The Suicide Squad (2021)
August 6, 2021 4:54 AM - Subscribe

Supervillains Harley Quinn, Bloodsport, Peacemaker and a collection of cons at Belle Reve prison join the super-secret, super-shady Task Force X as they are dropped off at the remote, enemy-infused island of Corto Maltese.

The movie is a sequel to 2016's Suicide Squad (previously on the purple), and has some returning characters: Viola Davis as Amanda Waller, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, and Joel Kinnaman as Col. Rick Flag; they're joined by a host of new (to the DCEU) characters such as Idris Elba as Bloodsport and John Cena as Peacemaker. The film had an... interesting path to production, as it was written and directed by James Gunn after he was kicked off of the next Guardians of the Galaxy movie following the publicizing of some old social media posts that he'd made (previously on the blue, previouslier). In addition to the principals, a number of other characters played by the likes of Michael Rooker, Pete Davidson, and Nathan Fillion, among others, are featured. And King Shark!
posted by Halloween Jack (50 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
This was surprisingly fun. Robbie steals the show as Quinn. Elba does what he can with occasionally terrible writing. Dastmalchian is the surprising dark horse.

Is Taika Waititi the best supporting actor in the superhero genre now that Stan Lee is gone?

Loved the use of music, which is a Gunn signature at this point.

I was amazed at the guts to pick this villain, but they really threaded the needle on funny vs threatening.
posted by bfranklin at 5:09 AM on August 6 [4 favorites]


How King Shark went from DC's aquatic demigod to The Suicide Squad's goodest boy
EW spoke with creators behind some of the key King Shark iterations to see how the character has evolved.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 7:04 AM on August 6 [2 favorites]


This was so much fun! I was worried it would be too gory for me but the violence is super cartoony, especially Harley Quinn's.

Is The Suicide Squad the beginning of the end for the superhero movie? James Gunn’s gory, knowing reboot of the DC antihero adventure is part of a newer revisionist trend that suggests the genre might be going the way of the western.
posted by ellieBOA at 10:42 AM on August 6


They pretty much lost me in the first seconds when they violently killed a pretty little bird, and I spent the rest of the movie just waiting for it to ever end (which, like all superhero movies, it didn't in any kind of decent fashion, since they're all thiry minutes too long). But of course, along the way, they threw in the horrific burning of a flock of pet birds, and the almost taunting the audience with the rat's potential demise, and faked us out twice that the shark guy was dead. Plus bonuses of buckets of gore and body horror. It seemed all very calculated for that hard R and to upset people.

DC has not been my preferred universe for a long time, so I had no investment in the story even though I'd read some things with a few of the characters. Viola can never really do anything wrong and she makes a perfect Waller, and the only way my friend could really lure me to the theatre with her was Idris Elba and Viola. As much as I didn't like the juvenile choices to upset people so we could see how bad everyone was supposed to be, the team stuff in the bar, that little found family dynamic they had there for a couple minutes, Harley's self-actualizing speech to her dead almost-fiance, kind of won me over. And I always love a small Taika bit (there were more than a few Marvel refugees here).

The most interesting thing to me was that my friend and I both spontaneously said "this is the best performance Elba's given in years," and that is just a deeply, deeply weird thing to say. Also, they saved the wrong dead guy at the end. Bring back Flagg and Polka Dot Man!
posted by kitten kaboodle at 11:29 AM on August 6 [3 favorites]


The Guardian article is interesting; but I think that if anything kills the superhero genre, it will be Marvel itself diluting the currency with an apparently endless deluge of low budget, slow burn TV shows. Disney has already figured out that two Star Wars films in one year is at least one too many. Will the MCU audience support a dozen shows a year, plus three or four movies? Can it? Will it even want to?

