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Lisin

S01.E02: The Darkness Beneath

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Deep in the mountains of Western Pennsylvania, John is a small mining community's only defense against an ancient Welsh spirit. In the course of protecting these isolated innocents, John finds a vital new ally in a mysterious young woman named Zed.
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Oh goody, Tommyknockers.   So glad I was not planning on sleeping tonight anyway.

 

One reason I like Constantine is he reminds me a lot of Duncan MacLeod (even played by a hot Brit).

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I had to turn to the google to realize that Zed was Lucia on Dallas. She's got a very different look in this series and why the name Angelica Celaya (sp?) sounded so familiar was driving me crazy.

 

I keep thinking how much more I would enjoy this if Keanu was John Constantine.  Matt Ryan seems to be auditioning (very emphatically) for the role of Constantine rather than just being Constantine. KR's more relaxed vibe actually made the character's darkness stand in sharper relief for me.  I'm not familiar with the comic though so please feel free to unleash walls of textual fan rage upon me:)

 

I'd like to hear more about Romany/Gypsy magic- that caught my attention.

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I enjoyed Zed. I thought she could hold her own now, but could still grow in her powers/learn how to use them in more effective, scary ways?  Holding John's arm/tattoos and being able to read him/them was cool.

 

For a while I thought the preacher was  that Sprint trenchcoat guy, but I'm not sure now. The voice sounded too different.

 

I missed Chas, but when succubi and train derailments are involved, I'm okay with a one week absence.

 

I like Matt Ryan very much! His Constantine is very satisfying to watch, but I wish he'd have more to say because I love his voice. Patrick Stewart and Avery Brooks levels of love!

 

I was glad that John did not completely go off and say all Romani magic was vile, but commented that there was something making all magick twisted (which we  found out last week.)  I want to know how John did the 'disappear in a blink and mid-sentence' thing! 

 

It was also a little refreshing to not have John brood over every death, which seems to be SOP for heroes currently. I/ We know that John has seen more death and incredible things, but it's nice that he just pushes through and gets the job done. We sasw that there is an emotional toll. Constantine just doesn't make a public spectacle of it. Again, refreshing.

 

That church. I was waiting for a jump scare, with the figure on the wall. The teen couple doing what some teen couples do was a good tension-breaker! 

 

I think I like the uninfected version of the spirits met in tonight's episode. I couldn't quite make out the name John used for them. Was it troglodyte?

 

Looking forward to next week!

 

eta: LOVED the actual comic art used in Zed's apartment! Nice tip to the source.

Edited by Actionmage
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Oh goody, Tommyknockers. So glad I was not planning on sleeping tonight anyway.

So it's an actual thing. Did not know that.

Zed is creepy but I am OK with that. What I didn't like was the forced UST. Either you have chemistry or you don't. Let it develop over time at least.

All that aside, I think I am going to enjoy this show. It has Monster of the Week cases but with the protagonist actually knowing how to deal with it.

I thought TPtB are not going to have Constantine smoke? I guess they worked around it by not showing him puffing face-on.

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I'd like to hear more about Romany/Gypsy magic- that caught my attention.

 

That caught my attention too. No magic is darker than Gypsy magic? Does that mean there will be Romany antagonists popping up throughout? Why is gypsy magic so dark, what makes it special? And does that mean no Gypsy magic is "light" magic or just that what is dark is really dark?

 

Also, I didn't like the constant leaning into each other Zed and Constantine do. It was really weird. Is she trying to intimidate him by being seductive? Were they just trying to intimidate each other getting into their personal space? Did the director think making them look like they were about to kiss 4 times in the episode would create sexual tension? It just made me confused as to what they were trying to do. And it doesn't help that Zed goes from seductive, put together, pick-pocketer to confused, scared, vulnerable girl in about 2 seconds flat. I have no real grasp on her character. She's like two different people smushed together.

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That caught my attention too. No magic is darker than Gypsy magic? Does that mean there will be Romany antagonists popping up throughout? Why is gypsy magic so dark, what makes it special? And does that mean no Gypsy magic is "light" magic or just that what is dark is really dark?

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I thought he said it was usually not dark magic. Except this past week, hell (literally?) broke loose and there are dark forces corrupting everything, including the miner's wife. She herself said she didn't practice it until something came over her recently. That's how the tommyknocker in the cave was subdued, by reminding it that it wasn't a bad guy.

