V-Wars #3



VWars3VC-minAs the “War between Bloods (vampires) and Beasts (humans) continues to escalate” the plot to Issue Three of “V-Wars” most probably struck its dwindling 5,866 readership as a fairly run-of-the-mill tale which focused upon the “under-manned” Vampire Counterinsurgency and Counterterrorism Field Team Victor Eight obtaining a new member in the form of twenty-five year-old Corporal Taurus Harper. Indeed, almost the entirety of Jonathan Maberry’s narrative for “A Puppy And A Picture Of His Kid” dwells upon the National Guardsman heroically fighting off all manner of vampires, whether they be gun-toting rioters at the Saint Thomas Housing Project in Brooklyn, or super-strong ghoulish “Middle-Eastern monsters”, in order for the “Newbie” to successfully become accepted by his team-mates; “We don’t have a learning curve. Genghis and Zman are going to kick your ass. Try not to let them. Show us you deserve to run with our pack.” The “New York Times bestselling author” even throws in a few sedentary barroom scenes between the “killer with a heart” and Luther Swann so as to help promote the “real soldier” to his audience and firmly establish that he isn’t simply “a gung-ho kind of guy.”

However, all of this multi-layered character development and exposition is shockingly spun upon its head with the turn of this publication’s final page, as the “magazine feature writer” stunningly has the “one-man wrecking crew” remove a set of fake teeth so as to expose pointed canines and his triumphant infiltration of Big Dog’s squad on behalf of the Crimson Queen. This revelation, which wonderfully comes completely out of the blue, genuinely makes this comic worth perusing a second time, if only to see just how very clever the Bloods have been in engineering the kill-team’s penetration and perhaps to reinterpret Taurus’ haunted looks at the dead Edimmu he recently killed as not being a man upset at senseless slaughter, but actually as a Vampire distraught at the slaying of his own brethren…

Of course in hindsight, Harper’s subterfuge could arguably be seen in Alan Robinson’s excellent pencilling. For whilst the vast majority of this book’s cast are healthily drawn, with square jaws, strong necks and well-filled clothing, the Chilean artist instead illustrates the man who has supposedly “acted in the best traditions of the National Guard” as a gaunt, overly thin figure, whose ill-fitting uniform consistently appears a few sizes too large, and yet still (inexplicably) appears to be more physically robust than his bigger comrades.

This article is the opinion of the author and does not represent the views of the site owner.


Reviewed by
For the past forty or so years I have been collecting American comics… To begin with they were predominantly black and white British reprints of “Marvel Comics Group” titles such as “Spider-Man Comics Weekly”, “The Mighty World of Marvel” and “Star Wars Weekly”; all six to ten pence editions I could store away under my bed in a large cardboard box. As a result though I was introduced to the teenage angst of Peter Parker, the discovery of a frozen Captain America by Earth's Mightiest Heroes, witnessed the dreadful rage of Doctor Bruce Banner, and even travelled to a galaxy far far away... Later I would be able to afford actual America colour comic books and supplemented my collection of “Marvel” titles such as “Conan the Barbarian”, “Howard the Duck” and “Captain America” with some “DC Comics” issues of “Batman”, “Green Lantern” and “Captain Carrot and his Amazing Zoo Crew”. There would even be time for Independent publications such as “Wildcats”, “Spawn” and “The Authority”. These days however I must admit to yearning back to the simpler times of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, back to when both artwork and storylines were straightforward, easy to follow and super-heroes were just starting out on their adventures. A time when no-one had yet to be resurrected from the dead for the fourth time. I've written over seven hundred comic book reviews on my blog over the past few years, with them usually following my latest purchases, all wrapped up in a large brown paper bag, as well as occasional ‘flashbacks’ to some of the classic "Golden Age" issues I already own…

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