The DCEU has been a predictably hit and miss affair, given that at some point the producers decided to eschew a house style and give filmmakers a freer hand, as opposed to the helicopter production Marvel style that has run off several filmmakers. There's no real question this is Gunn's film. I liked it a lot, but I also liked Birds of Prey a lot, and audiences passed it up. So who knows?
posted by kittens for breakfast at 12:00 PM on August 6 [1 favorite]


i hope you like funny gore. probably will watch it again, because it's weird and stupid and there are good cheap laughs. comic books are weird and dumb and this movie gets that, but also makes it funny. There's a surprising amount of drama, but i dunno, it's like a Troma movie, in that you will care for people that are purposefully very alienating. It does really help the action scenes, though.

it is too long, but like, the king shark character gets an arc, and the characters they didn't focus on left you wanting more, so, it was a good long.
posted by eustatic at 12:11 PM on August 6 [4 favorites]


It was big dumb fun. Starro reminded me of Stay Puft marshmallow man. I’m tired of booj sounds effects and car parts spiralling into the camera. The soundtrack was good. Wish The Thinker did more thinking. Starro’s last words were sad. Liked the rats metaphor and their importance, esp compared against the real alien threat. That is my review.
posted by iamkimiam at 2:53 PM on August 6 [11 favorites]


Liked the rats metaphor and their importance, esp compared against the real alien threat.

Agree. Like war of the worlds, but gross
posted by eustatic at 6:20 PM on August 6 [1 favorite]


It was fun but oh so dumb. I have no idea where that Harley came from, she's nothing like first SS or Birds of Prey and that whole princess setup thing that should have been a dream sequence she had while being tortured was real? What.

Gunn nails a certain kind of gory humor and I appreciate that, some moments were sublime, but this is textbook "all over the place " film.
posted by M Edward at 7:22 PM on August 6 [1 favorite]


I liked it much better than the first one, and am relieved that it's not just "Gunn does GotG, but with DC characters", which was what I was afraid of. (Not that that couldn't have had its moments, but this was really much more than that.) Some random bits:

- Expanding on what I said above, Gunn seems to have really looked at the first movie and at least some of the principals, and reworked what they meant and did. Peacemaker, for example, although he's initially presented as a joke, turns out to be much more like the character that the comics Peacemaker inspired: the Comedian of Watchmen, the violent vigilante who becomes the American government's go-to dirty tricks guy. (The survival of the character wasn't much of a surprise for me, since he's getting his own HBO Max miniseries, which filming has already wrapped on the first season of.) Elba's Bloodsport is likewise reimagined from the original version of the character (created by John Byrne to be a sort of commentary on Rambo) and is much more than Will Smith's Deadshot with the serial numbers filed off. Harley's thing with Joker and Flag's with the Enchantress are not only not part of this, thankfully, but not even mentioned, although Harley still has her tattoos.

- Corto Maltese was originally a reference to this Italian comic book series, and made part of the DC universe by Frank Miller in The Dark Knight Returns.

- WRT "Marvel refugees": Taika Waititi had a role in the Green Lantern series before he started work in the MCU, although he may not have wanted to remember it.

- Comics enemy Frederic Wertham cited the "injury-to-the-eye motif" in crime and horror comics of the 50s in Seduction of the Innocent; gonna hazard a guess that Gunn knew about this.

- The song that played over the massacre at the beginning of the film was "People who Died" by Jim Carroll. Carroll, who also wrote the junkie memoir The Basketball Diaries, lists real people who he knew and how they died.
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:23 PM on August 6 [2 favorites]


It was a big messy blast, and a lot of fun.

Once we realized Peter Capaldi was in it, the whole Starro thing made me think of Daleks and Skaro. The wee little layer made it even more fun.
posted by heathrowga at 5:49 AM on August 7 [4 favorites]


the king shark character gets an arc

Freaking Starro gets a goddamn arc.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 6:34 AM on August 7 [5 favorites]


And for a while I was like: Why is Capaldi being so quiet? How can you cast Peter Capaldi in a superhero movie and NOT have him eating all the scenery? And then it happens.
posted by 1970s Antihero at 6:40 AM on August 7 [2 favorites]


I liked it, but with the polka dot guy's whole deal, left me musing over messy father figures who gets redemption in the story versus the messy mother figures who live on only to torment.

Definitely... a more interesting recent superhero movie that played with that whole notion of american interventionism in the world compared to Age of Ultron (or for that matter, parts of Snyderverse). In a lot of ways, the horror genre elements went a long way to elevate the material in disquieting ways (i mean, wow, Starro basically was cheated out of their rape revenge fantasy/vengeful spirit arc).
posted by cendawanita at 11:55 AM on August 7 [4 favorites]


I mostly liked it.

