Following Vampirella’s discovery of a seemingly feral Red Sonja in the mountains, she attempts to get to the bottom of whatever enchantment has altered Sonja’s mind, as well as what her connection is to the many recent disappearances in the region.
This was a really fun issue that loosened up a bit from last month’s issue. I really enjoyed the tone struck by the first issue, with Vampirella still relatively early into her time on Earth, but already beginning to recognize the evil that humanity is capable of and how she can combat it. This issue continues that thread while also introducing more light humor into the mix. It’s done in clever ways, through dialogue and the culture shock experienced by our lead characters, so it never feels like it betrays the tone that has been established.
These are pulpy characters, so adding a bit of camp to the mix is certainly welcome. I’ll admit to having a goofy smile on my face at seeing Sonja sitting on a bed full of hamburgers. The lady knows what she wants.
As for the rest of the issue, it did feel like it was a bit of necessary set up, what with Vampirella trying to figure out what’s wrong with Sonja and the two of them getting over their initial misgivings regarding one another. The momentum of last issue doesn’t feel like it’s quite there until the last few pages, when things really kick up a notch. We’re also introduced to a new character in Charlie, who doesn’t really get much of an explanation other than the fact that she’s into the occult. Hopefully she’ll be fleshed out more in later appearances.
Seeing the contrast in how these two approach a potentially dangerous situation is a very welcome aspect of this story. In many of the team-ups we’ve seen between the two, they tend to pretty much be on the same page. It’s interesting to see them disagree on tactics, even if Vampirella still finds Sonja’s enjoyment of battle more than a little bit charming.
It also brings home the idea that this is meant to be the first time these characters have met, so it’s very interesting to see how they clash and where they find common ground, often with humorous results. They’re both fish out of water, albeit Vampirella has a bit more of an idea of how to behave in “civilized” modern society.
The artwork from Drew Moss is gorgeous, with Rebecca Nalty’s colors making the reds pop in particular. When you’re dealing with Red Sonja and the crimson-clad Vampirella, that’s a great secret weapon to have.
There’s an odd issue with the lettering being somewhat inconsistent throughout the book, mainly in normal dialogue scenes. The style seems to change for a bit in the middle of the issue. However, the designs and lettering for the Hyrkanian language being spoken by Sonja near the beginning is interesting and a very enjoyable (and humorous) contrast, especially once Sonja switches to english and you realize that she’s basically just been trash-talking in a dead language.
This was an entertaining second issue that finally sees our two leads interacting and playing off one another in fun ways. We also get more details regarding the vampire lore of this version of Vampirella, along with an interesting final page that suggests we may be seeing even more of that mythology explored in future issues.