Vampire Month for First Second/Life Sucks

First Second has declared May Vampire Month! (That link has resource kits for retailers and librarians that include decorations and activities with art from their books.)

Vampire Month logo

Why May, traditionally for springtime, bunnies, and flowers? Because the publisher has two graphic novels featuring the creatures coming out this month: Joann Sfar’s Little Vampire and Life Sucks by Jessica Abel, Gabe Soria, and Warren Pleece. They’re very different in mood, style, and audience, though. Little Vampire contains three whimsical-with-edge stories for all ages, while Life Sucks is aimed more at the post-college, “what am I doing with my life?” crowd.

Life Sucks cover
Life Sucks
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The high concept of Life Sucks is Clerks with vampires. Dave’s a member of the undead whose life has changed not a bit. He’s working at a convenience store for the vampire who turned him because his master needed a night manager. He’s got a crush on goth girl Rosa, but another vampire’s in his way.

It’s a well-observed, sometimes wryly funny coming-of-age story with an abrupt conclusion that doesn’t fully explore the big plot events that happen shortly before the end. (Maybe they’re planning a sequel?) It’s still worth reading, though, for the sharp character sketches during the dialogue-driven scenes, and the concepts, rethinking the traditional seductive creature of the night, are amusing.

So, let’s talk vampires!

My favorite vampire comic is Spike: Shadow Puppets. It’s completely an in-joke for fans of the Buffyverse, but it gave me such pleasure to read. Runner-up: First Second’s Vampire Loves, because disaffected young adults redone as mythical creatures who still have the same problems of finding love and purpose is genius.

My favorite vampire film is The Lost Boys, because it’s not about the gore, it’s about the mystique and the appeal of being different and distant and powerful.

My favorite vampire show is Angel, due to the amazing character transformation Wesley goes through over the course of the series. Upon rewatching recently, it held up much better than Buffy for me. And it made me cry.

What are yours?


10 Responses to “Vampire Month for First Second/Life Sucks”

  1. Justin Says:

    My favorite vampire novel is Of Saints and Shadows by Christopher Golden.

  2. Ed Sizemore Says:

    I love the classics. Dracula (1931) is my favorite, because nobody did it better than Bela Lugois. Next up is Nosferatu, the Spanish version of Dracula, Blacula, Fright Night, Dracula (Hammer Horror), The Last Man On Earth, Omega Man, Lost Boys, Blade, and Inteview With A Vampire.. Vampires make for great villians and interesting character studies.
    It’s amazing how they’ve keep their appeal over the years.

  3. Ed Sizemore Says:

    Sorry, that should be ‘Lugosi’.

  4. Dan Grendell Says:

    I have a lot of fondness for the Tomb of Dracula comics, particularly Tomb of Dracula Magazine. I’m also quite enjoying the manga version of Vampire Hunter D. As far as movies go, like Ed, I enjoy the classics, although I also really liked Shadow of the Vampire.

  5. Ed Sizemore Says:

    Dan,
    I’m a complete idiot. I totally forgot to list Vampire Hunter D. The two anime movies are brilliant and the novels are even better. Long Live D!

  6. Johanna Says:

    Hey, there’s a Blacula double feature on Turner Classic Movies after midnight on Friday, if anyone’s interested. And yeah, Shadow of the Vampire, fascinating!

  7. Jesse Says:

    Favorite Vampire Comic Book: Tomb of Dracula (though, Blood: A Tale is a close second, Grendel as well)

    Favorite Vampire Movie: The Hunger

    Favorite Vampire Book: I Am Legend by Richard Matheson

    Favorite Vampire TV Show: Dark Shadows

  8. Bill Says:

    Greenberg the Vampire still my favorite DeMattias title. Tomb of Dracula comes next best villain title period.

    Movie… tough one I like Herzog’s remake of Noseferatu and Coppella’s Dracula.

  9. PiQ Magazine Out This Week » Comics Worth Reading Says:

    […] due out on Wednesday. There, I am very proud of my article on josei manga as well as my review of Life Sucks. Look for the Speed Racer M on the cover. Check it out and let me know what you think! […]

  10. Vampires? In May? Why, First Second, You Are a Cheeky Publisher, Aren’t You? Says:

    […] cool First Second blog has brought readers a downloadable vampire kit, and links to features at Comics Worth Reading, Colleen Mondor’s blog, and Interactive […]




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