Pretty cool, huh? Looks like it’s going to be about some kind of giant. Like, a really rich giant. That eats castles.
Oh, they mean the guy in the trench coat. Not the emperor. Well.
I guess in this getup Matt Ryan looks, at least superficially, like John Constantine. He’s way too clean, and that smoke suspiciously isn’t coming from a cigarette, but it’s certainly more faithful to comic book Constantine than the Keanu Reeves version was. And Sting, the person Constantine’s appearance was based on, is too old to do it.
The producers of the pilot are also making the right noises. David S. Goyer told Variety that this version would be faithful to the comics.
“I’ve been a fan of John Constantine since he was first introduced in 1985. This Constantine, envisioned by Neil Marshall and embodied by Matt Ryan, looks like he sprang directly from the comics’ covers. Fans old and new are going to be in for a treat,” Goyer said.
But I’m skeptical that a TV show on NBC will embody the real John Constantine. You see, John is the protagonist, not the hero. John is an asshole, I guess he’d say an areshole. He’s weak and strong in the most dangerous way, there’s a horrible cruelty to him when crossed, and he leaves a trail of destruction wherever he goes.
This quote from the Dangerous Habits graphic novel by Garth Ennis sums him up.
“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?”
That’s John Constantine. Grimy, bloody, down and dirty. If the TV series can capture that, it will be worth watching.