The Strain #2


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The Strain #2


  • Words: David Lapham
  • Art: Mike Huddleston
  • Colors: Dan Jackson
  • Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
  • Price: $3.50
  • Release Date: Jan 11, 2012

The mystery deepens and the tension increases with the newest issue of this unique vampire series.

Based on the trilogy of novels from Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan, this visceral adaptation has enough bite to sink your teeth in to, or rather, to sink its teeth in to you.

Following directly on from the debut issue that featured a mysterious stranded airplane at JFK Airport, with no signs of life, this issue focuses on just what that mystery is. Clues build, as the bio hazard team investigate a coffin filled with dirt, and the lack of rigor mortis on the many corpses.

As Dr. Ephraim Goodweather and Nora Martinez interview the only three survivors from the mystery plane, we learn that a decrepit millionaire by the name of Eldritch Palmer is close to activating six nuclear reactors. He’s also close to immortality with secret procedures having replaced most of his body’s organs to keep him alive over the past few decades.

The second half of the issue thankfully moves away from all the news report exposition about Palmer’s wealth and the coming eclipse and hits its stride, starting with the disappearance of the soil filled coffin, and the hapless criminal tasked with moving it to Manhattan.

This series has yet to fully reveal the vampire virus that seems at its lifeless heart, but with examinations on the corpses and strange behavior from one of the plane’s survivors, it seems only a matter of time.

Lapham does well to maintain a growing cast of interesting characters, and there are even moments of dark humour thanks to the family life of one of the survivors, and the odd prirorities he reveals during his initial interview. Huddleston’s art is evocative and brutal when it needs to be. He uses blacks well to create shadows an imminent danger and his sketcy renderings are never without detail, as evidenced by two ghastly splash pages.

The creative pair are laying down an intriguing mystery that seems to be heading toward an unhappy ending for those about to be caught in the horror of it all.

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