Comics / Comic Reviews / DC Comics

Hellblazer #252


By Leroy Douresseaux
March 8, 2009 - 14:24

hellblazer252.jpg
Hellblazer #252 cover image

“Scab” Part 2 of 3

In Hellblazer #252, writer Peter Milligan (X-Statix) cruises into the midpoint of the three-issue story arc that opens his run on this venerable Vertigo Comics title.  I don’t think I’ve felt this troubled while reading a Hellblazer story since Garth Ennis and John Higgins’ Son of Man arc (129-133, 1998-99).

Out of the seeming happiness that began last issue, John Constantine has shed enough of his troubles to cause a nightmare for his new lady friend, Phoebe, a medical doctor.  Meanwhile, Mal Brady, the unlucky gentleman introduced last issue decides not to suffer alone, while Liverpool calls someone home.

Peter Milligan will have to have a big letdown for his run on Hellblazer to end up a disappointment, and I feel safe saying that after reading only two issues of his opening story arc.  I never seriously considered the notion that Milligan wouldn’t get it – meaning the supernatural troubles which seem to be John Constantine’s lot in life, nor did I think that Milligan would be incapable of coming up with imaginative scenarios for a title that has featured some stellar scribes.

It’s not so much a fresher prospective as it is a willingness to go there – that dark side of horror that challenges what we believe in enough to make us a little uneasy and also a lot scared.  Horror should be horrifying or horrible – really good or really bad, but not middle-of-the-road, bland, and safe (like so many horror movies).  “Scab” ain’t safe.  It will leave you feeling nasty and unclean.

A-

 


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