Thursday, September 11, 2014

Hellblazer by Jamie Delano issue #29

I'm really happy that Delano was able to maintain the suspenseful pacing of The Family Man story arc with this third to the last issue entitled Sick At Heart. This was just bloody fantastic all throughout as it further escalates the cat-and-mouse game that John Constantine and Samuel Morris are caught up in. The stakes had gotten higher which was only expected when an occultist and a serial killer are trying to outsmart each other. It is worth mentioning, however, that John would like nothing more than to just get it over with, especially since Morris has just killed a loved one he hasn't seen in years, and that was a mighty blow that even I did not expect John to be so visibly affected by. I wanted to hold him myself because he looked so pitiful, cowering there in a corner as he started sobbing. All the more reason to fucking murder that Family Man bastard!

I'm also pleased to see Chas making a memorable appearance here and I appreciate the friendship between him and John a lot because there is a level of trust there that I think had been put to the test before, and only continue to grow stronger. I would also like to mention that Chas' wife has no love for John whatsoever and if she had it her way, John will no longer be a constant presence in Chas' life. But Chas is reluctant to let go of his old mate, not when he knows for a fact that John keeps meddling on affairs and gets himself into trouble that are beyond his capabilities. And he wants to help as much as he can, but it has proven dangerous in this issue because Morris is quite determined to destroy John, including the people closest to him.

This issue made me pause every now and then because it was a bit painful to see John suffering in a very intimate level. He never asked to be hunted by a maniac. It was only by accident that he encountered Samuel Morris in the first place. But ever resourceful and easy to adapt, John knows he just has to make due of his circumstances. He's still very shrewd and hasn't lost his wits. It's worth noting that, as much as he's used to demons and paranormal confrontations, John does admit that humans can be the worst monsters and that's the irony that encompasses his troubles right now. Skilled in fighting the unknown and supernatural, John is actually struggling to confront this malicious entity in human flesh known as the Family Man. He still hasn't made up his mind whether he should kill him or not, but also knows that the choice has to be made soon or else. A part of me knows he can pull the trigger because John is one hell of a self-preservationist based from what I've seen so far. But good for Delano for always humanizing John when the opportunity presents itself.

I gotta say that John is still coming out strong in spite his grief. He is not giving up. I also love the fact that he doesn't seem angry or vengeful either; I get the sense that he even pities Samuel Morris for being a bloodthirsty killer. Nevertheless, John can't see himself taking a life of another person which was strange when you think about his history (and how his often reckless decisions have cost the lives of his comrades). It's mind-boggling that he hesitates to kill a piece of shit who deserves it the most. But then again, it only makes John Constantine more compelling to read because you just never know what to expect from this bloke. He continues to defy expectations. And my love for him deepens for every single issue!

So this was yet another grand issue that I very much enjoyed reading because this dangerous game that our titular hero is playing is also able to provide a more nuanced and refreshing take on the character. Samuel Morris also makes my blood run cold. What a detestable creature! He doesn't deserve John's mercy at all! And I suppose that's why John has earned my respect (and bewilderment) with the way he keeps hesitating on executing this bastard once and for all.


RECOMMENDED: 9/10

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