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Comic Book / DC vs. Vampires

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I realized the goal was not to start a war... their goal is the genocide of the human race

DC Vs. Vampires is a 2021 comic book maxiseries published by DC Comics.

Written by James Tynion IV and Matthew Rosenberg, with Otto Schmidt on art duties, it depicts an Elseworld where the Justice League must face a secret army of vampires, leaving our heroes unsure of who they can trust.

This series contains examples of:

  • Anyone Can Die: As befits an Elseworld apocalypse Alternate Universe:

    • The attack on the Legion of Doom killed prominent supervillains like Sinestro, Giganta, Toyman, and Black Manta; others, like Gorilla Grodd, Scarecrow, Cheetah, and the Riddler were instead turned into vampires. Lex Luthor dies soon after.

    • The vampire Hal Jordan kills both Andrew Bennett and Zan of the Wonder Twins to keep the Justice League from learning about the vampire threat.

    • In issue 2, the vampire Hal Jordan kills Anton Arcane. He then goes on to murder Barry Allen, as the vampires are convinced that turning someone with his speed and metabolism into a vampire would end up killing every human on Earth.

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    • In issue 3, a now-vampiric Zatanna kills the Penguin. Later on, Hal Jordan successfully turns Wonder Woman into a vampire.

  • Bait-and-Switch: The narration implies Andrew Bennett first went to the Hall of Justice to ask for help on Luthor's orders, but the ending reveals Luthor actually sent him to Wayne Manor first.

  • Big Bad: The mysterious new lord of the vampires. Mary, the former queen, kept the vampire community on a tight leash while avoiding direct conflict with the outside world. After killing her, the new ruler initiates a covert invasion to take over the world and subjugate humanity, killing or turning any superhumans who could stand in their way.

  • Crazy-Prepared: Batman, as usual. When he summons the rest of the Bat Family to discuss the vampire threat, he makes it a point of meeting in Wayne Manor's brightly-lit sunroom. He then has Alfred spike all of their drinks with holy water, then asks everyone to hold a cross before outlining his plan. Later, Alfred drinks the holy water tea in front of Batman to prove he hasn't been turned; Bruce thanks him, then casually explains that he'd already had Wayne Manor's boiler blessed so that Alfred's evening bath would have destroyed him if he actually were a vampire.

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  • Cruel and Unusual Death: The vampire Hal Jordan murders Zan of the Wonder Twins by trapping him in a giant blender construct and turning him into a gory smoothie.

  • Decoy Protagonist: Andrew Bennett uncovers a vampire conspiracy to take over the world and rushes to the Hall of Justice to tell the superheroes about it, but Hal Jordan reveals himself to be a vampire and kills him before he can do so, but not before he's sent a letter explaining the situation to Batman.

  • Dramatic Irony: Batman suggests that it's unlikely the vampires have managed to infiltrate the Justice League due to how difficult doing so would be. The reader already knows that the vampires already have an inside man on the team: Hal Jordan.

  • Driving Question: Who is the new lord of the vampires, and how deeply have they infiltrated the superhuman community?

  • Dying as Yourself / Better to Die than Be Killed: Lex Luthor refuses to let the vampires turn him. He also asks Andrew Benett to kill him via Neck Snap instead of being left with them to be tortured.

  • Daywalking Vampire: While vampires are normally burned by sunlight, Hal Jordan gets around this by using his Green Lantern ring to shield himself from its harmful effects, thus appearing human and catching Andrew Bennett by surprise.

  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Even after being turned into a vampire and gleefully embracing the murder and consumption of humans, Hal Jordan still deeply values his friendship with Barry Allen. He admits to the captured Barry that, when ordered to murder him by his new king, Hal genuinely argued for his being turned instead so that they could both be part of the vampire conquest.

  • First-Episode Twist: The vampires already have an agent inside the Justice League in the form of Hal Jordan, who kills Andrew Bennett and Zan before they can warn the rest of the League about the vampires' plan.

  • Foreshadowing: When Andrew Bennett is spying on the Legion of Doom members who have been turned into vampires, Gorilla Grodd notes that their inside man on the Justice League has confirmed the whereabouts of all of its members except for "Green..." before getting interrupted. This foreshadows the reveals that Green Lantern is said inside man, and that Green Arrow is already aware of the vampire threat and fighting against it.

