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The Origins Of The Suicide Squad

The anti-heroes of DC Films' Suicide Squad might dress like a Hot Topic exploded into a biker bar, but their comic book history traces back all the way to 1959, when the original incarnation of the death-defying team made their first appearance. The version of the Squad that's made it to the big screen consists of villains both known and lesser-known in the DC Universe. But it's the obscurity of some of these guys that makes them expendable, and therefore perfect for a team of disposable sociopaths to take deadly missions in trade for their freedom. So, who are they and where do they come from? Have a look at the origins of these Suicide Squad members.

Rick Flag

Rick Flag is a military man, and his alleged father, the original Rick Flag, led the first 1959 incarnation of the Suicide Squad, which was the non-military branch called "Task Force X," assigned the job of dealing with dangerous super-villains and civilian crimes. While the senior Flag was dedicated to his job, the junior quickly displayed signs of being an unstable jerk, and disliked the fact that he was working alongside psychotic criminals. The movie Suicide Squad's Rick Flag seems a bit off-put by the whole situation, but his apparent instability will probably help him fit right in.

Amanda Waller

It's never clear if Amanda Waller is a hero or a villain, but we know that she's a high-ranking government operative who specializes in organizing top-secret stuff, and as the Suicide Squad trailers make clear, it's her idea to assemble a team of dangerous, but dispensable, criminals to stop unusually threatening threats. DC's New 52 version of Waller is responsible for placing explosives in the brains of the new Suicide Squad members, which can be detonated any time they get out of line—so if there's any question about why these guys don't just go full rogue, the answer is brain bombs.

El Diablo

Historically, El Diablo has always been a good guy. The original El Diablo was an Old West hero who was resurrected by a shaman and possessed by a demon, and the second El Diablo was a Texan vigilante without any actual powers. The edgy New 52 version of the character, Chato Santana, got involved in a gang war and accidentally killed his rivals, as well as their families, using his demonic fire powers. Santana turned himself over to police and awaited death in prison, completely distraught, until he was recruited by Amanda Waller and given a chance to repent for his misdeeds.


Tatsu Yamashiro, aka Katana, is the only true hero on the Suicide Squad, and will presumably serve as some kind of moral compass for the otherwise chaotic team. Katana's backstory is typical hero fare: her husband was killed by a magical sword that absorbs souls, and she now uses that sword in the name of justice. Occasionally, her dead husband's soul speaks to her from the sword, because comics. DC's recent revision of her character implies that she's insane and not really talking to any deceased loved ones, which probably makes her a good fit for the Squad—but summoning restless souls from a sword to do your bidding is not an insignificant power to wield.


Deadshot's main superpower is to still be relevant after first appearing in Gotham City wearing a top hat and tails, But his secondary power is a flawless proficiency in marksmanship. If you pay him to hit a target, he'll get it, without fail, whether it's a good guy or a bad guy—and that's pretty much it. He's almost always a prominent member of the Suicide Squad, has a serious wish to die in an elaborate fashion, and he once completely wiped out crime in a part of Star City when he found out he had a daughter living there. He's not without a heart, but it's usually just powered by cash.


June Moone was once a normal artist, but after visiting a weird room in a weird castle at a weird party, she became possessed by an interdimensional evil. As Enchantress, Moone fluctuates between being able to control her immense magical powers and totally losing control, so she'll almost definitely be Suicide Squad's most wild card, so stuff it, Harley Quinn. You can't help but feel bad for Enchantress; not only is she trapped in some kind of demon-soaked hell on Earth, but this movie also makes her look kinda like Pigpen from Peanuts. Take a shower, lady.

Harley Quinn

Even the most casual nerd knows Harley Quinn's story, and knows that when you're a psychiatrist assigned to the Joker, you should probably gird your mental loins a little better than usual. Dr. Harleen Quinzel's infatuation with the Joker became an obsession, until she donned a jester outfit and helped him escape Arkham Asylum. Despite the fact that the Joker is psychologically incapable of love and regularly abuses Harley, she remains in his psychotic thrall, which will definitely play a large role in the Suicide Squad film.

Captain Boomerang

George Harkness is basically the Scumbag Steve of villains, and his origin story is simple: he decided to be evil because people thought that his stupid boomerang tricks were stupid. Instead of finding a respectable career like graphic design or landscaping, George doubled down on the stupid, and became known among other bad guys for his cowardice, laziness, and racism, which are values that not even the most disgusting villains usually possess. Every oddball team needs a conscientious objector, though, so expect Captain Boomerang to be a hilarious highlight.

Killer Croc

It's hard to pin down KIller Croc's true origins, but comics usually say that Waylon Jones was just born looking like a crocodile, and after years of abuse, he just snapped. Other origins say that he's the product of genetic experimentation, bad swamp voodoo, or some really messed-up steroids used during his wrestling career. His first appearances show him attempting to establish himself as a crime lord of Gotham, but future appearances depict him more like an animal, slowly de-evolving into a dumb beast. DC's New 52 reboot depicts Croc as almost a nice guy, declining to eat people outright, which is the most you can expect from a humanimal.


When you're going to become a supervillain, you need a theme, and that theme had better not be unbreakable ropes. Slipknot didn't get the memo. While Chris Weiss is also a chemist and master assassin (because everyone in the DC Universe is a master assassin), he mainly relies on his own fancy ropes to bring down heroes, which becomes a little difficult when he has his arm blown off during one of the Squad's missions. Hopefully, we'll be getting a Slipknot with a cyborg arm in Suicide Squad, because otherwise, this guy has a worse gimmick than Captain Boomerang. And it takes effort to out-lame a guy called "Captain Boomerang."