Preacher is one of my favorite comics of all time. I remember flipping through the first trade when I was just a lil’ 7th grader. My mom was doing book club or something and I often parked myself in front of the small comic book section at the old Barnes and Nobles in Campbell. Up to this point in my life the most risqué thing I had seen in comics was Psylocke in a bathing suit. Preacher was dark and strange and honestly too much for my young brain to handle. Swearing, blood everywhere, references to quiche, I figured I would pick it up again when it didn’t feel so dangerous. I finally committed to the series around my junior year of high school. My friends read it too. The trade paperbacks exchanged hands like I imagine the early dorks of God passed around the Gospels. Shit was exciting, smart, funny, and weird. Like the Gospels!
So yes, Preacher had it all. Smarmy dickhead angels, the friendly ghost of John Wayne, Southern maniacs that would make Flannery O’Connor proud, vampires, the inbred diaper wearing descendent of Jesus Christ, the Saint of Killers, a showdown in Monument Valley, and Arseface. It’s vulgar and powerful and ultimately one of the sweetest and most strangely believable love stories I’ve ever come across. It’s also a thinly veiled handjob to the chaotic mythology of America from a mad Irishman who tackles America with the sentimentality of a person whose formative years were spent watching Westerns. Now the big news is that “funny man” Seth Rogen is bringing Preacher to the small screen. I wanted to give Big Seth some tips for the no doubt complicated adaptation process. Here goes.
Dear Seth Rogen,
Don’t listen to the haters, Seth! You are the guy who brought this wonderful series out of purgatory (haha!) so in my eyes you have earned the right to play the titular hero! You may not be quite as tall or ruggedly handsome or tough or black haired or Texan as Jesse Custer, but hey, that’s what special effects are for.
Which leads me to James Franco as Cassidy. This could be the role that Franco is remembered for, and that’s saying something, because he’s basically great in everything he’s ever done (except that boring movie about the rocks that trapped him). I’ve never heard it, but I assume Franco can do a really bad ass Irish brogue. The fact that he is more conventionally handsome than you will make the “love” triangle all the more dramatic. LOOK: It is the role he was born to play!
Everyone is going to try to force you to cast Jonah Hill as Arseface. I think that would be a mistake. I haven’t really figured out who should play Arseface, but it is kind of clear that Jonah Hill would be a mistake (playing Arseface, that is). This would be funny doe: You can cut out the second half of Gone to Texas. It is forgettable and nobody really likes that storyline.
Jason Segel should play the Messiah. My friend Daniela suggested this, and I think it’s a damn good idea! It could be the perfect way for him to stretch his acting wings after all those years of being a huge guy married to the flute girl from American Pie.
I figured it out. Jonah Hill as Herr Starr. Jonah Hill is an Oscar Nominated actor. He has the gravitas to pull off this most brilliant of antagonists. Holy shit, for real though: CHRISTOPH WALTZ as Herr Starr. Too perfect. Jonah Hill can be recast or destroyed! John Wayne should be really obviously a ghost. Usually glowing, I mean. I’d also like it (but it’s not that important) that Danny McBride play John Wayne but that is never officially revealed in the credits. A little mystery is a good thing during times like these (recession).
Just like similar shows Dexter or Psyche, John Custer should be featured in most of the flashbacks, and played by you, Seth Rogen. Only with a different haircut.
Keep all the supplemental storylines from the assorted mini-series and one-shots. You need to make this show go on as long as possible. The only things to drop would be the aforementioned San Francisco plotline. You could probably even extend the Jody and TC storyline tenfold. Those guys are a hoot.
Noomi Rapace as Amy. If that is her name…I don’t remember. Tulip’s friend. Man, that scene were she was talking to the castrated bartender was quite good! This is a good time to cast someone outside your typical stable of actors. She was cool in Prometheus!
Bad Religion should do the theme song. You know, kind of an inside joke cause of religion and stuff? Merzbow can do the score. No inside joke there, just think that would be weird. Cast an unknown for Tulip. No more Apatow Universe Nepotism! On the other hand, if Emma Watson is willing, that would be cool, because it would be funny to see Hermione all shooting people up. Man, violence really is embedded in our culture, huh?
The Saint of Killers should either talk like Batman or Bane. You choose. I have faith in you.
It would also be funny if The Walking Dead was on the background when the main characters are at a diner or something and they always pause to watch it and are (somewhat) unimpressed. Kind of a new twist on in-house advertising.
When you find yourself at a crossroads and you aren’t sure what to do, just ask yourself “What would Kevin Smith do?” and then do the opposite of that thing. Do the opposite as hard as you can. That’s all I’ve got for now. Good luck Seth and keep the fire burning!