Suicide Squad's Will Smith as Deadshot: An In-Depth Analysis

asmithNow that we've seen the first official look at the Suicide Squad, with some special attention paid to Will Smith's Deadshot, it seems like we can get down to the business of making some observations about his look.

We took a look at most of the Squad yesterday, but there's a lot to say about Deadshot and Harley Quinn -- and they're wildly popular characters -- so we kind of glanced over them and figured that we would give them their own space to stretch out and be discussed, rather than trying to cram it all into an already-crowded article.

will-smith-deadshot-1So...let's get down to it.

First of all, we get the big panel of body armor, like in the Arkham games or on Arrow. More than almost any other costume in the shot, this one blends the looks from comics and other media. The white mask and red outfit come straight from the comics, but hey doesn't have the same high tech, silvery "armor" bits that the comics do. Instead, he has a more functional-looking body armor influenced by the Arkham games and everything that's come after.

He does, indeed, have the arm-mounted guns -- a specialty weapon from the comics which have made it into nearly every iteration of the character.

Here, he seems to have a spiritual side -- which may tie into the very human way that Floyd tends to come across in spite of being a hired killer. In the comics, he has a kid and deeply regrets the way his path in life has impacted her. Here, we don't see any specific indication that he'll have a daughter, but both his collar and the barrel of his sniper rifle seem to be quoting a jumbled version of John 14:6, in which Jesus says that "I am the way and the light." Here, it's "I am the light - the way." 

deadshotOf course, the other interpretation of this is that he isn't truly spiritual as much as he's just a guy who has a healthy sense of irony. we've seen killers in movies before who use religious imagery to help establish their identity during kills, from The Boondock Saints to Pulp Fiction.

Still, the idea of him having some kind of soul seems to be backed up by his expression in the unmasked version of the photo. While most of the other Task Force X members appear to be having a fun, or at least tryin to look badass, there's something a bit melancholy about Floyd Lawton, here. Is that actually about character, is it just Will Smith's choice of facial expression, or something else? Impossible to know just yet, but there are some things that seem to add up.

Other than the mangled scripture, it's really only his insignia -- the rifle scope also recently associated with the Squad itself -- which makes his clothing seem personalized and non-standard. Well, that and all the red.

The red actually looks like tights up top, and between that and the mask, he's about as true to the comics as you're going to get in a movie that's about mercenaries rather than superheroes.

What's weird? It looks like the enhanced eye is on the wrong side in this image; every other Deadshot I can find has the right eye replaced, while Will Smith's for some reason has the laser sight on his left one. Commenters have noted that if you're a right-handed shot, which Smith appears to be in this photo, then it would be the right eye that you want the "scope" on. Knowing basically nothing about firearms, I can't confirm that.

The fact that he's got so many guns and so much ammo is an interesting choice for the character. On the one hand, it's an "always be prepared" kind of thing, but on the other, it seems like it would be overkill if you're bringing in "the world's greatest sniper" and he needs 2400 shots.

On the matter of the mask:


figure2It looks good, and more "comic booky" than most of the rest of the film...but it's hard to ignore the fact that when I was a kid, I had a Snake Eyes G.I. Joe toy that looked a bit like this...

That's all I can see in my mind's eye with the perforated muzzle on that mask, which doesn't look like the comics, where there's a more classic Spider-Man style thing of just cloth over his face.