Peacemaker: A New DC Hero


Benedicto Campo, Contributing Writer

Peacemaker is a new DC TV show and HBO Max original that revolves around a relatively unknown and new character from DC Comics, Christopher Smith, also known as Peacemaker. Peacemaker is relatively unknown because he hasn’t appeared in mainstream comic books and movies unlike popular characters like Batman, Superman, and Harley Quinn. He is also new because he was introduced to a lot of mainstream audiences in director James Gunn’s DC film, The Suicide Squad. His popularity gained further due to the fact he is played by John Cena, a star-making actor, and wrestler who is beloved by many fans. This spin-off show reunites both James Gunn and John Cena for a superhero adventure unlike any other DC show has pulled off. It has gory fight scenes and stunts, swear words, and many dark jokes and humor. The gore, swearing, and dark humor in the show make Peacemaker one of the few superhero shows that are both rated TV-MA and explore adult content and themes. The show has a cast that includes John Cena as Christopher Smith/Peacemaker, Freddie Stroma as Adrian Chase/Vigilante, Jennifer Holland as Emilia Harcourt, Steve Agee as John Economos, Danielle Brooks as Leota Adebayo, Chukwudi Iwuji as Clemson Murn, and Robert Patrick as Auggie Smith/White Dragon. The star-studded cast, adult content, and the exploration of an unknown DC character carry the show and turn it into one crazy adventure. 


The plot of the show picks up after the events of The Suicide Squad, where Peacemaker suffered a near-death experience that put him in a coma. After he awakens from his coma, he escapes from the hospital he was put in and finds the freedom he has been desiring for. However, his freedom is cut short when a mysterious black ops group led by Clemson Murn hires him for a new mission. The mission is known as “Project Butterfly”, which is when a group of alien butterflies threatens to take over the world for themselves. Murn needs both Peacemaker and his group to stop these aliens. He threatens that if Peacemaker doesn’t join him, he will trigger the bomb that was planted in his head during the events of The Suicide Squad. Peacemaker reluctantly agrees and this leads to a wild adventure filled with violence, gore, humor, and many strange creatures and events. The show also delves into Peacemaker’s origins on what made him the man he is today and how it affects his life as a hero. He must also learn how to deal with his past in order to become a better hero for the future.


As a DC Comics fan, this show is unlike anything I have seen in any superhero movie or TV show before. This is because it goes all out with its violence, gore, and swear words. This benefits the show because it allows the action to be more realistic and has better shock value. This is unlike most superhero shows or movies where no gore comes out or the violence is off-screen. This is what makes the action more enjoyable and shocking to watch. The swear words also benefit the show because it allows the characters to stick to their true personalities and not have to worry about filtering to tone down the character. Most superhero movies or shows would either beep the word or substitute it for something kid-friendly. This allows character dialogue and banter to be more humorous and engaging. Another upside of the show is John Cena’s performance. John Cena does a good job of mixing in both his serious and comedic acting skills that watching his character makes him relatable to the audience. He carries every scene he is in with his chemistry with the rest of the cast and his acting that shows the character he portrays. This shows that he is capable of acting both outside his usual comedy roles and his wrestling persona. Another big upside of the show is the soundtrack. The show uses songs mainly from the 80s to 2010s. Each song the show uses manages to fit the scene it shows, which makes the scene both a good listen and watch. There is also an intro to the show that uses Wig Wam’s “Do Ya Wanna Taste It”, and it depicts the characters dancing to the song. This makes the soundtrack very fun and enjoyable for both the show and the audience to listen to. 


I personally believe that this show doesn’t have any major downsides that come with it. However, I do have one or two minor nitpicks about the show.  The first minor nitpick is the use of a shaky cam and weird camera work in some scenes. This is because the use of shaky cam made some scenes hard to pay attention to and view. This mainly happens during the fight scenes of the show where it is all action-orientated and gory. I think that the camera work should’ve been both slower to make some of the fight scenes easier to view. The only other minor nitpick I have is how some of the side characters could’ve gotten more exploration. The show spends much of its time on Peacemaker the side characters either got small or no mentions of their past. However, each side character still serves a purpose in the show and their banters with Peacemaker are fun and entertaining to watch. I hope the side characters can get more explorations of their pasts in the second season of the show. 


Overall, Peacemaker is an unexpected hit I thought I would never like. This is because at first, I thought a show about a side character from The Suicide Squad would have no point and purpose in the world of DC. However, it surprised me in many ways due to John Cena’s performance as Peacemaker, the cast of side characters, unrestricted violence and gore, storytelling, direction, and soundtrack. Although it also has minor nitpicks like the camera work and lack of exploration of side characters, the show is still enjoyable and fun to watch. In the end, Peacemaker is a show both casual tv viewers and superhero fans can watch if they want to enjoy a new type of superhero.