LOOK, I CAME UP WITH A BUNCH OF HALLOWEEN LISTS AND I'M GONNA POST THEM. I know Halloween is over, and has been for a little while, but I don't care. October isn't the only month where spooky spooky ghost times are allowed. So we're gonna talk about the vampiric blood suckers of comics. The vicious blood drinking fangfaces themselves. Is fangfaces a thing? Because if not, let's make that a thing. So here we go, ten of the best fangfaces in comics. Eat some garlic, hang a cross on your wall, and turn on all the running water in your house, because the entries on this list most certainly bite. WARNING: MAJOR SPOILERS INBOUND FOR ASTRO CITY . Normally I wouldn't warn you this early, but it's worth not knowing if you haven't had it spoiled for you.
Robert Kirkman's Astounding Wolfman is one of his most underrated comics. The story of Gary Hampton, CEO turned werewolf superhero, is one of violence and fun and tragedy.
After being mauled by a wolf, Gary begins his horrible transformation into a monster of the night. But he isn't alone in his quest. A mysterious stranger named Zechariah appears and says that he can help. Turns out that Zechariah is a vampire who has been around for decades, and he wants only to help Gary be the best that he can.
Except that maybe that isn't actually the case. Zechariah may have helped train Gary to become a superhero, but he also kinda – SPOILERS – murders Gary's wife and frames Gary for it. Oh and he begins training Gary's daughter to kill him. I guess he's kind of a huge jerk then, huh. But as a major villain for a great little series, Zechy sure works well.
Total jerk, great villain.
Hi, there, nineties X-Men cartoon fans! How are you guys doing? Good? Good. So anyway, Jubilee.
Jubilation Lee was an orphan turned homeless child living in Hollywood, California. At a young age, she discovered that she had the ability to shoot bursts of energy (nicknamed "fireworks") from her hands. Eventually, she was picked up by the X-Men, and Wolverine took her under his wing and trained her. After a stint on the X-Men Blue Team, she left to become a founding member of Generation X, where she lasted for many years.
She bounced around for a few years before losing her powers alongside most of the world's mutants on M-Day. After the death of Dracula, Jubilee was infected by a vampire suicide bomber and began to transform into a vampire herself. This transformation was completed by a bite from Dracula's son Xarus. This gave her full vampire powers, replacing her former mutant ones. She also adopted a child named Shogo, so points for her.
Vampire teen mom for the win.
8. Vampire Man-Baby-Kid
Axe Cop is one of the greatest things ever published by the human race. It is perfection, and I love every panel of it.
Axe Cop, for those who don't know, is a webcomic drawn by Ethan Nicolle and written by his 5 year old brother Malachai. The series is pure joyous childish imagination, full of murder and bad guy fighting and dinosaurs with sunglasses and Gatling guns for hands.
It centers on Axe Cop, a cop who found the perfect fireman's axe and decided to fight crime with his battle cry, "I'll chop your heads off!!!!!!!!!" It's great. But one of the villains is even better.
One day, a vampire bat bit a baby. That baby turned into a vampire that was half vampire man, half vampire baby, and half vampire kid in the middle (yes, that doesn't make sense, just go with it). Vampire Man-Baby-Kid is vicious and evil and hilarious to look at. In short, he's perfect Axe Cop greatness.
Yes, Batman. Batman was a vampire. Like, a couple of times.
One of which is in the friggin' awesome episode of Batman: The Brave and the Bold, in which he stalks the entire Justice League International on the satellite. Great episode, seriously, please check that one out.
But the most famous time when Batman was a vampire was in the three-part Red Rain elseworlds series. Those three books are Batman & Dracula: Red Rain; Batman: Bloodstorm; and Batman: Crimson Mist. And yes, those titles are pretty embarrassing when viewed from a modern perspective. I mean, "Bloodstorm"? Really? Eeeesh. But these three specials follow a longform narrative arc.
Part the first: Batman fights Dracula and ends up beating him, but gets bitten in the end. Part the second: Batman battles his inner demons and his bloodlust before asking to be staked to avoid turning into a monster. Part the third: Batman is reawakened as a full fledged monster who goes on an insane killing spree before finally being put down, once and for all. Not the best storyline, but worth checking out if you think it sounds like fun.
And hi, 90s Spider-Man cartoon fans! Man, first the Jubilee entry gets the X-Men fans, and now you guys. But if you did watch that cartoon, then you probably know Morbius, as he had a pretty decent-sized role in that thing.
Morbius was a biochemist who attempted to cure himself of a rare blood disease with a combo of vampire bats and electroshock therapy, which sounds metal as hell. But he messed up and turned himself into a vampire.
Well, not a vampire-vampire but like a vampire-like creature guy.
Poor Morbius has always vacillated between straight-up villain and misunderstood flawed protagonist, most recently in a self-titled series that I really enjoyed. He also did battle with the Marvel Zombies and helped reassemble The Punisher into Franken-Castle. But his regular role is as a good old Spider-Man villain, which is a role he's good at. Watching Spider-Man fight a vampire is always a fun time, so Morbius will very frequently pop up in the Spider-Books around Halloween. But I'm always glad to see him.