  • Frame-Up: The vampiric Hal Jordan and Wonder Woman frame Batman for the murder of Barry Allen, both to provide cover for Hal (the actual murderer) and to turn the Justice League against itself as it's being infiltrated.

  • Fully-Embraced Fiend: Green Lantern Hal Jordan has no problem selling out the human race, betraying his teammates in the Justice League, or killing and consuming people after being turned an unspecified amount of time before the start of the story. When he reveals his vampirism to the Flash and Wonder Woman, he flat-out describes being a vampire as a good thing.

    • Played with in the second issue: the vampire Hal Jordan still values his friendship with Barry Allen and sincerely regrets killing him on orders from his master, but only because he "wanted to conquer the world" with him.

  • Have You Told Anyone Else?: Probably the first hint that Hal Jordan was part of the conspiracy from the beginning.

  • Let's You and Him Fight: Black Canary gets into a brief and comical fight with Damian Wayne, when they find each other on patrol and suspect the other of being a vampire. It ends when Dinah takes a sample of Damian's blood, so she can confirm or root out her suspicions.

  • Late to the Tragedy: When Andrew Bennett's investigation leads him to the Legion of Doom's headquarters, he finds that most of its members have either been killed or turned into vampires.

  • Man of Kryptonite: When the Legion of Doom was attacked by vampires, Lex Luthor did something to his blood to make it toxic to vampires so that they couldn't turn or feed off of him. He gives Andrew Bennett a syringe full of it to pass along as a weapon against the vampire threat. When Bennett injects a small amount into the vampiric Riddler, the villain is instantly reduced to ash.

  • Mysterious Watcher: As Andrew Bennett desperately makes his way to the Hall of Justice, Green Arrow can be seen observing him out-of-sight at a couple of points.

  • Mythology Gag: Batman refers to an incident early in his career when he fought a vampire called the Mad Monk as his first bout with the supernatural (which happened way back during The Golden Age of Comic Books, in Detective Comics #32).

  • The Night That Never Ends: When Andrew Bennett infiltrates the Legion of Doom's HQ (now in control of the vampires), he discovers plans for a giant space construct that will block sunlight from reaching the Earth, allowing the vampires to run rampant over the planet.

  • Not Enough to Bury: After Hal Jordan runs Zan through a blender construct, all that's left of his body is the tip of one of his fingers. Since Hall didn't do a great job of disposing of it, Batman and Jayna are able to find it in the sewers beneath the Hall of Justice and figure out that Hal murdered Zan.

  • Our Vampires Are Different: These vampires possess the classic strengths and weaknesses (to holy symbols, holy water, sunlight and the like). That being said, the turned metahumans retain the abilities they had in life and can use them to circumvent the weaknesses.

  • People Farms: When Andrew Bennett uncovers the vampire threat, he discovers that this is what the vampires have in store for humanity. They plan to fully subjugate humanity as their food source, complete with human farms and slaughterhouses.

  • Poor Communication Kills: Even though both Batman and Green Arrow separately know about the escalating threat, they aren't informing each other or the Justice League due to fear and paranoia, which indirectly leads to the death of the Flash and the conversion of Wonder Woman. After her brief tussle with Damian, Dinah tells Oliver outright that keeping this to themselves is a bad idea because they need help.

  • Plot-Triggering Death: Mary, the queen of the vampires and Andrew Bennett's former lover, is murdered by a mysterious individual who takes her place as ruler of the vampires. Bennett discovering this and his subsequent investigation is what kick-starts the plot of the story.

  • Pragmatic Villainy: Hal's master orders him to kill Barry Allen rather than attempt to turn him, reasoning that a vampire with a speedster's abilities and metabolism would drink the world dry of humans and doom the rest of the vampire race with them.

  • Villains Act, Heroes React: Lampshaded as a plot point; Red Hood notes that infiltrating the supervillain community would be a good start for the vampire conspiracy precisely because the superheroes don't generally pay attention to supervillains when they're not committing crimes. Villains tend to lay low between jobs, which makes it unlikely that the heroes would notice them going missing as they're either killed or turned into vampires.

  • What Measure Is A Nonhuman: When Nightwing points out that Batman is basically telling the Bat Family to kill any vampires they encounter, Batman simply states that they're already dead.