The dark magician Constantine got off to a troubled start, killing the classic Hellblazer just to join in the New 52’s controversial reboot of everything and everyone. The original Hellblazer was a high point of comic books, an archive of every British writer to shape the industry, and an antidote to the saccharine shine of too many capes and costumes. By contrast the new Constantine is the guy without a cape in a world of capes – but defining yourself by your differences from someone else is very different to ignoring them.
The latest news is that Constantine might make it to the small screen with an option on a TV series. The problem is that the comic book creators don’t get a dime. Through Hollywood’s own forms of black magic (complicated contracts with a complete disconnect from morals and reality), the possible 2014 TV series option allegedly spawns straight from the 2005 movie. Which was paid for in the 90s. Because what’s a decade and a completely different project between executives and the peons who actually make things?
This wouldn’t be the first time John Constantine has been involved in somebody being screwing by an infernal contract. But it also wouldn’t be the first time he caused things to go horribly wrong for the guilty. Comic books have the advantage of putting the writer and artist right on the cover. TV adaptations have a history of sinking without a trace. Of course we can’t claim that the facts are related, but as the magic man himself will tell you, people should get what they deserve.