Titan Comics 2017
Written by Kim Newman
Illustrated by Paul McCaffrey
Ink Assists by Bambos Georgiou
Coloured by Kevin Enhart
Lettered by Simon Bowland
Kate Reed, vampire journalist and free-thinker, has taken a seat on the revolutionary Council of the Seven Days, adopting the codename Wednesday. Fah Lo Suee, The Daughter of the Dragon - an underworld figure, has warned Kate that the anarchist group harbors a traitor in its midst. Meanwhile, Dracula’s Prime Minister, Lord Ruthven, has appointed Penelope Churchward, a friend of Kate Reed and a vampire social climber, to chair the Jubilee Committee. Whilst on the streets of London, the Grey Men, Dracula’s dreaded secret police force, have been charged with quashing all resistance to his regime. In response, they staged a raid upon Verloc’s Bookshop in Soho, the headquarters of the Council of the Seven Days and surprised the co-conspirators in the midst of a confab.
I’m not really surprised by the fact that there is a lot to like here but I am slightly surprised by what I don’t like. This Walrus man for instance is much too Through The Looking Glass for my tastes in this Vampire setting. I mean that Sunday is kind of out there is disturbing but in a good way however i’m really not understanding how this Walrus Man is in the picture? Okay is he creepy, yeah especially with those nails but is he some vampire hybrid? If so how is he sentient? Regardless he’s leading the charge in trying to bust everyone at the meeting which doesn’t go according to plan and i’m okay with that.
I do like the way things are moving here with a lot of subterfuge and open hostility. Though i’m having a hard time figuring Paul out, he’s very protective of Kate and yet I can’t recall seeing a set of fangs on him so it’s funny to see him try to protect or shield her from things when he’s the one seemingly always in mortal danger.
Visually this series is full of moments that you really need to pay attention to. I mean that too because there are clues to what’s happening here in the artwork that have no mention in the wording. I adore that too because it becomes a truly interactive experience. Not to mention that it’s nice to see this kind of creativity and imagination on display. Plus the use of page layouts through their angles, perspective and use of backgrounds really make this so much more fun.
Also that Kim makes this world so incredibly interesting with all the different types of folk running around should be commended. With classic ruffians, foreign warlords and the vampires themselves up against a kind or resistance or rebellion make for a semi-crowded stage and yet the way it all comes across is beautifully done.
By the by that we’re getting Dracula as played by Nosferatu well that alone should be a gold star moment, well that and the fact that he’s literally played by Max Schreck only he should be in black and white instead of this green hue.
Fun, innovative and an interesting blend of horror and comedy this is something that made me go out and buy the Anno Dracula novel and that’s saying a lot!