Blood Queen Vs Dracula #4
Review by Paul Bowler
The showdown between the notorious Elizabeth Bathory and the Lord of the Vampires reaches its blood-drenched conclusion in Blood Queen Vs Dracula #4, as this new four-part Dynamite mini-series written by Troy Brownfield and illustrated by Kewber Baal, with colors by Kirsty Swan, and lettered by Marshall Dillon, sees these iconic horror characters locked in mortal combat as their enemies close in to attack them.
We’ve seen the opening gambits between the Blood Queen and Dracula, tensions and passions have run high, there’s been treachery on both sides, assassins have been vanquished, and now we have the final battle between the Blood Queen and Dracula! Surrounded by foes on all sides in her own castle, Elizabeth’s dark powers will be put to the greatest test of all, for even if she can defeat her peoples enemies, the Blood Queen must still find the strength to resist Dracula’s will if she is to avoid becoming the Lord of Vampires dutiful servant…
The final issue of this four-part mini-series enables writer Troy Brownfield to bring all the plot threads involving the Blood Queen, Dracula, and their common enemies in the Otterman Empire, together for one last brutal fight to the end. The world is indeed painted blood in this action-packed finale! Until now we have only seen the minor skirmishes. Here we finally see the Blood Queen and Dracula really cut loose, no quarter is given between them, and their battle becomes a whirlwind of magic, transformation, stone, bloodshed, and even steel!
Blood Queen Vs Dracula #4 is lavishly illustrated by Kewber Baal. Indeed, Baal’s exemplary work on this mini-series has brought this stunning world to life in exquisite detail. Castle Nadasdy in the Blood Queen’s kingdom of Varanno is the setting for this final confrontation, it provides a perfect battle ground for Elizabeth and Dracula to uses their powers to the full, and Baal ensures every moment is captured in vivid detail. The rich colors by Kirsty Swan also imbue every scene with added textures, providing subtle flourishes and tones, as blood, twirling mist, and crimson magical energies tear across the pages between these two powerful combatants.
When the Ottoman forces led by General Serhan’s brother, Burak, a magic wielding Sihirbaz, launch a surprise attack on castle Nadasdy at the height of Elizabeth’s battle with Dracula, the Blood Queen and the Prince of Darkness must set aside their differences and unite against their enemies. Troy Brownfield ensures the action doesn’t let up for a moment. The cutting banter the Blood Queen and Dracula shared throughout their combat quickly spills over into this stand-off against the Otterman’s and the vengeful sorcerer, making for a deliciously witty, violent, and decisively blood-soaked finale. But once the dust has settled an unexpected proposal is made, a new alliance is forged, and we are left with a tantalising coda that could well spark a rematch between the Blood Queen and Dracula at some point in the not too distant future…
Blood Queen Vs Dracula #4 brings this Dynamite mini-series to an exciting and immensely satisfying conclusion. Troy Brownfield’s dramatic storyline has built into a sweeping blood-splattered epic, its been great to see two horror icons like the Blood Queen and Dracula clash while their Ottoman enemies rise against them, and the excellent art by Kewber Baal has immersed us in every glorious moment of visceral bloodshed while the power struggle between Elizabeth and the Lord of Vampires thundered towards its climax. This new Dynamite mini-series has been a firm favourite of mine over the last few months, it delivered on every level, and I certainly hope we get to see the Blood Queen and Dracula cross swords again one day.