Jump to content
slinker

HELLBLAZER episode 290

  

11 members have voted

  1. 1. how was it?

    • good (10)
      0
    • less than good
      0
    • more less than good
      1
    • better than mediocre
      1
    • mediocre
      4
    • worse than mediocre (5)
      1
    • better than bad
      0
    • bad
      2
    • worse than bad, better than ugly
      0
    • ugly (1)
      0
    • I have no idea, since I did not buy it
      2
  2. 2. Bonus Question! Did you even know this issue was due out ?

    • Yes!
      5
    • No!
      4


Recommended Posts

002135e1.jpeg

Hellblazer 290 (2012)

English | 22 pages

 

The First of the Fallen wants the soul of London gangster Terry Greaves – and Terry blames John Constantine for an attack on his strip club. Can Constantine avoid a beating? And how will he placate the angry spirit of his dead sister? Lost souls, sentimental psychopaths and a plan to mess up an old enemy collide in "Another Season in Hell," part 4.

 

Written by: Peter Milligan

Finished by: Stefano Landini

Lettered by: DC Lettering

Painted cover by: Simon Bisley

Colored by: Brian Buccellato

 

Page Count: 32

U.S. Price: 2.99

On Sale Date: Apr 18 2012

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While I'm in agreement with the mob that this is yet another mostly unenjoyable story arc in a long line of them, I consider this installment to be the least offensive of them. I actually chuckled a couple of times where it was intended. Almost never do that on this title as most chuckles have not been intended by the writer, methinks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That issue just bored me.

The book has really grown quite wearisome, at the best. Strip-mining continuity to try to find something to fill the pages.

A story like this certainly does not deserve a Rimbaud quote. That's not going to save it. The issue gets one whole point knocked off for daring to quote Rimbaud at the end of a dull story.

Needless to say, this story-arc (left incomplete no less) did not compare to the story-arc in Shade, which deserved to quote Rimbaud.

It now gets a 4 (which is probably more than it really deserves in the end anyway, but at least this issue didn't make me groan, just yawn).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X6L8rHyzQj0

 

Never have these lyrics seemed more apposite to Hellblazenders.

 

You're trying to fool somebody, but you end up fooling yourself

You read from "A Season In Hell" but you don't know what it's about

I listened to you now maybe you'll listen to me

You're trying much to hard to make your world seem like a dream

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not the "HellblazerEnders" thing again, Ade? Come on, you're better than that. For one thing, the book is certainly no more EastEnders-y now than it was under, say, Mike Carey (long-lost relatives! Troubled love affairs! London gangland shenanigans! Sudden, rather convenient amnesia! Dadshock! Betrayed friendships! Of such stuff are cockernee soap operas made).

 

Secondly, and rather more importantly, you seem to keep using the implication of "soap" as though it were synonymous with "not very good". Which is just daft - that sort of character-driven storytelling has been a staple of serialized fiction for about as long as the form has existed, and it's been at the heart of plenty of fantastic pieces of writing. "It's gone all soap opera!" is the sort of glib, lazy pseudo-criticism I'm used to hearing from whining catpee men who don't want those pesky human emotions getting in the way of their exciting stories about spaceships/wizards/superheroes/delete as appropriate, not from astute, intelligent readers such as yourself. If the point is to be glibly dismissive to show your disdain that's fair enough, but it's also a point which is undermined a bit when you keep doing it.

 

The problem with Hellblazer right now isn't that it's soapy, it's that it's crap. Paper-thin characters, clunky dialogue, uneven pacing, and a weird, inconsistent tone. I wish it was *more* like a decent soap opera, in fact - that'd be a damn sight more entertaining than what we're currently getting.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem with Hellblazer right now isn't that it's soapy, it's that it's crap.

QFT

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did it! I walked out of the shop without this issue! A 20 plus year habit - broken!

 

I didn't even see it on the rack though, which is good. Out of sight, out of mind.

 

I'll be sending the rest of Milligan's run and maybe even Mina's run to some soldiers I know that are station in Afghanistan.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why do you hate the troops, Lou?

