Review: DC Vs. Vampires #1
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writers: Matthew Rosenberg and James Tynion IV
Colors: Otto Schmidt
Letters: Tom Napolitano
Artist: Otto Schmidt
Reviewed by: Carl Bryan
DC Vs. Vampires #1 – The Justice League has long protected Earth from all manner of foreign and alien invaders over the years, always keeping a vigilant eye to the skies for the next threat. But what if the threat was already walking the Earth…hiding in plain sight…watching…waiting for their moment to strike…
In the tradition of DCeased comes a terrifying new series from the twisted minds of James Tynion IV (Nice House on the Lake; Something is Killing the Children), Matthew Rosenberg (The Joker Presents: A Puzzlebox; 4 Kids Walk Into A Bank; Hawkeye), and Otto Schmidt that will tear the Justice League apart in their war with the undead!
Just in time for Halloween, and with the success of the series that saw the heroes of the DC Universe battling against the threat of zombies in DCeased, comes DC vs Vampires, a series that looks to pit the Justice League and company against legions of the undead.
In a story such as this, no hero is safe, which is evident from some of the ghastly deaths we see in the debut issue. However, if you were craving more of the DCeased world with a twist, DC vs Vampires is going to be your cup of … well, what is it that vampires drink?
To start, the writing team of Tynion and Rosenberg really have a fantastic understanding of these characters, even when it comes to some of them being secret vampires and how that fact would ultimately affect their normally-kind nature. S
Setting Andrew Bennett up as the main protagonist is an inspired choice, considering he’s one of the most popular bloodsuckers in DC Comics, thanks to his New 52 book. Whereas DCeased saw the zombie apocalypse ripping into the DC Universe with no subtlety to speak of, the idea behind this battle against the undead sees the vampires rising in secret and lending a sense of paranoia to the reader, especially when a major hero is revealed to be a member of the undead.
There are some truly fantastic story beats here, especially with Tynion and Rosenberg’s take on Lex Luthor, who falls to the vampire scourge alongside the ranks of the Legion of Doom but never loses his elevated sense of pride in the process. For fans looking to see some of the biggest heroes suffer unspeakable demise, there certainly is a major one here, though you’d certainly need to argue about said character’s current relevance in the scheme of things in the DCU.
Otto Schmidt draws an interesting book in that it appears to be “sun-washed” in parts and the gore is not what one would expect having read DCeased. In fact, there are a few scenes that a Todd McFarlane or Greg Capullo could teach Schmidt how to really handle the gore of a horror comic as they do in Spawn.
I am not a big fan of the artistic depictions of a “blonde” Hal Jordan or a Vulcan-like Zan from the Wonder Twins. Where’s Jana for goodness sake?
If DC wanted to have a horror book, then this should have been published under the Black Label banner.
The premise is great and it’s going to be a strong 12 issue run. However, the apocalyptic cover art is not what you’ll find inside the book. Don’t let it dampen your appetite for a good spooky story, though, as it is Matthew Rosenberg and James Tynion IV writing after all, and these guys a great Batman tale… so give this one a try!