Writer: Simon Spurrier
Art: Aaron Campbell & Jordie Bellaire
After years of not being in an adult title of his own, our dear own Hellblazer is back at it in DC’s Black Label new series. As shown in a sort of #0 issue, released earlier this year, this new series will tie-in with the new Books of Magic title eventually. But for now, all we get is a good old John Constantine story.
The chapter picks up with John being thrown out of a pub for telling anti-royalist jokes. John is made by the place’s bouncer, Nat, who should be John’s new companion at least for this first arc. After that, Constantine is ambushed and forced to help the Ri-Boys, a criminal gang who needs to know what has been massacring its members in the Peckham Rye Park, where they conduct their business.
Simon Spurrier did great work on this first issue. After years of not having John Constantine in his full character for an adult label, we finally got it and Spurrier was the one who delivered. The attitude along with the comebacks and self commentaries could satisfy any fan of Constantine. Not only he nailed the character but also the storytelling. The plot takes its time, every tiny element is carefully introduced to the right point in order to make this a paranormal mystery story and it is amazing.
Pencils in this issue were by Aaron Campbell who has a very characteristic style and brings out the best of London in wide panels. His close-ups are nothing to frown upon either. Campbell provides a lot of expression lines to characters’ faces and poses which easily contributes to a more cathartic reading experience.
The coloring is done by Jordie Bellaire and it complements the penciling spectacularly! Considering how many lines there are in Campbell’s work, that is a remarkable display of talent for the craft. The wide panel I mentioned before is made even more mesmerizing by Bellaire’s work. Plus the glow effect she put on some magical characters and even on London’s street lamps is wonderfully soothing and involving.
Comic readers and fans of Hellblazer from every corner of the Earth may rejoice. It is back and it is looking incredibly promising. Counting on a highly talented team, the title should bring up the quality standards back to Vertigo times and if that won’t convince you to pick up this new series, I don’t know what will.
John Constantine: Hellblazer (2019-) #1
Comic readers and fans of Hellblazer from every corner of the Earth may rejoice. It is back and it is looking incredibly promising. Counting on a highly talented team, the title should bring up the quality standards back to Vertigo times and if that won't convince you to pick up this new series, I don't know what will.