I’ve been an advocate of Scott Snyder’s American Vampire series since the first time I laid eyes on it. How could any fan of bloodsuckers not be? Instead of the usual pretty-boy tripe we’re used to being served these days, the fanged ones found in the pages of Vertigo’s complex, genre-defying, and generation-spanning comic series are scary and vicious. Unlike “Twilight,” nobody sees one of the undead creatures within these pages and wants to be one.
Scott Snyder returns to the horror world he helped create with American Vampire: Second Cycle Issue #1. It’s the 1960s, and vampires Skinner Sweet and Pearl Jones have moved in separate directions. Skinner passes his time in Mexico doing his own thing. Pearl is busy trying to save vampire souls who want to live undisturbed and invisible among the humans. Can the two remain apart when a new evil rears its head in the form of a sinister creature called the Gray Trader?
Writer and Co-creator Scott Snyder doesn’t miss a beat jumping right back into the horrifyingly wonderful universe of American Vampire: Second Cycle Issue #1 starts off at with a bang and doesn’t let up even in its cliffhanger ending. Snyder has you on the edge of your seat from the very first panel. He leaves you in a sweaty panic wondering what sort of cursed monster we’ll be introduced to in the second issue.
I can’t think of a single artist better suited to bringing Scott Snyder’s epic story to life than Rafael Albuquerque. His illustrations are menacing and gory and inject a certain amount of terror into each page he pencils. Every panel found in American Vampire: Second Cycle Issue #1 leaves the reader with a sense of dread and sadness that befits the tragic world Pearl lives in.
American Vampire: Second Cycle Issue #1 is suggested for mature readers. Its content features plenty of gore and graphic violence. There’s also some adult content and language younger kids shouldn’t see.
Every time I crack open a new volume like American Vampire: Second Cycle Issue #1, I wonder how long it’s going to take before we see Scott Snyder’s magnificent co-creation adapted into a TV series like “The Walking Dead” or the upcoming “Constantine.” The expansive world he created with the help of Stephen King is perfect for a long-running show that spans several decades of characters and story-arcs that mingle and mash into each other. This is recommended reading for any vampire enthusiast who’s tired of their bloodsuckers being fangless and sparkly.
American Vampire: Second Cycle Issue #1 is available now in print and Kindle editions.
For more articles by Eric Shirey, check out:
Comic Book Review: An American Vampire Special: The Long Road to Hell
“American Vampire Volume 5” Graphic Novel Review
American Vampire: Lord of Nightmares Issue #1 Comic Book Review