Illustrated by Guiu Vilanova
Published by Dynamite Entertainment
In which David secretly tries to get Emma settled into Collinwood; Barnabas discovers further disadvantages to being human again; and the reasons why Roger and Carolyn have been spending so much time at the Blue Whale is revealed…
David Collins has done many unwise things during his short life, but deliberately inviting a newly-created vampire (who can barely control her urges) into his home has to rank in the Top Three of His Dumbest Actions Ever List. But at least it’s an understandable action – how many other besotted young men would’ve acted otherwise? – and it ratchets up the tension as to whether or not Emma will confine her feeding to animals that David procures for her, or will the Great House’s other inhabitants be on the menu next?
The Roger/Carolyn portion of the plot leads to some nice interactions between Willie and his master. As they discuss Barnabas’s adjustments to being human once more, and the former vampire expresses his sincere thanks to his ex-thrall for everything Willie’s ever done for him.
But before this oddly touching moment, Elizabeth’s sudden decision to join them and Julia on their foray to the Blue Whale leads to a wonderfully captured moment of mutual consternation – how will they be able to get to the bottom of things with the Mistress of Collinwood (who, despite everything, is still mainly ignorant of the supernatural goings-on within her town) in tow? With Julia babysitting Elizabeth, it’s up to Barnabas and Willie to investigate – and they soon find out the hard way that Roger and Carolyn are not quite themselves these days…
VERDICT: A tense, atmospheric instalment (helped considerably by Guiu Vilanova’s far superior artwork) in which things seem to go from bad to worse for just about everyone. For the first time in quite a while, this comic has piqued my interest. 7/10
John S. Hall