Story: Nancy A. Collins
Art: Dave Acosta
What They Say:
A team-up set up by SWORDS OF SORROW’s Gail Simone, featuring the writer that she hand-picked: Nancy A. Collins! Now that the threat of the Pacifica Slasher/Anaheim Ripper has been handled, Vampirella must figure out how to survive in a world without monsters-including where to find her next meal. Meanwhile, Jennifer Blood turns her attention to Los Muertos, a deadly narco gang with a fondness for turning the faces of those who cross them into sporting goods. However, her plans for the gang’s leaders are derailed by yet another Jennifer Blood copycat-one who bears a disturbing resemblance to a certain voluptuous vampire.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The opening salvo of this miniseries is one that did the job it needed to in setting the stage for bringing together Vampirella and Jennifer Blood and establishing that it takes place in Blood’s world. Though we got a lot more of her background that I think we needed, the two were well established as was Vampirella being in a world that’s very similar but also very different from her own. The blending of the two worked well as they ended up on opposite sides for a bit, but mostly they were trying to keep from seeming too crazy to the other while dealing with their individual jobs du jour. With some solid artwork that continues well into this installment, the two definitely made for an engaging pairing overall, even though they spend most of their time apart.
With this issue, it’s about moving the narrative forward a little, but mostly focusing on the characters and the paths they’re taking, which do intersect again in an amusing way. Having split off after what happened before, Vampirella is trying to figure it all out and catch some shut eye and recuperation time as events have taken their toll, but we also see her expanding out of the cemetery in order to hunt up some nourishment as it’s been some time since she’s fed. And with no blood bank here, she has to get her hands dirty again. This has her going after some gang types along the way, or so it seems, but also just doing some random pickup along the street in order to suck the victim dry. It’s hard to tell just how far she’s going, since the time with the gang member is something that feels a bit out of place.
For Jennifer Blood, she’s just glad to be done with the Ripper and move on to the next target, which is the gang member Cavalera that we’re lead to believe Vampirella is after as well. Seeing a bit more of how Blood operates is decent, as we get into her mind just as much as Vampirella’s, but I admit that I don’t find her terribly compelling. It’s standard street smarts kind of hunting that goes on and we get a look at the narcotics/criminal nature of her city a bit, and it works well to show her in action alone for a bit before things just get chaotic. There’s some decent stuff as she realizes she’s being set up, again thinking it’s Vampirella, and you can see the pieces being set into motion to cause the two of them to really go at each other once again. It’s a familiar refrain, but one that’s executed well here, especially as we see how each of them views the other.
Though not exactly lighting up the world, the second installment of this pairing is a fun little romp into the seedier side of things. These characters aren’t the heroes of the light in a way, operating out front and in a public way, so we get a lot of alone time with each of them as they deal with their respective problems. We do touch a bit on the bigger picture with the swords from time to time, first with Vampirella’s mini dream sequence and also with Jennifer’s realizing that how she acquired her own sword would make her sound crazy, but right now it’s more about the two women working the world and doing what they need to in order to survive. Vampirella’s story clicks for me better as I’m more familiar with her and how she operates, but I also like the clear simplicity of Jennifer’s actions and the way she operates. It’s a solid installment that has me curious to see if there’s an expected twist next issue.
Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Dynamite Entertainment
Release Date: June 10th, 2015