Cast: Matt Ryan, Angelica Celaya, Charles Halford, Harold Perrineau, Michael James Shaw, Emmett J Scanlan
Writer: David S. Goyer, Daniel Cerone
Director: Neil Marshall
Network: Airs on NBC, Fridays @ 10p.m.
Original Telecast: Nov. 7, 2014
Last week on CONSTANTINE, we were introduced to Zed Martin (Angélica Celaya) as John Constantine’s partner on the supernatural show, as much as Constantine doesn’t want her around nor think she is legit. But there is no denying that her talents – the ability to have visions of upcoming evil (not to mention knowing sign language and modern technology) – come in handy during his exploits to thwart evil across the U.S.
In “The Devil’s Vinyl,” we get to meet Papa Midnite (Michael James Shaw), a voodoo businessman that has his eyes set on trinkets of the supernatural nature to help him make money as well as further his power position. In the HELLBLAZER comics, Papa Midnite is a bad guy but he has a complicated relationship with Constantine in that he requires his help occasionally, however, at same time wants him dead. In the movie of the same name, this relationship was also strained but they also worked together in some fashion in order to combat a greater evil. It appears in the TV show, they may be going about this same path.
In the “The Devil’s Vinyl,” Constantine discovers an evil record that if played either turns someone to ice or makes them want to spread the evil gospel of the music contained in order to kill anyone that happens to be listening. If you touch the record it possesses you but if you listen it kills you. So when two of Papa Midnite’s thugs acquire the record they go on a spree playing it at a club and killing dozens and then trying to play it over a radio station in order to kill hundreds more.
Luckily, Zed discovers their next move and Constantine arrives to stop them. But as seems to be a theme on this show so far, he fails miserably and only is able to succeed when Papa Midnite shoots all the speakers and Constantine can perform a quick exorcism to cast the record and the Midnight thugs to hell.
What I am enjoying about this show is the close ties it has to SUPERNATURAL in how the story is presented. We get an opening brutal death that results from something supernatural, we sees how it pertains to what Constantine and Zed are doing, we get some crazy mumbo jumbo involving exorcisms or dead body reanimation, get swerved in who the culprit may really be before finding out the real bad guy and ending the story. While these supernatural-of-the-week storylines will be good initially on the show, eventually, hopefully we will get more of the mythology that was established in the first episode – with Constantine sending a girl to hell, his own soul being sold to hell and why the angels want his help.
But for now, CONSTANTINE is enjoyable in a very similar way the early days of SUPERNATURAL were before everything went terrible for the Winchester brothers (not that it didn’t make for good television).
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Article: TV Review: CONSTANTINE – Season 1 – “The Devil’s Vinyl”