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For a while I thought the preacher was  that Sprint trenchcoat guy, but I'm not sure now. The voice sounded too different.

The preacher was James Le Gros, I believe.  I remember him best as Wade Messer on Justified.  Also enjoyed seeing Michael McGrady as the mine owner, who I've pretty much seen in everything.

 

I thought this was better then the pilot.  Not as much exposition, and mainly just jumping straight into the case, which was fun, even though I had to wife pegged early on (because it was Leisha Hailey, who is recognizable enough not to be merely play a victim's wife.)

 

Found Zed more interesting then Liv for sure.  Not famailar with the actress; I thought she was OK, but rough in a few spots.  Hopefully, it was just a case of working out the kinks.  I liked some of the banter with her and John, but they did overdue the looks and getting right in each other's face thing, which is clearly suppose to be setting up attraction and a potential future hook-up.  But, I do like that she has her own kind of power, that Constantine can use.

 

Maybe I'm lucky that I didn't see the film, but I'm still liking Matt Ryan's version of this character.  He still has the roguish charm thing going for him.

 

Chas was only in one scene, but his line about the succubus and the train derailment was one of my favorite ones.  I guess they didn't need Manny for this episode.

 

Noticed this episode was written by Rockne S. O'Bannon.  I wasn't aware he was involved in this show.  This could either be very good (Farscape, Defiance), or not so much (Cult, Revolution.) 

Edited by thuganomics85
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I thought he said it was usually not dark magic. Except this past week, hell (literally?) broke loose and there are dark forces corrupting everything, including the miner's wife. She herself said she didn't practice it until something came over her recently. That's how the tommyknocker in the cave was subdued, by reminding it that it wasn't a bad guy.

I thought she says that she vowed to give up gypsy magic but recently it came back to her and John replies saying hell broke loose, it's corrupting you. But the statement about gypsy magic being dark was separate from that, just its own fact separate from the new corruption. And the tommyknocker was native to mines, not a function gypsy magic per se.  So I was thinking the chain went, the corruption was influencing her to start practicing her dark gypsy magic again (and making it easier), and the gypsy magic corrupted the Tommyknockers, making them kill. 

 

I'm going to have to watch the ending more closely tomorrow, when it's on hulu. I was actually a little confused how everything wrapped up anyway. I thought the wife just wanted to kill her husband, so why was she killing the mine bosses? It didn't seem like she had lost control of them at the end, but I don't get her motive for the rest of the killings. Did she just go on a spree?

Edited by venturestar

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Angélica Celaya (note the accent on the "e") can stay. She plays well off Matt Ryan's Constantine by challenging him but not so much as to be annoying or come off as a Mary Sue. And she's just clueless enough that she can still act as an audience surrogate. I do hope they give the character a little bit more range, though. There were brief glimpses that showed that Celaya was capable of actual emoting, but most of the time she was only required to do the Tough Latina Stare. Hopefully she'll get a chance to let her guard down later.

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I thought the wife just wanted to kill her husband, so why was she killing the mine bosses? It didn't seem like she had lost control of them at the end, but I don't get her motive for the rest of the killings. Did she just go on a spree?

 

The wife told John in her house after the funeral-- she was lied to. She ended up in Haddwich after being told it was a wonderful town. She, with the 'infected' magic, ended up not only stopping her unpleasant husband, but the people who prospered off other people's lives. ( To be fair, this group of bosses were stereotypical evil bosses- not caring what was going on, but the mine was gonna turn a profit, dammit!) Mrs. Lannis perverted their purpose, to protect miners, and turned them into murderers. That was why John was able to get them to leave him alone.

Edited by Actionmage

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NBC reads minds and has kindly uploaded the scene where Constantine confronted the widow.

http://youtu.be/8x4FQVdPvoY

Excerpt from the scene:

C: You're Romani. There's nothing blacker than gypsy magic.

L: When I left home, I promised myself that I'll never use my family's magic again. And then it all came back to me. More powerfully than ever before.

C: The only reason you could do what you did, is because there's a darkness spreading everywhere. Even lonesome little backwaters like Haddich. It's infecting you.

Oops at me. I misheard the 'nothing blacker than Gypsy magic' line and thought he said there's nothing dark about Gypsy magic.

