Dark Fang #1
Writer: Miles Gunter
Artist: Kelsey Shannon
Letterer: Taylor Esposito
Review by KrisK
Dark Fang, the new vampire comic from Image, has just dropped. It’s basic premise is Valla, the vampire, (alliteration!) is new to our modern world and its ways. She was a fisherwoman before being bit by a vampire. Valla stays with him and his brides awhile, then moves, surprisingly, to the bottom of the sea. She lives down there for decades, but she is forced to go back up to the surface by environmental factors. Our nautical vampire learns the ways of society, and she shows why a vampire would do very well in the digital age.
The comic does a very good job of hiding what it is. There are enough plot turns that what you read on the first page will not be the same as the middle or end pages. Valla, like a real person, swings with the punches and adapts to what is going on around her. At the end of the night, she is just a girl trying to survive. She has her various impulses and emotions, but so far, they have all been fleeting. The world constantly distracts her.
The pacing of the story is consistent. It goes from one direction to another, but every turn seems logical as Valla figures out what is going on in the world. The story includes some backstory, but it does not make you relate, root for, or like the character. She kills a lot of people for various reasons and few really deserve it. The story is a combination of a few Disney princess stories, if they were violent and cynical. The art is stylized like a Disney movie. It is beautiful, graphic, and gory. It’s stylized nature is much more appealing than the character work done by the writer.
Verdict: Pass. The issue has its moments, but overall, I left it with no interest in seeing what happens next. I don’t like the characters, except for a sea creature they killed off halfway into the issue. The art is beautiful though, and I look forward to seeing the artist, Shannon, in other comics in the future. Just not any other comics in this series.