Note: This review is based on the first seven episodes (of eight)
Following on hot off the heels of 2021’s The Suicide Squad James Gunn strikes again with more hilariously entertaining superhero shenanigans. Originally Peacemaker would seem like an interesting choice of the squad to be getting his own series, especially after the final act of The Suicide Squad revealing him to be a complete asshole, but very quickly the show establishes itself and manages to make Peacemaker, AKA Christopher Smith, just a little bit more likeable.
The show opens with John Cena’s Peacemaker busting out of prison and he unites with some new teammates to defeat a bunch of alien creatures known as butterflies. On the team are leader Clemson Murn (Chukwudi Iwuji), John Economos (Steve Agee) and Emilia Harcourt (Jennifer Holland) two characters that we briefly met working for Amanda Waller in The Suicide Squad, rookie Leota Adebayo (Danielle Brooks) who’s by far the most interesting of the team behind the Peacemaker, as well as Peacemaker’s wisecracking friend Vigilante (Freddie Stroma). It’s a completely different sort of team to who we last saw Peacemaker with in The Suicide Squad but it allows for a much greater exploration of the eponymous Peacemaker.
John Cena is absolutely perfect for the character and James Gunn’s sharp writing and direction makes the show stand out. Right from Peacemaker’s ridiculous pitch-perfect opening titles up until the end of each episode it’s filled to the brim with stupidity and the sort of gags we come to expect from Gunn. It’s remarkable that the cast can perform it all with a straight face. Everything about the show has this air of stupidity to it, whether that’s in the dialogue, Peacemaker’s bald eagle pet named Eagly, or even just Peacemaker’s costume. But the show somehow perfectly balances this stupidity with seriousness as it provides a great look at Peacemaker’s character and actually gives a reason as to why he’s getting this show.
There’s far more to Cena’s character beneath the surface and beneath what we’ve seen of him previously and there’s something that deserves exploration and that’s what the series does. He’s willing to get peace at all costs no matter how many men, women, and children he has to kill to get it. The main plot line of the show about tackling the alien species of butterflies that take over a host body seems a little similar to Project Starfish from The Suicide Squad -and in fact the show even jokes about this similarity- but the show also delves into deeper issues as we experience the relationship between Peacemaker and his white supremacist dad Auggie played by Terminator 2’s Robert Patrick. There’s so much more to Peacemaker as a person and what he’s been through that The Suicide Squad just doesn’t touch on at all so this show is a good chance to really connect with him on a deeper level and it provides us with reasons to actually sympathise with this character.
We’re inundated with superhero content at the minute and Peacemaker feels distinct enough from much of what Marvel are doing, even Gunn’s own Marvel projects, however there is an easy comparison to be made between this and Amazon’s The Boys. Peacemaker isn’t quite as sharp or as smart as The Boys is, nor are any of the other characters in Peacemaker anywhere near the high quality of Amazon’s show but nonetheless it’s a delight to watch and a break from the many Marvel series we had in 2021.
As the show runs on a lot of the humour starts to drip away with Gunn’s juvenile style of comedy getting a bit repetitive. In particular the novelty of Stroma’s quippy Vigilante, who initially seems like DC’s version of Deadpool starts to wear off. Very quickly his stupidity and lack of awareness gets boring.
Peacemaker delivers with its heavy and brutal violence along with being incredibly funny and goofy at the same time. James Gunn shows us once again that he can make something fun and vibrant that feels like it’s been ripped straight out the pages of a comic book. It’s entertaining as hell and a great start to the year for DC.
The first three episodes of Peacemaker premiere on HBO MAX on January 13th with new episodes releasing each week.
