The Dracula Week In Ink: October 14, 2009

For the second shocking week in a row, it looks like none of the comics I picked up this week featured anyone getting kicked in the face, and while I was originally planning on going with a shot from Thor and Herc’s battle in Incredible Hercules (because really, an Asgardian kick to the junkules is almost as good), that was before I heard that there was actual vampire face-kicking in this week’s Detective Comics Annual:



Brother, if that doesn’t say Dracula Week on the ISB, then I don’t know what does. And for bonus points, that’s Looker, the inaugural Nobody’s Favorite doing the kicking.

And that brings us to another spoooooky Thursday night installment of the Internet’s Most Draculawesome Comics Reviews! But before we get around to that, a bit of my own special brand of bloodsucking!

The ISB Fall Fundraiser is going again, with a new round of stuff on eBay for your purchasing pleasure. So if you feel like jumping on some back issues and giving me your money in the process, here’s what I’ve got up:

Livewires #1-6: A very fun, very underrated series from Adam Warren.

Catwoman #1-37 and Secret Files: And speaking of underrated comics, this is the entire Ed Brubaker run on Catwoman, which was consistently one of the best books DC was putting out at the time. Gorgeous art from guys like Cooke and Stewart, fantastic super-hero noir storytelling.

Green Arrow: The Longbow Hunters #1-3: Hey, remember that time that Black Canary got chained up and smacked around and Green Arrow killed some dudes? Well, you do now. (That description notwithstanding, Longbow Hunters is actually really good.)

Empire #1-6: Mark Waid and Barry Kitson do a story that’s essentially what happens when Dr. Doom wins.

A Big Ol’ Bunch of Final Crisis! Both covers for #1-7! Both covers for Superman Beyond #1 and #2! Actual 3D glasses that have been punched out and worn by your favorite non-Dave Campbell comics blogger! Don’t ask! Just buy it!

Irredeemable Ant-Man #1-12: Robert Kirkman and Phil Hester bring you the world’s most completely unlikeable (but surprisingly fun) super-hero!

Daredevil: Guardian Devil paperback signed by Kevin Smith: Title pretty much sums it up there, I think.

And finally, Birds of Prey #56-127 and Black Canary #1-4: This is the other half of my BoP run, and out of everything I’ve sold on eBay these past few weeks, this was the one I thought the most about hanging on to. This is a title I picked up longer than anything else I’ve read ever (108 issues monthly), and this stuff, which includes the entire Gail Simone run, was highly enjoyable.

Okay, plugging over, let’s get back to it! Here’s what I bought this week..



…and in a moment, I’ll let you know what I thought of them! But seeing as this is Dracula Week, this time we’re going to be doing things a little differently: By seeing how my comics stack up against the spectrum of vampires that make up… The Draculometer!



Yes, from the awesome intenisty of Blacula to the wispy shirtlessness of James From Team Rocket Jean-Claude from Anita Blake, vampires in popular culture vary pretty widely in quality, which makes them the perfect unit of greatness for a given comic! Or to put it another way, it’s exactly what I did during Bring It On Week, but with fangs! Now let’s get to it!



Adventure Comics #3: A few weeks ago, when the crew of War Rocket Ajax was invited to the Between the Panels podcast to talk about Blackest Night, I mentioned that there is a complete lack of subtlety endemic to Geoff Johns’s comics.

Now before I renew my hater status, I actually am enjoying Adventure Comics a lot–more than I was expecting to, in fact, as the Superboy story is turning out to be surprisingly strong. And to be fair, a lack of subtlety is not necessarily a bad thing. I mean, nobody was less subtle than Jack Kirby, and I could–and have–read his stuff all day and never get tired of it. But there’s a quirk that Johns has in his writing where every single thing not only has to have a deeper meaning, but that the deeper meaning has to be literally explained to the reader at the earliest opportunity.

