Beleaguered with setup though Season 4 has been, Arrow managed to pull off the impossible in resurrecting Matt Ryan’s Constantine for an upcoming crossover. We saw the demon-fighting detective stamp out his mark in the first trailer, while the first official “Haunted” photo has emerged, along with some surprising intel on his appearance.

TVInsider snagged the first photo of the November 4 appearance, which sees Oliver calling on the comic exorcist to aid in restoring Sara to something resembling her former self (and just in time for Legends of Tomorrow, wouldn’t you know it). In addition to the photo below, the synopsis for the hour alludes to a surprising history between Oliver and Constantine:

Arrow Constantine Crossover Photo Details
Cate Cameron/The CW

MATT RYAN REPRISES HIS ROLE AS JOHN CONSTANTINE ON ARROW — When things take a turn for the worse with Sara (guest star Caity Lotz), Oliver (Stephen Amell) calls in a favor from an old friend who deals in the mystical, John Constantine (guest star Matt Ryan). John Badham directed the episode written by Brian Ford Sullivan & Oscar Balderrama

Moreover, Ryan himself spoke to TVGuide of the appearance, challenging that synopsis somewhat:

They moved heaven and earth to get me here. I was starting rehearsals for a play with Keira Knightley in New York on the first of September. And originally, where the episode sat in the season, I wouldn’t have been able to do it because of my schedule. But everybody just pulled together and moved some things around and really made it work.

There is not much that I can say about the plot. Three is a little history between [John and Oliver] … I would not say that they are friends. I would say they are acquaintances who have a past. John owes him.

John knows that there are worlds beyond our world, and he is used to dealing with these things on a day-to-day basis. So bringing him into a scenario with a group of people who have never witnessed anything like this is just fascinating. And John is an arrogant bugger too, so they are a little bit thrown off by him. you know, he’s the guy who will give the finger to the devil. So you have this arrogant, trench-coat wearing guy … and Oliver queen. it’s great!

It’s certainly of interest to ponder a “history” between the pair, given what we know of Constantine’s one-off appearance, and Oliver’s fairly rigid history from flashbacks timelines to Season 1. One imagines Oliver will have some explanation as to where and when he encountered the man, but could that imply Constantine figuring in somehow to a future flashback? Could John have found himself on Lian Yu for Oliver’s current island predicament?

We’ll find out for ourselves with November 4 installment “Haunted,” preceded by next Wednesday’s “Beyond Redemption.” Does Constantine look and sound like he’ll fit in just fine with Arrow?

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