Upon it's worldwide release on August 5th, Suicide Squad took the box office by storm. It shattered records for the biggest opening weekend ever in the month of August. It handily dethroned Marvel Studios' Guardians Of The Galaxy, a movie many believe it was mimicking in the tone of it's trailers and marketing.
However, all was not plain sailing for the latest entry in the DC Comics Extended Cinematic Universe. Critics slammed the movie. A talented and charismatic cast was not enough to save it from being deemed a choppily edited, shoddily scripted mess. Currently, the movie has a 27% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with an average score of 4.7/10 based on 283 reviews. Conversely, audience's scored an average of 3.7/5 based on 104,960 ratings, with 69% of the public saying they liked it.
This shows the divisive nature of Suicide Squad and the other films in the DCEU. Man Of Steel and Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice didn't fare much better critically. They also split audience perception. It seems DC and Warner Brothers struggle to deliver a fully satisfying film that critics respect and audiences love. This will hurt Warners, as they don't compare favorably to their rivals at Marvel Studios. That studio has made a habit of delivering critical and commercial darlings over the last few years.
One thing that is fairly certain about Suicide Squad, though, is that there will be a sequel. The film has grossed $471 million worldwide in just 12 days. This kind of box office dominance is a triumph for the marketing of the film. It is sure to return for round two. But what can audience's expect to see in a sequel? What threats will the ragtag collection of DC Universe villains face?
Suicide Squad: The Players
Firstly, we would hope to see the main cast members return. Will Smith, Margot Robbie and Viola Davis were all impressive in their roles as Deadshot, Harley Quinn and Amanda Waller respectively. Smith gave us a timely reminder of that blockbuster movie star charisma that defined him in his early career. He was a joy to watch as the cool-as-ice hitman with a heart of gold. Robbie embodies the kooky, sexy and yet dangerous persona of Harley Quinn. Davis a force of nature in the movie. Her Amanda Waller is a tough as nails government official who rules over the Squad with an iron fist. In many ways, Waller is more ruthless than the supervillains who make up the Squad, and we hope to see more examples of this in the sequel.
Jai Courtney was also a blast as Captain Boomerang, a Squad mainstay from the comics. It only makes sense for him to return. Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje went through an extensive make-up and prosthetics process to appear as Killer Croc. He managed to make enough of an impression that we would like to see more of the cannibalistic, yet somehow misunderstood and sympathetic monster. Joel Kinnaman also did well in a thankless role as the straightlaced military man forced to wrangle the Squad.
Part of the fun of Suicide Squad is the expendable nature of the team, which leads to an ever-changing roster. Thus, to replace the unlucky members who met sticky ends in the first movie, we'd like to see any one of Bronze Tiger, Count Vertigo or Plastique (classic recurring members in the comics), as well as Poison Ivy, the Batman villain who we previously saw in Joel Schumacher's lamentable Batman & Robin. Ivy is an awesome character, a tragic villain and eco-terrorist with a truly worthwhile cause and visually stunning powers. It also helps that she and Harley Quinn are best friends in the comics and are always entertaining when paired.
So, now we have assembled our team for the sequel, what mission would we want to see them tasked with? Considering the biggest problem with movie one was the weak villain, with her plot, such as it was, making little to no sense, we would not use Cara Delevigne's Enchantress again. She was little more than a generic comic book movie villain with an endgame that involved lots of dodgy CGI and a big beam of energy shooting into the sky. This is an overused plot device at this point in comic book movies, from the Avengers movies to the latest Fantastic Four. At the end of the day, Enchantress should square off with the Justice League, not the Suicide Squad.
Next time, we suggest the filmmakers dial things back and give the Squad a smaller, more black-ops based mission. In John Ostrander's classic 1980's run, the Squad's recurring villain was The Onslaught, a team of superpowered terrorists from Qurac (a fictional Middle Eastern country in the DC Universe). The Squad should be sent into a war-torn nation to battle The Onslaught with extreme prejudice .ie. to kill them. The Squad's function is to facilitate the operations the Government wishes to keep secret from the American public; they are bad guys doing bad things to other bad guys.
You may have noticed no mention of a character who was marketed as a main selling point of Suicide Squad. Truthfully, Jared Leto's Joker has very little screen time in the movie and almost no bearing on the main plot. This has disappointed a lot of fans and critics, as well as Leto himself. He has been candid in interviews regarding how much footage he shot that was cut from the film.
The Joker is the best villain in all of comics. He should therefore next appear in one of two places: Ben Affleck's first solo Batman movie or the rumored Harley Quinn spin-off film. To try and squeeze him into Suicide Squad 2 just doesn't make sense. He's too iconic and looms too large over proceedings. There's also the sense that the first movie had far too many characters to properly service in the best ways. All in all, removing The Joker is only logical.
What would you all like to see in a Suicide Squad sequel? Let us know in the comments section below.