Also known as the Hellblazer, Constantine first appeared in the 37th issue of Swamp Thing, in 1985. The character was created by Alan Moore, Steve Bissette, John Totleben, Jamie Delano, and John Ridgway. Constantine’s Hellblazer series has remained one of DC’s more successful ventures through Vertigo comics, and the character draws visual inspiration from Sting, the British musician and frontman of the band, Police.
Reeves, in his portrayal, captured the cynicism and chain-smoking that has defined the occult detective from Liverpool, in the comics.
Who is Constantine?
Constantine’s violence and anti-social attitude have earned him the reputation of an anti-hero who does anything to get the job done.
Growing up, Constantine’s experiments with magic led him to perform a spell that would make him a powerful magician. However, it required a sacrifice he was unaware of. During the spell, his house caught fire, leading to Constantine’s family’s death.
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Constantine had a wild childhood, teaming up with a police officer to embark on amateurish occult adventures, and then started a mystical-themed punk band. However, things went wrong when a spell caused one of the members to lose their connection with reality, and Constantine was unable to stop it. This spurred him to focus on his skills as a magician.
Learning all he could about magic in Europe, Constantine crossed the pond to go to America, where he trained under Nick Necro, one of the greatest mages in the world. At this time, Constantine met Zatanna, a powerful magician herself.
The two dated for a while, before a spell went wrong and killed Zatanna’s father – Giovanni Zatara, a powerful mage himself.
He had a couple more personal lows, including a casual sexual relationship with a demon called Blythe. Constantine, at one time, had checked himself into Ravenscar Asylum after failing to save a young child from the clutches of a demon. However, he was mistreated while there and found himself unable to return to London due to a curse from a demon he’d crossed.
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Constantine then moved to New York City. He’s been part of several major comic storylines including Justice League Dark and World’s End.
With powers like astral projection, and being someone who formerly had demon blood in his body, Constantine is widely regarded as one of earth’s most powerful magicians.