In Blackest Night, it’s that Barry Allen can’t just be the Fastest Man Alive who’s always late because Kanigher and Broome thought that was a nice recurring gag, it has to be a deeper signifier of his character. And while that’s fine–and I actually do like it–having someone stand there shouting it to the reader is something that just grates on my nerves. The same thing happens in this issue with Robin. There’s a long, drawn-out conversation about why Tim Drake’s wearing the Red Robin costume that could’ve stopped after one line (“Not until Bruce is back”), but goes on for panel after panel, literalizing the metaphor for anyone too thick to figure it out themselves. And that’s what bugs me: It’s not just Johns telling you how clever he is for figuring this out, but also telling you that you couldn’t.

Which isn’t to say that Johns is wrong for doing so. He is, after all, writing for an audience that read a story where the first page had the words “BATMAN AND ROBIN WILL NEVER DIE!” and then complained when Batman didn’t die in it (not to mention their complaints about not being able to figure out who Dr. Hurt was when Batman literally says who he is in the last issue), so it’s safe to say that there’s a good chunk of them out there who don’t want to think too hard when they’re reading their funnybooks. And you know what? There’s nothing wrong with that. Comics are meant to be fun, and having fun doesn’t always have to be hard work. But a good metaphor works even when it’s not spelled out, and there’s a definite difference between making something accessible and talking down to your readers, and when Johns has characters expound on how their past tragedies have led them to wear a particular pair of shoes, it feels a lot more like the latter.

Also, I will never understand why there’s an interest in having Krypto be a hassle. You want to talk about stuff that’s supposed to be fun? A flying dog is supposed to be fun, and instead we’ve got scenes where Superboy just can’t deal with him. He’s a source of angst. Krypto. The flying dog. A source of angst. I will never understand this.

But again: For all my grousing and complaints, Adventure has been a very fun read for the most part. To put it in Dracula Week terms, it ranks at a solid Spike From Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Better executed and far more enjoyable than than you think it’s going to be when it first shows up, but held back slightly by the annoyances of its quirks.





Hector Plasm: Totentanz: Regular ISB readers won’t be surprised by this one, as I haven’t exactly been quiet about being a fan of Benito Cereno and Nate Bellegarde’s previous work, especially their earlier stuff on Hector. And like the first collection, De Mortuis, this one is the perfect Halloween comic.

It’s alternately spooky and fun, and while Benito’s stories are more fantastic examples of the zippy, well-researched work that get him compared to Mike Mignola all the time, it’s Nate, the Paul Pope of Comics, that really stands out as the star of this one. His art has never looked better, whether it’s in the incredible two-page riff on Edward Gorey that starts things off or the absolutely gorgeous “Hector Contre la Danse Macabre,”–the book’s longest story–he just shines. The expressiveness, the figure-work, the way he lays out the pages (the silent nine-panel grid with Hector, the Skeletons and a fiddle-playing Death is about as good as they get), everything comes together perfectly. It’s a book I’ve read five times since I picked it up yesterday, and I just can’t stop looking at it.

Plus the bonus features are fantastic. The one-page “costume guide” by Dean Trippe and Jason Horn is a hoot, and while I would gladly read Hector Plasm every month if it was coming out, I’d read John Campbell’s stick-figure Hector strips extra hard.

To refer back to the Draculometer, this thing is straight up Dracula Himself. Not just because it’s the best thing I picked up this week, but because–like Dracula–Benito and Nate have shown that they can work beautifully with Hector in any idiom, from comedy to horror to silent film pastiches set to 19th century French compositions to recipes. And yes: There are a surprising number of recipes in this book.


Incredible Hercules #136: I’m just going to put this out there: Incredible Herc is the single best comic on the stands today.

I realize that’s nothing I haven’t said before, but in addition to the new issue, I’ve been reading through the previous stories and something struck me that made me love this book even more: I’m pretty sure that Greg Pak and Fred Van Lente have been re-doing the Twelve Labors of Hercules without ever coming out and saying it.

It’s just a pet theory of mine, so I could be wrong–or on the flipside, I might just be the last person to realize it–but the way they’ve structured their stories is mirroring the setup of the original 12: Herc’s battle with the Hulk that started things off has the air of his first labor, the Nemean Lion, as both see him tackling a seemingly unbeatable foe (though Herc came off quite a bit better against the lion). Then there’s the story where he and Atlas have their rematch from the 11th Labor, and he unchains Cerebus during his trip to the underworld, undoing the 12th. Even the current storyline, where Herc romances the queen of a fantastic race for somewhat devious reasons, is a mirror for the 9th Labor.

