Constantine—The Complete Series

constantine poster 2014 series matt ryan
6.5 Overall Score
Story: 6/10
Acting : 7/10
Visuals: 7/10

Best version of Constantine

Not enough energy, feels caught between a comic book series and horror series

constantine title card episode guide

Take a quick trip with Constantine

John Constantine (Matt Ryan) has always walked the tightrope between the light and the dark and used the balance to his own advantage.  When the mystical boundary begins to break down, Constantine finds himself thrust into the world as a “hero” trying to keep the darkness suppressed.  Teamed with his friend Chas (Charles Halford) and a psychic girl named Zed (Angélica Celaya), Constantine must stop the Darkness Rising…and the Heaven and Hell know his name!

Constantine aired on NBC from October 24, 2014 to February 13, 2014.  The series received poor ratings and mixed reviews and was cancelled after one season.  After the cancellation, Matt Ryan and the Constantine character was merged into the Arrowverse on the WB in Arrow—Season 4 (“Haunted”).  The series received a Primetime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Production Design for a Narrative Contemporary or Fantasy Program (One Hour or More) (“The Darkness Beneath”, “Feast of Friends”, and “The Saint of Last Resorts—Part 1”).

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I always found the invuche horrifying

I was never the biggest Constantine or Hellblazer fan.  I always liked the concept, but the idea of Constantine always seemed more fun than the actual comic.  The Keanu Reeves movie didn’t help that belief and seeing Constantine return in a TV format on a network station seemed like a bad idea.

The stories for the season are rather lack-luster.  Unlike the WB series, Constantine was afraid to go full superhero and instead danced around the edges.  The character (until New 52) never really did make the superhero jump, but the series seemed to want it both ways.  You had X-Files-esque episodes mixed with episodes involving Felix Faust, Eclipso (sort-of), Papa Midnite, and a lead-up to the Spectre that never happened…it is a bit of a disappointment.

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…can we finish up this Spectre storyline?

Matt Ryan is both right and wrong for the role.  He feels a bit too clean, too pressed, and too honest yet he looks like a modern Constantine instead of the Constantine of Vertigo days.  Lucy Griffiths left the series after the pilot (which felt weird) and was replaced by the likable Angélica Celaya.  I like Harold Perrineau but I wanted more of his Manny angel which goes the same for Charles Halford since the Chas focused episodes were some of the better ones.

The production for the series is strong in TV sense.  It doesn’t quite have that theatrical look, but if you watch it next to the other Arrowverse series it does feel like a match (which is good since that is where Constantine ended up).  With no characters in “tights”, the series mostly has ghoulish looking villains, but being network, it feels a lot safer than it should be (they maybe should have looked more at Hannibal for inspiration).

constantine episode 13 waiting for the man matt ryan

Constantine will be back!

Constantine was never going to survive.  It just wasn’t the right show at the right time for NBC.  While Grimm had a similar tone, Constantine was a “superhero” show that lacked the superhero on a network station where niche shows rarely survive.  With slow pacing, so-so stories, and visuals that did not push boundaries, Constantine just never made it over the hump.  Though I’ve never been the biggest Constantine fan, I’m happy that the character has continued on and has a future in the Arrowverse…but I hope that they someday wrap up some plotlines and bring on the Spectre.

Constantine—The Complete Series Episode Guide:

constantine episode 1 non est asylum matt ryan bailey tippen

“Non Est Asylum Furcifer”

Episode 1        Non Est Asylum Airdate:  10/24/14

John Constantine (Matt Ryan) tries to come to terms with the damnation of a child named Astra (Bailey Tippen) due to his actions by checking himself into a mental asylum.  When John receives a message from a demon, Constantine learns that Liv Aberdine (Lucy Griffiths) is in danger.  A demon named Furcifer is after Liv, but Constantine finds an angel named Manny (Harold Perrineau) is watching over him.  Liv finds that she is beginning to see things that others cannot…and John, his ally Chas Chandler (Charles Halford) and computer hacker Ritchie Simpson (Jeremy Davies) are the only ones who can help her.

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“The Darkness Beneath”

Episode 2        The Darkness Beneath Airdate:  10/31/14

John Constantine is drawn to the small Pennsylvania mining town of Heddwich which is being stalked by a creature from the mines.  As Constantine tries to determine what the killer is and if someone is controlling it, he encounters a woman named Zed Martin (Angélica Celaya) who could hold keys to unlocking the rising danger.

constantine episode 3 the devils vinyl papa midnite michael james shaw matt ryan

“The Devil’s Vinyl”

Episode 3        The Devil’s Vinyl Airdate:  11/07/14

A cursed record made by a performer who sold his soul threatens to unleash death upon whoever listens to it.  When Constantine goes after the album in the hopes of stopping it from being unleashed, he finds his old “frenemy” Papa Midnite (Michael James Shaw) might have his own plans for the record.

