See our recap of Part 1 for a short glossary of new characters, monsters
and evil organizations in this storyline.
When we last saw John Constantine, he was dying of a gunshot wound in a tunnel beneath a Mexican convent, and being stalked by a hungry invunche.
Above ground, Chas and Hugo are waiting for Anne-Marie and John. Anne-Marie surfaces and hands baby Diego off to his father, Hugo. When Chas asks, “Where’s John?” Anne-Marie only says, “I’m sorry, Chas.”
With few options and no time, Constantine makes a rash decision to save himself: he presses the amulet of Pazuzu into the flesh of his forearm, and with a brief incantation invites the Assyrian demon king in. Pazuzu possesses John’s body, heals the gaping bullet wound, and frightens away the attacking invunche. As the invunche retreats, Manny appears, and he is furious. “Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of the Devil! Ye cannot have part in the Lord’s table and the table of the Devil!” John is meant to be helping Heaven in the fight against the Rising Darkness in order to gain salvation, but as an angel, Manny is disgusted by John’s choice and says, “It’s not that I can’t help you, John. I won’t.”
The Crusader Van
Meanwhile, Zed, now captured by the Resurrection Crusade, is having a vision of Sister Anne-Marie in tormented prayer. She awakens to find herself in the back of a van, next to the plastic-wrapped dead body of Crusade member Eddie. The surviving Crusader is driving. Zed starts thrashing against the back door of the van, and when Crusader pulls over to sedate her, she manages to kick him to the ground and inject him with his own syringe. She leaves him barely conscious on the side of the road along with Eddie’s corpse and speeds off.
At the convent, John and Chas discuss the situation. John believes he has a few days before Pazuzu takes him over permanently, and they must find a way to exorcise the demon king before that happens. If they fail, John tells Chas he will have to kill John. But Pazuzu is strong—the demon takes over and throws Chas across the corridor, then runs off into the night. Chas calls Zed to enlist her help. He is unaware of Zed’s kidnapping and subsequent escape, and she chooses not to fill him in on what she’s been up to while Chas and John have been in Mexico. She agrees to come, saying, “hopefully we can find him before he hurts someone else.”
Cut to Constantine awakening in an alley, surrounded by the bodies of five Mexican gang members—they have been torn to shreds. As he stands, surveying the carnage, the police move in and take him into custody.
Palacio de los Santos Prison
A barrister from the British consulate, Stanley Gibson, meets with John in prison. It will take some time before there is anything the lawyer can do to get John out of jail, but time is something John doesn’t have. Constantine flips out on Gibson and is dragged away. Meanwhile, Chas picks up Zed, and she suggests enlisting Anne-Marie to help find John:
Zed: “Hey—Anne-Marie. She found him before using bilocation. She could do it again.”
Chas: “I’m not sure that’s an option, given she just shot him.”
Zed: “It will be when I’m done with her.”
The prison is filled with other members of Santa Muerte, the gang John/Pazuzu’s victims belonged to. John introduces himself to Julio (Efren Ramirez), as he seems to be the prison procurement specialist, and after giving Julio the barrister’s wallet is led to the prison chapel to search for exorcism tools. On the way, Julio turns into Manny for a while. It seems like Manny is softening up a little after his initial rage about John’s possession—and Heaven still needs his help. “There aren’t many like you down here, John.”
Chas and Zed find Anne-Marie in solitary prayer at the convent.
Chas: “John isn’t dead.”
Chas: “He cast a demon into himself.”
Annie: “Pazuzu. It’s not a demon, it’s a demon king.”
Chas: “He’s trying to fight it, but if we don’t find him fast—”
Annie: “That selfish wanker!”
Zed: “Selfish? You’re the one who put a bullet in his chest. He’s just trying to save his life.”
Annie: “While risking the lives of everyone around him, including yours.”
Zed convinces her that John’s doing more for the fight against the Rising Darkness than the Church has for centuries: “You kneel here night after night, hoping against hope that Heaven hears your words. Well guess what? John has Heaven on speed dial.” Annie agrees to use her bilocation abilities to find John.
Stanley the barrister enters his consulate office to find a creepy guy named Vicente, who represents the Brujeria, waiting there for him. Stanley and Vicente are in cahoots to keep Constantine locked up, but unfortunately for Stanley his usefulness to Vicente seems to be at an end, at least as a living person. Vicente unlocks his jaw and eats him.
Capilla de la Esperanza
In the prison chapel with Julio, John is looking for religious artifacts or anything else he might be able to use to self-exorcise Pazuzu. Julio double-crosses John, though, and locks him in the chapel with three Santa Muerte members intent on revenge. Perhaps they have not given much thought to just how John destroyed five of their brothers bare-handed last night—and those guys had guns. The gangbangers don’t even land a single punch before they are desperately pounding at the door to escape. They never stood a chance. The dead gang member count quickly goes up to eight.
El Campo de Prisión
John awakens from his demonic berserkering in the prison yard, surrounded by the other inmates. He jumps up and slams Julio into a fence. A terrified Julio says he had no choice: “they run this place.” John bellows to Julio and all of the other prisoners, “Now I run this place! Now sod off!” The other inmates scurry away. Julio cowers before Constantine, promising to do whatever he says, when Sister Anne-Marie appears and walks straight through him.
Anne-Marie makes it clear she only promised to find John for his friends, and does not intend to offer further help beyond praying for him. She says goodbye and disapparates.
Chas and Zed arrive outside the prison yard. Zed grew up in a Mexican prison town, and explains that she knows just how they work and how to get inside as she removes her bra and knots her top. She joins a group of prostitutes at the prison yard gates and, with a bribe for the guard, is let in for a conjugal visit. Chas follows, gaining entry by picking a fight with the same guard, thereby getting beaten and dragged inside.
