I’m torn on Jonathan Maberry’s latest work. When dealing with horror he’s known for zombies over vampires, so when I read the announcement that he’d be taking on this form of the undead I was extremely curious as to how I’d take it. For the most part, I really loved the book though I do have a couple of issues that I’m worried may drag it down in the long run, at least for me. Still, this issue is a great setup for the series and a well written read so let’s take a quick overview of the plot.
We start off by being introduced to Trick and Kyle. Two jocks who are the last people you would expect to be lead characters in a horror comic brought out by Dark Horse. The two were born minutes of each other and have the same friends, teammates, etc. What makes one of these two a darker character is we find out that Trick has cancer and while he’s been in remission a few times now, he doesn’t feel like he’s coming out of it this time. While he’s already shaping up to feel more like the darker of the two characters, horror has fit him into the hero role. We also get our eyes opened to Kyle who is really just being a good person and refuses to give up on his best friend and has been there for him through all of this. Even now when Trick is saying he wants nothing more than to die, Kyle is there for him and is able to help lift his spirits. The two truly share the bond of friendship and we are able to see it first hand here.
Right as he cheers up, Trick is attacked by a vampire who has just awoken and is having his first meal in ages.
Here’s my problem: when the vampire realizes Trick’s blood is tainted, he gives a very over the top manga response. At least that’s how I felt it went over and it took away the threat factor for me. Still we find out that in this world cancer is a sure way to battle the vampire hordes. The vampire immediately leaves and takes out Kyle, the only friend Trick felt that he still had and promises to kill all of his family as well.
Now we have the basis of our ongoing plot and one I’m looking forward to. With art by Tyler Crook (I’m such a Mike Mignola fan that his work on ‘B.P.R.D.’ has to be mentioned here) that for the most part knocks it out of the park, I am going to be following this one for awhile.
As I mentioned above, the manga-esque reaction of the vampire threw me and as most of the rest of the issue didn’t follow the feel of that one set of panels. I’m hoping it was a fluke because overall I am eagerly awaiting to see how Trick plans to use his blood to defeat the undead in his personal vendetta against them before his own time runs out.
BAD BLOOD #1
Writer: Jonathan Maberry
Artist: Tyler Crook