It is a well-known fact that I’m a “Marvel” guy. D.C. stands for “don’t care” for me. I didn’t even like Suicide Squad II which INTRODUCED The Peacemaker. But I do like the John Cena series a lot. In fact, I think it’s the best D.C. thing since Joaquin Phoenix got an Oscar for playing Joker (and, before that, Heath Ledger got an Oscar for playing Joker).

Here are 3 reasons I recommend HBO’s “Peacemaker”.

1.)    The Cast, But Mostly John Cena

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Solid cast. Some familiar faces are back from Suicide Squad II. And Robert Patrick is amazing playing the world’s worst father.

But, it’s John Cena that makes the show. I was not a fan of the groveling apology he gave to the Chinese Government after he made the horrific crime of implying that Taiwan is a country (which it totally is.)  But I will say, John Cena seems like a dude that’s hard to be mad at.  He’s got really good comedic timing, his acting is solid and he really seems to put everything he has into whatever role he’s doing.

2.)    The Soundtrack

The music on this series is so eclectic and so quirky it’s putting James Gunn up there with Tarantino on my list of “directors with interesting musical tastes”.

The theme song is from the winners of the 2005 Eurovision Song Contest…

There’s an eighties hair band cover of “Pumped Up Kicks” sung by the lead singer of Steel Panther…

And, there’s a scene where we find out that Peacemaker is a HUGE fan of Eighties metal. Bands that I loved but hadn’t thought about in years get name-dropped: Faster Pussycat, Hanoi Rocks…and the most lost of “lost classics”…Quireboys.

I just set my Spotify to the official playlist of Peacemaker. I recommend you do the same.

3.)    The Ballsy Way They’re Addressing Hot Button Issues

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There’s an unabashed goofiness to “Peacemaker”. They make references to some of the lamer parts of the D.C. Universe (Bat-mite?).  Their social agenda is front and center: unapologetic inclusivity with a lesbian couple of color… White Supremacists and Neo-Fascist SHOULD be played as bad guys.

But there’s something they do with a much lighter touch. It’s admirable. They include messages of social justice IN THE MIDDLE of witty banter and repartee. Look at this scene where the Peacemaker is sneaking out of a hospital and he has a conversation with a janitor. It’s basically a breakdown of the concept of systemic racism, but funny and starring John Cena.

As Peacemaker, himself notes, “Yeah, that’s actually a pretty good argument”.  Now think of how many Proud Boys and Oathkeepers in their twenties and thirties grew up idolizing John Cena.  The message…lifeline, really…to this audience isn’t subtle. But it also isn’t mean or condescending. And, it’s coming from John Cena who, as we established, is hard NOT to like.

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