“Monsterousness”

dracula- mf01

“POSSIBLE SPOILERS! DO NOT READ ON IF IT MATTERS!

When I started Dracula, Motherf**ker  I hadn’t realized that Alex De Campi wrote another one of my favorite comics – Archie vs Predator, where Archie, Jughead, Veronica, Betty, and many of the other characters from the classic Archie Comics series try to survive being hunted by the Predator, the alien from the late 80’s Arnold Schwarzenegger movie and subsequent spinoffs and sequels.

In Dracula, Motherf**ker, Dracula’s three brides nail him to the bottom of his coffin and escape. This was in 1889. Almost a century passes before Dracula is released by aging actress Bebe Beauland in 1974 Los Angeles. In the book’s afterword, Alex explains, “It’s wrong to encase a monster in flesh, to give it a face” and Erica Henderson, expresses this effectively by depicting Dracula as a vapor with many eyes and mouths. Something formless, visible but indistinguishable like smoke or summer haze. Something seemingly expansive and smothering.

Alex also reveals that the Dracula’s Brides have “always fascinated her” in the same way women like Melania Trump and Georgina Weinstein do. How much of the “monsterousness” have these women and the Brides normalized in their lives after decades of exposure.  You also have to wonder about Quincy Harker.

Quincy is a crime scene photographer. The more gruesome his photos, the more he is paid. So he chases the corpses. Follows the blood. Alex says that he is intended to be the embodiment of the “night people,” lonely, vulnerable people who you might not know to miss if they disappeared. I feel maybe he is an embodiment of a new sort of vampirism or “monsterousness.” A new monster that “eats” corpses for a living. You can dismiss his “hunger” for corpses to photograph as the practical need for rent money and groceries but it doesn’t require too much imagination to consider his need for corpses as the fulfillment of a darker emotional appetite.

Dracula, Motherf**ker was a great read but it needed to be longer. It left too much story untold. For instance, what pushed the Brides to the edge? After so many years, what gave them the courage to leave? And there’s wondering what’s next for Quincy Harker? Will he adapt to vampire life and being the only male vampire in the group? Do they even bother to keep him around?

I’d also like to get to know the all three Brides better. Who initiated the rebellion? Who was the most unsure? I assumed they followed the coffin to Los Angeles. How did they pass their nights? How did they feed? What non-Dracula adventures might they have had? Were there werewolves and a Frankenstein monster too?