It’s not a one-for-one comparison (the Secret Invasion issues were far more like his trip with the Argonauts rather than one of the Labors), and it’s all vague enough that I’m not sure if I’m right or not. There are references to Herc’s myths, of course, but no more than you’d expect from an ongoing starring the Lion of Olympus. But it’s obvious just from the books themselves that they’re drawing a lot on the original mythology, so if there is a conscious parallel to the labors, it’s one that’s pulled off very subtly, and that makes me like it even more.

But that doesn’t have a whole lot to do with why this particular issue is so fantastic, which has a lot more to do with its role in the Marvel Universe than in Greek mythology, namely in that it’s another great Thor/Hercules smackdown. The twist this time is that Herc and Thor are both dressed as each other, and given their history, that leads to some amazingly fun interplay between the characters that’s so good that it might just replace even Thor #356 (the great “Walt Simonson is on vacation, and so art thou” fill-in where Thor drops the entire island of Manhattan on Herc) as my favorite of the two.

And that’s why, in Dracula Week terms, Incredible Herc ranks in as Blacula. Both of them are drawing on disparate traditions–Blacula combining vampire movies and Blaxploitation, Herc with its Simonsonian blending of Myth and the Marvel Universe–to create something that’s truly incredible, and pure joy to experience.


Nomad: Girl Without a World #2: And speaking of things that take their inspiration from strange places, who would’ve thought that a solo series about the Rob Liefeld-created Heroes Reborn Bucky would end up being this enjoyable? When the first issue came out, I mentioned in passing that it was engaging and fun, and I’m glad to report that the second issue has continued along in that vein for a variety of reasons, including the fact that with Rikki Barnes now re-cast as Nomad, we don’t have to worry about Bucky 1.0 adopting that as his code-name at the end of Captain America Reborn.

But there’s a good chance I was the only one losing sleep over that, so let’s just stick to what’s giong on here: Not only does this one prove once again that Sean McKeever can do books about teenage Marvel super-heroes darn near perfectly, it also provides us with the return of one of my all-time favorite third-string villains: Flagsmasher.

Seriously, I love that guy. For those of you who aren’t familiar with him, he’s a legacy villain that carries on the tradition of the former leader of the Underground Liberated Totally Integrated Mobile Army To Unite Mankind (U.L.T.I.M.A.T.U.M.), one of Marvel’s lesser known but still totally awesome acronymed hate groups. He carries a mace (which he presumably uses to smash flags), and his recent apperances have pretty much involved his ass getting handed to him by teenagers, which is a role that I’m perfectly comfortable with him having.

But really, he’s just icing on the cake here. McKeever’s doing great things on the script, carrying on the proud Marvel tradition of dropping big ol’ metaphors for teenage isolation in ways that could only work in a super-hero universe, and David Baldeon’s art style fits perfectly. It’s fun and good for the kids, but I get the feeling that it’s being sadly overlooked. So in Dracula Week terms, that makes Nomad our Count Chocula. One hopes that one day, Rikki Barnes too will decorate ironic t-shirts across this great land of ours.


Unwritten #6: This week’s issue of Unwritten opens up with two page of pullquotes from everyone from Fables writer Bill Willingham to ISB sidebar resident Blair Butler. And yet, even with two pages to fill, “Sandman without its head up its ass” didn’t make the cut. Oh well.

Regardless, after the enjoyable diversion of last month’s story about Kipling, this one’s back to the ongoing tale of Tom Taylor, and it’s as enjoyable as it ever was. I’ve talked quite a bit about Mike Carey’s scripting and the focus on literary trivia that he manages to not just work into the story, but make the main focus of the story without coming off as a pretentous know-it-all (no easy feat), but Peter Gross is doing an amazing job with the book, pulling off the neat trick himself of delivering clean-but-detailed art to the story. It’s excellent stuff, and I’m glad to see that–around my neck of the woods, anyway–a lot of people are really getting into it.

