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Savage Tales Vampirella One Shot Review

by Olivier Roth on May 15, 2018

Written by: Erik Burnham

Art by: Anthony Marques, J. Bone, Fernando Ruiz and Daniel HDR

Colors by: Mohan

Letters by: Tom Napolitano

Published by: Dynamite

 

Vampirella has always been a pretty entertaining over the years that I’ve been reading her adventures (note: I started when Dynamite bought the rights). This one-shot continues the fun, but you really have to go in to this comic knowing full well that one: this is a very quick, one and done issue with no real lasting ramifications, and two, this comic is cheesy as hell.

 

One theme that seems to be very popular with Vampirella stories these past few years is dropping her into an unknown situation/town/universe and basically seeing what will become of it. That is very much true here as well: Vampirella wakes up, completely unaware of her surroundings and being attacked by men who have gone a little berserk.

 

We learn quickly that Vampirella is unable to control these men (with her “vampire” hypnosis) which leads her to the conclusion that these men are being controlled against their will and after some pretty nasty fighting, she gets some answers: a being called Ankimu came to their village/town and set everything in order, but for a price it seems: total servitude.

 

From there, the comic veers very much into the schlocky B-movie-style storytelling that is straight out of Sci-Fi and Fantasy literature/film/comics that you’d find pre-90s, and quite frankly, it’s a lot of fun, if you are a fan. If you aren’t a fan of that type of storytelling, then this issue might not be for you.

 

On the art front, there are 4 credited artists, but I’m pretty sure two of them are inkers and two artists. I say this because the line work is very consistent throughout  and then changes abruptly midway through to become Fernando Ruiz’s art. I’m not complaining since both artists and inkers do a fantastic job. It’s very reminiscent of the old-school Vampirella art (a lot more “bad girl” than modern), but it fits the overall feel of the comic.

 

I’ll also like to quickly mention the fantastic cover for this issue by Robert Hack in tribute to John Buscema’s cover from the original Savage Tales starring Conan the Barbarian. It’s a wonderful tribute to the legendary Buscema and a nice nod. It also immediately makes the issue recognizable as being part of the Savage Tales collection which is great for long-term collectors.

 

I would also like to mention the backup story real quick. I’m sure Dynamite decided to add this backup reprint to justify the $4.99 price tag, but I just wish they had picked something a little better. Thematically, it is very similar to Vampirella, Valaka has a very similar look, but otherwise, this story really felt like baby’s first sword and sorcery tale.

Our Score:

7/10

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