Constantine 1×11 “A Whole World Out There”: Liberation is the purpose

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Once again, Constantine delivers yet another wholly unoriginal episode. The difference is, this time it was actually entertaining. The flaws that have been seen throughout the season were still present, but there was a definite improvement in pacing and I’ll admit that Constantine‘s scares are always consistent.

Source: NBC

This week’s episode was basically Nightmare on Elm Street. The villain of the week was Jacob Shaw, complete with a brown fedora, just in case you weren’t sure they were ripping off another show. There’s something about disarmingly charming characters that are just extra creepy and William Mapother sure revels in it. There wasn’t much background to Jacob Shaw’s homicidal tendencies. It was sort of played off that he was a megalomaniac who simply enjoyed killing. But William Mapother’s acting gave the character more depth and intrigue – qualities that Zed and Chas definitely lack.

Source: NBC

Source: NBC

Zed and Chas weren’t present in this episode and it didn’t really make much of a difference. Really, the only irritating thing about their absence is the phony excuses the writers come up with. Look, if there’s no reason for these characters, then don’t bring them in. We’ve already seen that John is perfectly capable of solving mysteries with whatever acquaintance happens to be in the vicinity. To make up for their absence, we’re reacquainted with Ritchie Simpson. It’s nice to see Matt Ryan working with someone he actually has chemistry with.

Source: NBC

Source: NBC

This week’s episode brought up the issue of escapism. John finds his escape at the bottom of a bottle while Jacob and Ritchie found theirs in an alternate universe/reality. Comparing this episode to the rest of the season, it seems a little didactic. Usually, I dislike didacticism. It comes across a little superior and condescending, but it works for Constantine. It gave the episode a purpose, a direction, something Constantine sorely needs. The Rising Darkness got its obligatory shout-out, just to remind you that there’s a bigger story at play. But if all Constantine needs is a moral to teach in order to focus the story, by all means, do it. 

 

Yeung Wing

is an aspiring TV critic, writer and editor. You can see her past work on her Tumblr!
She lives her life through escapism.

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