Elvira Mistress of the Dark #3 Review

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At Whitby Abbey with Bram Stoker this time, Elvira once again has to face off with Vlad the Impaler. But wait, is he really behind all the time travel, or could it be someone else? Let’s find out in Elvira Mistress of the Dark #3 from Dynamite Entertainment.

Elvira Mistress of the Dark #3ELVIRA MISTRESS OF THE DARK #3

Writer: David Avallone
Artist: Dave Acosta
Colorist: Andrew Covalt
Letterer: Taylor Esposito
Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: November 7, 2018

Previously in Elvira Mistress of the Dark: Elvira has been traveling through time by way of a coffin, and meeting famous horror creators through history, most recently Edgar Allen Poe. But these meetings are complicated by the fact that Vlad the Impaler is following her and is out to get her, or maybe she’s foiling his plans and…he’s…still out to get her. At any rate, she bests him again, travels through time, and ends up at the feet of Bram Stoker!

THE SEXY, SEXY BRITISH MOORS

Not an auspicious opening here – Elvira Mistress of the Dark #3 begins with Florence Stoker calling her a harlot. Elvira realizes that “Bram” is Bram Stoker and asks him how his book is coming along, which simply increases the hostility between Florence and her. She warns them about Vlad the Impaler, whom Bram knows has been dead for centuries, which lets Elvira go into her recap schtick, and break the fourth wall to say that the writer could save her a lot of trouble by just putting all this inside the front cover.

The coffin starts making noises; Elvira tries to keep to closed (by shoving Bran on top) (with jokes, of course), to no avail. Vlad appears, as Elvira points out, right at the top of page four like last time. Elvira warns Florence to flee – but too late, she and Vlad exchange glances and are both infatuated to the point where he decides to take her as his bride. Bram disagrees and Vlad flings him away (and into a pond), threatening to do the same to Elvira, who chooses to sashay away.

Elvira gets Bram working on whittling a wooden stake, and they catch up with Vlad and Florence in the ruins of Whitby Abbey. After some rather florid dialogue (which Elvira naturally comments on), Vlad takes off his breastplate and Bram and Elvira charge in (with a “Yippee-ki-yay, mother-impaler!” on Elvira’s part). This momentarily distracts Vlad, who proudly proclaims that he has never impaled a family member. Well, unless cousins count. Elvira stabs him with the wooden stake which…doesn’t kill him. “Where did you get that idea?” he asks, and Bram looks sheepish.

The first two issues seemed to generally follow a similar formula, and while this issue sets that up, it also has a twist. Elvira figures out that Vlad is being played as much as she is. If they stopped fighting and refused to play along, maybe they could figure out who it is. Well, that lasts for off of a few minutes before Vlad decides to run off with Florence. One step ahead of him, Elvira grabs a torch – and runs off to use it on the time-traveling coffin. In the meantime, Bram sneaks away with Florence. It’s a sacrifice for Elvira to remain trapped here in time, but she doesn’t want Vlad to get into the modern day.

This brings out the schemer behind it all – Doctor Faust, who traded his soul for all the knowledge in the universe. He has the power – and the coffin wasn’t necessary for it after all. He sends Vlad away with a snap of his fingers, and sends Elvira back…to a movie set! Momentarily she thinks she’s home, but it is the set of “The Bride of Frankenstein!”

THE EYES HAVE IT

This is Elvira Mistress of the Dark #3, and admittedly much of the visual focus is not Elvira’s eyes (nor anyone else’s for that matter). But eyes are the center of most facial expressions, and there is a lot of expression going on here. From Bram’s surprise, to Florence’s fury, to Elvira’s range from puzzled, to exasperated, to sassy, it’s all there, pushing the story forward through the horror tropes to the humor.

And humor there is aplenty. This is Elvira – she keeps cracking the jokes and occasionally rolling her eyes or even winking at us. This is helped along by the art, and by the lettering. We have sound effects; we have people’s emotions changing wildly at the drop of a hat, we have about faces and abrupt turns galore. And the art keeps it all together. The ruined abbey on a desolate moor is perfect for the setting, complete with torchlight and strong shadows.

BOTTOM LINE: A LIGHT HORROR ROMP THROUGH TIME AND SPACE

If you’re fond of traditional horror and you have a sense of humor, I think you might like Elvira Mistress of the Dark #3. It’s breezy and carefree, with plenty of jokes. Elvira is capable as a heroine, but not so serious that she can’t keep laughing at herself as well. It’s just enjoyable to sit down with for a time, and I really like that we have the plot twist to help keep it from becoming too formulaic.

Elvira Mistress of the Dark #3

80%
80%
Breezy and Carefree

If you’re fond of traditional horror and you have a sense of humor, I think you might like Elvira Mistress of the Dark #3. It’s breezy and carefree, with plenty of jokes. Elvira is capable as a heroine, but not so serious that she can’t keep laughing at herself as well. It’s just enjoyable to sit down with for a time, and I really like that we have the plot twist to help keep it from becoming too formulaic.

  • Writing
    8
  • Art
    8
  • Coloring
    8
  • User Ratings (0 Votes)
    0
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By day, she’s a mild-mannered bureaucrat and Ms. Know-It-All. By night, she’s a dance teacher and RPG player (although admittedly not on the same nights). On the weekends, she may be found judging Magic, playing Guild Wars 2 (badly), or following other creative pursuits. Holy Lack of Copious Free Time, Batman! While she’s always wished she had teleportation as her superpower, she suspects that super-speed would be much more practical because then she’d have time to finish up those steampunk costumes she’s also working on.

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