Engaging, fun, and even educational? Clearly, Unwritten will fit in quite nicely on the Draculomter as Count Von Count.


X-Men vs. Agents of Atlas #1: I’m going to keep this brief hre: This is a new series by Jeff Parker, and you all know how I feel about him. It’s about the Agents of Atlas and the X-Men, and you all know how I feel about them. It involves Wolverine fighting both a gorilla and a robot, and you all know how I feel about that. Carlo Pagulayan does the art, and given what you already know, you can probably figure out how I feel about his work, too.

(HINT: These are all very positive feelings)

To place our final book this week on the Draculometer, this one is a solid Count Orlock: Just as cool as Dracula, but with the added street cred that being an unlicensed bootleg vampire can get you.



And that’s the Dracula Week In Ink! As always, any questions or concerns can be left in the comments section below, and as I managed to disparage Geoff Johns and Joss Whedon, at the same time in this post, I imagine you’ve all got plenty to say, and I assure you that I will definitely not ignore it.

68 thoughts on “The Dracula Week In Ink: October 14, 2009

  1. “ot to mention their complaints about not being able to figure out who Dr. Hurt was when Batman literally says who he is in the last issue”

    Maybe it had something to do with what Batman says not meshing with who Morrison said the villain would be in interviews?

  2. I don’t know why, but out of this immense amount of verbiage, what makes me laugh again and again is “This Guy”.

    I would have liked to see Bunnicula on the Draculometer, but oh well.

  3. Hercules is one of the first comics I reach for when it comes out. I’m not sure I’d say this was the best issue, but damn it must have been the funnest! The sound effects started out great and just got hilarious, the two page smack down Herc gave Thor, the taunting, the end result, and the wonderful chagrin. Also, sex toys.

  4. I’m going to have to reread my run of Incredible Herc, because you just blew my mind. What hit me this week was that in with two heroes wailing on each other while an army of elves waits to charge through a dark portal to wage war on a realm of men and gods, Pak and Van Lente just wrote what could have been the perfect World of Warcraft comic. Meaning they out Simonsoned Simonson. Crazy.

    Oh, and I totally call bullshit on ranking David Boreanaz over Adam Copeland on the Vampometer.

  5. Man… I haven’t been able to buy comics in a few months and the one I always regret not being able to buy most is “Incredible Hercules”. I miss it so much.

    Also, your alt-text for “Nomad” made me chuckle audibly. Well done.

  6. Remember back when the dog named Krypto was a normal Earth mutt that Bibbo rescued from drowning? And he went to live with Superboy in Hawaii? that Krypto liked pretty much everyone except Kon-El, so I’m willing to accept that he’s just not a dog person.

    Except that you’re absolutely right, and no Krypto should ever be a source of angst.

  7. It’s nice to see I’m not the only one enjoying Nomad. I was apprehensive going in given how awful Teen Titans was but it’s nice to see that was a fluke because this is right back to the classic McKeever formula that made me love books like Sentinel and Gravity.

    Plus, I mean, the villains are essentially an Evil Breakfast Club run by a terrorist organization that’s been reduced to rigging a high school election and fighting off an extra-dimensional squatter (I assume) heroine.

  8. I’m trade-waiting on the Nomad mini, but you’re right about how surprisingly good it is…

    Also I’m looking at a light pull list next week, so I’ll try to remember to see if my shop still has that Hector Plasm book. Sounds great…

  9. I’m not going to complain about Count Orlock and Count Chocula not being on the meter, because it’s already crowded near the top.

    But can you give us a general sense of where they would be? It’s such a minor question, and yet I must know.

  10. I want to know about Chocula and Bunnicula as well… Orlock too, although you could just assume he counts as Dracula.

    Also, very sad Barnabas isn’t rated higher… at the very least, I’d put him above Angel.

