Did John really defeat the Presence/God?

#1 Posted by seekquaze (606 posts) - - Show Bio

I often here a big deal made out of how Constantine tricked the Presence. I have read the scene in question and I don't see what a big deal it is. How did John trick him?

How do you trick a being like that? If this is similar or the same Presence from Lucifer you cannot. At the dawn of time it would know every possible trick Constantine could do and every way to counter. It would know how to set up events to have every possible counter. Heck, it would precisely know what trick he would try. It would have the power to rewrite the rules of reality to whatever it wanted to counter anything John could do. All the legions of hell would be nothing to the Presence. So why would it be intimidated from John's threats?

Isn't it a bit more likely that it helped John because it may actually like what he is doing? Generally fighting evil and help keeping heaven and hell in line.

#2 Posted by kuonphobos (4882 posts) - - Show Bio

@seekquaze: Can you give the specific occurrence of Constantine tricking "the Presence"? I honestly don't remember that. It always seems that Constantine deals with representatives of Heaven. But it has been years since I read through the Delano and Jenkins runs.

#3 Posted by Rumble Man (11119 posts) - - Show Bio

If Jacob can outwrestle God, then why can't Constantine trick the deity?

The YHVH in our world and in theirs are different (feats/hierarchy/importance)

#4 Posted by seekquaze (606 posts) - - Show Bio

@kuonphobos said:

Can you give the specific occurrence of Constantine tricking "the Presence"? I honestly don't remember that. It always seems that Constantine deals with representatives of Heaven. But it has been years since I read through the Delano and Jenkins runs.

It is the story where the First of the Fallen tells John that a supernatural taint is killing his friends. His only hope to save them is to give himself to the First in exchange for the First removing it. John meets up with God in the guise of an old man around a camp fire. He wants God to remove the taint. He claims if God does not John will go to Hell, take over because the First is an idiot, and eeventually become a threat to heaven itself. To prevent this he claims God has to save him. God does decide to remove the taint, but I cannot remember if God was smiling or not to imply something. It is not uncommon for people to claim this is some great feat on Constantine's part by manipulating or tricking God to do what he wants.

@Rumble Man: In that story the interpretation you link to and the BIble itself implies Jacob could never have bested the angel. It was an act on the angel's part. Some people take Constantine's feat as outwitting God with God powerless to do anything about it. I am calling this into question. Several crossovers have implied Sandman, Lucifer, and Hellblazer all take place in the same universe. Therefore the God would be the same and in Lucifer God was literally all-powerful and all-knowing which would make him impossible to trick, manipulate or threaten. Lucifer is the only one who got close and that was due to being and embodiment of God's infinite will.

#5 Posted by Rumble Man (11119 posts) - - Show Bio

@seekquaze: If it can be scared off by iron chariots then it can be tricked

#6 Posted by kuonphobos (4882 posts) - - Show Bio

@seekquaze:

OK That was issue 97 by Jenkins. I will re-read it and offer up some thoughts in a few days. =)

#7 Posted by seekquaze (606 posts) - - Show Bio

@Rumble Man: You yourself mention the God of the comics is different from ours. So its unlikely iron chariots would scare him off.

@kuonphobos: Thank you. I look forward to your thoughts.

#8 Posted by Rumble Man (11119 posts) - - Show Bio

@seekquaze: Unlikely, yet one man can defeat him

Abraham debated with God and won in Genesis

'different' does not imply 'better' by the way

#9 Posted by seekquaze (606 posts) - - Show Bio

@Rumble Man said:

@seekquaze: Unlikely, yet one man can defeat him

Abraham debated with God and won in Genesis

'different' does not imply 'better' by the way

How did Abraham defeat God in Genesis? Would you please give some details on the story?

Even then that is the God of the Bible not the God of Vertigo. In Vertigo, Lucifer for all of his brilliance, knowledge and power played to God's tune for billions of years despite his best efforts to the contrary. The only time God did not know something is when he went out of his way to prevent him from knowing it.

#10 Posted by Rumble Man (11119 posts) - - Show Bio
#11 Posted by seekquaze (606 posts) - - Show Bio

@Rumble Man: As I am mentioning for the third time the God of Vertigo is not the God of the Bible. He is based on him, but the overall personalities and stories about them are different. In the Bible God wants to be worshipped. In Lucifer at least God does not care about being worshipped. He created the universe intending for Michael and Lucifer to take over. In the Bible God is always directly stated to be the father of Jesus. In Vertigo, I believe the archangel Gabriel is technically the biological father. In the Bible, the question of predestination is debated. In Vertigo, everything is predestined. So, unless the God of Vertigo predestined himself to be tricked (itself an oxymoron) then the claims that Constantine was able to trick the Presence are not true.

#12 Posted by Rumble Man (11119 posts) - - Show Bio

@seekquaze: now that is interesting

predestination

#13 Posted by Fiery (145 posts) - - Show Bio

O___O How can you trick god? He knows everything that is going to happen.

