A mysterious figure races to the Hall of Justice, desperate to warn the Justice League of an impending war between the living and the undead. The strange situation is going to lead to unforeseen allies and – perhaps more shockingly – some very unexpected enemies revealing themselves.

The first issue in the bluntly titled DC vs Vampires series – part one of twelve – gets things off to a great start. Though mostly set-up and delivered via narrated flashbacks – therefore heavy on the exposition – it’s a well told story that gets us up to speed quickly; even those less familiar with the DC universe (myself included) should be suitably au fait with the scale of the situation by the end of the issue – and the shocking twists have some real bite too (pun most definitely intended).

Otto Schmidt’s art – a significant chunk of which is, in the flashback sequences, delivered in shades of blood red and black – is a great fit for the material; his super powered vampires look great and the gorier aspects of the action are subtly done, leaving much to the imagination. It’s definitely a toned down vampire story in terms of its horror approach, but Schmidt still finds a way to make it look and feel appropriately creepy.

It’s a real attention grabber of a story and a great concept, with some Hidden Invasion-style reveals no doubt on the cards for subsequent issues, where we’ll no doubt discover that long running characters have been vampires this whole time. Though writers James Tynion IV and Matthew Rosenberg run the risk of alienating hardcore DC fans with this kind of surprise reveal-based storyline – which is unlikely to remain the status quo for long – as a self-contained story it’s bound to be entertaining enough. Let’s see where we go as the story plays out.

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