Review: American Vampire 1976 #4
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Scott Snyder
Artist: Rafael Albuquerque
Colorist: Dave McCaig
Letterer: Steve Wands
Reviewer: Tony Farina
Key clues and coordinates in hand, the rogue branches of the VMS reunite for a final mission that could unlock the secret to taking down The Beast. On their journey to find answers about a pact between America’s Founding Fathers and an ancient counsel of monsters, the whole team—Skinner, Pearl, Book, Felicia, Travis, and Cal—realize they’ll need to confront their own complicated personal pasts before they have a hope of correcting world history. Back at the White House, the Gray Trader’s secret associate, Bixby, wrestles with his allegiance to evil and makes a final decision about the president’s fate.
American Vampire 1976 #4 is by far, the best issue of the series so far. Snyder has done enough to get us totally invested in this version of Skinner. There was not one flashback or an asterisk reminding us of what came before. This is the story. We are in it now. The hidden truth of America is coming to light as we learn about some more monsters. It is so fun.
Once again, the hero of this series is Rafael Albuquerque. Colorist Dan McCaig gets the silver medal here though. It is such a dirty book. The way they make me feel like I am in the time period is spot on. My earliest memories are of the mid-seventies and this is just what I remembered. Muted colors everywhere coupled with terrible fashion.
American Vampire 1976 #4 is slow. Personally, I don’t mind that, but the action has been brought to almost a standstill, while the team flies across the country. If you are looking for lots of biting and killing, this book is not for you. There is a LOT of exposition. I mean a lot. It is necessary, but it makes me wonder if maybe this series should have been a year long instead of just six months. That way, the story could unfurl at more realistic pace.
American Vampire 1976 #4 ends with another cliffhanger. Snyder is leaning into the pulpiness of the subject matter. There are times in most mini-series, usually in issue 4, where the story stalls. While there is a lot of sitting around in this issue, that works out. The plot has been moved forward while our characters wait. Excellent writing. This is what we expect from Snyder though.