Did anyone else get serious Team Fortress 2: Meet the Pyro flashbacks during Harley's escape scene?

it's like a Troma movie

While I didn't spot him in this film, IMDb lists Lloyd Kaufman as having uncredited roles in both this and Guardians of the Galaxy, so it seems apparent to me that Gunn has a certain amount of affection for the Troma model.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 3:49 PM on August 7 [2 favorites]


Gunn began his career working for Troma.

I felt sorry for Starro, too! It was a horrifying little shop the Thinker had going on down there. Of course, Starro dismembered him, so.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 5:17 PM on August 7 [5 favorites]


The song that played over the massacre at the beginning of the film was "People who Died" by Jim Carroll. Carroll, who also wrote the junkie memoir The Basketball Diaries, lists real people who he knew and how they died.

It was also used in the Dawn of the Dead remake, directed by Zack Snyder, who jumpstarted this DC cinematic universe, bit scripted by James Gunn
posted by maxsparber at 7:20 PM on August 7 [1 favorite]


I really really liked it. It had a bit more of the Ostrander/McDonnell (sp?) DNA. Not enough for me, but that's not a reasonable wish. It was gross and funny and sad and exciting. The outcomes for the characters were occasionally genuinely surprising. The casting was pretty much perfect, and had a lot of people that I had never seen before that were terrific (Ratcatcher 2 and Polka Dot Man especially). It was exactly gory enough for me. Like, I was occasionally grossed out but usually while laughing at either a joke or the sheer audacity of what I was seeing. Seriously, I dug it a great deal.
posted by joelhunt at 8:36 PM on August 7 [1 favorite]


See now I felt like this was almost exactly "James Gunn does Guardians for the Harley Quinniverse" and I loved it for that. It wasn't "Birds of Prey"-levels of transcendent for me, but basically no movies are as perfectly on my wavelength as Birds of Prey was. And while Harley gets and deserves top billing as the Franchise Character here, it's very much an ensemble movie, where realistically she or Bloodsport or even Ratcatcher 2 could be considered the protagonist.

Goofy, gory fun that eventually finds its heart. I somehow didn't know about Gunn coming from Troma, but obviously that DNA is all through this. If it weren't a Big Summer Movie it's exactly the sort of thing that you can imagine the Flophouse guys telling each other to check out, which is high praise.
posted by Navelgazer at 9:04 PM on August 7 [1 favorite]


I've been thinking about it all weekend. I really love Harley inside Starro's eye, and just how awed and happy she is to be there. A scene of horrific violence that becomes a transcendent moment of bliss for someone who may or not deserve it. I'm not sure the movie itself deserves that moment! And I really like this movie! I never expected to see the apotheosis of Harley Quinn. Certainly I didn't expect to see it happen inside the punctured eye of a giant starfish.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 7:41 AM on August 8 [3 favorites]


It had a bit more of the Ostrander/McDonnell (sp?) DNA

Quite literally: Ostrander cameos as the doctor who injects Savant.
posted by cheshyre at 7:53 AM on August 8


The only King Shark I am interested in is Ron Funches in the Harley Quinn series. Which is also incredibly violent but somehow it works better for me than this film did. I found myself looking at the clock a lot. "There's still 45 minutes of this left? How?"

Sebastian the rat was my favorite. "Why is that rat waving at me?"
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 1:54 PM on August 8 [5 favorites]


This was wonderful dumb fun. My husband and I both agreed that it was quite pleasant to see that the surprisingly strongest member of the Suicide Squad was Ratcatcher 2 (and Sebastian).

I liked that Gunn's use of Harley was less male-gazer than Ayer's version.

I'd totally watch it again.
posted by Kitteh at 5:09 PM on August 8 [1 favorite]


The death of The Weasel hit the meese household extremely hard, and we were overjoyed when he came back to life.

Shark King / Weasel spin off, please!
posted by meese at 6:02 PM on August 8 [3 favorites]


Loved this. Legit moved by that beautiful tide of freedom rats. I tend to prefer Marvel to DC in both print and film, but I don't think Marvel will let James Gunn do a movie about the Guardians storming Guantanamo Bay any time soon.
posted by EatTheWeek at 9:45 PM on August 8 [1 favorite]


this is a shaggy-dog but a good time, and understands what it wants to be and do so much more than most superhero movies in general, much less DC movies. overlong but that's just a genre checklist item at this point.

