TV Shows


There’s a scene early on where our titular character sits down at a bar, next to his attractive co-worker, and she tells him off for being a racist, murderous, piece of shit. He looks taken aback, and reflects on it.

Given my opinion on The Suicide Squad, I just know that Gunn wrote this scene and parts of Peacemaker’s overall story as a means of calling out his haters. It sets the tone for the whole adventure. To me, it says, “I know some of you hate this character, but let me show you why I don’t.” And I have to give credit where credit is due. Peacemaker is a good TV show albeit not without minor nitpicking – not everyone’s acting was stellar, more on that later. I promised my friends I’d do my best, and separate the artist from the art. Like the greats, Roman Polanski, and others. I’d watch, setting my bias aside.

First and foremost, I thoroughly enjoyed John Cena as Christopher ‘Chris’ Smith aka Peacemaker. I watched a bloopers compilation of the show, and at one point Cena replies back to a joke about great actors that he shouldn’t be included. The man sure is humble as his comedy is on point in every scene. In fact, without him, the show wouldn’t nearly have same effect however strong the writing is. He carried the leading role well, and I want to see him in more leading roles rather than supporting. Chukwudi Iwuji was quite good. I haven’t had the pleasure of seeing him beforehand. I enjoyed his performance and look forward to seeing more of him.

Now my nitpicking. Jennifer Holland, who keeps hiring her? Still as wooden as the day I saw her all those years ago in Zombie Strippers. She’d pull me out of immersion each time I saw her. And then we have the token character of the somewhat sassy, fat, black woman played by Danielle Brooks (wonderful performance). To Gunn’s credit, despite having to use that trope, it was delightfully done and self aware. I found myself wondering where was this tasteful and smart dialogue, and interaction in the previous movie. And it wasn’t just her, many characters would do something frustrating or idiotic, and the audience would get that feeling of annoyance and then immediately be appeased by dialogue that calls it out right away. It was a rollercoaster of being knowingly played with, that I didn’t want to get off of.

Before I continue, the character of Vigilante was interesting. It is a peculiar choice to make a psychopath the comic relief. It really makes a statement all on its own. This world is so messed up, that the funniest guy is the one that’s most insane. If this was Batman, such a character is the most terrifying. That contrast is called out by Gunn, in a lovely scene between Peacemaker and his elderly neighbor on that age old argument whether Batman should kill. Self awareness of the property source seems to be occurring more and more, and that studios are allowing it, it’s setting up for an interesting time in entertainment.

I’m aware of the similarity between how Vigilante was written and to Ryan Reynolds’s Deadpool. That was obviously intentional. It doesn’t detract from the character or Freddie Stroma’s performance, but a fun little call-out. In fact, I found myself thinking he stole whatever scene he was in. I found him delightfully infectious.

I want to say it was fun to watch Robert Patrick as a villain, but he’s made a career of that. This was no different. His character served only to further Peacemaker’s development, and it was obvious from the first appearance.

Overall, it is an excellent companion piece to accompany The Suicide Squad, and stands strongly on its own. John Cena is quite the comedic force to be reckoned with. James Gunn created a masterpiece for DC’s halls. I recommend this dark adventure, but I still think the character is a murderous, piece of shit.


The Suicide Squad

This review contains minor spoilers

After having seen it, I can see why it might be so highly rated. There is a lot of good lore, and world-building. But, I’m just super divided on it. I think it would have been much more enjoyable if there wasn’t so much self-gratification of American propaganda. If they didn’t keep fluffing themselves to be the savior. The story takes place on the fictional island of Corto Maltese aka basically Cuba. It honestly didn’t even bother to disguise that fact. And now a group of Americans are going to save this poor third-world country from a tyrannical president and military coup (which in all likelihood was implemented by a similar American agency that sent out the Suicide Squad.) However, we don’t want that to be too obvious so we’ll include a third-act bad guy to switch our antagonist to. See, James Gunn can write twists.

Awhile back there were some tweets regarding James Gunn, and having seen much of what he calls humor in this film, I now understand why there was a bad light cast on him. That kind of humor doesn’t change, that kind of fetish for underage jokes. And wow, the sheer amount of children jokes or children being threatened to be killed is high. Like the first was admittedly funny, but then it just kept going. Beating a dead horse. Like Tarantino gets off on feet, James Gunn has a disturbing and morbid humor involving underage minors. Oh, I’m sure the message of ‘killing kids is a big red flag’ is understandable, but why even the need to bring it up? (Probably to make the audience understand that Amanda Waller is a worse villain than the team she creates).

The interactions between all the characters was great, it was humorous. Witty, intelligent. There was a finesse to some of the action scenes. The gore and violence was creative and felt like scenes out of comic book pages, and then other scenes were far too gratuitous. Some scenes added absolutely nothing except made me think this is some sort of satanic ritual to be filmed. Spoiler. Bad dudes burn down a giant bird cage and you get to listen to the birds’ screams. This scene infuriated me. NOTHING was gained as a viewer. I didn’t think that the general was worse than he already was. It didn’t symbolize anything, not even the president’s ideals being burned away. It was pure evil for no reason at all. Sorry, pardon my French, but how fucked are you in the head to think up that scene?

Was the movie weird? Yes. And it often felt forced. Like it was being weird just for the sake of being weird. I bought into the hype reading actor’s interviews and tsk. I’m disappointed. Some of the scenes are incredibly stupid, like Harley’s escape. Yes, guys with assault rifles will all single file and one at a time approach and not at all think to shoot their guns. Idris Elba was strong as Bloodsport. His character similar to Will Smith’s in the first movie. Daniela Melchior as Ratcatcher2 was also quite strong in her role, brought what limited emotional impact she could. John Cena as Peacemaker was a walking metaphor for the USA. He was a caricature, two dimensional or even one. There was no depth to his character. The fact they’re making a show with his character is a joke.

Overall, half of me hates it. It’s a sick, twisted adventure from a disturbed mind. Sure, you can always try to find beauty in madness, but I’m going to stay away from this. I’m not gonna judge you for watching this movie, or if you immensely enjoyed it. And the other half of me liked some parts. I liked the jokes and self-awareness between characters. Actually, that’s all I liked. Anyways, my review won’t stop you from watching it if you’re already keen on doing so. You’ll probably dismiss it as rambling. I’m sick of these metaphors, messaging – subliminal or otherwise. Nothing I want more than to shut my brain off and enjoy but I can’t help but see the social programming plugging away.