Writer: Danny Lore
Artist: Karen S. Darboe
Colorist: Cris Peter
Letterer: Joe Sabino
Cover Artists: Karen S. Darboe & Cris Peter
Release Date: June 21, 2023
Deacon Frost wanted Blade’s blood to empower his followers. When that didn’t work, he let Brielle’s mom escape, then sent his posse in pursuit. Will Saffron lead Deacon’s vampires directly to Brielle? Let’s Hack And Slash into Bloodline: Daughter of Blade #5 and find out!
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Jay and Rebecca realize Brielle’s in trouble. So her friends stick by her side. Saffron finds them where Blade trained Brielle. With the high stakes, our pink-haired dhampir spills what she’s been going through as Whitney and her clone daddy’s vampires arrive. Saffron doesn’t want her daughter to fight. Rebecca knows better. With her help, Brielle subdues Whitney and hacks and slashes vampires. Now she’s got to rescue Blade from Whitney’s foster daddy before he succumbs to a bestial rage.
Sadly, I learned no more about vampire cloning in Bloodline: Daughter of Blade #5. Might another Frosty Clone appear in Marvel’s upcoming Blade series? As a newbie, I wondered why Blade struggled to prevent transforming into The Incredible Dhampir. If there was an explanation in earlier issues, I missed it. My biggest question about the series regards Brielle’s pink hair. In issue #3, black cornrows surround her head. Yet when she goes outside, she’s got straight pink hair. When a vampire grabs her by the hair, she yells, “Yeow!” No wig flies off. Am I just clueless about wig attachments and quick-acting dyes? Despite my insatiable curiosity Danny Lore fulfilled all the individual character arcs in Bloodline: Daughter of Blade #5. Now I don’t need to rush to the vitamin cupboard for a handful of iron pills!
In the first panel of the first page, Jay, Rebecca, and Brielle look like they’ve emulated the fan who wanted to look more like Red Skull. Later profile depictions reveal the characters didn’t visit Dr. Schlotkin. Citizens of Druidia: relax. You’re in no danger of losing your oxygen. In the last panel of the first page—a profile shot of Brielle and her mother—Saffron looks angry at Brielle. She’s probably just upset that Deacon endangered Blade and her daughter. Still, I thought, “‘Don’t tell Bri off! She’s doing her best!”
There were a few other irritants in Bloodline: Daughter of Blade #5. Saffron’s car looked like a sedan in one panel and a crossover SUV in others. (It’s probably the tilted camera views). The Incredible Transforming Blade resembles a Claymation figure. But by and large, Karen S. Darboe’s art depicts action well, and the characters’ emotions shine like beacons in Deacon’s mausoleum hideout. While she probably draws digitally, her signature splatter gives the comic a hand-inked look.
When Darboe’s noseless panel made me stumble, Cris Peters’ coloring helped me keep my feet. The headlights from Saffron’s car/SUV reflect off the front edge of Jay’s headphones and one lens of his glasses. The harsh lighting makes the trio’s teeth glow and overexposes their faces. I like how she brushes pink shadows around Jay and Rebecca’s eyes and across the trio’s neck. A reflection slashes across the vehicle windscreen. A brush streaks purple above Saffron as she hugs her daughter. The moonlight plays across the fabric of Whitney’s black Emma Peel catsuit, dapples Brielle’s hair, and washes out the vampires’ stark features. Need I go on about the coloring in Bloodline: Daughter of Blade #5?
Joe Sabino’s uppercase black lettering in white dialogue balloons is easy to read and follow. Sound effects were balanced and effective in style, spelling, and frequency. I wasn’t sure the few times characters used small font merited lowered voices. Still, his efforts helped bring this series to a satisfying conclusion.
Bloodline: Daughter of Blade #5 sinks its claws into your heart and doesn’t let go until the final page. Fueled by devotion to family and responsibility for others, readers depart enamored by Brielle and thirsting for more pint-sized dhampir adventures.