Perfectly blending top-tier writers and artists such as Steve Lieber with tomorrow’s greats like Andrew Maclean, Dark Horse Presents #29 features more standalone stories and thrilling continuations. The cover is an eye-catching shot of the title character of Blood from the thrilling conclusion to part one!
Mimicking last month’s issue, we open with Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan’s The Strain: The Fall-The Silver Angel Chapter 2, written and drawn by David Lapham with colors by Lee Loughridge. We catch up with Angel as he’s having flashbacks of a girl named Annika while out vampire hunting. It’s full of action and fast-paced as we build up to the conclusion in the third chapter. Lee Loughridge’s drab colors fit the story’s tone well.
Next, we have a one-shot, written, drawn and lettered by Andrew Maclean with colors by Jordie Bellaire entitled Snip Snip. Visually this couldn’t be anymore different than The Strain but it still has the same morbid tones. We’re told the tale of Harbor City, where each profession such as nurses and bagboys start their own gangs. It’s a dark wacky story with bold and light color choices.
Another Edgar Allan Poe adaptation, Alone, appears by Richard Corben. It’s the classic tale of a man meeting with his lover and telling her about the realistic scary dreams he’s been having. Corben is faithful to the original story while making it his own. He’s a master at drawing decaying bodies.
Then, we have Chapter 10 of Alabaster: Boxcar Tales written by Caitlin R. Kierman, art by Steve Lieber with colors by Rachelle Rosenberg. Maisie and Birdie are traveling through a field searching for Flammarigold, when they stumble on a barn for shelter. Inside, they’re watched by a mystery girl whose intentions are unclear. Alabaster is a well-drawn story and each chapter is plotted brilliantly to leave a cliffhanger.
Nexus: Into The Past Chapter 4 is next, with story by Mike Baron, art by Steve Rude and colors by Glenn Whitmore. The title character heads to the 21st century to hunt the murderer Clayborn. Nexus was created in the 80s and it wears that fact on its sleeve. The art harkens back to its heyday with a pop art style. It’s a fun, out-there science fiction story.
After Nexus, we have the wonderful Trekker: The Train to Avalon Bay Chapter 6. Written and drawn by Ron Randall with colors by Jeremy Colwell, this issue sees Trass approaching his ship with Molly while St Clair is hot on his trail. The last chapter in this series ends beautifully. It’s an action-packed conclusion to a solid sci-fi story.
Next, Nosferatu Wars Chapter 4 with story by Steve Niles and art by Menton3 creeps into view. The final chapter of Nosferatu Wars wraps up wildly as Mangus and Tarquin have a final confrontation and Moria takes off with other beings. The ending is a great twist that I don’t think anyone could see it coming.
Then, we have Chapter 3 of Mr. Monster: Dark Stearn, written, drawn and colored by Michael T. Gilbert with co-plotting from Janet Gilbert. Doc Stearn takes on Dark Stearn as Dark is poisoning the town’s water supply with arsenic to kill all the monsters. Doc is taken down and can he recover in time to stop Dark? This is a fun, bright story and I look forward to seeing how Doc takes down his evil other half.
The thrilling conclusion to Blood with story and art by Neal Adams and colors by Moose Baumann appears with Chapter 10. Blood is in a final showdown with his brother and both Bloods’ blood is spilled. Once again the art didn’t do too much for me but the story is fun. Plus, with dialogue like, “I am Blood! And today you die!,” you can’t but help laugh.
Finally, we end with Brainbot Jr., a fun tale by Dara Naraghi and art by Tom Williams. Brainboy Jr. is a one page story about an evil genius and a lab rat. It’s a cute strip that’s one short joke.
Dark Horse Presents #29 has a few great concluding chapters and a couple good stand alone stories. Highlights include Snip Snip, Trekker and Nosferatu Wars. With three stories wrapping up, I can’t wait to see what new series start.