While it has nothing to do with previous editions of the “Tales of the Vampires” series published about the Buffy vampires by Dark Horse, this new one-shot is the kind of book that Dark Horse does very well. There are two covers as usual, but the unmistakable renderings by Brazilian superstar artists Gabriel Ba and Fabio Moon is a gorgeous tribute to the visuals which adorned previous installments and is of course, my favorite of the two.
The story within the covers is not bad at all, centering around a guy named Jason whose life changes very little when he is turned into a vampire. We’ve seen this kind of story before but writer Becky Cloonan, who is best known for her manga work, takes the premise of a human flirting around dangerously with vampires and turns it into a moody, nuanced and introspective look at youth’s ongoing fascination with the undead.
If anyone has seen the Buffy episode where Buffy’s boyfriend Riley Finn allows vampires to feed on him because he was disturbed by Buffy’s lack of interest in him at the time, can see where some of the inspiration for this story comes from as Jason undergoes similar disturbing moments. Even though Buffy doesn’t appear in this comic (she isn’t supposed to as these are the tales of the vampires) the comic is supposed to adhere to regular Buffy continuity as this story takes place after Harmony’s reality show changes the public’s perceptions about vampires and slayers.
Dave Stewart does a fantastic job of coloring as usual, but Vasilis Lolos’ quirky artistic style, reminiscent of the Luna Brothers and other influences comes alive in this comic. Lolos of course ,worked with Ba, Moon and Cloonan before on the self published series “5.” I think when artists and writers reunite on a project they know each other so well and are so comfortable working together in the collaborative process that the end results are usually quite good.
I guess what I am saying is you should buy this comic. Next week we return to our regularly scheduled Buffy saga with issue #26.