Comic Book Review: Vampironica #4
It is good to see some consistency back into the release of these issues. Vampironica is a story with too much potential for Archie Comics to allow it to lose readers for wait times. Especially when they are also planning a big crossover story for this book down the road. With that said, this issue is exactly the one we have been awaiting when we see the confident version of this Vampironica who we saw in the very first season of the debut issue kicking ass and on a mission.
From the start we jumped straight into the thick of this chapter. It was thrilling how everyone was set to save this pool party. There was of course a few who we needed that general reaction from to the existence of vampires,and they surprisingly broke how cliche that could have turned with a little humor thrown into the mix. It was fun for everyone else also to be able to set that fear aside for what they needed to do to combat the threat. How some of the vampires reacted to them was a great way to work off of them since instantly we were also able to fill some gaps between what happened with Reggie and some other things that raised an eyebrow along the way. That along with a few other developments aided in assuring us that this was an assault that this story was building up to rather than throwing it at us out of nowhere. Now despite the excitement of the actual siege and what not, it was a siege that came and went pretty fast. I was surprised by how it picked up momentum, then found itself brought to an end quick.
While the siege did come and go, it was wise to see that there was more to this than what we were seeing on the surface. If you were looking forward to a certain big bad encounter, then this story will deliver on that end. The only problem is that this is not what you will get this issue. You could overlook this for the approach that they have taken to that big confrontation. It may make-up for what you may have thought didn’t satisfy. I know I was prepared for a bigger confrontation because this is a series that gives us a bit more pages than your usual books.
Veronica as usual had the spotlight on her when she is a refreshing take on vampires. As I’ve said before, not even turning the rich girl into a vampire changes who she is at the core. Having fun with the role of hero that she has been thrown into, enjoying the attention she has been given for being able to crash a party in a unique fashion. There is just no preparing for the way she eases into all that power in the palm of her hands. Responsibility looks good on her when she is written the right way. You would have never expected two such as Veronica and Dilton to work so well together, but they managed to catch us off guard with their plan too. Most of the counter-attack on their end was winging it, but it was their final move that made this memorable.
I have to say that I was a bit disappointed by the change in art team for this issue. I have spent the past three issues praising the work of Greg Smallwood, and this was too soon to have to get used to a new style. Maybe if this was the start of a new story arc I could overlook this, but they made this decision during the climax of a long-awaited issue. You are going to be sure to disappoint some readers who aren’t prepared for sudden changes like this. That is not to say that Greg Scott and Matt Herms are bad artists or that their work here wasn’t satisfactory, because it was. However, that doesn’t change the principle of the matter that is finding the right time to switch things up. So with that said, again I didn’t have a problem with the artwork we got here either. Scott and Herms did a great job capturing this crucial chapter of the story. It helped that they tackled this going for the same visual atmosphere as what we got up to this point. That means the same color schemes that engage us in the horror, along with the grainy overlay as well that strips this story of the idea that there is normalcy in these events. The characters aren’t as detailed as when Smallwood drew them, but they were still appealing for the expression and personality we got out of them regardless.
Vampironica #4 was an interesting execution of events for this siege of Riverdale. I do feel as though the siege could have been bigger, with a more memorable conclusion at the pool party, but this is undeniably leading to a development that is pretty cool for a story about vampires.