By Hans Steinbach
Published by Tokyopop
Slugline: Ancient, undead musician has taken up goth rock when his past comes a-knocking in the form of werewolves, zombies, witch-vampires, holy paramilitary orders and romantic trauma.
These two books bother me. First problem: there are some really cool sequences, such as volume 1's combat through a hospital and volume 2's introduction of Elizabeth Bathory. Second problem: the art sometimes isn't clear when it needs to be. The worst example was when a section of wall turned out to actually be a train. (This was sometimes a problem in another title that I really, really wanted to love: Poison Elves by Drew Hayes)
And never mind that I'm not clear on what part of being undead includes having children who can grow into adults. Or being a werewolf. But I'm willing to let it slide.
I suppose I should be thankful, too, that I took French in high school (a thousand years ago,) because he keeps lapsing into it (and German and Italian, once or twice.)
Steinbach's got talent, I'm not going to argue that. There's wittiness and fast-moving combat and werewolves howling atop Notre Dame. There's a beautiful moment in v. 1 when Ein says "You are safe here, my friend." He uses a scratchy-pen art style that reminds me (fondly) of the early issues of Sandman. But the storytelling is rough and sometimes unclear, and in one important place the dialog just doesn't carry the weight needed to convince me that the likes of Bathory is going to change her mind.
I want to see what he writes when he's finished A Midnight Opera.