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  1. #1

    Default Another classic title consigned to the dustbin of history

    You have to hand it to DC, there's basically nothing they won't crap on for a dollar.

    Hard to believe, but the longest running title at DC right now that has not been rebooted or renumbered is Hellblazer. However, DC has just announced that Hellblazer #300 will be the final issue, as they are canceling the Vertigo series and launching a New 52 version called Constantine that will be in-continuity with the rest of the DC superhero universe.

    Now, I am not a fan of John Constantine or Hellblazer, but this irks me. They are taking a serious, adult Vertigo series (and character) and replacing it with this rebooted, watered down mainstream version instead. I can't help but think this is being driven by someone high up in editorial interested in making the character be more in line with the movie version, hence the new title "Constantine." Of course, if they will cancel Action and Detective, they'll cancel anything, and it's certainly possible they will see a minor (and likely temporary) sales spike from this. but so many of their decisions over the last few years have been driven by cynical marketing reasons instead of creative reasons that it has become wearying.

    Also, unlike Batman and Superman, Constantine has always seemed to me to be a cult character. I'm just not convinced bringing him into the mainstream DCU is going to bring in more fans. I think it's very possible it may instead lose many of the hardcore fans that have been following the book for so long.

    Welcome to the Classic Comics board, Hellblazer. Looks like this will be your new permanent home.
    At last, Boy Comics finally gets its own website!

  2. #2
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    Yeah, I was sad to see this, also. I haven't seen, have the numbers just been that bad?

    I was part of the problem with this one...I loved the book and every so often would go on a run of 8-12 issues in a row that I would buy monthly, and then let it go a year or so before picking it up again...It's weird, the book never seemed to grab me so that I never missed it, yet I was always satisfied with Hellblazer purchases...

    Hopefully interesting things can still be done with the character, I just don't feel entirely confident within the confines of the New 52...

  3. #3
    Senior Member Bad Wolf's Avatar
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    I've read Hellblazer for a longer run than I have of any other title or character (I started buying it around #35), so this is disappointing. I guess the title change (maybe they think "Constantine" will sell better than "Hellblazer" in certain regions of the U.S.?) and renumbering are superficial, but it's a shame that it will no longer be a mature readers book.

  4. #4
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    I've been reading Hellblazer since the beginning (and following John Constantine since his creation in Swamp Thing). This news has thoroughly depressed me. And I have no interest in picking up the DCnU Constantine. That leaves me with just Fables from Vertigo.

  5. #5
    *choke* Dan B. in the Underworld's Avatar
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    Geez. I wonder if this is the longest-running U.S.-published title of which I don't own (AFAIK ... there's a lot of randomness in my Vertigo short boxes, especially up through 2000 or so, so I wouldn't absolutely, positive swear that there isn't at least one Hellblazer stuck in there somewhere) a single copy?

    At the very least, I can vouch for the fact that I've never read one. Not sure why; probably the Sting aspect of the character's design creeps me out too much, given what a pathetic waste of an "artiste" I find him.
    Last edited by Dan B. in the Underworld; 11-08-2012 at 03:24 PM.
    I tend to split superhero comics fans into "People who like Krypto" and "People who don't like Krypto."
    Basically, if you miss the wonder of a dog flying around in a little Superman cape, you're in the wrong hobby.

    -- Reptisaurus!

  6. #6
    Idaho Spuds Slam_Bradley's Avatar
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    I bought the first issue of Hellblazer from the comic shop when I was still an undergrad. I've followed it since, mostly in trades. I'm not overly sentimental, but I'm bugged a bit by this. I have no interest in Super Constantine.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by _Tim_ View Post
    Yeah, I was sad to see this, also. I haven't seen, have the numbers just been that bad?
    Sales rankings for September, 2012:

    196. Hellblazer #295 - 9,143 copies

    I think the bigger problem is the lack of sales from the trades. A lot of Vertigo titles -- and DC titles in general -- make their money on the TPB sales. While this chart is only direct sales -- comic book stores -- and thus doesn't represent sales at bookstores or amazon and stuff, there wasn't a single Hellblazer TPB in the top 300 at least. Fables, by contrast, had two volumes in the top 300. Hell, 100 Bullets had a collection in the top 100 and that series ended years ago.


    It's certainly possible this move could work for DC in terms of sales. Jonah Hex was selling about 10k copies a month when it was switched to the New 52 and relaunched as All-Star Western. Thanks in part to the Court of Owls and Gotham City tie-ins, it has been selling much better, with #0 selling 25k copies, which you can see is a 150% sale increase from a year ago. I have my doubts this will work with Constantine though. We'll see.
    At last, Boy Comics finally gets its own website!

  8. #8
    Senior Member Ish Kabbible's Avatar
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    I have read Hellblazer since the beginning and this cancellation only adds to my dis-connection to current comics. You could almost say since last September, every Marvel/DC book has been rebooted. Thanks for the memories

  9. #9

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    I make a distinction between the comic book company that was known as DC (included in that National Allied, Detective Comics Inc, Superman Inc., All-American Comics Inc., National Comics, Vertigo, et al), which dominated the industry for 75 years, and this new company that acquired the DC properties over a year ago and launched their own versions of some DC characters, that I now know as Peal Comics (look for the Peal trademark on every Peal Comic). Peal does a pretty good job of reprinting some of the comics and stories they acquired from DC, but they are not DC.

  10. #10
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    I enjoyed the character in Moore's Swamp Thing but never followed it after that. Didn't realise Hellblazer had such a long run.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Bad Wolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dan bailey View Post
    At the very least, I can vounch for the fact that I've never read one. Not sure why; probably the Sting aspect of the character's design creeps me out too much, given what a pathetic waste of an "artiste" I find him.
    He doesn't look like Sting at all, IMO. Maybe in the very beginning, but it got away from that before long.

    If you like horror comics at all, you should give it a try. It's one of the very best and most consistent.

  12. #12
    Idaho Spuds Slam_Bradley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Wolf View Post
    He doesn't look like Sting at all, IMO. Maybe in the very beginning, but it got away from that before long.

    If you like horror comics at all, you should give it a try. It's one of the very best and most consistent.
    He was designed to look like Sting.

  13. #13
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    What are the best Hellblazer runs? I think some writers that I like have worked on it - Garth Ennis, maybe? - so I might give something a try one of these days.

  14. #14
    Idaho Spuds Slam_Bradley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by berk View Post
    What are the best Hellblazer runs? I think some writers that I like have worked on it - Garth Ennis, maybe? - so I might give something a try one of these days.
    Opinions will always differ. Mine is that Garth Ennis' run on the book is the pinnacle. He did the best single storyline: Dangerous Habits (though I don't care for Will Simpson's art) and he created Kit Ryan who is among my all-time favorite comic characters.

  15. #15
    *choke* Dan B. in the Underworld's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slam_Bradley View Post
    He was designed to look like Sting.
    Yep. For me, at least, it's one of those things that once seen cannot be unseen.

    Perhaps if there were an arc where his Sting-self was, oh, bound & gagged & set on fire & pushed down a long, long flight of stairs, all while being beaten with chains ...

    ... preferably in the company of whatever idiot thought it would be a good idea to incorporate the visage of such an utter prat when creating the character's look.
    Last edited by Dan B. in the Underworld; 11-08-2012 at 03:24 PM.
    I tend to split superhero comics fans into "People who like Krypto" and "People who don't like Krypto."
    Basically, if you miss the wonder of a dog flying around in a little Superman cape, you're in the wrong hobby.

    -- Reptisaurus!

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