By Koppy McFad
May 20, 2010 - 04:03
Batman teams up with a vampire to fight zombies. Yes, they are serious.
A cynical person would say this story was written just to cash in on the craze(s) of romantic vampires and ravenous zombies. But despite the rather over-used themes, the creative team still bring some new, interesting twists into this tale.
Batman joins forces with a vampire named Dimeter in New Orleans to track down a villain hiding in one of their bizarre museums where actual human bodies, sealed in plastic, arranged like weird sculptures, and put on display. The villain re-animates these plasticine bodies and sets them upon Batman and Dimeter, giving us the strangest-looking zombie horde of all time.
The story has a nice balance of dialogue, mood and action, instead of relying too much on 'decompressed' storytelling so common in comics today. Some parts of the story are a bit hard to swallow such as Batman's sudden acceptance of this Dimeter fellow. He may not be a bad guy but he is still a vampire and that should ring some alarm bells. Is he a recurring character or someone brand new? The story doesn't make that clear.
There is a little too much wallowing in gore in this issue with a girl getting her face clawed off in the first pages (okay, she was deceased at the time, but still...) and a man being graphically impaled through the back of his head later on. The art by Mandrake actually helps make the story easier to take since it does not attempt to make the gory scenes look realistic. Mandrake does a good job however of maintaining the air of mystery and danger in this issue, keeping it from looking like the rest of the 'zombie' stuff out there.
One problem in this issue is the way Batman faces all these horrifying events without showing the slightest sign of shock, fear or even disgust. This detracts from the horror that the entire story is trying to convey. When the lead character acts like all these monsterous things are just 'another day at work,' the reader can't help feel the same way too.
Rating: 6.5 /10