Monday, July 14, 2014

Constantine #16 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: Ray Fawkes
Art By: Edgar Salazar
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: July 9, 2014

Bad Moon Rising

Last issue we saw Constantine go to Hong Kong to find out who the mage was that got him to cast his first spell costing him his parents.  In the land of China Constantine went up against Graceful Moon, a mage that uses everyone else's luck to her own advantage.  After a big long confusing battle where Constantine triumphs we find out that Mister E (still trapped within the Moon Blade) knows the identity of the mage responsible, even though it was his idea to go to Hong Kong to find out.  It's a odd bit where Graceful Moon wants revenge on Mister E because he was the mage responsible for her casting her first spell costing her her parents and I guess Mister E used Constantine to get her out of the picture.  After a jumbled confusing issue we're left with Constantine having a vision of the future where he sees the chains of reality breaking.  Now what we want to see is him dealing with that problem, but instead we head into a forest in Germany in search of another mage.  Let's check it out.

Explain It!:

It looks like the Cold Flame are up to their tricks again, taking out powerful mages to usurp their power.  This mage is apparently hiding out in a deadly forest in Germany and his pursuers are a group of Cold Flame assassins known as The Stained Claw.  This group consists of two demi-wolves and a Lovecraftian looking creature known as a phasing witness.  But Constantine doesn't have any worries about these nitwits.  His plans involve finding this mage and getting him to remove the motivation spell Zatanna placed on him to make him a better person.  You know why bother doing things when you can smoke and be a dick.  Actually I understand completely.

So Constantine finds the opening to a masking spell hiding the Xylomancer Albrecht Zimmermann's cabin, but he's not there too long before the Stained Claw find their way in as well.  Of course Constantine hides at first, but when he sees an opening he secretly takes out one of the demi-wolves with enchanted silver.  When he's discovered he plays the bad guy and says that the Cold Flame sent him in as backup, but he should watch what he says because Albrecht Zimmermann unlike these demi-wolves is the real deal and turns into a gigantic werewolf.  Albrecht quickly takes out the demi-wolf and it looks like Constantine shits himself at the sight of this raging monster.  He drops his enchanted silver and before he can fight back Albrecht slams him against a wall and Constantine is down for the count.

Surprisingly Constantine wakes up to find Albrecht not sporting his fancy fur coat and to the old mage nursing our anti-hero's wounds.  To see if he can trust the crafty Constantine, Albrecht probes his mind and eventually decides that he can trust him and is willing to help him undo the spell that Zatanna has cast on him.  It's really too bad that Papa Midnite sold Constantine out to the Cold Flame a couple issues back because Tannarak has had enough of Constantine's shenanigans and uses the kill switch that Papa Midnite sold them to finally take out our brash Brit when he finds out that the Stained Claw have been killed.

In the end as Albrecht tries to remove the spell Zatanna placed on Constantine, the kill switch is activated and it looks like our anti-hero might not survive this one..... Ha ha.  Yeah I know it's comics and who really dies, but even if it's not death we're talking about it looks like Constantine isn't going to be a happy boy next issue.

That's all we've got this issue, but make sure you come back next month because it looks like we're finally about to get to a war with The Cold Flame.  Nothing begins a fight like someone trying to kill you, or maybe actually killing you.  I'm not sure that's a thing, either way I can't wait to actually check that out.

Bits and Pieces:

While I'd much rather of seen the breaking of the chains of reality that was teased last issue, I have to say that this wasn't a bad consolation.  At this point it seems that this book really suffers from having a new artist every month, but lucky for us Edgar Salazar is on art duty this month and we have a comprehensible story to follow.  Also even with the fact that I love Ray Fawkes on this book, I feel that the story is wearing thin and I hope that it comes to a head soon so we can get Constantine onto something new.


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