Know what you mean. I started with the first book, stopped for months for other comics, then began again after seeing the movie. When I began the Garth Ennis book, it definitely breezed through quicker and more enjoyable. But then again, anything Garth Ennis writes is fun to read.
The first two issues of the series (The Hunger) are brilliant. I think that they're a perfect intro to the character. However, the rest of the trade leaves a lot to be desired.
I like the movie, but everytime I've watched it I've felt dissapointed afterwards. I mean gum? Come on.
I bought that thing. Art is horrible, like most of Vertigo's early stuff from like 1991. It's at a level where it's ugly enough to annoy me when reading it :O
The writing is sorta Neil Gaiman-ish in the sense that he never shuts the fuck up. BLABLABLABLA INNER THOUGHTS BLABLA LONG BOGUS EXPLANATIONS BLABLA and then I forget what's going on half the time and you can't look at the art to remind you because it looks like it was done entirely with a ball-point pen.
I liked the ones done by Ennis/Dillon better but still nothing that would make me read Constantine and God knows it would be easy since like 1/5th of the comics on sale in the huge crap box at the used book store seems to be Hellblazer issues.
Like, I don't even think they accept any more comics, they just sell until they finally get rid of it all and all that's left is crap from the early 90s...
Anyways I did like that part with the fat dude eating constantly but still drying up like a fig and dying of starvation. Very post-modern.