*WARNING* THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR EPISODES 4 AND 5 OF PEACEMAKER
Peacemaker is separating itself from the loveable/unloveable feel of the first three episodes. Instead, James Gunn crafted a character that almost no one cared about (before Suicide Squad) and surrounded them with characters no one cared about either. Somehow that concoction gave us the excellent first three episodes. In episodes four and five of Peacemaker, the mystery behind the whole show deepens, but the audience gets plenty more answers.
If you thought that mystery would be from a government agent or a simple source, you’re wrong. Instead, it’s a wonderfully atrocious PowerPoint presentation. John Economos showed his mettle in these two episodes, sharing excellent music taste with Peacemaker and also shredding a Butterfly-ridden Gorilla with a chainsaw.
This is an alien-invasion plot within the “deep state” at the core of it all. Doing something like this in the political and internet climate we face was a dangerous decision for James Gunn and the crew, but it works incredibly well with this show. It took him lambasting people that believe hogwash like this for it to really hit, but the commentary on the white supremacist, “alt-right” cable-loving Auggie is spot on.
The real star of these two episodes, though, is Vigilante.
Doing Dexter Better Than Dexter With Vigilante
Do you like homicidal maniacs that love killing people? Do you like them to have loads of personality and charm your pants off even if they’re kind of terrible? Welcome to your newfound love of the character Vigilante. Freddie Stroma took a character that no one could have possibly cared about and made it their own. The scene where he goads Auggie’s henchmen into attacking him is an all-time classic for the superhero genre.
The character is goofy, heavy-handed, and really shouldn’t be as likable as he is. Yet, the performance and writing of the character outshine all of those presumed negatives of the character. Vigilante is just as crucial to the equation for Peacemaker as any of the other characters. Vigilante getting almost an entire episode to shine proves the power of Gunn and this show. It’s about the outcasts, the nerds, the ones who might not be the most popular (DC heroes/villains), and they’re getting their time. That is what makes this show so unique.
The Mystery Deepens…
Like They Live, Peacemaker’s X-ray helmet can see the aliens that hide inside humans in plain sight. The ending of episode five gives us another look into what might be happening through this whole conspiracy. Murn is a butterfly. Adebayo finds this out, and we end with a cliffhanger about what Murn does with her. Hopefully, we will learn more about his character, his motivations, and what could be next for the whole conspiracy.
These two episodes handled multiple genres, storylines, and tones blended together perfectly. It’s a testament to the performances on screen and the direction and writing for James Gunn. There’s also plenty of mayhem in play here. If there’s anything Peacemaker does incredibly well, it’s mayhem.
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