After two arcs covering Vampirella having to deal with end of the world blood curses as well as end of the world virus conspiracies, we begin Issue #12 with Miss. V. getting to kick her feet back and having some relax time, taking her reigns on of becoming Queen of the Nosferatu. Won fair and square in battle as she defeated her twin brother (long story) Drago. That defeat gave her Drago’s kingdom and title as per his goal. All is good now. Things should be chill. Right? Right? No way man!
It appears that after reading through the pages of Issue #12 that being the Queen of the Nosferatu might be a little bit tougher than it first seemed. For one, these ugly offshoots of the stereotypical pretty girls/boys vampire portrayals, these Nosferatu have a tremendous chip on their shoulders. The feel a little shortchanged on life, granted with the vampire power, but not the looks or attraction powers of their contemporaries. They also seem to have very little regard for humans or human lives as we get to witness a little “harvesting” operation being undertaken by a powerful Nosferatu who may just take some offense to his new Queen that has high regard for human life.
Day to day. Or actually, night to night business regarding the Nosferatu is a tough job and one that is ill suited to Vampirella who throughout her history has either worked alone or in collaboration with others. She never has had an opportunity to really lead in a full capacity, ordering others and rendering decries and such.
And it is in that aspect, that this transition story between arcs issue of Vampirella really plays off well and has a sinister bite to it (pun intended). Issue #12 is an interesting insight tale that on the surface would appear kind of lame if you were passing through, not paying attention. But if you give this one a closer view, I think you will find that this has been one of the better issues of the series to date.
Writer Nancy A. Collins has done a stellar job in having Vampirella deal with sticky situations throughout her writing run, but she was always been able to win out through her power and strength. Here in this issue, power and strength really are not enough as Vampirella must utilize her wits (and maybe her power and strength) to deal with this constituency who most seem none to pleased that their former king has been vanquished.
It is a nice element of writing by Collins that blends in well with some of Drago’s backstory tapping into the nature of the Nosferatu and their struggle for who and what they are. Despite their immense ugliness, they are a misunderstood lot that feel, and yes, that love. Collins cuts through these details with a razor sharp edge that adds very strong substance to the issue and really adds depth to it all.
Artist Patrick Berkenkotter, like Collins, has been doing a strong job in portraying this Queen of the Night and Queen of the Nosferatu. He has drawn Vampirella with considerable charisma, but also with some self doubt too. Sure, she still wears the one piece and exudes confidence on the outside. But within and through subtle moves, Berkenkotter shows a vulnerability that comes out in excess during this issue. Adding to his art is a new colorist in Dinei Ribeiro that adds the traditional strong contrast, but that adds some fuzziness which works with some of the issue’s more brutal happenings.
This series has had more hits than misses. But it appears to be gaining some momentum as it wears on. Vampirella is entering into new territory that will more than likely cause her to return to old territory in dealing with some threats that await her. Something big (and unknown) is brewing in the hands of a Nosferatu named Count Savanovic that looks like will be causing some serious trouble for our Queen. Needless to say, I am on board.
Vampirella #12 Writer: Nancy A. Collins Artist: Patrick Berkenkotter Colorist: Dinei Ribeiro Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment Price: $3.99 Release Date: 5/20/15 Format: Ongoing; Print/Digital