James Gunn always has a knack for making movies and shows with complex characters with surprisingly depressing backstories. The hook is that you would not realize these are sad characters just by looking at them because they are a bunch of silly-looking dudes, and are very funny. Yet the tone of comedy never clashes hard with the tone of sadness. It is always featured in the right balance that it cannot function without the other.
Today we look at the most masterful jokes in season 1 of Peacemaker, so we can further analyze how James Gunn does his bate and switch.
Peacemaker's Gift for Nicknames - Episode 5 Monkey Dory
Adebayo tells Peacemaker to ease up on insulting Dye-Be-- Economos because it is starting to hurt Economos' feelings. Vigilante joins the conversation and tells Adebayo that it is just part of Peacemaker's personality to be a bully and make insulting nicknames.
The conversation turns to the reveal that Peacemaker used nickname guys out of what their penis looks like. He named Vigilante's older brother Prince Charming because his penis looked like a scepter. Peacemaker's friend nicknamed Veiny McVeinerstein, told Peacemaker once that he is like a gypsy but with dicks instead of palms.
Peacemaker then justifies that he is not a bully because he was bullied too... Because kids told him he was a bully all the time, and keep telling him he was abusive. He said it hurts his feelings.
Whatever happened to the good old day when anyone could just non-stop mess with somebody without them claiming to be the victim?
Vigilante Don't Want to Use Duct Tape - Episode 7 Stop Dragon My Hear Around
When Eagly needs medical attention, the team rushes into a veterinarian clinic. Vigilante wants to kill every clinic staff with no hesitation. Harcourt instead suggests tying the staff up instead. In a hilarious twist, Vigilante suggests not to use duct tape because it would hurt their skin when they are trying to peel them off.
So he's compassionate about tape, but not brutally murdering people? Yes.
Peacemaker Sings and Dance Wearing Only Underwear - Episode 1 A Whole New Whirled
Everybody remembers the scene with Peacemaker in his tighty whities in The Suicide Squad. Well, the second time's the charm. When Peacemaker sees a Quireboys album in the music collection of the girl he just slept with, he danced and sing seriously to the tune of "I Don't Love You Anymore" in his tighty whities once again, this time using a dildo as a microphone. apparently, Peacemaker has only two styles of fashion.
Seeing an overgrown muscled man dancing in his underwear and a dildo is always funny. Especially when there is no effort to hide his bulge. Thank James Gun for his love of needle drops and exquisite soundtrack selection for making this scene happen.
Eagly Hugs Peacemaker - Episode 1 A Whole New Whirled
Meet Eagly, Peacemaker's pet, and sidekick. He does not have a dog named Doggy, and a daughter named Daughtery, but he sure has an eagle named Eagly.
When Peacemaker went to jail, he left Eagly to the care of his father. Now that Peacemaker is back, he went to his father's house to see Eagly. Eagly is so excited to see Peacemaker, he chirps like he is a child who has just seen his father's return. Then the unexpected happened - Eagly hugged Peacemaker. Peacemaker's reaction is like he just experienced a miracle. If you have never seen an eagle hug a guy, then now might be the time to watch Peacemaker.
Eagly Hugs Again - Episode 7 Stop Dragon My Hear Around
Eagly just might be the only good soul in this series because the entire cast are terrible people. So as we see him lying lifeless as Peacemaker begs and pray that Eagly survives, we are with him, praying for a miracle.
Then, as if Eagly heard Peacemaker's prayer, Eagly rises from his bed. Peacemaker's face is suddenly filled with relief. With a rising musical score, we are blessed again as Eagly adorably wraps his wings around a tear-stricken Peacemaker for a second time. This time Eagly's eyes are closed and his wings are even tighter. Clearly, Chris is right, miracles do come true. A selfie miracle.
Every Comment Vigilante Makes - Episode 5 Monkey Dory
Vigilante is turning out to be the funniest character in the series - the balance of a really big dork with a casual presence, that makes it disarming when he says and does something psychopathic.
In this episode, Vigilante may be used sparingly, but every time he says something, he is in comedy fire. Literally, everything he says in episode 5 is funny.
In the team meeting, when he saw a human next to a chimpanzee in the PowerPoint slide, he comments he thought they are friends and are going to be going on an adventure. When Murn asked an obviously rhetorical question, he is unable to read the room and answers with no self-awareness.
