REVIEW: ‘Dracula Motherf**ker!’

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Dracula Motherf**ker!

Dracula Motherf**ker! is published by Image Comics, written by Alex de Campi, and art by Erica Henderson. In Vienna, Austria 1889, Dracula is nailed into his coffin to be locked away for all time. Well, until 1974. When Dracula’s casket is found and brought to Los Angeles, a new reign of terror for the Prince of Darkness begins. When photographer Quincy Harker finds himself entangled in Dracula’s plans, he learns a whole new meaning to the term graveyard shift.

Horror is a genre about pacing. This is doubly true for the classics like Dracula. By now we are all thoroughly familiar with how the moment will go down, how the vampire will claim his victim. Without the element of the unknown to fuel the reader’s fear, the tale needs to rely on pace to allow the moment to seep into the reader’s mind. Giving it time to brew and create the horror for itself. If this pacing goes wrong, the story can find itself quickly devolving into a string of predictable horror scenes. Even if the moment itself is executed well, it will likely fall flat if the pace outruns the atmosphere. This was my biggest problem with Dracula Motherf**ker!.

As the bodies begin to pile, Harker quickly finds himself in Dracula’s crosshairs. Why exactly is never made clear, but it becomes quickly obvious that he won’t be long for this world without help. Luckily for him, there are those who oppose Dracula. Some of his former brides have gone rogue and vehemently oppose their former master.

This element of Dracula’s brides, both current and former, play a substantial role in Dracula Motherf**ker!’s story. It takes the prince of darkness and uses him as an allegory for abusers of women in general. Promising them eternal youth and power, there are those who cannot say no to the potential Dracula offers. Of course, the deal is not what it is cracked up to be. Hence why several of his self-freed wives arrive to challenge him and, if possible, save his current crop from their would-be tormentor.

Dracula Motherf**ker! 

There is one particular scene where two of Dracula’s brides have a confrontation that is, to me, the highlight of this story. There is an inescapable feeling of the surreal as an all too real conversation occurs between two supernatural beings. De Campi does a fantastic job of balancing the unbelievable with the mundane in this scene. There is something special that really highlights such real-world moments when they are placed in such unbelievable circumstances.

While overall, this scene does a good job with its presentation it, like most of Dracula Motherf**ker!, feels a bit rushed. It just feels like there are too many things the book is trying to do to give the time necessary for any one to hit perfectly. Whether it be character confrontations or Harker coming across another vampiric victim, everything is over too quickly.

The artistic presentation here does a solid job of complementing the story. The simpler style keeps the images from getting overly cluttered and allows the art to focus on the key elements of each panel. Henderson also does an excellent job with the portrayal of Dracula himself. Instead of any of his expected appearances, Dracula is kept much more ethereal within this story. A true monstrosity, it is only through his powers, and the promise of a share of it, that would ever draw a victim to his grasp.

The biggest stand out of the visual design though is the coloring. With only a couple of colors filling each panel the book is bathed in a classic gothic horror feel.

When all is said and done, Dracula Motherf**ker! delivers a solid vampiric tale. While there are some high points, the book attempts to do too much to ever let any of them truly land.

Dracula Motherf**ker! is available on August 12th wherever comics are sold.


Dracula Motherf**ker! 
3.5

TL;DR

When all is said and done, Dracula Motherf**ker! delivers a solid vampiric tale. While there are some high points, the book attempts to do too much to ever let any of them truly land.