While most people I know think of zombies when they think of Jonathan Maberry, his work on the first issue of the comic adaptation of his novel ‘V-Wars’ might be changing that. When an all out vampire virus spreading across the world and creating a war between mankind and vampire, it seems as if we might be in for a special treat if the image can continue to go as strongly as the first issue.
We enter the tale and quickly learn that it is being told through the eyes of Professor Swann. The origin of the vampire virus is simple. It was set loose and most people have the genetic markers that could have them turn into vampires. There is no way to know who will or won’t become one of the bloodsuckers. Swann is a firm preacher of cohabitation and is trying to bring that about. After a brief uprising right as the initial wave turned called the Vampire Wars, things calmed down and he and the Speaker of the House are working together to bring about a lasting peace.
While this is going on, Swann’s daughter turns and kills his son and ex-wife. He is able to restrain his daughter but she is no longer daddy’s little girl. Somehow, he is able to go on still with the belief that peace can be achieved. That is, until a monumental speech by the Speaker of the House pushing for equality and peace ends with him being assassinated by what appears to be a vampire extremist group.
What were called the Vampire Wars is nothing now that human and Vampire are truly doing battle with one another. The premise seems to be that vampires were people and in many instances are still very human-like. Though lets face it, at the end of the day we’re food for them so that is a problem that hasn’t been mentioned yet but I could see it coming up.
Part way into the actual war where violence has become widespread across the world, we see Swann being forced to join a military unit in order to help them take a target. That seems great until a chance encounter on a mission (that I won’t spoil for you) turns everything he knew about the war inside out and suddenly he isn’t sure who or what he is fighting for.
The art in this book really gives it a perfect feeling of normality, if vampires were real. The colors are bright during the day and we aren’t stuck primarily in the dark in the majority of the scenes. While the gore is a bit high for your typical vampire book (even for violent vampires) it fits most of the scenes and drives home the point to anyone reading along that these are no longer humans. No matter what or who they once were.
A strong start with the one weak point being the thought that full cohabitation can exist with the extreme violence by some of the vampires out there. I want to see where this one ends up going!
Writer: Jonathan Maberry
Artist: Alan Robinson