Summary List Placement
Who and what is the Suicide Squad?
If you’re not familiar with the comics, the Suicide Squad usually follows a revolving door of DC villains and former villains who work for a government agency called Task Force X. If they step out of line on their missions or try to escape, they’re instantly killed, usually by a device attached to their necks or implanted into their heads.
In 2021’s “The Suicide Squad,” it’s the latter.
Though you’ll notice a few familiar faces from the first “Suicide Squad” movie, including Viola Davis, Margot Robbie, and Joel Kinnaman, Gunn’s film is considered a standalone. (We explain more here.)
Gunn himself said he likes to think of his film as a sequel to John Ostrander’s original run of “Suicide Squad” comics.
From Harley Quinn to Polka-Dot Man, meet the squad featured in the new film, out now in theaters and on HBO Max.
Margot Robbie is back, once again, as Harley Quinn.
The last time we saw Harley, she was riding off with Cassandra Cain in “Birds of Prey” after moving on from her breakup with the Joker. Gunn’s film will deliver another new look for the character that pulls from a mix of the video games, comics, and her animated origins.
Robbie delivers her best scene as Harley in Gunn’s movie.
According to press notes, Quinn is “re-incarcerated for making a cash withdrawal with her car.” She joins the squad as a way to buy her freedom and is “single and ready to mingle.”
Viola Davis returns as Suicide Squad organizer Amanda Waller.
The government official is the one responsible for rounding up and selecting a group of DC baddies to work undercover as her fall guys from Belle Reve prison.
If the group doesn’t perform the tasks she orders, or if they try to go astray, she simply blows them up by pressing a button that explodes a chip in their heads.
Waller doesn’t have any superpowers of her own, but she shouldn’t be underestimated.
Joel Kinnaman reprises his role as Colonel Rick Flag.
In the 2016 film, Flag led Waller’s squad as they moved against Enchantress.
In Gunn’s “The Suicide Squad,” Flag comes across as a bonafide hero. It’s not noted why he joins the squad, but as a military man, he likely does it as a service to his country. He’s tasked with keeping the rest of his squad in line and that isn’t always easy.
Jai Courtney rounds out the returning cast as Captain Boomerang.
We didn’t really learn much about the Flash villain in the first “Suicide Squad” movie. As you can probably guess, his character has an affinity for using boomerangs as weapons.
Press notes also mention that he is “devilishly handsome.”
David Dastmalchian plays the very underrated Polka-Dot Man.
Batman villain Abner Krill is one of the quirkier characters from his rogue’s gallery. His white costume is covered in an array of colored spots. In the comics, the spots can come off of his costume to be used as weapons or transportation.
Here, the spots are a bit more deadly.
Gunn comes up with a completely new tragic backstory for the villain, telling Insider he wanted to take the “dumbest super villain” from DC “and give him a soul.“
Here’s how the character’s described on promotional material sent to Insider: “Dourly dispirited Polka-Dot Man wears his rainbow-pustuled dermis with all the shame of an acne-riddled teen going stag to the prom. But when he fires his deadly polka-dots, he can turn even the smoothest criminal into Swiss cheese.”
John Cena plays the wildly hilarious Peacemaker.
Peacemaker, aka Christopher Smith, is a world-class marksman obsessed with keeping peace at any cost. That doesn’t mean he’s against killing other people.
John Cena described him as a douchey Captain America. The main difference? Peacemaker isn’t invincible.
Idris Elba appears as Superman villain, Bloodsport.
The mercenary character goes after Superman, at the behest of Lex Luthor, with kryptonite bullets. It’s noted briefly in the film that this version of the character does too and that’s why he’s serving time in Belle Reve.
There have been three iterations of Bloodsport in the comics. Here, Elba plays Robert DuBois, the first Bloodsport who had a mental breakdown after he skipped out on the Vietnam War draft and his brother went in his place, only to lose his limbs.
Gunn revamps the character a bit in his film. Like Peacemaker, he’s also a world-class marksman and that puts the two at odds a bit in the film. In “TSS,” he was trained by his mercenary dad from birth and turned to a life of crime. His only soft spot is his daughter.
Storm Reid plays Bloodsport’s daughter, Tyla.
Tyla gets a brief, but hilarious scene early on with her father as he’s persuaded to join Task Force X.
