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A. Heathen

The State of Hellblazer

  

24 members have voted

  1. 1. Compared with the history of Hellblazer, it is currently ...

    • Good
      2
    • Okay
      8
    • Bad
      14
  2. 2. Compared with most other current comics, Hellblazer right now is ...

    • More interesting
      10
    • No different
      7
    • Less interesting
      7
  3. 3. I carry on reading Hellblazer because ...

    • of habit, I am not enjoying it
      12
    • I am enjoying it
      7
    • (I am not reading it any more)
      5
  4. 4. Cake or Death ?

    • Death
      6
    • Cake
      18


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a while back someone asked if hellblazer should be rebooted, and i think i was against it then. seeing what dc has done to turn a fine character into a douchebag fuckwad still leaves me tentative in that regard, but i say bring in an allstar creative team-one with skins on the wall-and reboot the motherfucker. or make it like milligans run is that season of 'dallas' when bobby dies, and then it was all just pam's dream when bobby came out of the shower as-the man from atlantis!

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I don't want to see a reboot because of my fear that they'll just use it as a chance to make John 20 and mess with prior continuity. I don't see a good way to really reboot HB.

I can imagine the horrors of Hellblazer Reborn, followed by Hellblazer Returns...

In this world, John saved Astra during Newcastle, but killed a hobo in Halesolwen during a bout with meth addiction...nudge, nudge, wink, wink to all you longtime readers.

The best thing is that it's a Vertigo book, and continuity was always played fast and loose before the Carey run.

Milligan's run could wrap up all the outstanding plot threads, and the next writer could just take over and move on, just ignoring the continuity of Milligan's run.

"Remember that time you got married to that mobster's daughter, John?"

"Vaguely, Chas. Very vaguely."

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But what if they pick another Milligan. See, I worry that because other fans are digging it, they might stay with someone similar to Milligan. Those fans on the facebook group love milligan's run. if dc/vertigo were to do some market research about what people thought of Milligan's run, where do you think they'd start? facebook? or this forum? hellblazers true blues are here, but facebook is a phenomenon that advertisers and marketing fuckers gizz all over when they can't find an infant to do that to. (like Bill Hicks would say).

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I guess they get most of their market sample from their own online forum, where the feeling about Pete's Hellblazer was largely positive last time I (half-assedly) checked.

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Oh yeah, that's right, Jason. I checked that forum out of curiosity back when we were all bitching about the demon jacket story, and they loved it. I don't recall the reaction on Facebook but I think it was positive, as well. They love the current storyline. Give them hell and they swallow, I guess.

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hellblazers true blues are here, but facebook is a phenomenon that advertisers and marketing fuckers gizz all over

 

Much as I'd love to buy that, if I was an advertiser I'd be inclined to pay more attention to a facebook group consisting of thousands of readers than a forum with an active membership in, at most, the low dozens. There may have been a point a few years back - around the time That Bloody Film was coming out, I'd say, and for a year or two afterwards - when this place was a fairly significant group among the Hellblazer readership, but these days we're just a fairly insignificant little sub-community. That's not to invalidate our opinions, obviously, but we can't in good conscience claim to represent the "true" readership without deluding ourselves.

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Look at the true readers on facebook and the DC boards, Mark.

Do you really want to be associated with people like that? I'd much rather be marginalised, meself...

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DC don't care. All they care about is selling comics. So to them, of course they are going to aim at the FB crowd.

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Those are also your fair-weather fans that the publishers have to appeal to in order to keep sales up. Otherwise, they'll be stuck with a small core audience until the book is canceled for low sales.

I've pointed out time and again that we're the hardcore Hellblazer fans who read the book just so we can come to this Forum and bitch about how much we dislike the book.

The majority of fans are people who read HB because they enjoy the stories. They go to a positive place where they can say, "I love reading Hellblazer! Don't you?", "Yeah! Me too! It's great!". The minute the book goes in a direction they don't like, they actually just drop the book and move on.

So, yeah, Vertigo is probably going to try to keep those fans, or gain even more new fans, rather than worrying about the guy who loved Delano and hasn't enjoyed the book for the past 15 years, but is still reading it every month out of habit (i.e. US).

