Heartland Heartland

Writer : Garth Ennis
Artist : Steve Dillon

Set in Belfast, and featuring Kit Ryan (John Constantineís ex-girlfriend) as the lead character, Heartland offers a look at day to day life in Northern Ireland as well as a family on the brink of destruction.   The central story is based on the conflict between Kit and her youngest sister, Bernadette and the events which transpired between them and their troubled father.   Kitís father was a drunk and abusive to his wife - with little time for any of his family save his youngest daughter - Bernadette.   A constant level of tension ran through the Ryan household till one faithful night, after being barred from his local, Kitís father came home early.

Life in Northern Ireland

Following a stupid accident with a teapot, he looses his head and starts to beat his wife - when his children try to intervene he knocks them aside. Kit snaps and stabs her father in the cheek - leaving him stunned and bleeding on the floor.   Bernadette, still a young child, raced to her fatherís side.   Kitís father continued his drinking and eventually ended up in hospital - passing away with only Bernadette at his side.   These old tensions come to the fore when Kit gets caught making a move on Bernadetteís boyfriend.   All hell breaks loose and vicious words are exchanged.

No synopsis can really do this comic book justice - itís almost undoubtedly Garth Ennisí finest hour as a writer and Steve Dillonís rendition of Belfast is excellent (matching his depiction of Dublin back in HellBlazer #76).   Despite Constantineís absence, this is amongst the best HellBlazer stories ever written.

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