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A. Heathen

John Constantine vs Nick Necro

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It occurs to me that comics sites are divided on the series being based on Constantine or Hellblazer,

but Hollywood Reporter seems to have more background.

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/nbcs-dc-comics-adaptation-constantine-682523

That seems more like Hellblazer except there is a whiff of demon of the week which I hope gets expunged from any series.

(Also sounds more like Keanusteen than DC's Constantine: Crossoverblazer)

 

I expect there are press releases, casting calls and draft scripts doing the rounds.

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A little more detail...

 

Further to our previous information that the new TV Constantine is to be blond Brit, I can now share a little more information about where the show will go should it get picked up for a full run. Only the pilot has been commissioned so far but, unless that turns out to be a turkey, you can expect to see a full series screening this autumn.

 

The pilot episode is set in and around New York. Some scenes take place in the Ravenscar Psychiatric Hospital, which was located in the UK in the Hellblazer comics but has been moved over the Atlantic for the purposes of TV. As far as I can tell, the intended series is meant to stick to New York too, special episodes or temporary trips to other locales notwithstanding.

 

Introduced in the pilot, with a subplot providing him a kind of origin, is the character of Papa Midnite. As the series runs on, we’ll see Midnite and Constantine facing off again and again, as the stakes get higher and higher.

http://www.bleedingc...et-in-new-york/

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...The pilot episode is set in and around New York. Some scenes take place in the Ravenscar Psychiatric Hospital, which was located in the UK in the Hellblazer comics but has been moved over the Atlantic for the purposes of TV. As far as I can tell, the intended series is meant to stick to New York too, special episodes or temporary trips to other locales notwithstanding.

 

Introduced in the pilot, with a subplot providing him a kind of origin, is the character of Papa Midnite. As the series runs on, we’ll see Midnite and Constantine facing off again and again, as the stakes get higher and higher.

 

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OK, why would they base a new tv show on a canceled comic rather than a new one with the same character? I would gizz like a water weasel if it were based on Hellblazer, but that sort of fucks the DC title into a short run, doesn't it? I think the series and comic are supposed to cross promote each other, so it will more than likely be based on the new Constantine, not the old Hellblazer, or that's what I think.

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The whole "will it be based on Hellblazer or Constantine?" thing really doesn't make a huge amount of sense outside the context of the 20-30,000 people max who actually read either book, though. So far as absolutely anyone else is concerned - and I strongly suspect that "anyone else" in this case includes most of the people making the show - it's just not an important difference. The bare bones of the character are broadly the same anyway - aside from the quality of the writing it's only really the universe in which he lives that makes any significant difference between the two versions (and following Milligan's run, even quality isn't a really decisive difference). Since the TV show isn't going to have him teaming up with the Justice League Dark or wandering into shit crossovers every other episode, that's not a huge concern. While it's hard to tell exactly what direction they'll be taking from that summary up thread, it appears to have more direct nods to "our" John - more Ravenscar + haunted-by-the-loss-of-a-young-girls-soul, markedly less Nick Necro.

 

Short of adapting specific stories, I'm buggered if I can think of any really *important* way in which the show could be recognizably a direct imitation of either version (or, indeed, of the Swamp Thing Constantine, who's a different beast again) - there's just as much difference between, say, Jamie Delano's Constantine and Brian Azzarello's as there is between Milligan's and the New 52 version. TV John is undoubtedly going to be a sort of hybrid of all of the above, plus some new stuff that doesn't come directly from any existing source, just as it was every time a new writer took over Hellblazer.

 

Besides, if they actually are taking significant amounts of inspiration from the comics then they're almost certain to draw far, far more from Hellblazer than from Constantine, if only for the fairly obvious reason that there's so much more of it.

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wow, mark i really have to disagree with you. hellblazer john was such an interesting character with so much depth, so much history. dc john is a clown, a boor in the worst sense with little appeal. it's like being a fan of a winning sports team for years then that team starts losing all its games so that all it has in common with its winning past is they wear the same uniforms and that's it.