  11. Re: Adventure Comics and Geoff Johns.
    Y’know Chris, we got what you meant after the first, or maybe the second, paragraph. There was no need to go and explain it in great detail to the readers, together with long, drawn out comparison to Batman R.I.P. But otherwise, your review was a very good read (and you’re right about Krypto).

    :) :)

  12. Really, the whole top of the Draculometer should be higher; the only truly lame vamps are the bottom three, and I think that the rest of the vampire community would like to put as much distance as possible between themselves and Sparkle Vamp For Kids.

    But that’s not the important question. The important question is, “Wait, something happened to the original Flag Smasher?” Because dang, he was a third-stringer with the potential to go A-list any time. Anarchist with his own acronymed organization (who had great fashion sense, IIRC–weren’t they the guys with the chiaroscuro beret look?) And a mace. “Anarchist with a mace” is high-concept enough to get its own book, and you’re telling me they bumped him off and put someone else in his costume? I weep for the days when crazy mofo characters like that were cherished, not whacked.

  13. Karsten – nobody out-Simonson’s Simonson. They achieve Simon-zen and become one with our Lord, who art in upstate New York, Walter be thy name. Amen.

    Incredible Hercules is being written by a member of the Walt Simonson Appreciation Society, just as the ISB review was.

    Life is bloody good.

  14. Absolutely agree with you on Totentanz in the top spot. You are right about the art. It works way better than just good. It takes some pretty great writing and elevates it even more.

    I am really impressed by Nomad, and it even did a nice job of manipulating my feelings and making me sad at the end of it. It wasn’t exactly a surprise, but I was hoping it wouldn’t end like it did.

    Unwritten is starting to surpass even Tiny Titans as the comic I look forward to the most, and that is saying a lot.

  15. As a devoted Joss Whedon fan, I have to say… eh, you’re right about Spike. And I can’t complain about Angel’s relative placement on the Draculometer. This is probably not the reaction you were expecting.

    As for an actual question, I don’t remember you reviewing The Marvels Project #1 previously, so I’m curious what you think of that series. It looked kind of interesting and it’s by Brubaker, but I haven’t given it a shot yet and was wondering how it is. (Okay, technically I didn’t ask a question there.)

  16. Your critique of Geoff Johns is all wrong – I don’t want to read a reasoned evaluation of the disparity between concept and execution that’s defined most failed Silver Age fetishism, I want irrational entitlement and the undisguised inference that you can do better. That’s why I come to the internet.

    Fuck your Draculometer. Count Von Count is the greatest of all vampires, and where the hell is Mona?
    You are clearly insane.

  17. Flagsmasher has one of the best costumes ever. He’s a villainous Space Ghost…with a mace.

  18. All right, I’m going out on a limb here, contradicting Sims on something out of the Simonson era of Thor, but I’m pretty certain that Hercules smacked Thor with all of Manhattan. Thor retaliated by punching Hercules all the way to a place even the gods had forsaken (or was it forgotten?) – Hoboken.

    Maybe Chris just doesn’t read that issue very often because it’s not by Simonson, just from that era.

  19. Hercules lifted Manhattan clear out of the water, with Thor on it.

    It’s now a tie.

    Whoever remembers the greatest line in that book first is the winner.

    Hint: It includes the name Biff.

  20. I adore Hector Plasm. It’s truly a creator love child. I can’t imagine it without Cereno or Bellegarde attached. And let’s all remember when we’re raining praise on Haunt that Hector had super loogies first.

    Oooh, but now I’m remembering Axel (?) from Xstatix who would like puke on people and dissolve them. That might count as a super loogie. Hmmm….

  21. Wait, wait, wait. This week’s TEC annual had Looker fighting a vampire in it…and it was apparently drawn by Kelley Jones?! That’s the sort of thing DC oughta let people know. The website just said it’s part two of Azrael 2.0’s origin story. Hmph.

  22. Many of the Silver Age Krypto stories were all about angst. His very first appearance centered on Superboy’s inability to keep the dog in line, and ended with Krypto shooting off into space indefinitely to chase comets and a very conflicted Superboy who was simultaneously glad to be rid of the headache and lonely for his dog. After that, countless Krypto stories involved Krypto or Superboy thinking one of them had betrayed the other. “Why has my master tied me to this Kryptonite doghouse?” The character was invented as a vehicle for stories about testing responsibility and loyalty.

