HELLSTORM #2-3 (1993)

Of course Dr. Strange ties into a book about the son of the devil returning to Earth.  That actually makes a lot of sense.  Damon’s enemy Gabriel has written an article about him, and Strange is investigating.

It’s no secret that this comic came about as part of Marvel’s effort to counterprogram against DC’s Vertigo books–specifically, Hellblazer starring John Constantine.  And as early as issue #2, Damon specifically says he’s emulating a “Brit” in a “similar line of work.”

Later in the same issue, I swear there’s an appearance by Constantine himself…

The guy with the glasses.  That’s him right?  I mean, here’s what he looked like in his own book:

Anyway, Strange looks for Daimon.

They discuss Damon’s past, including his time on The Defenders with Dr. Strange, and some highlights and headlines.

And Hellstorm explains that there is no true “Satan”–just a bunch of pan dimensional deities.

One thing he doesn’t do, though, is explain what happened with his marriage to Hellcat–and Strange says that Patsy is missing.

Then we get a visit with Gargoyle.

And he’s referring to Damon as “master.”  And issue #2 closes with a damn creepy picture of what’s happened to Patsy Walker.

Issue #3 “explains” it all with a lot more retconning and recapping, and basically what happened was that Damon gave up his connection to Satan, which meant he also gave up his powers, but in so doing, he started to die because he’s not human and needs his demonic connection.  So Patsy made a deal with the devil, trading her sanity for her husband’s life.

I’m finding this a pretty decent 1990s reboot of a character from the ’80s, modernizing him for a saavier, older readership. Also, I’m a fan of Isaac Christians and he joins the cast as Daimon’s butler, making the second DC Comics reference in these two issues…

1 thought on “HELLSTORM #2-3 (1993)”

  1. I’ll admit, as much as I enjoy the ‘Daimon Hellstrom/Hellstorm’ character, I was not devastated when this series bit the dust. How could Marvel realistically expect a series this avant-garde and off-the-wall to develop a permanent audience-?? The percentage of comics-fans who would support this type of series indefinitely is less than one percent. Remember, it wasn’t low-sales that sunk the original 1970’s ‘Son of Satan’ series, but, rather, it’s controversial subject-matter. Marvel is notorious for riding trends, and the original ‘Son of Satan’ series was initially designed to cash in on the fact that ‘The Exorcist’ was the big movie to beat in 1973. But, as we all know, when trends and fads die, they die hard. Very hard. ( see under: Disco, the Sixties ‘Batman’ TV show, Kung Fu movies, yo-yo’s, CB radios, and so forth ) Too many parents walking into their kids’ rooms and finding ‘Son of Satan’ comics on their bureaus, said incensed parents pickiting the Marvel offices, etc. So, by 1976, Marvel realizes they’re on the wrong end of a losing battle, and wisely decides to cut their losses by cancelling the series. It was just as well, anyway, because, as noted, by 1976, the ‘Exorcist’ craze was over. I don’t believe the character reappeared in another Marvel Comic for another five years, with ‘Defenders’#95, ( I could be wrong about that ) when writer J.M. Demateiss realized the company was letting a great character go to waste, and brought him back in time to put him front-and-center for his excellent ‘Six-Fingered Hand’ storyline, which culminated with ‘Defenders’#100. So- just what exactly “possessed” Marvel ( npi ) into believing a relaunch of a seriously-less sympathetic version of the character would make it seventeen years later, in the nitty-gritty Nineties??? The Nineties were a gritty and rough time for Marvel super-jocks, but not THAT rough. I can buy Hellstrom being a tad obnoxious, all things considered, but he is also “a man of wealth and taste”. His reflections on his time as a Defender were not appreciated by myself, because we’re talking about a team that suffered from WAY too many weak and sorry characters- the Gargoyle, Devil-Slayer, Hellcat, ( sorry, Daimon ) Cloud the Hermaphrodite, Dollar Bill, the stupid elf, etc. Daimon Hellstrom was one of the greatest of all Defenders, a natural ally to Dr. Strange. In this issue, Hellstrom makes mention to Dr. Strange how there is no true Satan, only “pan-dimensional demons.” It’s precisely this type of proselytization-nonsense that got Hellstrom’s first series taken off the market! Marvel has no business trying to sell it’s considerable readership on the idea that there is no Satan, or Hell, etc. The logical extension of this mindset is that “Good” and “Evil” are simply abstract, nonexistent concepts that we should not concern ourselves with, or their repercussions. This character CAN be marketed to the comics-buying public WITHOUT promoting subversion. Remember- in the 1950’s, the comic-book industry was nearly put out of business by the US government, due to the industry’s inability/unwillingness to regulate ITSELF. So, I’m all for a third attempt at a series featuring this character as long as Marvel will assign it a writer who can “stay in his/her lane.” Finally, one last detail that has always bugged me about this series is how the narrators have always told us since ‘Marvel Spotlight’#12 that Daimon is the ONLY son that Lucifer has EVER sired!!! Isn’t there ANYONE out there, besides myself, who has been bowled over by the sheer idiocy of this contention??? Satan has been the Ruler of this world since he was cast out of Heaven, ( per Genesis ) so nobody, least of all Marvel Comics, is going to tell ME that the Prince of Darkness hasn’t been getting busy with every woman he can seduce since the Dawn of Man!! ( and, more accurately, woman!! ) Our world is, undoubtedly, freaking OVERRUN with Satan-Spawn!!! ( which would explain the rampant levels of Evil in our world, constantly threatening to destroy it, which, of course, provides the backdrop for Marvel and DC superhero comics and movies ) If Marvel ever does decide to give Daimon another shot at a third series, I hope that the carefully-selected writer will address, and, hopefully correct this aggravatingly-fallacious point!! NUFF SAID!!!


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