"Hollywood Babylon, Part 1": The Red is under attack, and as a result, both Buddy and his daughter Maxine are doubling over in pain as the learn that their sanctuary has been infiltrated by [[Brother Blood (Prime Earth)|Brother
- No matter what we have to do, no matter what it takes... We have to get our family back.
Synopsis for "Hollywood Babylon, Part 1"
The Red is under attack, and as a result, both Buddy and his daughter Maxine are doubling over in pain as the learn that their sanctuary has been infiltrated by Brother Blood, who has gained the support of a rogue member of the Parliament of Limbs in order to win the controlling share of The Red's power. This means, though, that war will come between Blood and the remaining Totems.
Facing Blood and his supporting Totem, the Parliament demands to know why Blood was allowed to corrupt the Red. The rogue Totem responds that with the Rot and the Green in flux, it is the Red's chance to overtake them. As Brother Blood attacks the other Totems, his supporter warns that the time has come for his own monarchy, and despite the Totems' threats that their death will bring his, the Totem allows Blood to murder them all. After all, he had waited years to see an aggressive avatar chosen.
Buddy squirms on the floor as his tormentor, Clinton Hogue joyously announces that he can finally feel a connection to The Red - which means that Brother Blood is winning. As the police burst in, they are all surprised as Hogue's humanoid body suddenly explodes into a throbbing mass of flesh. Before Buddy can react, he receives a call from his estranged wife Ellen, warning that Maxine has disappeared.
In the Red, Maxine and her companions learn that Brother Blood has killed the majority of the Totems, and though the girl is no longer in pain, she can feel that something has changed for the worse. Shepherd explains that the Totems put most of their power into Maxine and Buddy, which left them too weak to defend themselves - but even so, the intruder must be very powerful to defeat them altogether. Sighing, Shepherd admits that they will not be able to continue their search for her brother Cliff's soul, as he and Socks were tasked with keeping Maxine safe - and that must take priority now.
Brother Blood's master warns him that so long as Maxine and her companions remain alive, they will never have full control over the Red, and so he suggests that they gather some warriors. The first of these is Clinton Hogue, who is ecstatic to find himself, finally, within the Red. As for the power that still resides in Buddy Baker, Brother Blood's Church of Blood has plans to see him dead by sundown.
Ellen's mother Mary frustrates her by watching the Hollywood Screen Awards, for which Buddy is nominated, claiming that the TV keeps her company - keeps her from thinking about what might be happening to Maxine. Even so, she feels sure that Maxine is still okay, for now - though Ellen is far less certain. Fortunately, Buddy arrives, and relieved, Ellen rushes outside to meet him. He tries to apologize for Maxine's continued entanglement with the Red, but she stops him, explaining that after spending so much time blaming Buddy for Cliff's death, she learned that separating him from Maxine didn't keep her any safer. Maxine is destined to be a part of it all.
Ellen suggests that Maxine might have gone into the Red searching for Cliff, but Buddy can't go back. The Totems shut him out last time he was there. Even so, he promises Ellen that he'll find a way - find Maxine. As he wraps his arms around Ellen, she states that they will find her together. No matter what it takes, they will get their family back.
Suddenly, Mary rushes outside, warning that something disturbing has come on the television. Clinton Hogue has returned, hijacking the awards show to make a statement. He warns that Buddy Baker is a false prophet; not a hero. The gods to whom he played servant are now dead, and the Church of Blood has risen. And now, if Buddy doesn't come to sacrifice himself to give Brother Blood power, everyone in the auditorium die.
Appearing in "Hollywood Babylon, Part 1"
- Captain Longneck
- Blue Bird
- Mary Frazier
- Jimmy Diamond (On a TV or computer screen)
- The Freckled Manatee
- A clip from the Hollywood Screen Awards (an analogue for the Academy Awards) notes that an actor played Skinner Sweet in a screen adaptation of American Vampire, a book which is illustrated by this issue's artist, Rafael Albuquerque.