Story: Mike Carey
Art: Doug Alexander Gregory
concludes the "Bred in the Bone" two-parter, and,
well, remember what I said
about "real and sinister darkness"? Spoke too
almost nothing here but exposition. We find out what happened
when Constantine and his associates originally came to Gruinard
Island and got what they were after. We find out what lives
on the island now (and they're more adorable than scary).
And we get to see Gemma, almost
by accident, prove out her Constantine blood.
to have been at least tense and creepy if not actually scary
or horrifying, but when I was a kid I had a ViewMaster adaptation
of Dracula with more drama. It's hard to feel that Gemma is
ever really in danger, or to care about anyone who is hurt
or killed, or even to come to grips with any of the vaguely
sketched occult underpinnings, and without these elements,
is this really a Hellblazer comic?
news is that the script is cool and sharp, and the art is
absolutely terrific, a little easier to understand than last
issue. So there's still the sense that both writer and artist
have the chops to tell the Constantine stories we want to
read. It's just that Carey thus far hasn't dared to cut more
than skin deep.
isn't just about winning all the time, and looking cool with
a cig and a trenchcoat. It's about getting your hands dirty,
taking risks, using luck and skill to win but also making
sacrifices and accepting the consequences. In the old days,
those consequences changed
Constantine's life, and we were in his head when he realized
what he'd done. Now, it seems, fat
chance of either.
a little exchange at the end, partially lifted from The
Hitchhiker's Guide to the
Galaxy, with yet more foreshadowing. Let's hope the bite
starts getting worse than the bark.
Story: Bill Jemas
Script: Andi Watson
Art: Larroca / Miki / Smith
Last issue I grumbled
about overly familiar threads that this issue unravels and
weaves into more complex patterns. There are several moments
where Watson leads us down a predictable road that ends with
a surprise detour, and each time it enriches the story and
adds dimension to the characters.
now it's been easy to forget that Namor is half human, but
this issue illustrates the point with elegant subtlety. We
learn more specifics about Sandy's father's financial situation,
and what the promise of Atlantean oil really means for him
and his family.
meets Sandy's parents, immediately alienating one and finding
an unlikely friend and ally in the other. And we find that
the simplistic confrontation that seemed to be on the way
probably isn't, at least not in the expected form.
an eerily quiet series. All the action takes place on a purely
social level so far, and beyond that the scenes still feel
like one still photograph after another, without the illusions
of motion we've come to take for granted in most mainstream
comic art. But slow and steady wins the race, and I intend
to sit back and stop trying to guess where the finish line