So, for the record, John Constantine wasn’t born cursing and with an already lit cigarette in his lips.
Since his debut back in The Saga of Swamp Thing #37 in 1985, we’ve seen John Constantine in all sorts of remarkable situations, from conning powerful demons, to performing some very mature readers-level rituals, to saving the world alongside the Justice League. But Hellblazer: Rise and Fall, the new standalone DC Black Label miniseries written by the red-hot Tom Taylor and drawn by none other than Darick Robertson, opens with a moment from John’s life that we’re not accustomed to seeing—his birth. Yes, the infamous chain-smoking exorcist was, in fact, a child at one point, and a seemingly quiet one from what we see in this exclusive sneak peek at the first issue. None of that sound and fury that would accompany his later days playing in Mucous Membrane or learning the arcane arts alongside the likes of Zatanna.
As for what follows, Hellblazer: Rise and Fall finds John and his childhood friend Detective Aisha Bukhari investigating a bizarre string of deaths involving winged billionaires that may have ties to something in his past. It’s a scathing tale about right and wrong, heaven and hell and the unlikely shape of evil in 2020 society. It’s Constantine as you’ve never quite seen him before, in a tale well suited for new and longtime fans alike. A new vision of Hellblazer that starts, fittingly, at the very beginning…
Hellblazer: Rise and Fall #1 by Tom Taylor, Darick Robertson and Diego Rodriguez is in stores and available digitally on Tuesday, September 1.