"I'm the one who steps from the shadows, all trenchcoat and cigarette and arrogance, ready to deal with the madness. Oh, I've got it all sewn up. I can save you. If it takes the last drop of your blood, I'll drive your demons away. I'll kick them in the bollocks and spit on them when they're down and then I'll be gone back into darkness, leaving only a nod and a wink and a wisecrack. I walk my path alone... who would walk with me? " - John Constantine
Tainted Blood or 'The Bitter Taste Defense': Constantine's blood is demoniacally tainted, initially by a blood transfusion from the demon Nergal, and later by sex with a succubus. His blood has been shown to have healing properties. It has also acted as a defense mechanism when attacked by the King of the Vampires. Sorcery: Constantine is a magician but unlike most magicians, Constantine rarely uses magical spells, unless he really has to, especially in combat.
Some examples of Constantine's magic: * Divination: Used a pendulum and map to find the location of a magical disturbance. * Demon Summoning: Summoned the demon Nergal to destroy a monster for him, which it did (although John lost control, due to his inexperience). * Black Magic Cursing: Placed a curse on his father that caused him to waste away. * Spirit Ward Creation: Placed a magical sigil on a succubus that prevented the forces of Heaven and Hell from tracking her. As well as using sigils to hide himself from Satan. * Golemancy: Raised a golem. * Oculumancy: Erased a man's traumatic memories. * Necromancy: Raised a group of murder victims as zombies to attack their murderer. * Illusion: Making people think he's someone or something else. Or using Illusion to scare susceptible opponents into catatonic insanity. * Synchronicity Wave Traveling: An instinctual supernatural ability to be in the right place at exactly the right time. This has led John to uncanny luck, like winning incredible amounts of money from Arcade machines and Casinos. Avoiding harm. And more times than not - to meet the right kind of ally to help prevent or stop an apocalyptic event from happening. * Mind Control: often through the manipulation of opponents and allies.
Abilities Master Manipulator: John Constantine is an excellent con artist and negotiator. These skills are often more useful than his magical ones. Constantine faces most of his challenges relying primarily on his cunning. Arcane Knowledge: he has vast knowledge of the occult. Well Known: an extensive list of contacts. Stage Magician: Constantine has also exhibited considerable mastery in "stage magic skills" Hypnotist, Sleight-Of-Hand Expert, Escapologist
* John Constantine is afraid of needles. * Although John has generally been shown to lose most fights against a superior combatant and generally avoids physical battles - he has been known to win fights, either by using a magical weapon or by fighting dirty. * Constantine once won a bet wherein he predicted the exact month, day and hour that President Lyndon B. Johnson would suffer a fatal heart attack. He used his winnings to finance a series of free rock concerts in the New York area in the early 1970s. * John's favorite brand of cigarettes are Silk Cut.
Hellblazer Hero of the Counterculture Knight of Humanity The Laughing Magician Man for All Seasons The Magus many other nicknames unsuitable for print.
Groups Belonged To
Former member of Mucous Membrane former member of the Newcastle Crew former member of The Trenchcoat Brigade (along with, the Phantom Stranger, Mr. E and Doctor Occult)
Universe /// Base of Operations New Earth /// London, England
Gender: /// Height: /// Eyes: /// Hair: Male /// 6' 0" /// Blue /// Blond
Unusual Features: *Scar over left eye *Christmas tree / evergreen tattoo on right buttock *Scouse accent
Status Citizenship: /// Marital Status: /// Occupation: /// Place of Birth: British /// Single /// Magician, Con Man /// Liverpool, England
He was born in Liverpool, England, on May 10, 1953. His mother, Mary Anne, died giving birth to John and his stillborn twin brother because an earlier abortion—forced on her by John's father, Thomas—had weakened her womb. Because he was unable to accept responsibility for his wife's death, Thomas blamed John and the pair grew up with a deep dislike for one another. Whilst in the womb, John strangles his twin brother with his own umbilical cord; in a parallel universe glimpsed in Hellblazer #40, the twin survives to become the well-loved and well-adjusted magician that John never was.
While only children, John and his older sister Cheryl lived briefly with their aunt and uncle in Northampton to escape from their father's alcoholism and subsequent imprisonment for stealing a female neighbor's underwear. They later then moved back to Liverpool when their father was released. As a child, one of John's first acts of magic was to hide all of his childhood innocence and vulnerability in a box to rid himself of it. Later, in the 1960s, a teenage John ran away from home, but not before a botched curse on his father caused him to become withered and frail. John eventually made his permanent home in London in 1969, rooming with Francis "Chas" Chandler, a young man who has since gone on to become John's closest — and longest surviving — friend.
