Epic DC Reads: 10 Comics to Keep You Occupied Until Peacemaker Season 2

James Gunn's Peacemaker series, featuring John Cena as the titular antihero, took the DCEU by storm with its debut in 2022. The action-packed and hilariously entertaining show followed Christopher Smith, known as Peacemaker, as he teamed up with a Task Force X unit led by Amanda Waller to combat an alien invasion. This unique antihero character was originally created during the Silver Age by Joe Gill and Pat Boyette for the Charlton Comics Group, presenting a satirical "diplomat" who believed in achieving peace even if it meant resorting to lethal methods.

The Max TV series brought Peacemaker into the spotlight and quickly won over fans, even those who were not familiar with him before The Suicide Squad's release in 2021. Despite not having numerous appearances in comics, most of his moments were concentrated within the last two decades of his 60-year history. Peacemaker often found himself relegated to miniseries, backups, and brief cameos, but thanks to the show's success, he has finally received the recognition he deserves.

Epic DC Reads: 10 Comics to Keep You Occupied Until Peacemaker Season 2

NO # 10 is Green Arrow & Dawn Of DC Primer

Joshua Williamson, Sean Izaakse, Leonardo Fernandez & Jeff Spokes

The "Dawn of DC Primer" introduces us to Peacemaker, alongside his formidable new counterpart, Peacewrecker. Together, they lead a high-stakes mission to the enigmatic Lazarus Island, with the goal of recovering the powerful Helmet of Fate. This mission promises to shape the course of events in the unfolding universe.

In a subsequent arc written by Josh Williamson, Peacemaker and Peacewrecker reemerge, now making their mark in the pages of Green Arrow. However, their path crosses with the iconic duo of Roy Harper (Green Arrow's ally and former sidekick) and Black Canary. As they all pursue their respective objectives, clashes of ideals and action-packed confrontations are guaranteed.

This thrilling storyline promises to be a defining moment in the "Dawn of DC" era, weaving together a tapestry of complex characters, epic adventures, and the unfolding machinations of Amanda Waller's grand design. DC fans are in for an exhilarating ride as they explore this fresh chapter in the ever-expanding DC Universe.

NO # 9 is Lobo

Alan Grant, Val Semeiks & John Dell

Lobo may not have a significant history with Peacemaker, but the last Czarnian's comic book vibe bears striking similarities to Peacemaker's TV series. Both characters share an action-packed, chaotic, and morally dubious nature, making them almost kindred spirits in their approach to life. Interestingly, the Peacemaker portrayed by Cena on TV seems to embody more of Lobo's traits than his comic book counterpart.

Like Lobo, Cena's Peacemaker exudes immaturity and a propensity for violence. Despite Lobo's profession as a bounty hunter in deep space, he remains fixated on indulging in vices like women, booze, and brawling. These traits mirror the reckless and unpredictable behavior we see in Peacemaker's character on the small screen. If and when Lobo eventually makes his appearance in the DCEU, he is bound to resonate with the same fans who have been captivated by Peacemaker's wild and entertaining antics.

NO # 8 is Unstoppable Doom Patrol

Dennis Culver & Chris Burnham

The Doom Patrol and Peacemaker found themselves sharing strikingly similar portrayals in the DCEU, making it a natural occurrence for their paths to intersect in the comics. In the latest limited series, Unstoppable Doom Patrol, we witness the team's extraordinary journey as they venture forth into the aftermath of Lazarus Planet. Tasked with both saving the world from menacing monsters and extending a lifeline to these very creatures, the Doom Patrol faces a formidable challenge.

Intriguingly, Unstoppable Doom Patrol has been experiencing a surge in new recruits, drawing close scrutiny from Peacemaker and the U.S. military. As tensions mount, the series is building up to an inevitable and epic confrontation between Christopher Smith (Peacemaker) and DC's most peculiar yet powerful superhero team. The clash promises to be a battle of the ages, pitting unconventional forces against each other in an unforgettable showdown.

NO # 7 is he Janus Directive (Suicide Squad & Checkmate)

John Ostrander, Paul Kupperberg, Luke McDonnell, Rick Hoberg, Al Vey & Karl Kesel

The Suicide Squad has been one of DC's most captivating and entertaining teams since their reinvention in 1987. Alongside their own iconic run, Checkmate also emerged, narrating the tale of another covert team that stood as America's final line of defense against villainy.

During the "Janus Directive" story arc in 1987's Suicide Squad, Peacemaker was introduced to the squad as part of a crossover with Checkmate. This marked the vigilante's inaugural encounter with the team of formidable villains and complex antiheroes. The storyline expertly blended elements of a spy thriller with intense all-out action, making it a memorable and gripping narrative.

NO # 6 is Peacemaker (1988)

Paul Kupperberg, Tod Smith & Pablo Marcos

After acquiring the Charlton heroes, DC promptly granted those characters their individual titles. Although Peacemaker didn't secure an ongoing series like Captain Atom, Question, and Blue Beetle, he was still granted a miniseries alongside a series of backup stories in Showcase.