I appreciated how the only truly bad guys are the U.S. government, though the movie elides this point soon after making it by focusing down on Waller. starro's just a tortured soul who happens to be a hive-mind starfish monster, and the whole Carto Maltese government is a red herring (that made me uncomfortable until the fairly explicit "this is all happening here because of the U.S. not giving a shit about this country" that, along with the freedom fighter massacre, sort of put a pin right in the proverbial eye of this genre and the action genre's larger tendency towards the anonymous brown-skinned enemy)

king shark is wonderful and they do a great job of giving him pathos because they never make him suddenly smarter or more intuitive than he should be. flagg dying didn't do much for me except that it helped re-underline Peacemaker's whole deal, which as I said I quite enjoyed as a militaristic-colonizer-superpower critique
posted by Kybard at 8:43 AM on August 9 [1 favorite]


Wow this movie is unexpectedly good.

The comedic style reminds me less of GotG Gunn and more of Waititi, when he's good. It plays moments straight-faced as its characters do dumb things, joining with the audience in laughing at itself.

It's hard to describe how funny it was when the Polka Dot guy sneaks off into the woods to puke up a bunch of glowing polka dots as his sinister mysterious power reveal. Or like Peacemaker chopping all along the body of a sleeping person. Or even like Flagg getting the hard drive out of the computer like he's working a vending machine. Moments that aren't really played as jokes that are over before you have time to laugh.

Overall it's just glorious. It's not perfect but at least I never found it tedious.

(Also, my horrible TV has "action smoothing" that sometimes can't be turned off. It creates a "soap opera" effect, which is terrible, and there are some things I just refuse to watch when action smoothing is stuck on. But for this movie it worked because it heightened the absurdity and tactical badness. Like, I think it's kind of funny when they meet Capaldi in the Gatita Amable and he's like wandering around standing under every light figure with weird looks on his face and a bunch of doodads sticking out of his skull, a parody of every "meet the shady contact in the bar" scene ever -- that's funny, but it's even a little funnier looking like 60 FPS shit garbage daytime TV.)
posted by fleacircus at 11:25 AM on August 10 [1 favorite]


I guess I'm the lone voice of dissent... the film was enjoyable, but it also felt really disconnected to me, like a series of missions from slightly different video games mashed together into a slightly too long melange. The performances were good in that the actors elevated largely unearned character moments into something compelling, but it all felt ... required, like these scenes were calculated to give audiences "the FEELS" or become memes. Flag's sudden decision to expose the US Government's role in Project Starfish seemed particularly out-of-nowhere; when was that side of his character developed or even suggested? I mean, I guess because he was on the secondary "distraction team" that got massacred. Speaking of which ... an example of how the post-Deadpool irreverence and willingness to do the unexpected was, well, fairly predictable. The opening "fake-out," with the loser team (not including Flag & Quinn) getting massacred was amusing, but not much of a surprise given the premise of the film (d-bag criminals sent into near-certain death) and the fact that most of the characters were barely featured in the promo material (vs. the main cast, who were heavily advertised, at least in what I saw). When Bloodsport and Peacemaker were having their murder contest, I was 90% sure that the pay-off would be something f'd up, like they were killing their own allies or something... I think the only moments that truly surprised me were 1) Quinn's "break-up" with her new boyfriend, El Presidente, and 2) the conclusion to Polka-Dot Man's story. Even a lot of the office comedy back at Waller's HQ felt telegraphed... Maybe I just had too high expectations/hopes going in, but eh, I wanted something more coherent. I will give it another watch, though.

BTW, did anyone else think Waller telling the Squad to just let Starro do his thing was, uh, a little ridiculous? Yeah, the US government may be happy about fomenting civil disorder in a hostile country, but wouldn't they be worried about a giant alien that can take over huge populations with mind control in a matter of minutes and that, as established earlier in the film, gets bigger and stronger as it gains more minions? Like, Corto Maltese can't be that far from the US, you're eventually going to have to kill this thing, why not try now when it'll surely be a lot easier? But, the story needs that redemption moment, Bloodsport has to become a true leader, Waller needs to be taken down a notch, etc.
posted by Saxon Kane at 12:34 PM on August 10 [2 favorites]


Once we realized Peter Capaldi was in it, the whole Starro thing made me think of Daleks and Skaro.

