Toil and Trouble

John Constantine is all over the place these days. With the success of Preacher, DC is undoubtedly looking to its other supernatural projects to further its mature market. Well, in case you didn’t know Constantine will once again star in a series of his own. This time, it’s animated! Matt Ryan will reprise his live-action role in the animated series, voicing the legendary and mischievous cretin known simply as Constantine.

The Executive Vice President of Blue Ribbon Content, Peter Girardiwas at the Television Critic Association’s Winter Press Tour recently. As the studio behind Vixen, Constantine, and Freedom Fighters: The Ray animated series he had plenty to say about what can be expected from the upcoming series.

Peter Girardi spoke with Collider’s Allison Keene.

…with animation, the first thing you ask is, Why does this need to be animated? So we try to up the scale, and the consequences, and the VFX, and the set pieces in animation because, as we call it in the world of animation, pencil power. Just pencil power, it’s people drawing.

Animators take their craft very seriously. Vixen, the other animated series connected to the CW shows, looked incredible. Constantine should be even more of a visual treat for fans. Luckily, it looks like the studio is paying attention to the what fans want.

The dark and magical world of Constantine is a character in and of itself. It would need to be a glorious work to draw the attention of the many fans the brooding Brit has around the world. But it looks like they’re taking the right approach.

However, the best comments referenced the DC character’s original comic origin.

Some Places You Don’t Want To Go…

Girardi continued to speak about the series and how it would match up against both the preceding series and the original comic.

Constantine was a great example as well because the Constantine that we’re doing … it’s Constantine, if you’re familiar with the character, it’s Constantine from the Vertigo comic; it’s dark. Darker than the show.

That’s fantastic news. The Hellblazer comic from which John Constantine originates is a classic and phantasmal set of stories. Over the year he’s found himself in quite a bit of ridiculous pickles that would make for a fantastic animated or live-action tale.

A rather large market is building for Mature content in the superhero realm. Logan and Deadpool have changed things. Expect other studios, and especially DC, to attempt to replicate that success. But to tackle an animated series with this subject matter is surprising. If there’s one part of the DC machine that is succeeding at the moment it’s the animated department. Unlike DC Films, Warner Bros. Animated are churning out films left and right.

They’re even hitting theaters, with the Teen Titans Go to the Movies! film gearing up for a July release. If they keep up this kind of success, the animated film could end up out-grossing the DCEU.

Girardi also explained the possibility of crossovers into the live-action Arrowverse continuity as seen in The Flash, Arrow, Supergirl, and Legends of Tomorrow.

“That’s yet to be determined. The first one we did was Vixen. And Vixenstarted out as animated. And I think we were also happy when it did migrate into the Arrowverse, but it started out as animated first. Since then, we’ve figured out a little more of a strategy around it where we worked very closely with Greg [Berlanti] and Marc Guggenheim and the team there to figure out what characters are going to work, what’s in [their] future plans, what can we do.”

The series is expected to see John Constantine do whatever it takes to protect the innocent. He will use all of his skills to face supernatural terrors that threaten our wold and send them back to where they belong. And he might just be able to redeem his own soul that is currently damned to hell.


  • About The Author

    Daniel Mills
    Batman & DC Writer

    Daniel Mills is a screenwriter and director working in Los Angeles, California. Far too many comics and Forgotten Realms-novels led him to want to tell stories of his own. From articles and opinion pieces to reviews and screenplays, he sees every new opportunity as another new realm waiting to be explored.