Sunday, October 29, 2017

The Horror Of...Halloween Night, Dracula: In The Company Of Monsters - An Introduction

It's a cold and rainy day, and sometimes you need more than a good film or show to bolster your Halloween and macabre sensibility. Sometimes, you just want a good read. A tome not so much of forgotten lore, but of enjoyable horror.

And if you need an interesting read, as you enter this new week, try one of the many tales of Dracula tales made into a comic. A mix of dark words, dark deeds, and striking imagery.

Dracula: In The Company Of Monsters.

Published by BOOM! Studios in 2011, this tale takes us into a strange twist in the unlife of Dracula. is he the most evil force to face? This story challenges that idea.

This ongoing tale was created by Kurt Busiek (Astro City, Action Comics, Superman, Avengers, Conan, ). It's co-written by Daryl Gregory. It's illustrated by Scott Godlewski. Colors were done by Stephen Downer. And lettering was done by Johnny Lowe.

It is a 12 issue series that spans an epic struggle between forces beyond most of our reaches. It has since been collected into 3 volumes.

For now, I want to introduce you to this world, and the forces that will soon be pitted against each other for power, and survival. When we come back, we'll go through Volume 1.

So for now, let's reveal a SPOILER from the book. It is largely about Dracula. I know!

We get to see many key moments, legendary moments, from his life (and more the life of the actual Vlad Tepes/Vlad III of Wallachia, Vlad the Impaler, Vlad Dracula).



And death.

We also see the steps towards the Dracula we all know so well. And, as well, the type of man he was. He is one that will not bow to any man, god, or any power..

He will exist, and continue to do so only on his own terms.

In the present, we look to Barrington Industries. It is a powerful company, but an ailing one. Everyone is scared that it is on it's last legs. Many terrified they will be gone in the next round of layoffs.

Not all though. Evan Barrington. He is the great nephew of the owner of the company. (Also, the son of the chair of the board.) So he's family. And this is a family company.

But Evan is a troubled man. He has just hovered in his life. In school and work, nothing has thrilled or excited him. He just moves along, knowing he was a Barrington.

But now his uncle has entrusted to him a strange mission, one he can't explain to others, and that he also doesn't really understand.

He has had to study and master a series of ancient languages, then he's studied one ancient text after another. Most of it has had to do with Vlad Tepes. But other bits have been strange rituals and incantations.

It is all fascinating to Evan, learning more and more about this historic, but largely forgotten figure. He is impressed by him, as a long dead figure from the distant past who he'll never have to meet.

And now his uncle, Conrad Barrington, beckons.

His uncle takes him on a mystery trip. Evan thinks his uncle has gone over the deep end, chasing magic and myth that will get them no where.

And it is a deep deep end.

But when they go down where his uncle has taken them. They find something Evan did not expect.

A skeleton encased in a strange honey concotion.

The remains of Vlad Tepes.


And the main players ready to take the stage. An arrogant, gluttonous, and ancient vampire. An old lumbering corporation. And an arrogant, greedy, and aging man of wealth, power, and privilege. Who is the most vile? Who is the most twisted? Who is the most entrenched? Who will exploit who? And which of these, if any, will rule the day?

Plenty of issues left to reveal it all. A dark read for this Halloween.

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