Monday, June 29, 2015

Constantine the Hellblazer #1

I had a different caption here but I was being a whiny baby so now you have this caption and a mystery!

One night when Constantine was still a television show and the world was a wonderful place full of hope and optimism (of course gay people couldn't get married in every state then but who wouldn't give that up again to get Constantine back on the air, amirite?!), the opening credits to Constantine began playing on my television. My cat Pelafina was sitting on the floor in front of the television minding her own business when the screen filled up with all those writhing souls before the name of the show appears. As soon as she saw them, she hunkered down low to the ground and began a quick combat crawl toward the television. That moment in the credits is pretty quick and after a couple of seconds, they were gone. When they left, she straightened back up, looked around, and went back to staring at other dimensional creatures that only she can see the way cats usually do.

The New 52 Constantine was mostly a boring fuck who was constantly pining after Zatanna. He was a complete bell end. There was no real tension or sacrifice in his life. Every month he would just cast a spell which he just warned everybody was the most dangerous spell in the world and then he'd be okay. Hopefully this series will consist of John finally paying the price for all of those outrageous spells he was casting just to impress Zatanna. And maybe the Nightmare Nurse a little bit too.

This issue begins with a blood covered naked John Constantine suddenly appearing in a shop while Narration Boxing a swear word (it's bleeped out but at least it's a curse!). The title of the story is "Going Down." I think that's violating all the Comic Code Authority rules at once except for the one about no monsters. Although John's cock might count as a monster if he wasn't covering it up with his hand. Although if he can cover it up with one hand, it's probably not a monster. At least not yet.

This is a nice enough bit of introduction to explain to the reader that this isn't a super hero comic book.

James and Ming make sure Constantine's bisexuality makes an appearance on page three just in case anybody's paying attention. Sure, he says he fucked a ghost but he probably fucked Gaz when Gaz was alive so that's definitely homosexuality. And John's been known to put his pee pee in the vicinity of Zatanna's ovaries which is probably heterosexuality. Put them both together and what does that spell? I don't know. I'm drunk.

Constantine acts as his own narrator as most comic book characters do these days although he's much better at it than Roy Harper. He's actually giving the reader a feel for his life and the darkness which he thrives in. He wants those traveling with him for the next few decades (optimism!) to understand that they will be seeing terrible, horrible, awful things and to maybe not judge him so much when he barely even notices them. Not a wince. Not a dry heave. Not for good old John because he's been waist deep in demons and gore since the tail end of puberty.

Constantine ditches Gaz and the other ghosts following him for a nice curry with chips and a side of strapping young cock.

Okay, maybe the cock's not on the menu.

Now I want a curry. One time in Berlin, I had street curry. It was the best curry. Because it was on the street. Currywurst. So good. I'd probably have to go downtown to find a curry cart in Portland. And then it wouldn't be the best curry because I would be downtown in Portland. Blarf.

Oh my. I stand corrected. Look who just made the happy ending menu. Happy hour! I meant happy hour!

Constantine is perfectly right about one thing: chatting is nice. In comic books at least! Fuck actually chatting with real people! So awkward that they won't just touch my penis. I have to get to know them first? But chatting in comic books? Great! Awesome! Build some fucking character guys! Why would I care when Oliver's lungs get sucked up his throat by a demon if I'm not able to have some nice moments with him first, you know?!

John's flirtation is interrupted by a demon named Blythe. Blythe has stopped by to fuck Constantine. Blythe also needs help banishing some imps from the club Blythe runs. It's a little place called Inferno which Constantine points out is a bit on the nose because, well, it's a bit on the nose and some character had to mention it so that critics of Tynion and Doyle can't!

The club is entered from the top floor where patrons head down, down, down through all nine circles of Hell until, I suppose, they wind up in Satan's mouth? That sounds like a good time!

Blythe is an interesting character. A bit of a Desire wannabe with a love of calling John "rude." And the trip through Inferno is cutesy and well plotted. It reads a bit like a Sergio Aragon├ęs cartoon if he were allowed color or to draw inside the margins.

Blythe walks Constantine right across the Ninth Circle (Treachery! Although no sign of Judas or Satan) and into the business partner's office where Blythe locks the door and expects John to kill the partner. See, Blythe can't collect souls or send demons to Hell or Blythe goes to Hell too. But if John sends Blythe's partner to Hell, Blythe gets to keep the Inferno Club which captures souls and sends them to Hell, factory-like, without getting Blythe's hands dirty. So John, to keep himself alive, conducts an exorcism on the partner. But he flubs the final line because, to get even with Blythe for manipulating him, he wants Blythe to jump in and finish it, thus sending a creature to Hell which means Blythe winds up back in Hell as well. Such a Hellblazer thing to do!

Constantine making friends.

John's ghosts show up on the final page where Gaz points out that Frank the Ghost is dead. Really dead. Like dead dead. Apparently you can be deader than dead because Frank is that. He's the deadest. It's a mystery to be solved by Trixie Constantine!

Constantine the Hellblazer #1 Rating: So far, so good! And one of those three words (one used twice!) I really wasn't able to use very often when describing The New 52 Constantine. It was often boring. This one at least has things happening and has John being John and has swearing and smoking and sex with demons! It also has a Constantine in a thigh high duster which is a bit weird but I guess it's modern or something? Whatever! This version of Constantine works! So far.

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