Peacemaker's miniseries, published in 1988, delved into his encounters with an international terrorist. The storyline provided a profound exploration of the lasting effects of Smith's father's cruelty on the antihero's troubled psyche, all set within the action-packed backdrop typical of '80s style storytelling.

NO # 5 is The Peacemaker (1967)

Joe Gill & Pat Boyette

Peacemaker, an iconic DC antihero, actually had his origins with a different publisher. Created by Joe Gill, he made his debut in Fightin' Five #40. In this iteration, Peacemaker was introduced as Chris Smith, a diplomat who held an unwavering dedication to the ideal of peace, even if it meant resorting to lethal means to achieve it.

The character's first solo series, titled "The Peacemaker," chronicles his thrilling adventures across the globe as he combats violence and terror. From daring missions like taking down a villain's submarine to preventing nuclear warfare, the anthology series showcased Peacemaker's relentless pursuit of his mission. These remarkable moments from the series were later reprinted by Modern Comics, further cementing Peacemaker's status as a compelling and enduring DC character.

NO # 4 is The Swamp Thing 2021

Ram V & Mike Perkin

Swamp Thing has consistently delivered captivating stories in DC Comics, and the 2021's rendition, titled "The Swamp Thing," lived up to expectations with its enthralling narrative. This series introduced readers to a fresh iteration of Swamp Thing, Levi Kamei, as he navigated through life and confronted formidable adversaries, including the enigmatic Pale Wanderer.

During his eventful journey, Swamp Thing found himself at odds with the infamous Suicide Squad, who relentlessly pursued him into the lush forests of Kaziranga, India. The clash between Peacemaker and one of DCU's most potent beings added an exciting dimension to the series, appealing to fans of V's horror-style, loyal followers of Swamp Thing, and those seeking an encounter between Peacemaker and a formidable DC character.

Thanks to its masterful storytelling and contemporary appeal, "The Swamp Thing" series is undeniably earning its place as a modern classic in the realm of DC Comics.

NO # 3 is Peacemaker: Disturbing The Peace

Garth Ennis, Garry Brown & Juan Ferreyra

After the resounding success of the Peacemaker series, DC Comics made a bold move and enlisted the legendary writer Garth Ennis to delve into the dark and complex psyche of the antihero. In "Peacemaker: Disturbing the Peace," Ennis masterfully crafts an origin story that unravels the twisted path that led Peacemaker to become the relentless agent of violence he is known as.

The narrative skillfully alternates between Peacemaker's sessions with a psychologist, providing a glimpse into the troubled depths of his mind, and a series of haunting and traumatic experiences from his tumultuous childhood. These flashbacks take readers on an emotional rollercoaster, from the heart-wrenching discovery of his mother and stepfather's lifeless bodies at home to the harrowing episodes of being taken in by a pair of unstable criminals. It's a challenging read that delves deep into the character's past, bearing Ennis' signature style that fans have come to love.
While "Peacemaker: Disturbing the Peace" may be a raw and unsettling journey, it remains perfectly aligned with Ennis' unparalleled storytelling expertise, leaving readers captivated by the exploration of Peacemaker's origins and the complexities of his twisted persona. This graphic novel promises to be a gripping and intense addition to the Peacemaker legacy, showcasing the brilliance of Garth Ennis' work in the realm of DC Comics.

NO # 2 is Suicide Squad 2021

Robbie Thompson & Eduardo Pansica

Despite his breakout role in James Gunn's The Suicide Squad film, Peacemaker hasn't been frequently associated with the team throughout the years in the comic books. In fact, apart from the original 1986 series, the antihero had no connections to Task Force X until the DCEU recruited him, and subsequently, the comics followed suit.

In 2021, the Suicide Squad comic series finally elevated Peacemaker to the position of leader within the team's ranks. He assumed command of a group of heroic villains who embarked on a crucial mission to confront the Crime Syndicate on Earth-3. The series boasted one of the most compelling line-ups in the team's modern run, featuring characters such as Bloodsport, Conner Kent, and Talon, as they squared off against formidable adversaries like Superwoman and Owlman.

NO # 1 is Peacemaker Tries Hard

Kyle Starks, Steve Pugh & Kris Anka

In DC's main comic book continuity, Peacemaker embodies a hard-boiled, no-nonsense persona reminiscent of The Punisher, bearing little resemblance to John Cena's comedic portrayal. However, Peacemaker Tries Hard took a different approach, fully embracing the DCEU version of the character in a hilariously action-packed team-up comic alongside some fantastic co-stars.

The ongoing Black Label miniseries, Peacemaker Tries Hard, partners the antihero with a diverse cast of heroes and villains as he embarks on a thrilling array of missions, determined to violently eradicate crime. From teaming up with Monsieur Mallah to joining forces with Red Bee and his newfound loyal canine companion, Bruce Wayne, Peacemaker's adventures take him all across the country. This series undoubtedly stands out as the ultimate tie-in for fans of James Gunn's rendition of Peacemaker.


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