 

Hahaha...I'm hoping maybe they give them to the insurgents?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I only joined this forum for reminders about when new issues were out.

That was a lot of nothing. Just breaking it down; there was some cop toruble, a lie-ornamented rose, rappin with the First, fun with grave-diggin', a ghost on the move, and some other stuff. Not the total or even a good representation of what makes Hellblazer in my thinking though. And, yes, it's been that way for a while.

Just a note on the soap opera thing- Having enjoyed unemployment in America for a few stretches, I know our soaps well. I don't know what they're like in England, but here they center with painful singlemindedness on some family as its members go through various dramas. Yes, I agree that writing something off as a soap can be intellectually lazy, but while I can't speak for anyone else: that's not the way I've done it. In fact I can take issue with my use of the term because soaps here are the opposite of

Paper-thin characters, clunky dialogue, uneven pacing, and a weird, inconsistent tone
to a fault. I don't however believe that Hellblazer at its best has been about Greaves family, nor is ideally so.

I voted "mediocre" for this one, and I prefer such descriptors to numbers on a bland 1-10 scale, for whatever that's worth.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem with Hellblazer right now isn't that it's soapy, it's that it's crap.

QFT

 

 

Two comments about Mark's analysis of my gentle ribbing of the beloved Hellblazer.

 

Soap opera is not the only genre about family dynamics, but it is generally the low brow one. And the low quality one in mist cases. Both of which apply here and did not in Mike Carey's case. So I am agreeing with you regarding what is the problem.

 

More importantly it has fairly obviously been a light-hearted dig.

 

But you suggest it has been my only criticism and you would not want to be guilty of the sort of dismissal that producers of Constanteen made.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why do you hate the troops, Lou?

Because if it conveys that righteous anger displayed above, they will have Afghanistan wrapped up in weeks.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It'll be like those old Hostess cake print commercials where there's a bank heist, Spidey gives them all Hostess fruit pies, the crooks are so wrapped up in said fruit pies that they don't notice Spidey wrapping them up in Spider-webbng. It'll be like that. And that'll be better than anything Peter Miligan has ever written in his life.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Except, it'll be the exact opposite. They'll be so stunned by the sheer shite that "Westerners" consider to be entertainment....

Actually, you might just help their crusade, in the end....

"No! Really! We gave the world Joyce! It's not all like this! Even we can't stand it!"

 

As far as soap, really, Chris Claremont brought soap to the world of Uncanny X-Men, and it was good.

It doesn't always have to end up eye-rollingly stupid and insepid, totally lacking in human motivations and good characterization.

Having said that, my grandmother watched "Days of Our Lives" for years and years, and I remember seeing episodes in my youth, and insepid, totally lacking in human motivations and characterization seems apropos.

We just need more cheating. Piffy needs to start sleeping with the rest of the town. Then, we'll have reached the level of American soap operas.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A colossus with clay legs, is what this arc is. Milligan is trying hard to make the events appear dramatic and profound, but the plot holes are too jarring to allow for any serious drama. Why is John so adamant about not looking for Cheryl's child? Oh, because the lie in Hell was necessary to fuel the plot.. So who gives a shit - Terry died, Gemma is in a coma and John becomes pals with the First - Blood! Drama! Irony!. Who cares about some little sacrifice in the "character motivation" department. The quote at the end was forced and not earned at all, but rather quite an obvious device to make the reader think there's something DEEP happening. Just bring on the Werewolf Constantine already..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

my grandmother watched "Days of Our Lives" for years and years, and I remember seeing episodes in my youth, and insepid, totally lacking in human motivations and characterization seems apropos.

 

Dude Stefano had a base on an island -with automatic sliding metal doors- that he used to play headgames with the housewives of Salem. I'm sorry but that's badass, and completely believable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Stefano also created a weather machine to torment Salem.

 

If Terry was a villain anywhere near as awesome as Stefano, this book would be redeemed.

