John Constantine Hellblazer 6 cover by Aaron Campbell
(Image Source: DC / Aaron Campbell)

John Constantine, Hellblazer: Dead In America #6 Homages a Famous Alan Moore Story

Alan Moore is widely regarded as one of the greatest writers to ever work in the medium of comics. Such is Moore’s career that the fact that he co-created John Constantine is often overlooked. The latest issue of the Laughing Magician’s comic honors Alan Moore, referencing a famous story he tells regarding the “London wideboy occultist.”

Written by Si Spurrier with art by Aaron Campbell, John Constantine, Hellblazer: Dead in America #6 continues the supernatural investigator’s journey across America. Charged with retrieving the dream sands stolen from The Sandman, the magician and his companions make their way to Las Vegas. It is here they pick up a metamancer; a magician who alters reality so they are the center of a story.

John Constantine and the Secret of Magic
(Image Source: DC / Aaron Campbell)

As John Constantine explains metamancy and why most mages don’t trust it, he also explains general magic theory. To John’s mind, magic is a con-game or hustle. What separates him from the metamancer, however, is that Constantine only uses illusions to sell his lies. The metamancer tries to make his false dreams a reality, effectively lying to himself and the world.

John Constantine repeats Alan Moore’s magic secret

The dialogue in this scene echos a story Alan Moore tells regarding his creation. According to Moore, he has met John Constantine on two separate occasions in the real world. It was on their second encounter that Constantine reportedly told Moore the ultimate secret of magic. Artist Eddie Campbell illustrated this tale as part of the graphic novel Snakes and Ladders.

Alan Moore Meets John Constantine in Snakes and Ladders
(Image Source: Top Shelf Productions / Eddie Campbell)

It is worth noting that Alan Moore is not alone in claiming to have seen John Constantine in the flesh. Other Hellblazer writers, including Jamie Delano, Peter Milligan, and Brian Azzarello, have also reported seeing the character. It is unclear if this is a shared delusion or if the writers are trolling readers who might believe that John Constantine is traveling the multiverse. On the other hand, it would be in character for the Hellblazer to tease his writers in this fashion. It might be considered a fitting punishment for all the hell they’ve put him through.

John Constantine, Hellblazer: Dead in America #6 is now available at comic shops everywhere.