During the 1970s, John became involved in occult circles in London, and visited San Francisco, where he met, and subsequently began a relationship with, the female magician Zatanna. He also became enamored of punk rock; after seeing the Sex Pistols at the Roxy Club in London in 1977, John cut his long hair and formed his own band, Mucous Membrane, whose members included Chandler (as a roadie), a drummer named Beano and fellow Liverpudlian Gary Lester.
John's first venture into occult "heroism", as depicted in a flashback in Hellblazer #11, was a disaster. On tour with Mucous Membrane at the Casa Nova Club in Newcastle, he found the aftermath of a magical orgy gone horribly wrong: an abused child, Astra, had conjured a hideous monster that took revenge on the adults who were tormenting her, and the monster refused to leave. With typical recklessness, John convinces some members of the band, along with several occultist friends, to try destroying the creature by summoning a demon of their own. Unfortunately, this demon was not under their control and after it had destroyed the child's monster, it torments Constantine's friends and took the child to Hell. John suffered a nervous breakdown after this incident, and was committed to a mental institution, which he drifted in and out of over the years. He was severely abused by the staff during the time he spent there, as they believed that he was the one who had molested and murdered Astra. John was never officially cured in any way — his time at the asylum ended when a local criminal used his influence to spring John for his own purposes.
The guilt of Astra hung over him for many years until, in his mid-forties, he used some magic and con-artistry to free not only her, but also the souls of all the other children trapped in Hell. As for the rest of the "Newcastle Crew", the incident left the group both physically and psychologically scarred.
Years later, John was able to persuade the same group to help with his investigation of the Brujería cult, as seen in Swamp Thing #37–49. However, the cult murders most of them, including John's then-lover, Emma. These people, and others who have died due to John's carelessness, have continued to appear to him as silent, reproachful ghosts. Chas is one of his only human friends to have survived a long-term association with John.
In his late thirties, John contracts terminal lung cancer. During this time, he came to the aid of a dying friend, Brendan, who had sold his soul to the First of the Fallen, the most powerful lord of Hell. When the First came to collect the soul, John tricks him into drinking holy water, which rendered him helpless and prevented him from collecting the friend's soul at the appointed time.
For this, the First promised to make John suffer unprecedented torment in Hell when he dies. Slowly dying from cancer, John hatches a plan to save himself from eternal torment. He secretly sold his soul to the other two Lords of Hell. When they discover Constantine's actions they realized that they could not allow him to die, or else they would be forced to go to all-out war over his soul - a war whose only winner would be "the Lord of the Hosts" (i.e. God) and his angels. However, they were also far too stubborn and proud to enter anything resembling an alliance. As a result, they were forced to cure John of his cancer.
Constantine then went on to have a series of adventures and misadventures playing the role of puppet and puppeteer with his signature style and profane sarcasm. He has been wanted for questioning in relation to several cases (ranging from murder to extortion) that have since been solved and has, in America, a prison record serving time for the suicide of a man called Lucky that the police had misconstrued as murder. After a prison riot and an FBI agent orchestrated his release from prison Constantine traveled across America for a time on a personal quest to ask the forgiveness of the widow of Lucky, for whose death he felt responsible even though he was innocent of his murder. After encountering, roughly in order, the psychotic pornography-making relatives of Lucky, a huge black boar, and a group of snowbound killers, Constantine's journey culminated in his discovery that Lucky's widow had joined a neo-Nazi group. Constantine, who has often evinced a dislike for "fascists", disassembled the group from the inside and burned the widow's house to the ground after Lucky's ghost revealed the real reason for his suicide.
At this point Constantine was contacted by the same FBI agent who had initiated his release from prison and asked to take part in an attempt to incriminate billionaire Stanley Manor (whom the agent knew was responsible for numerous illegal and immoral acts but who, because of his wealth, could never be brought to justice). To this end Constantine frequented a BDSM sex club, seduced Stanley, raised the ghosts or the illusion of the ghosts of Stanley's parents, and finally faked his own death.
As yet it is unclear how Lucifer's retirement and Azazel's capture by Dream has affected the deal he made to save his life, or what he traded Azazel and Beelzebub his soul for in the first place.
The character of John Constantine was created by Alan Moore, on something of a whim originally. One day Alan Moore is quoted to have said "Hey, let's make a character that looks like Sting." and, well, the rest is history. The character was developed further by Jamie Delano and later still by Garth Ennis.