‘DC’s Legends of Tomorrow’ Star Matt Ryan Explains Why It Was Time to Say Goodbye to Constantine

Matt Ryan has played John Constantine for almost seven years now, six on The CW‘s Arrowverse. But he and the producers of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow have decided that it’s time for him to hang up his trench coat. At least, for the time being.

Matt Ryan, who plays John Constantine, onstage at San Diego Comic-Con in 2014.
Matt Ryan | Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images

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Why is Constantine leaving ‘DC’s Legends of Tomorrow’?

Ryan and producers decided it was time for Constantine to part with the Legends before filming season 6. And for Ryan, it felt like the perfect time to say goodbye to John Constantine for the foreseeable future. 

In talking with TVLine, Ryan said, “There was only so much that we could ever do with him on Legends. It almost felt like we were on borrowed time at some point, because you don’t want to push a character like this too far into a show and take him away from his roots too much. So it felt right, to be honest with you, that this was the right time for him to leave the show, and for me to move on to something else and find a new challenge as well.”

Ryan felt as if he had to do right by this character he has played for so many years. He stated, “I absolutely adore the character, and he taught me so much, but I felt that I had an obligation to him and the fans of the original Hellblazer to at least try, within the context of the show, to be somewhat true [to the comics character].”

John Constantine is a character destined to be lonely and grumpy, which had changed a bit in the past couple of seasons of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow.

What will Constantine’s fate be when ‘DC’s Legends of Tomorrow’ Season 6 comes to an end?

Over the course of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Constantine made new friends, became a part of a group of superheroes, and fell in love. All of these things are very unlike Constantine’s character.

While his storyline was becoming more positive and light, producers and Ryan realized that Constantine is not made to have a happy life. That’s why his character took a disastrous turn in recent episodes. Constantine started drinking a dangerous potion that gave him dark powers, eventually reverting to his selfish self.

In the Aug. 29th episode, “There Will Be Brood,” Constantine, desperate to get his magic back permanently, hurt those around him. In the end, he was betrayed by Bishop, costing him his life. 

With only the season finale of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow to go, Constantine can’t indeed be dead, right? That would be too easy of an ending for John. But fans will have to wait and see when the finale, “The Fungus Amongus,” premieres on Sept. 5 at 8/7c.

What’s next for Matt Ryan?

While DC’s Legends of Tomorrow might be saying goodbye to John Constantine, the show refuses to part with Matt Ryan.

Ryan and producers announced that he would return in DC’s Legends of Tomorrow Season 7 as a new character, Dr. Gwyn Davies. Dr. Davies is an eccentric scientist from the early 20th century. He will join the Legends as the team’s only hope in what is sure to be another crazy season. There is no explanation for why he might look like the Legends’ old friend Constantine.

Of course, there is still a glimmer of hope that Constantine will return to the Arrowverse in the near future. But, for now, fans will have to say their goodbyes and say hello to Dr. Davies.