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But that's down to the fact that he's being written badly. If you were describing the basic concept of the character to someone who'd never read either title, both could still essentially be boiled down to the same as it was when he was first introduced in Swamp Thing lo these many years ago. You won't have to persuade me that Hellblazer-John is a richer, more interesting character, but that's because he was being written better, by writers with more autonomy to actually tell the stories they wanted to tell. The underlying shape of the character, though - and that's what any adaptation will ultimately be based on, far more than any specific iteration - is the same. Try explaining to someone who doesn't read comics that they're, like, completely different characters and they would look at you like you were mental. Yeah, there are specific biographical details that differentiate the two, but he represents the same archetype. Besides, as I said, there's just no way they aren't going to be drawing more inspiration from Hellblazer than from the new version - there's over ten times as much of it, and it would be manifest lunacy for that much material to be ignored or overlooked by the TV writers.

 

Think about it this way: pre-Crisis Superman, All-Star Superman, post-Crisis Superman, Justice League Unlimited Superman, Christopher Reeve Superman, even f'ing Man of Steel Superman...there are huge, huge differences in tone, characterisation and context between them all, every bit as substantial as the differences between Vertigo-John and New 52-John. But only a fully certified crazy person would deny that they're all recognizably Superman.

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I'm with Mark on this one, that said though John Constantine battling Papa Midnite through the streets of New York ?

 

Doesn't sound very Hellblazer to me!

 

hb72.gif

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mark, i understand what you;re saying, i just think there're substantial differences making them more different, even to a casual fan, but i'm not able to explain it very well apparently.

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Slinker, to me that's like saying that George Clooney's Batman is a completely different character from Christian Bale's Batman.

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OK, DC John shoots firebolts from his finger tips. He has magic tattoo energy shields on his arms and can teleport. Hellblazer John had none of those qualities.

 

No matter who was Batman, they all had the same utility belt, Batman never had Superman's strength all of a sudden. He certainly couldn't ever fucking teleport. TELEPORT.

 

Also, DC John interacts with caped superheroes, he didn't in Hellblazer.

 

I find just those above qualities to be huge differences in how a John COnstantine story for TV will be presented. You guys going to enjoy the fantastic teleporting John Constantine with energy bolt finger weapons, are you? That's not a big difference where you guys are from, eh? :sherlock::hattip:

 

Cuz I think that wil suck. The first time I see "magick" in the form of a beam, bolt or any other form of energy as a defensive shield or offensive weapon, I'm out. Won't even give it another shot. Perhaps, you chaps differ.

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If you can shoot magic energy bolts from your fingers and shield yourself from same with you magic arm shields, when are you ever in danger? The only time you are is when someone else has a power greater than or equal to your own, and that limits the stories you can tell to just absurd magic battles which is all we've seen in John's 2 DC titles.

 

If you can produce magic energy bolts from your fingers, how is a london gangster any more of a threat to you than a mosquito? Pew pew!! He's toast! Did he shoot his gun off before you blasted him? Good thing you have those shields. Or good thing you can teleport out there quick. What need you of a taxi cab when you can teleport? Sorry, Chas, I teleport, I don't need you to heh drive me someplace.

 

And having those near godlike powers doesn't change the character? Are you serious? Hellblazer John wasn't a sorcerer. He was magician with no actual magical powers. He said so so many times we've all got it memorized: "magic is all in the mind." Well, now it's in his fingertips and forearms. Why does he need to be old conjob when he can blow you away with his magic fingers? So, he's not a conman any more.

 

You see, when he has these powers, it breaks down the elements of the character that we loved about him. John is a fucking grifter in hellblazer. He relies on his wits. He hasn't used his wits one time in the DCU except for a spell that will cover up his presence with a magic sword he used to trap Mr E in.

