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Saturday, December 29, 2018

Constantine in 2018

     If you're a fan of John Constantine's activities, then surely this year turned out to be one with mixed feelings to be polite. In August, we saw John's solo title, The Hellblazer, mercifully come to its bitter end. Personally, I felt that so much of it felt out of place. The more I read of that series, the John that was being presented to me did not seem like the antihero of old. Now before you dog pile me in the comment section, I mean that the stories came across as being just thrown together. However, I did feel as if Tim Seeley did a commendable job, given the tools and parameters he had to work with at that time.
     We saw Matt Ryan resume his role as John Constantine as a season regular in the CW abomination of DC's Legends of Tomorrow. That show is so cringe-worthy that I find myself fearing for the worst for the future of our occult detective. If I thought he was homogenized before during the New 52 in Constantine and Justice League Dark, it appears that more of that seems to be the status quo for John in these other mediums. At this point, I can only hope that Matt Ryan will wrap up with that show in season four. While there are rumors abound that Matt Ryan as Constantine may return to his own show resuming with season 2 on the DC Universe app, nothing has been confirmed at this time by DC Entertainment. It would be great though if John were to show up in one of the episodes of Swamp Thing in 2019.
     There were some things though that seemed to shed a darker light of promise on the Hellblazer returning to his classic Vertigo roots this year. With the 30th Anniversary release of the Hellblazer trade paperback put out by the Vertigo imprint, one can only hope that DC is trying to gauge the fan base as to where the character should go from here. With John featured prominently in the Black Label miniseries, Batman: Damned, hopefully we will get a return in the future of a more mature direction. It seems like we are starting to get a little of that with this year's Constantine: City of Demons.
     Whatever DC decides to do with John in 2019,  the appeal of John is that he does not work well with other protagonists. In fact, the number of good acquaintances can be counted on one red right hand, but even that number is dwindling as the years go on. I don't fancy John as a superhero. He's always been the counter culture to the superhero culture and it seems as if somebody at DC has forgotten about that, or perhaps they are just choosing to ignore it entirely.
      Here's hoping for a better 2019, Hellblazers!
    

Thursday, November 29, 2018

A Brief Retraction, Back Up And Running!

What's this?! A new post??!! That's right, we've returned home to our original url link. We are now officially back up and running. This is because the partnership with the Wordpress platform did not bear any fruit. With all of the modifications and upgrade I had planned, it just did not make any logical sense to stick around with that domain host. We are talking an expensive venture over time. This is why the sane choice here is the embryonic stages of what you see before you. I don't need all the bells and whistles of  an expert graphic designer. No, I have grown quite fondly of the do it yourself approach to creative projects. This D.I.Y. method is an essential pillar of the punk rock attitude and lifestyle. For what it's worth, I'm sure John would agree with that sentiment. Regardless, I should have another post up before the year is out. See you all soon, hellblazers!

Sunday, November 11, 2018

We have moved! Follow us over at Wordpress!

This blog feed will cease to be updated. Please visit The Cult Of Constantine at for all future blog postsgoing forward. Thank you for understanding.
cultofconstantine.wordpress.com

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Down At The Crossroads

     It's been a strange decade for Liverpool's favorite laughing magician. What started out as a potentially great idea on paper, turned out to be one that left more doubts and questions for the future of John Constantine. His most recent ongoing title, The Hellblazer, was cancelled back in August. Currently John is having to share the spotlight with the Batman in the Damned miniseries for the Black Label imprint. But as for plans for a new ongoing book, there have been no announcements made by the folks over at DC Comics at this time. This can certainly cause fans to voice their  concerns in the online forums of their choice. Perhaps the editorial staff at DC has decided to test the waters with the character by taking new chances with him on the Black Label. I kind of think of it as some sort of experimentation. Then again, there's another part of me who feels that DC may not be sure what John Constantine that they want to present to the public. On the CW series, DC's Legends of Tomorrow, viewers are given a far more tame and cleaner cut homogenized version of the character. It is as if I don't know what they are trying to sell to me on that show. It's not the John Constantine that I know. The one that I prefer is foul-mouthed, rude, arrogant, and thoroughly disheveled in appearance, all the while wreaking profusely of booze and cigarette smoke.
     Perhaps that is the issue in that DC is not sure how they want to present John, so they are opting to see what sticks. What is it that will make John Constantine stick? The answer to this complicated question is depending on who you ask, as it can be divisive in some arenas of discourse. The battle between hero and anti-hero, saint and bastard. Without question, it appears that DC has lost their way in how they want the character to be presented in future stories. I have always been under the impression that the characteristics that make John appealing to readers is his quick wit, charm, and lovable cynicism. He may not share the physical prowess as some of those within the capes and tights crew, but his cunning puts even Harry Houdini to shame. To say that Constantine is a slippery character would be grossly understating the obvious, he keeps coming back from seemingly impossible odds. His self-centered nature uncovers our own insecurities as people, that maybe we are not as morally good as we let ourselves on to be at the end of the day. During the Vertigo years, he was the only character who aged in real time and I think that is what made those stories so compelling. It wasn't just those spectacular covers that cast their spell on you visually. No, it was the self-destructive ugliness that John bore on his demeanor with everyone he interacted with each passing issue.
     This month will mark the thirtieth anniversary of John Constantine's tenure in DC Comics. This comes at a time when the direction to proceed is unclear. While sporadic appearances are good to show that he is being used, the cause for concern is that fact that he is perhaps being used improperly. A notion like this is understandably subjective. It is my hope that the character will return to more
darker and mature stories that were a staple of the Vertigo imprint in its initial heyday. John has never played well with others and he takes a lot of heat from multiple sides, which often leads him to live a lonely existence. Here is a guy who is haunted by the spirits that he chases on a regular basis. His essence exudes spiritual toxicity to all that he encounters. Loved ones and companions end up dead, damned, or even far worse. It is the price that he pays as he dabbles with the forces of dark magic.
     So why do a blog about John Constantine? With the exception of the various tribute pages on social media, there is not really all that much in terms of content devoted to our beloved anti-hero. However, there is a blog called The Laughing Magician that has a few informative posts. It has not been updated since the beginning of the New52 era. While there are plenty of those who primarily write about his live action incarnations in television and film, I intend to make a conscious effort to not dwell on those outlets. I may reference or touch on some of that content briefly, but on this site I will be focusing mainly on his appearances throughout DC Comics. I intend to skip around quite a bit, just to keep things fresh and interesting. This is an evolution in progress so I will be making improvements over time. I will do my best to keep the content somewhat organized and user-friendly to navigate. The posts will be sporadic and infrequent. Be rest assured that this site will not be removed or deleted, as I will be keeping it up for other fans. I will be adding content to it over a long period of time. I hope a podcast will eventually spring from all this, but that remains to be seen.