Archive for Hellblazer

The Return of the Hellblazer?

Posted in Media, Occult Detectives with tags , on February 6, 2015 by Occult Detective


Word on the street is that John Constantine’s about to come down with a bad case of Vertigo.

It’s no secret that I consider the whole “New 52” relaunch of the DC Universe a colossal disappointment and failure on a grand scale. No title has epitomized this disastrous  turn than Constantine. The Comic formerly known as Hellblazer was reimagined as a smug Conjob-lite with Dr. Strange tendancies, showing up not only in his own title, bu also headlining and guest starring in other books, like Justice League Dark, Injustice: Year Three, and Future’s End, for example.

Since Hellblazer was stolen away from Vertigo and whored out to the greater DC Universe, everyone’s had their mitts on him. And it’s not been pretty.

Hopefully, that’s all about to change.


DC Comics has announced, in the wake of “Convergence”, a mini-relaunch in June. A bunch of titles are getting the axe, a bunch more are getting fresh coats of paint, and it looks like the New 52 is getting scuttled. What does this mean for Constantine?

DC has announced that Constantine will be relaunched as Constantine: The Hellblazer. Helmed by Ming Doyle and Riley Rossmo, I’m afraid that John will still be housed alongside the Capes Crowd, but talk around the proverbial watercooler is that editorial is looking for John to more closely resemble his former Vertigo-era self.

While that’s all well and good, I can’t help but wish that Constantine would be set apart from that crowd, along with the rest of the supernatural-flavored characters. He works best when he’s not rubbing shoulders with Batman and company.

Until he is back fully into Vertigo’s control, I don’t see this as a return to form that will satisfy his fans from the original Hellblazer run.

Let’s face the cold hard truth of it. Comics are broken and they don’t look to be fixed anytime soon, if ever. Thankfully, no matter how they muck things up, we’ll always have the original stories to return to.

#Hellblazers Unite! #SaveConstantine

Posted in Media, Occult Detectives with tags , on November 25, 2014 by Occult Detective

smoke up johnny

Keep the faith. Spread the word.
And smoke ’em if ya got ’em…

First Look: Constantine

Posted in Archive with tags , , on May 12, 2014 by Occult Detective


Watch a preview:

Watch the trailer:


How ’bout that? Bloody terrific, no? Earlier I’d posted the news of NBC giving a series order for the adaptation of DC Comics’ Hellblazer, John Constantine. I believe the words I used were ‘cautiously optimistic’. Well, they’ve gone and screwed that all up. I’m now somewhat over the moon based on that trailer.

What’s right about it? Let’s get the obvious out of the way. He looks right. He sounds right (well, he’s got a bit more of a Welsh accent, but close enough). The tone is right. The effects are right. Has anything screamed “occult detective” better than this? If I didn’t know better, I’d say these cats have been peeking in on my friend Will Wright’s Credo the Series and The Ritual short.

Okay, so it takes place in New York, ala CBS’ modern-day Holmes series. But why pick at nits?

This is some edgy stuff and Matt Ryan is nailing Constantine. The only thing not making it perfect is the lack of a fag hanging from his lips in every shot.

Look, I know we haven’t seen the pilot yet, but based on the above, I dare say, I’ve a new favorite series looming. It looks that damned good.

Colour me shocked… and pleasantly so.

Hellblazer is Dead. Long Live John Constantine.

Posted in Archive with tags , on November 12, 2012 by Occult Detective

I came to the world of John Constantine a bit later than most, I suppose. I knew of him, of course, but it wasn’t until Neil Gaiman’s Books of Magic that I got my first real dose of the character. I was immediately smitten. Constantine was a real  nasty piece of work. He’s been called a “working-class magician” and “con-man”. Yep, that sums it up rather nicely. He’s bitter, road-worn, and a chain smoking ne’er-do-well and I love him for it.

I’ve read the Constantine monthly, Hellblazer, pretty consistently since the late 90s. I’ve read all the specials and crossovers and gone back and tracked the character’s progress from his first appearance in Moore’s Swamp Thing.

I guess you’d call me a fan.

Hellblazer’s barking right up my proverbial tree, John being an occult detective through and through. Constantine and my own occult detective, Landon Connors (originally named Solomon Killingbeck), were born about the same time in the late 80s and I guess Moore and I were tapping into similar influences. Constantine is far more bitter than my guy, mind you. He’s far more jaded and had a tougher go of it. But they’re cut from a not dissimilar mold.

Thing is, the world needs John Constantine even more than it needs Landon Connors. Sure, Johnny’s most often looking out for himself, but he’s the one that does the dirty bits that need doing.

And here we are, with Hellblazer being cancelled with issue 300. 300? Damn, that’s a good run, isn’t it?

The internet is, of course, up in arms, with fans and creators alike screaming their displeasure. But you know what, Hellblazer may be coming to an end, but Constantine’s being restarted fresh. Will it be worth a toss? I don’t know. But what I do know is I’ll be the first in line to buy the new book and to give it a chance. If it’s utter shit then fine, I’ll trash it and move on. There are 300 issues of Hellblazer, a dozen or so special issues, and a metric shit-ton of cross-overs and such waiting to be reread.

They can’t kill John Constantine.

It’s like that old saying, “Heaven don’t want him and Hell’s afraid he’ll take over”.

The king is gone but he’s not forgotten

Posted in Archive with tags , on November 9, 2012 by Occult Detective

Hellblazer is dead.

Long Live, John Constantine.

Tune in Monday for my thoughts on the matter.

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