Everything you ever wanted to know about Vampirella, daughter of Drakulon

Vampirella Strikes

Issue 1 (October 1995)

Regular cover - Model: Sascha Knopf $2.95
Signed Regular cover (Sniegoski and McGuinness) - Model: Sascha Knopf (1,500 copies) $?
American Entertainment cover - Model: Sascha Knopf $2.95
Limited Edition cover - Model: Sascha Knopf (5,000 copies) $2.95
Signed Limited Edition cover (McGuiness) - Model: Sascha Knopf (1,500 copies) $?
Newsstand Edition cover - Model: Sascha Knopf $2.95

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The Prize (part 1) [Artist - Ed McGuinness, Nathan Massengill/ Writer - Tom Sniegoski]
Adam van Helsing has been changed to Bad Jack by the drug Hyde 25 and is being treated by the Danse Macabre, an organisation of para/supra-normal "dansers". On the streets a silver fluid creature called Passion is extracting revenge on wrong doers. Created by a dying woman, Passion has the soul of the dead woman but not her memories. The woman's daughter tries to establish a relationship with Passion, but Passion is called away to fight evil. The monster Passion fights is in fact a mental construct of another group of paranormal powered beings who work for the Dante Corporation. The battle is used as an excuse to recruit Passion for the Corporation.

Meanwhile, Vampirella is sent on a recruiting mission for the Danse Macabre.

This series of Vampirella seems to be more the traditional super-hero/super-group style of tale. Notwithstanding, it is still a good read and an enjoyable story. Passion is particularly well drawn.

If I had to be very picky I would say that the rendition of Vampirella's costume didn't quite work for me. The gold bat logo on her lower abdomen is way too "fat", and looks quite indistinct. More of a gold triangle shape with a couple of dents in it than a logo per se.

NOTE: Apart from the Official covers listed above, there is a copy of Vampirella Strikes 1 signed by Sascha Knopf. I believe this was done at conventions, and is a little unusual in that it is signed as "Sascha Knopf", whereas most signed items of this time were signed by the model as "Vampirella".


Issue #2 (December 1995)

Regular Cover - Mike Deodato, Jr. $2.95
Signed Regular Cover - Mike Deodato, Jr. (250 copies) $9.95

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The Prize (part 2) [Artist - Ed McGuinness, Nathan Massengill/ Writer - Tom Sniegoski]
Vampirella arrives to recruit the teleporter that the Danse Macabre had traced, only to discover that he is a three year old baby who can open doors to other worlds. She is attacked by Passion and the Dante Corporation operatives who also want the baby.

A doorway is already open and there are Slash-Mar (werewolves) in the house, and a giant "mother" Slash-Mar on her way through the door. Bad Jack arrives and helps turn the tide, Passion realises that her new friends are really the bad guys and helps Vampirella defeat the Slash-Mar, save the baby and her mother.

There are some really great action sequences in this issue. In fact, nearly the whole issue is a fist feast! Good, blood pumping stuff!

This issue came polybagged complete with the P0 Promo Trading Card for the Topps Vampirella Gallery set.

Note that the signed edition has Tom Sniegoski's signature on the polybag and not on the comic itself.


Issue #3 (February 1996)

Regular Cover - Rudy Nebres $2.95
Signed Regular Cover - Rudy Nebres $?

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Midwood Skin [Artist - Karl Moline, Jason Temujin Minor / Writer - David Quinn]
Brooklyn is being haunted by a serial killer who collects body parts/skin from his victims. Vampirella visits a museum with a holocaust exhibition, and meets a survivor of the death camps. Vampirella and the gentleman take the subway as they continue the conversation. The subway train is attacked by a gang of robbers in cahoots with the serial killer, whom Vampirella dispatches.

Not a bad one-off story, but probably the important message here is man's inhumanity to man. The survivor of the Nazi death camps finally comes to terms with his situation and starts to move on and live again, with Vampirella's help.

The underlying theme seems to be that monsters come in many guises, and some of the nastiest monsters are human beings.


Issue #4 (April 1996)

Regular cover

Regular Cover - Dave DeVries $2.95

Soul Food [Artist - Rudy Nebres / Writer - Ian Edginton]
For centuries, a quorum of powerful men have made human sacrifice to Balaam, a scorpion like demon trapped below Manhattan. Alerted to the threat by Web Mother, a psychic, Vampirella enters the pit and destroys Balaam.

Traditional "cult summons demon" fare, but there is a very hard edge to Vampirella - a mean streak that reminds you that she isn't your average super heroine, she is something more and dangerous to both friend and foe alike.


