Comic - Van Helsing vs Dracula #1

Van Helsing vs Dracula

Reece Morris-Jones enters the world of Van Helsing vs Dracula as he takes on the first issue from Zenescope...

Writer:Patrick Shand
Artist:Andrea Meloni

Last year, Liesel Van Helsing was attacked by an evil from her father's past… but she survived, and has moved on with her life. Besides becoming the name that vampires in the tri-state area fear, she's also found love - in, admittedly, the strangest places.

However, when old friends come calling on her for help, she will find herself pulled into a final conflict with the deadliest vampire of all time…

I’ll admit, this cover did discourage me a little bit. I’ll make it clear; I’ve no problem with a bit of cheesecake in comics as long as it is equal opportunity cheesecake. But from my past experiences, comics that have characters decked up in corsets and fishnet stockings whilst fighting tend to have other things on their mind than good character work or compelling storylines.

So consider me proven slightly wrong, if not entirely convinced of good intentions. Van Helsing vs Dracula has a lot less T'n'A than presumed and a level of interpersonal drama that I wasn’t expecting, even if it doesn’t quite escape its roots.

If anything, Van Helsing seems to have filled the niche of TV shows from the 90s and early 2000’s that no longer exist like Charmed or Buffy the Vampire Slayer, where a central group of characters exist in a supernatural world and interact with its inhabitants, usually romantically at some point. Admittedly I don’t ever recall Phoebe or Willow beating on vampire in a bustier, but then perhaps times change?

I’m undecided in the end. Van Helsing vs Dracula picks up as if it had come back from a mid season break and spends a lot of its first issue recapping past events and key character moments for new readers. I did appreciate this as it brought me up to speed on where everyone was, but I also could have done with some more character development, as the shock twist at the end of the issue didn’t leave much of an impact on me.

I think it is best to treat Van Helsing vs Dracula as the adage of ‘comics are a soap opera’ in its purest form. Long time readers will find plenty of developments to keep themselves entertained and the comic is easy to pick up for new readers in the same way a soap is.

Van Helsing vs Dracula is available from Zenescope
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