Old 11-18-2013, 01:01 AM
AMC Bringing Preacher to TV

With the loss of Breaking Bad and soon Mad Men, AMC is looking at a big hole in their schedule, one that shows like The Killing and Low Winter Sun haven't quite been able to fill. While they have the ratings juggernaut that is The Walking Dead, they still need something that will be a buzz show, that will get a ton of attention and make a cultural impact. They're betting that show will be Preacher.

Sources tell me that the network has ordered a pilot based on the classic Vertigo comic by Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon. In the comic Jesse Custer is a small town preacher who is torn by booze and sin and who finds himself the vessel for a strange entity - the child of a mating between an angel and a demon. Filled with immense power, including The Word of God, which makes anyone do whatever he says, Jesse goes hunting for the Lord Almighty, who has abandoned creation. He aims to make him pay for leaving his children behind. Joining Jesse on his journey is his ex-girlfriend Tulip, who is now a hit woman, and a hundred year old Irish vampire named Cassidy. Along the way they battle secret religious commandoes, the retarded descendent of Christ, a guy who fucks meat and even each other.

The comic is profane and blasphemous, and if AMC takes it to series they're showing a commitment to upping the R-rated quality of what we've seen on The Walking Dead. It isn't so much that Preacher is hyper-violent - although it can be - but rather that it tackles hot-button religious issues with all the subtlety and grace of a loud wet fart in church.

Preacher has been out in the world of almost getting adapted for a while; it all started back in 1998 when Garth Ennis wrote a draft of a script and Kevin Smith tried to get Harvey Weinstein to make it. Along the way we've seen people like Rachel Talaly, DJ Caruso and Sam Mendes attached to direct. I don't know who is attached to the TV series, but I hear the names are big and impressive.

The sprawling, road trip nature of the comic lends itself to TV more than movies in my opinion. I think AMC will take the show right to the edge (if it goes to series), and I wouldn't be shocked to discover they shoot alternate, crazier versions for Netflix and home video. And of course going to series is the next big hump; this property has been floundering in adaptation for a lot of years, and there's no guarantee this version will get any farther than previous ones.
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Old 11-18-2013, 08:48 PM


I hope they do it right too because its a really good graphic novel series and I think a lot of folks will dig it.

The casting choices should be interesting.
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Old 11-19-2013, 05:21 AM
No way they pull this off, especially if that fuckface Rogan is involved in any way.
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Old 11-19-2013, 10:22 AM
apparently according to creator garth ennis rogan is the only one to get the tone right for preacher

reports also say Garth is an active consultant
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Old 11-24-2013, 11:53 PM
One of the things I keep waiting for, in comics, is for something highly controversial to be adapted and then, become a social lightning rod. Adapting preacher is not for those with queasy stomachs, because the subject material is apt to hit a wee bit too close to home. I read the graphic novels myself, and I found it to be extremely sacriligeous and straight out fun, but I also know there is a huge segment of humanity who would not get the joke.
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Old 11-25-2013, 02:50 AM
There's a problem here. Preacher is a perfect series, absolutely perfect in almost every way (I say almost 'cuz I still don't like the bit about Jesse's mom in the "Salvation" storyline, but whatevs), which makes series adaptation impossible.

I never read the Walking Dead comic but I know a few folks who did, and almost immediately after the series started they were complaining about how it deviated. Well, I thought, that's kinda necessary isn't it? Not because of the extreme graphicness of the comic being toned down for basic cable, but because if it stays exactly true to the comic then everyone can very easily find out what's gonna happen. That's not so much of a concern with movies, of course, since the thing is over in two hours, but it is with serialized television.

What if everyone catches the first few episodes and absolutely loves them? If there had existed a comic book version of Breaking Bad out there, what fan wouldn't have read the whole thing a few episodes into the series, and thus had the whole thing ruined? Even I would have broken down and done it, and I'm the most spoiler-phobic guy I know. When you become that invested in a story it's almost impossible to not want more, and if Preacher is done right it should be that kind of show. The kind people invest in, because that's what the comic was. So two or three episodes in (whenever Cassidy chomps into dude's neck, probably) people are gonna fall in love with it and immediately read the comics. Boom, entire show ruined. Sure there are faithful fans such as myself who will watch it no matter what, but to Joe Dumbass the typical TV viewer it's gonna be all "well I already know what happens durrr, why should I keep watching it durrrrr?" Dumbass. The only way to truly get around this is to do what they did with Walking Dead, which is change things as you go to keep the viewer surprised and establish that things are going to go differently.

