Dark Shadows / Vampirella #5 Review

The final issue of this crossover event is here, but does it disappoint or satisfy loyal fans?  Read on to find out.

The official description from Dynamite:

The blood-drenched conclusion! Vampirella and Barnabas face off against Lady Bathory and Jack the Ripper! Can Barnabas keep his vow and save an innocent girl from certain death? Or will the ancient evil of Lady Bathory destroy everyone in her path? If our heroes fail, Bathory’s mad plan will forever change the world! And who is that lurking in the shadows……?

When you get two good vampires in the same book taking on an ancient blood-sucker you’re bound to have a outrageous but not necessarily good read on your hands.  With that said followers of both Dark Shadows and Vampirella can rest easy because this talented creative team absolutely delivers a fitting conclusion to this chaotically entertaining jaunt.

Marc Andreyko offers-up a brief but nonetheless solid script that easily builds off of the strengths that have been featured and established in this ongoing saga.  His words for the most part, get out of the proverbial way, as the art and violence carry this tale to a necessary and quite bloody climax.  There were times where stiff dialogue and corny attempts at humor gave way to some sub-par moments, but overall I was thoroughly entertained.  From the strong characterizations to the ultimate finish, this is truly a story that will delight followers of both of these franchises.

Jose Malaga does an outstanding job on the art.  In five rather uproarious but altogether brief releases he’s been able to deliver some beautifully rendered characters and detailed backgrounds that were all packed rather nicely in some dynamic panels.  Perhaps more important, his pencil strokes succeeded in giving life to a believable atmosphere that allows both of these vampire themed but divergent franchises to intersect in some believable ways.

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Dark Shadows / Vampirella #5 is an extremely solid and fun conclusion that leaves just enough narrative strands dangling in the wind to perhaps bring about a potential sequel.  Recommended.


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