Earlier this year, Unified Pictures announced that they would be crowdfunding a comic adaption of an incredibly rare Vampire Hunter D short story titled “Message From Cecile”. Dubbed “Vampire Hunter D: Message From Mars“, the story features writing by Brandon Easton (Bad Moon Rising) and artwork from Michael Broussard (The Darkness, Captain Midnight, The Walking Dead, Castlevania).
The Kickstarter was a resounding success, raising nearly $110,000 to adapt this short story, which, “…was only published for a fan event in Japan and will make it’s English debut in this comic book series published by Stranger Comics.” A week ago, samples of the comic were released and they looked absolutely gorgeous.
I’ve managed to get my hands on a preview copy, which reveals the first five pages of the forthcoming comic, which is supposed to come out on November 16th. Already having seen the cover and one fully illustrated page, I hopped into the the rest of the material, eager to venture back into the world of D, a character I’ve been familiar with since I saw Vampire Hunter D on the Sci Fi Channel back in the early 90’s.
From what I could gather from the few pages I was sent, the story follows D as he travels to Mars for an undisclosed reason. He has received a letter from someone by the name of Cecile, “…a sound technician in the Mars capitol city of Wells.” Upon landing on Mars, he is met by another vampire, who recognizes D and knows of his history of vampire slaying. A battle ensues and D obviously wins (c’mon, it’s the first issue, so this shouldn’t be seen as a spoiler of any kind). After that, D continues forward, saying that he doesn’t, “…want to keep the client waiting.”
Honestly, there’s not too much to go by story-wise because the focus of these few pages is to give the reader the chance to read Cecile’s letter to D as well as witness the battle. The cliff-hanger in this preview is that Cecile states she is able to see the future and that D is going to kill her.
The first thing that struck me was the absolutely gorgeous artwork and coloring done both for the cover and the pages themselves. Everything looks vibrant and bright, even D, in all his dark clothing, cuts through the pages like a shadow.
The lettering is crisp but not bland, the font easy to read while being pleasant. Additionally, D’s parasitic left hand has a different font, making him stand out and, from what I’m guessing, making it easy to differentiate between the two when they converse.
Not too much is revealed here, which is perfect. I got a great taste of what’s to come and it left me wanting more. Any chance to have more D in my life is something I’ll happily accept!
Bonus: Unified Pictures’ Scott McLean also sent us photos of a test proof of the Badali Jewelry D pendant, which was a limited offering on one of the Kickstarter tiers. Only 100 were made, so these are very precious and it looks quite beautiful! Check it out below!