Edited by kwerkee
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I find Zed to be a better foil for John than Liv, but other than that this was disappointing. It felt like a middling Supernatural episode.

Edited by glitterpants
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Didn't care for this one. 

 

Problems in mine safety are about deliberately poor management, not intruding on supernatural boundaries, the metaphor didn't work for me. Abusing the benevolent mine spirits should have been the sole and central supernatural evil, IMHO.

 

If the mine was an intrusion of some sort, then killing the mine owners was probably as important as blowing up the shaft entrance to closing the mine . So Constantine and gypsy princess were effectively on the same side most of the episode?

 

"Gypsy magic is the darkest magic." Completely gratuitous, and anti-Romany prejudice is a real thing that doesn't need affirmations from pop culture.

 

I know the gypsy princess had to go down to defeat, but her fate at the hands of her rotten husband was unpalatable. Sorry ladies, not even magic can help you out of that abusive relationship.

 

I'm never a big fan of "clergyman loses faith, gets it back by facing evil" trope, that's a personal taste thing, not a flaw per se.

 

It seems like they want to speak in magic as metaphor for the coolness of it, but they don't have anything to say, or they don't even understand what they are really saying with it.

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Didn't care for this one. 

 

 

"Gypsy magic is the darkest magic." Completely gratuitous, and anti-Romany prejudice is a real thing that doesn't need affirmations from pop culture.

 

I know the gypsy princess had to go down to defeat, but her fate at the hands of her rotten husband was unpalatable. Sorry ladies, not even magic can help you out of that abusive relationship.

 

 

Thank you for saying this. These two things really detracted from my enjoyment of this ep. Like enough already. Other than that I'm loving the series so far. I hated the movie because that Constantine was so far from the comic book character, it made my teeth itch.

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Guest Accused Dingo

I actually liked Liv better then Zed.  I found Zed kinda meh...while Liv's "I don't want no part of this crap" was entertaining to me.  Zed was too damn needy.  But hey Zed's stalker charm might grow on me,  

Edited by Accused Dingo

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To be fair to Zed...if you bumped into a man you'd only seen in your dreams beforehand...you might come across as slightly stalker-y lol.

 

And I can't believe I only just realised this seeing as I'm from Swansea, but how awesome was it have a the welsh flag pointed out by a Welshman (playing a liverpuddlian but still) on the wall of that pub *G*

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I got bored halfway through and started playing with my phone.  Not a good sign I think!  

 

The whole tone is just wrong for me somehow.  Supernatural (which I stopped watching 3 or 4 seasons ago) makes that kind of breezy cynical humor seem so effortless but evidently it's harder than it looks.  Because I think this is just missing the mark.  I think Matt Ryan is nice to look at and I like his voice (and accent) but I can't decide if he is a crappy actor or just can't rise above the material.  Zed does nothing for me.  Actually I pretty much hate her.  The actress made some weird choices too; her body language just seemed so off all the time.

 

I don't think this is something I will be sticking with.

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I preferred Liv to Zed as well.  It was just one episode so I'm willing to have my mind changed, but Liv's story was more interesting to me.  She came with a history that connected her to Constantine, and her ability with the amulet expanded the world.  She knew where things were happening.  Zed's talent seems confined to Constantine which doesn't really expand their world at all.  I found her too frantic and annoying, and the attempts at forcing UST didn't work for me.  Possibly it was a scramble to replace Liv after the pilot so I'm going to give it another few episodes to see how she settles in.

 

The dark Romany magic bothered me too.  I thought the line was unnecessary, and I didn't like that a woman who seemed to fear her husband (before she killed him anyway) was dragged to her doom by him.

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Guest Accused Dingo
I thought TPtB are not going to have Constantine smoke? I guess they worked around it by not showing him puffing face-on.

 

 

Smoking is so out of fashion these days only the worst kinds of villains smoke.  I think the only show where I have even seen people smoke is Sons of Anarchy and those are drug dealing, gun smuggling outlaws.   They don't even smoke on prison shows anymore (Orange is the New Black).    You are more likely to see someone on tv shoot up heroin then light a cigarette. (Sorry its a weird pet peeve with me.  Shows where lack of cigarets are glaring)  

Edited by Accused Dingo
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Loved the episode and Zed. Not sure about the leaning, I swear they were going to make out several times during the episode.