Stefano was a villain who is relatable to everyone living on 21st century Earth. A villain with a plan and the money to pull it off, yet totally lacking the need of any motivation outside of the fact that he has the will to pull it all off...not some outdated supernatural being with some nebulous plan that's too convoluted to even want to bother to figure it out.

 

Hmm...Salem?

Fuck Hellblazer! I want a Days of Our Lives comic book!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just feel so bad about this. I like Mr Milligan, he seems a nice guy, I have enjoyed work he has done.

 

I like Hellblazer, have for years.

 

I hate that I have to limit my comments, because of fear of hurting the guys feelings.

 

I hate that I don't like reading the comic any more.

 

And I really do support the soap opera criticism, it is only too fucking true, imho. Sadly so.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not the "HellblazerEnders" thing again, Ade? Come on, you're better than that. For one thing, the book is certainly no more EastEnders-y now than it was under, say, Mike Carey (long-lost relatives! Troubled love affairs! London gangland shenanigans! Sudden, rather convenient amnesia! Dadshock! Betrayed friendships! Of such stuff are cockernee soap operas made).

 

Structurally it's exactly like a soap, though, with each closing storyline overlapping with a new one, while (usually) a third one continues in the background, bridging them together. And in terms of story and focus, being almost entirely London-bound, using strictly small-scale events, and mostly basing its events on the interactions and relationships of an incestuously close group of regular characters.

 

As for Carey, his storylines require far much more reductive thinking to be EastEndersy than Milligan's (his 'London gangland shenanegans' were between a pair of magic-using groups fighting over an ancient relic; Milligan's are of the traditional 'strippers and protection rackets' variety; Carey's 'troubled love affairs' were between a couple of fuckbuddies who didn't really seem to have too many troubles but just drifted apart and, later, between John and a vengeful demoness; Milligan's involve rape, petty revenge and familial fighting - proper EastEnders stuff).

 

Secondly, and rather more importantly, you seem to keep using the implication of "soap" as though it were synonymous with "not very good".

 

Actually he's using EastEnders as though it were synonymous with "not very good", which is fair enough, I think.

 

The problem with Hellblazer right now isn't that it's soapy, it's that it's crap. Paper-thin characters, clunky dialogue, uneven pacing, and a weird, inconsistent tone.

 

Sounds pretty much exactly like EastEnders to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, yeah, the issue. It was all right. For the most part I don't really care what's happening in the comic any more, and only read it out of a vaguely masochistic sense of completeness. Angie's sudden reappearance was jarring; wonder if the next issue will basically be an apology to Mike Carey? Mostly I just wish Milligan would wrap it up, but the business with John's lost nephew and The First's big plans suggests he'll be around for a while longer yet. I also want him to pay off the thing with Cathy in Hell from 'The Cottage' back in Milligan's first (or was it second?) year. It'll annoy me if that's left dangling.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wonder if we will really see the payoff to what The First plans for Terry.. That looked like a BIG plan on his strategy wall (or whatever that was..). It would be nice to have some closure to the setup, but surely Mr. Milligan must realize that with the upcoming arc, his run becomes the longest in the title's history.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Really? How sad.

It's like torturing us. Milligan introduced the First's plan just to show that he can write HB for generations of Greaves.

I was going to ask, "Just how long has Milligan been on this title now?".

 

Was Carey's the longest until this point?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Carey clocked at 41 plus one issue after Mina. And All His Engines. Garth had 42 issue run i think, but then did Son Of Man which was another 5. I guess there is still hope for Pete to avoid the record. He is at 40 now, but with a new storyline kicking off 3 issues from now, i think he will get there. "Curse of the Constantines" somehow doesn't sound like a one-and-done :).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem with Hellblazer right now isn't that it's soapy, it's that it's crap. Paper-thin characters, clunky dialogue, uneven pacing, and a weird, inconsistent tone. I wish it was *more* like a decent soap opera, in fact - that'd be a damn sight more entertaining than what we're currently getting.

This. Very much this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...