Another good reason not to care about our opinion is because they have already gotten guaranteed sales of HB from readers like us. They know we're going to keep buying the book each month, hating it, and hoping it turns into what we want it to be (which it probably never will again, sadly).

 

I'm just hoping they don't go for the reboot option.

Growing up on the R&B scene, John Constantine set out to join an Occupy:Wall Street group wearing his vintage birkenstocks, where he was introduced to magic through a tattered copy of Psychonaut by Carroll....

Oh, and instead of looking like Sting, he now looks a lot like the lead singer of the band Arcade Fire.

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It's not as clean cut as that. While there have been runs when I've just bought the book out of habit over the past 20-odd years (Carey, Diggle), now isn't one of them.

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They can probably sell more back issues from trades and electronically downloadable reissues.

 

I do not think that there is as much market scoping as you folks are suggesting.

Sure on the big franchises and trademarks, but for Vertigo sales and fan response is less important.

 

The main facebook stuff appears to be about the character as a whole rather than rammed with people loving the current incarnation of the book.

 

To be honest, I would welcome a reboot, but that should have been JLD and so far that is Meh City.

 

Let's hope #300 is a turning point.

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My official DC forums link takes me to a fans page that just has links to facebook and twitter.

Has it gone the way of the letters columns now that letter columns are back?

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The State of Hellblazer in the dawn of the DCU taking everything

 

I've ranted and raved how much I hate the new powers that be at DC, when I got into comics it was about the story at DC, not the money. With Johns recontting everything to make the DCU really "Geoff Johns' universe", Vertigo has be hit hard by it. Madame Xanadu was canceled so Amy Hadley could draw Batwoman, which seemed like a poor investment with the many false starts the new Batwoman series has had. Swamp Thing has returned to a breed of comic readers who didn't know who he was before the hype. Shade The Changing man is going back to the Ditko origin that no one cares about and now I am told Hellblazer is no longer a subscription title.

 

Why would Hellblazer be dropped as a subscription? Is it because Dan Didiot finally cried for all the toys back that he has ripped away Vertigo's flagship character? Hellblazer may not sell fables numbers, but Hellblazer has history and literal magick within the pages. I really hope the foolish management at DC keeps John in the universe he belongs in. John did not work in the DCU since most people didn't understand his "messiah" role and he has changed from that when he got his own book. To this day John Constantine really is a "in the know character", when guys like Warren Ellis has adapted the Constantine archetype for many of his stories. Many acclaimed writers and artist have worked on John one way or anther. By bringing him back to the DCU, DC comics his hurting his character and that is not what Didiot understands since he wants all comics accessible and easy to digest.

 

Above I mentioned magick within the pages, and magick it does. The Columbine shooting happened after Shoot was written and illustrated. Tim Bradstreet's brother in law who was the model of John for Bradstreet's covers past away when Bradstreet left the covers. Alan Moore has claimed to meet John in bars in london, and in issue #120 John has met Alan Moore. Those are just examples of how Hellblazer has mirrored life. If DC cancels Hellblazer for greed, I can see them sealing their own death. Wonder why they may be losing Superman? The Gods have not favored DC comics since they left 666 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY. The head office where they made their deals with the devil in the first place.

 

DC Comics does not understand how important Vertigo is and John Constantine to Vertigo is like Superman to the DCU, Spider-man to 616, Spawn to Image and Witchblade to Topcow. Each universe needs their linchpin and John Constantine is that for Vertigo, Constantine has pushed the medium in ways the mainstream is still catching up too. To dumb down his character and bring him back to the DCU would be the equivalent of DC Comics peeing on their future burial grounds. By not respecting Constantine, DC Comics is welcoming companies like Image to steal readers like me.

 

Cheers

- Silkcuts

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Seeing as there's no news on Milligan leaving anytime soon from NYCC '12 , we must prepare for the worst...