The ridiculousness of Capaldi's gear would fit perfectly in just about any era of Doctor Who :)
posted by Saxon Kane at 12:37 PM on August 10 [4 favorites]


No I don't think it (the decision to recall the SQ) was ridiculous. I mean first of all you can imagine hubris, and second of all it's pretty easy to imagine they wanted it to become more of a problem before they fix it, with the proper media-ready heroes. The movie did not imply these directly but I think it's easy enough to imagine that one needn't throw a ridiculousness segfault.
posted by fleacircus at 1:47 PM on August 10 [1 favorite]


Flag's sudden decision to expose the US Government's role in Project Starfish seemed particularly out-of-nowhere; when was that side of his character developed or even suggested?

it felt heavily implied to me, if not stated outright, that Flagg's the only non-convict in the bunch and the only good guy (he gets some "you're a true good guy" love from the freedom fighter lady if you want more explicit seeding for this turn)
posted by Kybard at 3:47 PM on August 10


(not that I gave much of a shit about Flagg's turn either, and it's hard to imagine him having a genuine sense of moral outrage here after being a veteran of Waller's missions; I guess it's just that someone has to realistically oppose Peacemaker in that moment for there to be continuing tension/allow the HDD to be the thing that gives the survivors their get-out-of-jail-free card, and Flagg's just the expendable relatively-good-dude to do it)
posted by Kybard at 6:16 PM on August 10


wouldn't they be worried about a giant alien that can take over huge populations with mind control in a matter of minutes and that, as established earlier in the film, gets bigger and stronger as it gains more minions?

Not in a world that has Superman in it
posted by maxsparber at 7:28 PM on August 10 [1 favorite]


Or nukes, for that matter. (Remember, that was the government's ultimate solution for the problem of the Chitauri invading Manhattan in the first Avengers movie.) And a nuke would erase any potential evidence of the American government's involvement in Jotunheim.
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:06 PM on August 10


wouldn't they be worried about a giant alien that can take over huge populations with mind control in a matter of minutes and that, as established earlier in the film, gets bigger and stronger as it gains more minions?

If Waller were interested primarily in the safety and protection of humanity? Yes. If Waller were interested primarily in the safety and protection of her job? Nah, let somebody else handle it.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 4:19 AM on August 11 [2 favorites]


Fair points.
posted by Saxon Kane at 10:21 AM on August 11 [1 favorite]


It's an interesting string to pull on with Waller and "world-ending" events. In a world where Supes and WW exist there is no concern with anything "too big." Not her job and honestly not needed, things get too out of control and the gods will handle it.

This mission does not begin as a world threatening event and ultimately the squad doesn't need to fight the kaiju. Nukes and/or Justice League members could handle it, would be fun seeing Aquaman in this particular instance. The squad is not out to save the world, the world isn't even in question, it's about the.smaller scale of human life and devastation. It goes along well with Amazon's Invincible when Nolan gives the speech about not worrying about the little people, that the only concern are the world enders. People are gonna die, so what, the world is still intact because we exist. This movie doesn't directly acknowledge that, we have to infer Waller assumes Superman will handle it, but the squad chooses empathy, they see the direct and immediate consequences of waiting for the savior and decide to do something about it. I originally said the movie is dumb, and it is, but it's that empathy that I think elevates it a bit. I could make a argument that none of the current "Avengers" have any of that empathy. Is there a moment in any of the 3 shows or BW where the heroes' actions are born from anything other than their own sorrow? Maybe, just maybe the very last bit of Loki, but at that point, I mean, everything is kinda blown up.

Anyway, I find it interesting that in the midst of this big dumb violent mess is a small tangent of do good, be kind. GOTG1 and to a lesser extent GOTG2 also had similar pathos. I'm here for it.
posted by M Edward at 11:14 AM on August 11 [2 favorites]


Although it does raise the question: were the big heroes not watching TV? Superman could get there in, like, 10 seconds after seeing it on the news. Anyway, not really that important, and issues of plot logic (like whether or not it makes sense for Waller to recall the Squad, which, as others point out, makes a fair bit of sense given the story) aren't really the issue I had with the movie. Just that, as I said earlier, it felt more like a collection of set pieces with little garnishes of character moments that were fairly generic and expected.

