Written By Scott Snyder, et al.
Art By Rafael Albuquerque, et al.
In the aftermath of American Vampire Vol. 5, readers are left wondering where the story will be taken after the events that changed the character’ lives. While the wait for volume six was intense, it wasn’t with the same anticipation as the next Harry Potter book. Rather it was a relaxed calm you get while waiting to board your plane for vacation. Questions littered readers’ minds: What would Skinner Sweet do next? What would Pearl do now with her human husband dead? Would the older vampire sects plan a backlash? The questions still remain unanswered, because volume six is an interlude of short stories.
The short stories focus on singular incidents in the American Vampire universe. The first story “The Long Road to Hel” tells about two teenage lovebirds attacked by vampires. They unwillingly transform into blood suckers and search for a cure, picking up an orphaned boy on the way. As they battle the blood hunger, they get closer to the goal. In the end, their greatest wish is granted, but it doesn’t end with a happily ever after. Other stories in graphic novels are small instances in the American Vampire casts’ lives. These stories include an European vampires’ attack on a Native American village, Skinner Sweet’s time attacking a Kansas town and acting in an old movie, and how Hattie Hargrove became a vampire.
The small vignettes are a pleasantly morbid distraction while your for to return to the main storyline. Many of the stories are only a few pages long and won’t make sense, unless you’ve read the other volumes. Volume six is used as a way to clear backstory and gives Scott Snyder and other writers the chance to tell those inklings they otherwise wouldn’t have told. Depending on how you want to see it, the stories have an ADD format as they jump from one plot to another. It’s hard to get as absorbed in this volume as others.
The art in American Vampire is always glamorous horror eye candy. It combines the beauty of humanity with the gruesome horrors that haunt the imagination. Volume six has a myriad of guest artists, each a perfect choice for their story, but Rafael Albuquerque still remains the best choice for series.
American Vampire Vol. 6 helps pass the time while you wait for the main plot to pick up again in volume seven. Out of all the volumes it can be skipped, but it adds its own color to the series.