Graphic Novel - The Strain vol. 1

The Strain Volume 1 by David Lapham
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Creepy and Gory covers. Volume 1 has the 1st to the 11th issue of this comic. I started reading it knowing that was about vampires and some sort of pandemic virus. I was also curious because the original book is written by Guillermo del Toro (and Chuck Hogan's - The Strain ). Before finishing the volume 1 I've also saw the first episode of the TV-show/series.

I love the artwork. One issue I have with many comics and graphic novels is beautiful covers and not so pleasing artwork on the inside. But this is one is spot on. The colours and the contrast really help setting the tone of creepiness of the story. The mixture of dark colours really help to deliver a brutal and violent story. Some scenes look like nightmare material!

It all starts with an air-plane full of dead people. Mysterious dead people. Nobody knows why they are dead. Upon this the main character is presented.Dr. Ephraim Goodweather (what a name!) working for the Center for Disease Control.
He is the chief investigator of this operation, but he's life is quite a turmoil. Eph is an ex-alcoholic juggling between his job and family (mainly his son).

In the second issue a coffin is found in the air-plane cargo. There are a few survivors from this mysterious situation whom are released and sent home.
There is this morgue scene where you discover that the death people have tiny and strange marks in their necks, almost invisible to the naked eye. All bodies are drain from blood and, oddly, despite they are death for hours, the bodies are still warm and without rigor mortis. 

Another extremely important character is an old men named Abraham Setrakian. Jew from Romania, Holocaust survivor, owner of a little pawnshop is the only one who knows what is going on and have some hints how to stop this pandemic infection of vampires. (I actually enjoyed a lot the parts about Abraham life, they are scattered through the different issues and give helpful hints about what's going on and how he knows so much about everything).

One of the best and scariest parts is when the death came to life in the morgue. (I actually saw this scene in the first episode of the tv show and sh*t is awesome too!). They come to life and they first urge is to find their love ones... and feed upon them. When they finish feeding on the blood they infect the people. 

By the forth issue of this comics they decide to assume that it's a parasite - in the comics it's not very clear, but in the tv show you can see worms, white worms - the parasites - on the dead/vampires.
In issue 6 you learn that are 7 original vampires called The Ancients. Three are in the old world (Europe), Three in the new (USA - where the action happens) and the 7th is the one whom is Abraham arch-enemy. Is also the only one whom doesn't hide from the humans. These vampires (as usual) don't get a long, that's why they are divided - I suppose. It's not very clear why these vampires don't get a long and white they have a truce. Or even why the fact that this 7th vampire - the master, come to USA will begin a war between vampires. 

It was only possible for this 7th vampire come to USA because there is an economic group called The Stoneheart Group led by Mr Eldritch Palmer that make a deal with the vampire. Mr Eldritch thinks he can control the vampires. However his goals are not very clear.

There are a few questions that are not answered during this volume, that got me questioning what's going on. I will be for sure reading the rest of the comics and also keep an eye on the tv show. I'm already looking for the original trilogy to add to my tbr list.
I totally recommend these comics for anyone who likes scary vampires and horror stories.

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