PREVIOUSLY: Harriet Tubman, Demon Slayer #1
At the end of the previous issue, after Tubman easily dispatched of the three vampire slave patrollers, she and the slave family find themselves confronted by a pack of what appears to be about two dozen more vampires. Tubman has them all get into the carriage, with Catherine driving the horse in front, as the vampires pursue them. We find that Tubman’s arsenal includes a bow and arrows, which she expertly uses to kill some of the vampires that pursue them, but then at once point the carriage bumps over something which tosses young Venus out of it, she lands in a nearby lake, upon which vampires surround her. Tubman leaps to her rescue and we’re treated to another display of her skill with swords. It’s also heavily implied by her actions that Tubman possess some kind of superhuman (or supernatural) abilities herself, as she certainly displays speed and strength greater than that of a normal human. And surprising cliffhanger introduces a new character to the book.
Joey Vazquez takes over the art duties, and does a very good job. His style is similar enough to previous artist Courtland Ellis’ that it doesn’t feel like a drastic change, yet he’s also a bit more polished. So once again no complaints on the art side. But unfortunately I maintain my same complaints regarding the writing. The story feels stretched out, with a lot of wasted dialog. There’s a sequence where Venus tells Harriet about her favorite books, and even Catherine says “are we really having this conversation now?”
Exactly! These are a family of runaway slaves being chased in the dark by vampires, there should be more fear and urgency in this book, but it felt strangly blase. Also Crownson seems to be oddly determined to portray Ceasar, the slave father, as a bit of coward. We learn of his fear of riding horses in the first issue, and in this issue he fainted and had to be carried onto the carriage by Tubman. It was a little weird.
I’m still intrigued by the premise enough that if the promised third issue gets published I will likely check that out to see if this story progresses, but so far this has been an average series that hasn’t lived up to its potential.