Sylvester Stallone voices King Shark, aka Nanaue.
The giant humanoid shark has enhanced sonar powers and superhuman strength.
In “The Suicide Squad,” the character isn’t simply a flesh-eating monster. He’s an experiment that went wrong and views the world with the naivete of a child. Instead of referring to him as King Shark, the squad respectfully calls him by his first name, Nanaue.
In a virtual Q&A, Gunn told Cinemablend’s Sean O’Connell that they hired three different actors for the role before asking Stallone, his friend, to do the role.
“I wrote the role for Sylvester Stallone. I was afraid… Sly’s my friend. … What if it didn’t work? He’s Sly! I would’ve just had to have a voice that didn’t work,” Gunn said.
“We had one voice actor come in and do the whole movie. It didn’t work. We had another voice actor come in and do the whole movie. He didn’t come to life. We had an actor — a really, really famous actor who was also a friend of mine — come in and do the voice. And that didn’t work,” Gunn continued, saying he then called up Stallone who said he “would love to do it.”
Gunn’s longtime friend Michael Rooker plays Savant.
Brian Durlin (aka Savant) was introduced in “Birds of Prey” in 2003. He tried doing the whole superhero thing and then found himself better at extortion. He’s a masterful martial artist and, like Batman, the heir to a fortune.
More recently, the character was added to the Suicide Squad roster in the comics and was placed on a mission to track Harley Quinn.
In “TSS,” Durlin really doesn’t want to join the squad, but it’s not like he has much say in the matter. He joins the crew to avoid boredom and to knock a few years off his current sentence.
Sean Gunn (James Gunn’s brother) plays Weasel.
In the comics, John Monroe was teased as a college student with his classmates sometimes referring to him as a “weasel.” In his comic introduction, he originally wears a weasel costume when he turns to a life of crime to get revenge on students at Stanford.
The character was later re-envisioned to look like more of an actual animal. In Gunn’s film, Weasel definitely isn’t a man in a weasel costume. His real name is unknown.
Peter Capaldi plays the Thinker.
There are a few versions of the character, but the first one, Clifford DeVoe, was a Flash foe, appearing on the CW series. The inventor built a powerful cap which allows him to essentially be a living A.I. The character is a bit reminiscent of Brainiac, a Superman nemesis.
Capaldi’s version of the character is a scientist named Gaius Grieves who has a penchant for running some wild science experiments.
Pete Davidson is Black Guard.
The Booster Gold villain, whose real name is Richard Hertz, has super strength and an energy shield.
Yes, Davidson plays a character named Dick Hertz.
Daniela Melchior stars as Ratcatcher’s daughter, who aptly goes by Ratcatcher 2.
“The Suicide Squad” introduces a gender-flipped version of the character who was first introduced in Batman’s “Detective Comics” in 1988. Otis Flannegan took on the moniker Ratcatcher because of his personal connection with the animals and ability to train and control them to do his bidding.
In “TSS,” Cleo Cazo controls a legion of rats using an electronic wand, something she learned how to do from her dad, the original Ratcatcher. Her main sidekick is an adorable rat wearing a backpack named Sebastian.
Flula Borg appears as Javelin.
The Green Lantern villain was an Olympic athlete who became a mercenary. That’s where he gets his javelin weapon.
Mayling Ng is Mongal.
Mongal is the daughter of a tyrant named Mongul the Elder. She and her brother have gone after Superman in the past. She has super speed and strength among other powers which should make her an asset to the squad.
She doesn’t usually play well with others.
Nathan Fillion plays a character named T.D.K.
Cory Pitzner’s limbs have the ability to detach and float, giving him his moniker.
We won’t spoil what the letters mean. It’s more fun to hear it said aloud during the movie.
Alice Braga brings Sol Soria to life.
Sol Soria is the leader of the freedom fighters on the island of Corto Maltese in “The Suicide Squad.”
She’s out for revenge after General Luna and General Suarez killed her entire family. She’s hoping she overthrow and take control of the Corto Maltese government with her group of rebels. She’ll cross paths with the squad as their missions intersect.
Jennifer Holland plays one of Waller’s cronies, Emilia Harcourt.
In the comics, Emilia works with the NSA to monitor the Suicide Squad.
Harcourt will be back on HBO Max’s “Peacemaker” series.