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Constantine Volume 1: The Spark and the Flame TP (The New 52) Paperback – 27 Feb 2014

12 customer reviews

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Constantine Volume 1: The Spark and the Flame TP (The New 52) + Constantine Volume 2 TP (The New 52) (John Constantine Graphic Novel) + Justice League Dark Volume 1: In the Dark TP (Justice League (DC Comics) (paperback))
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Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics (27 Feb. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401243231
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401243234
  • Product Dimensions: 16.9 x 0.6 x 25.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 12,731 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Award-winning Canadian cartoonist Jeff Lemire is the creator of the acclaimed monthly comic book series SWEET TOOTH published by DC/Vertigo and the award winning graphic novel ESSEX COUNTY published by Top Shelf. He also writes ANIMAL MAN, FRANKENSTEIN AGENT OF S.H.A.D.E. and SUPERBOY for DC Comics. In 2008 Jeff won the Schuster Award for Best Canadian Cartoonist, and The Doug Wright Award for Best Emerging Talent. He also won the American Library Association's prestigious Alex Award, recognizing books for adults with specific teen appeal. In 2010 Essex County was named as one of the five Essential Canadian Novels of the Decade! Recently named one of Wizard magazines 25 "rising stars," Jeff is also hard at work on a new graphic novel for Top Shelf called THE UNDERWATER WELDER, due in 2012. He currently lives and works in Toronto with his wife and son.

Customer Reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Stranger on 21 Feb. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Now this is not Hellblazer it is no way related to the long running Vertigo series, although the two characters share the same name and a lot of the same character traits this is very much the new JLD (Justice League Dark) Constantine rather then the anarchic amoral spell slinger from the now defunct Vertigo series.

This is very much a mission statement for John, bits and pieces of his past have been revealed in JLD but this is more a explanation of his place in the wider DC universe as the dividing line between the dark and the rest off the world and also set out his methods and real lack of morals and his willingness to go to any lengths to stop the bad guy, now this works well by the end you get a very good sense off who and what John is and why it's dangerous to be around him, less well covered is the actual plot which is a bit thin due to the need to set the scene for the evil cult of the cold flame, which are actually decent enough enemies, and also John's allies who boil down to a bartender and a woman who owns a pet shop, past that there is some twists and turns surrounding a compass and a demon or two but it's all a bit thin on the ground, added to that an issue featuring Shazam which doesn't fit well (Trinity War crossovers on the whole aren't that great) and generally a sense it's all a bit predictable that leaves a bit off a feeling off a missed opportunity. All that said the parts where John is faced with some of the members of the cold flame, especially the bosses work quite well, it's good to see John use tricks and his wits to out manoeuvre the bad guy and even with him being the man he is you still feel you can root for him, which is very important.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By W-Town on 24 Feb. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The decision to reboot the Vertigo Hellblazer series as here as 'Constantine' into the new 52 continuity was always going to be a troublesome effort. The Hellblazer series was one of the great Vertigo runs, dealing with adult themes and issues and generally avoiding seeing the hero do any actual magically trickery.

Constantine here's comes across as much younger and more gun-ho that the previous incarnation, with a magical trinket to pull out for any given situation. The story lines feel dumbed down in favour of action and fast pacing, it still feels like the same character but the plotting is now more like a Michael Bay film than the thoughtful narratives of the original series.

For the new comer there is action and excitement a plenty and this is not a particularly bad title by any means, for Hellblazer fans the change is a bit of a wrench that may not sit well. It's worth giving this series a shot to see where it goes, but treat it like a bit of popcorn fun and not a serious piece of writing. The old series is getting a nice new reprint at the moment so, go buy Hellblazer 1: Original Sins and see which you like more.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Squirr-el TOP 50 REVIEWER on 24 Mar. 2014
Format: Paperback
The story running through issues #1-6 of DC Comics' New 52 comic `Constantine' is collected as Constantine Volume 1: The Spark and the Flame TP (The New 52). He talks like John Constantine, he walks like John Constantine, he even pulls the "how do you baffle a vegetable" trick; but there's something missing. I can't put my finger on it, but this Constantine feels too smug. Maybe he'll grow on me with time.

The story itself seems to move far too quickly, but then we are thirty years after his early appearances (which I still remember quite well), and life has speeded up. There is a new Society of Evil Magicians at work, and John is out to stop them obtaining a magical artefact, during the course of which adventure he sacrifices a few friends, talks the Spectre into letting him off, steals Captain Marvel's powers - yes, even down to the costume - and manages to cheat death (again).

It is all here, but it feels like the surface of a John Constantine story but without the depth. He does work better with as group, as in Justice League Dark; but as I said, maybe he'll grow on me.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By drewsbrewbeerblog.blogspot.co.uk/ on 20 Feb. 2014
Format: Paperback
*sigh*

I knew this would happen. They've taken a character that revels in thinking simple and playing dirty, removed any subtlety and essentially put a cape on him and announced "Constantine r my fayvrit super magics man!!!"

It's like they've tried to wedge the character into a "paint by numbers" super hero storyline that has a multitude of characters who, if you don't know them, seem way too try-hard or, in some cases, way too try-not-hard-enough. The artwork is good but gets a bit sloppy in places, in fact it slips between having brilliant splashes and really crappy little throw away panels. For that I should probably give it 2 stars but I'm sticking with 1 because DC have ruined all the good work that people like Garth Ennis and Mike Carey have done fleshing out the character.

I won't spoil anything for you but I will sum it up:
(Ok, some spoilers.)

Everyone else: Hey, isn't that John Constantine? Occult mega-genius and super-mega-magician man?!
Constantine: Yup, that's me, I have no mystery about my character whatsoever.
Everyone else: Hey, are those magical trinkets?! I love magical trinkets that do stuff!!
Constantine: Yup, I'm all like Batman but without the cape... Guvn'or!
Likeable Sidekick: I'm going to die at some point, aren't I? I haven't been fleshed out as a character at all and the plot is telegraphing that there is impending doom. I guess I should just die and come back later to get some sort of revenge I guess.
Constantine: That sounds like a good plan, Squire. I'm an English person... Apples and Pears, cup of tea etc.
Everyone Else: Oh noes!
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