El Cuarto Conyugal
Zed meets John inside a conjugal visitation room. He is only able to keep Pazuzu from jumping her due to her not being a threat, but he knows he can’t keep control much longer. Anne-Marie unexpectedly shows up, fresh clothes for John and Zed in hand. As a woman of the Cloth, she is allowed into the prison to offer spiritual guidance. Although she’s changed her mind about helping, she continues to have a lot of attitude for a nun who just shot someone at point-blank range. But Zed knows from her visions that Annie is in emotional turmoil—she has decided to try to help with the exorcism, but both her faith and confidence are shaken. She and Zed talk while Zed changes from her hooker ensemble into a nun’s habit. “Zed, if we make it through this, you should leave him and never look back. I wish someone had given me that advice.”
Vicente, the snakey guy who works for the Brujeria, shows up at the prison wearing the body of Stanley Gibson, Esq. of the British Consulate. Once inside, his face turns into a mass of serpents.
La Sala de Gimnasia
Constantine is now in the exercise hall of the prison. Chas and Zed tie him to a weightlifting bench. Arrangements have been made so that they will not be disturbed, and Annie starts the exorcism. Chas stands by with a phurba, a Tibetan ceremonial three-sided stake, in case John needs to be killed—although he has made it clear he has no intention of using it. The rite is not going well. Pazuzu is in deep. There is a disturbance in the hallway, and Snake Guy enters. Constantine tells him to identify himself, and we learn that he is the Trickster—the Tempter—the Original Serpent—the snake who tempted Eve to eat from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil in the Garden of Eden. Like Lamashtu, the Serpent has been recruited by the Brujeria. The Brujeria released him to rain darkness down on the world, and although he was sent to kill John, he now sees Pazuzu in the body of Constantine as a great potential ally.
John begs Annie to take the phurba and kill him before this can happen. Chas attacks, but is killed by the Serpent. Anne-Marie, rather than killing John, instead turns and plunges the knife into Vicente the Serpent’s back. He collapses into a swarm of snakes.
Now in the prison infirmary/morgue, John’s strapped to a gurney. Chas is in a body bag on the other side of the room, and wakes up—“it’s hot as hell in these things.” (Thrashing body bags are kind of a theme on this show.) Annie suggests they try to get John back to Jasper’s—maybe the occult power of the millhouse will help with the exorcism. To buy John some time, they enlist Julio to collect all the heroin and other drugs he can in order to sedate Pazuzu for long enough to get back to Atlanta.
Annie: Are you sure you can do this?
John: If there’s anything I’ve learned in the last 48 hours, it’s this demon needs me alive.
Annie: And if you’re wrong?
John: Well, then I’ll go out riding the world’s greatest high—with my first love at my side. There are worse ways to meet your Maker, eh?
Julio cooks up the drugs and handles the injection. The others change costumes, with Chas, Annie and Constantine disguising themselves as medical personnel and a dead body, respectively. (Zed has already left the prison during the kerfuffle kicked up by the Serpent’s arrival.) As relatively easy as it seems to be to get in and out of this prison, they hit a snag when the guard they need to get by in order to leave is the one whose nose Chas broke on his way in. Anne-Marie pulls a neat bilocation trick: she holds her breath as if going underwater, and appears across the street from the prison, unclothed and hollering for help in an American accent. This draws attention away from the departing gurney. While the guard stares transfixed at the hollering naked lady, the three of them make it into the car Zed has brought around and speed off, and naked American Annie vanishes.
Back at Jasper’s, they all start again with the exorcism process. At least now they have all the occult artifacts they might need close at hand. While Chas sets up a cot, Zed and Annie talk while collecting religious icons. Both Zed and Annie have empathic powers, and Annie realizes that something bad happened to Zed while John was away.
Although they have a recording of John reciting exorcism rites in a variety of languages, John knows that just a tape of a wanker like himself will not be enough to do the job on a demon king. As a person of faith, Anne-Marie will have to perform the rite. Although Roman Catholic doctrine would not usually allow for a novice, let alone a woman, to perform an exorcism, there is an exception for those who have experienced a divine epiphany, and Annie’s experience at Newcastle was only one of the times she’s been face to face with real live demons—she’s seen proof of Hell’s existence.
The rite still goes badly, though—The lights go out, books fly from the shelves, and Constantine thrashes and levitates. Sister Anne-Marie cannot keep control over the situation, especially when Pazuzu starts talking to each of them about how lame and weak they all are. (We wonder if Chas happened to notice that the demon called Zed “Mary.”) But Zed helps her through it—Annie is not only wracked with guilt for having shot John, but for her hand in creating the mage John Constantine, strapped to a bed yet hovering in the air before her. After all, it was Anne-Marie who first introduced the adolescent John to the dark arts. Zed helps her let go of the contrition of twenty years:
Annie: “I can’t save him!”
Zed: “I saw a vision—your hatred and your rage. You make your own prison. The ritual needs for you to believe that John can be saved. You need to find a way to forgive.”
John/Pazuzu: “Crawl back to your convent, you craven whore, where you think you’re safe!”
Annie: “I have forgiven him, I swear.”
Zed: “Not him—you. You have to forgive yourself. […] Whatever damage he’s done, whoever he’s hurt, it was never because of you. But if John dies and this demon is released, that failure will be yours, Anne-Marie.”
Annie gets her groove back. Pazuzu is finally cast out, and the mark of the demon’s amulet disappears from John’s arm. As he is being released from his restraints, John looks up to see that Manny has been observing from the upstairs walkway.
As Annie prepares to leave, she tells Zed that she needs to tell John about what happened with the Crusade, and Zed says she may be right. As things appear to be getting back to normal at the millhouse, John reminds his friends that this is only the beginning.