Will Suicide Squad be more popular than the average superhero movie?
Like many others, I am very excited for Suicide Squad. This got me thinking…this is a movie about bad guys, and yet some could argue we’re perhaps more enthusiastic than say, the average
superhero movie. Granted Suicide Squad is from a beloved comic series, and full of DC characters we can’t wait to see come to life on the big screen, but could it possibly be that the hype growing around this film has been drawn from fans who have become maybe even a little used to typical superhero movies?
I know that’s a big question to ponder, and really this is only speculation but when you consider that The Joker is one of the most loved villains of all time, despite being a total megalomaniac, and that Harley Quinn, a pathological, and psychotic killer, is now of the most cosplayed characters at Comic Cons, perhaps it’s true that some fans nowadays are identifying more with the villain that the hero.
Of course, Suicide Squad is not your typical villain movie, they are of course assembled to ‘do some good’ as Amanda Waller says. And this could in a way make them heros, but up until now that’s not how these characters are have been portrayed, ignoring the comics, of course.
You could argue that in these tough times, we need superhero movies now more than ever. Terrorism is everywhere, politics is leaving generations disillusioned and division in communities is growing. Fictional icons like Captain America, Spider-man, Wonder Woman and Superman stand for justice, strength and a united front, but these are qualities all too hard to find nowadays. Could it be that audiences are turning their backs on characteristics they no longer hear about in the news? Or identify with ?
Of course, this is only one form of reasoning behind the support of Suicide Squad. Another is simply that the portrayal of the characters looks accurate, there’s a good cast, and comic book fans love to delve into the twisted minds of villains. Look how much praise Heath Ledger’s portrayal of The Joker received. I’m interested to see what people make of Jared Leto’s version. I personally think he’s a very good actor, but it’s obviously going to be a different kind of Joker than the others we have seen.
Excitement and support could also be due to the success of Deadpool. Deadpool’s an anti-hero, whose film was made on a very meager budget and yet profits sky-rocketed. The film was made well, by fans themselves who knew exactly what was needed, like an R rating. This has led to rumors about possibly more R rated superhero movies in the future, including the next Wolverine movie. Surprisingly enough, it was only rated a 15 in the UK!
A final point I will make is that people love to live vicariously. We all have people we want to get our own back on, we all have that little part of us that would love to take the law into our own hands, superhero or not, perhaps superhero one day and villain the next. These ‘bad guys’ do what they want and don’t appear to deal with any of the guilt or suffering some of our beloved heroes go through. They’re just crazy. But also often broken, damaged, and dealing with loss, grief and pain. Could it be we’re drawn to their warped sense of humanity?
Will Suicide Squad be more popular than the average superhero movie? Possibly. There are certainly more superhero films than there are say, villain origin stories, because at the end of the day, we want the good guys to win…right?