Review: Vampirella Roses for the Dead #4

It’s been a long wait, but we finally got to read the conclusion to Kristina Deak-Linsner and Joseph Michael Linsner’s Vampirella: Roses for the Dead in issue #4 from Dynamite comics. This concludes the tale of Vampirella and Evily’s hunt for a sexual predator with connections to the occult. We find out exactly what those connections are in this issue, but I’ll try not to totally spoil it.

The book picks up after Blake cut out the tongue of his servant Natalia. Vampirella and Evily arrive outside his residence and battle their way inside where they find the villain. After the confrontation ensues, he reveals his true nature. Together, the heroes are able to stop him, but Vampirella is incapacitated in the process. She eventually recovers with the help of her friend Parrish and is able to finally meet Clare, who has also recovered. We get a quick glimpse of Blake’s punishment in the afterlife, and Vampirella and Evily say their goodbyes.

I really enjoyed this series, but I really wish it had come out on a monthly schedule as it had originally been advertised. The long breaks between issues really mess up the flow as a reader. I think this would be a great book to pick up in trade paperback format so it can be read straight through. I also would have liked to see this extended to a five issue series. An extra issue would have given more opportunity to flesh out some of the characters and their relationships to one another. Specifically, I felt like the character of Natalia drew the short straw. After she was mutilated by Blake, she became somewhat of a sympathetic figure, but we never heard from her again after she was left bleeding on the floor.

This series was a real breath of fresh air after the kind of Vampirella comics we’d been subjected to leading up to it. It was a step back to a more classic era without being a copy of anything that had come before it. It had it’s own distinct voice but also stayed true to the character rather than reinventing her. I kind of get tired of talking about the costume, but it’s and ever-present issue. I loved the way it was handled here. Basically, Vampirella was in the classic costume during the scenes where she was “on the job.” In the other moments she wore different outfits that were obviously based on the costume but were more like normal “civilian” clothes. As I’ve said in every review of this series, the art was great. I particularly enjoyed the color palette that was used. It was a bit brighter than what you would expect from a Vampirella book or any horror/occult themed comic which worked really well for me.

I don’t know if Deak-Linsner has anymore story left to tell, but I would definitely be on board for a sequel series with these characters. I could see them teaming up again with Clare in the mix and maybe even add another character like Pantha and make it a team book. Now there’s an idea – a Vampirella team book…hmm…

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