  23. re: Incredible Herc, Chris sez: (the Secret Invasion issues were far more like his trip with the Argonauts rather than one of the Labors)
    That might still fit in retelling the 12 Labors of Hercules. Some versions of the story say that King Eurystheus gave Herc a temporary break from the labors so Herc could go get the Golden Fleece with Jason & co. Would be a pretty cool trick to make lemonade out of the lemons of an editorially-mandated crossover if Pak and FvL are retelling the labors, though.

  24. Thor (dressed as Hercules) fighting Hercules (dressed as Thor) is so ridiculously AWESOME that it’s like Pak and Van Lente are writing stuff that I want before I even know that I want it.

    The Warriors Three providing ringside commentary is just icing on the cake.


    I am somewhat curious as to your reaction to Magneto returning after the High Evolutionary dipped him into the brain of a Celestial to recharge his mutant batteries – which is one of those sentences that could only exist in comics.

  25. I have to say, this is one of the rare times where the comments were more entertaining than the post itself… Nimbus and Triple J nailed about everything I could have come up with to say about the slavish, baseless Morrison nuthugging in the Action Comics review. Not exactly a timely response, but I know Chris was sick of hearing everyone bash RIP by the time everyone was bashing Final Crisis. Weird to bring it back up.

  26. Orlock and Count Chocula are both mentioned in the post. If I’d added every vampire I could think of to the Draculometer, I would’ve been making it all night and never would’ve gotten around to my weekly reminder that I kind of like Batman RIP.

  27. Whilst I basically agree with the critique of Geoff Johns, I don’t think citing a Grant Morrison comic that’s about as open to literal-minded readings as David Lynch is a particularly useful stratagem. Certainly, Batman does claim Dr. Hurt is Mangrove Pierce, but Hurt himself lays claim to being Thomas Wayne and the Joker ID’s him as no less than the Devil itself in the same issue. (I prefer the latter reading, as it’s all-inclusive.) This story is followed by one where gods wear people like hats. Identity is not open-and-shut here.

  28. “I kind of like Batman RIP.”

    I enjoy that this fact comes as a surprise to folks and that through a clever comment they can change your mind…

  29. I’ve always had a little bit of an issue with the arguement that RIP starts with “Batman and Robin will never die!” and therefore no one should have expected Batman to die. If it had started that way, and then on the very next page B&R were shot point blank in the face, should the average person then assume they are not dead? No, they’d assume the initial comment was intentional mis-direction, or played for humor. Obviously that’s not quite what happened with RIP, but the arguement seems to say that everything that was on the printed page is “true” in the story, when clearly that is quite often not the case.

  30. Certainly, Batman does claim Dr. Hurt is Mangrove Pierce, but Hurt himself lays claim to being Thomas Wayne and the Joker ID’s him as no less than the Devil itself in the same issue.

    Yes, why on Earth would we believe Batman, who is always right, over two actual, literal crazy people?

  31. Wow, 9 years? That is a pretty really long time be picking up a comic. Preacher wasn’t even 6 years, was it?

    Excellent column, really. Always a great read, and this is one of the best to date, even if it is unlikely I will actually ever read any of these comics.

  32. Yes, why on Earth would we believe Batman, who is always right, over two actual, literal crazy people?

    Chris, it’s not like detective fiction is known for having characters say things to mislead the audience and hero.

  33. I would like to point out that my earlier comment was a joke – hence the smilies. (I was amused by how Chris was using a lack of subtlety and overexplaining how Geoff Johns suffers from a lack of subtlety and overexplains things).

  34. wall of text on the Superboy story of Adventure but nothing on the Polar Boy/Sun Boy team up? you disgust me.

  35. Dorian, so what you’re saying is that Thomas Wayne had the split personality of Mangrove Peirce and was also the Devil? Does that make Batman the anti-christ?

  36. wall of text on the Superboy story of Adventure but nothing on the Polar Boy/Sun Boy team up?

