During December, we’ve learned the main characters in Suicide Squad, from Jared Leto as The Joker to Viola Davis reportedly playing team overseer Amanda Waller. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that there won’t be any additions to the team. In the comic books, the team’s members have gone into the double digits, and with only five supervillains officially announced (one of whom might not even be part of the team), there’s always room for more bad guys. Now there’s a new rumor suggesting that a certain one-eyed mercenary from the DC universe might be appearing in the 2016 action film.
Possible spoilers for Suicide Squad ahead
A Redditor named oldcomicbookfan claims to have taken part in a Suicide Squad focus group over at Warner Bros. Among the plot details they provided to the participants include the role Slade Wilson, a.k.a. Deathstroke, might play. In the film, Slade is Amanda Waller’s personal bodyguard who is sent to oversee the Squad so that they stay in line during the mission. There was also concept art of the characters shown, and the Redditor said that Deathstroke is the best they’ve ever seen, stating it’s a "realistic but tech-geared look." If true, this would be Deathstroke’s theatrical debut. Recent live-action appearances include a recurring role on Smallville, played by Michael Hogan, and as a major antagonist on Arrow, played by Manu Bennett.
Keep in mind that none of this is official, and even if it was, given that shooting doesn’t start until next April, Warner Bros. could always change their mind about including Deathstroke. Plus, considering how popular the character is, why wasn’t he announced alongside the other team members? Even if you’re not a comic book reader, chances are you’ve seen him somewhere on TV or a video game. However, an appearance in Suicide Squad wouldn’t be entirely unprecedented. The mercenary was included in the team lineup earlier this year when DC’s Suicide Squad comic book relaunched as New Suicide Squad, although he was revealed as a traitor in issue #2. Given Deathstroke’s occupation as one of DC Comics’ deadliest mercenaries, having him serve as a body guard is an odd shift. Much like The Joker, I can’t help but wonder if this version of Slade has ulterior motives for serving Waller.
Other interesting tidbits from the Reddit post include a Warner Bros. official stating that the "blend of action with a time sensitive conflict" from the 1994 film Speed inspired the Suicide Squad plot. Harley Quinn is implied to be the protagonist in the film, and she is brought in to help track down bombs placed throughout Gotham City by The Joker. Although she starts out estranged from her clown boyfriend, she eventually betrays him, which is hardly surprising. There also might be a subplot involving Joker working with Lex Luthor, which would line up with the rumors that Jesse Eisenberg is reprising his Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice role in the film.
Whether or not Deathstroke and these other elements make it into the final product, Suicide Squad certainly sounds like it’s shaping up to be something exciting and action-packed. The film is set for release on August 5, 2016.