Scott Snyder has enjoyed a successful on the Batman title since the relaunch of the DC universe. His storytelling and world building within the comic has seen old fans and new embrace the series and his story arcs featuring the Court of Owls and the Joker have been very positively received. Before Scott started writing Batman he created the series American Vampire along with Rafa Alberquerque for Vertigo (DC). I had read Snyder’s run on Detective Comics with Jock and Francesco Francavilla which I had enjoyed immensely and was directed to American Vampire by a tweet that Scott Snyder himself had sent out, recapping the previous issues before the fourth part of the ‘Death Race’ story came out. I bought the first two volumes of American Vampire shortly afterwards and it has fast become one of my favourite comics. I now have the first four volumes and am eagerly awaiting the next! I would like to shine some light on this series so that more people can give it a look. Trust me, it’s well worth it! Let me tell you why:
The vampires featured in the series range from the traditional European vampires ala Dracula and have the same weaknesses to wood and garlic as you would expect. However, this series also expands on the mythology and brings in new ‘strains’ of vampires including some that resemble werewolves and the titular American Vampire. Where the European vampire has the associated bat like features, the American vampire has fangs that look like a snakes with thin, long teeth that deliver a slow acting numbing poison. The bottom jaw also juts out away from the mouth and the finger become long talons. American vampires also survive in sunlight and are weakest when the moon is out. As a massive bonus for Twilight haters, these vampires are vicious and have no reservations when it comes to killing people and other vampires.
American Vampire has a wealth of interesting characters that all have their own story to unfold within the pages. There’s Skinner Sweet, the outlaw vampire from the old west, Pearl Jones, the actress who is turned into the second American vampire by Sweet to save her from European vampires, Henry Preston, her human husband who sticks with Pearl after her turn and Hobbes, a high ranking member of the Vassals of the Morning Star who are dedicated to killing every vampire regardless of species, situation or affiliation. These are just the main characters as in each arc new characters are introduced, some of which reappear and some feature in the spin off series, Lord of Nightmares and Survival of the Fittest. This is certainly one of the strengths of this series, the characters and their stories.
This article was first posted on December 20, 2012