There has been a lot of talk lately about how comic book adaptations are finally taking over TV, after dominating the big screen box office these last five years or so. This fall will not only see the return of favorites such as Arrow and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. but also the premiere of its spinoffs, The Flash and Agent Carter, as well as the debut of new series like Gotham and Constantine.
Based on the DC Comics title Hellblazer, Constantine has already been adapted once before as a 2005 film starring Keanu Reeves, Rachel Weisz and a young Shia LaBeouf. But while the film was generally well-received, in the end it failed to satisfy fans who thought too much had been changed from page to screen.
NBC’s new series, on the other hand, has been praised for being much more faithful to the original comic, judging by images of its star Matt Ryan in the role, plot details from the script and the already released full-length trailer. And today’s latest casting change, which will introduce an original character from the comics, should make fans even happier.
According to THR, Constantine female lead Lucy Griffiths (True Blood) – who played Liv, a woman with the ability to see the supernatural world among us – has left the show after creators decided to move the overall story in a different direction. She will still appear in (at least) the pilot that has already been filmed, but her character will then be written out at a later date.
Instead, the as yet uncast comic book character Zed will join the series in an early episode as a foil for John Constantine. In the comics, Zed uses her psychic powers to help Constantine save his niece Gemma before becoming his right-hand woman and romantic interest. She’ll be just the first of many additional characters from Hellblazer and the occult DC universe to appear on the series.
A lot of times, a change in creative direction for a series this far into production can seem like a problem, but for Constantine this could be a step in the right direction as it gets back to its roots. Having a character at odds with the lead should prove much more interesting than one who is just along for the ride.
What do you think, Screen Rant readers? Are you excited about this change and what it could mean for Constantine?
Constantine premieres Friday, October 24, 2014 @10pm on NBC.