writer: Mike Carey
artist: Marcelo Frusin
The Beast Who Would Not Be Named is part
of that plentiful species of villain that likes to gloat and
then take its sweet time about deciding when and how to deliver
the coup de grace.
This is a very good thing for Constantine
(currently brain-dead) and company (in a nice heap of trouble,
by issue's end), who take two steps forward and three steps
back in that essential Part 4 of 5 manner. So it's all very
predictable, but as the Beast would probably agree, getting
there is what's fun.
and Chas team up and pay a visit to Unca John's storage locker,
which is crammed full of mystic books in foreign languages,
skulls carved with pentagrams, and obscure idols. Apparently
the proprietor must owe our hero a favor, or maybe there's
a magic Automatic Bill Pay spell in one of the grimoires that
keeps the rent up while Constantine is off gallivanting around
the world or being chased by inmates in jail.
are quickly distracted from such mundane considerations by
the appearance of three guest stars. It spoils nothing to
list them: the Swamp Thing, Tim Hunter, and Carey's other
blond angel/devil protagonist, Lucifer. Of these, only Swamp
Thing makes more than a cameo, helping out in his (its?) typically
casts a spell. It works, but it might not have been the best
plan in the world. Oh, and there's another witticism lifted
from Douglas Adams. That's about it for plot this time around,
but it works just fine as we race toward the last issue in
the story arc and things look hopeless, as they will.
could still use a little more interior life. It would be nice
to know what Gemma's thinking about all this through some
inner monologue, rather than the unwisely lengthy conversation
she has with her uncle once they finally meet up.
artwork is no help, still hasty and crude. Facial expressions
are absent or almost unreadable, and the last page looks more
like a game of Pictionary than a dramatic climax.
this is still the most compelling Hellblazer story
in quite some time, and if Carey keeps his pace we should
be in for a satisfying conclusion.