PEACEMAKER: SEASON ONE
Starring: John Cena, Danielle Brooks, Freddie Stroma, Chukwudi Iwuji, Jennifer Holland, Steve Agee, and Robert Patrick
Creator: James Gunn
I loved everything about Peacemaker. First, the little things: great action, R-rated hilarity, and a rad 80s metal soundtrack that support a multi-layered story and a cast with tremendous chemistry. But second, and more importantly, is the star-making turn by John Cena. While terrific in The Suicide Squad, this series highlights Cena’s range as an actor. He imbues Peacemaker with a depth not seen in Squad, making him a tragic, sympathetic figure despite his dickheadery. And let’s talk about those opening credits: They were often the best 80 seconds of my week. I even made the theme song my ringtone.
I had some doubts after the first episode of Peacemaker because James Gunn’s comedic dialogue is 50/50. Either it’s absolutely hilarious or it goes over my head, unlike Drax (see what I did there?). What always delivers is Gunn’s heart and earnestness, and throughout every episode, the entire cast embodies both qualities. John Cena proves he’s today’s go-to comedic actor with range, Danielle Brooks is as charming as ever, and Freddie Stroma comes from nowhere to steal the whole show. There isn’t a weak link in the acting, writing, action, or pacing making Peacemaker a bonafide staple in comic-book entertainment.
I enjoyed The Suicide Squad, but I’m going to go out on a limb to say that Peacemaker is better. John Cena may be among the most consistent comedic actors today (which is wild to say), and he proves here that he can continue that in a leading role. The accompanying ensemble is a collection of unique characters that all work well together, especially Danielle Brooks’ Adebayo, who is the series’ MVP. It’s vibrant, the violence is reminiscent of The Boys, and it’s bolstered by an exceptional soundtrack, not to mention it has the best intro of any series on air.