 

I think many of you will agree that Hellblazer's foundation was built on the small stories in between the epic story arcs. Magic energy finger bolts renders those pointless. All that will be compelling is an enemy with powers equal to or beyond John's and that will mean absurd unbelievable plots that would never happen in the real world. Part of Hellblazer's appeal was that John could live in our world and pull off most of the shit he pulled off, or that's how it seemed, like his knowledge of the world went a bit further than most of ours, and THAT'S what makes him special. Now what makes him special? DC John is a sorcerer, not a magician (because magician's don't have real magical power). That doesn't change who he is?

 

It totally changes what the character is when you totally change what that character can do. A magician is not the same as a sorcerer. A sorcerer does not fear normal humans. a magician does because he possesses nothing more powerful than they do unless he possesses more knowledge than they do. That used to be John's only advantage over his opposition. Now he can just blow them away. That's a completely different character.

 

It totally changes what the character is when you totally change what that character can do.

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Slinker, to me that's like saying that George Clooney's Batman is a completely different character from Christian Bale's Batman.

 

Erm, they are different characters.

Inspired by the same roots maybe.

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So which of them is Ben Affleck's Batman going to be adapted from?

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You guys going to enjoy the fantastic teleporting John Constantine with energy bolt finger weapons, are you? That's not a big difference where you guys are from, eh? :sherlock::hattip:

Of course I wont enjoy that. I'm just saying that there's a difference between someone writing really badly about a character, and saying that it's a different character.

 

Cuz I think that wil suck. The first time I see "magick" in the form of a beam, bolt or any other form of energy as a defensive shield or offensive weapon, I'm out. Won't even give it another shot. Perhaps, you chaps differ.

Well there was lots of that kind of "magick" in Buffy and Angel, and I enjoyed a lot of that, so it's not an absolute no-no, but it WOULD mean they're really fucking up the chance of making a GOOD JC show.

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So then are we humans still the neanderthals we evolved from? How much does a character have to evolve/be changed for it to become a different character for you? I put it to you that once John could blast you with magic fingers, he ceased being the John Constantine from Hellblazer. You differ in that opinion, which is your right (to be wrong)(heh!) :boogie:

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You're still looking at context and genre more than character, though. Again, it's like Batman. Clooney and Bale are playing the same character, but he's handled completely differently because he's been placed in two completely different settings. Clooney's version is what that character looks like when you stick him into a campy, over-the-top cartoon fantasy world (and then write him very badly). Bale's version is what that same character looks like when you play him according to the rules of a more realistic, grounded and gritty setting. It's the same with John - the reason New 52-John looks the way he does is because he's being written according to the rules of a crap superhero universe. His magic is of the rather less interesting fireballs-and-teleportation variety because that's the way magic looks in that sort of setting. "Our" John is what that same character looks like when you put him into a more realistic, well-rounded and interesting world. For that matter, Swamp Thing-John is, retroactively, that same character interpreted according to the rules of a rather more interesting and multi-faceted superhero universe on which an intelligent writer was able to put his own spin.

 

Until we know what sort of tone the TV writers are aiming for, there's not really any way of knowing exactly what their version of John will look like. But we can probably take some comfort from the fact that, looking at recent trends in television drama, it's likely to be rather a lot closer to the Hellblazer universe than the New 52 one.

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(In other words, I suspect this is largely a semantic disagreement - it's not as though I'm denying that the differences in the way the character is written in the new book are really quite substantial. Most importantly, I'd imagine that the take on John you're hoping to see on TV is pretty similar to mine)

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Mark, what I'm saying is that the subtle and not so subtle combine to make the character noticeably different from his previous incarnation to make the character seem like a different person altogether. A character who doesn't have powers in one universe but has powers in another one is a different character, regardless if they are based on the same character. so in my opinion, this is more than a semantic argument. I'm just not very effective when arguing this point, apparently, so it's difficult for me to make my point in a manner that is easy for everyone to see what I mean. I'm close, but not the right english, I guess.

 

 

Until we know what sort of tone the TV writers are aiming for, there's not really any way of knowing exactly what their version of John will look like. But we can probably take some comfort from the fact that, looking at recent trends in television drama, it's likely to be rather a lot closer to the Hellblazer universe than the New 52 one.

 

I believe we concur on this point.

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