Loved the MoW and the mystery, I thought it was the bar fly/priest, was happy to be wrong.

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I preferred Liv to Zed as well.  It was just one episode so I'm willing to have my mind changed, but Liv's story was more interesting to me.  She came with a history that connected her to Constantine, and her ability with the amulet expanded the world.  She knew where things were happening.  Zed's talent seems confined to Constantine which doesn't really expand their world at all.  I found her too frantic and annoying, and the attempts at forcing UST didn't work for me.

 

 

I agree with all of this. At this point it feels like Liv was replaced by Zed because the showrunners decided UST is a must and that that wouldn't work with John's dead friend's daughter. It might not have bothered me so much if they had led up to it slowly, or even given in a couple of episodes, but no. It was full-on forced attempts at UST from her first scene to the last. I don't like that she's such a complete blank slate, either. Did she just pop into existence once she started sketching John? Doesn't she have a job, a reason for being in that town, or any sort of a life at all? 

 

I also didn't appreciate the line about gypsy magic being the darkest of all magic. That's pretty damn gross, and not even true in the Hellblazer universe.

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To be fair, in comics Constantine had both sexual tension and actually slept with quite a few girls and occasional blokes as well (in his own words). So giving him Zed as a partner, with whom he had actual, and quite complicated relationship in the comics works for me.

I can't say that actress is really good, but she's decent, and at least she can say her lines with various emotions, and not only histrionics and incredulity.

Yeah, Lucy Griffiths is pretty, and she done something either with her face or makeup to look quite like Jennifer Connelly circa Labirinth. But she's wooden. I get that her role wasn't well written, like, at all. But I've seen actresses on other shows who was given way less and turned it into much more. For example, Bree Turner in early seasons of Grimm (Rosalee), Emily Bett Rickards in first half of Arrow's first season (Felicity), and quite many others.

 

As for line about "Gypsy magic is the darkest", I think writers meant fabled gypsy curses. But eh, given what both Constantine himself, and various other practitioners have done in comics I really fail to see it.

After seeing just in the first issues how Papa Midnite and John himself filled Harry Lester alive with countless carnivorous flies - eh. Gypsy curses suddenly don't seem so bad in comparison. Not to mention the original Astra's story. 

Edited by SilverStormm · Reason: Comic Book Talk Tagged.
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To be fair, in comics Constantine had both sexual tension and actually slept with quite a few girls and occasional blokes as well (in his own words). So giving him Zed as a partner, with whom he had actual, and quite complicated relationship in the comics works for me

 

 

It's not that having her as his partner deviates from canon --

for me, the problem is more that having the usual male/female partnership with UST makes the show feel so generic. Last night felt exactly like your standard-issue procedural, only with demons instead of serial killers or whatever. Where the pilot felt like something different and interesting, this episode seemed to take pains to show that it's not going to be different at all.

Edited by SilverStormm · Reason: Comic Book Talk Tagged.
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Yeah, I think the problem wasn't sexual tension, because there actually wasn't any. There was just a desperate attempt to generate sexual tension by having the actors grab each other and get their faces really close together.  Good UST usually builds and, with good actors or even just actors with real chemistry, is obvious even when they are standing 50 feet apart.

 

The more I think about the demon-summoning Gypsy wife being sucked down to hell by her rat bastard murder victim, the more I like it. Not as a fine moral example, but as actually a better representation of Constantine's darker nature.  That kind of arrogance about passing judgment seems more damning (not a pun) than accidentally sending a little girl to hell. It remains to be seen if the writers are thinking in the same way.

 

ETA: Why do both judgement and judgment look misspelled when written out?

Edited by Greta
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ETA: Why do both judgement and judgment look misspelled when written out?

Possibly because both are considered correct?

 

So, here's what the replacement of Liv with Zed leaves me wondering: Liv was the one with the Millhouse; John gave her the keys IIRC.  We didn't see him get the keys back, just the amulet and the map, when she took off for California.  So, now there's this abandoned, unwatched millhouse (presumably originally intended to be this show's Grimm Trailer) that contains not only all the Standard Issue Occult Paraphernalia, but the freaking Helm of Nabu, which is only one of the most powerful artifacts in the entire DC Universe?  That's not something I would think one would leave unattended for long.

