The first issue of Titan Comics’ Bloodborne series caters to fans with a unique approach to the story.
Bloodborne, much like its brethren of the Souls series, has a narrative as challenging as its gameplay. Titan Comics’ outing into Bloodborne will be handled by writer Aleš Kot and artist Piotr Kowalski, the latter of who worked on Titan’s Souls issues. This first entry, entitled The Death of Sleep, follows a nameless hunter through the streets of Yharnam during the night of the fateful hunt.
The issue features gloriously detailed artwork that truly captures the nightmare that is Yharnam. Aleš Kot does a fine job crafting a narrative that pays homage to the source material while simultaneously etching its own, unique path. I will give credit to the team for choosing an interesting character to have befriend and help the Hunter in this issue and am impressed by the directional choice the narrative seems to be taking. Without breaking the narrative ingrained by From Software, they have taken an approach to this tale that can appeal to fans of the game.
After finishing the rather short first entry, I will say it was slow to pull you in. Not to say Bloodborne isn’t known for ambiguity, but Titan Comics really leaves a lot hanging to the point that those who haven’t played the game will most likely fail to be hooked by the premise. The somewhat slow start to this series, that randomly splices in direct references to the game, is slowed by the fact that this story is not one which can be told quickly or without assumption of some prior knowledge.
And that is the big problem for comics based on games. Bringing in a fanbase that isn’t based entirely on those who played the game your referencing is extremely difficult, especially when the story is so weird and vague like Bloodborne. You can’t really knock Titan Comics and the team for it, but these entries of fan services through and through.
As a fan of Bloodborne, this first issue succeeded in making me anticipate the rest of the series. I admire the direction the story is taking, and how it is dealing with the personification of the nameless Hunter. Giving a voice and attitude to a character who does not necessarily embody either is a tricky task. The artwork is brilliant, the dialogue is quick and foggy much like in the game. There isn’t too much directly given to you, and Bloodborne fans will enjoy that, I think.
The amount of admiration this entry/series receives will be directly related to how much the fan base of Bloodborne as a whole enjoys it. I’m excited to see the narrative expand from its current state, and I hope Aleš Kot, Piotr Kowalski, and the rest of the team at Titan Comics continue to take risks and craft something truly special for a truly special game. For the fans, from a fan, this is truly for the Hunters. Fear the Old Blood, but try to love this new comic.