Old Foes, new light
For those of us who worried how much little ol' John would change coming to over to DC proper, here's a scorecard. It's 2 for 2 pure Constantine. He is a true S.O.B. He is cocky, brash, fast witted, and above all else a trickster
So for the synopsis. John is after a powerful artifact that has been split into three parts around the world. With the needle of Croyden's Compass in hand at the expense of one his few friend's life, he is off to find the two remaining parts, but will have to face off against powerful mages and avenging spirits out for his life and/or soul.
If your a fan of the vertigo title, and all his crossovers, you will very much recognize many of the mages that were already mentioned in Constantine #1 and #2. Hellblazer and Books of magic dealt with these very mages he is confronting.
Here is the glorious part of the story, even if have never read any past story about John Constantine, you aren't missing anything. This is a total fresh start. Even characters that were in old stories ware completely re-imagined and fresh.
So will people feel like they were cheated out of the old Constantine? Maybe.
Should they? Definitely not.
You can't control how people feel, but this is such a great version of Constantine, that it would be incredibly sad for any Hellblazer fans or new readers not to allow themselves the joy of reading it.
He's smug, selfish, everyone hates him, especially himself. So why would you read it. He is not bigger, badder, or more powerful than most people he meets. He is a trickster that uses his guile and magic to misdirect and out think opponents. You are always watching for his slight of hand and just when you think you see it, he tends to send you and his opponents looking in the wrong direction. Constantine was always such a fresh perspective in comiics as opposed to the run of the mill beat em up superheroes. The world is dark, Constantine is an a**hole, his friends tend to not stay alive very long, but sooner or later he might be all that stands between us and the end of the world.
The art is detailed, but has a very fitting dirtiness to the lines that fits Constantine's grittiness.
The story has kept me involved and wanting more. I am absolutely intrigued to see more about this version of Mister E. Guest appearances by the Spectre felt powerful in the short appearance as it already places Constantine in peril for his very soul as he almost always was in Hellblazer.
In conclusion, all I need to know now is when the next one comes out.