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It's not that having her as his partner deviates from canon --

for me, the problem is more that having the usual male/female partnership with UST makes the show feel so generic. Last night felt exactly like your standard-issue procedural, only with demons instead of serial killers or whatever. Where the pilot felt like something different and interesting, this episode seemed to take pains to show that it's not going to be different at all.

Yeah, I get it, it was like some weird mash-up of Grimm and Supernatural. Sadly, Constantine will constantly have this problem, I think. Hellblazer comics been around for a long time and served as an inspiration to a couple of urban fantasy TV shows, books, and even tabletop RPGs. So even if they would adapt them word-to-word they would still look like some copycats to those who haven't read them (and maybe even to those who have). And combined with lack of grittiness in this show, it really can become quite generic.

This reminds me - the second episode had another problem - everything is too... cheerful.

I can't point my finger on exactly what's bothering me, but Hellblazer universe is anything but bright colors and white shirts. Show's visuals, and also its script lack grittiness. I get that it isn't Thatcher's England, but right now it seems that my fear of them neutering the comics has come to pass. I forgive them changing Astra's story, it really probably would be too much for a network, even if they have Hannibal. But in the second episode that little mining town looked too clean, too bright, too respectable. Constantine's world in the comics always was chock-full of downtrodden, freaks, demons, despair, madness and so on. It had bright moments too, of course, but they didn't set the main tone.

 

I still will be watching, of course, I like Matt Ryan's Constantine, and I have that rule not to give up on show until I saw at least 5 episodes. But I won't get my hopes up.

Edited by SilverStormm · Reason: Comic book talk tagged.
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This reminds me - the second episode had another problem - everything is too... cheerful. I can't point my finger on exactly what's bothering me, but Hellblazer universe is anything but bright colors and white shirts. Show's visuals, and also its script lack grittiness.

 

 

Yeah. The general tone simply feels wrong. Everything was so bright and cheerful and normal.

I don't feel like the show is transporting us into John's world. Instead it seems like they've taken Constantine and crammed him into our entirely unremarkable world.

I don't know if it's a budget issue or lack of vision or if maybe I was just hoping for too much.

Edited by SilverStormm · Reason: Comic book comparison tagged
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Last night felt exactly like your standard-issue procedural, only with demons instead of serial killers or whatever. Where the pilot felt like something different and interesting, this episode seemed to take pains to show that it's not going to be different at all.

Agreed. This was really meh for me, neither that interesting nor exiting. For a master (I mean occasional dabbler) of the dark arts, I was disappointed that he didn’t try to use any means other than the conventional to get out of the car. Fail to break the window via physical strength = death? How's that different from the standard "carchase ends with one car in a canal/lake" trope?

 

The final confrontation in particular was a major letdown. It was simply a case who’s demon can get whom faster. John had no incantation to try to wrest control of the whatchamacallits nor one to stop them choking him, and the Romany didn’t even attempt to close the Lenny portal that John had opened or used her Gypsy magic to collapse the roof on it, or something, or anything.  When both sides are equally defenseless against the other’s offence, it is really not much different from who is better at the quick draw in a gunfight.

 

Frankly, I’d rather have seen what happened after John lit his hands on fire in the ending montage of the pilot. That seemed much more interesting than what we got in this episode.

 

I am in for a couple more episodes at least, but I am not optimistic about the series appeal to people like myself who have never read the comics.

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Yeah, I get it, it was like some weird mash-up of Grimm and Supernatural. Sadly, Constantine will constantly have this problem, I think. Hellblazer comics been around for a long time and served as an inspiration to a couple of urban fantasy TV shows, books, and even tabletop RPGs. So even if they would adapt them word-to-word they would still look like some copycats to those who haven't read them (and maybe even to those who have). And combined with lack of grittiness in this show, it really can become quite generic.

This reminds me - the second episode had another problem - everything is too... cheerful.

I can't point my finger on exactly what's bothering me, but Hellblazer universe is anything but bright colors and white shirts. Show's visuals, and also its script lack grittiness. I get that it isn't Thatcher's England, but right now it seems that my fear of them neutering the comics has come to pass. I forgive them changing Astra's story, it really probably would be too much for a network, even if they have Hannibal. But in the second episode that little mining town looked too clean, too bright, too respectable. Constantine's world in the comics always was chock-full of downtrodden, freaks, demons, despair, madness and so on. It had bright moments too, of course, but they didn't set the main tone.

