Constantine has a run-in with Mister E in Myanmar while trying to find the Dial. He also bumps into The Spectre, who really wants to get all vigilant on him.
The series is still new (it's only the second issue, obviously), but I like the way writers Jeff Lemire and Ray Fawkes are weaving in the mystical elements of the DCU. We get to see Mister E in action here, who was at one time a Vertigo character appearing with John in BOOKS OF MAGIC. The revamp is a bit different from his Vertigo counterpart, but it works. Mister E is a member of the Cult of the Cold Flame, which the reader knows is one of the big baddies in this series, but Mister E doesn't come off as someone who wants to destroy Constantine. He just needs something from him and that's it. Constantine is a fly on the wall to him.
I found myself really enjoying the Spectre redesign (which we originally see in the PHANTOM STRANGER on-going). It has almost an ancient Egyptian feel to it with the strands of fabric crossing over his body. This isn't a character that the DCU needs, but it's a character that the DCU Dark deserves. It's a great fit, and it's good to know that the Spectre will always be looming over Constantine, waiting to interact with him again.
Artist Renato Guedes kills it ("it" meaning the execution of artistic storytelling) on this book. We are treated to this brilliant splash page, on page three, of Constantine, unconscious, in the back of a pick-up truck, surrounded by boys with assault rifles. I love the perspective here and the overall layout of the page and how your eye slowly moves to the top right corner of the page. Marcelo Maiolo does great with the colors here and on the rest of the issue. What a fantastic art team.
While I love seeing Juan Jose Ryp's art on the cover of this book, I hated how he drew The Spectre on the gatefold cover. He looked a bit like a molesty old man. To be honest, Constantine doesn't look that great either. The design and layout, itself, are very cool though.
I liked a lot about this issue, but it just didn't get me very excited. It's extremely solid, don't get me wrong, but it's the start of a new series, so it can take a little bit of time to really kick into gear.
CONSTANTINE #2 delivers a fun issue that reminds me a bit more of an 80s adventure movie than a comic book. I love what DC is doing with their Dark books, and I love the fact this comic is a fun read. The Mister E redesign is pretty cool and I like how he's being integrated here. The art team is what really stands out here. I cannot wait to what this book has in store in the future.
Overall, I recommend this issue.