Voodoo: Dancing in the Dark
Written by Alan Moore
Illustrated by Michael Lopez and Al Rio
A four-part mini-series created for Wildstorm comics, a DC Comics imprint.
Warning: this is a complete rundown of the story. If you are going to read the graphic novel, then avoid this. I do no justice to Alan Moore's amazing story.
Part One: Legba
Priscilla Kitaen, better known as Voodoo of the superhero team WildC.A.T.s, is taking a leave from the team and heads to New Orleans to take a break. When she gets into town, an older man warns her about her name: Voodoo. She meets Carry-4 about the same time who takes her to the Midnight Lounge to try for a job as an exotic dancer. She gets the job easily after putting on a show for the club.
We then meet Purity, another dancer at the Midnight Lounge, and learn that the club used to be a church and was built on an Indian burial ground. There is a picture in the dressing room of the club back when it was a church. We then see Angel, the dancer who Voodoo will be taking over for, dead in an alley. Angel bled to death, but not in the alley. She was stabbed fifty times then brought there after she died.
Jump to the police investigating Angel’s apartment. There are charms that weren’t hers all over the room, and strange symbols written in blood on the walls. Angel was Catholic.
Voodoo then runs into the old man from the train station, Attibon, who helps her find a place to stay. He takes her to his place, a huge, old hotel. We meet Baron, a retired hitman, also a tenant of the hotel, who invites them for a drink. The bartender is also the proprietor, a large, older woman named Freda who is a former hooker. Then, we don’t meet him, but we hear of Mr. D, the man on the third floor. These four people are the only people who live in the hotel.
Attibon shows Voodoo his hornet marmalade. He trapped some hornets in a jar with some light beer and Voodoo begins to admire it. She says it’s sad how something so beautiful like the hornet doesn’t even know it’s about to die. What she doesn’t know is that is a metaphor for herself and the other strippers at the Midnight Lounge.
Then we see a quick scene where a stripper gets taken to a special room. She is then beaten and chained. In walks a man who starts a voodoo ritual that will require the blood of the stripper.
While Voodoo sleeps, Attibon, Freda, and Baron enter her room. They each lay their tokens, a garter belt, a gold key, and the ace of spades, and say that she is the one. She is destined to end all this. We then see their shadows, which are the shadows of demons or monsters.
Part Two: Erzulje
Open with Voodoo having breakfast with Attibon, Baron, and Freda. She agrees to let Freda show her the ropes.
Jump to the morgue. The detectives find out that Angel has almost no blood in her at all, like she was cut and hung upside down to drain.
We then learn that it was the Midnight Lounge’s owner, Christian Charles, who is killing his strippers. One of the detectives talks to him, but learns nothing. Charles goes to his private room where he summons his demon and asks it to kill the detective.
Freda gives Voodoo a bath with herbs and rose petals. She gives Voodoo her old dress to dance in, and her three wedding rings to wear for luck. One of Freda’s ex-husbands is Mr. D. On her way to work, Voodoo stops by a bookstore and buys five books about voodoo. In the dressing room, we see the picture of the church from before. It is the same picture, except now it has the old reverend in front of the church.
Voodoo starts reading one of the books, and it tells us (she doesn’t see it yet) that Attibon, Freda, and Baron are actually voodoo spirits. At the same time, Charles’s demon kills one of the detectives. This demon is Carry-4.
The people at the hotel say it is time to prepare their “white horse,” Voodoo.
Part Three: Samedi
Purity walks Voodoo back to the hotel. When they get there, the hotel is destroyed, like an earthquake knocked it over.
The remaining detective has a nightmare, a vision to the past, about what happened to the church. The reverend there was preaching voodoo. He had sex with most the women of the church. A mob thought he was killing all of them and they burned down his church. The detective wakes up to his phone ringing. He goes to his partner’s apartment to find him dead.
Christian Charles finds Purity in the dressing room. He convinces her to come with him.
Voodoo and the detective go for a drive. On their ride, Voodoo learns that the reverend had gotten one of his women pregnant and that the baby is Christian Charles.
Back in Charles’s room, Purity puts up a fight and stabs one of the guards. Charles is in a hurry, so he says to forget her and to put the wounded guard in the cage.
Voodoo and the detective find Purity at the club. She tells them what happened.
Charles is standing below the cage. Blood is showering over him. He says that this is the last sacrifice that will be needed. Then the building starts shaking and collapsing. Charles then looks possessed. He says, “Rejoice, for he is risen.”
Part Four: Damballa
Charles raised his father from the dead and the reverend took over his son’s body. He also turned the Midnight Lounge back into the church. Voodoo, the detective, and Purity are trying to escape when the reverend confronts them.
The reverend summons Carry-4. He and Voodoo then “dance,” fighting using voodoo. She turns into the voodoo goddess Erzulie. Erzulie is everything that anybody desires. Carry-4 soon gives in because he wants her.
Voodoo resurrects the hotel, which, like the church, is a source of magic, and leads the reverend there. He sees Attibon and tells Voodoo that she has invoked the Rada, who are Attibon, Freda, and Baron. The Rada forces the reverend to enter a room and meet god, Damballa. Damballa kills the reverend.
The story ends with Voodoo talking to an old woman. The woman is a voodoo expert and she is going to teach Voodoo everything she knows.