Marvel Comics’ Spitfire one-shot, released last week, looks like a speedster story from the cover…but it’s really a vampire story. Once I realized that, I found the second read much more enjoyable.
Spitfire is Lady Jaqueline “Jac” Falsworth, a World-War II–era speedster who got her powers from the combination of a vampire bite and a blood transfusion from the original Human Torch. After she lived out a normal lifetime, a second transfusion restored her youth and activated vampire traits, like fangs and, most importantly for this story, immortality. She works for British intelligence service MI:13, along with vampire slayer Blade, whom she is dating.
The plot involves Spitfire and Blade pursuing a suspected spy — who is also a vampire — to New York. Through the course of their pursuit, Spitfire has to confront the similarities between their quarry and what she herself has become. Will immortality leave her jaded and empty, like it has so many of the vampires she’s met? Will she become what they hunt?
New Readers? Really?
As someone who doesn’t follow Marvel Comics very closely, and hadn’t even heard of the character until a few days ago, I appreciated the text page at the beginning. It’s a bit dense, but it covers Spitfire’s origin, her history with vampires and fighting Nazis, her recruitment by MI:13, and her relationship with Blade. It’s also easily skippable by readers who are familiar with the character.
The cover is labeled “Women of Marvel,” which seems to be some sort of event like DC’s ill-titled “Girlfrenzy” set of one-shots during the 1990s. Most of what I can find online has to do with a series of variant covers for established books like Captain America, Iron Man, and the Avengers, so I’m not sure what other books are involved.
So How Is It?
Mild spoilers after the cut. Continue reading