Wednesday, April 21, 2010

American Vampire #1

When one gets new comics every Wednesday you are going to have some Wednesdays when only a book or two come are purchased; however, there will be new comic days when every other book you read comes out. At $3.99 a book the busy days add up. Today...was a busy day.

Sure there were some exciting titles released this weekly nerd holiday such as the new Amazing Spider-Man, the return of Thanos in Guardians of the Galaxy, and the new Doomwar (why am I still reading this book), but there were also some back issues which my shop picked up for me. If the new titles and the 6 back issues I picked up were not enough, I also grabbed a Warren Ellis thoughts turned words book. It has no pictures, and I assume its filled with ideas towards comic and story creation, but honestly his name alone sold that book to me.

Lastly I noticed American Vampire #2. Not wanting to start the series out by missing the first issue I was able to grab the last American Vampire #1 in the store, and after some convincing by Mike, the Comic Bug owner, I picked up the new American Vampire, as well. This Wednesday cost me $50. I have a problem.

American Vampire #1 includes a story by Scott Snyder and a story by Stephen King. Snyder sets up a story about a young entry level actress in 1925 whom is a hard worker which needs a break. She ends up getting one in the form of an invitation to a Hollywood producer's party. But after a mysterious cowboy looking bum warns the actress not to go, she finds out her party invite was for different reasons then she hoped.

Stephen King's tale takes place in 1880 on a Colorado railroad. The same mysterious cowboy looking fellow is being transported by train to his final destination: the end of a noosed rope. The cowboy outlaw momentarily breaks free, but is seemingly killed by an old business man who has a fanged secret. This story lets the reader in on who may be the main character in the American Vampire comic books. Both Snyder and King write sharp dialog which progresses the story and adds to the building of what seems to be followed characters.

Both stories are presented beautifully by artist Rafael Albuquerque. He captures the essence of each time period through the character designs (clothes, haircuts, etc) and produces visuals that capture the emotions and tone of every moment flawlessly. Some books will have two different artists draw separate inter issue stories, but American Vampire #1 wisely chooses not to do that. The stories and joint characters maintain a strong presence and are able to hold the feel you grow accustom to after first seeing them. Also, Dave McCaig, on coloring duty, separates the stories time periods through his various pallets with great skill. The second tale has more of a western feel so we see more tans and oranges to bring out the western-desert feel, while the first arch has some more greys in the city scenes with bright lighting during the Hollywood scenes.

Today, American Vampire #1 may be the comic of the day, but tomorrow American Vampire #2 will be. It took me quite a bit of restraint to write this post before picking up the next issue right away. I spoil you (the one or two readers who read these posts).


Scott Snyder said...

Thanks Dom! Excited to hear what you think of 2!

Anonymous said...

Now I want to go get the American Vampire series...looks cool.

And also, you have a problem. But we all knew that already.