From Bayou to Abyss:

Examining John Constantine, Hellblazer

In a universe populated by heroes and villains clad in colorful, tight-fitting outfits, you might not expect a chain-smoking ex-punk rocker wearing slacks, a tie, and a trenchcoat to stand out among the rest. Yet when British occultist John Constantine showed up in Alan Moore’s Swamp Thing run, that’s exactly what happened. Constantine’s arrival elevated Swamp Thing profoundly, and it wasn’t long before John had his own spinoff title, Hellblazer, which outlived its parent series and spawned several onscreen adaptations.

Quick with a quip, hesitant to involve himself in others’ lives yet often compelled to do so, Constantine has a weakness for narcotics and alcohol binges, an unnatural obsession with the occult, and a long list of lovers he’s betrayed, hurt, and discarded. John has slain his twin brother, taunted Satan, outwitted demons and angels alike, been trapped in Hell, and even fathered an elemental. Through all of this, he has somehow managed to come out on top, though his loved ones have usually ended up caught in the crossfire.

Edited by Rich Handley and Lou Tambone, the editors of Sequart’s Somewhere Beyond the Heavens: Exploring Battlestar Galactica, this volume examines the mage’s history from his earliest appearances to the present — not only in the pages of Swamp Thing and Hellblazer, but also on film and television. Essay contributors include Swamp Thing scribe Nancy A. Collins, Constantine TV series writing assistant Matthew Levine, former DC Comics editor Robert Greenberger, and a wonderful lineup of other talented comics historians.

At times, John Constantine can be a complete bastard. He has questionable hygiene and a lack of ethics, and he’ll likely hurt anyone foolish enough to let him into their lives. But John is nonetheless a hero — well, a Byronic hero, in any case. As fans, we wouldn’t have him any other way.

ABOUT THE EDITOR

Rich Handley is the editor and cofounder of Hasslein Books and the managing editor of RFID Journal. He has written or co-written five books to date (Timeline of the Planet of the Apes, Lexicon of the Planet of the Apes, Conspiracy of the Planet of the Apes, The Back to the Future Lexicon, and The Back to the Future Chronology), and is currently working on Apes-related projects for BOOM! Studios and Titan Books. Rich has contributed numerous works to the licensed Star Wars franchise, and is co-editing a trio of Star Wars essay books for Sequart with Joe Berenato. He has penned essays for IDW's Star Trek newspaper strip reprint books, Sequart's New Life and New Civilizations: Exploring Star Trek Comics, and ATB Publishing's impending Star Trek anthology, Outside In: TOS 110. In addition, he has written for or edited numerous other publications, including Star Trek Communicator, Star Trek Magazine, Simian Scrolls, Cinefantastique, Sci-Fi Invasion, and Dungeon / Polyhedron.

See more, including free online content, on .

Also by Rich Handley:

Somewhere Beyond the Heavens: Exploring Battlestar Galactica

co-editor, contributor

The Cyberpunk Nexus: Exploring the Blade Runner Universe

contributor

A More Civilized Age: Exploring the Star Wars Expanded Universe

co-editor, contributor

Bright Eyes, Ape City: Examining the Planet of the Apes Mythos

co-editor, contributor

A Galaxy Far, Far Away: Exploring Star Wars Comics

co-editor, contributor

A Long Time Ago: Exploring the Star Wars Cinematic Universe

co-editor, contributor

The Sacred Scrolls: Comics on the Planet of the Apes

co-editor, contributor

New Life and New Civilizations: Exploring Star Trek Comics

contributor

ABOUT THE EDITOR

Lou Tambone is an independent musician, freelance writer, and UI/UX designer from New Jersey. A lifelong fan of pop culture, he was an early HTML adopter, creating and maintaining some of the first Star Wars fan sites under the Starwarz.com banner. As well as the occasional magazine and web piece, he’s made many contributions to essay anthologies from Sequart on the Planet of the Apes, Battlestar Galactica, and Star Wars franchises. His editing credits include The Cyberpunk Nexus: Exploring the Blade Runner Universe and Somewhere Beyond the Heavens: Exploring Battlestar Galactica. When he's not reading or writing stories, he’s usually writing music or rehearsing with one of his many bands. During his "spare" time, he tries to remember to eat and breathe.

See more, including free online content, on .

Also by Lou Tambone:

Somewhere Beyond the Heavens: Exploring Battlestar Galactica

co-editor, contributor

The Cyberpunk Nexus: Exploring the Blade Runner Universe

co-editor, contributor

A More Civilized Age: Exploring the Star Wars Expanded Universe

contributor

A Long Time Ago: Exploring the Star Wars Cinematic Universe

contributor

The Sacred Scrolls: Comics on the Planet of the Apes

contributor