Sandman’s Johanna Constantine Explained
Warning: The following contains SPOILERS for The Sandman: Preludes and Nocturnes graphic novel.
Confusion and controversy surround the character of Johanna Constantine, who appears in the upcoming Netflix The sand man To display. In The sand man graphic novels, John Constantine makes an appearance, and it was unclear from the original cast whether Johanna Constantine was replacing him. Early interviews further obscured the connections between Johanna Constantine and the characters featured in the DC Comics original series that the show is adapting.
The confusion and controversy began in April 2021 when it was first announced that Coleman would play Lady Johanna Constantine. This has led several outlets to report that The sand man would have Coleman playing a female version of the wizard John Constantine. In the graphic novels, Lady Johanna Constantine is a different character who is an ancestor of 18th century John Constantine and was created by writer Neil Gaiman and artist Michael Zulli specifically for The sand man graphic novel series.
The story around Coleman’s character became more confusing when it was later confirmed in September 2021 that Coleman would be playing dual roles and that Netflix The sand man the adaptation would also feature Coleman playing a woman named Johanna Constantine in modern times. This saw another round of complaints that echoed debunked complaints about Gwendoline Christie playing Lucifer on the show. According to Neil Gaiman, casting Coleman in the dual roles was all about practicality and suitability for the role, tied in with dancing around some tricky legal issues regarding John Constantine’s rights.
Lady Constantine explained
The character of Lady Johanna Constantine first appeared in The sand man graphic novels. Lady Johanna Constantine was more of a trickster than a magician, but she knew enough of real magic and ancient lore to be dangerous. This set her apart somewhat from her descendant, the modern-day magician John Constantine, who was created to Swamp Thing several years earlier. Both Constantines were heirs to a curse that gave one Constantine of each generation magical talent at the cost of losing everyone they loved in Hell.
The Sandman, Morpheus, first met Lady Constantine in 1789 while chasing a legend concerning the Devil and the Wandering Jew meeting once every 100 years in a certain London pub. His information was perfect, except for the identity of the two men who met, who were in fact Morpheus and an immortal friend. Morpheus was impressed by Lady Constantine’s audacity in trying to frame him, however, and he asked her in 1794 for help in a matter in which he could not be seen acting openly.
Lady Constantine’s full background was later revealed in a 2003 miniseries by writer Andy Diggle and artist Goran Sudžuka. Their story detailed how she regained her royal title after quietly assisting King George III in a matter of some importance. This miniseries fleshed out the character of Lady Johanna Constantine, further distinguishing her from her descendant by establishing her as a master spy and a highly trained expert in espionage. It was a far cry from the John Constantine of the comics, whose training in everything was as informal as his demeanor.
Is Johanna Constantine a John Constantine woman?
Whether or not Jenna Coleman was playing a female version of John Constantine was finally settled by a trailer from Netflix. The sand man. The trailer showed Coleman, dressed in John Constantine’s trademark trench coat, chatting with a woman named Mad Hettie about the Dream King’s return after decades of imprisonment. This scene is taken directly from the third chapter of the first Sand seller graphic novel, Preludes and Nocturneswhere wizard John Constantine was informed of the Sandman’s return to power just before meeting him in the flesh.
Despite this, it seems a little flippant to describe Johanna Constantine as simply a John Constantine woman. Jenna Coleman and The sand man Showrunner Allan Heinberg both talked about the character of Johanna during a casting video (via Youtube, below) filmed for Netflix Geeked Week, describing her as “upgraded in its clientele” and “a bit classycompared to John Constantine. This matches what we see of her in the trailer, where her overcoat is crisp and clean to the point of almost shining, looking more like a wizard’s robe than a dirty feather duster. preferred by John Constantine in the comics, giving him the classic look of a private detective.And yet, while his client list may include the Queen of England, Johanna seems to be cut from the same cloth as the traitor John Constantine, with his character poster warning that “Even demons don’t trust Johanna Constantine.”
Johanna Constantine’s The Sandman Story Explained
In The sand man graphic novel Preludes and Nocturnes, Morpheus came to John Constantine in search of the magical bag of sand that held much of his power, which Constantine had acquired at some point in his past along with other assorted magical artifacts. A new photo, which depicts Morpheus (Tom Sturridge) in a dark blue trench coat to match Constantine’s, suggests that this scenario will be recreated as part of The sand man season 1. This scene seems to be inspired by a similar moment from The sand man comics, where Morpheus of the Endless reluctantly replaced his usual black robe with a trench coat out of respect for wizard John Constantine’s request to try and blend in better.
Will John Constantine appear on Netflix’s Sandman Show?
Confirmation that Jenna Coleman is playing a female version of John Constantine in Netflix’s modern setting The sand man strongly suggests that there will be no appearance of the original John Constantine in the series. Neil Gaiman addressed this point (via Twitter), after a fan asked if the decision to cast Coleman as modern-day Johanna Constantine stemmed from rights issues regarding the use of John Constantine, who had recently been removed from the Arrowverse after being played by Matt Ryan for several years later Legends of tomorrowin anticipation of JJ Abrams Constantine reboot for HBO Max.
Gaiman acknowledged rights issues made the prospect of giving John Constantine a one-episode cameo more difficult, but said the decision to create a modern Johanna Constantine based on 18th century Lady Constantine and cast the same actor in both roles had been made early in the show’s development cycle and was not necessarily related to rights issues. Adaptations are free to change things up on the characters if necessary, and with Gaiman’s involvement in the decision to create Johanna Constantine, giving John Constantine a guest appearance in The sand man would be completely useless, in addition to being legally complicated.
More: The Sandman’s Lucifer Explained: Gwendoline Christie’s Accuracy
The sand man premieres Friday, August 5 on Netflix.
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