Marc Alan Fishman: Suicide Squad’s Sinister Sextet
Hello movie lovers! Tis I, Marc Alan Fishman, resident ComicMix snark-do-well. I figured I might as well get at least a day out from the legendary John Ostrander on the topic that most presently has the comic book fanboys all a flutter. What’s that, you say? The recently announced Suicide Squad movie from DC Entertainment now has a cast? Well, what better to do then but react to each of the specific castings of the sinister sextet of seriously spiteful sinners.
Jared Leo as The Joker
I know what everyone is thinking. “Boo! Hiss!” they cry. Well, not me. Casting the clown prince of crime with yet-another slightly slick looking actor, with plenty of dramatic chops, seems apropos. Look kiddos. When they announced Heath Ledger, the outcry could be heard for miles around the Internet. All up until footage started leaking in dribs and drabs. And then when The Dark Knight debuted, every nerd with no-good in their hearts shut their yaps at light speed. Ledger’s Joker was a performance that will never be replicated. But with Requiem For A Dream, Dallas Buyers Club, and several smaller parts in good movies, Jared Leto is honestly not a bad choice. But, put a pin in that, because I’m going to wrap up everything with a nice neat bow before we’re done today.
Will Smith as Deadshot
Well, I think this comes as the shocker, no? Will Smith is a conundrum of an actor. Sometimes, he hits them out of the park. Lead roles in Men In Black, Ali, Independence Day and countless others cement him as being more than capable of balancing humor with a serious side. Of course for every spark in his IMDB file, it comes balanced by serious fizzles of failure. Hancock, After Earth, and Wild Wild West do plenty to make me waiver on how this casting catches me. Suffice to say I could care less about the issue of Floyd Lawton being black. What I’ll care about most is if the script calls for a equal amount of cocky humor with deadpan deliveries in between.
Tom Hardy as Rick Flagg
Dude. It’s Bane being the badass good guy. And there’s almost no chance he’ll have an indecipherable accent and a mask covering his mouth! Count this one as being just fine by me.
Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn
Hmm. Really? I don’t know if I’m skittish more because Ms. Robbie hasn’t been in anything I’ve personally seen, or because we’ve already hit on the fact that The Joker is in the picture. No offense, but when the two of these kooks share a screen, Mark Hamill and Arleen Sorkin have set the precedent. Call me a closet cheerleader for good roles for men and women, but something about having this twosome announced makes me hope that Leto is in and out, allowing for a Harley that’s allowed to be more than something nice to look at.
Jai Courtney as Boomerang
What, he couldn’t be a captain? Damnit. Mr. Courney’s resume is very action-heavy. So it bodes well that the once laughable Digger may have a bit more of an edge to him. That being said, if the dude is still hurling boomerangs, no amount of black leather and cool one liners will quell a common moviegoer.
Cara Delevingne as Enchantress
Ms. Delevinge is too new an actress for me to know whether she can play an uncouth sorceress supreme. As with everyone else announced here, I’m less worried about the name attached to the role as much as the role itself.
You see, John Ostrander’s original series pitted C-Listers on missions that could easily wipe them from continuity. I highly suggest you go read his run, if you haven’t already. Looking over this announced cast – complete with three known names – begs me to ask the heavier questions beyond the frivolous. The Suicide Squad comprised of well-seasoned villains, as played by the likes of Leto, Smith, and Hardy, feels like “suicide” isn’t anywhere in the game plan. More to the point, if you believe The Joker has a chance at biting it on the big screen then you don’t know good business. Hmm, given DC’s track record now and again, maybe he will die.
The key to Suicide Squad being a success lay firmly in the hands of the writers. As a comic book fan and writer, I’m still trying to wrap my head around how one would ever choose The Joker to be on anyone’s team. And will the desire to give Will Smith a few too many quips come to pass? And isn’t the Enchantress a bit overpowered for a team consisting of muggles?
On top of this, rumor has it that Lex Luthor will be making an appearance. Hmm. A known Superman, Batman, Flash, and Wonder Woman villain all being united for a team. Seems like the through-line to Justice League is right here.
At the end of the day, all I personally care about is a good story. If the characters are presented in a form agreeable to their pulpy roots, I don’t mind how modern things need to be presented. With a trio of powerhouse actors on board, there’s no lack of talent. But there’s something to be said about having too much of a good thing. With a bloated cast (remember in addition to the sixth known cast members, and Luthor… there’s also Amanda Waller, as well as whatever heroes may exist in the flick) and seriously over-qualified villains leading the charge, color me holding my breath this picture doesn’t chomp down on the cyanide pill long before the ending coda is playing to an empty theater.