Papa Midnite

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Papa Midnite
Publication information
PublisherDC Comics
First appearanceHellblazer #1
Created byJamie Delano & John Ridgway
In-story information
Alter egoLinton Midnite
AbilitiesVoodoo

Papa Midnite is a fictional character in the Hellblazer series published by DC Comics' Vertigo imprint. Midnite is a vodun shaman and businessman, who has lived since the American Revolution. Midnite is both a sometime ally and enemy of John Constantine. He first appeared in Hellblazer #1.

Fictional character biography[edit]

Linton Midnite was born on the island of Jamaica along with his twin sister Luna in the 18th century. From an early age the two were taught the skills in Voodoo magic. The family later relocated to New York City where they took over the home of a white landlord rendering him catatonic and used him as a puppet to guns and other weapons.[1] However this all came to an end when a slave named Kofi planned to overthrow his masters and asked Midnite to create a spell that could make him bullet proof. The powder he gave him was fake and the rebellion was quickly quashed leaving hundreds of people dead. Kofi got revenge by forcing Midnite to decapitate his sister then cursed him with immortality for as long as white men ruled over black men on the American continent.[2] Midnite communed with vodun god Anansi the spider and put together a plan using Fortune the son of Kofi. However this plan was doomed to fail as Midnite hoped that by crushing the rebellion that this would lead to all the slaves rising up against their masters. When Fortune found out Midnite called upon Anansi to kill him. But Anansi turned on Midnite leaving him to burn at the stake. Fortune then took Midnite to the West Indies where he was forced into slavery himself.[3]

Over the next century he moved around a lot acquiring the heads of other "sisters". One was a Jamaican girl Cedilla– he convinced her brother, to kill her and sever her head so he could use her to gain information from Hell.[4]

By the 20th century he returned to New York where he opened the Midnight Club and began carving out his own criminal empire. In 1983 he tried to sell the "Ace of Winchesters" to John Constantine through a man named Zeerke but he raised the price, so Constantine stole it.[5] It was also revealed the Constantine had stolen $50 thousand from Papa Midnite in the past as well.[6]

Although the two had a turbulent relationship Midnite helped Constantine take out the demon Mnemoth. Midnite used magic combined with the electric chair from Sing-Sing to summon the demon into the body of Gary Lester, consuming itself.[7]

In the 90's Constantine returned to New York and Midnite used this opportunity to send his soul to Hell. While down there he found Cedilla and freed her from the spell trapping her in Hell. She traveled back to the Earthly realm and forced Midnite to throw himself off the Empire State Building.[8]

Being immortal he reformed himself over time, however, in the early 21st century he was haunted by the ghost of Fortune wanting revenge. At this time Constantine came to Midnite to ask for help in battling the "Shadow Dog" but he refused to assist.[9]

Papa Midnite attended the wedding of Constantine and Epiphany Greaves.[10]

The Hellblazer: Rebirth[edit]

Papa Midnite returns to the DC Universe in the comic book The Hellblazer: Rebirth that was part of the DC Rebirth, a relaunch to return famous DC stories and characters from before the New 52 back into the reboot. Papa Midnite was one of the few Hellblazer characters besides Constantine, Chas Chandler and Mercury to be included in the DC Universe.

Midnite later tracked down and tortured Constantine after he stole his "Sounding Skull", however Constantine managed to change his mind and help him battle the "Cult of the Cold Flame".

In other media[edit]

Film[edit]

The character Papa Midnite, portrayed by Djimon Hounsou, appears in the film Constantine. He is a former witch-doctor who once fought against Hell. After swearing an oath of neutrality — unless one side should tip the balance of power — he opened a nightclub to serve as neutral meeting ground for both sides of the war between Heaven and Hell.

Television[edit]

Papa Midnite appears in the TV series Constantine, portrayed by Michael James Shaw as the main antagonist in the series.[11][12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Papa Midnite issue 1
  2. ^ Papa Midnite issue 2
  3. ^ Papa Midnite issue 3
  4. ^ Hellblazer volume 1 #71
  5. ^ Hellblazer volume 1 #76
  6. ^ Hellblazer volume 1 #1
  7. ^ Hellblazer volume 1 #2
  8. ^ Hellblazer volume 1 #72-75
  9. ^ Papa Midnite issue 5
  10. ^ Hellblazer volume 1 #275
  11. ^ "Papa Midnite Is Constantine's TV Big Bad, Show Is Set In New York". Bleeding Cool.
  12. ^ "Exclusive: Shaw cast as Papa Midnite on 'Constantine'". USA Today.

External links[edit]