Still, better than any of the Avengers movies -- I totally agree with M Edward on the general "lack of empathy" in the Marvel movies, and at least this film makes some gestures towards the question of what effect super-powered individuals have on the public, something that the Marvel films largely ignore.
posted by Saxon Kane at 12:28 PM on August 11


Well if Superman watches American TV he probably doesn't hear much about tragedy in Spanish-speaking countries.

Though, while I don't read comics, my exposure to Superman feels like he should be in what's essentially a different universe than the Suicide Squad, where things work better. Superman should be helping a basically well-functioning society handle problems that are too big for it, while Batman is correctly criticized for being a billionaire in a broken society who doesn't really help it handle problems it should be able to handle. Snyder's Superman to me is just some bullshit and not really anything.

it felt more like a collection of set pieces with little garnishes of character moments that were fairly generic and expected

Like I think this is basically true. I'm gonna quibble a little with the "fairly generic" though. I feel like there was often a joke or little visual thing that made it work. Like when Idris Elba meets with his daughter and they argue about the stolen watch and she screams "It does other things too!", her delivery of tha t line saves the whole scene for me, because yes otherwise it's generic and rote.

Or the cute fish that sort of befriend Nanaue but turn bitey. Like, it's just a throaway thing, but the fact of just how cute they are, sort of like porgs or Baby Yoda, transcends everything else. And the whole fact of how throwaway it was is also just amusing. This movie has a gleefulness to it.

Or when Ratcatcher 2 reminisces in the car and it shows her memory projected on the window (and so, of course reverse when seen from the other side) (and plus her dad is Taika Waititi), that's like a minor amusing thing that carries it through for me.

Similarly, yes it's obvious that Harley is going into that eyeball with her javelin some amount of time before it actually happens, nevertheless the moment delivers more than merely that.

Like I don't mean to be disagreeable! Or talk this movie up better than it is, bc your point of view is right -- but for me it had some good touches that elevated it significantly above other supposed "fun dumb action movies!!" that I've seen and snored through.

But maybe it's just my tastes, or maybe I'm just in a mood, idk.
posted by fleacircus at 1:48 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


Although it does raise the question: were the big heroes not watching TV? Superman could get there in, like, 10 seconds after seeing it on the news.

It's a perennial question in superhero comics, especially in the MCU, where about 90% or so of their superheroes are in NYC, and it's usually hand waved away with "the Avengers are off in space this week" or something similar.
posted by Halloween Jack at 4:47 PM on August 11


I feel like there was often a joke or little visual thing that made it work..... it had some good touches that elevated it significantly above other supposed "fun dumb action movies!!"

I agree for the most part, and just to backpedal a wee bit from my original comment: I did enjoy the movie, certainly more than, say, the previous Suicide Squad, or any of the Avengers, or Justice League (Snyder cut or regular), or Joker (don't get me started on what's wrong with that movie)... But while some reviews (published, not here) are praising this as reinventing the genre, or showing the maturation of superhero films, or whatever, but there just didn't seem to be anything all that new besides the extra emphasis on head-explodey, and bolstered by good performances.

Re: the issue of "logic"... I mean ultimately, any arguing about why something did or did not happen in a superhero movie (or comics in general) by trying to formulate some logical argument about unseen motivations and actions is a pointless game, because the "rules" of the universe are so flexible that all explanations are pretty much equally valid. We could come up with a dozen reasons why Superman or Wonder Woman or Batman or Martian Manhunter or Green Lantern or Aquaman or WHOEVER didn't show up to fight Starro, and a dozen reasons why they should have. Maybe Superman is still in the ICU, or off in some mirror universe, or not watching Spanish-language TV -- but then again, wouldn't Batman have some global satellite information network constantly scanning the globe? Or wouldn't Superman be able to hear Starro, given that in one of the recent films he's able to discern individual spoken conversations from the stratosphere? Sure, maybe, who cares. I mean, none of that really matters, because it's all just plot conveniences for the story -- which is either compelling and meaningful, or it's not, whether or not it follows the laws of the "real world." Given the responses people have made, I don't actually think Waller's decision needs all that much explanation -- it makes sense in the context, although I still think it was a sort of dumb decision for someone in her position to make.
posted by Saxon Kane at 6:08 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


the MCU, where about 90% or so of their superheroes are in NYC, and it's usually hand waved away with "the Avengers are off in space this week" or something similar.

