As the concluding issue of the Scout’s Vlad Dracula miniseries hits the stores, the battle lines are expertly drawn.

And as Vlad prepares for the final battle with his brother Radu, Vlad is trapped in his castle, badly outnumbered and on the receiving end of a repetitive onslaught.

Writer Matteo Strukul pulls out all the stops in describing this centuries-old situation. The words are few but descriptive, the drama is intense and bloody. There are twists and turns in the proceedings that act on our hearts… love, hate, anger, and sorrow. And always, slaughter.

Artist Andrea Mutti continues to depict these battle-weary battalions with a line and brush that suggest the unforgiving weight of it all. The shapes are shown in massive fatigue, in mid-stride, in falling, and in flight. The atmosphere is all-surrounding, all-encompassing. Colourist Vladimir Popov shows us the shades of defeat, the blood strewn results of incessant strife. The misty greys, the blending of boiling in oil, the blast of battle.

It’s been a long road, and a strongly written and illustrated series of extra-paged issues.

Scout Comics, Vlad Dracula 3 (of 3), $6.99 for 60 pages of content. Mature

By Alan Spinney

After a career of graphic design, art direction and copywriting, I still have a passion for words and pictures. I love it when a comic book comes together; the story is tight, and the drawings lead me forward. Art with words... the toughest storytelling technique to get right. Was this comic book worth your money? Let's see!!