#14 Posted by Rumble Man (11119 posts) - - Show Bio

@Fiery: Laziness/inactivity

Did DC god every did anything when pre-C anti monitor, mandrakk, darkseid with anti life decided to eff up multiverse?

nope

#15 Posted by seekquaze (606 posts) - - Show Bio
Column HeadColumn HeadColumn HeadColumn Head

@Rumble Man said:

Did DC god every did anything when pre-C anti monitor, mandrakk, darkseid with anti life decided to eff up multiverse?

nope

When does the Supreme Being of any universe ever act directly? In the contexts of the story one would probable argue he already knew how everything would turn out so he did not have to since it was going according to plan or he did not care to get involved. If things got too screwed up he could always start over.

#16 Posted by Rumble Man (11119 posts) - - Show Bio

@seekquaze: well TOAA did 'fix' thanos when the HoTU was on

#17 Posted by kuonphobos (4882 posts) - - Show Bio

@seekquaze:

OK I finally got around to re-reading Hellblazer 97 and based upon your previous synopsis I think you (or whomever your cited) have conflated this issue with some earlier goings on. At the onset of issue 97 the demon blood has already been removed. John feels drawn into the "wild" and there encounters a praeternaturally knowledgable gypsy.

The gypsy is referred to as a "shepherd" and is therefore thought to be Jesus Christ.

During a tarot reading (interesting activiy for a traditional Jesus which this is not) this gypsy basically tells John that previously was like a fox who was playing with the devil and who was so far lucky in his dealings. Using the tale of Peredur from the Mabinogion the gypsy tells John that now (after the removal of the demon blood) he is like Peredur who was given the chance to change through a choice. The butterfly tarot alluding to the butterfliess alighting on the tree in the Peredur tale attracted to the flame (as John clearly is). Finally, before the gypsy can reveal the final card, John walks away basically knowing what choice he will make (or consigned to his fate because of his nature) Either way we (the readers) get to see that the final card was again the fox meaning that John would go back to his previous, devious ways.

Jenkins brilliantly evokes the Medieval christopaganism that is threaded throughout the Arthurian Tales and the pre-Christian tales they were built upon. This version of Jesus (or an angelic stand-in) is more Druid than Judeo-Christian IMO. A very different take from Ennis' view of theology and in a way a hearkening back to Delano's shamanistic elements.

When I get the time I will go back to the events which preceed this story and see if there is any confrontation with "God" as you cite previously. But based upon this issue alone I see no evidence that in any way supports the idea that John "tricked" God. If anything, the gypsy was controlling the cards to give John a heads up and John was able to tap into the "magical" process to see the inevitable. Or he just knows his own weaknesses and guessed where the reading was going to go.

#18 Edited by seekquaze (606 posts) - - Show Bio

@kuonphobos: Thanks.

I have not read the story myself, but am basing it on what I was told, the scans, and what I read on various websites.

I did a bit more research and I think the issue that is being referred to is Hellblazer #128 of Jenkins run according to the

http://www.insanerantings.com/hell/comics/ongoing/hb128.html

John makes some threats about inevitable taking over Hell thanks to the First being an idiot and it would be in God's interest to remove some taint from him rather than risk John leading Hell against Heaven. Some people use this as evidence that Constantine tricked for forced God to do what he wanted when it doesn't make sense for reasons I stated earlier in this thread.

@kuonphobos said:

Jenkins brilliantly evokes the Medieval christopaganism that is threaded throughout the Arthurian Tales and the pre-Christian tales they were built upon. This version of Jesus (or an angelic stand-in) is more Druid than Judeo-Christian IMO. A very different take from Ennis' view of theology and in a way a hearkening back to Delano's shamanistic elements.

If you wouldn't mind, could you please go in a bit more about that? In Constantine's world I always took it that Judeo-Christian theology was not subject to belief the same way other belief systems are sometimes portrayed as. Are you saying some writers interpret it differently? Or a bit more on how different writers viewed it?

#19 Edited by kuonphobos (4882 posts) - - Show Bio

@seekquaze:

When I get some time I will re-read 128 (and others in that arc) to get a feel for it and report back.

Asfar as your other question: "In Constantine's world I always took it that Judeo-Christian theology was not subject to belief the same way other belief systems are sometimes portrayed as. Are you saying some writers interpret it differently? Or a bit more on how different writers viewed it?"

What I think may be is happening is that different writers have different takes on things. There are probably few writers in all of comicdom who have an attitude toward "Heaven" as antagonistic as Garth Ennis which can be seen across the body of his work perhaps culminating in Wormwood. His portrayal of John certainly had this element to it.

Jenkins at times doesn't seem to share this same attitude/belief system. Jenkins certainly has a much more studied focus upon magic and religion in general which IMO places him closer to Delano in many ways.

Jenkins really focused upon the magical history of Britain and Constantine's affinity for it while Ennis seems to be more concerned with a more western theological milieu of dualism and (IMO) the childish (some might say visceral) nanny-nanny boo booish interplay between the "powers" that be in what is actually a thinly veiled political satire against Conservatism. (IMOof course)

One quick thought:

Jenkins = Mabinogion --> Arthurian Legends

Ennis = Dante (Divine Comedy) --> Milton (Paradise Lost)

#20 Posted by JackKnight (2969 posts) - - Show Bio

@fiery: Because John Constantine is just a badass like that ;)

#21 Posted by ComicStooge (11991 posts) - - Show Bio

If by "defeat" you mean 'make a deal with', then yes.

#22 Posted by VinoVash1234 (351 posts) - - Show Bio

John constantine is probably more badass than anyone in marvel and DC

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