From Dark Horse Comics
Based on “The Strain” Trilogy Novels by Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan
Story by David Lapham
Art by Mike Huddleston
This new and terrifying comic book adaptation based on The Strain Trilogy of books starts in Romania 1927. A young boy named Abraham Setrakian is being told a scary yarn (while trying to eat his Borscht) by his beloved Grandmother or “Bubbeh” This yarn is about a giant infirm Polish Nobleman named Jusef Sardu who, during a Wolf hunt with his father and cousins returns changed and evil.
It is only the beginning of the story though as when upon returning to his homeland Sardu shuts himself away ever transformed into an un-dead demon. Abraham is made to endure hardships with his family which includes terrible nightmares about Sardu, missing villagers, Nazis and Concentration Camps. The reality of Sardu lurks ever near and Abe is forced to face this ancient evil that corrupted the kind and gentle Jusef Sardu.
In the present in New York City, Flight 753, a Boeing 777 lands at JFK and immediately upon landing stalls and is powered down for no reason on the runway. No engines, lights or electricity. The Centers for Disease Control is contacted, fearing a terrorist attack. We are then introduced to Dr. Ephraim Goodweather (or “Eph”) and his assistant Dr. Nora Martinez. Along with them is a team of professional biological-threat first responders.
Only the elderly and wizened Abraham Setrakian, now a pawnbroker from Spanish Harlem (“El Barrio”) in Manhattan suspects a venomous and supernatural purpose behind the mystery of the Aircraft . Something ancient that is intent on spreading a Vampiric plague that can envelope the City and the World’s population in 2 months!
Lapham does a commendable job bringing this first chapter of Del Toro and Hogan’s novels to life. The story is tight, terrifying and very involving. It is very reminiscent of other great Vampire tomes like “Salem’s Lot” mainly because it is very multi-layered and dynamic. There are many characters, story-lines and locales that all eventually merge fabulously. It puts an incredibly interesting spin on the genre and it succeeds in grossing us out and chilling us to the bone at the same time. Huddleston’s art, though a bit clunky at times (some pretty shoddy anatomy work) it is very fluid, raw and scary.
His images of the mature Vampires are stunningly rendered, feral and deadly looking. The absolute stuff of nightmares. Not since “30 Days Of Night” have I been this excited about a Vampire Comic. I am also very impressed on how true and accurate Lapham stays to the Novel. He obviously wants to convey the sheer terror and hopelessness of the outbreak and the tender bonds that are ripped asunder and made alike. The story has a other-wordly dramatic effect as well. So, I hope you all get a chance to pick these Issues up or pre-order the Trade Paperback Volumes 1 and 2 here
Vic’s Note: “The Strain: The Fall” is currently an ongoing series of books as well. You may get more info here for Volume 3 and 4 of the terrifying sequel!
Vic’s Note: Actor Ron Perlman (Hellboy, Pro-Life, Alien Resurrection) does an astounding job on the Audio-Book of the first installment of the trilogy: “The Strain” I highly recommend it! The next two novels are read brilliantly by Daniel Oreskes (The Devil’s Advocate, The Sopranos). Enjoy!
Here is the HD Trailer for the new FX show “The Strain” which has begun. Enjoy!
Enjoy the Comic Book Panel Gallery Below!
Excellent. This looks and sounds wickedly awesome!
You’d really like it. I can’t praise it enough, man. Also read the books or if you can get the audio-books. They are unabridged and the first is read by Ron Perlman. Thanks for reading!
I didn’t know this got turned into a comic! I met Del Toro a few years ago and got him (& Hogan) to autograph my copy of “The Strain”. I have all three books of the trilogy & they are an excellent read. It would make an awesome mini series for a brave cable network like HBO or AMC. Good write up Vic!
Man, some guys have all the luck. You have an autographed copy of the novel? Damn, that’s awesome! I’m on the second novel now. I am so hooked on them. I re-listen to the first audio-book constantly. Something about Perlman’s voice. You should pick up the comics, you’d really like them. I believe I read somewhere that Guillermo is pitching The Strain to some Cable Channels like FX or AMC. I hope it’s get made. Especially with the success of The Walking Dead. Thanks for the comment and for stopping by, hermano! 😀
The artwork for this looks superb – going to have to check this one out.
Please do and enjoy. Let me know what you think of it. Like I said the art in spots can be a bit off but the good art way outweighs the bad. Thanks for stopping by.
I’ve got to check this out. I also just nominated you for the Tag Blogathon. See my blog for details.
Awesome! Thanks. First time I’ve been nominated for anything, lol. 😀
Making a TV show of this I think, but I will check out the comic 😀
Yeah, I thought I heard that a pitch was done for this. Can’t wait. I think you’ll enjoy it big time. One of the better adaptations of books to comics.
I have the first issue but since I had already read all the novels, I kind of didn’t want to re-read everything again. Still awesome stuff.
It is. Agreed. Going to review some issues of “The Stand” eventually. Thanks for stopping by!
I love the artwork on that pic of Setrakian, although I imagined him frailer. Great review.
Thanks! Yeah, Abe appears much frailer the way Del Toro and Hogan describe him in the novel. In “The Fall” he is almost described as death warmed over. In the comics there are some panels of Abe were he looks just like he is described in the novel. They keep the opening as well (when Abe is a child) which is drawn very accurately. Especially Sardu.
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