Ever since the news broke last week that the rights were scooped up by Universal TV as part of the studio’s deal with Kelly Sue DeConnick and Matt Fraction’s newly formed production company Milkfed Criminal Masterminds, I’ve been obsessing about the casting. Who is cool enough to play gods reincarnated as rock stars, especially when some of those gods resemble Rhianna, Kanye and — all hail — The Purple One himself? That aside, the incredible amount of diversity among the Pantheon and the humans of “WicDiv” is part of what makes the comic so wonderful.
So here’s some pure speculation about which performers could, in an ideal world, inhabit the cast of “The Wicked + The Divine” if a television series does end up happening — and here’s hoping a couple of high-profile music superstars have room in their schedules.
Let’s start with Laura Wilson, the ultimate fan of the Pantheon. Although she begins the series as a devotee of Amaterasu, she is equally fascinated by the darker sides of gods like Luci and Baal. It was impossible for me to pick between these two, so I submit that both Nathalie Emmanuel and Antonia Thomas could bring Laura to life.
Were you a weird adult fan of “Degrassi: The Next Generation” like I was? If so, it will be no surprise that I’m thinking Aubrey Graham, or Drake, as the kids are calling him, is the perfect casting for Baal. He’s an excellent musician, and definitely has the acting skills to embody the arrogant, beautiful god.
Described by Luci as “the nicest member of the Pantheon,” Amaterasu, the goddess of the sun, is a stunning character. Inspired by Kate Bush and Florence Welch, Amaterasu immediately called Lily Cole to my mind. Cole’s performance in “The Moth Diaries” displayed both power and vulnerability, perfect for a goddess. The actor’s unique face, flaming red hair and piercing eyes are practically a McKelvie drawing come to life.
The Morrigan, Scottish goddess of war, appears in “WicDiv” as an elusive, disturbing triad of personalities, the most prominent of which is a black haired wraith, dripping in feathers and tattoos. It’s not just about style with The Morrigan, but about creating mystery and drama. So let’s see — someone that could be mildly unhinged, eerily beautiful and inspire a slightly crazed following? Frances Bean Cobain. I don’t know if she has any interest in acting, but there is none more goth than the daughter of rock god himself, Kurt Cobain.
Lucifer/Luci may have died for our sins, but ever since the first issue of “WicDiv,” I have been living for her. Charismatic, sharp and gender fluid, Luci needs an actress that can bring hellfire to the screen, and nobody quite embodies that like model/actress Ruby Rose.
Inanna, the Sumerian goddess of love and warfare, draws inspiration from Prince (with beautiful purple eyes) and is bigger than a single gender, which is why I could see her majesty Janelle Monae stepping into his shoes.
The protector of the Pantheon and goddess of destiny, Ananke is a complex character. Up until this point in the series, she’s the only god that ages and, true to her mythology of being a weaver of fate, seems to orchestrate the goings on of the Pantheon’s reincarnations. What we need is a feisty, no nonsense actress that can instill a healthy respect into the immortal brats: Lin Shaye.
Speaking of immortal brats, none is more mischievous than Baphomet. Channeling mid-’80s and early ’90s deathrockers, Baphomet is a classic fanged bad boy. I fell in love with Thomas Dekker in “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles” and “A Nightmare on Elm Street” where he was the perfect gothy high school outcast, and could see him fitting this role perfectly.
While I’d love to offer casting suggestions for Cassandra, I’m not well-versed enough in transgender Asian actresses. I firmly hope that her character’s gender and race are accurately portrayed in a TV adaptation of “WicDiv” as she’s an amazing part of the story, and I’d love to see that representation upheld.
Now it’s your turn — what is your ideal fan casting? And which god are you most excited to see brought to life (besides Tara, because who even knows at this point.)
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