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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

DC doesn’t hold back with ‘Peacemaker’

Peacemaker/HBO Max
Peacemaker/photo HBO Max

Jose Romero

DC has thrown its hat into the ring that is the Disney-dominated, high-budget superhero show with “Peacemaker,” and it’s done a pretty good job at it. 

The story begins about five months after the events of 2021’s “The Suicide Squad.” Peacemaker, played by America’s favorite wrestler John Cena, is in the hospital after sustaining damage in the climax of the film. In the show, he initially believes that he’s a free man, no longer under the chokehold of the government, but he’s quickly slapped with a reality check. When he arrives home, he’s approached by an agent named Clemson Murn, played by Chukwudi Iwuji. He says Peacemaker showed his loyalty in the last mission since he killed one of his team members that was going to expose the government. So, Peacemaker is recruited for Project Butterfly — a discrete government operation. 

Not like he has much of a choice since it’s either helping on the mission or finishing his 30-year prison sentence.

Writer/director James Gunn brings his Marvel pedigree to the show, so it may feel familiar to some. It has a mixed bag of characters with questionable motives and a CG animal. Sound familiar? Fortunately, because of his experience, he’s become pretty good at fleshing out an entire group of characters. But his involvement also brings along his sense of humor, which can be hit or miss at times.

Leota Adebayo, played by Danielle Brooks, is the standout character of the group. She’s brought into the mission through means unknown by the others, making them question her purpose. She’s not as well-trained or notorious as the rest of the team, so she’s constantly having to prove herself. Sometimes, proving herself means having to do something she’s not entirely comfortable with, such as taking a life. 

She brings a nice beating heart to a group of cynical government employees that want nothing to do with Project Butterfly. Especially because it means having to work with Peacemaker. 

Adebayo fittingly describes him. He’s sexist, probably racist, but above all else, sad. In “The Suicide Squad,” he’s shown to be a no-nonsense mercenary that’s willing to do anything for peace, no matter “how many men, women and children” he has to kill for it. Now, he has more reservations about the targets he’s willing to take out. 

He still is an absolute murderous maniac, but there’s something different about him. He constantly reflects on the words he was told by the man he killed in the film. “Peacemaker, what a joke.” Those words are embedded into his brain, making him realize he may not be the hero he hopes he is. 

Cena’s portrayal of Peacemaker is surprisingly complex, turning a despicable assassin into a charming, relatable human with a conscience. 

This show isn’t for anybody with a weak stomach. 

Guts and blood shower the screen as the fantastic glam-rock soundtrack reverberates in the background. The CG is noticeable at times during these sequences, but what’s happening on-screen is more interesting than nitpicking it. 

“Peacemaker” doesn’t break the mold from what’s expected from a superhero show, nor does it need to. It’s fun, chaotic and surprisingly has heart. At the time of writing, five episodes have been released out of eight. 

If it remains consistent, then it’s worth watching. Even if just for Eagly, Peacemaker’s bald eagle sidekick. 

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