They cannot do that with Preacher. To change the story would be to destroy it. Okay not necessarily the story, but the ending. Jesse, Cass, Tulip, the Saint, and God, changing those character's ultimate fates would be unacceptable, would fundamentally alter the story. And the show will never become a hit with Joe Dumbass able to learn said fates with a quick google. If the show doesn't become a hit, it doesn't last, and if it doesn't last then it doesn't get done right. I just don't think this will end well, any way about it. I'll damn sure watch it though, that's for sure.

I used to fantasy cast Preacher all the time, back in the day when Wizard magazine used to cast movies like Avengers and it all seemed like a far-away daydream that these types of things might someday get made. I used to think Matt Dillon would've been a good Jesse. The look is exactly right, anyway, and while I'm not sure about his acting abilities Jesse should be the least challenging role acting-wise. Cassidy was always Ewan McGregor in my mind but he's a little old now. Maybe Colin Farrell. We'd have to color his hair a little but other than that, he's got the right screen presence and even the accent. Fuck yeah, actually, now that I think about it Colin Farrell would be perfect. That obviously won't happen with a TV show, but that's why it's "fantasy" casting. The Saint was once Kris Kristofferson (picture him from the first two Blade movies, just in a trenchcoat), but he's like fuckin eighty now so that won't work. Herr Starr should be that dude from Inglorious Bastards, I guess. Used to be Jurgen Prochnow but again, age.

Hey, you know who'd make a good Jesse? Channing Tatum. Yeah, that's right, I said it. I don't understand why everyone loves to bag on that dude so much, I think he's pretty decent. Like Tulip said Jesse has to be "big, and strong, and good, all at once." Tatum can pull that shit off easy. Slap the collar on him, put a cigarette in his mouth, and boom:

Tell me that isn't Jesse Custer.

Anyway, I sidetracked myself there for a second. A tv series would indeed be the best way to do this, as a movie is too short and a lot would have to be left out, but I'm worried. Worried that they're gonna change it. Worried that if they don't, it won't succeed. The ending of the story and the characterization of God is probably one of the most blasphemous things ever written, and a basic cable network is gonna get all wishy-washy frigid-footed when the reality of that hits home. That worries me most of all, that they'll get us halfway there and then bail out because of how many Christians it would piss off (which is to say, ALL OF THEM). These types of reports have been coming and going for years though, so I'll believe this when I see it on my screen and not one minute sooner.

EDIT: Holy shit I just thought of this, fuckin Bryan Cranston as The Saint. Grow his hair out and yeeeaaahhh, perfect. Picture him using his Heisenberg voice and stare standing in the middle of a mushroom cloud saying "not enough gun." Yeeeaaahhh.

Last edited by Chillingworth; 11-25-2013 at 03:04 AM..
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Old 11-25-2013, 03:03 AM
Originally Posted by Chillingworth View Post

Tell me that isn't Jesse Custer.
OK: That isn't Jesse Custer. I'm tellin' you, right now. That is NOT Jesse Custer. At all.

As for the show on AMC... I doubt it's going to happen. I think the comic is great (not nearly even close to perfect), with my biggest love being the take on God and His attitude. It's fucking hilarious.
I have a feeling if it was to be adapted to AMC, it would go through some rather significant changes. Finding the balance between keeping true to the tone of the original, not pissing off the comic fanbase, yet also making it accessible to a larger fresh/new audience would be a difficult trick to pull off.
I'm not saying it can't be done, but damn it would be hard.

In all honesty, I say they shouldn't attempt the series on network. Keep it on Showtime or HBO or Cinemax and I think it would have a chance.
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Old 11-30-2013, 12:39 AM
I tried reading the comic. I thought it was okay at first, but it was trying way too hard to be as grotesque as possible, almost to the point of parody. I lost interest with the third TBP.
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