Yes, Dracula is a mainstay Marvel character. In fact, Tomb of Dracula is one of the more famous and long-running Marvel horror comics.
Vlad Dracula was also directly responsible for the creation of many of Marvel's other vampires, specifically British superheroine Spitfire, Captain America villain Baron Blood, and the greatest Marvel character of all time – I swear – Hellcow. Hellcow is a vampire who is also a cow. That is perfect.
Dracula also likes to fight the X-Men. He does it quite a bit. Oh, and one time, he made a moon base and shot a bunch of vampire missiles with the plan to shoot vampire missiles at the earth. Why, yes, that was the raddest goshdarn sentence you have ever read. It's ok, take a minute and absorb the awesome. Let it wash over you. Dracula"¦moon base"¦vampire missiles"¦I can die happy now. Presumably by being hit from space with a vampire missile.
It would be a good death.
Like, was I just gonna leave Blade off the list? Am I an idiot? Don't answer that.
Tara Brooks was a prostitute in 1929 London. And as a prostitute in 1929 London, her life wasn't super great. Plus, she was pregnant. Her life got worse, however, when she was attacked and drained by vampire Deacon Frost. But the baby was born. The legendary half-vampire, the daywalker. Eric Brooks, aka Blade. Blade trained for years, growing more and more ferocious and adept. He joined up with other vampire hunters for a time, but would always drift back to lone wolf status. After being bitten by Morbius (you remember him) he gained new powers and officially became the daywalker.
He signed up with SHIELD during Civil War and got himself a robot hand, which is pretty sweet. But his next prominent role was in Captain Britain and the MI-13, where he returned to his British roots and fought Dracula. Plus, he teamed up with the X-Men, and tried to stake Jubilee. Yeah, all of the Marvel Vampires tend to run into each other pretty constantly. Small world.
3. Pearl Jones
Unfortunately, I haven't had the chance to read a ton of American Vampire, but I love what I have read. The series focuses on the transitions of vampires to the new world and the birth of the new, super-powerful American Vampires, as opposed to the traditional European ones.
But, while the main character of the series is ostensibly the first American Vampire, Skinner Sweet, the character I actually wanted to put on this list was the protagonist of the first volume's "A" Story: Pearl Jones. Pearl was an actress in 1925 Hollywood who was taken advantage of by a big shot movie star and wound up fed to vampires. Not a fun night, I'd assume.
After the legendary Skinner Sweet transformed her fully into a vampire, Pearl returned to life hell bent on revenge. She's a badass, and her vampiric transformations are pretty terrifying. But it is at its heart a revenge story, and a fun one that I'd highly recommend to pretty much anyone. Hands-down great start to a series I need to check out more of.
2. The Confessor
SPOILERS! Ah, it's too late. I gave you the warning in the intro paragraph specifically for this entry way ahead of time, so if you just spoiled this for yourself it's honestly 100 percent your fault. Sorry, them’s the breaks.
But anyway, let's talk about The Confessor. From Astro City, which is maybe the best superhero comic book of all time – no joke – the Confessor pops up in the series' second big arc, Confession. The story focuses on a young guy who’s recently arrived in Astro City, who is taken in by The Confessor as his new sidekick, Altar Boy.
The Confessor is a Batman analogue who does all the Batman-y disappearing tricks and fear instilling. But toward the end of the arc, it's revealed that he can do all this because he's actually a vampire. A vampire who wears a cross on his chest. To keep him focused. That's badass.
But then, so is The Confessor.
Look, if you thought I was gonna pick LITERALLY ANYONE ELSE for the number one slot, you're drunker than Cassidy probably is right now.
Preacher is one of the greatest comic book series of all time, and Cassidy is a perfect example of why it's so good. Have you ever met someone who you thought was kind of a jerk, but the good, fun kind of jerk? If you have, I'm sure you've also experienced the moment when they turned on you and you seriously questioned what kind of person they were.
Preacher's use of Cassidy literally pulls this trick on the reader as much as it does the main characters. Cassidy is a beautifully nuanced portrayal of a scumbag. A figurative bloodsucker as well as a literal one. He's charming and funny and bitter and mean, but he slowly reveals himself as an a-hole of the highest caliber.
And how much you like him by the end of Preacher comes down to whether or not you can find forgiveness in your heart. Before it gets staked, that is.
And there you have it, my list of my favorite vampiric comic book characters. I'm sure there're a few I left out (number 11 woulda been Hellcow) but hey, if you woke up this morning with bite marks on your neck and an aversion to sunlight, you've got some new role models to look up to. Just remember to not cross running water, because that's the one vampire thing everyone forgets about. Well, that and the ability to turn into mist, but that one's dumb. Talk to you next week, my creatures of the night.