Hellblazer #299 (Vertigo)
Continuing with Death and Cigarettes Part 2, we find John Constantine…
…dead, from a gunshot wound to the chest. Executed by a goon who hung around with his wife Epiphany’s gangster father.
Peter Milligan has written a real bummer of an issue. Sure, it has a part with a weird scorned lover beast with six breasts…
…but by and large this issue is about Epiphany, and what she does after John’s death. It’s a real tear-jerker. This man, who has survived an absurd amount of demons, black magic and other supernatural bullshittery, taken out by a regular asshole with a regular gun. It’s incredibly sad.
Feels, attacking. The feeeels.
Oh Chas, dude!
Finn, John’s cousin, comes around to visit, and to make matters worse, he lets Epiphany know John ruined his marriage by teaching him magic. He got a bug up his ass to learn more, and started digging up corpses. So, Finn’s wife leaves, and takes the children. The curse of the Constantine continues.
The issue ends with, as you’d expect, a heck of a twist.
Guiseppe Camuncoli draws angular people in excellent fashion as usual. The colors by Stefan Landini, Brian Buccellatto, and Sal Sipriano are a lot of dark blues. Fitting, as this is a very somber issue.
Final Score: 9
- Sad, in a good way
- Lots of action
- Great art
- A lot going on, when you’d think it would just focus on John’s death
Is it good? Yes. It is excellent. It is, however, all over the place, which is the only thing that keeps it from getting a perfect rating. That, and I feel uncomfortable giving something a perfect score. However, this is the best arc, with pound for pound the most heart and intrigue of any series I’ve read lately.
I eagerly await the last issue, but I’m upset to see good old John go, to be replaced by a new, probably douchier, more obnoxious version for the New 52. Let’s hope that we can bury this series with a smile on our faces, as we remember the good times, with our old friend.