Mind Capsules – Graveyard Shift #1 and Elektra #9

Graveyard Shift #1
Graveyard Shift #1

Writer – Jay Faerber
Artist – Fran Bueno

The world is full of vampire stories, maybe moreso now than ever before.  That does not mean that there is not room for more and thus Image Comics has released this book.  Jay Faerber might be late to the party, but in actuality, the idea for this book was brewing many years ago before the latest vampire explosion, it just took a long time to make its way to the page according to his afterward.  It is a bit of a shame too as it might have performed better years ago than it would do so now, but better late than never.  While it does not bring anything new to the party, at least not yet as it is only the first issue, that should not be held against it.  You do not have to rewrite the rules for every subject you may want to tell a story about.  Sometimes it is good to play within the established boundaries already set out, and here, at least so far, that is exactly what Faerber does and he does so quite well.  The story is compelling, it has mystery and suspense, a little tension and a fair amount of action and horror and is written quite expertly by the author.  The book also looks wonderful thanks to artist Fran Bueno who has a very unique pencilling style and creates the perfect mood upon the page no matter the scene.  The horror genre is always a little harder to express upon the printed page than it is in a movie, yet Faerber manages to do it successfully and the book works on every level.  Is it the best vampire book you will ever read?  No, not yet anyways, but it will be fun to see if Faerber can do it as he is off to a good start.

4 out of 5

Elektra #9
Elektra #9

Writer – W. Haden Blackman
Artist – Michael Del Mundo
Colours – Marco D’Alfonso

Elektra has been on the hunt for Bullseye and with a little help from Jennifer Kale, she has finally caught up with him.  With some additional aid from the dragon that used to serve the Hand, Elektra manages to capture the man but not before the Hand had completed their ritual to restore Bullseye to his former glory.  Sort of.  W. Haden Blackman leaves the book on a bit of a soft cliff-hanger, setting up the next issue’s story perfectly which may or may not end up being good for our heroine.  From the very first issue of the series, Blackman has been doing a great job of fleshing out Elektra’s character, probably more than any writer has previously and it has been a fun ride to see him do so.  Elektra is one of the most complicated women in the Marvel Universe and while we may have thought to have known who she was before this, Blackman gives us even more.  Going forward, it will be interesting to see just what happens between her and Bullseye as Blackman has crafted a tale so utterly fascinating that you cannot help but return each and every month to find out.  The second half of the equation is Michael Del Mundo who’s painted artwork strikes always strikes a chord of awe within the reader.  Whether it sees Elektra in bloody battle or in repose, the book looks gorgeous and graceful and is one of the best looking-titles that Marvel has ever produced.  Though this book has been cancelled, it still deserves your support and if you have not been reading it, pick up the trade paperbacks or find the back issues because it is one hell of a good series.

4 out of 5

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