John Cena’s Peacemaker was the break-out star of The Suicide Squad. For most of the movie he was an amusingly psychotic character devoted to his mission of achieving peace, no matter how many men, women, and children he needs to kill to achieve it. This was played for (dark) laughs, though things took a more sinister turn when it was revealed he’s got secret orders to cover up the USA’s war crimes.
The resulting brouhaha with Idris Elba’s Bloodsport left him hospitalized, but now he’s back in the debut trailer for upcoming HBO Max show Peacemaker. Check it out:
The Suicide Squad was already pretty extreme but judging by footage there’s a chance this show will go even further. Given how good Cena is in the role it’s nice to see the character being given a little more room to breathe and it’s going to be interesting delving further into his extremely twisted (and hilarious) mindset. The trailer suggests we’ll also be unpacking a softer side to the character in his relationships with the team around him and his pet eagle.
So why is this character getting his own show? Well, DC Films were apparently so excited by what James Gunn was doing in The Suicide Squad that they asked him to pick a character to expand in a spin-off show. Gunn later revealed why he chose Peacemaker:
[Peacemaker is] not an evil person, he’s just a bad guy. He seems sort of irredeemable in the film. But I think that there’s more to him. We didn’t get a chance to know him [in The Suicide Squad] in the way we get to know some of the other characters. And so that’s what the whole show is about.
One focus will be Peacemaker’s relationship with his father Auggie Smith, a powerful and cunning small-town racist. He’s played by Terminator 2, The X-Files, and The Sopranos star Robert Patrick and from the looks of it, we’re due a typically intense and disturbing performance.
Even better, we don’t have too long to wait. Peacemaker will consist of eight episodes, five of which are directed by Gunn himself. The series is due in January 2022 and after this trailer expectations are sky-high.