Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Review of "Travelers No. 8: Springtime for Vlad Tepes in Romania," comic written by Tony DiGerolamo

Review of

Travelers No. 8: Springtime for Vlad Tepes in Romania, comic written by Tony DiGerolamo

Five out of five stars

One of the most unusual opening segments

 Vlad Tepes was a ruler in the Eastern European province of Wallachia in the fifteenth century and he is the source of the legend of Count Dracula. He was the second son of Vlad Dracul, who was the ruler of Wallachia when Vlad was young. Known to history as a cruel man, few people would have voluntarily traveled to the castle of Vlad Tepes.

 In the opening of this story, a traveling circus is moving towards the castle occupied by Vlad fifty years ago. The scenery is unpleasant, yet consistent with the legends of how Vlad ruled his lands. There is a temporal shift to the present where the owner of a deli is offering up samples of what he is considering as new menu items. A woman in a fur bikini wearing a Viking hat, a small man with elf ears, and a man in a padre outfit are among the patrons.

 The plotline then takes another twist, as the reader learns that everyone in the group are vampires. They move on via a wagon and when they arrive to give a performance for a king, one of them states that they are “the jolly jugular jugglers.” A pun on the jugular vein of the neck, a prime target for the vampire. The group goes before the king and when he tries to destroy them a twist of fate that is actually a bobble saves them. In conclusion, there is a happy ever after unusual love story.

 Bizarre is a light word to describe this oddball comic. Yes, it is an overdose of the vampire plot device, but that heavy hand is lightened with humor and genuine stupidity. One does not often encounter stupidity when the characters are vampires.

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