The Man Who Fleshed Out John Constantine
♦ 2018 is the 30th anniversary of DC/ Vertigo’s John Constantine and we just chatted to the writer Jamie Delano who brought Moore, Bissette and Totleben’s creation to his own book about his legacy and more…
TW: How do you feel about Hellblazer’s 30th anniversary?
JAMIE DELANO: In a word, old. Gratified by the compliments the occasion has engendered, and for the affection in which the character is still held. A mild sense of irritation that Constantine will probably be remembered long after I am reduced to my constituent molecules and forgotten. 😉
TW: Can you remember your remit as a writer when the book launched all those years ago?
JD: There was no official ‘remit’. My sincere intention was to do justice to the potential of the character Moore had invented, and write stories from the heart that reflected my personal worldview and spoke genuinely to others whose experience was not often represented in the medium.
TW: Did you ever imagine the character would still be around all these decades later?
JD: Truthfully, at the time I imagined I’d be lucky if we strung it out for 12 months. And I didn’t let my taxi licence lapse for at least two years.
TW: The character has now been on film, TV and animation. How do you see that character compared to the one you fleshed out back in 1988?
JD: The Constantine movie is the only screen iteration of the character that I have so far watched. My stock-in-trade observation on that is: Two totally different characters sharing a name. I understand the Matt Ryan TV show is maybe more worthy of attention, but I made a conscious decision to avoid the need to have an opinion by resisting the temptation watch it. The existence of this new thing (animation?) had, until yesterday, passed me by completely. My usual advice to anyone contemplating bringing John Constantine to life in any medium is: The chap is not to be lightly fucked with- so make sure your intentions are pure or ‘bad luck’ will surely fall upon you.
TW: If you were offered, would you ever write John Constantine again?
JD: Pretty sure I wouldn’t. I still feel affinity but my creativity is now focused elsewhere. http://lepusbooks.co.uk/homepage/jamie-delano/ 😉
Here’s Tripwire’s look back at 30 years of the man from March