Constantine RECAP: Good Thing Satan Isn't on iTunes Yet (S1:E3)
Open in a dark alley in Chicago. This is going to go well.
A well-to-do woman gets out of her car and goes inside a building. She’s super creeped out and no wonder, there are dead animals and lots of blood everywhere. Also occult symbols. This is Constantine, after all; they want to make sure you know this is some demon stuff and not just your usual P.T.A. animal sacrifice. Ritual sacrifice in an old recording studio? She knocks out a cinderblock and pulls out a huge Bible with a record hidden inside. “OMG IT’S REAL,” she says.
She meets a man named Bernie at a recording studio. He’s British, I wonder if he knows Constantine? That’s how that works, right? She warns him not to touch the record with his bare hands and not to listen to it either. She just wants to know if its genuine. How exactly is anyone supposed to tell? Is there an evil record database we can compare this to? The woman gets a call from her daughter and steps out. Alone, Bernie immediately takes off his gloves and puts on his headphones to listen to the record. Good job, dumbass. The headphones freeze to his head and he starts screaming. He pulls them off but then begins to hear voices telling him to kill himself. Which he does. Better to listen to the devil than a woman trying to protect you.
Zed is sitting in her car outside Constantine’s house. Chas pulls a shotgun on her—oh, right! They haven’t met yet. She didn’t get an address but found the house thanks to her visions. Apparently there aren’t many millhouses in Atlanta. Chas lowers his gun and follows her into the house. He’s sure one tough guy, fending off all the stalker girls by letting them come inside.
John’s naked and covered in blood, and also listening to metal. I guess practicing spells is just like any other hobby. Totally normal. We learn this is actually Jasper’s house. So I guess they’re squatting? Is Liv okay with this? The house also grows and shrinks, so maybe she’s still lurking nearby. Chas and John show Zed their map-o-stigmata and tell her about their plan to save the world. OMG! Bernie was a friend of John’s! I guess that totally is how that works!
Zed gets a vision that smells like jasmine, so I guess she’s playing the role of Cordelia on Angel. Her usefulness expended, John tries to show her out. But she won’t be gotten rid of so easily and wants to come with. He only lets her come though because she has a car. John explains to Chas that he still doesn’t trust Zed but he can’t seem to get rid of her so he’ll keep her around. FYI, John has the nails from St. Padua’s coffin. They’re a tracking device. (Remember that, I’m sure it’ll come back later on.)
Zed pickpockets their way into the morgue so John can look at Bernie’s body. Apparently Bernie produced the only album by John’s punk band, Mucus Membrane. I’d totes be a groupie just for the name. He raises Bernie for a few minutes, using an item called Hand of Glory, which is a so much better name than Torchwood’s “Risen Mitten.”
He may have done it wrong because all the other corpses in the morgue wake up too. Swear to God this isn’t The Walking Dead. Bernie gives them a couple of tiny clues, including the word “Moonrise.” Payment for that incredibly informative spell, says John, was a few days of his own life. Nbd. Zed connects the dots and figures out that Moonrise was the name of a recording studio.
The woman from the beginning of the episode is hiding the record on a bookshelf in her house, and her daughter sees. The woman hugs her daughter to comfort her from a nightmare. Part of the bookshelf begins to freeze…this doesn’t look good.
John and Zed go to the hospital to visit Marcus Mooney, owner of the studio where the evil record was recorded. John gets past the nurse by flashing a playing card with the power to show anything the bearer thinks. Time Lord Constantine?
We see an old man who’s so decrepit you can barely understand anything he’s saying, and he tells the story of how the record came into being. Flashback time! A man is recording in the studio and starts hearing voices, looking around worriedly. Nobody checks on him. Black goo starts coming out of the walls, and he’s understandably freaking out. Nobody checks on him. He gets swallowed by the black goo and explodes. Still, nobody checks on him. Do the writers realize that an entire wall of the recording studio is glass? And that usually someone is running the recording equipment behind that glass? Apparently the black goo was the devil, and now so is the record. Back in the present, the old man says he sees an angel, and as Zed runs to get help, time stops. Dammit, Manny. The angel kills the man with a kiss and…we cut to the drive home. Apparently nobody has to explain why the man died while Zed and John were in his room. Not suspicious at all, nope.
