John Constantine has been shown to be a guy with a hand in many things. With the recent events, it’s been unknown where he would end up next. With James Tynion IV and Ming Doyle taking on the dark and magic area of the DC Universe, they’re tasked with taking John in a new direction. The two will be working on CONSTANTINE: THE HELLBLAZER (as well as DARK UNIVERSE, more on that later), so we asked them what’s coming up for Constantine.
COMIC VINE: How will this be connected to the previous series.
JAMES TYNION IV: It’s one of those things, and I think this is one of the core aspects of a lot of these new DC books, those stories happened. We’re not going to do anything to directly contradict them or anything.
MING DOYLE: This is just going down a different path.
JT: Yeah. This is us, but we’re also not too concerned with staying the course.
MD: If you didn’t read CONSTANTINE before this at all, if you didn’t know what he was up to, you can pick this up and figure it out.
JT: Right, but also if you did read that, if you have been reading CONSTANTINE and you love the character, we’re going to the core of the character you love. We’re going to tell an incredible story that’s deeply personal to John. We’ll explore the core danger at the heart of him.
MD: Just like not everything that happens to Superman is in a regimented chronological order of events, he’s doing seven different things in two books at the same time. Really, this story doesn’t pick up from the previous CONSTANTINE. It doesn’t disregard it, it doesn’t say it didn’t happen. It’s just following this other thing that John’s doing.
CV: Are there going to be any elements from the television show added in?
MD: Not consciously.
JT: The television show has been a really great entry point to the character for a whole bunch of new fans but we wanted our vision to come from ourselves.
JT: So we haven’t been letting the show guide us that much.
MD: It’s a different iteration of the character just like the Batman cartoons aren’t the same thing as the Schumacher Batman movies or whatever. It’s not in the same continuity necessarily. It’s the same guy but a different deal.
MD: No. You will see new characters.
JT: You’ll see lots of new characters and it’s very likely that familiar characters will pop their heads in every now and then. We want to create a Hellblazer title that gets down to that dangerous core and approaches it in a good clean way so that you never have to have read a Constantine book. This book will show you why this character, showing up in just a few pages in a Swamp Thing comic, why we’re still talking about him today.
MD: But, if you have read every Constantine comic, we hope that readers will think this is a new interesting story about a thing that has happened to John and it’ll just expand their appreciation for the character.
CV: Will it have a slightly Vertigo feel?
MD: It’s gonna be dark!
JT: These are horror books but to say it has a “Vertigo feel,” we want to match the challenge that the original Vertigo writers took upon themselves to take these incredible concepts and ground them in our day to day lives. But they grounded it in the real world of the late 80s and early 90s. That was so perfect and so real and so timely back then. I think sometimes now, to get at that Vertigo feel, it’s now dated because John Constantine shouldn’t look like someone who walked out of 1993. When he first showed up in the pages of SWAMP THING, he was the dangerous attractive man in the bar. Yes, John Constantine is always going to be wearing a coat but…
MD: He’s been wearing the same coat over thirty years.
JT: That’s ridiculous. We want to get to that dangerous heart of the character that made him into this timeless character.
MD: You can have a style but you don’t have to wear a uniform when you’re somebody like John. You’re not Superman, you don’t put on the suit everyday.
You can find out more in June. Here's the solicit for the first issue.
CONSTANTINE: THE HELLBLAZER #1
Written by MING DOYLE
Art and cover by RILEY ROSSMO
1:25 Variant cover by MING DOYLE
On sale JUNE 10 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
Retailers: This issue will ship with two covers. Please see the order form for more information.
The dark adventures of DC’s foremost occult detective continue in an all-new series as he investigates the cruelest case he’s ever come across – his own dark history!