Constantine Review: Papa Midnite Don't Preach

Constantine Review: Papa Midnite Don't Preach

"The Devil's Vinyl" is the best Constantine episode yet, even if it stumbles and keeps making Doctor Who references.

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I'm worried about the First Of The Fallen being the classic Lucifer/fallen angel character. In Hellblazer The First Of The Fallen and Lucifer are both separate characters. TFOTF was the first being ever created by God to be a companion. He believed God had gone insane so he turned against him and was sent to Hell. Shortly after there came the Second and Third Of The Fallen. Powerful demons who agreed to rule Hell as a Triumvirate. Lucifer in the classic angel rebelling against God character also exists. Was banished to Hell much later on and took over as he was much more powerful. Got bored, left and the triumvirate took over again.

Having the three fallen is a pretty big deal if they ever plan to do Dangerous Habits. BUT the First and Lucifer only both exist to avoid continuity issues with Sandman. As long as the Second and Third come up it might be okay that they've combined The First and Lucifer.

I really want this show to be good but I'm apprehensive. Hellblazer's gone and with a 12+ rated comic and a network tv show I really don't think we're ever going to get a real representation of John Constantine any time soon.

I still hope that it gets better but my faith that it will is starting to disappear. I like the guy who is playing Constantine well enough but both the stories and the tone still feels off. Honestly I don't think this has a place on ABC. It should be on something like HBO where they wouldn't have to tone things down.

Spot1990:
I'm worried about the First Of The Fallen being the classic Lucifer/fallen angel character. In Hellblazer The First Of The Fallen and Lucifer are both separate characters. TFOTF was the first being ever created by God to be a companion. He believed God had gone insane so he turned against him and was sent to Hell. Shortly after there came the Second and Third Of The Fallen. Powerful demons who agreed to rule Hell as a Triumvirate. Lucifer in the classic angel rebelling against God character also exists. Was banished to Hell much later on and took over as he was much more powerful. Got bored, left and the triumvirate took over again.

Having the three fallen is a pretty big deal if they ever plan to do Dangerous Habits. BUT the First and Lucifer only both exist to avoid continuity issues with Sandman. As long as the Second and Third come up it might be okay that they've combined The First and Lucifer.

I really want this show to be good but I'm apprehensive. Hellblazer's gone and with a 12+ rated comic and a network tv show I really don't think we're ever going to get a real representation of John Constantine any time soon.

This is one of those times I wish the Escapist had a like button.

Speaking as someone who hasn't read Hellblazer and only saw the terrible Keanu Reeves movie, I really like this series so far. It's not the best thing ever, but with some room to grow I could see it being pretty watchable.

It did definitely seem like Papa Midnight was supposed to be more important than they were really portraying him. He just didn't really have much gravitas or presence. In short, he just seemed like some guy, when the story clearly wanted him to be seen as something more.

Furbyz:
Speaking as someone who hasn't read Hellblazer and only saw the terrible Keanu Reeves movie, I really like this series so far. It's not the best thing ever, but with some room to grow I could see it being pretty watchable.

It did definitely seem like Papa Midnight was supposed to be more important than they were really portraying him. He just didn't really have much gravitas or presence. In short, he just seemed like some guy, when the story clearly wanted him to be seen as something more.

I'm much the same. Going from Djimon Hounsou in the movie, who could likely gut you with his bare hands, no sharp implements necessary, to the guy they have in the TV series, very much seems like some of the Power is missing, or maybe it's just that intensity Hounsou brings to all his roles. But the character is set to reappear in other episodes so perhaps this version will grow on me. Midnight in the movie was very much middle of the road. I predict in the series he will hinder Constantine in some instances, help him in others.

I confess, the show feels a lot more conservative than it should be and diversity phobic in places.

* John protects mining bosses from an abusive housewife.
* John makes sneering comments about gypsies and says Voodoo priest like it's a curse.
* A homeless person tries to murder John for his shoes and credit card.
* A happy ending involves a preacher regaining his faith in God.
* Heaven is on the side of the angels here. Pun intended.

It seems....off in a serious way.

Hellblazer was punk not just in music but in politics.

Remus:

I'm much the same. Going from Djimon Hounsou in the movie, who could likely gut you with his bare hands, no sharp implements necessary, to the guy they have in the TV series, very much seems like some of the Power is missing, or maybe it's just that intensity Hounsou brings to all his roles. But the character is set to reappear in other episodes so perhaps this version will grow on me.

Furbyz:

It did definitely seem like Papa Midnight was supposed to be more important than they were really portraying him. He just didn't really have much gravitas or presence. In short, he just seemed like some guy, when the story clearly wanted him to be seen as something more.

I don't know if it's just the way he is filmed or also the actor, but he never look menacing, even when he got the upper hand, and the life of Constantine in his hand. He even ask what's going on, when a guy like him should know.

I lean on the way it's filmed, mostly, never look imposing or bigger than Constantine, so it's hard to think of him has a great power to be handled very carefully, if you like your guts the way they are.

Throughout this series, I've been comparing characters to their movie counterpart. While I prefer Reeve's Constantine over this new version. I quickly realized I didn't much care for this version of Midnite. He came off as a mob boss who knew of the supernatural rather than a mob boss who was deeply entwined with the supernatural. Think about it, in the movie, the first time we see Midnite he's in a meeting with a demon. Then the second time we see him, he's pinning John to a wall by sinking his fingers into John's stomach. But that's been a constant thing with this series. Characters aren't as good as they should be. Constantine is never prepared and has to be save regularly. I'm not asking for him to become Batman, just to show some incentive in staying alive by, I don't know, keeping some charms or runes in his pants pocket. Everytime his gets into trouble it's without his man-purse or his coat which houses some of his supplies.

I like the show overall. But for some reason, I get this vague sense of it feeling "dumbed down". Figured it was just me until this episode.

Then it hit me! The show uses a lot of expository dialogue that seems unnecessary or repetitive. A few examples:

-After Constantine shows the magic playing card to the nurse (otherwise known as "psychic paper" to Doctor Who fans), he launches in to a lengthy explanation on how it's a magic card that's been charmed to make whoever sees it view it however they want. Except we just SAW that in action. All he had to say was "It's not a trick, it's magic."

-Constantine is looking for a acetate. He hears a radio broadcast about mayhem going on a nightclub and hightails it over there. The next scene shows a bunch of dead bodies outside the nightclub. Then Constantine says how Midnight's goons "took the record for a spin in a nightclub." All which seems fairly intuitive from the preceding scenes.

-We see Constantine slip the magic findy nail in Jasmine's coat pocket. Later after he goes missing, Jasmine makes a comment on how there's no way to find him. Zed looks at the coat and says "maybe there is." After she finds him, she explains how she saw him slip the nail in the coat and used that to track him.

Either show OR tell. Doing both suggests the writers don't trust their audience.

Liking this show more and more. Speaking as a metal head, I would have paid real American Dollars to see John's old punk band, Mucous Membrane.

Some real world band already called dibs on that name, didn't they?

 

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