Or you get the "Devil of Hell's Kitchen" solution: make a hero who patrols an area of less than 1 square mile with population under 50k so he won't bump into other heroes too much :D
posted by Saxon Kane at 6:16 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


The very obvious answer to the Superman question, I would think, is that when you have an invincible god-being and the only thing standing between him and the total annihilation of all life on Earth is his idealistic sense of Midwestern decency, you do everything in your power to keep him as far away from the alien sea star (space star?) with mind control powers as possible.

A Starro problem can demonstrably be solved by a handful of talented miscreants (or, barring that, a nuke). A Starro plus Superman problem is a whole other kettle of starfish.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 7:57 PM on August 11 [8 favorites]


The death of The Weasel hit the meese household extremely hard

You do realize he's arguably the worst villain in the Squad, right? Flag said he killed 27 children!

Speaking of awful people, did anyone think that when Javelin was dying and gave his javelin to Harley, his last words were going to be, "Do it for... Hitler"?

I think James Gunn likes rats. In his Tromeo and Juliet, there's a particularly memorable scene involving rats and popcorn...
posted by Saxon Kane at 5:40 PM on August 14 [2 favorites]


Watched the film again over the weekend... Certainly enjoyable, and there were a few cool visual details I noticed that I hadn't seen before, but the major beats/plot points/character developments still all feel pretty formulaic to me -- although well performed.

Somewhat important inconsistency: Flag nonchalantly announces that Weasel killed 27 children, but when he's arguing with Peacemaker about going public with the US' involvement, his rationale is, "They experimented on children! ON CHILDREN!"

As far as a Peacemaker tv series... eh, not excited. John Cena was fine, but carrying a show on his own? Also, it seems like a show about Peacemaker would be like "What if The Boys, but we're on Homelander's side?"
posted by Saxon Kane at 9:49 AM on August 16 [1 favorite]


Just saw it for the second time. May or may not have yelled "GET IT, GIRL!" during a certain scene. My darling chaos muppet Harley!
posted by praemunire at 3:49 PM on August 22


his rationale is, "They experimented on children! ON CHILDREN!"

Up until this point Flagg is basicslly still a true believer. A patriot. The idea that a supervillain weasel killed children is exactly why Flagg does what he does. The government exists to stop the weasels of the world. The fact that they undeniably are as bad or even worse is a slap in the face.
posted by M Edward at 3:58 PM on August 28 [5 favorites]


Man visits tropical destination, learns to overcome his fear of rats.


There’s a lot to love about how this movie was made. It was visually gorgeous and I laughed quite a few times… but the film (and most the trailers beforehand) solidly cemented that I want my media to be fluffy and uplifting for the foreseeable future.

Even though the gore was cartoonish, I had to avert my eyes through a bunch of it. And stop by my boyfriend’s house on the way home to get a few hugs to help me relax. I guess R rated action movies aren’t for me anymore, and I’m okay with that.

I became deeply uncomfortable with Harley as a character when reading comics in the late 90s, and just haven’t ever been able to get over that. Similarly, while I liked the “twist” of the people who were killed in the jungle encampment being freedom fighters rather than “the enemy”, I was upset by how that reveal was basically treated like a throw-away joke. A situation with no consequences.

Another petty disappointment was that Starro never did a partial cartwheel/reoriented which arm was its “head”.

I’m glad nobody asks me for advice of what movie to see, because this would be difficult to recommend even though so much of it is well made. James Gunn has a lot of talent, but without him having studio restrictions on gore, I’m not sure I’ll see more of his movies.
posted by itesser at 7:21 AM on August 30 [1 favorite]


Another petty disappointment was that Starro never did a partial cartwheel/reoriented which arm was its “head”.

I think it does happen somewhere a bit after one hour and 46 minutes. (Yes, checking this was a good use of my time.)
posted by paper chromatographologist at 9:38 AM on August 30


the film (and most the trailers beforehand) solidly cemented that I want my media to be fluffy and uplifting for the foreseeable future.

I enjoyed this movie, but I understand why others wouldn't, completely independent of its aesthetic value. There are definitely only some people I would recommend it to.
posted by praemunire at 9:50 AM on August 30


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