When he said that Peacemaker was always a bully since he was a child, giving insulting nicknames based on how people's penis look, he just casually said he never got insulted because he has no feelings. As if he has no self-awareness that makes him a sociopath.
There is a scene where he wants to bring a chainsaw on a stealth mission, and when Harcourt says no, he whines like a kid that he would never have a chance to kill anyone with a chainsaw.
When Harcourt tells the team that a Butterfly can make any living creature their host, Vigilante laughs at the thought that they can possess a chihuahua.
He then complains that he is not the one who killed the gorilla with a chainsaw.
Vigilante Fails to Cover Up His Secret Identity - Episode 4 Murn After Reading
Peacemaker is about to visit his dad in prison to tell him everything about the top-secret team he is a part of. Adebayo tries to stop him by telling him that his father is a terrible person that does not deserve Peacemaker's love. Peacemaker in total denial goes in anyway.
Vigilante, who is in his civilian wear, without his costume on, interjects that Peacemaker has to do what he was to do. Adebayo correctly assumes that he is Vigilante. It is only at this moment that Vigilante realized that he is not wearing his costume and so fails to hide his identity from Adebayo.
He denies that he is Vigilante by saying he is not him. Adebayo tells him he sounds like him, so Vigilante changes his voice. When Adebayo tells him that it is obviously fake because it was different 2 seconds ago, Vigilante tells her that it is because he is about to cough.
Vigilante is still limping now because of the torture he received from the previous night, so Adebayo sarcastically asks why he is limping. At this point, Vigilante is defensive and raises his voice saying it came from a snowboarding accident, totally unrelated in any way to Vigilante, apparently. He claims he does not even know who Vigilante is. As far as he knows, he tells, Vigilante might even b a woman, and only assumes Vigilante is a guy since he sounds exactly like him.
Nice try, Vigilante.
Vigilante is Tortured to Get Information Out of Peacemaker - Episode 3 Better Goff Dead
When the villains, who are possibly aliens or monsters, have captured both Peacemaker and Vigilante, the villains want some information out of them. Specifically, they want Peacemaker to tell them everything. But instead of torturing Peacemaker for the information, the villain keeps on torturing Vigilante so that Peacemaker would talk in the belief that while humans suffer from physical pain, seeing their loved ones in physical pain hurts them more. But... Peacemaker might not love Vigilante.
As the villain tortures Vigilante with electricity, Peacemaker just keeps on challenging the torturer to pick up the voltage with complete indifference. Vigilante is visibly in agony, but all Peacemaker does is assure Vigilante to don't worry because he will never give them any information.
The villain faces Peacemaker and tells him that if pure pain does not scare Peacemaker, perhaps losing something more permanent would make him talk, only to turn to Vigilante again to cut off his toe. Peacemaker tells him to even cut off all of Vigilante's toes. When Vigilante looks at Peacemaker, Peacemaker winks at him with a smile. Well, that's reassuring.
Peacemaker's Conversation with the Janitor - Episode 1 A Whole New Whirled
When making a series, one must establish the tone right away, and with this scene, we immediately know this series is a comedy because this scene is hilarious. Peacemaker has just been told by his doctor that he is free to go, but he is actually a prisoner. So he gets the janitor to ask him if there are any government guards assigned to watch him around in the hospital.
The conversation quickly turns into an argument, a tone of two children fighting but with a sense of friendship, despite Peacemaker and the Janitor only knowing each other in a moment where they share weed one time.
The laughter keeps on building and building with each passing word - There is a fight about Aquaman and what he does with fish. Later when the janitor finally recognized a superhero called Peacemaker, he remembers that he is a racist superhero. Peacemaker denies this but promises to kill more white people in the future. Hey, if the ratio is suspect, the ratio is suspect.
The Intro Credits - All Episodes
There are only a handful of intro credits that no one pushes the skip button on, Game of Thrones, Stranger Things, and now Peacemaker just made the cut. The intro credits present the entire cast dancing an awkward stiff dance at the tune of "Do You Wanna Taste It?" By Wig Wam, all with a straight face, emotionless in fact. They could have made the entire cast look like they are enjoying themselves but making them emotionless makes it more hilarious.
The performance number is complete with elaborate lights with a set of neon and metal stairs. It does not even matter if a character is a straight-faced serious type in the series, in this intro he or she is going to dance. Even Eagly got into the action.
This must have been hell to shoot as the cast must have been laughing all the time. Whatever the case, this is an intro no one would skip.