Mercury and Constantine continue on their journey until they run into an old ‘mate’ of Constantine. How will the encounter go?
Writer: Simon Oliver
Artist: Davide Fabbri
Colourists: Carrie Strachan with Tony Avina
Mixed bag is the phrase that comes to mind this month. Oliver’s writing has been some of the stuff I’ve enjoyed the most since Rebirth. His writing in Hellblazer is plenty entertaining but also feels somewhat smart and ‘grown up.’ This issue is no real exception, the plot is fairly good although there is less social commentary than usual. It’s more of a filler issue, killing time till the next big plot point. The art however…
I don’t mean to say anything against Davide Fabbri as a person but I really, really don’t like his art. It looks like the sort of thing you’d find in a Scooby Do comic. Everyone is the same kind of vague cartoon character. It feels more like a webcomic than a DC release. The colouring doesn’t really help either. It’s all so flat. Not in a Tim Sale stylistic way, it just looks like it lacks depth.
It’s hard to get invested in a comic when you disagree with the art so much. I’ll admit it’s better than the last Fabbri Hellblazer comic that used solid colour backgrounds. He clearly has skill as an artist. Some pages are surprisingly beautiful whereas others look like a high school student’s first comic page. With any luck he’ll improve having been given such a big comic to work on.
That’s all there really is to say this issue. The story is fine and I take issue with the art.
Recommendation: I’d wait for the trade but since every other issue is so good I’d need to recommend the issue to current readers.