It’s Tuesday which means it’s time for Crossroads Comics!
This week we’re taking a look at In Blood We Rise by VikingMera. For our final entry during Pride Month, I thought I’d spotlight one of my favorite comics at the moment, a story of witches, vampires, and a little bit of queerness thrown in as a treat. In Blood We Rise follows Theodore Ashdown, the heir to one of England’s most infamous witch families. Theodore has very little time to be an individual, his family having planned out his entire life in advance. Unfortunately for them, the fates have other plans, and they come in the form of a vampire named Oliver. Follow Theodore and Oliver as we dive into a world of peculiars, magic, and self discovery.
Before we delve into spoilers, let’s first analyze on a broad basis what it is that makes In Blood We Rise such an interesting read. For those that like themes of supernatural and fantasy, this is definitely a worthwhile read. It references many lesser known supernatural beings and elements, such as the Fylgja from Norse mythology, as well as recharacterizes popular ones, such as vampires. It makes for an interesting story because in the time I’ve been reading this comic, I’ve already learned several things about the supernatural that I wasn’t familiar with in the past. On top of that the visuals are gorgeous. The comic shifts from grayscale to full color periodically and this really compliments the comic as a whole, since it makes the more important scenes stand out more, and makes the more detailed panels that much more breathtaking. I’ve included a sampling of them in this article today but this really is just a small taste of what this comic has to offer visually.
Getting into the specifics, In Blood We Rise does super well to characterize Theodore from the world go. In its prologue and first few chapters, the story shows us that Theodore is a caring individual that’s willing to buck the rules if it means achieving an end. We see this in the prologue where he feeds the family’s ancestral spirit a hex in order to try and help his sister, Jane, and later on when he’s speaking with Oliver, we see it again when he really empathizes with the plight of the peculiars despite being a witch. He doesn’t want to follow tradition, he just wants to live his life. As a result, In Blood We Rise becomes a story about a man struggling against the chains that keep his locked in his family’s will. And this doesn’t even factor in the queer elements, which add a whole other layer to the whole mentality of struggling against those that wish to control you.
Many members of the LGBT+ community can likely empathize with both Oliver and Theodore on those elements alone. It provides a lot to relate to, both on the self discovery side of things as well as helping someone discover themselves. I also can personally relate to Oliver because as a Christian member of the LGBT+ community, it’s not uncommon for find these two aspects of my identity clashing with each other. But as Oliver aptly puts it, “People bother me. Not God.” This has a double meaning, as not only is Oliver a vampire, a creature weak to the powers of the Holy Church, but he’s also gay, something that wasn’t exactly accepted in the Victorian Era of England. And it’s instances like this that the comic has really excelled at recently.
People of all kinds can relate to the struggles that Oliver and Theodore are going through because many of their troubles have direct, real world parallels. The discrimination against peculiars can be seen as an allegory to racism or classism, things that are still very prevalent today. Thus, while you can read it on the surface level as a story about these supernatural and magical creatures struggling to survive in the world, it can also be seen as something much deeper that one can directly related to.
All in all, I highly highly recommend reading In Blood We Rise. It’s visually stunning and has a very well thought out and interesting story thus far that’s only just getting started. They also just finished a chapter so now is a great time to binge through it so you can be ready for the next chapter when it starts.
You can read In Blood We Rise on ComicFury and on Tumblr. You can also follow the author on Twitter, Deviantart, and ComicFury. So be sure to check out this comic and its author, because not only is it a great read for your upcoming holiday weekend, but they’re also great LGBT+ rep, and the perfect way to close out Pride Month this year.
And without further ado, let’s check out the rest of this week’s lineup!
Land-Shaymin Balloon floaty!
PMD: Chanterelle Formal introductions!
PMD: Crossroads Yeah! What about food?
PMD: Explorers of Life This could be going better.
PMD: Harmony Context is key in these situations.
PMD: Wildfire Social queues, mate!
Pokemon X Adventures Oooh how pretty.
Shinka: The Last Eevee Callie seems so shaken, poor thing.
The Shaymin Cafe Go Team Steampunk!
The Spaced Out Rangers Phasers definitely not set to stun.
Across the Divide Round 1 done!
Finding Balance The beginnings of a beautiful friendship.
Obsidian Blaze Stay strong! Don’t give in!
PMD: Broken Code Outside? Woohoo!
The Caretaker How… comforting?
The Essence of Being Yeah! Respect the new name!
The Long Way Where one journey ends, another one begins.
Vee New Vee acquired!
Deadly Syns Talk about salt in the wound.
Golden Sun Welcome aboard, Kali!
PMD: Mystic Island The brawl continues!
PMD: Team Rowanberry Is he down and out?
PMD: Turncoats What a banquet!
Sunlocke New bonds have been forged.
The Nateventure Mudkip acquired!
Wanted! – PMD Outlaws Mission complete!
Ask Druddigon Wonder what startled them all.
Ask Eden What a cutie!
Ask the Isle Oh no! Look out!
Ask Wasteland Labs No means no, bub.
Occasional Idiots Seems like solid guidelines.
PMD: Explorers of Madness Let the story begin anew.
Tales from Kirkland Crystals! So pretty!
Team Next-Gen What an adorable interaction!