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DC Supernatural: Where do I start? ie Constantine/Zatanna

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DC Supernatural: Where do I start? ie Constantine/Zatanna

Postby ChangeApproved » Thu Apr 23, 2015 9:42 pm

Hello! I most recently wanted to become more familiar with the supernatural side of DC.

Wondering where I should begin.

I hear Garth Ennis' run on Hellblazer was great so I was thinking Hellblazer Vol 5: Dangerous Habits or Hellblazer Vol 6: Bloodlines

I'd also love to know the best Zatanna or Swamp Thing stories. So any suggestions would be great, thank you!
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Re: DC Supernatural: Where do I start? ie Constantine/Zatann

Postby AcidDragon » Thu Apr 23, 2015 9:54 pm

My friend, I recommend the entire 6 volumes of Swamp Thing by Alan Moore available in Trade Paperback. Not only is it an amazing literary journey but we get to see appearances from other supernatural/occult characters like Baron Winters, Deadman, Zatanna, Sargon and the Demon Etrigan and more... MUCH more. The run takes place during the 1980s and I'll try not to give too much of it away, but a certain large cross-over event even has tie-ins with it.
"Finally got all the way through that 'Death of Superman' video game...as Steel. Play Superboy and you're history by level three, right? But Steel..." - Kon-El AKA Superboy
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Re: DC Supernatural: Where do I start? ie Constantine/Zatann

Postby Princess_Amethyst » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:04 pm

Zatanna's almost been more of a support character but Paul Dini gave her her own book. I had great fun with them, especially the first book Mistress of Magic. Unfortunately volume one is out of print and harder to find but Shades of the Past is still a fun read. Dini also did Bloodspell starring her and Black Canary but I haven't purchased that yet -so thanks for reminding me indirectly. :pagrin:

P.S. I loved the entire scope of Ennis' Hellblazer run but if I had to choose Dangerous Habits or Bloodlines, I would go with Dangerous Habits.
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Re: DC Supernatural: Where do I start? ie Constantine/Zatann

Postby ChangeApproved » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:13 pm

Awesome thanks for the quick response AcidDragon. I was dead-set on starting with Hellblazer, but this is the 2nd time I've been suggested Swamp Thing by Alan Moore. I am going to have to reorder my Amazon wishlist. On Amazon there is Swamp Thing Vol 1 released in 1998, or Saga of Swamp Thing, Book 1 released in 2012. They seem to be the same, do you suggest one over the other?

Hello, Princess_Amethyst. A story starring Zatanna and Black Canary sounds awesome! I'll definitely start with Dangerous Habits when I begin Hellblazer. Great suggestions, much appreciated!
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Re: DC Supernatural: Where do I start? ie Constantine/Zatann

Postby AcidDragon » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:17 pm

No problem, ChApp!

I also recommend Swamp Thing before Hellblazer for chronological reasons and you'll see why! :jclol: :swpgrin:
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Re: DC Supernatural: Where do I start? ie Constantine/Zatann

Postby ChangeApproved » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:37 pm

Acid.. I totally signed my message to you 'ChApp' before seeing you abbreviate it here. I believe it's official.. that I will forever be known as ChAp or ChApp. CHANGE APPROVED!!
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Re: DC Supernatural: Where do I start? ie Constantine/Zatann

Postby AcidDragon » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:43 pm

You got it, ol ChApp! :bgthumbs:
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Re: DC Supernatural: Where do I start? ie Constantine/Zatann

Postby S. Griffin » Fri Apr 24, 2015 7:23 pm

As a long time John Constantine fan, as well as a fan of others affiliated with him, I'm going to kind of condense some of what's already been said into one post, expand upon it, and add to it. Start with Moore's Run on Swamp Thing then pick up the Hellblazer Volume 1 "Original Sins" trade paper back to familiarize yourself with John and the dark supernatural world the character basically carries on his shoulders. I would not recommend starting with "Dangerous Habits" but jumping to volume 5 and then skipping right to the "Dangerous Habits" story (it takes up about the last half of the book) from there. Unless you really hate it, keep going with the subsequent TPBs and don't stop until you've at least finished Volume 8, as those stories are the last of Garth Ennis' regular run on the book. (Moore created John, Delano defined him, and Ennis refined him). Move on to Paul Dini's Zatanna stories when ready.
From there, if you're feeling ambitious, take on the Sandman series by Neil Gaiman. If not feeling ambitious (it'll also be cheaper), the Books of Magic also by Neil Gaiman is pretty great and features appearances by John Constantine, the Phantom Stranger, Zatanna, The Spectre, Doctor Fate, Death and others. It's basically Gaiman's way to tie together the threads of DC's vast occult/supernatural tapestry that began around 1940, and it's kinda short, and conveniently bound in one TPB published last year.
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Re: DC Supernatural: Where do I start? ie Constantine/Zatann

Postby AcidDragon » Fri Apr 24, 2015 10:58 pm

SG, is the Books of Magic a standalone story? I have the Sandman two volume Omnibus collection which I haven't read through yet. This isn't in it, right? It sounds worth picking up on my end.
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Re: DC Supernatural: Where do I start? ie Constantine/Zatann

Postby S. Griffin » Fri Apr 24, 2015 11:06 pm

AcidDragon wrote:SG, is the Books of Magic a standalone story? I have the Sandman two volume Omnibus collection which I haven't read through yet. This isn't in it, right? It sounds worth picking up on my end.


It is and it isn't. As Gaiman did it, it was. Then because of popularity, critical acclaim or both, DC/Vertigo decided to turn it into an ongoing series with new writers.
And it's not a Sandman story, so I'd be surprised if it's in there.
I highly recommend picking it up. I found the main kid annoying sometimes, but because of Gaiman's writing, he's a hell of a lot less so than most kids in comics or graphic novels or pretty much any medium, and the story's appropriately clever, odd, fantastic, and good.
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