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Undying Love #2 – Review

This issue of Undying Love may not have the artistic prowess of the previous issue, but there is more meaningful action, more character development and more disappointment. John Sargent is in love with the vampire Mei and sets out to kill her maker Sang-Ji to turn Mei back into a human.  He sets out first in this issue for Club G-Boss, a vampire hangout and gets bitten by one of the vampires.  Now he may become a creature of the night himself.  Undying Love is a vampire tale from the creative minds of Tomm Coker and Daniel Freedman, with emphasis on the words “creative.”  The usual tale about vampires is absent here.  The comic has a fresh setting in China with new characters to add to the vampiric lore character roster.  Some characters do fall by the wayside.  Mei was barely in this issue unlike the last where she was in almost every page.  In this issue she only appears on the last page.  She always seems to be in danger and only showed a bit of her strength during the first issue, while her lover John took out hordes of vampires.  Every other vampire in Undying Love seems ready for action and capable of a little death and destruction, but Mei is just John’s damsel in distress.  Coker and Freedman seem to have forgotten that her fangs aren’t just supposed to look deadly, but be deadly too. Image Tomm Coker and Daniel Freedman's Undying Love #2 Two characters in Undying Love do successfully peak my interest in this series and remind me why I will keep reading it to the end.  John, who I found not very developed in the first issue, has become an even better fighter since the last issue and his love for Mei is admirable considering he’s willing to go through hundreds of vampires to set her free from her curse.  But there is a problem with his love – there is still no explanation in the series on how he met her and fell in love with her.  I know Coker and Freedman are probably trying to keep their series away from the whole clichéd “boy meets girl, boy falls in love with girl” and just skip to the part where “boy kills for girl.”  But skipping this formula took away the realism of John’s love for Mei and is making it look shallow.  John has managed to become more interesting, but there are still so many unanswered questions that Coker and Freedman should address soon since any sympathy for the characters is a thin at best.  The other character that was the best part by far in this issue was Tong, a young boy who knows everything about vampires and who I could not stop enjoying for a second.  He is calm and collected even when John comes in bitten by a vampire.  And he saves him by taking out a vampire’s heart while he’s still alive… er, still undead with a smile on his face which also happened to be the creepiest moment in this issue too.  Tong is the perfect mixture of an innocent looking child with the mind of a wise old man weaving tales of the ancient ones with a bit of insanity mixed in.  The actual story is pretty straight forward with the boy saving the girl, but with a lot of action and some exposition that I found even more satisfying than the action. The action itself was nothing Eisner-worthy but stood out from the crowd of clichéd action comics out there. It also breaks the mold of the usual action formula with meaningful action.  Rather than kill a bunch of guys for no reason other than to see a fountain of blood, Sargent makes every one of his kills mean something: that he is one step closer to helping Mei.  Not much has changed art wise, at least not in a positive direction.  Sometimes lines are overused and a lot of the backgrounds are very generic and look almost rushed with little to no thought going into them.  There aren’t many panels with art making me want to go to Hong Kong like the last issue and the emotions on characters faces, done so well in the last issue, are almost absent in this issue.  It is still impressive that Tomm Coker manages to both write fairly and draw fairly well.  The colors supplied by his fellow writer, Daniel Freedmen, have a similar chemistry as their writing, just not enough chemistry to match the previous issue. Undying Love #2 is not a bad comic book.  A lot of thought went into the comic and some of the characters are really intriguing but most still do not inspire much emotion from me.  The art also fails to measure up to the last issue with only fleeting moments of good quality art mixed in with an interesting color scheme of grey and red that does manage to be nice and subtle if not a bit boring.  Hopefully future issues will delve more into the characters and remind me why I care for those I’m reading about – until then this issue is lukewarm at best, failing to be great but definitely far from terrible. Overall Score – 6.7/10 *Satisfactory - A title that's not for everyone, has a few stand out moments. Maybe if you have a few extra bucks it's worth picking it up.*


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About / Bio
An all-around nerdette, I’m a comic book connoisseur, horror aficionado, video game addict, anime enthusiast and an aspiring novelist/comic book writer. I am the head of the comic book department and the editor-in-chief of Entertainment Fuse. I also write and edit articles for Comic Frontline. I am also an intern at Action Lab Entertainment, a comic book publisher at which I edit comic book scripts, help work on images in solicitations and help with other comic book related project. My own personal website is comicmaven.com.

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