James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad has revamped the 2016 Task Force X and made some interesting additions to this roster of supervillains who save the day. This new lineup, although fresh, has not left behind some of its most iconic characters who dominated the screens during its predecessor movie, namely, Rick Flag, Harley Quinn, and Amanda Waller.
The newer members have different abilities and different motivations. Although Idris Elba’s Bloodsport and John Cena’s Peacemaker are expert marksmen, reminiscent of Will Smith’s Deadshot, Daniela Melchior’s Ratcatcher 2 and David Dastmalchian’s Polka Dot man bring in a set of unique abilities and personalities.
James Gunn is known for his trademark colourful and humorous direction, making Ratcatcher and Polka Dot Man some phenomenal additions to the team. What’s better? Although at first sight Peacemaker might come off as just another patriotic guy with stellar marksmanship, his character and story take a turn right before the movie reaches its climactic point.
Polka-Dot Man has an unusual set of abilities and a bad case of psychological issues, which the movie touches over numerous times. Although passive, he seems to have a bad relationship with his mother and sees her in everyone, making it easy for him to be a killer and a villain.
Joel Kinnaman reprises his role as Captain Rick Flag, Amanda Waller’s right hand man. In the 2016 version of Suicide Squad, Rick was a righteous guy who did Waller’s bidding and had a bitter relationship with the antiheroes. However, his story takes some turns here and there in Gunn’s Suicide Squad as we see him get softer towards the “bad guys” and rebel against Waller.
Here’s what there is to know about Rick Flag, Peacemaker, and Polka Dot Man!
Leader of the 2016 Task Force X, Rick Flag was a U.S. Special Operations Forces Specialist. He was recruited by Amanda Waller as the leader of the Suicide Squad team when it was first conceived to defeat the siblings Enchantress and Incubus as the host of the former was his lover June Moone. The mission was a success and Flag returned to head a new Suicide Squad in this movie.
As the captain of the new Squad, Flag led them on another high-risk mission to Corto Maltese with the objective to destroy a fortress called Jotunheim and Project Starfish, a dangerous project which could’ve been severely detrimental to America’s reputation for their involvement in something so sinister. After getting ambushed in the beach with a rag-tag team, he leads the original Suicide Squad for the mission.
As someone who was visibly annoyed by the eccentric antics of Harley Quinn, Flag is seen to be friendly with her, volunteering to rescue her when she was being tortured in Corto Maltese for information even though she was part of the team Waller had planned to dispose of. He was also, to some extent, blackmailed by Waller during the first movie when she held his lover June who possessed the Enchantress as a leverage against him. However, things get worse when Flag finds out about the U.S. being directly involved in bringing Starro to Earth and letting the Corto Maltesan government conduct experiments on its enemies by weaponising Starro, while trying to save their own reputation. However, on finding out the truth, he has a 1v1 fight with Peacemaker, who was secretly under orders from Waller to ensure that the information about USA’s involvement does not reach anyone. During their fight, Peacemaker stabbed him straight in the heart with a bathroom tile which ultimately led to his demise.
Expert Marksman: Flag is one of the best Tier One shooters in the military, though his skills are not on par with that of his anti-hero counterparts such as Deadshot and Bloodsport. But he is highly skilled himself and is capable of using any weapon in the US inventory.
Expert Combatant: Flag is highly skilled at both armed and hand-to-hand combat. Once again, he is far surpassed by some of the other characters in the DCEU such as Batman and Katana. He was able to hold himself against the superpowered Enchantress and almost subdued Peacemaker with skill and technique before being stabbed to death.
Peak Human Condition and Durability: As a human with no superpowers, Rick Flag shows exemplary physical prowess and durability, having had rigorous training and from extensive field experience. Enchantress’ Eyes of Adversary needed to mob against him to overpower him, despite being born of superpowers. He also has good durability and can swiftly recover from physical attacks caused by superhuman beings. However, he has his limits and was ultimately overpowered by Peacemaker during their face-off.
Expert Leader: With experience in the US Armed Forces as a colonel, Flag is a revered leader. Waller even refers to him as “the finest special forces officer that has ever produced”. He has successfully led the Suicide Squad in its missions twice even though he lost his life doing so.
John Cena joins the DCEU in Suicide Squad as the Peacemaker/Christopher Smith. Although he desires “peace”, he is a violent extremist who is willing to go to any lengths to achieve peace in the US. Born to Auggie Smith, a cunning small-town racist, Christopher Smith was deeply scarred by his father’s bigoted views during his childhood. He turned out to become a pacifist diplomat who is willing to kill anyone to maintain peace, making his character very ironic. His costume is a bright blue which he pairs with a chrome helmet with a dove engraving, symbolising peace. Since he committed several murders due to his commitment towards peace, he was captured by ARGUS and detained in Belle Reve.