 

 

Adding insult to injury:

 

swsor_cv4_r1_02.jpg

 

SWORD OF SORCERY #4

Written by CHRISTY MARX

Backup story written by MARC ANDREYKO

Guest art by TRAVIS MOORE

Backup story art by ANDREI BRESSAN

Cover by WALTER SIMONSON

1:25 B&W Variant cover by WALTER SIMONSON

On sale JANUARY 23 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T

Retailers: This issue will ship with two covers. Please see the order form for more information.

• Amaya travels home to Earth from Gemworld only to find new trouble! What will happen to her powers when she becomes Amy Winston again?

• Guest-starring John Constantine!

• And in the new backup story, enter a world of modern magic and terror with Stalker, the man without a soul!

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This is what John has become?

 

And this:

 

hlb_cv299_02.jpg

 

HELLBLAZER #299

Written by PETER MILLIGAN

Art by GIUSEPPE CAMUNCOLI and STEFANO LANDINI

Cover by SIMON BISLEY

On sale JANUARY 23 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • MATURE READERS

In part 2 of “Death and Cigarettes,” it’s the funeral to end all funerals! Epiphany finds herself alone, in basic black, mourning the loss of her husband, urban occultist John Constantine.

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They're killing him off again. I knew it. He has 5 days from the time issue 298 comes out. Is it cancer again? It IS called death and cigs.

 

I read the tea leaves. There's already a playlist for it...by the way, I hope you lot understand if the musical quality of the playlist may have gotten worse once Milligan's run kicked in. We had steam through Scab, but once India was over, it was what I think it must have been like to be the music coordinator for a Steven Seagal movie. Or maybe Jean Claude Van Damme. It got to be to the point of "do we want to insult Pavement by sticking it on a Milligan list. Then we'd go search for an older playlist with a less caliber song and switch them.

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They're killing him off again. I knew it. He has 5 days from the time issue 298 comes out. Is it cancer again? It IS called death and cigs.

 

I read the tea leaves. There's already a playlist for it...by the way, I hope you lot understand if the musical quality of the playlist may have gotten worse once Milligan's run kicked in. We had steam through Scab, but once India was over, it was what I think it must have been like to be the music coordinator for a Steven Seagal movie. Or maybe Jean Claude Van Damme. It got to be to the point of "do we want to insult Pavement by sticking it on a Milligan list. Then we'd go search for an older playlist with a less caliber song and switch them.

No...DEATH BY DIDIO!!

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heh.

 

I heard he shows up at the end of the funeral. Get it, it's a joke. It's never been done in the Hellblazer comic book before, nope. Never.

I also heard he finds out he has lung cancer, decides to slit his own wrists, and goes to Hell for a while. While he's there, tricking the First on a monthly basis, he comes across his sister, he finds out that she had another kid she never told anyone about. This one became a Wall Street tycoon.

While going to America to meet this new relative, he meets a nurse, who is his dream woman and falls in love.

He gets divorced. The nurse dies. He falls in love with Epiphany all over again, and they decide to get married again. Except Demon John shows up and rapes Gemma again.

Milligan's got enough ideas to write this book forever!

It's literally the Twilight Zone.

Your only other choice is to read about John's adventures in Gemworld with Amethyst.

 

The problem with that letter is there is no Vertigo Universe anymore.

Image's lynchpin isn't Spawn. Spawn is the book Image readers wish would just go away, because there really isn't any Image Universe anymore either.

Companies made up of creator owned titles don't need any characters to be a lynchpin.

People need to realize that Vertigo has moved on. Everyone else who made up this Vertigo Universe are back with the DCU proper now.

Vertigo has books like The Unwritten, Sweet Tooth, and Saucer Country that don't need a character like John Constantine.

The letter writer probably doesn't help his case when he says that Hellblazer used crazy magickal powers to cause the Columbine school shooting...Use the magick for good, not evil, John!

Also, it's kind of self-defeating to argue that John Constantine shouldn't be changed, while then complaining that Shade is apparently going back to the original Steve Ditko creation. Sure, Milligan's time on Shade is classic and more fondly remembered, but Ditko's version is what the character was created to be.

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Why won't he let go? Why? Does he enjoy tormenting us like those movie fuckers did?

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