Constantine cancelled

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So in all the election excitement I missed this little piece of bad news: Constantine has been cancelled.

I can’t say I’m particularly surprised. It hadn’t done well in terms of ratings, and when NBC’s other shows were renewed, it wasn’t. Which is a shame, really, because although it wasn’t perfect it had potential, and had been on an upward trajectory throughout.

It’s not “dead” dead yet, apparently; there’s an outside chance that it could be picked up by another network (A campaign backed by Captain Kirk, no less -Ed), but it remains to be seen whether anyone will pick it up.

For now I’m not holding my breath. Time to bring out the last rites, I think.

13 “Waiting for the Man” (Constantine season 1) [SPOILERS]

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So this is it. Maybe.

The last episode of Constantine‘s first series has come and passed, and still no news on its future. And in this case, I suspect, no news is probably bad news.

As someone who has enjoyed the series, and who has a deep love for the source material, it pains me to think that this series hasn’t measured up. It hasn’t been bad, and has had a great many excellent features, but some of the competition it was up against was in a different league.

It may yet be that NBC decide to give it another chance. Or another network sees the potential and decides to take it off NBC’s hands. Or, this may be the only series we get to see.

Let’s hope, then, that its final hurrah is a good one.

Read on…

12 “Angels and Ministers of Grace” (Constantine season 1) [SPOILERS]

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This is the second to last episode of Constantine‘s first and, as it stands, only season. There’s no news yet, that I’ve seen — at least not official news. The rumour mill has been in overdrive. Some are saying that it’s been cancelled, which is not surprising, but not yet verified.

One of the more interesting rumours is a potential move to SyFy, and a rebranding as “Hellblazer”. Which, again, is unverified, but I’d happily take that as a solution.

I’m still not sure what will happen, but another network adopting it can’t surely be ruled out. I do think that NBC would be making a mistake to axe it prematurely though. Perhaps I should write to the BBC… They could return it to its proper, British setting.

Read on…(and mind the spoilers)

11 “A Whole World Out There” (Constantine season 1) [SPOILERS]

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I genuinely expected the preface for my review of the latest episode of Constantine to be a eulogy. But somehow, despite being on life-support, against all the odds, the patient is still alive. Indeed, there’s a petition which has been started to try and persuade NBC to relent and give the show the second series that it, on balance, (probably) deserves.

I’ve signed, of course. I’d sign purely to keep Matt Ryan in a job (in this job), as the most authentic Constantine I’ve ever seen.

At time of press said petition had 16,597, so still a fair way short of the 100,000 target. But fan campaigning saved Farscape, bringing it back for the triumphantly brilliant Peacekeeper Wars. Then Firefly fans jumped on the bandwagon and got Serenity made. And both of those shows had already been sent to the great studio in the sky.

So can fan activism save Constantine from the axe in the first place? I have to believe so…

Read on…(and mind the spoilers!)

10 “Quid Pro Quo” (Constantine season 1) [SPOILERS]

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I think it’s definitely arguable that last week’s Constantine heralded the beginning of what the show should have been from the very start. The biggest shame of all is that it has come so late in its first season. Had it been doing this sort of thing from the very beginning, the axe would definitely not be floating over its head.

And believe me, there is an axe. It has yet to fall, and there is still the chance that it may not, but on balance I think that Constantine is for the chop.

Which, as I say, is a shame. But that’s where we are.

Read on… (and mind the spoilers!)

08 “The Saint of Last Resorts” (Constantine season 1) [SPOILERS]

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It struck me watching this week’s episode of Constantine, that I don’t actually know how many episodes of the series there are. To my knowledge it hasn’t been renewed for a second series, and reports had said that there would be 13 episodes. If so, that means that there are another five episodes to go.

Which makes the pacing of the series seem a little odd.

The rising dark has been simmering away in the background throughout, and presumably is going to be a big part of the season climax. So a little more detail being fleshed out might be about due. Just saying.

Read on…(and mind the spoilers!)

07 “Blessed are the Damned” (Constantine season 1) [SPOILERS]

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I’m not quite sure, following my intro to the review of the last episode of Constantine, of whether to celebrate that it hasn’t been cancelled yet, or get annoyed that it hasn’t yet been renewed for a second season.

Grateful, perhaps, that the series exists in any form at all. Perhaps.

It might seem a little dated in ways, but actually they’ve struck a fairly good note. The episodic format feels like it’s leading into something greater somewhere down the line. Which brings me back to whether it will get the chance to take us that far…

Read on…

06 “Rage of Caliban” (Constantine season 1) [SPOILERS]

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There has, I will admit, been some worrying news coming out around Constantine.

I make no secret if the fact that I have been enjoying it, so I’m disappointed to read that NMC have stalled production of the show. It is, they insist, not a cancellation, but I am worried nonetheless. New TV series are birthed into a cut-throat world, and the networks’ axes don’t always fall fairly. Just ask Farscape and Firefly.

So, if Constantine ever needed to pull an A+ episode out of its pocket..

Read on…(and mind the spoilers!)

02 “The Darkness Beneath” (Constantine season 1) [SPOILERS]

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My comments on the premiere episode of the new Constantine series basically boiled down to: a great start, but a long way to go. It also needs to calm down a little if I’m going to be able to keep up for several — hopefully — seasons.

The bizarre thing is that, having set up so much in the first episode, they’ve taken an editorial change of tack and dumped a lot of the establishing material that it featured. Specifically, the female lead, Liv. Entirely. You have to feel for the actress, Lucy Griffiths, but my understanding is that they wanted to pursue a different direction, cleaving closer to the comics.

Quite why they couldn’t have made a new pilot episode, rather than tacking on a scene to the end which negated a lot of the set up, I have no idea.

So for those familiar with the source material, it might well be wise to simply treat this second episode as the real pilot.

Read on…(and mind the spoilers!)

01 “Non Est Asylum” (Constantine season 1) [SPOILERS]


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Declaring an interest here: I am a big fan of the Hellblazer comics, the source material for this new TV adaptation which is going by the name of Constantine.

The dark themes, and unflinchingly bleak look at a magician from Liverpool (Yay!) are hynotically well-written, with characters that leap of the page. I even like the 2005 Keanu Reeves film, also titled Constantine, which wasn’t much of an adaptation at all.

But this, this I have been looking forward to since it was announced. It promises to stick closer to the source material than did the film, and from the look of Matt Ryan in costume as the eponymous main character, it is off to a good start. The question, though, is how much of the comic they can get away with bringing to the screen.

Read on…(and mind the spoilers)