Gotham Knights Official Nightwing & Red Hood Gameplay Reveal; Pre-Orders Available Today
Warner Bros. Games and DC today revealed the first official gameplay of Nightwing and Red Hood in Gotham Knights, the upcoming open-world, third-person action RPG in development by Warner Bros. Games Montréal. Narrated by Game Director Geoff Ellenor, the new video debuts an extended look at both playable characters as they bring justice to Gotham City’s criminal element, while also investigating clues around the mysterious Court of Owls. In this gameplay walkthrough, each hero’s distinct fighting style and open-world traversal abilities are on full display, from Nightwing’s unique acrobatic combat and aerial glider to Red Hood’stwin firearm skills and powerful leaping capability.
Gotham Knights is scheduled to launch worldwide on Oct. 25, 2022. Please note, to provide players with the best possible gameplay experience, the game will release on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S and PC and will not be available for PlayStation 4 or Xbox One consoles.
Starting today, Gotham Knights will be available for pre-order on all launch platforms via the PlayStation Store, Microsoft Store, Steam and Epic Games Store. Players can pre-order the Gotham Knights Standard Edition. The Gotham Knights Deluxe Edition can be pre-ordered, including the base game and Visionary Pack downloadable content (DLC) with exclusive gear, cosmetics, Beyond Suitstyle character skins inspired by the Batman Beyond animated series and more. The Gotham Knights Collector’s Edition can be pre-ordered, featuring the Deluxe Edition, augmented reality collectable pin, 16-page media book, exclusive Gotham City map, four-character statue diorama and more. Additionally, pre-orders will receive the 233 Kustom Batcycle Skin at launch, based on the vehicle’s first appearance in DC’s Detective Comics #233.
For more information on how pre-order Gotham Knights, visit GothamKnightsGame.com.
Gotham Knights features the Batman Family as players step into the roles of Batgirl, Nightwing, Red Hood and Robin, a new guard of trained DC Super Heroes who must rise up as the protectors of Gotham City in the wake of Batman’s death. From solving mysteries that connect the darkest chapters in the city’s history to defeating notorious villains in epic confrontations, players will confront an array of challenges as they evolve into their own version of the Dark Knight.
Alongside the gameplay reveal WB Games UK has released several new stills, which you can view below.
DC Showcase-Constantine: The House of Mystery Review
Warner Bros. Animation continues to glean beloved characters from DC’s robust library for the popular DC Showcase line of animated shorts, this time opting to elevate Constantine, Kamandi, The Losers, and Blue Beetle in the 2021-2022 compilation release, DC Showcase: Constantine – The House of Mystery. The shorts collection will be available from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment on Blu-ray on 2nd May and on Digital Download from 3rd May 2022.
Produced by Warner Bros. Animation, DC and Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, and inspired by characters and stories from the iconic DC universe, the all-new quartet of DC Showcase shorts are produced by Rick Morales (Mortal Kombat Legends franchise, Injustice). Jim Krieg is the producer, and Sam Register is the executive producer.
While Kamandi: The Last Boy on Earth!, The Losers and Blue Beetle have all appeared as enhanced content on past DC Universe Movies, the extended-length Constantine – The House of Mystery makes its public debut as the anchor for this dynamic shorts compilation.
Matt Ryan (Constantine, Legends of Tomorrow) reprises his live-action and animated role as the Hellblazer himself in Constantine – The House of Mystery. In the all-new short, John Constantine wakes up in the eerie House of Mystery with no recollection of how he got there. Fortunately, Zatanna and his friends are all there. Unfortunately, they have a bad habit of turning into demons and ripping him to shreds, over and over again!
Telling stories through these showcase shorts offers stirring, mature adventures covering all corners of the DC universe. The anthology-style series throws the spotlight not just on the biggest DC superheroes but also on the characters that may be unfamiliar to the general public in surprising genre-defying ways.
After the events of Justice League Dark: Apocalypse war in which Constantine convinces the Flash and uses his magic to guide him in creating a new flashpoint in order to change the cataclysmic events and eventually save the Earth. However in doing so he’s meddled with time and unfortunately a price must be paid and Constantine must pay it.
