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"Dark Red #4" Comic Review

Written by James Ferguson

Published by AfterShock Comics

Dark Red 4 00

Written by Tim Seeley
Illustrated by Corin Howell
Colored by Mark Englert
Lettered by Marshall Dillon
2019, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on June 26th, 2019

Review:

Chip has been through a lot in his long life, going from soldier to vampire to loner. He's come to a point where he just wants to live quietly by himself in the small town of Fall's End. That all changes when some Nazi vampires come looking to take his land and food supply. If there's one thing that Chip cannot stand, it's Nazis.

I continue to marvel at Chip's journey through Dark Red. When the series started, I wrote him off as an incel vampire, then writer Tim Seeley flipped the script, showing how there's a lot more going on here and he's not what he seems. At first you think he's going to join right up with this group of vampires that roll into town, especially since one of them offers him a chance to change everything. They're finally listening to the little guy. That would have been fine if they weren't Nazis.

The line is drawn so very clearly there is absolutely no doubt that these jerks are the bad guys. One of them goes by the name of Toad Warrior. He's covered in Nazi tattoos and he spouts off some of the most offensive language that you are just itching for him to get what's coming to him.

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Click images to enlarge

Artist Corin Howell drives home the monstrous quality of Toad Warrior. He's a skinhead with rows of sharp teeth, glowing yellow eyes, and pointed ears. Since Toad Warrior is always “vamped out”, his speech takes on a supernatural tone. Letterer Marshall Dillon uses a red font for his words and the balloons are outlined in an uneven red line, as if his dialogue is pulsing to the beat of an undead heart.

Somehow he's not the most terrifying vampire in Dark Red #4. That comes with Miss Kamille Magdalena Kaczmarek, the leader of this group. You can tell right away that she's a being of great power. Although she appears human, she is the most monstrous. She carries herself with a poise and confidence that exudes strength and hate.

Colorist Mark Englert makes Kamille glow with a strange pale light. It's like her skin is so white that she gives off a supernatural energy. Given her views on other races, she would probably see that as a compliment.

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Click images to enlarge

Dark Red #4 transforms Chip back into the soldier he once was. When he realizes the severity of the situation, he immediately leaps into action. We get a nice covert sequence as Chip infiltrates the Nazi base that serves as the calm before the storm. Along the way, we learn a bit about Chip's two local-yokel traveling companions, which give us some perspective as to where they're coming from and the small town horrors that existed in Fall's End even before the vampires showed up.

Chip is the most human character in Dark Red and he's a vampire. He got mixed up in the wrong ideas for a moment, but now clearly sees what must be done. When Nazis are involved, there are no doubts about who's right and who's wrong. They are most definitely on the wrong side. These bigoted jerks are about to get what's coming to them and I can't wait. I thought I hated Nazis before this comic, but Dark Red has renewed my hatred for these assholes.

Grades:

Story: Fivestars Dark Red 4 Small
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Dark Red 4 Small
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Art: Fivestars
Overall: Fivestars

About The Author
Spez Bio 2
Lord of the Funny Books
James has a 2nd grade reading level and, as a result, only reads books with pictures. Horror is his 5th favorite genre right after romantic comedy and just before silent films. No one knows why he's here, but he won't leave.
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