Comic Review: SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE VAMPIRES OF LONDON (Dark Horse)

When Sherlock Holmes was last seen in public, he was in the midst of a confrontation with Professor Moriarty at the Reichenbach Falls in Switzerland (as was detailed in Sir […]

When Sherlock Holmes was last seen in public, he was in the midst of a confrontation with Professor Moriarty at the Reichenbach Falls in Switzerland (as was detailed in Sir Athur Conan Doyle’s short story “The Final Problem”). Now, before he returns to Dr. John Watson’s narration in “The Empty House” (also by Doyle), Holmes, in a letter to Watson, said he “must write about this [adventure], with the certainty that, alas, I may not finish it.”

Holmes recounts living in Paris with the help of his older brother Mycroft, when he stumbles upon a cadre of vampires that ask Holmes to return to England and meet their master, Selymes.

Upon meeting Selymes (which is a surname that shows up in Romania) he is revolted to see the vampire in an orgy of bodies and blood, but he listens to the master vampire’s proposal. He needs Holmes to eliminate a crazed vampire named Chanes.

Chanes is brutally murdering and feeding on the members of London High Society. Selymes is concerned this will lead Queen Victoria to waging a war against the vampire race. He further compels Holmes into his assistance by threatening Mary Watson, the wife of Holmes’s friend.

However, Holmes meets up with Chanes and finds out there is more than just random slaughter. He discovers a being fighting an addiction and works to turn the tables on the vampire community.

REVIEW:

This is hands down one of the most brilliant adaptations of Sherlock Holmes ever written. Writer Sylvain Cordurie incorporated his expertise of Holmes-isms within this narration and told a story that made perfect sense.

In late 19th Century Victorian London, three famous persons moved about after dark. Holmes, of course being one, and Dracula and Jack the Ripper being the others.

Selymes is Dracula had the Transylvanian vampire succeeded against the likes of Jonathan Harker, Abrahahm Van Helsing, and his lot. Cordurie gives Selymes a look almost inspired by the vampires in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Fright Night (1985) and Van Helsing (with Hugh Jackman).

Add this with the art of Laci (I do not believe that is his real name), he captures the mood of what Jack the Ripper would have seen during his brutal attack. Laci is able to capture even Ripper-like brutality without it becoming graphic and disturbing.

If there was any “down side” to this story, it was that it had little of the greatest Holmes-isms –his ability to look at any person and say where they were and where they had been.

However, considering Watson is barely in this story, it was amazing to see Holmes almost on his own. It was like watching the Doctor (from DOCTOR WHO) without a companion.

SUMMARY:

I loved this! This reminded me of the Boom! Studios mini-series POE which featured Edgar Allen Poe solving crimes that would inspire his later works. The series was brilliantly written by J. Barton Mitchell even more brilliantly drawn by Dean Kotz).

For vampire lovers, this is it! For Holmes lovers this is it! For people who want to see a real Sherlock Holmes versus Dracula, you could not ask for a better story!

Please, please, please pick this up!

CREDITS:

Sherlock Holmes and the Vampires of London

Dark Horse

Sylvain Cordurie, Story

Laci, Art

Axel Gonzalbo, Colors

Jean-Sebastien Rossbach, Covers

94 pages

$17.99

About Don Smith

Before self publishing 'Ghost Investigator' under the Spirited Comics Publication banner, Smith has written comic books for Heske Horror and Bluewater Comics. His bio comics, 'Political Power: Ronald Reagan' and 'Political Power: Rush Limbaugh' garnered national attention on 'The Rush Limbaugh Show' and 'The New York Times.' His upcoming comic 'American Defenders: The Army' gives a history of the United States Army. Smith also garnered acclaim with his latest history book, THE GOFFLE ROAD MURDERS OF PASSAIC COUNTY, that detailed the first murders in Passaic County, New Jersey and their unusual connection the administration of President William McKinely and Vice President Garret Hobart. Visit his site at http://donsmithwrites.wordpress.com.