The punishment bestowed upon him feels like a groundhog Day horror story as he’s trapped for eternity inside “The House of Mystery” a secret domain where none can escape from. Very little is known about this mysterious house, the architecture is indeterminate and changes periodically. The same holds true for inside the house as rooms constantly shift and one never enters the same room twice, One thing for sure though is that the house likes to play tricks on people and the superheroes that enter it.
If anything Constantine is put through the physical and emotional wringer and what he endures throughout his imprisonment is gory and gruesome.
Throughout the film there’s a mystery to be unraveled and its even more impactful thanks to Robert J. Kral’s incredible, haunting, and eerie score which truly elevate the films more supernatural sequences.
Matt Ryan continues to be the definitive Constantine, portraying him both in live action and animation. He truly made this role his own, with his splenetic humour and arrogance that the Hellblazer is well known for.
finalising the cast are Camilla Luddington (Grey’s Anatomy) and Ray Chase (Licorice Pizza) who reprise their roles from Justice League Dark: Apokolips War as Zatanna and Jason Blood/Etrigan, respectively, while Robin Atkin Downes (The Strain) and Damian O’Hare (Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl) reprise their roles from Constantine: City of Demons as Negral and Chas, respectively. In addition, Grey Griffin (Scooby-Doo franchise) and Lou Diamond Phillips (La Bamba, Longmire, Young Guns) join the cast of the short, which is directed by Matt Peters (Injustice) from a script by Ernie Altbacker (Batman: Hush).
Constantine: The House of mystery is a stacked twenty-seven-minute short film that features mystifying elements as well a few explicit scenes. Its gripping, gory and deliciously sinister whilst showcasing visual animation, haunting score and ultimately a mindbending hell-induced nightmare visit to The House of mystery
Constantine – The House Of Mystery is set for release on Blu-ray on 2nd May 2022 and on Digital Download on the 3rd May 2022.
Don’t forget to enter our competition HERE as we’re giving two lucky winners a copy of the new collection of DC Animated shorts, Constantine – The House Of Mystery on Blu-RayTM – UK ONLY!!!
WIN CONSTANTINE – THE HOUSE OF MYSTERY ON BLU-RAY™
Enter for your chance to win one of two copies of CONSTANTINE THE HOUSE OF MYSTERY on Blu-ray™
To celebrate its release, we’re giving two lucky winners a copy of the new collection of DC Animated shorts, Constantine – The House Of Mystery on Blu-RayTM!
The new DC Showcase line of animated shorts elevates the beloved characters Constantine, Kamandi, The Losers, and Blue Beetle. In the anchoring short, John Constantine wakes up in the eerie House of Mystery with no recollection of how he got there. Fortunately, Zatanna and his friends are all there. Unfortunately, they have a bad habit of turning into demons and ripping him to shreds, over and over again!
Matt Ryan (Constantine, Legends of Tomorrow) reprises his live-action and animated role as the Hellblazer himself in Constantine – The House of Mystery. Camilla Luddington (Grey’s Anatomy) and Ray Chase (Licorice Pizza) reprise their roles as Zatanna and Jason Blood/Etrigan, respectively.
The shorts are directed by Matt Reeves (Constantine – The House of Mystery and Kamandi: The Last Boy On Earth!) and Milo Neuman (The Losers, Blue Beetle). Scriptwriters for the shorts are Ernie Altbacker for Constantine – The House Of Mystery, Paul Giacoppo for Kamandi: The Last Boy On Earth! and Tim Sheridan for The Losers, with Jennifer Keene penning the screenplay for Blue Beetle.
Constantine – The House Of Mystery is set for release on Blu-ray on 2nd May 2022 and on Digital Download on the 3rd May 2022.
For your chance to win a copy of Constantine – The House Of Mystery on Blu-rayTM, simply comment below the answer to the following question:
What is Constantine’s first name?
Entries for the competition close on 3rd May 2022. UK entries only.
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