For quite awhile now I’ve been a firm believer that if Image comics ever decides to enter the film and television race with Marvel and DC, that it would be over for everyone. Image comics has produced some of the most critically acclaimed and talked about stories amongst comic book readers in decades. Image is home to hits like Rat Queens, Saga, Sex Criminals, and the amazing Wicked + Divine. Wicked + Divine is one of the two comics that were my first introductions to Image and the interesting and oftentimes unique stories that they tell. Ever since I read Wicked + Divine I’ve had a desire to see this insanely unique and fun story make the leap from comic to live action. The story features a diverse and amazing cast of characters that would translate extremely well into a live action television show on HBO or Netflix.
Antonia Thomas as Laura Wilson
Laura Wilson is the lead protagonist in The Wicked + Divine. she is a huge fan of the Pantheon and borderline obsessed. By the end of 2013, Laura had seen most of the current resurgence’s shows. Shes brave and quick-witted and intensely defends the Pantheon especially the 2010’s resurgence. Just like any fan, when Laura meets the Gods she is insanely nervous, but tries her best to hide it. Laura’s first introduction into the world of the Pantheon is when she meets her first God Lucifer, or Luci as we come to call. Laura is supposed to be a teenager and usually I’m a huge proponent of allowing teens to play teens, but the idea of Antonia Thomas playing Laura was too much to let go of. I’ve been a fan since the first time I saw her the BBC hit Misfits. Antonia can perfectly weave in the vulnerability and excitement that is required to play Laura, while also perfectly conveying the journey of self discovery that Laura soon finds herself going through.
Evan Rachel Wood as Eleanor “Luci” Rigby
When I first picked up The Wicked + Divine I was quickly drawn to the character of Luci who would actually end up becoming one of my favorite characters. Luci was such a fun and devil-may-care type character which is ironic considering she is the incarnation of Lucifer. Luci is extremely sarcastic, snide, and fun-loving, and self admittedly attention seeking. Luci lives for four things: cocaine, sex, cigarettes, and coffee and not necessarily in that particular order. She has a larger than life personality, and she is the first god that Laura Wilson actually meets, and in this aspect is her introduction into the world of Gods and monsters. Luci’s real name as I’m sure many of you Beatles fans have already guessed by now is an allusion to the Beatles song in which her parents, who were fans, drew inspiration from. The entire time I was reading the comic, I kept picturing Evan Rachel Wood with the short blonde hair slicked back and a badass devil-may-care attitude. I’ve been a fan of Evan’s for years and its her True Blood character Queen Sophie Anne that actually makes me firmly believe that she would absolutely kill it as Luci.
Dame Judi Dench as Ananke
Ananke is a guiding force behind the Pantheon and the Gods who find themselves recurring. She is present to help and lead them, and has been for many many years. Shes extremely enigmatic and mysterious, but it is known that she was present during the first recurrence known as The Occurence. She is extremely serious and stern with a very sinister appearance and personality. I chose Dame Judi Dench because I would really love to see her in a role like this. I’d love to see her be the brooding sinister force pulling strings and playing the long game in the background enacting her will upon others. Dame Judi Dench is an absolute treasure and an undeniable talent that would work wonders with Ananke.
Madelaine Petsch as Amaterasu
First things first when you hear the name Amaterasu you’d probably think of the Japanese Shinto Goddess of the Sun not a redheaded white girl flower child that the series actually refers to. Based on singers Florence Welch, Stevie Nicks, and Kate Bush, Emily Greenway who would later awaken as the goddess Amaterasu during the 2010’s resurgence of the Pantheon. Just like most of the of the current Pantheon, she began as a huge fan that participated on online forums dedicated to them. In the series she can be described as the hippy flower child who is kind, loving, “incapable of jealousy”, and friendly. I’ve become a big fan of Riverdale’s Madelaine Petsch who plays the character of Cheryl Blossom. Amaterasu would be a huge departure from the mean, snarky, and genuinely rude Cheryl Blossom, but I firmly believe Madelaine has the charm and the acting ability to pull it off.
Michael B. Jordan as Valentine “Baal” Campbell
Based on everyone’s favorite outspoken and overopinionated rapper Kanye West, Baal was the first of the Gods in the 2010’s resurgence. Baal is aggressive, proud, and arrogant with an ego that matches his characters inspiration. Like most of the Gods, he isn’t exactly happy with the limited lifespan that comes with being a God. He has the ability to manipulate and generate massive amounts of energy in the form of lightning which might make his skill set one of my favorites in the series. From the moment I saw Baal, I instantly thought that Michael B. Jordan should be the one to play him. He and Baal share a certain swagger that I don’t think many other actors could pull it off. Jordan’s role as Adonis Creed in the 2015 film Creed totally made me see him in the role of Baal. His character had so much pent-up rage and aggression and was extremely cocky and egotistical, which matches Baal to perfection. Baal is also extremely charming, which is a quality Michael B. Jordan has in spades.
