Jump to content
josborn

Royal Blood - Best Ever

Recommended Posts

It is certain now. i have read HB for a long time aand i'm now firmly of the opinion that the story of Royal Blood is the best story in the Constantine cannon.

 

Why do I believe this? I will tell you. I first read the story two years ago when my older sister bought it for me for christmas (i loved the cover of Bloodlines and had wanted to read it for sooo long). It was very interesting and politically adept at criticising the royal family. But the real reason its my favorite is because of what happens on pages 132-133. I didn't sleep for nights after that i was so terrified and upset. This man is in the void, in Hell, and he's chained up with a demon Calibraxis RIPPING HIS INSIDES OUT OF HIM. I cant forget his face. I can't forget his scream. i always used to wonder what was that man before he was in Hell? did he have a wife kids, a mum and dad who loved him? What would it do to their MINDS to know what was happening to him right there and then. it's so horrible. Its not like the usual ideas of Hell. It's just a blank pink void and theres nothing there but pain and fear for him while he gets ripped open again and again. What was he before he went to Hell? Was he a soldier? A teacher? A killer? We don't know. but Ennis and Simpson deserve so much credit for that story and creating these images that will never get out of my head. I was angry with Ennis for a long time after that. now i think hes brilliant and the best writer HB has ever had (tho I've not read Delano and Jenkins)

 

So what is your opinion? Do you like this scene and this story? If not why not? What scenes from HB terrified you? Made you cry? What do you think happened to this poor man to put him in Hell where Calibraxis could eat him a live for eternity? *shakes*

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Umm...No. Not a big fan of Royal Blood, honestly.

The Jack The Ripper theme gets old.

I'm not a fan of the gore for the sake of gore type of horror stories.

It just didn't do much for me.

 

My guess is that the man must have stole fire from Heaven in order to get the eaten alive for eternity punishment!

 

What HB issues made me cry?

A few of the Jamie Delano issues.

Dead Boy's Heart has had a strong emotional reaction from me for years.

 

A lot of the Peter Milligan issues have made me cry...but for a totally different reason. heh

 

You know, probably the most terrifying scene involving John Constantine (not HB, specifically) was in Neil Gaiman's Sandman.

When John entered the house of the dust addict and they discovered what the walls of the house were made of, yeah, that scene really disturbed me, and it's stuck in my mind far more than any HB scenes, as I can't think of many scenes from HB that terrified me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You really really should read Delano. He wrote some really good HB stories. Jenkins is also OK, but doesn't do it as much for me.

As for "Royal blood", I think I'm somewhere between you and Christian.

My absolute favorite HB story is probably the single TPB "All his engines", or maybe Carey's first major arc (The shadow dog saga, from issues 175-193).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Royal Blood is a bit of a mixed bag for me. It's redeeming features stem more from its artwork (always liked Simpson's style) than its narrative which is quite dull. I can imagine that when Ennis and Simpson first pitched the idea "What if a member of the Royal Family gets possessed by a murderous demon?" it must have seemed funny and ripe with possibility but they quite fumbled the execution and, even within the context of Hellblazer, the story's absurd.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

'Royal Blood' is far from my favourite story, or my choice for best ever, but I do like it.

 

 

pretty much this. i like dRoyal Blood a lot. But there are better stories.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It was better than The Pub Where I Was Born, but it was hardly one of Ennis' best, never mind an all time great.

Sorry.

:tongue:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really liked Royal Blood at the time, largely for the good old anti-royal vitriol, but it was soon overtaken by Ennis' later run (essentially starting when Steve Dillon took over on art, not counting the very weak corpse-shooting story).

 

Definitely check out Delano - there's some big collections of his original run, plus the recent Pandemonium one-off. Jenkins is probably for completists only, though I'd take him over Carey.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thought this was going to be a thread about the amusing, and pretty, Bad Blood mini by Delano/Bond, go the names mixed up!

I <3 Bad Blood. It's not actually very GOOD, but it's a whole lot of fun.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It isn't as bad as all that: it's just the cult about big ears' ex that's so completely daft that it makes the rest of the story look ridiculous by association.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It isn't as bad as all that: it's just the cult about big ears' ex that's so completely daft that it makes the rest of the story look ridiculous by association.

For a few years after '97, that didn't actually seem so far-fetched. Fairly mild satire, really.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jenkins is probably for completists only, though I'd take him over Carey.

So Carey is one of your least favorite writers on the title, then?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So Carey is one of your least favorite writers on the title, then?

Well, it's the only time I was ready to drop the book (saved only by a short-lived improvement in art when Frusin left). Other writers have had their ups and downs, or some aspect of their writing that helped redeem the weaker aspects (Azzarello's atmosphere, Mina's characterisation, whatever it is that Milligan's doing), but no other writer has been so consistently uninteresting for such a sustained run.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It isn't as bad as all that: it's just the cult about big ears' ex that's so completely daft that it makes the rest of the story look ridiculous by association.

For a few years after '97, that didn't actually seem so far-fetched. Fairly mild satire, really.

Sad but true. It isn't wearing well now, though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
... Jenkins is probably for completists only, though I'd take him over Carey.
... it's the only time I was ready to drop the book (saved only by a short-lived improvement in art when Frusin left). Other writers have had their ups and downs, or some aspect of their writing that helped redeem the weaker aspects (Azzarello's atmosphere, Mina's characterisation, whatever it is that Milligan's doing), but no other writer has been so consistently uninteresting [as Carey] for such a sustained run.

