Caution: Spoilers Ahead in this Constantine Recap

John Constantine is a self-proclaimed exorcist and master of the dark arts. Unlike other DC shows like Arrow, The Flash, or Gotham, the first episode throws the audience into the world of the supernatural right from the start. The audience is given little preparation and that works for some people, while others may feel lost. We meet Constantine when he is at a low point in his life. One of the main story arcs for the season is his failed exorcism at Newcastle. John accidentally cast a young girl by the name of Astra to Hell, thus condemning himself to eventual damnation as well! Constantine is unlike any other superhero show on TV, which is fitting seeing as John Constantine is unlike any other hero the world has seen before.

The show begins with John in an insane asylum due to the aftermath of the botched exorcism in Newcastle. He tries to forget his past life but when his old life starts coming back to him, it’s time to strap on his jacket and get back to work. Another factor that pushes him back to work is the angel Manny, who was assigned to watch over John, he occasionally pops in to have a conversation with John. Manny informs John that there is a Rising Darkness and demons are becoming more and more powerful. Also, offering John’s soul in exchange for his services, John reluctantly agrees and now he is a supernatural detective casting demons back to Hell.

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blastr.com

Fighting alongside him is his best mate Chas, who can survive just about anything. Chas is not immortal, but seeing what he lives through, its easy to understand why people would think that. His first case brings him to the daughter of a former friend of his, Liv Aberdine. Her father possessed the ability to see lost souls on Earth, a trait passed down to Liv. John uses her father’s pendant and Liv’s blood on a map of the world so he can see when a new soul has revealed itself in a particular location. John intentionally scares Liv away in order to protect her from the life he leads.

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Using the map John is able to know exactly where he needs to go in order to stop a new demon. It’s not too long that John meets a young woman by the name of Zed, who has been having visions in her sleep about John. Realizing that Zed is psychic he uses her abilities to track down a new demon. At first John does everything he can to abandon Zed, to try and scare her away so he can protect her like Liv. Eventually John accepts that there is no getting rid of this girl so he allows her to join his crusade against the Rising Darkness.

There are many mysteries behind each character on this show. While John’s origin is known from the beginning of the show, he was abused by his father because John’s mother died giving birth to him, yet there is still so much left unanswered on the exorcism in Newcastle. Each episode offers new insight on what happened and who was involved. In one episode it is reveled that the girl whose soul John banished to Hell was Papa Midnite’s little sister. Papa Midnite is a voodoo priest and an adversary of John Constantine. There is also a mystery behind Zed’s past that even Constantine is unaware of. The mid-season finale reveals that Zed’s past had something to do with the church. Not much has been given to the audience, but perhaps her infatuation with angels and God could stem from what happened in the church. It was revealed in episode 7 “Blessed are the Damned” that Chas has a daughter, but how he acquired his healing abilities and how he became partners with John remains a mystery.

The final mystery is without a doubt the angel Manny. He obviously wants to help John, but being a servant of God prevents him from getting involved. Although he did save Zed in episode 7 when a fallen angel attempts to kill her, so he is able to help he’s just forced not to. He doesn’t state why John is important to stopping the Rising Darkness, simply that he is needed. Perhaps as the series goes on John will discover what Manny and Heaven have in store for him.

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Everyone on this show is spectacular at their roles, but this also leads to a complaint I have for the series thus far. We rarely get to see team Constantine working together as a collective unit. The only episode in which everyone was working together was episode 5 “Danse Vaudou” and it holds the second highest rating for the show so far, after the first episode. This is probably due to seeing Jim Corrigan aka The Spectre appear in the episode, but what made this episode my personal favorite was seeing everyone work together in an amazing display of teamwork. Papa Midnite even put his differences with John aside and worked with him to take care of the problem together. This episode also revealed that someone close to John is behind the Rising Darkness and that he would be betrayed by someone close to him.

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The rest of the episodes either have Chas missing or Zed missing or everyone is in the episode but they aren’t working on the case together. Although, the episodes that have Constantine working exclusively with only one other individual makes for excellent character/relationship development. In the episodes where it is just John and Zed, John is acting as a mentor to Zed. He helps her hone her psychic abilities despite not having any psychic powers of his own. Except John does have an extensive knowledge on all things supernatural so he is able to teach Zed, and where John learned about the supernatural is answered in the mid-season finale. A woman named Anne Marie, another individual from the failed exorcism in Newcastle, calls for John’s help in New Mexico.

The episode shows the audience that Anne Marie was the one who introduced John to this world of the supernatural. Teaching him the ways of casting out demons and exorcisms, it’s for this reason she feels responsible for what happened in Newcastle. As I mentioned earlier Zed’s past with the church catches up with her and she is ultimately captured and taken away by the end of the episode. The situation with John in New Mexico is not much better. The demon John has to face off against is a sister of Eve (as in the first woman ever created). She is stealing babies and killing the mothers.

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theeffect.net

Eventually John finds out that the family that is having their children stolen are decedents of La Brujeria, ancient evil spirits cast out from God and thought to be dead but are actually alive and ready to make a comeback. Eve’s sister reveals that La Brujeria’s plan is to break down the walls of Hell and Earth so that they are free to rule the Earth! John is able to stop the sister of Eve and saves the babies with Anne Marie. But after casting out Eve’s evil sister, something else comes into our world. It’s an invunche, a creature said to live in the time of Noah which tore out throats. The invunche has John, Anne Marie and the babies cornered. Anne Marie uses her last resort; she shoots John in the side allowing her the opportunity to flee while the invunche attacks John.

Constantine is a magnificent show that can certainly fill the inevitable void that will be left after Supernatural is over. The creators, the writers, and the actors have all demonstrated to have the upmost respect for this character. Due to its unfortunate timeslot, Fridays at 10 pm, the show has not reached its well deserved success. Although the show has had fluctuating ratings throughout its 1st season, it has developed a small but strong following. These fans call themselves Hellblazers and their cries for a second season have not gone unanswered! While NBC has not officially announced a second season, they have moved Constantine’s time slot.

Hellblazers and new fans may tune in to watch Constantine on NBC at its new time, Friday nights at 8 pm starting January 16th!

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What do you think? Have you been enjoying Constantine so far? Do you want to see it back for a second season?

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