It’s nice to see a series that has had its ups and downs catch its creative second wind. The entire creative team is firing on all cylinders, with particularly high marks for colorist Heather Moore, who has created a distinctive look for the whole series.
Pity vampire Atticus Sloane. For years, he’s been turning humans into vampires known as Sips for profit. So many in fact that the First Born Council – the original vamps – have ordered him to kill all the Sips he created or face his own death after undeath. Sloane is down to one hand, and his dead assistant is now only a figment of his imagination.
As if all that weren’t bad enough, the council has had enough of Sloane, and has now sent the Pensmiths after him. Those ancient vampire assassins are sure to spell trouble for Sloane as he struggles to find the money to buy a black-market hand.
Such is the world of Blood Stained Teeth, a series that done a great job of turning itself around from a “monster-of-the-month” story to a compelling series. We may not love the arrogant capitalistic protagonist, but he an interesting enough character in situations most of us can related to – at least on some level.
That’s thanks to the talents of writer Christian Ward. Ward has created an interesting world, corrected any narrative missteps made early on then drove the story forward in new and exciting ways. And while the construct of chasing down a different Sip down every month may have gotten old, at least those being hunted were interesting and posed a different challenge to Sloane.
While the story has had its ups and downs, Patric Reynolds’ artwork has been consistently strong. Sometimes violent, but never too gory, the illustrations show the dark side of the vampire underworld. The drawings are expertly colored by Heather Moore, who adds so much to the story, it’s hard to overemphasize her work. Perhaps even more than Ward and Reynolds, Moore’s innovative use of darks combined with subdued but striking purples, blues and yellows make this story stand out from anything else on the comic book rack.
Since starting this new arc, the entire series has revived itself – much like a vampire rising from its grave for the first time. If it can keep up its momentum, Blood Stained Teeth could distinguish itself as a modern horror classic.
Blook Stained Teeth #7 will be available for purchase on Wednesday.