NBC’s newest superhero show Constantine stars Matt Ryan as the title character. Ryan recently took a break from filming in Atlanta to chat about Constantine’s accent, what makes him a unique hero and even spilled a little about the beautiful Zed.
Constantine is the most recent in a long line of comics being turned into a TV show, so naturally viewers will want to know what sets the series apart from the other supernatural shows that it will inevitably be compared to, and Matt Ryan feels like it boils down to John himself. “To be honest with you, I think that it’s – it’s down to the central character of John. And that’s what made the comics – the comic books unique, you know? The kind of anti-hero, working class anti-hero, wisecracking street magician, you know?
He’s someone who sacrifices his friends to get what he needs. And – but you still love him as well because he has this – this compelling urge to – to save humanity even though he does it with a cigarette and a whiskey all the time, you know? So it’s – I think – I think it’s – it’s him. It’s him.
And then in effect the relationships that he has with the other characters around him. And I think that – that’s kind of what’s unique to him. He really is an anti-hero. And – and he’s not a superhero in tights, you know? He’s a working class man that is for the people.”
There seems to be something brewing between Constantine and Zed, so when asked to tease a bit about their relationship Ryan revealed, “Zed is – she’s a feisty one, let me tell you. She’s great because she’s someone who gets in John’s face, doesn’t take any of his shit. She’s not afraid to smack someone in the face when – when it comes down to it. And – and she also has this unique ability which John – it’s very useful for John.
So they – they – they need each other as much as – as much as the other. But at the same time, you know, there – there’s a chemistry between them which – which could develop into – into something more. She’s mysterious. She has a mysterious background.
And what’s interesting about these two characters is they work together on some level but then they’re both reluctant to reveal each other’s past to each other. So, you know, there’s a constantly kind of looking out of the corner of each eye with each other which is really interesting.
And then – then there’s the kind of sexual chemistry between them as well which – which leads to a really kind of fun play in between the two of them. And – and that relationship throughout the series, will kind of develop in a very interesting way, I must say.”
Matt hails from Swansea, Wales, but actually changes his natural accent to portray John in the show. When asked about why he decided to make the switch, he said “…John’s originally from Liverpool and then, you know, he’d been in London a lot and it’s a comic book so it’s – it was kind of up for grabs, you know? And so I – I talked to a lot of the guys about it.
But I thought that the main thing that was important was for me to kind of try and get the essence of John rather than kind of playing an accent, you know? But then I didn’t want to do something that was exactly the same as my accent, you know?
I just wanted to kind of make a kind of sort of nod to him really… I’m from Wales but my accent isn’t exactly very strong Welsh anymore because I’ve traveled so much. So I left Wales when I was 19. And John left Liverpool when – when he was younger as well.
So I kind of took that balance of if he – if he’d left somewhere when he was younger, then he’s traveled and kind of – yeah, so I just added a subtle nod of Northern.”
Constantine airs Friday nights at 10/9 on NBC!
Photo Credit: NBC