Reviewer: Mathan â€œLost Boysâ€ Erhardt
Story Title: Suck Off and Die
Written by: Howard Chaykin & David Tischman
Penciled and Inked by: David Hahn
Lettered by: Jared K. Fletcher
Colored by: Brian Miller
Editor: Shelly Bond
Publisher: Vertigo > DC Comics
The issue begins with the shocking death of Eduardo Del Toro a 265-year-old vampire who also headed up the Del Toro crime family in Miami. And thus we enter the world of Bite Club. A world where Vampires are a segment of the population, just like any other minority. They have even been allowed into the Catholic clergy. Welcome to Bite Club!
After Eduardo’s death, by an unseen assailant, we meet his daughter Risa Del Toro. Risa (who graces the cover) is a mover and a shaker in the music industry, and she’s not quite 21. She finds out about her father’s demise while partying at one of Miami’s hottest nightspots. Meanwhile, Eduardo (Eddie) Del Toro Jr. is bailing his son, Danny Del Toro out of jail. Apparently crime is in their blood.
But maybe it isn’t. We then meet Risa and Eduardo’s brother Leto Del Toro, the nation’s first ordained vampiric priest. He hears about his father’s death from his Monsignor. Later we see Eddie and his cousin Victor Sanchez interrogating some hookers about Eduardo’s death and discussing the future of the family â€œbusiness.â€
After the funeral we meet the widow Arabella Del Toro who is pretty upset. Danny goes digging in his grandfathers room finds a gun and makes another discovery. Leto also makes a discovery; his mom and cousin Victor are closer than he ever realized. And after all that Zephraim Klein, the Del Toro consigliere, informs Leto that Eduardo wanted Leto to take over the family business.
Chaykin & Tischman have a knack for dialogue and airtight plots full of twists. Just check out â€œAmerican Centuryâ€ if you don’t believe me. This story has the potential to be a breakout hit. The story is interesting, a mystery is present, and all the characters are viable suspects. The writing is perfect. A familiar society is changed just enough to seem alien, but the writing makes it seem natural. The cast of characters leaves you desperate to read the next issue, if only to see them interact more.
I’ve never seen Hahn’s work before, but I have to say I find it to be very clean and easy to look at. Since most of the story takes place at night or indoors the colors are muted accordingly, a touch that I appreciated. The book is sort of bloody, but I didn’t find it too bloody or offensive. A good job by all.