The scum always rises to the surface
I’d like to say it was inevitable I’d end up with my grubby mitts pulling the levers of John Constantine’s life. It certainly felt that way in 1999, at the tender age of 18, when I first set my heart on writing comics. There was a brief spell when it seemed any ambitious Brit writer with at least a passing acquaintance with creative bastardliness could expect a brief stint at the Hellblazer helm, sooner or later.
But what with the title’s lamented fadeout several years ago, and the viccissitudes of my own insane workload, it seemed I’d missed my chance.
It’s therefore with delight - and a quite frankly indecent smirk - that I relaunch Hellblazer this fall.
We’ve worked our grubby socks off to simultaneously acknowledge the many reticulations in Constantine’s tangled life/lives, and to find an honest way to restore what my inner 18-year-old still regards as the character’s fundamental quiddity. He is a liar. He is a cheat, a conman, a betrayer, a trickster, a devil in beige. He’s also a tar-stained romantic, believe it or not, and quite possibly the last and best hope for a soul in peril.
He’s Bryon without money or rhythm.
He’s not the hero we wanted, but he might be the bastard we deserve.
Plenty of sneak peeks and notes forthcoming as we get into the meat of it, but — to give you the basic beats:
Oct 30th: look out for the longwindedly-titled The Sandman Universe Presents: Hellblazer - a 38 page rollercoaster which digs into an ill-visited but fertile corner of the ongoing Sandman Universe project - still observantly curated by Neil Gaiman - and untangles the many threads that compose that most cunning of cunning men, John Constantine. Interior art by Marcio Takara.
Then we’re back on Nov 27th with Hellblazer #1, in at the deep end with a poison-blooded, filthy-mouthed ongoing series, with interior artist Aaron Campbell, which kicks off with a 3-part arc titled A Green And Pleasant Land.
Be a dear and get yourself down to your Local Comic Store ASAP, to reserve a copy.