Why Constantine’s name is pronounced differently in The Sandman

Netflix’s Next TV Adaptation Of DC’s Beloved Comic Book Series The sand man will use the comic book-accurate pronunciation of the Constantine surname – and creator Neil Gaiman took the time to clear up any confusion fans of other on-screen DC projects might have.

by Netflix The sand man stars Jenna Coleman as Johanna Constantine, an occult detective and relative of John Constantine. Over the years, John Constantine’s name has been commonly pronounced as “Constan-TEEN”, including in many official DC adaptations. In the original comics, however, the Hellblazer’s last name is actually pronounced “Constan-TYNE”. (As John himself once said, it rhymes with “good”.)

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Over the past month Sand seller interview with the cast, Johanna’s last name was consistently pronounced as “Constan-TYNE”, consistent with the original comics. More recently, a fan of shows like NBC Constantine and the CWs Legends of tomorrow — which starred Matt Ryan as John Constantine (pronounced CONSTAN-TEEN) — reached out to Gaiman on Tumblr, raising the question of how the name is supposed to be pronounced.

“Alan Moore named and co-created the character, and that’s how he pronounced it,” Gaiman replied, referring to the “Constan-TYNE” pronunciation. “And that’s how it was pronounced in the comic that it first appeared in,” the author continued, referring to 1985. Swamp Thing #37.

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“Consider Us Even, John Constan-Tyne”

Following its debut in Swamp Thing #37, John Constantine became hellblazer, which would become a trademark of DC’s now-defunct Vertigo Comics imprint. Since then, the character has been adapted for the screen numerous times, starting with the 2005 film Constantine, with Keanu Reeves in the title role. The aforementioned Ryan reprized the role for the NBC series Constantinelater picking it up as part of the Arrowverse, including becoming a series regular on DC’s Legends of Tomorrow. Ryan has also voiced Constantine in various animated projects.


In all of these shows and movies, the character’s name was pronounced “Constan-TEEN”. Interestingly enough, however, the comic’s accurate pronunciation was referenced during the Arrowverse’s “Crisis on Infinite Earths” crossover event, which saw Ryan’s Constantine come face-to-face with Tom Ellis’ Lucifer, the latter originally being a Sand seller character. During their brief encounter, Lucifer teasingly pronounces John’s last name as “Constan-TYNE”, with the Hellblazer quickly correcting him.

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Speaking of Sand seller characters, Lady Johanna Constantine was originally introduced as John’s ancestor in the 1990s Sand seller #13. In the upcoming Netflix series, Coleman portrays two versions of the character – one that lives in the 18th century and another that exists in the present day, the latter serving as a stand-in for John, who played a big role in 1989’s. Sand seller #3.

Gaiman previously explained the decision to omit John from Netflix The sand man. “The rights situation with John is certainly circumscribed right now,” he said, alluding to the fact that there are other on-screen projects for John at the moment. “But the plan for Lady Johanna and Joanna to be in the story and played by the same person was there from the start. It felt more orderly. So it worked.”


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The sand man premieres Friday, August 5 on Netflix.

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