Vault Comics 2020
Created by Hiroshi Koizumi
Written by Eliot Rahal
Illustrated by Dike Ruan
Coloured by Miguel Muerto
Lettered by Andworld Design
The year is 3333. Earth is in a state of recovery. Vampires are real, and though far less populous, they thrive alongside humans in the Japanese-engineered mega-city known as Asylum. People have come to understand that some Immortals are good, some are bad, and most navigate the world without incident. There is peace. That is…until now. Someone is brutally murdering vampires. And Detective Harper Halloway has been assigned to the case. To solve it, she’ll have to unearth a much deeper truth: The future of humanity has been edited.
This is why I love Vault Comics. They started off relatively unknown and now they’re a powerhouse publishing house in comics. They’ve stayed true to their science fiction roots and have continually expanded and pushed the envelope in what the genre is and consists of. This book right here is a superb example of this. The idea behind the concept is phenomenal and it almost, I said almost, feels like it should fit into the world of Bladerunner.
I am a huge fan of the way that this is being told. Eliot keeps refining his work as he grows and evolves into one heck of a tale weaver. The story & plot development that we see through how the sequence of events unfold as well as how the reader learns information is spectacularly laid down. There is a great sense of mystery and misdirection happening here and that we see so much so soon, which by the way doesn’t feel rushed or crowded, feels as natural as can be. The character development is solid stuff. How we see the situations and circumstances come about and we see them act and react to them shows us a lot about their character. The pacing is superb and as it takes us through the pages revealing the twists & turns along the way we see how all of this works together to create the ebb & flow for the story.
This is a great book, and I mean a GREAT book! There is something about it, that elusive “IT” factor that is here and how we meet and see the main character as she takes us through her day and introducing us to this world is extremely well done. This is one of the stronger introductions to a series as we see what is needed to move forward and to engage the readers’ mind throughout.
The interiors here are really spectacular! The buildings that blanket the page and the panels placed on top that’s the kind of imagery that a reader remembers for a long time. Plus the linework is magnificent to see and how the varying weights and techniques that are utilised in bringing out this level of attention to detail is amazingly clean and strong. Backgrounds are utilised more often than not and what they bring to the story is immeasurable as they enhance the moments and give us this great look at this world. They also work within the composition of the panels to bring us depth perception, a sense of scale and that overall sense of size and scope to the story. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels show a masterful eye for storytelling. The colour work is divine and how we see the myriad of colour choices is sensational. The way that the hues and tones within the colours are utilised to create the shading, highlights and shadow work is superbly rendered.
This has pretty much everything, including the kitchen sink, in it and how Eliot manages to make them work together and make it feel so natural is stupendous. That we see this vampire ninja cop should be alarming but with his partner, our main character, who’s desire to do old school detective work is the perfect balance. The layering of the arcs that running simultaneously and how they all fit within the larger picture is just beautifully done.