All sparkling aside, remember when vampires were monsters that were more likely to eat a twelve year old girl than romance her? Remember when vampirism was a metaphor for addiction and dark, difficult emotions? When you’re ready to come back to that world of deeper meaning and literary concern, read Something Animal. I bought this book at 2012 WonderCon in Anaheim from the publishers, Fanboy Comics. They’d given me the proper pitch: that it was a dark story about vampirism and not to be taken lightly. I wish I had headed their warning and read this book earlier. It’s good stuff and reminds me of all of the reasons I got into comics.
One day I’ll write a post about how James O’Barr’s The Crow made me see comics as an art form and not just pop candy. But today it’s about how although Something Animal is not a goth, rock n’ roll comic like The Crow, it carries the same emotional tension and exploration. I read the book in a single sitting – something I rarely do given my schedule and workload – but with this book, I had to do it. It packed that kind of punch. It reminded me of David Wellington’s Vampire Series where Laura Caxton faces some of the most vicious vampires ever depicted.
Part of the visceral feel of Something Animal comes in Robert Burrows’ art. It’s crunchy and painterly, sweeping at times. But the important thing is that it honestly conveys emotion, sets a black mood without being emotional. For better or worse, it reminds me of Ben Templesmith’s work on 30 Days of Night. Templesmith was not the progenitor of this dirty and disturbed style but he’s certainly the most famous person using it and both Something Animal and 30 Days of Night are vampire books. I would say that Something Animal is building on what 30 Days of Night brought to vampire comics. All read and done, Something Animal was a great read for an early, sullen morning.
Written By Sam Rhodes And Bryant Dillon
Art, Photography, And Design By Robert Burrows
Original Story By Ben Rhodes
Edited By Barbra Dillon