    What exactly is there to say about it? By all means, feel free.

  37. Uhhh, what is Sparkle Boy doing on this list? If you can go out in the sun at all… you’re not a vampire by all conventional logic.

    That said… hot DAMN did your assessment of Dr. Hurt’s identity just blow me away. I never really considered the “Batman is never wrong” angle in that context. I knew he couldn’t be Thomas Wayne, but the Devil idea kind of appealed to me.
    Having it spelled out like that though, Mangrove Pierce has to be the correct answer.

  38. Mr. Sims, if your Herc theory is correct (and I hope it is)…can’t wait for the stables of King Augeas.

    And I would like to humbly request more thoughts on Secret Six, which is one of the most consistently awesome books DC puts out.

  39. I never really considered the “Batman is never wrong” angle in that context.

    I find that life gets a lot easier once you accept that Batman is always right.

  40. “What exactly is there to say about it? By all means, feel free.”

    damn, no one’s called me out before. um … I’ll shut up

  41. Kate Beckinsale should rightfully top that Draculameter if only for the effort it took to squeeze into her skin-tight vamp suit.

    Then there’s the point of her being hot as hell, but that’s just the healthy heterosexual male in me talking.

  42. I am reminded that I picked up Incredible Hercules years ago on your say-so, Chris.

    “Oh, for the love of…” MALEKRRRUNCHHHHHH!

    God bless you, Sir.

  43. It’s good to see that Varavara is so cool she made the Draculameter even though she’s not a vampire…

  44. You called her a vampire in your review of her first appearance in 1946, but later in the series it’s explained what she is, and it’s not a vampire.

  45. Uhhh, what is Sparkle Boy doing on this list? If you can go out in the sun at all… you’re not a vampire by all conventional logic.

    … you do realize that Dracula goes out during the day multiple times in Dracula, right?

  46. According to the story she told (not that she’s an entirely reliable narrator), Varvara basically is a demon who stayed on earth because she’s having too much fun. OTOH, just about everyone else in BPRD 1946 and 1947 was a vampire so it’s an understandable error.

  47. … you do realize that Dracula goes out during the day multiple times in Dracula, right?

    There’s a half a page about this in The Annotated Dracula.

    Van Helsing clearly states (several times) that vampires can only go around at night; and then Dracula (and maybe Lucy?) are seen wandering around during the day, in direct sunlight.

    A goof by Stoker? Or is Van Helsing intentionally incorrect on this point? (Frankly, Dracula would have been staked halfway through the book if the heroes had shut up and listened to Mina. No wonder she’s pissed off in LOEG.)

  48. bookrats @ 56:

    To my knowledge, F.W. Murnau (director of “Nosferatu”) was the first to suggest that vampires are burned by direct sun. I believe Stoker claimed that vamps could walk around by day, but were largely powerless.

  49. Hunh. you learn something new every day. Thanks for that explanation of traditional vampirism, guys.
    (there’s a sentence i never thought i would utter)

  50. Why is Lestat lower on the Draculometer than that guy from Twilight? I’d think it’d be the opposite.

  51. “I want irrational entitlement and the undisguised inference that you can do better.”


    Deadpool 900 was pretty cool. Jason Aaron and Fred Van Lente on two stories, Joe Kelly on another (albeit with Rob Liefeld on art, which I enjoyed regardless), and Kyle Baker penciling the last story. Good stuff, I liked pretty much everything involved and I haven’t liked anything with Deadpool in it since C&D got canceled.

  52. Gary (comment #20) is correct. In Thor #356, Hercules drops Manhattan on Thor. At least, that’s the way Hercules tells it.

  53. I officially love for you including Thomas Raith, the most underrated vampire in modern fiction.

    The funny thing is that he appears to be Jim Butcher’s answer to Team Rocket… er, Jean-Claude. He’s described in the books as having the same basic physical description, plus he’s also a sex-oozing incubus… except he’s infinitely more manly, kickass and un-PepeLePewesque.

    I mean, he wears a fricking FAIRY costume in Book 3, and still comes across as the third manliest dude in a very crowded room.