Thursday, May 4, 2023

You can't kill Captain Boomerang!

I have a lot of time for James Gunn's take on the absurdity of superheroes, and think his films benefit from the Troma hidden deep in his DNA. It's not the only way to do superhero films, but the sincere snarkiness of Gunn's movies is usually fun and sometimes nakedly sentimental, and it works for me. I look forward to seeing the new Guardians of the Galaxy next week.

That said, I still can't fucking believe he killed Captain Boomerang.

Not everything about the 80s Suicide Squad comics by Ostrander, Yale and friends has aged that well, but one thing that is still a delight - 35 years later - is that Captain Boomerang is a fucking idiot who doesn't belong in this world, but somehow scrapes by.

He should be robbing banks in Central City and getting his arse handed to him by the Flash. But there he is, in the thick of black ops with massive body counts, just trying to keep his head connected to his shoulders. 

And in a comic like suicide Squad, where even the most powerful characters weren't safe from a sudden shocking death - the clue was always in the name - Captain Boomerang kept going. He survives the cosmic nightmare Apokalips and the worst that Kobra can chuck at him. He's not a particularly nice person, but you have to admire his self-preservation skills.

So when the cinematic version of the loudmouth Australian - as played by Jai Courtney, who shows charm he rarely gets to use in the very serious action films he usually appears in - gets killed five minutes into the second Suicide Squad movie, it really hurts.

It's easy to see why they did it - it's all about the shock value. It's like a Scream movie, just because you survived one encounter with Ghostface doesn't mean you'll get through the next. Even Randy knew that.

But it misses the point of having Captain Boomerang in the first place. His continued survival is patently absurd, and that's the whole reason we like him. He doesn't have much else going for him. 

Still, as much as I love the Boomer. I gotta appreciate the troll of having one seemingly dead character suddenly get up and walk away into the end credits, and it's the fuckin' Weseal. Well played, Mr Gunn. Well played.

No comments: