Review: Vampires – The Eternal #1

Zenescope’s Unleashed crossover began this week and Vampires: The Eternal is one of the connecting mini-series to the overall story. While Samantha covered the main Unleashed series, I only had time to check out the Vampires issue so I’m not 100% in the loop on the overall crossover. I did however enjoy this series even if it mostly served as an introduction to the Vamps associated with the Grimm Fairy Tale universe.

The opening is a bit strange as a woman is running from a guy chasing her. He shows his Vampire teeth and says some threatening yet very Anne Rice inspired dialog before catching up with the woman. He takes her to the ground and the two begin laughing and kissing. After a moment it’s revealed that he is in fact a vampire and that the two are in love. Around this time our Vamp from the cover arrives and cuts the man’s head off. The woman screams that he wasn’t going to hurt her, which is exactly why the other Vamp killed him. This is our first introduction to Samira who is attempting to unite the Vampires under her leadership.

The story back tracks to 1348 to a young Samira. It’s the height of the Black Death and her mother has just passed. Even though she is sick and likely dying as well, Samira heads out to the streets to call for the removal of her mother’s body. There she unknowingly meets five vampires strolling through town. One of them becomes fascinated with Samira and well you can guess the rest of that part of the story.

There’s a lot going on in this issue, but at the same time not a lot happened. It was a pretty standard introductory/origin story issue, but it wasn’t bad. We’re shown the new and old Samira and it’s easy to spot the differences in personality and beliefs. Since I’m unfamiliar with her character I don’t know what brought about the change in her, but I’m curious to find out. I’m definitely going to read the Unleashed issue because of this issue so it was successful in that regard as well.

I’m tired of new takes on the Vampire look, over the past few years it’s become incredibly annoying. Thankfully the Vamps design in this series were more of the classic Vampire take, but there is either the addition of pointed ears or the possibility of different races of Vampires. Either one is cool with me. Otherwise the art was just good. There were a lot of missed opportunities in the backgrounds of panels which resulted in emptiness filled in with one color gradient. It did however come through when the story needed it to and especially with the character design.

I think this is a successful tie-in. Mostly because it didn’t come across as a cheap tie-in and had a full and rich reading experience. The backup story on the other hand did feel forced, but it was more bonus than anything else. I’m still feeling out which tie-in series will be for me, but if there all as strong as this issue then it’s probably a safe bet that I’ll check them all out. If you picked up Unleashed then I would say there’s no harm in grabbing this one either.

Score: 3/5

Writer: Pat Shand

Artist: Vittorio Garofoli

Publisher: Zenescope Entertainment

Price: $3.99

Release Date: 4/24/13