Story: Jordie Bellaire
Art: Drew Moss
Colors: Rebecca Nalty
Letterer: Becca Carey
What They Say:
NEW STORY ARC! Perfect jumping-on point! What in the HELL are Vampirella and Red Sonja doing in 1920s New York City, WHAT did they do to piss off gangsters, and WHERE are they going next, IF they even SURVIVE!?!?!
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
As the series moves onto its next arc, Jordie Bellaire has the difficult job of transitioning to it and laying the foundation for it. Some of it doesn’t work so well this time around though there’s more than enough to make it enjoyable. But the transition element isn’t as smooth as it could be and there’s some weird uncertainties in the mix here as well. Thankfully, Dress Moss and Rebecca Nalty deliver a beautiful looking book with so many great pages, handling the darker scenes well while the brighter and more vivid moments really leap off the page. And we get our two leads in 20s gangster outfits complete with hats, so there’s a whole lot to love right from that alone.
After the time spent in the past and the two of them very far apart, which meant Vampirella waited for several decades in a monastery for Sonja to catch up to her, the two are at least together and roughing up bad guys here in the 20s as a pair of gangsters try to give them grief. A couple of punches later and swiping their outfits, our leads are now taking on their role and trying to figure out what’s going on that has them here. There’s some fun catching up that they do, a little inside joke material, and then the reveal of a talking rat when Sonja tries to consume him in a single gulp since she’s not eaten in what feels like forever. The rat factors in later more, revealing itself to be Marzanna, but that’s only after a couple of other reveals surface.
What the pair discover is a meeting that the gangsters were setup for so they follow through on that, which ends up being a meeting with crooked cops. They’ve got a deal with someone named Baby Blue that is working a distillery of sorts hidden away which the cops protect and the gangsters were selling for. It’s a perfect racket, but one that uses kids in order to make the material. And they’re all mindcontrolled by a vampire that looks absolutely delighted that Vampirella is here and what looks like excitement over the generation stone as well. That’s less clear but what we get is that the two are separated quickly and Sonja finds herself now partnered with a literal rat and has to save her friend. Which makes it easy to understand why she preferred going up against dragons more than anything else.
While the new arc doesn’t feel quite as settled as I would have liked in putting us into a good place to start, it does offer up a lot to like. The setting is an interesting one that feels new, the costuming is obviously a whole lot of fun for our leads, and the nods toward the greater story are there but likely read better when read in full as opposed to monthly installments. I love the way the book looks with so many distinctive moments and striking panels and I like a lot of what Bellaire offers here to work with. It’s just that the story side feels like it’s missing an extra page or two in order to seal the deal and really put us into this place with its intent.
Age Rating: 15+
Released By: Dynamite Entertainment
Release Date: March 11th, 2020