They talk a little bit about souls and the devil, and meanwhile the little girl from earlier finds the record her mom hid. Really? You know your kid saw you hiding a killer record in your own home and you didn’t bother to move it to a new hiding spot? Christ.
Zed and John hop the fence around a famous rocker’s home, following the trail of clues. Stellar security. The door’s unlocked, of course. John roughs the guy up, and his wife pulls a gun. Hey, she’s the lady with the record! And her name is Jasmine! Good job, Zed. Years ago while her husband was ill with cancer, she met a man named Anton who offered her husband’s life in exchange for her soul. He recently found her again and offered her soul back in exchange for the evil record. John says it sounds like a soul dealer, because they troll hospitals. GOD, JASMINE, HOW DID YOU NOT KNOW THAT? Anton said he’d go back on his deal, but obviously they never do that because duh, Jasmine. John thinks something’s fishy.
The little girl plays the record while John and Zed are still in the house, and her eyes get all gold and creepy. She’s going to kill us all, isn’t she. But when Zed stops the record she just falls asleep.
John goes…somewhere…and suddenly meets Anton the Soul Dealer. But not before passing his hand directly over some candles, just to prove that he’s a badass. John and Anton talk for a second, and then we hear creepy laughing. IT’S PAPA MIDNITE! John should have known he was behind this. Does he not read his own comic books?
Papa Midnite is obvs a legit necromancer, and John lets him know so. Some of Papa’s minions don’t like John questioning their boss and knock John out. He wakes up tied to a table in a warehouse, with only Papa Midnite nearby. He injects John with an anticoagulant and makes a deep gash in his arm. He says it should take 4 hours for John to bleed out. Fuuuuunnnnn. He’s going to find the record and come back to question John further before he dies if need be. He also leaves a bottle of Vitamin K nearby, with a super not-printed-out-from-Microsoft-Word-looking label attached. If John can get it, it will stop the bleeding.
Meanwhile, Papa Midnite’s goons bust into Jasmine’s home, demanding the record. Zed resists, telling them it’s dangerous, but Jasmine gives it up immediately. The goons touch the records with their bare hands without hesitation showing their stellar intelligence. They marvel over how cold it is, and the car freezes over. Geniuses.
We come back from commercial, and a rat is crawling on John’s torso. Come on, no self-respecting rat would crawl on a living being. Especially not Constantine—gross. A homeless guy wanders by but doesn’t help. He just steals John’s jacket and—IT’S MANNY! He still doesn’t help though. Manny’s a dick. He becomes the homeless guy again and tries to stab John, but it’s okay because Zed with a baseball bat to the rescue! She followed John by finding the St. Padua nail in Jasmine’s coat. She’s also pissed John didn’t share his plans with her. She frees him, and they drive to a music club.
Chas shows up at the club with OJ because someone has to be John’s dad. Everyone who was in the club is dead, but a deaf busboy tells them that Midnite’s goons played the record for everyone in the club so they killed themselves. It’s super lucky there was someone there who couldn’t hear. He seems pretty okay though for having just seen a hundred people kill themselves. Also apparently the goons weren’t dead. They just really REALLY want to play this record for everyone in earshot. They lamely find a new clue and head to a radio station, believing that the goons will play the record on air.
John puts in some earbuds to block out the sound with loud music and runs into the radio station, where the record is playing. Runs? Didn’t he just almost bleed out? Chainsmokers are immune to anemia? I guess it was magic orange juice. John fights some guys again (didn’t we decide he’s more of a priest or a mage type?) and his ear buds get pulled out. SO SURPRISED. John rolls around in pain but it’s okay—Papa Midnite with a shotgun to the rescue!
Papa Midnite kills the speakers in the station while Chas drives a car into a transformer to stop the transmission. Chas can come back from the dead, remember? Then John exorcises the record, sending it back to hell. No, literally. Like, it rips a hole in the floor all the way to hell.
They head back to see Jasmine and force Anton to rescind his deal with her. This will cause her husband’s cancer to come back, but at least she won’t get sent to hell. She’s not happy about it because hell is awesome. Meanwhile, Papa Midnite is pouting and burning John in effigy. Actually in voodoo doll, but whatever. I have a feeling it’s not the last we’ve seen of Midnite, considering he’s a major villain in Hellblazer. More voiceover and mysterious shit about Zed. Yay.