Home > Vertigo > Bite Club #3

Bite Club #3

June 8, 2004

Quick Rating: Very Good
Title: Men Are From Mars, Women Are Intravenous

Father Leto makes his decision on the family business.

Writers: Howard Chaykin & David Tischman
Art:David Hahn
Colors: Brian Miller
Letters: Jared K. Fletcher
Editor: Shelly Bond
Cover Art: Frank Quietly
Publisher: DC Comics/Vertigo

Chaykin and Tischman’s vampire mob story continues, and it keeps getting better. As Father Leto remains torn between his vows to the church and the calling to take over his family’s mob operations, his sister Risa continues to pull the strings behind the scenes. Meanwhile Leto’s old girlfriend Carrie, who was Risa’s best friend in high school until she screwed them both over, returns to town.

A new discovery this issue also tempts Leto with the possibility of turning the entire business legit. There’s a touch of science fiction in here, with the idea of using a vampire’s blood both as a narcotic and as a solution for a very real medical problem in our own world, so the writers add layers of yet another genre to a book that was already defying classification. Part horror, part crime drama, and now part speculative fiction, the important thing is that the book is all smart and fun to read. Leto’s struggles are understandable, wavering between the church, his family and his own desires.

David Hahn was unknown to me as an artist before this series, but he is a perfect match for it. His characters are almost cartoonish enough to fit in with the Batman Adventures art style, but small touches make them a little more realistic and a lot grittier. Risa oozes sensuality and Leto comes across visually as a very young man carrying a very large burden. Brian Miller’s colors also work very well on this book, using uniform color palettes for each scene, but somehow working a lot better than when he uses a similar trick in the DC Focus line.

Vertigo, at its best, has always been a line that has succeeded by putting familiar elements together in unfamiliar ways, and Bite Club is another fine example of that. With the miniseries half-over, I sincerely hope they come back to these characters in the future.

Rating: 8/10

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