Graphic Novel Review: Requiem Vampire Knight Vol 5: The City of Pirates and Blood Bath
IN the dying days of World War II, SS officer Heinrich Augsburg is killed on the Eastern front, only to be reborn in the corrupt and twisted reality that is Resurrection, where evil souls are brought back to life as monsters, growing younger instead of older. Joining the vampire elite under the name of Requiem, Augsburg finds a reawakened sense of honour driving him, and embarks on a quest for his lost love and his one hope of redemption. Guided by a hideous and ancient vampire baby, and coming into conflict with pirate ghouls and the deadly Mortis and Claudia, his adventures are only just beginning…
Translated from the original French graphic novels, this is writer Pat Mills at his most unrestrained, with his characteristic satirical edge complemented by the brutal violence portrayed here, albeit with a notable touch of humour and morality. The artwork by LeDroit is beautifully detailed, offering intricate designs, luxurious paintwork and a real understanding of what the writer is trying to convey, something often lacking in comics work these days.
Each new volume ups the ante, with the creative team further developing the warped and twisted realm of Resurrection, building on the structures they have already established and expanding on their ideas in new ways. Fusing satire, horror and violence with social commentary, humour and good old-fashioned adventure, the creators fail to put a foot wrong any step of the way.
If your only experience of Pat Mills comes from his legendary work in 2000AD, where he created the likes of Slaine and Nemesis, then prepare to be stunned, as he manages to outdo the bulk of his English work with this highly accomplished vampire saga. A remarkable achievement for someone who has been working in the industry over four decades.
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One of the stand-out independent graphic novels of the year, miss Requiem at your peril.
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