REVIEW: ‘DC VS Vampires,’ Issue #4

Reading Time: 2 minutes

DC Vs Vampires #4 - But Why Tho

DC Vs Vampires #4 is written by James Tynion IV and Matthew Rosenberg, illustrated and colored by Otto Schmidt, lettered by Tom Napolitano, and published by DC Comics. Green Arrow and Batman continue their battle against the vampire kingdom — a fight that pits them against each other, as each thinks the other is a vampire! Meanwhile, the creatures of the night continue their attack on the heroes of the DC Universe — including members of the Bat-Family and the Justice League.

The issue features perhaps the best artwork of the series yet-and considering Schmidt has been turning in some stellar art during the series’ run so far that’s saying something. The issue is split into three sections: Batman and Green Arrow’s fight, Red Arrow and Batgirl vs Gorilla Grodd, and John Constantine confronting the vampiric Zatanna. The Batman/Green Arrow fight is brutal, frenetic, and showcases why both the Dark Knight and the Emerald Archer are not to be underestimated; despite not having any superpowers, both of them are highly trained fighters and are able to utilize the environment to their advantage, especially Batman as the fight takes place in his base of operations. The two’s fight also has an emotional weight to it as both think the other is a vampire; Schmidt draws their faces going through a variety of expressions; rage, then despair, and finally relief when the whole thing gets straightened out. Note to all superheroes: call each other or come up with code words to avoid these kinds of things.

The color art from Schmidt also takes things up a notch, drenching Gotham City and the Batcave in shadows. Only flashes of color can be seen, including Grodd’s blood-red eyes and razor-sharp fangs — alongside Green Arrow’s trademark emerald hood and Zatanna’s violet-hued magician ensemble. Even the narrative captions by Napolitano switch colors depending on who’s talking; first, they go from green, representing Green Arrow, to gray and black for Batman. Color can help set the mood in a story and the current mood is not good.

The “bad mood” comes courtesy of Tynion and Rosenberg, who constantly throw up roadblocks in the way of our heroes. Constantine attempts to talk to Zatanna until Doctor Fate kills her. The entire Justice League has been tricked into thinking Batman killed the Flash. And the vampires have turned heroes and villains including Grodd and Wonder Woman. Most of DC’s maxiseries including Dark Knights of Steel usually take a huge narrative turn around the third or fourth issue, and this series is no exception. I’m genuinely concerned for our heroes and hope they manage to gather reinforcements because if other heroes are turned into vampires they’re screwed.

DC Vs Vampires #4 finally unifies Batman and Green Arrow in their battle against the undead but also takes things from bad to worse with the vampire invasion. With the series’ “first act” essentially completed, it remains to be seen how the Dark Knight and the Emerald Archer escape this predicament — and who else will oppose or join them.

DC Vs Vampires #4 is available now wherever comics are sold.


DC Vs Vampires #4
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TL;DR

DC Vs Vampires #4 finally unifies Batman and Green Arrow in their battle against the undead but also takes things from bad to worse with the vampire invasion. With the series’ “first act” essentially completed, it remains to be seen how the Dark Knight and the Emerald Archer escape this predicament — and who else will oppose or join them.