John Constantine is back in London, back to his old tricks-and just in time, as things have become very dark indeed in his old stomping grounds. A small-time gang lord has found himself dealing with a big-time outbreak of supernatural weirdness...and, without any allies to call on and nothing left to call his own, John doesn’t have much choice in taking a paycheck from one of London’s worst, or accepting the help of one of the gang lord’s would-be foot soldiers. But what should be an open-and-shut exorcism turns out to be nothing but...and the madness is just getting started! Collects The Sandman Universe Presents: Hellblazer #1, John Constantine: Hellblazer #1-6, and Books of Magic #14.
DC's conjuring con man returns in a savvy new outing by Spurrier (the 2000 AD series) and artist Campbell (the Green Hornet series). Dark magician John Constantine is back with a (literal) vengeance, released into 2019 and its uneasy era of racist, xenophobic Brexit England. The decline of Britain is the ongoing backstory against several shorter narrative arcs, such as Constantine mentoring a cheery new age conjurer fanboy and investigating a cancer ward cursed by an angel of death, which allow Spurrier to script in the flavor of the best Hellblazer tales.While never subtle, Spurrier's scripts are imaginative and clever; he's as sharp with a horrific scene of demonic possession as he is with a pee joke, and he's got a keen ear for the dialogue of modern Britain, along with ample bawdy humor and sarcastic muttered asides. Campbell's atmospheric artwork captures realistic character design and fantastic, grotesque demons, as well as over-the-top violence. The exemplary coloring work paints London and its inhabitants in suitably grim shades, replete with grit and splattered blood. Hellblazer has been published continuously since 1988, and the series opened critiquing Thatcherism; fans will be pleased by how Spurrier and Campbell's take on contemporary Britain feels as fresh as the original comics.