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NEW REVIEW GROUP WEEK 7 - American Vampire #22

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Outhouse Editor

Postby GLX » Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:43 pm

guitarsmashley wrote:do we have a book?

Fatale #1.
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Outhouse Editor

Postby GLX » Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:43 pm

guitarsmashley wrote:so does an amber atoms rule apply?

God willing.
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REAL OFFICIAL President of the Outhouse

Postby Frag » Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:50 pm

I'm not reviewing this one either because I still need to catch up with this book and don't want to read it out of turn. No Nacireman-filled review for me.
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Stephen Day

Wrasslin' Fan

Postby Stephen Day » Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:57 pm

GLX wrote:
Fatale #1.

MY LCS might have that, I'm not sure, but if they do, I'm in, if not then I'm out.
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Zombie Guard

Postby Zero » Wed Jan 04, 2012 5:56 am

Best Review Group EVER!
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S.F. Jude Terror


Postby S.F. Jude Terror » Sun Jan 08, 2012 3:32 am

So now that the great Amazing Spider-man catch-up is complete, I got this book and Fatale to get up to date with the review group.

So the first time American Vampire came up in the review group I avoided it. Why? I thought the name was stupid, and despite liking Stephen King, his involvement in anything comics tends to seem overhyped and lackluster. As a result, I missed the entry of Snyder, who is such a chunky Internet dreamboat. So this is the first issue of American Vampire I've ever read.

And fuck. I wanted to hate it so that I didn't feel inclined to add another entry to my monthly reading list, but instead I loved it. First, it was very accessible fr a new reader. Despite being issue 22, I didn't feel lost at all with the story, which, by the way, is an example of excellent modern pacing. We got a beginning, middle, and end in this issue with the story of the greased taking out the girl's parents, which was wrapped in the bookends of the death race. But with the final reveal at the end, the bookends become the real story, the main plot from this issue becomes an introduction, and to top it all off, we end on a cliffhanger... almost literally. Just fantastic. Simple structure, but masterfully executed, and very satisfying.

The art is petty damn good. Characters were attractive when required, and ugly when called for, showing a good range where many artists can only do one of the two. The art fit the tone and period of the book, and was clear and easy to understand. The one thing that annoyed me, and this is really a nitpick, was the signatures at the bottom of the pages. I know the artist probably wants to sell these pages for some extra cash, but it tended to snap me out of the story a few times because it was so obvious. Place them more subtly.

I really can't find much wrong with this book. It was fun, it was compelling, and I want to read more.

Story: 10
Art: 10
Subtotal: 10
Artist sigs: -1
Overall: 9
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Staff Writer

Postby Punchy » Mon Jan 09, 2012 7:29 am

American Vampire #22 - Death Race, Part One' - Snyder and Albuquerque

Story - The word 'epic' is used way too often these days, any comic, TV show or movie that has a cast of more than 5 people is described as 'epic'. That is not epic, but American Vampire may actually deserve the descriptor, simply because Snyder is telling a story that is taking place over centuries. We started off in the Wild West and 1920s Hollywood, then we headed to 1930s Las Vegas, then to WW2 and then back to the West. And now Snyder has taken us somewhere new, to the 1950s, and boy, is it fun.

Snyder introduces us to a new character here, Travis Kidd, a young Teddy Boy who moonlights as an independent Vampire Hunter and it says a lot about the quality of Snyder's writing that Travis is immediately as interesting a protagonist as the likes of Skinner Sweet and Pearl, characters we've been following for 20 or so issues. I especially liked his use of wooden fangs to bite the Vampires, it was a nice new twist. It's also great stuff for new readers, they can come in here and not be lost, but for existing fans, there are enough connections here to the previous stories that it all feels part of one, epic whole, Kidd says he's from Las Vegas, which was the setting for the book's second story arc. Does Travis have any connection to Cash McCogan or any of the supporting characters from that story? There's also the appearance of the seemingly-immortal Agent Hobbes which likes Travis to the Vassals Of The Morning Star.

One of the best things about this book is how it filters American History through the warped lens of Vampirism, and to my mind at least, Snyder gets the 1950s trappings spot on, there's the drag races which of course bring to mind James Dean, there's wayward teenagers necking in a cool car, there's a Diner and a Malted Milk, the cover has a Jukebox on it, all we need now is some Nuclear Paranoia. Of course there's more to be scared of in the world of this book than Commies, and Snyder melds all of this 50s paraphernalia to the world of Vampires, so that the over-protective 1950s parents are actually Vamps who use their 'daughter' as bait for food, and one of the drag-racers is a Vampire, it's really cool stuff to see, and it shows just how flexible and wide-ranging this book can be, Snyder is adept at bending the Vampire Genre to any time period and it sets this book apart as one of the best in the market.

This was another fantastic issue of American Vampire, and one that takes the book into exciting new places and with a very cool new character, since this book can reinvent itself so easily, there's no worries about it losing steam, and each story provides something new. How many other comics can say that? In a medium that too often repeats itself, American Vampire is an infusion of fresh new blood.

Art - Rafael Albuquerque is just awesome, the man can draw pretty much anything and make it look good. His style is perfect for this book, and he draws Travis Kidd as pretty much the coolest guy alive, I can't wait to see what he does next, and how he adapts his style for yet more time periods.

Best Line - 'Free from these goddam bloodsuckers!'


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