Jussie Smollett as Inanna
I know earlier that I said Luci was one of my favorite characters from the series, but the honor of being my absolute favorite goes to none other than Inanna. I’m a huge Prince fan, so when I started getting further into the series and I see Inanna for the first time I got insanely excited because I realized….the character is based on Prince. Inanna’s wardrobe looks like its straight out of Purple Rain and I was 1000% here for it. I quickly became fond of Inanna because he lived life free and happy. In the series he is described as “lovely and morally” pure while Luci also described him as “having a meaner streak than people realize”. Inanna had no problem engaging in lots and lots of sex with people of all genders, and he in no way minded he also didn’t engage in monogamy and for the life of him he couldn’t figure out why others did. For a brief time in his godhood, he and Baal were in a relationship until the two had a falling out. I chose Jussie Smollett to play Inanna because he just fits so perfectly. Jussie has this amazing energy and this immense purity and genuineness to him that I think is required for Inanna.
Rihanna as Ruth “Sakhmet”
Lets be honest the only person who can play a character based on Rihanna is Rihanna.
Katie McGrath as Marian “The Morrigan”
The Morrigan, an Irish death Goddess, as one of her abilities can take on 3 different forms: The Morrigan, Badb, and Gentle Annie- all of which come with 3 different personalities. Her personalities vary depending upon the form that she takes. When she is The Morrigan, she is actually quite kind and welcoming, when she is Badb, she is extremely violent and angry and only appears when the Morrigan is challenged and tested, and when she is in her final form Gentle Annie she is kind and gentle, however she only appears when talking about death. Whenever I would read the comic, I would always envision Katie McGrath in the role of The Morrigan because in a way it reminded me of another one of her roles as Morgan Le Fay on the hit BBC show Merlin. Katie McGrath is one of those actors that has the ability to convey intense darkness and then on the flip side flash an insanely warm and gentle smile and welcoming personality. Katie would absolutely own it as The Morrigan.
Finn Wittrock as Baphomet (Nergal)
Baphomet is the type of guy that every girl or boys parents told them to stay away from he’s sarcastic, a show off, and absolutely obsessed with his death. I’m pretty sure his obsession with his looming death is part of what he is also so self-destructive and also impulsive. Before he became a God, his name was Cameron and in fact he and Marian aka The Morrigan attended the same school and were even in a relationship together until some infidelities on his part. I chose Finn Wittrock because over the years I’ve watched his performances on American Horror Story and honestly I’ve been blown away quite a few times. I love his ability to transform for a character and completely embody the character. His role in American Horror Story Hotel as Tristan Duffy is what truly made me see him as the perfect Baphomet.
Brianna Hildebrand as Minerva
Minerva is the baby of the Pantheon of the 2010’s resurgence. Her parents began to personally profit off her Godhood after she transformed and she would go on to sell personal miracles due to her parents. Minerva was essentially her parents meal ticket. Minerva seems like she has the potential to be one of the most interesting Gods, and like her character, could offer up a look into the dynamic of stage parents and their children. I chose Brianna Hildebrand because even though Minerva is meant to be a child, whenever I would see her character it was always Hildebrand that I saw in the role. I always saw this little rebel with a cause who was hip and caring. I could see Brianna slaying in the round shades and red military jacket similar to the Beatles.
Iwan Rheon as Woden
Woden is insanely jealous of the other gods because of his lack of magic. Woden is meant to be the Norse All Father God Odin and his design is based on a member of Daft Punk. Where the other Gods have abilities that are actually useful his ability is the ability to bestow powers onto others and objects. So rather than actually being able to produce lighting or throw fireballs…..he can’t do it himself but he can give someone else the ability to. Woden is notoriously racist, misogynistic, and he fetishises Asian Women. All of these things end up becoming a huge problem at some point, but I’ll try not to spoil that for you. Woden has a pose known as the Valkyrie who depend on him for power and therefore do his bidding. I chose Iwan Rheon because he is amazing at portraying characters like Woden….the type of character that you love to hate because he is so good at making you dislike him.
Nishi Munshi as Aruna “Tara”
One of Tara’s most defining characteristics is her amazing beauty. Shes been objectified and harassed by men since she was an adolescent to the point that for the longest time she was nervous around the opposite sex. Tara is misunderstood in that most of the other Gods think she is attention seeking when in fact all she wants to do is perform and enjoy the music. She detests being a God and would prefer to lay low. I chose Nishi Munshi as Tara because aside from her immense beauty she has the talent to correctly portray the vulnerability that I believe is required for Tara.
Unknown Japanese Trans Actress as Cassandra Igarashi
I am a firm believer that the only actors who should be playing trans characters are trans actors. While trans characters have existed on film and television for quite a while seldom do we actually get to see trans actors portray themselves and tell their own stories. Cassandra Igarashi is a journalist who specializes in mythology and who has studied the Recurrence. Cassandra is my favorite type of character because she has a healthy amount of skepticism and is constantly questioning the things she sees and hears. She is the type to need the facts and not just what others say. I love her brand of skepticism and sarcasm, and it’s why I tend to find her interesting. She is always curious and is a fierce seeker of the truth and understanding. I firmly believe that it is important to seek out an actual trans Japanese actress to fill the role of Cassandra.