constantine episode 4 feast of friends hunger demon

“Feast of Friends”

Episode 4        Feast of Friends Airdate:  11/14/14

Constantine’s old friend Gary Lester (Jonjo O’Neill) comes to find John and accidentally unleashes a hunger demon in Atlanta.  With the demon consuming whomever it comes in contact with, John is in a race against time to contain it again…but Gary’s encounter with Zed has her questioning John’s motives.

constantine episode 5 danse vaudou papa midnite michael james shaw matt ryan

“Danse Vaudou”

Episode 5        Danse Vaudou Airdate:  11/21/14

Ghosts are appearing in New Orleans and the spirits are killing people who encounter them.  Constantine, Chas, and Zed’s investigation leads them to a detective named Jim Corrigan (Emmett J. Scanlan) who could either help or hurt the investigation.  When Constantine learns Papa Midnite is involved, it could lead to an odd alliance.  Corrigan finds he also has a memory of Zed and her past.

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“The Rage of Caliban”

Episode 6        The Rage of Caliban Airdate:  11/28/14

A spirit is inhabiting the bodies of children and forcing them to kill their parents.  With no clue of the spirit’s origin or name, Constantine finds himself in a race to locate the killer before another innocent child kills again.

constantine episode 7 blessed are the damned angel angelica celaya matt ryan

“Blessed Are the Damned”

Episode 7        Blessed Are the Damned Airdate:  12/05/14

A snake handler named Pastor Zachary (Patrick Carroll) finds his gift for faith healing when he captures an angel’s feather in a near death experience.  Constantine and Zed discover that healing can have consequences, and an angel named Imogen (Megan West) could pay the price.  With Imogen dying, Constantine and Zed must reclaim the feather…and Manny might have to break his vow to help them.

constantine episode 8 the saint of last resorts part 1 sister of eve

“The Saint of Last Resorts—Part 1”

Episode 8        The Saint of Last Resorts—Part 1 Airdate:  12/12/14

Constantine is contacted by an old ally named Anne Marie Flynn (Claire van der Boom) when a baby is kidnapped from an orphanage in Mexico.  Travelling to Mexico with Chas, Constantine learns that the kidnappings could be part of a darker plot.  Zed learns that her new friend Eddie (David A. Gregory) might not be who he says he is.

constantine episode 9 the saint of last resorts part 2 pazuzu matt ryan

“The Saint of Last Resorts—Part 2”

Episode 9        The Saint of Last Resorts—Part 2 Airdate:  01/16/15

To stop the invuche and save his life, John has allowed himself to be possessed by Pazuzu.  Having escaped her father’s men, Zed is headed to Mexico to help Chas free John and stop Pazuzu…and they might need the help of Anne Marie to do it.

constantine episode 10 quid pro quo felix faust mark margolis

“Quid Pro Quo”

Episode 10      Quid Pro Quo Airdate:  01/23/15

Chas’s daughter Geraldine (Alexa Nisenson) falls into an unexplainable coma along with other people in New York City, Constantine, Chas, and Zed discover John’s old enemy Felix Faust (Mark Margolis) has gained new powers.  As Chas recalls how he gained his extra souls, John tries to free Chas’s daughter by becoming an agent of Faust.

constantine episode 11 a whole world out there ritchie jeremy davies matt ryan

“A Whole World Out There”

Episode 11      A Whole World Out There Airdate:  01/30/15

John Constantine’s old mate Ritchie Simpson has opened a portal to a world created by a man named Jacob Shaw (William Mapother).  John finds himself forced to team with Ritchie in an attempt to rescue Ritchie’s students, but the temptation of another dimension could be too great.

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“Angels and Ministers of Grace”

Episode 12      Angels and Ministers of Grace Airdate:  02/06/15

The murder of a drug addict brings Constantine, Zed, and Chas to a hospital where Zed learns that her visions might not have an unearthly tie.  When Constantine binds Manny to human form to help him track a black diamond, the true killer must be sought out before it is too late!

constantine episode 13 waiting for the man annalise basso

“Waiting for the Man”

Episode 13      Waiting for the Man Airdate:  02/13/15

Jim Corrigan calls in Constantine when a Satanist (J.D. Evermore) kidnaps a girl (Annalise Basso) to be his child bride.  Zed debates telling Corrigan about the vision she has seen.  A price on Constantine’s head has Papa Midnite gunning for Constantine, but Manny reveals he might have his own secret.

Related Links:

Constantine:  City of Demons (2018)

Constantine (2005)

Arrow—Season 1 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Arrow—Season 2 Review and Complete Episode Guide

The Flash—Season 1 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Supergirl—Season 1 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Legends of Tomorrow—Season 1 Review and Compete Episode Guide

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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