Prometheus: "Deacon Blues" and the blue Deacon

leading from 
and
 
 
Deacon Blue/ Deacon Blues emerges in Prometheus
a) Origins of the Deacon
The odd question is what was the Deacon in Prometheus all about, why was it named so by the production team and why was it blue?  Carlos Huante recalled that the idea for the Deacon was his idea, and wasn't written in the script.  At first he was called The Bishop and then he was demoted to the Deacon.

Carlos really thought that they were going to make his Deacon but for some curious reason, they went with the one from the storyboards that were not his character or his design. The storyboard artist illustrated it for the purposes of storytelling for the storyboards but not as the design. 

Carlos has illustrated a couple of efforts for the open mouth (which they showed in the documentary) but they were for an even different version that was after the Deacon, when he thought of making the creature even more human. The design of the actual Deacon was abandoned. 

The genesis of that character came after a conversation he had with Ridley about a design progression of the creatures to the Xenomorph of the first film. 


He went home and thought about it but kept on with the Gigeresque Ultramorphs. 

Then as he worked, he thought “wouldn’t it be cool if these Aliens who are born of humans and haven’t been mixed genetically with the Engineers yet would look more human and less biomechanical“, of course this was for an earlier version of the script but that’s where the Deacon (or Bishop, as it was originally named) came from.  

It would later became an Ultramorph and as the script changed slightly after Carlos left the production, it became the blue creature at the end. Why it was blue? He didn’t know… His illustration was near enough blue so as to emphasize it’s whiteness in a dark blue setting and he was following some inspirational paintings that a contemporary Russian painter did of a man’s head that Arthur had sent him from Ridley. The creatures were all supposed to be albino. They were supposed to look simple, beautiful and ghostly like a Beluga whale in dark Arctic water.

As to why the name changed, Arthur Max said that the name to the creature because, Ridley said " It looks like a bishop's mitre, the evil deacon's pointed hat" Also Carlos thought that the change in name came because of the character Bishop and so the change to the name Deacon came. The original idea was that the Deacon would come out of a man and not an engineer. Then the final creature was given a strange blue colour.
  1. Ridley Scott dubbed this creature the Deacon, based on the pointed shape of its head, similar to a Bishop's head-dress.  (Prometheus Blu-Ray gallery notes) 
  2. "Ridley said " It looks like a bishop's mitre, the evil deacon's pointed hat"" recalls Arthur Max. (Prometheus: The art of the film. p186)
  3. see also exploration of origins of the phrase "The Evil Deacon"  
  4. AvPGalaxy – Any regrets or feelings of ‘I wish I could’ve done something different’?
    Carlos Huante – I wish I could have stayed on to supervise the follow-through with the designs. My biggest disappointment is that what I did got modified of course. Any artist would say that. But I really thought they were going to make my Deacon but for some really strange reason they went with the one from the storyboards which was NOT my character and not the design. The board artist illustrated it for the purposes of storytelling for the storyboards but not as the design. I had illustrated a couple of efforts for the open mouth which they showed in the documentary but they were for an even different version that was after the Deacon, when I thought of making the creature even more human. The design of the actual Deacon was abandoned. It was very, very strange to hear the creature group in London talking in the DVD and they’re all looking at the storyboards. I’m shaking my head as I write this.
    The genesis of that character came after a conversation I had with Ridley about a design progression of the creatures to the Xenomorph of the first film. I went home and thought about it but kept on with the Gigeresque Ultramorphs. Then as I worked I thought “wouldn’t it be cool if these Aliens who are born of humans and haven’t been mixed genetically with the Engineers yet would look more human and less biomechanical“, of course this was for a different version of the script but that’s where the Deacon (or Bishop, as he was originally named) came from. He later became an Ultramorph and as the script changed slightly after I left the show, it became that thing at the end. Why it was blue? I don’t know… The illustration was blue so as to emphasize it’s whiteness in a dark blue setting and I was following some inspirational paintings that a contemporary Russian painter did of a man’s head that Arthur had sent me from Ridley. The creatures were all supposed to be albino. They were supposed to look simple, beautiful and ghostly like a Beluga whale in dark Arctic water.
     (https://www.avpgalaxy.net/website/interviews/carlos-huante/?all)
  5. Carlos Huante: They screwed that up too. That Deacon is all my idea it wasn’t written in the script I gave them that thing. At first, he was called The Bishop then he was demoted to the Deacon because of the pontiff’s hat shape Ridley called him The Bishop at first but I think because there is a character named Bishop he started calling him the Deacon. So the idea of the Deacon was that it was originally supposed to come out of a man. It wasn’t supposed to come out of an Engineer. (https://hnentertainment.co/exclusive-creature-designer-carlos-huante-says-original-prometheus-script-was-similar-to-aliens-with-an-army-group-and-talks-early-concepts-for-the-engineers-ultramorph/)

     
Deacon puppet
b) Catalyst for exploring Deacon Blue connection
Someone in a forum asked people to post photos of the Deacon. October 5th October2012,  I began to think about posting a photograph of the band Deacon Blue and apologise later for getting the wrong Deacon. By the 7th, I started to think about the fact that the Deacon in Prometheus was blue in colour.
Scottish band Deacon Blue
c)  Deacon Blue, Deacon Blues and Steely Dan
The band Deacon Blue, a Scottish pop band formed in Glasgow during 1985 took its name from the 1977 song "Deacon Blues" by Steely Dan. In the lyrics of this song are the lines "They call Alabama the Crimson Tide, Call me Deacon Blues" where they're just the names of college football teams and the Deacons were the losers. Meanwhile Steely Dan take their name from the strap-on rubber dildo mentioned in William Burroughs fictional novel Naked Lunch.
record cover for Steely Dan's Deacon Blues
Donald Fagen told Rolling Stone magazine: "Walter and I had been working on that song at a house in Malibu. I played him that line, and he said, 'You mean it's like, 'They call these cracker a--holes this grandiose name like the Crimson Tide, and I'm this loser, so they call me this other grandiose name, Deacon Blues?' and I said 'Yeah!' He said, 'Cool, let's finish it.'" (source: wikipedia)


d)  Crimson Tide
If this creature was the "Deacon Blues", Rick McG asked then "who is the crimson tide?" It also happens that Tony Scott, the brother of Ridley Scott had made a movie released in 1995 called The Crimson Tide starring Denzel Washington and Gene Hackman, where  "On a US nuclear missile sub, a young first officer stages a mutiny to prevent his trigger happy captain from launching his missiles before confirming his orders to do so.The Nuclear submarine of course is named the USS Alabama.
  1. "On a US nuclear missile sub, a young first officer stages a mutiny to prevent his trigger happy captain from launching his missiles before confirming his orders to do so." (source: IMDB
  2. The US nuclear submarine USS Alabama is assigned a patrol mission, to be available to launch its missiles in a preemptive strike if Radchenko attempts to fuel his missiles. Captain Frank Ramsey (Hackman) is the commanding officer of the sub, and one of the few commanders left in the Navy with any combat experience. He chooses as his new executive officer (XO) Lieutenant Commander Ron Hunter (Washington), who has an extensive education in military history and tactics, but no combat experience. (source: Wikipedia)  
Tony Scott

No comments:

Post a Comment