Let there be no doubt: “I, Vampire” is a series where Joshua Hale Fialkov and Andrea Sorrentino are never content to keep the status quo from one issue to the next. With “I, Vampire” #13, I feel that we’ve entered the third phase of this series’ journey, and it’s to their credit that these transitions have all felt both smooth and logical.
After the climax of “I, Vampire” #12 where Andrew Bennett transformed all vampires save himself into humans, the path forward was left wide open for the series to go in a different direction. Fialkov follows up on that here, with former main villain Mary now human and working with Troughton even as it’s Andrew Bennett that is now the one to worry about.
What makes this work is by Fialkov pushing Mary into the narrator role for the first half of the issue. We get a glimpse inside her head and it’s fun even as it’s dangerous. Her explaining what it’s like to be a vampire is a great monologue (especially with the reasoning on why vampires are always jumping on kissing couples), and there are a couple of extra-good punch lines. “Being a vampire gave me my powers. But being me made me awesome,” sums up Mary in a nutshell; she’s almost as dangerous as a human as she was a vampire, with a strong will and ego to back up what her body might no longer have built into it automatically.
When the story does shift over to Andrew Bennett, Fialkov and Sorrentino don’t disappoint there, either. The wide open vista that greets us in Maine is spectacular — how Sorrentino isn’t an artistic superstar is beyond me — and it builds well from there. The scene in the cabin is nicely claustrophobic (a contrast to the look we got outside), and the fight in those close quarters feels rather nasty. And how can you not love someone showing up to a fight with a super-soaker water gun full of holy water?
“I, Vampire” #13 keeps up the solid nature of this series, and it’s nice to see it sticking around for now. Fialkov and Sorrentino’s series stands nicely on its own, even as it has also successfully incorporated crossovers and appearances with Batman, the Justice League Dark, and even Stormwatch over its first year. Now that it’s back on its own again, though, it’s a reminder that it doesn’t need those additions to be a good book. If you haven’t read “I, Vampire” before, #13 is a good place to hop on board.