Last week we spoke to Jeff Lemire about his take over of DC's GREEN ARROW starting this February (you can read that interview here). Yet, it doesn't seem like that's all that Lemire has in store for fans. Earlier today DC Comics announced that the SWEET TOOTH creator will be taking John Constantine to a whole other level with the release of CONSTANTINE this March. Lemire enjoyed tackling John Constantine so much in his JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK series that he will be doing a whole lot more of the character, and he'll be getting a little bit of help from Ray Fawkes and artist Renato Guedes.
John Constantine is my favorite character. He has been since I was sixteen and I grabbed a copy of Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon's Hellblazer 61 from my local comic shop, Olympic Records in Windsor, Ontario. I was hooked from the moment I saw that amazing Glen Fabry cover with John, leaning, exhausted and bloody, scalpel in hand, against a door frame. I quickly went back and scrounged for every back issue I could, discovering the rest of Ennis' amazing run as well as Jamie Delano's groundbreaking original issues.
"I'd known Constantine from Alan Moore's Swamp Thing run, but his solo book was what really hooked me. The mix of magic, politics, humor and horror as well as John's undeniable cool, really struck a chord with me. I continued to follow Constantine through all 300 issues of Hellblazer and have had the unbelievable fortune to end up writing him in Justice League Dark. And now, along with my good friend and JLDark co-writer, Ray Fawkes, I get to help shepherd Constantine on the next stage of his journey as co-plotter of his new solo monthly comic, CONSTANTINE in March.
The writer cited that Constantine has been a favorite character of his since he was sixteen, and having had the opportunity to write him in the JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK series was simply not enough. According to Lemire, Ray Fawkes will be assisting the writer and artist Renato Guedes will take over on the art for the issue.== TEASER ==
Ray will be doing the heavy lifting, scripting the book (I've read his first three scripts and they are fantastic!!) along with the talented Renato Guedes on art. As someone who has nothing but respect for the character and the incredible legacy of writers and artists who have worked on him in the past, I want to do everything I can to help create a comic that pays respect to who John was, but also reintroduces him to a whole new audience. CONSTANTINE will be different from Hellblazer. No doubt about it. For one thing JC now haunts Manhattan instead of London (the reason for the move will be explained in Issue 3!). And, he once again has one foot planted firmly in the DC Universe, much like he did in the original Swamp Thing stories. But rest assured, Ray and I are not pulling any punches in Constantine. John's still the same as he always was.
We have a bunch of cool stories coming your way, from the ongoing threat of the mysterious CULT OF THE COLD FLAME, to a brand new Sargon the Sorcerer and a horror called THE WITCHBREAKER, Constantine will have his blood-stained hands full. I hope you come a long for the ride.
It was originally announced in November that Robert Venditti would be writing it. Perhaps it's Lemire's familiarity with the character in JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK that made those plans change. What do you think of the news that Jeff Lemire and Ray Fawkes will be launching a self-titled ongoing series? Are you looking forward to the book this March, 2013?