American Mythology’s first issue of Dark Tales from the Vokesverse is a glorious compilation of stories that Vokes has worked on in the past. With a creative group of collaborators, Vokes has orchestrated a volume of stories that are sure to send a shiver down your spine.
There are six stories and two previews to stories in this issue.
This issue explores the afterlife, vampires, dark forests, zombies, Frankenstein, and more! The first story, “Walpurgis Knight,” is one that mixes horror with Mexican masked wrestling. “The Wicked West: Day in the Afterlife” is follow-up to Vokes’ western book, The Wicked West. “Marc of the Vampires” tells the tale of a man who was institutionalized, but suddenly finds himself free of the one room that confined him… Is he really?
These stories, though all falling under the “horror” umbrella, greatly differ in content and theme. From finding terror in places we wouldn’t suspect to building on stories we grew up hearing all the way to horror in institutionalization and the unreliable narrator, these short stories explore horror in many more ways than we’re used to seeing.
The language used in these stories is reminiscent of classic horror comic books like Creepy and Eerie. Everything is just a bit overdramatized, there are a lot of caption boxes, and the scripts carry a perpetually grim tone throughout the stories. Writing has advanced in so many ways, and horror stories are written more modernly nowadays, but I can never get enough of this older style.
Neil Vokes is able to illustrate these stories with really different styles. All have fairly undetailed line work but are really cartoonish and expressive. The panels are really full, for the most part, and have a lot going on within them. There is a lot of heavy shadowing that really relays the mysterious and terrifying tone that reads really well.
This is a great collection of stories that brings back the classic type of writing that defined horror comics. For any and all horror fans, this is a must-read book.
Written by: Various
Illustrated by: Neil Vokes