"Vincent Price Presents #25" Comic Review
Written by James "Spez" Ferguson
Published by Bluewater Productions
Written by Clay and Susan Griffith
Illustrated by Patricio Carbajal
2010, 36 pages
Comic released November 2010
Bluewater Productions continues their look into the mind of horror icon Vincent Price with the 25th issue of this series. This one's called The House of the Raven and tells the tale of two rival warlocks. Their lives have been two sides of the same coin for years. Dr. Von Horn was the serious type who always had his nose in a book. Meanwhile, Dr. Pitt (Price) was the flamboyant showboat always going for style over substance. Regardless of their personalities, both were very skilled in magic and were constantly trying to one up each other. Von Horn ultimately won by marrying Pitt's sweetheart.
Von Horn had a run in with a werewolf while hunting in Bavaria and is now cursed with lycanthropy. He has a proposition for Pitt. Von Horn's house is filled with powerful magical artifacts that need to be protected. He feels that he cannot properly protect them in his current state. If Pitt can kill him with the only piece of silver in the house, he’ll inherit everything that Von Horn owns. Pitt makes his way through the mansion and seeks help from his dead love's ghost and an Archduke of Hell that Von Horn has imprisoned in his basement.
The story in this issue flows very quickly. In fact, it moves too fast altogether. There's a lot of information crammed into just this one book. I don't envy authors Clay and Susan Griffith here. It's tough to weave the whole story without making things too complicated. The dialogue is heavy in exposition and there's no deliberation about the actions of the characters. It would have been better if the book was broken up into two issues or, at the very least, given a few more pages to work with. Taken with a grain of salt, this issue is still fun, but it would have been more memorable if it wasn’t in such a rush.
The art by Patricio Carbajal is stellar and makes up for the shortfall of the writing. Carbajal has a talent for likeness and has really captured the image of Vincent Price. Just take a look at this panel:
Von Horn's house is decorated with tons of mystical trinkets and there are no two things that look alike. Shrunken heads, giant archways and stark candelabras fit into the setting wonderfully. Von Horn's werewolf form harkens back to the old school Wolf Man. Carbajal portrays the ghost of Pitt's love Aubrey in a translucent haze while keeping her a beautiful visage.
While this issue has its faults, the art makes it a much more enjoyable read. Bluewater is bringing back the old EC Comics feel with Vincent Price Presents and fans of the genre should take note.
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