Warning: The following contains spoilers for Sunday’s Legends of Tomorrow. Proceed at your own risk!
Did John Constantine just meet his end during the penultimate episode of Legends of Tomorrow Season 6? As previously announced, the character will be leaving the series, with his portrayer Matt Ryan taking on a new role next season, and this Sunday’s episode sure felt like a goodbye.
In the hour, Constantine and Bishop discovered that the Fountain of Imperium is actually an alien being that saved Spooner and then deposited her in the future after her mother was killed by oilmen. But when Constantine used Spooner’s blood to unlock the fountain, Bishop revealed that he had secretly injected deadly poison into the serum he’d given Constantine to trick the fountain into thinking he was worthy. With Constantine and the fountain now linked, Bishop can destroy the fountain, which protects Earth from invasive alien species, and then, ultimately, end the human planet, the baddie explained.
As the poison overtook him, a dying Constantine told Astra that he was all out of tricks. “You are my greatest failure and my biggest accomplishment,” he said, the sounds of the fountain’s screams filling him. “I killed it, Astra,” he added solemnly. The significance of Constantine’s possible last words being directed to Astra isn’t lost on his portrayer.
“It’s something that we really wanted to show, the relationship with Astra,” Ryan tells TVLine. “It was really important to have a moment between those two, I felt. This chapter, in a way, of John has been about the Astra problem, the girl he condemned to Hell, and then was seeking redemption from… That relationship between the two of them really needed some kind of finality.”
“It gets me a little bit, emotionally, now because it’s almost like a father-daughter relationship, but it’s much more than that,” Ryan continues. “I think the good thing about John leaving, as well, is what it leaves other characters with. Astra now needs to step out on her own, away from her mentor, and those things are really interesting. It was easy to play in a way, because after seven years of playing this character, he’s under your skin. So it was lovely that the writers actually really paid attention to giving him those emotional moments.”
But will John’s girlfriend Zari get a similar moment of goodbye, if not closure, in next Sunday’s finale? Ryan is keeping mum about what to expect, although The CW did release photos of him and Tala Ashe sharing a scene in the season ender. “What’s interesting is that the relationship with Astra and Zari, there’s a question like, ‘Which one would he talk to last?’ Would it be Astra, or would it be Zari, the love of his life that he met and [fell] in love with and tried to change himself for the better [for]? Or the person that he condemned to Hell and then ultimately found redemption from? I think it’s fitting that it’s Astra that he has that conversation with,” Ryan says, adding he doesn’t want “to say anything more about the season finale because I think it should remain a mystery in the way that a lot of what John does and why he does it is a mystery.”
Regardless of what happens in the next episode, it’s pretty much a given that the Constantine and Zari romance is going to be over if the master of the dark arts is no longer part of the show. “That relationship, hopefully, [for] the character of Zari, that carries on then for her,” Ryan says. “Hopefully, for the audience, the payoff [at] the end of the season is as satisfying as it was for me playing it in terms of John’s relationship with everyone on the show, and it’s certainly something that I’ll miss, playing those relationships [with] those actors as John.”
As for how John’s arc wraps up, “all I can say is that the way that the writers constructed John’s exit was very John Constantine,” Ryan teases.
The actor is also not ruling out the possibility that he’ll put that infamous trenchcoat back on down the road. “John Constantine is just such a f—king cool character, and I don’t mean cool as in, like, cool. As an actor, as a human being, he has so many levels to me and so many struggles and human problems that [are] wonderful in the context of the superhero world,” Ryan raves. “And I’ve learned from playing John, you never say never. Maybe when I’m in my eighties, and they’re doing the 150th crossover of whatever, and they need multiverse John to come back, then maybe I’ll turn up, with a walking stick and an old cigarette or something as John Constantine. But it’s great to have explored him on Legends over this time.”
Legends fans, what did you think of the episode? Hit the comments with your thoughts!