Constantine, Episode 10 “Quid Pro Quo” Broadcast January 23, 2015
Written by Brian Anthony
Directed by Mary Harron
A robed figure stands against a city’s backdrop speaking Latin. He’s upon a roof, summoning a cloud of smoke, which he commands to go down the chimney. Within the house a girl plays with her dolls, unaware of the smoke writhing into the room. She stands to face the mass which swarms about her. The doll drops to the floor, covered in smoke, while viewers are left to assume the worst. Cue opening title sequence.
Zed is cleaning up the mess in the millhouse left by those that abducted her. John says he’s cast a spell and she’s safe, but Zed says that didn’t stop the intruders last time. She tells him that the group that wants her call themselves the Resurrection Crusade. “They’re fanatics…Their leader believes I’m crucial.” She reveals her father is their leader. Lifting some papers, Zed finds blood on the stigmata map atop the Big Apple. Chas is on his way to Brooklyn, so Zed has to book their flight. As Chas drives down the dark highway listening to Blue Oyster Cult, he thinks to two years earlier. He’s in a bar on his cell telling his wife he’s on his way home. John’s cutting out with a bird and asks if Chas is okay to drive. He says he is, though his table is covered in empties, so Constantine performs a quick protection spell. A metal band takes the stage and their pyrotechnics start a fire. The crowd rushes to exit, but Chas breaks windows to vent the smoke and helps a woman escape by lifting her out. However, Chas succumbs to the smoke and falls to the floor just as the ceiling caves in. Back in the present, Chas grimly continues his trek to visit his only child. Back at the millhouse, John shows Zed a few of the magical items he’s bringing since she’s told him of an unexplainable number of comas that’s overcome some of Brooklyn’s citizens. In Brooklyn, Chas and his ex-wife Renee spat over his continued tardiness on the weekends he has custody. He goes up to see his daughter he assumes is asleep, only to find her on the floor. She’s the girl from the opening. Her eyes are wide open and dried blood has left a trail from her nose. He screams for his wife as the first commercial break occurs.
This is the episode that reveals why Chas is able to die and come back, but now there is a limit that’s introduced. It’s a very cool origin of his ability, it makes sense, and it gives a huge emotional undertone to Chas. Charles Halford does a really good job in this episode and he sold the heck out of it. Matt Ryan has several outstanding moments as this is the Constantine fans like–a complete jerk who’s sold people out and want to kill him. Roger Floyd is amazing as Fennel, whose introductory reaction is fantastic. The séance scene is exceptional. It does everything one would want, ending in typical Constantine fashion. Zed demonstrates a new ability that could become very problematic in the next three episodes. Chas has a great climatic moment and Zed has a very sweet message for John.
The good: Charles Halford, Matt Ryan, the script by Brian Anthony, Amanda Clayton who has some great scenes with John and Renee, and Roger Floyd.
Fun lines: “It don’t hurt that you’re easy on the eyes as well,” “Why is he here?”, “I should be dead,” and “It’s because of you!”
The bad: Mark Margolis as Felix Faust. Faust is the antagonist in this episode, but looks as though he could fall over at any time. Considering what he’s done, he looks completely wrong. He didn’t seem a threat at all. He was woefully miscast. If the antagonist is weak, the tension is lost.
The final line: Chas gets a great origin, but the villain of the piece is weak. Overall grade: B-