 

Wow. This is Hellblazer you're referring to, right? The comic with John Constantine? :tongue:

 

I can dig that you found Mike Carey's run uninteresting; for me it lacked a certain spark, and I claimed at the time that he was (doing an excellent job of) keeping a franchise ticking over. But when I re-read his run in one go, I could see there's genius in the setup and structure of it, and I'd love to see him back in the driving seat.

 

As for Paul Jenkins, I adored his run on the title, right up until his last (IIRC) two stories. What do other forumites think of the idea that he's only for completists?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, Jason, you know that Jenkins is my second favourite writer on HB. I completely concur with your assessment.

It really marks the end of John Constantine's life, for me. After that, it was just re-hashing earlier periods of John's life over and over again, with no believable progression as a human being.

Honestly, outside of some of Ennis' run, I'm really only a fan of Jamie Delano and Paul Jenkins on Hellblazer.

 

As fas as Bad Blood, Delano admitted that it was dated pretty much by the time it was published.

That doesn't need to take away from the story though. As some have stated, it didn't seem so far fetched at one little slice of time, and it can just be read as an alternate reality. I haven't read that since it was released though, so I can't really speak for how well it stands as a story now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As for Paul Jenkins, I adored his run on the title, right up until his last (IIRC) two stories. What do other forumites think of the idea that he's only for completists?

I think it's a misguided idea at best, or even utter nonsense.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

As for Paul Jenkins, I adored his run on the title, right up until his last (IIRC) two stories. What do other forumites think of the idea that he's only for completists?

 

It's the only reason I have all those floppies. Just to know I have all that stuff (in one form of print or another) up until, what, 250 is it? When did Milligan take over? Yeah, right there.

 

I started this habit with Critical Mass (which really belongs in discussions for top HB story EVAH!) but didn't want to burn the candle at both ends. So I swore not to read it until I caught up with everything that's happened before. And the pay off was mighty. Now having said that, most of Paul Jenkins run bored the fuck out of me. To debate the merits of it would mean that I would have to go back and re-read it and I dread the very notion, old bean.

 

I made a Rich the Punk avatar. Shall I wear it? Fuck that I'm doing it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lou, how old were you when you last read Jenkins' run?

Because, I was buying HB during the Ennis years, starting when I was 18. We're the same age.

So, I was reading the Jenkins' issues monthly. There were a few issues that I loved, but yeah, Jenkins run, I found it to be boring.

I was buying the back-issues during that period, so I kept collecting, even though I wasn't impressed by Jenkins. He was no Ennis or Delano.

Later on, when I was older, I re-read HB straight through, and I discovered that most of Jenkins' run was actually quality.

I changed my opinion. Jenkins was actually better than Ennis, in my opinion.

Then, even more recently, I tried to re-read some of Ennis' run, and it wasn't the same for me anymore. I think some of Ennis' run would still impress me today, but the 30-something version of me doesn't find the same enjoyment from Ennis that I found at 18 through early 20s. The opposite of what I've found with Jenkins.

Meanwhile, I've loved the Delano issues from day one to the present.

 

I'm not saying that you'd feel the same way as me. There's still a lot of British mythology and fantasy elements to Jenkins run. It's not as horror oriented. You still might find it dull.

I'm not saying that it's a perfect comic book either. I never got into the supporting cast from Jenkins, for one. It's also a shame that his run went downhill at the end.

But, a story like Widdershins (for example), that I could care less about back when it was released, is now just a perfect little John Constantine tale.

At the very least, after reading what Milligan has done with the book, I'm sure you'd appreciate Jenkins run more.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Widdershins is a great story.

As I have been lambasted for comparing Milligan's run to the worst excesses of soap opera, I think it's worth pointing out Jenkins' run as the best example of writing an ensemble cast with ongoing tales, as opposed to the superhero team heroics of JLD or the Dynasty level of family dynamics we are currently treated to. Not the same as the best supporting cast, as Jenkins' cast were integral to the story in a comprehensive way. At the time, I enjoyed it, not sure I'd favour another period of settling down with friends, but the contemporary John could certainly look back with regret that those days are gone.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So Carey is one of your least favorite writers on the title, then?

Well, it's the only time I was ready to drop the book (saved only by a short-lived improvement in art when Frusin left). Other writers have had their ups and downs, or some aspect of their writing that helped redeem the weaker aspects (Azzarello's atmosphere, Mina's characterisation, whatever it is that Milligan's doing), but no other writer has been so consistently uninteresting for such a sustained run.

Oh, that's harsh. He's tied for favorite writer for me (the other being Jamie Delano). As for Jenkins, I appreciate a lot of his run, and woul definitely want to see it traded, but I kind of felt he bit of more than he could chew. That's not just a bad thing though, I'd rather read someone trying and not quite succeeding, than someone playing it safe.

 

But horses for courses, I guess, you're entitled to your opinion. (*)

 

 

 

 

(*) This is a lie. I must kill you now, for your Wrongness.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

CC - I think I was around 21 or so when I stared reading HB but put off Jenkins run til a couple years later.

 

You are right in that my older mind might appreciate it better, our tastes do change.

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...