 

I still will be watching, of course, I like Matt Ryan's Constantine, and I have that rule not to give up on show until I saw at least 5 episodes. But I won't get my hopes up.

It may not be Thatcher's England (Or Britain- I'm Welsh it's a pet peeve of mine) but it's pretty damn close with the way the Conservatives and the Lib-Dems are running the country....but yeah I think the line they're trying to walk between being original and faithful to the comic (and sanitising it in some cases-see Astra) and trying to avoid cries of "copycat!" But it does *need* that darkness otherwise John as an anti-hero doesn't work. I hope they get bolder.....comparisons with Dean be damned

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It may not be Thatcher's England (Or Britain- I'm Welsh it's a pet peeve of mine) but it's pretty damn close with the way the Conservatives and the Lib-Dems are running the country....

Ah, sorry for that, I'm not a native speaker, so nuances like that are often lost to me. It's just that the UK is called 'Anglia' in my mother tongue, so I used it without thinking.

 

but yeah I think the line they're trying to walk between being original and faithful to the comic (and sanitising it in some cases-see Astra) and trying to avoid cries of "copycat!" But it does *need* that darkness otherwise John as an anti-hero doesn't work. I hope they get bolder.....comparisons with Dean be damned

Yeah, ITA. But I fear that even if they do get bolder, camerawork and sets will stay the same - bright, cheerful, not even brooding or foreboding, not to mention gritty or dark. I mean, the other NBC show, Grimm has its share of problems, but camerawork and sets (yeah, I know that it's Portland, but they can achieve similar effect with evening shots and color filters on other location) which they used in the first season in particular would have been much better fit for Constantine than what we have now. My first thought seeing this was episode was that they 

are trying to adapt that early Hellblazer issue about tiny town, Vietnam vets and the ghost squad, but will change Vietnam veterans to Iraq or Afghanistan ones. I was kinda disappointed that that wasn't the case, shows me right for not watching promos.

. So my second thought was: "Why is this town so colorful and cheerful?" I've never been in small mining communities in USA, but generally mining cities in which I've been were anything but cheerful in real life. It's not that they were full of misery, no, but they sure weren't so pastoral. 

Edited by Artesia
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And I am out. I found this episode really repellent. The Roma are a real and much persecuted people. The show just labelled all of them as practitioners of dark arts.

 

"There's nothing blacker than gypsy magic!" That's straight-up racist. Try replacing "gypsy" with literally any other ethnic group and see how it goes.

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Yup, I agree, the line about the gypsy magic was kind of dropping the ball.

Outside of it, the wierd mood swings that Zed was having was weird as well.

I am a bit weirded out of the death of the other men as well... were the ghosts acting on their own? Why was she acting like that when the wife said that she cared that she was lied to... there wasn't even one line indicating really that she was pissed in general at the way the mine was treated?

Confusing...

 

I liked... but I can't wait for the show to hit its stride.

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Ah, sorry for that, I'm not a native speaker, so nuances like that are often lost to me. It's just that the UK is called 'Anglia' in my mother tongue, so I used it without thinking.

 

Yeah, ITA. But I fear that even if they do get bolder, camerawork and sets will stay the same - bright, cheerful, not even brooding or foreboding, not to mention gritty or dark. I mean, the other NBC show, Grimm has its share of problems, but camerawork and sets (yeah, I know that it's Portland, but they can achieve similar effect with evening shots and color filters on other location) which they used in the first season in particular would have been much better fit for Constantine than what we have now. My first thought seeing this was episode was that they 

are trying to adapt that early Hellblazer issue about tiny town, Vietnam vets and the ghost squad, but will change Vietnam veterans to Iraq or Afghanistan ones. I was kinda disappointed that that wasn't the case, shows me right for not watching promos.

. So my second thought was: "Why is this town so colorful and cheerful?" I've never been in small mining communities in USA, but generally mining cities in which I've been were anything but cheerful in real life. It's not that they were full of misery, no, but they sure weren't so pastoral. 

For your first point don't worry about it. You  didn't mean anything by and if anything it tends to result in a mild "give me strength" whispered under my breath when talking to people rather anything else. It's all good.

