After “The Suicide Squad” was released in 2021, James “JG” Gunn (one of my all time favorite filmmakers) developed a spin-off series known as “Peacemaker” with John Cena reprising his role. A year later, the show’s first season officially streamed on HBO Max. The first DC Extended Universe (DCEU for short) based series outside the “Arrowverse” received positive reviews from critics, fans and streamers alike. Recently, a second season is green-lit. As you may know, a video game titled, “Suicide Squad Kill The Justice League” will be released this year on PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X.
Today’s review contains no crucial SPOILERS. I’m giving some of you a chance to see Peacemaker’s first season. Feel free to check out my non-spoiler article.
Positive & Negative Elements
Positive: John Cena reprises his role as Christopher “Chris” Smith/Peacemaker. He did a fantastic job for his performance. Besides headlining the show, he also serves as a co-executive producer.
Jennifer Holland & Steve Agee reprise their roles and they both did a great job for their respective performances.
Newcomers to the DC Extended Universe such as Danielle Brooks, Freddie Stroma & Robert Patrick all did an amazing job for their respective performances.
James “JG” Gunn mapped out all eight episodes. He did an awesome job constructing a cohesive storyline. Unlike the idiots who made “Teen Titans Go,” JG understands the DC Comics lore and he’s passionate as a life long comic book fan.
Fun Fact: JG is officially engaged to Jennifer. Meaning, he finally has the Leslie Mann to his Judd Apatow.
Action Sequences retain The Suicide Squad’s hard R fatalities. If you have a weak stomach, be prepared. Get yourself a barf bag.
Clint Mansell (Requiem For A Dream, The Wrestler, Black Swan) & Kevin Kiner (Star Wars: The Clone Wars) orchestrated the soundtrack together. They also worked on “Titans” & “Doom Patrol.”
Chris has good taste in 80s hair metal music. It was JG’s idea to add various songs for the show.
Chemistry between Chris and his allies, serve as the main highlight. Their interactions move the story arc forward.
The Peacemaker costume retains the comic book look, John wore it in public appearances to promote The Suicide Squad and the eponymous show.
Humor has elements of black comedy. As if Quentin Tarantino made a DC series. Most of John’s comedic moments are improvised. He credits Amy Schumer & Judd Apatow for improving his acting skills on “Trianwreck.”
A running gag involving Economos’ beard.
Like Doom Patrol & The Suicide Squad, the show is filled with crimson blood thicker than water.
Opening Credits features the cast dancing to Wig Wam’s “Do You Really Wanna Taste It.”
Primary Themes are Teamwork & Trust. Both of ‘em are handled maturely for a dark comedy series.
According to JG, Peacemaker is influenced on Bob Odenkirk’s role as Jimmy “Slippin’ Jimmy” McGill/Saul Goodman in the “Breaking Bad” prequel, “Better Call Saul.”
We learn about Chris’ troubled past.
Chris’ pet bird Eagly, is actually computer animated. I thought he looked real.
An alien race called, The Butterflies (they look nothing like Mothra) play a key role.
Negative: I couldn’t any flaws. I’m giving JG and his posse an Extra Point for making a flawless season as possible.
Episode 1 – A Whole New Whirlwind
Fresh: Episode 1’s title is a play-on-word of “A Whole New World” from “Aladdin.”
Set five months after the events of The Suicide Squad, Chris fully recovers from Bloodsport’s bullet. He’s recruited by operatives to embark on a mission under Amanda Waller’s order.
Chris’ bloody battle with a superhuman, indicates this show is not intended for families. If you feel nauseous, bring a barf bag.
A familiar face makes a cameo appearance.
Expired: No boo boos spotted.
Episode 2 – Best Friends, For Never
Best: Chris reunites with an old friend.
A lengthy argument involves a famous stand-up comedian who lost credibility and fell from grace who never leaves his damn pants on.
Worst: No cons found.
Episode 3 – Better Goff Dead
Alive: Episode 3’s title is a play-on-word of the phrase, “Better Off Dead.”
Chris and his team are assigned to annihilate a U.S. Senator, who is not entirely human.
A hilarious dispute over a children’s book series. I’ll give you a hint, it was adapted into cartoon and it’s not “Arthur.”
Dead: Nothing terrible happened.
Episode 4 – The Choad Less Traveled
More: Chris disses a superhero’s moral code.
We get a glimpse of Chris’ past.
A Plot Twist occurred.
Less: No bad things detected.
Episode 5 – Monkey Dory
Strong: Episode 5’s title is a play-on-word of David Bowie’s “Hunky Dory.”
A hilarious argument involving famous people.
Economos has an awesome moment.
Wimpy: No flaws discovered.
Episode 6 – Murn After Reading
Hot: Episode 6’s title is a play-on-word of The Coen Brothers film, “Burn After Reading.”
This episode is filled with shocking moments. I refuse to give anything away. Meaning, tensions have officially escalated.
Vigilante’s ringtone got me laughing really hard.
A Mötley Crue song is played for drama. Speaking of which, the Hulu mini-series “Pam And Tommy” based on Pamela Anderson & Tommy Lee sex tape scandal also streamed in 2022.
Cold: No issues spotted.
Episode 7 – Stop Dragon My Heart Around
Increase: A flashback reveals more about Chris’ past.
Chris battles White Dragon and his pawns.
Mr. Cena shows off his dramatic chops.
Somebody meets his/her end.
A big reveal sets up the Season Finale.
Decrease: Nothing terrible occurred.
Episode 8 – It’s Cow or Never
Victory: Episode 8’s title is a play-on-word of the phrase, “It’s Now or Never.”
Season Finale concludes an eight-part story arc.
Somebody disses a superhero in green.
The Butterflies motivation makes perfect sense.
A few faces make cameo appearances.
Defeat: No boo boos found.
The Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!
Peacemaker’s first season is an instant hit. Like “Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, John Cena has come a long way as a wrestler turned actor appearing in the ridiculous Fred Figglehorn movie to becoming an establish action star. Peacemaker is perhaps the best non-animated DC based series since “Doom Patrol.” James Gunn knocked it out of the park. If you haven’t seen Peacemaker’s first season, it’s a must watch. I cannot wait for the next season. Don’t forget Mr. Gunn is working on “Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3.” He’s a master of two worlds shepherding Marvel & DC.