in "A Closer Walk with Thee" from writer Brandon Jerwa and artist Gabriel Mayorga. When all else fails, she's not above beating the crap out of some monsters, as seen in "A Cry in the Jungle" by writer Nancy Collins and artist Francesco Manna.
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That last one takes the cake for the scariest story in this issue, as it features a sub-species of vampire called the Tianak. They're babies. Yes, that's right. Vampire babies. They work as a group, so there's a little horde of them and they jump out and just start biting. It's creepy and just plain terrifying, seeing them pop out of the trees and lunge at their prey.
Although this comic is celebrating 100 issues of Vampirella, it's pretty new-reader friendly. Anyone can jump in and get a good introduction to the character and what she's about. She's a smart, sassy vampire hunting vampire that may be from another planet. What more do you really need?