Picked by Waller, he joined the second Task Force X during its strike team mission to Corto Maltese. He made an initial impression as just an expert marksman who wants to achieve peace, things take a turn as the movie progresses. Despite striking a good rapport with the team, he turned on them when they decided to leak the news about USA’s involvement in Project Starfish. Acting under secret orders from Waller, he is unphased by the project being a mistake of the US Government and is willing to kill his squadmates to maintain peace in America. He murders Rick Flag with a jagged tile and attempts to kill Ratcatcher 2 while she holds the drive. However, Bloodsport arrives right on time and shoots him before he could kill her.
Bloodsport’s bullet sends him into a coma instead of killing him and his recovered body was sent to a hospital in America where John Economos and Emilia Harcourt are seen waiting for his consciousness to return as they intend to send him to another dangerous mission. This mission is set to be the DCEU’s first move into TV shows.
In Belle Reeve, Amanda Waller recruited him for black-ops missions, Smith was sent on a high-profile mission with the Vigilante/Adrian Chase. The two developed an intense hatred for one another due to their rivalry. Peacemaker’s spinoff series may delve into their relationship.
Smith is a jingoistic patriot who is obsessed with the idea of gaining everlasting peace and liberty in the US. His character is two-faced as his idea of acquiring peace also involves killing those who threaten it irrespective of whether they are his friends or not. He prioritizes peace over the truth and is arrogant, egoistic, self-righteous, and racist. His hypocrisy in his ideals caused the members of the squad to dislike him severely or not take him seriously. He remains unaffected by their opinions on him due to an inflated sense of ego.
Expert Marksman: Similar to his counterpart Bloodsport, Peacemaker is a world-class marksman who surpasses Rick Flag. His calibre and marksmanship is seen in the scene where he kills people from Sol Soria’s army in the jungle without even looking at them. He had undergone severe training since childhood to bring peace into the world.
Peak Human Strength and Durability: As someone with no superpowers, Peacemaker shows stellar condition, strength, and durability for a human, which is a result of his training to achieve global peace. He is big and muscular in stature and was able to overpower Rick Flag during their face-off. He also showed immense resilience as someone who survived Bloodsport’s shot in the throat.
Polka Dot Man
Abner Krill, popularly known as the Polka Dot Man, is a minor Batman villain. His character in the comics is known for having launched a crime wave inspired by polka dots. Having contracted an inter-dimensional virus, he can grow multi-cultured polka dots on his body and weaponise them for his offensive tactics.
He joined the second Task Force X in James Gunn’s Project Starfish. Contrary to the wishes of all those who were incarcerated in Belle Reve, Krill wished to be a superhero someday, which he achieves in the movie during its ending battle scene on the streets of Corto Maltese. He attacks Starro, destabilising him during their confrontation but is ultimately killed by the alien creature.
Krill’s mother was a scientist for S.T.A.R. Labs. She was obsessed with superheroes and obsessively used her research to give her children superpowers. During her experiments, Krill got infected with the inter-dimension virus which is where his power stems from. The virus caused his body to grow glowing polka dots as lumps that formed under his skin. Some of his siblings died as a result of these experiments while some survived.
Krill needs to expel the polka dots twice daily to prevent the inter-dimensional virus from eating him from within. Krill has also acquired Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD as a result of these experimentations and the death of his siblings and harbours negative sentiments for his mother. He sees her in everyone’s face and though not fond of killing, he can do it if he envisions his targets as his mother. This implies that he must’ve killed her in the past and is the reason why he is in Belle Reve.
He is soft-spoken and dispirited, contrasting the characteristics of his co-member the Peacemaker. He does not believe in himself or his meta-human abilities a lot and is often nervous. He is cynical and suicidal as well as he wants to die in his mission.
Krill was recruited by Waller in 2021 as a member for her new Suicide Squad where he travelled with his team to Corto Maltese to destroy Jotunheim and Project Starfish.
Weaponized Polka-Dots: Krill is a metahuman who grows multi-coloured polka dots as growing bulges under his skin. He uses gauntlets to project these dots to attack his enemies. These polka-dots are offensive and can disintegrate whatever they come in contact with, making Krill a valuable addition to the Suicide Squad.
Expert Engineer: The gauntlets Krill uses to expel his polka-dots are in fact, engineered by him. He is experienced and has constructed his entire uniform.