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August 5, 2012
 

Action Age Comics Review: Dracula the Unconquered #1 & 2

Dracula the Unconquered #1 & 2
Publisher: Action Age Comics
Writer: Chris Sims
Artist: Steve Downer
Letters: Josh Krach

Have you ever read the book Dracula by Bram Stoker? Or see one of the countless films made based on the story? Did you ever want more of Dracula when the story was over? Sims, Downer, and Krach got you covered in that regard.

It’s 1901 and Dracula has been freed from his near-dead prison by a rival vampire named Varney, who plans to rule the world with Dracula as his servant. Dracula is no one’s servant, so he escapes with the aide of Thalia, Varney’s proxy to break Dracula out. Now Dracula’s gotta escape from his enemies, which include a Raven spirit and his old slave Renfield, regain his strength, return to power, and finally take over the world!

This comic is a lot of fun, it’s got artwork that’s slick and made me feel like I was watching a cartoon. No two characters look anything alike, no one has an issue of “same face” going, the colors pop out, and I love that you always know Dracula by the signature red in his motif. This whole comic feels like a great Saturday morning cartoon, and I mean that in the best way possible.

Sims gives everyone a distinct voice and shows that Dracula’s still got it even when he’s starving and weak. His new characters are able to blend well with the pre-existing ones. I love watching Dracula pull off some new amazing feat due to his centuries of occult knowledge. I mean, he wrestles a Raven spirit and gains powers from it, if that doesn’t make you want to check this out then I don’t know what to do with you.

Thalia is a capable character in her own right. Dracula is able to respect her as his new assistant, and that goes miles if you know anything about the character. She is smart enough and clever enough to keep her wits about her when dealing with crazed monsters and madmen. She isn’t sexualized, and she can pull of adventuring in a dress without it seeming unbelievable. She’s Dracula’s new sidekick, but she’s no Renfield, and that’s made apparent when she fights the original vampire slave.

I like that the source book is taken as an in-universe existing piece of material that characters have qualms with since that’s what a fictionalized account of any true story would be. It’s a clever way of making new material and not outright dismissing the old; Dracula by Bram Stoker is still a book, and the characters from this series have read it.

Another nice part about the series that actually elevates it above Saturday morning cartoons is that the characters change looks. Dracula gets more and more disheveled as this night of his return is continuing on, with him getting attacked and exhausted. It shows that attention to detail is there, and that things are constantly happening even if you aren’t paying that much attention to it.

My only negative review for this comic is that when it ended I wanted to have more. The schedule is whenever they can get them out, but for a price of 1 U.S. dollar, that’s a steal. I’m anxiously awaiting the next issue to see what happens next with Dracula and Thalia.

Alexander Bustos
drbustos@comicattack.net

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