American Vampire #3 - Scott Snyder and Stephen King 

Three issues into Vertigo's monthly "American Vampire" series, and it's clear that it's deserving of the "new horror classic!" status the publisher has placed on promotional materials. It's to the title's credit that it would achieve this even without Stephen King's name to help sell it.

Although King's half of the continuing quasi-anthology of interrelated tales is certainly good "? and welcome for the weird Western subgenre "? it's creator Scott Synder's lead story that sports the major hooks. Currently, small-time Hollywood actress Pearl is getting comfy in her new skin as a vampire, exacting revenge on the men and women who made her so.

I like that Synder's vamps aren't the same ol' same ol'; for one, their fingers grow into spindly spikes during attack mode. Artist Rafael Albuquerque continues to use splash panels to help hammer home the jolts. "American Vampire" is shaping up to be a true epic. Can't wait to see the movie, assuming there is one. (Hollywood would be stupid not to.) "?Rod Lott

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