“In the future, robots will run on human blood…” This line opens the first issue of Transfusion. In a single line of text, written against a desolate gray sky, Steve Niles sent shivers down my spine. Simple. Effective. Chilling.
In a future overrun by out-of-control machines and monsters, a handful of human survivors try to fight their way back to a normal life. But what is normal in a world where both monsters and machines need human blood? And which are the real bad guys?
The chills do not go away as ou continue to read. Niles’ haunting words are perfectly paired with Menton3′s bleak artwork. Dark-clad figures with gas masks slink across a barren landscape. Terrifying in their own right, it is clear that they are the hunted. If that is the case, just how horrific must these future robots be?
We soon find out. Chaos, confusion, and wonton destruction ensue as the band of survivors is ambushed by a patrolling robot. The robot lives up to the promise of being more than a match for the black-clad figures and the barren ground is soon stained red.
As I was reading, I was reminded more than once of The Matrix. There is a band of survivors (clad in black). There are robot overlords. The robots are far more powerful than the humans. It gets ugly. I was prepared to write it off as a creepy, but not terribly original story. But then the vampires showed up.
The subtitle of the book is Vampires vs. Robots, and that is where the book gets interesting. We are trained to root for the humans in these books, but how are we supposed to root for something that is, for all purposes, food for the real combatants of the story? Both the robots and the vampires are after he same thing: blood. Without it, neither one of them can function. Humans are the prize, not the protected.
Transfusion is a creepy book that is perfect for not only Halloween but for all of the winter months. Like 30 Days of Night, there is an added chill factor that comes with reading a book that takes place in a cold and desolate environment while the world around you grows colder and more desolate as fall slips in to winter. Niles and Menton3 seem to have found a way to overcome a gimmicky concept and create a book with true potential. I am looking forward to seeing if they can keep it up for the remaining issues.
Transfusion (IDW Publishing) is on sale today.