Constantine – “Non Est Asylum” Review (Series Premiere)

Constantine - "Non Est Asylum"Constantine doesn’t waste time getting into the heart of what this show is about. Literally. Within five minutes of the show beginning John Constantine already exorcised a demon out of a woman in the Asylum. That’s after we’ve heard some of the witty banter and sarcasm he seems quite adept at dealing out. It’s his energy that carries this show. He’s compelling and a bit of a jerk, but even still you want to like him. Add in his line of work, the sorts of characters he finds himself around, and the depths that plague him. He’s quick and his smart, but he’s not trying to play games. He will have a bit of fun with one’s lack of knowledge. By the end of the episode you can’t do anything but feel for John and want to know more about him.

Constantine - "Non Est Asylum"Then there’s the angel Manny, Emmanuel if you couldn’t figure that out from the nickname. Manny is more of the sort of angel from something like Supernatural. He may be good, but there is something also sinister from him. It makes his character stand out even though he’s only in a few scenes. Harold Perrineau seems to be enjoying playing a role. And those contacts make him look exceptionally creepy. That’s not even mentioning the way he likes to pop in and out of places with no notice.

The plot of the episode was actually what I would consider the perfect introduction tot he kind of world that Constantine is a part of, while providing us with answers. While Liv may come off as annoying as she is asking questions and doesn’t really take anything into her own hands, this is someone who’s world was just turned upside down and keeps getting more stuff thrown at her. As the audience we get a taste of the things this world has to offer, demons and spells and a grim look at the world. it is dark there is no denying it. The demons are glorious and creepy. these are demons that you do not want to tango with. They toy with the dead and and mimic faces. Add in the eerie effects they use on the demons black out eyes, adding gore, and making the mere sight of them repulsive. All of this is unfolding in front of Liv’s face as though she’s supposed to cope with this like it’s normal.

Constantine - "Non Est Asylum"What Constantine did really well was set up the tone of the world. Constantine is not a romp through light supernatural material. Constantine is dark. People die. Souls are tortured. Mutilation is common place. And Got is second nature. Demons are standard fare, and with it comes danger. The world feels rich and complex already, but we don’t even know what else will come. We’ve only begun to scratch the surface of this world and it already feels fully inhabited by all sorts of supernatural entities that can chaos havoc for John. I can’t wait to see more of what the world has to offer.

I’ll be honest. I saw this pilot over the summer when it leaked online. At the time I enjoyed it, but there were a number of issues in the pilot. They seem to have used their time wisely and retooled the pilot so that it became more effective. Not only that, but they also changed it up to work with the cast changes they made. The result was a pilot that was far more effective and compelling that it previously was.

What did you think of the episode?

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