 

But yes to your second point. The lighting has to darken. I don't care if the resulting ambiance leads to comparisons with Supernatural/Hannibal. John's world is *dark*. it needs to be shown on screen and not just in those moments where he does something anti heroic. And his clothes need to be less pristine. Maybe they're leading us slowly there, but too slow and they'll lose fans of the comics, who feel that this is sanitised

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John's world is *dark*. it needs to be shown on screen and not just in those moments where he does something anti heroic. And his clothes need to be less pristine. Maybe they're leading us slowly there, but too slow and they'll lose fans of the comics, who feel that this is sanitised

 

I haven't read the comics, but I agree totally with those who feel the tone feels off. For that matter, the writing and acting feel kind of off for me as well :)

 

And I fully realize that this is ridiculous, but I just can't reconcile the actor's carefully moussed hair with its distracting frosted blonde, stopped-at-the-beauty-salon tips with the fact that he's supposed to be such a "dark", living-in-the-shadows, devil-may care badass. 

 

I generally really like both crime dramas and supernaturally themed shows, but I'm thinking that maybe this awkward combination of the two just doesn't work for me.  

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I am in for a couple more episodes at least, but I am not optimistic about the series appeal to people like myself who have never read the comics.

 

 

This sentiment (which I've seen other places, too) worries me because when I talk to people who have read the comics, we're mostly in agreement that the TV show is being made for people who haven't. I'm not sure that the showrunners are even certain who their target market is, because the introduction we were given in the pilot doesn't seem to fit with "The Darkness Beneath." If they're wanting to please Hellblazer fans,

striping the story of its darkness and John of his smoking/bisexuality seems like a poor approach

. If they're trying to lure in fans of Supernatural and Grimm, then why is everything so light and bright and cheerful? If I had only seen the second episode, my guess would be that they're targeting fans of whodunit procedurals who have been longing for a bit a demonology thrown into the usual solved-in-42-minutes drama.

 

Unfortunately for the writers, I'm not sure that demographic exists. The only way my grandparents will switch from Law & Guns & Whatever to this is if they go off their meds.

 

One more thing about the comics --

I really wish they had kept the same case (Gemma's wedding) for Zed's introduction. Yes, it's a dark story, but it was Halloween! And it was a far more interesting story than the mining town.

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So, here's what the replacement of Liv with Zed leaves me wondering: Liv was the one with the Millhouse; John gave her the keys IIRC.  We didn't see him get the keys back, just the amulet and the map, when she took off for California.  So, now there's this abandoned, unwatched millhouse (presumably originally intended to be this show's Grimm Trailer) that contains not only all the Standard Issue Occult Paraphernalia, but the freaking Helm of Nabu, which is only one of the most powerful artifacts in the entire DC Universe?  That's not something I would think one would leave unattended for long.

I think the Helm of Nabu is pretty capable of protecting itself from misuse.

Edited by Bruinsfan
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Legends!  Nice.... and an excellent point.  I wonder if that helm (the prop, not in-story) is the one from Smallville.

I think this is one is more ornate *G* but the Smallville prop was more in line with it's comic book appearance.

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I don't have a problem with it being all light and everything.   One thing everyone liked about the first season of Grimm was its bright colors and lush landscape.   THey've gone brown over there and people are not happy.   

 

I see Constantine as this guy who is offing demons and protecting the world.   I don't need him to be dark and broody to do that.   I definitely don't need him angtsing all over the place about it.   It's a job.   He goes and does it and moves on to the next job.

 

Plus he keeps saying "there is a darkness that is loose."   That tells me that things DIDN'T suck before but are heading that way because evil got loose.   His job is to keep things from getting dark.

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Yup, I agree that it looks like they are planning for things to get bad and turn darker in the course of the story... it looks that much more menacing to see how things are slipping towards the deep end instead of being thrown in the already extra dark. :) At least... that is how I read it currently.

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If that's how it's going to go I might stop watching.  I need some lightness and hope sprinkled in with my darkness.  Even some humor once in a while is necessary.

 

Too much darkness and hopelessness is too much for me.  That's why I don't search for episodes of the Walking Dead on youtube any more.  I've got all I can handle just reading about it.

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I really liked this one, to be honest. Zed is much more interesting and has good chemistry with Constantine, than Liv was. So much better. I'm actually looking forward to them working together. So is she going to pop in and out of the show, or will appear in each episode?

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