Issue #5 (June 1996)

Regular Cover - Nelson DeCastro $2.95
Signed Regular Cover - Nelson DeCastro (500 copies) $9.95
Special Edition cover - Rudy Nebres $2.95

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Vampirella vs. the Eudaemon [Artist - Rudy Nebres / Writer - David Quinn]
Pandemonium is THE place to go for fetish and domination orientated pleasures. The management create demonic rituals for their clients in need of an alternative source of pleasure. One of the rituals works and they are turned into zombie like creatures by the demon Mördare.

Vampirella infiltrates Pandemonium as Ella Normandy, but is drawn elsewhere by a feeling of evil. In a bar nearby, two men prepare for an impending showdown with Mördare, whom they are tracking. Vampirella arrives just as they are attacked by the transmogrified slaves of Mördare. One of the men transforms into a demon, Eudaemon, and helps Vampirella destroy the servants of Mördare, and to chase off Mördare himself.

Vampirella and Eudaemon go their separate ways, content in the knowledge that they are not the only monsters fighting on the side of good.

Rudy Nebres really has a feel for occult based stories, and, to his credit, he has not forgotten the bat shaped birthmark on Vampirella's right breast!

I have no idea who Eudaemon is, but have the feeling that he is a character from another comic book, and this is a crossover to promote Eudaemon to Vampirella readers.

If so, it didn't work for me. This comic book is the only one I have with Eudaemon in it.

The signed regular cover was a convention special, and came complete with a one-off sketch of Vampirella by Nelson.


Issue #6 Ash Can (June 1996)

Regular Cover - Mark Texeira (3,000 copies) $5.00
Signed Regular Cover - Mark Texeira (500 copies) $5.00

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A cold day in hell! [Artist - Louis Small Jr., Caesar / Writer - Mark Millar]
The first fourteen pages of the impending Vampirella Strikes #6, in black and white.

Another typical ash can, that tempts and only delivers just enough to get you to buy the issue that's being promoted.


Issue #6 (August 1996)

Regular Cover - Mark Texeira $2.95
Alternative Cover - Louis Small Jr., Caesar (100 copies) $9.95
Signed Alternative Cover - Louis Small Jr., Caesar (100 copies) $9.95

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A cold day in hell! [Artist - Louis Small Jr., Caesar / Writer - Mark Millar]
Vampirella tracks a colony of vampires to a missile silo they have commandeered in Alaska. Having got used to the long nights in Alaska, the head of the colony has decided to launch a nuclear missile to set of a global nuclear war which would result in a nuclear winter - dark skies, no daylight, a vampire's paradise!

Vampirella locks the silo doors and makes her escape as the missiles explode underground, destroying the trapped vampires.

Hot, sexy and action packed this is a great read. Trapped and helpless at the hands of the vampires, Vampirella breaks her bonds and escapes a little too easily. The plot got a little thin for a moment but overall the story was quite a good one.


Issue #7 (October 1996)

Regular Cover - David Mack $2.95
(Back cover art - Rudy Nebres)

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Thicker Than Water [Artist - Rudy Nebres / Writer - Ian Edginton]
Vampirella teams up with an occult bounty hunter to track down what he believes to be a vampire hybrid. It turns out that the person they are tracking is an ordinary woman whose younger twin sister was given to a Duke of Hell at birth.

The vampire sister bites her older sibling as Vampirella and the bounty hunter arrive, and then engages Vampirella, but dies in the process. The other sister kills herself rather than become the vampire her sister was.

NOTE: There are two covers but only one comic - the back page is an inverted second cover.

A good, one-off story with a moral about becoming obsessed. There are also a couple of pages of gratuitous nudity as Vampirella takes a shower. The shower scene adds nothing to the story but is certainly good to see!


Annual #1 (December 1996)

Regular Cover - Adam Hughes $2.95
Alternative Cover - Louis Small Jr., Rob Stull (500 copies) $9.95
Signed Alternative Cover - Louis Small Jr., Caesar (250 copies) $?

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The Heat [Artist - Louis Small Jr., Caesar / Writer - Jamie Delano]
The city is in the grip of a heat wave, and the worst elements of society have crawled out of the gutter. Vampirella, dressed as a hooker, meets out some rough justice and then is chased by a howling mob led by a depraved policeman. Consumed by the same rage and lust as the mob she takes her vengeance.

This is a bit of a strange story - you have to read it a couple of times to work out what's happening. No demons, vampires or monsters, just a bunch of bad people possessed by the spirit of a corrupt city. A sort of "bad day" gone horribly wrong.

But the real question is "who is the sinner and who is the saint"? There aren't any saints in this story, just sinners.